Today is March 29, 2006. Two years ago today ... was my third embryo transfer, from our third round of IVF. During the first two IVF cycles (in October 2003 and December 2003), we had transferred four embryos each time. Because I was only 32 years old, had "textbook" embryos and "no known problems" most people gasp when they hear that. The potential for quadruplets definitely existed, but I suppose I never really was concerned about the thought of having multiples. I just wanted to get pregnant ... to be a mom, for Charlie to be a dad ... for us to have children and be a family. It had been such a long road paved with heartache, I needed it to end.
The night before our embryo transfer, was a Sunday. It was a beautiful, southern California spring evening. I remember that it had been such a gorgeous day, we decided to have a barbeque and eat dinner outside. As we sat on the back patio sipping our wine, we looked in to the beautiful twilight sky. It had been all over the news that the planets were in alignment and visible in the night sky. We pulled out our telescope - and sure enough - those planets that would have been visible to us on earth, were. We could make out Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn ... clear as day ... in a straight line across the sky.
There are a few times in my life when I've been filled with a peace that truly emanates through my whole body. If I had to guess, I would believe that it was God, literally holding me in His hands. That night, March 28, 2004 ... was one of those times. I had a feeling, deep in my soul ... that this third cycle, was going to be the one that made us parents. The planets aligned in the nightime sky, the love between Charlie and I, and the overwhelming feeling of peace, was epic.
The next morning, a Monday, we went to visit Dr. Smotrich and be reunited with our 3-day old embies. We decided that we would transfer four fresh embryos and two embryos that had been frozen from our cycle in December, for a total of six embryos. This might seem to be irresponsible and reckless ... but Dr. Smotrich knew that we were desperate. We had spent over $30,000 on treatment by this point and although I was willing to sell everything we had and mortgage our house to the hilt ... the emotional and physical burden was exhausting, bordering on excruciating. Since our two previous cycles with four embryos had not worked ... I wasn't overly concerned with transferring six.
This photo to the left is a picture of our six embryos on the day they were transferred back to me. I wish I knew who was who in this photo. I do know that the embryos to the top left and bottom right are the frozen embies from the December cycle. The four embryos in the middle are the fresh ones, from my March cycle. The pregnancy test was taken in April - a few days before my bloodwork (the doctors recommend you don't do this because you can get a false positive result), but I was really starting to feel "different." Once I saw the line appear - I was doubtful that it was correct ... but I also, began to wonder ... "What if they all decided to stick around?!" Anyway, I think it's a beautiful picture. The very first picture of my babies ... the little souls that have brought an immeasurable amount of love and joy in to our world. And finally, a feeling of completeness.
Even though two years have passed since my embryo transfer ... and we are coming up on the babies turning 18-months old, I still am in disbelief that I ever became pregnant in the first place. That I ever became a mom. When I look back on the challenges that we had to face to get to this "place" ... I don't think I'd change any of it. The struggles to become parents made us stronger. And since then, I feel like my story - and experience as a mom to triplets - have helped so many other people that are either struggling with infertility ... or facing the news that they have multiple babies on the way. Anyway you dice it ... I think God was holding me in His hands on March 28th. I could feel it then, and I can feel it now. This is a very special day for me, and for our family of five!