Having children was never in our plan until we both crossed the magical age line of 35 when the biological clock finally struck us and we decided to give it a try. Our journey started with Dr. Kashyap in 2012. In the first meeting with Dr. Kashyap, both of us were asked to do a series of tests, including the egg reserve test. As a same-sex couple, we surprisingly found out that I have a very low egg reserve and Y has a very high egg reserve, even though we are the same age. Since I was the one who had a much stronger desire to have kids, we first tried with my eggs. In a span of less than one year, I went through 5 IUIs and 1 IVF. The IUIs didn’t result in any pregnancy. The IVF cycle got me pregnant, but then it led to a miscarriage at 12 weeks. Towards the end of 2013, we went back to Dr. Kashyap after a much needed break. Dr. Kashyap believed that my very low egg reserve made it very hard to get good result. She suggested, if I am not too attached to my own eggs, we should try with Y’s eggs and have me carry the pregnancy. So this became our strategy.
Y’s high egg reserve didn’t bring us a favorable result immediately. It was Y’s second IVF in early 2014 that gave us 3 good quality day 5 embryos. Y is a mathematician and studied Probability in grad school. I am an analyst and like to look at things in numbers. Both of us love the fact that Dr. Kashyap uses statistical numbers in her explanations—it puts everything in perspective and gave us reasonable expectations. For the 3 embryos, we decided to go through genetic screening this time. Dr. Kashyap told us the chance of a good embryo is 50% — 50% of 3 means it could be either 1 or 2 good embryos. We got 1 good embryo. We did the transfer of the only genetically normal embryo. We finally got a positive pregnancy test result. During our first ultrasound, a couple of nurses came to the ultrasound room to cheer for us. Dr. Kashyap asked me how I was doing. I said I was very nervous, and then she said she was nervous, too. Then we saw the little flicker showing on the screen. We were so happy and relieved. The nurses were doing high-fives on the side. It took 3 IVFs and so much hard work to get us there.
2015 was a happy and busy year. Our daughter Sammie was born. But our journey didn’t stop there. While both Y and I were on parental leave in 2016, we brought Sammie to Genesis to meet with the team that we had been working with for over 4 years and to discuss trying for a sibling for Sammie. With no frozen embryos or sperm samples in storage, we had to start all over again. Dr. Kashyap told us up front: we will try with Y’s egg again, but the odds are getting even lower now since we have all added a few years to our age. We ended up having another failed IVF. But the real dilemma was when to stop and how many more failed IVFs we could endure. In 2017, we said we would try one last time—our 5th IVF. We had 2 good quality embryos on day 6. When it came time for some decisions, we called up and said we needed some advice. An appointment was scheduled right away, and we got to meet with Dr. Kashyap the following day. As usual Dr. Kashyap quoted a lot of statistical numbers. When she was done with numbers, she said: “If this is me or my sister, I would do without genetic screening and transfer one embryo at a time. I think that is the best way to maximize the overall chance.” We took her advice and transferred the better grade embryo. In 2018, with a VBAC I delivered a healthy baby girl Lulu on her due date.
6 years, 5 IUIs, 5 IVFs, 1 miscarriage later, we have two beautiful daughters. We wouldn’t be able to have this without the help of Dr. Kashyap and her team. The gentle guidance of all the nurses we have met; the hand-holding during tough times; and the smiles at joyful moments, they all gave us quiet strength to go through the journey. We have always felt safe and protected under their care and the communication has always been timely and transparent. We are grateful for everyone that has helped us at Genesis. We learned that there is definitely truth in uncertainty in life, and we are both happy and sad to finally graduate from Dr. Kashyap.