I’d made peace with the fact that we were going to have to put off trying for a kid for six months; in fact, I’d decided that I was going to make the most of the delay and complete my weight loss journey. It would take some serious work, but surely I could get fifty pounds or so off in six months. That way, I’d be in the best possible shape to carry a child when (hopefully) it happened, so I wouldn’t feel like I was doing nothing at all during the delay.
Then, I began reading accounts of women who’d taken Lupron. And they scared the hell out of me. Massive weight gain, crippling depression, dizziness, clumsiness, joint pain, forgetfulness, diminished mental capacity, bone thinning…no one seemed to have had a good experience on the drug, and more often than not, their accounts were something out of a horror movie; it seemed that no one made it all the way through the treatment before quitting.
Joey asked me over and over if I wanted to go through with it, and he assured me that he was okay if I didn’t…that he was more concerned about my well-being than the possibility of a hypothetical future child. Conversely, though, he reminded me that it’s rare for someone to take to the internet with an account of a positive experience with a drug, and that I shouldn’t make a decision based solely on the mostly one-sided world of the interwebs. I’m very thankful to have a husband who’s the voice of reason when I need it most.
Despite the fear, I knew it was our last non-invasive chance for a child, and at this point, we’re not willing to take more invasive measures, so there was no question that I was going to go through with the shots. Weight gain, though? I’d lost 44 pounds over the last 1.5 years, and I was scared to death of gaining it back. Bone thinning? That doesn’t go away or get better. Forgetfulness? I have an insanely stressful job that requires every bit of my brain function most of the time. How was I going to make it through this?
Between the time the Lupron arrived at my doctor’s office on Tuesday and my appointment for my first injection on Thursday, I agonized over my decision to go through with it. All of these other women suffered, seemingly horribly, and here I was willingly walking into the fiery furnace. But I also did something else, something extremely uncharacteristic of me: I decided that I was not just going to survive this Lupron treatment; I was going to thrive during it, and I was going to share my experience. I knew that there would be negative side effects, but I wanted to prove that they were endurable and could be mitigated (maybe even overcome) with focus and diligence (and lots of prayer). I wanted some poor, scared, woman, searching for answers about her upcoming treatment, to find my story and perhaps some hope that she wasn’t going to end up fat, senile, and riddled with broken bones.
So we got some calcium chews and threw out the junk food, and I registered for a 5K on 4/23 and committed to myself that I would run at least part of it.
And I tried not to think about the fact that I was going to be jabbed in the ass with a giant needle in a couple of days.
Well, it’s been another long season of silence on the ol’ blog. I look back at years past and regret that I haven’t kept up with things more than I have, but I also struggle with feeling like I’m navel-gazing too much and not wanting to annoy people with constant talk about myself.
I’m breaking that silence, though, and am committing to regular blogging, at least for the rest of the year, to chronicle a very important journey and hopefully help some other women along the way.
Two years ago (this coming May), Joey and I decided that we were going to start trying for a kid. I’d never had even a hint of a maternal instinct, and for almost twelve years, we’d been perfectly happy being childless and parents only to our kitty, Shelli. In fact, we weren’t even sure if we were ever going to want kids at all. I dealt with the “when are you going to have babies?? Don’t you even want children??” questions with an eye roll and a proper sense of sarcasm, but didn’t think of it much otherwise.
Until one of my closest friends had her first son. And it hit me like a ton of bricks: I wanted a child. Joey and I spent a few months talking it over and decided that the timing was right to start trying.
I thought it would be pretty simple (which, in retrospect, was stupid since I already knew I had PCOS and other health factors working against me), but month after month after month went by with no luck. During the process, I worked on losing weight and getting my health in order, and I tried to keep a positive attitude despite feeling like I was constantly taking my temperature or peeing on something either to tell me if I was ovulating (usually not) or if I was pregnant (definitely not). For the record, if there’s ever an Olympic category for peeing in a tiny cup, I’m taking home the Gold.
By the end of the year (2014), I’d gone to see my OBGYN and she suggested that we try a round of fertility meds. I thought that would be it; everyone I’d talked to who had done them ended up pregnant after one or two rounds, so I was gearing myself up for this to work and to have a child by the end of 2015.
Except it didn’t work. For those of you unfamiliar with fertility drugs, they usually ask you to come in during the middle of your cycle (a few days after you’ve finished the round of meds) so they can do an ultrasound and see if you have an egg that’s ready to go. And I did not. I did, however, have a cyst that was larger than the usual PCOS-type cysts. After another two or three ultrasounds (that’s a lot of getting a giant wand shoved up your wazoo, FYI), they determined that it was an endometrioma and wasn’t going to go away. In June of 2015, my doctor recommended that I have surgery to get it removed, but I was reticent to do something that invasive when I “wasn’t having any problems” (or so I thought). She was amenable to doing another couple of rounds of the fertility meds, just to see if we could “get lucky” (hehehe), but it was all for naught.
After reading scores of natural-living blogs, I tried what seemed like everything to “cure” myself of this endometrioma: diet changes, supplements, essential oils…nothing worked. And I got pissed. I ready story after story of some “natural mama” who’d had problems conceiving, and after some coconut oil, castor oil packs, and a few essential oil blends, started popping kids out like a factory. And here was me, oily, unsuccessful, and irritated, with this ambivalent cyst that seemed to be mocking me from inside my body.
I gave in to the idea of surgery in November of 2015, and scheduled it for the following January 6th. I felt like that would allow me two more months to try and maybe get lucky and not have to get cut on. I prayed fervently, and felt hopeful that God would rescue me and keep me from the knife. I mean, we all read about miracles, right? Surely He would make me one of those stories, and I’d be able to help other infertile ladies with an account of being rescued just in time.
–to be continued–