IVF #2 Egg Retrieval: A Multimedia Essay
December 31, 2008
Egg retrieval for IVF #2 went pretty well this morning.
First, for your listening pleasure as you read the rest of my post, my retrieval playlist (which I played this morning to begin my journey to the clinic, followed by an hour of other Radiohead songs):
No alarms and no surprises please
–Radiohead, No Surprises
For you I’ve waited all these years
For you I’d wait ’til kingdom come
–Coldplay, ‘Til Kingdom Come
I believe in you and me
I’m coming to find you
If it takes me all night
–The Killers, Everything Will Be Alright
I was able to do all of the preparation for the houseguests yesterday (with the help of our housecleaner), except for a few things I finished this morning before leaving the house. The eight houseguests have dwindled to five — the family of four has been replaced by That Guy. The family bowed out because the logistics were too difficult with young children — not the kind of parent that I hope to be, but very typical. Once That Guy realized that most of his friends would be at this party, he just had to join in. When I previously told you That Guy is the kind of husband’s friend that most wives can’t stand, I was so correct. Even though the Other Hosts have room for That Guy, Mrs. OH has decreed that he is not allowed to stay there. In contrast, DH and I welcome everyone. Once you have four houseguests following an egg retrieval, what’s one more person?
Back to the retrieval. A snowstorm started just as we were arriving at the clinic.
Nine eggs retrieved. 111 million sperm, though they only need 9. Not much else to tell. I think I’m getting used to the general anesthesia; I’ve spent the whole day awake (we’ll see how long that holds out during the New Year’s celebration). Not sure if the transfer will be Friday or Saturday.
Unlike IVF #1 at the hospital, at the clinic they let me wear my own socks instead of the lawsuit-prevention socks with the rubber soles.
Needing as much luck as we can get, I decided to expand the sock superstition by giving DH a pair of his own today. He’s been lobbying for cozy socks for months; I bought these for him weeks ago but forgot about them when we canceled Christmas. DH said there was no way he was wearing nothing but these socks during his part of the process. Since we agreed that he could keep his shoes and other clothes on as well, he has become quite fond of them.
By the time we were finished with everything, the snowstorm was in full effect. Our drive home took almost twice as long as usual. Here is a photo depicting the early stages of the storm, featuring the pole outside of the clinic which always cracks me up.
Then, literally as we were backing out of the parking spot to start the long drive home, DH received a phone call from Mr. Other Host, who will be hosting tonight’s New Year’s Eve party. “Good news!”
Can you guess what kind of good news someone who has been married for six months might have to share?
Of course, the Other Hosts are pregnant.
They will be telling everyone in a grand announcement tonight at the party. DH actually has known about the pregnancy for two weeks. Mr. Other Host specifically asked to strategize with DH about the best way to tell me. Because of our decision not to tell any of DH’s friends anything about treatments anymore, Mr. Other Host does not know about the current IVF, but he does know about our fertility issues. It was very kind of him to tell me individually ahead of time rather than ambushing me in front of 20 other people.
As much as I appreciate Mr. Other Host’s sensitivity, when I was put on the spot to respond to his announcement on speakerphone, still groggy from anesthesia and in a lot of pain from post-retrieval cramping, I could only muster the weakest congratulations. DH effusively expressed his genuine excitement for them, but I didn’t share it. I absolutely care about them and want the best for them; they will be good parents, and Mr. OH is one of the most family-oriented people I know. It’s not the same bitterness that I’ve experienced with some other announcements, but I felt and continue to feel no happiness at all for them. Maybe I would have on another day, but today is not the day.
I also feel a bit like they stole my thunder (even though it was secret thunder).
So now, in addition to pretending that I’m not in terrible pain throughout the party, I must get ready for the big announcement and hours of talk about pregnancy and babies. If anyone asks when we’re going to have kids, I swear to you right now, I will say, “Fuck off” and then insult them. Today is not the day.
I foresee the creation of a sub-party in the basement, with DH, single guys, video games, and me. The sign on the door will read: No Breeders Allowed.
But the day hasn’t been only grumpiness. As we left the clinic, I spotted a restaurant and told DH to pull in, famished from having been NPO since the night before. In the midst of the snowstorm, standing outside the restaurant trying to draw customers inside, I saw something which I hope will be a good harbinger for 2009.
Thanks to everyone for all of your good wishes. Happy New Year to all of you.