It occurred to me yesterday, that in all the excitement of being able to announce a pregnancy, and then all the complaining about how awful pregnancy is, and what to name the baby, I’d forgotten to mention just how I finally became pregnant.
Eighteen months. Eighteen months it took us. By that eighteenth month, last August, I was very close to giving up. A year and half of sadness and defeat had taken it’s toll. Honestly, the idea of no longer trying began to feel good. At least then I would know the outcome. One child. That would be us and it would be fine. The struggle would be over and that alone was very tempting. I’d started to consider the yard sale I’d have to clear out all the saved baby gear and clothes. Just the thought of it was a release. I was getting ready to stop.
Except when I wasn’t, which was every moment that I wasn’t thinking about stopping. Every time I had one of ‘ those ‘ moments, the ones that make motherhood so absolutely wonderful. I’d think, ” No. I have to do this again. Of course I do.”
Alex was closer to the end of the rope by this time. It’s funny how we women think of ourselves as the romantic ones, the sensitive ones, especially where sex is concerned. The ovulation tracking, sex on demand regardless if you actually want to, aspect of it all was not upsetting to me. Not one bit. It was a means to a very precious end. I would have coupled with a robot to get pregnant. The Hubs? Hated it. Hated it. Any kind of sex that wasn’t based purely on desire was much more difficult for him, and hurtful I think. He was over it.
We’d tried the old-fashioned way for a good six months. Then we started in with ovulation predictors. Nothing. Next, a round or two of testing that showed that everything seemed normal. Clomid was next, but I abandoned that after only two months, it was too freaky. From that point and for the next 5 months or so, it was back to basics with loads of stress and ‘ it HAS to be today’, and ‘ I don’t care that you just came back from a twenty four shift, let’s get this going!’ kind of thing, when suddenly, matter of factly, it was suggested to me that we try a round or two of IUI. Intrauterine Insemination.
Now, at this point, I was in the OB’s office to discuss meeting with a fertility specialist and moving to the next level, namely, In Vitro Fertilization. It was late spring and I was now forty. And panicking. Turns out IUI is this incredibly simple and rather inexpensive ( cost us $165!) procedure. Why. Why. WHY had it never been mentioned to me before? I’d easily gotten pregnant with my first child at 37, a fairly clear indication that there wasn’t anything really wrong with either mine or my husband’s reproductive parts. Age was the likely culprit and all the crap that comes with that. That is going to sit in my craw for awhile, but oh well, what’s done is done, and I honestly think the age difference between these two boys will be perfect. Especially for Mama..
The next two months I was stymied in my IUI fever by Alex’s work schedule. I was beside myself. That is, when I wasn’t thinking about forgetting the whole thing. It was a lovely time to be inside my brain, I can only imagine how it was to live with me…
Finally, one August day, it all came together. Here’s how it works- I tracked my ovulation as normal. Upon getting a positive result I called into the Doc’s office. They like to do the procedure twenty four hours after your first positive for ovulation. The next day, Alex “produced a sample” and I dashed off to the Doctor’s with it. A process called ‘washing’ the semen is done, takes about thirty minutes, then they call you in. Just like getting a Pap, you lay on the bed, feet in the stir-ups. The doc inserts the “sample” directly into your uterus, bypassing the often treacherous journey through the vagina. Took maybe two minutes from start to finish. Voila! The egg should have had plenty of time in those twenty four hours to travel down the fallopian tube to the uterus, giving the sperm a super easy job of finding it.
Nine days later I peed on a stick, knowing it was far too early to tell. Negative. The next morning, day ten, undaunted, I peed again. Leaving the stick, I went back to my room. Luka called to me a minute or so later from the bathroom. He was waving the test wand in his hand. ” No, don’t pick that up!” I grabbed it out of his hand, worrying that the motion might mess everything up.
I stopped dead. I gasped loudly then fell absolutely silent. I stared. And I stared. I realized then that I really never thought I was going to see that word again. On a pee stick for me.
Then I called everyone on the planet.
And that my friends, is how you get it done.