Once the relief of not having cancer had worn off, I started looking at the path ahead. We have two cycles of the Clomid left, but I don’t hold much hope in that now. Suddenly IVF feels like it’s looming over my future, and the prospect is so much more terrifying since that needle biopsy test I had to check for cancer.
See when I was a very young child I had an allergy scratch test done, twenty-five needles in my back. It may not have been so bad, but the nurse would only do one or two at a time before disappearing to answer the telephone. She dragged the process out so long that I’ve been traumatised ever since.
Unfortunately facing my fear doesn’t make it any better. This year alone I’ve had more than 15 blood tests, 7 injections, 2 biopsies and that doesn’t count anything that happened when I went into hospital. Whatever strength and reserve I had for facing my fears is feeling thin and fragile at the moment.
To go through with IVF you’re committing to injections every single day, with additional blood work just for fun. I have no idea how I long I could face that without suffering a complete anxiety breakdown. Even though our health trust pays for two cycles, I suspect I’ll be lucky to make it through one. So with Clomid looking futile and IVF looking doubtful, last week I started looking into adoption.
After reading several websites, it seems like there’s no point in even applying. One site was looking for people with lots of extra energy, so my chronic pain & fatigue excludes me. Another suggested that they excluded those with a history of mental health problems because the process is so stressful. Others implied you’d only be able to adopt if you’d take siblings or disabled children, which I would love to do, but the a fore mentioned pain and fatigue makes that prospect even more daunting. And of course you’d have to wait a year after completing your medical investigations into infertility before even enquiring. Oddly enough it sounded like having IVF was a requirement before you could apply - simply deciding not to have it didn’t sound like an option. I understand these rules are in place for a reason, that logically they are trying to offer the best opportunities for the children in their care, but it does leave me without hope.
Suddenly I feel at the end of our journey. I know there is still a sliver of a chance in the Clomid and IVF, but I no longer believe in it. And I don’t know how to continue through the process when everything feels so hopeless.