Thursday, January 3, 2013

What's Next?

I've sat here for five minutes just watching the cursor blink at me.  I want to write a post about my doctor's appointment this morning, but I just don't even really know where to begin.  I'm annoyed, confused, frustrated, sad and sort of just blah. 

Every time I have a doctor's appointment, I get very anxious.  Butterflies fill my stomach and my body shakes.  It's weird because I'm SO comfortable with my doctor and everyone in her entire practice.  I've become friendly with the medical assistants, the nurses, the doctors and even the receptionist at the front desk.  We joke that I have their number on speed dial (I find it so interesting that I can joke and put on a smiley, happy face at my doctor's office - as if this all isn't killing me.  And then, here on this blog and at home, at work and in any other social setting, I can't put that brave face on... I crumble and melt into a puddle of tears and sadness.).  Anyway, the anxiety normally dissipates as soon as I'm called back for my blood draw, ultrasound or meeting.  But today, my anxiety didn't really go away.  All of that anxiety became a big, fat lump in my throat and it caused me to forget some of the things I'd been going over in my head to ask my doctor... I was too focused on trying not to unload all of my tears from my frustration with this entire mess of infertility right in front of her as my husband and I sat across from her in her office. 

The meeting started by my doctor reviewing our perfect cycle.  Maybe that's why I was so uneasy in her office.  It's hard for me to reflect back on IVF #4 because it was the cycle that should have given us our BFP.  There's no reason for that cycle to have failed.  Unless, of course, if you remember that my eggs are bad.  I have a high-ish FSH and I asked my doctor if that's why she thinks this "perfect" cycle failed.  Which basically, in a long and round-about response, the answer to that question is yes.  Something to do with the mechanics of my eggs is probably the cause for the development of the chromosones to stop diving and growing and doing whatever else it is that they're supposed to do.  And that assumption comes from the fact that I have a high-ish FSH.

I asked if she would consider me as someone that should be diagnosed with POF (premature ovarian failure).  She said no, but that my "diagnosis" would be DOR (diminished ovarian reserve).  This makes sense, as the highest number of eggs we've been able to retrieve is seven, even on the highest amounts of stims that my doctor is comfortable with someone taking.  She said that if once my FSH levels come back in the 20's (my highest FSH level so far was 18.6), then I'd be considered "peri-menopausal".  Beyond "peri-menopausal", would be someone who has POF.  So, the good news here is that I'm still a step or so away from all of this.  My doctor still has confidence that somehow, someday I will have a baby with my own eggs - with or without the help of IVF.  It's frustrating for me, though, because although she's seen it happen and although I've heard of it happening for other women, I still don't feel like it'll happen for me.  My doctor did mention again that her thought is that I'll certainly go through menopause prior to the average age of fifty-two.  Again, sort of hard to hear.  That's still twenty-two years away, but obviously menopause isn't something you want to even hear about at the age of thirty, when you're trying desperately to get pregnant.  **This is where I completely forgot to ask about my AMH levels.  I had even written this in my notes on my iPhone to make sure I bring up and ask... I guess I got so flustered hearing about my DOR that I just couldn't take anymore and wanted to focus on what we are going to do next**

So... what are we going to do next?  As previously mentioned, we have four frozen embryos (I'm still so, so, so thankful for this).  My doctor reviewed the report with us and confirmed that we had two blastocycts frozen on day 5 that were both "good/A".  We then had two additional blastocycts frozen on day 6, both of which were already hatching on their own and that were also graded "good/A".  Good?  Yes.  But it was also good last time, with our fresh cycle, too.  So, do I have much more faith in a frozen transfer?  No.  But I'm trying to.  We decided that we would go ahead and thaw two blastocycts, in hopes that both would make it for the transfer so that in the event that FET #1 fails, we'd potentially have two blastocysts left for a second FET.  But, as all of us infertiles know, nothing is for certain in this terribly painful journey.  There is the possibility that during the thawing process, our embryos won't make it and the embryologist will need to go back to the freezer for our other two blasts.  Fingers crossed that this won't be an issue... but you never know.  I'm starting to just expect the worst.

So, we'll be starting our FET hopefully soon.  I'm in the middle of a cycle now, so January has already been counted out, which I'm trying to convince myself isn't exactly a bad thing.  We changed our health insurance this year (to a PPO in hopes of getting at least some sort of reimbursement if we end up going out to CCRM), and I know we'll probably need some time to straighten all of that out.

In the meantime, I'm trying to hold onto Amanda's reminder that God is good.  Always.


Amanda said...

Oh Aubrey, my heart hurts for you so much. It sounds like there were lots of good take aways from the appointment, but I know it can be so hard to focus on anything good when the good hasn't worked before. Wishing I could give you a giant hug! Praying those frozen babies are ready for the thaw!

kimberly said...

Sorry your appointment was stressful! Happy your doc is still optimistic! Maybe a frozen cycle will be the ticket! I have heard that the body is stressed by the fresh cycle with all the drugs and the retrieval and for some people the success happens in the frozen cycle instead! I hope that will be the case! In the meantime I will be here to read and support!

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