Year of the Rabbit!

I think most of my readers are people who are already at least nominally familiar with the calendar that’s used in Asia, most famously in China, yes? Japan celebrates both new years at the same time, so here it is already the Year of the Rabbit even though most other countries will be waiting until January 22nd for the rabbit to arrive (or cat in Vietnam, and wikipedia says it’s a mousedeer in Malaysia? This is the first I’ve heard of that one). I am very excited about this year in particular because, since I was born in 1987, I am a rabbit myself! (Recent rabbit years are 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987 (hi), 1999, 2011 and this year.) Because of that, I am determined to make 2023 a good year.

Anyway, let’s have a run down/catch up of where we are on the IVF front. My period showed up right at the end of November and I dutifully trotted off to the clinic on the second day, where I was to see Dr. Y (since it was Dr. O’s day off).

“Hmm,” he said. “Normally things have calmed down by the time you menstruate, but you’ve still got inflammation from the OHSS. No transfer this month.”

Ah. Oh well. Guess I can have mulled wine at Christmas after all! I thought.

Dr. Y continued, “Normally we’d say to just roll up whenever your next period comes, but…”

“…but my body doesn’t like to be predictable about menstruating and it could show up over the New Year, right,” I said.

He nodded. “Exactly. Come back in a few weeks and we’ll see then if you need any meds to help things along.”

“You must be even busier than normal coming up to the end of the year now that more people can get treatment (due to insurance coverage),” I commented.

“Oh god, so busy,” he laughed. “Especially because it requires all this stupid extra paperwork and other random requirements.” He handed me yet another agreement form to fill out (one per month, required for insurance!), “Like this silly thing.”

“Still, if it means people who couldn’t previously afford payments upfront can now have easier access to treatment that’s a good thing, right?”

He winced behind his mask. “Well, yes. Yes and no. It means that some people who don’t really need certain treatments – like, maybe something else would be a better match for their needs – ask for them anyway because of what’s covered by insurance. So ultimately I don’t know how many people it’s really helping who wouldn’t have used the old system anyway. It’s too soon to tell, maybe.”

One of the reasons I really like this clinic is because Drs Y and O are both so straight forward and upfront about everything. I really do like them a lot, although I can imagine that’s not everyone’s cup of tea. I like that I can trust them to give me all the facts I want, and to be honest. Gotta love transparency!

Anyway, just before Christmas I went back to Dr. O, who inspected my uterus again and gave me meds (I now forget what) to delay the start of my period until after the New Year. Apparently they have a really well-known side effect of nausea, so she also prescribed some antiemetics.

“…Can I drink while taking these?” I asked.

She looked at me sternly. “Of course you shouldn’t be drinking at all for optimal pregnancy conditions…”

“Of course, of course,” I said. “But Christmas and New Year are coming, and…”

“Medically, there’s no risk,” she laughed. “Just don’t get hammered.”

Finally, here we are! Yet another period eventually arrived shortly after New Year’s, and yet another trip to the clinic. This time they didn’t even do a transvaginal ultrasound, which was a nice surprise, but instead just a blood test. I helped the nurse as she tried to get everything organised, and she laughed. “You’ve been here too often,” she said. “Hold this for me, will ya?”

Blood tests revealed that my hormone levels were, for once, exactly as they should be! Another nice surprise. Dr. O was running behind schedule and looked a bit pale and overwhelmed. She didn’t even offer the traditional New Year’s greeting. “Okay, start oestrogen patches tonight,” she said. “And then come back again next week. You don’t need a nurse to explain how to apply the patches, do you?”

“Nah,” I said. “We’re good. You must be rushed off your feet today, what with people who would have appointments normally, and people like me whose appointments got shifted until after the New Year!”

She suddenly deflated. “Yes, yes, oh my goodness yes, it’s just crazy today. I’m so sorry…” She smiled. “It should be a little calmer this afternoon… I hope…”

“Hang in there,” I said. “Good luck! I’ll see you next week.”

“Thank you so much,” she said, and nodded her head in thanks again as I left her consultation room.

And so there we have it! My skin is bracing for another few weeks of having the super sticky oestrogen patches stuck to it for two days at a time, and the next appointment is scheduled for Friday.

How will things go this cycle, I wonder…

5 Thoughts

  1. I didn’t know it’s also the year of the mouse-deer omg I love that!! 💕

    The clinic sounds incredibly busy right now ;; I hope the doctors aren’t too stressed out, they do sound like good people

    I’m glad you managed to skip the ultrasound this time around, and hopefully the hormone levels being spot-on means that things are going to be well 💙 wishing you so much luck 💙

    Liked by 1 person

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