With medicated timed intercourse being a bust (no pun intended). We decided after a brief conversation with our doctor, intrauterine insemination was the next natural step.
What Is IUI?
Intrauterine insemination or IUI as it’s commonly known is, to cut a long story short, when the sperm is placed directly into the uterus. As IUI is often used for unexplained infertility, we were given a high chance of this working for us.
For all our IUI cycles (don’t forget we did 5 of them), we opted for Menopur, which is an injection taken in the abdomen at the same time daily, its use is to grow and mature follicles. Now follicle production was never really an issue for me, but we found that on Letrozole I wasn’t producing as many as I was naturally… weird. So we thought that Menopur was the best bet. But taking injections in your stomach everyday is rough, especially when you are absolutely petrified of needles. When the clock hit 9 pm every night, Sameer and I became nervous wrecks, gearing ourselves up for the dreaded injection… you have to remember this was just as hard for Sameer. The poor guy didn’t want to hurt me.
Ultimately though, with every round of IUIs we were excited, so freaking excited, to actually be making progress. After about 12 days of Menopur shots, daily ultrasounds to watch my follicles, and daily bloodwork to measure my Estradiol, LH and FSH levels, the day was here. We were given the go ahead to use the magical trigger shot (Ovidrel) eek! The next morning, bright and early after Sameer had made sweet sweet love to a plastic cup, we headed to the clinic. His sperm was washed and ready for action, I was placed in a very unflattering position (I won’t go into detail, but just think of a spread eagle). The nurse came in catheter in hand and got busy with my cervix. We were left to relax in the room for a bit before heading home. Sameer and I were on cloud 9… literally, I remember floating out the room. But after the second, then the third, forth, and finally fifth time we felt defeated.
I would watch the women in the fertility waiting rooms start to fade away, they’re procedures becoming successes. I would listen to the excitement of the newbies, thrilled to be there and just feel bitter. I was angry… so freaking angry. Oh what a horrid person I was becoming.
I knew that I had to change, I didn’t like the person I was. So we actually scheduled a meeting with an IVF doctor the same day as our last (fifth) round of IUI. A fresh conversation with someone new gave us a new outlook, for the first time in a long time we felt hope.
Unfortunately the fifth round of IUI didn’t work. I needed to stop for a while, not only for my brain but for my poor body, it had been through the ringer. We scheduled a bunch of tests with the IVF doctor for December and logged out for a bit. This is when we headed on our big European adventure. To be able to forget (or try to) about babies for a while was such a blessing, and more needed than I thought.
I came back home, refreshed, happy, and ready to start this next chapter… IVF.
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