A day in the life of the IVF patient

When we decided on IVF, I hadn’t put a lot of thought in to how the day to day process might impact our routine. Some women quit their jobs to focus on getting pregnant. That is not my testimony. I work from home full time and have a somewhat flexible schedule. However, I also have a kindergartner on a set school and bed schedule and it’s ideal that I get my work finished between the hours of 8:00-5:00.

Thus far, I’d rate the entire IVF process as “manageable” but it has definitely introduced some new challenges.

Typical morning routine on blood draw days. (3x a week)

  • 6:15 am get ready for the day
  • 6:30 wake up my daughter “G”
  • 6:40-7:00 G eats breakfast and I wake up husband to give me my progesterone in oil shot
  • 7:00-7:30 coach G through the rest of her morning routine, pack her lunch and brush her hair
  • 7:30 leave for blood draw – 1hr round trip- eat breakfast in the car
  • 8:30 arrive home. Take first 3 pills, pop in a suppository and start work day
  • The balance of the day includes the ingestion of 8 more pills and 5 more meals and popping one more suppository at bedtime
  • Twice a week, I also have to remember to swap my Vivelle patches. I’ve yet to figure out the best way to scrub off the smudgy residue that these leave on my skin. (think bandaid)

The rest of my week is a little more relaxed. I still have all the meds and nutrition but it’s actually easier to start all of that as soon as I get out of bed instead of having to remember to fit it all in as soon as I return from my blood draw. And you’d be surprised how comforting it is to only be stuck with one needle on a given day as opposed to two. It’s the little things.

My husband’s routine has definitely been challenged as well. He is an independent game programmer and a night owl by nature. He is currently working with other programmers over seas and has to be online at odd hours. His normal bedtime is anywhere from 2:00-6:00am. It’s definitely messing him up to have to get up every morning for my 7:00am shot. It’s also not uncommon for him to stay up or get up for a doctors appointment across town so that he can hear the latest news with me. He’s been a total rockstar- or as we prefer to say in our household- Jedi.

Nutrition poses it’s own challenges. Thankfully, most food still appeals to me but that doesn’t mean they appeal to me at any given meal. Breakfast is always challenging. Lately, I’ve focused on eating a handful of nuts as my first food for the day. Once I’ve had something small to eat- a wider range of foods become appealing. I have tried to be intentional about eating 6 small meals or snacks a day. I’ve also tried to include fruits and veggies with most of those meals. Calcium hasn’t been an issue- milk sounds good most of the time. Milk was a favorite during my first pregnancy as was dairy- in general.

We’ve been making stew in our pressure cooker. We load it up with veggies that I don’t usually like to eat. If it’s in a stew it all tastes about the same. Same principle with smoothies- but I haven’t worked those in yet.

I’ll close this post on a somewhat related note- my mother in law has made smoothies for my finicky daughter since she was about 2 years old. She puts so many veggies in that the juice is sometimes a shade of greyish green and at other times greyish purple. We have a joke around the house. “The first rule about the juice is – we don’t talk about the juice. The second rule about the juice is – we don’t talk about the juice.” Frankly, I’ve always been amazed that the kid doesn’t balk at the concoction. She drinks it and gets her veggies and for this I’m very thankful.