Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Circus We're In

I had gotten pregnant easily (much to my surprise and joy) with all four of our babies. We got pregnant on the first try the last three times, which is remarkable for anyone, especially someone with my history of endometriosis, cysts, and surgery. But last November, after it became apparent that we were no longer able to make babies just with tools we had around the house, we were referred to an infertility clinic.

The infertility may be the result of messed up hormones - starting in late 2007 I started having 2-day periods, no LH surge detected with ovulation predictor kits (though my temp still rose mid-cycle like always - go figure), and functional ovarian cysts (but only one at a time - not PCOS). I doubt the January 2008 laparoscopic surgery has helped matters either. I had the surgery in hopes of finding some answer about what caused out babies to die. I ended up losing my right tube, which was badly damaged and almost certainly useless for reproductive purposes, and had varicose veins as a result of being stretched around a 10" peritubal cyst I had removed in 2001. I also lost my right ovary due to an endometrioma. Since then, I don't have the dull pain in my right side that has plagued me for years, but instead I am infertile. Not a good trade-off. This had made our whole ordeal so much harder.

So for the past few months, my life has been scheduled around doctor appointments. The current protocol includes Clomid, an HCG trigger shot, IUI, and progesterone thereafter until we get the pregnancy test results. Pills, shots, and suppositories - oh my! We're going at this from all angles.

In February, after cycle #1, I was shocked to get a phone call from the clinic on Friday the 13th saying that the pregnancy test was positive! It was especially shocking because I'd been having bad endometriosis pain for several days. I had pregnancy symptoms for a few days, but by Monday they were gone and a blood test showed my hormone levels weren't rising.

Although there will be no cradle this time, it is a relief that there will also be no grave. A miscarriage at 5 weeks is a completely different experience from a loss in the 5th month. It took a long time and some help to even get pregnant this time, and the loss was merely devastating rather than traumatic like the last two. Now we know now pregnancy is still possible, which might be a good thing.

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