Staying Sane During the Injections + IUI Process
Hi, I am Kelsey Edwards co-founder and Grant Committee Chair of Maverick’s Miracle Babies Foundation. As you may already know from reading my story on our website, my husband and I struggled to get pregnant for 4 years. What finally worked for us was doing Gonal-F Injections and receiving an IUI. I want to talk a little about the injection and IUI process and what kept me motivated throughout it.
The first time I was to give myself a shot was intense. I am not a believer in the motto pain, no gain. Pain is something I like to stay away from at all costs so the thought of jamming a needle into my stomach was nauseating to say the least. I must have counted down from three a dozen times, willing myself to go through with it, but each time I’d stop short crying, I can’t do this!
After 30 minutes of listening to me whine, my husband Tim graciously offered to do it for me. He started the count, 3-2-1¦ Oops. Turned out he hadn’t stabbed me hard enough so the needle barely pricked my skin before bouncing off. Neither of us realized how much force it would take to get the needle all the way in. Feeling terrible, he tried again this time holding the needle like a dart. Success! We had made it through the first shot only 29 more to go.
The next couple of weeks were full of hope and anxiety. I gave myself 2 Gonal-F shots per day for a little over 2 weeks, got my blood drawn every other day and then had doctors appointments a few times per week so they could watch my maturing follicles.Â I pretty much lived in the doctor’s office and lab. My stomach was covered in bruises and the butterflies within grew in intensity as we neared IUI day.
Finally, my eggs matured to the optimal size so I gave myself the HCG shot that would release them from my ovary. Two days later we had the IUI and after a few more weeks we found out we were pregnant!
I was tremendously lucky to get pregnant the first time. I know this is not the case for many couples and I can only imagine how weary you must feel. The injections + IUI process takes a lot out of you physically, mentally, and emotionally.
There were 4 things that helped keep me sane throughout it all:
- Knowledge that God was there for me to lean on and talk to. I knew that he was aware of my struggles and that if I would turn to Him he would share His love with me and comfort me.
- Talking to and reading stories of women with similar struggles. It gave me hope when I’d read an IUI success story and it gave me comfort when I’d read that life would go on even if it didn’t work. Although it seemed unfathomable to be okay with never having a biological child, others were doing just that and living happy fulfilled lives.
- Serving others. Focusing on helping someone with their struggles is one of the quickest ways to forget your own.
- Having a supportive spouse who was there to listen and cry with me throughout the process. Tim didn’t judge or down play my feelings and he was comfortable sharing his own fears and concerns. We were able to lean on each other and be a team.
If there is one last piece of advice I can leave it is this: Don’t allow yourself to withdraw from life. Don’t be ashamed or embarrassed to let people know what you are going through. For me, things were the hardest when I allowed myself to believe that I was alone and broken. You have a community of women who understand you, love you and want success for you. Reach out and allow that community to bless your life, in doing so you may bless someone else’s.
Stay Hopeful and Positive!