As I sit here trying to think about what to write for this month’s blog I just feel so empty.
Our second round of IVF did not go even closely as planned.
I had planned on writing about how successful my second round was. It was pretty much written after egg retrieval – thinking about how many embryos we were going to have, even thinking about transferring two this time.
After the kick to the stomach from our first round, I thought I could contain my smugness. I spent five months doing everything that I was supposed to before we started – no more alcohol, acupuncture treatments, IV therapy for egg quality, took my supplements. I did everything that I read about improving your egg health.
On June 5th I was expecting the next call from our embryologist to hear about our growing embryos. Instead when I answered the phone – it was my doctor’s voice.
As soon as I heard his voice it felt like my stomach fell out.
I already knew what was coming, I just didn’t know how bad it was going to be. All of our embryos were gone. How was this even possible?! I tried to maintain my composure while I listened to the doctor tell me how he didn’t expect this, and that he was sorry and his assistant would contact us with a follow up appointment.
I had already broken down at this point . In-between sobs I assured him that I would make an appointment. When my phone rang, Ryan came down to the bedroom door. As soon as he heard the doctor’s voice he sat on the bed and waited for the conversation to be over.
Ryan held me for what felt like hours as my whole world melted into nothing. We had no embryos left on day 4. We were worse off than the first round. I felt like the biggest failure and there was nothing that I can do to make it better.
We changed all of my medications for this round.
We didn’t want to over stimulate like we did last round. It happened anyway. I vowed not to have any expectations at all, but I was still not prepared for these results.
I really thought that the egg retrieval was going to be the worst part of the round. They had to do my egg retrieval without freezing as my ovaries were too lifted which is by far the worst pain I have had in my life. They retrieved 19 eggs, 13 were mature enough to be fertilized.
We started with 13 embryos on day 1, then 7 embryos on day 3, and then none by day 4. I had honestly banked all of my hopes on this round. I had visualized being pregnant and finally catching up to my friends. In the 2.5 years since we started trying I feel like we have been lapped by all of our friends. Now I know how crappy Super Mario Kart players feel.
We have spent a lot of time talking about egg donors, adoption, or a third round of IVF.
Ryan and I are having a hard time coming to grips with the first two options. We are just not ready to give up on having a child together yet. There are days that our only options feel like someone has offered us death by burning or drowning. Which one is the least painful?
Whether we choose to use a donor in the future, or to adopt, I would love and raise that child as if it was my own.
Accepting that I will never have a biological child of my own is a tough pill to swallow.
So, here we sit in limbo trying to make a decision on what is next. The fact that I am turning 37 this year makes it even worse. It feels like we have no time to make decisions at all. I know that we are better off than a lot of people in our situation as we are not financially stressed by this journey.
Since we received the terrible news of our embryos dying, three people in my life have gotten pregnant. Every time I see or hear another announcement I get a tightness in my chest. I feel panic thinking about why it feels like I will never get there.
I went to baseball yesterday, which is such a good release for me. Even then, a girl on the opposing team announced that she was pregnant. I know that the rest of my life will be filled with pregnancy announcements, baby showers, 1st birthdays. It would just be nice to be on the other side of the things for a change – to be the one making the announcements and hosting the events.
Since last September, we have been rearranging our lives around fertility schedules, living in the land of what ifs.
We are ready for a change of scenery.