THE 2 WEEK WAIT
For those who understand or are going through fertility treatments, you've heard of or have been through what we call the 2 week wait. For those who don't - the 2 week wait (2 ww or tww) is a 2 week period of time between receiving fertility treatment to conceive (ie IUI or IVF) until the time we learn if we are or aren't pregnant. Chris and I had our third IUI (intrauterine insemination) treatment the 23rd of April. Within these two weeks, my body has either possibly conceived or is doing it's thing to get ready for the next cycle. Unfortunately there's no way to know because blood pregnancy tests can't really detect if we are pregnant until about 2 weeks. In these 2 weeks, there's not much else to do but.....w a i t. Some doctors will wait even longer to test, which I can't possibly imagine. Most home pregnancy tests (HPT) aren't sensitive enough to detect pregnancy this early, so a blood test sometimes is the only way to go. It's either that or you wait and see if and when your next cycle starts.
So we have our blood test Monday...exactly 2 weeks after our procedure. They are checking for Beta levels (beta hCG). This is a chemical produced by cells in the placenta that nourish the embryo after implantation (after the embryo becomes embedded in the uterine lining). Levels can be detected about 12 to 14 days after conception. This is the first time I've refrained from taking a HPT on my own. Not taking one is the hardest thing to do but I can't torture myself. If it's negative, I usually come up with this grand reason in my head as to why and somehow convince myself it must be wrong. This time, I'm just going to wait for the results of the blood test - we get a call from the doctor with the news maybe Monday, but most likely Tuesday. With our first IUI, I never made it to the blood test because my cycle started before I even made it there, confirming the procedure failed. Last time, I did make it two weeks but was still disappointed to find out it was negative. Waiting for that phone call for two days was complete torture...I must have checked my phone every 5 minutes. In retrospect, I'm glad I received that call at the end of the day. I had to work that day and after the news couldn't bare to continue. I hope I'm lucky enough this time to get the news later in the day for sanity sake. I'm no longer a rookie at this point, so I've tried to figure out ways to keep me sane. Most people dealing with treatments will tell you that they have a few dates burned in their head...most probably are bad days. Mine was March 9th....after the phone conversation with the doctor that our second IUI failed. That was by far the hardest and worst day of my life and I'm doing my best to not re live it. A few hours after the phone call, my cycle started and the news was re confirmed. NOT a good day. As I mentioned in my last post, the difficult thing with infertility is that we relive the sadness each and every month and don't really have time to grieve because the next round of treatments starts immediately. I grieve each and every month for a baby I've never been able to have. I still love that baby more than life itself even though it's not real yet. I don't think people recognize my loss because no one actually died. But of piece of me DID die! With death, people see your loss and understand it. With infertility, no one sees my loss and few understand that the loss is just as significant. Yet, most people either choose to ignore it or say a quick "sorry" and expect me to get on with life. In a way I'm glad most people don't understand, because that means they've never experienced this. I wouldn't wish this problem on my worst enemy. I feel inclined to help others understand treatments, what we are going through and gain sensitivity to how we feel.
So the closer it gets to the two week mark, the harder waiting gets. It's hard not to over analyze what your body is feeling. For example, if I get tired easily I try to convince myself it's a sign of pregnancy, when actually it's probably something else. There have also been times, closer to the two week mark, where I find myself refraining from going to the bathroom. I am heartbroken when my cycle starts again, so somehow I think that avoiding going to the bathroom will delay it.
A week from today is Mother's Day. In my head lately, it's all I think about. This is the first year I am dreading mother's day because it's just a reminder of who I'm not. I've never had the joy of someone calling me mommy. It seems everywhere I go it's thrown in my face...at the store: "free gifts for mothers" or in the mail is an advertisement for mother's day brunch, the list goes on. These are all things that I can only participate in as a daughter, not a mother. How can I celebrate a day that's just a reminder of the hell I'm dealing with every day? Some people don't get that this isn't a happy day for everyone. Who's going to remember me on mother's day?