We never imagined Scout to be an only child and so when she was only 4 months old we stocked up on some of her donor’s sperm from the London Sperm Bank so we could one day realise this. Since then, it’s been tucked away in a little freezer somewhere in the darkest depths of London waiting to be called on to do it’s job.
A couple of months ago we got in touch with a fertility clinic in Sheffield and arranged a meeting to put together a plan of action. I’d somehow blocked out most of the (highly stressful) treatment we had to have Scout. For one thing I’d forgotten that the clinic would want to know every little detail about our lives to the point where it feels as though you are having the toughest job interview of your life – to be a parent. Completely irrelevant questions were asked – the consultant focused on Kate’s disability for at least half an hour when this felt redundant to us really… It wouldn’t be Kate carrying the baby so we couldn’t really understand it and were left biting our tongues . Were they questioning her ability to parent? Or was it pure nosiness?
Anyway, you’d think having had a child already (who is by all accounts is happy and thriving) we’d be spared the in-depth questioning but we were even asked to go to a counselling appointment so we would understand what we were getting ourselves in for. (Having brought a hyperactive toddler along to the meeting who was happily playing with the uterus model on the table I think I know what I’m getting myself in for thank-you-very-much.)
From our point of view it looks so easy for hetro-sexual couples to have babies when I totally know that’s absolutely not the case for everyone. For a same sex couple it’s hard when you feel like you need to jump through so many hoops in order to even be allowed to try and get pregnant. Next step is a HIV test at some point in the next couple of weeks. Another box to tick and another waiting game. I’m just going to have to try really hard to be patient and let all of the leg work wash over me and concentrate on giving myself the best chance possible to get pregnant… acupuncture, lots of dairy and exercise here I come!
I’ve no idea if these things will even help but they may have done when I became pregnant with Scout so it won’t hurt to give them a try. Plus maybe they will keep my mind occupied during the whole process.
I’m now one week post IUI and what a crazy week it’s been. I’m using the progesterone suppositories to support the possible pregnancy and I’m finding the physical side of them fine but I have no idea if some of the craziness I’m experiencing is down to them or just PMT or perhaps side effects from the trigger shot I had to give myself the night before the IUI.
I’m generally not a spotty person at all. I even luckily missed all that during my teenage years and have had lovely clear skin since then. However, at the moment I have THE MOTHER of all spots on my face. Think painful everytime I smile, move or basically show any sort of emotion. You can see it for miles. I was having a cuppa in a cafe in Soho the other day and one of my sort of ex-boyfriends from around 10 years ago walks in as he’s seen us in the window and wants to say hi. Cue me wildly trying to hide said spot using any prop I can muster from hand, to mug…even my phone. CRINGE.
I also had a complete melt down after seeing a play this week which was quite sad but not standing on the Southbank sobbing for ten minutes sad. I mean, come on body get it together!!
Anyway only 1 week to go and then I guess I will do a test. BFP or BFN (getting used to the acronyms used in the fertility world!) whatever happens I’ll have a plan for the next month and can act accordingly. I’m just still trying to think positive!
So the IUI went without a hitch, we think.
After a long wait in the waiting room with me downing loads of water as the treatment has to be done on a full bladder we headed down to the basement of CRGH bursting for a wee. The room was dimly lit and very clean and just contained an ultra scan machine, it was all pretty chilled really. I got undressed and it was all over in minutes. Bit like a smear test…uncomfortable but ok and I did my best to visualise the little spermoids swimming in and making contact with the egg. (I was told to do this, as well as think lots of positive thoughts.) I then had to lie down for about 15 minutes and then head home. We spent the day relaxing and eating yummy food and thinking good thoughts!
I’m writing this five days after the IUI and I feel completely wiped. The medication they have given me comes with lots of side effects which bizarrely are a bit like pregnancy signs like sore boobs, tummy ache, tiredness etc. But I keep having to remind myself that they might mean nothing at all and not to get my hopes up. I’m already having to stop myself googling IUI success rates every two minutes… it’s all I think about at the moment…!
1 week and 3 days and then we shall know!
Just had the phone call from CRGH telling me to trigger the ovulation by giving myself an injection so tomorrow will be IUI day! eek! Exciting…good vibes please!
I’m not going to talk too much about choosing the sperm as K wants to get in to all that, but it’s all a bit of an odd experience.
For the past week I have had ‘high fertility’ according to our little ClearBlue fertility monitor and that’s meant going in to the CRGH every day for internal scans and watching my follicle like a hawk. Every day we have not known whether today ‘will be the day’ that I get inseminated so everything has had to take a back seat…theatre trips, birthday parties, friends coming over…work. It’s been a really odd week as I am determined to stay at chilled as possible so have tried to get rid of all stressful aspects of my life. However since I’m totally anxious and nervous about the IUI itself the week hasn’t really played out that way.
This morning we went in for yet another scan thinking that the IUI would happen today or tomorrow but my little follicle needs to grow just a tiny bit more for the doctors to be happy. So I had a blood test to measure my hormones and am currently at home waiting for a phone call from the nurse to tell me whether to inject myself tonight in prep for IUI tomorrow or just to come back for a scan in the morning.
Everyone that knows knows I am terrible at not knowing what I am doing. I’m a planner and I plan pretty much every hour of my day. I don’t like to waste time… I like multi tasking and getting tons done in one day but this week I’ve just felt shattered so I’ve been allowing myself some luxury day time naps and have been trying to do relaxing activities like cooking or reading which has actually been quite nice. So this afternoon has consisted of a rest and me urging my follicle to grow and doing lots of visualisation techniques which apparently are supposed to improve chances of conceiving. Hmm…we’ll see.