I’m Pregnant!!!

So I guess the cat is out of the bag?! I’m pregnant! We did a digital test 9dp5dt. In other words, 9 days post our 5 day old embryo transfer. We were supposed to wait until May 4th which would have been 11 days, but decided to do the test the day before we left Portugal. I actually woke at 5am that day and couldn’t hold my pee any longer, so I peed on the stick and then left it hidden in the bathroom. It literally KILLED me to not look at it, but I had promised Audrey we would…

Embryo Transfer

Transferring an embryo is the process of placing an embryo into a woman's uterus with the intention of establishing a pregnancy.   The uterus must be ready to receive an embryo which is why uterine preparation meds are used- usually estrogen to start with and then progesterone 3 to 5 days before the transfer. Other meds such as Orgalutran can also be used, to make sure your body doesn’t ovulate. The uterine preparation can be tough on your body, mimicking early pregnancy. In the past I’ve felt bloated, exhausted and sore. But I actually felt quite good on this cycle,…

Egg Collection

So much of IVF is unknown. There is only so much in your control. We were able to do Audrey’s egg collection earlier this week. It all looked good but we really just had to wait to see what would happen. Yes you can do scanning and bloodwork to try predict the outcomes and even make an educated guess at how many you will get... but until you actually do it, there is no way to know how many mature eggs you will get, or what quality they will be. It’s the same with so much of this process. The…

Travelling with a Toddler

Travelling with a toddler is the best and the worst of childhood all rolled up into one messy little package.   I feel like sometimes people think Ava is totally chill all the time. Trust me. SHE’S NOT. Perhaps that’s my own fault? Maybe I need to start posting the meltdown videos as evidence? Words like strong willed, belligerent and independent spring to mind. Well let me tell you, those were not the words we were using at 2am last night.   Travelling is hard for anyone. Adult or child. So I imagine it must be hard on a toddler.…

Progress of our Reciprocal IVF Cycle

Well we are finally here in Portugal. Today is day 2 and we are feeling more settled in now. The first day was crazy, getting to the first appointment at Ferticentro Fertility Clinic for scans and bloods. As you all know by now, reciprocal IVF splits the IVF process between the two mothers. One gives the eggs and the other does the uterine preparation for embryo transfer. It’s really nerve wracking wondering whether things will be ok, or if you might encounter a problem. With IVF you can never be sure how things are progressing until you get a scan…

7 Solutions for Staying Sane During IVF

IVF is incredible... allowing us and so many others to have beautiful families that wouldn’t have been possible 30 years ago. We know how lucky we are. And yet… Staying sane can be hard going through the process of IVF. There is so much to consider and so much that is unknown. And there is stigma. IVF is still considered a taboo subject, even though it is SO common. Bearing this in mind, here are a few things that have helped to keep us from going crazy throughout this process.   7 solutions for staying sane during IVF. Link in…

Who carries the baby?

People ask us this all the time. How did you choose who would carry the baby? Well for us it was pretty simple. We both have always wanted children, but Audrey never had a desire to be pregnant. Whereas I always imagined growing a baby and breastfeeding. Having done it once already, I can’t wait to do it again. This isn’t to say it wasn’t hard. I’m a Type 1 Diabetic, which made it all the more difficult. But even with all of the complications, I absolutely loved being pregnant. The next issue to consider was work and which one…

The cost of having a baby!

Assisted Human Reproduction (AHR) is a massive industry. In Ireland, we are fortunate that the cost is not as high as other places, like the USA. But it is still very expensive and can be prohibitive for a couple. Meaning that lots of people never have children because they can’t afford  the cost of getting pregnant. This goes for anyone who needs AHR. This is usually same sex couples, infertile couples and single women. This makes me so sad- that not having the money to conceive a baby, means you might never be able to start a family. Some countries,…

Why we chose Reciprocal IVF

Audrey and I always knew we wanted kids. We both come from large families and were always the ‘favourite aunties’, constantly babysitting for our nieces and nephews. Before we knew that Reciprocal IVF had a name, we would say to each other ‘wouldn’t it be cool if I (Ranae) could carry the baby but we used your (Audreys) eggs?’ The difference in a Reciprocal IVF cycle is that the ovarian stimulation and uterine preparation is ‘shared’ between the two mothers. This is why it is also called Shared Motherhood. It wasn’t until we went to a Dublin fertility clinic in…

Reciprocal IVF: our story

My name is Ranae. My wife Audrey and I live in Ireland with our 19 month old daughter Ava. We decided in 2015 to undergo ‘Reciprocal IVF’ treatment in Spain, as it was not available to us in the South of Ireland under the current legislation. (That’s a topic for another day!) It’s also known as ROPA or Shared Motherhood. Not many people have done reciprocal IVF in Ireland, and it’s an unknown area for lots of couples. Think of this as a ‘behind the scenes’ look into the world of same-sex IVF or for anyone wishing to avail of…