We've all heard the dreaded three letters before, but we really know what it's all about. I-V-F, probably one of the hardest things I ever had to go through, and it was not even my body that endured the process.
At the beginning of our IVF trip in February, the emotions were high, the stress went through the roof, but we had to sit down, take a breath and be thankful that we have made this next step. We would be thankful! Well, this was completely unknown, we really had no idea what we were doing, especially ME. I had no idea where my head was. All I could think about at the time was that we had to go through it because of me! It was not fun.
Now began the difficult part, medication! Boy, there was a lot. I think Filipa had to endure 4 injections in one night. Ouch! Do not get me wrong now, the injections put a lot of strain on Filipa, but I felt bad. I mean, I had to manage it every night. When the clock struck at 9:00 pm, our two hearts started beating ten to twelve. I went to the kitchen, washed my hands, took the right dose, and flicked through our Spotify playlist. We needed something to distract our feelings and something better than a Bohemian Rhapsody. When we went back to the living room, where Filipa was, we looked at each other and both had the moment "not again". A quick disinfection, pinch skin, hold and pull back. It was over! But wait, let's not forget the other three.
Apart from medication there were appointments. From February to March we had to do blood tests and ultrasound 2-3 times a week. The timing was everything, we needed the best time to do it all. This has put a heavy strain on our lives, luckily it did not affect our work that we are both self-employed, but a boy who gets up at 5:30 in the morning to make sure we do not have to spend the whole day at the hospital was hard.
Things have gotten weirder, in my view, since I was so invested in this trip with Filipa that I realized that men are not really involved. Now I do not generalize, but get up, wait in these waiting rooms full of women, sitting alone and turned my thumbs, I felt like the only one. Boys, gentlemen, men, hombres, if you can, then be on every step of the way. Trust me! Everything felt a lot more real to me because I heard it directly from the doctor or nurse and not from your wife when she got home. They are both together and it makes a big difference to be invested.
The day had come, we got the golden box from our nurses. In the golden box was our trigger. This shot would change our lives forever. A quick injection routine later we were pumped. The following morning was pickup day and my fun time;). After we made our way to the clinic, we were split. I had my free time, did my rehearsal and then went to Filipa to wait for her egg retrieval process. We were so excited and worried that basically all kinds of emotions were running through us.
After harvest, they had collected 5 embryos, but only 2 were fertilized. We are freshly awake and ready to make our way to the clinic. When we arrived we were informed that only 1 went through the whole cycle. A? Only one! Filipa and I felt the pressure on this fertilized embryo. We made our way to the doctor's room, the embryo was loaded and waiting for something! Bohemian Rhapsody starts playing as soon as the embryo is released. WHAT! Coincidence! I do not think so!
Transfer day finally over, now the waiting game. Filipa and I could not be happier, but the wait took forever. I tried to raise her spirits and always tried to make her laugh. Our support system was strong, we never let each other down. Shows that if you go through this process with an invested partner, the process is much easier.
I love you Filipa and could not imagine a better partner for me. I look to you and your stamina, your courage and your old kick-ass spirit. And now we can start the next part of our journey together.
Let us do this!
To summarize, I have tried to have an open dialogue about men in the world of fertility. For Google, there is no place where we can behave or feel. We should not like that our feelings are worth nothing. Fertility forums are (obviously) so overloaded with women that a man is most likely ignored when he asks a question. I do not want another man to feel like me. Let's take part in the conversation. It's so easy to dismiss a man's feelings. Together we are much more powerful
When you or someone you know goes through that reach, open the dialogue, discuss things, and above all, be there for each other. For God's sake, we are only human!
Keep your heads up!
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