I received the rather damning news that I have 'Premature Ovarian Failure (POF)' last March at age 35:
My ovaries had been quietly failing (oo - that word nips...) for some time it would seem and the fact that I have a child at all is a wonderful miracle - it should never have happened. Apparently. I fully believe it absolutely should!
Stupidly/naively/certainly not timely I had not given too much thought to the night sweats, the hot flushes, the erratic and extremely heavy periods and the permanent PMT; prefering to concentrate on my lack of a pregnancy. I know all about pregnancy. I've been pregnant a few times (6, actually but more about that later...) and my husband and I were so busy either having sex constantly (while secretly growing to despise one another ;o)) or thinking about having sex constantly that it was only dawning on me a good 18 months into 'Project Baby-Number-2', that when once we shared a bar of soap and became pregnant (for those of you wondering, this is not an actual way to become pregnant), suddenly and rather annoyingly I was having periods most months. And negative pregnancy tests.
Yesterday I received the blood test results that change everything. Actually, they change very little but because I had harboured a romantic notion that it would 'all work out for us in the end', I now have to face the stark fact that with an FSH of 31.5 and oestrodial levels of <70, my one-in-a-gazillion chance of obtaining a pregnancy through IVF has vanished - poof - forever. I no longer have that option. In all honesty with an 'undetectable' ovarian reserve and a follicle count of 4 in total, almost a year ago, we were looking at a less than 5% chance anyway but, to us, that was a chance.
I didn't 'leave it too late', I was 27 when we started trying for a family. After two miscarriages and an ectopic, we were blessed with a darling son (DS) in 2006. He is ace and I am extremely lucky to have him. We started trying for baby number 2 (with a view to eventually stopping having babies at around the '4' mark) in the December after DS turned 1 year old. We managed a pregnancy the following March, which sadly turned out to be another ectopic and then nothing. Sex virtually every other day for the next 14 months or so ensued. My GP eventually agreed there could be a problem and sent me for tests. And more tests. And then a few more. None of which gave us very much hope.
Last October, amazingly, I became pregnant. Quite naturally. I would say 'all by myself' meaning without the help of IVF but I believe my husband was there at the time so I can't take all the credit. By November, it was all over. Another miscarriage. I don't think I could ever feel more heartbroken than I did at that time; for me, for DH, for DS and for yet another baby that wasn't to be.
And so here we are.
My advice, by the way, if you are struggling to conceive - see your GP as soon as possible. Especially if your mum had problems conceiving or had an early menopause. Had I pushed it, I may be sitting in a different place today.
My husband and I had discussed donor eggs (DE) briefly but I had refused to give it serious consideration as I was still hankering after that little girl that looks just like me. Now, we've made an appointment to go and see the 'Donor Egg Coordinator' (who'd have thought such a lady existed..??) at our local Centre for Reproductive Health. It seems that we will be giving it some consideration afterall...Watch this space...