I’ve been trying to write this blog for 2 weeks, and for some reason the words just entirely evaded me. I’ve started it a few times, would get halfway done, realize I was writing nonsense, and then delete it. I kept writing about the surgery I had a couple of weeks ago. The experience, the recovery. The stupid details that no one wants to hear about anyway.
But let’s start there – I had surgery on June 3 at 7:30a. Everything went as planned. Scar tissue, endometriosis, encapsulated fallopian tubes removed on both sides. Recovery went well.
But here’s what didn’t go as planned: how I was going to end up feeling about this whole thing. To be clear, I went in with 100% knowledge about what we were doing, and what the results would be. My doctor is amazing, and we talked in depth about what my options were, and the possible outcomes.
I knew that after surgery, I’d be clinically sterile. But what I didn’t know was the impact that term would have. The one thing we want more than anything is a baby, and now, here I am clinically sterile. Clinically. Sterile.
This is not how this is supposed to go.
I am no more or less sterile now than I was before the surgery, so how is this weighing on me so much? Maybe in my head, there was still this shred of hope. Like there was a 0.002% that a spontaneous pregnancy would occur. Who knows, maybe I’m more of an optimist than I thought?
It’s funny how some people respond when they find out you’re doing fertility treatments. So many people have been wonderful, with the most amazing and appreciated words of kindness. But there are always those people who say, “Watch, you’ll go to start the IVF and then you’ll get pregnant!” I used to have energy for a witty comeback, or at least “nope, but nice thought”. Now, it’s just a sad “there is literally zero chance of that happening”. It’s generally an awkward moment all around, but it’s the truth.
I’ve learned to deliver all kinds of bizarre information through this process, but having to repeat over and over how defective my body is gets exhausting.
Emotions aside, there was no getting rid of one fact: I didn’t have a choice. As a product of 5 previous surgeries, my fallopian tubes were completely encased in scar tissue. There was a 0% chance an egg could have gotten in, and suspending reality and pretending it did, there was a 0% chance of fertilization as it was full of toxic fluids. Going the try-to-fix-it route only left me susceptible for them to close right back up, and at risk for ectopic pregnancy (yes! It’s totally possible, even with IVF) where I’d lose my tubes, and the baby, anyway. More than 50% of ectopic pregnancies are a result of damaged tubes, with many miscarriages a result of the toxic fluid coming back into the uterus and damaging the embryo.
My intention with this post isn’t to be depressing, it’s to bring these kind of things into the light. Since we’ve decided to be open with this, I’ve had the joy of connecting with so many people going through this. Some with good outcomes, some not. Some open about this, some who have hidden it from everyone – close friends and family included. I couldn’t have known how this would feel. I didn’t know it was even an option. But I do know this: this fight is much easier when you’re not doing it alone.
I suppose this is all part of the process. And I mean, if we’re being real optimists here, fallopian tubes are just a formality, right? I like to consider my surgery an upgrade to my future child’s uterine home. It’s like getting bumped to a suite at a hotel. Without the free toiletries. Silver linings all around.