Saturday, October 22, 2011

Taking a step back

Most people who know me, know I work pretty hard. I am reliable. If I have a job to do, it gets done. I take my work very seriously and while I love to have fun at work it would never be at the expense of actually performing my role to the highest standard.

This year I've had two unexpected lengthy drop outs of the office for ectopic pregnancy surgery and recovery and one shorter planned drop out for my gallbladder surgery. I am grateful that because I have been a hard worker with the one employer for a long time I have a large sick leave balance, that even now (after 50 sick days since February) has a few weeks left in it. So I'm not on sick leave stressing about getting back to work for the money, I'm stressing about letting people down and not getting to complete things for which I was responsible.

With the curette confirmed I decide to meet with work and ask if I could return to work part-time. I feel so distressed about the idea of returning full-time to the same role. I just don't have the same stamina to manage the pressure of the day-to-day work load. I'm so lucky because I know just in my asking that my workplace will do practically anything to help me out. The Acting CEO is more than happy to arrange a 3-day week for me and to have me oversee a few smaller, special projects instead of the state-wide role I'd been performing.

Phew. It is a massive release to know for at least 3-months I will return to work only 3-days a week. More days off than in the office. Excellent.

The next day is curette day. It is uneventful, fast and painless when compared to every other surgery I've had in 2011. It is also sad. I remember my first one of these procedures I had back in 2009 when we lost our first pregnancy and I know I'm nowhere near as sad and that I'm emotionally dealing with this better. I guess so much has happened since then.

The following week I finally get to have a follow up appointment with my fertility specialist. It feels like months since I've seen him, but it only a few weeks. When he sees me waiting in his rooms he looks sheepish and says "I don't think I want to see you." I tell him too bad, that I have a massive list of questions so he is just going to have to suck it up. As we walk down the corridor he puts his arm around my shoulders and says "I'm so sorry".

I wasn't joking about my list - I had written one as I was worried when I got in there I would forget everything. The first thing he answers is the result of the curette. They test the products of conception to find out if there is a reason the baby miscarried. Like our first miscarriage there was a chromosomal problem, the fetus had two extra chromosomes. So it wasn't the drugs, or the surgeries, or the infections that caused the miscarriage, it was nature.

The rest of the list is pretty straight forward, except for my belly button wound - which is STILL OOZING! Not as badly as the initial infection, but just not healed. My specialist takes another swab and armed with the results of my blood cultures from when I was in hospital he send it off to be tested. He gives me a new antibiotics prescription that I am only to fill if he rings me with the result of the swab.
It turned out I was still infected, so I needed to go back on the antibiotics.

Now it is a waiting game where only my emotional health will determine when we get back in the IVF saddle. Thankfully there are eight little frozen embryos ready and waiting to be transferred, when I think I'm ready for another go. Initially I was thinking 3 months off, but we'll see...  with no chance of natural conception, I think I will find myself wanting to get back into it sooner, especially while I'm able to take a step back at work and focus on myself for a while.

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