DATE: 07.30.10 TIME: 10:10 AM
Through the last 38 weeks, it’s something that comes to mind everyday and is talked about between Charlie and I at least 3-4 times a week. Why did we get so lucky? Why did we get pregnant with fertility treatments so quickly while so many women dealing with years of infertility are still not pregnant. What did we do to deserve this?
Even before we started trying to get pregnant in October 2008, I knew we would have problems. My mom had problems getting pregnant, and with that came a wonderful older brother who was adopted as a newborn before I came along. I was always really small and very active - a dancer and a cheerleader - and doctors would tell me and my mom that I would eventually get my period when I gained a bit of weight. They weren’t even concerned that I was almost 16 years old with still NO PERIOD. Even after getting my period, it never came when it was supposed to - and at 20 years old, after countless stained clothing - I was sick of not knowing when I was going to get it on a regular schedule! My doctor’s solution to this was not taking tests to see what the hell was wrong, but to put me on birth control to regulate my system.
So after nine years of straight birth control, Charlie and I decided it was time to get off the pill and try to get pregnant. Only getting off the pill didn’t bring excitement - it immediately brought worry - because after that last period on birth control, I went 82 days without bleeding. And the irregularity continued for 6 months just as it did when I was a teenager. I was only getting my period when put on hormones to induce it and obviously NOTHING was happening other than meeting new doctors hoping someone would say “Oh wait. Something is wrong.” But no, what I got instead were doctors telling me I needed to wait a year (even though I wasn’t even getting my period AT ALL). I even had a doctor tell me that I wasn’t getting pregnant because she thought I had an eating disorder. Yes, really.
After nine months of only 4 periods (2 of them induced with hormones, all cycles lasting more than 45 days, 2 cycles twice that length), I decided to take matters into my own hands and I scheduled an appointment with the best Reproductive Endocrinologist (RE) in the city of New York.
This week marks one year that we met Dr. T and his staff at the Sher Institute in New York City. We walked in to his office praying and hoping that he would be the doctor to tell us that something is obviously wrong - that birth control wasn’t the cause of this - that he was going to “fix” everything - and that he was going to get me pregnant. And the first day I met him, that’s exactly what he did. He even got added bonus points for asking us “What took you so long to come see me?”
I’m sure that many REs tell their patients these very same things. After a few tests to find out exactly what was the cause of us not getting pregnant (my horomone levels were of a woman aged 35-37, not a woman of 29) and to add even more insult to injury, my husband also had infertility problems on his end. We thought we were doomed. But our RE kept reassuring us that the treatments were going to work! And we believed him every step of the way. Of course there were moments of doubt and extremely sad days where we thought, “What if this doesn’t work?” and “What if we aren’t able to have a biological child?” But in the grand scheme of things, we tried our hardest to remain positive even after two failed cycles of treatments.
Our third treatment worked and here we are. But we are always going to be one of those few couples who understands and knows what it’s like to not be able to get pregnant on your own – that some things in life just don’t work out exactly the way you thought they would. But we also know that we are the few fortunate couples who didn’t suffer for years through treatments, and for that, we are entirely grateful – but it still doesn’t stop us from feeling for those couples who have been going through treatments for years and who still aren’t pregnant. We couldn’t be more excited that we are going to have a baby any day now and we wish for our infertile friends that they will soon be able to have this experience.