Wednesday, November 21, 2012

10 Weeks, 2 Days: Moving On

When I started this blog I wasn't sure how long I'd be blogging because, surely, I'd be pregnant from my first medicated cycle.  Then I wasn't, and even though the fertility treatments sort of sucked and it felt like no one in my life could understand, I was happy to meet a great community of fellow infertility bloggers.  I'm so grateful to have had some understanding women along with me on my journey.

And now that I am pregnant I feel like my time here has come to an end for several reasons.  First, I have so little to say about pregnancy so far.  Luckily it's been a bit of a snoozefest.  Second, I have a bit of survivor's guilt knowing that most of my audience is filled of women trying so hard to get where I am so admitting point number one makes me feel even more guilty.

Third, and probably most importantly, I follow dozens of parenting and other blogs and unfortunately the name Pussy Parent is maybe not the most family friendly to use when commenting on other blogs.

And lastly, just knowing how I felt during the infertility journey, whenever I found a new blog I would start at the beginning and read all about someone else's cycles and whenever someone got a BFP I would keep reading a few entries to make sure everything was okay and then move onto another blog.  If you're new and reading this, I am pregnant from my first IVF cycle and if these words are still here, all is well.

So, I'm not leaving exactly but I am cautiously trying out a new blog. I don't want to link the name here because it contains personal photos and I want to limit my googlability but here is a picture with the name in it.  I hope you will follow me there.  Here it is:

Monday, November 5, 2012

Eight Weeks: Graduation!

I was a little on edge driving to the clinic this morning because my husband had turned to me in bed earlier and said "oh crap, your ultrasound is when?"

Men.  Seriously.  He was there when I scheduled it!  And it's the same exact appointment time as last week's.

"Don't panic." I told myself, "he's already seen the baby on the ultrasound twice and we heard the heartbeat so everything will be fine."

Then the little paranoid voice inside my head argued with the rational voice.  " were measuring three days behind last time and three days is nearly half a week and a week behind is BAD.  Plus you don't even feel pregnant."

I get to the office and it's the typical crowded masses I've gotten used to at this Monday appointment time.  Back when I used to go at 8:30 it was a lot less crowded but at 10 it's packed to the brim.  And a lot of people looked really stressed, staring into their phone or looking down at their shoes.  It reminded me of the line that Jack Nicholas says in the waiting room of his therapist's office:

"What if this is as good as it gets?

On the one hand, I wanted to distance myself from anxious fertility patient and enter my new role of happy pregnant patient but I was nervous too, hoping that the little bean I had seen the past two weeks would still be greeting me on the screen and that the drive home wouldn't be traumatic.

Just then a woman walks in with not one, not two, but THREE children.  Holy crap!  I had defended women who bring children to the fertility clinic on message boards before, but OMG three.  One was barely three years old, one was about 18 months and one was maybe nine months.  Yes the math doesn't work out but the two older kids were calling her Mom so they must all be hers.  And no, sadly, they did not sit quietly like little cherubs.  Maybe she's an egg donor? I know I shouldn't judge, but damn, that was not what the room needed this morning.

Getting back to the important part of the story, everything went great with the ultrasound!  The pregnancy is measuring 7 weeks, 6 days so we caught up two days!  I graduated from the fertility clinic (see ya!) and they even gave me a free Baby Bargains book.  Maybe this is really happening!  I still feel great (knock on wood) and I'm three pounds below my pre-IVF weight, 9 pounds below post-IVF weight.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Seven Weeks: Heartbeat!

Thank you to everyone who offered their thoughts and support after Saturday's bleeding scare.  I really appreciate it. 

My weekend was spent in suspended animation.  We didn't end up going to the haunted hayride or anyplace for that matter.  I spent most of it firmly planted on the couch, hoping to not temp fate.  My sense of smell was crazy and I got mad at my husband for eating peanut butter.

We got in to the doctor's office today and it was SO busy.  Waiting was pretty weird.  DH told me he wants to tell his boss I'm pregnant because "people are asking questions" and I'm trying to shush him because I don't even know if I'm still pregnant AND we're in a fertility doctor's waiting room and I don't want to rub it in for the others around us.

Anyway, I finally get wanded and there it is, my little sac.  Looking good.*  Before I knew it there was a sound coming from the screen. 

Buh bump.  Buh bump.  Buh bump. 

Wow, there is a heart beating inside me!  It was probably the coolest thing in the whole wide world.  The nurse said the heartbeat is 120 bpm which (according to a quick Dr. Googling) is normal.

*The ultrasound dated my pregnancy as 6 weeks, 4 days even though I am 7 weeks today.  Last week I was measuring 1-2 days behing and now I'm measuring a full 3 days behind.  The nurse said not to worry but I'm still a little concerned.  I really hope my little guy catches up some by next week.

Does anyone have any early ultrasound measurement stories to help ease my mind?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Six Weeks, Five Days: Bright Red Blood

Trying to stay calm.

Woke up and went to pee, only to see bright red blood on the toilet paper accompanied with some thick darker blood.

Called the nurse and she said to just take it easy and that it could be from the Crinone or intercourse.

I feel okay, just sort of paranoid.

Next ultrasound is on Monday.  I hope I make it.

Hang in there, baby.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Six weeks: One sac!

I'm too tired to get out of bed - where I've been since I came home from work - but I figured I can use my handy phone app to record the happy news.

We saw one gestational sac, one yolk sac, and one fetal pole with the tiniest little flickering of a heartbeat. So exciting! Everything was measuring right on track. I can stop the Lovenox finally and I go back next week to hopefully hear the heartbeat.

All is right with the world. Just really tired.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

One Or Two Embryos: Part Two

On the eve of my first ultrasound I think it's fitting to finally update on our decision on how many embryos to transfer, as promised in this earlier post.  In case you aren't familiar with how the past few months have gone here's a recap:

Before going through our first IVF cycle, my husband and I were pretty certain we were only going to transfer one embryo.

We ended up transferring two embryos.

I am now pregnant.

In retrospect, I wish I could articulate our decision to transfer two in the same way I had previously explained our rationale behind only transferring one.  To be honest, I think until you've actually been through IVF it's really easy to underestimate the emotional component involved in making these decisions.

Scientifically, it seemed like we would have just as good a chance of success transferring one fresh embryo and later, if necessary, a frozen embryo, as we would if we transferred two fresh embryos.  That all makes SO MUCH SENSE on paper, but then you get to the actual IVF.

I was very excited to get nineteen eggs on retrieval day, only to wake up to an urgent phone call from my doctor several hours later that H's sperm sample was the worst ever and we would need to use ICSI - something we had previously decided to forgo.  Even with ICSI they were only able to fertilize nine of the eggs.  Little by little our optimism began to fade.

Here's the other thing: my clinic has pretty bad SART statistics. This never really bothered me because I accepted the explanation they give -  they offer competitive IVF prices and don't turn anyone away due to age or other fertility issues thus lowering their statistics.  On the other hand, I always thought *my* chances would be better.  I read so many accounts of women being given personalized statistics based on the quality of the embryos, so I awaited eagerly for mine.  Imagine my shock when transfer day came and I was given the same exact odds as the clinic's overall success rate: 37 percent chance of success based entirely on age and nothing else.

I asked the doctor (one I hadn't previously met) why the odds were not higher and he said simply that if I wanted to transfer three embryos he could give me a 40 percent chance. Three?! we are.  My legs spread open in stirrups.  We're presented with these odds that were less than we had hoped for and of the nineteen eggs we had originally, we only had nine embryos and five of them had apparently stopped growing on the second day.  We had two day five embryos, one great quality and one good.  Of the seven remaining, two looked okay (a day three and a day four blast). All of a sudden I thought about our chances in a new, less clinical, way. If we transferred the best day five blast, would the second best one even survive the thaw?  And if the best embryo didn't stick, how confident could we be of the second best one sticking?  The third?

Two went in and at least one stuck.  They gave us a thirty percent chance of twins and, if I had to guess based on beta numbers, I'm smack dab in the middle of where my levels would be for a singleton pregnancy.  I'm not going to lie, a part of me would be relieved to see one sac tomorrow.  Because all of my fears and doubts about twin pregnancy and parenthood didn't vanish simply because we changed our mind.  Another part of me would be a little sad about losing our other embryo.

Mostly I am just nervous about seeing at least one normally developing six week pregnancy in my uterus tomorrow and I'll just thank my lucky stars if that actually happens.

Friday, October 19, 2012

5 Weeks, 4 Days: Milk Does a Body Good (I Hope)

Chugging along on my fifth week of pregnancy.

Back from my awesome vacation.

Chugging two percent milk like it's going out of style.  I tried my beloved almond milk last night and it just wasn't the same.  I need the cow kind.  It's all I want.  I got two little cartons today again at lunch and almost immediately regretted not getting a third.  I was afraid the lady at the register would judge me.  Must secure large carton of milk to keep in work fridge.

Going to a birthday party tomorrow night.  I already told the birthday girl I was pregnant (couldn't wait) but I have since told her that H doesn't know she knows and we're going to play it cool at the party.  It's at a beer hall so I'm hoping they have some N/A beers or something so I can fit in.

I'm down nine pound since retrieval day.  I can't deny I'm happy about that but retrieval day was also my highest weight ever so I'm only about four pounds below normal and still six pound above where I started out TTCing.

Need to catch up on a few work related things but wanted to give an update.  Pretty much nothing is happening.  Other than wanting milk and going to bed early I have no symptoms.

Ultrasound is Monday, can't wait!