The Journey to a Little One to Call Our Own

One gal's experiences dealing with IF, pregnancy, the birth of our first son, parenthood, and doing it all over again with our second son... here is our journey.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Defense Mode

I had lunch yesterday with a work friend of mine, A. She is two weeks away from her due date and about ready to pop. Not pregnant, she is about 5'7" and naturally thin at maybe 125 lbs. She is the perfect, beautiful pregnant woman with a round basketball-shaped belly. After she talked for awhile about doctor appointments, the nursery, and plans for rushing to the hospital to deliver, she asked me the question all of us IFers don't always know how to answer:

"So, when are you guys planning on having kids?"

It was the first time I have been asked this question while pregnant. I didn't know exactly what to say. I did kind of want to share my news with her, since I won't see her for a couple of months when she goes out on leave. So, I told the truth:

"Well, actually, soon... I'm pregnant!"

She was super excited... after freaking out, asking how far along I am, etc., I shared with her that I am not sharing with many people until after the first trimester, as we've lost through a miscarriage, and it's been a really long, tough road to conceive. This was her next comment:

"Yeah, I know people who have lost, and it's no fault of your own. It's God's way of saying that the baby wouldn't have lived a healthy life. And I know a lot of people who have gone through infertility... I could share a lot of stories."

For some reason, I had to stop myself from going into defense mode. I reminded myself that A was only being supportive and kind, but I wanted to scream, "Do you KNOW what we've been through? I know more about miscarriage, pregnancy, and infertility than you'll EVER know, so don't try to tell me your thoughts on stuff that I've actually gone through that you have never had to deal with."

Of course, I didn't say that. I brushed it off and changed the subject back to my pregnancy and not the loss, but I seriously don't think I'll ever shake the fact that IF will always be a part of my life. I need to assume positive intent when people make comments, and not get so internally defensive.

I think about what I will be like when I am in my second and third trimesters. I have always been so sensitive to women who talk non-stop about being pregnant, resting their hands on their giant belly. I just know that I will be conscious of who is around me when I say things about the baby, being pregnant, etc. I think it's a sensitivity chip that those of us who have dealt with infertility don't ever lose... and I think it's a good thing. It reminds me that there are so many of us who have experienced the same struggles, whose hearts break when they have to listen to a story about breastfeeding or picking out the car seat. Not to say I am not excited for all of these things... I totally am, and can not wait. But because IF will always be engraved in my heart, I will choose my comments and actions carefully and tactfully.

In ICLW news, I officially dropped the ball this month. Seriously, I think I checked out two new blogs and commented on only a few of my blog buddies' posts. I promise to be better next month :)

Mel will be posting the Creme de la Creme list on January 1! I am so excited to check out the posts... it's my first time participating, and I am already planning my day around being next to my computer.

And... instead of a New Years' Resolution, I will be posting my personal Start, Stop, Continue list on January 1. Stay tuned!

Mr. D and I have a wedding tomorrow, 12/31, and will be ringing in 2011 at a local reception site. Not quite sure yet how I am going to hide the fact that I won't be drinking. But, I've covered it pretty well over the holidays at several family get-togethers, so hoping I can pull one or all of the following tricks:

- Have Mr. D drink his cocktail 1/2 way and then switch with me... continue as the night progresses
- Pretend I am sipping wine by just touching it to my lips, but not actually drink it
- Dump most of it out in the sink/toilet
- Dump the beer out of a bottle (or have Mr. D slam it) and fill with water

Here's to 2011... it's going to be a GREAT year! Not just for us, but for my blog friends, too... I can just feel it :)

Mrs. D

Monday, December 27, 2010

I Broke Down...

...and bought my very first pregnancy-related items (other than pre-natals and HPTs): What to Expect When You're Expecting and Pregnancy: Day by Day.

I was so scared to buy anything related to being pregnant, for fear that I might jinx it. I am really pushing myself to not be so worried and paranoid that something is going to happen. It's in God's hands, and I am doing everything in my control to protect this little one. I have to trust that everything is going to be fine, and each day that passes, the better and better our chances that our baby is just fine. And, if not, I trust that God will take care of us.

And, I figure, I really do need to focus on what is happening with this new life... it is real, and I shouldn't be thinking that it won't last! This baby deserves all the attention in the world... after all, we waited for a long time to conceive this miracle :)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

In Awe...

Mr. D and I saw our little bean for the second time today. I am in complete awe of being pregnant, the way our baby was created and is growing inside, and the amazing changes happening with this little one each day.

We saw and heard the heartbeat! The ultrasound tech found the gestational sac right away, and zoomed in on the baby. When she expanded the image, I could see a little flicker and knew it was the heartbeat. She pointed at the screen and said, "that's the baby's heart... it's beating!" It was the most amazing sight, and when she cranked up the volume, the sound of that amazing beat just about melted my own heart.

I am measuring 6w4d, and the heartbeat was 135 bpm. I just knew I was a couple days further along than my first ultrasound tech told me I was, and today's ultrasound tech was amazingly detailed. We must have spent 30 minutes in the room as she explained every image on the screen. We are amazed at the life we've created.

And I got pictures! All four pictures show my uterus, gestational sac, yolk sac, and embryo. The yolk sac and embryo have now split into two... last week, the two were together. I could have laid on that table forever listening to the beautiful sound of my baby's heartbeat.

It is, by far, the best Christmas present I've ever had. :)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Welcome ICLW.... It's Christmas Break!

It's ICLW! If you're one of my blog buds, thanks for stopping by!

If you've never been here before, WELCOME! You can check out our story here. Basically, long story short, Mr. D and I have been married for 4.5 years. We tried for 2 very long years to get pregnant. After multiple rounds of Clomid, a miscarriage, procedures, surgery, tracking, and months of disappointment, we were over-the-moon to find out on December 2 that we're pregnant! We're still in shock. But, happy shock :)

So... it's the holidays! I am done with work until Monday! WHOO-HOO! Man, does that feel good. I am ready for Christmas. Mr. D and will be spending the holidays with our families... both live about 20 minutes away. I can't wait to sleep in tomorrow, relax, and enjoy the season over the next few days!

In baby news, I am 6w1d, and keep plugging along! I am feeling funny stretching sensations in my tummy recently, and on top of being exhausted, having huge, aching boobs, and continuing to pee every couple hours, I am definitely pregnant! We get to see the little bean again tomorrow at our 1:00 p.m. ultrasound. I can not wait.

Happy holidays, blog ladies and gentlemen (I doubt there are any guys who read my blog, but if so, rock on!)!!

Mrs. D

Friday, December 17, 2010

Have a Little Faith

I heard the most appropriate song on the radio when I was at work today. I literally stopped what I was doing at my desk, stared at my computer monitor, and pretended to read a long e-mail. The song was, "Have a little faith... have a little faith in me." It totally hit home.

I have been trying so hard NOT to get excited, but I am starting to realize that I will obviously do everything in my earthly control to protect this little one. But everything ultimately is part of God's plan, and it's out of my hands. I just need to trust. I need to have a little faith. :)

So, I am feeling a bit more relaxed and definitely allowing myself to be more excited. It's real and I am pregnant!

My doctor called today and ordered another ultrasound for next week - yay! She said that the first ultrasound was early and she really wants to be able to detect a heartbeat to ensure we are in a good place. Mr. D and I have the day off on Thursday, 12/23, so I scheduled our appointment for 1:00 p.m.

If we do see/hear the heartbeat, we are considering telling our parents at Christmas, since the chance of miscarriage dramatically decreases after that important milestone. I am still skeptical about this... we ended up telling my parents at the beginning of my first pregnancy, as we were going to Mexico with them the next week (they needed to know why I would be declining margaritas), and we ended up having to tell them that we lost the baby. It was terrible.

I am still stuck on waiting until 12 weeks, but if we do hear/see a heartbeat, maybe we would share during the holidays only with our parents. Thoughts from my blog friends? Wait or share?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

My Little Appleseed

We had our ultrasound this morning, and the tech found our little bean right away. This is actually real!

She measured a lot, checked around a lot, and basically, let us revel in the sight of our little bean.

All we could really see is the gestational pouch and yolk sac. I asked if we would be able to see the heartbeat, and she said rarely has she been able to pick up on a heartbeat prior to 6 weeks. She said even a woman who is 5 weeks, 6 days pregnant may not have a baby heartbeat that is detectable. She measured me at 5 weeks, 1 day. I was kind of surprised, given I got my BFP 13 days ago... I thought for sure I was a little more far along. I was guessing right around 6 weeks, give or take a day. But, 5 weeks, 1 day it is, and I am so happy that we were able to see the little one. Our baby is officially the size of an appleseed :)

So, not sure if I will be called back for another ultrasound to check the heartbeat prior to my first official appointment.... man, I hope so. I am waiting for my Doctor to call back. Either way, Mr. D and I are thrilled.

We keep praying that this little one continues to stick and thrive inside of me. My boobs still feel like they've been used as a punching bag, I am fast asleep by 8:30 p.m., and I think I am peeing a bit more frequently. I think these are all good signs :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ultrasound Tomorrow

I am SO thankful for Dr. C.

After seeing my high beta from last Thursday, she ordered an early ultrasound. WHOO HOO! So, tomorrow at 9:15 a.m., Mr. D and I will be marching into our clinic, ready to see our little one on the screen for the first time. I am praying that we see our little bean and see/hear his/her heartbeat strongly pounding.

Man, this IF stuff messes with my mind. Most women I know who have been pregnant are completely satisfied with their pee-on-a-stick BFP and don't think twice about the baby really being "okay." They just think, "oh, I am pregnant - cool!" They don't need to see the baby on an ultrasound to believe the baby is growing. And even if they do see it, they just figure everything is okay from that point on.

But I can not associate with most women. I am an IFer for life. It will be a huge milestone if we see that heartbeat, and even that will not stop me from worrying every day, just praying that our little one is safe and sound inside of me. I think IF will leave a permanent impression on my life, and I will not rest until I bring home our live, healthy baby.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Holy Cow, This May Be Really Happening

Beta on 12/2 = 55

Beta on 12/9... 7 days later. Results came in this morning =


I am doubling every 1.2 days or so. I can't believe it. I prepared myself for the worst... somewhere in the high 300's, thinking that I was just jinxing myself to pray for something in the 1,000's. No more HSGs needed... we're moving on to the ultrasound since we've now well-surpassed 2,000.

The nurse triage was super busy today - they had some nurses call in sick - and the nurse who called me was from a sister clinic. She said after reviewing my file, she knew I struggled with infertility and she needed to prioritize her call to me (thank you, thank, you, THANK YOU, kind nurse Maureen).

She told me that my results were "really good", and when I asked for the number, I literally about fell out of my chair when she said 3,328. I made her repeat it to me, and she goes, "yay! I knew you'd be excited - congratulations!"

So, onto next steps! I have never made it this far and still am in shock. I think I will continue to be in shock until I see our beautiful little bean on an ultrasound.

I can not tell you enough how much I appreciate my blog friends... you gals are the best and I so appreciate your support, thoughts, and comments. Thank you!!

Happy weekend, ladies. We're preparing for some major snow tonight and tomorrow here in good ol' Minnesota (some reports say up to 12 inches!) ... should make for a white Christmas :)

Mrs. D

Thursday, December 9, 2010

It's Out of My Hands

I am trying to come to terms that this pregnancy is out of my hands. Whatever God wants for us, will be. All I can do is take care of myself, and leave what's meant to be up to God.

I still can not believe I am pregnant. Other than my aching boobs, here-and-there crampy feelings in my stomach, extreme tiredness at night, and increased urge to pee (let alone the three very positive HPTs) as "signs" that I am indeed pregnant, I am shocked that I have a little bean growing inside of me.

I went in for beta #2 this afternoon. I get results tomorrow, and I hope more than anything that my numbers went up. I am praying that this is not all just a dream.

After stopping by the Dr. office for beta, I had an indescribable need to go to our church and pray. Mr. D and I go there every Sunday for Mass, pray before meals and bed, but I've never felt so inclined to need to be at church. So I went. And I prayed. And I sat in the pew for awhile. I sat next to one of the stained glass windows, and gorgeous rays from the sun shined through a portion of the glass onto me. Nobody was there, and it was beautiful. Peaceful. And it gave me time to think, pray, and trust.

I'll post results tomorrow; thanks for the continued prayers and comments. My blog friends are the best!

Mrs. D

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Patiently Waiting...

My fill-in Dr.'s nurse called today. My real Dr. was on maternity leave until Monday, so I was working with her temporary fill-in Dr. last week. Progesterone level from my blood test last Thursday was great, so fill-in Dr. advised to discontinue use of progesterone suppositories. It makes me a little nervous to stop using them, as I've been thinking that they've been helping keep baby safe, but I was reminded that too much isn't good either.

Then I asked her about another beta, thinking that I would go in this week to test again. She told me, "No, that won't be necessary. We have on record that you are pregnant with a 55 HSG."

So, then she's like, "So, since you are about 1 week pregnant, go ahead and set up an initial appointment on week 10 or so."

Ahhhh.... what?

I tried to explain my dates... yes, my last AF was 10/23, but I am sure I ovulated on 11/18 or so, which would put me right around 4.5, almost 5 weeks. AND... my real Dr. had told me months ago that once I got pregnant, to call her, and she would ensure we test HSG to ensure it rises appropriately and do an early ultrasound.

So, she told me that she'd call me back. A few hours later (4 to be exact, but who's counting), she called and told me that my Dr. ordered another HSG test for me to complete this week. She wants to see me hit 2,000 before an early ultrasound. So, if I am not at 2,000 later this week (not sure I will be), I am supposed to go back next week and keep testing until I hit 2,000. Then, I can schedule my ultrasound... thankfully, before Christmas :)

So, I feel much better. We keep patiently waiting and praying that this little bean is growing just perfectly inside of me. For now, I am great with the plan... much better than waiting several weeks with no action.

Please keep us in your prayers for a high beta on Thursday afternoon! I should have results back on Friday.

Thanks to my gals who left me such nice comments this week... your support is so wonderful!

Happy week, everyone!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Keeping Our Fingers Crossed

It is SO hard to believe I am really pregnant and we are just praying everything will be okay. IF is constantly on my mind... Am I going to be able to carry this baby this time? What went wrong last time, and are we doing enough to fix it?

My beta last Thursday came back as 55, which my nurse, Beth, said is "barely pregnant." But, still pregnant :) I think she and my Dr. were a bit concerned that my last AF started on October 23, and I am just now getting a beta of 55. However, I know I didn't ovulate until November 18 or 19, so a beta of 55 is okay. We are praying my numbers rise. My Dr. is waiting for my progesterone results to come back - I should have them mid-week, and then I am going to request another beta (I am thinking she'll prescribe one, anyway). The Dr. I've seen for years is coming back from maternity leave tomorrow, and I can't wait. She knows our whole struggle, and I remember her saying that when I get pregnant, she'll run any test she can to ensure everything is okay.

I peed on another First Response this morning and the lines were much darker than Thursday morning. Thursday's lines were definitely there, but today's lines were super dark. Mr. D was very excited to see that, as was I.

We're just keeping our fingers crossed and praying that this is it.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Holiday Blessing to Mr. D and Me

I used CBFM this month. Low, low, low, high, high, high, low, low, low. No peak... showing no real ovulation.

But - for once throughout this whole TTC journey - I listened to my body. I thought I felt like my body ovulated around Day 30. But, who ovulates on Day 30? Seriously, that is so late that I thought I was crazy for thinking my body was ovulating so late in the month (for me, anyways).

But, I thought, what the heck. We're going all out and trying just like we would any other month.

And, then... this morning, around 7:00 a.m., on the 42nd day of my cycle, but 12th day DPO....

I peed on a stick. Well, two sticks, actually: a ClearBlue Easy digital and a First Response Early Result.

And both tests were positive :) Pregnant!

I truly can't believe it. Mr. D and I stared at those tests for, what seemed like, several minutes before freaking out.

The day has been a blur. I called my Doctor, was quickly seen for two blood tests (HCG and progesterone level), and prescribed progesterone suppositories.

I am keeping myself from being extremely excited about this BFP until I hear some test results and progress a bit... I keep thinking, "don't get your hopes up, this could not work out, like last time, and then you'll be so sad." It's awful to hold myself back from a natural feeling of complete excitement and happiness, but once an IF-girl, always an IF-girl. I need to take it easy and let what's meant to be happen. Mr. D and I keep praying that this is real, and we have a sticky, healthy baby. For those of you I know in real life, please keep this only to yourself :)

This is an incredible blessing. :)