We have two embryos maturing into what we hope will become full-fledged human beings. They’re currently as healthy as these things can be said to be–good heart rates and the proper size, etc–but we’re still a long way from babies.
We’re excited, of course. When the IVF nurse who was performing the ultrasound said “you’ve got a baby,” I almost asked her to repeat it just to be sure I’d heard it right, and when she turned the speaker on so we could hear the heartbeat, I grinned like a damned fool, clutching Amy’s hand and beaming down at her. And then a second one–both embryos had made it this far!–and we grinned even harder.
This was the first time that it’s really felt real–the pregnancy test two weeks ago was promising, but this is more solid than a voice on the other end of the phone giving us a test result. And that period between implantation and the first visible evidence that the embryo has tunneled in to the side of the uterus is a Schrodinger’s box of uncertainty (and if I’m misusing that metaphor, please remember that I’m a poet and not a physicist). Lots of morulas and blastocysts make their way into a uterus and never mature into anything more substantial. (We named the first morula we sent into what Amy has termed a “murderworld” Kobayashi, as in Kobayashi Morula. Nerds will appreciate this.)
But these two, currently named Cobrahead and Gütküttr (the better to survive in such violent and dangerous territory) are thriving, or at least are holding their own. We’ll go back in two more weeks and see if they’re still there, never taking anything for granted, because if there’s one thing that’s certain about childbirth, it’s that it’s dangerous for everyone involved. Less so for the dad. I’m not likely to die from anything in this process, but one or both of the embryos and/or Amy could, very easily. Nothing about this is safe.
So I’m excited but cautious. For now, two potential humans are in there growing, like in Alien but grosser and more terrifying. I’ll keep you posted.