Saturday, March 9, 2013

Embryos and Bedpans

Here I am lying on the couch typy typing on my brand spanking new laptop. We’ve been discussing the purchase of a new computer since September, and I decided that now is as good a time as any, especially since I thought I might feel compelled to do something other than watch TV during my two day bed rest. I gotta say having a laptop is bomb diggity. So is being on bedrest.

My sister is doing dishes and the kids are running amuck and there is a super blizzard outside and I haven’t been up on my feet for more than five times since yesterday afternoon—and only to pee. I try to be helpful by yelling at the children from my stationary post, but I am on mandatory bed rest since yesterday’s embryo transfer, you know, to get the little sucker to stick and all. Not that it could just fall right out or anything…in fact, the nurse made a point of telling me that it’s perfectly okay to have a normal BM because it wouldn’t get pushed out either way. Giggle. BM.

I gotta say, I’m sort of enjoying being a lazy sack and having people do things for me. Yesterday my husband brought me grilled cheese and tomato soup in bed, and my sister served up some mac ‘n’ cheese for lunch to the kiddos and me on the couch. I tried testing the limits of my husband’s patient servitude yesterday, saying “fetch me this and that”, and he was shockingly cheerful through it all. My sister is super duper awesome and helpful too, but I feel a tinge of guilt when there’s chaos and screaming and people need fed and poops need wiped and dishes need cleaned and laundry needs washed, and here I am lying on the couch surfing the net. I still think that I need a bell though.

Dooley works an hour away and won’t be coming home tonight—to avoid driving in the snow—and as a result, my sister and I are going to have to be brave little toasters and do the butt shot alone. That needle is friggen huge: several inches long and as thick as pencil lead. Old school pencil lead, not those newfangled mechanical pencils the kids have these days. Wait. The kids just have ipads now. Does anyone know how to write by hand anymore? I know I suck at it. My handwriting is an illegible scribbley mix of script and print.

For those who are interested in the technicalities, the aforementioned butt shot is Progesterone in Oil, an intramuscular shot meant to help maintain early pregnancy, and I will have to continue using it every other day for another 4-6 weeks. This saddens me. Amazingly, however, if I ice my arse cheek for several minutes beforehand, it’s numb enough for the massive shot not to be the most painful experience ever, and if the shot-giver is brave enough to use a “quick, dart-like motion”, and really commit to it, I hardly feel it…other than the uncomfortable pressure of the fluid being injected. Then I massage the muscle for awhile and all is well.

Five paragraphs later, the main event: the embryo transfer itself. I hate to disappoint, but the procedure in and of itself was very quick and simple. Similar to a regular ladyparts checkup, only with more people and equipment in the room. There’s the endocrinologist with the embryo warming stuff, and a little screen where we could view the embryo itself before it was sucked up into the turkey baster. But it’s really nothing like a turkey baster, so scratch that. I think it’s a very thin tube. Anyway, there was also the bigwig doctor, a nurse, and ultrasound tech. On the ultrasound screen, you could see a huge black mass, i.e. my insanely full bladder, and also my uterus, where you could watch the tiny embryo get shot in. Really fast. The most uncomfortable part was the bladder pressure. Enter the fun part of this experience…

As I mentioned in my last post, acupuncture is a common procedure on the day of transfer. I had a treatment before and after the transfer. It’s supposed to do things like prevent uterine contractions and regulate hormones. Whatevs. So once all the needles were in for treatment #1, I remembered I was supposed to drink a crapton of water so I had a full bladder (which makes it easier to see things in the ultrasound). Since my arms and hands were bristling with needles, I asked Dooley to be so kind as to pour some water in my mouth. I know what you’re thinking: bad idea…he won’t be able to resist the urge to pour it everywhere. But you’d be wrong, because he successfully delivered several gulps of spill-free water. That’s trust. Then we got overconfident, and we all know that pride comes before a fall.

So there I was, on the doctory bed, in the doctory hospital gown, immobilized by needles, struggling with wobbly abs to lift my head enough to drink the water being carefully poured by my dearest husband (let me just say that drinking while mostly lying flat is very difficult), and suddenly there was too much water, too fast. There was also a second of continued pouring. I coughed and spurted and couldn’t swallow the mouthful of water, and out it came. I was soaked all over my left shoulder and arm, and there was a puddle on the floor. I continued to hack and hack for a good few minutes, but also couldn’t stop laughing about it. Perhaps it was the valium they gave me, but I kept picturing what had just occurred and kept on laughing and coughing and laughing and coughing. It was funny. (Yeah, probably the valium.) Not exactly the restful time that was intended. Luckily no one came in right then, but when the acupuncturist came back and I sheepishly told her what had happened, she made sure I had new warm, dry hospital clothes. All the bedding there was nice and hot, like it had just come out of the dryer. Singsong voice: looooovelyyyy!

Anyway, I cautiously used the hand with the fewest needles to gulp down the rest of the water bottle myself, and by the time we were transfer-ready, I was pee-ready. To the max. The ultrasound tech pushed directly on my bladder the whole time, but luckily the whole thing was very quick. Soon it was time for my second acupuncture treatment, but before that, I had the pleasure of peeing the bed. No not really, but I had to…or got to…use a bedpan. I say “had to” because they wouldn’t let me get up to pee, but I say “got to” because I’ve never been so thrilled to have an empty bladder, even if it meant using a bedpan. Still, very humbling, to say the least, and any girl who’s had a similar experience will know that gravity does unpleasant things with fluid when you’re lying down and peeing, i.e. makes it go all over your backside. Dooley was there the whole time too; our giggling about the whole thing gave me pee stage fright, but once I let loose, it felt sooooo good, and that bowl was quite full. Almost full enough to be bathing my ass checks in my own warm urine. Then the poor nurse who had to remove it almost spilled when Dooley was trying to be helpful by opening the door but bumped into her instead. Almost spilled. Gratefully there was no actual spill.
My second acupuncture treatment was much more restful, other than my intensely itchy nose, which I asked Dooley to scratch for me. He obliged, but then made me “eat my boogars”. Joke’s on you, babe, there are no boogars outside my nose. Plus when he was ever-so-carefully helping me out of the bed, he was surprised upon touching a damp sheet--then horrified when he realized it was a little pee that had escaped the bedpan. HA. And ew. On another note, he very helpfully and maturely kept the IPs (intended parents) updated on progress throughout the day via text messaging.

Anyway. I may or may not be now pregnant with someone else’s baby. I have ten anxiety-ridden days until the first pregnancy test, or “beta”. Tomorrow I can resume normal activity, but sadly, I can’t resume my hardcore exercise routine (*snicker*).


  1. so much of this made me ell oh ell

  2. Lovely images of Dooley water-boarding you, then making you eat boogars. Dooley being loving and supportive. LOL. I think the process would go about as well with Paul.



New Year New Me: Pony Progress

Today I thought I’d mix up my morning “internesting” ritual (coffee and computer time, usually comfortably nested on the couch); I brought ...