It’s been a rainy couple weeks.
This is one of those that I’ll mostly keep under wraps. I’m not going to share it, but I’m not going to censor it either. Today is just as much a part of the story as any other day. And a real story isn’t real if we trim it down pretty, anyway.
I just got the results from my second round of testing. As a recap—round one showed my AMH levels at .21 ng/mL (this is a fertility thing), which is less than half the starting level for women age 50+. My doctor’s assistant noted it could be worth testing again, so I crossed my fingers for a fluke and made arrangements for the repeat.
In short—things are tough. The familiar pain is returning to my left side and I’m riding serious mood swings as my hormones try to find their legs again post-ovary removal. The avoider-jokester in me would normally add “which has been fun” to that statement. But that’s a coping mechanism and a lie and the truth is it has been hell.
It’s the same dance every time I start not feeling well again. Hang in there a couple cycles, watch the pain spikes, try physical therapy, rule as many things out as possible. It’s a nasty waiting game I’ve never liked and it always gets me praying the same thing over and over:
God, if this is a thing again, let it hit me hard. Let me have answers quickly.
So I kept watching and tried not to wig-out and I scheduled my next test. (I also started doing yoga every day and letting Jesus back into things. Which has been truly great.) Of course, of course, I was hoping my last low number was a fluke. Maybe they swapped my vials with the sweet little grandma next to me. Maybe I tested at the wrong time.
But when the results rolled in, the level had stayed consistent. In fact, it had barely budged.
According to Quest Diagnostic’s website, the AMH test is said to accomplish the following:
(Anti-Mullerian Hormone AssessR, 2017)
- Determine ovarian reserve: AMH has been suggested as the best biochemical marker of ovarian reserve; the higher the AMH level the higher the number of remaining follicles.
- Predict age at onset of menopause: AMH decline reflects progression to menopause better than follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), inhibin B, or chronological age.
- Confirm diagnosis of premature ovarian failure: AMH levels are low or absent.
- Predict likelihood of IVF success: AMH levels correlate positively with number of retrieved oocytes; low AMH levels predict a lower likelihood of follicle response.
Round 1 AMH: .21 ng/mL
Round 2 AMH: .22 ng/mL
The realization hits me sporadically. I have a deep desire to experience the miracle of life inside of me. To one day see the look on my husband’s face when we hear that quick little heartbeat for the first time. I want to feel a baby kick.
That may not be on the menu. It’s hard pill to swallow.
But I prayed for an answer and I got one.
That’s something good.
Trev’s another good thing—a walking, breathing, crazy example of God’s great timing and creative plan—and I’m unbelievably grateful for him and the support he’s been through this.
When I showed him the test results, he just started spitting truth. It’s like the Holy Spirit dropped in hard and gave him just the right words. Sentence after sentence he affirmed me—one way or another we’re going to have a family and those kids are going to be a reminder of God’s goodness.
“When I do think about it and acknowledge how much I want all of these things—it’s impossible to ignore how good God has been in the past, how good He currently is, and how good He will be.”
It all hit me again a week later and this time my parents were there to swoop in.
“This is just a small part of a big story that ends well,” my mom hugged me as I dirtied the shoulder of her sweater with tears (and probably snot).
“Sounds like an invitation for a miracle.”
Dad with the mic drop.
I’m wildly blessed to have the humans in my life that I do. It’s been a hard hard season. I’m a 23 year-old with one foot in menopause, a bratty dose of pelvic scar tissue, and a reproductive system that thinks it’s 65.
Sometimes it feels like I’m in a rigged race against a screwy body-clock and it really sucks. Sometimes it gets to me. Sometimes I freak out about it. But I’m working on it–slowly wrenching those training wheels off.
My sister would tell you positivity is a daily fight you cannot allow yourself to lose.
(Fists up, people.)
This is just a small part of a big story that ends well.
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Eternal, “plans for peace, not evil, to give you a future and hope—never forget that.
Jer. 29.11 (The Voice)