First Reactions

Post by John:

I had recently done my awkward donation and was waiting on the results from the urologist office.  Jenna and I were driving to Cat Bowling League (side note: if anyone ever asks you to bowl in Cat Bowling league, say no.  I think the season starts in August and ends in May.  It takes forever).  We got a phone call, it was the nurse from the urologist office and she had a pretty simple message for me.  “Mr. Hopkins, we’ve detected a problem with your sample, we found that there is no sperm.  We’d like you to please come in for a follow up.”

‘No sperm?  How does that happen?  Does that mean I can’t have kids?  Do I still want kids if they aren’t mine?  Jenna really wants kids, should I leave her so she can find someone else to have kids with?’  Those are the thoughts running through my head all night that evening, I didn’t tell anybody or say anything to anybody – but I kept replaying everything over and over again in my head.


The next day, I can’t bear to go into work so I decide to work from home.  Around 3:00, I couldn’t take it anymore.  I had to get out of there, out of Peoria.  I had to forget about everything and clear my head to decide my next move.  I threw a bunch of clothes into a bag and started to drive back towards Lockport.  It’s Thursday night and all of my friends had to work, except for maybe Hutten.  He worked an odd shift so maybe there was a chance he was off tonight.  I called him and luckily he was off, so I told him I was heading up and we were going to the bar.  He knew something was off, so we get to the bar and order a drink and I lay it all on him.  There’s not really much you can say to someone in my situation, I mean Hallmark doesn’t make a ‘Sorry you can’t have kids’ sympathy card.  So instead I drowned my sorrows in the bottom of a Captain Morgan bottle.

Friday rolls around and Adam has to stay asleep to go to work that evening – so I decide to head over to Brooks’ house.  He was at work, but Monique was home with the kids so I decided to hang out with them.  Mo is one of those people that is great at listening – usually at the end of nights it ends up with her and I being the last two up and we talk for hours, so it was fun hanging out with her and the kids all day.  I also called up Gunner and let him know I was in town and he should stop by.  That night, Ryan gets home and invites over Gunner and I do a Round 2 versus that Captain Morgan bottle (you should start to see a theme here).

Saturday rolls around and I have to go to my stepdad’s surprise 50th birthday party in Lockport.  I was supposed to go early to help the DJ setup, but I wasn’t really feeling up to it (sorry Jameson).  It was an open bar, so I get another crack at that Captain Morgan that I haven’t had for about 12 or 13 hours.  Wason and Jo were there, so I got to complete my round to all my close friends to talk about everything.  Oh you know who else decided to show up?  Jenna did.  Notice how she wasn’t a part of this story until now.  She knew I left Peoria and went out of town, and figured out I was back home with some friends.  We didn’t talk much, if at all, over my long weekend home.  Even after Sunday rolled around – I stayed at Brooks’ house until as late as I could before I had to drive home.  I didn’t want to have the conversation with Jenna so I thought it was better that I hide out and wait as long as I can before we have this discussion.

So let’s do a quick recap – I get some bad news, run away, binge drink, and hide from my wife.  Yeah that about sums it up.  Not only for this weekend, but that sums up my entire 2014.


Jenna and I finally talk – she’s extremely supportive and says we’ll figure something out.  So we decide to go back and see the urologist.  He says that what I had is rare and there was a multitude of tests and treatments he had in mind.  First, I had to give another sample because maybe there was a false read.  Fast forward through another awkward hospital bathroom experience and the results are the same.

Second test, there was probably something blocking the path, so we had to do an ultrasound to see if there was anything in the way.  With modern medicine you would think we could do this through an MRI or an X-Ray or something, but that sure wasn’t the case.  This magic wand had to go inside to check my insides to see if there were any blockages.  I’m a guy, so guess which hole that had to go through?  I hope any guy reading this is squirming because it sounds as awful as it really was.  So I’m in my gown and in walks this beautiful nurse – you remember the one I was hoping would assist me in giving my sample?  Well here she was, in the flesh, and she tells me to lay on my side in the fetal position.  “Don’t worry, I’ll use a lot of lube,” she says.  About 45 seconds in, she tells me that this will last a few minutes and if I don’t breathe I’m going to pass out.  I learned three things this day:  1) I won’t be leaving my wife for another man.  2) I don’t ever want to be a nurse that has to do that to another human being.  3) There were no blockages – so that was not the cause of my body not creating sperm.

Third test, well this is really more of a treatment.  My FSH levels were extremely high and my testosterone was extremely low (probably why I can’t grow a beard), so the doctor thought giving my shots of testosterone would help to balance out and my body would start to generate sperm.  So I had to go to the doctor every other week for a shot of Profasi to boost my testosterone levels.  Throughout all of 2014 I kept going to the doctor for these treatments.  These started in February, and in July I gave another sample.  My testosterone levels went from about 150 up to 700, but still no sperm.  So I stayed on the shots through the end of the year.

In the meantime, Jenna and I are struggling.  On the outside, no one would know anything is wrong.  But I’m a wreck – I’m drinking a lot, I’m being extremely unbearable to live with.  Fights are the norm, I get angry about something really small like Jenna leaving her shoes in the middle of the living room and it turns into WWIII.  They say that when you’re hurting you always choose to hurt the people closest to you and that couldn’t be more accurate.  In November 2014, everything spilled over and an unfortunate event changed my life forever.  More on that next time.  Thanks for reading.


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