Life of Needles

One of the things that define a close encounter with fertility treatment is needles. Lots of needles which have to be used to inject yourself day after day with drugs from the stash in the fridge.

On one hand it’s no big deal really. You get used to injecting yourself. Take a deep breath and just do it – get it over with. Then at least there is a whole 24 hours before it has to be done again. On the other hand, I sometimes stop and think – what am I doing, this is plain crazy and just totally surreal. I never ever imagined I would be here needle in hand. That, however temporarily, my life would become one defined in part by needles.

Worse of course are the side effects of the stuff I am injecting myself with. At the moment I am still in the down regulating phase which in my case means Decapeptyl injections (i.e. triptorelin acetate). Since I started these injections I have been feeling tired more or less constantly, had quite some headaches and generally just not feeling quite like myself. Particularly feeling a bit down for no apparent reason.

But again I think it’s not really as bad as it could have been. So far at least. I’m happy I decided to get off the rat-race for a while and take a career-break. Although it means financial worries, it also means that I can just go with the flow of what the drugs do to me. It’s not really that big of a deal to feel tired is it.

On the other hand however the whole thing makes me wonder time and time again what I am doing to myself and how it has come to seem perfectly logical to do so. Going through fertility treatment seems to imply a particular logic which is hardly questioned. It’s a drive to succeed in our endeavor which has taken on a life of it’s own. The more treatment, the stronger the wish for success becomes. The needles are physical, material artifacts in the technologies of artificial reproduction which play a decisive role in making this life of treatment what it is. They manifest the structuring and disciplining of my body. But with everytime I’m there, needle in hand, it seems less of a big deal and more normal.

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