Monday, August 09, 2004

Change of Pace

The latest developments are this: short of my getting pregnant naturally, there probably won't be any more developments until we have our first consultation at the Ass Con Centre in October. We are preparing to enter hyperspace, the cryosleep chambers are waiting, and we are ready to enter suspended animation as far as any further medical treatment goes, for the next couple months.

We had thought that it would make sense, given E.'s poor morphology result, to have him do another test before we went to "Ass Con 1". We were advised by my lovely GP that this might help give a fuller picture of what we might be dealing with here- at least on his side of things. So E. went back to see his doctor with a view to getting a referral to a private hospital over in the Other City.

There were a couple reasons for going private for the second test. Firstly, it's generally much quicker to get seen on private (i.e. paying) basis. Secondly, given the last experience we don't exactly have shedloads of confidence in that particular NHS hospital lab. And we thought we might be able to get a proper consultation, with a proper report, not just some numbers printed out with nothing to indicate what any of it meant.

E.'s doctor shall henceforth be know as "Doctor Just Do It" since his response to E.'s initial queries about infertility was this:

"Oh, you can always just do IVF."

As a result of that one little comment, it has taken me some time to disabuse E. of the notion that IVF is something you sign up for casually, like a trial gym membership.

Anyway, Dr Just Do It's take on the whole "private test" was not to bother.

"He said it might come back worse and then what we would do?," E. explained as we drove over to the park for an evening run.

"That is the whole point. If it's worse, it might be helpful to know that NOW," I replied, wiping the froth from my mouth.

E. went on to say that Dr Just Do It said we'd have to do another test at the Ass Con Centre regardless. And anyway, Dr JDI didn't really rate the private hospital too much. He said the consultants there were all NHS, and they rushed you through a morning appointment so they could get to their proper jobs.

"He says that if we want the best treatment, there is a place down in X, across the border."

"And how does he know all this, exactly?"

"From personal experience, apparently," E. said, swerving to avoid the teenage mother walking out in front of the car with a baby carriage.

"I doubt that anyone who has been through this would say something like "you can just do IVF," I muttered darkly.

Eventually, we decided to wait. It's maybe not ideal, but we are trying to learn to live with uncertainty.

It's also opened the door for a lot more of those "what if?" discussions. What we will do if one or both of us can't physically deliver the goods. On one hand, those "what if" discussions seem like a pointless waste of energy- dwelling on potential avenues that we may never need to take. But on the other hand, it's good, because it helps E. understand a bit more of what is at stake here, what it might take to achieve that, and gets both of us considering how far we are willing to go. And maybe if we sit with that for the next couple months, letting it marinate, we won't be wracked with indecision when the time comes to make up our minds.

It's hard to know. Every day I wake up and feel differently. Or something will happen to change my focus. A year ago, if you told me that E. really wants his child to carry a genetic link to him (but not necessarily to me), I would have been very reluctant to even consider the options, i.e. egg donation. I might have just closed down that route, thinking among other things, that it's both of us or nothing.

But that night, we went running. We ran during that lovely hour when it's not close to being dark, but the day is finally over, and slipping towards night. We took a new route, me huffing and puffing behind E., trying to keep up. I looked ahead, and saw his strong graceful strides, his retreating back against the silver summer sky.

I thought, he is so beautiful when he runs.

And I suddenly realised that if it did come to that, I don't know how I would be able to let that end with him.

So beautiful.


At 12:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh boy, this so far is the best rationale I have for having a go with donor eggs should this last IVF with my own not work. He is so beautiful - I can't bear for all that loveliness to go nowhere.
My genes? Ach, not so lovely.

(and btw, thanks for your support over at my place)


At 1:32 AM, Blogger Jen P said...

I really wish you guys some breakthroughs with the new doctors. Dr. JDI seems like to a total a-hole and you're right...anyone's who's been down this path knows you don't 'just do' IVF. IVF scares the utter crap out of me and if a doctor suggested that was what we were just to do...I dunno.

Thank you for writing all that you do. It really helps me rethink my own life and it's like bouncing ideas off really brilliant people. I wish you two so much luck and the very best.

At 9:05 AM, Blogger Pazel said...

With Matt, we are dealing with low count (usually only a few million), low motility (usually 12%), and poor morphology (want to say 7%). Because of this, when we did IVF, we did ICSI. What I'm saying is that if you go to IVF, you might want to have that test so that you can decide whether to do ICSI with it or not.

I think you should pursue parenthood in whichever form becomes available and acceptable. With time, it's amazing how much we are willing to give up to get to our final goal of a child. I'm sorry that you have to wait, although it seems you are okay with it. For us, I had known we would be going to IVF for years, so once our 3rd IUI failed, I couldn't wait anymore.

(p.s. I missed you when I was gone. Is that weird? I have so much to catch up on.)

At 4:11 PM, Blogger E. said...

Your post is beautiful -- all misty and wistful. I've always shied away from donor eggs for the same reason -- but when you explain it this way, I see why it's an option. I hope you keep writing during your wait. I'm thinking of you.

At 3:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That doctor...what a funny guy! "Just do IVF" Please. Oh, and while you're at it, why don't you "just adopt" too?

Beautiful ending to your post. I understand what you mean completely. Knowing that our child will not be genetically related to my husband (or me...I like me too) is the very hardest part of adopting right now.

Heidi @

At 7:58 PM, Blogger lobster girl said...

Ah, dear, there's so much in this post. Getting ready to wait is such a hard thing to do. And helping to bring E. up to speed ... well, let's just say my husband and I had similar conversations not too long ago. At the time, just a mention of IVF completely freaked him out and shut down the conversation. But he just needed time to see what the options may truly turn out to be. Those are good conversations to have, my luv.

Your ending is beautiful. I agree. I couldn't stand the thought of severing my partner's genetic connection to our kid. I can barely think of giving up my own link, and that's the fear I dreamed about recently. But I know I could do it ... if I had to. But not his. No, not his.

Good luck as you enter hyperspace. Perhaps you'll at least get some good views out of the porthole as you drift towards your appointment.


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