Friday, June 7, 2013

Follow-Up Appointment

On Monday, Robby and I went in for our IVF follow-up appointment. We were very emotional about it all, knowing that this was likely the last time we would meet with our doctor. We've tried to count how many times we think we've driven that drive to Clovis. Probably over a hundred. We were often full of hope and excitement because no matter how many months things hadn't worked out, an appointment meant a new opportunity.

We couldn't help but think about the last time we were at the office. It was the week of our IVF, and I had cried with joy when the nurse told me I had enough eggs to move forward. It feels like an eternity ago now. 

Our doctor started the appointment by saying he had spent time looking at my very thick file, and he believed we were at the point to make some difficult decisions. He explained our problem again, which clearly has to do with my eggs. My undetectable AMH levels, high FSH levels, and poor response to a very aggressive protocol all confirm that my little eggies are in bad shape. None of this was new to us, but it weighed heavily on me as I listened. We shared with him that we had already decided not to do another IVF. He did remind us that as a doctor who has done this for decades, he has seen women with seemingly no chance of conceiving become pregnant. He said we could sit there until the evening hearing the stories he has :) But, in the medical world, they have to give a realistic assessment, and my realistic assessment is slim to none to having my own biological baby.

We talked about my endometriosis, and he confirmed again that there are medications to treat the pain and delay the growth, but nothing cures endometriosis. Plus, those meds sound absolutely terrible and cause bone loss. There are add-back hormonal therapies to do afterward, but still, it's not something I'm going to pursue until I feel I have to. Surgery would only be done again if medications didn't work.

We brought up the inconclusive hysterosonogram done last fall. That was when one doctor thought there was something wrong with my uterus, but it didn't align with the HSG I had done in 2009. Because this is a potential septated uterus issue, we are waiting to hear if we can have an MRI of my pelvis done to check and make sure everything is okay. If it is a septate uterus, it needs to be fixed. Luckily, the surgery is an easy one.

Finally, we had a conversation about egg donation and embryo adoption. Our doctor has mentioned a number of times that in our situation, he would recommend using a donor egg. We aren't interested in that really, but we've recently been learning about embryo donation/adoption. Embryo donation/adoption is when couples choose to give leftover embryos up for adoption instead of having them discarded. He had just performed his first adopted embryo transfer a month ago, and the woman was pregnant! He told us a little bit about the experience and said it sounded like a good option to think about. 

Overall, I was so thankful with how the appointment went. Our doctor spent so much time with us, answering questions and offering helpful insights. It seemed like he had nowhere to be except there with us. I know that was an answer to our prayers.

On the way out, Robby said it felt like saying good-bye to friends, and I knew exactly what he meant. We've been seeing our same doctor for nearly four years now, the same two nurses, and the same office staff. They've been the ones to give us good news, and they've had to give us bad news. They've represented our hope for our own little one, and so walking out those doors hurt. It hurts right now even thinking about it. I know that there is a plan for us, and I know God has not forgotten us, but right now, our arms are empty, and I wish they weren't.