Under normal life circumstances, two weeks typically fly by. Like, it’s the middle of October already. Last time I checked, we were somewhere in September. But there’s one two week period that absolutely doesn’t fly by — in fact, it’s possibly the slowest two weeks ever. The dreaded two week wait when you’re trying to get pregnant.
For some women, conceiving is easy (sometimes too easy — shout out to all the whoopsie kiddos), for others it can be a huge challenge and for some it sadly never happens.
This is simply my story.
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about the fertility journey that my wife Becky and I have been on. We spent a year trying to get Becky pregnant, but had to abruptly switch to me after she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer (she’s totally cancer-free now, but thyroid-less). Since then, I’ve attempted two IUIs — AKA intrauterine insemination.
IUI is basically like having sex, except minus the romance and the actual sex part.
The doctor sticks a catheter in your vagina, through your cervix and into the uterus to release the sperm (you guys, I just had to text my fertility doctor, Dr. Marli Amin, because I wasn’t sure how it actually worked — clearly I’ve learned nothing). And the rest is up to your body.
My first IUI was pretty standard. I had about 75 ultrasounds done to make sure at least one egg would drop (okay, maybe more like two or three ultrasounds, but it felt like 75). After two days, I felt some cramping and was certain something was happening (other than, you know, gas). For two whole weeks, I was convinced I was pregnant. I had pretty much already created a baby registry in my mind.
But finally after the two week wait, the pregnancy test revealed that it didn’t work. I wasn’t pregnant.
So we had to wait another two weeks before trying again (I don’t make the rules, that’s just how ovulation works). Obviously waiting happens in two week increments when trying to conceive.
Because it had been well over a year since Becky and I began the process of trying to get pregnant, I asked Dr. Amin if there was anything we could do to increase my chances — patience is hard. Even though she said I didn’t need to yet, I decided to take hormones.
As if there aren’t already enough hormones racing through a woman’s body, adding to that is more or less insane. Specifically, for your partner and anyone else who’s around you on a daily basis. For the most part, I was totally fine and a normal human being. But there were a couple of days where I just couldn’t control my feelings, my emotions or the things I said. It was an out of body experience — and not the good kind.
I don’t know how it happened, but miraculously, it worked. The sperm found the egg. I imagine it looked something like the opening credits in Look Who’s Talking.
My body did what it needed to do. Somehow all the things lined up and it created the beginning of a human life. I’m pregnant! We’re going to be parents to a real life human being! It’s totally smooth sailing from here, right?