Sunday, September 28, 2008

Lady in Red

Red is my favorite color. And I happen to look good in it. Nice contrast with the blue-green eyes and brown hair (or so my mom tells me when I'm feeling a little down: "just put on a little red lipstick, honey. You'll feel better!). When all else fails, I turn to red. I have four pairs of red shoes. A red jacket. A red purse. My kitchen is even red. Although I've never had a red car. Hmmmmm.

Red is not my favorite color when it applies to my skin. Red, hot, angry skin - all over my chest, neck, face, and ears. It started the day after my retrieval. I noticed it as I was getting ready for work - it totally freaked me out. Whaaaaaat is going on? It's like I've been on a Caribbean cruise for a week instead of sitting my lard ass on the couch watching back-to-back episodes of Project Runway.

I haven't told my boss about any of my fertility business. He's totally "old school," just about to retire, and he always wants way too much information. In this case, it would be just too uncomfortable explaining to g-pa boss man how I have my vaginey explored up to three times a week. Thankfully, honestly, SO THANKFUL, that I don't have to explain my whereabouts. I can pretty much skip out for the occasional blood draw or IUI without anyone suspecting a thing. But, I knew I'd be out for the whole day for the retrieval. So, I told g-pa boss man that I was having a "procedure" and that I'd be out for the day. No details. I figured he's a smart enough man to figure out that it had something to do with lady stuff and would just leave it well enough alone.

When I showed up to work the next day (late of course) with a sunburn...I honestly think he believed that I totally lied. I bet he thinks I played hookie and did something super fun involving sunshine and ferries and picnics and frolicking. I eeked out, "I'm having an allergic reaction to one of the medicines they gave me for my procedure yesterday!" He nods, and says, "so I see." Not an iota of sympathy or belief. I wanted to drop my drawers right there and show him my lovely purple bruises across my abdomen, my track marks in my butt, and the needle pricks in my arms. But I didn't.

Back to the rash. I called the lovely clinic and they told me to stop taking the vicodin. Dang. The only medicine that's any fun at all and it gives me a rash. Four days later I'm still lighting up like a neon bulb. I tell this to Saturday Morning Nursing Staff and they think it's the progesterone. Sucks to be me. Thank God I look good in red cuz I've got at least another week and half of this hot flash madness, and with any luck up to another couple of months.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The little Yellow pill that Wouldn't

This morning, according to the incredibly detailed plan for our transfer, I was to insert a little yellow pill of prometrium up into my nether regions at exactly two hours before the transfer. Done. So, I'm wandering around my house in my bathrobe, drinking the five million gallons of water prescribed, when what to my wondering eyes do appear, but that same damn yellow pill laying on the floor in the living room! I blinked, twice even, but it was still there, right next to our puppy's slimy chew toy. Just sitting there, like a brightly colored egg on Easter morning, waiting to be found. What the hell? I picked it up, walked back to the bathroom, and double-checked the prescription bottle. Yep. Just a quantity of one. So, because I am incredible good at deduction, I surmised that said yellow pill had in fact fallen out of my cooter at some point. I was dumbfounded. How does that happen? 

Now - do I wash it off and reinsert? Better not...water is likely to make it disintegrate. So, I just blew on it (10 second rule extended to yellow pill) and rubbed off the dust and doggie hairs, and resumed the position to reinsert. Done. But, this time, I decided to rest a bit on the bed. Make sure it stays in the appropriate area. After five minutes, I feel the thing making its way back out. Again! Whaaaaa? It was having nothing to do with my vagina. No wonder I can't make a baby - I can't even interest a little yellow pill in sticking around for five minutes!

After pushing it back in for the third time (this time with extra oomph and passion), I think it stayed. We made our way to the clinic, and got the report on our four little survivors. Turns out two of them made it to 8/9 cell stage and got a perfect grade, the other two were only to 6, and the prognosis for them was less than stellar. So, we got a picture of the two lucky ones (in color!). I can totally see that the bigger/more advanced one takes after me: totally has to be the over achiever, and definitely looks good in fuchsia. Some kids have ultrasound pictures to look at. We have them at the 8/9 cell stage. And they look good.

They transferred the two, and they'll keep an eye on the other two to see if they catch up. Now, I'm totally sitting on my bum, watching reruns of House, and reading a million blogs. Hey, if you read mine, I'll read yours. Keep the candles burnin'. Lots of prayers are needed in the next week and a half.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Down to Four

Got the call - just four of the eight fertilized. I was really hoping there'd be more...but, hey! There's four! (That's me trying to be positive). Transfer is scheduled for Saturday...please, oh please let them all make it to Saturday!

A happy medium between gloom and sunshine

I love to spend some quality time over at Rantings of a Creole Princess. I've never met Monica, but she seems like the kind of person who I would love to have a cocktail with. Not to wallow in self-pity, but to laugh with! And be silly! And crack ourselves up over the general hilarities in life.

She recently posted a piece on not letting infertility consume you or ruin you. How it shouldn't define us. That we should choose happy.

I have been struggling with this for a long time. I want to be that person who is grateful. Who celebrates the victories (especially the pregnancy/births) of my friends. The person who doesn't alienate herself from others because they don't know what I'm going through. I want to be that strong person that people look at and wonder, "how does she do it?" and, "I want to be around her because she's so positive and cheerful." Which reminds me of a friend of mine who has categorized people in to two groups: Fun-givers and Fun-takers. I'm afraid since all of this infertility mumbo-jumbo, I have fallen into the latter of those two.

But how do you move from "gloom and doom" to "happiness and joy"? How do we get there? I am "spiritual" (not religious). I pray and read God's word. I know this path I'm walking is directed by Him. Yet, I seem to lack the ability to celebrate and praise this time I'm in. I also don't want to be that person who is unnaturally happy - always seeming to have their head in the clouds and be nauseatingly Susy Sunshine. How can I move from negative to positive? Any thoughts? Anyone?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Amnesia - common side effect of a baby after infertility?

Last night I called a girlfriend. She's the only "real-life" friend I know that has had an IVF. I've known her for twenty years. Met her in college. Was in her wedding. She was the girl who wanted to get married immediately and have a gaggle of babies immediately. They soon discovered she had all sorts of uterus/fallopian issues and that conceiving was going to be a challenge. They went through 6 IUIs, and got pregnant with their first IVF. It was a long, hard journey for them, and I am truly glad it all worked out.

I hadn't talked to her since right after my miscarriage...but I wanted to let her know how all the other IUIs had gone (failed), and that we were scheduled for a retrieval the next morning. I thought she could empathize, give me some encouragement, listen to my fears with an understanding ear. Yet, as soon as she picked up the phone, she started in on how wonderful her life was. How much she loved being a mom - going into details on her son's various accomplishments thus far in life. How cute he was, his feeding habits, the awesome group of women she's met who also have babies the same age as her Sweet Pea.  How they were going to start trying for their second with all their FEs left over from their first IVF.

I was so mad! I was so hurt. I was so disappointed. I thought since she had gone through all of this crap herself, that she had dealt with this world of pain, that she knew first-hand what it felt like to be anxious and nervous and worried. That she knew, above all else, what it felt like to have a baby waived in front of your face. To have motherhood flaunted like a skinny person eating a huge piece of chocolate cake in front of a Weight.Watchers group. But NO! She totally went on and on, unabashedly, for the majority of our conversation. Until she wished me good luck and then excused herself because she had to put her little bundle of joy to bed because it was "way past his bedtime and I don't want to pay the price tomorrow!"

Am I being way too oversensitive here? Did I set my expectations too high? Did I have a false sense of camaraderie? I thought we were a special group of women, bonded by the shear nightmare of infertility. Am I totally off course? Do women who've gone the fertility treatment obstacle course to come out a winner on the other side usually abandon every memory of the heartache, depression, and frustration, not to mention the hurt caused by insensitive mommies?  

eight is enough, or is it

At O'Dark-Thirty we headed out to the clinic. Funny...the appointment was for 7:15, but the didn't bring me back until almost 8:00. If they had made the appointment for 7:45, I could have slept for another half an hour. Sleep is very precious.

The surgery center in a different part of the building from the clinic. Tucked back in the corner. It's the same entrance as where all the boys head off for their, um, self-inflicted extraction. They finally got me into a little recovery area, where I stripped down and donned the incredibly comfortable but equally unflattering. They poked my hand and started dripping some stuff into it. After carting me into the surgery room, they switched my drip to the good, sleepy medicine, and soon I was waking up in the recovery room. It was quick, and easy, and not painful at all.
They got eight eggs. Don't know how many of them are mature...still don't know how many of them will divide. I was hoping there would be enough to freeze a few, but it's not looking too good.

I'm sitting on my couch, watching War Games with Matthew Broderick and Alley Sheedy. I never really thought he was that cute. I was head-over-heels with Rob Lowe. Had him all over my locker at school, and pictures of him on my pee-chees. Just hanging out with my hubby. Recovering from my "procedure," and waiting to hear what the docs say.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fetch Those Eggs!

We made a mad dash to Costco last night, keeping an eye on the clock which is really hard to do when there's aisles and aisles of all this fantastic stuff that you really really need. The guy at the exit who looks at the receipt (and never your cart) asked us if we were in a rush to get home to watch the Season Premier of Heroes. Duh, yeah! Oh, AND have Mr. B stick a long needle filled with HCG in my tush. At precisely 8:00. Aimed at the middle of a sharpie-inscribed circle in the "upper left quadrant." I was really scared that he was gonna inflict serious pain on me. It's a control issue, I know. If I inflict the pain, it's no big deal. If he does it...I can hardly stand it. I couldn't even be anywhere near a mirror where I might see it all going down.

We tore into the driveway at 7:55. I raced into the "mixing lab" (a.k.a. the dining room) while Mr. B hauled the flimsy boxes of way-too-much-food-for-two-people into the house. He's yelling, "pull down your pants! pull down your pants! We're gonna miss the opening scene! Aaaaarrrrrrg!" He didn't do such a bad job considering all his thoughts were on the Cheerleader-Who-Saves-the-World - other than the slight twisting of the needle back and forth (one hand to hold it still, the other for the plunger, please!).

All that rushing and the first hour was a "pre-party" with scenes from last season. Bah. Who cares about last year.

This morning I peed-on-a-stick. What a waste of a test. I bought the 4-pack (from Costco, of course), knowing I'll have to use at least one in the next few weeks. For as many tests as I've done, I can never remember how many seconds you have to hold it in the pee. Although I prefer the holding it in a cup of pee option because I always end up getting urine all over my hands and worrying that enough of it didn't get on the tiny little absorbent tip. Although they do include a handy little picture which really looks like a yoga pose to me (Sideways Dog with Wand) because there's no pee coming out of the nice pink cartoon lady and it's not spraying all over her fingers.

Retrieval is tomorrow morning at 7:15. I'm a little nervous. Okay...a lot of nervous. I just want it all to work for once. And I want to be excited (this could be it!) but I refuse to let myself be too optimistic. And I don't want to puke all over the nurse when I'm coming out of the anesthesia.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Does accupuncture hurt?

Not physically, but if I've never done it before, and I start it, let's say, the day after my retrieval, will it hurt anything?

Backing Up and Looking Again

So, we know that in general, we tend to slow down and look at fender-benders on the freeway. Rubbernecking, right? Looking to see what kind of cars, how badly they were damaged, any jaws of life at work. But, we never make a u-turn and look again. Once is enough. But I did. At my reunion, anyhow. Went to the casual night on Friday - it was insane how nervous I was. But much to my relief, I was not the person who gained the most weight, nor the person who had lost the most hair, nor the person who aged the least gracefully. Many gals were trying their darndest not to be tagged with one of those titles. Lots of tight jeans, low tops, and freshly highlighted coifs. The guys were almost undecipherable. Without name tags, I would have been lost. Someone would say "hi" and I'd have to squint at their chest and try to summon any recollection of them from 20 years ago and transfer it to the person in front of me. In many cases, this was tough to do.

I apparently did not get my fill, because I did the u-turn and went back for the second night, too. This time with Big B at my side for moral support. I needed to see more. There was one guy in particular that I had to see. I'd had a massive crush on him for all three years of high school. He was so mean - laughed in my face when I asked him to Tolo. I'll admit there was some satisfaction in seeing his paunch around the middle and his hairline receding to nowhere.

There was also a sense of peace in all of it. 20 years is the great equalizer. We see that everyone has a life, had dreams that failed, medals that have tarnished, grey hairs that have monopolized, and waistlines that have thickened. None of us are the same as we were, or what we might have imagined we would be, and that creates a bond that goes beyond "best dressed" or "most likely to succeed."

I had my last ultrasound this morning. I have around seven follicles that look like they're ready for retrieval on Wednesday. Not as many as I had hoped for, but I know it's "quality over quantity" and that "it only takes one." I'm trying to keep my hopes up (but not too up) and psych myself up for the weeks ahead. My belly may have a nice band of purple bruises all over it, but I have a feeling that the hardest part is yet to come.

Friday, September 19, 2008

What was your label?

I went to a very large high school. There were over 700 kids in my class (711 to be exact). In a school of our size (over 2500 students), there weren't just cliques, there were sub-cliques, and even sub-sub-cliques. It wasn't just the usual Jocks, Brainiacs, Band Geeks, etc. It was more like the Jocks-who-were-also-Stoners and the Stoners-who-were-also-Band Geeks. I fell into the Jocks-who-were-also-Braniacs, although oddly enough, I was neither a jock nor a Braniac. I had attempted stardom at both, and failed miserably. It took me several tries to make the tennis team only to sit on the bench the whole year. I took AP English, but struggled my way through general Chemistry. I was definitely not "popular" - but I had enough friends to make High School a bearable part of my formidable years without too many emotional scars.

Part of my high school reunion is tonight. It's the "casual" get together at a pub. As of yesterday, I've re-bailed on the "formal" night. This is a result of my last ditch effort to find something fabulous to wear. Everything I put on made me look like a stuffed sausage. Stuffed sausages are neither sexy nor classy. Unless perhaps you are a purveyor of fine ground meats encased in membranes. Uck. And I am chock full of hormones that make me just weep about every 30 minutes.

So, tonight I will attend the reunion. I will see the other Jocks-who-were-also-Braniacs, and the Stoners-who-were-also-Band-Geeks, and we will compare notes, and see who lives in the most exclusive neighborhoods, who has the best jobs, who has the best looking spouse, and, of course, who has the most beautiful children (or lack thereof). It baffles my mind that many of them are sending their first-born to high school themselves this year.

Perhaps I will tell them that I have 39 holes in my belly where I've been giving myself shots for a week, and that I have approximately 10 follicles that are measuring about 15mm, and that I'm scheduled for a retrieval probably Tuesday of next week and a transfer 3 to 5 days after that. And, that with a great deal of luck, I'll take a test in a little over two weeks that will tell me if I'm pregnant with my first.

But, more than likely, I'll just order a double of something strong, knock it back, and remember the good 'ol days when your label was "jock" or "prep" or "stoner" and not "infertile" or "childless."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Sales 101

Yesterday I took a long lunch and tried to find something to wear to this stuuuupid reunion. I ended up at this little boutique within walking distance of my office. I was wearing sweet running shoes with my capris and suit top thing. I was lookin' GOOD (but it was a glorious day and I am not one to be subject to the confines of fashion). The saleslady was a piece of work. She kept running up to me with all these hideous outfits, "this is cute!" "what about this?" "I love this one." I said to her, "have you even looked at my body shape? How in the world is this sleeveless rayon number going to look good?" She actually responded by saying that the dress would hit my first "roll" and then kind of spill off of it, hiding the rest. Huh? And she wants me to buy something from her? This is a sales pitch?

So...had my Day5 workup this morning. They only found 5 follicles measuring at least 10 whatever units (mms?). Is that bad? I asked the tech and she replied in a semi-automatic way ..."Every woman is different! There's no magic number!" Grrrr. Why can't they just tell me? There's like 10 or 12 additional ones that are smaller. She said she hoped that they caught up with the rest of them. There's hope, right?After all, I was a late bloomer and look at me now!

I got my hair done last night...thought everyone at the clinic would notice. But they didn't. I wonder if I got a Brazilian if they'd notice. Probably not. Everyone at my office loved the new "do," though. It's very sleek. And sassy. And color-ific.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Perms & Pegged Jeans

If either of those items struck a chord deep within you, then you probably were in high school/jr high in the late 80s. Those were the glory years: my thick, slightly wavy hair took to perms like a bee to honey (I could make those bangs STAND!), and my flat butt and undefined waistline were camouflaged under a big baggy sweatshirt or sweater - leaving only my chicken legs exposed in stirrup pants, or jeans that were pegged so tight that they had to be left open at the ankles to get your foot through . Ahhh. Those were the days. It's like fashion had been styled just for me. Nice high-waisted jeans, not the low-riders nowadays that are constantly falling off my "hips" and always creating the dreaded muffin-top. Oh, and the big hair that required cheap suave mousse and aqua net, not fifty bottles of different products and a $100 iron to get the waves out. The rain/mist in Seattle only made my hair curlier! Now it foils every perfect blow-out leaving my ends either flipped-up in Gidget fashion, or under, like the old Dorothy Hammel do's from third grade.

And why do I reminisce? Because my twenty-year reunion is this weekend. Whaaaa? It is truly hard to believe. I've been out of school longer than I was in it. I wasn't going to go. There's too much going on. There's too many shots to be had and moods to be dealt with. But the curiosity of it all is killing me! Old classmates are coming out of the woodwork on f.acebook. And I can't help but look. Like the toddler who's having a total melt-down in the cereal aisle at the market - you just gotta look at him, prostrate, writhing, around, beet-red, while his poor mother tries to decide whether she's going to wait it out, or throw him over her shoulder and haul his sorry-ass to the car.

But what to wear! What to wear! I'm HUGE! Well...huger than high school. I'm bloated! From the year+ of fertility meds, of course (not the lack of exercise at all). If I could just wear some leggings and a big sweatshirt, I'd be fine. But no, I need to look hot, and classy, and young (all at the same time) and find article of clothings that pawn off my thai-food-pizza-m&ms regime for tri-weekly sessions of pilates. This means a mad dash to N.ordstrom where I will attempt to find a salesperson who isn't twenty years old and who won't laugh at every outfit I try on. On a T.arget budget of course. Ideas anyone?

Monday, September 15, 2008

An ice pick in the eye probably feels better

Holeeee crap. These headaches are wicked. I can't tell if it (the pain) is behind my eyes, up near crown of my head, or my temples. Maybe everywhere.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

New meds and takeout

So - I lasted two hours. Much better than I thought. I'm sure the beers helped. Am I even supposed to be drinking alcohol? I just clutched those ice-cold mood enhancers and totally steered clear of any woman with an extended belly. I managed to eek out a "how are you? We've been so busy! Nice party!" to the host. And then scampered away and hid in the corner of the backyard with all the dads. Way fewer hormonal fluctuations there. For the record, there was the candy bar diaper game, as well as a beer-in-the-bottle chugging/sucking contest (for the boys) and a guess-the-baby-food-flavor game - both new to me.

The Follistim/Menopur addition to the lineup last night was kinda stressful. Why do they have to make everything so difficult? Each medicine has its own little protocol - different needles, different caps, different pens, mixing, pulling, pinching. I dropped one of the needles - narrowly missing my big toe. It wasn't fun at all. The dogs were jumping around me, wanting to play with all the shiny bottles and wrappers. But, got through it. Just a few tears and a few moments of anxiety. The bruises have started, though.

Big B is currently ripping the floor out of the kitchen. We made a deal at the beginning of the summer that I wouldn't nag about the never ending supply of projects that come along with a 1935 home, if I could at least get a new kitchen floor before October. The former one was white linoleum that had dirt ground into all the little crevices. There was absolutely no getting it clean. And with the back door in the kitchen, and the dogs trekking in and out, I was mopping at least two times a week (emphasis on the "I"). Soooo...we're (he's) putting in dark-ish brown tile. I vow to not mop unless my feet are literally sticking to the floor. It should be about four times a year. Awesome. And I can't really help. No heavy lifting! And, I can't cook 'cuz the stove and fridge are disconnected. Hmmm - Chinese or Thai?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Diaper Pin Games and Bitterness

I have a baby shower tomorrow. I really don't want to go. I mean really. When I got the evite, I actually thought - how fun! A shower! But, as the days, hours, minutes, get closer, I am wondering what kind of pretend world I was living in when I checked the "I'm Coming" box and hit SEND.

When I took a moment to think about what actually happens at a baby shower, my blood went cold. I immediately started choking up. Of course this realization happened at work (and, ya know, it's getting harder and harder to come up with excuses why my eyes are teary all the time). All the little comments: "are you getting nervous?", "better sleep while you can!", "You look so beautiful!" "what are you going to name it?" "Natural, or C-section?" blah blah blah blah. All the questions I've been dying to have someone ask me! I've been waiting almost two years for someone to throw me a party with little diaper pins every time someone says "baby," or rifling through the contents of your purse to see who has the most crap, or diapers filled with melted candy bars that you have to I.D. I want that party! I want to be waiting just a few weeks to bring my little sweet pea home. I want to celebrate a new life inside of me.

I know I'm just going to break apart. Maybe while I'm shoveling appetizers down my gullet to keep my mind off of the girl with the ginormous stomach, or downing my third glass of Chardonnay in five minutes to dull my senses. My eyes will well up and my lips will start quivering, and my face will turn red, and I'll have to excuse myself while everyone stares and then looks at each other with that "oooohhhhh poor thing she's the infertile one" look, for about three seconds until they turn back to their never ending comments on baby names and I'm left to collect myself alone.

What makes it even harder, is that my friend who's throwing it (also the wife of my husband's best friend) is expecting, too. They decided to "start trying" about four months ago (right after my miscarriage), and she got pregnant the second "try." I know I should be thrilled for her, but I'm not! I'm jealous, and bitter, and resentful. And sad. I've been avoiding her like the plague. Her husband told my husband that they "want to be there for us" as we're going through IVF, and they "want to support us," but they can't! How can they empathize or even sympathize when they got pregnant on the second try! The second try! With nothing but a thermometer in hand. How can I possibly share my deepest fears and struggles with someone who is expecting her own "miracle?"

So, back to the baby shower. I have to face not just the pregnant shower benefactor, but the shower-thrower, too. And bring an appetizer. And a gift. Which leads me to my really great time at the ToysRButts this afternoon. It was so awesome. Seeing all those baby things and kids things towering around me. Aisles and aisles of stuff with families throwing it in their carts like its just another day. With new mommies and tiny babies taking on their first outings.

As I looked at her registry, I thought about how much time she and her husband probably thought about each and every item. Should we get the cream colored sheets, or the sage colored sheets? The bottles recommended by pediatricians or the bottles recommended by orthodontists? Again, the resentment, the bitterness, the pain. Again with the tears. I ended up buying the most benign items on the registry. Ya know, crib sheets, receiving blankets, fingernail clippers.

Plus I'm just a wee-bit emotional. Just a tad. And I start Follistim and Medrol tonight. Can't wait to see what lovely side-effects those two add to the who shebang. I'm such a whiner. I'm so self-centered. I'm wallowing in self-pity.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Just call me Junkie Jane

My third injection this morning (I just like saying it) went like a breeze! I hardly had to read my step-by-step instruction manual at all! And this time I remembered to a). leave the needle in for a few seconds, and b). swipe the top of the vial with the sterile-pad thingy. I forgot to do that last night. Do you think I contaminated the bottle? I hope not. That would be totally my luck - have to forgo the whole treatment because of a damned sterile swipee.

I have to kind of admit, I kind of like "shootin' up." It makes me feel all bad-assed. Look at me! I can stick things in my belly and not even wince. It has nothing to do with the fact that I have a teency bit of extra, ahem, flesh, right in the area where ya inject (the needle could probably be like 3x longer and I still wouldn't feel it). It's because I'm strong, and courageous, and a fighter.

Tomorrow I move it up to four shots a day. One in the morning, three in the evening. Let's see how I feel after that. But, I do have a whole new respect for diabetics and other folks who have to stick needles in various body parts all the time. My mom has a friend who forgot to take her insulin shot, so she pulled out her injection thingy and poked it right into her leg, right under the restaurant table, right through her jeans! Hard core! Someday that could be me. Except I'll need to wipe everything off with a sterile swipee first.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

My First Try at sticking myself with a Very Sharp Object

This morning I just couldn't wait to get out of bed. I mean, gosh! I get to poke myself with a very sharp object! How fun! How exciting! Big B left for work at O-dark:30, so I was left to figure out all the needles and whatnot by myself.

First I had to find the correct med in the fridge. There are several. But this specific one was hidden behind the mostly empty jar of raspberry jelly and the full jar of mom-in-laws plum jam (Blek!). Luckily, they idiot-proof the meds for you. The previously mentioned Ginormous Box of Meds has them all neatly ziplocked into packs for each type. There's one for the Lupron (which I would be trying my hand at this morning), one for the Menopur, another for the Follistim, yet another for the hCG shot, and two more filled with various medicines in pill form. It's all so confusing. How do they expect us to keep this all straight when we can't even have any coffee??

I located the correct pouch housing the needles and the sterile swipey pads for the Lupron. With those in hand, and the actual vial of the stuff already sitting out, I read the directions for the millionth time, and began. I filled up the syringe with the meds like a regular user. Let's get this over with. Oh wait. There's some lightheadedness. Maybe I'm getting dizzy. Probably should stand next to a wall or I might tip over. Deep breath (but not too deep). Grab the (plentiful) roll of fat, squeeze, and send that thin little needle barreling into the depths of my belly. Squirt it, and pull the needle out. Forgot to wait a few seconds before pulling it out. And forgot to let go of the roll of fat. This resulted in a bit of the liquid gold coming back out through the hole (gross!) and a little bit of blood.

All in all, it wasn't bad. I have a feeling I'm going to get really good at this.

Drugs are bad. But sometimes they're good.

We got our ginormous box of meds in the mail Friday. The box was WAY bigger than I had expected. Originally I was going to have the FedEx guy just leave them on our front porch..but the woman I ordered them from had a little lilt in her voice ("...are you sure you want to leave them on the front porch? Are you sure you don't want to sign for them? Okaaaaaaaay....."). That made me think a little - I guess the box of meds IS worth over $3K. But who wants a bunch of meds that make you bitchy, bloated, and possibly give you ovaries the size of Texas? But, ya never know. We do live in Seattle. In a rather crappy neighborhood. It would be funny, though, if someone stole it, expecting some major prize that they could resell at the pawn shop, and all they got were these crummy meds.

Also last week, we had a little training session on how to administer all these wonderful drugs. Because they all must be injected, you have to take a little class to make sure you don't stick the needle in the wrong place or poke your eye out. B and I sat around a table with two other couples. I spent most of the time trying to figure out if the women were older than me. One for sure (I think), the other maybe the same age (but she seemed older). For some reason this was really important to me. Way more important than practicing sticking a needle in a big ball of foam. My mind was busy constructing a story for each of the women: one was a successful career woman who decided at the last minute to produce offspring with her successful husband; the other a woman who had some horrible things happen to her Fallopian tubes. Somehow it made me feel better to know that there were two women, about my age, who were going thought the same thing. They both decided to take the chance, knowing the odds are only 38% in their favor.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Steppin' up to the Majors

Yes - it's been awhile since I've posted. I think we kinda put everything on cruise control and just coasted. That didn't mean that we put treatments on hold - heavens no. Went through three, count 'em, three MORE rounds of IUI. Back to back. No taking a month off for good behavior.

It was a lot easier though. Just pretending that we were just going about our business. The dreaded two-weeks post proceedures seemed to float by. Again, pretending that nothing special was going on. Come to think of it, nothing special was going on.

After our third round, we threw in the towel. Five IUI's and one failed pregnancy - It didn't seem like our odds were getting any better. So, a quick check in with the FE, and we were called up to the majors: The IVF.

We've gone through a flurry of tests 1. Making sure my supply of eggs is suffiecient (although they can't tell how many of them are crappy and will never amount to anything vs. healthy and robust and just chomping at the bit to become a real live little baby. Test #2, making sure my uterine cavity is healthy and willing to take a tiny little guest in for 10 months. Test #3, Making sure all the approriate hormones were doing their thing and weren't planning an early trip to menopause. #4, the hubby and I both had to make sure we weren't carrying any contageable diseases since the folks at the lab will be working with all our junk on a very personal level.