We decided to continue with our London clinic, so it’s off to London to visit the ABC IVF clinic once again.

It’s such familiar territory by now. We greet the staff as we come in, take a seat in the waiting room, help ourselves to some water from the cooler, make toilet trips (still scarred by the ‘have you emptied your bladder’ shouting, I now visit the bathroom immediately on arrival!).

We don’t have to wait long and get to see “our” consultant again as well, which is nice.

Happy New Year’s are exchanged, we talk about how I have been feeling this past month, and then it’s scan time.

It barely fazes me anymore to undress and go lie down on the little bench. Mainly I am glad to get the scan and to find out what is happening with my body. Legs up in the stirrups and off we go!

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Christmas and New Year’s are over, I am healed from the OHSS and egg collection surgery, and we’re eager to keep on going!

But what comes next exactly?

If I wouldn’t have gotten sick, they would have done a ‘fresh transfer’ of an embryo a few days after the egg collection surgery, and I might have been 1.5 months pregnant by now. I’m not, which feels fine most of the time, but sometimes it still hits me what could have been. I know it was naive to hope for it to go that perfectly, but of course we had hoped for exactly that – all the luck in the world…

All of our embryos were frozen instead and now it’s all about getting my body healthy and ready to be a good home for one of them. Once I am, and at the right point of my cycle, then they’ll defrost one of the embryos (I can’t help but imagine them doing this in a microwave!) and put it back.

This means that we need more appointments, more trips into London, and more money.

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It’s the last morning in our London hotel.

We have to check out in an hour, our bags are mostly packed, but first we’re waiting for a call. Our ten fertilised eggs have had several days to grow by now, and we’ll know how they’ve been getting on.

I am nervous. These little zygotes-growing-into-embryos are our only chance now, and I want them to do well.

The phone rings, and the embryologist talks quickly but I hear the words ‘one frozen’. I’m immediately both glad – we really were hoping for at least one that was good enough to freeze – and concerned, did they all do that badly we have only one left?

But then I listen on and realise they froze the one embryo already because it was top quality. The other nine are all still there and still growing!

It’s wonderful news to leave London on. Now we know for certain that we will get our try in a few months!

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After the egg collection, most of my focus is on recovering.

I have to inject myself twice a day all over again, and I’ve come to the point that I absolutely HATE it.

I’m still in pain from the surgery so anything on top that feels like a lot to bear. It’s even worse because I thought I was done with the needles, but now I’m not and the blood thinners really hurt when I inject them and leave massive bruises, I’m just done.

I’m also terrible at staying in bed all day. Especially because we’re in a small hotel room, I get cabin fever easily and insist on going out, even though it’s cold and horrible outside and every step I take hurts. I am not in the sanest of mindsets!

Because of the OHSS I am not getting an embryo at the end of this, and that’s really starting to sink in now. I don’t want to go home, still sore, still sick, and have nothing to show for it.

Luckily I have nice painkillers, and I do sleep at night. Every day it gets a little easier to dress myself, to bend over, to walk.

After being nauseous for so many days, my appetite is starting to come back as well. We eat a lot of grapes and crackers and cheese. We watch Netflix from the hotel bed.  

And… We get an update on our eggs!

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We have to cross London in rush hour and I am still feeling terrible, so we leave well on time.

In the tube station each train car is packed, so much so that we can’t even squeeze in the first three trains that stop. I feel unsteady on my legs, but try not to worry. We HAVE to get there. Egg collection isn’t optional!

In the fourth train that stops we press on, into the mass of people. I hold on to a rail on the ceiling.  Jo juggles a backpack with constantly checking on me, making sure I don’t either faint or throw up. A few stops down a seat opens up, and I sink into it gratefully.

I don’t feel like I’m on my way to a surgery. It feels important sure, I’m nervous, I’m nauseous, I can feel the swelling of my stomach uncomfortably pull my muscles – it’s like doing sit-ups in reverse this growing eggs business. But I don’t feel ready to be sedated and have someone take these out of me.

Jo and I take bets on how many eggs will be collected today. I say eleven, which is optimistic. Jo bets on a more sensible eight and suggests that the winner gets to nickname our first frozen embryo. We come up with silly names for a bunch of them, laughing a little.

We make it to the Raynes Park Create clinic.

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