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Never Say Never (When It Comes to Infertility)
a blog by CGD, March 4, 2011
I remember a time when I thought those people who did so many in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycles were kind of crazy. I remember stumbling onto an IVF veteran web board and thinking, "no way that will be me."
So how did I become one of them? Well, it’s a long complicated story, but, I at least know one thing for sure: Never say never. There is a reason why these are famous last words.
IVF No. 6, Here We Go ...
Yes, you read that right, IVF No. 6. I have officially become what I used to think of as my worst nightmare (and I imagine some of yours, too).
How, exactly, did I get to this place? Well, I have been trying to think of clever way to tie my story together and present it to you with big red bow, but it kind of doesn’t work like that. Infertility is messy and unclear and not usually so straightforward, and so is my story.
In the four years since we have been trying to conceive, we have
- seen two fertility doctors (reproductive endocrinologists),
- had a bunch of artificial inseminations (IUIs), both medicated and un-medicated,
- attempted five IVF cycles (only three of which made it to transfer),
- had one surgical laparoscopy,
- and lost one pregnancy in the second trimester.
What Is the Infertility Diagnosis?
As for what the hell is going wrong, well that is complicated, too (of course!) I seem to have a little bit of a whole bunch of things: a slight fragile x mutation, mild endometriosis and a mild blood clotting disorder called Protein S deficiency.
Did I mention that my husband checks out clear? Nearly every time, rock star swimmers (except for one IUI cycle, but still it’s a good track record), which means that the issues clearly lie with me — Miss a little bit of this and little bit of that — how lovely.
The Infertility Journey
You catch me right now at an interesting time. I am about to get going on this sixth IVF cycle. I am already on day eight of Lupron injections and will start stimms soon. We are also hitting out four-year mark in our infertility journey, and there are clearly a lot of mixed emotions on both fronts. I keep trying to figure out how I am feeling, and, frankly, I am having a little trouble making sense of it all. I know that hope feels a little hard to come by these days, except for the hope that, win or lose, this is my last IVF cycle. As I said before, never say never, who even knows what might come next.
I am excited to have you all on this ride with me. My protocol for this cycle is a marathon that will span well over two months. I am trying to strap myself in for the ride. We will be freezing our embryos this cycle on day three and transferring them in a later cycle into what my fertility doctor is calling “the un-medicated uterus,” hence the length of this marathon. His theory is that perhaps fertility meds are interfering with the implantation process for me. Let’s hope he knows what he is talking about and that this protocol, along with the recent addition of Lovenox and aspirin for the blood clotting issues make all the difference.
I started blogging about a year and half ago and have found it amazingly cathartic and supportive, especially during the time when we lost our baby last year. I have also “met” remarkable women along this journey. I do not pretend to think that I am special or unique, and cannot promise you that my story will be so interesting to hear about. In fact, these days, I kind of wish that my life was a little less interesting and that I could just be like everyone else, married with 2.5 children. But, I do think that there is value in sharing our experiences in an open and honest way. That much I can promise you: I am unfiltered, uncensored and very honest.
IVF No. 6 here we go ...