Hello lovely people, it has been a while since my last post due to ongoing chemotherapy and all that jazz. As it’s finished, however, I would like to share something that happened just before the chemotherapy.
It all happened quite quickly. It was busy, intense, and exhausting… but worth the stress.
This is about my egg freezing episode.
On a Wednesday in early February, I was told that I would be receiving chemotherapy; so I gave the fertility clinic a call on a thursday afternoon. Whilst arranging a date and time for the first appointment, the nurse surprisingly told me that I had to start the process right away on that day.
Normally you would start the egg freezing process on the second day of your cycle. Amazingly, the day I called the clinic was the second day of my cycle. I guess it worked out well?!
Everything got urgent, all the sudden. The clinic was 90 minutes away, and they were closing at 1600hrs. I only had just enough time to make it there.
I made a quick and urgent phone call to Dan, saying we needed to leave very soon. Thankfully he managed to take some time off work; so after 15 minutes, we were on the road to the clinic.
Roughly 90 minutes later we sat in a consultation room with a nurse, who was explaining the egg freezing process. Quite overwhelming. There would be multiple self-injections, pills and visits to the clinic. We came back home with three bags full of things. Moreover, we had to read through and sign on the terms and conditions forms in the evening. Wow!
Since then we made a visit to the clinic every other morning.
Most appointments were at 8am, which meant early starts for both of us. Every appointment included two things: a blood test and ultra sound scan of ovaries.
Every evening I had to give myself with injection and take two pills.
With eggs growing, I was given 2 more different types of injections to continue till the very last stage. These include this final injection to prevent the ovulation, which should be injected 48 hours before the egg collection. Due to the hormonal changes I was experiencing Pre Menstrual Symptoms like mood swings. Somehow it was becoming more and more difficult to deal with.
To end my misery, on the 14th day of the process, I got my eggs harvested and frozen.
It was a quick process; it all happened before I had my lunch. Then the next day I made the last visit to the clinic for a blood test to see if my hormone level was becoming normal.
It was only two weeks but felt much longer, I was really fed up with the morning drives and blood tests. Dan was very tired from driving for 3 hours or longer every other morning.
We were happy that it was all done and dusted.
However, that really wasn’t the end of it.
Two days after the egg retrieval, I started feeling a little odd. My belly was the biggest I had seen in all my life and it felt like there was a big water balloon inside. Also I was short of breath just walking upstairs, I felt bloated, dizzy and tired, and sometimes my eyes went blurry.
First I was a little panicked, thinking something went wrong. However, it really affected my emotional stability. I was upset, frustrated and miserable.
So, with great urgency, I called the fertility clinic and asked the nurse about what on earth was happening to my body. “Nothing to worry about,” the nurse replied. According to her, these symptoms normally appear when you have more than 25 eggs retrieved; which I did not. They had not told me in advance in order not to set unnecessary fear and worries in my mind.
“…Oh, ok. How long does it take for me to go back to normal?”
Full two weeks was all it took for me to start feeling normal. Though I started receiving chemotherapy at the end of the second week of these post egg retrieval symptoms, which was not great.
So what did I gained out of this ordeal? Security.
Security that, even if I become menopausal, I could still have a baby with the frozen eggs. With NHS funding it 100% to keep the eggs for the next 10 years, I could stop worrying about my fertility for once and get on with what was ahead of me… The chemo therapy and following cancer treatments.
Despite all the misery that it brought, I am glad I have gone through the process. Though, I have to say this isn’t for everybody. The consultant told me that some ladies had not chosen to go through it because they had been already quite overwhelmed by the whole cancer business.
I hope this post gives you a rough idea about the whole egg freezing process, and what to expect of it. (Though I feel guilty of having a massive rant!!!)
If you would like to help more people beat cancer sooner, please click this pink ribbon! It will lead you to Cancer Research UK website 🙂
I will see you in my next blog.
Bless you all!