My last post was a little mopey. I guess just realizing how involved this journey toward babyhood is going to be, has me feeling a little less than female. I won't go into that again, I did that here, and so what's the point?
Last Thursday night, hubs and I went to the injections class required by our clinic. I'm not really sure how we got bumped up on the list, but am greatly appreciative for it, as we were told the wait to get into the class could put off our starting a cycle for a while.
The class, led by an extremely personable and informative nurse, walked step by step through each drug, what it did, and how it was administered. I'd be lying if I didn't say that hubs REALLY seemed to enjoy poking the orange. I mean REALLY enjoyed it. I am crossing my fingers that he goes easier on me. Should all go well, these injections will begin sometime next week.
Right now I am taking some Prometrium tablets to start my cycle. There is really no way to sugar coat it, they leave me feeling awful. I didn't react well to them last month when I took them for the trial run, and seem to be even more irritated by them this time around. I feel extremely exhausted and nauseous, and have had a pounding headache the last four or so days. Another disconcerting little fact is that a side effect listed right on the bottle is breast cancer. Not "prolonged use of this drug can lead to..." Nope. Just listed between nausea and diarrhea. After seeing that, I think I'm gonna skip reading the other medication information packets.
Once my cycle starts, injections will begin on day two. I KNOW! I can't believe how quickly we have gone from no forward momentum to this point either. Please keep us in your prayers that this works the first time. Our insurance has a $15,000 lifetime cap, which will be more than spent on this first cycle, so things would get a whole lot more complicated if it didn't.
The drugs were ordered last week, but our insurance company requires them to come via mail. We ordered them to arrive Monday. It is Wednesday. Still not here. A call from the insurance company yesterday assured me that today is the day. Thank God I didn't start my cycle already, or this delay could have really posed a problem. The drugs, for the most part, require refrigeration, and have a shelf life of 28 days, so if the insurance were to not get them to me in time, and we had to put the cycle off another month, they would be no good.
The plan is to implant two embryos on transfer day. If not for the cap on our insurance, we would be doing one at a time, but we want the best possible chance for this to work. The doctor has told me that we have about a 50% chance of conceiving, and if we do conceive, a 50% chance of having twins. A smaller percent chance of higher order multiples. PLEASE PRAY that we do not conceive more than two babies. The whole issue of selective reduction comes into play at that point, and it is more than I can handle quite honestly.
So thus continues the emotional roller coaster that is infertility after loss. One minute I am happy that we are here, and things are moving forward, the next I am scared to death, wondering, If God is making it this difficult for me to have another child, should I be listening? Then a minute later, Why shouldn't I be a mother? It is a real volley of emotions.
A wonderful bloggy friend, Brandy Jean, sent me a package with meditation CD's specifically designed for the IVF process. There are meditations for retrieval, and others for transfer. I can't tell you how much it meant to me that someone who doesn't know me beyond my words on this page, took the time to do something to help ease me through this process. Brandy, herself, is awaiting news as to whether her transfer worked. Please head over and send her some love.
Has anyone out there tried accupuncture? I am in the process now of trying to find a licensed practitioner who deals specifically with fertility and IVF. I figure that in the next month, I am gonna become a human pin cushion anyway, so what's a few more needles, right?
I am going to preface the rest of this post by saying that I know that being open about my grief journey, in a public forum like this, means that some readers are bound to pass judgement on me, and that is fine. They aren't me, they didn't lose my child in the same way I did.
I also know that the vast majority of people who come here are the opposite. They are facing their own infertility, grief, or life struggle, and that is what brings them to this page. Because of this, whenever I come across something helpful to me in my journey, I like to share it here.
Below are some guideposts that I use when those moments/ flashbacks/ memories/ images that come seemingly out of nowhere to take my breath away, come calling.
These four guideposts were provided to me some months ago. Of course it goes without saying that I am by no means a therapist, but when I find something useful, I like to share it. I don't know the origins, or creator of these guideposts, and for that I apologize. Mine were jotted down on some note paper, and when I tried to do a google search on them, I came up empty.
The four guideposts are Focus, Grounding, Energy Conservation, and Direction, and they are useful to meditate on when you are really struggling.
Focus: One thing at a time. What is the most important thing for you to focus your attention on right now?
Grounding: Find a way to center or stabilize yourself, so that the waves of emotions can't drag you away into their undercurrent. (For me, this is writing or meditation.)
Energy Conservation: When you are really struggling, your energy reserves are limited. Ask yourself, "Is this the best use of my energy right now?"
Direction: Are your actions taking you in the direction you truly want to go? If not, remember that you can make different choices to change your direction at any time.
These guideposts bring me back to my favorite quote, one that I have turned to for comfort time and time again over the past 17 months. It is by English Novelist George Eliot (who, just as a fun little factoid, was actually a woman named Mary Anne Evans. She wrote under a man's name so as to be taken seriously.)
"It's never too late to be what you might have been."
On the days (like yesterday) where everything feels so impossible, I bring myself back to this quote, nod my head, and say "maybe so."