We had our quick WTF (‘follow-up’) appointment with our RE. He, again, gave us no answers. He said they didn’t have answers. My body was just not accepting the embryos. It could just be bad luck, but could also be something wrong with me. We knew the PCOS was what was screwing up the egg production, but my body seemed to not want to get pregnant either. Great. Onwards we go.
In my rollercoaster phase leading up to Sept 3rd, our new start date for another FET round, Dan and I were struggling with the biggest questions of all… when was enough, enough? How many more rounds do we do? How much money do we spend? When is the emotional and physical turmoil too much to continue with.
At this point, we had spent 1.5 years dedicated to fertility. To be fair, the first several months were simply appointments. However, my life had consistent of nothing but fertility hell since January 2013. It was like putting our lives on hold. We were unable to do most things due to my daily appointments requiring us to be in proximity to the clinic, the shortage of money (which was all spent on fertility) or me being too sick or too sore to do anything. Our quality of life had been decimated. Yes, having a family was important to us, but at what cost?
Perhaps it was time to start looking at other options. Other options… wait, did this mean I wasn’t going to be able to get pregnant? I will never be able to feel a baby grow inside me? I will never be able to feel the those first flutters that all pregnant woman talk about? Did this mean that we would never be able to have our own children? Would we ever get to have a newborn baby at home? What were these ‘other options’ anyways?
And so I started to research to see what was out there. To be fair, we still had two frozen embryos, and they were obviously going to work… but a back up plan was my way of staying in control. At least we had a Plan B. Or one could say that we’ve probably already used up the Plan B, C, D, E, F, and G. So perhaps I was drafting a Plan H. Nonetheless, a worst case scenario back up plan. It was so incredibly important to me to have a plan because if our next round failed, we were back to square one. No more embryos. No next steps.
My best friend Jen* and I were talking through this all one day while I was driving to a meeting (on speaker phone!!). She was great at the balancing act between staying optimistic, being realistic, and listening to my concerns. She was honest and told me exactly how it was. She was also amazing because, somehow, after all this, she was still willing to listen to be go on and on about fertility. There was a reason she has been my best friend since High School (welll… except for a minor bump in the road where I hated who she was dating and refused to talk to her… Forgive me?) After analyzing every piece of our crappy fertility puzzle, she suddenly became serious. “Adele, I know we’ve talked about this before and you keep blowing me off like I’m joking… but you and Dan can make great quality embryos. It seems as if the only part not working now is that your body won’t carry them for you. I know there is a lot to think about and understand, but Adele, I will carry your baby”.
Ummm… Cue me laughing nervously. I start to stammer and say how Dan would probably faint before that happened plus that it is actually kind of crazy…. And she stopped me. “Don’t answer me now. You need to do another round, and we would need to seriously look into it and understand everything before making a decision, but just know that I’m serious”.
We then continued talking about life, our jobs just normal stuff but I couldn’t quite get this out of my head. Jen, carry our baby? WTF!!?… Would it actually work? And is she on crack- this was actually crazy!
We hung up the phone and I immediately called Dan and told him we had to talk and rehashed the entire conversation that was just had. Dan listened quietly then said how amazing it was for her to offer, but then asked if I was seriously considering the offer. I told him I didn’t know, but I had never actually really thought about surrogacy as an option. Dan said to focus on our next round. Then said he didn’t think that was something he’d ever consider… it was too, well… weird. This incredible offer that came out of left field that I didn’t know if we’d even need, just got shut down so fast I didn’t really have any more time to think about it. Yah, I guess it is weird. Fine.
If surrogacy was out, then what else did we have left?
1. To keep trying. Do another round of IVF… but when do we stop?
2. International Adoption
3. Private Adoption
4. Public Adoption
5. Accept that we couldn’t have kids and enjoy our child-less lives together.
Dan and I had a long talk that night. Tomorrow was September 3rd and I was starting another round of FET. I made him promise me that we would set aside an evening with no distractions- just us- and work through the different options and figure out where we would go next if this round didn’t work out. These were not going to be easy choices… but they needed to be made. The deadline I gave him was that we needed to have our Plan B (or H or whatever we were at now) decided before they transferred our two last embryos. He agreed.
Holy crap this sucked. FET you better work!
*Names changed for the potentially not so innocent 😉