This morning at 8.30am I had my 3rd ultrasound of the week to check if I was ready for IUI (artificial insemination). My 4 follicles looked ready (size info below) and my RE said my lining looked beautiful, aaah I never dreamt I’d feel so proud of someone telling that my uterine lining was ‘beautiful’ but this is the weirdo I’ve become. The pride soon disappeared with her next words ‘you’re ready for the trigger injection!’.
I’ve heard this sentence many times and I know I should feel happy because it means the sperm will be inseminated the next day but it just freaks me out. It began with a burst of excitement ‘oh wow I’m actually ready!’ Quickly met with a feeling of dread ‘no no no don’t get excited, it probably won’t work.’
It’s been over a year since we did any treatment and this will be our 4th IUI after doing 4 IVF’s. Sounds odd to go back to basics but my RE said we have to ‘start again’ because so many things have changed.
THE UPDATES AND CHANGES:
1) My husband had a varicocele repair to improve sperm DNA fragmentation.
2) I had a septate resection which means an embryo can actually implant and grow.
3) Meds wise she stripped it right back. I did a lower dose of stims using only 150iu of Follistim (compared to 200-300). NO Menopur, no baby aspirin, no human growth hormone and no estrogen. I actually responded really well.
4) She will give me the trigger injection earlier than usual to prevent ‘overcooking the lead eggs’. In the past my follicle size has always been around 18-22mm before triggering and she thinks this has damaged egg quality. This time I had 4 lead follicles (ideal number is 3-5 for IUI), they were perfectly synced (same size) and at the right measurement of 17/18mm (not too big/ mature).
Leading up to this I gave myself firm instructions to have zero expectations as IUI has such a low success rate (only 10-15%). The mental coaching worked a treat and I felt ready for action… until she said the T word.
BUT WHY IS THE TRIGGER INJECTION SO HARD?
The trigger needle appears to be aggressive due to the sheer length (e.g. Novarel) but that part is a doddle. The hard bit is the internal slanging match between my excitable heart and my cautious head. Made a million times worse by having my body flooded with the hCG hormone that tells my body it’s pregnant and it will last for around 2 weeks – even if it works or not. Fake pregnancy? SO EVIL.
So I went home, did the trigger injection and watched the battle begin.
The fight involved wishing this was all over so I could get the turmoil out of my life. Then I felt guilty because I know I’m lucky I can get help. I then regretted telling anyone because they were hoping it went well for me but I just wanted to pretend it wasn’t happening. And then I cried because I was being so ungrateful and negative because it was actually really nice to have the support. See what I mean? Ridiculous.
I know it’s mostly the fake pregnancy state that’s made me into this mess but it reminds me why I hate this process so much. Because I hate the person I become. My only salvation is an end date. Right now I want this to be the last round but we said one more IVF after this IUI then GAME OVER. Maybe we should have a party to celebrate the freedom? Like when people have a divorce party. Turn it into a positive? Maybe not.
So there we go, this IUI is our penultimate treatment before closing the door and my legs to fertility treatment once and for all.
My eggs are ready, my lining is ‘beautiful’ so it’s over to you now sperm.
Don’t f#%k it up!