In the past two days, I’ve read 2/3 of a book. This is directly connected to a New Year’s resolution I made about 34 hours after the new year began, while staring at the large fishtank that features prominently in Clinic One’s waiting room design.
On January 2nd, as I sat staring at the fishtank, I was thinking about the liminal space of waiting rooms and of fertility treatments in general. Of how much time we spend waiting and bored, in what is cumulatively a life altering process. Not just the time spent in waiting rooms, sitting in light wood furniture looking at fishtanks or walls painted in neutral tones, but also the time we lose to TWWs, next tries, scans, or other anticipation. I tried to think back to what I had done in those countless waiting hours in 2012-2013. Stared at my phone, probably. Watched the fish swim in circles. Googled. Thinking back, I resolved to make the waiting that 2016 will inevitably hold more productive. I’ll do things while I wait, I decided. Not just crush endless candies on my phone. I’ll knit, I’ll read, I’ll write: anything that makes it feel a little more like my waiting counts. (My other fertility resolution is to not Google, which I’m half succeeding in.)
So, I’ve spent the last two days of cycle monitoring/waiting reading. Half-listening for my name or number, but mostly absorbed in somebody else’s life. (This Is Happy, if you’re wondering. On theme, and probably deserving of its own post.)
I only managed to read a little bit yesterday, in a visit that was luckily short. My ultrasound number was called before I could even choose a light pine chair to wait in, and my blood was drawn almost immediately after that. I did have to wait to see my doctor, whose face I couldn’t remember. So I read and waited, listening to other people’s names being called by other doctors. Then my doctor appeared. Though I hadn’t remembered what he looked like from our first visit, now it occurred to me that he looked uncannily familiar: eerily like my brother. We’ll call him Dr Paul from now on.
Dr Paul spoke to me for all of five minutes, as I tried to focus on what he was saying and not his resemblance to my sibling. The Femara has worked like a charm, it seems: on CD11, my lead follicle was 22mm. “A good follicle,” Dr Paul noted approvingly, “that will hopefully turn into a good embryo”. With that cheerful announcement, he sent me on my way to return for cycle monitoring the next day. (Today.)
Today’s visit featured a similarly quick ultrasound and blood draw, but was followed by a wait that stretched almost two hours. I diligently read, covering decades of Camilla Gibb’s life while I waited for Dr Paul to make his pronouncement. Patients filtered out of the office until I was only accompanied by a singing toddler and her mother. Dr Paul found me in the waiting room, not bothering to call me into the office. My follicle is now 24.5mm, or giant. (I’ve nicknamed it Chubs, though Sea doesn’t approve.) Dr Paul explained that, one way or another, the IUI would be happening tomorrow. I just needed to sit and wait until my bloodwork came back, so that they could decide whether to trigger or not. That wait took another hour, or 1/3 of a book. Finally he came back: my bloodwork shows that I’m surging, no trigger needed, IUI tomorrow.
So tomorrow Sea and I will head back to Clinic One, and I’ll finish a book while the sperm we’ve stored there since 2013 thaws. Then the IUI will happen, and we’ll be on to another wait.
Wish us (and Chubs) luck!