“We need to get you pregnant.” That’s how my doctor opened our last appointment. She knocked on the door, sat down across from the examining table, put her hands on her knees, leaned forward and said “I can help with that.”
So there I was, sitting with a paper gown around my naked lower half and thinking, ‘Woah. What just happened here?’
Yes, I do want to get pregnant…but how about a little “Hi, how are you? How have you been sleeping? How are your emotions?” My desire for emotional coddling was quickly overridden by the straight-forward approach though. After all, the whole reason I was at the doctor, was to find out what’s going on with my body and to figure out how to correct it as quickly as possible.
After recapping every blow-by-heartbreaking blow, including the fact that I was now on cycle day 44 with no sign of what I’m now calling ‘the second coming,’ the doctor and I agreed that there were at least a few things we could do right away.
First item on the agenda: blood work. “I’m going to test your thyroid function and your prolactin — both hormones can interfere with your body enough to stop menstruation.”
Second: Prometrium, a progesterone pill. “You’re going to take two a day for 10 days. Then you’ll get your period.”
Third: Cycle Day 21 blood work. “Come back on day 21 of your cycle. We’re going to test your progesterone to see if you’re ovulating.”
“And if I’m not ovulating?” I asked. “I can give you something to help with that as long as you’re OK with a slightly increased risk of having twins,” she replied with a smile on her face.
So that’s the action plan. I’m still waiting on results of the initial blood work (much like I’m still waiting on my second post-miscarriage period) but I did pick up my prescription for the progesterone supplement. I don’t know when I’m going to start taking it though. I’m going overseas for the next week and I don’t want to be on hormone pills while I’m in a different country. The last thing I need now is to find myself hospitalized while traveling. No–that wouldn’t be good. So I think I’ll wait until I return. What’s one more week in the grand scheme of things?
It’s here! It’s here! It’s here! After a whopping 9.5 weeks, my period finally arrived. I haven’t been this thrilled about getting a period since I was 20 and forgot to use a back up method while I was on antibiotics (some antibiotics interfere with birth control pills).
Despite my best efforts to induce it weeks ago with parsley tea, red raspberry leaf tea, pomegranate juice, and a stint of wearing nothing but thongs, it took nine and half weeks.
I don’t think nine and a half weeks is average. From everything I read, and even from what my doctor said, four to six weeks is about average. Does that mean that I’m above average? Well, I’ve always tried to be a cut above the rest.
The minute Aunt Flo arrived, I texted my husband. “You might want to bring home a bottle of champagne. I finally got my period!” He was just as excited as I was though I think for different reasons. Getting my period meant that he didn’t have to make room in the refrigerator for the parsley bunches (parsley can supposedly bring on menstruation), or receive daily e-mail updates on possible signs of its impending arrival.
I think we both knew it was coming when I asked if it would be wrong to dip a spicy chicken wing in chocolate. Other than strange cravings and the worst breakout since I was about sixteen, I had no other warnings though and that’s what made the wait so frustrating.
Of course, now that it’s here there’s the little question of when we start trying again. One doctor told me to wait for three cycles and another told me to go for gold after one cycle. I guess the upside of waiting so long for a period was that we didn’t have to make any decisions about what we were going to do.
There’s a tremendous amount of energy that goes into thinking about these things. There’s logic on both sides of the coin. If we wait and I don’t conceive again right away, or worse, we have another miscarriage, I’m going to be angry that we waited. If we don’t wait, and I conceive, and we have another miscarriage, I’m going to be angry that we didn’t wait.
You’re probably thinking “Uh…isn’t it possible that you’ll conceive right away AND have a healthy full-term pregnancy?” Yes. It’s possible but so are the other scenarios.