Monday, July 13, 2009

And Then There Were Fourteen or So

So my "wait a few days and see what happens" follow-up didn't go exactly as planned. Me, Tim, and Doc met Saturday morning at his office for an ultrasound and little conversation. During the ultrasound there weren't so many shocked comments, but when he came back (after I had replaced my clothing, because this was a very pants-on conversation), his eyebrows had nearly hit the ceiling. The first words he could get out?

"Well, you could be on the news!"

He had actually removed his little tie-on doctor's hat, which was a nice treat for me since I'd just been wondering the day before if he were hiding a bald spot. But nope, full head of hair with just the slightest tinge of blond left over from his youth. The shocked expression was a little bit of an instant face-lift, making Doc look almost as young and confused as I was.

So where I was hoping for a number less than seven to describe my mature egg products, I got fourteen. Which could very easily come out to quintuplets or some other litter of what Doc calls "high order multiples." High order multiples, by the way, result in multi-million-dollar NICU bills if not a whole load of deaths. At some number they just have to abort the pregnancy because nobody can survive it.

Anyway, Doc says he needs to give me a shot to stop these eggies from popping and send me to Boise to see Doc Slater or Doc Foulk and either suck out some of the eggs so they don't turn into babies, or suck them all out, make embryos, and do IVF at like 1/3 of the normal price. Sounds good, right? We figured he'd give me the shot, send me to Boise, and we'd see the Docs up there on Monday or Tuesday.

No such luck. Doc calls the clinic up there and they agree to stay open until we get there and see us that very day. Even better luck!

So we head up to the Idaho Center for Reproductive Medicine. (This place is one of the top repro places in the nation. If you're infertile and want to have a baby, GO THERE.) We didn't want to make them wait, so we threw everything we could into the car and high-tailed it up to Boise.

And got a speeding ticket.

Which was a surprisingly comfortable experience for me because the cop smelled like my dad when he's in uniform. Also, I wasn't the one driving.

When we finally made it up there, Doc Foulk had waited as long as he possibly could just so he could talk to us before he hopped on his flight. Pretty cool that he did that just to greet and talk to us.

We got pretty excited about the idea of converting to IVF, which means a really likely pregnancy really soon for way less than usual. But when we did another ultrasound, the follicles were too big. Bummer. How big? over 2 cm for 10 of them. Three more were over 1.5 cm. My ovaries were each six times the normal size. It was getting painful to walk, bend, etc.

First, we thought it would be best to cancel the cycle, do what's basically Plan B, or the morning-after pill. It was a really crappy and tearful decision to make, but the other option was to have some eggs removed, which sounded VERY painful and didn't give us much of a chance at pregnancy. So I allowed myself about ten minutes of crying and went home with the birth control.

But when we were about twenty minutes away from the clinic, Doc Foulk calls us. Now, doctors never call their patients. The nurse calls, the answering service calls, the receptionist calls, but the doctor never calls. But he did. The nurse talked to him just after the ultrasound, and then he called when his plane landed to check in. He then made it a point to call us and strongly advise that we turn around, go back to the clinic, and have the "follicle reduction" (egg removal).

I can't tell you how impressed I was with Doc Foulk for caring enough to call. This guy takes the Hippocratic Oath seriously. He said he just wasn't comfortable with the possibility that still remained that I'd get pregnant with high order multiples, which inevitably mean big trouble. Now that's a clinic that cares.

So everyone who needed to came back in and got me all drugged up for the procedure. If you've ever had the kind of ultrasound you get when you're not pregnant, it's like that, but with a massive needle. I wasn't drugged up enough to be asleep—just a little too giggly—so when the poking started I was still in a bit of pain. Like, the second worst pain ever. But I've never broken a bone or given birth, so my scale is a little off. And really, Doc Slater, who came in on her Saturday night to do the procedure, made it as easy as possible. It was painful, as having a needle stabbed into a very tender area through a very sensitive one always is, but is was fast, and once all the equipment was out, I felt mostly better. I've just been a bit sore, and it's been way better than it was when I was stuffed full of eggs. They removed at least 8 oz of stuff from my abdomen.

All in all, I can't speak highly enough of the staff at the ICRM. They were without fail kind, gentle, sensitive, caring, and excellent at what they do.

So where does all of this leave me?

In eleven days, I will take a blood hCG test. There's a 20% chance it will be positive. Six of those percentage points are twins. The other eighty send me to another round of blood tests and IVF later this year. Turns out, no doctor is likely to give me Clomid ever again, since I clearly overreact and sane doctors (and by that I mean not Octomom's doctor) do not want their patients to have litters.

Things are simpler now that I have two options: be pregnant now, or do IVF. And for having kids entirely, the option to adopt. We know what we want. We'll pray for it. I hope with everything I have that the two swollen follicles they left turn into one or two screaming, stinky, hungry, adorable, infinitely lovable little babies.

But as I am continually reminded, God is still God and I am still not. He's got a plan. Right now it seems a little convoluted, but I'm sure things will work out the right way at the right time. Fat'n'Happy or not.


Lisa said...

Oh. My gosh.

Yeah, you should never take Clomid ever again. Your ovaries are over-excited :)

But good luck with everything! How wonderful to have gotten such fantastic care. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers.

Alisa Haggard said...

Oh, wow. That's all I can say. Hope something wonderful comes out of all this sooner over later. :)

Emily said...

I've enjoyed catching up on your blog! How awesome of that doctor. Best of luck with everything. I know it takes lots of patience! Isn't it crazy how women's bodies work? When I took clomid I took it for 8 months and the last cycle I was taking 4 pills a day! Oh my goodness could you even imagine? Get some rest, you deserve it.

Brooke said...

I will think "happy thoughts" for you. I think it is best they took some out. I don't want to see you on the news...

Eileen said...

You are right. God is still God and we are not. I can only imagine how frustrating it is to wait. But he will bless you two! I know he will. I keep you in my prayers daily and hope you guys will get a bundle of joy out of all this heartache. I promise you that it is worth it!

Shar said...

You just like to do things in the extreme, Amy, and so does your body :) I'm glad you had such awesome care in ID. That is definitely good to know for the future. And I hope all goes well over the next few weeks and months. We miss you around here.