Sunday, May 8, 2011


*9 weeks, 1 day*

For the last several weeks, I've been blogging but not posting them. But now things are officially, and for the most part (short of making it "Facebook Official"), our secret has gone public. We're expecting!!! I am due on December 9th, and aside from complete exhaustion from being pregnant and wrangling a two year old every day, I'm feeling great! Anyways, I just posted all my hidden blogs from the past several weeks, so go back to the beginning of April if you're an avid reader to catch up with my journey.

Monday, May 2, 2011

graduation day

*8 weeks, 2 days*

Today I "graduated" from FCI. It was so bittersweet. I love everyone there, and I'm so grateful for each and every one of them. I bought a thank you card, brownies and cupcakes, and there were hugs all around. It was somewhat sad thinking that this would be my last time ever in this office as a patient.

Noah was not impressed by the image on the monitor, but we showed him a picture of the baby, with it's heart beating an impressive 172 beats per minute. wow. at this point (well at 10 weeks) noah's HB was 158. if the old wives tale is true, maybe this is a girl!

taking a step back, it occurs to me that i never wrote about the debacle of the first week and a half of this pregnancy. so my first beta was great, had me thinking twins. 2nd beta was not great. from 314 to 478 is *not* doubling. 3rd beta was even worse - 678. that weekend was so hard on me. i read so many things and asked so many questions to my fellow IF/IVFers. everyone reassured me - vanishing twin, they explained. this had to be the reason. another embryo still present in my uterus but not healthy enough to attach and survive. but still i wondered - what if it's ectopic? what if i'm going to miscarry?

after the 3rd beta was so low that friday, they pushed my 1st u/s to weds, as the HCG level has to be over 1200 or so for anything to be visible on u/s. on monday, the original u/s day, i spoke to my nurse gabby, who'd been out on friday. i asked about my progesterone levels. they were perfect, in the high 50s and low 60s. she assured me, with those prog numbers, it was not ectopic. i asked if i could come for a 4th beta (the other nurse on friday told me no), and i told gabby i needed some piece of mind and something to tide me over til the u/s on weds. she told me to come in.

later that day, i got a call from gabby that finally gave me an ounce of peace. she said she'd wanted to see the HCG level over 1600, and it was 1851. that number is forever etched in my mind, because it finally gave me hope that i was pregnant for good.

that weds, we went in for the first u/s. i was so nervous, and i know ben was too. there was no expectation to see a heartbeat. i was only 5.5 weeks, but we hoped to see SOMETHING, in the right spot, growing the way it should. and that's exactly what we saw. one beautiful embryo, tucked right in the middle of my uterus, measuring exactly 5.5 weeks. and then there was this smaller, somewhat crescent shaped shadow below my beauty on the screen. could it be? robin, the tech, couldn't be sure but said it could either be a collection of fluid or an unhealthy embryo. our vanishing twin.

when robin told us everything looked perfect, i lost it. i started sobbing and hugged her. given my rollercoaster week, i know she understood. plus, this was her job. she deals with crazy, hormonal, pregnant infertiles all.the.time. just another day for her.

on wednesday, a week later, we saw the heart beat for the first time. at 6.5 weeks, it was 122, and the "twin" was gone. i don't mourn the loss of the "twin". many people on my IF/IVF boards expressed their condolences. yes, twins would have been welcome, but i'm just grateful to have one healthy baby growing in me, and i'm not one to mourn a cluster of cells that was never meant to be. i know that sounds harsh, but after four rounds of IVF and a total of 12 embryos, i'll take two healthy babies as my final outcome any day of the week. :)

A-Z for infertility

a real post coming soon, i promise, but first thanks to liz at Compromised Fertility for this...

A. Age when you started Trying to Conceive (TTC): It was early 2006, so I was (doing the math) 27.

B. Baby Dancing or Sex: BD always was a weird term to me...

C. Children wanted: Two or three.

D. Dogs/Cats/Fill in Children: Two cats and one Child

E. Essential Oils/Vitamins/Snake Oils: Before my last IVF cycle, I was taking Vitamin C, D, CoQ10, extra Folic Acid and Prenatals. Now just folic and vitamins.

F. Fertility Meds I’ve taken: Ack, so many!! Clomid, Lupron, Follistim, Ganerelix, Menopur, low dose HCG... hm. probably others.

G. Gain: IVF always makes me gain 5-10. And then there's the 10 I never lost after Noah...

H. HSG (Hystosalpingogram): Yes, one when we first started Clomid, so fall of 2006.

I. Infertile Pet Peeves: People who get pregnant without trying and/or people who bitch and moan about the kids they have.

J. Job title: Early Intervention Service Coordinator

K. Kids names you’re afraid will be taken by the time you can use them: Emily was my girl name with Noah. Might be in the running someday, but no names that are truly "must haves".

L. Length of time TTC: Days shy of two years with Noah. On and off for 2.5 years since Noah.

M. Miscarriages: None. Thankfully.

N. Number of times you’ve switched OB/GYNS, REs, FSs: What's an FS?? Only switched OB when I started TTC. Was at Dupage Medical and switched to Dr C on the recommendation of a former co-worker who'd had fertility issues. Never switched REs. One of the best medical teams I've ever dealt with. And coming from me, that says a lot.

O. Ovarian quality: Questionable. May have diminished ovarian reserve. Test results for my FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) seem to fluctuate every time they're tested. But I for sure do not stim well.

P. Pee on a Stick (POAS) or wait for Aunt Flo (AF): I am not one to POAS.

Q. Quote from an obnoxious fertile: "I'm so fat and ugly."

S. Sperm: Perfect. No problems in that department.

T. Time you tried naturally: About six months before going to Dr C and starting Clomid. And then roughly a year and a half between Noah and IVF #3, and another ten months between #3 and #4.

U. Uterus quality: Good as far as we know. Possible endometriosis, but besides one cyst, no other evidence of endo.

V. Vagina: Poked and prodded by countless medical professionals.

W. What baby stuff do you already have?: Seeing as I have a 2.5 year old, I have it all, and I kept it all in hopes we'd get to use it again someday.

X. X-tra X-tra Hear all about it! How many people know the ins and outs of our crazy TTC journey? Family, friends, co-workers, strangers.... I'm known for being open about my IVF journey. I draw strength from sharing my story, and I know my honesty has helped others cope with their journey's as well.

Y. Yearly Exam (do you still go in even though someone sees your lady parts most months?): I go every year, though I think I am currently over due...

Z. Zits: Usually not a problem for me, even with all the hormones.