Posted by: thatjen | May 30, 2005

Sperm Shack Epilogue

The following morning, Cait was awakened by a desperate need to pee, and NO desire to crawl out of the warm nest of blankets and walk over to the main cabin where the bathrooms were. Peering at the clock, she realized that it was, indeed, almost temping time. After a shivery dash to the bathroom, she nudged Jen, who grabbed the thermometer from the corner of the bed and put it into her mouth. Cait stared, horrified, at the readout of 96.3, while Jen mumbled “prob’ly fine. think that hapnd before. mmmf.” And promptly fell asleep. Cait’s mind worked overtime as she dozed over the next hours. “How could she not have ovulated? Every cycle it’s been the same. Positive OPK. Insem next day (or not on months that were just for charting purposes). Temp rise the day after that. Like clockwork. Why did it go down?”

By the time we reached full consciousness around 9:00, Cait had an idea.
“Is the thermometer cold?”
“Yeah, it’s been sitting out all night.”
“Is your head cold?”
“Yeah.” (duh)
“Take your temperature again”
“Do you think maybe the frozen nature of the thermometer and the fact that your head has been cold and you’ve been breathing through your mouth because this place is basically your worst nightmare, allergy-wise, could have skewed your temp this morning?”
“Oh. Maybe.”

Hands slap foreheads. Moderate sighs of relief are breathed by all (although not so much by Jen because she never gained enough consciousness to worry in the first place).

The rest of the day was as uneventful as a day with Jen’s family gets. Which is to say that there was chaos when people were around, and then several blissful hours of quiet, while they all ventured out in the rain, scorning us for skipping out on a cold, wet, boat ride in favor of staying in a cozily heated house, with rocking chairs, our knitting, and cable TV. We knitted while alternately watching insanely bizarre B movies, staring at the lake, and (unfortunately for Cait) writing progress reports. And, of course, trying not to freak out about the lack of a temp rise and the presence of some lingering eggwhite.

Later that evening, we ventured out to the school for the first of the graduation events. Most of us stayed long enough to make dinner of the spread of hors d’oeuvres, and then skipped out on the speeches. We were told later by those that stayed that we had made a wise choice.

Graduation day started with SUNSHINE!!! Jen’s temp was still low, but slightly higher since we had slept with the thermometer UNDER the covers with us. At least we were expecting it this time. By the time we got to the school, it was approaching WARM outside.

The graduation ceremony was long, so Jen entertained herself by taking a short video clip of H getting her diploma, and then repeatedly played it back, hitting rewind just as H reached out for her diploma. “Oh, so close, ooh, not quite, oh, oh, wait, she got it. Awww… she had to give it back.” We were (shockingly) much more amused by this than the others we showed it to later.
During lunch, we were introduced to the drama teacher (insert link here). Jen grunted hello, but managed not to kill him right then and there, and then was ridiculed by her mother for giving him “the fisheye”. Her retort? “Well, SOMEbody had to!” We celebrated the sunshine by getting ice cream and buying short-sleeved shirts.

After a relatively mellow afternoon of watching The Incredibles, and yes, more knitting, we had dinner. For most families, this image does not evoke strains of Beethoven’s fifth, but those families have never dined with Jen’s family. The conversation ranged from mocking vegetarianism (and promising to feed our future child meat against our wishes), to talking about how people in their late 20s and early 30s (namely us) are not NEARLY as grown up as they were in previous generations. Because we watch animated films. And laugh at them. Cait restrained herself from making bitter remarks and let Jen do the responding. The outcome was still the same. We are not grown ups, despite the fact that we own a house and a car, hold down solid jobs, and pay all of our bills on time. Oh, and would have a child by now if the stupid universe would let us.

But the REAL drama started when H proclaimed that she had to leave. Apparently she and her mother had AGREED THAT SHE COULD STAY AT THE DRAMA TEACHER’S HOUSE THAT NIGHT, and she was ready to do so. Jen’s mom, while blasé about the lovers’ tryst, was apoplectic at the idea that H might leave in the middle of dinner. Much clench-jawed glaring ensued. While they “negotiated” the rest of the details, the rest of us scurried to clear the table and dodge the bullets, and returned to our movie. Eventually, H took the car and left, while we rested our jaws on the floor in disbelief.

Thanks to the sunshine, the Sperm Shack was much warmer, and when we woke up far too early the next morning, Jen’s temp was a whopping 97.4. So somewhere in there, ovulation took place. After saying our goodbyes, stopping to look at loons (no, not the family, the actual feathered ones) one last time, and having breakfast with friends, we returned the rental car and checked in for our flight. Our trip through security was much calmer with only the 2-inch-long needles of Cait’s injections sans dry ice to get through.

We made it home in time to relax on the couch for a bit, and then get ready for the black-tie, uber fancy wedding THAT WOULD NOT END. But that, my friends, is a story for another day.


  1. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Swim, Sperm, Swim!!!

    Sounds like your timing was positively perfect, and in my opinion, the insanity of your inseminations should at least double your chance of conception.

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