I had no idea when we embarked on this quest for a second child that the journey would be far different to the sprint we ran to get baby no. 1. In comparison to this journey, which feels more and more like a marathon every day, baby no. 1 was an easy 5k. You know what? I think 5k is probably even a strech. We did more like a 100m dash. No hurdles.
As we’ve progressed through the process I have come to realise that the race hasn’t even begun yet. Not really. We are still in training mode. We are still learning about obstacles and heartache and about what it feels like to live life at the skinny end of the bell curve.
And every step of the way I kept thinking ‘this will be the sprint part, we’ll have it this time’ only to find that I’m wrong. Because it is all still training and preparation. We are finding out what works and what doesn’t and what the hell is wrong. It is only now, after experiencing 2 early losses, 3 full rounds of IVF resulting in only 1 embryo to transfer very early on (which was probably abnormal) and many, too many, abnormal embryos, that I feel we are really ready to prepare for the main event. Why? Well it is only due to all this “training” we have been through that we have any clue about what is happening. And that is that my egg quality at the moment more than likely sucks. It’s a tricky one to fix but at least we can do something (depending on who you talk to – I believe we can).
So now we prep for the true race, the true marathon that is the real chance we have for making it to a baby. We are serious, more serious and focused than we have been so far on this journey. I am researching like a woman possessed and going pretty extreme because this will likely be our last chance. If we do all this and STILL get abnormal embryos then I don’t believe we will continue on this journey. Never say never and all that but I just don’t think it is likely. If we do EVERYTHING right this time then how could we continue? What more would there be to do? Unless you believe that eventually a good egg might just appear which I guess is possible. Anyway, right now, we are discussing the fact that this next round in about August 2015 will be our last.
Over the coming weeks and months we have a series of second opinions booked with fertility specialists.
- With a leading specialist in our area at a clinic we may actually change to.
- With the leading fertility specialist in WA whom our friend saw and had success with. His approach is pretty extreme (no plastics, chemical laden cleaning products, make up etc)
- With Colorado Centre for Reproductive Medicine (CCRM) for a second opinion, arguably one of the leading fertility clinics in the US. I am particularly interested in them reviewing my supplementation and what they recommend for boosting egg quality.
Right now I am also exercising moderately – pump (weights to music in a class format), yoga and body balance classes mostly. They aren’t as hard on the body as running is but they give me some relief which I need. The extreme Dr actually recommends only walking and swimming (for relaxation as opposed to exercise) so I will probably down scale to this in the coming weeks.
As far as nutrition goes the Egg book recommends exclusion of refined carbs and sugar, both as they can impact insulin resistance which is known to impact fertility so once we return from Canada, this is the path I will be on. In the meantime I am mostly GF anyway and rarely eat sugar but I am going to exclude entirely for the 3 month approach. There is no recommendation there to skip dairy however I do find my body responds poorly to dairy (eczema) which says to me inflammation in the gut and inflammation is bad so we will skip the dairy. Again, only ever have cheese really and hardly at all at the moment so it won’t be too hard to eliminate completely.
I won’t be drinking (haven’t in weeks anyway aside from a handful around Easter time with the family) and neither will Eric once we return from Canada. Apparently there is some evidence to suggest that even a small amount of drinking by the male or female in the month prior to IVF can actually contribute to lower pregnancy rates and then miscarriage. It seems to be mostly correlation at the moment but it is suggestion and if it affects the few then we need to assume we are the few which is my attitude with most of this. We are at the skinny end of the bell curve remember.
I know we had the iUI this month and sure, maybe we will get a big surprise and find that it worked but I can’t stop my preparation because of that. The doing has to start now. It’s not that I’m not hoping that the IUI worked, of course I am. But I can’t run my life ‘just in case’ it has. I have to be ready for the next step. I honestly don’t have any signs or feeling either way at the moment and testing is a good week away so we will just see how it pans out. I need to be realistic though. We have had A LOT of abnormal embryos. The likelihood of me popping out a healthy egg at this point is probably pretty slim but hey, you never do know.
In the meantime, I prepare for what the future will look like if we do not have a positive outcome this time..
I feel very focused and determined. My vision is sharp and clear. I know what I am aiming for now and I am committed to working hard to get the outcome we so desire. I feel the best I have in ages and I believe we can do this.
I have my gloves on baby and I am coming out swinging to get you and bring you home to us. That’s a mummy promise.