IVF round 1 : 6. Follicle check 1 & 2

Posted by Rose in Infertility, My Personal Journey on 19-02-2013

Aug 1, 2011
It’s 333am. I can’t help but wonder if we have an embryo growing. I feel a strange peace about it all, with random bursts of belly twisting anxiety when I begin to wonder what lies ahead.Saturday last week came with our first checkup. We headed out early for an 8am meeting with the vampire. Darko arrived at 7:15 and off we went, zipping on, over and around the road to Belgrade.

I guess it had rained the days before, or at least it must have on Friday.There are places in the road – as we pass through Umka, I think it is, that get washed out with the rain, since the road sits nestled on the side of a hill, with village shops sprinked on either side, and village houses hiding behind them deeper up and down the hillside. We drove carefully around the washed out chunks of pavement (ie., swirved sharply over and around buckles that might break the car in half if we grazed them or rode over them at ‘normal’ speed). I was thankful I had my gallbladder removed here just a few month ago, because surely it improved my unfailing need to use the bathroom while on road trips, generally at the most inconvenient places. I sensed Umka would have been that place, that morning.The young nurse with circles under her eyes worse than mine greeted us when we arrived, and took me back to one of the 3 exam rooms to draw my blood for the Estradiol test. The room sits between a wide screen TV that usually pipes in Pink video channel, and a painting that shows a unicorn with a red ‘leash’ around it’s neck, having been lowered by said leash into the center of a coral that provides little room for moving around in, muchless running and frolicking like unicorns do. I try not to think about the psychology behind the paintings (or my interpretations), and instead usually listen to the TV that plays all Serbian music and has a scheme displaying at the bottom of the screen where viewers can call in with their name and the name of someone that catches their fancy to see if they ‘love me, love me not’. It’s been a great resource for sifting through potential baby names, and we watch it here sometimes during morning coffee or meals spent in front of the TV. I keep spotting the name ‘Dejan’, which I really like, and Gordon is really hesitant about because it reminds him of a big dumb Montenegran kid he knew.

After she took my blood she showed me back to the waiting room and said I should have a seat and wait for the doctor to see me. The nurse makes him nervous, and his anxiety was building from feeding off that nervous energy she carries. I smiled politely in agreement and sat with my collective. We ARE the ‘gmorg’, and it’s amazing how much we talk without uttering a single sound.  We wondered silently why the sestra was under the impression I was supposed to meet with the Doctor, but we decided it would only be to our advantage to wait and let her have a look.

Inside of an hour, the doctor arrived and the tired nurse invited us in to another of the 3 exam rooms. This one is the 3rd room, between the 4’x6′ painting of 3 legged unicorns that I guess are supposed to be happy.

The room is pretty big and is sectioned in half. The entry part has her desk which is a lot less than impressive, but reminds me of the standard commercial black desk with metal legs you can find in most office supply stores back home. Her computer monitor shields her from prying eyes outside the door in the waiting room.  That consultation area stands apart by the division of a small folding privacy screen in the middle of the room, just next to a sonogram computer, gynecology table, and another wide screen tv, this one doesn’t show Pink tv.

I undress my bottom half behind the screen while Gordon sits in the far seat of 2 chairs in front of the desk. He can see the monitor – it’s quite big. I slip on the white generic clogs for patient use to scurry over to the table, my naked butt following me, just on the horizon of my dressy blouse. I lay down and put my pretty painted toenail feet ‘here’ and ‘here’ on the 2 cushioned styrups. It’s probably the nicest gynecology table I’ve ever been on. And that’s saying a lot.

The doctor waves her magic wand to and fro inside, finding my left ovary pretty quickly – they always do. It has 3 follicles of comparable size, and a 4th that’s a bit smaller than the others. Yay, I am responding to the menopur! After measuring the 3, she moves to the right side and waves her wand to and fro, to and fro, to and fro again, “Loves me, loves me not” comes to mind as I watch the monitor for the right ovary to appear. I explain again that my right ovary is situated a bit behind my uterus. She pokes and searches but she can’t find it and she explains there’s no reason to dig for it now, so she won’t. When the follicles grow she’ll be able to find it more easily.

After the appointment we left to return to the pharmacy, with the cash Gordon had taken from the ATM in town when he went on Friday to the medical center for his mom with the papers she needed signed for her broken ‘leg’. We bought just enough menopur to get us to our next appointment on Tuesday. We got home well before noon and sat in his moms bed while he recapped our adventure and all that everyone said. Her cell phone rang, which we designated for the doctors calls, and he jumped up to answer it. How he hates the phone. When he hung up, he said my estradiol was good, and my level was 145, he thought, but he couldnt remember for sure. I pressed him to remember, in English, outside his moms bedroom door who sat wondering what we were saying with that blank look I sometimes get when the conversation is just too far beyond my ability to interpret. He bit my head off because he was feeling the stress of not being understood like old times, and was upset I was making him feel like he should call back and ask for the level again. Mostly, I think, he was aggitated because when I asked when and if ICSI would be considered, the doctor informed us it would be done now, and said it casually as though we were already aware of that. Thankfully I came to terms with that, and Gordon didn’t have real strong issue with it – so he was just annoyed that we weren’t informed or consulted and that the decisions were happening without us.

We slept and took the shot at the right time. Our next appointment was on Tuesday, which was basically a replay of Saturday, with an icrease in Estradiol to 395. The left follicles had grown, the right ovary still MIA. It was supposed to be the day she announced when the eggs would be retrieved, but we had to wait for them to grow a bit more. Today we would buy the Cetrotide to inhibit natural ovulation, and start that one on Wednesday night along with the Menopur.

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