When you go through this process as a young woman the doctors talk to you about fertility preservation. They basically want to give you the option to collect healthy eggs (and healthy sperm even to make an embryo), that you will freeze until it’s safe to get pregnant later. Amazing foundations like LiveStrong will help pay for this process for women of child bearing age.
When this whole snowball effect started, I remember talking to Evan in the car about how I really wanted to have a baby after my cancer was gone. Something about facing the biggest giant in my path, overcoming that giant, then getting pregnant to bring new life in the world just filled me with hope. I love seeing what my body can do, I love pushing my limits and my body knows how to carry and birth babies. Evan was on board, he even brought up that his heart had started opening to the option of adopting, which would be an amazing possibility too.
Over the next few days, we learned that I am ER + (Estrogen Positive), PR + (Progesterone Positive) and HER-2 negative. Basically, my cancer is being fueled by my 91% + level of estrogen. Which can be a “good” thing in the cancer world, because that means the doctors know what is fueling my cancer, and if we can cut off my estrogen, we can cut off the cancer and keep it from coming back. Which means no fertility. Doctors did give me the option to preserve my eggs, but they said I would need to move fast. It takes about three weeks to complete the process and you must do this before chemotherapy starts. We were then told about the endocrine therapy that I would be placed on after radiation, (after chemo and after surgery) later this year. This pill I would take for the next 10 years of my life. It would basically make me pre-menopausal to keep cancer at bay.
So, if Evan and I had the true desire to have another child (via me) then we would not only have to preserve eggs, create embryos with his sperm via doctor, but also wait four years from my diagnosis date to get pregnant, then I would have to stop taking my endocrine therapy pill during the pregnancy, which could put me at risk for cancer to come back. Evan’s response was immediate, no more babies. For me the answer didn’t come that quick. But God did shed some light on my life, He reminded me of the gorgeous, healthy daughters we have at home and that He is in control of our life, not me. And how my girls, my Evan need ME. I need to put all my energy in winning this battle, so I can be there. Not put my focus on another baby right now. With that gentle reminder, I was quickly persuaded to let the doctors know that we would not be preserving my fertility. On top of that one doctor wanted me on Lupron which helps put your ovaries in a sleep-like state so they are less affected by the chemo, which sounds all good in theory, but it can make the chemo less effective to the cancer cells. Hm…. So we decided that we didn’t want that added to my chemo cocktail, since we decided not to have any more children anyway (at this point). We wanted this chemotherapy to be as effective as possible, so I could go on living my life as extraordinarily as possible with my gorgeous girls and my hunk of a hubby.
It’s pretty incredible how when a door is closed, God will open a window to give you a different view. Who knows what may happen down the road, we may decide that we are completely fulfilled as our family of four. Or maybe God will work miracles and a safe pregnancy will happen, or maybe we will seek out another little girl via adoption. All we know now, is God is calling us into battle and I am at the forefront. I am focused, and I am ready. When the battle is won, we will seek the Lord for our next steps.
***32 weeks pregnant with Halen, 2014*** ***33 weeks pregnant with Henley, 2016***