Ever since January 28th, I have been heavily into hormone shots, daily visits to the clinic and doing my damndest to not let my over producing ovaries effect my outfits or my day job. It’s a delicate balance but I do feel like I managed the task at hand.
Every single morning, I was at the clinic for blood work and a sonogram. As annoying at this was schedule wise, I can honestly say this afforded me way more attention than I got with my first IVF. I didn’t just visit this clinic as much as I feel like we were in a committed relationship. If the wand they used for the intravaginal sonogram vibrated, then we’d really have something special going on. Someone would definitely get a Valentine’s Card out of that deal.
Of course it’s not fun being shot in your stomach with hormones, having your veins opened for blood work, being prodded for an ultra sound or getting an injection in your thigh every single day to keep you from prematurely ovulating but I dare say you get used to it. Still though -- I’ve never had so many foreign substances stuck in me as I’ve had the last ten days. Now I know how Jenna Jameson must have felt during her porn career.
One of the odd advantages too of doing a clinical trial is that they didn’t give me too much information. I realize that may sound odd as so many fertility challenged people like to know how their uterine lining is doing, how many follicles they have and how everything is looking but during this process, they really didn’t go into details. I never realized how much of a relief that could be.
Every day, I’d usually one woman or another and she’d look and say, “Everything is looking good. You’re right on target. You can get dressed now.” And that was it. Even if I asked, she’d rarely elaborate. She’d brush me off with a, “Too early to tell but things look fine.” It occurred to me that this was probably the better way to go. I mean if she did tell me anything like, “Your uterine lining isn’t looking good...”, what the hell could I do about it anyway? I can’t go home and work on that so why know it and have it ruin my day.
There was one day though, out of nowhere, I got what I can only explain as a very chatty, fabulously gay male technician for my sonogram. It was an all around welcome change from the glum women reporting on my uterine situation. I have since nicknamed him “Chatty Cathy” as he was the only one that actually gave me details. Well, I should say ‘details’. I should say a running commentary of why my organs were spectacular!
When he started the exam, the first thing he said was, “Your uterine lining is gorgeous!” If he gave me three snaps after saying this, I wouldn’t have been the least bit surprised.
He went on to tell me that I had quite a few follicles on both ovaries and that everything was looking down right fierce. That’s right. For one moment, my fertility was fierce. I didn’t just want this man to do my sonogram from here on out, I also wanted him to come over in the mornings, pick out my outfits and do my hair.
I mentioned to him that my left ovary tended to always lag behind so some of my doctors didn’t have much hopes for it producing many follicles. He looked at me with utmost sincerity and said, “Well honey. I think your left ovary has seriously been misjudged.” Have I mentioned that I love this man?
On Saturday morning, we found out that the retrieval would be on Monday. I still can’t believe how quickly this all went but I’m grateful for it. When I arrived at the clinic, I found out that my usual doctor happened to be working that day and he would be doing the retrieval. This made me extra happy. Mind you – any doctor there I’m sure is gifted but my logic is that this man has already seen my va-jay-jay several times. He did my Sonohysterogram and removed my uterine polyp so there’s history there. He knows his way around my lady parts.
It was lovely to see him in the operating room and we exchanged pleasantries. He asked how the trial was going and I told him it was pretty damn good. Not what I would call fun, but so organized and planned that I didn’t really have to do a lot of thinking which was nice. What’s interesting to me is he said the doctor’s felt the same way. The trial is planned down to every last detail (how many embryos will be transferred, when they will be transferred, what the doses are, how often you visit the clinic, etc.) that it kind of takes away last minute changes and over thinking. Yes, it’s definitely more cookie cutter but there was nothing that they did that I disagreed with or that I thought was careless… plus… let’s not forget this whole thing was mostly for free so who am I to argue? I’m a financially and fertility challenged woman. I’ll take what I can get.
Right before they knocked me out, they asked if I was ready. Because of my last blog post, I HAD to say, “I’m bikini waxed and ready to go!” After a brief pause where I imagine they were debating whether or not they could laugh, they all ended cracking up. I was proud of myself for saying it but in the recovery room, I couldn’t help but wonder if while I was out, they said, “Wow. She really did. Check that out. It's like a topiary bush...”
In the end, they retrieved ELEVEN eggs. With my first IVF at another clinic with another doctor, I only had five eggs. Although five eggs are respectable, let’s face it, eleven is better. I mean, that’s almost a dozen and if it’s good enough to sell in supermarkets, it’s good enough for me. And who knows, maybe the waxing helped my ovaries feel more attractive that they wanted to rise to the occasion. At least I’d like to think so.
Today, I’m back at work. I’m not happy being at work at all but my boss was a big pain in my ass about me not being here so I figure it’s better to be here after the retrieval then push myself after the transfer. I’m sitting a lot and of the few co-workers who know what’s going on, they are helping me out which is lovely. I’m taking my Doxycycline and Tylenol and passing the time till I can get my sore uterus back home. And yes, I took my progesterone this morning. I’m glad I left myself that note though. Who doesn’t enjoy a post-it when waking up about sticking something up your twat?
The transfer will be this Thursday no matter what and the trial will only allow for two embryos to be placed into the uterus. If there are extras, they’ll freeze them. Even though I’m hoping with all my heart that the two they transfer will take, I wouldn’t mind having a few on ice just in case.
Other than the bloating and the cramps and the fact that I’m at work and not at home in my pajamas watching mindless television, I’m feeling fine. I look like hell and I think some of the progesterone is dripping out of me… but again, I’m fine. If nothing else, I least I know my “uterine lining is gorgeous”. That’s a comfort.