Husband and I went for an IVF seminar this evening. They mentioned the 'insurance package' which covers 6 cycles for a fixed high price and gives a big portion of the money back if we don't take a baby home at the end.
At the end of the seminar, husband asked what I thought of going in for that. I had told him before that I wasn't going through a second cycle if the first one didn't work. The whole thing was too invasive, stressful, expensive, physically and emotionally exhausting and it was taking over my life to the point that most other major things were on hold (like my career).
"Career stuff is not as important as this", he said.
"My life doesn't end if I cannot have kids, it's more important for me to bring up a child, regardless of whether they are mine". Of course, as I said that, I knew that the adoption process wasn't going to be any easier. That would come with its own set of problems - long waiting times, an endless application process, custody issues, exorbitant prices, etc.
We walked to an open air bar. It was a warm summer evening and the streets were full of people. Normally, both of us would have loved to soak in such an evening, but a gloom had settled over us. Husband was over-worked, tired, eyes blood shot. He was irritable and complained about minor annoyances. I stopped trying to make conversation. I felt guilty. Guilty and weak for not wanting to try indefinitely, guilty that I couldn't have the kids that my husband so desperately wanted.
The twilight was deepening outside; yellow lamps and neon signs started to come on. As I looked out over at the bustle on the street, I felt old and broken and above all, helpless.
There were multiple factors working against me - age, low egg count, endometriosis, fibroids. I had done everything I could upto this point, including a full abdominal surgery to get rid of fibroids in preparation for IVF. But even after all that, my chances with IVF were less than 45%. Less than half!
The source of all my problems, of course, was that I had waited too long. Sure, people my age were easily having kids, but then they didn't have decreased ovarian reserve or all the other problems I had. I looked back at the forks in my road, at all the decisions I'd made that led me to start trying only in my 30s.
I wondered, for the umpteenth time, what it was that could have caused the endometriosis and fibroids. My sister doesn't have these. All the women in my family have multiple healthy children. I have always been physically fit and active and eaten a healthy diet. Maybe I've always had endometriosis and it would have been a problem even in my 20s. Second guessing the past was a losing game.
We paid and walked silently out, past babbling kids and cheerful families. I was drowning in self-pity.
Scotland, Part One
13 hours ago