The big orientation was a on Wednesday. Our appointment was at 8:30am, and the big ass storm was coming overnight from Tuesday to Wednesday. Sattva and Mr. August took the train on Tuesday night and joined me in Fertility Treatment Town (FTT). The weather Gods were trying to mess with our fertility plans, but we said pashaw, that's already been screwed up. We slept at Mr. August's parents' house, also in FTT (just to keep you appraised of everything: Fertility Clinic, Fantastic Job, Mr. August's parents = all in FTT. Sattva, Mr. August, grad school, Chicken, my heart = all in Pleasantville). I loved picking them up at the train station. When I was looking at them both walking towards me from the train platform, I felt a wave of emotion. It's going to take all three of us to make a baby.
The storm roared its terrible roar and gnashed its terrible teeth, but when it was all said and done, it was less than the foot of snow they were threatening. We drove to the hospital and got there only 10 minutes late.
And then, the marathon really started.
I was surprised to see our nurse when we arrived. It is the same nurse we had when we were going through the IUI. The last time I spoke to her was on October 1, 2009, when I was weeping inconsolably on the phone because there was no response from my ovaries and it meant the end of the line. I always wondered if I would run into her during one of my visits to the clinic, but that never happened. And I wasn't sure if she would be our nurse case manager or if she would pass the baton to someone else. I'm glad we get to work with her again. I always quite liked her and after Wednesday, I like her even more.
Sattva went in first to give her medical history to the nurse, and then all three of us went in for the full orientation session. We went through in fine detail what meds would be taken when and by whom. Mr. August came out pretty easy in that part. By 11am, we had reviewed all the steps and Sattva had practiced injecting the skin simulating foamy block with her Gon.al-f pen a few times. But this was only the beginning.
We then had to meet with the psychologist again to sign all the consents and review what conversations we had since our meetings in early January. That was pretty straightforward. I like the psychologist, so it feels pretty comfortable to chat with him. And he is starting to be more familiar with us, so he was teasing Mr. August about his hypothetical questions (Mr. A is quite a divergent thinker who likes to think of all sorts of hypothetical scenarios just for the fun of it. You can imagine that with third party reproduction, there are many scenarios to run through, and his mind just lights up like a Christmas tree).
Mr. August and I then went to the business administrator's office to talk about moulah. Quick and simple. We have to have all of it paid by the time she starts the stims. I just paid for half of it on that day, and we will pay for the other half in the next few weeks.
After Sattva and I fantasized about eating Thai food for lunch, they told us that our RE couldn't see us until after lunch, but since we only had an hour, cafeteria food was our only option. It wasn't bad. We were all very hungry so even cardboard would have worked.
After lunch, our stamina somewhat restored, we went back up to the waiting room. Our meeting with Dr. RE had two specific goals: discussing the time line and addressing a question I had raised during our time with the nurse. The question was one which stirred strong feelings inside. They wanted me on sup.ref.act and I could not understand why. Why would a hormonal system that is nonfunctional need to be suppressed. My hypothalamus, sadly, does not produce gonadotropins. I would like it to, but it doesn't. Dr. RE came into the appointment knowing that I was taking exception to this prescription and initially responded by saying basically that: "it's the protocol". He supplemented this by saying that we couldn't take the risk that my system all of a sudden wakes up and starts to ovulate. Oh. Was that a pig flying out that window? I persisted in my questioning, ready to suck it up and take the freakin meds if I needed to, but determined to understand why I would do that. "If I am taking the sup.refa.ct to block signals from my hypothalamus to my ovaries, but we already know that the receptors on my ovaries do not respond to gonadotropins (425 iu of meno.pur a day and still nothing), then what will it accomplish". In answering this question, Dr. RE convinced himself that I did not need to take it. Case closed. I felt pretty happy to have stood my ground on that. So, Sattva will be the one taking all the supre.fact in this round.
Next, came the question of timing. Sattva was on CD4 on Wednesday, which meant that we had lost the opportunity for CD3 blood work for a whole month. Our nurse wasn't sure Dr. RE would allow us to jump onto this cycle, or have to wait for Sattva to complete another cycle. Our beloved nurse made all the calculations for us to start on this cycle and quickly had Dr. RE convinced that we could go ahead. YEAH!
Next was a little vag cam action for Augusta. I was on my 10th day of estr.ace and they wanted to see what my lining looked like. And what do you know: 4.5mm. Not bad!. And he even FOUND one of my ovaries this time (they don't usually find my ovaries because they are so minuscule). I got a phone call today that they are increasing my est.race as of today to see if how much my lining can be increased in preparation for next month's cycle, the one where theoretically, a couple of embryos will be invited to make their home inside Augusta's fleecy endometrium.
The marathon appointment left on a high note. We are moving ahead with this cycle right now. Sattva starts her supre.fact on Feb. 18 and then probably starts her stims on March 3, depending on how things look like on her March 2 ultrasound.
Augusta = cautiously, positively hopeful