Ding, ding, ding…end of round 1…

Yup, you’ve guessed it…a negative on the bloodtest…not pregnant (your mom that is, not me…).


We’d managed to keep the test day a secret from all the friends and family who weren’t friends via IF (because it’s impossible to bamboozle them about when the correct test date would be). We had big plans for how we were going to announce our good news. We’d worked out the roster to make sure that the right people found out in the correct order. We’d visualised going round to nan & granddad’s to surprise them with the news, we’d got it all planned out…but it wasn’t to be….

Your mom and I were doing well up to test day. We were managing to function normally, other than the patchy sleep patterns. Getting an invite to dinner at Scary Hairy’s for the night before was a godsend – we quickly realised during the 10 days between transfer and test day that you need to keep busy – sitting at home in the evenings was not doing good things to our stress levels. Dinner out a couple of times, movies, anything to prevent us from sitting quietly at home in front of the telly, obsessing about the approaching test day.

So, dinner the night before. A great relaxing evening, sat in front of their new wood-burning fire, chatting about this and that, eating good food, a glass or two of port (not for your mom though!) and a late night – perfect to ensure we slept late and had minimal time twiddling our thumbs before we were able to head off to the pathologists for the blood test (they aren’t ordinarily open on a Sunday for walk-in patients, but they kindly make exceptions for IF’ers).

Plans ruined by a ridiculously early phone call from our internet service provider to inform us that the problem with our internet (that we had no idea about) had now been fixed…THANKS! The first time in weeks that we manage to sleep passed 7am and the phone rings at 07:30…swine!

A coffee in bed, some cuddling, some far-away looks as we both entered our own heads, then it was time to shower and head off to the pathologists. Appointment was booked for 10 am and by 10:12 we were both climbing the walls waiting for the nurse to finish her rounds of the hospital to come and take blood. There ensued the normal game of ‘hunt the vein’, with your mom’s body eventually reluctantly releasing sufficient supplies from the back of her hand (nice bruise as a result!). Your mom then proceeded to strong-arm them into promising to have the results ready within two hours, and to allow us to collect the results in person (rather than having to wait the extra hour for the clinic nurse to phone the pathologists for the results)…there was much wrangling and she eventually bullied them into submission, but they got their own back because it then meant they were doing the test on-site, rather than sending it off elsewhere, which required the use of a different container…so ‘hunt for the vein – the sequel’ (two bruised hands for your mom as reward for our impatience!).

We headed off to the nearest coffee shop for a fry-up breakfast, to fill the 2 hour gap. Had lovely mince on toast with an egg and bacon, 2 cups of filter coffee for me and a lovely rooibos cappuccino for your mom…super. Asked for the bill, and then looked at the clock to see how many minutes were left of the two hours…ahh, only 97 minutes left of the 120…WHATTHEFUCK!!! We’re in a time-warp!! I swear we took one hour 55 minutes to eat breakfast, but the clock only shows 23 minutes…bad news.

We spent a bit more time watching the other patrons, including a few families with young kids – the coffee shop has a little playground with jungle gym…very cute.

Eventually decided we’d go back to the car via the hardware store (your mom never misses any opportunity to encourage me to DIY – see it’s not only the SA’s where she adopts this approach!). We knew that would eat up an hour, but 7 minutes later we were climbing into the car wondering how the hell two hours could take so long!

We agreed to head back to the hospital car park (the pathologists are sited inside our local medi-clinic) to sit and read.

This is where I decided to take things under control – took a swift left at one of the traffic lights and headed out into the countryside. It was a beautiful clear winters day – sun shining alone in the cloudless sky, green fields thanks to the recent rains, birds a-tweeting, cows a-grazing and sheep just wondering around aimlessly looking stupid.

In a marvel of timing, we arrived back at the car park at 2 minutes to noon…just enough time for you mom to hurry in and get the white envelope that we hoped was going to spell out the biggest change in our lives to date.

She climbed back in the car with the decidedly understated white envelope and we headed for home where we had agreed to open the envelope together. Hopefully not too many speeding tickets later, I decided to play a cruel trick on your mom and insisted on stopping at the local 7-eleven for milk – after all, when we told everyone our good news, we were going to be inundated with visitors, so many cups of tea and coffee would require us to have many litres of milk in the fridge!! – see what a positive thinker I am.

Into the house, onto the couch…ready to open the envelope – our own little Oscar’s ceremony…

This is when your mom decided to get her own back on me for the mean milk-buying delay and insisted she needed to wee first, and she also needed to insert her lunch-time pussy pills (Uterogestan vaginal suppositories in case you’re wondering what ‘pussy pills’ are). So there I sat, white envelope in hand while she emptied her bladder and ‘took her meds’.

Then the moment had arrived…I gave your mom a big smooch, carefully opened the envelope and passed the paper across to her to open so we could both read…







Damn results are printed in Afrikaans and your mom was clearly having trouble with the translations…I leaned over and pointed out the all too important line…

…”resultaat = negatief” (result = negative).

β-HCG value = big fat fucking zero. Not even a maybe…no doubt about it, unequivocal…no.

Needless to say, it was a difficult thing to see. We knew that this was the most likely outcome, we knew that the odds were that this was going to be the result, but it was still heart-wrenching.

No tears, no Oscar-wining performance, no rending of clothes, gnashing of teeth or loud appeals to the powers that be, no bargaining with fate or outpouring of anger…just quiet acceptance.

We hugged and cuddled in silence for a while, both trying to come to terms with this unbelievably shitty news.

After a while, we started moving again, put the kettle on (because nan & granddad had phoned an hour or so earlier and we’d invited them round for coffee – back when we were sure we would be surprising them with awesome news), and your mom got busy with sending out the million SMS’s to the large number of people who were waiting on our results.

We posted on Fertilicare, phoned some other family members, climbed into a hot bath, and talked and talked and talked. We lit a fire, ordered in pizza and watched a sad movie. We cuddled and cried on the sofa, we went to bed and cried a bit more. We held each other and finally went to sleep…ending a tiring and bitterly disappointing day.

But as bad as yesterday was, as I sit here in my office today, I can look back and know that it wasn’t all bad…as shattering as the result was, there were things to be thankful for…

I can see your mom and I holding hands in the coffee shop, laughing at the little boy covering himself in syrup, knowing that we’ll soon be one of those exasperated parents, if not quite as soon as we’d like…I can see us driving through the countryside (something we love to do) and still managing to appreciate the phenomenal scenery and beauty of the country we live in…I can think of the time spent online, reading messages of support and best wishes for the coming result, heart-felt messages from people we’ve never met, but who do really care…I can think of the hugs from my mom & dad who so desperately want a grandson, but who have never pressured us in any way, who’ve been the most incredibly sensitive and supportive people in the world…I can see your mom and I touching and holding each other throughout the day, knowing we can survive anything because we are still hopelessly and pathetically in love, exactly 14 years to the day from our first kiss….

So, this result is horrible, it’s depressing and disappointing, but it’s just another little pothole in a long and difficult journey. It’s not the end point, it’s not even a detour. It’s just the end of our first IVF, that’s all.

And like a boxer in the ring, the sound of the bell doesn’t mean it’s all over. It’s not something to dread or panic over. It’s just the signal to return to your corner, take a seat and rest a bit. The signal that you can take some time to wipe some of the sweat off your face, have a drink of water, a good few deep breathes, a short time-out, get some advice from the people in your corner who’ve been watching the struggle and seen what’s going on from a different perspective. All the time knowing that very soon you’ll be hearing that bell ringing to signal the start of the next round…that you’re going to have another opportunity to stand up and face the battle head-on…

Ding ding ding…end of round 1.

~ by HopelesslyTTC on 26/07/2010.

11 Responses to “Ding, ding, ding…end of round 1…”

  1. I don’t even know you and yet I’m so proud of you…
    Please, please, please remain “hopelessly and pathetically in love” it is after all what will make Jed & Jade the happiest children on the planet when they get here and realise how lucky they are to have parents like you…

    • Cheers Claire.
      I don’t even know you but you can’t believe how appreciative I am that you’re always there, giving support and advice, and making comments like this that cheer me up no end…thank you.

  2. I’m sorry to read about your results. I was really pulling for you guys. You seem like such an amazing couple. Your support system will get you through this. Best of luck on Round 2. I’ll be thinking of you guys!

  3. I’m so sorry – I’d already read the news on your wife’s blog, but it still brought tears to my eyes to read it again. You don’t know how much I hoped you’d be one of those lucky few couples who get a BFP on their first cycle.

  4. You guys are so disciplined! Wow. I’ll probably start peeing on sticks about 20 minutes after ET.

    You are also both so brave and your marriage is so strong, that really seems to be standing you in good stead through these trying times.


  5. fuck i hate that feeling.. hate it, hate it, hate it. I’m so sorry about this – we were really rooting for you guys. Sending much love xxxxx

  6. I have been lurking around your blog for some time, and logged on this morning as my eyes opened — as if you were going to get your results at 06h10. Then I logged on again at about 08h20 … and so was my day waiting in anticipation for your results.

    I felt I needed to comments, just to say how truly sorry I am for you both — I was so hoping that you could be THAT couple who got a BFP on their first cycle — I was really hoping it would be you.

    I’ve stopped wondering why shite happen to good people … I tend to just absorb it now … I really am truly sorry for you both on what must be an exhausting and terribly terrible horrendous day.

    • Thanks for de-lurking ReluctantMom.
      It was a shitty day, but we survived it only a little the worse for wear. We’ll jump right back on this bucking bronco in the near future!!
      Thanks for caring and taking the time to comment – it has really helped knowing others are right there in our corner, hoping and praying with us.

  7. I am so so sorry! Was so hoping that you would get your happy news. It does my heart good though to know that you will both take extra special care of each other in this very difficult time and that you have each others love and support to hold onto.

  8. Just catching up, had hoped for better news for you. You take it very philosophically. Better luck next time! (Though a rest is a very good idea).

  9. I am so very behind on doing all my reading, so I am just now getting caught up on your last few weeks.
    I am so sorry about the ending of round one. 😦 I am sending lots of cyber hugs to you and your wife.
    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog, and even though I am hit or miss on the commenting part, I love reading it. IF from a guy’s POV are scarce.

    PS You are flippin’ funny and love the way you tell a story. You need to write a book. 🙂
    PPS Tell your wife those drugs ARE flippin awesome! 🙂

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