Back in February, I told you all I was considering artificial insemination to become a Single Mom by Choice (SMC). I’m so happy to announce that after all of this time, I am officially pregnant with baby number 2!
I wanted to write down my journey through this because it was not as simple as I originally envisioned it. And once I started the process there were several moments my family (and even I at times) thought it might be best to hold off. But I’m not one to hide from obstacles or to give up on something I truly want.
Back in June, I started interviewing doctors. Typically, one would go to a reproductive endocrinologist (RE), but there was only 1 in my city. He charged a lot just to consult with him; even more to actually use him for fertility treatments. Instead I interviewed OB/GYNs who had the ability to perform IUIs in their clinics.
I came across really good doctors with really strong (negative) opinions about single moms. I came across mediocre doctors with incredible bedside manner. I came across some with neither bedside manner nor intelligence, and finally I came across one with the perfect combination of expertise and understanding.
During this time I also started religiously tracking my cycles by taking my basal body temperature (BBT or temping) and testing with ovulation predictor kits (OPK). The key to both of these things is finding your own pattern.
I had planned to start my first round of IUI in September, but Hurricane Irma had her own plans. Our whole state was without power the day of my scheduled procedure, so I’d need to wait for another cycle to try.
October was going to be my month. I ordered my sample, scheduled my shipment. Everything was set up according to plan, except my body had a different idea in mind. My temps were all over the place, and so were my OPKs. I didn’t have a pattern at all and when I went for my follicle scan, there weren’t any.
Follicles grow throughout the beginning of your cycle until they become fully mature and release an egg. Not all follicles have eggs, but in order to release any eggs, you have to have a follicle. This cycle was anovulatory, meaning no signs of ovulation and no follicles or eggs. I was devastated. I had to return my shipment (lose out on $300 shipping costs) and spent about 10 days sulking about it.
My doctor prescribed me Clomid to help ovulation and assist in the growth of follicles. I started 50 mg on cycle day 3 and took it once per day for 5 days. I fortunately didn’t experience any negative symptoms from the medicine. I was on edge, but I attribute that to nerves leading up to the follicle scan to tell me whether I’d get to finally have my procedure.
CD12, my follicle study came back with amazing results. This was the third scan I had, and my follicle was nearly double the size of the one time it was present in the past. My doctor said it was go time and had me overnight my sample to the clinic. My IUI was the next day, November 1!
I felt intense relief, but also started to question the timing. I hadn’t gotten a positive OPK yet, and my temps didn’t indicate I had ovulated yet. I began doubting that this cycle would be a success.
I stocked up on the cheapie pregnancy tests and read this website multiple times per day. This website tells you the odds of getting a positive pregnancy test (when you actually are pregnant) by days past ovulation. At 7 days the odds were 20% in my favor, so that’s the day I started testing.
It was negative when I woke up at 5 am to check, and I planned to only test once per day so as not to drive myself crazy. But to my surprise, when I arrived home from work, I saw the faintest little line. It was a solid line, but faint. I couldn’t see it in photos but I could in real life. I definitely thought I was crazy, but I truly did see it!
The next day, another line. This time it showed up within the timeframe and was a little bit clearer. I tested everyday and every day it became clearer and darker. I am pregnant!
At the time of writing this, I am 7 weeks 2 days along and have had my first prenatal appointment. I’m already showing and am definitely feeling the symptoms. I know they’re going to come on stronger here soon, so trying to stay hopeful that this pregnancy will be slightly easier than my last.