Sunday, November 27, 2005


It is a truth universally acknowledged, that an OvaGirl in possession of a good embryo must be in want of an effective shortcut through the city.

On the day of transfer, also known as Squirty Up The Clacker Day, this effective shortcut was not forthcoming.

Many coarse and unpleasant words were spoken during this stressful and painfully slow journey and many calming and soothing noises were made by C in a vain attempt to calm me down.

At one point of complete stasis I opened the car door and stepped onto the road to try and see just what the fuck was holding up traffic and if I could use the laser burning powers of my Furiously Unimpressed Stare to melt a pathway through. I never did see what the holdup was but the staring seemed to work because finally we were on our way.

The first part of our transfer actually started with the Chinese Fertility Goddess. Last time this happened she was gallivanting on a holiday somewhere so I was determined to take full advantage of her presence. This meant acupuncture both before and after transfer.

As soon as I arrived I was ushered straight up the stairs and onto a bed, no appointment, no waiting. I realised that this must be what it was like to be famous or else to have private hospital insurance.

The CFG was lovely and as if sensing the horrors of the previous half hour she rammed a pair of needles straight into my fists to calm me down.

Did it work? Well I suppose so.

I do know that by the time I walked out I had stopped obsessively muttering “out of our way, cunts” and that can only be a good thing.

C dropped me at the House Of Groovy IVF Love, a mere three minutes late, and went to park the car. And soon, very soon, my pants were off, my backless gown and terry toweling dressing gown were on and my blue disposable booties were in place.

The doctor who would be doing the squirty business was not our actual doctor, Doctor Who, but perhaps this was best. We have seen Dr Who for a grand total of twenty minutes, during our initial consultation. Was he overloaded with patients? Was he taking The Tardis for a spin? Whatever. If he had actually materialized now I may have fainted with shock.

Instead, this time we had Dr Lovely Accent who was actually the CFG’s Top Tip for best Sydney IVF doctor.

Unfortunately, at the time, I had already got a referral to see Dr Who and felt it was “rude” to try and get one for a different doctor. Much hysterical mocking laughter at this thought.

When I spoke to a Fertility Sister last week and she told me that I would be having Dr Lovely Accent instead of Dr Who I said Oh Goody, I hear great things about him.
Yes, said the sister, and it’s all true.

With C back from parking the car I was soon in the chair, legs up and waiting to go.

It began with a quick visit from the dildocam – we exchanged some pleasantries, I asked how business was going, he said he was looking forward to the Christmas break and by the way my lining was looking good.

Dr Lovely Accent measured my cervix which he said would assist him in knowing where to place the embryos. And, speak of the devil, up they popped on the screen before us. C and I clutched hands and became ridiculously moist eyed.

It turns out that in the process of thawing “tiltoo” one embryo curled up its cells that might one day be toes and bit the dust. Of the two that made it, one was starting to do whatever that thing is that non frozen embryos do and the other was obviously still feeling the cold because it was miserably hunched over itself and telling anyone who would listen to turn the bloody heater up.

Speculum in place, catheter whizzed in, syringe carrying embryos brought over and all too soon Squirty Up The Clacker Day was officially over for me, specifically the part that involves squirting and clackers.

Back we went to the Chinese Fertility Goddess. Mercifully the traffic had eased. This time, not only did I get to go straight upstairs and lie on a bed, the CFG came out of the consultation she was doing to swiftly apply pins and offer bowls of m&ms with all the brown ones taken out. I slept for an hour and then C drove me home and I slept some more.

Just before he finished, Dr Lovely Accent popped the dildocam back in. Look, he said, there are your two embryos. Or at least the airbubbles beside them.

There they were, two bright stars in the dark skies of my uterus. C squeezed my hand and my eyes filled with tears. Go little guys, I muttered.

And so we begin again. The waiting time. The hoping time. The dreaming time.

I drink my Horrid Teas and swallow my folic acid and slide my progesterone pessaries in and try not to dwell on what may or may not be.

Black thoughts pop up, negative words sound in my ears, fear and grief and depression raise their ugly heads. I grit my teeth and floor the accelerator and shout as we bravely hurtle towards them.

Out of our way, cunts.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Why Sometimes Being An Aunty Is Almost Enough

It was bathtime and Naughty Nephew the 3rd, aged 3, he of the blue saucer eyes and the baby chicken fluff hair, insisted he was perfectly capable of undressing himself.

Alrighty, we said.

He took off his teeshirt the conventional way but then decided that he would remove his pants by running from the lounge to the front door and back to try and make them fall down around his ankles.

When this method seemed a little slow he decided it would be better to jump up and down on the spot.

He was right, but it was even better when he decided to pop some Jumping Up And Down Till My Pants Drop music on the electric keyboard. This turned out to be the junior piano classic Fur Elise.

NN3 adjusted the tempo till it sounded like it was being played by The Chipmunks on speed and then he jumped and jumped like all the chickens in hell were pecking at his heels.

And then those pants came down!

Monday, November 07, 2005

The Great Big Fertility Ride continues

One of my friends tells the story of taking her niece on a rollercoaster ride at the Newcastle Show fairly soon after eating a steak sandwich.

The niece held up well but my friend didn’t.

Half way up (or down) she felt the imminent return of the steak sandwich which she captured neatly in her new leather handbag.

I was impressed at her sense of civic responsibility. She was willing to sacrifice the handbag rather than spray her niece and various passers by with her stomach contents.

As CD1 rolls round it’s time for C and I to step back onto The Great Big Fertility Ride.

This time we’re not riding up front in the shiny IVF carriage. We’re strapping ourselves into the Frozen Embryo Transfer carriage. It’s slightly dented, the paintwork’s scratched and there’s the unmistakeable whiff of previous failure in the air but hey, at least we got a seat.

This time round, it’s a “natural” cycle (which makes me laugh hysterically because when was the last time any of this felt “natural”?) so I am spared the evils of the Lucrin syringe or the Puregon pen.

I will however be inserting progesterone pessaries.

Obviously I’m looking forward to these.

As a child I was always told not to stick things up my nose (baked bean anyone?) or in my ears and certainly not up my botty. No longer! Infertility is like revenge for the Sticking Things In Your Body Is Bad brigade.

We are the Girl Guides to the AssChest Scouts – those unfortunate folk (mainly fellows I have to say) who have a variety of items removed daily from their rectums. I have been told that this delightful collection is apparently kept at the nurses’ station in the “Ass Chest” for those times when someone might be caught short and need a pen.

Or a vacuum cleaner attachment.

Or as a nurse once told me…a tomato sauce bottle. We almost believed his story of an unfortunate fall whilst making dinner naked, she said.

Until we removed the bottle and saw the condom rolled over the shaft.

Today, one of the Fertility Sisters from the House Of Groovy IVF Love scheduled me in for our FET and handed me our ticket to ride. Ultrasound and bloodtest in ten days time to check that I have a Dominant Follicle. More bloodtests until we determine that I have ovulated and the transfer can take place.

It seems weird to be hopping aboard once more. The crushing disappointment from our IVF cycle is still with me, shimmering below the surface. I'm trying to ignore the fearful voices that whisper to me, telling me our embryos are crap and my womb is a toxic cesspit.

Just before our ride takes off, the door opens again and a familiar figure squeezes in. It’s Hope. She’s got a big cheesy smile as she tells us This Could Be The One!

We nod and smile, warily. The mechanism starts up and our carriage starts to move. Hope gives an excited belch. Steak sandwich.

As we start our first dip, I grip my leather handbag.

If Hope hurls I know who’s going to have to catch every drop.