Date: 05 November 2009 08:00:27
*Disclaimer - this post was not written this morning, I am deliberately posting these entries on different dates so that I can be fully open about this IVF stuff without people knowing exactly what is happening when. It's a self preservation thing, with all of the injected hormones I become a bit of an emotional wreck, and am saving myself the pressure of people curious to know outcomes before I'm ready to tell.
Big day yesterday. I needed to be in hospital at 8:30 am (at least the best parking spaces are free...) having not eaten since the night before, showered with non-perfumed soap, no deodorant, perfume or make-up (including the nail varnish that used to be on my toes), wearing loose clothing, and bringing my dressing gown and slippers.
This was egg collection day. It is a bigger deal than even embryo implantation day (if we get that far). I'm allowed actual pain relief for this one, and need to be looked after for several hours afterwards.
The pain relief comes in many forms, starting with a couple of suppositories which are left in a tray along with a rubber glove and some lubricant for taking whilst getting undressed and into the open-backed gown, then there's the IV line, which took two medical professionals three attempts to get right, leading to me walking out at the end with taped on dressings everywhere. There's also the lovely mask that's put over my face during the actual procedure, and I'm not saying lovely in sarcastic tones, there's a lot to be said for the using measures that don't hurt and aren't suppositories.
There's a lot of waiting to be done, I'm never first in, so I'm glad I've taken a book, I wish I'd taken a better book though, Twilight was not the most inspired choice by any stretch, and turned out to be more than a bit rubbish. There is a Freeview TV (good job, as they've turned off analogue here) in each cubicle, but I'm really not a fan of morning telly, and even bad teenage vampire fiction beats anything broadcast between 9 and 10 am.
They tell me to go to the loo before going through. This is (a) totally pointless as I've had nothing to drink for 3 hours and (b) quite a challenge for decency in a backless robe. When I'm done they get the IV line in and I lie back and think of...
...anything other than what is happening.
Now that I'm out of the situation I can report that it involves (yet again) stirrups to hold the legs apart, a swab to make sure everything's clean (strangely the swab is the bit I'm most squeamish about, not sure why), and then in with the speculum (even on painkillers, owwwwww!) and the device that sucks the eggs out (yes, really). The first time I did this I remembered nothing of it, either they used stronger sedation techniques or I just plain passed out, either way that was a better plan than trying to think of sunbeams and kittens when my recent reading was making me think of vampire attacks and bad writing
TMI? (yes, probably, but I did warn you :D)
They collected 10 eggs, not as many as previous cycles, I think we normally manage a baker's dozen, but let's hope for quality above quantity. They will phone this morning to let us know how many have fertilized, in fact we are waiting for the call right now, I'm writing this blog as a distraction (not a very good one, as distractions go, but there we are).
By the time I got home I was pretty exhausted, hubby had to go out to work, but left me with flowers and chocolate. Shame I couldn't stomach anything sweet. He made up for it in the evening though by letting me order my choice of create your own pizza with extra sides, anchovies and spinach hit the spot wonderfully!
It wasn't quite all over for yesterday though, as we needed to restart the intramuscular injections that now take place every night until... whenever they tell us to stop.
These injections are not intended for the tummy, but for the buttock, therefore need to be administered not by me, but by my darling husband. My involvement mostly involves burying my head in a pillow and gritting my teeth until it's over, but I am vaguely aware of what happens...
There is yet again an ampoule that needs to be broken and have its contents drawn into a large needle, the needle is again swapped, but this time for one exactly the same size, as it needs to penetrate through to the muscle. The injection site is quite specific, to find it one needs to divide the cheek (as it were) into four quadrants and then inject into the middle of the upper outside quadrant. This apparently means little risk of damage to the sciatic nerve, or something, but when the needle is in, the syringe needs to be retracted a little to check that there's no blood (if there is we need to start again, woo). It always feels too high up, like it's actually in my back. Given the size of the needle it doesn't hurt as much as one would expect, but it does put one huge strain on bedtimes for the foreseeable future.
...and still we wait for the phone call. At this stage we have actually phoned them, but they are in a meeting apparently. they should still have called back by now, hoping no news is good news...
...breaking news, 6 are fertilised. We are going off to process this news now.