This try is going muuuuuch more smoothly than the last one. Probably because I'm not on Lupron.
I was a holy cunt on Lupron. I alternated between knashing my teeth whilst kicking those in close range in the shins and sitting limply in my chair, staring at the wall with glazed eyes.
"YOU ARE IN MORTAL DANGER!" I would cry out when E approached me with the syringe each night.
And she would soothe me and after my shot bring me a gin and tonic and I'd clutch at her and apologize for being a monster. It felt like my time with Lupron lasted 8 months. I think in reality it was closer to 2 weeks.
E, of course, is having no similar symptoms, because she's a better person than I.
She enjoys pointing out that "fits of violent irritability" and "lapses into semi-concious stupor" are not included on the list of potential side effects.
Lupron is a gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist that, over time, downregulates the release of FSH and LH, which are hormones that stimulate the ovaries to produce eggs. It "shuts down" your reproductive cycle so the doctor can ramp it back up with a cocktail of stimulating hormones.
This is called an agonist protocol, and apparently it is the most common protocol used in IVF because:
1. It is more controlled, thus easier to prevent ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) which, as I understand, is no diddling flu (with a moderate case, you can put on 2 pounds a day - yippee!)
2. It works with most people.
You fail your agonist cycle (i.e., you produce few eggs or poor quality eggs)? You're given the glamorous label of "poor responder," and may be told you need an antagonist cycle, which, your doctor will surely point out, is generally used for elderly ladies with shrivelled up raisin ovaries so desperate to become with child that they'll try anything. An antagonist cycle stimulates the ovaries without shutting down your system first, so you're more at risk for OHSS.
I'm not on Lupron because our new doctor has put me on an antagonist cycle. To be honest, I threatened suicide if I had to go back on Lupron, so he had little choice. If I've learned anything through this process, it is self-advocacy, and I was determined to avoid Lupron this cycle.
Not only because it fucked with my head, but it also gave me huge cysts on my ovaries. During monitoring one day during IVF #1, our old doctor, weilding dildocam with a vicious glee, proclaimed that I had Lupron-cycts. "Holy God! Look at the size of that one! That's gotta be ASPIRATED!"
"Aspirated?" I moaned.
"YEP. Don't worry, I'll prescribe you some VALIUM. You might even enjoy it!"
1. He prescribed me one feeble little Valium. Although I'm a relatively small person, I have a strangely high tolerance for drugs and alcohol. I need a horse tranquilizer to take a nap.
2. He refused to give me the pill until after I read my consent forms, so I popped it as I signed. I was strapped to a gurney with a foot long needle between my legs about 15 minutes later. I was feeling EXTREMELY UNRELAXED.
Lupron was cruel to me.
Anyway, I was pretty convinced that my Lupron-cysts had something to do with the fact that we only got 7 eggs from the egg retreival, only 5 of which were mature. It seemed like such a small number after so many drugs.
Hence, the antagonist cycle. E takes the Lupron to align our cycles and I start stims next Friday.
I'm glad that my old mate Lupron and I have gone separate ways. So is E. Things are looking up.