Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Some answers

I had a follow-up appointment today with the fertility clinic in Tacoma. I was nervous, because I knew the doctor would be reviewing my test results with me. He had my fasting glucose, insulin, and cholesterol levels checked. But I swear I thought somehow the result of the testing might be something like, "Put your head between your legs and kiss your butt goodbye! You're going to die!" Maybe that's because some days I actually *feel* like I could be dying. Trust me, after not having a period for close to four months, when it did happen, the sweet release of death was begged for silently at least once by me.

So, I talked with Joe last night about my concerns and fears and he gave me a blessing of comfort. Then, despite my allergies, I slept okay. It was hard to drag me out of bed for the appointment. I guess that's a result of my getting up whenever my body says, "I don't think I could sleep another SECOND right now. Maybe you could fall back asleep in an hour or two, but I'm pretty good at the moment." I still joke that I must be catching up on all the sleep I missed in college and grad school.

I arrived a little early for the appointment, and I didn't feel too concerned about what the doctor was going to say. It's like my friend Mark reminded me: if I was going to die, it was going to happen whether or not the doctor told me I was going to die. But I guess I was really worried that he'd say something like, "GIVE UP CHOCOLATE OR YOUR BOOBS WILL FALL OFF!" I begged the test results (and my blood) to do whatever voodoo magic they needed to do so that I wouldn't have high cholesterol or diabetes and I could continue inhaling my beloved chocolate as if it might go extinct any second.

The nurse told me the doctor wanted to probe my lady parts to make sure that the progesterone did its job. I disrobed from the waist down, sitting on the oh-so-comfortable exam table while my bum peeked out from under my sweater, just so it would be the first thing the doctor would see upon entering the room, and covered my lap with the flimsy blanket-o'-awkwardness. My doctor came in and sat across from me, watching me prudly squirm under the paper blanket as I attempted to keep it from escaping off my lap onto the floor and exposing my thunder thighs, joke of a shaving job, and gender identifier. He began by telling me that my insulin level was high, as expected, but my cholesterol and blood sugar levels were fine. Phew! He said this confirmed the PCOS diagnosis (although he just calls it PCO, which drives me bananas, but I'll let him slide since he's actually doing something HELPFUL), and then discussed the treatment plan while I sat, naked from the waist down, uncomfortably nodding and overly aware of the circumstances of my state of undress while praying in my head he would finish talking and get on with the show ASAP.

Ten million years later, he had me on my back, my feet quickly in stirrups and my rear perfectly situated like I was a professional gynecologist exam recipient. He chatted as though we were BFFs meeting over lunch as he squeezed some lube into the probe condom before sliding it on the ultrasound probe, and then commenced deep sea diving. He found the buried treasure that is my cervix, measured it, and pronounced the cervix size "acceptable." Just like that, the ultrasound and accompanying awkwardness was over. He instructed me to put some clothes on and meet him at the desk in the hallway where he gave me my prescription for Metformin.
So I start taking it tonight. It is typically given to diabetics to help reduce their blood sugar levels. But for people like me with high insulin levels and regular blood sugar levels, it helps reduce those insulin levels. I was given instructions on how to take it, as well as instructions to contact him if I have gastrointestinal issues while taking it, which may mean trying a different treatment route. I'll be following up with him in a couple months.

So wish me luck as I start this new journey. I sure hope my body cooperates and that this will lead to a pregnancy before I turn into fossil fuel!


Anonymous said...

Metformin is awesome! It has helped my PCOS (emphasis on the S) so much. Be sure to get the Metformin ER if you can. It is not as hard on your digestive system as the regular Metformin. Good luck!

conner posse said...

Oh my gosh, you are SO hilarious. I love how you've kept your sense of humor through this very human, vulnerable experience....and I love that you're not afraid to leave the filter in the dust and say exactly what's on your mind in such a public forum. Rock on with your bad self! **Sprinkled lots of fertile fairy dust your way!!** You make me want to delve back into my own writing!

Jenny and Travis said...

You're funny! I hope this turns into a pregnancy for you guys too!