What better way to start a 4-day weekend than early AM ultrasound & blood-work? Well, I could think of a couple ways….
Actually, in all seriousness, I was pretty psyched to go to morning monitoring on a day when I didn’t have to immediately high-tail it to work afterwards. Bad phlebotomist (see previous post) was not there this morning, thank god. I still do not know what her deal was – all of the other ladies are so nice and I can hardly feel anything when they do a blood draw.
Ultrasound showed two larger follicles on the left side – (12&13mm) and one on the right (12mm). Not sure exactly what this means compared to last IUI cycle. My follistim dosage is higher this cycle (75iu instead of 50iu), so I’m curious if they are seeing the desired response. I don’t really remember what I had at CD7 last time – I think that on CD9 my biggest follicle was 14. I’m curious if things will progress faster this cycle, or if I will still trigger on CD11.
After monitoring, I took advantage of my day off and grabbed some coffee and a muffin from my favorite place down the street. Then I went home and watched the latest episodes of Louie. A much better way to start the morning than going to work. All in all, not too bad, and it is only 9AM.
It’s good to feel like I’m actually doing something after last cycle’s TWW (even if that something is just needles, more needles, & ultrasounds). Today is CD3 of our second attempt at IUI with injectables. I am incredibly lucky that my doctor’s office is only 5 minutes or so down the road, so going to morning monitoring is not that big of a deal. I do have to get out the door bright and early , since I’m a teacher and my school day begins earlier than most 9-5 jobs. I usually try to leave the house by 5:50 so I can get to the office when they open. It is much less crowded and much less stressful when you are the first person there.
On a random note: Blood-work actually HURT today. Getting blood taken NEVER bothers me, ever. It probably helps that I have super-easy to find veins in both arms. A new woman took my blood today, though. Right before she inserted the needle she goes, “you’re going to feel a pinch.” I definitely felt more than a pinch.
The ultrasound showed that everything looks normal for CD3. About 10 small follicles in each ovary, and a normal uterine lining. I’ve heard that follistim can cause you to develop small cysts on your ovaries that can then cause your IUI cycle to be cancelled or delayed. So, I was thrilled when my doctor said he didn’t see any cysts and I got the all-clear to start injections tonight. They upped my dose of follistim from 50iu to 75iu – which I think is still relatively low. So we shall see.
Today is cycle day 1. First IUI cycle didn’t pan out, but I’m actually doing okay today. As hard as it is, not testing until my period is actually late seems to be the way to go. Having your period come is still like getting punched in the gut, but your body has a way of letting you down slower and more gently than a pregnancy test. I learned a while ago that symptom-spotting for pregnancy is a futile and often torturous endeavor – so many of the “new symptoms” I thought meant something were actually part of a normal menstrual cycle. I had just never paid so much attention to my body before trying to conceive. So, I don’t do the symptom-spotting thing anymore because I learned it drives me crazy. However, I do have a much better sense of my body now than I did 15 months ago. I’ve become a pro at spotting small physical changes that signal that my period is coming. Yesterday night (Friday) I just knew that I wasn’t going to make it to my BETA on Monday.
Tonight I’m going out with two of my good friends. One has a young daughter (born a month after we started trying), and the other is pregnant and due in September. I’m determined not to let my infertility make me distance myself from my friends, but sometimes it is difficult to navigate friendships when your entire life seems like a minefield of pregnancy announcements and babies. My friends are really great, and supportive, but they also are a constant reminder of what I don’t have. And that’s life – logically, I know that someone else getting pregnant doesn’t make it any more difficult for me to get pregnant later. But it still hurts to see someone have a baby when I am so eager to start a family of my own.
I was watching P.S. I Love You the other day (a little embarrassing to admit, but whatever), and I saw a scene that seems to sum up how I feel sometimes when infertility gets me down:
Hillary Swank’s character is on a trip to Ireland with her friends (or sister? or…I don’t know. I guess I wasn’t watching that carefully). This trip was planned by her late husband to help her get back on her feet after his death. Well, this one went a little wrong. Hillary & Friends get stuck on a boat in the middle of an Irish lake. Suddenly, one friend announces – to everyone’s surprise – that she is pregnant. Then the other friend announces that she is getting married. As the two friends congratulate each other, the camera zooms in on Hillary Swank’s face and you can see that she’s been a little thrown by this info. She’s happy for her friends, but hearing them announce milestones that she either never got to do (baby!) or may not ever get to do again (wedding), has drudged up a lot of sadness and confusion for her. The camera pans out and we realize she’s still stuck on that boat in the middle of the lake, with no way to make a graceful exit. So she just slaps on a smile and pushes down the angst.
Sometimes I feel like I am stuck on that boat.