Today was… intense.

So many tears fell today. Tears of gratitude. Tears of fear. Tears of hope. Tears of frustration. Tears of rage. Tears of exhaustion.

First there was the amazing Faces of ALI post and all the wonderful comments. I cried reading each and every one. I was so overwhelmed with gratitude, so overwhelmed with support. That Faces of ALI post was a gift unlike any other I’ve ever received. Thank you Jjiraffe. Thank you.

Then there was our first consult with the RE. I guess it was a good visit. We learned a lot (well, Mi.Vida did). We have a tentative plan and I suppose it’s good to know what our next steps are. But I will admit, I left the appointment feeling sad. I could tell Mi.Vida did too. We had tense conversations all the way home. We got in dumb arguments over stupid shit. It’s clear that we’re suffering from sticker shock. The RE, and everything he entails, is just so expensive. The first appointent cost us $5 a minute for fuck’s sake. An SA at his office, which Mi.Vida needs to do next week, will be another $200. The blood work he wants done for me is another $400 (if my doctor won’t order it) and the blood work for Mi.Vida is $250. All of this is before we’ve even done anything yet.

And who knows when we might do anything. That is very much up in the air right now. We need to get Mi.Vida’s second sample back to see what his numbers are like. If the results are similar to or better than the last sample we can pursue IUI. If they are worse, he’ll recommend we go straight to IVF. Which we can’t afford so…

I am also gumming up the works. I have a cyst on my right ovary (I think it was my right) and if it’s not gone by the start of my cycle (which is still totally AWOL, since that short course of BCPs last month) I’ll have to take BCPs again for another month or two until it’s gone. Then I’ll take Clomid and we’ll see if my ovaries actually respond to it.

All in all, I guess I’m glad we went. It’s clear we have issues. My doctor does believe that my diminished ovarian reserve (which was confirmed by the low number of follicles seen on the ultrasound) is part of what is preventing us from getting pregnant. I guess it messes with the hormones, causing my abnormally short cycles and incredibly light periods. Mi.Vida’s less than stellar sperm aren’t helping matters either.

I have to admit. It’s hard. We can’t really afford any of this. I’m looking for ways to make more money but there aren’t many. No one seems to need tutoring. I wouldn’t even know where to begin using my writing skills to make extra cash. I still have money in my “rainy day” account from my parents and I suppose I’ll just take more out of that if need be. That could cover at least the rest of the testing, a couple of non-indictable IUIs and maybe one injectables cycle.

Today I came home, feeling pretty down in the dumbs, and fooishly opened Facebook. There, at the top of my newsfeed, was the announcement of the birth of my cousin’s second child, a baby boy who arrived today, three weeks early. I totally lost it, just bawling my eyes out for the better part of an hour. Today my cousin welcomed her second child into the world, while I sat across from a doctor who told me all the many, expensive steps I’ll need to take for even the small chance at a having second child. It’s just so fucking unfair. And it makes me so mad even thinking about it.

I’m so scared. I’m terrified, really. I thought seeing an RE was going to make me feel more in charge of my own fate but instead I feel the opposite, careening out of control, on a collision course with a complete emotional breakdown. I truly don’t know how we’re going to manage this, both emotionally and financially.

Hope seems to have left the building.

I’m sorry this isn’t a more coherent post. I’m just in a really confused place right now. And I’m really hurting, and I don’t know what to say about any of it.

This is my 900th post by the way. I almost forgot to mention that.

17 responses

  1. I thought that seeing an RE would make you feel more in control too, but reading all of this over the last several weeks, I understand why you feel like things are more out of control. I would feel the exact same way.

    I know that I expected you to get a simple diagnosis and I was almost excited when the SA came back a little off because I figured, “that’s it. That’s the problem. FIXABLE!” I had no female issues (except the endometriosis they found at delivery but obviously that didn’t get in our way too much) so I have no idea what any of this is like for you. I don’t even know what a good AFC number is. I feel like a terrible “supporter” because I just don’t have experience with this on my end.

    I’m feeling at a loss these days because I don’t want to say anything stupid that makes things worse or harder on you, but I’m still a strong supporter of yours. I want so badly for this to all go away for you. I know you want the same thing.

    I’m rambling, but I just want you to know that I really, really think of you multiple times a day and wish there was something I could say or do to make it better. I will keep on supporting you, but please know that if I say anything stupid or overly optimistic – just ignore it. And I will try not to do that.

    I loved the photo of you three in the Faces of ALI piece, by the way. Beautiful!

  2. Hi there.

    I just wanted to reach out and tell you that I am sending all of my positive thoughts your way. I hate that you’re going through this.

    That’s all. Just sending hugs!


    Sent from my Windows Phone ________________________________

  3. Oh Esperanza. I am so sorry that it has come to all of this. I wish I could give you a glimpse of the future and promise that everything is going to work out, that you will get to bring home another healthy baby one way or another and that this is just a bump (more like roller coaster ride) along your path to building your family. But I can’t and that sucks. For better or worse these situations have to be taken as they come, one day, one hour, one appointment, one step at a time.

    I just want you to know that I have “been there” or at least somewhere close. I get how much your situation sucks and how hard it is to be in limbo, with so many under answered questions, even though you now sort of have diagnoses. I am sending so much peace, love, light, hope and hugs your way. Your feelings and tears are totally understandable.

    And to end on a happy note, I am so glad that you got the incredible gift that you did today from your dear Jjraffe. What a well-deserved honor to be profiled for her Faces of ALI. I am so proud of you. I believe in you. I know you can and will get through this difficult and uncertain time in your life. xoxo

  4. Oh Esperanza, my heart is breaking for you. I remember the pain of doubting you will ever have a second child. I am so sorry you are going through all this. If there is anything I can do to help…anything at all…please let me know.

  5. One thing I’ve discovered over the years: I have ZERO control over building my family. It fucking sucks, and I’m so sorry that the CHANCE of having a baby is so prohibitively expensive. It’s wrong.

    Sending you peace and love as you process through this all. This sucks, and I am so sorry you have to deal with this. 😦


  6. I remember our first meeting with our RE. And I remember that feeling of being out of control all to well. It is an utterly horrible feeling when you realize that money may be the only thing between you and having what you want. My thoughts are with you!!!

  7. This part is hard. Just hard, hard, hard. (What am I saying? It’s ALL hard, hard, hard…) I wish (like deep in the core of my soul wish) I could transfer the remainder of our IF coverage to you. Have you considered possibly pursuing IVF (if it comes to that) at a clinic in a city where costs might be lower? (For instance, my clinic, even without insurance, is far, far, FAR cheaper than most places and they have excellent success rates) I know it adds cost to travel (though I have it on good authority that there’s a house in Winston-Salem with plenty of room for you and Mi.Vida and Isa… 😉 ), but it might end up being far less than sticking with an expensive clinic.

    And also, just a note of encouragement: I had a cyst that threatened to ruin my cycle– I pretty much lost my mind when it was discovered, because I knew how ruinous it could be to an IVF cycle–, but in my case, my doctor drained it (well, needle aspirated it, I guess…) and I was able to continue on my cycle, with only a slight delay. If your cyst is looking like it might cause substantial delays, you might ask if draining it is an option…

    I’ve been thinking of you so much. I don’t know why I haven’t commented to say so (probably because honestly, I only know one other person well who has dealt with diminished reserves at an early age, and her story doesn’t lend itself to encouraging or helpful advice, and so I just don’t know what to say and then I don’t say anything…). Anyhow, I am really hoping that you are able to find a path forward through this diagnosis, that you are able to complete your family.

  8. I’m so sorry this is where you are in your journey to a second child. I feel your pain, well, kind of. We don’t know why I can’t get pregnant. Every test run on me is normal and so are all the tests they’ve run on my hubs. We have 2 more FET’s. If neither of those work, we’re done.

    Having a diagnosis is good and bad. It’s good because there is a reason, it’s bad because it means more $$ out of your pocket. I hate that fertility coverage isn’t mandated. I don’t know why even diagnostic things like your blood work and ultrasounds aren’t covered. It’s not fair.

    And then to get slapped with a birth announcement. I’m so sorry…There really are no words, just know I understand. If my last FET cycle had worked, I would be finding out if I was having a boy or a girl this week, and instead, I’m wondering how to move forward. It’s heart breaking.

    Sending HUGS to you and keeping you in my thoughts…

  9. Thinking of you and sending all the good thoughts I can. Hang in there.

    Quick question about you RE’s plan – if Mi.Vida’s sperm is less than what he wants to see to try an IUI, can’t an intermediate plan before moving straight to IVF be to see if you can correct your husband’s sperm numbers first? I know there are a lot of environmental factors to that for some men – for example being conscious of trying to lower temperature and also getting rid of the infection if he has one. Just a thought.

  10. Oh E I am so sorry to hear this… so sorry. so so much hope that things just work out for you guys, I wish you didn’t have this road ahead of you because it sucks. Hugs.

  11. I’ve been reading your blog for a while, And I decided to leave you a comment because I’ve been seeing myself in your case: I also suffer from secondary infertility, I have one living daughter, I’m 33 years old, I have the lightest of periods and I was diagnosed with diminished ovarian reserve.

    I wanted to let you know that although that diagnosis seems overwhelming, I have found that it doesn’t mean you cannot get pregnant, As long as you are still ovulating diminished ovarian reserve change things that much. I went through several cycles of IVF without success and I found that my problem was more implantation failure than anything else. Despite the lack of help from fertility specialists, because of my own research I discovered I had autoimmune issues, And I think after being put on prednisone I had been able to get pregnant pregnant three times without fertility treatments, which I was never able to achieve. with IVF. Unfortunately I’ve had three miscarriages because of the autoimmune issues. I’m currently pregnant With what I hope will be my rainbow baby, But I wanted to tell you not to get discouraged because of what doctors tell you, You may need to fight them or look for a better specialist, butI believe that you can find a way to get pregnant and carry your baby to term, It’s been a long four years struggle for us with three consecutive miscarriages, and not a lot of recognition for secondary infertility.

    Keep on fighting, I’m rooting for you.

  12. This sounds incredibly hard. I know that, for me, the times when I wasn’t sure what our next step would be have been the worst. Once there’s a plan I can focus on that. And it’s awful that fertility treatment is so horrendously expensive, which makes it so much harder to come up with a feasible plan. Hang in there!

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