Two of the younger nurses at the clinic have set up a phone line and email address for cycle monitoring patients. You never actually get a person, but they listen to your message and then they actually call you back, or answer the email. Usually that same day! This is amazing, and is the best idea ever, as my clinic is so busy it is usually really difficult to get anyone to call you back. Also the answering machine system is hideously complicated, so there is one message box for my f/s (which is a black hole, as messages never seem to reach him), and then each nurse has her own box, so you have to guess which nurse is a) working that day and b) feeling charitable enough to take pity on you and call you back.
And, since I don’t like calling people on the phone anyway, having an email address is perfect.
All that to say that one of the nurses got back to me about the blasts. The report isn’t in my chart yet, but she did say that they were frozen separately, as my clinic’s usual policy is only to defrost and transfer one blast at a time given they are higher quality and more likely to lead to a pregnancy. And she said that getting four blasts from 17 embryos was a perfectly normal result. She also promised to tell me about their quality once the report turned up. So good news all round, and Serenity is absolutely right in thinking that I always focus on the NEXT cycle. I don’t remember when I stopped thinking about the current cycle- possibly after the first FET, which was the chemical. But this time round I’ve been more concerned about my snowbabies than the ones (hopefully) tucked up in my womb. I think that’s partially a self-preservation matter, and partially just a reflection of our success to date. Fool me once and all that…
I think I’m officially on the mend. Not too much bloat, and no ovarian or abdominal pain. A touch of cramping still, but that’s not unexpected, and I’m still getting my dizziness/head rushes, so one of the meds has dropped my blood pressure. I’m back to eating my usual diet, except I’m still substituting Gat.orade for water and will probably continue to do so for a couple more days (even though I am disgusted by it), since tonight is my last Dost.inex and I want to make sure it wasn’t the only thing holding back the OHSS.
The best news is that I am not crazy like I was in December. Q. agrees with me that I am in a totally different head space. I don’t know if it was because I was in comps, or because I thought it could be our last shot, or because I had to take Pred.nisone twice a day and it gave me terrible insomnia and heart palpitations (I’m guessing it was probably the meds). Anyway, I’m still tired, of course, and emotionally drained, and frustrated with how flabby and out of shape I feel, but I am still ultimately me, which is a nice change.
Randomly came across a Ben Elton book at the library yesterday called Inconceivable– I had no idea he’d written a novel about infertility (it also got turned into a film called Maybe Baby in 2000 with Hugh Laurie). So I picked it up and zoomed through it- the ending got a bit strange, but overall it was a decent read. I couldn’t figure out if some of the gross errors in treatment and understanding were because Elton didn’t do his research correctly, or because the book was written in the late 90s and things have significantly changed. (Things like claiming Day 3 embryos had three-cells, and that clinics didn’t recommend freezing embryos, and that trying for five years to have a baby was not too long to go before seeking treatment. With that said, he was spot on with a lot of it, and there is a hilarious description of when the husband has to provide a sperm sample).
Anyway, one of the best things that came from it is it turns out Q. wants to read it after me. He is a big Ben Elton fan (I have read and liked a couple of his novels but really disliked others). So it will be interesting to get his perspective on it, seeing as half the story is told from the elusive male point-of-view. We were wondering if Elton himself had any experience with infertility- he and his wife do have twins, but I guess people still manage to have twins without medical intervention these days (my sister has a friend who had fraternal twins unexpectedly, no family history, and I was stunned that a fertility clinic was not involved!). Since Q., like most men, is not exactly big on sharing his feelings, I’ll be interested to see if he identifies with the husband in the novel.
There was one point where the wife was saying how much she appreciated her husband giving her the injections and how she didn’t know if she’d be able to give him needles, and how he never complained but just got on and did it. That reminded me just how much I love Q. When we said our marriage vows, we said the traditional words, in sickness and in health, for better or for worse, but I don’t think either of us thought those words would include while sticking needles in your wife’s derriere or calmly cooking dinner while she alternates crying and yelling for no apparent reason. But Q. just gets on with it. This whole process has to be hard on him as well, but he never complains, never makes me feel guilty for the days when I wallow in self-pity. I only see how hard the last week has been for him in the relief he’s showing now that I’m feeling better. It hurts him when I’m in pain.
When we do the injections, stims or trigger or progesterone, we have a routine. Q. sits on the side of the bed, and I lean against the wall so I can take my weight off of the about-to-be-jabbed side. And right before he tells me to take a deep breath, he always puts his feet on top of mine. It’s really comforting, almost like a hug, and it makes me feel like we’re doing this together. I told him the other day how much I liked that he did that, and it turns out he’s been doing it completely unconsciously (through both FETs and now this IVF). He had no idea he was doing it. But I think, even if he wasn’t aware of it, he was trying to find a way to reassure me, to show me that he loves me, even as he had to cause me pain.
Our babies are going to be so damn lucky to have Q. as their father. I wish they’d just hurry up and get here.