Monday, April 18, 2011

If I only had a blog...

What a weekend it has been. At every turn I just kept thinking that I should have a blog. I've thought about it a few times over the past 6 months or so but I kept hoping that I was at the end of my IVF journey and then it'd be one of those annoying IVF blogs that immediately turns into a pregnancy blog. Well here I am, still on my journey so what the hell. I'm going to give this blogging thing a try.

Let's begin with Friday. It was a pretty typical Friday. Spring fever is running rampant at school, teachers and students alike are effected. The second grade team was going out for a happy hour at a local restaurant to celebrate the year coming to an end. Later I met up with Jason at the American Club. I hadn't been feeling well all day. I had been constipated for a few days, from what I have no idea. I live in India sometimes it's best not to try and figure it out. Jason and I decided to go home early and try to get a good night's rest before the big day.

I woke up on Saturday with intense stomach cramps and diarrhea (thank you India). On the way to the hospital I thought for sure that I wasn't going to make it. All I kept thinking was that the retrieval would have to be cancelled. I just couldn't imagine the anesthesiologist allowing me to go under if I had diarrhea. After running to the restroom I went to check in. Since my last IVF attempt the hospital where the IVF lab is has changed its policy about egg retrieval. They were now requiring that IVF patients be admitted on the day of the retrieval so that they can be more closely monitored. So it was 9:15 and we were checking in. They said my bed wasn't ready so we sat and waited about a half hour during which I had more diarrhea. When I got back from the restroom one time my husband suggested that we check to see how long it would be. The admitting desk said it would be about 2 more hours wait for my bed. I lost my cool a bit with the admitting clerk. I told him that I had reserved a bed two days earlier and that I was an IVF patient and that I had to be in the IVF lab for my procedure. I said something along the lines of, "you have no idea how to do your job and I am important so don't ignore me." I lose my cool like this on a fairly regular basis when dealing with Indian bureaucracy. I know it's not cool but sometimes when emotions are running high it's hard to stay calm. So I marched myself up to the IVF lab where I knew I would be taken care of. I burst into tears as soon as saw the nurses. They put me at ease and said they weren't going to cancel the retrieval because of diarrhea, called the doctor and got me on some IV fluids. Then a string of doctors came to see me. Usually Indian doctors don't introduce themselves. Bedside manner is rare here. I'm not sure how many doctors came to see me in the end. Maybe it's because most of them asked me the same questions over and over again. I kept telling them these were the same questions I was asked the day before for my physical fitness test. But they insisted on asking so I answered their silly questions. I don't see how long I've been married has anything to do with having diarrhea but I'm not a doctor. The first doctor was my favorite of all. I'm not sure why he was there because as it turns out he didn't even know I was having diarrhea. Maybe it had something to do with the new policy. He was asking me what I think of India. As ex-pats we get these questions all the time and I answer them politely and try to move on. But this guy then started going on about how over populated India is. Yes, true doc, India is over crowded. Then, I couldn't believe it, he started going on about how fertile India women are, too fertile he said. So I looked at my husband in astonishment and tried to end the conversation by saying, "I wish I had that problem." But it didn't work. He just kept going on. Luckily I had to run out of the room to have diarrhea. Thank god for diarrhea.

Finally it was time for the egg retrieval. I was a little nervous. Getting knocked out is a pretty big deal. But the anesthesiologist did his best to put my mind at ease. His best was whatever drug he shot into my IV. Nothing like getting a little bit stoned before an egg retrieval. The moment I woke up I asked how many eggs were retrieved. Two! OK two is not too bad, we only had three follicles to begin with. Then they wheeled me out to the recovery room. On the way they have to wheel me through the IVF waiting room which was full of other hopeful couples and my dear husband. I have no recollection of this but, apparently I high-fived Jason and said, "it's your turn. go do your job!"

I wish I can say that I recovered from the anesthesia and went home to rest and heal. But we have to go back to the new policy at the hospital. That's right folks, more bureaucracy. So the IVF nurse comes to the recovery room and tells me that I have to go to the bed that is now ready for me. So they wheel me to a completely different part of the hospital. Thankfully Jason was there waiting for me. Of course, Jason and I had a million questions about our after care. First, I was hungry. I wanted to know if I could eat. So I asked the nurse in this general ward if I could. She said I could eat in two hours. So I asked if it was two hours from now or two hours from when I went into the recovery room. She looked at me, did the Indian head bobble and walked away. Jason asked her again to please clarify and we got the same response. So, again, he marched down to the IVF lab and talked to the Dr. V. Then Dr. V, both IVF nurses and their office manager came to see me on the other side of the hospital. The nurses in the general ward were not happy that we went over their heads and they let us know. I explained to them the the IVF lab knows me and my needs very well. I'm not a typical patient and need very specific care. I let Dr. V. know that this new policy that is supposed to protect the patient actually takes her away from the highly skilled care givers that she needs. I made it out of there with one more argument. The nurse ordered 16 gage needle for my PIO shots even after telling her that IVF patients use 24 gage for those shots. She ignored me and still got the 16 gage. I lost my cool again but this time I knew that I had to make sure I got what I needed. Could you imagine getting a 16 gage shot every day for 8 weeks? That's the thing she didn't understand. Finally, we got what we needed and got the hell out of there. It was a nine hour day. I got home and went right to bed to sleep off the anesthesia.

Sunday was a pretty easy day. I had a little more diarrhea but felt much better by 10am. Late afternoon we called Dr. V. to find out if our eggs fertilized. They did! Both of them! We were told to report to the IVF lab Monday morning at 10am.

Monday morning we got up had some breakfast and headed back to the lab. I was feeling really good. Everyone was all smiles when they saw me. When the Dr. V. arrived she said we could go in and look at the embies. The embryologist had given both of them a grade one, one was 4 cells and the other 2. I could just tell that they were so much stronger than our other little guys from our first IVF attempt (two grade three 2 cell embies). Everyone hugged me and congratulated me. It just feels really different this time. We are still being cautious but we are way more hopeful this time.

Today, thanks to my wonderful administrators, I am resting at home.

Now I'm just hoping that a blog will keep my mind off the very, very long wait I have until I can take a pregnancy test. My Doc wants me to wait 20 days! She wants me to take 3 HGC shots over the next ten days to help with luteal support. So the long wait begins. Pop in anytime to read how I'm keeping busy. My mother is coming for a visit so that should be interesting. I hope you enjoy! Sending out big love and positive vibes to the whole IF community! I leave you with a picture of my embies.
~ Kate


  1. Hey there! Glad to get to read how your weekend was since I haven't seen you at all. Your little dudes look great. I'm sending sticky thoughts your way.

  2. I love your blog...hang in there...tons and tons and tons of love to you and jason :)

  3. First of all you need to decide what you want woman! First, you're upset because you're constipated, then you're upset about dairrhea! WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM YOUR BODY! You and I both know that normal digestion is out of the question and diarrhea is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better than constipation so hooray! Just think of it as cleaning out your system. Your making more space for babies! I think that's how it works.......

    Ok now for the serious stuff. It sounds like living in India/going to the hospital is horrendous. Good thing you stand up for yourself and make sure you get what you need.

    Do Indians really do a head bob thing a lot?/why?

    Congratulations on the embies! They look just like you! I'm excited to hear about your progress. Also, I don't think you're a bad teacher for staring at your computer all day. Besides, I know your classroom probably runs itself by now. So sit back, relax and wait for that pregnancy to start!

    Good luck! Also, why is Douglas sending you inappropriate thoughts? ;)

  4. Hi! Here from ICLW. I hope you DO turn in to one of those pregnancy blogs right away! Good luck with your little embryos. I can't believe they make you wait 20 days to test.. Yikes