I do love a good story. It will be the best if it doesn’t just go down in the annals of trying to get pregnant and ends up in a baby book, eh?
So, Saturday morning La and I got up at 5:45am, which would hurt on almost any morning, but was particularly rough on a Saturday after having people over for dinner and games. I was dragging. We decided that La was coming and we would handle lying/not lying if and when it came to it. Right after our insemination, I had to be on an interview panel for the organization whose board I’m on so we took two cars. In retrospect, such a blessing.
On the way to the fertility clinic there was a massive piece of metal sitting in the middle of the road. Despite the 6:30am dearth of traffic, it was still almost impossible to miss the hazard safely and so I did my best to navigate around it. No dice. I heard a huge ‘clunk’ from the undercarriage and prepared myself for signs of damage. A few minutes later my car started making the undeniable aircraft carrier life off/flat tire sound, and I pulled over.
Thanks to my incredibly bad luck as a teenager, I became an expert at changing flat tires and with La as my assistant, we were able to get the whole process done with in 15 minutes! Unfortunately, that made us 15 minutes late to the appointment and unable to call the clinic to let them know.
We met BFF at the clinic and signed in – the receptionist was unphased at my tardiness or showing up as a trio instead of the typical dyad. I was sent upstairs promptly for the ultrasound and BFF and La stayed downstairs to wait for instructions. Upstairs in the ultrasound room I went through the usual ultrasound ritual and the tech looked initially at my right ovary. “Yep, you’re ovulating!” she said, taking measurements. Then she looked over at the left side. “Oh, there’s a few more over here.” She took measurements for three additional follicles on the left, then told me I could get up. “You’ll have to talk to the nurse about the risk for multiples.” No big deal, I thought – I was expecting that conversation.
After I was shown to an exam room, the nurse came in, introduced herself and looked at my chart. “You have four mature follicles releasing eggs,” she started, “So, we won’t be able to do the insemination.” Cut to: immediate waterworks. She leaned in and hugged me, which felt totally weird and awkward but I imagine its just protocol there. She explained to me that ‘legally’ they just couldn’t. When I looked at her funny (because I know there isn’t a *law* against inseminating someone with a certain number of eggs) she clarified that “they just didn’t do it,” She didn’t tell me what mitigating circumstances might change that, just said no. When I pointed out that I am not usually a patient at their clinic and was only there because it was a weekend, she mentioned that she MIGHT be able to call my on-call doctor and get approval, MAYBE. I told her that on 50mg of clomid I hadn’t even really ovulated, so what was I supposed to do? I was fucking exhausted and probably still had clomid coursing through my veins and all I could think about was missing this shot and how bad it would feel.
The nurse then left – without giving me much information about why or what was going to happen – and went running around the clinic. La later informed me she came downstairs and complained to the receptionist about me. (Side note: I have been known to be a real hardass with medical professionals who treat me poorly, but I actually didn’t this time. I just cried. Really.) La spoke up, specifically letting the nurse know that the orders from our doctor had been faxed the day before, and the nurse got a little contrite. By the time she came back up to me, she had learned that if the on-call doctor would approve the insemination with four mature follicles, they could move forward.
Thank god it was The Cover Girl on call for the weekend (which is why I was there, anyway.) The nurse tried to talk her out of it, but CG said we had talked about multiples (not entirely true, but I appreciate the small fib on my behalf) and that the risk still remained quite low for anything more than twins. And so, with the CG’s approval, we went forth! Even after what seems to me an obvious interlocution on the part of my partner, the nurse still told me ‘my husband’ could go leave his sample. So, downstairs I ran to tell BFF to do his thing.
A little while later, they called me back in and a different nurse prepped me for the IUI. Unlike the ma and pop process at the doctor, this IUI involved a lot of paperwork and chain-of-custody forms for the sperm sample. I guess I am grateful to know, without a doubt, its BFF’s guys that got injected into my uterus. The process was slightly more painful than the last, although that was mostly because she pinched me with the speculum.
And then, off we went, into an exhausting Saturday. BFF’s total count post wash was 11 million with 89% motility. Even if only 4% of those suckers are well dressed enough for a long term date with an ovum, that’s pretty good – right? And FOUR whole eggs hanging out seems like pretty good odds. 11 million sperm, 4 eggs – we just need one baby.