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I’ve been feeling pretty lousy lately, and between that and working and having family visit for the holidays, I seem to have neglected this space.

Things are going well so far. I’m 9 weeks today, which I find amazing and frightening all at the same time. I just keep thinking that after all this time, I can’t be this easy. I’m trying to shake my fear and just accept that maybe for once, it’s just going to work out. As soon as I start to embrace it, though, I feel like I’m jinxing myself. I know that’s crazy – looking at strollers online isn’t going to cause a miscarriage – but it’s where my mind goes. I fear that as soon as I allow myself to be excited about my pregnancy, it will all be taken away.

I was released from my RE earlier this week, and because my gynecologist doesn’t practice obstetrics any more, I had to find an OB. I debated and debated and debated some more – showed my husband all the options for hospitals in the area and the pros and cons of each – and in the end just went with my gut feeling. I had five recommendations – three from my RE, one from a friend (who has several friends who also go to the same practice), and one from my gynecologist. Unfortunately, I wasn’t 100% happy with the ones my RE recommended. The one my friend recommended is staffed half by OB’s and half by midwives. They deliver at the hospital I really wanted to use, but I just wan’t entirely sold on their philosophy. I would love to feel really strongly about a non-interventionist birth plan and be able to trust that my body is going to do what it’s supposed to, but I’m just not there yet. At the moment, I’m more concerned about my cervix (from my LEEP) and just being reassured that everything will be ok. IVF involves so much monitoring and feedback, and I don’t think I could handle an abrupt change to something so much more laid back. So, I went with my gynecologist’s suggestion and am seeing the dr. she wholeheartedly recommended. I hope I like her! The only negative is that the practice and the hospital are downtown, and traffic can be a bear. I was hoping to avoid it (especially since there are three hospitals 10 minutes from my house), but I decided the doctor is more important than the location. I see her next week – fingers crossed!

I’m starting to feel a tiny bit better. I still feel sick if I don’t eat often (like every hour), but the extreme nauseousness I felt earlier in the week and about a week ago seems to have subsided – at least for now. It seems to come and go, which is nice, really, especially if the alternative is feeling sick 100% of the time. It seems worse when I’m tired or not drinking enough water, so I’m trying to keep an eye on those things. If I’m not super nauseous, I’m just generally slightly queasy, which has been the case for the past three weeks. I can handle that – but the extreme nauseousness is a bit tougher. At least I’m not actually vomiting!

I got the results of my bloodwork back today, three days since I stopped taking crinone. It was ok – my progesterone was 25 – so a significant decrease from what it was, but high enough that they said I don’t need to go back on it. They said they want it above 15, and that 25 is normal. I’d feel better if it were maybe 30, or even 35. My estradiol continued to increase once I stopped taking medication, and it would have been nice if my progesterone did the same thing. I know they said its fine, and I’m trying to trust them, but I would feel better if it were just a bit higher. I wish I could just relax and not worry so much, but it’s so hard.

I’m not having any bloodwork or anything until the 26th, which is my next ultrasound. I am just keeping everything crossed that everything continues to be ok.

Sometimes, I feel like all my rational thought has gone out the window.

I felt really good after my doctor’s appointment on Monday. Everything looked good, we heard the heart beat, and my doctor estimated that our chances of miscarriage were down to about 12%. All great news! I breathed a sigh of relief and enjoyed the rest of my day. I realized on Tuesday morning, though, that no one had called me to update me on my bloodwork. They’re only monitoring my estradiol and progesterone at this point, but I’d still like to know what’s going on. I got in touch with the nurse on Tuesday, and I guess my bloodwork results had been delayed for some unknown reason. After looking at the results, my doctor decided I could stop taking crinone. She said my progesterone had gone up each week and was now up to 42, which meant my body was producing enough of it to stop the crinone. I was happy that not only was my body doing what it was supposed to, but I could stop taking the crinone, too! I have to get my progesterone checked on Friday, just to make sure everything is going ok, which is reassuring, too.

My happiness has turned to fear as I’ve become convinced that I’m not producing enough progesterone. I know rationally that everything looked fine – that my levels kept increasing as my dose stayed exactly the same – but it still freaks me out. On top of that, crinone leaves behind some “residue.” This may be TMI (unless you’re taking crinone – then you probably know all about it), but it leaves behind these chunks of stuff that are kind of gross. Even though I didn’t take crinone yesterday, I’m still dealing with its aftermath. Yesterday, I passed some rather large chunks, and along with it was almost a tiny bit of spotting. Spotting is almost too strong of a word – it was more like CM with a little bit of a brown tint to it. I freaked out, of course, but at the same time, I’m fairly confident that it’s from the crinone debris that’s all wedged up in there. I was on it for 4-and-a-half weeks, so who knows what’s going on in there (and how much it got moved around when I had my ultrasound!). Still, though, even knowing that, and that it hasn’t happened since – I’m still completely paranoid.

I still feel lousy, and my boobs still hurt, so that’s reassuring, but I wish I could just let go of this fear that something is going wrong.

I used to wonder why so many people stopped updating their blogs once they got pregnant after dealing with infertility. Now I know…or at least I know why I have.

It’s because it’s totally weird.

I know there’s the physical stuff – being tired, feeling nauseous – but for me, it’s the mental aspect that leaves me sort of quiet, I guess. I really just don’t know what to say.

It’s such a strange feeling to just about come to terms with the fact that you may never have a child, go through the ups and downs of an IVF cycle, and then find out that you’re pregnant. I expected when I first found out to be jumping up and down with excitement, or maybe crying tears of joy (although I am really not much of a crier, so that’s probably an unrealistic expectation), but really what I felt was relief, and maybe some fear. Each time I waited for the results of my bloodwork, it was the same – more fear, and more relief. People kept asking me if I was excited, and I would usually say something like ‘yes, but it’s early, so I’m just really cautious.’ Really, though, it’s hard to be excited when you’re slightly freaked out the majority of the day. I want to let it all go and just enjoy things, but it’s hard. I feel SO lucky and grateful, but there’s a part of me that just can’t believe it. I still just find it hard to believe we’re actually going to have a baby. After four years of trying, giving up, and trying again, we’re really going to have a baby?

We went to a party on Friday, and some of the people there knew I was pregnant (we aren’t telling tons of people but aren’t super secretive about it, either). I hadn’t seen them in ages, and it was bizarre to be talking to them about pregnancy symptoms, obstetricians, and childbirth. It was so awesome, in some ways, but surreal in others. I almost feel like an imposter – or that I imagined the whole thing – and that any day now I’ll find out I’m really not pregnant at all.

Yesterday, we had our first ultrasound, and we saw the heartbeat. To say it was a relief was beyond an understatement. It was amazing and awesome and so much better than I thought it would be. It was like some of my fears just floated away with that sound.

I can’t say I’m not scared anymore, and I’m still freaking out a little bit multiple times throughout the day. But, it is getting a little easier. I think (and hope) that I’ll feel more secure with each day and week that passes, and that by the time we hit the second trimester, I’ll feel like we’re actually having a baby.

I’ll be five weeks tomorrow. I think it’s weird that my transfer was only two weeks ago and I’m already supposed to be five weeks pregnant, but I guess I won’t argue with the professionals on this one.

I haven’t written much because I’m still in disbelief, and I alternate between being excited and being worried. I don’t even know if worried is the right word, because I’m not thinking about anything specific. I find myself throughout the day begging that things will be o.k. I look online for some kind of reassurance, but it’s not even like Dr. Google can help me, because I don’t have any specific concerns. I just want it to all be ok.

It such a bizarre feeling – almost like being in limbo. I feel like I’m straddling two worlds, and on one hand, I am so incredibly thankful and grateful and happy that we’ve gotten this far. No matter what, this is the furthest we’ve ever gotten, and that’s a big deal. Until I hear otherwise, we are having a baby, and that’s pretty freaking exciting. On the other hand, though, I’m paralyzed. I have no way of knowing what Monday’s blood test will show, and I’m just sort of hanging around in early pregnancy land waiting for blood work and the ultrasound. I have a good feeling about it, which is saying a lot for me, but it almost makes the whole thing scarier. I’m just so ready to let it all go and just be blindly optimistic, like I would have been 10 years ago.*

I’m also realizing how little I know about pregnancy. I’ve collected a lot of infertility information over the past ten years, and I know a whole lot now about the female reproductive system. I’ve never really worked my way past that, though, because I didn’t really have much reason to. I threw away the pregnancy book my SIL gave me years ago. I ordered a new one from Amazon yesterday, which I felt could be premature, but whatever – there’s some stuff I need to know! I also need to find an obstetrician (my dr. is just a gynecologist), but I’m holding off until the ultrasound for that one. Only 11 days to go. In the meantime, I’m going to just keep begging and hoping for the best.

 

*While my current husband and I have been ttc for four years, I lost my ttc innocence 10 years ago in my first marriage.

History

2014
May: BFP for baby #2, due January 2015

2013
July: Our daughter is born!

2012
November: Still pregnant. Fingers crossed! EDD 7/5/13
October: retrieval 10/12; 5dt 10/17; BFP!!! 10/25-hcg=70; 10/29-hcg=391
September-October: IVF, microdose lupron flare protocol
June-July-August: approved! dealing with scheduling issues and most likely starting IVF in September
May: waiting for insurance approval to start treatment
April: laparoscopic surgery to remove endometrioma on left ovary; diagnosed with stage 3 endo
March: RE finds cyst - suspects endometrioma; also high FSH, low AMH
February: consult with RE; bloodwork, hsg

2011
January-February: Acupuncture once per week, vitex and natural progesterone after ovulation; back to charting bbt
March-April: end of ttc
May:diagnosed with severe cervical dysplasia (CIN III)
July-August: L.E.E.P. procedure and recovery

2010
December: Start acupuncture
May-November: Not actively trying/on a break/enjoying life
April: Not actively trying, still waiting for insurance coverage for injectables
January-March: still waiting to start injectables

2009
December 09-March 10: On a break while waiting to start injectables
November 2009: 50 mg Clomid CD 5-9; BFN
October 2009: All tests normal; Take 50 mg Clomid CD 5-9; BFN
July 2009: Ob/gyn asks for bbt chart, S/A, CD3 b/w; plan tbd.
April/May 2009: Switch from OPKs to the Clearblue Fertility Monitor
March/April 2009: Start using OPKs and bbt

2007-2008
Sept/Oct 2008: Stop preventing; 'if it happens, it happens'
Summer 2008: Stop BCPs; using bbt chart to prevent pregnancy
May 2007: Married again! husband #2; no plans for children

Previous Life
Fall 2005: Divorced
Summer 2005: See RE; more b/w, clomid challenge test, sonohysterogram; 2 Clomid IUI cycles - BFN; male factor discovered (he now has a child with wife #2)
Spring 2003: See ob/gyn for IF, get b/w and HSG; All results normal; Husband #1 gets S/A, which he says is normal; results never sent to ob/gyn
Spring 2002: Stop BCPs, begin ttc and charting bbt
Oct 2000: Married to husband #1