During each round of IVF we were given a strict schedule of what shots needed to be done on what day. After so many days we would go in for blood work and ultrasound. Lets just say Round 1 did not go as planned. After 6 days of shots, we were canceled. Yes, canceled. Nothing was going on in there. How is that possible? C gave me shots for 6 nights in my belly. It was sore, I felt bloated, emotional and was just starting to get good at not wearing my heart on my sleeve.
No one had any idea what I was going through. I started to feel like I was an actress on a show. This wasn’t my life. I was just someone in the audience watching a sad story play out. After reviewing my first round the doctor explained it is all a guessing game. Often times with the first round, it takes some time to get the doses right. For some reason, this combination of drugs just didn’t do it. I remember after my ultrasound, I sat up and the resident’s face said it all. I could tell as soon as she started the ultrasound that it wasn’t good. She told me to sit up and just kept saying “I’m so sorry, there is nothing.”
How could there be nothing? I was there every night, with C. He would draw up my medicine, inject it in my stomach, sometimes 5 shots a night. What do you mean nothing happened?
Sadly, I feel that this is when my doctor gave up on us. I know that as a doctor, his job is not to be my support or friend or shoulder to cry on. Although I do wish he had a better bedside manner, or perhaps a uterus so he could begin to know what I was going through, he didn’t and doesn’t. He was simply there to tell me what the deal was and get us pregnant.
After bursting out into tears after the resident told us the news, she assured me he would call me with a new plan. It is so scary when you are given this news. You never know how long it is going to take. Each appointment you go to you hold on to every shred of information that seems positive. You take shots, you go to appointments, they email you results. The standard tests are: E2- estrogen levels, which tell you if your follicles are growing; P4- progesterone; and HCG levels, to see if you are going to ovulate soon. Each time we get emailed blood results, we look at the E2 first. We start getting excited when it goes up. This usually indicates the follicles are growing. Higher E2 means more follicles, more follicles COULD mean more eggs.
Each cycle we seemed to get less and less involved with the details. I remember the first cycle, I obsessively wrote down each number from my blood tests and would compare them each day. I would keep track of each follicle and size. Now that I have gone through 4 IVF attempts and 6 fertility attempts (including IUI) I realized nothing is really in my control.