IVF#2, Monitoring Appointment #5: Well, that was awkward.

Awkward Moment #1:  When I arrived at the clinic this morning, there were 1 ½ couples already waiting.  The second half of couple #1 showed up just after me.  This was not the awkward part (although I did wish, for a fleeting moment, that Hubby could have skipped out on teaching and come with me for this appointment).  We all know there’s an unspoken rule in the fertility clinic waiting room that you don’t make eye contact, smile, or otherwise engage with fellow patients.  We all know why we’re here.  But today, when couple #1 got called back, wife #1 actually stopped, introduced her husband to couple #2, called wife #2 by her first name, and wished her luck–with a hug!  I don’t know if it was awkward for them, but it certainly was for me.  And it was made no less awkward when wife #1 whispered a “good luck” to me on her way out.

Awkward Moment #2:  Both Saturday and Sunday, while Hubby and I were waiting in the lab for me to have my blood drawn, we saw one of his former professors.  The first time, it was just him and his woman (I have no idea the official status of their relationship).  The second time, they had their child with them, and we heard them before we saw them–the little girl seemed to be the one being stuck because we could hear her wailing from the waiting area.  Even though I made eye contact with the professor on the first morning, he didn’t seem to recognize me, let alone acknowledge me.  Hubby didn’t even get eye contact. So we speculated on the reasons they could have shown up in the same lab at the same time two weekend mornings in a row.  Having their child in tow the second day made sense because she has multiple developmental delays and disabilities.  The professor himself is near 60, so it isn’t unthinkable that he might need some routine blood tests.  But for them to come to a lab so far from their home on a Saturday and Sunday morning?  And then, this morning, I bumped into them again.  I texted Hubby later: Mystery solved.  Guess who I saw in the waiting room today?

Awkward Moment #3:  Dr. C was apparently very pleased with my ultrasound this morning.  He’s been in rare form the past few days, joking, commenting on my t-shirts and being generally positive that we just need to give this enough tries to be successful.  This morning, before I could get my feet from the stirrups to the floor, he was offering me a high five.  No joke.  It was just…weird.

*  *  *

I had a lot of anxiety last night about today’s appointment.  Maybe because I knew Hubby wouldn’t be with me to count follicles.  Not that it mattered–Dr. C did the ultrasound, and he never seems to count them all, just measure the biggest ones.  So in addition to not sleeping well last night, Hubby has to give me the trigger shot tonight at midnight, which totally screws up my sleep schedule tonight.  And I have to get up extra-early tomorrow to get more blood drawn before work. Whatever.  Retrieval is scheduled for Wednesday at 11.  We’re doing this thing.  And I can sleep when I know how many embryos we’ve got.

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24 thoughts on “IVF#2, Monitoring Appointment #5: Well, that was awkward.

  1. I’m all for breaking the waiting room rule!! Fertility treatments are so stressful, I think it’s great that people are rooting for one another. Even if it comes as a nod and a smile. Still better than the stone cold silence, IMHO.

    Glad to hear Dr. C is in such a good mood. I take it as a good sign for this cycle. Fingers are crossed for Wednesday!

    • I was actually a little torn because it was kind of nice. But we’d all been sitting there in the usual awkward silence, and the whole exchange totally threw me off!

  2. At one of my monitoring spots this cycle, two women were talking LOUDLY about their previous successes and living children, while the rest if us waited awkwardly to take turns having our blood drawn. In five IVF cycles and COUNTLESS appointments, I have never seen a single patient acknowledge another, and to be blatantly discussing your pregnancies/children in front if other infertility patients, not knowing their personal struggles, failures, or losses? I was APALLED. Did I say anything? No, just busied myself with my phone and escaped as soon as humanly possible. Seriously, there should be an infertility etiquette page that is discussed with and signed by each patient prior to beginning treatments, wherein we agree not to a) bring children to appointments, or b) discuss children in front of other patients.

    On another, much happier note, GOOD LUCK on Wednesday!!!!! I am sending the warmest good wishes for everything to go perfectly. I can’t wait to hear how many beautiful embies you make!

    • Thanks, Jo! Bringing kids into the waiting room of a fertility clinic just seems like a no-brainer, but I know sometimes there may not be another option. I was once waiting for an appointment, and someone brought in there newborn twins! I know she was there to show off/thank the doctor, but there should be a separate entrance for stuff like that!

  3. I am just SO excited for you!! Stress and awkward moments aside, it’s so thrilling to actually see those gorgeous embies and know that you have real shot at it, isn’t it? Thinking of you and keeping my fingers crossed!

  4. Good luck! Wednesday isn’t that far off now.

    My hubby hardly ever came with me to the clinic. Sometimes it would have been nice and others it was just easier to head in and out of there quickly myself. But, yeah, the sitting with other couples/singles in the waiting room was always a killer.

  5. I actually think it’s kind of sweet that that women wanted to cheer on her fellow waiting room dwellers 🙂
    I’m so glad you wrote this though, because I remember at our first ever RE appointment H had just started a new job (in another city), and just wasn’t able to make the appointment, and I went alone and felt like a total sore thumb as I sat among a whole handful of couples. At the time (when fertility stuff was really driving a wedge anyway) I was so angry at him, but you’ve reminded me that sometimes that’s just life.
    I am SO excited for you guys for tomorrow, I think I have butterflies in my stomach!! Can’t wait for updates.

    • Thanks, Sadie! I’m half-joking about it being awkward to see women hugging in the waiting room. It’s awkward either way, whether you speak to other people or ignore them.

    • I hope that’s what it means! I don’t know if it’s because this is our second time around, but Dr. C’s demeanor has just been much different this time. I’m trying to take it as a good sign!

  6. I’ve now seen TWO couples I know at the RE clinic! One lived in our apartment building and the other was a coworker. Absurdly awkward. Each time we chatted and stuck to the “let’s-not-acknowledge-the-obvious” rule. It made it so much worse. Ugh. My uterus is broken, his testicles are broken, let’s just out with it already, shall we?
    I wish there was some chatting in the clinic. I could use an impromptu mini-RESOLVE group meeting now and then.

  7. wow…is not like people who have had a child would EVER need to visit a fertility clinic again…sometimes people have secondary infertility, and have experienced the same spiral of disbelief when finding out #2 isn’t going to happen (easily). People have sent me dirty looks for having to bring my 4 year old along. HELLO- she’s 4..and its 6:30 in the morning. Where the h#ll do you think she should be right now?
    Anyways, I think I’m plenty familiar with infertility at this point.

    What people seem to forget is the flip side of infertility that 2ndaries face.
    #1 – you want to shop for baby stuff? We look at it and wonder if we will ever use it again
    #2 – you get asked about having kids? We get asked about having more kids. And the kids ask for siblings
    #3 – You don’t like your friends with kids – we don’t like our friends any more. So now we don’t fit in with our kids with friends or without kids.
    #4 – everyone says, if you’ve done it once, you can do it again. Clearly, that isn’t the case.

    So before you judge a woman for having to drag her child with her to a clinic,try some compassion instead of aggression.

    • Compassion goes both ways. Like I said, I can understand the need to bring your child to an appointment if you have no other options. And, as you’ve said, secondary infertility comes with its own set of challenges. But I think it’s equally important for people who do have children to acknowledge/remember what it’s like for those of us who are at the fertility clinic because we so desperately want to have one. Especially those of us who are trying to bounce back from failed treatments. Seeing other people’s children, even if they are the result of successful fertility treatments, is difficult, especially in the one place you would expect people to take that fact into consideration.

  8. GOOD LUCK TOMORROW! I have a good feeling about this round for you guys.

    I always felt a little proud when J wasn’t there with me. Might sound weird, but it made me feel like a strong veteran. Follicle checks are okay to fly solo for once you’ve been there and done that. J would always come out with a different count than me anyway. My count always won!

    • Thanks, Lisa!

      I feel the same way a lot of times. It was just that particular appointment I really wanted him there. His count didn’t mean squat last time, so I don’t know why I was so worried about it.

  9. Good luck! I’m sending good vibes your way! I think I would like a high five from a doctor, but maybe not a pantless high five. That seems a little . . . odd.

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