Sunday, September 28, 2008

Dipping My Toe

What I want to do is fast forward to the part where I get my happy ending. Where it's just me and him and our baby, living our normal life, and the scars of all of this failure and disappointment have faded to the lightest marks that you have to really squint at to see. Because right now, from where I'm sitting, I have nagging doubts about whether I'm cut out to get through what's in between.

Our meeting with Dr. A on Thursday confirmed what I felt after our first meeting: That she is the doctor that was meant to treat me at this time for this condition. Everything she says feels like it's part of the script for the movie, "What to Tell Good Egg to Calm Her Down and Give Her Hope." She told us that this past cycle was exactly what she was looking for (except for the not getting pregnant part). That she could certainly let us continue with injectible/IUI cycles to try to win the numbers game. But that, from a medical perspective, knowing the physical and mental toll this process takes, she would probably advise moving on. Bringing in the big guns. Going to the big show. IVF.

We knew going in that that was probably going to be her advice. And until I was sitting across from her I wasn't sure what my response would be. But as she said it, the failure of this last cycle still stinging, I knew she was right. Sure, we could keep trying the other way, and at some point we might actually get the result we want. But we could also trade in our cell phones for rotary. Sell our cars and get a couple of horses. Throw our iPods out the window and break out some 8-tracks. When there's better technology available to you, you use it. Because it's, well, better. Why should our quest for a baby be any different? I am ready to upgrade.

Still, I am, to put it mildly, apprehensive (some might say freaking out). Several things are overwhelming me at this moment. The first is the long list of instructions and new drugs that will be introduced to my babymaking regimen via this upgrade to IVF. I'd really gotten the injectible routine down, and there seem to be far too many opportunities amid this far more complex protocol for user error to come in to play.

There's also this feeling that I can't believe I'm here. Call me naive, in denial, whatever, but I really never expected to need this kind of intervention. Part of the blame goes to the OB/GYN I had when we first got married, who told me that the fix for my suspected PCOS would be, whenever I was ready, an easy course of "fertility lite" (Clomid) and voila: Pregnancy. Why wouldn't I believe him? Why would I imagine that years later we'd be knocking on the door of our last hope for biological conception? Despite the fact that it's been a long time since I lost that "infertility virginity," I guess part of me still mourns the fact that our baby will be created not on a fun evening with just the two of us and a bottle of wine, but with doctors and chemicals and stirrups. Needing IVF has brought that into sharp focus.

And of course, there's the thing I'd rather not mention but is the elephant in the room, the squeaky wheel in my head. My fear -- my phobia -- of anesthesia. Nothing like being pinned down on an operating table at the age of nine by insensitive doctors armed with a gas mask without having been prepared for said experience to really make a girl want to run screaming from the room whenever the words "surgical procedure" are uttered. Yes, I know they don't use the same general anesthesia they use for major surgery. And that I'm no longer nine years old. And that I'll only be out for 15-20 minutes. Doesn't help.

Still, I've dipped my toe in the IVF pond. And even with these doubts in my head begging me not to, I'm about to jump in.


Michelle said...

Exactly what I have been thinking! I am in the same boat as you with almost the exact same things said to me by my doctor. I couldn't have said it better. I am currently trying to save the money for IVF but I think we are going to do injectibles 1 more time with a few tweeks because insurance will pay for that (not IVF) but if that doesn't work its off to IVF land. I hope all goes well with you.((HUGS))

kirke said...

I know what you mean...I often wonder if it makes any sense to go the IUI route when the odds are so slim. With IVF you're chances are so much better.

I want to fast forward to your happy ending too. :)

Anonymous said...

I know this has been so hard, but I have so much admiration for the way you have gotten through it all. I know how scary it is to be staring down the barrel of this big gun (IVF) because I am right there too. But I also know that you will have your baby and that when you do, it won't matter one bit how s/he was conceived (and I bet almost no one will ever ask-- and if they do, you can tell them that you were abducted by aliens and nine months later . . . voila! That should shut them up). Anyway, I have faith in you and in Dr. A. Hang in there and take good notes-- I'm right behind you!