Friday, February 16, 2007

I blame the lupr*n

It has NOT been 8 days since I last posted. It's just not possible. During an IVF cycle? Me, the inveterate navel-gazer? Say it isn't so! My dog must have eaten all of my brilliant and insightful posts. I don't have a dog? Oh dear.

It has been an exciting week here in Low Places. I've laughed, I've cried. Mainly, though, I've longed for sleep. I don't know if I've ever mentioned this, but I truly love to sleep. I only feel at my perky best if I get at least 8 hours, and I'm even a touch perkier on 9. With 7, I can still manage a smile, but with six or fewer, we're on dangerous ground.

Luckily, my mystery man is also a sleep connoisseur (or dreadfully lazy, depending on your perspective), so normally we make it a priority to schedule in sufficient hours of glorious oblivion. However, things changed when I decided that it was a good idea to take an intensive Korean class while maintaining a full-time job AND doing an IVF cycle. The good news is that it HAS kept me from obsessing about the cycle. I can't. I don't have time to pee, much less to obsess. The bad news is that I'm now bad at Korean, bad at my job, and probably bad at IVF too. Go me!

A quick summary of this week:

Saturday and Sunday: Caught up on sleep. Went grocery shopping. Studied Korean. Tried to remind hubby that I know that he's alive, and that I'm happy about it. Not too bad, as weekends go.

Monday: Class all morning. Ran off to work after. At work until 7. Homework until 11, studying new vocabulary until 1. Insomnia until about five minutes before the alarm went off.

Tuesday: To RE. Follicle scan. Only 5-6 follicles. ACK!!!! OK, a quick disclaimer here. I know that it's all relative. I know that it only takes one good egg. I know that lots of people would give their left ovary to be able to produce 5-6 follicles. I understand that this is not a dreadful response. However, having produced 9 follicles only a couple of months ago, this set off some seriously unacknowledged fears about my ovarian aging. Everybody stops producing eggs eventually. What if my contrary body has decided that now is the time? What if this cycle fails and next time it's 3, and then 2, and then 1, and then....

So, the doctor increased my dosage a notch, and said to come back on Friday. Then I rushed off to class, late. When I walked through the door, the teacher put on an angry face, put her hands on her hips, and said "WHY ARE YOU SO LATE?" I had told her the day before that I'd be at the doctor, and would be late, so I surprised, but I held my ground and said that I was at the doctor, and that I was sorry that I'd been forced to arrive late, and that I had disturbed the class. Then she shouted "ARE YOU SICK?" (Keep this in mind that this is in front of the whole class). I said "not sick, I was in for tests", and skulked off to my seat. A few minutes later, I asked a question about what she was discussing, and she shouted at me again (because she had discussed this topic before I got there). Then she gave us an assignment in super-fast Korean that I didn't understand at all. Everybody else went to work, and I just sat and stared at the page. She walked around the room, looked at my page, and then made a public service announcement to the whole class that I was doing it wrong. At this point, the tears started to well up, and I realized that I was about to lose it. So, I just got up and left. The other students stared in shock, and I admit I felt a bit rude, but given a choice of bursting into tears in class, or appearing to leave in a snit, I'll go for the snit every time. I made it about ten paces beyond the door before I was sobbing. Impressive. NOT. Somehow, my visions of life in Korea hadn't included myself wailing and sniffling in a bathroom stall in a university bathroom. Clearly a failure of imagination on my part. I blame the lupr*n.

It was too early to go to work (and I do usually try to show up sans tears or tell-tale puffy red eyes), so I ended up running all the way home, to weep in my husband's arms for a while. Then I went through all of the de-puffing activities that I could think of, and left for work. Then a creepy man decided to try to grope me as I was walking down the street. Lovely. THEN I got to work and found that my boss had sent me something urgent in an email early in the morning that he needed by noon. It was 2:00. He was very understanding, but it still made me feel wretched. Not the best day ever, in other words. Then I got stuck at work until almost 8, came home to have to try to learn everything that I'd missed in class on my own, and was too anxious to sleep. Yuck.

Wednesday: I went through the day in a bit of a fog. The other teacher was teaching the class, so everything went well. Off to work. Ho hum. Had boss drop a huge load of work on me that has to be done by Tuesday. Yippee.

Thursday: Still no sleep. The mean teacher again. I pretended that nothing had happened (on the advice of a Japanese friend who is a language teacher here, and has a much better idea about the culturally appropriate way to handle conflict here), and so did she. It wasn't too bad. Then I got to work and had another big load of work drop on me. Fabulous.

Today: Delirious from lack of sleep. Another follicle scan: 7-8 follicles. Not great, but better. Whew! I trigger on Sunday for a retrieval on Tuesday. Then, the doctor delivered the second-best news* that I've heard recently. The Korean distributor of progesterone in oil has stopped providing my clinic with an adequate supply, so they're switching all of their patients to vaginal suppositories. Now, while the phrase "vaginal suppository" wouldn't have warmed the cockles of my heart a few years ago, there's nothing like a great big needle in the arse to make a girl change her mind. My butt has been rejoicing all day.

A silver lining to it all: I have some new friends. The Korean class has been a huge headache, but it's also really interesting (when I'm not crying), and is full of very interesting students. I've become quite close with three of the women in the class, which is so nice. So, I can't quite regret the decision to take the class now, since their support and friendship is just what the doctor ordered to help me to keep my spirits up.

So, there we are. A week in the life of the overscheduled IVF'er.

*The best news that I've heard recently is that my dad's cancer prognosis is excellent. His doctor estimates his chances of permanent remission at 98.5%. While I'd prefer 100%, I like that number a lot better than those that I had found via Dr. Google. The treatment will be hard, and will take several months (culminating in a pretty major surgery in April), but it'll be well worth it if it saves his life.


Marie-Baguette said...

Oh Sara, what a crazy week!First of all, I am really glad your Dad will be fine, despite the surgery and what I can only expect to be dreadful treatments. It is great to learn that you are making friends as I can't imagine how hard it must be to move to a new place as foreign as Korea. I sympathize a lot with your stories. For some reason (Murphy's law?) it seems that being preoccupied with IVF only results in bosses dumping work on you, and other calamities. I hope you can get your sleep back (acupuncture might help). Also don't worry about the number of follicles because I never got a good estimation of their number before retrieval. Plus it is not you getting older! I used to panic about this, but honnestly, you r eggs just don't age that much in a year, much less in 2 months.
Keeping my fingers crossed for you. PS: so glad you don't get the infamous PIO! Good for you!

Tinker said...

Whew! I got tired just reading about the craziness!

I'm glad that you're making friends; they can be very important when you're so far away from home. And having lost both of my parents (one to cancer), I'm thrilled for your dad's prognosis!

Lara said...

Hi Sara! Thanks for commenting on my blog! As for the mean teacher, doesn't she know not to mess with an infertile doing shots??? It's DANGEROUS!!! As for getting to do suppositories instead of pio shots I'm SO JEALOUS!!! I've been limping around all day long due to sore thighs (I have to do my shots in the outer thighs...ugh!) It's no fun!!! My sweet Bryan was stationed in Korea for a year at Osan AFB. I think that's kinda near Seoul isn't it? Anyway, good luck to you. I'll be reading more so update often!

Ladybug Ann said...

I am so glad you updated us! I was wondering how your stims were going. And boy oh boy, what a week! Good news on your dad, I do wonder how the doctor comes up with a .5% at the end of 98?

Good luck with retrieval. Sending good embryo vibes. Fertilize and STICK.