Saturday, December 18, 2010

Unnatural pregnancy

Let me say up front - no I'm not pregnant - but this month I'm starting to feel the side effects of the drugs I'm on to try and tip the baby make mission odds in my favour.

My clomid / serophene double dose (100mg a day for 5 days) didn't seem to cause any problems when I was taking it, but in the week leading up to when I ovulated, Oh My God!!!!!

A quick recap - the clomid / serophene is taken to block the oestrogen receptors in the brain. The tricked brain sends a message to the body to make more follicle stimulating hormone to get more follicles developing and release more oestrogen... or something like that. In my first appointment with the fertility specialist, he explained that the body creates a certain amount of oestrogen per egg that is ovulated. So if you ovulate two eggs the oestrogen is doubled.

This month my blood tests to identify when I was ovulating were all over the shop. The doctor had me going in every second day, 6 times in total, until finally we got the nod. Last month it only took 3 tests to pick the day. So I think, even though the doctor didn't mention it, that my oestrogen count was higher this month, indicating I was ovulating more than one egg.

I'm pretty lucky in the women's health department as a general rule. I've never really suffered from period pain, or complained of bloating or water retention throughout the cycle. I've often heard other women complaining of these ailments and felt lucky I haven't suffered. Well, this month I suffered. Ughhhhh, my guts felt like they were going to explode. Things I ate were going straight through me and my lower abdomen felt like a balloon filling up under the skin. On ovulation day my left side, down near my hip was aching. It was horrible.

But now I'm on the other side of ovulation and everything is back to normal - thankfully. And I again know this month we have had good timing and am waiting waiting waiting.

The drugs to support the other side of my cycle have been swapped this month. I was gearing myself up for another round of injection perfection to find out Brisbane is experiencing a pregnyl I couldn't get any. The doctor told me it was going to have to the pessaries.

These little wonders are made of wax that slowly melts at body temperature. They release progesterone, that is then absorbed through the uterus lining. Unlike the injections they are time intensive, needing to inserted twice daily, after which you have to lie down for a half hour. So night time isn't a big deal, just insert before going to bed. The doctor told me in the morning I'd have to get up a half hour earlier, only to then have to go back to bed and lie down for another 30 minutes. He also said that my husband should bring me tea and toast....hmmmmm... perhaps I should have gotten Matt to ring in to get his instructions as there hasn't been single tea and toast day yet. I have to do this for 15 days!

Even though I'm not up to the big interventions like IVF yet, it certainly isn't all that natural. Recently I had a few people ask how I felt about having to start taking the drugs etc, whether it was disappointing. I am grateful that this is one thing that doesn't bother me. I actually find it astonishing that it is generally completely acceptable to intervene for as long as we like to ensure we don't conceive and then when we do want to conceive we put an added pressure on ourselves that we must do it  naturally.

Fingers crossed this month I'll have an unnatural pregnancy. Just as good as a natural one in my mind.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Close to tears

On Monday we returned from a 10 day break on beach. I definitely feel more relaxed and rested than when I left, but all this relaxing and recuperating has the disadvantage of giving me more time to think.

My first few days of holdiays I was still wondering "Am I pregnant?"...  I don't mind this time. Thinking and hoping.

Having had one pregnancy, I have experienced the early symptoms of pregnancy, so when I started to get sensitive nipples and sore boobs I try to not to hope too much. Having had these symptoms often since the first pregnancy, and not being pregnant, the best thing about getting them is I know the wait is coming to an end. Once these symptoms are happening I'll know I'm either pregnant or not in the next couple of days.

This month, once again the wish was soon brought to an end with the onset of my period.

I didn't dwell on it, but immediately kicked into the plan set for the next cycle. The fertility specialist had already told me to double my dose of clomid / serophene if I wasn't pregnant. I'd packed in readiness for the result and had my drugs on hand. Because I was away I didn't get the same blood tests done to confirm my period had started.  Once I thought my period had started in earnest I started taking the clomid / serophene.

I'm supposed to take it at the same time every day. I stuffed up one day and simply carried away with beaches and swimming, but still managed to take it within a couple of hours of the set time. I'm not worried about that as all the blood tests have shown I'm ovulating every month, so a think a few hours late on one day of clomid / serophene won't be a problem.

The five days of medication taking pass and I've done all I can do. Then the waiting begins. Waiting for the fertile window. Last month this was the peaceful time, this month not so peaceful. I start in on myself mentally, I remember every glass of wine, every late day in the office, every coffee, every unnecessary calorie, every gym class missed. Having the plan and everything in place simply delayed the anxiety. I'm on the edge of tears all the time. Almost anything could set me off.

Yesterday I went to work - one day in the middle of my holidays - to ensure everything would be in place for a big meeting I have on my first day back. I was immersed in busy-ness. Rushing to meet a deadline, try to purge some of the hundreds of emails in my inbox and get the presentations completed for next Monday. The busy-ness distracts me from all the worry.

I think the worry really doesn't help anything, but finding the off switch, other than work, is hard.

With Christmas holidays around the corner, I'm beginning to dread the free time and all that time to think.

Oh well, coming soon is my next fertile window and I'll have the week of hope and contentment.