Bionic Mamas

you're not losing a vagina, you're gaining a son


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On The First Day of Waiting

…I’ll tell you a little bit about yesterday.

In the morning, we were still at the beach. I’d planned to be in the TWW while we were there, but my body had other ideas. We’ll talk about just how damn many sticks I’ve peed on this month another time. At any rate, there seems to be something to this whole “stress can delay ovulation” theory.

The good news about all that was: no limits on hot tubbing or drinking red wine. And indeed, no limits were observed. It was beautiful and peaceful and — here’s the key, I think — relaxing. …The next thing I know, I’ve got EWCM out the yingyang, and a true, indisputable positive on my OPK. Since we were planning to leave the next day anyway, we took the early-squirrelly ferry and headed to the ol’ Baby Factory.

Once there, I took off my pants and signed a lot of paperwork (including saying I am an unmarried woman — but that’s another post for another day). I had already talked to one of the IUI nurses about the peculiarities of my anatomy, why I thought the left side was the way to go, etc., but the other nurse was on duty. She sat down between my legs, syringe aloft, and I thought to say, “by the way, I know you’ve probably read my chart, but just in case….”

Her eyebrows rose just slightly. Here is a woman who knows better than to alarm a patient.

“Oh, just a minute, then. I’m going to get someone who will be very interested.”

Great, I thought, another med student. Or that poor Zebra Fish guy again.

Instead, she brought the big guns: a doctor. And then the fun began. It was not on the order of the “fun” we all had at my HSG, but it was more like that than I had hoped. A tenaculum was involved. Ultimately, so was an abdominal ultrasound. (Given how pricey that pink (!) goo was — and this was two vials-worth, as the clinic thought the counts were low — I was glad enough that the doctor wanted to be sure she was in before pulling the trigger, as it were.) I tried to think relaxing thoughts, as Stephanie Brill has put the fear of God in me about the contraceptive properties of prostaglandins, but my cervix evidently has both ridges and bends, and that damn tenaculum did hurt.

But! The doctor says that if this one doesn’t take, I should come early next time and they’ll slip me some valium. So there’s that.

Neither the doctor nor the nurse were overly excitable, which I think is good for us in re: not getting too worked up about any particular cycle. We’re trying to think of this one as “getting started”, which didn’t stop me from waking up in the middle of the night a little freaked at what we just did. (Man juice. In my hoo-ha. Yowzers.)


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What I Think About When I’m Not Thinking About Peeing

Trick question. I’m never not thinking about peeing these days.

In the interest of getting my act together re: ovulation prior to introducing pricier ingredients, I’ve been dutifully sticking a thermometer up in my business despite my morning grogginess (invariably poking myself something fierce) and peeing in cups and on sticks like it’s going out of style. Hooray for peeing on things!

Is peeing not the definition of a simple pleasure? Maybe it’s conditioning left over from potty training that makes the the characteristic sounds of micturition flood my brain with “new train set” endorphins, or perhaps it’s more ancient than that. Even my memories of wetting my pants in public — shame spreading across the seat of my corduroys in front of everyone, the wetness turning cold as the door handle that was in my hand, the injustice of not having been allowed inside to the bathroom sooner, the ugliness of the strange pants I was told to change into — contain, if I am being honest, a sighing undercurrent of satisfaction.

I always enjoy home science projects, and peeing on sticks sounded so easy, until I read the part about holding for four hours first. Four hours may not seem like much to you, but I’m a two-hour girl. Just am. Rare is the night that I’m not up once or twice, which is a lot more fun now that I don’t live in a dorm. I have shamelessly irrigated the shoulders of our nation’s interstate highway system, and my college students get “some time to work independently” during almost every class. (Yes, I know pregnancy will be insanity.) The last several days have been a delight.

If only I could be more like the woman in the OPK instructions! Sure, she seems to be missing an arm and the finer points of her anatomy are troublingly Barbie-esque, but look at her confidence! She appears to be practiced at standing(?) with one leg cocked, like a dog with a chemistry project. If I tried that, the pee would run right down my leg, but hers droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the stick beneath.

peestickfigure(2)

Split-stream = Twice Blest

I bet the pee-stick lady never forgets, three-and-a-half leg-crossed hours into the wait, and just hauls off and pees in the toilet like a normal person. I’ve done that twice this week. I bet she wouldn’t have to radically dehydrate herself to avoid Monday afternoon’s near-accident, in which I ran back to the house, the whites of my eyes turning yellow, an hour after foolishly taking in liquid. I bet her pee is still lightly yellow. (Mine looks like fancy beer.) I bet if she has to have blood drawn, as I did Wednesday, it doesn’t just d.r.i.p. into the vial, because she isn’t congealing from thirst.

After that blood draw, I wandered, dazed, back to Grand Central, where my lone functioning synapse demanded I find food and fluid before getting back on the subway. The food court was packed. Everyone was in a hurry. In the midst of it all, a miserable looking pit bull squatted on a ramp while a river proceeded from her and pooled on the concourse floor. From the look on her face, it was evident this was not territorial behavior. This was dire need. And I know just how she felt.