Tag Archives: infertility

Relief

Huge relief. That was the theme of yesterdays ultrasound.

D and I arrived about a half hour early in hopes that we would be able to have everything done early. Luckily, they called us back within about 15 minutes. I was an absolute nervous wreck, but I managed to hold back tears until we saw it–the gestational sac–in the right place, at the very top of my uterus! We were only able to see the gestational and yolk sacs at this point, but that’s all the doctor was hoping for.

It was measuring 5 weeks 3 days, which is about 2 days ahead of my calculations. Thank goodness.

Now another two week wait until the next ultrasound at approximately 7 weeks 1 day. This will be the viability scan where they’ll be looking for a heart beat in order to release me to my regular OB/GYN. I think I can actually relax a bit from now until then.

Where to Begin?

I’m not even sure how long it has been since my last post, because I didn’t even go to my blog when I logged in. I honestly needed a break from thinking about IF and loss. But I really feel the urge to write, and I’m hoping someone out there can maybe even give me some comforting words.

So, I am pregnant again. At least at this moment I am. This was a complete and total shock, as I haven’t had my period since 7/1 and thought for sure that I would need to take Provera to get things back on track. This was our first cycle NTNP, and it felt good to really truly take a break.

Three weeks ago I went to the doctor for hcg and Progesterone testing, which came back negative and at 1, respectively. The doctor thought I was not going to ovulate, but I had a strange feeling and decided not to fill the Provera prescription she wrote. Two weeks later, I got a positive HPT. Beta #1 was 192 on 9/3, Beta #2 was 458 on 9/5. Beta today was 1,507. This is why I need to write.

My doctor wants to see me for an ultrasound on Thursday, and right now the thought of waiting that long seems impossible. When the nurse called me today, she did not sound very optimistic. They obviously wanted to see my hcg at around 2,000, but with all of my researching this afternoon it looks like the number should actually double every 48-72 hours and that any growth over 66% every two days is considered promising. I have not given up hope, but I am worried tremendously. I had to take the day off of work, telling my boss that I believed I was miscarrying. I can’t fathom another loss, but at the same time it feels inevitable. Why wouldn’t this end in tragedy like my last? It seems like that’s the way everything is going this year.

What really gets me this time is that we weren’t trying. Isn’t that when everyone says your miracle is supposed to happen? Yes, I consider it a miracle that I even got pregnant naturally, but I want this baby so badly. It’s supposed to be born on May 10th, so close to May 7th when we lost D’s mom. It’s supposed to be the happiest moment in our lives to help ease the pain of losing Fran way too soon. Two pink hibiscus flowers bloomed each time we were in Cincinnati in the last month on D’s sister’s porch. That tree had been dormant all summer, she said. And yet here they are, each time:

I took these as a sign that everything is going to be okay with our baby; that Fran is up there working for us. I really hope that this is the case, but now more than ever I want a sign that this will all turn out fine.

I have read some blogs, or rather a blog where her hcg numbers were similar and had similar doubling times as mine, and she’s now well into her third trimester. This does offer some level of comfort, but I can’t help still worrying.

If everyone who is reading this could offer me the best, most positive energy they have right now, I would really appreciate it. I’m thinking dances, magic, huge prayers, what have you. I really need it right now.

I’ll update after my Thursday ultrasound.

Lost

Sitting in my psychiatrist’s office right now. He is notoriously at least 15 minutes late so I know I have time to at least let out some of the things I’ve been struggling with lately.

This is an urgent appointment that I scheduled last week when I ran out of Xanax and realized that I need to up my dosage of my SSRI. I’m feeling very lost and overwhelmed right now. I may have popped a few too many pills and had a few too many drinks last week for my comfort. All of my other (healthy) coping mechanisms seemed unfeasible at the time. I’ve been working 12+ hour days at work, coming home and sweating over the stove and then sink (our dishwasher is currently broken,) and then zoning out under the ceiling fan in front of the tv, not wanting to talk to D.

It has been two months since we lost Fran, and our house is a wreck. We have so much of her stuff that I’m considering hiring a personal organizer. Things that I used to be okay with (closet is a disaster, we need to get rid of clothes, etc.) are now driving me up the wall. I get so overwhelmed that I get into this almost catatonic, quiet state where I can’t do anything.

But on the outside, my friends think I am fine because I am not acting much differently. They want to think I’m fine, because who wants to see their loved ones struggle?

Work is confusing right now, structurally, and I’ll just leave it at that because it’s not worth getting into. Needless to say, it has been a gigantic source of stress these past two weeks.

I feel very alone. I know I am not, but I miss my parents and wish they could live nearby.

I feel very angry. I don’t understand why we had to lose our baby and Fran.

I feel very overwhelmed. I want our house to be tidy and clean and I feel like a bad wife that it isn’t.

With all of this, we have decided to postpone IVF until we are in a better mental state. We may wait until next February even. I’m calling 2013 a bust and saying screw it. I’m only 27; D’s only 29. We have time.

Cleanse, Detox, Whatever You Want To Call It…

…it sucks big time. I am on day two of a 21-day “action plan” from Whole Living magazine that several of my coworkers did back in the winter. They all saw some amazing results–improved energy, digestion, mood. Oh, and these already skinny bitches got even skinnier! So, as someone who has always sworn up and down against fad diets/detoxes/what-have-you, I am embarking on what I am sure will be a very cranky three-week journey.

Why am I doing this? Well, for several reasons. My mood and energy could definitely be improved, and I’d like to lose some weight before our beach vacation in July. Plus I enjoy a good challenge, and want to test my willpower. Okay, okay…and I guess I am starting to buy-in a little bit to the idea of “clean” eating. I need a fresh start to the summer, and I think it will only help with my upcoming IVF cycle.

But seriously, it sucks right now. For the first week you can only have veggies, fruits, lentils, nuts, oils, and seeds. And seasonings, of course. The recipes have actually been quite delicious thus far, and I have enjoyed them, but I find my mind to be completely fuzzy. It’s likely the lack of caffeine, but I am allowed green tea at least.

D is doing the cleanse with me, albeit without eliminating caffeine. His commute is way too long to go without it when he’s been a two cups before work each day kinda guy.

The part that is really bugging me right now is that I have no desire to run. It could also be an effect of my working 12-hour days for the majority of this week that’s sapping my energy. Apparently though, this week is supposed to suck, and you are supposed to spring out of bed on day 7 and be able to run a marathon. Or something. I know though, I will definitely be ready to eat some effing FISH and BLACK BEANS and BROWN RICE. But that will all have to wait 5 more days.

Has anyone reading ever done a cleanse? Would you be interested, or do you think it’s just starving and tricking yourself that it’s good for you? I’ll be sure to let you guys know how it goes.

More Signs That She’s Still Here

This weekend, D and I took a much-needed weekend trip with friends to a great little festival in Nelsonville, Ohio (about 15 miles from where we both went to college and first began dating.) We drank local craft beers, got stuck in the rain, ate delicious comfort food, met many interesting and good people, danced and held each other during Cat Power’s late-night set, and much more.

I will admit, I did have a few thoughts throughout the weekend about Sweet Pea and how we would have booked a hotel instead of tent camping if I were still pregnant. But they were intermittent and my mind recently has not been occupied 90% of the time with my loss and the desire to become pregnant again.

Something beautiful happened when the band that I was most excited to see came on the main stage Saturday afternoon. Lucius began their sound-check and one of the singers, Jess, sang the chorus of “Good Night, Irene.” At the time I was focused on how moving her voice was, even for a sound-check. But while walking back to camp after the performance, D admitted to tearing up when she sang that song. His mom’s middle name was Irene and she introduced him to the song when he was younger. I was, and still am, so touched to think that she’s still here and sending us signs.

Luckily for us, we were able to see Lucius perform another set in a completely acoustic, very small cabin. The setting was the definition of intimate, and although it felt like we should have been doing Bikram yoga there, it was worth the heat. I recorded an iPhone video of my favorite song of theirs, “Go Home,” which I have belted in my car on several occasions. I first heard it around the time I had just discovered I was not pregnant even though I had produced four mature follicles that cycle. The song kind of became an anthem for me and my struggle with fertility. Like I was telling my infertility to stop infiltrating every aspect of my life. I was wishing it away; telling it that I didn’t need it, and to go home.

After the performance, the band was sweet enough to stick around and talk to people, take photos, etc. D and I approached Jess and told her the story of his mom and how interesting it was to us that she used “Good Night, Irene” for her sound-check. She gave us both hugs and told us how sorry she was, but how glad she was able to show him a sign that she’s still with us. We talked for several more minutes about where we were from, etc. We found out that they are actually playing a free show at a festival in Pittsburgh in a couple of weeks, and she told us specifically to find her after the show. D and I were so touched by her kindness and genuineness that when said goodbye we both felt lightness and love.

Image

D and I with the vocalists, Jess (left) and Holly (right)

I would highly recommend to anyone to check out Lucius’s music and buy their EP. They have a full-length album coming out in the fall, and the wonderful thing about them is the diversity and range they have from one song to the next.

Here’s my foggy video from the cabin performance:

I’m so glad we were able to have a relaxing weekend filled with music and joy.

Fran C and Sweet Pea

I haven’t been here in a while because there has been so, so much going on. D’s sister’s wedding was last week and she absolutely embodied the spirit and joy of her mother. D officiated the ceremony and did an incredible job. There have been many signs that D’s mom, Fran, is still with us. The most amazing of which is something I can hardly wrap my head around.

D’s sister sent us a text from her honeymoon on Tuesday night while we were eating at Fran’s favorite diner in her neighborhood. We had just completed cleaning out her apartment and wanted to reminisce a bit. The text said this:

“We went on an amazing jet ski tour today and we saw a boat called the ‘Fran C’ and right near it one named ‘Sweet Pea.'”

We couldn’t believe it. We both broke down in tears and immediately saw it as a sign that his mom is somewhere taking care of our little Sweet Pea. It was both chilling and comforting, and I’ve never experienced such relief to think that our baby is somewhere being taken care of, and that Fran is doing what she has always loved the most and done best: taking care of her children.

That’s all I can really write for now. This has been the hardest two months of our lives. I hope we can find more respite soon.

Racing

I’m staying a bit late at work tonight to work on a photo transfer onto canvas for my parents’ 30th wedding anniversary. Today is their actual anniversary, so congratulations to them!

Yesterday I ran the second leg of the Pittsburgh Marathon, which was 3.5 miles. I was so convinced I could do it at a ten minute pace, but I went out too fast, did not anticipate the inclines, had to wait in line for a bathroom at the beginning, and had gotten my period that same day. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it, that I had something under my control, and I feel a bit like I failed. My time was 42 minutes, which, while respectable, just wasn’t how I wanted to finish. I had to stop and walk at least twice, and in general I just felt kind of “meh” about the whole thing. I’m hoping to redeem myself with a half-marathon at the end of July.

Apart from my personal goal not being met, it was a lovely day. D ran the half in record time (under two hours!) and it was gorgeous outside. I had fun celebrating with others who had finished the half or full marathon, and may or may not have had a beer before 11:00 am…

Of course though, we decided to attend a friend’s birthday celebration yesterday afternoon without thinking about who would be there. This friend has two children–a brand-new baby who is amazing and gorgeous, and a bright, spirited, lovely 19-month old. These particular friends are about five years older than me, and two or three older than D. I knew there would be kids there, but I was not prepared for how many. There were about eight couples including us, and we were the only ones not with children or currently pregnant. It really hit me at that point how we were the infertile 1 in 8. D kept telling me that they’re all older than us, which I understand, but it was still overwhelming. I kept myself busy by drinking hefeweizen and talking with our close friends who struggled for three years to conceive and now have a healthy 10-month old. But at a point I knew I was going to become emotional, I hurried to the bathroom and shed some tears. We stayed for about 15 more minutes until I decided that we needed to leave.

On the way home, I told D that I’ve felt so strong these past couple of weeks, and I thought that I was prepared to see lots of people with babies, but I wasn’t. I had a sneaking suspicion the day before that perhaps it wasn’t the best idea I’ve ever had, especially given the circumstances of getting my first period after an ectopic, but i ignored it. I feel like I’ve taken a bit of a step back in my emotional recovery, but I hope that I’ll be able to take a couple of steps forward as a result.

In fertility news, I am now officially, by self-imposition, infertile. Meaning that I started BCPs yesterday. Again, I’m hoping that it will clear up some of my PCOS symptoms (especially the weight gain) and regulate how often I get my period. D has his SA scheduled for this Wednesday and we have another meeting with Dr. A at the end of June. I really want to enjoy myself this summer, but I feel like we’re so far away from our IVF cycle right now. I think that for me I’ve taken a long enough break, but D needs longer. If it were only my decision, we’d be onto IVF in July. I’m sure that in the long-run, this summer will seem to have been very necessary, as it’s likely the last summer we will spend without children. But for right now it seems like an unnecessary three and a half months.

I want to focus on myself and my relationship with D. I want to have fun, and I want to look forward to things. But right now I’m having a hard time relaxing and being able to do this.

Has anyone out there taken a long break from TTC? I’d especially love to hear it if you moved onto another method of treatment afterward.