Another New Address

It was lonely and weird without L. here to keep me company. Like Home Alone, or something. And I never did like Macaulay Culkin. He's creepy.

Anyway, I've continued my ranting over here. This blog definitely worked some magic. Half of Lisafer is pregnant! TTFN!



Seeing Double

I was feeling really lucky (and still am) and a little (okay, sort of a lot) guilty about getting pregnant when so many of my infertility-struck friends are still struggling. But on Thursday, we found out that we may have a permanent, lifelong reminder of our battle with infertility: twins.

That's right. I only had three follicles from the Gonal-F (go hamsters!) and thought there was just no way - after almost 24 months of having 0 good eggs, that 2 out of 3 would be "good." Oooops.

I know I should be overjoyed - and in some ways I am - I feel incredibly lucky to be pregnant at all, and even luckier that if all goes well, I might just have a complete family in one shot before I'm 40. But I'm also terrified. There's so much more risk for multiples - what if I can't carry them to term? Get diabetes? High blood pressure? What if my back - which has already been acting up - gives out? Will I have to quit my job? How will we afford or take care of two babies? OMG we need a bigger car! A bigger house! A bigger ME!! I mean, let's face it, only Angelina Jolie looks like that 8 months pregnant with twins (two twig arms and a perfect round belly). Chances are good that I'll look a lot more like a snowman than a stick figure. I already told my husband that if this works out, forget the diamond earrings - I want a tummy tuck.

I feel incredibly guilty voicing these concerns here - I know that those of you who are trying are saying, "SHUT UP! I'd give my left arm to have a baby, not to mention TWO!" But I decided to write because multiples are a real possibility if you're on hormone treatments, and I sort of wish I'd prepared myself for it. I think if I'd been doing IVF, I would have (we were on injectible FSH with IUI)prepared myself a little better for the possibility of multiples.

But having the ultrasound tech ask, "How many transfers did you have?" when I hadn't had IVF at all, was sort of a jarring way to find out that I'm carrying not one, but two, babies.

Not that they are babies yet, and I'm scared to death that I'll lose one or both of them. But in some ways it might have been easier if I'd read a little bit about this beforehand - had accepted that I might be in that "low" percentage who conceive twins, and readied myself for it. When they told me it was a possibility, I just said, "At this point, I'd be overjoyed about having twins, trust me!" I thought getting pregnant would be the end of my stress and worries - not an invitation to indulge in a whole host of new ones.

Overall, I am really happy and feel really lucky, and don't take any of it for granted. Even the vicious 'morning' sickness (named by a man who'd never had it, cause it lasts all day and all night) makes me happy because it means I'm less likely to miscarry, and reminds me that I'm pregnant - something I was starting to think I'd never be.

But as the saying goes, be careful what you wish for. Because you might just get it - get it, get it!
- L.


All Spermed Up and Nowhere to Go

So I was wrong. Follicles can shrink, but sometimes they're salvageable. And in this case, on Saturday, the call told me not to cancel but to trigger. I had a 16 mm follicle (not 14 as the tech told me...one more reason not to ever, ever listen to what the tech says) and my estradiol had plateaued. So I took the shot at 9 p.m. That shot could do me in someday, by the way. I think that after two weeks of shooting the hamsters so much depends on the hcg shot working properly that it drives me a little mad. Put it this way: I wasn't winning any "nicest wife" awards on Saturday night.

Anyhoo, went in Monday morning for the IUI. Husband went in and did his thing (I tried not to think about it - kept myself in denial that he was in that depressing little hospital room doing the deed with old porn mags), then we headed to the hospital cafeteria for what is becoming his customary (if doing something twice qualifies) pancake breakfast. I had nothing, since it was white carb city (can someone please tell me why on earth a hospital cafeteria serves nothing healthy?). Then at 9 a.m. headed up for the big event. Here's what I want to say about an IUI after more than two weeks of injections, vaginal ultrasounds, bloodwork, phone calls and angst: It is completely and utterly anticlimactic. You lay there, they put a catheter in there, it feels like little more than a pap smear, you stay still for 15 minutes and then you get up and leave. Nothing dramatic happens to your body, and no one claps for you as you exit the room. Even worse, from that point forward there is absolutely nothing else you can do. If you're at all action-oriented, if you've ever in your life been told that you can do anything you set your mind to with some hard work, this is a very troubling fact to live with.

Before my IUI, I bemoaned the fact that I had only one follicle, but the nurse assured me that one is totally enough, particularly for someone like me whose only issue is that I don't ovulate. I want desperately to believe her. Some fleeting minutes, I do.



Newsflash: Follicles Can Shrink

You know how they told us in Sex Ed how easy it is to get pregnant -- that millions of sperm are unleashed each time you have sex to attack the egg (which, for their purposes, seemed to be perpetually hanging out in there just waiting to be fertilized)?

I want my money back. That class was a whole bunch of BS.

Apparently, follicles can shrink. Just waiting for the dreaded call to tell me that shooting chinese hamsters into my stomach for over two weeks has been for kicks.



From Slapstick to Survival

Yesterday was practically slapstick. After my (by now practically daily) rendez-vous in the stirrups, I pulled a nurse aside and told her that I want Dr. Fabulous tracking my cycle. Who should walk by at the very moment I'm uttering these words but Dr. Distracted. Not that he cares -- it's not like my girl parts are so fascinating that this renowned surgeon needs them on his roster. But still. Later, as I'm on the phone with a nurse outside my office building, two men come and disturb my illusion of privacy by standing directly in front of me and photographing the building. I could almost hear the narrative: "Observe the infertile female in her natural habitat, hunting for her illusive follicle prey." I don't know what they were up to, but it made a weird day even weirder.

Today was a different story. Today, I found myself spontaneously weeping in the blood draw chair when the medical assistant asked me how the ultrasound went. I honestly don't know where it came from, other than pure emotional exhaustion. I didn't have any information other than that the follicles I had the other day are essentially the same size today. From then until 2 p.m. I felt this heavy resignation, that I was with every minute crawling toward the eventuality that my cycle would be cancelled. But then, as I braced myself for the worst, I heard the nurse tell me to take the same dose -- 75 IU -- today and tomorrow and come back on Saturday.

On Saturday, as I wait for my results, I can remind myself of these top things not to do while you await your fertility treatment monitoring results:

*Google *any* form of the word "follicle," in any context
*Call your husband every 10 minutes with an update on your anxiety level
*Watch A Baby Story
*Give your ovaries a pep talk with anyone in earshot
*Obsessively review the last cycles' dosing, follicle growth and results, creating charts and diagrams
*Call your doctor's office with a fake question attempting to trick them into spilling the results early.

Anyone have other tips on what not to do?