Saturday, February 2, 2008

Pull up a Chair.

What I appreciate about you, cyber friends, is that I get to share the details of my newly-begun cycle without worrying that your eyes will glaze over or that you'll quickly change the subject to talk about, say, grass growing. No, if it's too lethargic a conversation, you can just move on to something more exciting, like Nieman Marcus' Spring shoes. My own husband, God love him, tries hard to pay attention. Ask him today what Lupron is, though, and he'll tell you I spend too much on makeup.

But a new cycle has begun and I need to share. The Lupron has continued, which really is no big deal. I'm stuck though with a 1pm shot time because my shots started during vacation. In the glare of the Caribbean sun, I figured that was a good time to take a break from the beach. Come back, dust the sand off my belly, administer shot. I didn't think at the time I would be continuing to shoot up through the rest of my 30's, which unfortunately requires a closed office door. Sometimes I close the blinds.

Now I'm on five days of Provera pills to bring on a period. So far, it's been three days of headaches. I blamed my boss for the headache my first day. Decided it was E's fault my second day. I accepted responsibility on the third day. Two more days to go. More blame to spread around.

Next we go on to nightly shots of Delestrogen. Intra-muscle. This concerns me from a process standpoint. My only experience with an intra-muscle shot is the trigger shot in November. I put a lot of thought into how this would go down. The nurse drew a circle on my left hip; I reasoned I was right handed so giving myself the shot should be easy. I just needed a well-defined target and a steady hand. Later that night, I learned I couldn't wrap my right arm around my body to reach the circle. (Next career: logistician.) So, I had to enlist my rock, E. I knew by the unnatural greenish hue in his face that he would not be sticking a needle in my hip. So, I used my left hand, got the needle in the target, and asked my rock to simply depress the plunger, which he did. His exact words, "I need to go throw up."

Naturally, I have a few concerns about how I'm going to get this done for the next 30 days. The right hip I can handle, I think. I guess for the left hip, I'm going to have to back up against a wall or McGyver-like use some duct tape and paper clips to fashion something. Or make nightly visits to the immediate care center. "Cough, cough, I'm sure I have bronchitis. Do you mind administering this shot for me while you take the throat culture?"

To complete the journey, or as I like to call this next attempt, "Is there a silver lining?", I'll double up on the oral estrogen and, thankfully, dump the climara patch. I'll continue the acupuncture. I'm cutting down on caffeine, and generally trying to eat healthier and exercise more.

So that's the schedule. Thanks for listening. I really mean that. If I've learned anything during this journey through infertility, I've learned the value of listening. No, the gift of listening. Just listening. Coupled with a sympathetic smile. A hankie. Words of encouragement.

It means more than I can say.

10 comments:

Almamay said...

Wow, that sounds like one strict regime. I've done Gestone (intramuscular progesterone injections) every day for 7 or 8 of my 2WWs. I'm a former needle phobic so I use EMLA cream to numb the area before injection. My DH usually does them but I've done a few of the injections myself and found the use of a mirror helpful. All the best.

shinejil said...

Based on this post, I think I should start practicing reaching odd corners of my rear with both hands, etc. I'm cheering you on, Melanie! Go team!

More cheers for trying to work on things like diet while doing all this.

By the way, if you want to blame someone for today's headache, feel free to blame me. Just ask any professor: We grad students are bona fide pains.

Denise said...

It's so great that you're starting a new cycle already. IM injections are definitely a pain in the ass (pun intended). You are a braver woman than me for continuing on Lupron-it makes me crazy. It also gives me headaches sometimes, so you can always blame the headaches on the Lupron.

I'm now in the habit of blaming every little ache/pain/moment of bitchiness on whatever medicine I'm taking at the time. This week, progesterone is my scapegoat.

Did they measure blood flow to your uterus last cycle? I know you had lining issues and I think sometimes the blood flow is related. Just curious. Are you doing regular acupuncture or electro?

Denise said...

Blood flow is usually measured by something called a doppler ultrasound (vaginally just like all the rest). It somehow measures the pressure in the arteries feeding the uterus. A number below 3 is preferable (the lower the number, the lower the pressure in the artery and the easier it is for the blood to get to the uterus and "feed" the lining).

My numbers were above 3 at the first check for this cycle. I underwent 2 "emergency" sessions of electro-acupuncture between that first check and the next check which was 4 days later and my numbers dropped well below 3. I really think it made a huge difference (although it didn't do anything for my lining) and I wonder if my lining would have responded better had we done the electro-acupuncture earlier on in the cycle. I think the norm is for 8 treatments prior to transfer (2 per week for 4 weeks).

My RE is pretty indifferent when it comes to regular acupuncture (and especially on transfer day), but he definitely believes in the electro for blood flow issues.

Io said...

I don't really have much to say other than owwwww, but I am listening. Just so ya know...

Duck said...

ekkk - IM shots every day and your doing it all yourself. You AMAZE me!
Anytime you want to talk about cycling, we're all hear, listening and interested.

Mrs.X said...

Hey there - you will be amazed at what you find you can do. I did my first IM progesterone shot last night and I managed to do the pretzel twist. If it is important enough, you will do it. I also think not dreading it helps - I used to get so worked up about things that by the time they arrived I was a) a nervous wreck and b) incapable of really doing anything. That is more of a mental thing than a body thing, but I think it's important.

As for listening, it's not that hard when you write so well. Best of luck on a go for your FET!

Rebecca said...

You have a lot going on med wise...I give you a lot of credit. I give you even more credit for doing the IM shots yourself...I was too much of a wimp!

Carrie said...

I've just come by from Cyclesistas. Seems we may be cycle buddies! My husband's eyes are sooo glazed over these days, I'm not sure he even knows we're on a new cycle!
I read your archives. I'm so sorry for your negative in Nov, it is hard to take when everything seems to have been perfect, huh? I'm also sorry to hear of the delay. From a girl with slight control issues, I understand the frustration of this whole deal.
Anyway I really hope it all comes together this time and I'll be following along too.

Frenchie said...

Sounds like a lot to deal with...

I'm listening...