Posts Tagged ‘ Hormones ’

CD15 – The Procedure

So onto day 15 and reflections on the insemination yesterday. We got to the hospital for 9am and were in a coffee shop by quarter to ten where I enjoyed some decaff tea whilst the hubby made some work based phonecalls and then we headed back to collect his sample. There was a bit of a wait even though they only deal with one sample at a time (to avoid mix ups) and we checked out the form of signatures which follow the sample from container to container being witnessed (again to ensure no mix ups). I can understand why it takes over 2 hours.

The biomedical scientist checked my hubby’s ID and then handed the sample over to me so I could pop the pink nutrient loaded sample into my bra to keep it warm and she informed us that the sample was well over the minimum levels for having the IUI.

Heading straight to the fertility center there was a bit of a wait for the consultant which did make me pretty anxious but I eventually calmed when I realised that having the head guy doing it is an advantage. All of the IUI scans and meetings have been with the fertility nurse, the same nurse so there’s a good little relationship that forms. From that point of view, having the consultant do the insemination (when the nurse would if she weren’t on her summer holidays) is odd, but even if the nurse does the IUI more frequently the doctor must be the more skilled.

So we went into the room together with the doctor and I got myself ready on the bed. Funniest thing, or most embarrasing, the doc told me he needed a sample from me and I got all confused thinking he meant some form of swab or blood. He meant my hubby’s sample of course but I sat there all dumb and stupid until hubby realised I was confused and stupid.

Then we were back on track and the procedure started.

I didn’t like the speculum although it was better than a smear.

I didn’t like the saline swabs of my cervix. Honestly weirder than a smear.

Then the catheter was inserted and the speculum removed. Then the pink sample is slowly injected. Personally, I had mild cramps which stopped once the catheter was in.

After all of the sample was in and the doctor had removed all the equipment from me, he left us in the room for as long as we wanted. Instructed to remain lying down for 10-15 mins, we waited a bit longer than that. Despite the doctor saying that there may be some leakage once you get up and plenty online saying the sperm cannot leak out, any wetness is mucus, I was (and still am) convinced that it was all the sperm. I was so convinced lying half naked on the hospital bed that I burst into tears. It was more the emotions of all of this because I’m still sure that some of the leakage was sperm. I’m being overly negative and super cautious because I cannot get my hopes up. I cannot think too much on the positive during this 2ww, I cannot hope too much, I have to keep level headed and err more on the side of caution

But that was it, treatment over, and we were informed to take a pregnancy test 16 days later even if I believe I’m having a period. Now it’s just the long wait. I’m paranoid about walking too fast to work, eating the wrong foods and making some huge mistake that stops this from working.

You see, the doctor said that I couldn’t have responded any better to the drugs and that hubby was within good parameters so what does that mean if this fails again? Especially as I had a discomfort in my groin the day before and of the IUI so I know I ovulated at the right time, at least in the appropriate window, but still, what does it mean if it still doesn’t work?

~ Persephone M

Picking It Back Up

So, I’ve been feeling really down recently. I think I went over ten days without posting a thing on here. Even on my laziest of days I usually find the three minutes it takes to upload a photo to flickr or copy and paste a poem I have saved at home. But no. I’ve not really been bothered to do anything other than watch TV.

By that I mean watching far too much Criminal Minds – to the point that I was completely paranoid about taking mum’s two foster children to the toilet in a fast food restaurant because we all had to go in separate cubicles. I ended up leaving my cubicle door open in case either of them tried to walk out or in case someone came in to try and abduct them. The fact that my husband was at the bottom of the stairs made an abduction quite difficult, but you never know! That is what TV has taught me.

Anyway, so I’ve been so down that I can’t even write. Usually when I’m a bit down I write poetry or at least blog. Or perhaps both of these things! For the past, possibly month, I can’t be inspired to do anything. I don’t know whether I’m just having a particularly stunningly negative month (only two days left until the next) or whether it has something to do with the laparoscopy I had at the beginning of March, but all I’ve wanted to do is hibernate.

The hopsital freaked me out so bad that in the morning when my husband came to get me, I told him I never wanted to be in hopsital again even if that meant that we didn’t have children. I’ve calmed a bit, but I still hate the idea of ever having to stay overnight in one again. I also still have slight pain. On the outside by the scars and on the inside. Some days I put it down to being too active whilst on others I think I’ve pulled it. Sometimes it’s simply because the youngest foster child (3) understands I can’t lift because of the “hole in my tummy”, but that doesn’t stop sitting on my lap and leaning back on it! Nice.

I’ve been back at normal walking speed for a few weeks, well maybe a bit slower as I tend to walk quite fast. I seem to tire quite easily at the moment. I’m also cycling to work at least twice a week. Maybe my negative mood is because I’m doing less exercise so have fewer endorphins. When I was younger I called them dolphins; I have fewer dolphins swimming around in me.

And then I had my amazingly negative day after a dreaded FB announcement, which culminated in me going on a photo trip to the local harbour and noticing every child in the vicinity. I started studying the parents if they seemed older than me and calculating if their oldest child meant that they were older than me when they had their first (I read somewhere the other day that the average age in the UK for first children is 29.1 Years. As a country we’re the second highest in the world apparently, which is odd given we tend to have the highest teenage pregnancy rate inside of Europe. I’m past the average, but every average needs people above and beneath it). And then, any parent who couldn’t seem to control a child (the father sitting near me who let his three run amok and out of his eyeline – has he not watched Criminal Minds; it only takes a second!) had me glaring at them.

Not only did I blog about that mood, I wrote a poem and a half. I might just be climbing out of the negative. Either because of a hormone shift, a father who couldn’t spare the attention or the lucky friend who’s pregnant for the third time.

Here’s to a happier month,

~ Persephone M

I Love Science

I’m not too sure when I fell in love with it, possibly somewhere in year 9 (age 13/14). At least I can remember my project book that I made all about the female reproductive system and it seems that since then, I had a fascination.

Some people consider the biological sciences to be the easier ones or far less interesting than the likes of chemistry or physics. I find it odd when people don’t love biology. But not all of that stupid plant rubbish. Even animal biology is only okay when it’s in a comparative way to humans (oh, the second year uni topic about chicken eggs and diving mammals!). I’m not sure why I never studied simple plain human physiology rather than the sister subject Biomedical Science. It would only really have meant a different third year at uni and I could have lost all of those pesky biochemistry modules.

Unfortunately, I was still convinced that I enjoyed biochemistry and even chemistry. But, no, my love of science is purely for the human physiology.


As I said, it was in year 9 when I did a project on the human female reproductive system and for some reason it all stuck with me. It’s why I now find it odd when I read others’ blogs with regards to trying to conceive, or when doctors explain everything to me in the simplest of terms. I simply think: how can someone not know their cycle?

After a few months of trying and getting nowhere, I didn’t jump online to learn how to time things, how to recognise the signs or learn about my body in greater detail. I was lucky to already know that information and simply had to pull it out of my mind. I think it’s why I get so frustrated and sink when day one comes back around. There is literally no more that I can do.

At the first appointment with the doctor, where he went over the procedures I can have to see if there’s anything wrong, his explanations of my body where met with nods from me, as I thought “I know this”. My husband, on the other hand, found it amazing and learnt what I’d been trying to tell him for months.

Even so, despite me understanding the hormones and recognising the dips and peaks, the withdrawal and the elation, I had never ever monitored my daily temperature. The thing I love about the female reproductive system is that, you can feel science happening. When you have that completely weepy, crash day, well that’s where your hormone levels have vanished with a click of the fingers and you’re almost in withdrawal from it. It’s the same with respiration or the circulatory system, you can feel the science. You can become your own test subject.

Just run a mile and your heart’s beating faster? That’s science.

Just recorded a drop in your basal temperature? That’s science.

This month, I started recording my morning temperatures. I haven’t been super regular about it, so I know I can’t depend on the results. As with any science experiment, the results need reproducing and then analysing. So when my temperature dropped the other day, near to the end of my cycle, I knew that I was going to have a period. Less than 24 hours later and my hypothesis was correct.

Did I breakdown? Did I feel like a failure?

No, I was prepared for it. When I recorded the drop, I knew there was a chance that it wasn’t reliable. I’d been awake on and off, my husband had already got up with a stomach bug (which I still seem to have avoided!), so there were enough variables that the reading wasn’t taken in the same circumstances as the others. However, I didn’t pin all my hopes on those few variables, on that slim chance. And with no other signs of either possibility, I remained calm.

If the next month provides good data then I can start depending on science, not hope to give me answers. It won’t affect my ability to conceive (I’ve always known where day 14 is), but it might help my ability to cope.

The only small problem is, I’ve always used science to explain my complete and utter breakdown once a month – of course I can’t control these tears, dear, it’s the hormones! Science says that my hormones have dropped (otherwise why the temperature drop?) and yet there is no breakdown. Perhaps it was never the hormones. Maybe, all along, it was my dependence on hope and putting my faith into it. Maybe, all along, it was my not knowing. Normally, I would not know it was day one until it hit me in the face. This time I was prepared.

And who can argue with science?

~ Persephone M

And now my boss hates me

For two or three days a month, I become a completely different person. Usually, I am hyper and bubbly, crazy in a fun and somewhat annoying manner. I am, unfortunately, the cliched “woman”.

It really isn’t that simple, and I don’t mean because half the population don’t understand what it is to be a woman. What I mean is that, those three days are not filled with a moody, grumpy me simply because of an imbalance of hormones. Don’t get me wrong, I am moody and grumpy, sluggish because of the pain and trying my hardest to not cry because it’s only a natural thing, for crying out loud.

Nope, over the past two years, my monthly “friend” (oh, she is so not my friend) has made me a far more sullen and tearful person than I have ever been before. In one simple sentence it’s because for those three days I am a complete and utter failure.

Yep, not only do I suffer from the hormonal instability, that same instability makes me fully believe that I am a useless human being. It’s irrational, but I calm down when the days are over and the hormones balance out. Seriously though (because I’m in those days so am irrational right now), what kind of a human being am I if I can’t even reproduce? Is that not the sole person of every single living creature on the planet?

I was reading an article on the BBC News Site about defining middle age and that no other animal has a “middle age”, but that possibly humans have it to pass on their culture. Of course by the mid-forties women at least can no longer reproduce, when animals get to this kind of age well there’s not much point to being alive anymore. We humans get to live a bit longer to pass on our art, our literature, etc.

So, not only do I have a finite time scale to be useful, but if I keep being a failure then there truly is no point to me. If I can’t pass on my genetics, then I can’t pass on my culture, and I exist to… what exactly?

Meanwhile, each month when the down moods hit because my stomach hurts, because I feel tired and hot for no reason, because I’m a pointless person, I sit there grumpy and wind my boss up to no end.

Today, presumably because of my mood, my boss seemed to stop talking to me and got grumpy back. Now, I’m useless because I can’t reproduce, can’t create life and because I upset my boss.

I need a hug!

~Persephone M.