Nicola’s Story Part 7
In the last instalment, Nicola faced the disappointment of a failed round of IVF. I know countless women who have been in this situation and it is absolutely heartbreaking. Even though you tell yourself that there is a strong probability that it’s not going to work, it’s impossible not to feel hope like a burning star in your chest. And then when the result comes back negative, it’s hard to put yourself through it again and again. In our area, the NHS will give you two full cycles of IVF (at least they did when we were about to do it). In Nicola’s area, the NHS gives one full cycle and one frozen cycle.
One thing I had on my side that many are not fortunate to have is frozen embryos. I had quite a good turn out from my fresh cycle and I was able to put some on ice. Many people I have spoken to fall pregnant on a frozen cycle and there was no reason I couldn’t do the same.
About 3 months later the frozen cycle begins. Not much is different from the previous cycles apart from the fact I don’t have to stimulate my ovaries and the Husband doesn’t have to have his private rendezvous with the pot!
They are transferred before you know it and the two week wait begins. When I was actually injecting, I could convince myself that I would be so glad to see that two week wait come around because it meant no injections and that I would happily float through it, not wanting to test and then calmly pull out a pregnancy test on the day the hospital told me.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. I was like a crazed animal being stopped from doing something that I really wanted to do. I said to my Husband on day 6, “Do you think I should test today?” and the answer was always, “No, Nicola. You will only worry yourself when it comes back negative.” Argh, he is so selfish (and damn sensible)!!!
Test day was here and I casually rolled out of bed at my usual 8am 5am and ripped open the test the hospital had given me, but just in case, I had my other 90 tests on stand by! Three minutes later it was a negative, not even a faint line to grasp onto.
So, that was it. I wasn’t ever meant to have a baby because I certainly couldn’t afford to go private time and time again. How many attempts did I need at this, for goodness’ sakes? Meanwhile I have to endure people around me getting pregnant at the drop of a hat, family members having abortions and people continuously saying, “Just relax and it will happen.” Argh! Piss off!
I decided to now get on with my life as if it wouldn’t have children in. For too many years I was scared to book a holiday in case it clashed with a future pregnancy and I couldn’t go. I also developed a passion in my life that I would later find out would help me in more ways than one. Photography. I decided to study it at college and enjoyed learning about medium format cameras and developing my own film in the dark room. I offered to do a couple of weddings and found that I really enjoyed it. Next thing I know this was taking up all of my time and I was struggling to do this along with my day job.
I believe things happen for a reason and from Photography formed a plan for my next treatment. I nearly worked myself into the ground doing it, but I was determined. I kept up my day job and started a career in Wedding Photography and it was going well. People liked my work, I was featured in places and getting a lot of positive feedback.
The day job would help pay for my day-to-day life/bills and the money I earn from Photography went into a pot. My Baby pot. Nothing made me strive for something more than that. I used to go to college and my peers there would ask me, “Why don’t you buy this lens for your camera or this backdrop?” and my answer would always be the same: “I only buy what I need and not just for the sake of buying.” Obviously I also wanted to do the very best for my clients and set up a business for life, so it would mean buying essential equipment, paying for insurances, etc. but still, money was filling the baby fund up.
Then, before I know it (about 2 years after my frozen cycle), we are choosing our private clinic and having our consultation meeting, the £5k was in the bank and we were ready to go.
The Lady we saw was really nice and straight away said to us that there was no reason why we could not conceive on this cycle. She went on to say that they were going to go to blastocyst with these embryos as she could see from my notes that the previous hospital hadn’t done this. Blastocyst means that they leave the fertilised eggs to mature for more days outside the womb, usually 5 days, before transferring them back. This helps enormously because you are left with the strongest embryos possible to put back, meaning your chances of conceiving are greater. Now, THIS was the reason we picked one of the top three clinics in the UK. No messing!
And so our journey began for a third time. Third time lucky some might say. Man, I hope so!
The Final Part will be up on the blog on Thursday.