I have written this post many times, always getting carried away writing thousands, upon thousands of words about the whole journey (why could I write thousands for a blog post yet at uni 1500 was too many lol). I get carried away. It’s a good thing though, it’s a release. Coming to grips with it all has been hard and in some ways writing this adds to the closure. It’s a little bit fitting though that I write this post on my blog’s 1st birthday as our IVF journey started a year ago with me finding out that I wasn’t as “young, fit and healthy” as the doctors keep saying. I had a low egg count, like 10 years older low, and my tubes were blocked. Not a good start to what was meant to be an easy “turkey baster” scenario. Instead it was straight into IVF plus the $$$ that goes with it.
The journey, while unsuccessful for us, is not something we regret or would change. We tried and can never say “maybe if we….”. We did everything we could within our budget without sending ourselves into spiralling debt, though we did go over. It’s cruel to say money played a big factor in our baby making journey, but it has. We have to think with our heads on this one otherwise there could be years and years of trying and we honestly don’t want that. If we were to look back in 10 years having tried and tried to no avail, would we be happy? Probably not. There would be holidays missed, opportunities gone knocking and a body wrecked from the hormones. We have made our call to end now with no regrets and knowing there are other options out there. We are young after all.
So what did our journey involve? Here is a very simplistic break down:
- Over 65 daily injections at the same time every night, often 2 a day. (Going out was a real pain.)
- Over 20 blood tests, always between 7am – 8am
- 30 days of twice daily progesterone pessaries. (These were the worst. I’d take injections any day over these.)
- 11 internal ultrasounds
- 5 hospital admissions
- 2 general anaesthetics
- 19 eggs retrieved
- 9 embryos created
- 3 embryos surviving 5 days in a petri dish. (Ever wanted to know what 1 looks like? Check out below)
- 1 embryo frozen and thawed
- 7 report cards on the progress of our embryos
- 6kgs gained in 3 weeks
- 4kgs lost.
- 1.5kgs gained in 4 days.
- Approximately 3008kms driven
- 2 nights in a hotel
- 6 weeks worth of “2 weeks wait’s” pregnancy-symptom spotting
- 3 positive home pregnancy tests
- 1 miscarriage
- 1 265 845 tears (ok I have no idea how many but there was a lot!)
After all of that, none stuck around. I don’t think it means we weren’t meant to be parents, I just think we were meant to open our home and hearts in another way. We have chosen a new direction – fostering with the Barnardos Find-A-Family program. (I’m sure there will be a post or 2 on that in the future.)We are embracing our new direction. We will never forget that having our own child wasn’t meant to be, but we don’t want to dwell on it. Life has too many adventures ahead for us and we want to enjoy it!
As I am sure someone will ask, just a note – Why doesn’t Naomi do it? Naomi unfortunately has her own set of “women’s health issues” that gives her a slim chance of conceiving. She is also the primary breadwinner and let’s face it, we need a roof over our heads! And to use her eggs but I carry? How do you explain to a child that you have 2 Mum’s with the same name, you were created with eggs from Mum 2 with a sperm donor from the USA but were carried by Mum 1? Even I get confused!!!
I’m sure there is plenty I have left out but one thing is for sure, it is a long and arduous process that is, if nothing else, emotional. That being said, I am not sensitive about it all and very open, so if there are any questions fire away!