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It finally started!

After all this waiting, we finally started! I went to the doc yesterday morning, had a blood draw and ultrasound and everything looked the way it was supposed to, so they gave me the go ahead to start poking myself. AHH!

Here's a quick overview of the process that's about to happen. (I'm halfway through writing this and i realized some of you probably don't know what i'm talking about, so i'm coming up here to do a little time-line in hopes that the following will make a little more sense... ) We start with 10 days of drugs. (This post is all about that!) Then after 10 days, we do surgery to collect all the eggs. Justin does a sperm donation and they take the two and combine them in a petri dish in the lab. This is when they'll actually inject the sperm into the egg and where the classic photo of IVF comes from. (see just below!) Normally, they just put a bunch of sperm on top of the egg and let them do their job. But since Justin's sperm aren't shaped correctly, they could  never penetrate the hard shell around the egg, (hence all this craziness,) so they have to actually inject it in.

Anyway, they'll let the eggs sit and mature into embryos for 3-5 days. Then they'll take the 2 best ones and transfer them back into me. The rest will be frozen and saved in case the first two don't take. These eggs can be frozen indefinitely, so hopefully if/when we decide to get pregnant again, we won't have to go through this again because we'll have frozen embryos left. So yeah, that's the process. Then I wait 2 weeks and have a blood test to see if it worked!

Back to the drugs...

I actually received my drugs on Wednesday and opened them to find this...



The "crinone" is the progesterone that I'll use later.. Below that is a bag of hypodermic needles. Then the blue bottle is my "Low Dose HCG." Then the flat bag is the needle for the trigger shot. Then going back up is the fluid and powder for the trigger shot and the box they came in. Then there's a bunch of alcohol swabs and gauze pads and then the sharps container. Then there's the big boxes and you see an open one in front and then to right a little more is the smaller box with an open one in front. The bigger boxes are the Gonal-F and the smaller is the Cetrotide. LOTS OF DRUGS! I feel like a little pharmacy over here!

So let me tell you a little about each one and why I'm using them. The first one I started taking is the Gonal-F. It is a Gonadotropin. It's job is to stimulate the follicles that contain the eggs during the stimulation phase.

The next one is the low dose hCG. It's job is to help those eggs inside the follicles to mature. I'm taking a little of this every day.

The next is the cetrotide. It's job is to prevent premature ovulation. I don't start taking this one for a few days.

The other is the trigger shot. It's the last thing I'll take and it triggers (clever name, right?) the eggs to release. This one has to be taken exactly 36 hours (I think!) before the surgery to collect the eggs. If I do it wrong, they'll either have to do surgery at a weird hour, or the eggs will be released and they won't be able to retrieve them. (A friend of mine had to do it at like 4 am and she said she wished she had prepared it sooner! haha.)

The last is the progesterone. With out giving away too much, those look and act like tampons but have cream inside. It's job is to keep my uterus in the best state possible to grow a little person. :)

So far, I've only done 1 shot and it was easy peasy. I took out the Gonal-F and found this inside...



What's in there is a little vile of powder... 



... and a needle that's prefilled with fluid...



and a bunch of hypodermic needles...

The needle itself is short and really thin, so you really don't feel it.
 (It's a 27 gauge needle for those of you to whom that has any meaning!)

So I stick the needle with fluid into the vial with powder and shoot all the fluid inside. It mixes and creates a solution that I then draw out with the little hypodermic needles and stick into myself. I pinch my love handles and with a little force, I poke it in! And I don't even feel it. (Those love handles finally come in handy!! I knew I was saving them for something. ;) )


So that's basically it! Some people have said they're really hard to take, and others say they don't notice. They're supposed to make you feel pregnant but so far I don't feel anything. The injection site was a little sore for a couple hours but only barely. I was sitting at dinner just after the first shot (I did it in the car on the way! My mom who was driving was freaking out a little. ha.) and thinking "Aren't I supposed to feel something?!" I hope they don't have a crazy effect on me, but if they do, I have a whole gallon of blue bell ice cream to make me feel better. :) If the words "Blue Bell Icecream" don't make your mouth water, go find some and learn of the goodness from heaven. (For those of you in Provo, it can be found at the Provo Beach Resort in the Riverwoods and at Carrabas in the form of "The Johnny."


So I'll give you more updates when I have them, but until then, just pray that I stay sane!


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