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Oh, It’s Tuesday: IVF Part Deux [The Results]

Ugh, I’ve started and restarted this blog from several different angles at this point. The first attempt was a meditation on worry, and how you do a lot of it between the embryo transfer and getting your pregnancy results. I planned to list all my worries out in a slow reveal of an epiphany that hit me like a ton of bricks Monday morning while I was brushing my teeth, and preparing to get my blood drawn for the umpteenth time this month: worry, I concluded, really is a useless emotion. I had heard this theory put forth many times — I am after all, a Californian — but I had never understood it on a truly practical level the way I did that morning after a mostly sleepless night of terrible dreams and watching a hamster spin itself into a state inside my head. I’m not sure how I’ll feel about this when I’ve actually gotten a few decent nights of sleep, but right now, my brain seems to have short-circuited. I’m officially too tired to worry anymore. However, I got bored during the listing of my worries and abandoned that post.

The second attempt was talking about how getting pregnant through IVF is different from getting pregnant through traditional means. I didn’t even get through the first sentence of that. But if you really want to know: SO many needles; countless ultrasound wands up your hou-hah; tests and more tests for everything — even the things you never would have thought of; unusual emotions that you don’t know whether to attribute to hormones, the situation, or the drugs; shooting progesterone up your hou-hah every night (which feels kind of like the longest yeast infection treatment ever); and most of all the bizarre nature of conception. Basically this involves drinking 32 oz of water within half an hour, and then taking a valium and four ibuprofen. About an hour later you hold your partner’s hand while a nurse pushes down on your full bladder while your doctor inserts a freshly-unfrozen embryo. Yet, somehow as you watch the embryo sliding in, you forget about your bladder for a full 30 seconds, b/c it is so beautiful, and for a small moment, you feel lucky, because relatively few parents get to see this moment. Yes, you think to yourself, we’re actually the lucky ones. But after the camera ultrasound picture goes away, your bladder informs you that if you don’t empty it now, it’s going to embarrass you in front of all these high-falutin’ people. And that’s when a nurse tells you that you’ll just need to lie still with your hips elevated, giving your embryo the chance to do its thing… for 30 minutes. And when everyone leaves you in the dimly lit room by yourself, yes, there are a few tears, because it’s basically impossible not to cry at least once during the IVF process, and because you really, really, really have to go.

I merely thought about a third attempt, in which I would explain why I don’t believe in privacy for myself when it comes to IVF. But I couldn’t figure out how to explain this. There are political arguments: if we don’t talk about it, then we stigmatize it. And why should IVF exist in the shadows of stigma? There is the spiritual argument: I am very superstitious that things will not happen unless I announce them. For example, unless I broadcast to the world that I am going to write a novel, then that novel will not get written. I quietly went about the infertility process for quite a while last time and nothing worked. Then I announced on the blog that we were going to get IVF and that did. I’m aware that many women believe the opposite, but the fact remains that my personal ethos dictates that only when I announce my intentions, do my intentions come true. ┬áLastly, there is the me argument: For whatever reason, it has never been in my nature to keep private things private. I think people either have the privacy gene or they don’t, simple as that. I remember getting in trouble with my mother for “putting our family business in the street” when I was younger. She had a pretty staunch privacy gene. I do not. Privacy, I’ve found out during my 34 years on this earth, only gets me in trouble.

But none of those ideas worked out, so I guess I’ll just have to end with this: We found out yesterday at 2:40pm that I am pregnant with our second child. Later that night we celebrated with Marinelli’s Sparkling Cider and cupcakes. We are at this moment, the happiest we’ve ever been. And we feel closer to complete than we ever have before. Our fingers remain super-duper crossed in the hopes that it all continues to work out.Thank you so very, very much for all of your prayers, kind words, and support.

100% Love,