Melissa and Joe
My name is Melissa Eisnor and I’ve been married to my husband, Joe, since July 30th, 2000. We started dating on my 17th birthday and just knew that we’d be together forever! 1 year later, we were engaged, and decided to start trying for a baby. Very young, I know, but we knew this is what we wanted since the very beginning :) After a little over a year of trying with no luck, we went to see our family doctor who referred us to a fertility specialist in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Our wait time to get in to see our specialist was about 7 months. We got married in the meantime! At our first appointment we were asked all the basic questions and sent for the routine blood work when you first start seeing a fertility specialist. Everything came back normal. I was then sent for HSG test to see if my tubes were open, and they were. Everything looked good - there was no reason for me not to be pregnant yet. I was given a prescription for 50mg Clomid to take for the next 6 months. I did 6 months of the Clomid but no pregnancy occurred. My husband and I went back to the fertility specialist to find out the next step. She started talking about IUI and/or IVF, and talked about the costs of these procedures. We were very young and the costs were far out of our price range. So we had to stop seeing the specialist and got back to trying on our own.
We tried on our own for 10 more years. We moved to Alberta in that time frame. We were living in Brooks, Alberta when I was 5 days late for my cycle (this would bring us up to our 12 years of trying to conceive mark). We went out and bought a 2-pack of ClearBlue pregnancy tests and went home to test. I used 1 and my husband and I left the room to wait the 5 minutes, I just couldn’t look at it! After 5 minutes we went back in to look and it was a blazing positive!!!!! In my untrained eyes (I had never seen a positive pregnancy test before) my test looked different from the example photos they provide, my test line was a lot darker then the ones they were showing. I feel dumb when I think about it, but I wasn’t sure if the test was positive, or, if I somehow did it wrong - haha. So my husband and I went back out and bought one of those ClearBlue digital tests, the ones that say “Pregnant” or “Not Pregnant” and tell you how many weeks along you are. So I tested with that one and it came back “Pregnant” and “2-3 weeks” !!!!!!! To say we were thrilled would be an understatement. Lots of happy tears were shed that night :) We were on cloud 9!!! We told everyone the happy news. Even though the baby was only the size of a poppy seed, me and my husband would rub my tummy and talk to the baby and even discussed names :)
That lasted for about 3 weeks. Then I started to bleed. Panic set in.
My husband took me to the emergency room where the doctor examined me and said he seen a bit of blood on my cervix but my cervix was still closed. He then wanted me to go get blood work the next morning and 2 days after that. I did and it showed my beta was rising nicely but I was still bleeding. So I was sent for an ultrasound. I went to the ultrasound and when the tech was done, he left the room and a few minutes later a doctor came in. He told me and my husband that our baby stopped growing a week before and was no longer viable. I broke down and could not hold my tears back. I was devastated. They sent in a grief counsellor to talk to us and we were given a folder with information on how to deal with a miscarriage and what to expect, and I was told to talk to my family doctor. I spent the rest of the day and night crying. We went to see my family doctor the next day where he reviewed the blood work and ultrasound results. But the report was unclear and he sent me back for another ultrasound a week later to double check on our baby.
This renewed my hope that maybe they made a mistake and everything is fine after all. I went to the second ultrasound, but unfortunately, it was confirmed that our baby had in fact stopped growing. I was given a prescription for Misoprostol to induce miscarriage since my body was not doing it on it’s own.
I took the meds later that day and by the evening I started cramping and bleeding quite a bit. Long story short, I miscarried that night in my bathroom. I don’t think I will ever “get over” the fact that we had to flush our baby down the toilet.
I cried for weeks, I was depressed, devastated, and angry, angry at God for making us wait 12 years to finally get pregnant, only to take it away from us.
We decided to start trying again right away. After about 6 months and no pregnancy we got a referral to another fertility specialist in Medicine Hat, Alberta. I had my consultation with him and he sent me for more blood work. He wanted to do an internal ultrasound to check on my ovaries. At the internal ultrasound, he said that he could not find my ovaries and it was either because my eggs were too small, or, because I was too fat (his exact words). He said that I had to lose 40% of my body weight and lose it FAST. He said he could not help me until I did that. I left his office in tears and never went back.
We moved away from Brooks to Red Deer where I started seeing my new fertility specialist. He ordered the same internal ultrasound to check my ovaries and had no problem seeing them, and I was around the same weight as I was when I seen the last FS. My ovaries were fine. He sent me for the standard blood work and another HSG test and everything was still fine. He then gave me a prescription for 4 rounds of 100mg of Clomid, which I did. No pregnancy. I went back and he gave me a prescription for 6 rounds of 25mg Femara. Still no pregnancy. I did one more round of 50mg Femara, but still, no pregnancy. We then talked about injectable medications with IUI. We scrimped and saved for half a year to get the money to do the procedure. We were excited when we finally were able to get started on the procedure. I bought my Menopur and paid for the IUI. I had to take 600iu of Menopur every night for 5 nights (that’s 4 vials every night!). After the 4th night of taking the meds I went in for my first ultrasound the next morning to check on my follicles. My fertility specialist was surprised that the ultrasound showed that I only had 1 follicle and it was still small at 14mm. He instructed me that I needed to buy 5 more days worth of Menopur. I didn’t have enough money to buy that much so he cut my dosage in half and said that was better than stopping it altogether. So that night I started showing strong signs of ovulation (ovulation pains, CM and blazing positive OPK). The clinic was closed by that time, so I took my meds that night and called the office first thing in the morning. I explained what was happening and asked to come back in that day (it was a Friday). I was told to continue my meds and come back in on Monday morning. I did what I was told. Monday morning I went in and had another ultrasound and it showed that there was no longer a follicle in there. My fertility specialist was away doing surgery but the nurse called him and explained what happened. He said to go ahead with the IUI. My husband and I were upset because we knew it would be too late for the IUI to work, but we had already paid for it and it was non refundable. We went ahead with it, knowing we had no chance at a pregnancy yet again that month. Sure enough, 2 weeks later my cycle started. No pregnancy. My fertility specialist said it was a learning cycle and we now know that I ovulate small immature eggs. Expensive lesson for my husband and I ($3080, and that’s not including the OPK’s and pregnancy tests I bought).
We are now trying desperately to save up the money to try again. We want to do IVF, but because of the extremely high costs of that procedure, none of which is covered by private insurance or Alberta Healthcare, we are having a very hard time trying to get the money together for it.
So here we are at 16 years of trying for our first baby, and still have empty arms. It is heartbreaking, stressful, and devastating to try so hard for something and the only thing holding you back is finances, it somehow feels unfair. I am desperately trying to hang on to the hope that we will get our miracle baby someday soon!
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