We had a chance to sit and talk last night. Talk about the cover we are so blessed to have, and discuss how we're going to use this to our best advantage before the year is through and we have to start meeting all our deductibles again. What helped actually was that we had a call from my mother who had just read my text about the insurance coverage and our options. She had some advice... she always has some advice and it's rarely the same as what I am thinking... Her advice to us is to forget about trying again with my own eggs. She feels strongly that my desire for a biological child is "ridiculous" and "frivolous". Yep... she used those words. The fact that they will cover a donor cycle means that they're willing to lay out twice as much as what we're asking for the PGS cycle, and we have a MUCH higher chance of success. She feels that the money would be better spent on a cycle with better odds. What helped was that while I was explaining our options to her in minute detail so that she could fully understand what our coverage meant -- I am not originally from this country, and our insurance back home is very different. Mr. R was standing by as I explained each step, and what the cover meant, and how I felt about our options. I was not able to make my mother see my position on this, but Mr. R heard me loud and clear. When I hung up he said, "Baby, we're not giving up on your eggs yet. Let's give it one more try."
We went over his questions about the two options. We discussed our cover and he reminded me that while we will most likely need 3-4 retrieval cycles for sufficient blasts to PGS, we only have 4 total IVF cycles paid in full -- including our donor cycle. We've used 1 already. (Our first cycle was a drug trial). And if we want to try donor eggs we will need to have at least one IVF saved for that. There is no way on this earth that we will be able to afford the estimated $26,000 it would cost us out of pocket for a donor cycle. No way. Ever. That will be our last try.
We came up with a plan... now of course, this will most likely be thrown around/tossed out after our appointment with Dr. S tomorrow, but I wanted to document it all so I can refer to it if needed.
1) Vasectomy reversal. This is our top priority.
2) Retrieval #1, day 5, biopsy, freeze blast/s and freeze biopsy material.
3) Laparoscopy for my endo (rest cycle)
4) Retrieval #2, day 5, biopsy, freeze blast/s and send both biopsy's for testing.
5) IF any normal embryos, transfer frosty/ies - if not, plan B.
6) Donor cycle. Plan B.
7) If donor cycle fails we're HOPING that the vasectomy reversal will prove a success and that we will have the option of IUI which we have unlimited cover for. But there's a chance that post-reversal SA will come back with very poor, unusable results. This is officially Plan C.
8) If all else fails there's the tiny, teeny, weeny, itsy, bitsy glimmer of a chance for a miracle unassisted pregnancy created the old fashioned way. Percentage odds are ridiculously low, but you never know what the future will hold and we're going to move forward holding this hope in our hearts. Plan D.
9) While we're hoping for the miracle to end all miracles, we may be able to start saving for an out of pocket donor cycle -- maybe in Europe where donor cycles are slightly more affordable, still... I don't imagine that they're cheap -- so we will need a few years to save for this one. Plan E.
The reality is that we probably will not have any genetically normal embryos. Heck, we may not even have enough blasts to send for testing after just two retrieval cycles. In both my past cycles we only had one embryo that appeared to possibly be able to make it to day 5. Having just 2 to test does not offer great odds, but it's our only and last chance. I know that I need this to be able to move on with peace in my heart that I gave me eggs every opportunity.
The reality with Plan B is that even with 22 year old eggs one donor cycle may not be enough for a successful pregnancy, but it's all we can afford to do. (Unless we win the lottery, in which case we'll keep trying and trying until we're successful).
Plan C's sober reality is that after almost 16 years his tubes are probably all gunked up and what comes out will be a mess. But we've done some reading and we've heard that this can improve over time. (Mr. R has promised to be vigilant about clearing the tubes out often. lol) (No, we don't seriously know if that helps, but he's committed to trying.) And yes, I realize that if IVF didn't work, our odds of success with IUI are very low, but I can't help but hope that we might "catch" a genetically normal egg one month.
We know that Plan D is our "Unicorn" plan. But since we're not willing to give up on a child completely, this will always remain on my list.
Plan E will mean extending our life of "poverty" to quote my mother as we save furiously for the chance at trying another donor cycle somewhere more affordable. We will see how tired I am when we get to this point. Honestly, this extreme penny-pinching lifestyle is really starting to grow old after just 2 years and I don't know how much longer Mr. R will be on board for PB on toast 2 nights a week. We'll see.
So there you have it folks! My game plan for the rest of this year and beyond. We'll see how much it changes after appointment with Dr. S tomorrow.