I’m happy to say my clinic has reopened to patients with certain diagnoses, which includes myself. They decided to allow women over 25 years old and women with an AMH level below 1.0 to start treatment again. From what I understand this has also been the trend for other clinics across the country as well. On my Instagram I am seeing more and more posts from other people showing they are starting back up with their treatment too. How long has it been that I’ve had to postpone treatment due to my clinic being closed? It’s been 49 days. It may not seem like a long time, but when you have no clue when your clinic will reopen those days seem like an eternity.
So what did I do during the time I was waiting to restart my treatment? I focused on trying to get healthier and lost some weight. Check out my Weight Loss Series to see my progress.
Catch-up on Previous FET Prep Posts
Countdown Until FET: 46 days (as of 5-17-2020)
FET Scheduled After Clinic Partially Reopened
I was so excited to read the email from my clinic that said they will allow me to start back up with treatment, due to my age and diagnosis. My diagnosis is low AMH (Anti-Müllerian hormone), which has lead to low ovarian reserve. With my particular diagnosis time is of the essence, and postponing fertility treatment could mean missing the chance of having a biological child. I’ve been told by my doctor that my ovarian reserve level is equivalent to a woman in her mid to late 40s. Basically, I cannot waste any time. So when I heard my clinic was prioritizing treatment to women with my diagnosis I thought it was a great idea and I was on board with scheduling my FET (frozen embryo transfer).
Naturally, I do have some concerns about flying out of state to do my FET during the COVID-19 pandemic. I plan on being extra cautious on the plane, in the hotel, the clinic, and any other place I may have to go while I’m in Seattle. I hear they are requiring everyone on airlines to wear masks, which is definitely a good thing and it makes me feel somewhat safer.
But I am very concerned about the recent photos I saw in the news where upset flyers took a picture of their packed flight. Airlines were promising to block out middle seats to allow for some social distancing, but those pictures show that the airlines are not following through on what they are saying. Granted it’s not every airline doing this, but apparently it’s been more than one. I’m hoping that my airline will stick with what they are saying. I plan to wear a mask, gloves, wash my hands often, and all that good stuff.
I don’t have any sight-seeing plans while I am down there. The only place I plan to go to is my clinic, that’s it. I’ll most likely have my food delivered to the hotel while I am there. I don’t even want to go to the grocery store that is around the corner from my hotel. I’ve only been inside my grocery store one time these past two months. Luckily I’ve been able to do grocery pickup to where I don’t even need to set foot inside the store, which has been really nice. The only time I went to Costco recently was because I knew they were requiring everyone to wear masks. Had they not done that I would not have gone in.
My doctor has me starting the process of down-regulating with birth control pills, to prepare for my frozen embryo transfer (FET). I won’t be starting my injections until June according to the calendar my nurse created for me. The birth control pills help to time my cycle so I can start my other medicine at the right time. The main goal of all the medicine is to help thicken my uterine lining to be more receptive to the embryo I’ll be transferring. The thicker the uterine lining the more likely the embryo will implant and the more likely I will have a positive pregnancy test. I’ve heard that some women have a hard time getting their uterine lining to become thick enough and they have had to postpone their FET. I really hope that isn’t the case for me. This is my first FET so I have no idea what to expect as far as how my body will react to these meds. I’ve never heard my doctor mention anything about issues with my uterine lining in the past, so I’m crossing my fingers I won’t have any issues.
The other issue that is on my mind is that I know several people who were returning to Alaska and they had their flight cancelled multiple times. Several of them said they had to wait upwards of one week before they could actually fly back home. I’m not stressing over how long it will take to get back home as much as I am getting to Seattle. The reason being that if I miss my flight I will miss my narrow window to have my FET procedure during the time that is best for my uterine lining. Essentially, my worst-case-scenario is missing my FET. But I don’t want to get there too early because 1) the hotel is expensive (yes, even during the pandemic), and 2) I am more likely to be exposed to COVID-19 in Seattle as opposed to back home (based on the number of cases).
At one point I considered driving down to Seattle but if I remember correctly I thought I heard that Canada closed its borders. Even if Canada was open, I think it would be stressful to drive that insanely long distance and make all those stops along the way for gas and food, which could expose me to COVID. Not to mention they say you need to reduce stress as much as possible before, during, and after your FET. I don’t know about you, but a 43 hour road-trip (one-way) during a pandemic while on hormone drugs sounds stress inducing to me.
I have my flight and hotel booked. It’s happening! Kurtis will be able to come with me this time since he has some time off. Just as I was writing that last sentence I had an “uh-oh” moment. What if he can’t be in the procedure room with me like they normally do because of the pandemic? S*$&! Why didn’t I ask that question before I booked the flights for us? I just took a moment now to shoot off an email to my nurse, asking her if Kurtis is able to be in the room with me. I’m not sure he’ll want to go if he can’t be in the room.
I just went back and reread a recent email from the clinic they sent to everyone. It says they are limiting appointments to patients only. Dang it! Why did I not remember that when I booked my flight? Well, before I go and cancel the flight I’ll see what my nurse says, and then I’ll check with Kurtis to see if he wants to come with me to Seattle anyway. If he doesn’t want to then I’ll have to see about getting a refund, which I don’t know is possible. Or maybe I could at least get a credit. I bought trip insurance, just in case my FET needed to be postponed, so I may have to use that on his ticket, we’ll see.
As of a few days ago, Seattle did not have a quarantine order for travelers, so that means I do not have to hunker down for a certain length of time when I arrive there. But when I return home to Alaska I am required to self-quarantine for 14 days. This is a mandatory state requirement as well as a requirement with my job. I’ll have to plan ahead and get groceries just before I leave Alaska so I won’t have to go anywhere during my self-quarantine. I’m not sure if DoorDash delivers groceries in my city yet. I know they deliver restaurant food, but that can get spendy pretty quickly. I need to plan ahead and get the majority of my food from the grocery store before I leave for my trip.
Mini Victories for the Week
Started back up with the vitamins I was on before for FET Prep.
Getting back on track with FET prep.
I’ve been doing weekly hikes on trails I’ve never been on before (social distancing of course).
Work in Progress
I had cut back somewhat on exercising this past week, and I want to get back into the routine.
Find out if Kurtis can be in the room during the FET procedure.