So today I finally had my blood taken. I hope.
From what I can tell you have your first blood test anytime between CD1 – CD5 to test for (1) Serum Follicle Stimulating Hormone; (2) Luteinising Hormone; and (3) Oestradiol (E2) (no, I haven’t yet managed to memorise those let alone spell them) and your second one on CD21 to test for progesterone. They’re also testing my Thyroid and testing for Rubella and Chlamydia iGg antibody (eeek – scary sounding).
I’m relieved this is finally happening. After months of requesting these tests and being told “wait another 3 months” on each occasion, and after actually having surgery for suspected endometriosis (thankfully not there), it’s good to finally have these basic checks.
So on arriving at the doctor’s surgery I naively assumed that the worst was over and all that was left was the “sharp stab of a small prick” (*schnarf schnarf*…possibly a Brits-only joke). Anyway, it appears not.
Firstly it took the nurse (although she wasn’t a nurse, because she kept saying “sorry, usually the nurses do this”) TWENTY MINUTES to work out which tests she actually needed to do. Admittedly this was not totally her fault, as the ridiculous system listed about 14 different types of Chlamydia tests alone that she could do. But perhaps she could have MAYBE asked a colleague which one it was? Or perhaps she should have MAYBE not asked me (with zero medical training) which one I thought it was? and perhaps I maybe don’t have a whole load of confidence when proceeds to Google the various tests (although I’m less bothered about this. I argue that doctors can’t possibly know everything about everything, so I can hardly complain that pretend-nurses don’t know!).
Anyway, I told myself to be calm. B is a nice girl who is patient and understanding. B does not get annoyed by general incompetence.
So then we got onto the needles part. YES. PROGRESS. Some form of testing for something which may or may not be in any way related to fertility testing is about to take place. Wahooooooo!
Only not. It transpires that she was not sure (a) which bottles she needed to collect the blood in; and (b) whether these were in fact in date and sterile. Cue: INSANE PANIC as she searched the entire surgery for appropriate equipment.
Anyway, on acquiring said
allegedly sterile bottles, the blood test itself was actually remarkably pain free.
I got up and thanked her for a time, with a big gummy bear grin on my face, and that’s when The Chat ensued. The minute she opened with the comment “you know a lot of people get extremely stressed when they find they cannot conceive as quickly as they would like” I knew exactly where the conversation was going to go. I won’t rehash it here, as if you have been TTC for a long time you will have been given The Chat repeatedly (always said in a manner which assumes you have never been given The Chat before and they are bringing this wonderful, heart-warming good news to you), and if you haven’t been long term TTC you will probably have given The Chat at some point.
Anyway, grab a pen and some paper kids because here are the take home messages:
- pregnancy doesn’t always happen instantly and when you want it to;
- people get so stressed their lives are put on hold;
- this stress is what stops them getting pregnant; so
- (you) they need to stop being stressed and then it will happen.
As I left she then told me the uplifting story of how she knows at least THREE patients who had been referred to the Fertility Clinic who then found they were pregnant before they made it to their appointment. THREE WHOLE PEOPLE. Best guess would say she’s early 50s, so has had a career of almost 30 years.
So there you go kids. An uplifting story to put a spring in your step and see you through to the end of the week. I hope you’re all beaming with positivity now.