Friday, January 3, 2014

Ovaries, Endometriosis, and Polyps...Oh, My!

At the end of October, 2013, I went through the most anticipated experience of our trying to conceive journey thus far -- laproscopic surgery to diagnose and remove endometriosis. Though I haven't experienced the crippling pain most people associate with endometriosis, I have had many other symptoms that clued my doctor in to this diagnosis being a possibility.

I was nervous about the surgery -- what they would find. What they wouldn't find. The pain. The outlook on our fertility. There were so many emotions that went into this experience that it was difficult to navigate through them. I felt very at ease, though, with our doctor and his expertise in the area of endometriosis. If anyone was going to know what to do and how best to "fix" me, it would be Dr. Hill.

So I went through the surgery and two hours later I came out with the prognosis that I had waited a year for. I did, indeed, have endometriosis, in addition to finding out that I only had one ovary, a polyp inside my uterus, and an "undesirable endometiral lining." My left ovary, the only remaining one, was completely attached to my pelvic wall with endometriosis. There were also several patches of scar tissue on the outside of my uterus. Dr. Hill removed all of the endometriosis that he could find, detached my ovary from my pelvic wall, removed the polyp, and did a D&C to remove the endometrial lining on the inside of my uterus. He feels confident that one of the reasons for my infertility is from my ovary not being in an optimal spot to release an egg where it could be picked up by the fallopian tube. (Which was thankfully in tact and endometriosis-free.) When I left that day my doctor told me that I was as "cleaned up as I could be."
They frown on makeup during surgery. Something I greatly protested!

From there I had a week's recovery. We tried naturally to conceive the month of my surgery, which was unsuccessful.

Last month, December, we had our first round of Clomid and IUI. (Intra-Uterine Insemination) Though I had previous had three cycles with Clomid and ovulated successfully on it, my ovary was never in the right position to get the eggs to the fallopian tube. Now after the surgery, they were supposedly where they could be picked up and ready for fertilization. In addition to the ovary and eggs being in the right place, we had the added benefit of going through IUI where they take all of the strong swimmers and place them directly in the opening of the fallopian tube so that there are more sperm, and therefore higher chances of conceiving. I think we were both excited to be doing something different and felt like our chances were better post-surgery and with IUI, but it was unfortunately unsuccessful.

After 15 months of seeing countless negative pregnancy tests, one becomes sort of "numb" to the whole thing. I wasn't overly disappointed when our first IUI round failed, but every month has its own separate and individualized sting so I can't say I escaped completely unscathed.

Knowing that God has a plan and a reason for all of this is what keeps me going. He is requiring me to rest on Him entirely. This is a situation that is almost entirely out of my control, and so complete trust is necessary. This has been the lesson of 2013 for me, and one that I will continue learning the rest of my life. I thank God for His presence and His provision in my life, and I'm looking forward to the day when I can look back on this and see its purpose and worth.

Our plan at this point is to go through IUI with Clomid again next week. If it's unsuccessful, we will try one last cycle of IUI with Clomid in February. If that is also unsuccessful, we are pre-scheduled for our first Invetro Fertilization (IVF) round in March. It feels good to have a "plan" when I really can't "PLAN" anything. Eventually God is going to lead us out of the wilderness. Until that day, I just have to keep trusting in His unfailing love.

...And that's that!


  1. In August, I endured surgery to remove a twisted dermoid cyst from my right ovary. Unfortunately, it was so damaged, my ovary had to be removed. I was 14 weeks pregnant with our second child so any surgery was considered high risk. I just remember asking over and over if my baby had survived. I'm so sorry that you had to experience this. It's not fun being a woman.

  2. Thanks so much. It's not a fun experience, but we will come out the other side stronger. :) Sorry to hear about your experience. I hope everything turned out okay for you.

  3. Hi Christina,
    I came to your website from Pinterest and saw this post. I will be praying for you and your husband. My sister went through a very similar situation. She also went through the IUI experience, then adopted 3 children over 4 years and finally had a successful IVF procedure and had fraternal twin girls! They have been such a blessing! Trust in God and let Him work out the details. He is faithful!