*This section is a work in progress. It takes a lot of emotional energy to remember this journey that began 4 years ago and is still going on*
My Husband and I married in 2012 and waited until fall of 2013 to try to start a family. I remember that I thought I was pregnant after the first month (spoiler alert-I wasn’t).
2014: After about a year of unsuccessful trying, I went to my OBGYN to check things out. I had my FSH and AMH levels tested. I didn’t think anything would be wrong because I had always had regular periods and never any real issues besides bad cramps when I was a teenager. The doctor called me when I was in my friends car on the way home from a barbeque and told me that my FSH levels were high and my AMH levels were low. Now, I am not a doctor, but basically it is not good news to hear. FHS stands for Follicle stimulating hormone. From what I understand (again, not a doctor or scientist) is that your brain and body is working overtime to produce follicles (technical term for houses for your eggs when they are released during ovulation) and this usually means that you don’t have very many eggs left. They asked me if my mother went through early menopause (she didn’t) because that it what I could be going through. I was so freaked out. I was only 30!! Menopause??! I cried and binge watched netflix for a long time, but made an appointment with the fertility clinic at my OB’s suggestion.
Meeting with the Fertility Clinic was interesting. The place we went to was downtown and crowded. You went from one waiting room to another and it was highly impersonal (I think it took about 2 years there before they knew me). We met with out doctor who was a nice, older man, and had been with the practice since it began. A coworker used him and had a child through IUI, so I was very hopeful. The first thing you do at a Fertility Clinic consult is to do more tests. Yay (sarcasm). I did another blood test and my husband, L, got blood tests and a sperm analysis (fun times). After about a month of taking these tests, waiting for results, navigating through insurance (nightmare, but I am grateful we had some coverage-it is terrible that many employers do not offer it!!), we had another meeting with the doctor to go over our results. I remember it was summer, I was wearing a dress with anchors on it and was going to be late for work. The doctor (Dr M) said that my FSH and AMH levels were still not great, but they were better than before (apparently these fluctuate-but mine were not going to win me any fertility prizes). Dr M then said that the biggest shock was the results from L’s semen analysis. It turned out that he had good morphology (individual sperm looked good-heads-tails, etc) but a low sperm count and low motility (most of his were not moving or moving too fast). I think that he said that L’s motility was around 3%. My poor husband was shaken, I could feel him trembling when I held his hand in the office. We walked out of that meeting shell shocked and unfortunately we both were late for work, so we couldn’t be together. This news was devastating to L, not matter what I said and how much I loved him, he felt like he let me down (which of course he didn’t). Even though this was almost 3 years ago, I still don’t think that L has completely opened up to me about how painful this news was for him.
Our first adventure in fertility treatments was an IUI. I was put on Clomid and began to develop some nice looking follicles. They don’t over monitor you during the stim process for an IUI, so it was pretty smooth sailing. The actual day of the IUI was where all my drama was (NOTE: no one else I know has had such shitty IUI experience, for most it’s a breeze and I’m pretty sure after all we have been through now, an IUI doesn’t sounds bad.
On the day of my IUI, I thought that it was going to be super quick. I planned to go into work just a little late because my appt was at 6:30 AM. Nope. No. No. I was so wrong about the length of the appt. it ended up taking over an hour for them to clean the Sperm (which I had to bring in). I was crying in the office because…hormones.
Once I finally got into the exam room, it was just me and a nurse. A pregnant nurse 😠. Before we began she read the semen results to me. I can’t remember exact details but it was a super low count, less than 3% mobility. For some reason I thought the sperm spa treatment it got was going to improve it drastically, which it didn’t. I started crying again (hormones) and then said that there was no way it can work. The nurse told me that “anything is possible”… not exactly a huge vote of confidence.
I ended up laying on the table and letting them do to procedure. I cried all through it and was a general hot mess. It was crampy and they couldn’t find my cervix and was super uncomfortable.
I was in a horrible mood for the rest of the day, but did pretty well during the 2ww. I was pretty sure it wasn’t going to work, but some tiny part of me held out hope. Needless to say, I went in for my pregnancy blood test and it was negative. Even though I thought I was going to be ok with it, I wasn’t. I ugly cried for about an hour at work.
Coming Next: 1st IVF round