If you saw my story on Instagram last Thursday I promised a full health update so here it is.
We have been on a very long journey to hopefully one day be parents. It is not a journey that I ever planned to share/be on or one that I would ever want anyone to go through. After our wedding we wanted kids right away, as you know I do not have any children, so that didn’t happen. I never thought I would have any fertility issues or this would be our journey. It has been devastating, long, unexpected, surprising and educational. I have gotten a lot of questions and this will answer some. I am not going to share everything but this is a brief portion.
While seeing my regular OBGYN we were not conceiving, so we tried ovulation kits, medication to ensure you ovulate (blood tests every month), many blood tests, invasive tests, countless ultrasounds and so much more. (I have seen my uterus more times than I can count) Everything was always normal so we just kept trying. (Hearing all the time it will happen when it’s meant to, everything happens for a reason, just be patient, when you stop trying it will happen…..) PLEASE DON’T SAY THESE THINGS TO PEOPLE! I know it is meant well but every time I hear it or someone I know with similar issues hears it, it is like a stab in the heart and brings up many emotions that you just couldn’t understand without being in this position. Ok off my tangent now.
After all these tests we finally went to see a Reproductive Endocrinologist (Fertility Specialist/RE). The first office we went to was a terrible experience, we were shoved from room to room just repeating everything to MAs, Nurses and then finally a doctor who then sent us back to another nurse, never seeing the same person twice. They all told us different things, no one was on the same page and they didn’t listen to us. When we asked questions they were not happy, they clearly wanted to move us through like an assembly line. This was not the experience we were looking for.
We switched to another provider and she was amazing. Our experience completely changed. (Don’t be afraid to speak up and change physicians – you are the patient you have rights!) I had the first of many surgeries to clean out my uterus, check my Fallopian Tubes and my ovaries, who knows what else but more. During this process it was discovered that I have Stage 4 Endometriosis. This was shocking to me and my doctor as I didn’t have any pain symptoms, or at least I didn’t think I did, I have a high pain tolerance but no one was expecting to find this. After cleaning all of that out we began IVF. We have our embryos frozen and so far have not had success. I can talk further about the details of that process in a future post.
Since we moved, I again had to switch physicians, I went with a provider that my previous physician knew and she has also been wonderful. After her review of my tests and doing her own she came to the conclusion that my fallopian tubes need to be removed. This was considered in the past but they were always left in. A lot of people asked me why, as these tubes are essential to pregnancy naturally. My tubes were obstructed inside which made them hold fluid, that fluid becomes a poison and when it falls into the uterus it can harm/kill/prevent pregnancy. She feels this is why our IVF has been unsuccessful so far. I was very hopeful that during the surgery we would be able to save one of the tubes, however this was not possible as both were too far damaged from the endometriosis. Since both are gone, I am now “sterile”, I wish there was a nicer word. It means I cannot get pregnant naturally. Our only chance is through IVF.
I am recovering now and we will decide what our next steps are in the coming weeks/months. All of this is very costly and mentally draining. Each couple will have a different experience and different choices to make. There are no wrong answers. I have days where I can’t keep the tears from falling and I have days where I remember how blessed I am to even have the ability to try everything we have so far. I have a great support system and we have shared very little so far. I am happy to answer any questions.
**Endometriosis does not mean fertility issues, every woman responds differently**