A woman who has shared her experiences of trying to get pregnant over eight years has written a heartbreaking blog post about their final attempt as ‘the IVF story that doesn’t often get told’.
Australian blogger Carly Ellen Lee, 29, who blogs as Little Miss Conception, shared the post, titled ‘our last frostie’, including photos of their pregnancy announcement that will never be used.
The emotional post has had more than 30,000 views in 24 hours.
Carly began the post: ‘A few weeks ago we decided to use our last remaining embryo. Our one, genetically untested, 6-day-old embryo, the only embryo from our last IVF sim cycle…. You can never not hope, but we were realistic, the chances of it working were slim, especially after all the time, and all these cycles.’
‘The results came back…. POSITIVE how was this possible? It must have been a mistake. How could it have been positive? How was I finally pregnant? We tried to be realistic. The only other time I had fallen pregnant from IVF our followup blood tests didn’t rise like they should have, and I miscarried within a short time, that might happen again this time. We were cautiously optimistic. Don’t tell people just in case, don’t get too excited we told ourselves.’
‘Our second blood test a week later was great, things were looking better. Perhaps we could share our news? Our third bloods a week after that were right on track, perfect. Then the pregnancy symptoms started to kick in. Do you know how good it feels to finally actually feel pregnant? The tiredness, sickness and constant peeing meant it felt real. It wasn’t just a number on a scale.’
After the booking in appointment and scans, the couple started making plans. They even prepared a photo as their pregnancy announcement with a babygro emblazoned with ‘eight years in the making’ and an image of the embryo before the transfer.
The announcement would read: ‘Days trying for a baby: 2999 (over 8 years) Doctors consultations: 62 Scans/ultrasounds: 45 Blood tests: 64 Needles: 130 Procedures: 3 IVF cycles: 11 Miscarriage: 1 Amount spent: $66,000’
‘After all this time waiting, our dreams have come true, we are beyond excited to announce that our baby is due in February.’
But in the cruellest blow, Carly suffered a miscarriage.
‘My body had failed us again,’ she explainsed. ‘We were in absolute shock. It didn’t seem real. Do you know what it’s like to hear you husband cry for the loss of your baby? A child that he will never get back? And to know you’ve caused all this pain and grief to him, to everyone else.’
‘The heartache is … I can’t begin to describe it. I’m lost for words, no one word describes my feelings.’
‘I cry myself to sleep, I cry before I open my eyes when I think about the reality of what waits for me upon waking.’
‘Our lives have turned from bright to black in an instant… Nothing happens the way we want it to. Was I ever actually pregnant? Perhaps that was the dream or the nightmare. How can we possibly pick ourselves up and try again when this journey has brought nothing but unhappiness and despair above all else.’
Evenutally, the couple came to the decision not to try again. ‘I can’t imagine adding anymore numbers to our list, no more blood tests, appointment, needles, procedures, scans, money, no more drugs, no more IVF cycles and please no more miscarriages,’ Carly concluded. ‘No more. It’s over. We can’t do this anymore.’
The pair have had a lot of support for the brave decision to share their story. On Facebook, one reader commented: ‘You’ve done a really brave and wonderful thing Carly xx’
Another wrote: ‘Wow. You could not have tried any harder to be parents… Don’t forget that you are amazing and strong people – and this is not the end of your dream, it is just the beginning of whatever your future holds for the pair of you!’