IVF in Barbados: Egg Retrieval

Prior to my egg retrieval, I was on ovarian stimulation injections for 10 days trying to get my ovaries to understand the assignment. Let’s hope those 4 follicles give us 4 good-quality eggs.

Fast forward!

I arrived at the clinic a few hours before my retrieval to do my blood draw for my protein-rich plasma treatment. After my blood draw, I hung out on the beach watching lots of crabs and enjoying the serenity and beauty of the nature that surrounded me.

Hubman met me at the clinic with our laundry so we found a local laundry shop and then I hustled back to the clinic as fast as I could to make it in time for my retrieval. I went back to the procedure area and changed clothes, then I went back to the procedure room, got comfortable, got my IV, and they started the egg retrieval. I wasn’t able to fully fall asleep during the retrieval. To say it was uncomfortable was an understatement, but at least it was over quickly.

They found 1 egg in each follicle, so 4 total. They started the fertilization process right away using ICSI.

We hired a taxi driver to pick up our laundry and take us back to the hotel. Once there, I was a little too sore to do anything except lay down, so I rested and stayed on top of my pain medications. I started feeling much better after a nap so Hubman and I walked down the boardwalk and met a few new awesome friends at Chill Bar. We hung out there for a while and grabbed a bite to eat before my pain meds wore off and it was time to head back to the hotel to get some more rest.

We found out this day that of the 4 eggs retrieved, only 3 were mature. Of those 3, 1 didn’t make it past the fertilization stage. The next day we found out 1 other hadn’t made it past day 1, which left us with 1 single embryo that was trying its hardest to develop and grow. This would be the single embryo that we transferred.

The next day I was feeling sore and swollen so I opted to stay inside and rest as much as I could. On the 3rd day, I was still very swollen but I was feeling good enough to head to the beach and meet some new friends from England. I got to see some baby sea turtles hatching from their nest and making their way to the ocean. I cried… a lot. (There’s a video on my tiktok if you want to experience it along with me!) It was the most amazing thing to witness and you guys know I have always had such a huge spot in my heart for sea turtles. After what seemed like an amazing day where everything was going well, I had a bit of a scare.

I’m so used to my body revolting against me that I thought for sure everything we had worked so hard for up to this point had been for nothing. We made plans to go to Oistin’s Fish Fry on Friday night with some new friends that we had just met. I left the beach and ran back up to the room to shower and get ready for dinner so we would be ready to meet our friends back in the lobby by 6:30. I took the fastest shower and when I stepped out to dry off, that’s when the panic set in. The amount of blood on my towel was more than alarming. I thought for sure I had started my period and seeing how our embryo transfer was scheduled for the next morning, you can imagine how upset I was.

I called the emergency line to my clinic and was connected to Dr. Skinner. She asked exactly what was happening and when I explained the situation, she assured me that this was likely a vaginal bleeding wound from the egg retrieval, since I was on blood thinners, rather than uterine bleeding caused by my menstrual cycle. She tried so hard to put my mind at ease, however, that’s much easier said than done. I tried so hard to move past it and enjoy the evening at the fish fry. The food was amazing and the company was awesome. I enjoyed visiting with new friends and experiencing more of Barbados’ traditions.

Sadly, all I could think about was how defeated I felt by my body, how I was just certain that I would show up for my embryo transfer the next morning to be told that it wasn’t going to happen. I was terrified. I didn’t get any sleep Friday night. As soon as Hubman fell asleep, I hid on the balcony and cried because the fear was so real. I finally fell asleep around 3, just to wake at 6 and head to the clinic for our transfer. Stay tuned to find out how our transfer day went.

I truly appreciate all of you guys taking the time to read our story.

Until next time, be humble and stay kind.

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