My husband and I watch Masterchef. We love to roll our eyes at the judges, laugh at the silliness of it all, and complain about all the things that are obviously staged. One of our favorite things to laugh at is that they always refer to one of their competitions called “The Pressure Test” as the “DREADED Pressure Test”. In a way I feel like that is the part of IVF I am in now… the Dreaded Two Week Wait (also known as the TWW). Some people say this is the most difficult part of the IVF cycle. It’s hard for me to say. Every part seems like it is the most difficult when you are in that part.
Today I began to feel the dread of the tww, though. The doctors always tell me to lay around for a couple days after the transfer. I think some doctors may say it’s good to get out and get your mind off of it. I like to play it safe for the first few days, so I try to take it easy, and I’m usually pretty worn out by this point anyway, looking to rest. The problem is that during the tww, there’s nothing to do! There are plenty of movies to watch and books to read and internet pages to search, but there is nothing to do to participate in the IVF process. All of a sudden, after appointments, shots, and procedures, we IVFers just have to… wait. Don’t get me wrong, I still get to have a wonderful shot of progesterone in my butt-cheek for the next 2 weeks, but other than that, it’s so quiet. No calls from the nurses. No one checking my hormone levels or using ultrasound on my uterus. No exercise. No hot baths. No housework or lifting heavy things. Some of these could sound like good things, but not when you’re looking to get your mind off of a subject.
I start to feel pretty lonely around this time. Progesterone doesn’t help my tendency toward sadness and grumpiness either. I have already thought a few times today: how could it have possibly worked? The negativity is like a strong wind that I always have to steer my mind against. The other strong wind is the internet. Every brain cell I have wants to Google all day long. I think of all of those numbers and factors pertaining to my IVF cycle and I want to search for them with the term “success stories” tacked on the end. If I can just read a couple real stories like mine that resulted in a baby, I can keep holding on and steering this ship.
Only, while putting your hope in internet stories is nice for a bit, it is like an addiction that soon leaves you unsatisfied and looking for more. This time I’m trying to put my hope in something higher than the internet. However, that’s not to say, I don’t believe in reading other people’s stories. I mean, that’s why I’m doing this! I merely think, if you’re going to stay healthy mentally on the tww, you have to have more than just the internet. You need to have relationships, including one with God.
As the wait goes on and gets longer and more tiresome, I hope I can take my own advice. I’m going to be honest here: I’m going to need some emails, texts messages, phone calls. If you ever happen to think of me, I’ll take whatever you got. And, I don’t mean a message about IVF either. Please, distract me! You’ve been listening to me for so long now. What is going with you?