Thursday, April 9, 2015

IVF: Post Egg Retrieval Side Effects and Thoughts

I realize that it's been a couple of days since I have written, but, I wanted to share a few things that I expected and, didn't expect from this surgery.  I realize that ultimately, this could potentially all lead to an incredibly immense blessing, and for that, I am incredibly grateful.  But, in being real and honest, I wanted to share some of the personal and physical struggles that go on with all of this in the hopes that I can help other women that are going through it, and, to just kind of get it off my chest.

1. Emotions: Whew, this is kind of a big one, and not one that shouldn't be taken lightly.  Everyday, you are injecting yourself with hundreds of units of hormones.  That's going to change how you feel...a lot. To give you an idea, the main hormone that my clinic was looking at is called Estradiol, as it plays a strong role in preparing our bodies for child birth.  A 'normal' level of Estradiol in a woman ranges, but, to give you an idea, I began mine around 125.  On the day of egg retrieval, it was 3,600.  Which was a 'perfect' level in their eyes to have my body ready.  Which is great, except when it's kinda raging through your body.  I wouldn't say that I was bottle soda that I was shaken, ready to explode (although my husband may argue on that point!), but, I will say, that if an emotional situation came up, it was amplified.  Anything that might have slightly annoyed me before, really got me worked up.  Or, if something upsetting happened that I might have normally been a little sad about, I would have a really hard time not continuing to cry about it.  So, if you are going through this, or, you have a loved one who is going through this, give them some grace.  Obviously, we can all control our emotions, and I don't mean to use it as an excuse, but, this really makes it tough, and, thankfully, I've got a husband who is pretty patient with me.

2. Bloating: Man, this was a tough one for me.  When you are going through IVF, you can't exercise, (aside from walking), and bloating is a very real thing.  The best advice that I can give is to eat healthy (even though you want to eat every last gummy bear in sight!).  Focus on drinking a lot of water (even though you don't feel like doing that either!), I promise, the more food you eat that helps your digestive system move along, the better that bloating feel will get.

3. Post Surgery; Cramping: The day of the egg retrieval, I experienced some pretty intense cramping and abdominal pain.  So much so, that I had to walk pretty slowly to and from the car, and pretty much, stayed in bed all day.  They did give me pain medication, which, has helped, but, I can say, that as each day passes, the abdominal pain improves a little more as each day goes on, and I don't have to take the pain medication at all, and I'm on the third day.

4. Post Surgery; Fatigue: I'm currently on the third day since my surgery, and I've gotta say, I just feel extraordinarily, all the time.  I have taken naps randomly throughout the day, sometimes, even in the car, while we're on our way to the store (seriously, that happened yesterday!), and, no, I wasn't driving, haha ;)  But, the fatigue is legit, and, if you experience it too, don't feel bad, it's totally normal.

My very best tip that I can give, is that, you must think about the future.  You've got to think beyond yourself, and keep hope and faith that all of this is going to be worth it.  IVF isn't for the faint of heart, each day brings something new and it's a very unpredictable process.  My case is still not solved, so much can happen for us still, but, that hope that I feel is very much there, and the idea of seeing our babe is going to make the fatigue, bloating, hormones, cramping, and everything else will be worth it.   And, let's be honest, if all of this is successful you'll be experiencing plenty of fatigue anyway ;)

Keep the faith, you can do this, WE can do this.  <3



  1. I found this on Pintrest, I realize its an old post but thank you so much for sharing! I'm getting ready to start the process of IVF!

    1. Monica, sorry I'm just now seeing your comment! I'm so glad that you stopped by and read it! After I wrote this post, we had to go through 2 more rounds of IVF before we became pregnant. Now, we have our precious little boy who is 2 months old! We are so incredibly thankful! If you have questions, need help or support, please let me know!

  2. Hello, I also ran into this post on Pinterest. I started injections today. It has been a rollercoaster of emotions. Especially taking into account all the extra hormones lol. I can totally relate with the whole "everything is annoying " part. Its funny that i only reslized that as I read this because I didn't think I was being irrational until I thought back and yes, everything is extra annoying and extra sad and extra happy. The k you for sharing!

    1. Claudia, thank you so much for reading my post and sharing this with me! Ha, isn't it so nice to know that we're not alone in this crazy journey?! I realize I'm replying late, but I hope that all is well with you, and please feel free to reach out! My e-mail is

  3. I must have found you for a reason this morning. I noticed the logo on your hospital gown on Pinterest. My 16 year old daughter is a patient at the ART in Bethesda- she’s post chemo- trying to save eggs. She’s been having a rough time - day 8 stim - estrogen is still undertectable.... I saw that you have a sweet baby now- what a blessing. This morning, you’ve given me hope! You’ve given us hope. I could have never imagined this emotional roller coaster.


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