Thank you all so much for sticking with this series and commenting on the journey so far, i would say the rest will be covered in this post and one more, so i hope you can stick with it until the end!
At the end of the last post i was on the list, impatiently waiting for our turn, ringing them (too) often to find out where we stood and if there were any donors who would match with us going through the screening process.
It felt like it was taking an age and i cried after every phone call, i felt so close but yet so far and it was all just too much to think about, the excitement, the anxiety, the hope, it felt like my entire life had been leading up to it and the pressure of it all was huge!
At the same time there were other life things going on, we weren’t as financially stable as we could have been and my grandmother died just before the letter came.
But then one day…
I had come home from work with a horrific migraine, as per, i could hardly see, i felt like i was going to be sick, and i needed to just go to bed and get some sleep, hubby had picked my up from work and i have a vague recollection of him opening the post while i was standing in the kitchen getting some water before going upstairs.
There was one from the clinic we were with.. but didn’t think much of it, my brain was at half capacity at best!
‘We are at the top of the list’ he said,
I had waiting my entire adult life to hear those words, to receive that letter, when family asked about my future, i couldn’t speculate because this was what i was waiting for, but i cant remember what my reply was, it certainly didn’t register in my head and i went off to bed, the poor guy had to sit thinking about it, wanting to talk about it all night while i slept, and the next morning i woke up and had a faint memory of a letter from the hospital but not what it said, when i went downstairs it was there on the table, in black and white, we were at the top of the list, it was our turn, it was our time, and the emotions were over whelming!
A couple of weeks passed…..
We chose a donor that was egg sharing, we thought if we could help her afford treatment and share eggs with her that would be an ideal scenario, we weren’t hugely caught up on personality or physical traits, we worked on the basis that if we had a happy healthy baby we wouldn’t have minded.
Its almost amusing now looking back, when they first explained about all the meds, ha and the pessaries, i was NOT okay with those, its crazy how quickly they all became normal and just part of daily life, you tell people about all the internal scans and they screw their face up, doesn’t everyone have internal scans as part of normal life?
Because it most certainly normal for me!
Our first cycle ended in a chemical pregnancy after my first experience of what turned out to be a menacing two week wait, it was hard, for the first cycle we felt so close, but we dealt with it, and concluded that at least we know it is possible, we have frozen 2 embryos that were really good blasto’s and i stopped the hormones, this was worse than i expected, the pain was awful, for someone who doesn’t have periods ever it was a shock to the system, at the time i hadn’t really appreciated that a chemical pregnancy is still an early pregnancy and still a loss, one that i would have to grieve for, but we did in our own way, and we took solace in the promise of another cycle with out two frosties.
It was at that point we realised just how quick a cycle can be over, we said that if we had the money when our NHS cycles ran out we wouldn’t rule out the idea of paying for treatment, but being younger I always knew that was unlikely due to financial reasons, it was a HUGE shock when we heard how much it costs, for what in theory is such a gamble that can be over in a matter of weeks, if we were going to pay for that gamble i would have wanted to be as young as possible to give us the best chance!
A couple of months on, we had our second cycle, we decided to raise our chances and put both embryos back providing they both thawed as they should.
Which was scary in itself!
All the phone calls, and results you have to wait for through the process is excruciating! You feel like your life is in limbo, and nothing is a certainty, it was hard enough getting through each and every day, never mind being able to get through a week!
To our amazement, they both thawed really well and so we had two top grade blastocysts put back, as it turned out it is pretty likely they were going to thaw okay, but i just couldn’t let myself get to the place where i presumed anything nothing is a certainty in this game!
The day of the test date came, they were always hard because of obvious reasons but i also have a full on fear of needles, i have mentioned it before in a previous post but i end up rocking in the corner hiding from the nurses and am a total mess after i have blood taken, it’s funny when i think about it and its not happening but when i’m there and getting it done it is truly traumatic.
Not only that, for some reason when i am pumped up on hormones my veins don’t play ball and on that day, after 2 hours of trying to get blood out of me, the nurse said i would be better to do a urine sample instead.
So i did and the result followed quickly after!
It was negative and after such a traumatic morning, i was beyond having even an ounce of energy to even pretend to deal with it in any way! Hubby had gone to the car to put money on the parking metre, she didn’t even wait for him to come back before telling me, just poked her head around the door and told me it was negative.
When he finally cam back after what felt like an age, we cried, we hid our selves away from the world and just held each other. I don’t think i have ever needed anyone as much as i needed him through all of this, and he was always nothing short of amazing, if it wasn’t for him i would be in the depths of a depression, i’m sure of it.
We told our family that night, just via text, we couldn’t say it out loud or we would just cry..again.
The next morning i was still expecting a phone call from the clinic to tell me what my HCG levels were, when they rung a really happy nurse was on the other side of the phone and asked how my morning was, i replied with ‘oh you know, not great really’ and, obviously oblivious to what had gone on the day before and what i had just said, she went on to tell me that she was so happy to tell me that i was pregnant!
I’m sorry…. WHAT??
That’s all i could say, and i’m not sure that they were clear enough to understand!
I don’t usually use GIFS in this series, i think its a bit too serious, but the above says it all!!!
I shouted for hubby and put it on speaker phone, asked her to repeat that again, and there it was, she said it again, i told her about the negative result and that i really didn’t understand what she was saying, shaking, crying, confused, and she said that the blood they had managed to get out of me, had been sent off and there was enough HCG in there to confirm i was pregnant.. and that they would see me in 6 WEEKS for a scan…
OH no no no, i will stop you right there ‘Mrs lets make a poor infertile woman confused nurse lady!’
I told them that yesterday i wasn’t pregnant, i could have stopped my hormones, gone out drinking, smoked (not that i smoke but i could have) I could have gone and played touch rugby for all they knew!!! I could have hurt my baby!! You could have made me hurt my baby!!
And now your telling me that there is a little life growing in me.. maybe.. possibly and now i have to wait for 6 WHOLE WEEKS, no chance!
So i organised another blood test in 48 hours to check the HCG level was doubling like it should, and thus more waiting began, waiting for the blood test, waiting for the phone call to get the results, waiting again!
Argh the waiting, how i don’t miss the waiting, but eventually, while i was at work surrounded by kids, there it was, the phone call came, the level had doubled and i sobbed, at work, in front of the kids, i just sobbed and sobbed and sobbed, it was probably a lot to do with being amped up on hormones too, but seriously.. the crying didn’t stop!
After a week or two I began to feel pregnant, the nausea set in and i wanted to eat… Nutella especially, my boobs hurt, and we began to believe this was happening, we had a moment in the supermarket where i just wanted all the food, ALL of it, and he looked at me,
‘You’re definitely pregnant!’ he said.
At the scan (10 ish weeks pregnant) hubby was so positive, he usually is and always keeps a positive mind! But he truly thought it was all okay, and so did i.
There was a lady in the waiting room, she kept getting up (obviously to be sick in the toilet) and came back smiling at her Partner, i felt jealous, it would be great to have that certainty.
Then they called our names, i will never forget lying there, on that bed and the silence as the doctor looked, as she pushed around inside me, she looked, and she was silent and she looked……
Eventually she said that there was a baby there, but they were measuring far too small, that there was a chance they were just behind, but that we needed a scan in another week, hubby said ‘its okay we know babies in our family are small’ but she looked at me, and i looked at her, and i knew that this wasn’t okay, and that things were only going to get harder!
For the following couple of days i stayed on the hormones and we spoke to baby every night, please be okay we used to say, we would do anything for you to be okay.. and we were in limbo again, limbo was becoming normal, and our normality sucked!
The next scan showed the baby had grown but not enough, and that these pregnancy’s would normally end in miscarriage, we held hands, we were silent, and we broke down.
To begin with i refused to believe it, how can you say that when the baby has grown? how can you say this when our baby is changing and developing, but by this time we were 3 months pregnant and things weren’t going to change, i eventually let it sink in and came off the hormones as instructed, not taking those hormones and knowing our baby was still in there, still fighting, it was nothing short of painful, not just ‘oh i banged my knee that was painful’ kind of way, i mean, physically i hurt, my whole body, my brain, my soul, we were hurt so badly and we knew it wasn’t about to get any better!
I am going to leave it there for now, it has taken me probably 6 hours to write this over a week or so, not solidly of course but its hard writing it in detail, but its a good pain, its positive, its therapeutic, and hopefully others can relate and know that they aren’t alone, we are all fertility warriors, and whatever the outcome we are doing our best to win the war.
Until next time….