When I got to the doctor's office, they had me pee in a cup (which I'm sure was to check to make sure my uterus was currently free of inhabitants), and I went to the room and undressed and waited with a sheet over me. My doc and I chatted for a few minutes about what to expect (irregular cycles for first few months, etc.) then my boyfriend came in to hold my hand during the insertion.
First off, she said the meds helped and my cervix was soft but holy cow, it didn't feel that great! She did the sounding thing which HURT and I squeezed my bf's hand and he looked like HE was going to faint, lol! She had a nurse get a cool cloth for my forehead and an icepack for the back of my neck (not sure what that was for) and kept telling me to breathe (even though I swear I was breathing already). After a short break from that, she did the insertion, which hurt (a sharp, stabbing feeling, then almost like a scraping feeling), and I said (yelled) swear words that would make my mother blush, and I could hear her counting while she slowly let the arms open. She trimmed the string, and had me put my feet together and stay laying down for a few minutes (I was feeling pretty light-headed and a little shell-shocked).
Then she went on for a few minutes about making sure I use pads for this cycle (because a dry tampon could attach to the dry string), and gave me the snipped-off ends of the string to feel so I'd know what to feel for. My boyfriend kept making goofy faces to make me laugh the whole time I was laying there recovering, which was sweet.
I stopped on the way out to make my follow up appointment (in 3 weeks), and didn't have to pay a cent (thank you, Obamacare for no copayment). I then politely requested (demanded) we stop for an ice cream sundae to eat on the way home (we had a 2 hr drive ahead of us). My boyfriend made some more jokes to get my mind off things, and there were plenty of funny things my doc said to laugh at (she has this gosh-darn, down-home southern-aunt type voice, which makes saying words like "penis" and "vagina" just so hilarious). He also said that if they ever do a sequel to the exorcist, that they should just film an IUD insertion.
After the insertion, I've been having mild cramping pretty regularly. I've been pretty good about taking some ibuprofen every 4 hours (including prior to the insertion), which I think helps. The cramping hasn't been terrible, but it's enough that I've spent much of the day curled up on the couch watching TV and reading a book.
All in all, it wasn't terrible. I wish I could remember my Mirena insertion (3 years ago) in more detail to say which was easier or harder. I want to say with that one it was more than mild cramping after the fact. I only had a 10 minute drive then, and I remember feeling every single bump in the road *so* bad.
I'm really glad I chose the Skyla. Yeah okay it hurt, but I don't have to think of taking a pill for three full years! Can't wait till I'm fully recovered to so I can begin to enjoy the benefits ;)