Monday, June 23, 2014

10 Weeks

My husband and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary over the weekend and received the best present today of another good ultrasound, including a great 3D shot of our growing baby.  I usually find 3D ultrasound images to be a bit... creepy.  But I love this one.  And I love this baby.  It was moving it's little arms and legs and measuring spot on at 10 weeks, 3 days.  Next week we'll have the big 12 week ultrasound but for today (and this week), I'm trying to enjoy today's good results.

Today I did the dumbest thing at work.  I wanted to photocopy one of our ultrasound photos to put in the journal I've been keeping.  I made the copy but somehow a second was made (that I didn't know about and therefore left on the copier).  Luckily, a friend at work saw it and brought it to me and she is someone I trust to not share the news with anyone.  But it brought up all of these feelings that I hadn't previously thought about.  What will it be like to tell people I am pregnant? When will I do it?  If I wait until I am comfortable with the pregnancy, I won't tell them until this baby is born.  I also feel embarrassed about what happened.  I honestly don't feel like I did anything wrong or could have prevented L's death, but I feel like a total failure.  My body let her down.  I let her down.  And getting back to sharing our news with people, it makes me feel like they will think, "Oh, she's pregnant again.  I wonder if that is a good idea?  I wonder if she'll lose this baby as well?"  I am sure they have more important stuff to think about, but this is just one of my fears.  A minor one, but a fear nonetheless.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Amy Klein's Blog

Have any of you followed Amy Klein's blog on the NY Times website over the last few years?  She's been writing "Fertility Diary" and today wrote a heartbreaking update about the five embryos she got from her last round of IVF and how all of them are genetically abnormal.  I obviously don't know Amy, but I've been following her journey for so long and my heart just breaks for her, the same way it does whenever I read another story of loss or of failed fertility treatments.  If you are going through IVF or other fertility treatments, you might give her posts a read -- she's a great writer and has quite a story.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Finding Out Gender after a Loss

With my DOR, if we make it to 12 weeks with this miracle pregnancy, we'll get a Maternit21 test done.  Part of the results include being able to find out the gender of the baby.  With L, we found out she was a girl just after 12 weeks (on my 33rd birthday, in fact).  I didn't care one way or the other before we found out... in fact, when my husband read the card and announced she was a girl, my first thought was "I hope I don't pass along my fertility issues to her."

But after losing L, I have a vision of what our family was going to look like with her in it.  When I think about our family, I think about us having a little girl.  Of course that little girl is L, so any future baby would be different, but the idea is there.  Truly, all I want is a healthy pregnancy and living baby at the end... but I'd be lying if I didn't admit to thinking a lot about the gender of this baby.  How will I feel if it is a boy?  Or if it is a girl? Should I find out early again?  Should we just be surprised if we get to that point?

Has anyone grappled with knowing the gender after a loss?  Any thoughts or advice on finding out vs. waiting?  Ultimately, I know that if I get to hold a living, breathing baby in just over 7 months, I won't care at all.  But in this time period of waiting and over-thinking, I'm seemingly obsessed.  I'd love to hear from anyone who has been through something similar.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

9 Weeks

Oh, phew.  The little peanut (who looked more like a T-Rex today with tiny arms and legs) looked great today and was measuring on track at 9 weeks and 4 days with a heart rate of 176 bpm.  It was moving all around, which was just incredible to watch.  I will never stop being in awe of something so miraculous happening inside my body.  I was particularly nervous about this week's ultrasound... I'm not sure why, but I slept terribly last night and the appointment couldn't have come quickly enough.  My husband hasn't been coming to each of my weekly ultrasounds (which is totally fine), but this morning my dear friend was in the office for her 34 week visit so she came to the ultrasound and held my hand, which was so comforting.

So, one more week down  in the first trimester as we inch closer to the big 12-week scan and the MaterniT21 test, both of which will happen on July 3rd.

I'm separately having some trouble wrangling doctors and trying to decide who will monitor me throughout pregnancy when it comes to my clotting.  I saw a MFM who I love, but she is in an entirely different hospital system than my OB and the high-risk OB we will see.  It is fine to have the MFM outside of my hospital system for now, but if we make it further along in the pregnancy, it will complicate things and I think there is a risk in having so many doctors involved leaving no one ultimately "accountable" for making decisions.  That said, the high-risk OB wants to be less aggressive with my Lovenox dosing (for clotting), which I don't like.  We'll obviously just figure this out, but I'm feeling a bit stressed about it right now with so many moving parts, coordinating test results and getting them sent to the right place, etc.  My past medical experiences have taught me that I have to advocate for myself so I'm just trying to do that as much as possible.

Monday, June 16, 2014

A Bit of Anxiety...

Admittedly, I'm having quite a bit of anxiety about my ultrasound tomorrow.  I haven't felt as nauseous the past few days, which I have convinced myself means that something is wrong.  I'll know whether this is the case within 24 hours, but I am totally distracted today by thoughts of what would be wrong, looking at miscarriage statistics, etc.  Very helpful, right?

Ever since my positive pregnancy test, I knew anxiety would be an issue.  It hasn't been as bad as it could be, but I find it overwhelming from time to time.  Every twinge in my belly leads me to believe that something is wrong.

In an effort to quell these fears, I kept very busy this weekend, including building these two chaise lounge chairs that our cat immediately enjoyed.  If relaxing in the sun in a chaise doesn't make me feel better, I don't know what would (well, maybe if I were at a beach while on the chair or still in the chair today instead of at work).  Anyway, I'm just venting a bit and counting the hours until 7:45 AM tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

8 Weeks

8 weeks and 4 days!  We saw a little heart beating away (173 bpm) and all development seems to be on track.  I'm still in a state of disbelief, although with each ultrasound I let myself (for better or for worse) get a bit more excited about the possibility that this might really be happening again and that maybe, just maybe, things will work out this time.

I've been struggling a lot with feeling like I am going to "jinx" myself by doing certain things.  Does anyone else ever feel this way?  I'm not normally a superstitious person, but there are a few things that I am either doing or avoiding for fear that doing the opposite will cause something terrible to happen (e.g., I'll lose this baby).  For example, I have a necklace that I got after we lost L that I now refuse not to wear.  I've somehow convinced myself that if I don't wear it one day, that will be it!  I know this is absurd, but sometimes the feeling that something seemingly unrelated could cause us to lose the baby is just overwhelming.  It doesn't always go with what I am wearing, so I've been trying to finagle a way to wear it each day but have it look less conspicuous.

So... am I just crazy?  Maybe I don't really want to hear your answer to that question.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

7 Weeks

Another sigh of relief for today... Little baby's heart is ticking away at 165 bpm and it's now measuring 7 weeks and 5 days.  I'm taking this one day at a time and today I am enjoying the good ultrasound and head to San Francisco for work! 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

On Motherhood

I just read a really lovely post on Darling about motherhood called "When Motherhood is Unknown."  
"Motherhood is absolutely one of the most precious gifts in this life. It is to be celebrated and revered. However, we also need to remember that, for some, the journey to motherhood doesn't often go as planned"
In the midst of loss and infertility, it is only natural to think about how unfair and terrible one's situation is.  But I try to remind myself that there are others going through a similar struggle for very different reasons, whether because they are unmarried and not wanting to have children alone, have battled or are battling an illness, or some other reason.  It is just another reminder to always be thankful for what you do have, even when that feels impossible.  

Separately, I really enjoy Darling magazine - it's worth checking out.