Monday, September 20, 2010

As the Uterus Turns

Something happened after I had a baby: I became a normal mom. Okay, maybe not completely normal. Definitely a bit more neurotic than some. Maybe walking around with just a little baggage from my experience with infertility (but more like a small carry-on). But more or less just another mother of an infant, obsessing over feeding and sleeping and trying to stay sane on the tough days. It's been nice. I've been pretty cautious about bringing up IVF, especially with the new mom friends I've made, those with whom the common bond is having an infant. We're on an even playing field -- we both have babies and it really doesn't matter how they came to be -- and I haven't wanted to disturb that equation with an injection of assisted reproduction chatter.

Well. It's been fun. Last week I inadvertently got off the normal train and boarded the infertility express and now I don't know how to stop it.

I got my period last Saturday, which was an unexpected but welcome event. Based on my history I had every reason to expect that it would never come back on its own post-childbirth. But there it was, just 1.5 mos after weaning H from nursing, just like a normal person. Yay, right? Not so fast. It was extremely light, and on Sunday a lightbulb went off in my head: Wasn't it just like it was after my D&E? And didn't we learn that was because I had uterine scarring? And can't you get more scarring from a c-section, which was one of several reasons I didn't want one?

The next morning, I called my OB, who emailed my RE, and before I knew it I was back in the stirrups on Thursday for an office hysteroscopy. My RE (who is still fabulous) swore it was not going to be Asherman's, since only one other patient in her career got it from a c-section. Do I even need to tell you what she found (while I was trying desperately to breathe through searing pain that hit me harder than contractions)? I was right. I'm the one-percent girl. Again. (If anyone needs me to come over and provide a diagnosis, give me a call.)

So all of a sudden I'm having an operative hysteroscopy in a few weeks. Because if I ever hope to be pregnant again -- and especially if I want to give my body a chance to do it on its own -- the scar tissue has to go.

I am just feeling weird about the whole thing. It feels so optional this time. My whole life doesn't feel like it hangs in the balance of a test result or a procedure. I mean, do I want a second child? Yes (though this answer is complicated too). Do I want H to have a sibling? Absolutely. Will I mourn if it doesn't happen? Yup. But it sort of feels like I could have just waited a couple of months to have it checked out, like I didn't have to force the issue right this moment. I kind of feel like saying wait a minute, I didn't mean it, and returning to my previously scheduled life as a mom.

But how can I? I want to pursue this second baby at some point soon, because it could be a long process, I'm not getting any younger and I just kind of want to finish the whole reproduction thing sooner rather than later. The first necessary step is this surgery, which I know from experience is not a big deal. And then maybe, just maybe that will be all the help I need. I'm not banking on it, but a girl can hope.


Amanda said...

Wow, that sucks. I guess it's good that you were able to recognize that something was amiss when your period arrived and knew how to take care of it. I hope it gets fixed and you can have another chance for a 2nd if you decide to.

I don't mention IF when talking to other moms either. I'm open about my PCOS, but conception just isn't a topic that comes up much. But the other month I was talking with a mom and the manager of my daycare and the manager was talking about being on an accelerated family building schedule due to some overy issues and how she was glad that she didn't have to do IUI's or anything. And I hugged M and said that he was an IUI baby, and worth it all. I was proud to share it in that situation.

anofferingoflove said...

feeling like this is "optional" at the moment makes a lot of sense. still, very responsible of you to go ahead and get it taken care of. i need routine stuff (annual/pap) done that i avoided while pregnant (um, almost 2 years overdue now!) and i just cant seem to get myself back in those stirrups! so, i admire you for forging ahead.

Roccie said...

Holy cow. Where did this come from? You must feel like you have been laid out on your back. I am so sorry to hear this news.

It sounds manageable. Right? It just sure adds another damn layer of complexity for you.

I am thinking about you. It is good to hear from you, but not like this.

ps - Crap. Are we not supposed to talk IVF? I always bust it out. Early. It is a part of me. Course, I am a little shy on the donor egg situation now...

Anonymous said...

Ugh. You always seem to hit the wrong jackpots, eh Egg? I hope the surgery goes well. Good for you for being so in tune with your body that you actually noticed there was a problem.

The whole second child debate is so unfair for infertiles- I see so many blogs where women are struggling to make a decision- they want their first to have a sibling, but they don't know if they (or their family) can stand up to the emotional/physical/financial strain of resuming treatments.

I always figured if we ended up with twins we'd be busting out the IVF word fairly regularly, as I guess people love to ask prying questions about multiples. But with a single bub currently gestating, I'm not sure. I guess it would depend on the situation.

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