So, I had my appointment at Fertility First on Tuesday. As I walked down to my car, I thought, If I have left the bloody lights on and the battery’s flat… but all was fine.
The clinic is a really beautiful Federation house with lovely gardens, art and objets, and a fish tank filled with amazing tropical fish in the room where they take blood – you feel tranquil and relaxed and that everything will be just fine. Just as well, because I just parted with $3,850 of my hard-earned. That’s just the deposit.
The nurse took blood to see if I had ovulated, as you need to have ovulated before the next step. She showed me how to inject myself with the Lucrin – yes, you do have to stick the whole length of that needle in – gave me a little showbag full of needles, a sharps container, alcohol wipes and the Lucrin itself, along with a freezer pack to keep it cold till I got it home and put it in the fridge.
The next afternoon, the nurse called – it’s all systems go – start the injections tonight!
I had a momentary wave of OH MY GOD, do I really want to do this?? But that passed quickly and was replaced by excitement. You’re supposed to give yourself the injection at exactly the same time every evening, so I have chosen 5pm, which I hope is not too early but since I get up at 4.30am every day for work, I figure it’s “evening” in Michelle hours.
5pm arrives and I prepare for the first injection of 10 units of Lucrin. God I hope I’m doing this right. I place the needle tip on my belly and in it goes. I barely felt a prick! In fact since then I keep thinking – am I doing this right? Because it’s so easy and I can’t feel a thing. So far so good
So, now the Lucrin is pulling all the strings. I am its puppet. As far as I understand, it is partially blocking naturally occurring hormones (Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH)) so that they don’t interfere with my egg development – they don’t want the eggs releasing any earlier than they are ready to collect them.
I have to say, I get quite excited every day at 5pm! I’ve set the alarm on my phone so I don’t forget, and I’ve just got to make sure I’m home. The nurse said (under sufferance) that they give you an hour’s leeway in doing the injection, but really, it has to be done at the same time every day.
The next (clinical) step is to go back next Friday for some “down regulation”, when I think I start FSH injections. I know I’m a bit fuzzy on the medical specifics, but the doctor has worked all that out so I don’t have to!
There were a few surprises/minor shocks at the appointment. Apparently if some part of the process isn’t working the way it should, other drugs need to be taken – at about $160 a pop! Literally, $160 PER INJECTION. Crap. And the half day in hospital on the day of egg collection costs about $2,000. My private health insurance won’t cover this as there’s a 12 month waiting period for any kind of ART or pregnancy related services, and Medicare will only rebate a small amount. BUT, as I said, i for a penny… in for (the amount keeps increasing) $10,000.
My mantra is … everything is working perfectly and I am pregnant on the first try. I just heard that the sister of a friend of mine is pregnant after her first attempt, which is heartening, especially as she was having lots of actual sex before that with no luck. Having fun probably but no cigar. For me – no fun = no proof that I have trouble getting pregnant = up the duff first time!
And god knows, I can only afford one round!
My next step? CHOOSE THE BABY DADDY!! The clinic gives you a basic list, which gives you details of height, weight, build, race, eye colour, hair colour and a general idea of his occupation. There is only one Aussie donor on the list (where are they??), the rest are from a sperm bank in the US. I can go onto the American website and get more details about each donor – family medical history, blood type, other information about his relatives, hobbies, skin tone. For a fee, I can access a baby photo and an adult photo of the donor.
And I’m going to pay that fee, because I want a pretty baby! I want to breed out this Celtic skin of mine, which is so not suited to the Australian climate, or any climate for that matter. And I want smart. And tall. And kind. All the attributes I would be looking in an actual man. Of course I will love whatever I am given, but really, who would go for a huge nose, weak chin, crooked teeth and bad skin if they had a choice?
And off I go, to choose the donor! Whoa.