IVF 4.0 – Starting Our First Cycle

Another couple of months just disappeared. Waiting, waiting, and more waiting.

You try to stay positive with infertility but each time you get that little ache in your back that says your period is about to start it breaks your heart.

Why us? Are we bad people? We did everything right so why can’t we have the one thing that we want?  It’s so difficult while other people are getting pregnant to keep a smile on your face and not hide away crying. It’s not like you don’t feel happy for them, it’s just you feel so much sadder for yourself.

After a few more months of waiting, being positive that everything was going to work out, the time had finally come. We were starting IVF, this was it! We were going to make our baby/ies and while the nerves were back we were just so excited.

IVF during COVID is strange, they try to keep you away and so most appointments happen via email and telehealth as much as possible. I was extra thankful for this, as the clinic also shared facilities with a medical practice – lots of sick people.

A couple of weeks prior to the due date of my period we went on a telehealth appointment with one of the amazing nurses to run through all the medications I would be taking and what to expect. Me being me I had a list of all the questions that I needed to ask, with space for answers, and categories into stages of treatments (can you say, nerd?) By the end of the meeting when I was asked if I had any questions I had none. This is how thorough they were in this meeting. After our initial meeting with our doctor and the feeling of judgment, it was such a relief to finally feel heard, understood and cared for.

So we ordered all our medications and were ready to wait for my period. I was actually a little worried about the medication costs because I had seen some shocking prices from my IVF Warriors in the US – they spend thousands of dollars on exactly the same meds as we do in Australia. My total bill? $176.00 – thank you to our healthcare system.

As it often happens when you’re really waiting for something – it turns up late! Of course my period was late. This was actually a huge surprise as I previously said my period is usually on time to the point of 7.50am every 28 days. I took a few pregnancy tests and hoped, but of course, my period came and, as the nurses explained, it was to be expected after my cyst rupture from a couple of cycles ago as my hormones were finding their rhythm again.

It didn’t matter. It was finally time, the first needle. Brad and I lined up all the medication and had my laptop on the kitchen bench watching the instructional video just one more time and then it was the moment. After all the angst it didn’t really hurt much, (if you go down this path the big hint is to leave the medication out of the fridge for a short period of time so it’s not freezing because the colder it is the more it hurts).

We quickly got into the injection routine and before long it was my first ultrasound! Yay! Another thing getting stuck inside of me and moving all around while my insides are stuck together with endometriosis. I hate transvaginal ultrasounds because even though I warn the sonographer that I have endo sticking all my organs together, not all are careful.

The ultrasound showed that I had 12 follicles, 7 looking like a good size so I was feeling pretty good. The sonographer did find what she thought was a cyst on my right ovary and when I asked it was a cyst or endometrioma she couldn’t tell me. I knew I had an endometrioma as this had been found on previous scans and unlike cysts, this would not go away. Anyway, I left thinking nothing of it as she didn’t seem too worried.

But then a few hours later the nurse called. My cycle was canceled.

The doctor had said due to the cyst they were cancelling as it could rupture or cause the follicles not to get to size. They still couldn’t or wouldn’t answer my question about if my cyst was a normal cyst or my endometrioma.

So again, I would have to wait. This time it would be a month as they wanted me on birth control and progesterone to shrink the cyst. With my upcoming wedding it also meant if I wanted to start on their schedule I would be having a egg retrieval the day before my wedding.

So again, we waited…

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