So yesterday my doctor brought me in for a blood test to check my HCG and Progesterone levels. (Again, because I have a doctor who cares about us BLMs, and is going to be vigilant!) My HCG levels are good--apparently good enough to be on par with "normal" pregnancies at 6 weeks. Of course, this makes me wonder if we're just super-healthy or if we're having twins.
No, Mike, I don't really think we are.
But my Progesterone is a little low. "Normal" is in the low 20s and I'm at 16. No, I don't have units of measure, mathy friends. I'm just 5-10 *somethings* low, and I know that's no good. To remedy this, my doctor has prescribed Progesterone supplements, and because I'm only a little low, I have to administer the hormone myself.
It's a suppository.
No, not that kind of suppository. Don't be gross. Okay, it's still gross.
But it's all for the babies around this professional-mom's house, so I sucked it up. Progesterone supplements could be the difference in a healthy baby or another child to mourn. So, I will now chronicle my adventure. I guarantee you, this is not for the feint of heart, or really anyone who is not TTC or PG after loss. Keep your innocence people. I wish I had mine.
First of all, these hormones are not sold at CVS. They are compounded. This is just a fancy way of explaining that they are made locally in the most remote and hard-to-find pharmacy around. I drove through the parking lot three times before finally calling the pharmacy for help. I parked in what seemed to be a condo lot and finally found the directional sign. Dragging a 30-pound child around (who refuses to walk) made this much more interesting. I open the door with the tiny, almost-illegible sign and walk into the creepy "vestibule" which was only about 3x3'. Another door, and a creepy, steep set of stairs. Oh, great. Let's haul Liv up a flight or two. Anyway, I got there and gave my name.
My joke of "bet you don't get a lot of handicapped patients" was met with silence.
But here's the next thing no one told me. Progesterone is pricey. Like, get a second job pricey. Nah, not really, but still, anything over $5 seems excessive to me, and this was WAY over $5. For a one-month prescription, I am now out fifty-five dollars. But it's for the babies. Let's stay focused.
Before I go further, I will now implore you to follow my advice. In every circumstance, no matter how silly you might feel, if a pharmacy tech asks you if you have questions, ask a question. Any question. Don't walk out of the remote, creepy pharmacy without knowing absolutely everything there is to know about what's about to be in your body. Please.
I did not take this advice.
All I knew going in was that the hormones were supposed to be refrigerated and applied at night. Here is what I wish I had known: First, Progesterone suppositories look like little bullets. Little white bullets that look kind of like hardened lotion. That is ALL. What I got was the bullet, still in what I have to guess is a plastic mold. I stared at that mold for an hour, imploring Google to answer the question I refused to word aloud: "Do I take the plastic off?" You do take the plastic off. Not that Dr. Google was any help. I went with a more guess-and-check style of medicine there, and it paid off.
So, white bullet in hand, I was still a little cloudy on what came next. This is where I again kicked myself for not talking to the pharmacist. Because, and no one had told me, most people get an applicator with their expensive medication.
I did not.
So there I am with just me and the bullet and a wish and a prayer.
I inserted it, like a tampon, to a point at which I thought, "that's going to be fine." Not fine. The bullet fell right out. Do it again. Same result. Third time? I ran for the bed and tossed myself on before gravity could do its work. Um...gravity doesn't have a time-delay. So I spent the rest of the night lying in bed, afraid to move a muscle for fear of losing the white bullet. Not moving a muscle. I couldn't even sleep! Mike adjusted my pillows, tossed a blanket on me and handed me my cell phone before sawing logs. And I did not move for hours.
Around midnight, I realized I had not taken my prenatal vitamins, and fear lost out to a need for folic acid. It's all for the babies, remember? I got up and went to the bathroom, expecting a fountain of medicine to start trickling out (because the one warning I had gotten was to pick up some panty-liners). Nothing. The one warning I was given and nothing happened. I think my body is just weird.
Anyway, I did eventually fall asleep and woke up feeling perfectly normal. No gross stickiness as I had been told. Just normal, if a little tired and irritated from dealing with Night #1 of Progesterone therapy.
Night #1. With no guarantee of how many nights there are to come.
Ugh. But it's all for the babies.