I’ve had a few health issues this past month, plus a work project that I’ve had to focus on, so the blog has gone on the back burner for a while.
I’m not sure if you heard about the storm that happened in South Australia a few weeks back. It was one of the biggest we’ve seen and ended up with the entire state losing power – some areas for more than 24 hours.
Hospitals and other emergency services generally have backup generators, and so do IVF clinics. After all – they have frozen embryos that need to be looked after.
Unfortunately one of the IVF clinics in South Australia lost all power and couldn’t get it back before they lost all of the frozen embryos. All of them.
They have offered free cycles of IVF for all affected clients.
I cried for the clients and the embryos when I heard this news. I was also very angry. I was angry at the loss of the embryos, but also because to most people the offer of another cycle was an acceptable way to make amends.
But, the loss of those embryos, at least to me, is much more than a free cycle could ever compensate for.
When we did our IVF cycles we got to take home photos of our embryos. We have two photos and I’ve kept them. I won’t ever part with them. Because they are our children. Had we lost any embryos in an incident where power failed I would have felt that our children had died – not just that embryos had been lost that can simply be replaced.
Does that sound weird? I would have felt that the clinic was being flippant about the loss of our babies.
What do embryos mean? How early is it in the cycle to say “they are our children”? For me, our embryos were our children – especially given they were as close as we ever got to holding our babies in our arms.
They were never just embryos to me. In those tiny little beings there were already so many things that were set – their eye colour, their hair colour, whether they would have had Kirby’s eyes. Would they have been interested in computers or writing? Would they have loved animals like I do? We’ll never know, but we’ll always wonder.
No doubt the different clients of the clinic would be experiencing so many different emotions and thoughts. For those whom IVF does not work for, will they forever wonder if one of the embryos that was lost could have been the one? I often wonder about an embryo that was not put in me because it was not judged as strong enough – could that have been the one that made it? Again – we’ll never know.
All I can say is that our embryos were the closest to our children that we ever got, and they were a part of Kirby and a part of me. They were more than simply embryos – so much more.