Monday, February 11, 2008

excuses, excuses, and the big day

Every time I get a bad cold, it happens in roughly the same way; the same symptoms, in the same order. Because I can't help analyzing and categorizing things, I like to divide it up into three stages:

  • stage 1: This stage includes a stuffy head, runny nose, and most fun of all, some fever and chills. All I want to do is curl up under many blankets and make some attempt at sleeping. During this stage I am absolutely no use to anybody.
  • stage 2: I start to feel a bit better, the cold is moving downwards and is hanging out in my throat. Highlights include a sore throat and a bit of shortness of breath.
  • stage 3: Cough, cough, cough. I feel okay, but I can't stop fricking coughing. The cold is rattling around somewhere in my chest and is usually pretty reluctant to leave.

At the moment, I'm still chilling out in stage 3, waiting for this stupid thing to go away. And of course everybody else in the house had to get their own, personalized version of Killer Cold 2008 (except J - what's up with that?). So we've had assorted fevers, coughing, sniffling, even a nice barfing episode just to mix it up a little. Really, there should be a biohazard label on my front door right now.

Which is all by way of saying - hi! How've you been? I can't believe I haven't posted in so long! I really want to tell you about the big day - the big Egg Retrieval day, which was a couple of Fridays ago.

We had to be in Lexington (about an hour away) by 7:00, and this is definitely not something you can be a couple minutes late for. So my mom showed up to get the kids to school and everything, and we left the house at about 5:30. We got there 45 minutes early - the parking lot was nearly empty, the main waiting room was empty and dark, and the smaller waiting room where we had to go was nearly empty. There was one nurse there, who seemed rather surprised to see us.

So we sat and waited a while, filled out some paperwork, you know, boring stuff. After a bit we went into a big white room with beds all around, curtains dividing them off. The nurses' station was in the middle and they were all chatting, the doctor there was making them laugh. I got changed into the super-hot hospital gown, waited and talked with J a bit more, eventually got my IV put in. (The IV was, of course, the worst part. It was also the worst part of the births of all three of my children. I hate IVs.) Other couples came in over the hour or so we waited in that room. I didn't mean to eavesdrop or anything, but there was only curtains and natural curiosity in there, so I managed to gather that we were really the only people in there for a donation. Everybody else was having the same procedure I was, but their eggs would then be fertilized and put back in (I think that's pretty much how it works anyway; I don't really know the details of that part). They were getting their instructions for afterward, and I was again thankful that I was able to have my own children without intervention. There were so many reminders that day of why I was doing what I was doing.

Finally I was brought into the operating room, which was a little bit scary. It was a small room with tiled walls and floor, and it was surprisingly dim. The only light was a bright one right over the bed I was on, and there were about five or six people in there, masked, waiting. I don't really remember too much after that. I laid down on the bed, and the anesthesiologist asked if I was feeling the effects on the medicine yet. I said no, but about two seconds after that I thought to myself, Oh, now I am. Two seconds after that I was back out in the big white room and J was making some joke about how they said he had to carry me out of the building. Of course I believed him at first; I remember thinking that it was pretty icy and that didn't sound very safe. Taking advantage of a woman in a compromised state, can you believe that?

So the whole thing was a success - they got fifteen eggs, which they tell me is a good amount. J and I were back home by 10:00 that morning, and I spent the rest of the day lounging around, watching a chick flick and having the Gatorade and protein bars they told me to. (I feel I have some idea, now, about what it is like to be an athlete. It sucks - I knew it.) I went to work the next day and I felt just fine until Killer Cold 2008. I got an email from the coordinator at Prospective Families and she said the Intended Parents, as they call them, were just thrilled. I can't wait to hear how it all turns out. She also asked if she could continue to present my profile to other couples, if I would be willing to do it again. I haven't gotten back to her yet. Partly because of the cold, but mostly because I'm not sure. I'm leaning towards something along the lines of "Yes, but not right away." But we'll see.

Have a great day! You'll hear from me again soon, I promise.