As I have mentioned before. I have slowly been telling my close friends that we are starting IVF this May. This past weekend I told some good friends who live in England.
One couple we are close to actually started dating around the same time as AG and I. The four of us were all in the same graduate school program together and became good friends back then when we started dating our respective spouses. After a few years they moved away to England, and we continue to keep in touch. Even though we don’t talk often, they still are one of our close couple friends. They attended our wedding many moons ago (he was one of AG’s best men- he had a few). A couple of years ago we flew to London to attend their wedding, where they revealed to everyone’s surprise (including their own parents) that they had eloped a year earlier! It was a wonderful trip and we really enjoyed seeing them again. Suffice to say they are a really fun couple whom we are lucky enough to be friends with. I miss hanging out with them and cannot wait till we see them again.
Apparently, even though we now live with an ocean separating us, our shared experiences have not ended.
As it turns out they too are going through IVF this year. This May/June she (I will call her EV) will be going through her second round of IVF. Once I told EV about our own journey, she too wanted to talk about her experiences.
After our facetime conversation, we spent a good deal of time texting back and forth about our own journeys so far. Her particular brand of IF is PCOS, so she has trouble ovulating, plus she is around 35 so the clock is ticking. The standard drugs (clomid etc.) to promote ovulation did not work for her. This year they graduated to IVF. Her first round of IVF produced a few good eggs. Three that made it to day 5 embryos. The first transfer of two embies failed, and she is going trough an FET this month with the last embryo of this batch. It is not of great quality, so she doesn’t have much hope for it. And then around May/June they expect to start their second round of IVF. So we will essentially be cycling together this spring/summer.
In a strange way, I am actually happy that I have someone to share the day to day struggles with. Someone who actually appreciates and knows what I am going through. Rather than all my fertile friends who, although supportive, don’t always know what to say or do when I talk about my own experience (understandable, it is hard to talk about something you have little experience with and most people have their own issues, so really why would they care about mine when they can’t relate?). That is why the whole IF blogging community and forums work, and why I love being able to pour my heart out here. But there is something different about having an old friend that actually gets it, to be going through this at the same time.
So in a strange way I feel fortunate that I get to share this experience this with EV and that she wants to share her experience with me. But at the same time, I am sad for them. It totally sucks that they also have to struggle. We both feel the same bitter/sweet way about it. Regardless, it makes me feel more positive about my own decision to tell people about my journey. I believe that more people I tell, the more others will want to share their own experiences with me as well. And at the very least, talking about it is great therapy for all involved.
But then there is the whole, what if it works for her and not for me, or vice versa situation. How will we feel? I guess it is good that we live a whole ocean apart so we can, in a way, control how much we choose to share with each other. That being said, I don’t think I would be bothered if she did get pregnant this summer. In my mind I think she has a very good chance of success, its just a matter of time (and the right protocol). So I fully expect this to work for her. I have less optimism for myself, so I am prepared for this not to work for me.
That being said, EV did a great job of getting me more optimistic about my own chances. She has been doing a lot of her own research this past year so it was nice to hear her own perspective. Even though our particular IF issues are very different, we get each other. It is a strange sense of feeling fortunate to have an ‘IVF cycle buddy’ that I know on a personal level, but also feeling sad for us to have to go through this.