Ferret Hormones, Walking Egg Cartons and Vaginal Fishing Floats. Or, When Infertility Gets Weird.

I’m always tempted to apologize after a long absence from the blogging, but then I remember that this was supposed to be some kind of therapeutic tool, and if I were my own therapist I’d have to ask me a whole bunch of probing questions and try to explore the deeper context of my apology, e.g. some kind of lingering repressed guilt from my mother or something, and frankly it’s the weekend and I’m burnt out and I don’t really fucking care where my lingering repressed guilt comes from on a Friday night. So there.

I guess I haven’t had much processing to do lately. I mean, the journey goes on and uterine hilarity continues to ensue, as well as tears and sadness and frustration sometimes. People around me get knocked up and I don’t, and I have a really hard time with that no matter what kind of evolved zen mantra-mumbling place I’m in. It sucks. But I think I’m feeling a bit more longitudinal about it right now.

Last month we went in to see the Doc, who described a truly appalling process in which I would be flooded with hormones (whose hormones? People hormones? Animal hormones? Scary GMO robot hormones? I don’t know. Seriously. Whose hormones?) over the course of 7 to 10 days that cause my ovaries to go into massive superproduction and pop like 7 eggs, and then the “trigger shot” (I believe that there is a genuine market need for less horrifying names for all this shit) makes them release. And then I have like quintuplets or something. He laid it all out and it was daunting and awful and jaw-droppingly expensive, so we filed it in the “nuclear option” bin and went for the far less costly and upsetting IUI.

And it was in general far less upsetting. It hurt like a &%$#@ because of my old friend endometriosis, but my husband was there and made me laugh with his little pep talk to his sperm on their way in – “Alright you guys, remember what we talked about! Get in there!” The only really upsetting part was later in the evening, after I had gone directly from the doctor’s office to a staff party and finally got around to going in the bathroom and taking out what Dr. S had described as “just a little plug to keep the sperm where they should be”. As I’d had my legs up with a sheet draped over them when he was finishing the job, I did not see it go in and was picturing some kind of dainty little tampon-shaped thing. So I was utterly aghast when I pulled out what looked like a small nautical buoy the size of my palm wrapped in a plastic bag tied at the top with dental floss. Like a gods damn fishing float. Holy crap. Have you guys seen these things? I was so grossed out I finally had to tell the women I was hanging out with after a couple of glasses of wine. One of my staff is from the Midwest and when I described the abominable thing she cheerfully informed me that those are what they use when they inseminate cows. So, you know, that happened.

And as it turned out, it didn’t work. I will point out here, as I refrained from pointing out to Dr. Pushypants, that when I had so rashly taken all that pesky control over my vajayjay and did a home insemination, I managed to knock myself up on the first try. Ahem. Who’s counting?

So we moved on to the nuclear option. A week of shooting up ferret hormones or whatever the fuck they are, then becoming a giant walking egg carton. My husband was totally mortified when I told him we’d be doing it at home, and would he please do the actual poking part because I didn’t think I could cause myself that kind of pain. Once I tried to give myself a bikini wax but wussed out and couldn’t go through with it, so I had to sit in a bathtub full of Coke to get all the glue off. True story. But he cowboy’d up and watched the instructional video twice and scrubbed down the entire coffee table and went to work, albeit with significant anxiety. I kept offering to do it myself but he declared that it was his part of the process and that it was the least he could do. He did a great job and only made me bleed a little bit. It was a rough week physically and I felt like absolute arse toward the end. If I lay down on my stomach it felt like I was lying on two little golf balls where my ovaries used to be.

Today I went back in for the IUI. On the way over my sister and I were on the phone cracking up about getting a buoy in my hooey. It hurt even more like a &*%$@# this time because my entire pelvic region is all sore and bloated and unnaturally egged out like an Easter basket on steroids. Also, my doc uses these horrible old-fashioned metal things to pry me open. They’ve got all knobs and dials and stuff. One time when I was waiting for him to come in the room I peeked into the drawer I’d seen him take one out of and it looked like Steampunk Gynecology in there. Fucking horrifying.

So anyway, that’s the catch-up. I think the Catbox might be pretty bad this time around, since we’ve just sunk upwards of $2500 into my mysteriously dysfunctional lady place and there’s a little, you know, pressure in that. I’m going to try to keep up better with the writing so that I don’t fall back into the bad place.

Here we go…




13 thoughts on “Ferret Hormones, Walking Egg Cartons and Vaginal Fishing Floats. Or, When Infertility Gets Weird.

  1. Good luck! The quintuplet talk from my fertility doctor scared the bejesus out of me. Here’s hoping for successful baby making.

  2. sarah says:

    Just went to my first IUI rodeo last week and may I just say that I’m feeling rather miffed – no one offered me a vaginal fishing float. Jerks.

    (Also, you and I both know they’re GMO chinese hamster ovary hormones. At least that’s what my friends on Ask Jeeves told me.)

    • The bastards. I’ll send you some from my guy. Or you could just take a Nerf hockey puck, wrap it up in a white plastic bag and tie it off with dental floss. And then put it in your ladyhole. Yikes.

  3. those shots and fishing floats (okay, there were no fishing floats in our doctor’s office) got me knocked up pretty quickly. i hope they work for you, too.

  4. newtoivf says:

    According to Zita West, the UK IVF guru, the hormones are either extracted from the urine of post menopausal / pregnant women or from genetically engineered chinese hamster ovary cells, depending on which flavour your clinic prefers! Good thing its not totally weird or gross huh?

  5. Oh hi, you! Glad to see you here. I feel the same guilt when I haven’t posted for awhile, which is ridiculous, of course, because we don’t owe each other anything.

    A couple of things:
    1) The discovery of the fishing float sounds hilarious/terrible as does your bikini wax bathtub incident. These stories make me feel slightly less crazy, because they mean that I’m not the only one who does weird shit or has weird shit done to them.
    2) I completely understand why you’re overwhelmed with the nuclear option. It’s an overwhelming prospect to take the plunge from mildly expensive/invasive treatment to moderately expensive/invasive treatment. We’re on the cusp of a similar jump. Scary stuff.

    • Weird shit has become a way of life. I think it just has to in this process. When you spend a significant portion of your day in management of the function, schedule and projected outcomes of your vagina, weird shit just IS.

      Good luck with that cusp, mama. Let us know how it goes.

  6. Kitten says:

    I love your sense of humor about all this. You almost have to, right, just so you don’t go insane? Wishing you the best of luck!

  7. so if this is the nuclear option what does that make IVF? Good luck with this IUI! BTW – It’s always nice you see your posts and I did wonder about you but don’t feel obligated to apologize for any time you spend away from the blog. Like you said, we start these blogs to help us deal, not to hinder our lives in anyway.

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