The date was set and all we had to do was get down there. We shoved the family in the car and made the 12 hour trek, praising the inventor of the portable DVD player for amusing our toddler on the way. As we were attending the fertility clinic to get the down-low on how this whole IVF thing works, we figured we shouldn’t be wrestling a monkey at the same time so we bribed my mother-in-law to tag along. You know, I’m fairly good at carrying on a conversation while my little girl destroys the world in the background, but I figured considering these people would be conducting business in my business, I should probably keep them happy. As such, the youngin’ chilled downstairs while my wife and I started this journey.
It was great to see familiar faces again, as I was more than apprehensive about what this whole thing was going to look like. Our doctor is super nice and sat down with us to go over the treatment plan. Now, there were a lot of fancy terms and I tried my best to keep up, but this is the synopsis that I heard:
- When we decide the ball is in play, I have to start birth control for 21 days starting on day 1 and I have to call the clinic. This is significant because who on earth thought that this person wanted to talk to anyone about my day one, let alone call someone 12 hours away to let them know! I don’t even want to know it’s day one. Normally I yell this is crap and then proceed to be grumpy for 3 to 4 days after.
- After the 21 days of birth control (the cool kids in the IVF Facebook groups use acronyms way too much. Instead of simply using words, like birth control, they use ‘BC’. To stay in tune with the IVF culture, apparently I need to learn these things.), I then get 5 days off. I feel this time is to be used to mentally prepare for the next step…or to provide me time to scare the shit out of myself about what the hell I signed up for…either, or…
- Day 6 after stopping birth control I get to inject hormones into my body that will effectively activate the growing powers of eggs in an attempt to get as many juicy little ones as we can. I am supposed to do one in the morning and one in the afternoon, using my tummy as a pin cushion for both. For the first time in my life, it is a benefit to not have those rock hard abs! Bonus, right?
- On the fifth day of the injections I have to go get blood taken. This is fantastic because I feel two needles a day for the four days prior is clearly an insufficient amount of needles for someone who HATES NEEDLES! At least when they take the blood, I don’t have to do it myself, so that’s a positive. I will then go in every other day to get my blood tested until the eggs are golden. Sometime in the mix, I get to add in a third shot too! That’s to hold all the eggs in until they are golden and ready for the Dyson procedure. This last shot I don’t mind…mostly because I thought about the consequence of not fortifying the ovaries to hold those suckers in. Imagine, they grow a chunk of my eggs at the same time and if they didn’t add this last shot, I would eventually have the nuclear bomb of all periods. If that happened, much more than “this is crap” would come out of my mouth and I’m pretty certain I would just quit being a woman altogether. I’m out! Yeah, so a third shot is the lesser of two evils for sure.
- Ahhhh, the Dyson procedure. So in theory, after roughly ten days of triple shooting I should have some giant ovaries packed with eggs. When she was describing this to me, I couldn’t help but picture a bag of marbles and was so delighted to get them out at that point. Well, that is fun in itself. You know it’s going to be good when they tell you they will have to sedate you. Nothing says this will be pain free like, “you will not be able to drive home due to the sedation.” The plan is, they are going to dope me up, gently (this word made me laugh when used in this sentence)…gently put a mini dyson up my hooha and suck out those eggs. Then I get to go home and ‘relax.’
- Still distracted by the dyson procedure news, I missed what exactly came next. I figured that it would involve more shots, because why not? And eventually they would need to put those suckers back in. I call this the potato cannon procedure, mostly because that’s what I pictured in my head as it was being described. Needless to say, I think my imagination was overreacting, but I still think that it will feel about the equivalent of a potato cannon shooting the eggs back in. Gently of course!
You know that I took this seriously because I took notes and everything. I’m pretty certain that I made her repeat herself as my brain was trying to comprehend what exactly I was getting myself into. As I was processing this, the doctor asked if I wanted to check out my eggs. Who wouldn’t right? Why not, they are the main portion of all this, so sure, let’s do this. She walked us into another room that was more clinical in nature and had a patient chair thing that looked pretty comfortable, next to an ultrasound machine. The doc put us in there, and then went to leave while saying to disrobe from the waist down. Confused, I look toward my wife and en route, my eyes pick up a very thin wand at the end of the ultrasound cord. What the hell is happening! I immediately asked my wife how on earth do you check out my eggs and she said they do an ultrasound through my hooha. WTF!!! Don’t they know who they are dealing with? I started freaking out like a puppy in the vets office that had learned how they check their temperature. I told my wife they need to give me more time to mentally prepare for stuff like this. I don’t just whip that shit out on demand. Pretty certain she was torn between comforting and laughing at me during that moment. This moral conflict lasted the entire experience for her and she watched me squirm.
The positive was that the chair was comfortable, but I knew their trick. They wanted to trick me into relaxing so that I didn’t protest too much. I bit my tongue and let it happen. I wanted to know after all, what is my egg situation? She poked and prodded and was looking intently into the monitor when she looked and me and said “you have some really nice eggs.” Naturally, my response was, “well, thank you. I keep them for special occasions.” My wife stopped being in moral conflict immediately. She was now mortified and shooting me death stares as she was afraid our doctor would fire me as a patient due to my smart ass comments. Luckily for everyone, this awesomeness only lasted for so long and my hooha was allowed its privacy once again! Just as I was about to relax, we were told that luckily (for who I’m not sure…) they could fit us in the next day to learn how to properly stab myself with needles! Swell…
The appointment was completed shortly after, leaving me in quite the overwhelmed state as my brain was desperately trying to process what I had just signed up for. I also decided that I have to mentally prepare for ANYTHING when I enter that office, just in case. Checking out some eggs was not as easy as it sounded and I would not be caught off guard again. At this point, we just needed to wait for the nod from my work in paying for it and then knock this crap out!
*I just wanted to note that our fertility clinic is amazing and I love every single person that we have worked with there. My sarcasm and distress comes from the ridiculousness that I never before imagined I would put this body through. Just wanted to clarify because they are just all-stars!*