The one with too much information

by DaniGirl on June 15, 2006 · 15 comments

in Frostie, Infertility

I’m standing in the ‘family planning’ aisle of the drug store, ostensibly to buy my ovulation predictor kit, except I’m distracted by – did you know they make condoms with little disposable vibrating rings on them? God bless technology.

I shake myself from a bit of a daydream, the details of which I decline at this moment to share with the Interweb, and go back to scanning the shelves for my OPK. Nope, don’t need a vibrating condom (or do we?), don’t need a pregnancy test (yet), don’t need any gel or foam or sponges. Oh, here they are. HOLY CRAP! $55.99 for a box of five pieces of plastic that I’m going to urinate on and throw in the garbage? That’s $11 a piss!

I see that there is a generic brand, and for a minute my inherently cheap nature (Dutch-Scottish roots) battles with my diva complex (even when choosing things to urinate on, I deserve only the best). What if I buy the generic one but it’s not as good, and somehow I screw up the date of my ovulation? There is a $13 price difference, and since this is only a mock cycle and I still haven’t entirely overcome my ambivalence about this whole ‘getting pregnant and bearing a third child’ thing anyway, I suck it up and pick up the generic box.

I’m still muttering to myself about the price, none of which can be claimed or deducted or in any way reimbursed, when I get to the cash register. I make a comment to the cashier about it being friggin’ expensive, and too bad it’s not a 20x points day (I am a junkie for loyalty programs. Canadian Tire money, Air Miles, HBC points, Esso points… I love ‘em all.) The cashier brightly informs me that Saturday is a 20x points day, if I would like to hold off. I pause, considering various schemes that would allow me to pay for something on Saturday that I must start peeing on by Thursday, but can’t come up with anything. The cashier notes my expression, and says, “You could come back and get a refund and then re-buy it on Saturday.” I try to imagine a conversation that would convince a clerk to refund a half-used ovulation kit, and decide that the points, which would probably only be worth a grand total of $1.17 or so anyway, are probably not worth the stress.

Stress is what you feel when you try to figure out exactly when you are going to pee on the sticks, because the directions tell you that you must pee on the sticks at roughly the same time every day, preferably between 10 am and 8 pm, but not with first morning urine. (Their bold, not mine.) And yes, I did read the entire package insert. Twice. Because even though I’ve used these infernal things before, I’m just like that. I read the entire sheet of directions and cautions in the tampon box every couple of years, too.

So back to my scheduling dilemma. I have to start peeing on the stick on Thursday, and probably for the five days subsequent. That’s two work days, two weekend days, and another work day. There is no reliable routine anywhere that I can follow. I’m strongly drawn to peeing on the sticks in the morning, simply because I can then call the clinic early in the day when my LH surges. Except that means peeing on the stick at work.

The directions (yep, not only did I read them, but I’ve pretty much committed them to memory) say that I have to leave the peed-on stick horizontal, little windows facing up, for three to ten minutes before reading the results. So do I sit there in the public stall, test balanced on my knee, waiting for the results? Ten minutes is an awfully. long. time. to be sitting in a stall at work. They may send in a search party. Or should I wrap it in paper and carefully bring it back to my cube, leaving it on my desk until I am ready to read the results? Will my colleagues, who read this blog, ever come into my cube again? Would you borrow a pen from, or drop by for a consult with, or have coffee with a co-worker if you knew she had at any time brought urinated-on objects into her cubicle?

Fun though it is to speculate, my colleagues will be relieved to know this is all a moot point, because I have in fact forgotten to bring with me a test on which to pee. (Oh, how I cringe at the google traffic this post is going to attract.) So at home it is. By default, I now have to remember to find some time during the arsenic hours between 5 and 8 pm to remember to take the damn test for the next five days.

You think this dithering is painful? Wait until we get to the whole “Is this a line?” frenzy of indecision. I remember the first time I used an OPK, during our (ultimately unsuccessful) intrauterine inseminations. After dozens (that felt like hundreds) of negative pregnancy tests, at least seeing a little line appear felt like a victory. “Hooray, my pee too can make a line appear!” (Aha, maybe this is why guys pee in the snow?)

Excuse me, all this talk of bodily functions has triggered a need to make some water. I’d best pee now, while the peeing is good, because starting at noon I’m going to be holding it to make sure I have a good reservoir built up to pee on that stick by 5 pm. It’s going to be a long day…


{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 nancy June 15, 2006 at 1:57 pm

I am all butterflyee with excitement here! And yes, I too recall being totally disgusted at how expensive those were. I always use(d) the generic brand, so many pharmacists have told me they are all the same. So of course I believe them, right?
Just pee as soon as you can when you get home, then set the alarm on your watch (if you don’t have one go buy one!) and set it to go off every day at that same time so you don’t forget.
You must not forget.
Not.

2 Miche June 15, 2006 at 1:58 pm

Sending fertile thoughts your way!

3 JoJo June 15, 2006 at 2:40 pm

This is getting VERY exciting. But honey, don’t your cheap Dutch-Scottish roots know that you can buy OPK sticks and pregnancy tests in bulk on line for pennies a test?

4 Snack Mommy June 15, 2006 at 2:59 pm

Wow, I got mine for free from my clinic…I hope I remembered to say thank-you!
Most importantly, I am so very excited to travel on this little adventure with you. A little teeny tiny eensie weensie adventure. One that will hopefully be an eensie weensie blue or pink adventure.

5 Jeff June 15, 2006 at 2:59 pm

My wife made me buy the pregnancy/ovulation tests last time. It was embarrassing but in a good way. The pharmicists knows my wife. She doesn’t know her personally, but my wife is a dr and has prescriptions called in there. She says Hi to me whenever I stop by to pick something up. Since they keep the pregnancy tests locked up (for what reason?) I had to ask her to get it for me. She started giving me (needed) advice as to which one to get and you could tell that she was excited that we were going to have another kid.

6 Renee June 15, 2006 at 3:13 pm

$11 a piss! Wow! That cracked me up. Good luck ‘pissing’ in the right manner.

7 Kirsten Neumann Stephens June 15, 2006 at 3:17 pm

Been there and am still there but have given up the pee stick ritual because I too was organizationally challenged. I did, however, discuss the generic brand dilema with the pharmasist at said “un-named drugstore” in our area and she told me that their store brand is made by the same company that makes the super expensive variety of OPTs. So, breathe easily, you are giving your urine a quality place to rest and react.
Bring it into your cubicle. Who cares? As Moms, I think we handle way too many bodily fluids to be worried about it. Your colleagues should just be aware that they should not pick up “pens” from your blotter any longer.
I’ve gone the other route now and am seeing a naturopath about our fertility issues. I’m also about to quit that. This morning I dumped my phytogreen slop all over myself and the kitchen before leaving for work and am thinking seriously about broaching the adoption subject with my husband…. I think I feel a post coming on.

8 Sugarmama June 15, 2006 at 3:58 pm

I’ll bet you wouldn’t be the first to bring peed-upon objects to your desk, but to answer your question, if I were your colleague I would ABSOLUTELY come by your cube for a little coffee if I knew your pee-stick was there. That way I could share in the vicarious thrill that is trying to get knocked up! Good luck! I hope it all goes beautifully.

9 Kerry June 15, 2006 at 4:15 pm

That’s it… all future meetings will be in my office. I can’t believe I sat in yours even briefly this morning. Peed on sticks!! Gah!

10 Marla June 15, 2006 at 6:14 pm

Happy peeing! Let’s all synchronize our watches and think of Dani at 5. Or, we could all have a sympathy pee at the same time. A Pee-in!

11 nancy June 15, 2006 at 9:38 pm

Marla has a great idea!!
4:39 PM….21 minutes till group pee!

12 BeachMama June 16, 2006 at 2:21 am

How exciting, not that you get to pee on a stick everyday, but that you are so close to your real cycle taking off!
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you could have got those OPK tests pretty cheap at “The Extra-Ordinary Baby Shoppe”. She sells generic tests that are about a buck a strip. You can even order them online :).

13 twinmomplusone June 16, 2006 at 5:23 am

missed the group pee today but won’t tomorrow 😉
happy peeing 😉
and may the line be with you 🙂

14 Nancy June 16, 2006 at 2:02 pm

I’m so, so cheering you on here!
I would totally come in your cube even knowing there’s a peed-on-stick, because I love what it represents. Go Frosty!

15 Jen June 17, 2006 at 2:02 am

Ah the pee stick. After my IF doc told us that we were finally pregnant, I bought a kit and peed on a stick because I wanted — I deserved — a positive pee stick. It’s in a photo album. So, I’d come into your cubicle (even if it is a moot point). Sending good vibes your weel as you head into the process!

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