Tuesday, December 4, 2012

21 week update

I usually log into Blogger every couple of days to check in on all of the blogs on my reading list....but never really look at my own. Which I guess explains how 6 weeks have passed since my last update?!?

Anyhoo, here's what's going on:

  • I'm 21 weeks today. How did that happen?!?! I'm officially into the maternity pants, which is kind of nice....especially so on Thanksgiving.
  • I've only gained about 10 pounds since we started our FET cycle.....which is huge for me given that by this time in my last pregnancy I think I had gained close to 20 (and that's not counting the 30-ish I'd gained during our infertility odyssey). I know that weight should be the least of my concerns, but I'm really committed to staying in shape and not letting things get out of control like they did last time. Sort of hard when I'm craving pizza with a side of bread followed by a bowl of ice cream....
  • We finally had an amnio last week....we'd been trying since 16 weeks, but due to some weirdness in my uterus (the two layers of the lining -- the chorion and amnion, I think? -- hadn't fused an apparently this can make miscarriage post-procedure more likely), we'd been on hold. The procedure itself was no big deal -- pretty much just another needle in the belly -- but it was oddly emotional. And weird to see all that fluid being sucked out.
  • The results of said amnio -- at least the preliminary FISH results -- are normal. Yay! Full results to come later this week, so hopefully there are no chromosomal surprises in our future.
  • And finally.....we're having another girl! I was totally surprised, but am excited for the Chicklette to have a little baby partner in crime. (We haven't told her yet -- more on that later.) And of course it's nice to not have to buy a whole bunch of new crap, although I'm sure somehow a few girly accoutrements will find their way into my shopping cart at Target.

So, that's the scoop. Now we're just trying to savor our last holiday season as a family of 3....

Monday, October 22, 2012

Hangin' in at 15 weeks

Still here. Still pregnant (at least I think so). Exhausted after a weekend of a toddler with gastrointestinal distress -- I now literally know what it means to be elbow deep in poop.

Somehow, I've rounded the corner into the second trimester. I'm sporting a little pooch, and am in that delightful not-quite-ready-for-maternity-clothes-but-obviously-larger stage, which is garnering some odd looks at work (where I'm not "out" to the wider world quite yet). The morning/afternoon sickness is more or less gone, as is the fatigue, which is nice.

Not so nice: the positive results from the first-trimester screening, which means I'm headed for an amnio next week. (In this context, "positive results" are not necessary positive.) I'm not worried about the actual test -- oddly enough, big needles don't really scare me much anymore -- but I am of course worried about the results.  It's a small chance (1 in 72) that something is wrong....but somehow that's not super-comforting at the moment.

The bright side: Getting to find out just a wee bit earlier than planned what flavor the baby is....which I guess means we won't have any more excuses for delaying the talk with the Chicklette about Becoming a Big Sister. Can't wait to see how that one goes!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Deja vu

I don't know what it is, but my uterus is such a drama queen. Last time around, I had a bleeding episode at around 8 weeks that foreshadowed the loss of a twin. Last night (at 8 weeks, 1 day), I woke up for my usual 2 a.m. pee to find a pantiliner soaked with red blood. Which, of course, incited total panic.

Our RE was able to see us at 9:30 this morning, and thank God everything looks great. The nugget is measuring a little big, with a heartbeat chugging along at 167 BPM.  The doctor said that the bleeding is very common -- he sees it in 50% (!) of IVF pregnancies, and it's almost always benign -- and that I shouldn't worry as long as it tapers off.  Easy for him to say, but comforting (I guess) nonetheless. There was no sign of any clots or other scary things in there, which is apparently also good.

So, we have a another scan on Tuesday, and then I'll graduate to the regular OB. (Of which I need to find another, since mine retired.) This is all going by really fast....and really slow....at the same time. Yikes!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Still growing....

Both the beta number and my chest.

First, the beta. It was 375 yesterday. So we're doubling nicely, and in range for a singleton. It's so odd, the numbers this time (182/375) are almost identical to the numbers last time (188/389). Of course, last time was a twin pregnancy that became a singleton....so I guess this means these numbers are stronger if there's only 1 in there? I don't know. I'm just glad they're doing what they're supposed to do.

Secondly, my girls. They already look like they are ready to breastfeed. If this is a harbinger of my body remembering this pregnancy stuff earlier the second time around, I should be sporting maternity clothes in about a week. Not that I'm complaining....but.....it's going to be harder to stay under wraps for long.

Anyway, looking forward to a weekend of naps and 8:30 bedtimes. And I couldn't be more excited about that!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


That's the beta number. I am in absolute shock. Happy shock, but shock.

Getting the news from our doctor was a hilarious comedy of cell phone errors. The Mr. and I are both working from home today, and my cell phone reception is not so great in my house. So the doctor called about 90 minutes ahead of schedule, I picked up and put him on speaker, and just as he said "Well, I've got some...." the phone went dead. So then I called back from the landline, and got put on a call queue at the clinic. The whole thing probably only lasted 45 seconds, but it felt like AN ETERNITY.

So, anyway, great news. Next blood draw on Friday. Hopefully by then it will have started to sink in a bit....

Saturday, August 4, 2012

5dp5dt: A sweaty sort-of mess

So, I have to say I've been doing fairly well so far with the waiting. I had a business trip to Chicago for a couple of days, which was a nice distraction. (Although the two business dinners were VERY PAINFUL without the aid of cocktails.) Today I'm home, and it's really the first time I've started to have the serious "am I or aren't I?" thoughts...as per last time, I'm pretty convinced that I'm not, so I'm starting to mentally prepare myself for the aftermath of Wednesday's blood test. 

Physically, I'm definitely feeling it -- night sweats, abdominal twinges, fatigue, headaches, back aches, sore boobs, the dreaded constipation -- but I know enough now to know that these symptoms mean NOTHING. The progesterone is evil and there's no getting around it. Also, I imagine that my body is going through some caffeine withdrawals -- I was pretty good about cutting back, but I was still having a grande dark roast every morning and a couple of diet Cokes in the afternoon until the day before the transfer. Also, I've been on a fairly strict low-carb diet until 5 days ago, and while the bread/deep dish pizza I've been shoveling into my face in the meantime has certainly been tasty, I'm not sure that my body totally remembers what to do with it yet.

So, anyway, nothing really to report. I'm hopeful but not optimistic. I can't wait for Wednesday but I don't want it to come. Pregnant but not really. A sort-of mess.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Cooking away over here...

All went well today. The thaw went as planned, and the transfer went smoothly. It was really strange being back in the same room we were in a little more than 3 years ago, but once I knew our little guy made it out of deep freeze I was able to relax and really focus on the experience.

I don't know if it's the Valium or what, but I find the whole transfer process to be extremely emotional (in a good way). It's not like there are many silver linings to the infertility experience, but one of them definitely is that you get to watch the exact moment when a little life enters your body. Holding my husband's hand (or gripping, because let's face it, it's still not fun having a speculum, bright light, and three people between your stirruped legs), I was able to really focus my intentions and love my hopefully future child. It was pretty effing cool.

So, we wait. Beta is in 9 days -- August 8th. Hopefully it will go by quickly and uneventfully. Burrow in, little guy.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

FET is tomorrow?!?

I'm going in tomorrow for my embryo transfer. I have no idea how this snuck up on me, but with general work and toddler craziness, it did. We're transferring our one and only Day 5 blast at around lunchtime.

I've heard people say how different cycling can be the second time around, and that's certainly been true for me. It's not that I don't want it to succeed just as badly, but I am so effing distracted by the rest of my life that the various preparations (shots, pills, scans, blood draws) are almost an afterthought. Which I think has actually been a good thing in many ways.

To be sure, a FET is a lot simpler than a fresh IVF cycle. No stims, limited monitoring, no retrieval, etc. So I'm sure that's part of it. But I think the bigger part is that the mystery is gone -- I'm not scared of the unknown, other than of course whether or not I'll get pregnant and whether that pregnancy will stick. Even the PIO shots are no big deal -- I've been giving them to myself, which I couldn't even imagine last time around. Is it horrible that I'm just trying to deal with the bigger stuff as it comes? Intellectually I know that not stressing out is not going to negatively affect the outcome (and it may even help), but it still feels weird.

Anyway, if anyone out there is still reading this sorry excuse for a blog, would you mind shooting a couple of good thoughts our way? First, that our little blastie survives the thaw, and then maybe that he/she burrows in there nice and good? 

Thanks -- I'm sure I'll be updating from my horizontal position tomorrow and Tuesday.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Diary of a wimpy Barefoot

So, I have been practically beside myself all week, waiting for my scheduled sonohystogram (a/k/a saline sonogram) this morning. For those of you who haven't had the pleasure, this is a procedure sort of like an embryo transfer -- they insert a catheter into your uterus, shoot some water up there, and then look around. In the words of my RE: "Sometimes, after pregnancy and childbirth, things aren't where they were the first time. So we like to take a look."

Sounds a little ominous, but OK!

So, I made the appointment last week and had been in a state of mild panic ever since. Because having a panoply of invasive infertility-related procedures, being pregnant, and giving birth have apparently done nothing to change the fact that I am a giant wimp. I'd even been debating about whether to take one of my leftover embryo transfer Valiums before the procedure-- I finally decided against, as I had some work to get done this afternoon -- but it was close. And I spent an INORDINATE amount of time thinking about it.

(I also spent some time -- BAD IDEA -- Googling the procedure, and read some absolutely horrific accounts. Why did I do this? Have I learned NOTHING?!?)

Anyway, so here's the funny thing. It turns out that I've had this EXACT SAME PROCEDURE before and didn't even remember. The nurse practitioner even showed me the notes in my chart (and the pictures), so I really must have been there! Must have been really traumatic, right?

(This is not to say that it's not traumatic/painful/etc. for some people. But clearly, based on my own past experience, I've been a bit of a drama queen.)

The procedure was no big deal. I mean, I'm never a fan of the speculum, but there was no pain, minimal discomfort, and the NP was very cool (and gentle). I'd also forgotten how neat it is to see all of your bits on the ultrasound. I mean, not quite as interesting as looking at a baby in there, but nice to see that I still have a uterus and 2 ovaries and both seem to still be in the right place.

So, all's well that ends well. Next steps: get my thyroid levels checked again in early June, and then hopefully get the party started with my next cycle. And try to avoid Google in the meantime....

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Back in the stirrups again

Well, not really. I have not yet been reacquainted with my old friend, the condom-sheathed transvaginal ultrasound wand. But it's coming.

We had a consult last week with our beloved RE (and I really mean this....I almost squealed when I saw him) to talk about our one lonely frozen embryo and what to do with it. I went into the meeting with very low expectations -- we only have one embryo (well, actually a blastocyst), so I guess I figured we'd give it a go as a sort of inevitable warm-up to a fresh IVF cycle.

As it turns out, this thing could actually work. Apparently my clinic has a 95% thaw survival rate for blasts, and something like a 32% success rate with single-embryo FETs.  It was really the first stat that floored me -- I'd mentally prepared myself to get ready to take a bunch of drugs, and then have the cycle cancelled because our little frozen nugget didn't make it. Which of course could still happen, but it doesn't seem quite so much like certain doom.

The other "exciting" part is how much less physically grueling this cycle will be. No lupron, no stims, no every-other-day ultrasounds of my pendulous ovaries. So, that's a plus.

So, timing. Right after my next cycle starts (probably sometime next week), I'll have the dreaded saline sonogram (apparently not as bad as the HSG, but I'm not anticipating butterfly kisses here). Then, more bloodwork (I've already had some, with not-so-great results, which I'll get to in a later post). Then, on day 2 of the cycle after that (mid-June), I'll start estrogen. Then lining checks for a while, and then the thaw and (hopefully) transfer mid-way through that cycle.

I'm not even going to let myself think about the two week wait. I'd love to get there, of course, but I'm also not excited about being there. If that makes any sense.

One of the last things my RE noted when I "graduated" from his care after last cycle -- and one of the first things he said during our meeting this time around -- was how impressed he was by our positive attitude during treatment. He thinks it makes a difference. I'm not sure that I fully agree, but I am trying to hold on to that thought -- there is no reason for me to expect this NOT to work until it doesn't. And I owe my little frostie all of the good feelings I can muster.

So, muster I will.

Monday, May 14, 2012


I was getting ready to sign in to my blog (more like trying to remember HOW to sign into my blog...it's been that long) to start chronicling our upcoming FET cycle...and up popped the heartbreaking news about Ainsley Knepper. I just don't know what to say. Jen, thank you for sharing Ainsley's life with us. I'm so sorry she had to leave you so soon.

More on our situation later...