Our Story

8 Nov

This is for Twelve and a Half Fighting Back (see Stirrup-Queens link to the left for details):

My husband was born with a birth defect which caused his uritors (the tubes leading from the kidneys into the bladder) to be very short and to go straight from the kidneys into the bladder without wrapping underneath the bladder first like they are supposed to. This birth defect is very rare and the doctors do not know what causes it as it is not genetic. Since the uritors wrap beneath the bladder to prevent urine from backing up into the kidneys and killing them, I’m sure you can imagine what happened next. One of his kidneys became severely infected shortly after birth and stopped functioning, it was removed. His remaining kidney was very damaged but functioned at least well enough to keep him alive until he was 16 years old and then it was also removed. He became very, very ill and was put on dialysis for a few months while his mother got worked up to donate one of her kidneys to him.
At 21 Hubby noticed one day while he was at work that his ankles were very swollen. The next day he woke up severely ill and was rushed to the hospital where he had a seizure and very nearly died. As it turned out his mother’s transplanted kidney was no longer functioning due to more complications of his birth defect which the doctors had failed to detect until then (his bladder is not “stretchy” like it should be which was also causing urine to back up into the kidney). He was put on hemodyalisis and has been going three times a week ever since. Hubby will be 31 years old in April. Last December he was finally placed at the bottom of a 6 year waiting list for a kidney transplant. Yes. It over 8 years for him to get approved to be on the waiting list due to his previous transplant failing – though it was no fault of his own. I am currently being worked up to see if I may be able to donate a kidney to him, but have been told that there is a good chance that my body will not support a pregnancy after kidney donation.
In 2004 Hubby and I began trying for a baby. I had read on the internet that men on hemodyalisis often have impaired fertility and we figured that it was going to take a long time to become pregnant and so we better get started. After a year Hubby went in for a semenalysis and was told that he had retrograde ejaculation (where the sperm go into the bladder rather than exiting through the penis) due to all of the surgeries he has had to try and repair his urinary tract and that of the 2 million sperm that they did find 90% were abnormal or not moving (due to the dialysis). The doctor said that our only chance of having a child would be through IVF with ICSI but that neither of our insurance covered it and that it would cost around $20,000 including medications for ONE try.
Watching Hubby try and digest the fact that he was never going to be a father on top of all of the other horrible things that he has had to endure his entire life was one of the most excruciating things I have ever had to do. After hundreds of surgeries, painful dialysis treatments three times a week, and feeling exhausted and sick every day of his life Hubby also cannot have a child on his own. Despite the fact that it is a direct result of his disability, the only treatment available would cost us more than my car. Yes, we are going to seek to have a child through adoption or the use of donor sperm, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to be parents available to us at all. Though we will have to put our selves into debt to achieve it or else risk my life by using donor sperm from someone we met on the internet who is willing to donate for fee. It is a bitter pill to swallow, however, when all we wanted was just one biological child – a true product of the love Hubby and I have for one another, and a little piece of him to keep with me if he should one day succumb to his illnesses.

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3 Responses to “Our Story”

  1. The Town Criers November 8, 2007 at 3:47 am #

    It’s salted wound rubbing against another salted wound. Truly. Thank you so much for doing this.

  2. twondra November 8, 2007 at 12:13 pm #

    Oh my gosh….I could totally hear myself saying a lot of what you said. Thanks so much for sharing! My husband was on hemodialysis for about a year. He also suffers from retrograde ejaculation. I didn’t realize others did too…I wonder if it’s a kidney thing? I’m really glad you shared because it makes our decision to go donor that much more “accepting”. It is a hard decision, but it makes it easier to hear other people going through the same thing. Take care sweetie! Thanks again! (((HUGS)))

  3. BethH6703 November 9, 2007 at 3:59 pm #

    I’m so sorry that you and your husband have been through so much. Truly a story that makes me ask “Haven’t they been thru enough?”.

    My thoughts and prayers go out to you.

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