Sunday, December 30, 2007

2 week birthday (new years eve), birth story

Ok, I understand that I am supposed to be tired.  Everyone told me I would be tired, I accept that.  What I am having trouble with is the level of bone-aching tiredness that has been the last week.  This weekend has finally started to get better and I am now truly up and about so I think (hope) that we are on an upswing.

Anyway, lets start at the beginning.

I had a lot of reasons for wanting a c-section.  I have a real anxiety about labor.  I have a deep-seated fear that I will freak out during labor and make the entire experience much worse that it has to be.  I had spoken to my dr about this and asked that some sort of calming agent be available.  He said that was perfectly acceptable but that since I was so open about talking about my anxiety and fears he didn't really believe that I had much of a problem.  He felt that those with the real issues are those who deny there is a problem, or don't recognize when they are in the throws of an anxiety attack.  H was sitting with me during this appointment and he made a face at me like, "He doesn't really know you very well".

Another reason for a c-section, I have had two miscarriages.  In each of these, nothing happened.  I never started bleeding, I never felt any cramps, nothing.  I had a real concern that my body wouldn't really know how to go into labor. 

Oh, and I didn't want to have my baby on xmas.  That just seemed so unfair to him.

Anyway, my dr was fine with all my reasons and allowed us to schedule.  We were scheduled for 39w1d.  This put us at Dec 17, and if I went into labor naturally I would have just attempted to have a natural birth, but if I hadn't gone into labor by that date, we would have the c-section.  Having a plan, an end point, was so incredibly helpful.  It made everything fall into place.  We had all our xmas shopping and shipping done.  All the cards had been sent, an email list was created for the birth announcement.  I just felt like I had a level of control that I needed.

My appointment was scheduled for 12:30pm, things were running a little behind but nothing surprising.  My BIL is a resident at a different hospital, but he did tell me a few things to expect from the spinal which was really good.  I got the spinal and immediately started to feel nauseas and dizzy.  It was pretty horrible, apparently your blood pressure can drop which makes you feel this way.  As soon as I mentioned it, they started another medicine in the line which increases your blood pressure, it took about 5 full minutes to really work, which felt like forever, but once it did work I felt so much better. 

I could tell they were cutting, but not really where, it felt like they were cutting higher on my belly than where the scar actually is, so perhaps most of what I was feeling was the pressure from their hands and the retractors.  H got some video of the 'experience' but so far I have refused to watch it.  I guess he saw them pull out my intestines or something to get at the baby.  I didn't really get a lot of detail there. 

We were told that as long as things went well, they would remove the baby, show him to me, wipe him off and give him to me or H to hold while finishing up all the cleaning out and closing up.  Well, that isn't exactly what happened.  There was a sheet hung up between me and my belly so I couldn't see any bloodiness, and when they finally got the nugget out, the dr said 'Look up, look up look up, here is your son!"  He basically flashed the baby at me for barely a second and then immediately brought him to a table I couldn't see.  It was very quiet, at this point there was no baby crying. 

They had to suction his lungs and give him oxygen.  He wasn't really breathing and no one would tell us anything.  They let me see him again after a few minutes when he was a bit better, but he hadn't 'passed' the Apgar tests, so they brought him to the NICU for a half an hour.  As far as NICU visits go, a 30 minute visit is not bad.  I think they just wanted a bit of privacy and quiet to get a real sense of what kind of trouble he was having with breathing.  For the next day or so, he was still 'wheezy', which they call grunting, but if he was held upright the sound stopped. 

We basically kept him in our room the entire 4-day stay except for the first night.  They nurses wanted to keep him in the nursery to be able to listen to him breathe during the night.  They just wanted to make sure the fluid was clearing from his lungs.  We had agreed that we wanted to try breastfeeding.  I know that the milk doesn't come in right away but still the nugget was losing weight and quickly.  Each nurse had a different suggestion as to how to hold him, latch him, everything.  It was a little confusing but still everyone was very kind. 

He was born at 8lbs 8oz, and by the third day he was 7lb 8.6oz.  At this point, we were told to begin to add formula as my milk still hadn't come in.  We added 1/2-1 oz after each feeding.  We left the hospital on Friday afternoon and had our first pediatrician appointment on Saturday morning.  By this point, my milk had finally come in, and his weight had gone to 7lb 15.5oz.  Basically he had gained half a pound in about 30 hours.   We were told we could stop the formula and just breastfeed for the near future. 

By this point though, breastfeeding was so painful.  I was cut and bleeding and it was not a pleasant experience.  It is still getting better, but really there is still pain whenever he feeds. 

We are still going in for weigh-ins at the pediatrician's.  He is not gaining weight consistently yet.  I think the formula really put us in a weird situation.  He gained too much weight, too quickly and now we are trying to re-normalize what his weight gain really is.  Part of the problem might be that I wasn't able to eat very much for a few days.  He was feeding so frequently and for so long, that I never had the time to make food or eat anything.  Apparently this makes breastmilk be 'skim' since there isn't really anything spare to put in it, making him need to feed more frequently.  This got to be a brutal loop that we are trying very hard to break.

I lost 15 lbs while in the hospital, and another 5 in the next five days at home.  This seems a little quick to me, so I am trying to be more conscientious about my intake.

Things are starting to settle in a little bit.  He is a beautiful angel and becoming far more alert every day.  He slept every minute he wasn't eating at first but now he eats and then is alert for a little while before falling asleep.  He is already a little spoiled.  He does not like to be put down at all.  If he is not eating, he still wants to be held.  This makes showering and going to the bathroom a little complicated.  It is alright though.  He is totally worth it. 

His name is Sebastian, he is mommy's little angel.



Monday, December 24, 2007

Welcome to the world! Happy 1 week birthday!!!

Our son arrived on December 17, at 1:40pm via c-section.  Today he is 7 days old.  He is beautiful and we are so very happy and excited.

It has been a crazy exciting week, and I want to update everyone on the birth experience and the last few days. 

I am working on the post now, but there is a lot of sleeping I am working on so it might take another day or two to get posted.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

38w3d, Belly pix!

Ok, here goes! I am wearing the same pants in each picture and look at how low they need to ride to be on the latest pictures! I think I am cutting off some circulation here.

Anyway, that is the last of the belly pictures, next up is either labor or c-section. Nugget was very active tonight. I don't think he wants to be inside any longer. He is ready to escape.







38w3d, Sorry, false alarm

We had a bunch of trouble trying to get the photos uploaded and that is why the belly retrospective is pending. 

That and the fact that other than working and doing laundry for the best dressed, unborn child ever, I am sleeping.  That is my entire life. 

Still no signs of nugget.  He is very content to hang out as long as mommy lets him.  No contractions, no nothing.

Except for some bleeding after an internal.  We are 50% effaced with 0 dilation.  At least we are heading in the correct direction.

Oh, and we are getting a sleet/ice warning for tomorrow and a potential Nor-easter for the weekend.  H is in a panic about getting to the hospital.  It is very sweet and cute. 

Saturday, December 08, 2007

37w6d, Last belly picture tomorrow!

Tomorrow we take the last belly picture.  I will need to load it and then will post it.  I might even post another time-line of belly pix if I am feeling industrious. 


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

37w3d, Favorite pregnancy symptom

I have had a favorite pregnancy symptom for the whole pregnancy.  It is blood when I blow my nose.  Obviously I love feeling the nugget move and everything, but a bloody nose was an early symptom and it has been consistent.  So even when I was concerned or doubting, if there was blood in the tissue when I blew my nose, it was calming.

Till yesterday.  I have only had a couple of real bloody noses.  Mostly it is just a little blood in the tissue, not actual flow.  Till yesterday.  At work.  Mid-conversation with a colleague, I felt my nose was getting runny.  When it started to feel a little drippy I grabbed a tissue.  By the time I got it to my face, his face had already fallen and he was asking 'are you alright?'.  That was when I knew the runny nose, was not really runny, but plain old bloody.

Only a little embarrassing. 

We saw the dr on Monday and everything looks good.  Nugget is head down (and has been since like June, so that wasn't a surprise), and almost 8lbs already.  7lb13oz was the calculation.  He is 91%ile in size now, and all measurements put him at 39+weeks.  We are pushing back the Dec 8 schedule to Dec 17 now.  If I go into labor naturally, fine, otherwise he will be removed on the 17th or 18th.  This is good, he will be a whole week before xmas so we could celebrate his birthday earlier.  Also, he will be around 9lbs by then, so if he doesn't come out on his own, would I really want to have to push him out??

He definitely favors the right side and my belly is often completely firm on the right side, and soft/squishy on the left side.  That is weird. 

Planned/expected end date, 39w1d, wish us luck.

Friday, November 16, 2007

34w5d, Panic begins to ensue

Had my 34 week appointment on Monday and did a non-stress test. Last
week I felt the nugget was a bit quiet and so my dr did the non-stress
test. It seemed fine, a little quiet but not a big deal. He just
wanted to check again, but this time we failed. We were
non-responsive. They followed up with an ultrasound and everything
seems fine.

Nugget was probably sleeping but still it wasn't that much fun. They
even used a buzzer several times to try to get a response, but while
nugget might startle, he didn't keep moving on his own.

We are really starting to get close. We are only a few weeks away and
there is still so much to do. I am hoping to get a bunch of stuff
done this weekend, but I have not been sleeping well so I am not
really terribly productive when I am home.

We are talking to the dr about a c-section because I am afraid I will
panic during regular labor, and also I would like to separate our
child's birthday from xmas if we can. It doesn't seem like it would
be very nice to have a birthday and xmas be on the same day or just a
couple of days apart. It would be nicer if his birthday could be his
own. So we discussed it, and the dr was ok with the idea, his nurse
called back the next day with a schedule of December 8!!

As in 3 weeks from now. I almost threw up on the phone. I freaked
out. I don't know if I will be ready in 3 weeks. Also, both H and a
good friend of mine are trying to convince me not to do a scheduled
c-section. Now I don't know what to think.

Monday, November 05, 2007

33w1d, 7week home stretch

Today I made the announcement at work that I am going to be less available after 6 weeks.  I know I am 7 weeks till the end but i didn't want to over promise to anyone if I have to leave earlier.
 
There still seems like there is so much to do, but some things can't really be done until later.  I would like to get our xmas shopping done, but H wants to use amazon for everything so we don't want to order too early.  We took some photos for our xmas card, but we haven't chosen that either. 
 
This crib is all set up and has a mattress but I haven't done any laundry yet for all the clothes or sheets that we have received from friends yet.  My mom is throwing me a shower this weekend, which will be very nice, but will also let me know what all we need to buy to complete the list of things we need.  For example, I don't think we are getting a cradle for our room, so we will have to buy that. 
 
I am looking forward to seeing everyone at the shower, and we are really getting excited about everything. I am just starting to worry about what we will get done on time and what will end up sliding till next year.  I don't like being late for stuff and will feel bad if we end up not getting xmas presents out to all the nieces/nephews because nugget decides to come early or we just didn't plan well enough.
 
 

Thursday, October 18, 2007

30w4d

I have a lot of stuff floating about in my head regarding this pregnancy right now and it has been tough to put it down in writing.
 
We had another appointment this week and we are in the 93%ile for size, so we are sticking around the same growth rates as the last few appointments.  The head measured 10.3cm x 7.8cm (ish).  This is basically 4" x 3" which seems like a good size.  Also I had protein in my urine yesterday.  I was a +2, but my bp is 90/56, so that isn't the concern.  Apparently there is a dehydration issue associated with protein in the urine, so I need to be a little more careful and see if that helps at all. 
 
We had a big bbq for H's birthday a couple of weeks ago and finally told the world the gender of the baby. 
 
I have kept this secret for 13 weeks, and now that it is out, I am feeling a little let down.  I am glad people know, though I don't want all gendered clothing, but then I didn't want everything in yellow and green either!  I am very particular this week.
 
We are having a boy.  We haven't picked a name yet or anything.  I know H wanted a girl but now he is thrilled by 'his son', 'our son', 'the boy nugget'.  I am happy for him, and now need to come to my own acceptance. 
 
Almost all of our friends have girls.  All the babies close in age to ours are girls.  We are the only ones having a boy.  In some ways that sounds nice, but it also sounds a little lonely.  Both for me and the baby.  Who will we spend time with?  Will all the children in the local mother's group be girls and if so, who will my son play with??  I know these things resolve themselves, but it is still where my mind is running right now.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

28w3d, Holy Crap

Had another appointment and now the size estimate is in the 97th percentile!  Holy crap. They checked my diabetes levels and found everything to be normal so that isn't the problem. 
 
OMG, I seriously do not know what I will do with a 10lb infant.  How does one even escape the body???

Friday, September 28, 2007

27w6d, Irony alert

H has been 'planning' my halloween costume.  He wants me to be a pumpkin. Ha ha, fat girl in pumpkin costume!
 
We both call the nugget and each other pumpkin so he thinks that would be cute, and it might be, but still a little cliche.
 
I was flipping through a catalog that had costumes in it while he was talking and I held up a cute 'goddess' costume and said "I could go as a goddess".  His reply "Yeah, a fertility goddess".
 
Yeah, that seems really appropriate.  Funny and ironic, but probably not appropriate.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

26w4d

I am very bad at this updating thing.  I have been a bit distracted with stuff around the house, but that is no excuse really.
 
I have also been spending my at home-computer time trying to put together a website for my family.  I registered at several different places and didn't want to have to tell people different things so I thought a website that consolidated all the information in one place would make things a little easier.  I have done any web stuff in years, and I am not imaginative enough to do the actual 'design' part, so I have been struggling to try to put something together that wasn't offensive. 
 
I think I have finally pulled something together that is simple and relatively attractive.  I would like to add some more functionality but I don't know that I have that in me this week. 
 
We had an appointment on 25w1d and found that the nugget (or nuggette) is measuring about a week or so ahead.  Apparently this puts it at the 90th percentile for size. 
 
That concerns me, a lot.  I have a biggish head, and H has a big noggin and thick skull so this kid is pretty destined to have a big head.  I don't need it to have a big head AND be bigger than other babies!
 
I have had a tough week with people at work too.  Not a big deal or anything, just a lot of extra comments about my size, weight, 'suggestions' of all kinds.  I kind of reached my limit this week, on Tuesday.  That is not a good sign.  I know I am probably being a bit extra senstive, but still I just want people to be a little less invasive some of the time.  I had someone ask if I was having twins, ffs!!  I am just starting my 7th month and I have gained 17 pounds so far.  That doesn't feel like 'twins' weight to me!
 
Of course that was after work where 2 people made comments about 'waddling' which I don't think I have started to do yet!  I mean, I am clearly, obviously showing now, but not like I am huge and look like I am going to give birth next week!
 
Well, I am supposed to be working, so I am going to run.  I'll try to post more soon.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

23w2d - 4D ultrasounds *UPDATED*

I hope these come out alright. I tried using the blogger video upload for the first one but it took FOREVER and was making me crazy. So the rest are on youtube, I didn't link to all of them, but if you go and choose my user you can look at any of them. Some came out better than others, and it looks like we have daddy's nose!

I think I like working for a medical device company! This was what I did at work yesterday and I will have another on Thursday morning.


video








***I forgot to add that while the scanning was occuring, the man was measuring the head. The diameter of the head (ear to ear) is 6.1 cm. Apparently this is larger than our dates would suggest. He felt that we were actually at 24w6d, I tried to explain that we are pretty certain of our dates, but he was stubborn. I didn't want to explain IVF and how it all works but how did this stranger expect to know more about my body than I do?

I told a woman I work with the story and her response is that you can be off by a week or more in either direction. I explained again that we were certain about our dates, and implied that with a husband who travels often for work this calculation becomes easier, but still she believes we might be further along too.

Does it not occur to anyone that some people have larger heads (both myself and H included) than average? That by having a dr, a petri dish, and a scheduled appointment, one can be fairly certain of the T=0 timeframe? So odd.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

22w3d, Update to previous post

I tried to add this as an update, but I did something wrong so I am creating a new post.

Sorry, but here is a photo to make up for it.
This is a profile shot, with hands over the nugget's face:
And this is a shot of the nugget's foot. Which is horrifyingly similar to its father's foot, flat and wide.

I do believe that I am incubating a lizard though. Everyone told me that you run hot during pregnancy, which is alright with me since I run pretty warm most of the time anyway. Well I have been cold for months. When H puts his hand on my belly it is frequently cold to the touch. I think this nugget is a heat sink. No matter how much heat I put in, it sucks it all up.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

22w2d

Just at the start of the sixth month and had another U/S.  Our place does two of the 'survey' ultrasounds, where they measure everything and tell you where your risk levels are.  We got another very good result.  Our nugget is exactly the right size and has none of the indicators for an issue.
 
This was very good news, especially since this might be the last appointment H can come to with me for a while.  He is so crazy busy at work and each appointment is half a day.  I understand, and am glad he got to see another U/S before he wasn't able to come anymore.
 
This is such a weird time in the pregnancy.  I am looking pregnant most of the time.  Occasionally someone looks at me like they are trying to figure it out, whether I am fat or pregnant, but mostly people are aware that I am pregnant.
 
For the first several months it was so anxiety inducing.  Things moved so quickly but everyday was something new to worry about.  Right now I am sort of coasting.  I know the end is going to be crazy but still I can't really get into doing stuff like remodeling a nursery that we aren't going to have furniture in for 2+ months.  We have been talking about a few design options, but that is it. 
 
I have started some registries and a list of things I would like to accomplish, but nothing feels like a crazy race right now, which is so weird after 3 years of hurry up and now we are just waiting. 
 
The only significant changes I am feeling/seeing are the real tightening of my belly.  It really feels like there is a lot of pulling going on and sometimes it gets so tight and tense.  Last night in bed the bump was sticking straight up.  It was a little uncomfortable, but still funny. 
 
I left our U/S pics at home today, so I will have to bring them with me to work tomorrow to post.  I will try to scan and post them tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

21w3d, Welcome to the Club

I had been worried as I hadn't felt any movement up till almost 21w.  I thought 20w was pretty normal and I was hoping to be 'normal'.  Finally though on 20w6d, (deadlines people, what would we accomplish without deadlines!!) I felt the first certain push.  What was really nice was that it was the day before my 35th birthday.  Maybe it was a little present from the nugget?
 
Either way it made me feel better.  Then two nights ago I had a bowl of ice cream and the nugget seemed to enjoy the buzz.
 
This morning was the big change though.  H was up early for work and I was awake and feeling a little odd.  I kept rolling over and my belly was hurting a little, mostly on the left side.  Not a big deal, just achy.  So I rolled onto my back and waited, there was a definite pushing/kicking feeling.  I put my hand on it and there were big motions!  I called H in to the room and he put his hand on my belly.  The biggest push happened about 30 seconds later.  It was enough to bounce his hand a little. 
 
It was an incredible morning. 
 
Now that I am fairly obviously showing, depending on the outfit, people talk to me about pregnancy, babies, blah blah blah.  It is like finally being inducted into a club that I knew existed but no one would admit to.  It is really nice to be 'accepted' but it does feel a little like fraud.  I feel like I got in under false circumstances.  I don't have the puppies and rainbows feeling that everyone else seems to have about pregnancy.  I feel much better than I did the first 5 months, but still, I keep expecting something unpleasant to occur.
 
I think I have almost broken H about knowing the gender.  We need to go shopping for some stuff for a registry and I looked around the other night.  I saw these cute outfit sets from Tar-jhay.  There was a set for each gender with a couple sleepers, onesies, hat and bib.  So cute.  The alternate, non-gendered option, was a pack of white onesies.  Boring.  I am hoping that he will want to know soon so we can pick out cute, appropriate stuff. 

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

20w2d

Things are moving forward faster than I am quite ready to handle. I finally told everyone in the family and at work. Now that everyone knows, everyone wants to discuss, everything. I am happy to finally be able to talk about stuff but it feels so wrong, so confusing to talk about every little thing.

Of course I tell you most everything, but that somehow feels different. The people who read this know what path we have taken to get here and understand what we have gone through. Everyone who knows now just thinks that I just accidentally fell down pregnant one day. Not after 3 years of very directed activity.

H is super protective of me now. He doesn't really want me going to work in case someone hits me in the stomach. I don't precisely know how that would occur, but he fears that it will. A coworker believes it is because he is 'proud of what he has done', and that may be a little bit of truth but mostly I think he knows what we both went through to get here and doesn't want anything to take it away from us.

I promised photographic evidence and have had no luck getting into blogger. I don't use this account regularly and always forget the password so any time I want to do a more complicated post I have to figure out passwords, track down info. It is always a pain, but I am in today, so I am going to try to get up to date.

Today are pics of the belly growing. Unfortunately H scanned the ultrasounds to a different computer that I can't see from my laptop, so I will have to post those separately.

To me I was seeing big changes between the first 3 or 4 pics, but the photos don't show what I saw in the mirror. The last change though is really the noticeable one. We call it the delta. Basically it is the change I see each morning. I go to bed not really pregnant, but wake up larger and fatter. It is kind of amazing, in a really weird way.




































































Monday, July 30, 2007

19w1d

I am sorry, I tried posting a picture and a couple of posts recently but blogger was being crabby. 
 
I has been a couple of busy weeks for us and the nugget.  I finally told my siblings last week and my boss today.  I am only working on a contract basis and the potential hire date is sometime in Q4, which means I will be huge and likely taking time off directly after that.  I think they might 'put off' hiring me as a full time person until I return anyway.  That makes me sad but it is not too bad.  We can get health insurance through H's company, but still I had been hoping to have this finalized before making my announcement.
 
I am still, sort of, getting away with normal clothes.  I can't wear my normal, normal clothes but wrap dresses and low rise skirts/pants are still working as long as they have a little give in the fabric.  Even so, a bunch of my friends have 'donated' maternity clothes to me.  Most of the stuff is for the later months, probably at least September but they have been so generous.  I haven't decided what I am going to do yet, since I can't really wear the truly maternity stuff yet, but I am outgrowing all my own stuff.
 
I finally started gaining some weight again.  I gained 6 lbs right away after all the procedure and everything else, but then plateaued for 2 months or so.  This last couple of weeks though I have gone on a growth spurt, or an eating binge, whichever.  Either way I am 4 lbs more than I was at 16w, and it is pretty much all belly.  It is fun though a bit shocking to see the change every morning. 
 
I will try to post pics again soon.  I tried to send an u/s as an email to blogger, but that just caused blogger to ignore me for days.  I think it was mad.
 
So far H still doesn't want to know the gender.  I would really like to tell him so we can talk about it, and plan for it.  I would like to be able to be happy about it, but right now I feel a little contained about the whole thing.  Of course I still feel like this is the week something bad will happen but so far that has only been in my head.
 
Today was a little scary though with the doppler.  We have been good at finding the heartbeat, some days it takes a little longer but on the whole it has been relatively easy.  Also, since about 16w the hb has been pretty rock steady around 140 bpm.  Today it was all over the place, bouncing up to 155 and dropping to 135.  It made me pretty nervous, but H thinks that I am dehydrated because this week I have not been as good about drinking water every 5 minutes.  I hope that is the problem.  I don't want to be the panicky lady who calls the Dr at the drop of a hat, but it did worry me a but this morning.
 
Thank you for being kind and patient with me.  It really means an awful lot to me.
 

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

16w3d

Finally had my 16w1d ultrasound on Monday.  So far everything looks very good.  Our Down's risk went down to 1:3000 (ish).  This time dr was much less 'enthusiastic' about doing an ammio.  He was really pushing for it 2 weeks ago, but this time things looked good enough that the amnio didn't seem necessary.  I was so relieved and H was happy too.  We agreed that if anything looked remotely concerning on the u/s that I would agree to amnio. 
 
I was clear that terminiation was not an option as long as there was no threat to anyone's life.  I have already had to do 2 terminations and I really didn't believe I could handle another one, especially if the baby was still alive.  At least both others had already 'expired' by the time of the procedure. 
 
H spent some of the weekend refinishing a 'new' piece of furniture for the nursery. (?)  I don't know how I feel about saying that.  It still feels like if I say too much that it will get taken away from us.  It is just superstition, but still. 
 
I attached the latest sonogram, though I have no idea how blogger handles pdfs.  I hope it works, otherwise I will have to figure out another solution after work.
 
The biggest 'concern' the dr had was that I hadn't gained any weight since I have been coming to him 4 weeks ago.  He asked if I was sick or nauseous.  I am not, never had any nausea really.  That concerned him a little but he said that I might be a later bloomer than average.  Well, last night my belly pooked out.  I went from having a little paunch that was mostly just a tire of fat around my waist to a firm round belly.  And I gained 1/2 pound since yesterday morning.
 
I don't know that I will be able to hide this at work for very much longer.  I was hoping to keep this to myself for a little bit longer but it is starting to get tougher and tougher especially as most of my clothes don't fit anymore.
 
I guess this secret is going to have to come out sooner or later. I fear that once I start telling everyone that something horrible will happen and that really scares the crap out of me.
 
 

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

14w3d

I know it has been a while since I updated.  I had my 14w1d appointment the other day and it was a little tougher than planned.  Things looked good on the ultrasound, my cervix is longer than 3cm which is apparently a good thing.  Our results for the Down's scan were 1/1700, which also seems like a good number. 
 
For some reason the doctor still wants me to do an amnio.  I really don't want to do it.  I do not want some news that might cause either the doctor or H to recommend a termination.  I have already had 2 terminations and I really don't think I can handle another one.  H seems to think that if there is any kind of problem, we would have more time to 'plan'.  I think that is justification for making me do a test that I don't really see a point for.  We spent the rest of the day 'discussing' this and didn't get anywhere.  The dr wants me to do it in the next week or so in case there needs to be a termination scheduled, which basically just proves my point. 
 
I haven't made any final decisions yet, please help.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

12w4d

Another update, just a quickie though. 
 
Got a call from the office and they got our 'first look' results.  This is the nuchal fold and some blood work.  From these they make a risk analysis of the chance for down's.  We got a lower risk factor than my age predicts.  For us that is earth-shattering information.  We have never been on the other side of the curve for anything in this process. 
 
I will get H to scan the US and I will try to upload a belly picture later today or this weekend.  JFife, you do realize that of course I took a photo of both the belly and the boobs.  Not a 'pervy' one, but just something to remember them by.  I haven't gotten any bigger during the last few weeks, which is a little disappointing, but probably a good thing.  I just added my next appointment to my work calendar and have it repeating so that people don't schedule me for meetings in the mornings on Mondays (the only day my dr is in during the summer).  I have the repeat on and had to keep changing the length to see how far out to go.  Turns out I only have to have the repeat on for 6 months.  I do hope that in 6 months there is good news at the end of this rainbow. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

12w3d

Monday was our first appointment with our new OB. The group is super
nice, and they specialize in high-risk pregnancies. The appointment
took forever, we were there for over 4 hours and he wants us to come
in every other week. That is a little tough for me what with just
starting a new job and all. It won't always take 4 hours but it will
still be most of the morning as the office is over an hour from my home.

We saw our nugget on the ultrasound and it has hands and fingers
already! It is very exciting. It is also around 6.5 cm which is a
little big, but no one else seems worried. They were all ok with me
coloring my hair again, because seriously it is so embarrassing to
continue walking around with these roots. I horrify myself. We even
got permission from the doctor to use our doppler. He recommends
only once a day, which is twice what we are doing so I feel like we
aren't damaging anything. His response was that we would be doing so
many ultrasounds, that the doppler would be a drop in the bucket.

We took some pictures this weekend for the first time. The last two
pregnancies we took pictures every week, and then they each failed.
It seemed like we would jinx things with a photo, but it was finally
time. Besides I need proof that I can grow boobs!

Monday, June 04, 2007

11w1d

So far so good. I am still on PIO until my next appointment which is
next Monday. I will just be at 12w1d then so I will be at the end of
the first trimester. Hopefully things will still be well and they
will allow me off the progesterone.

I haven't really had very much in the way of 'symptoms' except for my
pants being tight on me. When I look at myself in the mirror I can
see stuff spreading and thickening, even though I have only gained
~5lbs so far. My pants are tight, but skirts and stuff still look
fine on me. No one has 'noticed' my weight except me and H (of
course), in fact a woman commented that I am not fat at work today.
She was talking about in the general sense not the pg sense but still
that made me feel a little better.

The only real 'symptom' besides by burgeoning belly is my boobs. I
might even be a full B cup! Possibly a B+ (but that might just be
wishful thinking). Seriously I didn't even think my body could
create boobs, but it can!

We heard the heartbeat today after a lot of searching. It was a
little nerve wracking but finally we found it. I will have to check
again tomorrow to make sure it wasn't a fluke.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Graduation day (10w3d)

Yesterday was graduation day for us.  We had a very calming US, which showed a 155 hb and CRM of 3.5cm which is almost an inch and a half.  We saw our RE and she kicked us out.  She was super nice and gave us hugs and everything, but I am so nervous to leave.  I feel so cared for, so protected with them.  She tried to get me into a female practitioner but the only person with time in the next 2 weeks was a man.  I am not too concerned, since it sounds like a big practice and everybody crosses around to each other, and if I don't love this guy I can make my next appointment with a woman.
 
The bleeding seems to have stopped this weekend.  I haven't had any bleeding for almost 3 whole days, which is a new record for us.  I really hope that was the end of it.  I am going to continue doppling myself until the next appointment just to keep myself from going absolutely crazy.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

10w0d (today)

Thank you for all your kind words. H has been roping to the couch
for the last few days. He hasn't let me lift anything or do anything
around the house. It is really nice and I finished 2 novels this
weekend, but I feel pretty useless.

On a good note, it seems like we found the heartbeat again via
doppler. We hadn't been able to find it for several days. I hope
that is only a good sign.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Answered my question

I (foolishly) asked a rhetorical question in my last post. I asked
how do you know if bleeding is unusual if it happens for 29 days?
The answer is when it gets darker and red again. Then you know
something (else) is wrong.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

9w4d

I am loving the home doppler idea. I haven't always been able to
find a heartbeat or can be 100% certain that what I am listening to
is actually a heartbeat, but today I put the wand on my belly and
immediately heard thump thump thump.

It was very nice and it made me feel better. It is nice to start the
day with a search and I feel so much calmer if I can find the
heartbeat. I am still spotting but seriously if it has been almost 4
weeks now, can you really call it 'unusual'? I am hoping that I will
just be one of those women who spot, but continue to have a
relatively normal pregnancy. I know that is a lot to ask but that is
what I want.

Today I might have experienced my first bout of nausea, or I was just
offended by H's cooking. Tough to call, but I couldn't eat anything
he put on the table and had to have a bowl of cereal instead.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

And on the 12th day of bleeding...

my sweetheart gave to me... an ultrasound and a heartbeat.

Now it is actually the fourteenth day of bleeding, but when I started
this post it was the 12th.

I am still bleeding, just a little, but the ultrasound was fine and
the heartbeat/size was on target. We were very relieved about the
whole situation, but I think we were really expecting to be told bad
news that we weren't really responsive to anyone who gave us good news.

Now that it is sinking in, I am starting to get more happy, but I am
still trying to keep things reined in. I don't want the crash of
disappointment to be too enormous to handle.

We even heard a heartbeat on the home doppler this morning at 8w4d,
which apparently is pretty early. The doppler read the beat as less
than at the ultrasound, but it read my heartbeat as 200bpm, so I am
not sure the counting part is all that accurate. It was pretty clear
that it was the heartbeat we were hearing, so I hope it wasn't my
intenstines doing something funny. That would be disappointing.

I am tired most of the time. I basically go to work, come home, eat,
go to sleep. Do not pass go, do not collect 200$. I think partly it
is the pregnancy, but also it is a new job that I am working hard to
impress everyone at, so I think I am a bit overwhelmed and come home
to crash.

And, tomorrow is off to see the MIL. For the whole weekend. I can't
even type the statement without dreading every second. Fun Fun Fun.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Titles suck

I don't know what to call anything.  I don't want to do something cute and campy, because that is not me at all.  I don't just want a date stamp, though I guess that is helpful.

I just don't know.

Anyway, another tough weekend.  I just started work again after an extended period 'between employment'.  I didn't work too hard to find a job at first because I wanted to be able to 'relax' and just focus on treatment.  Well, that didn't work out as well as I would have hoped, so now I have found a new job that is a contract position.  It is with a company I was really hoping to get into and I am also hoping that it will eventually become permanent.

After work on Friday (3rd day!) I am on the phone with my aunt, just chatting away when I feel something wet 'down there'.  I figure there is some random something going on, so I hit the bathroom to find RED RED RED in my underwear.  I immediately get off the phone, call H and go directly to bed.  It was bright red and quick.  Not heavy, but each time I wiped there was a real amount in the paper.  Like a few mLs each time.  I basically stayed in bed freaking out all that night and spoke to the fellow on call.

He was super nice but clear that if this is a miscarriage there is absolutely nothing anyone can do for me.  I got up the next morning to find more blood, clumpy and dark.  I was supposed to spend the day with my mother but I cancelled, I just couldn't deal with it.

Sunday I still had spotting, but much less.  I finally just decided to go to the ER to try to get a US since our place does not do any scans unless they are scheduled.  All unscheduled scans must be done in the ER.

Turns out we still have a heart beat, 136(ish), and the fetus is ~7mm, which measures around a day or 2 behind.  We were a day behind at the last scan and are now either 1 or 2 days behind.  I am not sure exactly if this means we are falling farther behind or if the measurement has that much error built in.

Today is 7w2d, next scan is on 8w2d and I am on the couch for the next week, except for work.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

New update

I went away right after my second beta.  We went to LA for a business trip for H.  I got to spend the week in a sunny city with fun shopping and even a celebrity sighting or two!  It was really nice, and I got to see my cousin and her next baby.  Yep, I decided to go on a trip to see the latest addition to our extended family.  I might be a little bit masochistic.

After the previous depressing betas, I had to find another clinic in the LA area to take my blood.  It was a frustrating afternoon, but it got done.  The results were improved from the Saturday reading.  The HCG was 899, which was just about double.  My clinic has a minimum of 1.66 every 48 hours, rather than strictly doubling, so I met their minimum, but not by much. 

I had to go back again, to a new clinic since my nurse HATED the clinic I went to on Monday.  She found them so hard to deal with that she wouldn't let me go back. 

My cousin found me a place near her apartment, which was nice, since I could have lunch with her and my aunt directly after.  The time difference made getting results difficult, but the following day I found out I was at 2730.  Which, after 72 hours is completely acceptable by any standard. 

I had my ultrasound yesterday at 6w0d and we were right on for size and had a 106 heartbeat.  The article I read stated that if there was inadequate doubling during the first 5 weeks, even with a heartbeat, there is no successful pregnancy after first trimester.  I am trying to be happy about hitting this milestone, though I know I have been here before. 

H is happy though and hoping for the best.  I am hoping for the best, but I don't know how much faith I can put into it.  I have this fear that if I actually believe in this pregnancy and think it is going to work, that is when the rug will be pulled out from beneath me. 

Still, we saw Sean Penn and Mike Tyson at dinner (not together) so that was a cool end to the week.

Then we returned home to week-long house guests who brought their 11-month old.  Did I mention the masochism??

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Worst. Decision. Ever.

I received 'the call' about our HCG levels while at a friend's home for the weekend.  She just had a baby, her third and he was over 4 weeks early.  Several of her friends hadn't been able to give her a shower before the baby's surprise arrival so they chose to do a 'welcome home' shower.

It was very nice of them and they kindly went around my schedule to let me be included.

I wanted to go, for my friend and to meet the people she talks about all the time, but I had hoped to be going with some better news under my belt.

Instead I sat in a room with 10 women all having a minimum of 2 kids.  All talking about how easily they got pregnant, every detail about their children's lives.  Blah blah blah.

All this while I had to sneak into the bathroom to shoot myself in the butt with progesterone.  I would have called H to come get my if someone hadn't been anxiously awaiting the bathroom.  More than once I looked around to try to figure out how I could sneak away without offending anyone, and I couldn't come up with anything!

I love my friend very much, and we had a very nice weekend with them, but the baby shower might have been a little too much for me.

Next up, travel to LA to visit my cousin and her first baby, ~6weeks old.  Good timing all around.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Do I hear....?

...
 
I was looking for a 630, we had requests for 700, 800.  So what do you think the final count is?
 
...
...
...
 
495
 
So that isn't looking good, and I still can't have a drink?

Thursday, April 19, 2007

15dp3dt

I finally got my HcG test today and the results are 315.  It is much lower than the last time (which was a failure), so I am not sure exactly how I feel. 

I go back on Saturday to find out if all is doubling and doing the right things.  Saturday is the day I am more concerned about.  That is the day they tell me if there is a chance for the pregnancy to be ectopic or failing. 

Here's to 630 on Saturday.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

13dp3dt

Damn, I forgot to pee on a stick this morning for another 48 hour comparison.  I was thinking I was to test tomorrow, but that will be a 72 hour test, which is not as accurate to compare to the other sticks.  Damn, damn, damn.

On the good front, the spotting has stopped.  I spotted for a couple of days, and only strongly the first day.  It never turned red, and the severe pain I was feeling has definitely subsided.  I still get aches but the nurse swears that is from all the stim on the ovaries.  I didn't mention the incredible level of constipation I have been going through, so I am hoping a good portion of the pain if from that.  (I almost went in a way grosser direction for that sentence, you're welcome).

In our house we have become a bit obsessed with fiber.  If you have never met my husband you can't understand how serious a statement 'obsessed' really is.  He makes decisions and then goes crazy following them to see where they lead.  For example, he felt he was too heavy in college, so he decided to go vegetarian.  Not so unusual, right?  Well, he didn't actually go vegetarian, what he did was go to a no-fat diet and call it vegetarian.  He did lose quite a bit of weight over the 5+ years he did this diet. 

I am a bit more, whatever, about things.  I like to eat what I like to eat, I just prefer not to eat 10 lbs of it at a time.  A bit of his obsessiveness has rubbed off on me, (a little!!) but right now we are on a crazy fiber kick.  I am so constipated from all the meds and the pre-natal that I might explode.  Thankfully we have 14g of fiber bagels, put a little peanut butter on those babies and don't stray far from a toilet.  Also we have these breakfast bars that are 9g fiber, and poop-cicles (they are fudgecicles with fiber, what would you call them?) with 5g fiber each. 
 
I have been an enthusiastic consumer from this shelf in the kitchen and NOTHING IS HELPING.   I might actually die from this.  Ok, so maybe a little melodrama, but seriously, is it normal to not be able to remember when you last pooped?? 

I will now leave the poop conversation.  Please enjoy your regularly scheduled day.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Book Tour #3, A Time Travelers Wife

Hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at
http://stirrup-queens.blogspot.com/  

You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: Waiting for Daisy by Peggy Orenstein.

Henry suggests adoption (p337) and then says (p339) that he doesn't feel incomplete without a child of his own and that Clare is obsessed with having a baby. Did / do you ever feel that one of you wants a baby much more than the other and if so, how did you cope with it?
 
When we first began the saga that is infertility treatment, I mentioned adoption.  H was adamant that that wasn't an acceptable path.  He just didn't want it, he wanted his own DNA passed on or nothing.  I never cared one way or another.   I would like to be a parent and family but I don't really care where the child comes from.  Now that we have been through so many cycles and issues, H has finally accepted that adoption may be our only chance and he is getting to the point of knowing he would be able to care about an adopted child.  He still is not ready to 'give up' on a DNA child though.  I find the whole IVF process painful and exhausting, and, to be honest, not really worth it.  I would love an adopted child or children.  That is not an issue or concern, nor is passing on genes.  But for H the genetic tie is so important that we continue down this path until someone tells us to go home.

Before he died, Henry wrote Claire a letter telling her that he would see her again.  While the knowledge clearly gave her comfort, it led her to spend the later part of her life waiting for him. Was it fair for Henry to give that information to Claire?
 
I almost think it is unfair, but then I believe it is kindness.  When you have a loss like a death of someone you love dearly, who wouldn't want to have been told, "We will see each other again, I promise".  I mean some people have the faith that you will see those you love in the afterlife, but not all people have that.  If you were told that your loss was not permanent, wouldn't that make the immediate loss a little easier to bear? 

If you read the book without knowing about the pregnancy/miscarriage aspect of the storyline, how did you feel when you got to that part of the story? If you were unprepared for that aspect of the storyline, did you find it particularly jarring or upsetting? Or, if you read the book already knowing about this storyline, do you think that changed how you reacted to it? Did you find the pregnancy/miscarriage aspect made you relate to the characters more?
 
I read the book initially before treatment and then reread it for this tour.  The first time, I don't think I paid much attention to the infertility storyline.  I think I read it more for the scientific solution and the love story.  This time through it was more impactful.  I don't know that I would have been able to go through as many miscarriages as Clare goes through.  I have had 2 and they were each horrible.  Debilitating.  And we don't get pregnant that easily so there is a lot of time for recovery between miscarriages.  I can't imagine becoming pregnant with relative ease and then losing child after child after child.  It is horrifying.  Had I not had Clare's foreknowledge of a successful outcome, I don't believe I could have continued down that path.

The book ends in 2053, when Claire is 82 years old. Prior to the ending, we are left in the year 2008. Were you satisfied with the ending of the story? What do you think happened to Alba, particularly with her time traveling? In those 45 years, do you think they found a "cure" to the "involuntary" aspect of the time traveling?

I feel that Alba has such a strong nature that she is going to be ok.  I feel like Clare and Henry have given her a good foundation to build upon and that she has a different understanding than Henry did growing up.  It is like any kind of impediment that is embarrassing before being understood.  If Henry were dyslexic and passed that on to Alba, when he was young he might have been tormented for being 'stupid' but as we now understand more people can be more understanding and helpful to this generation, so Alba doesn't have the same hangups that Henry has/had.  I think Alba learned to control her gift more and more as she aged.  Henry learned to predict when it would occur and know the triggers, Alba had more control than that even at a very early age.  I would guess that would only improve with age and understanding.  I would think that a 'cure' is unlikely.  For many reasons, there are too few people to make solving the problem useful and as long as time travel doesn't seem to be damaging a person then non 'travelers' may not see the benefit of curing the 'problem'.  

11dp3dt, proof of confusion


Here are the 2 sticks, but I am still spotting. Crappy.

11dp3dt, and...

...first is the bleeding.

Then another stick, the line is darker. 

Thanks for all the confusing signals.

Friday, April 13, 2007

9dp3dt, Willpower = nil

Today was the day.  I knew I wasn't going to be able to wait any longer, nor did I really want to.  I knew that if it was negative, I could convince myself it was too early and if it was positive I would be content for a few days. 

There was the peeing, the dipping, the waiting, and...... nothing.  No line.

Unless you looked really really closely.  Like by the 'light of a thousand suns', don't know what blog I read that on, but it is helpful.

The faintest little pink line, next to this horrid glaring pink line.  So I bring it back to bed and make H look at it.  He sees nothing either, certainly without a lot of prompting from me.  Finally he agrees there is the faintest second line, but he doesn't really believe that it is real or an indication of pregnancy. 

I don't care, right now I feel certain I am pregnant.  How long I will be pregnant is completely not the point, just that I know I am, right now. 

I will test again in 2 days and let you know.  I will be very sad if the line stays the same or is lighter. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

I swore this time would be different (6dp3dt)

I truly did.  I really held myself back so as to not have the crushing defeat of loss.  Then I got caught up in the fact that we had good numbers and a reason for the last failure. 

So now I have been cruising along with all this hope in my heart and realizing that if this is another failure I might be destroyed.  The only 'symptom' I have been having is a little blood when I blow my nose.  I never have a bloody nose except right after transfer so it correlates with 'pregnancy' symptoms.  I have not felt bad, super tired, or gained any weight.  In fact I have lost a couple pounds since the retrieval, which doesn't sound like a good sign.

Each of the other times I got pregnant I felt incredibly tired and starving all the time.  I don't know when it kicked it but I do remember having it before the pregnancy test so I would expect it to be now or at least soon.  When is it too early to POAS??  I am desperately ready to do it now, but I might lose it if I get a negative.  I think it might be a little early for any sign, though a stick should be able to give me some info in the next day or so right??

I have the 'test 5 days early' sticks so in theory, I should be able to POAS by tomorrow for a sign.  H is counseling me not to test, which I know is the right answer, but I will need to be prepared before I have my blood test.  I will need to have some idea of the answer soon or I might make myself insane.  

I have 3 sticks on hand, you know, just in case.  Maybe I will tempt fate and try one tomorrow.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

4dp3dt IVF#6

The transfer went well and, for us, the numbers were encouraging.  We had 15 follicles, all of which were mature though only 9 fertilized.  I think that might be a record number of fertilization for us though.  We have had many more follicles before but used to have 50% mature and then another 60% fertilization rate.  So this new protocol is much improved.  I can tell you our protocol if anyone is interested.

Anyway, of the 9, 2 were 8 cell 1 rating.  Our clinic uses a 0 as perfect/no degradation and goes up to 4 for highly fragmented/poor, so a 1 is very good/minimal fragmentation.  There was also a 10 cell 1 rating.  Each of these was assisted hatched and put in.  Two others were a 6 and 7, and they were either 1 or 2.  The clinic thought they had a chance to be frozen but we never got a call so I assume that that didn't happen.  Really I am not disappointed.  I would have liked to be able to freeze but we have never even had results this good before, so I am not going to be greedy. 

The other 4 were all scheduled for destruction.  Mostly they had stopped growing after the first day and were just going to be used for testing, so at least I feel like something good might come from them. 

For me, this 2ww is the best part.  I am anxious, but the only news we can get is either good or bad, but not devastating.  I mean, if we get a negative, it will be very sad, but it won't be a death.  If we get a positive beta and then lose it (again) then I don't know if I can take it.  Another death (I know, miscarriage is the 'more appropriate' term, but that isn't what it feels like) could really just set me over the edge. 

Right now, my life is moving in a good direction.  I have found a few things to do with my time that I am really looking forward too, my job search is (hopefully) coming to an end (seriously if it isn't I am about to just toss in the towel and work at a bookstore for the discount) and this has been our best cycle yet.  If any of these precariously perched items falls then I might just lose it.  I am trying to build strength into my life so that if one thing fails it doesn't destroy me, but it has been hard with everything being 'imperfect' right now.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

17 hours till 3 day transfer

Retrieval went well the other day, even with the whole April Fool's issue.  We got 15 follicles and 9 fertilized.  I don't know how many were mature, but that percentage for fertilization is pretty good (for us).  I don't know anything further about quality or how many to implant, but I will know more tomorrow. 

Acupuncture first thing, transfer, acu again, then home to hang out on the couch for the next few days. 

Not a very exciting update, but if you want a fun roller-coaster then I will have to update about my job search.  Fun Fun Fun.  Ugh.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Is this a joke?

Back again this morning.  Had the nicest wand jockey ever.  He was very gentle, especially considering the fact that I am achy and crampy.  I got 'good' results.  Now there are 9 follicles on the right and 3 on the left still.  The 9 are 27 to 36 mm^2, the ones on the left are a bit smaller.

They want me to go ANOTHER DAY.  Seriously, I am going to burst.  I have never had to stim this long before.  I 'planned' everything out so that I wouldn't have a procedure on April Fool's Day.  I had it all worked out so I would have my retrieval on Thursday or Friday and transfer on Monday/Tuesday. 

Then they had my stay on another day, so I was pushed to Saturday still OK.  Then they told me that I was to go another day.  Seriously I am going to pop and I am running out of meds.

And we are pushed to a SUNDAY, APRIL FOOLS RETRIEVAL.  Is this a total joke?  I don't get it.  No two cycles have been the same.  Of course we haven't had the final result we were hoping for, so maybe that is alright.

So what joke are you planning for April Fool's Day??

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Do I have nothing to say??

It seems like I have nothing to say.  I haven't been posting frequently which is sad, because I have so much going on in my brain right now.  There has been so much going on, but much of it seems inappropriate to discuss on a public forum.

I have been getting my testing done and so far there are 7 follicles on the right and 3 on the left.  None of them seems to be the 'right' size, so I have 2 more days of pin-cushion-hood.  Right now it looks like I will take meds until Thursday, hCG on Thursday evening, retrieval Saturday, transfer Tuesday. 

I guess this is good, I did have a superstition about not doing a procedure on April 1, so no one can say "Ha it was just a joke!" but I have had superstitions before and those never worked out either.  I am just sort of barely believing this is possible.  I mean, I must believe it to some degree or I wouldn't be doing it, right?  But it seems like the world's longest shot so it doesn't feel like a great idea to go putting all this hope into the process.

As I was leaving testing today, there was a woman and her husband walking in.  She was sobbing and I wanted to walk up to her and give her a hug.  I know she had an ultrasound or something and didn't get the answer she was hoping for.  I wanted to give her a hug in the hallway, but I didn't.  I didn't because I know this is a private moment between a husband and wife, but I also regret not going up to her. 

This is such a lonely process and I know that it is better when those you invite in are helpful, but I do wish I had let her know that she wasn't completely alone.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Throw everything at the problem

I finally received the meds for this cycle and the box was a bit overwhelming. I had to take a few pics to really get a feeling of the contents. Here is what I saw when I opened the box...














And then I opened up the bags and found more crap...














I guess this them saying " this is everything we have, so good luck". It feels very 'end of the line' to me. This sucks.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Book Tour

A couple of months ago, I agreed to join a book tour to discuss the novel "Children of Men".  I was (obviously) interested in the topic of infertility and the movie trailers also piqued my interest.  There are 22 questions to choose from and we agreed to pick 5 each.  I am having a hard time with this part of the discussion.  Many of the questions ask about very personal information about my own experience with infertility.  I have a blog, and I do share some information, but there is still an awful lot that I keep private.  I would never want H to come to my site and feel like I betrayed a confidence.  That would do far more harm than help me to 'deal' with my situation.  I am looking forward to the next book, as it is a novel that I have read and enjoyed, but one that has no 'personal' connection.

Please feel free to comment and discuss your own personal views.  Also, check out next months option and join in if you like.

From the organizer:

Intrigued by this book tour and want to read more about Children of Men?  Hop along to more stops on the Barren Bitches Book Tour by visiting the master list at Stirrup Queens ( http://stirrup-queens.blogspot.com/).  Want to come along for the next tour?  Sign up begins today for tour #3 ( The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger) and all are welcome to join along.  All you need is a book and blog.


Now on to the questions I feel comfortable answering.  Next month I feel like I will be able to join in to the discussion far more fully, without feeling so guarded.

1. Though there are interesting female characters in the forefront of the novel, the cast of thousands of infertile women in the background are portrayed as crazy, desperate, and delusional. Did you feel P.D. James captured the emotions of infertility or do you think she merely repeated the image presented in the general media--infertile women are desperate and single-minded and obsessed with babies and pregnancy?

It seems to me that the women in the background are broad strokes interpretations of women.  To me it was also as if each background character was one individual emotion or feeling.  The women who was crazy with baby-lust, pushing a doll or kitten around, those women are a view into IF at a specific time and place.  It is like trying to find some sort of replacement for all the love and feeling you hope to shower onto your child but are frustrated with.  The woman who bashes the head of the doll is releasing some of the rage and anger that IF instills you with.  It is like each individual is actually one moment in time during IF.  These are not fleshed out women who are dealing with every aspect of IF.  Instead they are just a snapshot of the experience.

8. What do you think is the significance of the fact that the two people who are finally able to conceive are both considered "flawed?" (Luke had epilepsy and Julian had a deformed hand)

It is like a perfect joke.  Those who feel they are perfect and unflawed undergo every test, every indignity, while those who are less 'perfect' create something without thought or effort.  It was difficult to read about these people with their 'faith' in religion and moral character who could create life without all the anxiety of IF procedures.  These people were flawed in more than just their physical aspects.  They were less than good.  I never truly felt for either the mother or the father.  They both seemed to me to be hypocrites.  He a priest, she a married religious woman.  I never felt the love for her that the narrator feels.  He loves her strength but I feel her weakness makes a mockery of the fact that she is the only woman to carry a child.

I am sure there is much the same feeling when looking at friends and family and there fertility.  It is always such a blow to an IF when there is another pregnancy announcement.  Another horrifying moment when you think, "What is wrong with me?  Why am I being punished?"

14. If you were living in this time period and were given the ability to become pregnant but knew you would be the only person to do so, would you have that child knowing that they would be completely alone in an empty world for the last twenty-odd years of their life?

This is a hard question.  On one hand, I would say yes, with all the work and effort to try to bear a child, I would probably continue.  In my head it would seem that if even one person in one country can have a child, there might be another child in another place.  At some point these children might find each other or not.  Either way, the chance to actually have a child, even a child who might one day be very lonely, would be very powerful. 

IF is such a lonely experience, I think someone who has such a difficult time getting pregnant could explain to a child what they might expect for their future.  They might be lonely but who knows what a person could achieve if there were no responsibilities, no distractions.  Perhaps they would become another Michelangelo or Shakespeare.  Perhaps they would just watch every movie ever made. 

15. Some parts of the book were written in first-person narrator and other parts were written as third-person omniscient. Did this make the book more or less compelling? How did this change in narration style impact your enjoyment and/or understanding of the book?

I found this so distracting as to diminish my enjoyment of this book.  I found it so difficult to get back into the story each time the narration style was changed.  It was like reading two books at the same time (which I have done on WAY more than one occasion), but I didn't enjoy one of the books.  While reading from Theo's perspective I felt compelled to push forward.  To understand his thoughts and feelings, but the 3rd person viewpoint ripped me from that perspective.  I didn't 'like' the 3rd person view, it felt cold and distanced from the plot.  It felt like an attempt to distance the author but instead distanced the reader.  Each transition was harder for me, rather than easier.  I never felt for the characters during the 3rd person, while I felt very intrigued by Theo and Xan's interactions and history.

22. The Omegas are portrayed as cruel, self-obsessed and cold. Do you suppose that's a function of the way they were raised (as the last generation of children) or something inherent in them? Do you think that infertility has an effect on parenting?

This was another aspect of the book I had trouble with.  I know that many of the people I know (by no means all) who have had no IF issues or concerns have raised their children differently than those who either had difficulty having a child or chose to have only one for age or other personal reasons.  To me I actually see the opposite effect. 

Parents who worked harder to have a child are often more caring and considerate to their children and the people around them.  They seem to instill a larger consideration and kindness into their children than those who have never thought about what parenting means.  The children who I see that are cold, self-obsessed and just not very nice, come from homes where they are not valued as children but as objects.  Just another item to show off to those around you.  The children that come from homes where there are no rules and no courtesy are not usually those that have experienced IF. 

(Please, this question is the most personal one I answered and I tried to be truthful without being hurtful.  Please take this in the spirit it was written, not as a judgment, just an observation from a very small data set.)

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Pitiable

This is sad and horrifying.  H and I had a wonderful weekend away right after Valentine's.  I thought, it was 'relaxing' and just plain old nice.  We had a wonderful weekend, and the 'timing' was right.  I thought, hoped, that this might be the charm.  I have been acupunctured and yet, yesterday was day 1.  Another day 1. 

It is hateful. 

We spoke with the dr this week and we have the same/similar protocol as the last time.  With the expected same results.  I am sad and frustrated today.  I don't think a couple glasses of wine had a positive result on my mood.

Seriously a couple equals 2.  Not a bottle or anything, but I think I am just on the edge of unhappy and this pushed me right over the side.

BCP starts tomorrow.  I have a huge suspicion about April Fool's Day, and don't want a transfer/retrieval to occur on April 1, but then I had a 'suspicion' about 2 weeks ago.

This doesn't get better does it?

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Another wonderful day at the RE

Today I had a wonderful day (HA) at the clinic.  I needed a bunch of tests and blood to find out what the F... is wrong with me. 

So of course, I asked them to toss in a pap, because why not?  Legs are up, crotch is uncovered, go ahead.

I am not sure if I have mentioned but I am really terrible at the down-there doctor.  Like really tense bad.  I try to relax and remind myself this is no big deal but somehow it is always a big deal.  I have gotten better especially since I am feet-up every couple of months for another transfer/retrieval/blah/blah/blah, but still not great.

Well today was a topper.  On top of a pap, I needed a hysteroscopy and a biopsy of some sort.  The hysteroscopy was horrid.  There was so much pain, and there is no apparent reason.  Some people (most) don't really mind the procedure, but I could feel shooting pain all the way out into my hips. 

The biopsy was less painful, which is also a little odd according to the dr, but I was totally accepting. 

Now I am bleeding and crampy.  Just so uncomfortable. 

And we have a 'romantic' weekend planned.  I hope to feel better, otherwise this weekend would be a bust, and really, that might piss me off more than anything else.

This whole process has taken a lot of the 'fun' out of stuff.  Everything is timed and monitored and nothing is random spontaneous fun now.  It is pretty frustrating and I don't think I like it.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

I'm the dad

We had a (big) Superbowl party this weekend.  It wasn't intended to be a big event, but somehow it turned into a large group.  We started out inviting just 2 or 3 couples and then added a couple more and a another group.  Of course I didn't request RSVPs because, really, how many people are going to come??  Especially since we only started asking the Monday before the game.
 
Surprise!  We had over 20 people, some of which brought kids.  It was really fun, and I enjoyed myself (and Sangria) quite a bit.  My friend came over with her 4.5 month old and I was holding her when she started crying and fussing.  I turned to H and said 'She is broken, fix her!"  He takes her and she goes right back to sleep.  He had been playing with my nephew so I grabbed him and gave H the baby. 
 
My nephew and I started wrestling and growling on the floor.  He is so funny and so much fun.  While we were doing this the baby's mother said, "You are the dad".  I was a little startled.  I just looked at her.  Her response "You are rolling around on the floor and you leave H to do the comforting and calming, you're the dad".
 
It was very funny.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Winter laundry tips

If you want to do laundry in the winter, I have some tips. 

If you are using the hand-wash cycle for sweaters... allow just a little spin to release 10 of the 50 lbs of water trapped in the sweaters.

If you have heard that drying outside in chilly weather will speed up the drying process for said sweaters... don't put them in the shade, or in 1F weather.  Wet clothing + 1F + bare hands = rapid onset hypothermia.

If you see icicles forming off the arms of the sweaters... don't just giggle and think how funny it looks.  Remove sweaters from porch bench before they become a permanent fixture or they might snap when you are trying to move them.

If you do move the sweaters into the sun... make sure to take a picture before your sculptures melt.

I'll post a picture later.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Lunch

I met a friend for lunch yesterday.  We used to work together but she too was recently laid off.  She was one of the people I spoke to quite a bit as she also went through fertility treatments way back when.  She has a 21 yo daughter and it took them 11 years to get pregnant, so she is someone I feel comfortable talking to about this process.

While at lunch we talked about where I am and what is going on.  She is always understanding and helpful but yesterday was especially nice.  We were discussing options, a sixth IVF cycle, adoption, foster care, blah blah blah and she started talking about her daughter.  She said that she doesn't really remember the pregnancy or delivery.  The only thing she remembers is the moment they put the child in her arms.  She believes that she wouldn't have felt any differently about her daughter had it been adoption. 

In fact she said she often looks at her daughter and asks herself if they are related because she says or does something that is foreign to her parents.  She says she doesn't feel a 'connection' to her child like something mystical, but that she loves her because of the person she has become. 

It was a nice way to look at adoption.  No matter how you get your child, you go through frustration and difficulty but when someone puts a child in your arms, it is yours.  Your baby.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Sleepless

I have restarted acupuncture again.  This time I found a clinic near my home.  I have no way to measure the different facilities so I prefer to go to a closer site than the 40 minutes I was driving before.  Also, I have a theory that each person has their own strengths and so I hedge my bets by going to different people in the same clinic.  I have no idea if this helps at all.  I just know that I have had a session today to calm me and relax me, and it is 12:48am.  I have already finished a novel and trying not to start another one so I am not up until dawn. 

I had a great discussion with a friend today who has his own company and asked if I can help him launch his products.  It was very exciting and really could be an incredible opportunity.  I can't really go into any sort of detail, but I have been really excited about this project for a while and now he has asked me to join in and help. 

There is a bit to talk about, I finally heard from my clinic regarding the karyotyping of the fetal material removed during the last procedure.  It was a boy.  I guess I had told my friend that I believed it was a boy several times, and when I called to tell her the result her first words were 'you were right'.  It was a nice reminder that I was connected to this thing growing inside me. 

The unfortunate/fortunate results were that the fetus had a double x, so he was xxy instead of xy.  This is apparently called Klinefelter's syndrome.  Only about 0.1% of babies born have this so that is really a shocking display of statistics sticking it to us.  We keep falling on the wrong side of statistics but seriously, I can't even count on 99.9%??  Fuck.  

The good news (to me) is that the loss was not due to anything I did.  Nature saw that there was a mistake and corrected it.  Unfortunately between myself and my husband, we created something so stubborn that even with something seriously wrong he wasn't going to give up.  I fell while we were away on our trip.  I fell hard and really hurt myself.  I have a huge bruise, and an abrasion that was the size of the palm of my hand on my hip.  i was certain that this is what killed our child.  Also, we flew which our last cliinic (the one run by quacks, I know) didn't recommend.  I was sure that one or both of those things were the reason that I was no longer pregnant.

This might sound bad, but I am glad that there was something wrong to point to.  If there had to be a failure at least there is a reason that I can learn about and determine if there is some genetic proclivity towards it.  Also now we can do PGD and only put back the healthy embryo(s).  Maybe this actually means there might be hope.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Car thoughts

For the last year or so, H has been looking at buying a new car.  We don't really need a new car as we have a car and an SUV.  The SUV is a little too gas-happy, but we don't drive it long distances usually.  The car is great, though not great in the winter. 

He wants a sporty convertible (in Boston-very useful) and I would like to see if we have a child to determine what vehicle we buy.  We had an agreement that if we got pregnant he would hold off and then we would buy something that can accept a car seat in the back.  Well we got pregnant and then lost it.  So now he is back to looking at convertibles.  In January.  In Boston.  In 35 degree weather. 

I don't really have any good rationale anymore.  We have done 5 IVF cycles with no success and we are on board for another cycle in the nearish future, but what are the chances of success?  Why are we holding off on a purchase because maybe in a year or two, possibly there might be any chance of putting a car seat in a vehicle.

Well what if there is no car seat?  Why wouldn't we get the car he wants?  I still think it is a silly purchase, but I also don't really care that much.

When we bought this house, I was sold on the fact that the back yard was awesome for kids.  That the bedrooms were perfect for several kids or just 1 and maybe an au pair?  That we never use half of the house now because we only need 2 or 3 rooms. 

I told H that I am willing to sell the house and move closer to the city, maybe an apartment on the T line.  Then job searching will be much easier, and getting in and out of the clinic will also be more convenient.

Why wouldn't we buy (or sell) the things we want because it might conflict with our plan, that might never happen?

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Nice day

Today was a nice day.  There was a lot of cooking and friends and food all around. 

It started simply enough with a mention of brunch to a couple of friends.  That blossomed into a couple of other friends.  Then H's brother and wife were available only for the day so we figured, hey why not? 

It also began with bagels and smoked salmon, well some of our friends don't like fish, and the kids certainly won't eat them so I started adding a couple of 'options'. 

I asked H about french toast but he didn't want to make something high fat or anything that needed to be cooked while people were around.

I found a recipe for baked french toast that you make the night before and bake for 30 minutes.  It is full of butter and eggs and cream, but if you ignore everything and use egg whites and skim milk, grease the pan with a little olive oil spray and just brush the bread with a slight coat of margarine you can make practically fat free french bread.  It was so very yummy yummy yummy.  It soaks in all night, then you put some sugar and cinnamon over the top then bake for about 25-30 minutes at 425. 

We put some strawberries and light cool whip over the top and so very good. 

Of course you can't just serve french toast and bagels with smoked salmon and all the trimmings.  That would be silly, so lets cut up 3 lbs of potatoes into matchsticks, and hey, lets just add some sausage just for a little variety. 

This happens a lot.  I start a project and then think 'oh, wouldn't that be cool to add this or that, then it would be so much better'.  I really enjoyed the day and it works out for a party and group of friends, but it doesn't seem to work out when I try to translate that into a job search or decided what I want to do with my life.

It does make a damn good breakfast though.  DELICIOUS.

After clean-up, and a fire in the pit backyard...

oh by the way, it was 50-odd degrees in January in Boston!  Yay!

...I couldn't just sit there and see a clean kitchen.  So I figured I would add french onion soup to the mix.  There seems to be a theme happening.  Anyway, I have made it several times and my husband loves it.  I don't eat it so I can't tell you how it takes, but it makes the house smell like onions to the studs.  It also takes hours to cook down to usability.  I do love the process though.  H is always so very happy when it is done and he gets to eat it every day for weeks.  I make a couple of buckets at once so I don't have to make it again for a long long time.  I smell of onions for days, as it gets right into every pore of my body and nothing gets rid of that smell. 

Still, my family does seem to love it, so it makes me look good and I certainly like that. 

It was a very nice day.

Next up, lets talk about a car!