Egg donation #6: That’s a wrap

And so. After almost two years, around 80 injections, seven blood tests, 18 internal ultrasounds, six egg retrievals, one missing ovary and a whole lot of awesome, my egg donation journey has officially come to an end.

* I will be back in a few days to post a proper “conclusion” to my journey, but for now, I just wanted to share “the happenings”. You can read all my other egg donation posts here.

I was scheduled to check in to the Vincent Pallotti fertility unit at 6.45am on Sunday morning (6.45am on a Sunday! It’s completely uncivilised!) and my mom was supposed to drive me there and back. She was, however, mildly nervous about the whole thing – so much so that she pretty much needed instructions on how to get out of the immediate surrounds of my flat (love you, mom) – and so the Control Freak in me reared her head and drove us from the petrol station to the hospital, pumping Macklemore at 6.30 in the morning. It was real.

The Sister checked me in, weighed me, blood pressure-d me (I hate the blood pressure cuff, which then ups my blood pressure!) and decorated me. I told her that I secretly love hospital bands, and she told me they were “really expensive pieces of jewellery” which – at 6.50am – I totally believed. Shuddup, it was early. Plus, isn’t everything in a hospital really expensive? I rest my case. (Excuse the red mark left from my hairband.)

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Anyway, then the anaesthetist came round to do his thing – and he was so cool, I wish I could remember his name. He joked and told me that I was “tiny” and asked how much I weighed, then joked about being more used to dosing people twice my size. Then the doctor on call arrived, and I met him briefly, before being taken to the bathroom before going under. But not before taking a Totally Acceptable Selfie and Instagramming it. Hipster egg donations FTW.

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There, I somehow managed to lose the Sister, but found my way to the little operating theatre, and kinda hovered in the doorway while everybody did their thing. Nobody seemed to notice me, so I cracked a joke about “Is this where the party’s happening?” and the anaesthetist settled me on the little operating table. The Sister arrived – she’d gone to look for the After Hours Cellphone – and laughed at how I must have “just slipped past her”. Yeah, I’m a sneaky chicken like that.

The atmosphere in the theatre before this donation was wonderful – I’m so glad I had such a positive experience for my last one. There was a lot of laughter, a lot of joking and teasing. After the anaesthetist asked if I had been “decorated” yet, I cracked a joke about being “Bagged and tagged and ready to go” – and then, after inserting the canula to feed through the anaesthetic – he joked about “Sometimes being lazy on a Sunday morning” and not bringing me back – to which I replied “Well, you guys don’t need me anymore, right? I’ll be off then”. The anaesthetist told me a few times that I was “incredible”, so there was that.

And then there was that slight cold feeling in my arm, and I remember watching the surgical lights blur a little, and then waking up in the recovery room to a pot of tea and some toasted cheese and tomato sandwiches.

The Sister popped past and told me that they had managed to get 14 eggs – she called me a “good little chicken”! – and I was allowed to go home again by 9am. And now again, the waiting game – hopefully in about 3 weeks or so we’ll find out if this recipient gets pregnant, so send all the love and light you possess in her general direction!

And then a bit later on Sunday night, some amazing news. I discovered that one of my recipients gave birth to a baby girl… On my late father’s birthday.

My heart swelled to three times its usual size, and I may have shed a small tear. I’m surprised at how amazingly, amazingly special it feels.

I couldn’t have asked for a more amazing way to have my egg donation journey come to an end.

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I keep dancing on my own

So, I’ve maintained radio silence for far too long now – and it’s time to shake the dust off the blog and get my shit together. Seriously, I haven’t even written in my journal recently – largely because for the last two weeks or so I’ve either not been home very much or have been curled up around myself in a ball zoning out to old episodes of Modern Family. I didn’t say it was pretty – it’s been exhausting, for a multitude of reasons that I will have to self-censor for now. Nothing serious, don’t worry. Just, well, yes. Whatever.

So, let’s play catch-up…

After the great Tiger Tiger fail of 2012, I redeemed myself by having just one drink and dancing my ass off on a random Saturday night. It was awesome. I’d gone out with X and C to see Silver Linings Playbook (which, by the way, um, WOW) before rushing home to change into somethin’ purdy and racing to Tiger, where a drunk guy started grinding up and down me while I was at the bar and trying to stick his tongue down my throat. I was simultaneously flattered (it’s been a while – and hey, at least someone thought I was attractive) and outraged. I compensated by slipping out from behind him while he started trying to grind up against me, ass-first.

Tiger Tiger Claremont

Then, I’ve been filming reviews in the forest for work. ‘Cause we’re creative like that. I still need to make time to edit the f***ing things. But it should look pretty cool. Not much else to report, I just like the picture, really.Filming in the forest

You may recall my raving about Black Chandelier in my last post. The album is now in my collection 😀 And in my car. And on my work laptop. It does wonders for blocking out office noise. Also, it’s a pretty damn amazing album.

Biffy Clyro - Opposites

Candace vs. Kettlebell. We did some crazy, awesome new exercises with the kettlebells at gym this week. New positions = new bruises. Also, I nearly dropped a 12kg on my head. Thank god the trainer was lurking. This was the bruise in the evening after the session. I had a matching one on my left arm. They’re currently very dark blue.
Kettlebell bruise

Red. Hot. Chili. Peppers. In Cape Town. Went with my brother and one of his friends – Sean’s a MASSIVE fan. They played almost all the songs I wanted to hear, and I rocked out so hard my calves were sore the next day and my feet were blistered. Great night. Again, just one drink – donation day is (currently) on 11 February – eeek 😀 Will do a full catch-up post post-procedure.

Red Hot Chili Peppers Cape Town

If I ever write a memoir about my egg donation experiences, I think I’ll have to devote a whole chapter to “Fun with Cetrotide”. Note the mix-it-yourself-at-home kit… The first time I had to mix my own Cetrotide was during my first donation, and “fiasco” would probably be the best way to describe it. In my quest to get all the air bubbles out, I ended up spritzing a chunk of the meds across my bedroom floor, panicked and injected myself with said air bubbles (air pocket would probably be more fitting) and ended up with one heck of a bruise and worries that I’d ruined it all. However, I generally follow my first doctor’s rule of thumb: If it’s itching, it’s working. I’m getting more professional now. Though there’s always at least one effing air bubble somewhere.

Cetrotide injection

Then, this week’s musical obsession is Icona Pop’s I Love It – as seen on Girls. Love the show – even though it makes me so uncomfortable sometimes that I have to hide my head under the pillow temporarily.

Breaking radio silence

So… Best intentions and all that. A brief catch-up.

The last few days have been Mental. Yes, with a capital M. You know when your whole body just kinda collapses into itself and you can’t quite muster up the energy to do anything, and you know you should probably take it as a sign to maybe, just maybe veg out for a few days (that is when not working stupidly long hours to try play catch-up)? Yep, that.

Or playing Diablo 3. Which, by the way, kicks a whole large amount of ass. But then again, Diablo 2 ranks pretty highly on my list of favourite games, like ever, so I was always going to love it.

Also, after typing out a pretty ranty blog post that may or may not have contained some quotes from Sylvia Plath, I decided to cool my heels and not publish it. Very good decision. I’ve kept it in my drafts though. I’m not good at deleting things. My point here is: I nearly blogged. Nearly.

Mostly, the most exciting thing that has been happening is my third round of egg donation. Currently egg retrieval is scheduled for Monday morning sometime – and I do my final scan tomorrow. It’s at the weird nervy-excited stage of the process – but the team at the Clinic is beyond awesome so I know I shouldn’t be worried.

I’m currently at my least favourite part of the whole process – the three days before my retrieval, I’m generally a little crampy, very bloated and rather bruised. This time the bruising wasn’t my fault – the sister at the Clinic had to give me a rather large shot of Cetrotide (to stop me ovulating) and left me feeling super tender. Pretty much just three injections left – one more shot of Gonal F (the follicle stimulating drug) and two shots of Lucrin, the trigger drug. And then we’re A-for-Away.

This is a slightly shorter catch-up than initially intended – I’m entirely knackered. I’ve been struggling with crazy insomnia since about Tuesday last week – largely of the staring-up-at-the-ceiling-for-a-few-hours-falling-asleep-waking-up-at-the-crack-of-dawn variety. And then last night, I managed to fall asleep relatively early (around 10pm). Then had a pretty insane dream about The Geologist, of all people, which woke me up in a cold sweat at 3am and rendered me unable to sleep for some time after that.

Unresolved issues? Me? Never.