Part 3 of Amanda’s journey through IVF
Isn’t it funny how your opinion about something can change when you are actually put into a situation? I guess that’s why they say that you should never judge someone until you have walked a day in their shoes. That’s kind of what it was like for me with IVF. It was something that I was not against but something that I didn’t think was for me. I didn’t think it was something I would ever do, I always thought I would have enough faith that if something was meant to happen it would. Even when we started going to the fertility clinic we still weren’t thinking we would end up doing IVF, we wanted to find answers to why we weren’t falling pregnant and thought maybe one of us would need medication or some sort of minor procedure.
So when our doctor said that I had low ovarian reserve and that she couldn’t guarantee how much longer having a baby might even be possible and that the only treatment they could offer us was IVF it was a shock. I had not expected to be faced with this decision at all. If you had asked me months/years earlier before we started having problems conceiving I would have said that IVF was not an option for me. I can’t really tell you why I thought that but I do know that it was largely due to ignorance. I really had no idea what IVF was or what it involved. I thought that embryos were killed unnecessarily and that there was no faith needed at all ….. boy was I wrong!
So being faced with this huge decision we needed to do some serious soul searching and thinking. We spoke to a few people we trusted but really its a decision that no one else can make for you. No one else fully understands how you feel and ultimately you are the ones who have to live with whatever decision you make. I remember spending alot of time walking and praying and just looking for the right answer. I wasn’t working at the time so I had alot of time to think it all through. I am a Christian so it was important to me to think about what God would want but unfortunately when the bible was written IVF wasn’t around so there wasn’t a verse that said “yes do IVF” or “no don’t do IVF”.
In all our thinking and searching I remember thinking well how long do we wait?? Another 3 months, 6 months, a year? How long do we wait for our miracle before turning to doctors for help? We’d been trying naturally for 3 years at this point wasn’t that long enough for God to do a miracle? What it came down to for me was that if it was any other medical issue that was affecting my quality of life I wouldn’t think twice. If I needed a liver transplant or a pacemaker or some other sort of artificial man made help I would just do it so why should this be any different?
By now we had done lots of research about IVF and knew pretty much all there is to know without being a doctor and it is by no means a sure thing. There is still lots of faith needed and lots of miracles that need to happen to actually fall pregnant and then have a baby. First of all they need to be able to harvest good eggs, then those eggs need to be fertilised, the embryos need to survive and then one needs to attach to the womb to actually fall pregnant. And sure embryos do die in the process and I believe that an embryo is a life but embryos form in a womans body often and die before a woman even knows that she is pregnant … there are no embryos killed for no reason. If they die during IVF it is likely they would have died anyway.
We also talked about what we would do if one day we ended up with extra embryos that we didn’t want to use because we were happy with the number of children we had. We found out that we could donate them to a couple or couples who couldn’t make their own embryos …. what a priviledge that would be! To help someone else have a baby would be a joy. Sure genetically they would be our children but to me if another woman carried that baby and raised it, then emotionally it would be her child I know thats I how would feel.
So with all those questions answered our decision was made …. we would do IVF and whatever it took to have a child. And we were not going to wait any longer …. we were going to start as soon as we could. I remember feeling scared yet excited as well. Scared because despite our research we couldn’t really anticipate how we would feel and excited because maybe this was it …. all these years of trying and looking for answers and finally we were on the way.
Stay tuned for more of Amanda’s story!
Should you want to go back and read the first parts – Click Here!