Dr. PacMan whisks into the office.
"Hi. How have you been feeling?"
"Hi Dr. PacMan. I'm okay. I'm still really exhausted on the injectables. I spend a lot of time on the couch. I'm hoping I don't have to take anymore."
"And are you still having pain?"
"Yes. I hope it's because the Follistim is working."
"Let's see what we've got."
I hand him my four tickets to get on the infertility roller coaster.
Feet swing up, head drops back, staring at the familiar ceiling tiles. Part of me doesn't want to look at the ultrasound screen. It's a let down when follicles that look big to me are disappointingly small, but I'm weak. I hopefully shift my gaze right.
Dr. PacMan ponders my left ovary. As per usual, I have six gajillion follicles. Nothing very big. I grip the edge of the exam table as he moves over to the right ovary. Ultrasounds hurt a lot now that my ovaries are stimulated. Dr. PacMan is grimacing and making worried sounds as he studies the right ovary. I dig my fingers into the table and try to breathe through the pain as he applies extra pressure to examine a follicle more closely.
"Hmm...this right ovary...it worries me....so many large follicles..." he mutters while he continues poking me and I continue white knuckling the exam table.
I look beyond the ceiling to the heavens. Jesus, please don't let him cancel this cycle. Don't let all of this have been for nothing. Jesus, I'm not even praying to get pregnant right now. I'm just asking to finish out the cycle. Amen.
I sit up and the doctor says it looks like my follicles are ready. Thank you, Jesus! But then Dr. PacMan shoots me his most serious face and brings up the topic I fear the most.
"Will you and your husband consider selective reduction if you have multiples?"
"We've discussed it. We're praying we don't have to make that kind of decision but, yes, we would consider it for the safety of the babies and myself."
(I should mention here that I debated even posting about this. I'm so conflicted about it and it's such a heated topic. I don't want to even think about it. But this blog is my honest place, so here I am typing. We'll see if I actually post it.)
"OK, good. I'm glad you and your husband have already discussed it. If you had said you refuse to consider it, I would have cancelled your cycle. You will likely release several eggs and multiples is a serious concern." Umm...Jesus, that could be too much of a good thing. Ease up for me just a smidge?
So what's my line??? How do I even respond to the doctor's statement? All I can come up with is swear words. Dr. PacMan keeps talking. He says a bunch of stuff, but one thing sticks out.
"You'd be a great candidate for IVF."
How do I respond to that? Thank you?? Is it a compliment? A sign of things to come? If this fails, do we do another cycle of injectables or is it too risky that I will conceive a litter? I don't ask any of these questions but they are reverberating in my head.
And so, on Friday morning, Mr. Jaguar and I will be in the office. After thirteen months of trying, we've made it to IUI #1.