Insemination 2, Round 2

Valentines evening was lovely. I got home, and DH arrived home shortly after me. (Speaking of DH, I think that “DH” is pretty impersonal. Because of our surname, one of our friends started calling him the Hoff. No he doesn’t look like David Hasselhof ((that much)) but he has that same nonchalant yet charming way about him, so the Hoff it is.)

Oh yeah baby!

As I was saying, the Hoff started getting dressed for the dinner date I had organised for us. As he was buttoning up his shirt he said, “Sorry Mands. There is something I need to tell you.” So I said, “I know, I know, you didn’t get me anything for Valentines Day, not even so much as a card…” He nodded sheepishly and walked out of the room. Next minute he came back with this ENORMOUS card! And a bag full of stuff from the Body Shop! Romance is alive!!! Yeeehaaa!!

Took him off to din din at a very quaint little spot called Rosabella’s Rose Cafe’. It was a warm, balmy evening to begin, and soft eighties tunes floated out of the candle lit restaurant. Everything was strewn with rose petals and rose buds. It was really great to spend some quality time together. We chatted about the IUI, Clo mid, babies and other non fertility stuff too. We are definitely getting older, though, because at around ten o’clock we both started yawning and checking around for our waiter to get our bill!

This morning, the second insemination of IUI round two went well. Does everyone else also do two in a row in one cycle? Apparently it increases the chances of fertilization. I don’t know. My BFG commented on the fact that I was looking very relaxed. He also said that people with much worse numbers than us fall pregnant easily enough, and he said that he didn’t think that we would need to go the IVF route. I hope he’s right. He did go on to add that sometimes even when everything is perfect, conception still doesn’t happen, but that we should stay positive because stressing about it could have a negative effect on the outcome.

So I intend to take his advice, to just relax and not (try) not to get worked up about it. Whatever will be, will be.

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Giant Country, The Land of Dreams

Tootled off to the labs this morning with my “goods” safely tucked into my bra for IUI Round 2. I had forgotten to phone and book the semen wash yesterday, so I was dreaming up all sorts of ways to convince them to do it for me. “I’ll just cry. A lot. Loudly.” They were quite understanding though, so there was no need for any Oscar performances. Went for some breks, then back to the lab to fetch my little test tube. Safely tucked it back into the bra, and off to the clinic.
(Quick note: there is a lot of sense in getting IUI clothes. You really need something comfy for after. Only problem is that I am becoming poor very quickly, so I may have to make do.) 😦

The receptionist smiled when I walked in, and we made small talk. I am quite the local down there these days.
“Hi Lizette, how are the kids?”.
“Fine thanks, got to leave now now to fetch them from school. I have paged Doctor, he should be up any minute now.”
“Fantastic, can I get a peek of the sperm results?”
“No problem. Cuppa tea?”
“Wonderful. Could I get copies of those results for DH to look at?”
“Absolutely, fetch them on your way out.”
“Thanks, you’re a gem!”
Just then, my BFG came loping in, (that’s how BFG’s walk, you know) dressed in blue theater “pyjamas”, with a sea green paper “gown” and a white mask hanging loosely around his neck, all smiles. As we chatted amicably, he reviewed my file. He always takes time to read the file thoroughly, then looks up, smiles, and says, “How are you feeling today?” No wonder he bagged a 29 year old.
The insemination went very smoothly. I must be getting used to my BFG , as I felt very calm and relaxed. Hitched up the legs, wriggled to get comfy and fluffed up the pillow. We made small talk whilst he was inserting the catheter, he was giving me a running commentary about what was going on “down there”, and that all uteri (is that the plural?) are different. Interesting observation.
Then I got the standard issue pat on the leg, another smile and, “Well done, that went very well. Just relax there and Lizette can bring you some tea, okay? Need a magazine or something? Alright, see you tomorrow then.”
He loped off, and with a swish of his sea green gown, he was gone.
I lay back with my iPod playing softly, sipping my herbal tea, feeling quite pleased with the way it had gone down. Staring at the sonogram pictures of a developing embryo on the wall , I could not help myself. I began to daydream all over again…

IUI and Fertility Chat World

Okay, okay. So, it turns out that artificial insemination (or intra-uterine insemination – IUI) is actually a walk in the park. It’s not the cervical horror I had it pinned as.
What was quite horrifying, however, was having my cervix “dilated” in order to do the IUI. I still feel bruised. The actual insemination was quick and painless. I could do ten. (Hopefully there won’t be a need!) If thats what dilation feels like – bring on the epidural man! (I only dilated a couple of mills, when in labour a woman dilates to 10cm – O.M.G!)
Hubby came with for moral support, and it was really nice to have him there. I think it made him a part of the process as well. Now all that’s left to do is wait.

On a slightly different but totally relevant topic, yesterday I went exploring the world wide web, and stumbled across a whole other planet. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true! It is called Infertility Chat Rooms. The inhabitants were warm and friendly. They had cute, witty names, and spoke an entirely foreign language there. I came across Mrs Redcap, Alir, Bratt, Grumps, and Angie x, to name a few. They spoke about things like TTC (trying to conceive) and 2ww (2 week wait) and DH (dear husband). One inhabitant spoke purely in abbreviations! It went something like this: “I am doing IV with ICSI, getting AF cramps in my 2ww, hope it’s not a BFN – brb – the DH just walked in!” Yes, I know – it’s greek to me too!
Although I was a tourist there, they made me feel very welcome, and I made a distinct connection with them. The most amazing thing for me is just how many women are going through the same thing. It’s really wierd, because infertility can leave you feeling very isolated, but in those virtual rooms people in the same boat are sharing their stories and offering support. Speaking to them feels like a warm, reassuring hug.
As they say in the movies: “We are not alone. There is life out there on other planets.” Well, Planet Infertility is alive and thriving.

My Husband the Hero

Good news! Went to the doc on Friday for my day 9 scan – and everything is right on track! Follicle was a healthy 15mm and the lining was a robust 7mm! So off I trotted with my Pregnyl (not Pregnol) in hand, a couple of hundred rands poorer, but happy as can be!
On saturday we went through to the dam for some camping – which became very stressful, as the Pregnyl had to be refrigerated at all times!!! We have this mini fridge which plugs into the car ciggy lighter, and then when we got there we plugged it into the caravan. I had to keep checking the temperature of the little fridge to make sure it wasn’t freezing my precious jab!!! As no-one in my family knows we are doing AI, we had to be super clandestine about the whole operation. Bright and early on Sunday morning we snuck into the caravan. My hubby prepped the jab (mixing the various powders and liquids together, flicking the needle like they do on TV, pushing up the fluid until a bit squirts out the top…) Then he took aim and FIRED at the circle that my gynae had drawn onto my butt on friday! (was very careful about not washing it off).
All I can say is that he has missed his calling as a doc, because that was possibly the least painful injection I’ve ever had. I see him through new eyes now. He was so calm and sure of himself – it was very sexy actually. MY HERO!