May 4, 2009

Our story is I am sure very similar to many Dr. Sweet has seen before. Jody and I were married in 2004 and started trying on our own about a year later. We both have always wanted to be parents, and I would have to say as far as dads go, Jody was born ready. If there is a baby in the room, Jody has it. I have always felt like a mother without a baby.

We first adopted the attitude that we would just go unprotected and wait. And wait we did. And wait and wait. Years went by, and even though Docs said there didn’t seem to be any reason why we couldn’t conceive, we had little luck. We got a positive result once but it seemed to be a chemical pregnancy as it resulted in a loss very quickly. Finally I saw my GYN who recommended I have a dye test to determine if my tubes were blocked. Of course, they were. We were not in a position to see a specialist yet, so we decided that since I had one open tube we would continue to try on our own. We tried ovulation tests, thermometers, home remedies, and wives tales galore. We spent hundreds on watches to predict the times to try, and tons of pregnancy tests destined to come out negative. Every month was split in to two halves. Two weeks depressed and sad over yet another failed attempt, and two weeks hoping and praying wearing out our knees that we had succeeded. The magic of trying had LONG since faded and it became a source of stress between us.

I finally made the appointment with Dr. Sweet after three and a half years being married. Our appointment was for January 2nd, and I had high hopes of starting the year with a family on the horizon. So, we had the consultation and made some plans for some tests. I had instructions to call on a certain day of my cycle to schedule and ultrasound, which I did. However, as the appointment neared I realized I had never really gotten my period. So, reluctantly I went and got a pregnancy test. Miracles of Miracles it was positive! It appeared that just by visiting the office I had gotten my wish. This place was AWESOME and I had to tell my friends! Jody and I had never been so happy. I went into my scheduled appointment and told them I was already pregnant. They ordered blood tests and we did the ultrasound. After three long weeks of tests and retests we succumbed to the inevitable that this pregnancy was just not viable. We waited for the miscarriage to happen, which it did. Heartbreak again. Sympathetically Dr. Sweet told me to come back in a few months and we would resume where we left off. So, after some healing I came back in ready to do whatever it took. The first thing the Doc wanted to do was surgery to attempt to unblock my tube. I was in. He explained that we had a 1 in 4 chance of it unblocking and leading to a pregnancy. So, I booked the surgery and remained optimistic about our chances. Then came the call from Michelle, the financial coordinator in the office letting me know that my insurance would not cover any of the surgery and it would cost upwards of 18k to get it done. I was so devastated and crying on the phone with her. She took pity on me and tried her best with no avail to get it approved, but did suggest that I think about talking to the doc about IVF. She went over the numbers with me. I knew we had little chance of coming up with those funds too, but if we could that we would rather spend our money on better odds. We had seen Doc’s success rate for my problem that are my age, and we were hopeful. Granted, Dr. Sweet had not planned on going through with this drastic plan so fast, but when I explained that we had one shot at this with the funds we had, he agreed that he would go ahead. Now with an actual timetable of a chance at REALLY being pregnant, I felt like a new person. It was May, and we couldn’t get into a cycle until August, but I was pumped!

Things really changed around our house. With the great support of the coordinator, we realized what we needed to do health wise. We got in better shape and read a lot. The stress of battling out another two months of failed attempts off our shoulders put the spark back between us. We could relax and let our turn arrive. August came and I got my meds! I was too excited. I thought the needles would be a problem for me but the morning came to start them and I was too happy to care. Days went by, and we checked my follicles. I did not proceed as quickly as a lot of women, or even as we thought I would. But, we got to the retrieval. We ended up with 14 eggs retrieved. Four were either too small or broken which left us with ten. When we got the call that 8 had fertilized we were ecstatic! So now we waited again. We had a plan to put 2 fertilized eggs back in and Jody and I REALLY wanted twins. We really wanted there to be frozen leftovers for our future babies too. We got the office on our implantation day and surprisingly, only 1 had made it to the stage we wanted with one close behind. So, we put in those two little guys and prayed. We were very sad to know that we had none that could be frozen, leaving us with literally all our eggs in one basket! But, this was God’s picture to paint now. I did everything they said over the next 9 days to ensure success. I swear it felt them implanting as I sat on bed rest for those 3 days. I was not really concerned because I just knew it had worked. Also, against all advice I was taking pregnancy tests daily like crazy! They came back positive so fast after the Ovidrel left my system. I knew the twins were on the way. My first blood test came back at 100 which was excellent and we celebrated. Now we knew the numbers needed to double in 48 hours to be on the right track from our experience with our last failed pregnancy. The numbers came back at 185...too low. We needed a 200! My stress level was high, but anxiously waited for the next test a long 5 days later. The number this time was 1400. When the nurse called us to tell us 3200 we went through the roof!!! Now we had to get our U/S at 6 weeks (You will find reproductive therapy is not a success but a billion tiny series of successes!!) What I secretly wanted anyway! Now comes the down part of the roller coaster…no heartbeats. The possibility that they had taken extra time to split was there, and we could only wait a WHOLE week until we could come back and check. They gave us a 50/50 shot. Needless to say, that was the longest worst week ever. The morning we went back was the only morning I had morning sickness. I laid down to prepared for the worst. They turned on the machines, and low and behold two healthy heartbeats.

Jody and I went home and told everyone! We were so blessed. We had our 10 week appointment scheduled with Dr. Sweet, and the next 3 weeks I spent reading how we were going to attempt to handle twins. When we got back in the chair she turned on the machine I did not need her to tell me that one of my babies was gone. I knew. But, in that moment I saw that other baby thriving and had grown so much, I knew that God had intended for us was still right there he and Dr. Sweet had put it. We shed our tears about the baby lost and out it promptly behind us as we knew we still had all the blessings in the world. We were discharged and sent to our regular OB and off we went.

The next months FLEW by, and I can honestly say we never rushed this pregnancy. We knew better than that, and we cherished every moment not rushing our miracle into this world because the people at Dr. Sweet’s office had taught us what we had achieved with their help not everyone gets.

May 4th, 2009, Owen Warren Jacoby came into our lives without a single complication. He is perfect, and so are our lives - in all the ways someone’s life should be, and for that we are so grateful. To God first, and to the people at that office that helped push our miracle along.

Darla Jacoby

Comment From Dr. Sweet:

A few things come to mind with this family. The one-sided tubal occlusion on the dye study (HSG: Hysterosalpingogram) is often a false positive with the tube really open. In her particular situation, however, the HSG suggested a real occlusion. Surgery was an excellent option but insurance wouldn’t cover the procedure! This kind of stuff drives me crazy! I really thought I could make an impact but my hands were truly tied.

I had no idea that Darla was cheating on the home pregnancy tests, something we really do recommend against. They can make an anxious patient even more neurotic!

Darla not only had twins but it was clear by the ultrasound that one of the embryos had split and that they were identical twins! Loosing only one of the two is unusual since what ever caused the first to be lost (i.e., genetic problem) is present with the other, so if one is lost, they both usually die. Owen was obviously one stubborn and, quite honestly, one lucky little boy.

I know he will be much loved as he was hard fought for. I’m so appreciative that we could be a part of such a wonderful success.

Craig R. Sweet, M.D.

updated 1/10/10

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