The Bigger the Better

So this morning I nipped off from work for what I assumed would be a quick scan at the clinic a 5 minute drive away. 2 and a half hours later I was finally back at my desk. Every time I’ve been to the clinic on this cycle the waiting room has been packed, I can’t remember it ever being this busy on our last attempts. Maybe IVF is in this season?

25 mins (or 2 copies of Stylist magazine) later than scheduled I was called in for my date with ‘dildo-cam’. I’m becoming quite adept at shedding the bottom half of my clothing in seconds, I could have been in Bucks Fizz if only I’d been born 20 years earlier.

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The scan showed around 17 follicles, 4 of them at 16mm and the rest between 10 – 12mm. My egg collection had originally been scheduled for this coming Monday but because of the amount of smaller follicles they’ve pushed it back to Wednesday and told me to continue with the Menopur for another couple of days in order to hopefully boost their size.

Prescription in hand I ventured off to another nearby hospital pharmacy to collect the extra drugs. I’ve never ever had a straightforward trip to this hospital, cue the standard routine;

  • Drive round the car park cursing at lack of spaces
  • Park in a 20 mins max drop off bay, safe in the knowledge that you’ll be in and out at lightening speed (yeah right)
  • 5 to 15 mins in – Sit quietly worrying about being parked in said bay
  • 15 – 20 mins in – Get increasingly agitated about the time it’s taking and spend another 10 mins debating whether to move the car whilst visualising clamping/fines
  • 30 mins in – Decide you MUST move the car and leave the pharmacy
  • Move car two spaces along
  • Return to pharmacy having missed your prescription number being called out

I’m sure they wait until they see me leaving the building every time.

In between all the stress I also managed to take it out on my partner when he phoned to ask how things had gone, he’ll probably hide the Menopur when I get it home, he should hide the wine too (just kidding).

Anyway, after the initial disappointment of it being moved slightly I’m now back to my chilled self. If more time and more drugs is what it needs then so be it.

Also, on a purely selfish note it means that I can now definitely go to a gig that I’ve had tickets to for ages. If the dates hadn’t of changed there was a chance the transfer could have fallen on the date of the gig, the other half would have had me wrapped in cotton wool and under lock and key so I would have had to miss out. Every cloud n’all that!

Flaming follicles!

Just a quick update after a visit to the clinic earlier today. I went for a scan to check the Menopur is doing what it’s meant to be doing…..apart from just making me a nightmare to live with. Although to be fair it is making me sleep loads so my fella does get a bit of peace now and again.

We had a good response on our 1st fresh cycle so I wasn’t anticipating any problems. The nurse pointed out the follicles on the screen (I nodded and pretended I could see something as per). After commenting that my lining was looking good “like a jam sandwich”?!?! She told me the ones on my left ovary are quite small and borderline in size, whilst the lead ones on the right ovary are looking bigger and are already at around 15mm. Egg collection is still pencilled in for Monday 3rd November but she did mention maybe extending my course of drugs and moving the EC back slightly if the smaller ones don’t catch up. I have another scan at some point on Friday so they can determine what to do.

In the meantime you can find me lying with my legs in the air to encourage blood flow, knocking back protein like there’s no tomorrow and wearing 17 layers to keep my tummy warm. If it needs to be pushed back then so be it but I’m hoping the little blighters grow by Friday.

10 things I hate about…

For National Fertility Awareness week I thought I’d share my thoughts on what I believe to be the worst bits about trying to conceive and going through IVF. Feel free to add your own in the comments section, I’m all about positivity but we all need a rant now and again 🙂

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Injections – For the most part I’ve always taken my medication at around 7am, apart from our 1st FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer for you non I.V.Effers). On this occasion I took it at 7pm, this was my worst cycle ever and my moods and other side effects were horrendous, obviously I blamed the timings (no idea why) and since then have vowed to never do it on an evening again. However, this now means that during cycles lie ins are a thing of the past and every weekend I curse my choice. Mind, I only have to think back to the time in that cycle, when I was on my knees crying on the bedroom floor because of my ever increasing pile of ironing, and it reminds me that maybe the 6:30 alarm isn’t so bad.

Bloating – as an avid (read obsessive) watcher of the scales, the bloat is definitely up there in the top ten worst things about IVF. Shallow I know, but I don’t care! High waisted jeans are both a blessing and a curse, great first thing for giving the illusion of an almost flat stomach….however, come 6pm it’s a different story as your zips threatening to burst and your circulation is almost cut off. Loose fitting attire is the way forward from as early as 3 days in if you ask me.

Crying (lots of) – I’ll be honest, I’m the type of person who will cry at anything. I’ve been know to shed a tear at Masterchef just because someones soufflé has collapsed. During a cycle of IVF my crying rate goes through the roof…. if we ever have to pay for a cycle I might ask Kleenex if they’ll sponsor it.

Other side effects – feelings of confusion and struggling to string a sentence together whilst on Buserelin, the insatiable thirst throughout the whole thing, the volume of water consumed trying to beat the thirst, the constant trips to the bathroom as a result of trying to combat the thirst. Talk about a vicious circle.

The 2 Week Wait –  aka the longest 2 weeks ever, if only a fortnight sunbathing & drinking cocktails on holiday felt this long. The wait from the day of transfer to the day of pregnancy test is excruciating. When reading up on IVF before starting treatment I thought this part would be a doddle compared to the rest of it, how wrong I was. You analyse every little thing, convincing yourself that is has worked, hours later you’ve come to terms with the fact it hasn’t worked. This happens constantly throughout the 2ww, Google becomes your best friend and you can while away hours looking up symptoms. Of course it doesn’t help that the side effects of the pessaries/suppositories (your choice) that you have to use during the 2 weeks are exactly the same as the symptoms you would get in early pregnancy. Talk about a mind f*ck. Isn’t science brilliant!!!

The 3 Week Wait – as above but with added mind f*ckery!

Envy – Almost everyone in our social circles now either have children or are growing bumps. 50% of our social life is spent at christenings or in Mamas and Papas sourcing gifts for new additions to families. I mean, I enjoy shopping but sometimes I’d like to be going into such establishments to buy items for our own little family. No matter how happy you are for people when they tell you (and I am, I would never ever want someone to feel uncomfortable or worried about sharing their good news with me) you can’t help but feel a little bit envious. And don’t get me started on Facebook, it feels like new scan pics appear almost daily! And that’s why I’ve decided when we do fall pregnant I am going to bombard all forms of social media constantly, with updates of every step – pictures of me with the positive test result, scan pictures, me at 5 cms dilated etc, etc. *

Planning anything – planning a holiday, a  short trip away or even a day/night out can become a military operation. Sunglasses and accessories are cast aside to make way for the drug stash. Feeling like an extra from Trainspotting whilst ‘shooting up’ in toilets is a common occurrence. Then there’s the feeling of selfishness you get when meeting with the clinic to discuss potential dates. Feeling disappointed that the dates that they’ve given you (and that you’ve been waiting for forever) now might clash with a planned big event or night out and you might have to miss it….and then feeling selfish and beating yourself up about it for feeling disappointed.  It’s ridiculous that we feel bad for trying to lead a normal life outside of IVF.

Adverts like this…if only it was that easy!

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I couldn’t think of a tenth, which goes to show that for all the things we put ourselves through maybe things aren’t so bad, and we know it will all be worth it once we get that positive result.

* I hereby promise that social media updates will be kept to a bare minimum once I am    with child – especially any ‘nethers based’ statuses