Friday, 23 November 2012

Another chapter. + 2 years

So, two years after going on the waiting list for fertility treatment, more than three after deciding to try for a family, we are on the way.

As you can (possibly) see there are two buns in this particular oven.

Of course, there's a long way to go. But whatever happens now, it will be a story about a full or partial pregnancy and not a story of infertility. So this will be my last post.

I like to think that, had treatment been unsuccessful, I had reached the point of being able to greet that with contentment. But there's no way of knowing if that's true.

The most stressful times were the extensions and uncertainties about the wait at IVF Wales, and the unpleasant doctor there. BCRM was wonderful.

My 'tips' for anyone in a similar situation:
  • just let yourself feel the way you feel: there is no right way to approach these matters
  • try not to plan ahead or to depend on ay particular future result - this will save you stress
  • only talk to people who make you feel better - you don't owe anyone anything
  • enjoy as much of your life as you can, embrace current and new hobbies and relationships - you can't make a baby happen or grow in a particular way; you can live the life you have been given to the full.

God bless. 

Monday, 5 November 2012

So far, so good

Very relieved to see this on Saturday morning.

I need to go in for an early scan on November 21st to check things look ok.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Treatment day 49 +23 months

Pessaries #14

Can't believe I've been taking something or other, or been in hospital, every day for nearly 50 days!

Just 3 little pessaries left.

It is stressful now because I have lots of pre-menstrual type symptoms which could also be early pregnancy type symptoms. So every time I go to the loo I have to take a deep breath.... and Jon is in Canada, so he's not around to help dissipate the anxiety (by watching Buffy with me or something - discussing the situation is of very limited use.)

On Saturday, after taking the PG test, I have to drive about 70 miles to go and speak to 500 people at Salisbury diocesan synod....not sure they'll get the best of me, either way, to be honest!

Friday, 26 October 2012

Treatment day 43

Pessaries #8

So far, so good.

I don't actually mind the waiting for the results of the IVF. What I'm frightened of is the day they come! Either way, to be honest: it just seems so momentous.

Jon set off for Canada today, so he's all the way over there learning to have a new life. And I'm all the way over here trying to deal with the pregnancy question. It's not easy.

Often I'm quite sad and emotional - but I do feel like I'm alive. There have been challenges and we've worked through them. If there are more, we'll do the same. We've had to make choices, and we've done it. And I think we've made the right ones.

I'm very grateful for all the prayers and care we've had. And moved by the times when people have said they've found this chapter of our story helpful and inspiring. In such exchanges I find evidence of a God who connects us all. Whatever may befall us. And I believe he will be there in the middle of the next chapter, too.

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Treatment day 38

Pessaries #3

Yesterday morning we had a call to say my two eggs had become two healthy looking embryos. Hurray!

Not many people get to have two embryos replaced because the hfea wants to limit the number of multiple births resulting from fertility treatment. But we fitted the criteria for it because they only retrieved two eggs in total from me and I am under 35. So, we decided to have both replaced. Obviously, this means we didn't have any embryos to freeze (and they wouldn't have frozen the one remaining one, anyway, again down to the regulatory criteria for such procedures.) 

There is now a 34% chance of twins. Eeek! And exciting.

lovely pessaries
I was back into BCRM at noon on Saturday for the replacement. Not very pleasant - a huge moving chair and a nice big speculum in place for what seemed like an age.... But they said the procedure went very well and both embryos reached their destination.

I have to take pessaries for 2 weeks to give me progesterone and keep the womb lining thick. And then take a pregnancy test.

Notwithstanding this blog, I am hesitant about discussing all this because I expect people to suddenly get excited and assume we're having two children. There is a long way to go before that! It's not likely both embryos will take, quite likely neither will, or that I'll miscarry, or that there will be complications. I would like to concentrate on being happy we've got this far, coped with the whole thing very well (in my opinion) and that treatment has gone well. The present reality is all that matters.

Hard to believe that it as less than a week between follicle scan and embryo replacement!

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Treatment day 35

The op

Back home. All seemed to go well. They got the 2 eggs and Jon's sperm looked good. Now it's all spending the night together in a little dish!

We will be called by the embryologist on Saturday morning to find out if we have any embryos and, if so, when I need to go in for implantation.

The staff were very good at BCRM. Even the needle in my hand didn't bother me at all, unlike last time I had one. Actually, it was quite nice to come round after having a proper sleep! I am a bit tender in my right abdomen and weary but feeling ok.

My own personal sharps bin. Now full!
Now that everything is out of our hands, I feel better. I can't be at fault for missing an injection or mistiming a sniff or whatever. It's much easier to be stoical about things one cannot control. Will I be able to maintain an emotional equilibrium if neither of the eggs become embryos? I don't know, but I think my chances of doing so are higher than if I had failed to do one element of the medication properly.

There's also a sense of it being 'in God's hands' in a new way. Which is odd. Because of course it always was. There's no reason it should be any more in God's hands in the lab at Southmead Hospital than there was of it being in his hands when I was administering injections. But I find it harder to believe God's in charge when I'm playing an active part. Must say something about my inner demons, that!

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Treatment day 34

Break day

Today is a day off medication. Yesterday, I took my last sniffs of buselerin (8am, noon, 4pm, 8pm) and last injection of menopur (6pm), as well as the single ovitrelle injection (1015pm). All had to be timed exactly.

We went in for my scan on Monday. It was a bit disappointing because I only had two follicles mature to the required point. If it had been easy for us to start again during my next cycle, I think they would have recommended it. But as Jon's about to leave, we asked to go ahead with egg collection this week. It means we probably only have two eggs to work with.

ovitrelle pen
So the op. is happening tomorrow morning. I'm quite scared. Also very tired as I haven't been sleeping. But so glad the nurse let us make our own decision about going ahead now. And happy we are going to get through this before Jon heads off. It would have been very hard doing it without him. (We should be able to see any viable embryo, if we have one, put back in before he leaves as well.)

The ovitrelle injection makes my eggs mature ready for collection.  It was pretty stressful to do. You get given one dose. I've had to keep it in my fridge for the last 5 weeks and move it from one house to another. It is a pen device, so I was very scared of breaking it or dropping it or doing something wrong. Only once chance! Jon helped me to keep calm and I think we managed ok. So relieved I don't have to do any more injections.

Fingers crossed Jon's sperm and my bits look ok tomorrow and they can go ahead. And that the needle in the back of my hand doesn't hurt too much : ( We are in at 830am and I should be out around lunchtime.