We spent last night discussing DE and all that entails. We even perused one database to check out the options and see how hard it would be to find a lookalike. This is going to sound vain I think... I have really, REALLY curly hair and it's kind of my trademark, people know me for it and I have always dreamed of little ones with heads covered in ringlet curls as mine was. I am also very tall at 6' and it's important to me that my future children have at least a chance of being tall too. (Mr R is 5'10") in one database we managed to find two possible donors with curly hair - though not quite as curly, both were over 5'9. That put my mind at ease. Is it ridiculous that I want to find someone that closely matched? I feel ridiculous being so specific. What do other recipients look for in a "match"? We talked about it at length but Mr R is adamant that we give my own eggs one last try and because I am not completely sold on DE myself yet I agreed.
So what does that mean for us? Clearly we have a quality issue when it comes to our embryos. Three grade A, zero fragmentation went in but none came out. We've been reading about PGS. I emailed my embryologist last night to get his take on it and it seems he's already brought this up to my doctor. Our only concern is that because of the low number of eggs I produce, and even lower number making it to day 3, we may never have any to test given that our clinic only does Day 5 genetic testing. And an even stronger possibility is that we send my one day 5 embryo for testing only to find out he's genetically abnormal. I've heard about banking embryos - multiple retrieval cycles, freeze all day 5s and send them for testing. The cost, as you can imagine, is going to be exorbitant and most insurance companies will not pay for PGS so this is going to be out of pocket - to the tune of between $2,500-4,000 per the internets. Then we also have the issue of Mr R needing a fresh TESE with each retrieval and our embryologist saying we'll need 2-4 retrievals to have enough embryos to test. My mind is spinning. We are not rich people. We live a very modest life. I don't know if we can afford this and it makes me incredibly angry that the only thing standing between me and a possible genetic child is money! We would gladly do 10 retrievals if we could afford it. Our insurance coverage when it comes to banking is questionable and I have my clinics finance people looking into that today. But even with the cover we have each cycle is a minimum of $4,000 out of pocket and at this point we've sold everything we have to sell - we're sharing my old beater car and sitting on camping chairs in our living room. My mother says I am ridiculous to even consider this because financially it will ruin us. It infuriates her that we've spent as much as we have already and says we're living in poverty! I don't feel that we're quite that bad, but I do see her point. When is enough enough?
We're also discussing a wild card option. Mr R wants a vasectomy reversal. It's now almost 16 years old. We've been told that a reversal at this stage is worthless and that any semen would be unusable. Of course every man likes to think that theirs is the best and strongest and that they will beat the odds. I'm not sure about that, but what I am sure about is at least wanting to have a teeny tiny chance at a miracle. The slightest possibility that one day one perfect sperm cell will meet a genetically normal egg and create a perfect miracle baby. The internet is full of success stories like that - even in cases with DOR. Once the vasectomy reversal is paid for we have unlimited monthly free tries, on top of our embryo banking and genetic testing.
And so... Our decision? Well, we're going to talk about it some more today - Mr R is coming home early to console me and we're going to formulate a plan to take with us to our WTF next Wed. But at this point we think our future looks like this:
1) vasectomy reversal
2) 3 bank retrievals (insurance has 3 cycles left)
3) PGS any day 5 embryos we have
4) laparoscopy for my endo (not necessary but we hear it can help with implantation)
5) transfer normal embryo (2 if we have that many)
And if all of that fails then we can move in to DE with a clear head.
I'd love to find some bloggers who are dealing with old vasectomy reversals and banking for PGS. If you currently follow anyone like this please let me know their URLs. I've learned so much from you all and I know there's a lot I need to learn about these two things.