Saturday, February 28, 2009

13 Weeks

Yesterday I told my first graders I was "going to have a baby". I actually whispered it to them (literally) because I had parents standing in the back of the room for a field trip and I am not one for big announcements. I figured at least one of the louder children would let their parents know and then the job would be done for me. Sure enough it was. It was getting too hard to keep my belly in (especially after lunchtime) and I was looking forward to not having to wear only certain shirts that were billowy enough to hide it.

I am officially in the second trimester (that's hard to believe). I have more energy and any slight nausea I had has been gone for about two weeks anyway. I am glad the bump is growing, or I wouldn't feel pregnant at all. I have been told by Dr. G. that I have a "dainty uterus" and boy do I feel that thing stretch all the time. Round ligament pain has been an on and off constant for the past week. I have been trying to relax and just go with whatever I'm feeling down there. I still can't help but worry sometimes. I don't think that worry will ever go away, but I am working on it. The further along I get, the easier it becomes.

I will post my first belly pics now:
12 Weeks

13 Weeks

Monday, February 23, 2009

I'm Coming Out

Today I shared with my coworkers that I was expecting.

It was harder to do than I thought.

Most people had suspected it and all of them were of course so happy for me. I only told three of the ones I felt most comfortable with about my IVF. I am not keeping it a secret, I just felt like it was a little all at once to tell my story over and over again to each person. I will slowly let people know what I went through. This was enough for one day.

I brought an u/s pic so I could just show them and they'd know. It felt too awkward to announce it out loud. It still doesn't seem real. I'm not sure when it will. . . I always think, maybe after the next doctor's appt, maybe after the next u/s, maybe after I get even bigger.

The feelings that come with pregnancy after IF are most definitely unique.

One of our office secretaries (with two grown kids) asked how long I've been trying. She's the only one who asked. I said it wasn't easy and we'd been trying for awhile. She held up her fingers and told me they tried for four years. I instantly felt a bond with her I've never had before. I confided how strange (and wonderful) it felt to finally be pregnant. She nodded her head and said that you never forget how it feels to hurt like that.

It made me realize how many people that we see everyday struggle, or have struggled, with IF and we never know. It can be such a silent battle. It was for me for a long time. So much so that even now it is hard to come out with all of it, but I really feel that's what needs to be done. Especially when all people hear about IF or IVF comes from the media and quacks who have 14 children.


I'll end on a sweet note.

Last night DH was sitting on the couch. When I walked by he grabbed me, pulled up my sweater and kissed my belly. I almost started crying. I know how much he wants this now. I think it took our IF for him to truly realize it. That is one of the good things that came out of all of this.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I Have Hair Where?

My body parts they are a changing.

Last night I was telling DH how bloated I was feeling. At night I look huge. I've always been easy to swell up in the midsection, but now it is just out of control. By the time I wake up in the morning is much more presentable, but after lunch it is hard to hide the pooch. Which makes work interesting. No one knows yet. I might tell the girls I work with Monday. I am going to wait until next Friday to tell my class and their parents. I've already had some stares in my direction. (No one is saying anything because they all assume, rightly so I guess, that I'm infertile. Even though I've never discussed it with any of them.)

So last night I pull up my sweatshirt to reveal my bloated stomach and I noticed hair. That's right, a thin trail of hair from in between my boobs down to my belly button. Ewww. Part of me was disgusted, part of me was giddy. It was the first real thing I've seen that is different than anything I had before my pregnancy. I've always peed a lot, tired easily, ate a ton, had big boobs, gained weight in my midsection, and been an emotional person. Pregnancy so far had just heightened those things. To see this was a sign to me that things are going to start changing. I've noticed my hips begin to spread too. It is amazing to me. I welcome all the changes.

I realized maybe I should start taking belly shots (in the morning of course- we don't want to scare anyone). Tomorrow I'll be 12 weeks. I think that's a good place to start.

Speaking of 12 weeks, I can finally stop taking my medication after tonight. (I switched from PIO shots to prometrium at 10 weeks.) After today I will stop the suppositories, estrogen and asprin. My clinic makes everyone take them that long regardless. They don't check your hormone levels past your second beta. It's a catch all approach I guess. I hope I don't experience any ill effects from stopping them all cold turkey. I assume after 12 weeks they don't do much to help anyway because the placenta is supposed to be taking over.

I emailed my OB about the apparent second sac we saw last week. I wanted to confirm that it wouldn't affect the growing fetus. I feel like the meds I've been taking have been sustaining the empty sac and when I stop them I'll experience bleeding (which will cause me great anxiety).

She seemed to doubt that we even saw a second one because no scan had picked it up before. (Then what the hell was it? Whatever, I know what I saw.) She then went on to say that if it was, it would just be slowly absorbed by the body throughout the pregnancy and it shouldn't have a negative impact on the fetus. Let's hope.

I failed to post my 11 week pic. Probably because the quality was so bad. I will do it now. If you look closely in the upper left hand corner of the picture, you can see what I think shows the second sac. I'm sure Dr. G. would have known what is was. OBs should have more training on IF issues.

You can only see the back of the head, back and butt. The baby is being camera shy.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Today I Almost Had a Heart Attack. . .

But luckily everything was fine.

I had my 11 week ultrasound today.

In went the dildo cam.

Then we saw. . . an empty fucking gestational sac!

Just the yolk sac and no baby!!

My last ultrasound at 9 1/2 weeks showed a decent size baby in there. I know I've had some spotting, but I also know I have not passed a fetus. I think 10 days is pretty soon to be reabsorbed by the body. I thought at worst we'd see a baby with no heartbeat that had stopped growing. I was never expecting to see this.

Where was my baby?!

I said, "Can it just disappear?" She nurse practitioner looked confused too. Finally (after zooming in on the empty sac) she kept moving the cam around and finally found the one with the baby in it! I almost died from panic. Leave it to DH to put two and two together and he asked if that could be left over from the other egg they transferred. If it could have implanted and then stopped growing. I'm convinced that's what it was. It's the only thing that makes sense. Even though no one had ever been able to see it before. The nurse should have been thinking of that option when she was in there. She knew we came from infertility. Stupid lady still seemed a little confused. She kept apologizing.

The good news is, the baby is growing on track and has a strong heartbeat. My heart was racing just as much as my baby's I'm sure. Talk about stress! It seemed so much bigger than just 10 days ago. Much more substantial than I've seen before. We had a view of the back of its head and butt. It was the best thing I had ever seen. Even if the resolution on the machine was terrible (which it was).

We go back on March 8th for a check-up. My next u/s won't be until the big 18-20 week one on April 8th. After the emotional roller coaster of today's u/s maybe it won't be so bad not to have one for awhile. . .

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Feeling Out of Place

Last night DH and I went to an early prenatal class our OB made us take. Part of me used to be so jealous of my friends who got to go for their pregnancies. It was another thing I couldn't be a part of. What was I thinking. . . This class sucked!

I knew they probably were not going to tell me anything I didn't already know. If being infertile teaches you anything, it teaches you how to research. I have researched the hell out of this pregnancy so far. I probably know too much. DH was dragging his heels, but he came. He also suspected we wouldn't learn anything new.

Why do the most annoying people in the world run these types of things? We had grandma up there hamming it up. Before we started we had to go around and introduce ourselves and tell how far along we were, our due date, and what number pregnancy this was. Shoot me now.

I'm sure this lady had no formal medical training. I caught her several times giving out the wrong (or incomplete) information. I hate people who speak condescendingly to you about important things. Tell it straight, and leave your stupid anecdotes out of it. The night would have moved a whole lot faster.

The best part of the evening came when she asked for a show of hands how many people had to POAS multiple times because they were in shock and so surprised. Actually lady, I didn't need to test again because I got a call with my blood test results about an hour after. Then I got to sit on pins and needles and go back three days later and test again. No "How did this happen?" moment for me.

What got to me most was that almost everyone was younger and by far more naive about their pregnancy than us. It felt like we were at a cult gathering or something. Everyone was so giddy and stupidly pregnant. Grandma would make some lame joke and everybody laughed. I would bet money that no one else there came from IF treatments. Don't get me wrong. I'm giddy too. I'm so grateful. I am also sad that I feel I have been robbed of a normal pregnancy because the stakes are so high. If something happens we are back to square one in a big way. I was jealous that they could take it all so seemingly light. The whole night felt very surreal to me. Never had a belonged in a place and yet felt so out of place. Maybe time will help me fit into this new world. I still don't feel like I'm a part of it.

DH and I left at breaktime. We were outta there!
I shared my news with some close friends from high school this weekend. These were the first people I told who were not aware of any of our IF struggles. They were so happy for me. What I realized though, is that they didn't really get it. They didn't really get how painful it was. They didn't really get what we went through. We all know IF is a unique kind of pain and one no one can understand unless they go through it.

Here is an example of a comment one of them made when another shared that her friend got pregnant with triplets after IVF. Unfortunately, she miscarried two of the three in the first trimester. Someone said, "Do you think she's relieved to only have one now?" My other friend answered, "We haven't really talked about it, but I'm sure she is." I bet your ass she's not. She loved and worked hard for all those babies. I'm sure she grieved for them. That might have been her only shot at having more than one child. Really? Relieved?

It just shows how out of touch they are with the struggles that I and so many others have been through. I realize now they will never get it. I hope for their sake they are never forced to.

Monday, February 2, 2009

My Super Spotty, Super Scary, Super Bowl Weekend


I hate spotting. Like f*cking clockwork it seems to happen every weekend. Saturday night was the worst I've seen it. We were at my mother-in-law's to celebrate DH's brother's b-day. I had rested all day and I was looking forward to a nice dinner.

Every other time I have spotted during this pregnancy I have been around my MIL. Every single time, without fail. I'm not kidding. It happens so much that I said to DH before we left that if I spot tonight, I am not seeing your mother for eight months. No joke, it happened again.

I was feeling bowel type cramps and my hemorrhoids (had them before pregnancy too) felt painful and irritated. I am pretty good at knowing the difference between my abdomen sensations so I was super shocked to see dark pink/light red bright spotting on the tp. I was freaking out! It was more than the light pink I had seen before. I immediately laid down in the guest room and did not join anyone for dinner. That was the worst of it. From then on it turned light pink, then brown.

What also alarmed me was that the brown bleeding continued through Saturday night, all day Sunday and is still hanging around today (though getting lighter). Sunday was strict self-proclaimed bedrest for me. DH and I abandoned our super bowl plans and we had our own private party. He made snacks and it would have been great if I wasn't so worried about the spotting.

I had decided that if it hadn't completely stopped by this morning I would try to make an appt. Getting an appt with my OB is like trying to get past airport security with a weapon, almost impossible. A nurse had sympathy on me for being an IF patient and got me in.

Dr. H. wheeled in the dildo came and looked at me like, "How did you get past security? Spotting can be completely normal?" I looked at her like, "Listen bitch, just do your thing or I'll do it for you." I sure miss Dr. G. sometimes. DH was not very impressed with her either. She can give a mean pap smear, but bedside manner is not her strong suit. I didn't need a best friend. I just needed to know everything was okay.

And (thank God) it was. We even got to see the baby move! Its profile was towards us most of the time but once it turned to face us quickly and then turned back just as fast. DH said it was pointing its finger at us. "Ha, ha got you! This won't be the last time I make you worry." It looked like it was pumping its fists like a boxer. (I hate calling the baby "it", but what else are you going to do right now? Say "the baby" a million times? Use he/she repeatedly?)

When asked the reason for the spotting, no one ever has an answer. She said it could be implantation bleeding. To which I said, "Didn't that happen a long time ago?" She said it could take a while to come all the way out. Bullshit, not buying that one. Then she said it could be from the cervix. That one sounds more like it because I've always had a sensitive cervix and bleed at exams and stuff sometimes. She had no interest in examining it though. I hope I get better service next week with the nurse practitioner.

So here's our latest u/s pic. DH says we have more pictures of our baby already than he ever did of him as a baby (poor ignored third child). Only 10 more days until our next u/s. I'll be holding my breath as I always do. . .