Fertility is a F-word

by - August 21, 2023

Fun fact: Boyfriend Pham sent me the 'how is prangent formed' video while we were office buddies and we both laughed deliriously - who knew we'd be trying to get prangent together a few years later. I was clueless about how is prangent formed when Boyfriend Pham and I first started trying beyond the general birds and bees talk. By ‘trying’ I mean we stopped avoiding pregnancy. My first GP doctor said to try for 6 months before seeking help. My second GP said to try for 12 months. All in all, we tried for over a year before getting a referral to see a fertility specialist. 

The first fertility specialist we went to was part of the Monash IVF group as one of my friends was using Monash IVF at the time and recommended them. She put Boyfriend Pham and me through a bunch of blood tests. Boyfriend Pham did a sperm test and I had the fun experience of having contrast fluid shot up my uterus in a hysterosalpingography (HSG) X-ray to see if my fallopian tubes were blocked. All our results came back good. There wasn't anything obvious stopping us from falling pregnant naturally.

After 8 months, I still didn't know why we couldn't become pregnant. Even though there's a lot of information out there about fertility and ways to boost fertility, I figure there isn't much research into the root causes of infertility because IVF exists as a workaround.

We were given the option to do artificial insemination as a next step, but during the paperwork process, the fertility specialist encouraged me to jump straight to IVF because I was 38 and about to turn 39 soon. Age 40 is an egg quality cliff for women better to sign up for IVF now in case it took a while. She specialised in private IVF but knew money was a concern for us so told me to get a referral to a bulk bill IVF clinic.

I went home and picked a bulk bill IVF centre based on location. I'd heard good things about Adore Fertility but they were across town, and I wanted convenience so I picked Life Fertility in Bowen Hills as it was closest to home. I read reviews that had mixed vibes about Dr Glenn Sterling, but I figure I'd judge for myself when I met him. At my first appointment, I realised why he may rub some people the wrong way. Dr Sterling has a great sense of humour and is big on Dad jokes, which is allowed because he's a father. I can see how some couples felt he was disrespectful or confronting for making light of a serious life situation. However, I love that he can share his medical knowledge while making me laugh because I'm someone who prefers to laugh at uncomfortable things than stress or cry. I really enjoyed the humour and the lighthearted way he explained how my body works and the somewhat daunting process it was about to go through.

It wasn't until we started IVF that I began to understand the timing, logistics, and magic that goes into creating life.

Next time on Keep it in The Phamly... IVF hormone injections and symptoms. Spoiler: I did not have a good time.

Our fertility and pregnancy experience

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