I never let a good thing go un-fretted about.
The protocol for this cycle is new, but largely old hat at the same time. As I told my nurse last week, most of the meds aren’t foreign to me, but the fact that we’ve planned for them from the start and will be doing them with purpose is. Despite my planner persona, the bulk of my prior cycles have been an incredible shit-show of changing things mid-stream only after realizing things aren’t going as they should be. This is the first time I’ve gotten my clinic to agree that things never go as they should with me and that, in fact, an excess of caution is probably the best course of action in my case. So, instead of waiting for terrible betas to get us to start HCG boosters, we’re doing them right away. Instead of finding out that suppositories and Crinone do absolutely nothing for me, we’re going with PIO injections from the start. Instead of waiting weeks upon weeks for Clomid to cause me to unexpectedly O one late-blooming follicle, we’re jumping both feet in and stimming with injects. It’s been nice to have a plan and (more or less) be sticking to it.
One thing is brand new this time. Lovenox. An injectable blood thinner used for many things outside of infertility land, Lovenox is often prescribed to those with repeat losses, clotting disorders, or suspected/diagnosis immune implantation issues. With three losses, an MTHFR diagnosis, and a fistful of autoimmune diseases under my belt, I pretty much demanded Lovenox this time around. My RE would have automatically put it on my after another miscarriage as part of his one-size-fits-all repeat loss protocol (he, like many, don’t count my earliest loss as a “real” miscarriage), but I promised I was OK with being moved to the head of the class and skipping that waiting period. Just give me the damn syringes already!
After a barrel-full of needles from my past and current cycle (PIO, HCG, Gonal-F, and Lupron) the whole, “Wait, you want me to inject myself?” thing faded long ago. To be honest, I never had much of it to begin with. Prior to my birth, my mom was a lab technician and regularly drew blood. I like to imagine her in those days. She worked in a large city hospital with a pioneering cancer research team in the 1970s. I see her in her hospital uniform, working a productive day, sneaking pure lab-grade alcohol to the roof to share screwdrivers with her colleagues (true story), and partying with doctors and nurses a la Studio 54. I’m sure the reality was much more mundane, but the photos, diaries, and overheard stories she left behind have provided fodder for my overactive imagination for a long while now. Anyway, whenever I needed blood drawn as a child I was usually pretty chill with it. My mom held me tight, explained what was happening, handed me my blankie, and, if all else failed, cussed out the failing phlebotomist who was hurting her daughter and just drew the blasted blood herself. She wasn’t a shy lady. Needles have never really bothered me. And, once I got my Hashi’s diagnosis that was a Godsend since I started to spend so much time in the phlebotomist’s chair.
However, Lovenox is supposed to be a real bitch of a shot. So much so that it had even me worried. “It’ll burn like hell while injecting,” a friend in the computer warned. “You’ll get a lot of nasty welts, lumps, and bruises,” my nurse cautioned. For years I’ve read about the hell that is Lovenox. I was armed with the knowledge that pushing the plunger slow is best, that the needles feel dull when entering the skin, that the air bubble at the top of the syringe shouldn’t be pushed out before you begin, that icing the spot would be my favorite curative, and that my stomach will look like a horror movie before it’s all said and done. Last night was my first date with Senor Lovenox. How’d it go you ask?
I kinda feel like I got left on my doorstep on prom night. All dressed up and fully prepared for a moment to remember, only to feel confused and left behind. After all that worry, all that preparation, all that time spent telling Mr. But IF he’d be scooping me a giant bowl of ice cream when it was all said and done, it was totally underwhelming. Yea, it stung a little as it entered, but much less than your average bee sting. Honestly, the Lupron injection site itch was much more annoying. And the bruises I was guaranteed? So far absolutely nothing. Now the appearance of my ass after last night’s PIO injection is another story, but I’ve done PIO before and I know what that’s like. All-in-all I guess I’m one lucky girl!
Except, now I fret anew because I’m a total loon. As soon as I mentally uttered my, “That’s it?” with needle still in flesh, I jumped straight to, “Wait, did I do it wrong?” Yes, dear readers, even when things go peachy keen and better than anticipated I find something to worry about. I did the same with the PIO before this and the Clomid before that. I was convinced for the longest time that my ass was so fat (it really isn’t) that the freaking huge PIO needle wasn’t long enough to get the intramuscular purchase it requires to do its thing. And, when the Clomid didn’t make me totally bat-shit crazy and result in 5 million mature follicles I instantly worried. Welcome to the land of IF, where things going right results in worried sleepless nights.
Well, not exactly sleepless nights. Between the PIO, Crinone, and tonight’s first HCG booster I’ve got enough pregnancy hormones floating through my system right now to drop an elephant for a 2 week uninterrupted siesta. I fell asleep on the couch last night at around 8 and slept straight through to the morning. Sleep, it appears, is not a problem. Oh shit, am I sleeping too much? Is this a problem?
So, that’s about that. I’m in the boring early days of the TWW (3DPO today), I’m shooting up, I’m sleepy, my mom is my ’70s icon, needles don’t scare me, my over-analyzing everything does scare me, and I had vanilla ice cream last night. Oh, and I have a bathroom again. I plan on getting in this tub and never leaving. Ok, I’ll still go to the Walk of Hope, but can we get someone to come take my beta on the 24 from this tub? After a month and a half without a bathroom I need to make up for lost time!