A snapshot. Three days. A view into a cycle. This was over a year ago. People may have wondered why all the tears back then. They didn’t know. They couldn’t. I still cry when I read my own words because it feels like it was yesterday. These were some of the hardest moments to go through.
A pass/fail moment
**written on 24 June 2014. I never finished that book I was reading**
I only recently read the term a pass/fail moment. I never really saw it as that – it’s funny how you can adopt the thoughts of another and not even realise you have.
I’ve also never hated my inside of my body – the outside, sure – I’ve had a love/hate on/off affair for ages – but the inside, I’ve never considered being distasteful to my ovaries or my uterus. Today I had that thought.
To be honest, it was an adoption from the book I’m reading. The one that is painfully close to home, the one that painfully describes every feeling and emotion I have failed to document but have felt all the same, but also the story that is not my own. And I’m trying to acknowledge that the thoughts I have today, are not in fact all my own.
Today did feel like a fail on our journey. This is the first fail I’ve felt to be honest. Every other step seemed to have gone as I, we, the professionals expected. Today did not.
Scan 1, day 8, shit loads of drugs between day 3 and today, and only 4 follicles. All on the right. The left has just stopped working it appears.
A low responder. That’s the category I’ve been put into now. One needing individual special attention. Why I couldn’t get that from the beginning I don’t know – it’s not like I’ve already spent close to R100k on this whole debacle. (I have in fact spent that. That’s the same as an overseas holiday to a destination I’ve been craving for years. It’s also more than a swimming pool. It’s also the deck, the chairs, the renovations. Well look, it’s a lot of things. Except it’s not. It’s R100k worth of tears).
So, now we wait. For next steps, for a sign.
And all I gotta do is sit around and wait
And all I gotta do is not anticipate
That’s harder than Newton Faulkner makes it sound.
**25 June 2014. Bloods day**
Day 9 and it’s time to get my blood tests on. Basically, I do this a lot. First thing in the morning – head over to Pathcare, take a seat and be asked “is this your first time?” (Err, no – I was here last month), “Have your details changed?” (Nope, but you still have my husbands phone number wrong), ok take a seat. (Gee thanks, flicks through a home decor magazine).
The nurse gives me the same drill each time “when you stop thinking about it, that’s when it’ll happen” – yes thanks nurse. Or better “you’re still so young” – really? Because I don’t feel fucking young? I feel tired and exhausted from having that needle in my arm every day between day 9 and 14.
Bloods day is especially fun when they can’t get the vein to work. “Ooh, looks like this one has collapsed, let me try that again” – makes prick in other arm.
I used to be ok with needles, blood tests, doctors rooms. Now, I close my eyes like a child and try not to cry as yet another needle goes in. I don’t watch the blood fill the little tubes with my name and ID number on them. I just silently pray (or wish) that whatever hormone they’re testing for today, is at the level it should be, doing what it should be doing.
I make a joke as I leave, something about seeing them soon and holding thumbs. They laugh, I laugh. I walk out the hospital that feels too familiar. People should not have to be so familiar with hospitals around Cape Town. People should not have to have blood tests this often. People should not have to know every day what day of their cycle they’re on or what exactly their follicles and uterine lining are doing.
But I do. And tomorrow, we scan again.
** 26 June 2014. And the last documented chapter of this (part) of my story. My second IVF. There were more. I stopped writing for a while after this. Some may say the wheels came off for a bit. Others may say I just had a little wobble**
And I think I’m ok about it.
Look, it’s not ideal and not what I had revved myself up for (I was rather looking forward to the best nap ever – deep sedation will give you that). But yep, there it is. Stop spending money on this this month. Instead we try a new, different, more personalised approach next month.
Keep trying. Not quitting.