Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A curve ball

I went to the RE on Sunday (yes Sunday! My RE works on Sundays, or rather, my RE's staff and colleagues work on Sunday), and they ran some tests, including FSH, estradiol, AMH, and an ultrasound with antral follicle count. Since I had to drive 2.5 hours each way for my date with the cooter-cam, I was just pulling into my driveway when the nurse called with the results. She said that the tests of ovarian reserve were all really good, and that the doctor thinks that all options should remain on the table, including cycling again with my own eggs, or even trying injectibles with IUI. I was not expecting this. At 42, I have already grieved the possibility of a genetic connection with my second child, and moved on to being pretty enthusiastic about donor eggs. I don't really know why I agreed to having tests of ovarian reserve at all, given that we were planning on DE. I guess that either my RE is very persuasive (true) or that I was assuming that the results would be bad, thus confirming that DE is the best (and only) option for us (also true). So, I really don't know what to do with this. I do NOT want to do another failed cycle. I am tired of BFN's and want something to work. We can't afford to continue to throw money away on failed treatments, and we don't want too big of a gap between our kids. All of this points to using DE. But... it isn't just about what I want. The one thing that continues to worry me about using DE is that I don't know how any child that may be created will feel about being donor-conceived, especially given that Eggbert is my genetic offspring. Will #2 FEEL like #2? Having the option of putting the donor out of the picture and still maybe possibly perhaps having another child dangled in front of me has really thrown me and I just don't know what to do. Meanwhile, Mystery has come down with a terrible case of Whinging Cough, and has officially declared himself unable to even converse about any topic of seriousness until he feels better or expires, whichever comes first. So, I am counting on you, dear internets, to help me process this. Any thoughts? All advice, sage and otherwise, is welcome.


Antropologa said...

The origin of the eggs isn't going to make the kid feel one way or the other, if you ask me. It's all about how the parents love the children, and your kid(s) will be definitely fine, in that case.

That said, if the doctor thinks going with your eggs is a good idea, I'd at least start there. Good FSH etc. at your age is an awesome sign, right? They WANT you to get pregnant ASAP for their statistics, right? So I don't think they would be sending you down that path if it's not likely to succeed, based on how they determine that. From what I understand, they are fast to suggest DE if the signs point that way, but in your case, at this point, they aren't.

Maybe set a limit of how long/how much money you are willing to put into your own eggs, and then see what happens?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Antropologa- any IVF clinic is going to advise you within what they think is a viable option and for statistics they would be foolish to advise you to use your own eggs if it wasn't a viable option. :-) Congrats on having it be an option (in addition to the option of DE's)

Thalia said...

I had a quick read of the archives before replying. I think the answer is that it is of course possible to conceive with your own eggs. But given the results of your last cycle, it is not going to be easy. I believe the chances at 42 of conceiving with IVF are around 5% (even with good numbers). Let's say yours are 10%. Chances with donor eggs will be closer to 70%, depending on the donor characteristics. You said here and before that you cannot face another negative cycle, and your posts this year seem to reflect a lot of openness to donor eggs. it is definitely your best chance. It is by no means your only chance. Only you and Mystery can decide what you are up for.

Anonymous said...

I have a first child (from my own egg) and a second (from a donor egg). Of course for #2 there will be questions, but I don't think there will be any feeling of being less loved (or at least no more than petulant adolescent fits always involve), because we just love her so.
But I can't advise you about trying with your own eggs. At a certain point I stopped -- not because I was certain that it wouldn't work, but because I was also tired of it not working, because I was excited to have something that was likely to work, because I didn't want to begin to feel too old (I was 43 1/2 when #2 was born), and because I wanted the distance between #1 and #2 not to become another potentially distancing factor -- which may also be a consideration for you.
I can live with my choice and the knowledge that maybe oh maybe it would have worked with my own eggs had we continued to try.

Bionic Baby Mama said...

i've been thinking all day about what to advise -- on the one hand, the reservations you've had about DE all along make your RE's comments seem like a reprieve. but on the other hand, thalia's comment is wise, and all that wrangling you've done, i feel sure, would steer you clear of the most ruinous shoals inherent in DE. (can you have inherent shoals? anyway.)

so. the bad news is that it's a tough decision. the good news is that neither choice seems "wrong." does that make sense?

Lut C. said...

It's a tough call.

If you do try again with your own eggs, and it works, you'll be relieved of being spared the donor dimension (I would think).

If you try again with your own eggs and fail, you might very well wish you had gone on to donor eggs.

How badly do you want to avoid another BFN?
Can you handle a BFN with DE better (relatively speaking)?

Having gone through BFN after BFN in trying for #2, I must say your concerns are entirely justified.
Antral follicles are just one part of the story.

As far as statistics go, I'm with Thalia.

Could you give it one final shot with your own eggs and then move on to DE? Perhaps do an IUI or two (in stead of IVF) with injections if that changes the financial picture?
(Was Eggbert conceived through ICSI?)

Marie-Baguette said...

ugh. Why don't you ask your chances and take it from there? I am sure they have plenty of stats.

also, I need to ask, are you absolutely sure you want 2 kids? I feel like I rushed into having a second kid, and it was horribly stressful. Pregnancy was harder because I could not get a break. And I was a zombie for the first year. I still feel like I am a bad mother because I can't focus on both kids at the same time and they do have very different needs (one is 2, the other is 4). It is much harder than I anticipated it to be. My best friend had tried to warn me, but I did not want to believe her. Also, in terms of money, 2 kids make a big difference. It meant we needed a car, and a bigger apt, and we can"t afford private school for 2 kids, and we have not been traveling because I did not want to have to deal with both kids on a flight. Things are getting better and easier, but it was tough. Right now they are going to the same daycare, but soon, drop off and pick up will be at 2 different places and logistics are going to become even more complicated.
And something else: they only just started playing together. Until 2 weeks ago, I could not even take my shower and leave them alone for 5 minutes.

Good luck! I am rooting for you


Lollipop Goldstein said...

No sage advice except to go with whichever path feels as if it has the least amount of regrets based on WHAT YOU KNOW NOW. I had to scream that last part because of course you'll learn things along the way, but you can't let new knowledge ever make you regret what you try now based on what you know right now.

Sarah said...

I am sorry for such a curve ball. I know the feeling of thinking things will go one way, then the RE tosses out a totally different set of rules. I hope you all find peace in your decision and whichever way you go, it leads to sweet little sibling for Eggbert.

I am here from Stirrup Queen and just wanted to say I totally relate to your wishes. Mine are very similar. I will be keeping my fingers crossed that yours all come true.

Tippy said...

There are so many ways to look at this. But even if your FSH is good, you are still older and your eggs have a higher chance of genetic abnormailty and thus lower chance of success... I think it basically comes down to... how much $$ do you want to spend and how quickly do you want this to work. DE's will work for you, especially since you have carried before... But the option to have your own eggs is appealing :-) Sorry, I'm not being much help.

Heather said...

Well at least you have your options open and I know that one way or another you will find a way to have that child you want. I'm here from the wishes and I hope that your child will be very healthy all his life and that your friend who is so sad finds a way out of that, or maybe can find even one good thing to focus on.

Anonymous said...

Boy, I wish I knew! I had a pretty good chance of getting pregnant again with an iui and donor sperm, but I just couldn't take it any longer--that's what it came down to for me. Is there a different protocol or anything that they would follow with your eggs this time? DE is pretty awesome, and they'd still have the same genetic father and prenatal environment (you).

Anonymous said...

All those statistics they throw at you at the IVF clinics are enough to make anyone crazy! When it comes down to it it's either 0% (BFN) or 100% (BFP) and nobody's statistics are going to change that. If I understand it right, you have made peace with DE and have a much higher chance of success with it. Plus you DO want a second child, that is not in question. I know this isn't a "why don't you just...?" type of situation, but from the outside looking in, DE still seems the best way to go, and what your body may be telling you is that it is ready to be pregnant again.
Thinking of you.

marwil said...

I hope you have come to a conclusion by now and are moving forward with what feels best for you. I probably would have the same kind of thoughts regarding the future and feelings from the child. Best wishes.