Get ready for IVF with me! This post will review how you can stay organized with your schedule, an IVF medication organizer, a calendar or tracker, and more.
With fertility and IVF, there is so much that is out of our control. And we’re done feeling out of control, aren’t we? Fortunately there is finally one thing that you CAN control, and that’s your organization throughout the process. Staying organized during IVF is so important, not only so you don’t make a mistake, but also for your sanity.
IVF is beyond overwhelming, It’s physically exhausting, it’s mentally and emotionally taxing, and it can be financially draining. Exercise some power here by getting yourself ready so you feel prepared throughout your journey.
SAVE THIS POST FOR LATER:
This post may contain affiliate links which means we may receive a small commission at no cost to you if you make a purchase using one of these links.
Tips for Staying Organized During IVF
Here’s the truth: there is SO much to keep track of during an IVF cycle, and it can be incredibly stressful. Medications with names you’ve never heard of, syringes, alcohol pads, dosages, and appointments. Especially if this is your first cycle.
I have now done two rounds of IVF and felt just as anxious and flustered at the start of my second as I did at the start of my first. You receive just as many medications and tools for administration, and you probably need a reminder of what everything is and how you’re supposed to mix and take it. Planning ahead will make things go much more smoothly.
Here are some recommendations:
1. Set a Realistic Schedule
Injection timing: IVF medication needs to be administered at the same time every night, with a one-hour before and one-hour after grace period. Meaning, if you choose to give yourself injections at 7PM every night, you have room to do it from 6 to 7PM and 7 to 8PM if necessary. However, this doesn’t mean that you have a wide-open two hour window to do your shots. It just means that if you happen to have an unexpected blip in your schedule from time to time, it’s ok to not be on time. Just don’t make a habit out of it.
Appointments: IVF tends to require a lot of trips to the clinic, especially if you are going through a fresh cycle, which will include stimulation, retrieval, an embryo transfer, a beta test and some monitoring. The bulk of your visits will likely be toward the end of stims, just before you take your trigger shot, when your fertility doctor is monitoring your follicle growth and progesterone, LH, and estradiol levels. Some of you may be asked to come in for blood tests and an ultrasound daily! It just depends on how your body responds to the medication prescribed.
Because of all of this, it’s important to be realistic with your availability. Before committing to a cycle, sit down with your partner and take a look at your calendars to determine if you have a pretty relaxed month ahead. If you have travels, company coming in from out of town, or several social or work obligations, you may want to wait til next month when you’ll have more freedom to rest and easily visit the clinic. Overcommitment is the last thing you’ll want, particularly when you can’t anticipate how the IVF medications will make you feel (holy tired!).
2. Organize Your Medication
This is a big one, and so important! The first package I received was PACKED with items I had no idea what to do with. While there was some literature included, it was still overwhelming enough that I just popped the items that needed to stay chilled in the refrigerator and set the rest aside for the time being.
When you’re ready to get down to the nitty gritty with all your IVF meds, you’ll want to organize them in something that you can easily access rather than keeping them in the giant box it all came in. Choose one way to organize everything and keep it all in a safe place.
Many of your medications will require refrigeration, so consider getting a storage container for each.
Keep reading til the end for some of my favorite IVF medication organizer ideas.
3. Keep a Calendar or IVF Tracker
Your IVF medication schedule won’t be the same throughout your entire journey. Not only are different meds introduced at different stages, but your doctor may adjust your dosage partway through. Part of the reason you are visiting the clinic for blood tests and ultrasounds while stimming is so that your doctor can monitor your response and adjust where needed. One day you may be taking 175 units of Gonal-F, and the next they may increase that to 225 units. Everyone’s protocol is different.
Because of these changing elements, it’s very helpful to keep a calendar of your treatment protocol. Each time you get instructions from your doctor, log it on your calendar so you can reference it when it’s time to take your injections.
I like to print out a blank calendar and stick it on my fridge. I write in my daily dosages and appointments, even if it’s the same medicine each day. Why? Because it’s a LOT to remember, and eventually, you won’t be taking the same meds. You’ll be taking entirely new meds and you’ll have to remember what to start and when.
I also enjoy keeping a calendar because when I am starting a new cycle I can refer back to prior cycles when I need a refresher on what to expect.
IVF Medication Organizer Ideas
If you are looking for ways to keep all of your supplies in order, and in an easy to use way, look no further than an IVF medication organizer! You don’t need anything special or fancy to keep your medications and tools neat and tidy to make this process seamless. You may already have something at home that works for your needs.
Why do I need an IVF Medication Organizer?
Easy – it’s one less thing to stress you out. Like we said earlier, you get a heck of a lot of medication and supplies when you go through an IVF cycle, each requiring different vials, needles and mixers. It’s best to keep it all in an organized space to make each dose a breeze!
It’s also great to have an IVF medication organizer for personal reasons:
- If you already have kids, you’ll want to keep the medication bottles and syringes out of the way in a safe place that they can’t access. My daughter gets into just about everything, so it’s critical that we keep my meds out of reach.
- If you are hoping to keep this process private, you’ll want a simple way to store everything so they are out of sight when you have company over. We didn’t tell anyone, even family, when we were going through our two cycles, so it was important to us that we had a way to hide everything!
Following are some of my favorite ideas for storing your medication and supplies:
1. Clear Plastic Containers
Clear plastic containers are a super simple way to “contain” all of your supplies in an organized way. You can easily slide the container onto a shelf when you aren’t using it, and take it down when you are ready to do your injections. When you’re done, you can reuse them for something else!
2. A “Toolbox” or Caddy
Who said a caddy was only for diapers? Toolboxes and caddies are excellent for IVF medication organization because of the compartments, pockets and shelves! And, they are a discreet way to keep your supplies away from prying eyes.
I love this one because you can reuse it for diapers, creams, and more when your beautiful bundle arrives!
Or, you can take a more simple and crafty approach with a basic plastic caddy like this one:
3. Travel Cosmetic Bag
I used my travel cosmetic bag to organize myself for my first round of IVF and I loved it. I hung my bag on the back of our bathroom door and easily accessed everything I needed.
4. Over-the-door Shoe Rack
I love this idea because if you get a hanging shoe rack that is clear/see-through, you can easily locate all the pieces you need.
Not only is this IVF medication organizer flat and out of the way, but it is totally functional.
5. Weekly Pill Organizer
Pill organizers are perfect for containing your estrogen pills as well as any other supplements you might be taking like a prenatal vitamin. I don’t know about you but I am really bad at remembering if I took my prenatal, so keeping them in a weekly organizer is really helpful.