Tuesday, August 22, 2006

How Can I Ever Forget The DETAILS

On the day of retrieval/fresh tese (the day otherwise known as IVF 2 cancellation) i went with dh and a friend to the fresh tese, which was scheduled at 7:30 am. We arrive at 6:10 am. The surgery was expected to last about an hour and half, and my retrieval was scheduled for 11:30.

My friend and i waited for two hours in a crowded waiting room. The ivf clinic had given us the medium they wanted used for the fresh tese, and I carried those in a soft covered black cooler. I knew if the doctor came out with the black bag, then we're set to go for the retrieval. If not, it was over. I was, at the time, incredibly calm. Having suffered through a terrible three weeks, i was glad to finally be at this moment of truth. Either way, i was to be set free.

At about 9:45, the doctor comes into the crowded waiting room, carrying the black bag. And, i thought, oh my God, this is it. THIS IS IT!!! He hands it to me and says "Good luck with the retrieval. Things looked more promising this time..." and some other stuff. I was too focused on what it meant to have the bag of vials in my hand. Oh my God, the cycle is going forward!?

The ivf clinic was 3 miles away from the hospital, and I drove myself and the friend, la la lalala, we're off to see the wizard, and it's all good.

I get to the clinic and hand the vials over. A small part of me still wants to hear from the embryologist that it's all good. The nurse then comes and takes me and my friend back to the same room of the first ivf, just the other bed. I undress and put on the hospital gown. The nurse asks me to read the drug instructions for the rest of the week. I couldnt think straight, let alone read a word on a page.

The nurse comes back after a short while and i ask her if all was well with the vials. She said that the embryologist gave her the star to go ahead, which means everything's fine. If they had any problems, they would have said something. The nurse then asks me if i had any questions. I said, um, yes, well, could you go over these instructions completely, i dont want to miss anything. Well, last time the nurse explained it to me herself.

She explains everything to me. I dont understand much about the progesterone shots, and she says she will come back with an example.

She comes back and says that the embryologist cant find any sperm and that they have to cancel the cycle.

I am shocked and dumbfounded. What? What did i bring then? What did the urologist see? What's going on? What am i missing? This makes no sense.

The nurse says "would you like to speak to the embryologist?" I said, yes.

The embryologist comes and says, "we found nothing. There was NOTHING. Okay? I dont understand...the notes from your doctor said that this cycle might be cancelled. You expected this. You knew this could happen."

The embryologist was snappy and defensive. I hated her in that moment. Mean!

I said to her, "yes, i expected that the cycle might be cancelled, but NOT WHEN I'M CARRYING THE SPECIMEN IN MY HANDS! What happened?"

The embryologist decided to call the urologist to find out what i was talking about. But she tried to explain that their microscopes are much more powerful than the urologist's. So maybe the urologist saw something that under a greater magnitude turned out to be nothing.

I dont think so. That would just be stupid not to have a powerful microscope at the surgery site!

She also said that there was no way she could manipulate the tissue any further to find anything. It was sliced to smithereens. Then she left, but not before shrugging and saying "the cycle is still cancelled."

In the meantime, some doctor (not mine, i dont even know if my RE is working that day, it's like a factory at this clinic) comes in to help explain why the cycle is being cancelled. "I'm sorry. They found one sperm with an overly large head, no neck and no tail. I'm sorry." But, but, all we need is dna. Just gimme the dna. "We cant do a retrieval for one poor sperm. It has NO NECK OR BODY. I'm sorry."

I wanted the dna, but a part of me was like, God, i dont want to push it with such poor quality sperm. Maybe it's a sign of poor quality dna. But i had to ask! I had to ask.

Another thought occurred to me. But, what if i got more tissue, what if i went back to the urologist and got more? The doctor hesitated, "You have up until 12:30 for your eggs to be retrieved." It was 11:30. We had time!

The doctor leaves and the embryologist comes back. "The urologist never actually saw sperm. He just gave you the tubules that normally carry the sperm. And the one sperm we found, it's head is too big to fit in our needles. It wouldnt survive the transfer." Did you find any dead sperms? "No, nothing dead or alive. I'm sorry."

A few minutes later i just left. I wasnt sure what there was left to wait for. I had to go back to my husband, who still did not get out of recovery. If there was any chance to save the cycle, it would be with him. En route, i spoke with the urologist, he said that there was no way that they could go back into dh that day without causing permanent damage.

It was over. I arrived at the hospital waiting room precisely at the moment that the nurse came out to call for me. My husband was done with recovery and i was faced with the task of informing him that the ivf was cancelled.

It was awful, and it's been awful. And i'm now so glad to finally be off that God awful rollercoaster. Now you can see why i would need a serious break from the baby chase. No more. Enough. Uncle. Mercy. God, please, i get it now.

As i write, this it amazes how many little tragedies went on that day. Why couldnt it just have ended at the surgery? The doctor didnt have to come out with the bag, raise our hopes up again. At the ivf clinic, why did the nurse say it was ok to go ahead? Why did i have to be the one to tell dh that the surgery he just did was all for naught?

And this day is like a microcasym of the last year. After we found out that we could never have kids one year ago, after i had a mini-stroke in shocked reaction, after it took me six months to come to a point where i can start to move on, a sliver of hope crept in by way of blood results. The doctor then recommended a surgery and about a month and half later he told us he found sperm. Then ivf 1 cancellation because the sperm did not thaw out from the freeze. Now this. It all could have just ended with the first news, that we can never have kids last year. Instead we were dragged into a series of dashed hopes. Just in case we didnt get it the first time, we had to be reminded good and well twice more. We wont be having any kids of our own. Get the message forever now, and get over it.

I'm not bitter about this past year either, i just find it curious. What's the meaning behind it all.

So, we're back to where we started a year ago, except that i'm not shocked by the news. Where do we go from here?

I look forward to a better year, God willing.


At 8:32 AM, Blogger zhl said...

What a horrible day. To have such hope taken away as you literally await your transfer.

I'm sure that in time you will figure out what to do next. I too hope you have a better year.

At 9:47 AM, Blogger Hopeful Mother said...

An unbelievable story - I can't believe they strung you along that long. Absolutely unexcusable.

I am so sorry for what you're going through. It sounds like you are thinking of next steps. Next year will be better - it has to!

Praying for your peace and healing.

At 11:36 AM, Blogger Lut C. said...

That's one of the most awful experiences I've heard of. I'm sorry you had to go through this.

Personally, I don't believe there is a meaning or a purpose to be found in IF. Though of course, the experience takes on a meaning as it unfolds.

Wishing you better times to come.

At 2:34 PM, Blogger Summer said...

I know a little bit of how you feel. I went through something similar about my eggs. The worst part is letting yourself get taken along by all the possibilities only to find yourself back where you started. I, too, wonder if there was anything to learn from all this or was it just all part of some cruel joke?

I hope this is the worst that things will be for you and you find yourself in a better place, soon.

At 8:53 AM, Blogger Lara said...

Oh FS, im so sorry! Its just all so horrible and that embryologist needs to be fired!!! Talk about no empathy for the patients!!! BASTARD!! IF sucks ASSSSSS!!!! (and so btw does that embryologist!)

At 12:49 AM, Blogger Wishing 4 One said...

God Willing it will be a better year for you. You have suffered so, learned so much and become wiser in this journey, there was a reason you took it- no matter what anyone says.

You will know what to do... but in the end all will turn out fine- you have faith and this alone believe me, cures all. Words of wisdom, I know listen to me, I need to be telling myself this and believing it too; and I do, but its so much easier to try and soothe other's souls rather than our own isn't it?

By God's Grace we will all make it through this IF journey and hopefully will all grow Fertile Souls, like you my dear sister.

We are all here for you always....xoxooxox

At 9:43 PM, Blogger ellie said...

Oh my gosh- what a horrible experience- no one should have to go through that! I am so sorry. You have amazing strength to even be able to get up after all that- i admire that. I hope that you take time out and take care of yourself- find a peace with all this and move forward with life. I am so sorry that they dragged you both around for that year...

At 2:40 AM, Blogger Meg said...

Dar FS - You are one brave brave woman. I hope you know that.

I know you will find your meaning.

At 7:16 AM, Blogger Heather said...

I hope the next year is absolutely wonderful for you.

I'm so sorry they were mean. Why can't they try to put themselves in our shoes when they give us bad news?

At 6:47 PM, Blogger Mary Ellen and Steve said...

What an awful day. I can't even imagine. I am so so sorry that you had to go through that. I am absolutely horrified at the way you were treated by some of the clinic staff when you were experiencing such a tragedy.

I hope that you are able to find peace, and come to a decision regarding what will come next. Hugs to you.

At 7:09 AM, Blogger Sunnie said...

My heart was beating so fast as I was reading this. I had so much hope for the black bag. :( I am so sorry your hopes were dashed.

Here's to a new and improved year!


At 4:20 AM, Blogger StellaNova said...

This just sounds like the most awful experience. I'm so sorry it turned out like this for you.


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