In a lucky twist of fate my tubal patency ultrasound was scheduled for today, just a few days after my last bikini wax. In an unexpected and unlucky twist we had a car accident on the way to the hospital.
Now, this car accident was not a big one. In fact, judging by the minimal amount of damage done to the three cars involved (one slightly misshapen licence plate, a few scratches to paintwork and a couple of minor dents) it barely counts as a crash at all. But the music of squealing brakes and deforming metal really wasn’t the soundtrack I wanted to start my day to. Sorry Husband, but all I can say is… thank God I wasn’t the one driving.
Despite this set-back we made it to my appointment in the nick of time, leaving me with a funny sense of deja vu. Will be ever be able to make it to an IF appointment without some sort of travel drama? But I digress…
We arrived. I was shown into the changing room to strip naked from the waist down and instructed to don a gown before waiting in the “women’s waiting room” (male partners are strictly verboten and forced to wait around the corner in the public waiting room). I was pretending to read a magazine while tugging awkwardly on both the neckline of my gown (which seemed to be trying to strangle me to death) and the back hem (which seemed to be trying to embarrass me to death by displaying my bare bottom). Another patient breezed past me and looking at her much more comfortably-fitting gown I realized in horror that I had mine on back-to-front. Feeling slightly concerned that the doctor performing the ultrasound might refuse any procedure which could – however indirectly – lead to the impregnation of a woman who clearly couldn’t even be trusted to dress herself I rushed back into the changing booth and ripped the gown up over my head. This is precisely the moment a nurse called my name. I scrambled back into my gown (right-way-round) and was shown to the ultrasound room while the nurse went to fetch H (who despite not being allowed in the same waiting room as two modestly-clad women in floral hospital gowns was allowed front-row seats to see my lubricated, goose-pimpled vagina being probed by a complete stranger).
The procedure began with a basic pelvic ultrasound to ensure that I had a uterus to pump contrast into in the first place, and to check there wasn’t any sign I had recently ovulated (haha, yeah, right).
If you’ve read The Beginning you know that I am well aware that I have polycystic ovaries. In fact: they are impressively polycystic. Oh, but I had no idea how very excited this doctor would get about just how polycystic they are.
Her: I can see a few cysts…
Me: Oh yeah…
Her: You’ve been told this before?
Me: (giggle) uh… yes
Her (moving the US wand just a tad to get a better view of the cysts which I assume are held together by some ovarian tissue): Oh my! They’re really, very cystic, aren’t they?
Me: (quietly) I kinda think they look like Swiss cheese
Her: YES! That’s exactly what they look like. These are the sort of ovaries I’d like to show someone who is learning to recognize PCO – there’s no mistaking them, is there?
Luckily this time I found it more amusing than tear-provoking.
Next came the part during which the catheter was inserted through my cervix and into my uterus in order to pump the whole assembly with contrast. This was the part that “might be a little uncomfortable”. It bloody hurt. Yes it only lasted a few minutes; yes it’s all for a good cause; but it bloody hurt – a deep, gripping, visceral pain.
I could feel my face distorting in ways I knew couldn’t be attractive, and knowing that H isn’t used to medical procedures in the same way I am I made a point of looking over to him frequently to flash him a reassuring grimace smile and on a couple of occasions a cheeky tongue-poking. (Interestingly when I later asked H how he coped with the whole thing, pointing out that he looked a little uncomfortable, he informed me that he had a sore back and was having trouble finding a comfortable position in his chair. And there I was thinking he was worried about me…)
But the good news is: I’m patent!
The bad news: I had to stand up and wipe my very damp bottom in front of the doctor, the nurse, and my husband, before strapping a huge absorbent mattress to my underwear.
Unfortunately the semen analysis results still aren’t back so my plan to start popping pills tonight has been thwarted. On our way home we stopped at the pharmacy to fill the prescriptions anyway, in the hopes that the results are in tomorrow and I can start the Progesterone tomorrow night.
I’ll keep you posted!