There is much to be written on this here blog, but only so much juice left on the laptop battery (and the Augusta battery). The training weekend was certainly an interesting process. But I think I have to go reverse chronological on you, dear reader, and talk about Monday's RE appointment first.
Well, after waiting for an hour (again) we finally got to see Dr. RE. And just so we are clear, I don't mind waiting that long to see him because when we do see him, he takes the time to answer our questions in a thorough fashion. I am assuming he does this with all couples, causing to be him behind schedule. I prefer that to a jerk of a doctor who is on time. In a very funny, double-double negative (that makes 4, so that's positive, right?), Dr. RE said my lining was fine. No problemo with the cells in my lining. Also, the estrogen patch seemed to have done the trick in terms of thickness, according to him. He's happy with where we are in terms of lining and we can go ahead with what's next.
What IS next?
The options we were playing with going into the consultation were twofold:
1) Donor Eggs from Sattva
2) Donor Embryos from new Canadian program started last year
We started with number one. We talked about the possibility of taking up Sattva on her generous offer to go through the whole IVF process again. From an emotional standpoint, that is our first choice. We LOVE Sattva, and to have our family join with hers through DE is a dream that we wish could be realized. The miscarriage was awful on so many levels, the death of that dream not the least of them. The obstacle is Sattva's age, which introduces a great deal of statistical uncertainty into our baby making equation. I'm angry that this has to be a factor, but it just is. Sattva is a healthy woman who has given birth to healthy children in the past, but she is close to 38. It still makes her a candidate for pregnancy, but for donating eggs, it seems to be riskier. I think I am too afraid of it failing again.
Then there is the embryo donation program, where an existing adoption agency started a program that matches couples who want to donate their remaining embryos from previous IVF cycles to a couple in need. We are in need! The alluring aspect of this is that the couples have most likely been successful with their embryos before, since they are in a position to donate them. Also, we would have a connection to another family through this process, which is something that appeals to us very much. The cost is similar to the costs we just paid for the DE IVF, but most of it is in consultation and legal fees with the agency. We would have to do the embryo transfer at the donating couple's clinic, which seemed to worry Dr. RE. He felt that many Canadian clinics have set protocols to build a recipient's lining and they don't like to deviate from that protocol. And, as you know, I don't fit into a protocol very well (you will remember the supre.fact episode).
Dr. RE's was pretty neutral, as he tends to be in his ethical, respectful stance. But then I asked him to help us weigh our options. To our surprise, the good doctor gave us his opinion.
You want to get the job done, he said. Which leads us to option 3:
3) DE IVF in the U.S. with an anonymous donor
It's not a new option. I haven't been living in a bubble here. I read your blogs. I know it's out there, it just never seemed to be for us. I dreamed about it privately, as it seemed it could be this high-probability-of-success-solution. But the costs are so prohibitive. However, Dr. RE's point was well taken. You can keep going with the Canadian system, which is partly funded, for a long while and end up with the outcome you want, but often after much trial and error, not to mention heartaches. The American system is fee-for-service with a greater focus on getting the job done the first time. Hmmm. I would like to get the job done. A take home baby is what we are aiming for here.
He talked about a specific large practice in the DC area with which they have had dealings with in the past. He seemed confident that the clinic in question would follow his protocol for my lining. And the young eggs. Oh, the young eggs. I hear they make good babies. Dr. RE suggested that we have a teleconference with this clinic just to talk about how it would look like. I better have a teleconference with my banker beforehand.
I must admit, the draw towards option number 3 is strong. Mr. A and I need to discuss it at greater length before we launch ourselves into that venture, ridiculous debt and all. But the draw is very strong.