Friday, December 9, 2011


From Firefall Vision's Etsy Page

So my sister needs to go back to the lab to get the AMH test redone, because somehow the lab messed up the sample. And she didn't feel that she could do that until the weekend because she already was late to work once due to getting the baseline ultrasound and antral follicle count done.

In response, I wondered wryly (but refrained from asking) how in the world she could do a whole IVF cycle for us, which would require daily bloodwork and almost-daily ultrasounds and would surely make her risk lateness to work if her boss is already raising objections.

But why say this? Because really, it looks like we may not get to the place of her doing an IVF cycle for us.

We aren't ruling it out, either. Will and I are waiting on the AMH results and then will have a regroup with Dr. Schl. in Denver and get his thoughts. But I have to say, things don't seem overly promising.

Not dismal, maybe either, but not overly promising.

In the meantime, we're taking a few steps back and reconsidering our options.

Could we take the donor we already fell in love with, the one with the rare chromosomal abnormality, to another clinic, do CCS testing on her embryos, and use her despite the inversion on chromosome 9? Would we want to? Would any clinic let us? (Interestingly, the agency is still listing her as available to donate... now also saying she has "proven" fertility and has been a "prior donor." Seems a bit disingenuous to me). She is perfect in every way but for the slight chromosomal issue, so mildly thinking about it.

Do we want to just proceed with a transfer of our embryos into my body and hope for the best? Leaning toward this at the moment. This is a surprise, as I thought we would never do this. However, originally, our NYC RE and Dr. Schl. suggested that trying another transfer of our embryos in my body was the most reasonable option. It's just that we didn't think we could take another loss - and what if those are the last chromosomally normal embryos that I could ever make? Can we survive another loss now? Maybe. Can we tolerate it if we try this and fail and then have nothing left for a gestational carrier? Thinking on this.

I'm in month two of Depot Lupron. It would feel good not to "waste" these two months of Lupron I've been on. It has not been easy, and I hope it hasn't been for nothing.

Perhaps if transferring our embryos into my body didn't work, we could throw a huge IVF stimulation party, cycle my sister, the donor, and me all at the same time and see just how many embryos we could make.

I'm kidding.


These are the fertility-related things rattling around in our brains. Today, at least. Tomorrow brings another AMH test for my sister. We've requested the results stat. Not sure how fast that will bring them, but we are hoping for quickly.

We're tired of waiting in limbo.


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  1. Like you said, if you sister has a hard time going to work late again in a week, how is she going to be able to take all the time off that IVF requires? Is she planning on telling her boss ahead of time or does she have no clue of what a cycle implies. I think that's a big one.

    Transfer your embryos Mo! How many do you have? After going through 2 months of Depot Lupron, I would definitely transfer :-) That might be all it takes :-)

  2. Wow, as usual some big decisions ahead of you. I think it makes total sense to transfer your embryos - then you'll never have to wonder "what if...."

    In the mean time, hopefully your sister will get cleared soon and give you that option as well.

    I don't blame you for being tired...a lesser woman would have folded long ago.
    Hang in there, and keep us posted!

  3. My situation wasn't nearly as complicated as yours was, but for me it came down to the simple (?!) question of what's the worst case scenario or, as I talked about it in therapy, choosing the thing that sucked the least, because all the choices seemed sucky. But by last January I knew that I had *one* more cycle in me, it had to work, and I couldn't wait any longer; thankfully it did because I really don't know if I could have gone through with a FET.

    Your resilience is astonishing to me. Right now you have multiple options...none of them ideal, perhaps, but all of them potentially workable. My heart aches for you.

  4. Limbo sucks! You have lots to think about. I don't know what I'd do. I think once you get your sister's AMH level back, you'll be able to make a decision either way. I think I'd be nervous about cycling with the donor you had chosen if anyone even lets you - only because if they don't think it's a good idea, I would probably listen but I get that it must be hard to let go - as you said, she's perfect in every other way. So many decisions.

  5. Interestingly, I was going to comment on your last post that you might want to consider trying to cycle your sister (of course, this was before the information about the late to work issue...) and then if she didn't respond well, then thawing your embies instead for transfer; so I see what you're thinking. I hope that you find the pathway forward which makes the most sense for you-- whatever that is. Hugs to you and Will in this challenging time.

  6. Forgive me if you've already considered this, but would your sister be willing to carry your embryos? It's a lot to ask someone, but my sister offered this to me once and she said it was "just a no-brainer. Why wouldn't i want to do that for you?". Just a thought.

    I am thinking of you!!!

  7. Courtney

    Interesting idea - but my sis has never been pregnant, so our clinic would never let her carry for me. you sound like you have a wonderful sister!

  8. I've been meaning to comment but keep getting pulled off line.. I think I would forget using your sister and move onto a new different proven donor. Preferably one from the CCRM pool. I would still consider doing CGH testing on any embryos prior to transfer. Even though they are from a proven donor you can still end up with a bad embryo.

    If you have it in you to try another transfer then GO FOR IT! I would love to see this work out for you two. But I know you've been through hell and back so I know it's easier said than done. That's why I say go with a proven donor (CCRM backed) and do the testing. Use all of our wonderful technology to try to ensure this can work!

    Always thinking of you two! Sending you strength and wisdom! All my best!

  9. It sounds like you have a lot of decisions to make but the plus is you have these as options! So many don't have these to consider. I hope your sisters AMH is great making things a bit easier. Will your sister discuss this with his boss to decrease stress and worry? Bc you r right, it takes a lot of time up until the ER!

  10. I think once you get your sis's AMH results you will have more information.
    I would not go with the original donor given the issues that were found. I don't know how many embryos you have, but you should try with one of your own. Sending you positive vibes, I hope the situation resolves itself quickly so you can move ahead.
    Reg you sis' work situation, I can imagine she has not mentioned anything so far to her boss since its not a 100% certiant that it will be a "go", but once everything is confirmed, I am sure she will tell her boss. So, I would not worry about that aspect of it.

  11. I think once you get your sis's AMH results you will have more information.
    I would not go with the original donor given the issues that were found. I don't know how many embryos you have, but you should try with one of your own. Sending you positive vibes, I hope the situation resolves itself quickly so you can move ahead.
    Reg you sis' work situation, I can imagine she has not mentioned anything so far to her boss since its not a 100% certiant that it will be a "go", but once everything is confirmed, I am sure she will tell her boss. So, I would not worry about that aspect of it.

  12. Wow. Lots of options, and you know my thoughts--choosing ANY option at this point is better than wasting 2 months of Devil Lupron. Seriously.

    (And have you already BOUGHT that pendant, because if not, you're going to be getting it in the mail from an anonymous admirer (ahem). Because truly, I think it suits your situation to a g-d tee.)

  13. Mo if I wasn't still breastfeeding I would offer my uterus.

    Go with your gut feeling!

  14. Oh boy, I think back to my last IVF cycle I had to go into the office eight or nine times in sixteen days for ultrasounds/bloodwork (not counting embryo transfer, obviously), because I had to stim a few extra days. If this is already a problem for your sister I think it's very smart to have the discussion now rather than when you're in the middle of the cycle and the boss is threatening to fire her if she is late to work again.

    You don't know me from a hole in the wall, but if I were you with your history I would get a proven surrogate and transfer one of your normal embryos or two and see what happens. I suspect that your embryos are fine and something about your uterine environment isn't working. If you put two embryos in a proven surrogate with the same outcome that you've had then I think DE becomes the logical step. Wishing you all the best.

  15. I couldn't agree more with JNS. That is exactly what I would do. I know, I know... easy for me to say. I wish you all the best.

  16. Ugh!!! So frustrating! Hoping that a clear path becomes visible to you all and that the planets align as they you...definitely providing you 'with the goods'!!!

  17. You'd think that when one gets to the point of embracing non-tradition family building options, that the path forward would become clearer. But for you guys, it has become more complicated.

    Here's wishing you get some kind of wonderful breakthrough soon!

  18. I echo what the others have said, especially the hope of Michelle (Seriously) and the wishes of Amy.

    Clarity. That's the energy I'm sending you. A clear way.

  19. Mo, sadly, I don't think the AMH will contribute much to the picture you already have, because it is only a surrogate marker, it supposed to correlate with the # of antral follicles. The only surprise would be, if it turns out to be very low, then there is always the Vitamin D theory to test.

    I would not use the donor you liked, simply because I'm afraid of how sensitive these tests are. Yes it can pick up obvious chromosomal errors, but what about microdeletions or microadditions of genes? You really do not want to go all in and lose everything, which would be the the very small but distinctly higher risk with using such a donor.

    I do not know what to say about using a surrogate or using your body to carry your embryos. Obviously the surrogate is the lower risk option, but I'm sure there are still some time delays and other roadblocks associated with it. Whatever happens, you have got an entire blogsphere praying for you.

  20. ah, so easy to ponder and advise, when it isn't you (for all of us!).

    my advice, haha, would be to get thru the depot, and do an FET of your best 2 embryos at CCRM. the logic being, your body is primed, you have embryos, so do a FET now. like you said, some time has passed and the possibility for another loss is not so unbearable (although, i know, it would be unbearable...). and however lame this may sound, there *is* a possibility of success, so align yourself with that, and go for it.

    my reasoning is that you were/are ready to use a donor egg. that option will be there in 2 months, in 4,6, whenever... whether you use your sister or wind up finding another great match (don't use that original donor!!!). if your embryos don't work now, you are already "ready to move on" to donor eggs, but you may as well try with your own first if your body is ready for a FET. instead of always wondering what would have happened if you tried this scenario, pull that curtain away from the wizard and find out the real story!

    as far as a surrogate, wait to see- if plan A does not work (your own body with your own embryos), and plan B does not work (your own body with a donor egg embryo), then do plan C (surrogate with either your remaining embryos or donor egg embryos).

    you are ready NOW. like i said, and i know you have written, you have to do all you can now so that this time next year, you will be well on your way to having your baby, and no matter how that baby is made from scratch (your eggs, donor eggs, someone else's oven), it won't matter- all of that will fall away when you hold that baby in your arms for the first time.

    i understand the half-joking to do it all at the same time too- dr.sch suggested to me that we do a double transfer to my own body and a surrogates to heighten the chance of success... i was tempted but too afraid of the irony of ending up with quadruplets.

    time is of the essence... do that FET!!

    lol, easy for me to say right? i support you 1000% in whatever you choose. xo

  21. I agree with Sunflower - your sister wouldn't have offered if she didn't take it seriously. She needs to be allowed to vent a bit about the ridiculousness of the clinic schedule stuff too if she's going to go through this. Also, remember, she's not a veteran, it will take her a bit to get into the mindset.

    As for her numbers, I think best for an expert to help you decide.

    Wishing you luck.

  22. I completely agree with Anonymous. The donor options will be there. The option of using your embryos is ready now! If you are reconciled to using a donor and open to a surrogate why not exhaust the possibilities of having your genetic child in your body first? I also agree that you should buy that pendant...unbelievably fitting.

  23. So, so sorry for all the waiting and uncertainty. You are so brave to keep forging ahead...


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