Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bun in the oven

I am pregnant.
There.
I've said it.
I am pregnant.
How does that sound?
That sounds just amazing...incredible, scary, beautiful, wonderful...all of those things.
But how long will it last?
God.
Who knows?
But I've got a hell of a lot of hope and enormous love around me to make it very possible.
WWWoooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!
I am now part of a very select group of people on the planet who know the exact time of conception. Well, not exactly conception, but pretty soon after...
2.15pm on Wednesday March 31.
The scientist came in and had a chat to me before the embryo transfer happened this afternoon.
Of the 16 eggs harvested, 12 fertilised - I think I mentioned that last time - and by today, eight had kept on dividing and showed signs of life (four started dividing, but didn't continue for a range of reasons).
So I had one very healthy one returned to its womb-y home today and we have seven others "on ice".
Apparently that first cab off the rank was an A-grade double-divide cell or something jargony. I asked what it meant and was told it was "near to the top" in terms of quality.
So, then, in it went...
Doc and the nurse had done 16 other embryo transfers today thanks to the pre-Easter rush, but they still managed to be genuinely happy when wishing me well - and wishing me pregnant. I could see it in their eyes...
So much so that I broke into tears as soon as I was in the change room with the door closed.
But I put my hand on my belly and said a little prayer for my little one and just told it to be strong and make a nice home there for the next nine months (and to, please, not make me too sick) - and now I'm crying again just writing about that moment!
Momentous...overwhelming...awesome.
Now, a strange assortment of emotions has descended upon me.
Firstly, I am afraid of being upright for too long...and have in fact been lying on the couch for about the past two hours and will have to return there soon in case gravity works some evil trick.
Similarly, I am quite worried about going to the loo, walking or lifting any heavy objects for fear that tiny little embryo might suddenly shoot out into oblivion.
I did in fact consider calling for a wheelchair as soon as the transfer happened...and hereafter for the coming nine months, but then realised I hadn't really thought about the associated logistics (or prepared my arm muscles for the strength required).
Of course, completely irrational thoughts...but ones that nonetheless exist.
Apart from that, I am filled with total wonder at how it all happened - and so quickly - and again for what will happen next.
I am pregnant.
Please let me stay that way.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

How sweet it is...

Well, a lot has happened in the past day or so*.
Mammoth trip to Brissy yesterday for the very scary surgery - white lights, backless gowns, lots of waiting - in three different waiting rooms, no food or drink for six hours and a bloody stingy-wingy anaesthetic needle combined to produce a generally quite unpleasant experience overall!!
But of course that was all pushed to the background when the doc gave me the best news of all: we got 16 eggs.
16!!!!!!!!
Just call me mother hen! That's, like, a dozen...plus four gifts with purchase!
There I was in recovery and the doc walked in, patted me on the leg (slightly patronising, but I prefer to think of it as an encouraging gesture) and said "you did very well, we got 16 eggs!"
I smiled and drifted back to sleep. Ahhh, sleep. I tell you what, any sleep-deprived parents out there, I can highly recommend general anaesthetic for one of the deepest, most satisfying slumbers you will ever have!
And you wake up all wrapped up in your blankie layers and it is so COSY...took me back to those days when I would sleep in on a Sunday until 11am.
So eventually I was discharged, we got back in the car and drove home - going via a lovely friend's house, who had been looking after Jay for the day.
I felt fine, as long as I kept the Panadols up, if a little bloated. And fair enough too I guess...after all, a needle had just been pierced through the wall of my cervix, penetrating both ovaries to harvest the eggs - it was always going to be sore! Sorry if too much info there!
Bizarrely I was given a script for antibiotics and told to get some protein powder to make up a drink I had to take three times a day.
What the?
I got some answers today: the antibiotics are a precaution as it was discovered that I have something called an endometria, like a cyst on the ovaries, and there could be an infection...there could not; and the protein thingo is not because I have suddenly been advised to embark upon a career in bodybuilding, but because I am now at risk of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome - which comes with capital letters, therefore must be serious.
Well, it is...but as long as I have three litres or more of fluid a day and take my protein shakes (they taste like a vanilla malted milkshake and are quite nice) I should be right.
I also rang the doc's office to see how my little embryos had fared overnight. Cos it's one thing to start planning a "We got 16 eggs party" but it's quite another when you realise how many of those 16 have divided strongly in 24 hours.
I found myself feeling quite protective of those little cells sitting forlornly in the lab in Brisbane.
I slept really well until about 5am, at which point I felt a sudden jolt of guilt that there was so much distance between us...how weird. These little embryos should be inside me...well, not all of them, but you know what I mean. And yet they were holed up in some dark, scary lab...in day care already, and so young!
Gosh, Mem Fox would have a heart attack!
Anyway, more good news: 12 of those 16 are strong, vital little beginnings...wow.
Wow!
Is that too many? Not enough? What will we do with the other 11 if the first one takes? What if none of the 12 take? What on earth does the future hold???
We will hop on the next rollercoaster in this crazy theme park when we have the implant tomorrow...where some, all or none of those questions will be answered.
*understatement

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Surgery tomorrow

Repeat it with me: must not complain again about being tired, must not complain again about being tired.
Yes, that broken record is now smashed into tiny particles.

How about we focus on some positives - like the red letters adorning today.
Today, people, marks the last day of injections!!!!!! Happy days are here again!
I set my alarm to do the last one at 1am today. Thank the lord they have changed the type of syringe since T did it - and it is now not the massive horse needle that looked like an enormously thick skewer and just screamed "I am going to hurt you real bad" and is instead a quaint little old glass syringe with a needle exactly the same size as the Puregon one I've been taking for a fortnight.
It reminded me of something a tragically fascinating poet might use to shoot up in the back loo of Les Deux Magots in a Paris of the 1920s...complete with an absinthe chaser or something.

No absinthe required in this case. Quite frankly I may as well be permanently pissed...don't they say fatigue and drunkenness are basically the same? I put the cheese back in the freezer the other day and am just depressingly accepting of the fact now that whenever I click on Google I almost always completely forget what I am meant to be searching for in the nanoseconds it takes for the home page to come up.

I had to get T to get out of bed and stand with me as I did the 1am prick, in the glow of the oven light, activated for eerie effect and dim enough so it didn't completely blind my hitherto-slumbering eyes.
I don't know what the hell I thought she was going to do to help.
In fact all she did was stand there looking dazed before suddenly putting both hands up to her face and making an "aawwweeeuuuww" sound just as I stuck the needle in.
"Oh, baby," she said. "You don't know what that does to my stomach." (as in, it turns it...)
Um, WHAT IN THE SAM HILL DO YOU THINK IT'S DOING TO MY STOMACH??!! It's damn ouchy, it's making me grouchy, bloated, more moody than a schizophrenic and feeling like I'm on a rollercoaster through Strung Out City, alright??
Thanks for your support. Back to bed with you. Haha.

So, that was Ovidrel. It "stimulates late follicular maturation", a fancy way for saying it gets your eggs ready to be collected.
That's the go for tomorrow.
In the meantime I am fending off Jay, who insists on climbing over very specific areas of my anatomy that are suddenly quite sore...in fact I swear his heels and elbows have just had an in-built ovary AND breast-seeking device implanted. I have found I have been quite bloated in the lower abdomen - and fair enough too I guess.

I did in fact get quite an attack of the "hard done by" earlier...I was just contemplating how relatively easy it was for T and I to do all this without a little person in the house.
All the associated logistics, paraphernalia, water bottles, favourite toys, snacks, distractions, second favourite toys deliberately hidden from sight so they make full diversionary impact once sighted, tissues, balls, socks, hats, crucial pieces of leaf that JUST MUST COME IN THE CAR WITH US NOW etc - none of that, none of it, existed last time.

I am also so tired, did I mention that already? And that makes reasoning with a two year old pretty much impossible 99% of the time. My short fuse just got a whole lot shorter!
But look, in the scheme of things, I think I have fared pretty well so far. And the lack of sleep is undoubtedly a preparation for things to come.

**by the way, I have only just now worked out how to correct my time zone settings. FYI...for all previous posts...um...guess! Or pretend you were in Alaska, which is where I think they were originally set.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Countdown to crunch time

Whoa! Ok, doc is happy, we are happy and it seems my ovaries are happy to respond perfectly well to the array of drugs I have been taking.
We are good to go for a Egg Pick Up in hospital on Monday! I will have to take the whole day off as it is a general anaesthetic, then we duck back again for a much shorter trip on Wednesday morning to impant the new embryo.
Wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo! This is really happening! So so so exciting.
After so many months talking about it and guessing how it might feel, all of a sudden it is happening at lightning speed - and right now!
So I am now stopping the Synarel nasal spray, I have one more Puregon injection and then have to give myself the booster shot at 1am Sunday.
Have to set my alarm for that one...as it's not like I will be in the middle of a club dancefloor and have to hold up my hands and say "hold on, guys, can you hold my Black Russian while I bolt to the loo and shoot up my gonad booster thing?"
I will be injecting Ovidrel, something delightfully called a gonadotrophin. Now I don't know what that means technically, but I thought only men had gonads, so I was initially a little worried...
But it turns out all it does it "ripen" the eggs inside the large follicles inside my ovaries (which I saw today on an ultrasound and look like dark little grapes all bunched together...kind of).
And why 1am? Weeell it's timed fairly precisely to be a certain number of hours before the actual surgery, which involves sucking out the eggs ready for fertilisation.
Wednesday morning we are back for a quick implant, hopefully, as long as we get at least one embryo that divides strongly and looks healthy.
How freaking exciting. This time next week, I could have a tiny human person beginning life inside me.
Oh my GOD!
Bloody hell. Am I ready?
No way.
Well, ask me in an hour.
But then by tomorrow I will have changed my mind again...
I honestly don't know.
Does anyone?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Narcolepsy strikes again

Evening all.
Once again I have been hit completely for six by a type of tiredness I have never known - and that includes coping with a newborn.
Frankly I hope Jay can take care of himself tonight because I will be asleep before him I reckon. (He is in bed right now, but doing his usual "I might have a chat to slinky and Pooh Bear for an hour about my day before I actually close my eyes" thing). Hilariously, he is still in cot-lockdown mode even though he is in a normal king single bed...and it hasn't occurred to him to actually climb out and push those boundaries a little more.
It's quite disarming. Like some weird Stockholm Syndrome thiing where he feels more comfortable in the confines - perceived or real - of a cot,
My boy prefers jail to freedom! haha.
Not a hell of a lot to report other than we have a tres exciting trip to Brisbane at sparrow's fart yet again tomorrow for a doc appointment.
Am feeling quite apprehensive at this stage...bit of performance anxiety! Basically we will find out how many follicles my ovaries have been producing these past few hormone-induced weeks, and that little vision on the ultrasound screen will determine how many may be harvested next week.
So, fingers crossed I can report some good news tomorrow.
Night.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Qld altruistic surrogacy bill - opinion piece

Me again.
Were you expecting someone else?
I thought I would copy and paste an opinion piece I wrote last month following a debate in Queensland parliament on altrustic surrogacy. Eventually, and thank goodness, the process was legalised for same-sex couples and singles. Welcome to 2010, Queensland.
But it didn't come easy. The debate was long and tainted by controversy, ignorance and high emotion. And it ultimately prompted Premier Anna Bligh to call those who opposed the bill - including every MP from my own region - rednecks. Wooshka!


Published February 14, 2010
I MAY have watched Back To The Future more times than I would care to admit, but even I know time travel is a fantasy.

However, this week, for some of us living in Queensland, it felt very real.

I found myself transported back in time.

As the mammoth State Parliament debate on the altruistic surrogacy laws stretched achingly toward the 20-hour mark, I felt more and more like the Marty McFly character in that movie.

Although, this time I had crash landed into the 1950s clinging desperately to the hot vinyl seats of a beige FJ Holden and not a spaceship on wheels with a DeLorean badge on the bumper.

The crazy professor was there, although he looked more like Ray Hopper than Doc Brown.

And in place of the flux capacitor was my capacity to be flummoxed. It was very, very high.

The 1950s.

That is where these laws were stuck and where a frighteningly large proportion of our state MPs’ morals and attitudes are stuck.

These are people elected to represent their constituents. The ones who live in Queensland in the year 2010.

For better or worse, all sides of the debate must accept that society has changed.

There is no such thing as the traditional family unit.

The definition of family has changed, broadened and diversified to include grandparents, carers, uncles, aunties, stepmums and stepdads, guardians, cousins and same-sex parents.

None of these people were accepted as true “parents” in the 50s. Now, for the most part, they are.

I call it progress, a necessary step towards tolerance and the creation of a more inclusive society.

You may call it the destruction of the family unit or some sort of moral decay.

Whatever you call it, accept it is there.

The fact is, homosexuals have been around since the caveman.

The fact is, homosexuality has been prevalent and widespread in nature since creation.

How dare anyone declare that one portion of society should not have access to the same options of having children as another.

And based on what? Something as mundane as whom they choose to share their bed with?

Surely, if we truly agree on a “best interests of the child” philosophy, it is more important that parents are responsible, caring and able to provide a safe, structured, stable, nurturing and enriching environment for their children?

I have spent a lot of time this week wondering if the conservative opponents of this Bill would prefer our children be raised with a mum and dad, even if dad was a drunk and mum was a drug-user.

The traditional family unit.

Yes, I know there are gay drunks and lesbian drug-abusers.

But that is precisely my point.

The gayness or otherwise of a person does not alone determine their fitness to be a parent.

Are they a good person? Are they fit to raise a child?

There is also an argument that some of you may not like.

It says that same-sex couples actually make better parents because of all the hoops they are forced to jump through to satisfy, or dodge, government regulations.

It also says they make better parents because there is simply no way for them to conceive a child other than to painstakingly plan and organise the process after thinking long and hard about their options and their readiness – both spiritual and financial – to be parents.

This is not something same-sex couples just jump into lightly. Buying a pet, sure, but not having a baby.

In one house, mummy might accidentally fall pregnant after she and daddy have a few too many tequilas one night. Meanwhile, the two potential dads next-door are Googling surrogate mums while making doctor’s appointments, checking their bank balances and planning, planning, planning.

But leaving all of that aside, I ask you to consider my story.

My female partner and I have a son. He turns two tomorrow.

He loves the Wiggles, riding buses, going to swimming lessons and digging in the garden.

He is slowly getting the hang of toilet-training and is learning to say more words every day.

He is the most joyous centre of our worlds and has changed our lives in a million magnificent ways.

I realised when I held him in my arms just minutes after he was born that I would willingly give my life for him and do anything – anything – to ensure his health and happiness.

Yes, the fact my son does not have a father and the questions he will inevitably ask about where he came from are big considerations for us.

I would rather he had two dedicated and loving mothers than a father just for the sake of having a father.

I am convinced our unwavering love, support and honesty will shield him from any ignorance or abuse, although I hope with all my heart he never needs to call on those resources.

I am convinced the wonderful men in our lives, who will play a big part in his, will help him fill any “man-stuff” gaps and I hope he will be a generous, compassionate and self-assured citizen of this planet.

For those of you who believe homosexuality is a choice, again please, consider my story.

Would I willingly put myself and my family through this by choice?

I say it again: a person’s sexual preference is not the sole determinant for a good or bad parent.

To hear MPs claim otherwise this week caused deep offence, as though my complete commitment to being an excellent parent to my son was being questioned.

It also caused me to question if I had chosen the right state in which to live.

Thankfully I can now mark February 11, 2010 forever in my memory. It was the day Queensland came into line with every other state in Australia on this issue.

It was the day the laws that govern the state in which I live took a significant step towards including my family by simply acknowledging that it and others like it exist.

Think happy thoughts...

Oh. My. God.
I had an incident this morning.
An incident with the needle.
I stuck it in my belly and then realised I had not dialled up the dose.
So I had to do it again.
Because, you know, any extra times you have to slam that piercy needleness into your skin is just a bonus really. Wonderful.
I slept badly and was more foggy-brained than usual. Plus I am finding that instead of being something that you do over and over and you get used to, or better at...this is not getting any easier at all.
In fact, it seems to be getting worse. During the day my mind will wander to that dreaded daily moment and I literally feel queasy in the stomach.
I don't know what your first thought is when you wake up, but mine causes a knot of anxiety to lump in my throat.
I've always wanted to snatch an extra few minutes sleep when I first open my eyes, but now I have one more massive reason to do so.
It is ridiculous after all, I mean how on God's green earth am I going to cope with birth if I cannot handle a tiny micro needle? And it should all end by this weekend - another four days or so.

So, I have to place my faith in the power of the mind to help me...BUCK UP AND GET THE HELL OVER IT, PRINCESS!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Let the imagining begin

So my mind is wandering again - as it often does, now fuelled by random chemicals and bizarre liquids I am injecting into myself at will...or against it, more like.
I must say so much of the anxiety about the unknown has disappeared somewhat because we have been here, we have done this before. Already, we have totally stressed ourselves out at what Jay will call each of his two mums, what we will put on the birth certificate, how we will explain the lack of a father in his life and what people/teachers/checkout chicks will say or think about us. (Not that that means we have a cookie cutter we can apply to each child we have: he/she/peanut will be her own person, I know that...but a lot of the fears are dulled a bit now, thanks to experience).

The fact is there is very little point freaking out about the details. For one, life always works itself out, I don't care what you say. There is also no point whatsoever losing sleep over things you cannot control: what other people think or how our kids may or may not "cope" in life.
Yes, that is always a worry for any parent, but frankly, you just do your best - some days, it's enough, others, it's nowhere even close.
Parenting is an endlessly undulating mountain climb - those highs will take your breath away, and the lows will have you shivering and depressed in a matter of seconds. And unlike Edmund Hilary and his compadres, there are not days between those extremes - they happen within minutes.
I walked in the door from work tonight and T's first words were "I am about to kill him, take him now".
Cue a butter-wouldn't-melt look in his eyes as his favourite ally (me) scooped him up in my arms. We took the dog for a walk and apart from nearly being lifted off the ground by mozzies, he was a dream and it was great. A lovely moment, completely at odds with what T had just experienced.
Needless to say, we left her home - rocking in the corner - while we went for a walk. Space. Space.
I honestly believe our Everest is simply providing a safe, happy and enriching environment for our kids. With any luck, that love will envelop them like a shield and go some way to protecting them from any bullshit the world feels like slinging on any given day.
We'll get there.
Meanwhile, in other news, I have been trying to spruik my blog around town and just fired a PR scattergun at every IVF support group I could find in a frenzied 20-minute Googling session yesterday.
Anyway, a few have been supportive - thank you, kind strangers!, but this one reply stopped me in my tracks.
I best not say who it was from, but the gist of it was that this particular group actually lobbies for "an end to the use of anonymous donors" and as my blog seems to imply that using anonymous donor sperm is okay, they cannot come on board with the whole blog promotion thing.
Fair enough, and it wasn't nastily written at all...in fact, they were almost apologetic.
But it made me think that the fact is there is no such thing as an anonymous donor anymore. When J or our next bub is 18, they will have every right in the world to track down their donors and say g'day, chat over Skype or shake hands in person...whatever. And we will support them in that.
Yes, it will probably sting a little in our hearts if that volition even surfaces...but I completely understand it. Completely.
God, what an interesting ride this is.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Marco?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Baby-desiring lesbians still need pricks

Yes, even as a woman in a same-sex relationship, some prick is required.
Haha - boom tish!
In this case, the prick is not some dero I picked up at the local pub who had on not so much his beer goggles, but his bourbon/rum/bourbon/vodka/midori/port/ouzo goggles.
No, this is much more romantic.
Here is my hot date.
We meet every morning, religiously.


He is Puregon, as the driven snow. I always think it sounds like some nobleman from Middle Earth...the boyfriend of Cate Blanchett's character in the Lord of the Rings, Galadriel?
So, yeah, this is the pic of the syringey thing I give myself at about 7am each morning. I will have to do it until prob about next Friday when we go to doc again for a scan.
As I have mentioned it is bloody confronting actually inserting the needle..and even after a few extra days, it is NOT getting any easier.
You unscrew the epi-pen, load a vial with about four days' worth of doses in it, screw it back together and then pop the needle (a new one each time) on the end, dial up the dose - 200 in my case..younger gals would get something like 100 or 150 - and then inject it.


(Observant eyes will pick up the tiny drop of fluid at the very end of the needle, as I took this pic after it had been in my belly. Eeeuuuw! Sorry.)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Diabetics and druggies, my hat is off to you

Oh my Lord I had to inject myself for the first time this morning and it was up there with the most confronting thing I have ever done!

I did it as soon as I woke up - deliberately - so I was groggy, but hopefully not too groggy that I accidentally stuck the needle in my big toe. Eeek. Eeuuw.

So I tried to be all business like and fast and pop the new needle in the top of the epi-pen thing, and dial up the dose and get the alcowipe to sterilise the skin (not necessary according to doc, but I feel it is imperative, if only for reasons of ritual and delaying the inevitable).

So it was ready in microseconds and there I stood with needle gripped in hand, pointing it at my belly. I tried to continue in the quick business-like manner I had adopted until then, but I only succeeded in gritting my teeth, holding my breath, bracing for the jab and forcing my arm to retract and then jerk towards my body - the problem was I automatically stopped about 1 millimetre short of the skin.

It's not normal!! I may as well have opened the second kitchen drawer, removed a paring knife and thrust it into my stomach. Eeuuw, stop it! Brrrraarrrghghgh!

Anyway, some bizarre emotion took over and I succeeded in actually inserting the needle pretty soon after. I think it was such an issue because for every needle I have ever received in my life, I have looked AWAY. Who wants to see that? No one wants to see that. This time however, and for the next 10 days, I will have to stare it down!

I must admit it did not hurt really at all - the needle is quite fine, thank god. But the concept is incredibly hard to get my head around.

Apart from that all is going well...I could sleep for seven days straight, but all else ok. It's the mental stuff that really occupies your mind - I know, where else would it be...but I often drift off and think about what we are actually doing and start feeling anxious, wondering if I am ready, how my body will respond to these strange potions going up my nose and into my bloodstream and how I will deal with any unexpected hurdles along the way.

We have been told ICSI carries a 60-70% succcess rate...but I almost feel like pregancy should just happen to someone in my kind of position, using that process. There are no true fertility issues here, no weak sperm, no under-performing ovaries (at least I don't think so). So, on some days that feels almost like a pressure - as in, there is no excuse not to fall pregant first go, like T did. It should be guaranteed. But it's not that black and white, I know.

Hmm, anyway, bed time for me.

***Must remember to post some pics of the syringe and needle tomorrow morning for you. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ni'night

Ok, I am literally falling asleep at the computer andwll make no apologies for bad typing - as it apers mu fingers have aleady hit the hay.
been up since 6 to take ina horror 2.5 hour drive to brisbane this morning - whoever does that commute daily should be wrapped in a straight jacket nd locked in a white room for a very long time. i would rather sit on hot coals and take shots of battery acid while combing my hair with a chainsaw than drive in city peak hour ever again.
thers that melodrama again...
so, have picke dup my injections and doc gave me first one today - i actually barely felt it. It's called Puregon and stimulates my ovvaries to make with the egg production, pronto!
I will will have to inhject mself tomorrow and not looking forward. plus i had a nurse nazi from hell take my blood and actually say to me when i asked her half jokingly to "please be gentle" that i was a big bloody wimp. um, that's not helping helga. and she bloody looked like a helga too...

anyway, apart from being tired there is such an incerdible amount of excitement at how quickly this now seems to be going. peoeple, i could be pregnant before easter. tha's right easter/ of course i won't know it as implantation looks likely for the mon or tues before actual easter...but isnt that amazing?
and, hell i may not habve gone to church in about 15 yers, but im a good catholic school girl and i seem to remember easter being something about new life...or is it those nougat eggs you get from darrell lea w the fluffy chicken on top? i dont know, but i know i am excited...and tireddddddddddddddd.............night.
did any of this make sense? i am a sleepalready.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Euphoria dysphoria

Thought I'd better fill you in roughly on the process I am undertaking.

I am doing ICSI...stands for Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection, like you see on TV where the pipette syringe thingo pierces the egg and implants sperm. But it's not that simple...there's lots required in the lead-up.
As I mentioned I am taking a drug called Synarel twice daily. It stops my ovaries producing eggs - d'uh, I mean we need to hang onto those little things, right?
But, here is what I think is the weird part...that's not enough. So, tomorrow we go to the clinic in Brisbane to pick up a round of injections I will need to stimulate those ovaries into hyper-production.
Well, not hyper-production...too much and I end up in hospital, but hopefully enough so instead of the one egg the body produces during ovulation every month, we get about 6 or 10. They are then harvested (what am I? A field of wheat?) and are fertilised (what am I? A veggie patch?) before being implanted - one at a time...
Depending on how many eggs are collected and how many look strong enough after fertilisation to be frozen, that's how many cycles we will have up our sleeve. But T only needed one little embryo for Jay - and it was the first one, so here's hoping.

So that's where we are at right now. Freaking out mildly at the injections, particularly as I am almost 100% sure I will be sticking that thing into my own flabby gut. Despite the fact that I gritted my teeth and injected T when she needed it years back, I don't think Miss Needle-Phobe is really going to cop it as sweet this time around.

In the meantime, it's a matter of coping with the hormonal highs and lows...which whether psychological or real, seem more intense since Synarel. Has it ever been used as a defence in a homicide? I must Google that one day...I may need to know.

Honestly, one minute I can be raging and frothing at the mouth at the fricking idiot in the green Lancer just in front of me on the drive home because she is doing a whole 7 ks under the speed limit, while the next I can be sobbing my way through tissue boxes because Jay wants me - and only me - to read him a book, or he spends his first night in his big boy bed (last night, sob) or if a Huggies ad comes on. It must be love, love, love...boooooo hoooooo!

Most times, such mood swings come and go in a flash. But other times, the consequences are a little longer lasting.
My mum visited on the weekend and we ordered a pizza for dinner Sunday night. I staged a one-woman mutiny against the fact that I always am the one to pick up the pizzas and announced that T would be driving up to get them this time (first red flag that a particularly dangerous mood was on its way). I order, am told it will be 18 minutes and end up ordering T out the door 25 minutes later. She returns and, predictably, the pizza is stone cold.

I feel white hot bubbles of rage rise within me at that point. Turn on my heel and flick on the oven to 200-degrees. I spin around again, snatch the pizza and throw it in the oven - box and all - while harrumphing "I hate cold pizza" and "I told you it was only going to be 18 minutes". A little while later, I decide to check on the pizza only to see the box has caught on fire, having touched the element on the roof of the oven - of all the strangest places...

So we all burst into action, tea towels are swatting, oven trays and clanging and pot lids are being stamped all over the embering box. The smoke alarm is squealing and we begin dreaming of a black Christmas as large square flecks of burnt cardboard up and flutter throughout the kitchen at odd, annoying angles. Noice.

We fluff off the bits of charcoal and eat what we can in silence. I am sheepish, I apologise and feel bad. But the charcoal has been great for my lower intestine.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Creation

"Your blog has been created"
Were ever more thrilling words ever written? Haha, I will try and suspend the melodramatic. Although, I must warn you all, I am currently on some wacky drugs designed to put my body in a menopausal state. So melodrama may in fact end up being the dominant theme of this little blog.

Hello, this is me.

I have just taken my first cautious steps aboard the IVF rollercoaster, although my female partner has been there are done that - the ups, the downs and the final spectacular, exhilirating rush to the finish that produced our little boy, Jay, who turned two last month.

Now it's my turn and I am 14 days into my first round of IVF treatment. That's 28 doses of a nasal spray called Synarel (cue the menopause and the homicidal thoughts) which helps prepare my ovaries for a round of stimulation injections. And they are now more imminent with the arrival of my period today.
Hang on.
What was that? I think I just heard all the men click out of this blog, right? Haha. If you had a penis and had already read the words "menopause", "ovaries" and "period" just five short pars into a blog, would you hang around? Really?

So, hello ladies, and hello to you, lone man who has stood tall in the face of judgment and hung in there, perhaps out of interest, or perhaps because his computer has frozen stuck on this page. In my mind, you are called Terry, you live in a garage above a kebab shop and maybe you are intrigued by this strange IVF process. I'm with you on that one.

I have started this blog to document my IVF...no, I refuse to say it. There will be no "journeys" here - in my mind, journeys should remain firmly confined to the realms of Idol, Biggest Loser and So You Think You Can Dance (and they shall be accompanied by fake tears and sob stories). This is my experience with IVF - it may be like yours, it may be like that of someone you know, or it may be completely different. But like Dr Phil...or someone, once said, "It's healthy to share". And now that I have joined a blogosphere that for better or worse doesn't seem to understand the concept of "too much information", here I go.

Feel that? Butterflies in your stomach, dry mouth and a whoosh of air as, thud!, into your body goes the bumper bar which has just lowered and clamped to your chest. It's meant to secure you snugly into your seat, but you are shit-scared you might fall out, that something will go wrong or it might not be as good as you'd hoped.
Ready? The rollercoaster has just taken off.
Click, click, click. Here we go.