Welcome to our first ‘Inspiration Monday’ feature via Bump to Bottles, a new addition of Miss.Conception Coach! What better way to start off the week, then with a reminder, that miracles ARE happening all the time, all around us…
I want to share my success story to show others that it CAN happen.
When I was 13, my appendix burst, and it was burst for 5 days before we knew. When your appendix bursts, it leaks poison into your body. I had blood poisoning and severe infections I my abdominal area. The surgeon said it was the worst infection he had seen from an appendix. If my mom didn’t take me to the hospital that night, I wouldn’t have lived to the next day. What is normally an outpatient procedure or 24-hour hospital stay, ended up for me to be 10 days in the hospital, 3 surgeries, and 4 weeks out of school (score!). At the time, the surgeon told me and my mom that there was a 15% chance I could NOT have children because of the damage the infection did. At the time, my mom was just happy I was alive. I was 13 and not thinking about kids. I was on birth control since I was 18, but had never had regular periods.
Fast forward to October of 2006. I was 27. My now-husband proposed. We knew we wanted children right away, so I went off birth control, thinking I would “cleanse it from my body” and be ready to get pregnant after we married in January 2007. And then nothing happened. I talked to my OBGYN and she put me on Clomid. Nothing. I had my first HSG October of 2007. It was clear of any blockages. She was ready to refer us to the only fertility specialist in our area, who had a 6-month waiting list. We ended up moving to a different state February 2008. I had to start over with a new doctor. Thankfully, she didn’t want new tests other than bloodwork and OPK’s. Testing showed that I don’t naturally ovulate. Ultrasounds showed pretty severe PCOS. Well, at least we had a diagnosis. We tried 5 more months of Clomid without results. In fact, I only ovulated 2 of those 5 months. She was ready to try IUI with Clomid and a trigger shot. U/S showed 20+ awesome follicles at the time of trigger. Husband’s sperm was rated “super sperm”. We did the IUI. Doc said she isn’t a betting person, but would bet her house that this was going to work. It didn’t. She referred us to a reproductive endocrinologist fertility specialist. More tests were done and showed the same thing. We tried 3 more IUI’s, but this time with FSH and trigger shots. Every time, I had awesome follicles, shown ovulation, and BFN.
We finally decided to go with IVF. Our first IVF was October of 2010. Everything was so perfect, they said we should be spokespersons for IVF. We had 29 eggs retrieved and 26 fertilized. But none made it to blast. She had no idea why. We transferred 2 grade B embryos that were just below blasts. We froze 6 more. BFN. We waited over a year to do our FET, due to emotions and finances (insurance pays $0.00 here in Idaho for anything fertility related). We thawed our 6 embryos. 3 survived thaw but only 2 were viable to transfer. We did the FET February 2012. BFN. We were devastated and broke. We took a break. We became foster parents. We explored adoption. We went on vacation. We never stopped trying naturally. We sought out a different specialist. He told us he wouldn’t do anything different than our current doc.
Finally, in January 2014, on our 7th anniversary, we decided we were ready to try again. We saved up and paid for a bulk program that offered some money back if multiple IVF/FET didn’t work. We did a fresh IVF April 2014. A few medication changes. Again, everything looked perfect. This time I had 3 EXPANDED blasts, 4 blasts and 4 pre-blasts. On 4/17/14, We transferred 2 expanded blasts! We froze the rest. The way our doctor does it, we go in for a Beta at 10 days and 12 days. They don’t tell the results of the first one, but wait to see if the number went up. When I went into the 10-day appointment, I told the nurse I was short of breath and nearly passed out when I tried to eat. She said it sounds like ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome (OHSS), which can be triggered by pregnancy hormones. She gave me a wink. That afternoon, the nurse called to check on me. She said she’s not supposed to say anything, but my symptoms were probably morning sickness. Wink wink. I was pregnant?! I was so sick! I called and told my husband. He was excited and worried about me. That night, I went to the ER. I had so much fluid accumulating in my abdomen, it was crushing my lungs. I spent 6 days in the hospital. They had to put a PICC line in because I was too dehydrated for an IV. I gained 13 pounds of fluid in 2 days. I had 2 paracentesis done to drain over 2 liters of fluid each time. My stomach was so crushed, I didn’t have one bite of food for 5 days because there wasn’t room. We were told at this point, the baby was like a “parasite”. As long as they kept me hydrated, it would get all the nutrients it needed.
Once I was discharged, I had lost the 13 pounds of fluid, and an additional 13 pounds due to not eating, and then only having room for 2 bites for hours. I had numerous ultrasounds to check my fluid levels, but the baby was too small to see. Finally, 19 days post transfer, we saw what appeared to be an embryonic sac. An empty looking jelly bean that would eventually become a baby. At 25 days post transfer, we saw 2 embryos. One was a week behind in size, and we were told not to get our hopes up about viability. We were having twins! At the 9 week visit, we were informed the smaller twin didn’t make it. It is known as vanishing twin syndrome. We were heartbroken, but relieved that the other baby was healthy.
On December 29th, 2014 at 3:27pm, I gave birth to a 7lb 1oz baby girl named Reagan. I am 35yo and my husband is 37. She is fondly known as our million dollar baby. After 7.5 years, we were parents! We never gave up and never lost hope. Fertility treatments are expensive. They are physically and emotionally grueling. But, for us, they worked.
That’s our success story! We beat infertility!
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