C (or should I say Carlos, Jules? 🙂 haha) and I have been going back and forth in our brief time together this week (he’s been working a lot) on the big IVF decision, each voicing our trepidation with the enormity of the decision. The finances are scary (yes, we have coverage, but know there will be OOP expenses still, including the nearly $850 storage fee if we’re lucky enough to have any embryos make it to freeze, plus another $500 yearly for storage that is not covered by insurance, $30 co-pay for every visit, co-pays for medication, anesthesia and bi-weekly acupuncture appointments that are about $70 a pop), the moral questions (leftover embryos is our paramount concern as we would want to commit to giving each a chance at implantation), and time and energy. Fear of failure.
IVF seemed so unnecessary three months ago and so quickly it feels like it may be our only chance. Truthfully, I am shocked that we are here. Nothing about our history makes much sense most of all the fact that L (or should I call him Leopold? haha) was conceived without assistance. It’s mind blowing, truly.
I’m so tired. I’m tired of hoping and getting nowhere, I’m tired of the mindf*ck that is infertility. I’m tired of being emotionally overdrawn, I’m tired of being upset and frustrated with my body. I can’t remember who I was talking to on twitter, but we were discussing my Mom’s insensitive comment of “at least you don’t need birth control! Some people really have to worry about that.” This comment really pissed me off and brought tears to my eyes of how much my Mom just doesn’t get it (and how could she after easily popping out four kids and never once actually trying to get pregnant). She was trying to say that BCPs are so awful for women’s bodies, all of those synthetic hormones that aren’t good for us and cause side effects. Umm, yea mom, what do you think fertility drugs are made of, exactly?
Anyway, my twitter friend commented that someday maybe we really would feel our family is complete and actually actively prevent. This caused me pause… I wanted 4 children. I don’t know if that’s what I want now, if that’s even physically or financially possible, but I don’t see how we would get there from here, but when will I say enough is enough? When will I be satisfied and not hope for more? There has to be an end somewhere, I don’t have it in me to try endlessly for children. I don’t have it in me to fight this fight cycle after cycle, year after year. Eventually, we will have to stop, be satisfied and thankful and move on from banging our heads against the proverbial infertile wall hoping for more.
As I said a couple of posts ago, something that gives me peace is the thought that someday I’ll be a Mom for longer than I was fighting to be one. I want that time to come sooner rather than later. I want to be able to be totally happy and not hope for another, I want to feel that I’m satisfied with our family building efforts and done with this fight. I want to be able to talk about our journey as a complete tale and not feel fear of what else I’ll have to fight to get to where we want to be. I don’t want to forever be a fighter – I want to be a survivor of infertility. I know I will never forget and infertility will always be a part of who I am and will have shaped who I’ve become, but it’s different when the fight is complete, with an end to the fight comes healing and closure.
I’m not there yet. I know I will not be okay with L being an only child. I want him to have a sibling so desperately. I want him to have a partner in crime and a friend. But I know my reserves to fight this fight are dwindling by the day.
I see two paths forward:
IVF. A high tech, more efficient, more costly, more stress, but higher chances of success in a shorter period of time. We have 4 cycles of IVF covered. I can see us doing two cycles within the next year if necessary.
Stopping treatments now. Just enjoying life and hoping that we somehow have another incredibly lucky cycle to conceive. The thing is, I’m 29. I’m truly lucky to have started this fight young, but I cannot imagine hoping for a pregnancy until menopause. I don’t know when I’ll go through the big change, but let’s say I’m 37 (I’m assuming it will be early given my crap FSH). That’s EIGHT years away. could I handle that much up and down, that many years of cycle after cycle of disappointment? It’s almost been a year since I’ve had my period back post Leopold (Yes, L has become Leopold now, because I think it’s funny and cute, though it is not his real name), and I am frayed. I am sad, disappointed, and it has caused me to be not a very good Mama to my existing kid this past week. I’m not okay with that. I’m not okay living in sadness, bringing our family down if I can do anything in my power to help it.
Today, my gut says let’s do this thing. Let’s do IVF. Let’s go for it, get it over with and see where our cards land. I have fears about IVF and all that is involved. I do. But I have more trepidation about putting my family through the better part of a decade of crushed hopes and cyclical disappointment. Will it get us another child? I don’t know. But I feel in my gut it’s the right decision for our family right now, to give it our all right here, right now. I feel better facing a future that is somewhat predictable than an endless sea of cyclical disappointment and increasing depression.
My husband hasn’t been around much this week, he’s been working crazy hours and my nights have been spent with my new husband, Dawson’s Creek on Roku. We have plans to go out to dinner tonight and I hope we can connect and agree on a path forward for sure. Which I think is IVF starting in late January 2013.
I also have an appointment with an acupuncturist who specializes in treatment for infertility on Monday to treat me in conjunction with IVF that I’m looking forward to (he often works with my clinic, which makes me feel comfortable going). If I’m going to do this, I’m going to do everything in my power to do it right. I don’t think it will necessarily mean it will work, but at least I’ll leave with peace of mind. No regrets.