We had our first consult with the RE in July 2015 to see “how all this would work”. We were told that IVF would probably be our only option and that we needed to see a urologist specializing in male fertility. Looking back, I know we were certainly not ready to start a family at that point, but I’m glad we went. Turns out hubby had extremely low testosterone which caused him to stop producing sperm so he would need to be on injections to stimulate testosterone/sperm production for at least 3-4 months before we could hope for a sperm retrieval. By the time we got an appointment and waited for the insurance pre-auth we started his injections in October. Now before you go feeling all sorry for hubby about months and months of intramuscular injections, let me tell you this: he gets them in his thigh… which he can’t feel.
Soon, while we were waiting for his body to start cooperating, we decided that I would get some of my preliminary testing out of the way. This way once we were sure we could get some swimmers we could hit the ground running, or rolling (see what I did there). This included a baseline ultrasound, blood work, and an HSG test. Sounded somewhat straightforward, not so much! First off, I didn’t realize till I was spread eagle in the exam room that the ultrasound isn’t like the cute moments you see in movies. This one was transvaginal, in other words, dildo camera. Literally looks like a dildo! They even put a condom on it…safety first 😉 Blood work and ultrasound looked normal, good news.
Next was the HSG. I of course googled the crap out of it, and read mixed stories. Some women describe it as worse than childbirth, others say it was really no big deal…I now don’t believe those women for one, single second! The doctor says you might feel some “pressure and mild discomfort”. What he should have said, was Hi, I’m Edward, Edward Scissorhands, and I’ll be shredding your cervix today. Then maybe I would have been more prepared for what I was about to experience. The whole test lasted less than 10 minutes, but it seemed like hours. Started off fine, then I felt awful, worse than any period cramps I’d ever experienced. Then I started sweating and seeing spots. Then I woke up to the nice tech telling me it was almost over and to try to move my hips to the left to get the fluid through that tube- vaso-vagal response I guess. They made me lay there for 20 mins and pumped me full of OJ. Hope that doesn’t happen during labor. Good news is it was done at the imaging center, not with my RE or OB, so I will NEVER have to see Edward again.
So with that trauma out of the way, we played the waiting game and made a few check up visits with the urologist. We got the all clear from her that as long as his sperm retrieval was February or later, she was confident we would get enough to create embryos. She does not want to freeze, prefers fresh, so we will both have our procedures on the same day.
We went back to the RE in January and got everything started. Our protocol consists of 19 days of birth control to “line up my follicles” whatever that means. Its been years since I was on the pill, so I must have forgot, or it could be that I’m older now, but within 3 days my boobs grew a cup size and I felt increasingly puffy. Hubby was happy about the growth, however all the new bras I just forked out some $$ on no longer fit, and they are sore as shit! Hoping this soreness goes away, but I’m skeptical seeing as in a few short days I will be pumping my body full of hormones and trying to grow some eggs.
I went for another round of blood work and dildo camera today and got the call that everything looks good, so I will start my injections on Saturday, 2/6, tentative egg and sperm retrieval of 2/17, with 5day transfer on 2/22. Definitely feeling excited and nervous. Excited to finally feel like were getting somewhere after months of waiting. Nervous that I will have to give myself injections everyday and about the potential side effects they will cause. Also nervous about the sperm retrieval. I have this fear that we will go through this whole process and not be able to retrieve enough sperm on retrieval day.