Fear of a Name

“Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself”

When a friend of mine, who’d just had a second baby, asked me if we would try again, I explained that I’d love to but I’m afraid. In not actively trying, having a second child is a choice that I was in control of. If we decided to try again and it ultimately failed then we no longer have that choice and it was scary to have that choice and control taken away.

What I didn’t tell her was that we were already into plans for a 2nd baby and our appointment with the RE was set up and things were happening.

Until now, I still haven’t had the courage to say it out loud and we’ve since met with the RE and we just finished all our pre-cycle testing so things are really really happening.

I don’t know where I am mentally. I mean I know my family is not complete and I know that this is what we need to do to complete it so these facts are keeping me moving forward but every time I dwell on the negatives I want to quit while we’re “ahead”. So I’m clinging to the exciting bits. The possibilities. And so far there’s been good and not so good news but our RE is on board and eager (from what I can read on his all-business face) so off we go!

The story thus far:

The meeting with the RE was typical. We have no frozen embryos so we have to start from scratch. We don’t have to do another ERA (yay) but we did have to do all the pre-cycle testing, including a hysteroscopy (boo). He dropped the “let’s not wait because you’re old af” line but with such finesse that I didn’t mind. He also said that because N had to go to St Thomas (zika zone) for work that we’d have to delay 3 months or use our frozen sample. I think we’re going to use his frozen sample because … old af. And lastly the PGD lab we used before merged with another so we would have to register with them and do another genetics consult. The price for their testing a potentially more expensive (750 per embryo instead of 2k for 8) but we usually only get 2 or 3 embryos to test so not too worried about that. All in all it was a positive appointment. All questions were answered etc etc.

My hysteroscopy was yesterday and it was something else. After the last one I swore I would never do it again. The pain, for me, was almost on par with labour. So the drive to the clinic was extremely difficult and in that hour I had built the pain up so much I almost turned the car around. I don’t know how I made it through that. I explained to him that the last time it hurt a lot and I was shaking and near to tears. He of course said it shouldn’t be more than a bit crampy. I pulled a face that made the nurse laugh out loud. I think I went somewhere safe in my mind to help me through it.

And the kicker? It didn’t hurt… at all. I felt nothing. I felt the speculum go in and I asked him for a second to collect myself and then I said okay go and I waited for pain and nothing. Then I heard him tell the nurse to take a picture, and another picture. I asked if he’s already in and he said yes he’s actually all done. I think I melted right there. I couldn’t believe it. I asked why it was so easy and the nurse asked if I had vaginal birth and I said no, a c-section and she asked if I had contractions and I said yes and she said that’s why. I’ve never been more relieved but in thinking about it I think it’s just another little cruel joke that it’s just a little more painful to go through IVF for your first child. If that makes sense.

After he showed me pictures of my uterus he showed me my AMH levels and again asserted that we have time but we have to go get those eggs now. My levels went from 2.7 to 1.4 to 1.03. I’m not sure what the time frame is so not sure how rapid of a decline that is. I asked 2 ivf friends for their input and have decided not to google AMH numbers. It’s not going to help. I just know that this time it’s going to be harder, but not impossible.

Oh, one last bit of news. Before we left the RE’s appointment we were in with the nurse going over paperwork and quickly she left the room to ask the finance lady how many cycles we had left on insurance and she came back in and said we only have one, just like I feared. We were bummed of course and while we were gathering our things to leave we heard footsteps running down the hall “Wait! Wait!” and in busts the finance lady, “You guys had a baby, right?”. We said yes, so she said “Six.. You have six cycles. Insurance resets after every live birth”… Omg the relief. I could have hugged her. We are so very, incredibly lucky to live where we live and I’m so lucky to work where I work.

So that’s where we are with that. Our follow up appointment with him is April 3rd. After my next cycle which is a bummer so we’re going to start our retrieval cycle end of April. And he loves long suppression cycles so I’m envisioning a retrieval mid to end of June. Ah the slow turning wheel of IVF.

Well, here’s to facing fear. And here’s to speaking it’s name.



Hysterscopy and Endometrial Biopsy

Well, that sucked.

I’ve written about my first hysterscopy here. This second one was much the same and I was way more nervous because I knew what was coming. Severe cramping for about 2 minutes. Just as I was about to tap out he said he was all done and the pain started to subside. But we weren’t done yet. I was so hoping that he could do the hysteroscopy and the biopsy in one fell swoop but that was not to be my destiny.

As soon as I came to my senses I was asked to sit up with the speculum still in me so that the solution could drain out. That was so weird. It just felt all kinds of wrong and uncomfortable but at least not painful. What was painful was when I laid back down he had to re-adjust the damned speculum. Fun times.

I asked a friend, who had a un-sedated biopsy, what it would feel like and she said that it feels like really awful cramps for 10 seconds and then it would be over. I was shaking and nervous at this point but I figured 10 seconds is bearable. Boy was I wrong.

If you’ve ever had an IUD put in, this is very similar with a much more painful ending. He said he would count to three and have me cough. When he put the torture device in it was a very very sharp cramp that I could locate. Like, I almost knew exactly where he was getting the biopsy from. The hysteroscopy cramp was more of an overall period cramp that radiates down your legs (and up your spine if you’re lucky). This was very localized and had me yelling out explatives as quietly as I could.

Then he counted to 3 and I had to cough but it came out “*COUGH* FUCK! FUCK! *COUGH* *COUGH* *COUGH* FUCK! *COUGH*”. And I barely heard him say he was all done. Guys, it was terrible. Terrible, I say! That same localized cramp x 10. Terrible.

I was in a shaky haze after that but I did hear that the hyseroscopy was all clear and we’ll get the results of the biopsy in about a week. He also asked me if I’d taken the pain killers I was supposed to (indicating that I am perhaps a wimp). I had, of course. I took a lot more than I should have I’m sure. I just don’t think that Tylenol extra strength does the trick. If I have to do this again (and I seriously hope I don’t) I’m going to ask if I can take something prescribed and possibly have my husband drive me. This was not fun at all.

And there you have it. Again, I’m not the yard stick with which to measure these procedures by as my pain threshold is one above zero. But at least you know how the procedure works if you have to go through it.

I have no idea how I’m going to give birth one day. Goodness me.


modern day torture device

I Survived

First things first, It hurt! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I don’t do pain. I’m the one who takes pain killers as soon as she sees her period starts. That way I don’t have to deal with the pain when it comes. They told me to take 600mg of Ibuprofen, I took 800 and it was still unbearable. That being said, if you’re waiting to do a hysteroscopy, this is not the post to read. I am an outlier.

I arrived at the clinic and hour early of course and we got going almost right on time. Me, Dr G, new nurse and veteran nurse showing her the ropes. They were doing less nursing and more standing in the corner judging my loser behaviour. I did ask the doctor why we were just looking today and not going in there with a pair of scissors and lopping off whatever didn’t belong. He said that he’s not sure that there’s anything there in the first place and if it’s a fibroid they wouldn’t be able to “lop” it off anyway. The other procedure is like a surgery and it might not be necessary here. I guess he was right, so I let him continue.

The speculum didn’t hurt more than it normally does, the iodine (I think that’s what it was) was uncomfy. The camera going in was painless and then came the saline solution. Cue cramps and swearing. It just felt like really bad period cramps. But more sharp. Localized in my ass for some reason. Anyway, over the internal screams in my head, I kept hearing the doctor say “picture” … “you’re doing great, just 10 more seconds”… “picture” (10 seconds later) “just 8 more seconds” (what?!!) “you’re doing great”… “picture”… “picture”…”aand we’re done”. And that was it.

The pain went away immediately after he took everything out. There was a gush of saline solution. Awesome. And then he took his sweet time to tell me that he saw nothing. I was so relieved because there was a 10 second pause where he looked a bit worried. But there you have it. He said can start the next cycle with my next period. Woohoo!!

No not yet… there’s still the matter of payment. So it looks like we have to pay for PGD testing up front. It does get fully reimbursed which is great. So I really can’t look a gift horse in the mouth, but we don’t have 5K lying around so we have to make a plan for that. Hopefully we can find a quick solution. But that also brings me to my next issue.

So, luckily my clinic opens at 6:30 for monitoring appointments and Monday I had to do a blood preggo test but work starts at 7 and I rolled in at 7:20. I’m not happy about that. My boss is cool about coming in late. He said coming in around 7:15 is fine but I really wasn’t happy and it doesn’t sit well with me that I’ll have to do this almost every day for 2 weeks without a good reason (I know this is best reason but it’s too soon to share this with him). Especially since it’s a new job and I’m still on probation.

I’m eager to start my next cycle. I’m so ready. I’m so very ready, but I also want to make a good impression because I really love this job. Where do I find a balance? I feel like I should sit out the next cycle and try for November (if we get the funds). I’ll be out of probation by then and I’ll find out if my boss even wants me to stay. And also, We may have to save up for a long time too so this could all be a moot point.

Sorry this was a long rambling post. I apologize for being all over the place. Thank you for keeping me in my thoughts and sending well wishes. They all seem to have worked.