A familiar story, I guess – my 39th birthday was the deadline for making a decision on whether or not to (attempt to) embark on single motherhood. That deadline passed in April 2012 and the following June I made contact with a fertility clinic, after first talking to my very lovely and understanding GP.
This was a decision that had been in the making for a good 4.5 years, since my long-term boyfriend and I finally broke up. It was not one I took lightly. I’m sure no woman chooses this path without a huge amount of reflection, agonising and mixed feeling.
Having made the decision, however, I felt nothing but enormous relief. The stress of trying to negotiate the world of dating and relationships in your mid-30s with an enormous, invisible (to him) clock ticking away in the background was gone. Although I might never have a relationship again, if I do it will be because I want to be with the man and he with me, not because I need a Daddy Donor. I actually wish I’d made the plunge sooner, but you’re ready when you’re ready, I suppose. I hope I haven’t left it too late.
Trying to conceive (ttc) at this age is a long road and, if I get there, pregnancy will just be the beginning. There’s the nine months, and then the 18 years, and then some…
Reading about the experiences of fellow TTCing bloggers helps a lot, as does having a sense of humour about this often ridiculous process.
Anyhow, fingers crossed, legs uncrossed and let’s see how this goes.
PS. In case you were wondering, the “Wear your aprons high, single ladies!” line is from a phrase I came across the week I started this blog. Wearing your apron high is a euphemism for being pregnant, apparently. The image of an apron worn high over a bump is a nice one, I think.
IUI #1: October 2012 − chemical pregnancy
IUI #2: November 2012 − negative result
IUI #3: January 2013 − negative result
Now bringing out the big guns
IVF #1: started June 2013; six embryos frozen in July − transfer delayed due to mild OHSS
FET #1: two five-day embryos transferred 11 September 2013 − negative result
Post-FET tests indicated very high levels of: i) inflammatory cytokines (CD4:CD8 ratio); ii) natural killer cells (NKCs); and iii) CD56 NKCs. Took concentrated Omega 3 for eight weeks pre-FET#2 to tackle cytokine levels and continued with the same dosage during the cycle. Also had three doses of intralipids and on 25mg steroids, 20mg blood thinner and aspirin during the cycle to tackle NKCs. Plus, on Metformin for the cycle after building up to 850mg twice a day, as I may have insulin resistance (high ovarian reserve/ovarian response indicate PCO traits). No, I don’t know what most of that means, either.
FET #2: started late January 2014; two five-day embryos transferred 13 March 2014 Positive result but miscarriage around five weeks
FET #3: started mid-May 2014; one five-day embryo transferred 25 June 2014. Meds as previous cycles with higher level of blood thinner (40mg) and addition of Neupogen to further depress immune system (first injection directly into uterus eight days before transfer and second injection self-administered into stomach six days before transfer) – negative result
FET #4: started early August 2014; one six-day embryo transferred 16 September 2014 Meds as FET #3 (Clexane, Neupogen, Metformin, Omega 3, intralipids) except lower dose of steroids (10mg) − chemical pregnancy
IVF #2: started January 2015, long agonist protocol – two fresh five-day embryos (blast and morula) transferred 8 February 2015
Gonal F 100 and Menopur 75, plus other meds as FETs (Clexane, Neupogen, Metformin, Omega 3, intralipids)
Positive result but miscarriage around eight weeks
FET #5: started early June 2015; one six-day embryo transferred 17 July 2015. Meds as FET #4 (Clexane, Neupogen, Metformin, Omega 3, intralipids, steroids)
Positive result – due date 3 April 2016
My beautiful boy born 1 April 2016 by c-section