Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Putting down the pee sticks

Will is out of town and so I was left today to handle the HCG booster myself. Typically, I do all my own subcutaneous shots and Will handles the IMs. But not this morning.

I was worried about my ability to execute the injection but had no problems and actually found it less painful than when Will gives it (sorry, Will!).

But what was difficult was knowing that as I pressed the plunger, adding more HCG to my system, that I was effectively making it impossible to check for pregnancy before the beta.

In psychology, we would term my compulsive use of HPTs as a checking behavior. Its purpose is to reduce anxiety. We all engage in various checking behaviors (everything from making sure the front door is locked to looking repeatedly at a mole we're slightly worried about even though the doctor has said it's fine). Go over and see fellow 2ww'er Murgdan's latest post to wish her well and to see a lovely illustration of the concept. The thing with checking behaviors is that when you can't determine with certainty the outcome of whatever you are checking, it leads to more of the behavior, in a failed attempt to reduce anxiety. Bottom line, it doesn't help - in the very short term you get some relief, but long term, it actually makes you more anxious. I fully understand this. I work with patients on this very thing. Hell, I'm about to get my freakin' Ph.D. even. But does that help me? NO!

Sigh. How ever will I cope without my pee sticks?! They give me the illusion that I am finding out some information so I don't feel the full brunt of how helpless and uncertain this whole stinkin' process is. I guess I'll be left to my other 2ww vices: dr. google, obsessive reading, and gazing longingly at the embryo picture.

It's going to be an interesting week and a half. Hopefully the insanity of my dissertation will be a solid distraction the entire time (my goal is to submit a final draft to my commitee before beta day). Maybe it's a good thing that Will is out of town. He'll be back Friday. I should be in full HPT withdrawal by then. Poor man.


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  1. I feel you - I am a hopeless addict as well. I am considering either holding off in sisterhood with you or peeing on double...

  2. SO I shouldn't tell you about my cycle with booster shots when I used pee sticks semi quantitatively and it worked?



  3. Good luck. I am thinking of you and I hope that your dissertation is a good distraction. I understand what you mean about obsessive checking behaviours that exacerbate anxiety. It is addictive even though you know it is unhelpful. x

  4. I'm so proud to have exhibited a failed anxiety-reducing checking behavior!!! :-) I think time is the only cure to this...and I don't want to wait anymore.

    Gotta go Google...I'm 4dp5dt now...all new search results!!!

  5. Good luck with distracting yourself; hope you are able to focus on the dissertation!

    I've had nothing but bad news from pee sticks so it didn't seem to bother me to wait last cycle; maybe it will be easier than you expect. Looking forward to waiting with you.

  6. Hang in there and just try to stay busy.

    I actually looked at the HPT differently and I was pretty calm for the most part. I guess not doing them kept gave me hope that all was going to work. Not seeing the "sorry charlie" on the stick because it was too early and then being sad about it allowed me to stay smiling through those weeks of wtg. I did take 1 and I cried then snapped myself out of it and promised I would NOT take another one until the beta count came back and I KNEW I would see a yes. lol

    Good luck with your dissertation.

    Take care and think positive.

  7. I'm glad you have a major distraction! I was never a huge fan on the pee sticks myself, loving to hold onto hope until the last day or two at least. But then again, knowing me, if I had HCG boosters I'd probably pee on the sticks just to see those two lines! Hang in there!

  8. I'd be peeing on them anyhow, just to see if they actually work since you know you should see two lines right now thanks to the shots. I'm almost convinced that the damn pee sticks I buy are all defective. They're always negative. Of course, I haven't gotten pregnant yet, but I blame it all on the pee sticks.

    Good luck with the waiting!

  9. The 2ww STINKS BIG TIME!!!

    I counted ... I spent $70 on one iVF cycle to HPT. Ugh!

  10. Glad the hCG shot went easy - I, too find them less painful (though more stressful) when I give them. Doesn't stop me from asking the boy to do 'em when he's here, though.

    Ugh. I'd be dying without the 2ww HPTing. Interesting on the checking behavior. I'm seriously guilty of that sort of obsessive checking when I'm anxious, but I've always just put it down to my somewhat compulsive personality. Good to know it's normal for normal people, too.

    And yes, Murgdan's post had me laughing out loud at work.

    GL with the dissertation. I am rather in awe of your ability to carry on while dealing with all this. You're heading into research, yes? Can't wait to hear how everything goes these next couple of weeks!

  11. SOrry I'm anti pee stick anyway, i had one give me a positive back when I was actually ttc - and a zero beta. They are evil and made by the little man with horns.
    My mother has OCD - so I totally actively do not do any checking behaviour - it drives my husband a little nuts as I always just turn off the computer once or the stove, once, and never check....

  12. i'm so impressed when people do their own IMs. i don't think i could. seriously. other people? no problem, i can give an IM quick and painless. myself? it would probably take me talking to myself for 30 min before i could actually inject myself. where are you doing them? i'm not even that flexible :)

    hope the diss distracts you and you are super productive. so close...

  13. I found it strangely liberating and relaxing not to POAS this last cycle. It took a HUGE part of the anxiety away...Boosters bite big time - they really ramp up the "feeling pg" business. Good luck!!

  14. Hey- I'm the same days past ET as you on my 3rd cycle. I'm freaking out as I have previously used PIO in sesame oil, then olive oil and now ethyl oleate. previous cycle developed this chest rash made of TEENY odd rash-like bumps...This was my best cycle to date (embryo wise) and this morning I think I started with the odd little bumps again- it's not as bed as it gets yet but there are a few. I'm sure they'll switch me to the supps. but do you think it's harmful to the embies???

  15. Anonymous,

    Try not to worry. easier said than done. my dr has repeatedly said that the allergic reaction can't be the reason for the failures b/c so many women have them and get pregnant. I think he is letting me off the PIO mostly to reduce my suffering (starts to feel masochistic to be repeatedly covered in itchy hives when you don't get pregnant). I worry about the allergic reactions' effects, but I have zero medical science backing me up, so it's probably just me grasping at straws again and trying to control something in this very uncontrollable process. Good luck to you! let me know how it turns out!


  16. Thanks! I have an email in to my RE. My rash never itches- it's just these little tiny bumps-almost like pimples (I know-gross). Best wishes to you. I discovered your blog by chance on Saturday night and I have a funny feeling that we both go to the same clinic. Yes, that means we were at ET together. Totally random coincidence! Anyway, I wish you the VERY best!

  17. For what it's worth, I didn't POAS during my cycle, and while the wait still sucked, I only had to suffer the intense "am I or aren't I?" anxiety once. I think if I'd peed that it would have been worse. So maybe the withdrawal won't be so bad? Or maybe I'm totally talking out of my ass! :)


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