We try all our youthful lives to NOT get pregnant, and then when we try to get pregnant…it doesn’t quite happen. Why is that?
It’s National Infertility Awareness week and I have had a really strong pull to share our journey through infertility. It’s one of those things that when we were going through it I was quite shameful and embarrassed…but I feel like lately it has become a more talked about topic.
Does anyone else agree with me when I say that I feel like infertility has become more prevalent in our generation compared to our parents and grandparents? Not sure why this is, maybe the fact that people are more open with sharing their lives; or just a scientific freak accident?
I’ll be honest, this is quite challenging to write. But I remember when I was in the mix of everything reading SO MANY BLOGS, and doing so much research trying to navigate through everything.
If this blog can help just one person navigate through this process, then I’ll feel good!
- When I was younger, like middleschoool/high school age I had VERY REGULAR periods and almost no “period symptoms.” Yes, I would consider myself very lucky! In my senior year of high school I struggled with an eating disorder and started having irregular periods. So between the irregular periods and the fact that I was heading off to college it was decided that I should be started on birth control.
- Fast forward 4 years, now I’m a senior in college and relapsed into my eating disorder tendencies again.
- August 26, 2017 Kwin and I got married and I took my last birth control pill ever! We had talked about the idea of letting my body rid the chemicals of birth control for a couple months before starting to try for a baby. Well lone behold, after 8 years of birth control and TWO different times of anorexia…. my period didn’t come back. I waited six months of no period before I decided to go see my GYNO to try and figure out what was going on.
- February 2018 I had an ultrasound to check out my ovaries/uterus and some reproductive lab work done.
- The ultrasound came back insignificant and my lab work showed low FSH&low LH (female hormones,) normal TSH, normal testosterone, normal cortisol, and all other labs normal as well. Great news right? NO..not when you’re trying to find the reasoning behind your issues!
- I was diagnosed with PCOS and told to start on Metformin. Um no thanks… I didn’t meet the criteria below to be diagnosed with PCOS and felt like this was just looking to put a bandaid on my issues.
- PCOS Diagnostic Criteria (to be diagnosed with PCOS you have to meet TWO of the three criteria listed)
- Have irregular periods– this indicates that your ovaries do not regularly release eggs (ovulate,) blood tests showing you have high levels of “male hormones”, such as testosterone (or sometimes just the signs of excess male hormones, even if the blood test is normal,) scans showing you have polycystic ovaries.
- Blood tests showing you have high levels of “male hormones”, such as testosterone (or sometimes just the signs of excess male hormones, even if the blood test is normal)
- Scans showing you have polycystic ovaries
- June 2018 I made an appointment with the most amazing naturopathic doctor! We worked on hormone balance and acupuncture.
- I was getting acupuncture once a month. My Dr’s focus for these sessions was promoting blood flow to the reproductive region. She would also make modifications each session based off life situations and what my pulse was reading.
- We monitored my hormone levels every 3-6 months. Some things that we did to work on balancing my hormones were seed cycling and looking at my cycle being in alignment with the moon cycle. I will link some resources for seed cycling HERE.
- November 2018 still no periods, but my hormones were getting closer to normal. Kwin and I were both getting impatient with the process so I decided to make a consultation appointment with the ‘Fertility Center‘ to see exactly what they offered and become an established patient for when we truly were ready. I was really impressed with these doctors!
- April 2019 still no periods. So Kwin and I both met with the Fertility specialists and did more tests to rule out any other issues!
- Kwin got a sperm analysis done
- I did a procedure called HSG (Hysterosalpingogram) A simple (yet quite painful procedure) where they insert an iodine-based dye through the cervix and take x-rays. These x-rays help evaluate the shape of the uterus and whether the Fallopian tubes were blocked.
- Again everything came back “normal” so I was given the diagnosis of ‘Secondary Amenorrhea.’ With this diagnosis the fertility specialists felt that I would probably need to do IUI or IVF (eventually, not something you can start with right off the bat) to get pregnant. That was a hard pill to swallow. They also gave us the option to do “timed intercourse” which essentially means that I would still take all the fertility promoting medications, but instead of having them inject Kwin’s sperm into me (IUI procedure) we would have intercourse around time of ovulation. We opted this option to start with!
- June 2019 1st round of Menopur injections– How menopur injections work… I would have to give myself shots every night based off the dose that the doctors prescribed me. Every couple of days I would get ultrasounds done to check how my body was responding to the medications- specifically looking at my ovaries and the eggs developing. Once my eggs reached “optimal size” the doctors instructed me to take Ovidrel (the trigger shot to tell my body to ovulate!) After the shot was done we were instructed to have intercourse for the next three days!
- We learned a lot over the first month of this process. The #1 being that I needed to RELAX and not try and “force” anything. When it came to “doing the deeds” Kwin felt super pressured and like it wasn’t natural.
- This cycle was not successful.
- We took the month of July off due to our big road trip out west!
- August 2019 2nd round of Menopur injections
- Cycle #2 I was defiantly trying to me more relaxed about everything. Same process as above!
- This cycle was not successful
- We had to take the month of September OFF due to cysts being present on my ovaries from the previous cycle.
- I’ll be honest this was very upsetting to me… I felt like my body was failing me even more than ever.
- I took the month of September as a “Megan’s ultimate selfcare month” where I dialed in on my nutrition, took more rest days, and just really listened to my body!
- October 2019 3rd round of menopur injections
- The doctors wanted to change up the dose of medications on this round…AND IT WORKED!
- Our THIRD round of Menopure injections + timed intercourse was how we got our little miracle baby!
Everyone’s journey is different! So please please please don’t compare yourself to me or anyone.
Use this blog as a resource, as a source of hope!
If you are someone going through infertility treatments please feel free to reach out!
It is nothing to be embarrassed or shameful about.
You are not alone.