Archive for 2012

A mistake

Friday, December 28, 2012

I have a confession to make, I still surf through various forums that I used to frequent when I was right in the thick of dealing with my fertility issues.  Sometimes I leave comments and offer support and other times I just read.  For some reason, I still feel very much connected to those ladies that are going through issues that are similar to what I experienced, much more than the pregnancy forums.


Last week I was doing some surfing through one of the fertility forums and I saw a message from a familiar girl who is still in the thick of her battle with infertility and loss.  Her post really broke my heart.  She has had 2 losses (one around the time of my 3rd), gone through several rounds of C.lomid with TI, and gone through several rounds of C.lomid with IUI.  She has yet to have success.  Her doctor switched her to F.emara, but her insurance doesn't cover it so it cost her $200 for a one month dosage.  Her post alluded to the fact that she could no longer afford the meds and was thinking of giving up because she was going broke.

Well, I really felt bad for her and wanted to do something to help.  I had an unused bottle of letrozole in my closet that was just collecting dust, so I decided the right thing to do would be to donate it to her since she has a prescription.  After all, it expires in July and so I would not be able to use it.  It also cost me about $2 with my insurance.  

I contacted her and told her about the good deed I wanted to do, and she was very thankful and receptive.  She gave me her address and I told her I would send it after the holidays.  I felt like I was paying it forward.

I mentioned to my husband what I was going to do and he cautioned me not to do it, saying it wasn't legal, yadda, yadda, yadda.  I didn't really put much stock into what he was saying.  I was donating fertility meds to a girl who needed them and had a prescription, but could not afford the prescription.  How could that be illegal?  I didn't think anything more about it, until today...

I was getting ready to mail the package, when I saw a tiny label on the side of the medication saying that it was a federal offense to transfer the prescription in the bottle to anyone other than to whom it was prescribed, originally.  There was no by-clause regarding the transferee having a prescription and then transferring.   That made me a little nervous, so I of course consulted free legal advice from G.oogle.  Turns out, my husband was right.  I didn't have to go vary far into my research to find a ton of information on how what I was doing was extremely illegal.  I decided at that point to forgo the donation because the idea of spending time in a federal prison doesn't sound like something I would want to do.

I went back and forth on deciding whether to email the girl to tell her that I was not going to send her the meds.  I don't know her, I have no idea who she really is.  I could just disappear and that would be it.  I decided that I couldn't do that though.  I needed to woman-up and explain to her why I wasn't sending the meds and apologize, profusely. 

Writing the email was really hard (and I am sure it was even harder for her to receive).  I felt terrible.  Like a complete piece of shit.  I got her hopes up and then just totally shot them down.  I knew I was doing the right thing legally, but was I doing the right thing morally?  Why is it that rich people or people with good insurance can get their medications with no issue, but people who work hard for a living can't?  Why can't people donate their fertility medications to others who have legal prescriptions for them?  It makes me so mad and sad all at the same time.  I was just trying to help and I ended up screwing everything up in the process.  Stupid.

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Just a (short) rant (that ended up longer than planned)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

I just got back from a terrible trip to the shopping center.  I had to get some ramekins and a table cloth for Christmas dinner from H.omegoods.   I also had to get food for Christmas Eve, Christmas morning, and Christmas dinner from W.hole F.oods.  I also had to stop at the "regular" grocery store to get some things that they don't sell at WF like K.eurig & S.wiffer).  Now, I normally hate grocery shopping and recently I have been doing it alone every week because my husband has been working on our new bamboo floors.  It is bad enough to tag team it, but braving it alone at the holidays while pregnant is even less fun.

First of all it took circling the parking lot several times to find ANY parking spot.  I ended up stalking a mom and her daughter for their spot.  Every store was jam packed with people picking over the last few available items.  Luckily, I got what I needed from the regular grocery store and H.omegoods.

Then I battled to leave the parking lot to go on to the next one.  Somehow I always have 2 SUVs on either side of me so that I can't see when I am backing out.  It never fails.  I like having a small car, but not in a parking lot.

W.hole F.oods was a DISASTER area.  They had police directing traffic even though there is a light.  I was lucky to get in and find a spot their fairly fast as someone was just pulling out.  No shopping carts at the door so I waited for someone to bring theirs back.  Then I realized I lost my shopping list.  Somewhere between the last 2 stores I must have dropped it.  F*ck.  I was able to do most of my shopping from memory though.  The store was packed with the usual WF a-holes.  I complain about the bargain grocery store having too many illegal immigrants or people buying gallons and gallons of fruit punch with EBT, but WF has mostly stuck up assholes who don't care if they plant their cart right in the middle of a crowded isle so no one can get by.  Also, for some reason they stock the shelves during the day on Sunday so that is an added obstacle...EVERYWHERE.

People at WF are also known to shop while wearing headphones or while talking on the phone.  Today, some jerk-off guy was having a fight with his wife on the phone and nailed me with his cart and just kept on walking and yelling at his wife.  He didn't even hear me yell "ASSHOLE" at him as I tried to keep it together.  I always move my cart to the very side of the isle or in a place where it won't be in the way to everyone passing through.  He had plenty of room to get by me without hitting me.

When I finally had thrown (what I thought) was everything into the cart and made my way to the checkout I realized I forgot freaking kale.  I ran back through the sea of shoppers to the produce and thew the first one I could grab into a bag and ran back to the thoroughly annoyed cashier.  They packed all my stuff into 4 of my 6 cloth bags making them about 50 lbs each.  I guess I don't look pregnant, just fat.  $266 bucks was the damage.  WTF.

I made it back to my car and loaded the lead bags into the trunk.  Someone was already waiting for my spot so I hopped in my car, looked both ways, and then started backing out, only to have another c-you-next-Tuesday lay on her horn as she came flying through the parking lot.  I continued backing up anyways, to give the person who was backing up traffic on the other side my spot, and she continued to obnoxiously honk at me.  I gave her the middle finger as I peeled away to the exit.  Seriously, she couldn't wait 2 seconds for me to back out?!

As I drove away to my house, I saw the crazy lines of traffic trying to get in and out of the shopping centers.  Ugh.  Completely miserable.  Makes me question the point of this "jolly holiday".  Everyone seems pretty miserable to me and no one seems to have any "holiday spirit".

When I got home I took in a load of stuff only to remember that I forgot something.  My husband came in and asked if I needed help and I burst into tears.  Like hysterical tears so bad that he didn't understand what I was saying.  Maybe it is the hormonal overload and maybe it was the sea of jerks, but I just had enough and the thought of going out again was too much to take.  It took me a long hug to settle down.  Merry f*cking Christmas.

Bah Humbug


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Viability!

Friday, December 21, 2012

I feel like I am still so very shocked when I hit milestones.  First it was seeing the strong heartbeat, then it was making it past 10 weeks (past my longest carried pregnancy), then it was making it to the second trimester, then it was 20 weeks.  Now I am at 24 weeks and I am still having trouble processing that I am really here.

I know that 24 weeks (the age of viability considered by most US hospitals), is the point at which the medical community will try to save a baby if it is born, but I also know that a baby born at this age of gestation faces a very uncertain future.  It does give me some comfort to know that they would at least try to save my baby if things went bad for some reason. This is a first for me.

I found a very interesting article on babies born extremely premature (22-24 weeks gestation).  I also found these statistics regarding babies born prematurely:

Image borrowed  from: http://www.statisticbrain.com/premature-birth-statistics/

Obviously a 39% survival rate isn't great.  I think the comforting thing to me is just knowing that they would at least make an effort to save my baby.  With miscarriage, they tell you there is nothing they can do and you just have to wait for the inevitable or have surgery.  Basically, with an impending miscarriage, you have no real choice other than to watch your baby die.

I know that there are some ethical/moral issues surrounding trying to save babies that are born so premature.  They have a long and painful road.  If they survive, they are usually faced with serious health issues.  I read one article that questioned if spending so much money to save something so frail was a good use of funds (tax payer, insurance, private, etc.).  I think it can be easy to say that it is silly to spend a ton of money saving an extremely premature baby if it is not your own.  I think that if that baby were yours, then you'd most likely do anything and everything that you could to keep your child alive if there was any hope that they might be able to pull through.  I guess I speak for myself though.

On a different note, yesterday I signed my husband and I up for a few classes: Childbirth, Breastfeeding, and Infant care.  Totally not cheap...$300 for all of the classes, but I think that they will be worth it.  I actually had a very vivid dream last night that I had my little boy.  I was trying to breastfeed him, but I had a ton of trouble as nothing was coming out (and my nipples kept inverting!).  He was really hungry and crying so I let him suck on the tip of my finger.  I did get to really see him though and he was absolutely adorable.  Holding him and seeing him was such a nice treat.  I was so annoyed when my alarm went off at 4:30 AM (yes, I get up super early to make my 6 AM train...totally sucks!).  I only hope that I am able to experience this joy in a few months.  Yes, I'd like him to bake in there for a few more months!     

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Spotting and a few too many Christmas cookies

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

As I mentioned earlier, this past (extended) weekend was my crazy cookie making weekend.  This was also combined with registering at B.abies R Us on Saturday with my awesome friend who drove several hours to give me some amazing seasoned advice (if you are reading this...thank you again!!).  The whole registering process only took us 2 hours.  


Back to the cookies...  After registering on Saturday I got home around 5 PM and made 4 different types of doughs.  On Sunday, I took the dog for a 3 mile walk, went to the grocery store, made several more doughs and then started some baking and candy making.  I called it a night around 9 PM when my eyes started shutting.  Yesterday, I spent all day from 8 AM-9 PM in the kitchen.  Baking, candy making, frosting, and decorating.  Not to mention that I also put together 12 gift bags, with cookie lists and bows, for my colleagues and friends.  I also made up a few larger boxes for my husband and I to take to work and for my family members.

My feet were throbbing, my back was aching, and I was just generally exhausted last night.  I took a shower, which helped a little and was getting ready to wind down and turn in when I noticed some brown discharge/blood when I wiped.  Of course, I immediately freaked out.  I have not had any type of spotting during this pregnancy and I was happy about that.  Shit.

Of course I G.oogled.  To my surprise, I found mostly benign things related to my minor episode so I relaxed a little.  I did get out the Doppler and found my little guy with no problem.  I also could feel him kicking, so that helped, too.  I drank some water and went to bed.

This morning I woke up to no more brown on the toilet paper.  I felt a little bit better, but I am still going to call the doctor at 8 AM when then open.  I am guessing that they will want me to come in, but I guess I'll see for sure in a few minutes.  I am thinking i over-did it the past few days.  I am so tired and last night I really didn't sleep well.  We are going away this weekend, too, so the holiday hustle and bustle continues.  We have a Christmas tree, but have been too busy to even decorate it.

UPDATE: Called and talked to the nurse who said that since I am A Positive and it is brown and I have no pain that they are not concerned.  They said to call if anything changes (i.e. the blood changes to red or pink or I start having pain) and to take it easy.  Easier said than done!

Double-chocolate cookie bars.

My counter, taken over by Tupperware containers.

The finished project.

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Unfair

Monday, December 17, 2012

One of my blogger friends (All My Pretty Ones) who I have been following for many months lost her baby last week at just a little over 18 weeks.  My heart is breaking for her.  I cannot even imagine the pain and sadness that she must be feeling right now.  If you can, please go and offer her some support.  I think that she could definitely use it right now.

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Is this really my husband?!

Friday, December 14, 2012

If you have been following along for a while (or have read my timeline) you'll know that just a few short years  my husband wanted absolutely nothing to do with children.  He did not like them and definitely did not want any of his own.  I actually shared this same sentiment until I hit the age of about 28 and started seeing friends start families.  For me it was sort of like a maternal instinct kicked in all of a sudden.  I would see pregnant women and babies and feel an intense longing to start a family.  This did not start for my husband at the same time as it did for me.

There was a time in our relationship a few years back when I wanted to have a child (all I wanted was one) and my husband did not.  I thought that it might rip our relationship apart and so many sad thoughts were running through my head about our lonely future together.

I think we had only 3 really serious conversations regarding starting a family and my husbands reasons for not wanting kids were (and not in any particular order): he was afraid that he wouldn't be a good father,  he was afraid our child would be born with a serious birth defect, he just didn't like kids, he liked being a twosome and didn't want to come second, he wanted to travel, he didn't want to budget, he didn't like the thought of going to kids events, etc.  From this list, it sounds like he is a terrible and cold guy, but he isn't.  He ended up crying during one conversation and leaving during another.  Those were pretty dark days.

After that, I decided to give up the dream and topic for a while.  I needed to see if I could imagine a life with just the two of us.  We had some very fun times together after that.  We went to St. Lucia, went to Topsail Island, went out with friends, and generally enjoyed each other's company.  I did still feel pangs of jealousy and sadness whenever I got a birth announcement in the mail, saw something on FB, or got invited to a 1 year old's birthday party.  I remember a time when my Mom came to visit.  We walked with my dog to the beach and we saw a baby and his grandmother playing in the sand.  I told my Mom about our issue and she told me to give it time and that eventually he would come around.  I didn't believe her at the time.

Then his friend's wife got pregnant and everything changed.  He brought up the fact that he wanted to start trying and I nearly had a heart attack.  I wasn't sure exactly what changed his mind, but I think it was when he saw his friend holding their baby.  He saw the love between the two of them.  It was like the Grinch.  His heart grew 3 sizes that day he met their baby.  I am eternally grateful for her (their baby). :)

So then you all know what ensued when we started "trying".  Yeah I won't rehash that sad story, but you all know anyways.  Now we are here.  Cautiously, but optimistically growing our little boy.

So you might be wondering about the title of this post and what it means?  After our 3rd miscarriage, my husband and I were walking on the beach with our "son-dog" (one of the many names for our Dal) and he told me that he decided he wanted to have 2 kids.  That totally shocked me, but in a good way.  He said he wanted our child to have a best friend through life and someone to be around when we weren't anymore.  I agreed.  I was just worried we would have trouble even getting one.

Last night was my office Christmas party. My husband and I went even though I didn't really feel like it and none of my work friends were going.  It is a pretty big event with lots of booze, good food, and lots of people I don't know.  While we were standing and I was thoroughly enjoying a plate of fried calamari and kalamata olives, my husband popped the following question, "How many kids do you think we'll have?".

I was thinking this was a trick question so I said, "Let's start with this one and see how it goes.  Then hopefully we can have another someday."  That was what we had decided on during that walk on the beach.

He looked at me with a smirk.

I said, "Wait are you saying you want to have more than 2 kids??"

He smiled and said, "Yes, maybe."

I was in again in a state of shock!  What the heck happened to my husband?!  He went from kid-hater to family man?  I mean don't get me wrong, I love this new side of him.  It really makes me happy, but after all of the trouble that we went through (both mental and physical) for this one... I dunno, it is tough to think about trying for more than even one child at this point.  I am still worrying about getting this one into the world safely.  I am sure that I will change my mind though.  When I see this baby being born and then see him turn one, I'll have longings for those kicks from the inside again.  :)

P.S. 23 weeks today!

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MFM visit @ 22 weeks, 4 days

Thursday, December 13, 2012

This past Tuesday I had my regularly scheduled MFM visit with my doctor.  No ultrasound this time, so I was in and out fairly fast.  My blood pressure was still fairly consistent with where it has been at every visit to that place, higher than normal.  Tuesday it was a little lower than it has been at their office at 136/66.  They tend to use the machine when I go there and then they sometimes follow up with the manual one.  The machine always has a much higher reading than the manual one.  I am not sure why that is.

The next order of business was checking my weight.  I made sure to shed every non-essential piece of clothing for this, which is something that I have never done before.  For the first time in my life, I weigh more than 130 lbs (134 lbs to be exact).  I know, for some that doesn't sound like a very high number, but for me, the life-long athlete, it not the easiest thing to see.  I asked the nursing assistant how that number measured and she laughed (hopefully not at me) and said it was somewhere in the middle.

After all of that fun ended, the doctor came right in, which is not normal.  He is normally the doctor on call in the hospital.  Usually I wait around for a while, but I guess that today was a slow day or something.  He came in with a medical student, which I agreed was fine.  He mentioned my thyroid and I let him know that I was seeing an Endocrinologist who was seeing me every 3 months, still had me on the 25 mcg. of Levothroxine, and at my last check at the end of October my TSH was 1.07.  We was happy with that and I impressed the medical student by knowing my exact numbers.

The doctor had me lay down and he checked on the baby with the hand-held ultrasound.  Wow was this guy active while we were there (and then for the rest of the day).  He punched and kicked all over.  We even saw my stomach moving from the outside again.  The baby's head was down and off to the right and his feet were up to the top left, which was where we saw most of the outside movement.  I mentioned the Doppler incident and he mentioned that he doesn't recommend those to his patients for the very reason that I got worried the other night.  He checked the heart and said that it looked healthy to him, be he also said that during this time it can get irregular occasionally since it is working so hard to help baby grow.  At this point in time, however, it was beating away normally.  Phew.

We talked briefly about my weight gain, at my request.  I asked him what he thought about it.  I am up about 14 lbs.  He said he would like me to gain 25 lbs.  I gulped.  Note sure how I managed to gain 14 lbs already after losing weight in the 1st trimester.  I am also not sure how I am going to be able to only gain 11 lbs more during the rest of this pregnancy.  Any one have any tips or advice?  I walk at least 4 days a week for at least 2-3 miles at a time.  Plus, I walk to and from the train on most days which is a little under 2 miles round trip.  I eat healthfully (for the most part).  No soda and not a lot of sweets.  My typical day consists of (M-F):

5:30 AM
high fiber cereal (a God send)
fruit (usually a banana, berries, or an apple)
orange juice w/ calcium & vitamin D
water

8:30 AM
S.iggi's yogurt
berries
water

11:30 AM
leftovers from dinner or a salad
water

1:30 PM
fruit
Kind Bar
water

5:00 PM
hand full of trail mix
or
cheese and crackers
water

7:30 PM
chicken or fish (usually)
veggies
rice or quinoa
water

**Occasionally, I have a sweet treat or two in there like a snack sized peppermint patty or half of a Whole Foods triple chocolate brownie (YUM).  Also thrown in there as I prepare dinner might be some olives or some Cape Cod Reduced Fat potato chips.**

After that he asked me if I had any other concerns.  I mentioned my Vitamin D levels might be low and he offered to check them for me (it ended up being  on the lower end of normal at 38 ng/mL, normal being 20-80 ng/mL).  He told me to come in at the sign of any bleeding, prolonged pain, regular contractions, if I fall (in any direction), or for any other reason that I might feel concerned (gosh I love that place!).  He told me that he'd see me in a month and that we would do an ultrasound before the visit so he could better check how things were progressing.  I go back on 1/8.  I am excited to see my growing little boy!

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Might be time to put away the Doppler

Monday, December 10, 2012

I haven't been using the Doppler as much as I was a few weeks ago.  Now that I can feel the baby move pretty regularly I haven't felt the need to use it as much, but last night I decided that I wanted to take a listen. I laid down on my bed and squirted the gel on my stomach.  I put the wand down in the usual spot (to the bottom left of my belly button) and started scanning.  I would hear him for a minute and then he would move away.  I could hear kicks and punches and heart echos every couple seconds, but I had a touch time actually  getting the heart to register.

I squirted some more gel on the right side of my stomach and continued searching.  I found something that sort of sounded like the heartbeat, but it was kind of troubling.  It would go "thump, thump, thump, skip, thump, thump, thump, skip".  It sounded like an irregular heartbeat.  I listened a little longer to see if it would go back to normal, but no dice, only "thump, thump, thump, skip".  I totally freaked out and ran to the computer to consult with Dr. G.oogle.  Of course, we all know that this is a terrible idea under any circumstance, but sometimes we just have out freak-out moments.

The things that I found through Dr. G.oogle, were of course 1/2 reassuring and 1/2 troubling.  I left the consultation feeling sad and helpless.  The only thing that made me feel a little better was that for the first time, while I was searching for the heartbeat with the Doppler, I saw the baby kick from the outside.  That was cool.  I know he is alive in there.  I also have a monthly appointment with MFM tomorrow, which was another thing that made me feel better.  At least I could mention it to them so they could check it out.

I went down and tried to cook dinner, but all I could think about was my poor little baby with an irregular heartbeat.  After I finished prepping dinner and had put it in the oven, I decided that I was going to take one last try at the Doppler.  I am a sadist I guess?

I squirted the gel, and put down the wand.  This time I put it a little lower than last time, off to the left side.  Right away I found that familiar sound.  This time, I could detect no irregularity and the Doppler registered about 140, which is what I usually see.  I listened for a few seconds and everything seemed normal again.  Then he kicked really hard at the Doppler so I saw that as my cue to turn it off.  Phew.  I felt so much better, but came to the realization that I should probably put the Doppler away.  It was awesome when the baby was smaller and I could not feel him kick.  I rarely had trouble finding him.  Now, I have so many different noises going on in there...the placenta, the umbilical cord, the baby, me, etc.  I have no idea if I really picked up the baby before or not.  Maybe that was something else?  Either way, I am going to fess up to the doctor tomorrow and tell him about my Doppler experience.  Maybe they will give me an ultrasound just to be sure everything is ok?  Maybe they will just tell me to put the Doppler away?  I think I might just do this voluntarily.

This week is a busy week, as have been my past few weeks (we bought our nursery furniture last week!).  Tomorrow is my  22 1/2 week appointment, Thursday is my work Christmas party, Saturday I am registering with the help of my friend who is an expert ;), and then the rest of my weekend will be consumed with cookie baking as is it COOKIE WEEKEND!!  I am also taking off work on Monday to get everything done.  Busy, busy!  Oh and in case you are interested, I added a new bump shot over on the photo tab.

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It's that joyful time of year

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Thanks for all of the comments/feedback.  After thinking it over, I decided that I am not going to stop blogging.  I am going to try to let myself be a little more open with my thoughts and my ideas.  I need this space for me.  It helps to get out my thoughts and I really love interacting with others who really get it.

I am still on the fence about commenting though.  I have a core group of ladies blogs that I comment on regularly.  They comment on mine.  I consider them friends...real friends, even though I have never met any of them in person.  I feel like I really do know them.  I feel comfortable commenting on their blogs.  I think that limiting my blog list and stopping "drive by" commenting, even where friend bloggers solicit support for their blogger friends or I feel like I really get what the person is experiencing, is the way to go.  I don't ever want my comments to be taken the wrong way and I never have had the intention of hurting another blogger and if they don't know me or really know where I have come from then I guess this is possible.  Hopefully this is the last I'll be writing about this because this space is supposed to be for blogging about loss and pregnancy after loss and not blogging about blogging!

This past weekend, my husband and I sent out holiday cards which I created through V.ista P.rint.  I have been creating yearly cards (and sometimes calendars) for friends and family.  My cards, up until this year, have consisted of my furbaby family.  It has always been my year-long goal of getting them together for a picture where they are all looking at the camera.  As you can see, last year I succeeded, naturally!

2009

2010

2011
Last year around the holidays was tough for us.  We had our second miscarriage in the middle of December.  Holiday cards flooded my mailbox with pictures of new babies and happy families.  It was a tough pill to swallow.  My mom came up to help me through it (this was my only natural miscarriage so I wasn't sure how hard it would be).  She was amazing through everything.  She made me tea and watched K.eeping up with the K.ardashian's with me.  She also helped me bake cookies, which is something that I love to do.  At Christmas, I make 13-15 different kinds on my own.  I bake for 3 days straight and then deliver (or mail) bags and boxes to my friends and family.  Since I wasn't feeling very festive last year, my mom helped me make about 6 different doughs before she left.  Somehow I managed the strength to get all 15 cookies mixed, baked, frosted, decorated, bagged, boxed, mailed, and delivered.  Not sure where that drive came from as I bled heavily.  Maybe it was a defense mechanism?

This year my husband and I decided that we had been withholding the news of this little guy for too long.  Even though we will never feel comfortable with things regarding this pregnancy, we decided to combine our yearly card (with furbabies, too) with a baby/gender announcement.  Let me tell you, as I created and ordered the cards, I was filled with fear.  I was filled with even more fear on Saturday and I addressed and stuffed the envelopes.  What if this doesn't work out?  What if something bad happens in the last 18 or so weeks?  To me, it seems like I have been trying to hide this pregnancy, even at 21 1/2 weeks.  Still worried that I might lose the baby.  The truth is, nothing is certain.  No one can guarantee me a baby in a few months.  I need to accept that.  I also need to accept the fact that I am visibly pregnant.  Pregnant enough where strangers tell me congrats and where my co-workers tell me I "look so big".  There is always a chance that something will go wrong.  Sending out a card isn't going to make the chance any higher (man miscarriage has made me so superstitious!).  It is what it is.  What will be will be.

So this year we sent out cards and included our whole family and we are hoping and praying for the best in 2013.  :)

2012

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This is why I blog

Friday, November 30, 2012

Yesterday wasn't the best day for me in blog land and it wasn't for another blogger I follow, either.  The blogger that I follow recently got her BFP after infertility, miscarriage, and IVF.  She has expressed over and over how thankful she is and how scared she is.  I totally relate to everything she says even though we have slightly different circumstances.  Getting a BFP after loss brings with it a whole different set of challenges.  It is hard to be excited about something that you have had before and lost in an instant.

That said, just because someone has experienced a loss (or 2 or 3...) and has dealt with IF and/or has had some form of ART doesn't mean that they shouldn't be able to be honest about their pregnancies when they do become pregnant.  Someone being honest and truthful about things (especially in the IF community) can often be misconstrued as being whiny or complaining when they "should just be happy they are pregnant and pretend everything is always roses".  Well, unfortunately this isn't always the case, as I have come to find out (my latest pregnancy malady is serious eczema of the left ear canal).  I am always very reticent in revealing some of my true thoughts on how I am feeling on my blog because I don't want them to be misinterpreted as me complaining and not being so incredibly overjoyed that my body was finally able to figure out how to grow a human being past 10 weeks gestation to hopefully give us the baby that we have wanted for so long in a few months.

Anyways, the blogger posted about her issues with her weight (something I actually posted on a few days ago).  I totally understood where she was coming from, but apparently others didn't. I don't know what was said exactly because I missed the follow-up post, but it made me sad to think that she was getting nasty comments for being honest.  There is nothing wrong with some comments of differing opinions, but there is no need to be rude and/or nasty.  Most of us IF/PL bloggers have been though enough and are just looking for some support and validation.  I don't know why some people feel the need to be mean. If you really don't like what the person is saying, then don't read any more.  Sheesh.

As for me, I had another issue with commenting on another blog.  I was offering support to someone who is going though yet another pregnancy loss.  Apparently my words were not good enough or something.  I am racking my brain trying to figure out what I said that might have offended.  I NEVER mentioned being pregnant or ANYTHING about pregnancy.  I only offered condolences like all the others because I have suffered through 3 losses myself in a short period of time.  I get it.  Or I thought I got it.  Anyways, for one reason or another my comment never got published.  I am not sure if it is because I am pregnant now or what and maybe the blogger knows that.  I guess that means that all of my earlier struggles don't matter.  The fact that I am pregnant now invalidates everything I went through apparently?  Maybe I am reading into things, but in this circumstance, I don't see how I could be doing that.  Maybe I need a lesson on proper commenting?  Maybe I should just stop commenting?  The whole thing just really bothered me for some reason.  I thought about it all night.  I ended up unfollowing the blog (my blog list is dwindling) because why read and give support where it isn't wanted?  I also questioned leaving comments on other blogs any more because I don't like this bad/guilty feeling of not knowing what I did wrong (still debating this one with myself and haven't decided what to do yet).  I still want to support those who are in the trenches, but maybe they don't appreciate my support or see it as sincere anymore.  Maybe they would rather I stay away?  That makes me sad, because I really do care.  :(

This is when I started having serious doubts about continuing to blog and follow/comment on other blogs.  I felt so much more connected when I was having trouble and experiencing loss then I do now. Even though a lot of the bloggers that I have been following are now pregnant, I still feel this way.  The bloggers who are now pregnant blog much less than before.  I am not sure why this is.  I guess I blog less, but mostly because I am worried about being too honest and offending people.  I sort of feel like once you are pregnant, no one really wants to hear about the pregnancy aspect of things.  Maybe this isn't true, I am not sure.  I also feel guilty for not having it as hard as some others have had it or continue to have it.  I only had to go through this shit for a year and change others have been going through this for years.  Sometimes it seems like it is a contest of who has it the worst.  I know that there will always be someone out there who has it worse than the next person.  That just sucks.  I know that when I was going through loss after loss, I felt the most comfort going through old posts of people who had experienced many losses and went on to have successful pregnancies.  I wanted to read all about their experiences.  They gave me so much hope.  

This morning when I checked my gmail, I found an email from someone who had experienced 3 losses in a short period of time (very similar to mine) and had just gotten a positive pregnancy test.  She was obviously very scared, but hopeful at the same time.  She found my blog and has been reading for a while.  Reading her touching email made me realize that no for every person out there who isn't interested in my story or thinks I didn't have it hard enough or something, there is someone out there who I might be helping and who really is interested.  I have connected (through email) with several ladies who have been through very similar situations as me.  I now email some of them regularly.  I check in with them and vice-versa.  We share worries and fears along with the good news.  Even though some of these ladies are on the other side of the world, I feel so connected to them now.

The email from the woman made me remember why I started this blog and why I continue to write.  This is why I blog.

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20 weeks

Monday, November 26, 2012

I can't believe that I am writing a post that is titled, "20 weeks".  Is it really possible?  The reality of everything is continuing to creep in.  I don't really have a big long post to write at this time, so I am going to share some bullets.

  • My Thanksgiving went well.  We traveled out of state for the day to visit my husband's relatives.  It was the first time in three years that we had been there so it was nice to catch up.  This was also the first time that most of those relatives found out that we are expecting.  Most of them were very excited for us.  Some of them were pissed that we had not divulged the info on FB (ummmm yeah if they only knew).  Some of them had comments about my appearance (i.e. "Wow you are showing a lot for only 20 weeks"...how nice).  Others asked question after question regarding things like the sex and such.  We managed to stay quiet about that.  Overall the food was good and it was great seeing everyone. 
  • I unexpectedly met my high school best friend for coffee on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.  We were inseparable in high school.  We lost touch for a while during college and then picked up where we left off several years back when she moved near me.  She has since moved away and we hadn't really spoken much in about a year and a half.  It was awesome to see her.  We always seem to pick right where we left off.  I shared my news with her (she knew about 2 of the miscarriages) and then she shared her news with me.  She is also pregnant and due in April, exactly 2 weeks behind me.  I found out that they conceived on their first month NTNP.  That stung a little, but it was hard to not be happy for her.  She was thrilled and so excited to find out that we are due within weeks of each other.  I am excited to have a new preggo buddy to share stuff with.  
  • Speaking of getting in touch with long lost friends...  I got in touch with my BFF from my home state via FB.  I hadn't talked to her in years (since 2009, at least).  I found out that she recently had a baby and I wanted to send her my congrats.  I had sent her an email in the thick of my miscarriages that she never responded to.  Apparently she didn't use that email much, but read the whole thing after I mentioned it and responded in an unexpected way.  She, too, had fertility issues.  She wasn't ovulating on her own and had to take Clomid and had low progesterone.  She suffered an early miscarriage before getting pregnant with her son.  Is it crazy that I am even happier for her knowing that she had problems, like me?   
  • On the pregnancy front, I am feeling good. physically.  Last week I went to the gym 2 times and walked outside 2 times for about 40-45 minutes, plus a few days I walked 20-30 minutes.  I have started to feel stronger movement in there, but still nothing very regular.  I feel him more in the mornings at work and in the evenings after I eat.  I still use the Doppler every few days or so.  This baby likes to move a lot.  I normally would find him to the left of my belly button, but last night I found him to the lower right.  He gave me a little scare.  My symptoms are mostly hunger (all the time), itchy belly (using B.io O.il religiously, twice daily), vivid dreams (EVERY night), occasional RLP, peeing a lot (at the gym I had to get off the treadmill twice to go), and some discharge (although much less since I seem to have cured the yeast infection).  As you might have guessed from the comment I mentioned in the first bullet, I look pregnant now.  No more hiding it.  My next OB appointment is 12/11.  Mentally, I am doing better.  We finally DTD the other night.  It was a little awkward, but I lived to tell the tale.  ;)
  • I have started thinking about registering, although I am still nervous to do that.  Everyone has an opinion on what you need and don't need so it is tough to know what to register for.  I bought some paint samples this past weekend and hope to get to that next weekend (??).  We also, apparently, need to start looking at baby furniture because I guess it can take weeks to come in.  The things you learn...  Oh and we got a cute gift from MIL.  Our first baby clothes!  Seems very surreal.
  • My husband is in the process of putting down new bamboo floors in the dining room, living room, and entry way.  I am so excited!!!
I hope everyone had a nice and relaxing holiday!  I can't believe that Christmas/New Years are just around the corner!

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The talk

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

First I wanted to say, thank you so much for all of the nice comments and support on my last post.  It really meant a lot to me and I took many of the ideas to heart.  Thanks again, ladies.  You are awesome.

The past two days have been hard.  On Monday, my husband picked me up from work at the train and then announced that he had to go back to work to complete a few more tasks and then he was going to C.rossfit at 6:30.  So , basically that meant that I wouldn't see him at all that night.  He dropped me at home and I sulked into the house, alone.  As soon as I dropped my bag on the bench, I burst into tears.  Even my dog who normally greets me at the door was afraid to come and say hi.  I cried for about 20 minutes and then decided I needed to get my lazy, out-of-shape ass to the gym. 

I wiped off the running mascara, put on some of Lulu's finest, and headed to the gym.  I ended up walking for 45 minutes at an incline of 3 (about 2.7 miles) and then I did squats, lunges, curls, and flies, with 5 lb weights.  The whole time I was walking I was thinking about the situation and fighting back tears.  I did not enjoy my time there.  In fact, I resented it.  I probably worked out harder than I should have.  Why?  Trying to get back in shape to compete with the twenty year old girls or something was my idiotic rationalization.  Stupid.

As soon as I got back from the gym, I broke down again.  I cried for a good hour just thinking about my poor innocent little baby.  He doesn't deserve a mom like this.  I felt really selfish for being so vain.  I also felt bad for not being supportive of my husband and jumping to conclusions that those stupid fit girls meant anything to him at all.  I felt ugly, huge, and unattractive.  Ugh.  I ate dinner and headed to bed.  My husband asked me if everything was ok and I just told him I was tired.  I didn't feel like talking on Monday.

Yesterday, when I got to work, I still felt bad.  My husband had driven me to the office and then we met up for coffee later in the morning.  We didn't talk much.  I knew he could sense my sadness, but he didn't bring it up. 

Luckily he did not go to C.ross fit last night.  He was tired.  I was tired.  We decided to stay in and rest.  As we made dinner I decided that I had to say something.  I brought up how I was feeling and no sooner than the words came out, I was a bumbling mess of tears.  I told him how I was having issues dealing with gaining weight, being out of shape, and my changing body.  I mentioned how self conscious I was and how I felt so guilty about feeling that way since we worked so hard for this little guy.  I told him that it didn't help that he was constantly with young, cute, and in-shape girls every night. 

What happened next was somewhat of a surprise.  He came over, gave me a hug, and started crying.  He said he felt so bad and didn't know that I felt this bad.  He told me that I meant everything to him and that he wouldn't be able to continue on if I were not there for some reason.  He even said that when I am out of town for a few days that he is completely lost.  He also said that he doesn't know why it took him so long to realize that I was the only one for him (only 7 years before we got married :-).  He told me that he thought I was beautiful all the time and he was so excited to start our family.  He thanked me so much for carrying our son and said how wonderful it was, but acknowledged that it wasn't an easy task.

We spent about 20 minutes just hugging, kissing, and talking in the kitchen.  He told me that he never stops talking about me while he is at C.rossfit.  That made me smile a little and feel better.  I am so glad we talked.  I am lucky that I have a sensitive husband who really does love me and will talk to me openly and honestly.  I know that some people see crying in men as a sign of weakness, but I don't.  To me, it means that he feels comfortable enough to fully express his feelings and emotions in front of me.  That makes me feel so special.  Last night I was fully reminded of how much I really love this man.  I am so excited to have this baby boy with him.  I am so excited to start our family.

On a completely different note, I wanted to thank Alicia for my lovely socks!  I participated in Cristy's Fertility Sock Exchange last month.  If you haven't done it yet, you should.  It is such a great idea.

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Jealousy

Monday, November 19, 2012

For a change, I am not using the word jealousy to describe my envy of someone with a sizable bump or a cute little newborn.  Nope.  This time I am using it to describe something completely different.  Please don't judge me too harshly.

Let me start with a little background, which I think I may have mentioned before.  My husband is in awesome shape right now.  I mean he is usually in great shape, but right now he is probably in the best shape that he has ever been in EVER.  He started doing C.rossfit a few months ago and recently got invited to be on the competition team at his C.rossfit gym.  When he first told me that he was asked to be on the team, I was so excited for him.  I pictured he and a bunch of super-fit guys lifting weights and doing lots of burpees at competitions.  I was right to some extent, but not completely.  I found out that about 65% of the team is made up of girls in their early twenties.

At his first competition a few weeks ago, I felt very awkward.  Here is my husband laughing and joking with a bunch of super-fit 23 year old girls while I sit on my lazy behind and "cheer them on".  There are a few really nice girls on the team who have been very friendly to me right off the bat.  There are several others who I can tell want nothing to do with me.  I can tell that me being there interferes with their ability to flirt with my husband unabashedly.

My husband has been going to C.rossfit practices two times a week, plus regular workouts 2-3 days a week for a few months.  These practices and classes last for 2 hours a night.  Basically, I see my husband for 1 hour a night if I am lucky since I have been going to bed at 8:30-9 PM since I have been pregnant so basically, he spends more time with these girls right now.  Oh yeah and we haven't had sex in over 4 months and I have been shooting this gross yeast infection cream up my who-ha for the past 6 nights.  That's hot.   I have started developing a complex.  A serious jealous complex.  Not a good side of me.

Yesterday my husband had another competition that he wanted his mom and I to go to.  He left at 7 AM to meet up with 3 other competitors to drive down together.  Two of the competitors were girls.  The thought of it drove me absolutely crazy.  He did end up having to drive down separately though because his mom was going to drive back home directly from the competition.  That made me feel a little better until my mind started imagining things like one of those girls hoping in for a ride.  Ugh.

The competition itself was very long (over 5 hours).  My MIL and I got there at 10 AM and we both brought our dogs which proved to be huge pains in the asses.  We spent most of the day outside, freezing, because those competitions never have big venues and half of the activities are outside.  It was great to see my husband competing because he really is talented.  I videotaped all four of my husbands events.  He was awesome and I was so proud.

At one point I was standing around with my husband, MIL, and his 3 teammates (the guy is nice, one of the girls is nice, the other girl is not-so-nice).  I noticed that the not-so-nice girl was wearing a sweatshirt from the college I graduated from so I asked her if she went there.  She replied "only for a semester" and then walked away.  Ummm ok bitch.

Towards the end of the day, my back started hurting from controlling my dog on his leash for several hours.  My husband had finished his last round, it was already pushing 3:30 PM and I was super hungry.  I thought we were going to leave, but my husband said he wanted to watch the girls last competition.  I felt my blood start to curdle.  He, his teammate, and mom were all standing across the ring watching those two girls lift weights shouting for them.  I stood across on the other side.  They waved at me to come stand with them but I declined their invitation and went to the car and sat with my dog.  I was really feeling sorry for myself at this point.  Quiet tears running down my face.

I am not trying to complain about being pregnant here, so please save your judgements if you think I am just being selfish.  I am so happy to be be pregnant with my son.  I love him so much and I am so grateful for everything that I have right now.  I am also human and have tons of extra hormones in my body right now.  I am being completely honest here.  I have started to feel very depressed.  I have started to have body image issues.  Here I am, watching my husband who is in great shape, handsome, friendly, funny, cheer for some in-shape 23 year old girls that flirt with him tirelessly.  I am in terrible shape.  No muscle.  No endurance.  I have only been focused on one thing for the past 2 years...getting pregnant and having a baby.  I have let everything else go. 

In the car ride on the way home, I was quiet for a while and vowed to myself that I would not mention my jealousy to my husband because I didn't want to wreck his day.  Somehow it slipped out though.  I couldn't help myself.  I brought up how I felt left out and how it made me so uncomfortable that the girls were flirting with him and that him cheering from them really made me feel bad.  I missed him cheering me on when I was racing competitively.  I told him that I was jealous of his interaction with the girls on the team.  I told him I thought one of the girls had a crush on him.  As the words escaped my lips, I regretted them.  I felt bad.  Why was I trying to wreck his moment and making this about me?  I was so angry with myself.

To my complete surprise, he wasn't at all mad at me (which honestly made me feel worse).  He told me he understood and knew that it was killing me to sit on the sidelines and not exercise and be the athlete.  He told me that he had no idea that the girls might have been hitting on him because he was focused on the competition.  He told me that he was actually flattered that I was jealous and said it was cute.  He told me that my job right now was to grow a healthy baby and it was ok that I wasn't in the best shape of my life (even though he told me he thought I was in better shape than a lot of the girls in the competition...haha).  He told me that he was sure I would bounce back into shape in the spring and that he couldn't wait to cheer for me.  Seriously, I felt like a complete piece of shit.  Oh and while we were driving he got a text from his teammate saying they got 3rd place in the team competition.  His teammate was standing alone on the podium with a medal.  I felt even more like a piece of shit for complaining that I was hungry and making us leave before he could get an award.  I suck.

Well he was right about the athlete thing for sure.  I miss being in good shape.  I miss racing.  I miss getting the attention and the pats on the back for doing a good job and setting a new PR.  Seeing those girls get high fives and pats on the back from my husband kills me.  Hearing them cheer for him makes my skin crawl.   That is only part of it, though.  Just knowing that he is spending so much more time with them hurts my ego feelings and makes me feel inadequate.  I am not sure how I can get past this.  I have not dealt with this type of jealousy since college.  I guess one more thing to talk about with the therapist next week.

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Always have to be worried about something

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

After getting such positive results back from our anatomy scan you would think that I would be much less anxious and worried.  I would say that generally, I was starting to feel a little more relaxed.  Then came yesterday when a co-worker unknowingly (or so I think) spiked my fears again.

I work with someone who has two autistic children.  I believe they are both under the age of 12.  I am not sure where exactly they fall on the spectrum, but I think they are somewhere in the middle to lower functioning end.  The coworker (let's call her Sally) is always willing to discuss the topic of autism and what she believes are the causes.  Sally is very into holistic care and organic and natural products as opposed to processed ones.  I agree with this and she knows it because we have spoken about it many times.

I feel very bad for Sally because I know that her kids are a lot of work.  She mentions this a lot.  They go to special schools, have special diets, and require constant care.  I know she feels alone in dealing with this, especially when she hears people complaining about their "normal" kids.  I know she is thinking..."If only".

Yesterday Sally asked me how my appointment went.  I told her that it went so much better than I ever expected and they baby was measuring perfect.  After a congratulations she asked me if she could send me some information on autism (seriously 15 minutes after the congrats).  She said she wished that she would have had the information before she had her boys so she could have done things differently.  She said her biggest regret was getting her children vaccinated while they were under the age of 6 months.  She thinks the whole cause of autism thing "not being known" is a conspiracy.

I decided to look at the document while I was waiting for another co-worker to get back to me on something.  I am almost regretting that I looked at it.  In the list of possible linked causes are (from: From Preconception to Infancy: Environmental and Nutritional Strategies for Lowering the Risk of Autism, by David Berger, MD, FAAP):

Please note that these are not necessarily my views and only items that come directly from the article.

Prenatal

  • Genetic mutations (including homozygous MTHFR C677T SNP)
  • Maternal nutrition
  • BPA (and other toxicities)
  • Maternal allergies
  • Celiac Disease
  • Candida (yeast)
  • Mercury/lead (including thimerosal)
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Various vitamin deficiencies (including vitamin D, iron, & folate)
Birth/Postnatal
  • C-section birth
  • Birth induction
  • Early vaccines (including Hep-B)
  • Not breastfeeding
So right off the bat I saw several on the list that I am already at risk for including, BPA (canned foods, bottles, etc), maternal allergies (the article doesn't really go into detail about what types of allergies put a women at risk, but i have several), candida (umm right now I have a yeast infection), hypothyroidism (I am slightly hypothyroid without meds), and I have iron that is on the lower side.  I have no idea if I might need to be induced or have a c-section.  Awesome.

I don't think the intent of Sally was to scare the living crap out of me, but that was what ultimately ended up happening.  Luckily I had a therapy session yesterday and my therapist tried to talk me down.  I also told my husband and we had a nice conversation about it last night.  He and I discussed that, like cancer, they don't really know what causes it, unfortunately.  There are guesses, but no one has been able to come out and say that this is what causes it, so stop doing it and your baby won't have autism.  Like cancer, I am sure that women who do everything right still end up having a child on the spectrum.  It totally sucks that they still can't figure out the exact cause.

That said, I will love my baby no matter how he turns out.  It is incredible the amount of love I already have for this child.  

Sorry if I have scared anyone or brought up a highly debatable topic that might cause passionate reactions.  I still really have no idea what to think here.  It is something that has been on my mind since yesterday and has been added to my worry list.  I just needed to get it out.  Thanks for reading.  I'd love your feedback, as always.  

P.S. If you would like a copy of the document, feel free to email me and I will send it to you.

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It's a...

Monday, November 12, 2012

BOY!  I was right and so was the ultrasound tech that did our NT scan several weeks back.  :-)

More importantly, the scan went great and the baby is looking healthy.  He cooperated (for the most part) and let the tech take all of the pics she needed to get.  He is definitely stubborn though and does not like to give profile shots...haha.  His heart, brain, arms, legs measured perfectly, though.  We saw his lips and nostrils and his 5 fingers and toes.  So incredibly amazing, this little guy.  We are so thankful for this miracle baby boy.

If you know us IRL (in real life) please don't say anything to anyone else regarding the sex.  We have a fun surprise planned for a few weeks from now so we would like to keep things a secret until then.  Thank you!!

The only not so great news to come out of the appointment today was that (TMI, sorry), I have a yeast infection.  Yuck.  Honestly though, I will take a yeast infection for a healthy baby ANY DAY.  I got back in a month for my next follow-up.

A special good luck to all my favorite bloggie girls going for ultrasounds tomorrow.  I am wishing you all the very best!!

I added some new pics if you are interested!  Scroll all the way down to the bottom.


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I am 99% certain

...that the ultrasound today is going to tell us that we are having a boy.  I have been feeling boy since the very beginning.  With my last pregnancy, I was sure it was a girl, but I never got any confirmation from the test results of the D&C.  This time, I feel boy.

Now I have to try to "work" all day today before the appointment at 2:45 PM.  I am not really thinking about anything else other than that.  I am praying that this baby has all of the normal parts and measures normally.  I will be happy with a baby of either sex.  I am just praying for healthy!!

This past weekend we started getting rid of furniture (thank you for taking so much of it sis!!) and started organizing.  I went to the C.ontainer S.tore (had never been until this past weekend) and bought a new smaller desk, chair, and several desk organizers. We are moving the office into the spare bedroom to make room for a nursery.  Wow, can't believe I just said that.  Don't worry.  I am not painting or anything yet.  I have not bought one baby related item although I must say that I have been tempted.  Baby steps (no pun intended!).

 

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This is becoming more real

Thursday, November 8, 2012

In the past week, several co-workers have come up to me and asked me if I was expecting.  For some reason this always makes me feel uncomfortable.  I smile uncomfortably and say, yes.  Some people ask me more questions, "when are you due?", "are you finding out the sex?", "how do you feel?".  I am still having trouble talking about this pregnancy like it is actually going to result in a baby.  This week I have not told any one about our troubles, which is a big step.  I have kept conversations brief, but pleasant.  I am now showing to the point where I really can't hide it anymore.  Cat is out of the bag.  Well if you see me.

In the past 2-3 weeks I have started feeling some weird sensations in my lower abdomen.  I first felt them when I was away visiting my family.  They were just very slight taps.  I felt them one morning while I was lying in bed.  I convinced myself if was just gas from the fried chicken I had eaten the night before (don't judge, it is a specialty where I am from and not found near me now!).  I felt a few other odd sensations in the same area, like bubbles in the next few weeks, but again I thought it might just be my burgling belly.  Nothing regularly timed and nothing that really felt the same each time.  At my last OB appointment I asked where my placenta was located (thinking it might be in the front) and was told that it was in the back.  Optimal for feeling earlier movement.

This past Monday, I worked from home.  I felt kind of crampy in the morning.  Nothing majorly painful, just kind of uncomfortable.  Almost like a sore abdomen feeling.  Maybe round ligament pain??  Water usually helps me to relieve this type of discomfort so I chugged almost a liter of water in less than an hour.  I started to feel better as a result.

I was reclining on the couch and working with my laptop propped on a pillow when I started to feel unmistakable taps on my lower right side.  Then I would feel something on the left side.  All heck broke lose in there and I felt taps consistently for at least a 1/2 hour.  How incredible.  I have a baby in there and it is moving around.  Such an amazing feeling that I was never sure I would ever get to experience.  I couldn't help but smile.

Yesterday I had the same sore/crampy feelings, only slightly worse and I had to go in to work.  I started getting nervous and then G.oogling.  Not a good idea.  I drank more than a liter of water over the course of an hour and I started to feel better.  I also started feeling the baby moving all over.  This time I swear I could feel a somersault or something.  So odd, but very neat.  Today I feel some movement, but not as much as some of the previous days.  I can't wait until I can feel this little one regularly.

Feeling the baby and having others notice that I now have a bump has made me realize that I need to start acknowledging the baby in there.  If only for the sake of the baby.  Up until now I have been treating it like an "if" or a "maybe".

My anatomy scan is Monday afternoon.  I am excited to find out the sex, but also nervous to find out if the baby is developing normally.  I take some comfort in knowing that the NT/Quad results came back normal and that my last visit, where we did a quick look with the mini-ultrasound, went well.  Tomorrow I will be 18 weeks.  Crazy.  Time is going by fast, yet April still seems like an eternity away.       

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A sad confession

Monday, November 5, 2012

I have a rather sad confession to make and for some of you this might be TMI so if you know me or don't like TMI topics and don't want to read then I'll catch you on the next post.  Otherwise, here goes...

My confession is that I am afraid to have sex.  My husband and I have not done the deed since week 4 of this pregnancy.  My doctor has never told me not to have sex, but for some reason it is just another correlation that I have drawn to having sex and potential miscarriage or other pregnancy related issues.

During the first trimester, I was totally scared to have sex, but also just didn't feel like it.  I was nauseous almost all the time, bloated, gassy, and so anxious that I don't think I would have enjoyed things very much at all.  I did, however, have a ton of sex related dreams (most of them included my husband, too!)  and I think I may have even orgasmed in my sleep a few times.  If I didn't get all the way there, then I was definitely close.

I told myself, just get through the first trimester and then you'll feel better physically and mentally and you'll be able to feel comfortable with it again.  Well, that hasn't happened.  Now at about 17 1/2 weeks  I am still not comfortable with the idea of it.  I hear so many stories about women who start bleeding after sex and that totally freaks me out.  I have not (knock on wood) had to deal with any bleeding during this pregnancy and I fear that if I see blood I will totally lose it.  I have also heard horror stories about orgasms causing contractions/miscarriages and premature labor and semen causing the cervix to soften.  I also have no clue about which positions are safe and which once might not be so safe.  Ahhh I need to stop the G.oogling and pregnancy forum hopping.

My husband has been extremely understanding.  He hasn't once made me feel bad about it even though I feel terrible about it.  He has brought it up a few times and when I tell him how I feel he backs off right away.  I sort of feel like I am failing as a wife.  I also don't want to push my husband away just because of a potentially irrational fear that I have.  I mean come on, the guy hasn't had sex in months because of me.  I feel terrible.

I also just miss being with him.  We went from having sex 4-5 times a week to never!  I feel like any time he kisses me I kind of squirm away because I am afraid it will turn into more.  I am so annoyed and angry with myself.  One other thing to note, I have not spoken about this to my therapist.  Maybe I should though.

I am not sure if how I am feeling is normal for people who have gone through RPL or IF.  I just feel like if I have the option to not do something to keep the baby safe, then I will do it.  I would love to get others feedback.  Have you experienced similar feelings?  Any words of advice for this newbie that has dealt with RPL?  If you haven't come across this situation yet how would you deal?  Would you just have sex and not even think about it or would you be worried and wither not do it or not be able to enjoy it?

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Quad Screen results

Friday, November 2, 2012

I will apologize first and say that I have not been the best blogger or 'commenter' this week.  Once again, work has become the top focus in my life right now.  I have a lot of catching up to do this weekend!  Good thing my Friday nights have been consisting of Chinese takeout, a book or my remedial crocheting project, and bed around 9 PM.  Exciting stuff!

We had an appointment at MFM this past Tuesday.  I was under the impression that the appointment was to discuss the results of the Quad Screen from the NT ultrasound and two sets of blood work.  I was wrong, apparently.  Our appointment on Tuesday was just a follow-up.  They checked the baby with the Doppler (heard the little Button's heart beating!), checked the baby with the hand-held ultrasound (saw him sleeping), and then asked me if I had any questions.  My main question was, what the hell happened to my Quad Screen results?!

The doctor seemed annoyed that no one had called me to relay the results.  He told me everything came back negative for any issues.  He mentioned that they might be backed up due to the hurricane, but that someone would call me to give me the exact percentages.  We left there rather confused, but happy to know that the doctor said everything was normal.  We scheduled the anatomy exam for 11/12.

This afternoon, I had not heard back from anyone at the hospital, so I called the nurse triage line and left a message asking for the results.  A few hours later, a nurse called me back and apologized that no one had gotten in contact with me.  She told me that our risk of DS was 1/4,100 (for 31yo the average risk is 1/590), so pretty good results.  She also told me that we screen negatively for neural tube defects and for trisomies and that basically this was very good news.  I am incredibly relieved.  Not that I didn't believe the doctor, but he was very general about it all and I am a scientist.  I like the exact facts and numbers.  None of this everything is great BS.

So things have been going pretty well on my end and being so busy has helped me to not think about things so much.  I have continued with the therapy, although I have switched to every-other-week.  I have become less anxious generally speaking, but still have the high blood pressure at the OB.  Only at the OB though.  I went to the Endocrinologist the day before my OB appointment and my blood pressure was low (my TSH was also down to 1.07!!).    

Another quick update on a friend... I spoke about her before.  She had a subchorionic hematoma from 12 weeks on and bled (not spotted, full out period bled) her entire pregnancy.  She delivered her baby boy at 33 weeks on Halloween.  He was 4 lbs 13 oz and he can breathe on his own.  He is even starting to take formula from a bottle.  Such a precious little miracle.  I am so happy for her and he husband!  :)  She has has such a long and hard road.

Now back to commenting and more blog posts.  Hope you are all doing well!

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I am extremely honored!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bree over at Thought Provoking Moments nominated me for the Liebster Award this past weekend.  I am thrilled and honored that she thought my blog was interesting enough to get the award, so Bree, thank you!

The Liebster Blog Award is an award that is given by a blogger to another blogger with less than 200 followers.  Liebster is German for "favorite" so basically it is an award you give to your favorite bloggers.  :)

Here is how it works, Bree nominated me (and several other of her favorite blogs) and created a list of 11 questions for me to answer.  I answer those questions, nominate several of my favorite blogs, and then make up 11 questions for them to answer.

So here goes with Bree's questions!

1.  If there were one word you could choose out of the dictionary,  which one would you choose to best describe yourself?
Stubborn.

2.  What’s your biggest pet peeve?
Wasting time.

3.  Throughout your journeys, what would you say is the most important lesson you’ve learned thus far?
You never know what someone else has been through, so never assume anything.

4.  What’s your favorite childhood memory?
Going on family vacations to North Carolina or South Carolina.

5.  What’s your biggest regret?
Being so ignorant about my fertility in my younger years.

6.  If there were anything about your life experiences you could change, what would they be and why?
Well if I could, I would bring my Dad back to life because I miss him every day.

7.  Tell us something quirky about you.
I make up funny songs and sing them to my pets (constantly).

8.  What’s your favorite dish/meal?
Roasted duck with cherries, kale, and pine nuts over homemade papardelle pasta.

9.  Who or what’s been your biggest influence throughout life?
My husband.  He has helped to try to loosen me up a little since I am rather tightly wound most of the time.  :)

10.  Do you have a bucket list? If so, what’s the most ridiculous thing to do on it?
I don't have one, but my husband and I want to live in Amsterdam, Holland and Maui, Hawaii at some point during our lives.

11.  What do you do for a living?
I am an IT analyst for a small finance company.  So exciting!!  My majors were legal studies and sociology...haha.

And now for my nominations (So many of my favorite blogs have been already been nominated so I tried not to duplicate)!  If I nominated you and you have already been nominated then I guess that you are extra-doubly special and don't bother answering my questions unless you really want to!)...drum-roll:

1.  Sunshine @ Befriending my Ovaries.
2.  Elizabeth @ Bebe Suisse.
3.  M @ I've Seen a Love.
4.  Kaybee @ Things Couldn't Be Better.
5.  K @ Our Growing Gardunn.
6.  Stupid Stork.

You ladies are awesome and I look forward to reading your blogs whenever you post!!!

Here are my questions!  Sorry I don't have the best imagination for questions:

1.  Skiing vacation or beach vacation?  Which is your idea of how to spend a relaxing day?
2.  Coffee or tea?
3.  Do you have any pets?  If so, what kinds?
4.  Do you have any siblings?  If so, how many?  Are you close to them?
5.  iPhone, BlackBerry, Droid, or other cell phone?
6.  What is your favorite type of cuisine (i.e. Italian, Chinese, etc.)?
7.  What is the biggest part of your life that IF or PL has affected?
8.  Do you have a lot of good friends or a few great friends?
9.  If you could meet one famous person (dead or alive) who would it be and why?
10.  What is your favorite Halloween candy?
11.  If you could have one wish (except for more wishes, haha) what would it be?

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Full disclosure

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Is it strange that when someone asks me about my pregnancy that I feel weird talking about it?  I don't like telling people that I am pregnant.  Is it odd that I still wear baggy clothes/sweaters to work and have not mentioned my pregnancy to anyone other than my boss and a few close friends?  I am definitely popping out of my clothes.  Is it weird I still don't feel like this pregnancy is for real yet?  I have not felt any consistent movement and have not gotten the results from the Quad Screen back yet.  Am I just nuts?  Probably.

I am not sure if I am the only one here, but I am compelled to speak about the trouble that my husband and I had when conceiving this child.  When someone finds out that I am pregnant (usually from someone else, like my husband or my Mom) and they ask me questions about the pregnancy, I feel like I have to mention that it wasn't easy for us to get to this point.  I feel like if I don't bring up my miscarriages that I am lying.  I am also so much more conscientious about the fact that the person that I am talking to might have had trouble or be having trouble conceiving so I withhold most pregnancy details.  I can't imagine just being a normal pregnant person and yapping about how morning sickness sucked and about how many times I wake up every night to pee. 

When I called me Uncle and Aunt to tell them them I was pregnant (only so they didn't hear it from someone else first), I told them about this pregnancy and then I had to explain that we had trouble, but didn't get into the whole loss conversation.  Part of the reason that I mentioned having trouble is because I know that my Aunt had trouble.  She had only one child and I know that she was always kind of jealous of my Mom having 7.  I mean who could blame her?  She seemed very happy for me even before I got into the whole having trouble portion of the conversation, but I still felt compelled to share.

Then I called my cousin (their daughter, because I didn't want her to hear it from them and not me).  I was worried about telling my cousin because she is 35, unmarried, and I know would love to be a mommy someday.  I told her about my pregnancy and then immediately went into the story of my 3 losses in great detail.  For some reason I felt that might make her feel better?  I think I probably just made her feel awkward because I don't think she knew quite how to respond.  Luckily she is currently dating someone and they just got serious.  She acted very happy towards me.  I probably didn't need to go into all the sad details, but again, I did anyways.

When I was visiting family and people commented on this pregnancy I would clam up.  Of course I would bring up the fact that it wasn't easy for us in EVERY conversation and make the other person feel extremely awkward and sorry that they ever mentioned anything.  I just couldn't help it.  Why???  I told my Mom that I kept doing this and she told me that I didn't owe anyone an explanation about how I got to where I was and that I should just try to enjoy the moment and be happy. 

I know my Mom was right.  I don't need to tell everyone about my lost babies.  I don't need to tell them about my surgeries or about how I needed to take fertility meds to conceive this baby.  I can be respectful about how I talk about this pregnancy without going into all of the nitty-gritty details about exactly how I got here.

I am still not sure when I am going to tell people at work or even if I have to.  Can I just stop covering it up and wait for people to ask me or is that rude?  Does anyone else feel the need to discuss the problems that they had conceiving when telling others about your current pregnancy?  Does anyone else still struggle with when, how, and/or if to tell someone?  Even if you are not pregnant yet, will you tell others about your struggles or try to be that normal pregnant lady?

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Unfollowing

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Back in April, when I started my blog, I didn't know that there was a whole community of other bloggers out there with similar issues to the ones that I was having.  I started the blog because I searched and searched for others like me and couldn't find anyone at first.  I thought that blogging would be a way for me to write about the issues that I was having and hope that I might help someone in the future who stumbled across it.

One of my friends forwarded me the Stirrup Queen's blog URL and I was immediately intrigued when I saw that there were many others out there that were in situations that were almost identical to my own.   Multiple miscarriages with no apparent cause??  I immediately signed my blog up in the main listing and then started searching for other blogs.  I started following a few blogs that interested me and that I could relate to.  Gradually people started commenting on my blog and I got a few followers.  I signed up for the LFCA and made even more bloggie friends.  Through ICLW I have met even more amazing ladies with some amazing yet heartbreaking stories.

Over the past few months, I have gotten to be much closer with bloggers from all over the world. It has been incredible that this little blog, which just started out as a collection of my thoughts for the random user, has made allowed me to make some really great friends.  I am so grateful to Mel @ Stirrup Queen's for bringing so many fabulous women together.  

Thus far most of my experiences in the blog world have been nothing but positive and enriching.  That was until last week.  Something happened to me in the blogisphere that kind of upset me.  Maybe it is my pregnancy emotions or maybe I am just more sensitive after opening up so much.  I am sure that you are all rolling your eyes by now (and will probably laugh when you read on), but I am being honest and I have never blogged about blogging before so hear me out if you will.

I heard of another blogger who was going through similar recurrent miscarriages like I have gone through.  She was worried that her current pregnancy might end up in another miscarriage.  This is a fear that I have felt many times before and that I STILL feel.  I thought I'd got over and offer some support because I felt like I could really relate to the person.  There were already quite a few comments, but I left one anyways.  I was trying to be optimistic, which in hindsight might have been a bad idea since most of the other commenters forecasted gloom and doom in a supportive fashion.  Anyways, I left the comment.  A few days later I went back to check the blog and I saw that the author had about twice as many comments as when I left my comment and that she had (literally) posted a response to every comment, thanking everyone for their support and advice, EXCEPT for mine.  I get that not every comment warrants a response, but I was really the only comment that didn't deserve one?  For some reason I felt really hurt by this at that particular point in time.

In this rather vulnerable moment, I started thinking about all of the blogs that I have been following regularly.  There are more blogs that I regularly comment on who comment on mine too and ladies that I support who also support me as well.  I have spoken about some of this before, but I recognize that some girls who might have followed me and supported/commented more regularly when I was TTC that either stopped or do so on a much less frequent basis because they are in a bad place.  I get it.  Hearing about any pregnancy while you are currently in the trenches is tough to deal with, IF/loss or no IF/loss.  I am not necessarily talking about this situation (although I will have to admit that sometimes it stings when people that you support(ed) all the time don't support you back anymore, but I guess that is just the way the infertility/loss cookie crumbles).  I am talking more about the blogs that I have followed and commented on who's authors have never once commented on my blog.

I get that you can't follow every blog out there and you can't always comment on every comment that you get, but if a person comments on my blog more than once, I usually start casually following them and commenting occasionally and then sometimes I end up following them regularly if I make a connection.  I realized last week that there have been ladies that I have been following, commenting/supporting for months that have never (or maybe once) commented on my blog.  I started asking myself why I was continuing to follow them and offer them advice, when then have never once done the same for me?  Some of those blogs have gone post-less for weeks.  I decided then and there that it was time to start unfollowing those blogs and only keep the ones in my reader where I truly have a connection with the author.  I think at this point I owe it to myself to stop investing my time and energy into people who either don't know or care about my existence or what I am going through.

I also tried to remind myself of the reason why I started the blog in the first place.  The blog was for me to write down my feelings to share with others that were going through similar situations.  I think I got really caught up in the whole idea of followers/commenters and lost sight of the real reasons that I started the blog.

Now I am curious if I am the only one who had ever felt this way or had a similar experience or realization regarding blogging?  Am I just taking things too seriously?  Do I need to grow some thicker skin?  Has anyone else ever cleaned out their blog following list under similar circumstances?  I would love to get some honest opinions here.  Feel free to call me out too, because there is a strong chance that I am just being to sensitive.

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I'm back!

I totally forgot that my trip to see my family was coinciding with this month's ICLW that I signed up for.  I was wondering why I was getting so many random comments until I saw that one mentioned ICLW.  Ooops.  I am a little bit behind in my commenting and blogging, but I promise that I will make up for it this week!

I am going to pull some bullets here to catch up on some things for this post, but if I have time later I think I'll start into one of the posts that I have wanted to write about since last week. 

  • My trip to see my family was really nice.  I got to celebrate my little sister's sweet 16 and the work that I thought would be ready for me to complete while I was there wasn't done in time so I didn't really have to do much except for respond to a few emails via BlackBerry.  I hung out with my Mom and Grandma mostly, but also got to spend some quality time with my two brothers and sister that still live at home.  We went out for lunch and went for some walks on the bike trail.  The weather was nice on a few days so we got to enjoy the lovely fall colors.  Yesterday, right before my flight back home, I asked my Mom to stop by the florist so that I could get some flowers to put on my Dad's grave.  Yesterday was what would have been his 56th birthday.  My Grandma (his Mom) went with us, but had a really tough time being at the cemetery.  She had not been there since his funeral 6 1/2 years ago.  It was hard to see her crying because she is usually so strong.  I was glad that I went though.  I know he isn't really there, but I felt like he was, in spirit.
  • So far I have completed 2 therapy sessions with my new therapist.  So far, I really like her.  She is an older lady who has an extremely calming personality.  Her office overlooks a pond, so it is very peaceful there.  The first visit she spent mostly getting to know me and the second visit she focused more on getting my anxiety (surrounding pregnancy) under control with some guided deep meditation.  She also helped me deal with the small amount of anxiety that I was feeling about flying in general and flying while pregnant.  It really helped me because I did not have my usual anxiety-ridden flight.   My next appointment is Nov. 1.  I really am starting to feel way more relaxed, in general.  I am not sure if it is the therapy or just the natural progression of things.
  • I found out a week and a half ago that the friend that I mentioned in a previous post that was pregnant and due in May after 5 miscarriages and 1 live birth (from IVF), had yet another miscarriage.  She went in for her 8 week ultrasound and the baby had no heartbeat.  She ended up having a D&C yesterday (her 4th).  I feel so bad for her.  I know exactly how she is feeling, yet I wasn't sure what to say to her when I found out.  How do you console someone who is losing their 6th baby?  I let her know that I am here for her and sent her some flowers.  I am hoping to walk with her at the end of the week.  She is amazingly strong and is going in to her fertility clinic today to try to get some answers.  I really hope they can give her some hope.
  • I got the second part of my quad-screen blood taken last Tuesday.  I arrived at the hospital right at 7 AM hoping to get in and out.  Turns out that I had the wrong paperwork and the lab would not draw my blood until I had the right papers.  I had to wait until 8 AM until the doctor's office opened so that they could give me the correct paperwork.  Annoying, yes.  End of the world, no.  I think we get the results next Tuesday...gulp.
  • I am now about 15 1/2 weeks as of today.  I still haven't really wrapped my head around things yet. Am I really pregnant still?  Is this possibly going to work out?  The day before yesterday, right before I woke up, I felt what may have been the first flutters of the little Button.  I am still suspicious that it is the little one and not just gas bubbles or something, but it feels like what my Mom and others have described.  Almost like fish swimming around in there.  It is a very surreal feeling.  I still haven't told many people that I am pregnant yet.  I just don't feel like I can go and spread the news around yet without feeling uncomfortable.  Telling my relatives and family friends over the weekend was super hard for me.  I feel like I just don't have the right to be telling people.  I know, I am crazy.
  • Finally...ICLWers: Hi!  Apologies for the late into.  You can find out more about me here and here.  I promise to get around to commenting, responding to comments, and blogging for real this week.  I hope everyone is doing well.  I am excited to catch up!!

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