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(mis)Adventures in Reproduction: Diagnosing Bad Luck

Surprise! I’m still not pregnant (nor have I been since the chemical pregnancy in April). Here’s what’s happened in the past three months:

RE or REally not impressed

My Obgyn broke up with me saying, “There’s nothing more I can do for you.” I’m not sure what she had really done for me to begin with so I only feel slightly rejected instead of broken-hearted. As a parting gift, she referred me to a reproductive endocrinologist (RE) otherwise known as a fertility specialist. I went back and forth on whether I should actually go. What, exactly, could this RE do that my OB hadn’t already done (except charge me $50 per visit instead of $25)?

After talking about it with some online friends, I decided that a consultation couldn’t hurt and I had my, now rather large, medical file sent to the specialist’s office. I went to the first appointment with just a little glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe I would be getting some answers soon.

At the first appointment, the doctor reviewed my history and bloodwork results from the OB. She refused to speculate on possible causes of the miscarriages until she had the results of about 22 blood panels and a saline ultrasound — all of which had to be done on very specific cycle days. I walked out of the office after that initial visit with lab orders (for myself and my husband), prescriptions, and directions about how to prepare for my ultrasound.

With each test, I grew more excited, sensing a discovery was just around the corner. “Today’s test is going to show something! I just know it.” I imagined sitting in the office, getting the results and exclaiming “Well that explains it! And you say all I have to do is take these magic pills and it will all be ok? Why didn’t I do this sooner?”

The follow-up appointment didn’t exactly go like that. Instead, it went like this. Doctor: Well, I’ve reviewed the results of every test and everything is well within normal range. I have no explanation for your multiple losses other than to say it’s simply bad luck.” Me: Did you just say my diagnosis is bad luck?” Doctor: Well, that’s not a diagnosis, but yes. There’s nothing wrong that we can see.” Me: “So that’s it? That’s how this ends?”  Doctor: “That’s up to you. I have a treatment plan.” Me: “You have a treatment plan for bad luck?” Doctor: “The plan is to get you pregnant as many times as possible and hope that one sticks.” Me: Stunned silence followed by tears and lots of nose blowing.

As a side note, my husband was with me for that appointment and he said the doctor looked truly shocked that was sobbing. Does this not happen frequently in this office? Hormonal women getting hopeless news on a nearly daily basis and the doctor is shocked that I am sobbing? Anyway…

I walked out of the office that day faced with choices that range from $400 per month to $4000 per month. Keep in mind that all of these choices are aimed at getting me pregnant as many times as possible and “hoping that one sticks.”

I’ve decided to not pursue any of the choices made available to me; not Clomid, not Femara, not IUI (inter-uterine insemination), not IVF (in-vitro fertilization). I’ve decided that reproducing really shouldn’t be this hard. And I have no idea where that leaves me or what’s left to do– except to write a break-up letter to my RE.

So that’s the update. I plan to finish out the summer with my own treatment plan: an endurance mud-run race this weekend, plenty of wine drinking on summer terraces, perhaps a cocktail of natural fertility boosting supplements, and reckless baby-dancing with my husband — you know — just in case one sticks.

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6 Responses to “(mis)Adventures in Reproduction: Diagnosing Bad Luck”

  1. Julia Julia Says:

    I saw an RE too and had the same feelings when everything came back normal….I even had a sick glimmer of hope when she thought my uterus was misshapen. Proven normal with MRI. My thoughts are with you and I think your plan sounds perfect!!! Good luck!

  2. Angela Angela Says:

    Emily, I found your blog when I was trying to deal with the aftermath of a miscarriage earlier this year(followed by a scary 4 months of unexplained illness combined with friends popping out babies everywhere!), and I can’t tell you how much your story has helped me. Like you said, there’s not that much support online for miscarriage or “TTCAL” (esp when it’s complicated by follow-up health issues!) and I think you’re just amazing for sharing your journey with us, so thank you :) I haven’t seen an RE yet but I did see a lot of specialists who were trying to work out what on earth was wrong with my health(am better now and starting to TTCAL)and they seriously do tend to give some upsetting “maybe” scenarios. So please don’t let the words of the RE stay with you – it is God who has the final say over your body. I do struggle with why we go through such heartbreak but I also know for sure that what has happened yesterday isn’t a sentence for what will happen tomorrow. Thanks so much for continuing to share your story.

  3. Molly Molly Says:

    Hi Emily –
    I have been following all of your posts and your words have truly helped me get through my miscarriage last July. I just wanted to send a huge thank you out to you and to let you know that you have been in my prayers and not to give up!

    Wishing you all the best-

  4. Melissa Melissa Says:

    I have a 3 month check up this week for a miscarriage that happened in May. My day has been filled with searching the internet for stories of women who go to their “follow-up visit” hearing good things. I came across your website and so blessed to be reading your stories right now. I really do not feel alone in this miscarriage. I have 2 best friends pregnant and a sister that delivered a baby boy 3 weeks ago. I wanted a baby so badly and that plan blew up in my face. My pregnancy ended too at 7 weeks and I am left with no explanation. Keep us updated!! Best of Luck :)

  5. Callie Callie Says:

    I feel the same way as the others. It helps to read your words, to know that I’m not alone on this path of infertility. I feel the same way, that reproducing shouldn’t be this hard, and it hurts so much that for us it is. But I’m remaining hopeful for you. It’s time for your luck to turn!

  6. Joanne Joanne Says:

    Hey Emily,
    I check your updates every once in awhile to see how you are doing. Thank you for sharing your journey… it brings all of us so much healing to know that someone understand what we are going through. Praying for you.

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