A while back I read a post written by Jay over at The 2 Week Wait entitled "Level Two" where she likened IF to a video game, but, instead of saving the princess at the end you get pregnant. I remember after reading it wondering when I would have enough points to finally save the princess. On my journey to save the princess I've fought monsters sometimes winning, sometimes losing. Through the past few months I gained IF points when battling monsters that took the shape of Bacterial Infections and HPV to Jealously and Depression. I've even lost a few points along the way. The night the IF monster reared its ugly head was a battle lost. It was not one of my proudest moments.
All along as I've played this game battling monsters in secret chambers humming the tune to Nintendo's Mario Brothers I've been aware of another way to reach the princess. There is a secret realm that only a few venture into in the Land of IF. It's a whole new level of infertility that I have just recently graduated to. From far away this realm is scary and unknown. But from up close it's not so bad at all.
After our 27th cycle failed things were as they usually are. We were devastated for a couple of days and then, as we tend to do, we picked ourselves up off the floor and asked ourselves what our next steps were going to be. It just so happened that we had planned a trip to Ireland for our spring break so we knew that the coming cycle was going to be a much needed break. Before we left I convinced Jason that it was time for us to look into using donor eggs. We have friends here that did and I know a few of couples from the blogging world that have grown their families that way. I knew in my heart that it was time. So we went to talk to a doctor, who from here on out, will be called The Baby Maker. She runs a clinic here in Dehli that caters to westerners who are interested in egg donation and surrogacy. At first Jason was unsure of the whole thing. The Baby Maker is a savvy business woman which in some ways can be very off putting. But I reminded Jason that she is in the business of making babies and she's damn good at it. She really knows her fertility shit. She spent close to an hour with us answering and ASKING questions. Doctors here in India tend not to do that. They tend to glance at your documents and then give you a photocopy of whatever protocol they use. The Baby Maker suggested that before we make any big decisions I should get my day 3 hormones and my AMH checked since it's been about a year since those have been done. I just happened to be on my second day so the next morning I went in and had my blood drawn. The day threes were back later that day with a raised FSH, higher than it's ever been. The following day my AMH came in. It was devastatingly low.
As I looked at the number I felt the strangest thing. I was relieved. I almost laughed actually. It was just what we needed to take that next step. It was the key to the hidden realm. When I sent the results to The Baby Maker she responded in an email with, "the path ahead is clear." And so, I've leveled up, just not quite in the way I had expected.
Just hours after we had gotten my AMH results we boarded a plane to Ireland. It could not have come at a better time. Ireland, especially in the spring, is lovely and exotic and unpredictable. I've often felt that as an infertile it's so difficult to live in the moment. We're always thinking of what is coming next, always waiting. In unpredictable and lovely Ireland we hadn't a thing booked. Every decision was a game time decision, where to stay or eat or when to get out of the car and look at the scenary. Jason and I haven't lived entirely in the moment in a long long time. It was one of the best trips we've ever taken. (click here if you'd like to read about our adventures in Ireland and here to see them) In many ways it was bitter sweet, though, poetic even, looking at those beautiful Irish faces knowing that my child will not have my freckles or my blue eyes. However, I wouldn't have wanted to be anywhere else in the world while mourning that loss.
The day after we returned we headed to the Baby Maker's clinic to discuss the details of our DE cycle. By Friday our chosen donor had started her period and was beginning treatment. By Saturday I received my schedule and started my treatment. Today I go in for my first ultrasound and away we go. It all happened so fast and yet it feels so right.
So as it stands now we are scheduled for egg retreival on May 8th or 9th and embryo transfer on May 11th or 12th. If I get a positive result I'll have just enough time to have a 5 week scan before Jason and I head back to the states to our home in MN for the summer.
For the next few weeks I have a feeling I'll be updating this blog fairly frequently as I capture this crazy ride.
Here's to the princess. She's closer than she's ever been before.
And here's a bit of fun! I've leveled up in another way. I've gone from being OLF with Bernadette over at Rasta Less Traveled to being friends IRL! I am so fortunate to be part of a community of strong women.