Red Team: The Tallents
Our Infertility Story, as told by Kendall:
Wade and I met in 2001 when we were in 7th grade. We dated, if you can really call it that, on and off for a couple of years until he moved to a different school. Fast forward 4 years to 12th grade; we were back at the same school and started dating again. That’s where our story really begins. We have now been together since we were 17. After dating for 4 years, we got married on June 27, 2010. We both love kids and knew we didn’t want to wait too long to start a family of our own.
When I was 18 my appendix ruptured resulting in 3 surgeries and lots of pain and complications to follow. After my final surgery to remove the abscesses that had overtaken my body, my doctor told me that he should have taken out one ovary and tube, but was able to remove the infection and “save” them. Knowing that scar tissue can build up after that type of surgery I think we both knew we could potentially face infertility problems, but didn’t know exactly how hard it would be. Since we knew it could take a little longer for us, soon after we got married we decided to ‘stop preventing’ and just see how things went. Little did we know that almost 4 years later it would still be just us and our two sweet dogs!
After about six months with no luck, we stared really trying. A year went by with no luck so I made an appointment with my OB/GYN. She diagnosed me with PCOS and referred us to a Reproductive Endocrinologist. We did a lot of testing including a HSG test to check the function of my tubes which showed the left one completely blocked but the right tube appeared clear. My doctor thought the best course of action would be to completely remove the blocked tube and leave the right one since it was clear. I scheduled and had my surgery in August 2012. As soon as I recovered from surgery and was cleared by the surgeon, we started on our first cycle of fertility treatment.
We started with 4 cycles of Clomid/timed intercourse with a few responsive cycles and a few that weren’t at all. Once we determined that Clomid was not for me, we moved on to another oral medication, Femara, also with timed intercourse, but this time we added Ovidrel to trigger ovulation. Yay! The first time was a charm, we were pregnant! We were beyond excited. We told both of our immediate families and thought we were finally going to be parents. We knew there was always a risk of miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy, but because our battle thus far had been GETTING pregnant, we didn’t think twice about it. A week and a half after we found out that I was pregnant, I started spotting. Of course my doctor said this is very normal and happened in more than half of normal pregnancies, but he wanted to see me anyway. I went in and did an ultrasound and found nothing. We were devastated. He said it could be too early, we need to repeat in a few days, by then my HCG blood levels would be to the point that something would appear on ultrasound. When I went in for the repeat, there was still no baby. Because of my rising HCG levels my doctor declared it as an ectopic pregnancy and I was administered a shot called Methotrexate to stop the dividing of cells and basically trigger a miscarriage since the pregnancy was not viable in the tube. This was devastating. We had finally gotten the gift we wanted for it to be taken away from us just a few weeks later.
Since we now knew what medication worked, we could try it again in about 3 months. We did 2 more cycles of this medication but my body did not respond. My doctor said the time had come that we needed to move on to injectables. We had been avoiding this as long as possible. We ordered the first round of Follistim and Ovidrel and got ready to start. The first cycle had to be postponed because I had a cyst that needed to go away. One month of birth control pills ( I know, how ironic) and the cyst was gone and we could finally start. Twenty days of injections followed by that beloved “two week wait” and to our surprise, the first time worked again! WE WERE PREGNANT! Of course this time we knew that after one ectopic we had a higher risk of it happening again. After just a few days the bleeding started. We did all the same things; blood work, ultrasounds, no luck. I had to have the Methotrexate shot again and this pregnancy was also lost due to ectopic. After a second ectopic pregnancy and the fact that the tube is the only one I have, my doctor feels that we should not try this course again.
At this point we have to move on to IVF. We have high hopes with IVF. We know that no matter what, when our end result is our beautiful baby, everything will have been worth it.
Update June 2015: Grayson and Lila have arrived! The first Race to Parenthood babies were born on June 17, 2015! Grayson weighed 5 lb 14 oz and Lila weighed 5lb 12 oz! Kendall and Wade are doing great and are excited to be parents!