My Dad is a wise man, he is a realist and although sometimes being realistic can be tough, he always says “don’t stick your head in the sand like an ostrich”, or “hope for the best, prepare for the worst”, or my personal favourite, “don’t count your chickens before they hatch.” These have been my mantra’s over the past four weeks, because I have had to be realistic, to avoid potential feelings of devastation with my egg collection cycle.
“One step at a time”, another piece of advice from the wise man himself. The odds were against me, a low AMH, one ovary and a plethora of health problems, so I can tell you I wasn’t planning on getting 20 eggs, to be honest, I was preparing for the worst, to get nada.
Walking down to have an ultrasound last week, I was prepared for the doctor to tell me no follicles were there, but hoping I was wrong. Now, it may sound like I was being pessimistic about the whole situation, but every ounce of my being wanted him to tell me it was all good, but sometimes realism is important and getting your hopes up sometimes can fail miserably, it’s a balancing act.
Laying there, the doctor came out with a “Wow, you are doing really well for someone with such a low AMH! I was thinking we were not going to get a good result, but this is positive.” Let me tell you, I have never been so shocked and relieved, because jabbing myself everyday was actually producing an outcome.
Was I glad it was working, because the side effects of those injections are nasty! I was thrilled to hear the shit skin, bloating, lethargy and increased hormonal state (have you ever cried at a Missy Higgins/ Ed Sheeran concert? Because I have, the whole bloody show!) wasn’t for nothing, because I can tell you, my apartment would have suffered due to my episode of rage if he had of given me bad news.
The next ultrasound, although having good news last time, I was still wearing my realism hat, expecting the follicles to not have grown. But, my body proved me wrong, I had more follicles and they had grown! Well, I’ll be buggered, am I actually going to see some eggs frozen!? Shock and horror!
6:30am, Mum and I dragged our weary heads to the hospital, ready for the big day, the day I have some eggs collected…. AKA time to be poked, prodded and lose another piece of that dignity. As I walked to the theatre room, Mum tells the nurses “Go and collect my Grandbabies”, I can tell you, that woman is going to bloody adore these future kiddies, because she already dreams about them, as do I.
Here I am, laying here starring at the ceiling lights, being jabbed with needles feeling very drowsy and suddenly up in the stirrups I went (another piece of that dignity gone) and then I was out cold.
I cannot fault the nurses that looked after me today, although they are on a time schedule, they made me feel so comfortable, made me laugh and were absolute angels, it made me realise how much of an impact we nurse’s have on a patients experience.
I woke up surprised that I was totally with it, because usually I am a zombie, I felt like all I did was blink and it was all over…. Thank goodness for anaesthetists, I have to give my thanks to the doctors, because they were amazing too, I was all round lucky.
8 eggs, from one ovary, pretty impressive outcome given the circumstances! But, as the wise man said “don’t count your chickens before they hatch.” Although 8 may seem a lot, I am still waiting to hear how many survived freezing and then when the time comes, thawing, fertilisation and transfer is to be taken into account. Now, I must admit, I have stupidly googled success rates and scared the shit out of myself, worrying that 8 isn’t enough. So, we won’t get ahead of ourselves and say we are out of the woods yet, there may be another cycle, depending on what the doc’s say, but I am happy to say my body has surprised us all, it’s about time!
Today, I realised, we women are a tough breed. Sitting in the ward surrounded by women in similar circumstances, I realised how strong a Mother’s love can be. We are willing to put our bodies through some horrendous shit to bring apart of ourselves into the world, I think that’s truly incredible, IVF or natural conception, we are all Queens!