Sunday, November 1, 2015

IVF Surgery #1–Making the decision to do IVF

Doug was the first of us to have surgery. We came home from Fuds and doug had surgery that week.

Here he is a few hours post surgery. He requested popsicles so that is what he got!


Doug had a procedure called a TESE or TESA where they extracted sperm, found it was good (yay!) and froze 7 vials for our future use.

This his him the next day handling it like a champ.IMG_2304

Once Doug’s surgery was done, it was my turn. We had big decision to make and lots to discuss.

Once we knew we could continue with IVF we had to decide if we wanted to do IVF. It is a HUGE decision. I read so much and we did so much research.

The main objection the church has with IVF is the loss of lives when they fertilize as many eggs as they extract, but most people do not end up implanting all those embryos. So those embryos are frozen in time for years, decades and most likely destroyed. I completely agreed with their concern. I did not want lives hanging in the balance. That is a huge responsibility because it is not the fertility clinics that are responsible for the decision on what to do with those lives, but the individual couples.

The other big objection the church has with IVF is that embryos are not made in a “loving embrace”. They are not made with Love. This is almost laughable. To go through all the shots, all the surgeries, all the money – if that is not showing more love than having sex one time in the back of a truck, I don’t know what is.

So we had to find a way to not lose any lives. I felt that was the moral thing to do. Also, what if Doug died and I had 10 frozen embryos just sitting there? Should I put them in as to not kill them? What if I died? Would doug have “our” children with a new wife? Would he have to pay for a surrogate? These are not issues we want to worry about later.

I met with my doctor and told her my concerns and she was more than willing to work with my requests. I DID NOT want to fertilize more than 6 eggs at first. I wanted to only do small batch fertilization. I was not ok with more than 6. She agreed to pursue IVF the way I wanted. This is a HUGE DEAL.

Think about it – Fertility Clinics have one job – to get you pregnant and for you to have a live birth. That is their mission in life. They track all their stats to share with future clients. They want to fertilize the most eggs possible to get the best embryos possible to get you pregnant the fastest. They do not care how many embryos you freeze nor what you do with them once you are done having kids. That is YOUR responsibly. Not theirs. So when you want to only fertilize a few eggs, some places will tell you no or try to make you change your decision.

Thank God my doctor did not force me into anything. Honestly, if she had tried I would not have done the IVF there. I felt too strongly about these lives in the balance.

Also – embryo grading is SO subjective. We did a lot of research and while embryologist are great at their jobs, they all rate embryo’s differently. I told my doctor I did NOT want them rated as they were all going in NO MATTER WHAT. I did not care if they were rated “poor” or “fair”. They were lives and they were going to be implanted. She did not like this as much and asked if they could be rated and they just not tell me. I said sure! I really did not care if they were rated. If they had a chance of life, I was going to give it to them.

As the month went on we were preparing for the actual IVF cycle. It only takes 2 weeks, but your life revolves around it.  As we got closer to the cycle I decided I no longer was ok with 6 embryos frozen. Again, what if Doug or I died? I was not having it. I changed my mind again and asked that we only fertilize 2. I wanted to “fertilize the eggs on demand”. We can fertilize them as we need them. That way we have no frozen babies floating around. I asked to freeze my eggs separate and we would thaw as necessary. Again, my doctor and embryologist agreed. Thank God.

Finally, we had a plan that felt right. It met my values, helped me keep my faith (no lives lost) and was the right plan for us. I finally felt at peace….then the shots started. Eek. I will save that for a later post.

The middle of May is when the shots started. So many ultrasounds. So much probing. I swear. If this whole process does not show love, I do not know what does!

I will continue with the “May 2015” things and give you the IVF updates as they came about.

Love and Hugs, Lizzie

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