Yes I have been a little MIA (Missing in Action) for over a month now. There are so many reasons for it that it’s hard to know where to start, but it has been good. When I was last around I was already starting to feel on the up. Actually my last post was the morning of our FS appointment and I haven’t even updated you on that. Boy I have been a slacker.
First off – sorry to all those who were following my Challenge, I decided enough was enough and have put that to bed. It was really tough and challenging and I think therapeutic, but no more, I want to move on and too much of that challenge was backward facing, not what I want to do so… so ends that notion!
So back at the end of November we went to see our beloved Dr S. Yes after much debate and back and forth in my mind we settled on going back to Dr S even though Prof is awesome and has the reputation, in the end I just wanted to deal with the doctor who I found it easier to communicate with and who is so gentle and kind and caring. Dr S was, as always, absolutely fantastic. I had a little book full of questions following on our cancelled cycle and in terms of planning for our next cycle. He took all the time and answered every one of my questions. We discussed the role that weight loss can play in my future success and he showed us stats and reports and presentations he has presented and seen at conferences on how a 5% reduction in body weight can increase the chances of our success on our next cycle by as much as 71%! Now those are stats to give me the motivation to lose some weight.
He has put me on DHEA and said I need to be on it for six weeks before doing another IVF, which helped to answer some of my questions about timing our next cycle. I was keen to get going as early this year as possible, but Dr S was going to be on leave. But as it turns out my six weeks on the DHEA will be up on Thursday. So we will be doing the IVF on my next cycle, probably about three weeks (dependant on my ever confusing and irregular cycle). The DHEA has apparently been show to potentially increase the response to the meds in poor responders in the younger age group. This is the first time since we started the TTC journey that I have been referred to as being in the younger group, but apparently it relates to women under 40. I looked up DHEA and it seems it might also have some other added benefits, helps with weight loss, helps you live longer, eases depression! Sounds all good to me.
We also talked about anti-depressants. My therapist had recommended that I go onto some anti-depressants while I am processing things and learning new ways to cope. So I asked Dr S what his thoughts were. He said that there is no clear evidence on whether anti-depressants can have a negative impact on either the success of IVF or the baby and where there is not a clear ‘no risk’ situation he normally doesn’t recommend it. I was all set to just cope on my own (well with my ever loving husband, great amazing friends and therapist), when he said that in my case he thought it might be beneficial and might actually help me lose some of the weight. So he wrote me a prescription for Prozac and I have been taking those for the last six weeks too. And what a difference I am feeling.
I think the difference doesn’t just come from the drugs, I think the therapy has helped me to start to face my mother’s suicide and the issues I have of my own from growing up with my mother’s mental illness and personality disorder, and my own fears about motherhood and rethink my control freak nature… and the list goes on and on! But as Chris keeps saying to me, time really is a healer too. And time has made a big difference. The pain of that cancelled cycle isn’t so raw now, thinking about that cycle no longer gives me cold shivers and debilitating fear that it will happen again and that we will never get to be parents. Time has given me distance and perspective and the irrational thoughts and fears are coming under control. Best of all time has allowed that four lettered word to creep back in again… HOPE!
Yes Hope has re-entered the building. I feel so hopeful about our cycle. I hope that the DHEA will have made a difference and I will have a better response to the stimms this time round and we will get a better haul of eggs. I hope that the recent relaxing holiday I took will also ensure that my body has the energy to put into making top quality eggs. I hope that my stronger state of mind will help me cope no matter what happens with this cycle. I hope that the 5% of my body weight that I have lost (well had lost before the holidays and I haven’t been on the scale since we got back, but I think I wasn’t too bad) will improve our chances of success by the full 71%.
I hope that the amazing good news some of my friends have received in the last few months means some good news is coming our way too. Of my cycle buddies from my first cycle there is only myself and one other who is not yet pregnant! My friend, L gave birth to an amazing cute and kissable healthy baby boy. My friend K is pregnant from her 10th IVF and has had her foetal assessment scan and all is looking good for a healthy baby arriving in July. My friend M is pregnant on her 3rd IVF (after her second cycle was cancelled) and has seen a healthy heartbeat!
So here’s to a new year! With a new outcome!