So as you may recall, the new plan was three rounds of IVF, the first of which helpfully kicked off when I was on holiday — oh the lolz, I can’t even. To start with there’s the fact I’m not drinking. I can get away with the health kick fallacy when I’m dressed — I’m 40 FFS I’ve had years of figuring out how to hide the lumps I hate and flaunt the bumps I don’t — but when I’m in a bikini and my stomach is nowhere near close to flat, and several kegs away from the six-pack that should be the reward for my impressive dedication to abstinence, it doesn’t really work. (Privately I’m blaming the hormones for the excess lard, which may or may not be fair, but either way if someone told me they were on a health kick and had the sort of body I’m sporting at the moment, I’d tell them to kick a bit fucking harder.)
I’ve developed this bollocks spiel about “mindful drinking” but in a bid to move the conversation on, I also throw in lines like “but it’s quite hard to talk to other people who are still drinking about this without sounding like you’re passing judgement which I’m absolutely not” — frankly I’m surprised I’ve got any friends left.
So yeah, clandestine injections and then ridiculous scenarios like the one I wrote about in my last post ensued. This time around I’m on a drug called Pergoveris. It combines the follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) that’s in Gonal-F (the drug I took when I was freezing my eggs) with luteinising hormone (LH). I should know why, but I’ve started to have a bit of apathy about the whys and wherefores. This whole thing is exhausting enough so I’m slightly just letting go and assuming my consultant knows best. But basically let’s just assume it’s because I’m older and my ovaries are shitter and need more help.
And despite the extra hormones, my ovaries are still being a bit shit. Sorry ovaries, you’re not really, you’re just being 40 years old, it’s not your fault. Upshot being that today, I had the egg retrieval process, and they got two eggs out. Two. Bearing in mind that when I was egg freezing, they collected between four and eight eggs, it’s not what we might call ideal.
But then maybe I’ve recalibrated my expectations. Because I kind of knew that it was looking like that from the scans. And I’m not really disappointed. It just is what it is. I can’t even get excited about it because those eggs have to be fertilised, and form embryos, and even then they may not be good enough to freeze or use…
Yet that is where we are, one round of IVF down. And who knows what to show for it. I do know that when I spoke to my consultant she told me that the next cycle we do will be a natural cycle, which is basically where you don’t pump yourself full of loads of drugs, (which in my case seemed to have limited effect anyway) you just aim to retrieve the one egg that the body was going to release anyway. Quality not quantity, as I keep reminding myself…
PS (because I know that among the gritty medical crap, you need a bit of a lol, fuck knows I do) It’s not that I’m deliberately trying to create scenes for a screenplay from my life — because let’s bear in mind that this is My Actual Life — but these small yet hilarious incidents keep on happening. Case in point when, after I’d had the egg retrieval procedure and was in recovery, I had to hide my phone screen from the nurse who came in to check my blood pressure. Because I was messaging guys on Tinder. Which somehow probably isn’t quite the done thing. Yet again, I found myself wondering “How The Fuck Is This My Life?”