Sunday, August 30, 2009

This May Take A While

Today I was treated to a very thorough and thoroughly invasive ultrasound to make up for the one I didn't have yesterday. And of course, I didn't shave my legs for this. He was up there for a painfully long time carefully measuring each follicle and checking out what appears to be a "nothing to worry about" endometrial cyst.

Consumer friendly as Cornell is, they have an extra monitor set up near the exam table so that the patient can also see what the dr is seeing on the ultrasound. It's one of many classy and empowering things I appreciate about CRMI. So during the never-ending ultrasound, I got the show while the dr got the show (we even paused once for a commercial break, the exam was that long.). What did I see, but ovaries full of follicles - each looking like a black hole and collectively looking like a post-bloom lotus flower. In other words, lovely.

The status is that everything is progressing nicely, and I am right on track. The bloating, cramps and general discomfort are all good signs that I am responding, so my dosage will probably be decreased again. Retrieval is likely be in a few more days which means the first in a series of intramuscular torture is near. But I am a total bad ass, and I have a syringe-filled sharps container to prove it.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


My insides are starting to feel like a tree heavy with fruit. I think it might be all in my mind because that is how I am starting to imagine my ovaries. My IUI injection cycle didn't feel like this. Although I wasn't trying to produce such a high yield harvest. I am just hoping for one good apple.

The good news is the dr. decreased my dosage of follistim. It makes me feel like it might actually be working. I was on such a low dose last time that the constant dosage increases made me skeptical of it's effectiveness.

I Shaved My Legs for This?

After 2 stalled trains, 4 train transfers (mta weekends!) and a 15 minute walk in the rain, I arrived at Cornell just in time for the 8:30 a.m. cutoff. I don't suppose they would lock me out if I arrived late, but I like to be prompt. So I get there and am immediately called back (their efficiency continues to astound me) and told that I am only having bloodwork today. So you mean to tell me, I got up before dawn to shave my legs and nobody's head is going to be in between them? Someone better go down there, if I wasted my time.

I was happy to be in and out of there, but it was a lot of effort for a little vial of blood. Well, I also did get to add to my growing collection of bruises. I know I have made a big deal about the junkie look I am starting to rock on my arms, but it really isn't attractive at all. Today on the train ride back, the man next to me clearly noticed my bruising. He started talking loudly about his medical residency and demonstrating to his friend where were the best places to draw blood on her arms and hand. Mta weekends....

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Round of Shots for Everyone

Mattie and I celebrated our wedding anniversary with a round of shots. Unfortunately it wasn't of the Patron Silver variety. I have noticed that if my stomach is empty, and I get a nice firm pinch, I barely feel the needle going in at all. I have been joking with Matt that the little roll he is getting would make a nice spot for a BD micro-fine needle. I dared him to try it, and a few days later, he did. I almost cried. Ok I did cry. While it doesn't compare to shaving your head when I love one has cancer, it was a terribly sweet and brave gesture. Needlessly sticking a needle in his belly for me - I can always count on him for immoral support.

Instead of the 5th anniversary being wood, this year it is syringe injections.

Speaking of pricks, on my first day of my official IVF start, the receptionist called me up and gave me my bill. I paid $30 each time I visited SLR. I have been paying $300 at Cornell so the trend is adding a zero. I knew it was going to comparable to the down payment on a starter home in the south, but I thought I would get a bill, and have time to absorb it and ensure the appropriate funds were allocated to the right accounts. No, the bitch (she was actually quite nice and lovely, but in the film version she will be a bitch) hands me a bill and asks me how I would like to pay it. "Do you accept pennies?" I replied. I pulled out my Discover card and tried to focus on the cash back I would be getting from this. How many lobster grams can I get with that?

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Cajun Injector

Years ago when I cooked my first real Thanksgiving dinner in yankee territory, I put a little of my cajun heritage on the table. In addition to the Tony Chachere's in the brussel sprouts, I basted my turkey with the cajun injector - a marinade that is injected with a giant syringe. The products tag line was "put the flavor deep inside the meat." I never knew turkey could taste so good.

Well, last week I begin putting the flavor deep inside the meat. I have started referring to myself as the cajun injector. I do feel like I am basting in a marinade of hormones and spices. The lupron isn't awful, but my office mate will testify that I am more moody and get the 2 o'clock sweats. I think it is making me pudgy.

I have also been put on antibiotics, because test results showed I have a UTI. It feels more like a WTF. I don't appear to have any symptoms, and I really don't want to put more drugs in my Mint Milano hole. So in addition to moody, hot flashes and flabby, add nausea. All the symptoms of pregnancy without the pesky kid.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

One is the Loneliest Number

But two can be as bad as one. It's the loneliest number since the number one.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

I.V.(F.) League Education

The first order of business at Cornell was an IVF teach class. It turns out you have to sit through a 2 hour seminar in order to undergo IVF at Cornell. Matt was the only man in there at the beginning, but eventually another husband showed up late and then blackberried/slept the rest of the time. I love my husband.

I did appreciate that Cornell takes the time to ensure that you fully understand the process. It was very empowering. The class was thorough (there is that theme again). At the end of the class, they gave us a cup that included all of the medications we would be using during our cycle and the nurse went over how to adminster each. We even took turns practicing the intramuscular progesterone injection (aka, butt shot) on a dummy. The first person got it in and then when she went to remove the syringe from the dummy's ass, the bottom part of the syringe came out and the needle stayed in the dummy. It was a little needed comic relief for us desparate participants.

I am still fighting with hope. Not everyone gets pregnant on their first try with IVF. I have read that you should go into your first cycle with the idea that it will be a learning experience that will help determine the most effective protocol. As my coworker aptly put it when I was telling her this: "education is expensive." Fingers crossed that I won't have to learn too much.