My seventeenth charted cycle started on March 22, 2006. I was back in the game with a new donor after a four-month break, 6 failed IUIs, a miscarriage, an HSG, 2 donors, and almost of year of recording fertility data. I was starting to think it was never going to happen.
According to That Fertility Site, I ovulated on Day 12 (April 2), a Sunday, but the OPK didn’t give me a positive until Sunday afternoon. My temp rose only 2 tenths of a degree on Monday, but it rose nonetheless. I was disheartened, but I manually overrode the charting software based on the OPK and called the doctor. They scheduled me for 3:00 Monday afternoon. I had a student teacher at the time, so I took a half day and went home early to wait for the appointment. I needed the downtime. I was convinced it wasn’t going to work, that I’d missed the window.
My doctor was delivering a baby, so I was scheduled with the nurse practitioner. She had done my last IUI in November, and I liked her a great deal–she explained every single move she made, right down to opening the catheter, inserting the speculum, depressing the plunger. She did not hurt me, and when she was finished she made sure my cervix was not bleeding from the tenaculum. She told me my swimmers were abundant and full of energy. She was kind, and she made me laugh, and I left feeling calm and peaceful. But I was still convinced it wasn’t going to work.
I spent the rest of the week in a daze, staring at my chart, staring at everyone else’s charts, trying to find some small shred of hope and finding none. Nothing was different, nothing was out of the ordinary. I was financially prepared to do two more months, but I was already looking ahead to when those attempts didn’t work either, and I would be back where I started, but with considerably less money. Spring break started that Friday, and I actually managed to do other things–read, watch movies, eat [lots of junk], take Suzanna for long walks around the neighborhood [in my pajamas]. I was fighting a battle with myself–feeling myself falling into that sadness of a failed cycle, but trying to convince myself to focus on something, anything, positive. Positive.
On Easter Sunday I was planning to drive to my mom’s and spend the afternoon with my family. I have to confess that I didn’t want to. I wanted to stay in bed and feel sad, watch “Beaches” and “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood” and “You’ve Got Mail” for the billionth time and lament about a seventh failed cycle. I had tested the day before (negative) and the day before that (negative), and on Sunday, 13 days past ovulation, I almost didn’t bother testing again. I showered, dressed, and with time left over I thought “what the hell” and peed on a pregnancy test. And then I almost forgot about it. I got my things together and was on my way to the car when I remembered it. I walked into the bathroom and nonchalantly picked it up, fully expecting to glance at it and then throw it away. But it was positive. Positive.
Positive! So I opened a different brand–a plus/minus type. Plus! Positive. So I drove to W@lgreens and bought a digital test. Pregnant! Positive. I could. Not. Believe it. I tried to be excited, but I was terrified. I had a positive once before. It did not last. But I gathered up the digital test and put it in an Easter basket for my mom–finally, an Easter basket worthy of The Easter Basket Queen–and headed out the door.
By the time I got to my mom’s a mere 45 minutes away, the “pregnant” reading on the digital test had vanished. I tried to body slam the voice that whispered “bad omen” in my ear. My family was excited by the news, but also cautious, I think. We didn’t talk about it much. In fact, I hardly talked about it all all, ever. I was too busy holding my breath.
I’m still holding my breath.