Thursday, February 4, 2010

E - Day

[I wrote this post after I got back to our hotel room from the hospital. I’m beyond exhausted, should be asleep and shouldn’t be posting entries when I have this many blazing thoughts, but I’m so determined to get this post out tonight that I ask for your understanding that it’s still a raw, unedited draft.  To reiterate, before you read on, please know, I’m thrilled beyond words to know we now have embryos growing in the lab but the process was a difficult one and I’m still in the moment.]

Thank you to all who sent emails, posted comments and were thinking of us today!  It was the toughest day yet and I’m ecstatic it’s finally over.  I think Geoff and I each slept for all of two hours last night due to the anxiety – an emotion we’ve come to know well this trip.  We were up at 4:30am, out of the hotel by 5:30am and didn’t arrive home this evening until 8:15pm.  The capper was that the 12 minute ride this morning was a full hour coming home.

If you can believe it, we arrived at the hospital before admissions opened and left after it closed.  Heena, the  sweet SI assistant, met us this morning to help us navigate registration and thus ensure we had a room on the 10th floor, the floor on which my procedure would occur.  If I never have to see room 1014 again, I will be perfectly okay with it!  I shared this room with another woman and her family………………all 12 of them.  It was a revolving door of people.  As if we weren’t there they laughed, talked, answered cell phones as loud as car horns and, I swear, did their laundry in the sink because there were a few pairs of skivvies hanging in the bathroom.  Eeeewww.  The thing that made me overcome these shenanigans was that later in the day we found out the patient had given birth to twins the night before and they were all celebrating.  Actually, one of the family members spent a fair amount of time chatting it up with us and even gave us some sweets that are celebratory treats in India.  Geoff found these delectable!

Anyway, I headed into the bathroom (a.k.a. my roomy’s laundry room) to change into my sporty gingham johnny and pants.  The bathrooms here still spook me a bit and although they may be clean for some, I find them pretty gross and smelly.  There’s always 2-3 buckets and a sprayer next to the toilet instead of TP.  No, not a bidet, a sprayer like I have attached to my kitchen sink.  How the heck does one wash with that thing without soaking all of their clothes?!  Note to any woman traveling to India….I’ve been carrying around a cushy roll of Charmin in my purse and it has definitely come in handy.  When I resurfaced from the bathroom Geoff saw the look in my eyes and tried his best to make me laugh by singing a rendition of Hip to be Square, offering his best Bollywood moves, which we’re both captivated by each time we see it on TV.  After his performance, we waited and waited with just a couple interruptions by the anesthesiologist and nurses checking my vitals.

At 11:15am, it was go time.  They stuck a hairnet over my head, asked me to remove my socks and walked me into the surgical suite.  I hopped up on the gurney and tried to deep breathe with my heart pounding out of my chest.  I knew no one, Dr. Yash had yet to  arrive and everyone around me was speaking Hindu.  After sticking me with a needle that looked like a samurai sword, they got me off my gurney and walked me into the “OT” – operating theater.  Even more masked people were in this room and the huge spot lights shining down magnified the foreign medical equipment they quickly began hooking me up to.  WHAT THE HELL DID I GET MYSELF INTO??  I felt so alone and still no Dr. Yash.  I was more scared now than I had been the whole trip.  Tears streamed down my face and this alerted the nurses and surgeon closest to me.  He leaned over and in a thick Indian accent said, "don’t worry - everything will be fine.  Ha ha, that’s easy for you to say, Mr.!  He summoned the nurse to get Geoff, thinking this would make me feel better.  Geoff appeared in the entrance of the surgical suite’s doorway to see me sprawled across a table with my arms out to the sides as if I were making a crucifix.  Over the hustle and bustle Geoff yelled out, “I love you and I’ll see you soon” which of course made me cry even more!  I tried to make him out but without my glasses on I was even more out of sorts.  Dr. Yash came in at that last minute and apologized for being stuck in traffic.  After that, the last thing I remember was them placing an oxygen mask over my face and injecting something into my IV.

I awoke just outside the OT in the surgical suite again and I will admit, I was in a significant amount of pain.  They retrieved my eggs laparoscopically leaving me with three very sore incisions.  In addition, my throat then (and still now) is killing me from the tracheal tube they put down my throat.  On a good note, from approximately twelve follicles, they retrieved six mature eggs – all of which were fertilized today with a fresh batch of Geoff’s sperm through a procedure called ICSI.  For two days the embryos will grow after which the doctors will decide which are the best three to implant into our carrier this Friday.

After the surgery, we waited and waited and waited………….for almost seven hours.  Seriously?  SERIOUSLY.  I’ll admit, we were both disappointed that neither Dr. Sudhir or Dr. Yash visited us in our room today.  Thank goodness Heena was there to check in with us and to translate when needed.  With her much needed help, I was discharged at 7pm and given prescriptions she helped us fill at the on site pharmacy.  Unfortunately, despite me confirming the one medication I have had an allergic reaction to with every nurse and doctor today, that is the antibiotic they prescribed - so we then had to deal with that.  We left the hospital by 7:15pm only to sit in a car the size of a match box in bumper to bumper traffic on horrible roads for another hour.  Gggrrr.  The good news is, it’s over and I’m now resting on clean sheets in bed at our lovely hotel.  The incisions are much more sore than I anticipated, but I’ll deal with it knowing the surgery is behind me and the transfer is ahead.


  1. the good news is that ordeal is in the past and you have done it - I am so proud of you and your courage. Rest and sweet dreams. Sheryl

  2. Congratulations, Shannon & Geoff! You'll be in my thoughts in the days to come. Shan, I hope you recovery is smooth and the pain subsides quickly. Travel home safely, we'll cross our fingers for some good news in a few weeks! Hugs from Hathorne Street ;)

  3. Oh Shannon, Thanks for the post it is well worth writing because u have your readers on pins and needles...I will be where u are in a few days!! A little more scared now but will manage, right?

    Get some rest and wishing u guys all the best and GOOD LUCK!!

  4. Sorry to hear of your bad day but your initiative to describe what it's like - in a painstakingly honest manner - is very admirable and a great service to those women who will come after you, many of whom will be complete strangers from countries all over the globe looking for any and every shred of info or anecdote that describes the process. (which is pretty accurate regardless of which clinic is used) Your posting will give them and their partners a greater sensitivity and awareness of the whole process and what to expect. Not exactly for the faint at heart for sure.

    Hope you take it easy these next few days and give your body a chance to heal.

    Good luck to the both of you!

  5. So glad this phase is over for you
    !!!! Will cross our fingers and pray for good embryos!!!! Sit by the pool and relax - you earned it!! We love you and send our prayers, Carol

  6. Been reading your posts everyday! So happy for you guys. I'll be thinking of you on Friday. Alicia

  7. I so desperately want to crack a joke in an effort to put a much needed smile on that face, but instead I will tell you how amazing a woman you are for taking us along on your painstaking journey, and how much we love you and Geoff and are wishing and hoping for nothing but the best for you two.
    Dave, Kim and the crew

  8. I am so Happy that I finally got to talk to you. I kept checking the blog and gmail and Skype. This hurdle is out of the way. Whew!! What a Journey. Let the baby making begin. Please remember to stay strong and I am rooting for you always. I can't believe you have had this rough of a day and still you turn the conversation around and ask about Rob and I. You are quite a lady. Always thinking about others before yourself. I am soo glad we have met on this journey. Please keep me updated and get some rest. I will be thinking of you and Geoff for the Transfer.


  9. We are sending lots and lots of good thoughts your way! Dreams do come true and I have a really good feeling yours will be coming true really soon:) xoxo


    Laura, Bill, and Chase

  10. Sending you all kind of baby dust for friday...
    Grosses Bises.
    Matthieu and Logan

  11. I agree 100 % with Laura I love you guys hanging there it's going to be so worth all of this and just think of the amazing story you have to tell love ya Toni and Matt xoxox