Thursday, 2 May 2013

Taking the road less travelled

Sometimes, when you’re on a journey, you’ll come to a fork in the road. You need to decide which way to go. You can take the safe option – the road you’ve been down before, or you can take the road you’ve never been down. As Robert Frost said “I took the road less travelled by and that has made all the difference.”

One of the down falls of clomid is it turns you into the Sahara Desert, drying up all of your internal fluids. For the majority of women, this isn’t a problem. Some notice no difference at all, and others just use a little but of lubricant and Bob’s their uncle. However, if you’re a woman who suffers from vulvodynia, you’re not so lucky.

Vulvodynia also dries up your internal fluids so the clomid has pretty much left me with nothing.  The first 2 rounds were manageable but now, we’ve had to significantly increase the amount of lubricant we use. If we don’t, sex is the equivalent of rubbing sand paper all over myself. Sorry if I just made you all cross your legs and squirm, but you get the picture.

The problem with having to use more lubricant is it can cause more damage to the sperm. This means less sperm are able to get to the egg, which in turn lessens the chance of creating a pregnancy. Given I only have a 25% chance of falling pregnant each month anyway, I feel like these issues make that percentage take a steep nose dive.

The saddest thing for me about having to deal with this is the pain sex causes me. And not just me, but the pain it causes my husband having to see me in pain. Sex is meant to be two people expressing their love for one another, and in our case, using that love to create a baby. It should be an enjoyable and loving experience. There’s nothing more unenjoyable than having to grit your teeth and tell your husband it’s ok as tears sneak out of the corners of your eyes and run down your cheeks. It is not the way anyone wants to create a baby.

So I’ve decided to stop wasting our time and take the road less travelled. We're moving onto insemination (IUI). This will be my last cycle of just clomid. The fertility specialist wanted me to try 4 cycles before moving onto IUI but I’ve decided 3 is enough. I will stay on the clomid through the IUI process because I like the fact it regulates my cycle so I know exactly what’s happening.

What’s the point of doing IUI if I stay on the clomid I hear you ask? Well, it means I no longer have to worry about killing off the sperm because they’ll be injected into my uterus – totally lubricant free! It means we can have sex and use as much lubricant as we like, knowing it won’t impede the pregnancy process. It means we can bypass any other issues that the ongoing discharge and cramps may be causing. It means we get the troops straight to the jackpot!

I am so happy to have made this decision, and the fact my husband is ok with it. He’s not looking forward to starting a new relationship with a specimen jar, but I told him that was better than having a needle shoved up inside of you. Now, I hope the specialist will be on board with it too and not talk me out of it. Assuming I don’t fall pregnant this month, I’ll see him on day 10 of my next cycle which will leave us only 2 or 3 days before the procedure has to be done. So I hope he can squeeze me in!

Because I don’t expect to get pregnant this month, I just want to get through it so we can move onto the next phase. I will throw myself into trying because hey, you just never know, but I’m not invested in it. I know I said I would love to find out I was pregnant on Peanut’s due date, and I still would. But, I’m totally ok if I don’t. It means I can go away, have a few drinks that week and come home ready to start the next chapter. I’m really excited. More excited then when I started the clomid. I am trying not to work myself up too much so I don’t get too disappointed if it doesn’t work first go. But, for the first time in 7 months, I now feel like we have a real shot at this.

Image by scottchan
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