First, thank you all so much for helping spread awareness of Mito! Blogspot.com offers a stat feature so you can see if people are reading your blog and where. In the past two days our blog has received more than 500 page hits (likely, 50% of them are our parents - we love you!).
However, I know not all of them are our family because people from Thailand, Spain, Netherlands and other countries have read it. So WOW! Thank you so much. I know so many of you have posted on Facebook and send emails to friends. I know if I called you out by name, I would miss someone, so if you've helped spread awareness this week, feel free to leave a fun comment today. If you forgot to send an email or like the UMDF's facebook page, it's not too late to help spread awareness this week either!
So today something super positive happened. About a year ago when this whole medical journey with Will began, multiple doctors told us we shouldn't have more children. That pretty much crushed me for a long time. We want to give Will and (selfishly) us a bigger family. So, we started looking at adoption. Lot's of good and bad things about this route for our particular situation.
Then, when we found out that it was my egg that dropped all this bad mito mutation stuff into Will we REALLY knew we would never have any more biological children. A really wonderful fellow Mito Mommy suggested to look at using an egg donor and using an IVF process. So I greedily did my research and Neil and I both liked the idea a lot better than adoption. Essentially, we would find a healthy woman who kind of looked like me, then mix up a little of this stranger and a little bit of Neil and then put the baby inside me through IVF. I would carry and deliver the baby. We won't discuss the creepy factor here.
Well, this morning we met with a fertility specialist and low and behold, there's a lab in Chicago (one of two in the country) who can develop tests for specific genetic mutations and then isolate it and check to make sure the embryo doesn't carry the mutation. So, that means that IN THEORY, if all goes well, we could harvest my eggs, mix it up with Neil and then do an IVF procedure which would then insert the embryo inside me WITHOUT any known mutation.
Let me address a couple of things:
-we are NOT getting pregnant tomorrow, next month or even this year. We are simply in the research and planning process and have no intent of starting this. In fact, I plan on having a few rita's on a beach trip we have planned for May 2012. So no, there is no need to every ask me if I'm pregnant. Though I may look extra fat, it's not a baby.
-we are NOT interested in anyone's religious or moral views about this subject. Harsh sounding I know. It's like your momma (should have) taught you - if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. And if you're momma forgot to teach you that lesson, I'll adopt you.
-we are totally ok if we end up with twins
-we are actually not crazy, we promise
Overall, Neil and I are extremely optimistic now. We are meeting with a genetic counselor next week to go over quite a few "missing answers" to a lot of questions. For example, if we isolate this specific mutation, whose to say the next child wouldn't have a mito disorder manifest in a different way. So on and so forth. You're welcome to post a question and I will answer it to the best of my ability.
This is in no way shape or form a done deal. It's just nice to feel excited and optimistic about something that could make our lives more normal. So, I hope you join us in saying "yeah!!" Happy Thursday.
In honor of Neil's favorite football team - Week Old Will (ala May 2009). This season Neil has taught Will how to say "Football" and "Touchdown" - sometimes he even manages to get his arms up in a "V"