Ahh, week two. Where the estrogen is in full gear and my intestines go to hell. I forgot about this!! Here I was spacing out the side effects of delestrogen thinking about the salacious highs (an overabundance of hormones in the beginning often has me attacking my husband more than normal haha) and completely blocking out the lows of the overheated body (literally waking up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat) and the fact that nothing I eat seems to please the Intestinal Gods. Let’s just say the train is stuck in the station or at mock speed to get out, rather than at it’s normal speed. Yay me.
Anyhoo, that’s really the majority of what’s up in IVF land as my whole focus of life is my back. So I don’t think a ton about the what-ifs. That’ll happen when we reach transfer day. None of my doctors can tell me why I’m not improving, as there’s really no – even small – measurable improvement. Apparently the newest strengthening exercises are actually irritating my SI joint and nerves in that general area, so anything that involves being on my hands and knees and extending my legs ends up making the rest of my day sore as hell, and unable to walk more than a block without exhaustion. Turns out when you have a lumbar herniated disc, it can affect all the surrounding nerves and fascia which then in turn weaken your entire hip stability. So basically those simple little exercises like being on your hands and knees and outstretching the opposite arm and leg, or lying on one’s side doing clamshells, or on my back doing “dead bug” stability exercises (not even real abdominal bicycles, simply doing a quasi “march” while lying down) all lead to me feeling super fucking sore, defeating the purpose of eliminating what is now becoming diagnosed as not only the HD, but chronic pain. So finding ways to strengthen without making things worse? The new challenge of my two PTs – who I still adore by the way. But I’m glad they removed those exercises as I’d rather be able to walk a mile than do those right now, as I need SOMETHING to elevate my mood. When you can’t walk even one fucking block without feeling like your great-grandfather, you feel really trapped, especially on one of those rare moments of sun that pop out here in Portland in the spring amidst a multitude of gray skies and rain showers. When your husband is working full time and then coming home to do 80% of the stuff you used to do in a 50/50 marriage and your client work has just finished up so your days are wide open and yet completely unproductive on the home front? It’s swell.
So yeah, all of my energy is on healing this back. ALL of it.
And yeah we’re both off the turps now that it’s cycle time, so even though after 2+ years straight of infertility treatment cycles my tolerance is shit for more than a half a glass of wine, it was always nice to have the option, ya know? Husband is fine with it, as we are definitely a solidarity couple (I always want to gag when male partners say they “don’t know how they’d do it” – what the fuck you douchebag, do a little more than jack off for the process, your woman sure as hell is…) so his focus now is growing the new hops vines that he divided from our original Nugget plant, and getting into a class on brewing sometime this year. With my tummy? I’m happy if a cuppa lemon ginger tea will ease things…
Overall though it’s a pretty mellow time in the cycle. When you’ve been through so many of them it becomes all relative in the grand scheme of things. Being that it’s our 5th FET, all we have is a schedule of Delestrogen and Progesterone shots, and the PIOs don’t start until April 8th…so that’ll be when the real fun begins.
My celebrity self care regimen is in full swing though, with a kickass facial on Thursday and an equally kickass massage last night. I swear I have the best people for pampering!! They are nice and funny and kind and exceptionally good at what they do. And they know what I’m going through and don’t say stupid things and instead make me feel cared for and safe. And we can talk about some of the wilder recommendations out there that have come to me such as vaginal steaming and internal pelvic massage (while I’ve been open to a lot of things,, these two treatments are on my Hell Fucking No list, by the way) without it being all weird or awkward. Heh…what a strange universe it is.
Now I just gotta work on my back and focus on my gratitude.
And remembering stuff like this: