On Monday I was told that I have severe endometriosis and my left ovary is stuck to my uterus and my bowel. The surgeon actually briefly mentioned this immediately after the laparoscopy, but I was too groggy to take it in properly at the time. I couldn’t remember the precise wording that he had used and was hoping that they were wedged there, rather than stuck with adhesions. You know you’ve been in the trenches for too long when you’re hoping that your ovary is wedged between your bowel and your uterus. I had rather optimistically been googling “how do I move my ovary” which returned a disappointingly (but not unsuprisingly) low number of responses. But no, they’re stuck together with nasty black endo goop.
So far I have had no reaction to this news whatsoever. I am numb. I get up, get ready, go to work, come home, eat dinner, go to sleep, and then I start all over again. The repetitive, unstimulating work week has gone by and now I am sat home alone on a Saturday afternoon and I am trying to decide how I feel.
On the one hand, 50% of my ovaries don’t work. This is bad given that 99% of D’s swimmers don’t work. I do not like those odds.
On the other hand, 50% of my ovaries do work. That’s more than some people. I can still create a child that is biologically mine. I should be grateful for this.
The most confusing reaction that I am having is the overwhelming sense of relief. I always knew that there was something wrong with me. Not my borderline PCOS hormone profile, something bigger than that. When doctors asked me how painful AF was I used to comment on the subjective nature of the question and then mention that I needed to medicate for the first couple of days of my cycle. I’m not really one to dramatise my pain and I consider myself to have a high pain threshold. For a while now I had been concerned that endo had spread to my bowel as I was always very uncomfortable before a bowel movement. There is a small part of me that is pleased that I AM NOT GOING CRAZY and that I do know my body. I need to listen to my body more. My infertility struggles have taught me how to do this. I think D was really suprised with this diagnosis. He has been fetching me hot water bottles and watching me bloat up and struggle to fit into my clothes once a month for 13 years and yet I guess he must have thought that that was normal.
I remember being 9 years old on my sister’s first day of school. I couldn’t pick her up afterwards because I had severe AF pains and all I could do was lay on the sofa. I remember being 10 years old and bleeding through my towel at school. I told my teacher and she took me to the staff toilets for supplies. I was wearing a skirt and as we walked, blood started to run down my leg. That memory still freaks me out 18 years later. I wish the doctors had listened to me then. I wish that they cared as much about diet and lifestyle as they do about medicines and surgery. Most of all I wish that this next cycle gives me the family that I long for. Because it is a longing now, I long with every fibre of my being. I am ready to be a mother. Fuck you infertility.
Did anybody have the children’s book “Funny Bones” when they were growing up? It’s a classic. I loved it. The children that I may never have will certainly love it. It has a very repetitive rhythm and children can join in and chant along with their parents. Most of the book is devoted to a high level run down of the human skeleton that goes something like this “your knee bone’s connected to your… thigh bone, your thigh bone’s connected to your… hip bone” etc.
It turns out that this does not only apply to bones. If you’re extremely (un)lucky this can apply to other body parts too. I met with my consultant this afternoon to have my post laparoscopy follow up appointment. So, my uterus is connected to my… left ovary… my left ovary’s connected to my… bowel. I have severe endometriosis on my left side and it’s all a bloody mess. The right is fine though, so that’s something to be grateful for. He drained the cyst on my left ovary and burned the side of the capsule that he could get to without damaging anything else. This means that the cyst will return all the more quickly. He gave me photos of my right ovary and before and after shots of the left ovary. The left one is still an endo-ridden mess, but it’s better than it was. He recommends starting IVF round 2 asap as he has guaranteed that it will come back quickly.
We discussed the endo diet and he said that any difference that it made would be a drop in the ocean given the severity of the adhesions that are already there. I’m not ready to give up on it yet though so I will persevere until my next cycle at least and see if it’s helping me to lose the weight.
So, now I am at the mercy of the ridiculous NHS appointments system. I have no idea when my next cycle will begin, but I would expect it to be around April time now, judging by last year’s waiting times. I’ll be doing the long protocol this time, which is what most people do. Does anyone know at what point in the cycle down regulating begins? Last time I went straight into stimming on day 2 of my cycle. This time it’s going to be far more involved.
In other news, I went back to work today. It was exhausting. This Laparoscopy really took the wind out of my sails. It is a major operation & I didn’t really realise that until I was unconscious on the toilet in my hospital room! I’m still walking at half speed and I’m still a bit bloated. I’m half expecting someone to ask me if I’m pregnant at some point. Not sure how I’ll react to that, although I expect violence is inevitable…
Hello beautiful bloggy buddies, I have been putting off updating since my follow up WTF meeting as writing about things makes them more real somehow. To recap, at our initial WTF meeting the doc said that she thought that the cyst on my left ovary that stopped them collecting any eggs on that side wasn’t in fact endometrial, she thought it was a straight forward haemorrhagic cyst. She was also impressed with the SA on the day of retrieval as the count had increased from 4m to 37m & so she sent us away with homework: I was to have a follow up scan to decide if the cyst was endometrial or not – if it was still the same size a month later then it is endometrial, as they are persistent, unlike haemorrhagic cysts, which come & go. The hubster was to have some fun with himself again & they were going to do a “swim-up test” to see if a “spontaneous pregnancy” is likely… HA! As if I could spontaneously get pregnant!!
Long story short the doc smashed our hopes when she said that actually my cyst is endometrial & the SA only had a count of 9m this time. Once they applied a gradient to the 9m little dudes to see if they could swim uphill that 9m became “occasional motile sperm”. She reassured me that this meant that there would be enough to perform ICSI… I had NEVER considered that there wouldn’t be… Until now!
I had to BEG to be referred for a laparoscopy as the doc said that endo doesn’t interfere with IVF so there was no point… bitch, please?! I’m waiting for the letter now so that I can get that all booked in, I’m expecting it to take a while.
The weather here is gloomy and miserable, like my face, and to make my Monday morning all the more sunny I got 2 pregnancy announcements within 20mins of each other this morning. The first was an old work colleague. I should have replied congratulating her, instead I hit delete. She got married in April THIS YEAR for gods sake!! Shortly after this my HR director – you know, the one that I poured my guts out to on my return from the failed cycle? -emailed me to let me know that she’s pregnant, that she had her 12 week scan last week & that she didn’t want me to hear through anyone else. I thought that that was thoughtful & tried not to think too much about how far gone she would have been when I bared my broken soul to her.
All of this doom and gloom is giving me all sorts of crazy ideas to brighten up my life. I worry that I am at the start of a mid life crisis. In fact I’m pretty sure that that is where I am heading. I spend a lot of time fantasising about handing in my notice and doing something exciting. I want to be envied, not pitied, which I’m pretty sure makes me a bad person. Hey ho, bad people seem to have no problem making babies so that’s something to look forward to.
I will snap out of this moany place, but for tonight I am wallowing. Feel free to join me! X