I'm not surprised. Starting Saturday I could tell that we were getting close. People in the infertility blogs I read have often mentioned a feeling of fullness, but they never describe it. Now I know what it feels like. You know that slight ache you get when your bladder is too full and the bathroom is too far away? Its much like that, only its on either side where your ovaries are located. It made dancing uncomfortable on Saturday night, and I developed an aversion to being jostled or hugged below the ribcage. Theoretically I suppose that that casual squeezing isn't going to pop the follicles like so much bubble-wrap, but my less logical brain functions are insisting that I behave as though I'm carrying delicate, priceless glass sculptures around in my lower abdomen. I figure I'm entitled to a little paranoia about the follicles given that its my first IVF.
The shots have not been a big deal to me, though I'm glad that last night's trigger was the last one I needed to find belly flab for. While they don't hurt enough to register on my pain-o-meter, my lower belly is currently covered in little bruises. I bruise very easily, and 400 units of Follistim is a non-trivial amount. It had been getting increasingly difficult to find a usable spot. Of course, starting tomorrow night I'll be getting progesterone in oil shots in my backside. By anyone's account the progesterone in oil is pretty nasty. I can't give myself that shot, so finding a fresh spot will be psychohist's problem. It we're really lucky that will prove difficult, because if this whole thing works we continue progesterone in oil through the first trimester.
The instructions for retrieval are interesting. The ban on eating or drinking after midnight tonight is expected, as is the ban on jewelry and makeup. This is because of the anesthesia. The interesting part is the ban on nail polish, perfume, or fragrance of any type. This includes aftershave for psychohist. The no fragrance thing will be tricky. Just about every toiletry I own is scented in some way or another. The thinking behind it is simple: the eggs are fragile and they don't want any ambient chemicals floating around. I'll see if I can scare up a bar of ivory soap for my shower tomorrow.
As for the retrieval itself, if you're curious about how they get the eggs out, they use an ultrasound probe with a big needle on the end of it. I wonder how much I can freak my mom out by describing a probe shoved you-know-where with a big needle on the end of it. Probably a lot; I'll have to save that one up for the next time she tries to nag me about something. It doesn't freak me out because the plan involves me being mostly unconscious while it is happening.
I have no idea how many eggs we are likely to get. I suspect the answer is 'not as many as I'd like'. I am greedy, and want lots. On the other hand, I am educated enough about this to realize that the important thing is having two good looking embryos to transfer on Friday, and no amount of eggs will guarantee that. Even having two lovely embryos come Friday is no guarantee that either of them will take, but its what will give me the best chance of having this cycle work, and that is what I am focusing on. I am resolving do my best not to stress about the intermediate steps.