Where I am: 12w7d
Medications: just the basics!
Symptoms: still tired, still sore boobs, still a little bit of nausea, still slow digestion, still food/smell hypersensitivity and aversions, still congestion, still constipation, and *new* round ligament pain!
Sorry I haven’t checked in for a while! I assure you, Bug is fine. As far as I know (Friday’s OB MD appointment will reassure me of that).
Also, unless she’s lying to my face, brother’s girlfriend isn’t pregnant. PHEW!
So let me update you on a few things… Continue reading
Where I am: 8w2d
Symptoms: tired, sore boobs, nausea, slow digestion, food (and smell) aversions, congestion, headaches—and hemorrhoids?!
It was 174bpm, to be exact.
Friday morning, we woke up early and drove into the city to the same place I went to on that unfortunate Christmas Eve. As we walked in the entrance and the long, incredibly long entryway (it’s a strangely long building) to the elevators past registration, I could see the events of seven months ago clear as day.
I remembered walking in, nervous. I remembered the scan, which I’ve already told you all about. But then there was the exit. Walking through the waiting room full of pregnant women, to the elevators, down to the first floor, down that long entryway, through the streets to the train station. Crying, the whole time—me, a person who’d rather die than cry in public.
I remembered the devastation, the heavy emptiness in my belly, the disbelief. The grief.
But this day…this day was different.
We got to the waiting room and they sent us right in. My hands shook as I removed my leg brace, then my jeans, then my underwear. We weren’t in the same scan room as before, thankfully. Like the practice by my apartment, this one had a scan room specifically for those receiving fertility treatment. There was just the one monitor—no TV screen mounted on the wall to possibly display the horrible truth.
The technician told me she would take the measurements all for herself first, before showing me anything. With a tremor in my voice, I said “Okay,” and my husband gently brushed my hair with one hand and squeezed my hand with the other. All the lights but one had been shut off, all but one soft light directly over my head. I stared at it and tried to control my breathing, but I felt my whole body shaking. Tears rolled down my cheeks involuntarily as I mentally prepared myself for what I felt was the inevitable.
And then, probably because she saw I was about to fall to pieces right there, the technician turned the monitor towards me. She pointed to the bright spot and said, “See there? That’s your baby’s heart. It’s beating furiously, honey. Okay?”
I let my breath out, and more tears came, and as she turned the monitor back so she could do her thing, I whispered “Okay” and looked up in my husband’s eyes. “Okay.”
Lucky Bug is measuring ahead (according to estimated ovulation, anyway) a few days. At 7w7d, Bug measured 8w2d and had a heartbeat of 174. It’s brain is forming—the technician pointed out the dark shadow where it would be in a few weeks. We also saw what was left of the yolk sac, the cord, and the very thin and almost indiscernible amniotic sac. And we saw that heart. That beautiful, strong heart beating away.
My husband surprised me with two presents: a Swarovski ladybug, small enough to fit in the palm of my hand. This he gave to me in the car on the way to the appointment. He then surprised me with a necklace and earrings set: simple, small Swarovski earrings to match a simple, small necklace: a flower, with a tiny ladybug perched on it. This he gave to me in the exam room while we waited in between the ultrasound and the consultation with my RE. I cried both times.
I cried a lot that day, actually.
My RE is confident this pregnancy is going to progress normally. In his words, “We’ve done everything we can to fix what needed fixing. The polyps, the hyperprolactinemia, your hypothyroidism…you have done all you can.”
Speaking of which, my TSH is at an astoundingly perfect 2.42, a level it has never ever been before. I take this as a good sign, and I hope it stays near this level for the rest of this trimester.
I asked my RE about two things: an additional ultrasound between now and 12 weeks (for obvious reasons), and an at-home Doppler.
Though I should have fully graduated to the regular OB team this week, my request for another ultrasound will delay that two more weeks…somewhat. My RE was kind enough to offer me one final check at 10w on August 14th, so I will graduate and say goodbye then. I still have my OB intake appointment this Thursday, though. And after the next ultrasound, it’ll only be another two weeks until the NT scan.
As for the Doppler, well, my RE advised against it. He said it would drive me crazy. He once again reassured me that my problems seemed very 1st trimester-influential, and that once I pass 13w I will be good to go. I haven’t made a decision yet whether I will get one or not, but I appreciated his input.
So there you have it. I’m officially in the “Red Zone.” About five weeks and I’ll be past it. In that time, I have two scans and a regular OB appointment. I think I’ll make it, if everything goes well.
And of course there’s more to that day. And the weekend. Highs and lows. But that’s for the public post.
I’ll leave you with this: I love this baby more and more every day. It’ll take a lot of strength for me to make it in one piece to the next ultrasound, and I’m sure I’ll be just as ready to fall apart then as I was a few days ago. But I love this baby. I want it to stay with me. With every scan I pass with flying colors, I feel relief for a few moments, and then dread as I realize I’m becoming more and more attached. I am attached. I love…this…baby.
Hang around, Lucky Bug. Mommy and Daddy want you to stay. ❤
I’ve had this post sitting in my drafts for over a month. Never could I have expected to be where I am now when I published it. Newly pregnant, so far unestablished by anything but an obsession with peeing on sticks (my only comfort now, thanks a lot Quest).
**Warning: possible triggers for women with recurrent miscarriage.** Continue reading
I can’t. I have to wait at least another day while the proper people are informed and blah blah frickin’ blah.
This is not even TTC-related, but I am so anxious to get it out there and write about it and I can’t on my public blog and I’m losing my mind.
I got the job. At my work. The permanent, full-time editorial position.
GUYS I GOT THE FRIGGIN’ JOB. I FINALLY HAVE A JOB IN MY FIELD.
I can’t even…
I can’t. Not even a little.
Aside from the fact that I’ve been waiting four whole years for a job in my field, aside from that…this job…
…okay, this is going to go TTC-related. This job means so many things. It means I have, for the first time in over a year, a full-time permanent job. For the first time in forever, I have a job in my field.
I have a normal paycheck. Not that we were struggling before, but the fertility stuff was eventually going to start making things really difficult. Treatments aside, possible ER visits or procedures or prenatal care…the money was going to start dwindling somewhere. And our precious tiny “baby fund,” compiled of all the money we got from our wedding over two years ago now, was going to have to be touched. And then the money we’d want to eventually spend on our newborn baby would start to disappear.
Same with the mortgage. And everything else that comes with buying a house. Sure, we have our down payment set aside (and that came to us only out of tragedy) but there’ll be expenses. New appliances. Painting. Furniture. Higher bills. Etc, etc.
And we went into this year kind of saying, “Well, screw it. Let’s close our eyes and hope for the best.” And we did. And I applied to this job with my eyes closed, my breath held, and I got it.
Were not millionaires now. My new salary, while AMAZING considering I’m used to living off of a meager near-minimum wage thanks to over ten years in retail, doesn’t mean we can afford a giant house. Or even a house bigger than what we planned on anyway, in fact. It doesn’t mean we can do a zillion medicated cycles or IUIs or IVF treatments, or adopt a baby as easy as 1-2-3.
But this job…it means so much. It means I can breathe a little easier. It means if we run into a speed bump with buying our house, we won’t sail over the median and crash head-on into a Mack truck. We might get into a little fender-bender, but we’ll be okay. We’ll be able to drive home safe.
And it means benefits. It means more health insurance. It means maybe infertility still won’t be covered, but eventually being doubly-covered for prenatal care might make up for the dent that treatments will put us in. It means maternity leave.
I’m sorry, I know I’m rambling. But I smile-cried the whole way home today. I feel like things have been going so wrong, for so long. I needed this job, just like I need us to buy a house. I am so tired of things being taken away from me, from me and J. I don’t know what the hell is in store for us regarding TTC, but at least I know it’s not infecting every other damn part of my life. I’m not being followed by the dark cloud I thought was haunting every waking moment. I feel like our life’s felt stagnant for years as I’ve navigated the publishing world and struggled to find my footing and a job, suffered miserable jobs in retail where I was overworked and underappreciated, and as we continued to put everything in our lives on hold while we TTC. I almost didn’t go to grad school because of the miscarriage. I almost didn’t take the job I have now because of grad school. We almost didn’t start seriously thinking about a house because of two miscarriages and the realization that we needed medical help.
Well screw you, infertility and recurrent miscarriage. We’re moving on without you.
I know I play tough on here but I have been fighting a dark place ever since December. And I myself didn’t realize until I drove home how this job offer really affected me. I didn’t realize I was holding out for it so much.
Okay. I feel better now. Oh except for one more thing.
Hey future baby. I hope wherever you are, you’re seeing and hearing this right now. Mommy’s got a good job, so she can buy you the things you need. Mommy and Daddy are going to buy a house for all of us, too, where you’ll have your own room, and a backyard to play in. So you see? We’re ready for you now. More ready than we’ve ever been. So you can come home, now. Everything will be here for you when you arrive. ❤
Where I am: CD19
First of all, an acknowledgement of my most recent post about BFPs in the IF/RPL community. My blog has received
155 192 views from 67 89 visitors just today! The post itself? An astounding 78 88 views!
I am flattered. I am touched. I wrote it as a nod to my preggo pals, and instead my blog is imploding from all the attention. Thank you!
Anyway, a small update. I got my thyroid and pituitary results back recently. My prolactin, thankfully, went down from a way too high 38.36 to an almost pregnancy-safe 16.64! So I will continue my half-pill of bromocriptine every night.
My thyroid… *sigh* My TSH went up slightly from 3.08 to 3.29. GRRRRRR! So frustrating, especially since they increased my dose since the last level!
The nurse called me today, and Dr. O wants to put me back on the dosage of levothyroxine I was on last fall (which consequently brought my TSH to an incredibly low level of .19 during my last pregnancy). I asked her whether or not we should have the free T3 and T4 done, and she said no because my level was within normal range.
This frustrated me a little bit. Isn’t the whole point of increasing my dose so that my thyroid levels are closer to pregnancy-safe? Why wouldn’t they want to make sure the tests are accurate??
I’m considering calling back and speaking to someone else…and requesting—or demanding—that I have those other tests done. I’m nervous the TSH alone isn’t being reliable, and the paranoia that my thyroid contributed to both my miscarriages is rampant and I don’t want it to happen again.
Anyway…CD19 today. Inching closer and closer to AF, I hope! Oh, and that reminds me—while I had the nurse on the phone, I had her put in an order with CVS Caremark for my new dosage of Clomid. I’ll probably call on Monday (CD23) and have it delivered the next day so that I have it for the start of my new cycle.
Fingers crossed that 1) AF shows up in a reasonable time, and 2) I clear my baseline ultrasound. I’m still having ovarian tenderness/pain in my abdomen that flares a little sometimes when I pee. I’m nervous the last Clomid cycle and possible OHSS did something to screw up my lady parts. I hope I’m wrong.
I know that, for many, seeing others in the IF/RPL community get BFPs can be hard. As much as we want to support each other, as much as we want to see others succeed, it is still hard to not wonder, Why not me?
And I understand that. I feel it sometimes, too. I see all these women popping up with their BFPs on here and on Twitter and, as soon as the congratulations are out of my mouth, I feel that little pinch of jealousy…of envy…of resentment. What about me?
I’m part of a group on the Baby Bump app I downloaded the week I got my first BFP last year. There are message groups/forums abound on there, and while I haven’t made any everlasting pals on there like I have on here and on Twitter, I do find some comfort there. The group I am a part of was for women starting new TTC cycles in April, and was a small amount of people (less than 20 members) and we all started posting on there. We shared our stories. We shared our symptoms. Most of us shared our BFNs. But two women shared their BFPs. Right off the bat, they were successful and the rest of us were not.
And I felt it again. The old faithful, Why them and not me? Why? WHY? I felt jealous, I felt sadder for myself.
Well, within a week each of announcing their BFPs, both of them miscarried. For one it was her third, for the other—her sixth, and last. She’s given up at this point. It’s too painful for her. She can’t deal with it anymore.
Another person I found here on WordPress earlier this year just announced last week that she has lost her second pregnancy.
And that, my friends, is why I don’t mind seeing your BFPs. Your pregnancy posts. Your post-pregnancy photos. Because I cried when these three women lost their sweet little could-have-been babes. To see more losses only breaks my heart in a way it doesn’t break when I see others being successful when I’m not. It hurts more.
And it scares me, too. I feel such hope and strength when I watch you ladies being successful on medicated cycles, successful with a viable pregnancy even after so many losses. But when I see someone lose another baby, again, it terrifies me. It makes me wonder, but in a different way: What about me?
What if what happened to them, happens to me…again?
I know everyone is entitled to their opinions. I don’t speak for the whole community. I know that each and every one of us needs to protect our hearts, our sanity, and that means doing what is best for us in the moment. And sure, there may come a day or two when I don’t feel the same temporarily…or, maybe, permanently. But for right now, I love seeing your posts. I love seeing your success. It gives me hope. It gives me the strength to keep trying. It reassures me that sometimes, it does work out. ❤
Where I am: CD17
Holy crap, what a weekend!
Let’s start with Friday. My parents were on vacation, so I have been stopping in and checking on the cat every other day or so. This time, J came with me so he could change out the litter (despite my non-pregnant status, we just take precautions…and also, why would I want to change litter?) so we decided to make a night of it. My parents have a huge (I mean huge) 3-D TV that’s got all the bells and whistles (oh the things you can buy when you finally get an empty nest) so we decided to watch a movie and order out for dinner from the local pizza place. We stopped and picked up a six-pack of beer for me on the way. For the most part, the night was good. I had one small meltdown about the weekend, but that was it. The beer made me tired so we came home and went to bed pretty early.
Saturday started out rough. I woke up early due to intense, intense ovarian pain and serious abdominal bloating. It hurt to do anything: cough, sneeze, use my abdominal muscles, to pee or poop, to walk. Every step I took reverberated in my ovaries. Based off of Dr. Google (because he’s sooooo reliable), I self-diagnosed myself with mild OHSS (it makes sense, what with overstimulation and all). I spent the majority of the morning in bed, only to finally force myself out of bed at 11:30 so I could make my hair appointment (with a swing by Dunkies first, of course).
The hair appointment was awesome, as usual. My hairstylist is amazing! Thankfully, she didn’t ask about TTC (since I told her last summer that we were and she’s asked every time ever since) so that was a nice break. I decided to give my hair a break from the crazy-color highlights (since once they fade my hair gets very rough and also it turns grey-white-blonde) and decided on a semi-permanent violet-red that would still give me the purple hues I love but wouldn’t require any bleaching. I told her I was going out to celebrate my anniversary with J, and my hair looked so good they wanted to put it on their “Instaglam” so I got a free curl job (?) out of the deal and got to look all pretty for the rest of the day!
Afterwards I gritted my teeth and, armed with Tylenol and Gatorade for the pain, J and I headed down through Cape traffic to Plymouth. We walked the jetty, all-in-all over a mile, which I think was good for me despite the pain in my tummy. We decided on a place to eat for dinner, and when faced with an hour-long wait to eat inside, we decided to opt for a wait-free table outside (J doesn’t like the cold and it was about 7:00PM by the time we got to the table—I wanted to sit outside from the beginning, he didn’t). We had risotto bites for an appetizer, which were absolutely fabulous. J had steak tips, I had chicken carbonara—both were simply delightful! I also enjoyed not one, but two delicious Hawaiian-tinis and another mixed drink (I forget the name). It’s safe to say I was feeling a good buzz. (I can thank a year-plus of TTC for my now incredibly low tolerance. Hooray, cheap date!)
Sunday morning, we went to brunch and stuffed our faces with all the food we could manage. Eggs, waffles, french toast, sausage, fruit, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, rice, cooked meats, everything! I had a coffee with Frangelico and Bailey’s in it, I believe, followed by yet another martini (you can see I threw alcohol caution to the wind this weekend, well-deserved). We then went to IKEA for a few hours in search of inspiration for the house we’ll be owning by the end of the summer, and then off to work he went and I spent the rest of the day relaxing, drinking a few beers, and watching the X-Men trilogy (it was on TV all weekend and last week and I kept catching snippets of it, which made me want to rewatch them).
Perhaps the second-best part to Sunday, aside from the anniversary time with J, was that I woke up in significantly less pain than Saturday. I was still bloated as all hell (still kind of am, even another two days later), but the pain that came with every movement, cough, sneeze, step…was almost gone. This leads me to believe I ovulated sometime in the past few days and Saturday was the peak of the pain as those 3 or 4+ eggs dropped. Yeesh.
And now it’s Tuesday…I’m back at work after the long weekend, looking forward to a relatively easy week. I have a work function on Wednesday, an in-law outing on Friday. Today is my actual wedding anniversary with J, and tomorrow marks eight years since our first date. Today is also CD17, which means (hopefully) that AF will be coming around in a week or so.
This weekend was really, really good for me. It got me out of the funk from my cancelled cycle. It reminded me that there’s more to my life than TTC. That I am married to an amazing man and I wouldn’t have been able to get this far without him. I know that this feeling of optimism is going to last until the next bad things happens (oh, the roller-coaster continues), but I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts. I’m ready for my next cycle.
Go, Team Junebugs! 😉
Where I am: CD26
No, I don’t think that’s an actual term. I made it up. But I think it best describes what happened last night.
I got the BFN to end all BFNs (aka: a beta) on Wednesday. And I surprisingly took it well. I dusted myself off, ordered my next round of meds, and said “Better luck next time.” I went home to my husband, drank way too much wine (the hangover lasted all day…thank you, TTC, for making my tolerance basically zero), cooked dinner with him, got tons of snuggles and TV-watching in to make up for him being gone for 5 days, and went to bed. It was, more or less, an uneventful day.
And then for some reason (probably the hangover), I was just down all day yesterday. I felt like crap, physically. I had a somewhat good day, watching YouTube videos at work (boss is away at an expo) and getting coffee with a friend on my lunch hour. I had dinner with my parents, watched Survivor and Blacklist and some of the Bruins game. Went home, turned on Netflix, watched Parenthood until J came home.
And then he asked me if I was okay. I seemed off. What was wrong? I could talk to him. Was I upset about the failed cycle?
And I said I didn’t know. And then I said I was nervous. And then I said I wasn’t upset about the first Clomid cycle not working because I was actually scared of it being successful. I told him I was terrified of seeing that second line, because it would feel like the beginning of the end all over again. I’d be anxious and second-guessing every bit of spotting, every twinge in my abdomen, every second my boobs didn’t hurt. And then, if we were that lucky, we’d make it to an ultrasound, and see our baby, again, with a heartbeat, again. And we’d get attached, again. And then something horrible would happen and it would get taken away from us. Again.
And J was sweet. He held me. He told me he understood. He told me he was scared, too. He wiped away the few tears that managed to escape me, and calmed me down, and told me he would be here with me no matter what. And we’d make it through anything. He told me how strong I was.
And then I tried to go to sleep, while he went and took a shower and got ready for bed. In the hour-plus that it took for him to do all of that and come to bed, I couldn’t fall asleep. When I lay down, my heart felt like it would pound right out of my chest. He came back shortly before 3AM, and at some point I got up and went into the living room and that’s when it hit me.
I just started sobbing. Loudly. Hysterically. I went from feeling panicked and restless to overwhelmed and upset in a matter of seconds. Thankfully, J heard me and woke up and came into the living room and climbed onto the couch and under the blanket with me and put his arms around me. And I just cried. I said I was angry, and that it wasn’t fair, and that I just wanted to have a baby, and that I was sick of the universe making everything hard for us, and I was tired of being strong, and I was tired of feeling like we didn’t deserve to be parents. He said, “I know.” And he held me until it stopped. And then he brought me to bed, and rubbed my back until I fell asleep.
We can only be strong for so long…until we aren’t anymore. Resilience isn’t a forever type of thing. It comes and goes. And it went last night, for sure. You can say you’re strong all you want, and you may actually be so, but sometimes being strong is exhausting. At some point, you have to let go.
I think it took realizing what I am actually scared and nervous and apprehensive about to get me to release all of that emotion. The truth is what I said the other day: I’m really not upset about the failed cycle. There may come a day, very soon, when I will be.
But right now…the week of Mother’s Day, the week I get the shower invitation for a friend due within weeks of when I was, the week two months shy of July 6th which is when my sweet little “Baby Bean” would have been born, I am not upset about a failed cycle. I am still grieving. (And in a way, I’m trying to grieve already for the next one, which needs to stop.) I can’t even think about what a failed cycle means for me. I can’t think about whether or not I might actually have a difficult time getting pregnant now. All I can think of is what those two lines could mean and the pain that I went through last time and how absolutely, undeniably terrified I am of losing another baby.
And I don’t know what to do with that.
Where I am: CD24 [14dpt(rigger)]
Symptoms: same old, same old…
My hCG level came back undetectable.
I am not pregnant.
There’s a good chance that, despite my desperate attempts to be happy and not let it get me down, I’ll have a good ol’ cry in J’s arms once I get home. Then again, maybe not. But probably.
But honestly, I think I’m good. I think I’m okay. I have my eyes on the future.
Plus side for the day is I don’t have to take any more Crinone starting right very now. No more gooopy hoohah! Hopefully AF makes her appearance by the weekend, because I’d awfully like to get started on the next cycle!
And my RE (Dr. O from now own, and no that’s not a pun…his last name actually begins with O) wants to do the same protocol as last time, meaning the Clomid/Ovidrel trigger. I call on CD1, they do a baseline before CD3, and if everything looks good (which, if my ovaries know any better, they will) then back around the TTC circle we go!
My hopes for the next cycle are that I don’t end up with one incredibly large-and-in-charge follicle and a whole bunch of others that are smaller. Normal growth is what I’m aiming for this time. At least 2 or 3 good ones. That aren’t ridiculously huge.
Anyway. Work day is almost done. I had this post sitting in my drafts with “I am/am not pregnant” written there for hours. It bums me out that I had to delete the affirmative. But what can you do? Nothing but go home to the copious bottles of wine I have waiting for me…plus a sweet, loving husband exhausted from drill who just wants to snuggle and watch TV, and a nice steak dinner that we’ll be cooking together.
“There’s no harm in hoping for the best as long as you’re prepared for the worst.”
― Stephen King, Different Seasons