Battling Infertility - our story

UPDATE (3/18): Introducing Morgan Elizabeth!!!
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Battling Infertility - our story

Postby PhantomNick » Tue Feb 25, 2014 4:13 pm

This random thread has a wide assortment of topics, and after doing a search and not seeing anything related to this, I thought I'd post it here. If this is deemed not appropriate or too personal, there are no hard feelings if it is locked. I just felt like it would be interesting to see if any other couples out there in the TPR world have experienced a similar journey to the one my wife and I are on now.

Back in January of 2010, my wife and I made the decision that we wanted to start a family. It was an exciting time for us, and we were as ready as ever to take that plunge into parenthood. We "tried" for the next two years to get pregnant. My wife at times even attempted "charting" in an effort to try and maximize our chances at hitting that ideal window. Towards the end of that second year, some definite frustration had started to set in. There were many negative pregnancy tests, some tears shed, and friends were getting pregnant seemingly like it was nothing. We began wondering if something was wrong with us. After many discussions on the matter, we decided it was time to seek out some help.

In January 2012, we went to a local hospital to visit with a reproductive endocrinologist (RE). We've been really lucky, to be honest, as our RE has been such a blessing to us! After running a battery of initial diagnostic tests, everything came back "good" and "normal". It was the dreaded "unexplained infertility". We were given a few more months to try on our own. After those months proved unsuccessful, we returned for a follow-up with our RE. More tests were run, and we were told that they had a suspicion that my wife might possibly be dealing with a condition known as endometriosis. This condition can hide from initial testing, and the only way to find out for sure if it is present is to have a laproscopic surgery to investigate. My wife's first surgery in December of 2012 revealed that she had stage 4 endometriosis. At last, we had a reason.

Endometriosis (especially more severe cases like my wife's) can greatly inhibit the ability to get pregnant naturally. During the surgery, they cleaned up some of the areas to give us another shot on our own. This was to be a limited window, because unfortunately there is no cure for endometriosis. It can be cleaned/removed, but it will come back. More trying, and more of the same.....negative after negative. At that point, a plan was put in place to have us try our "best shot" based on my wife's condition - IVF. Another surgery was scheduled for this past summer, and the target was then the fall of 2013 to attempt our first IVF cycle. In November, we moved forward and began IVF. Unfortunately, the medications required caused my wife's body to react adversely, so it was decided we would not proceed with our "live" IVF cycle. Instead, they retrieved as many eggs as they could and headed to the lab to see if any viable embryos could be produced. They were able to retrieve 6 eggs, and of those, 4 viable good quality embryos emerged and were frozen for later use.

Fast forwarding a bit to today, and we are preparing for our first FET (frozen embryo transfer) this week! =) It has been quite a journey for us, full of times with plenty of emotional heartache. Dealing with infertility can be one of the most difficult things a couple can face. There are times spent feeling frustrated, confused, alone, angry, and incredibly sad. Infertility puts a drain not only on your emotions, but also your bank account. These procedures we are going through are incredibly expensive, and almost all insurance companies do not cover 1 cent of it. I will say that this whole experience has made my wife and I even closer though. Our love for each other has grown exponentially as we've taken on this battle. On a personal note, I am truly inspired by.....and in awe of.....my wife. She has had to put her body through pure hell just to try and have a baby. I couldn't ask for a more incredible partner. We don't know what the future will bring us as we continue on this journey. Perhaps this first transfer will work......or perhaps it won't, and we will need to recover, regroup, and try again. We feel like we are giving it our best shot possible. And if after all this it isn't meant to be, then we are already fully intending on exploring adoption. I truly believe that somehow, some way, we will be blessed with a baby in due time.

So, that's a condensed version of our story. As we have gone through this, we were surprised to learn just how common infertility is. 1 in 10 couples (on average) deal with it in some form or another. But good can come from it as well. During the height of this battle, during a time that was more difficult for me, I discovered (through TPR) Give Kids The World and the wonderful Coasting for Kids event. I decided to channel that energy that could've been spent feeling bad about our situation, and pour it into an event that does so much good for such deserving kids. Have any others out there dealt with, or know someone close to you who has dealt with, infertility issues? Feel free to comment, share personal stories, or even ask questions. We have become much more open about our struggles with infertility. Sometimes you end up feeling so isolated, so it's nice to be able to talk with others who have experienced the same. Kudos if you've made it through this whole post......and thanks for reading!
Last edited by PhantomNick on Wed Mar 18, 2015 11:18 am.
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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby PhantomNick » Tue Jan 13, 2015 4:13 pm

Hello again, TPR friends! I just thought I'd dust off this little thread and give an update on our journey to parenthood, for anyone who read the initial post and might be curious. As posted above, almost a year ago, in late Feb. 2014, we did in fact attempt our first IVF cycle (frozen embryo transfer). Unfortunately, it was not successful. After a period of grieving and regrouping, we targeted June 2014 for our second transfer attempt. The first embryo they used did not survive the thawing process, so they needed to use our 3rd of 4 embryos for the transfer. We had decided earlier to plan a vacation for right after the transfer (relaxing could only help, right?). We headed away to visit family, go to Kings Dominion (where I participated in Coasting for Kids), and then spend several days relaxing at Virginia Beach. Towards the end of our trip, my wife was experiencing fairly similar symptoms to that first unsuccessful transfer. We were convinced that this attempt had failed as well, and we felt crushed.

The Monday after we returned from vacation, we went in for the blood draw pregnancy test. Then, later that night, after the doctor's office left a message on my wife's phone, we sat down to listen to the message together. We prepared for what we thought was another disappointing bout of news. Then, listening to the message, we heard the greatest words of our entire lives - "Congratulations, you are pregnant!!!" :b :b I will never forget that moment as long as I live. We instantly broke down into tears of pure joy! Our long journey had finally taken a turn in the right direction, and when we were certain (in our minds) that it wasn't going to happen. It was early of course, but above all else we thought to ourselves, "Hey, we really CAN get pregnant!!"

Throughout the early portions of the pregnancy, we endured many scares from bleeding to not hearing the heartbeat at some doctor's appointments. We felt like we were having a record number of "emergency ultrasounds"! But thankfully, things stabilized in the 2nd trimester, and at around 20 weeks, we went in for an ultrasound and discovered that we were having a little GIRL!! We were beyond words at how far we had come in this process, and so incredibly in love with what we have termed as our own little miracle baby. Mom-to-be is feeling pretty good, and our little sweetheart is growing strong and healthy! Due to a condition that developed during the pregnancy, we recently discovered that our bundle of joy is arriving 4 weeks early, via a scheduled C-section at 36 weeks, which is actually a mere 2 WEEKS from today, on January 27th!!! We are so incredibly excited for the arrival of miss Morgan Elizabeth!! I think of this journey, and realize that when I get to hold her in my arms for the first time, there will be no greater feeling in the world. :lover:

So, that's the wonderful update to our saga, for those who are interested. We cannot wait to enter a whole new part of our journey as we become parents!! =) Here are a couple (of the many, haha) ultrasound pictures of the soon-to-arrive Morgan!!

Morgan1.jpg
Our little sweetheart starts growing up!

Morgan2a.jpg
From November, a 3D view of our baby girl!!


Thanks so much for reading!!
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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby ginzo » Tue Jan 13, 2015 9:52 pm

Congratulations, Nick! I hope you haven't burned through all of Morgan's college fund bringing her into the world.

Are you already mapping out the list of the first coasters she'll ride? Her first woodie. Etc.

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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby SharkTums » Wed Jan 14, 2015 8:26 am

Wonderful story! Good luck with everything and don't forget to have fun!

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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby Meteornotes » Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:19 am

Congrats!

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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby PhantomNick » Wed Mar 18, 2015 11:46 am

Well, I figured it was time to update this little story of ours......by introducing to TPR our lovely daughter, Morgan Elizabeth!!! :b =) Morgan came 4 weeks early, as scheduled, via c-section on January 27th. She tipped the scales at 6 lbs., 15 oz, and came in at 19 inches long (well on her way to coaster riding height, haha!) My wife Erin and I are simply over the moon with excitement that our little miracle - 5 years in the making - is finally here! She is just perfect, and we instantly fell head over heels in love with her when they first handed her over to us in the hospital. She's now 7 weeks old (already!), and it's just an absolute blast watching her grow and develop! There's really nothing better than holding her in my arms.....she's absolutely beautiful! (Yes, I realize I'm biased.....but that's fine with me!! ;) ) And some of her faces? Totally cracks me up! I think she's got a good start on a spunky little personality. Just wanted to also thank those of you who followed along and posted some very sweet comments in regards to this whole journey. Now the journey continues, and the real FUN has begun!! Anyway, enough talking.....here are some favorite pictures of our darling Morgan!! :lover:

Morgan_1.jpg
Welcome to the world, Morgan!!

Morgan_2.jpg
Ready to come home from the hospital

Morgan_3.jpg
Hanging out with my girls! ;)

Morgan_4.jpg
Daddy's sweetie

Morgan_5.jpg
LOVED this pose she randomly did! (How you doin'??)

Morgan_6.jpg
Valentine's Day

Morgan_7.jpg
<3

Morgan_8.jpg
Hey! You lookin' at me??

Morgan_9.jpg
Morgan contemplating life

Morgan_10.jpg
Fist bump!! :)

Morgan_11.jpg
Yesterday's St. Patrick's Day outfit
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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby AllenA07 » Wed Mar 18, 2015 12:27 pm

Congratulations!!!
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Re: Battling Infertility - our story

Postby Coastinmiller » Wed Mar 18, 2015 1:25 pm

Very touching story and congrats!
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