I got a call on my cell. “Please hold for the doctor.”
OMG! Doctor X was calling me unsolicited! What could be going on?
I had started taking the birth control pill on Sunday, per plan to regulate my estrogen… for IVF. I was doing IVF… and not because Dr. X had insisted, but because he had said he didn’t care what I did so, as I was unguided, I took his advice from earlier meetings.
I was exhausted by the emotional ups and downs of not being pregnant along with the stressful and frustrating experiences of The Fancy Clinic. I wanted this whole process to be over. I wanted to move on and have my baby. I was no longer the scared, overwhelmed woman from six months ago. I was now focused, determined and ready.
But I still dreaded every interaction with Dr. X and The Fancy Clinic.
“Hi, it’s Dr. X.” Dr. X cleared his throat a little, “I was looking at your file and your levels are excellent. We can skip the birth control pill phase and begin doing the injections immediately. But you’ll have to come in today to begin your shots.”
Holy crap… I could start shots today? Then it occurred to me that D. X hadn’t looked at my chart until now. WOW! Three days ago I had said I would do IVF and he was just now checking my numbers in my chart??? I was horrified.
“You have to come in right now, actually” Dr. X said. “We are closing early today.”
So I would have to drop everything because he had just looked at my chart? “I’m babysitting,” I told him.
I was between jobs; that’s what we in the entertainment industry call being unemployed.
“Well, call the mom and tell her to come home or bring the kids here, because if you don’t get here before 4pm, then forget it. You’ll have to take the pill for ten days.”
He was all agro again – like it was my fault I was working even though he had JUST checked my chart. I thought about bringing the three children I was babysitting to his office; a 5 year old a 7 year old and a 9 year old, just hanging out, watching me put shots in my belly.
It was 2:30pm. He was giving me an hour and a half to get there. My heart was racing.
“Are you coming?” There was the Dr. X I knew so well… pushy, rushy and really annoyed.
“Let me see what I can do,” I told him.
I was babysitting for my close friend Allyson and she changed her plans so I could go. I called Dr. X back.
“Linda is out sick today, so another nurse will help you,” he told me. And you’ll need to make a payment with the financial department. They’ve left for the day, so you’ll have to come back tomorrow.”
As I drove to the office I wondered what Linda was sick with… flu? something worse? Was this why she had been so negligent? I have to admit, I was suspecting brain tumor. Horrible.
I ran to the office and checked in. “I’m supposed to see someone to help me give shots,” I said. “I’m Dr. X’s patient.”
Soon a new nurse, Stephanie, came to get me. She took me into Linda’s office and spread out a bunch of needles and vials. She showed me charts and papers and started explaining it all to me.
“Is your partner going to be giving you the shots?” Stephanie asked.
“I don’t have a partner,” I told her. “I’m single.”
“Are you using a sperm bank?” she asked.
“Nope,” I said with a heavy sigh; I’d answered this question so many times though it was in my chart. “it’s my best friend’s sperm.”
“OK,” she said, “So have you met with Barbara or Abby?”
“Yep, all taken care of.”
“The tests? Done?”
“Yep,” I said. it’s in my chart.
“You need an infectious disease test.”
“I did one in December,” I said. it’s in my chart.
The fact that she would even think I’d gone this far without these things, was telling.
“I don’t see that here,” Stephanie said, “I’ll leave a note for Linda about it.”
There’d be no note or follow up, for sure.
“The sperm analysis?” she asked.
“Oh!” I said, stopping myself mid eye roll. “I don’t know. Can you check my chart?”
“It’s really important that your friend has that,” Stephanie said, opening a folder with my name on it, as I imagined dust flying off of it. “It doesn’t say anything about a sperm analysis here. You should probably do one.”
If I’d been doing inseminations all this time and something is wrong with Dan’s sperm and they never had me do a sperm analysis…. I will be furious. Even more furious. My shoulders were tense.
“I’ll leave a note for Linda,” Stephanie said.
That will never happen. No one will ask for a sperm analysis, no one will check on any of it, though everyone likes to ask and everyone likes to say they will take care of it. But no one checks. I’ve done 3 inseminations already without these this in my file and without the lawyer papers. I’m sure Barbara didn’t even make any notes. This place is a mess…
Stephanie picked up a needle and a vial of liquid. “This is Follistum,” she said, “It goes here in this pen.” She showed me how to fill the cartridge and twist the numbers to get the proper dose. She rubbed a little alcohol swab on my stomach. “Pinch an inch of your tummy skin and inject yourself by pushing the top down.”
I was shaking. My hand was literally shaking. (Can I just say I hate the way people misuse the word “literally” On the Bachelor Pad, which I watch, whatever, one woman said, “My head literally exploded.” It hadn’t.) I poked the needle into my skin and pushed on the pen. It twisted down and unloaded the drug into my body. I had begun. It left a bruise.
She smiled. She showed me how to do the next shot. Menopur. You mix the powder with special water and then inject. I did it myself. Wow. I had just given myself 2 shots!
Stephanie looks at the chart, “You’ll have to get the rest of the stuff tomorrow at the pharmacy. Like this one,” she points to something called Saizen. “Tomorrow, you can start with Saizen. Any other questions, you can ask me or Linda tomorrow.”
“OK,” I said. “I have to come back here anyway, to make a payment. Don’t forget to leave a note for Linda about my tests.”
“Oh right. I almost forgot,” Stephanie said.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/spentpenny/46177684/”>spentpenny</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/zetson/2625383224/”>zetson</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>cc</a>