Call me Revelations.

My normal luteal phase is 13 days. It’s pretty faithful, though occasionally I only get 12 days.

Yesterday was day 14.

I was pretty useless at work all day, as you might imagine. I spent a couple of hours poking around the internet, looking at baby names and baby slings and pregnancy discussion boards. I spent another hour humming and looking out the window. I made a mental list of who to tell, in what order. I reminded myself not to get my hopes up, as they would almost certainly be dashed.

And dashed they were, this morning, as the waters of my body turned to blood and poured out in positively biblical fashion. Mr. Malaprop cried a little. I didn’t. Sometimes I feel like I’m past crying.

Tomorrow I go in for the first part of the screening for the clinical trial. I want the IVF to work. I want it a lot. If it doesn’t, I’ll try a few more IUIs. Then, as I told Mr. Malaprop, I will be done with this. And I will want to talk about adoption.

Edited to add: Boy am I feeling sorry for myself right now. This is a pity party the likes of which have not been seen in, oh, I guess about a month. My superego is watching from a safe distance, shaking its head in disgust.


Say hello to my leeeetle friends

All ten million of them.

We did our first Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) today. Mr. Malaprop had been disappointed by the p0rn selection at the clinic where he did the semen analysis some months ago, so we went out last night to get him a good magazine. While we were perusing the stands, we talked about how great it would be if they had a DVD player, and then he could watch a movie.

As it turned out, this clinic knew what they were doing in the p0rn department – they had a DVD player and DVDs to go with it. Mr. Malaprop was pleased, but said it wasn’t anything to write home about. I reminded him that he really shouldn’t be writing home about p0rn anyway.

When the sperm was all washed and ready to go, the lab tech handed it to me inside a carefully wrapped syringe, with strict instructions not to expose it to direct sunlight or allow it to get too hot or too cold. Of course it was a bright, 95 degree day here in Southern California, but I tucked the small package into my armpit and hopped in the car. “To the Batcave, Albert!” I commanded, pointing forward. And off we went to my gynecologist.

The actual sperm-insertion was fairly uneventful. Mr. Malaprop’s numbers were a little low, but the motility was high, which the doctor said made up for the numbers. I had some nasty cramps, but they passed quickly, and I lay on the table feeling somehow let down. “Was that it?”

“Yup, you just stay there for three or four minutes and then you’re good to go.”

The doctor left the room. I stared at the ceiling, and tried to gauge three or four minutes without the aid of a watch or my cell phone. I became distracted. I pictured those ten million sperm, all crowded into my uterus, gazing about, pulling out a map and arguing about how to get to the fallopian tubes. I should have provided a disco ball and a DJ, I thought. Or at least pizza and beer. I began to shimmy my shoulders and quietly sang “Party up in my uterus! Party up in my uterus!” until it was time to get dressed.

One of the nurses gave me a funny look on my way out.  I can’t imagine why.


Yesterday and today have been a whirlwind of appointments. First, at 3:30pm yesterday, we met with a doctor at a well-known local fertility/reproductive clinic, who walked us through all the steps of the study and asked us questions to see if we were Good Candidates. He also explained the workings of the reproductive system in exhaustive detail, complete with charts and pictures. When he was explaining how the egg “migrates” to the uterus, I confess, I started to giggle a little.

“What’s funny?” he asked, and I knew with ominous certainty that giggling was not a quality of a Good Candidate. I explained apologetically that I had suddenly pictured the egg somewhere in Iowa, with a rucksack on a stick, trying to hop a boxcar for the uterus. He smiled thinly, and went on with the lecture. I stifled any further leaps of the imagination.

In the end, it turned out we were good candidates. Only one problem.

“We’re expecting an e-mail, maybe tomorrow, maybe Monday, telling us we’re not allowed to enroll any more people for this study.” He handed me a lab order sheet. “I need you to get these blood tests done immediately, and meet with the study coordinator tomorrow to sign consent forms.”

We rushed off to my regular OB/GYN to get the blood drawn, slipping into the office shamefacedly just as they were packing up to leave. Maybe out of pity, maybe out of duty, they stayed long enough to poke me with a needle and draw four or five vials.

This morning I woke up at the ass-crack of dawn to go meet with the study coordinator before I had to be at work. I initialed and signed four thousand pages of consent forms, and then gave her a bit of my medical history. And then we were done. And now I am in – at least through the screening process. No e-mail will come from above and snuff my chances at a free IVF cycle. Whether I’ll manage to snuff it myself through inappropriate humor has yet to be determined.

I leave you with this photo, taken in the bathroom at the fertility center.

See? Totally inappropriate.