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. :)

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