I think I first heard about IVF in my late teens. This couple, our family friends, had not conceived in almost twenty years of marriage and the woman later had twins through IVF. This was in the 90s and it was called test-tube baby. Luckily for me, my parents were overjoyed for her and though it was announced on sorta like the hush-hush, it wasn't too secret either and those in our social circle did not treat her with stigma.
So when the doctor adviced us to consider IVF, I did not feel like over my dead body! or think that I would be breaking some news so unique and unfathomable to my parents. We had also kept them in the loop as needed especially with the big laparoscopy surgery that required anesthesia. Picture below.
Now, some people assume or may be thinking this story will end in a positive - with either the announcement of a pregnancy or a biological baby. Being Christians, most of us are used to certain types of testimonies, and there's nothing wrong with that, but I'm simply blogging to tell my story. This story may be different from most you've come across and it may not go the way you'll like.
Yes, I'm not telling my story to make anyone happy, or to increase anyone's Christian faith. However, if in raising the profile of infertility and exploring a different path to parenting, those happen, that is fine too :)
Anyway, we agreed to go the IVF route, and scheduled a cycle. My reaction after that was to try to find out how long it would take for us to have a child and what we could do to make sure it worked. I read up on the statistics and found blogs to read the personal accounts. What I found out was that there were no certainties about how long it will take or if treatment will ever work. Nor are there any kind of magic formula that will guarantee success.
We did the best in our power. We both cut down on coffee, cut out alcohol, and brought our weight to healthier levels. That was around the same time I did the Bouri weight loss programme and that also helped me to ensure we ate better and healthier. We also researched our doctor and his rates are good, comparable and in some cases better than the others in our area. The rest was up to God's plan and purpose for us.
Brief info - During the IVF treatment, the woman is shot up with a cocktail of hormones in order to control her production of eggs. First birth control pills, and then one after the other of different pills and injectables. At the end of that, eggs are harvested, the sperm is put into it, and when the doctor is satisfied that the result is developing as a healthy embryo, it is transferred back into the woman.
Now, I hate injections with a passion but for about a month, I gritted my teeth and bore it as either Atala or the nurses at the doctor's office pushed needles into my tummy or butt and pumped varying amounts of liquid medicine into me. And then it was the day of the egg retrieval.
To be continued...