Saturday, December 8, 2012

Appointment Yesterday

Yesterday we met with the midwife again.  This was a long visit because I had a big blood draw, plus the pap smear, breast exam, and pelvic exam (not expecting it to be quite to intense, but maybe that's a new thing?). It was supposed to be about an hour and between the number of questions we had which probably added 20-30 minutes to the appointment plus the blood draw issues we had (it was freezing in that office and they had to stick me 4 times and get blood in two sessions), we were there for a little over 2 hours!  But, my blood pressure is normal, my uterus felt like an orange, which is apparently normal, and when she felt for my butt bone, she couldn't feel it, which is a good indicator that my pelvis will not cause me to have to have a c-section as long as the baby is behaving.  Because of the difficulty I had getting pregnant and the auto-immune issues they've discovered, they want to send me a an MFM.  They gave me two choices to choose from and I have to research and let them know.  Our next appointment is right after the New Year and we will do the second part of the Nuchal Translucency Screening.  I am trying not to worry about this and doing a pretty good job, I think.

I think that I am still having a very difficult time believing I will actually bring home a baby.  I am just so afraid something is going to happen and very aware that nothing is guaranteed.  I think that's why I haven't enjoyed telling people as much as I had always hoped I would.  The more people who know, the more people who will ask us how we're doing if something bad happens.  Most people I work closely with know and all of our close friends at church know as well.  It will be in the church bulletin tomorrow.  Our church is small enough that we can list all expecting couples in the bulletin, as well as birthdays and anniversaries. 

I have a very close girlfriend (we are friends with the couple, but she is one of my closest girlfriends on top of that) who had two miscarriages two cycles in a row before they conceived their son, who is now 8 1/2 months old.  She told me that she had doubts about bringing home a baby all throughout her pregnancy too and it really kept her from bonding with the baby and she regrets it a lot.  My problem is, how do you bond with the baby? 

In more exciting news, we went to the Motherhood store today and I got a pair of jeans and I have some clothes in an online cart for Old Navy maternity clothes. I am nervous about ordering so much, but I am ordering two different sizes of jeans since it's free return shipping right now.  I have been having to wear a knock-off bella band every day because I can't button or zip my pants now.  My shirts seems to be getting shorter too.  I wonder if I am showing too soon and gaining too much weight too fast. 

Well, I am rambling now.  Overall, I am thankful to God for all the blessings we have and I realize what a miracle we have.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

First Midwife Appointment Today

Today was our first appointment with our midwife.  I really liked everyone in the practice including the midwife.  I had a ton of questions and she answered some of the really urgent ones and then asked if we could save the rest for our next appointment which is much longer.  The appointment is next Friday, so I was fine with that.  So, their measurements brought us to June 12 as the EDD b/c they said we were 11w6d, but they didn't say they were changing our previous EDD from the RE of June 15 during the visit.  I guess I'll ask just to make sure on the next visit.

I told my boss and the VP that I work with closely today.  Yesterday, I told one of the men I work with that I feel pretty close to.  He was really excited and shared some of what he and his wife did and how much he loved being a parent - his kids are grown and married and they are hoping to have grandchildren soon.  It was very encouraging. 

So, here are some ultrasound pics from today.  At first I was really nervous that the baby wasn't moving, but then the lady doing the ultrasound pointed out that we could see the heart moving.  Whew!  Then, she had me cough and suddenly the baby jolted awake and was super active.  We could see that while the baby was sleeping, his little hand was up over his face and then when he woke up, we saw both arms and legs flailing around.  It was very sweet.  Of course, I say "he" in the generic sense because I don't want to say "it" or "the baby" all the time.  We are still not planning to find out the gender of the baby before birth.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Great Appointment!

I was hoping to scan the pictures and post them, but I haven't yet and I don't want to keep waiting to post about our appointment on Wednesday.  Everything was great!  Our official due date is June 15.  The baby looked great.  The heartrate was 182.4 bpm.  We could see his or her little arm waving.  It is amazing how much this little baby has grown in 2 weeks!

When we first found out we were pregnant, we thought we were 5 or 6 weeks.  We googled what size the baby would be and it said it was the size of a grain of rice.  My husband referred to the baby as "Rice, Rice Baby" for several weeks.  Yeah, wow.  :)

We have picked a doctor, for now.  I tried to call today to make an appointment, but they close at noon on Fridays.  So, I'll call on Monday.  We don't know anyone who has been to this practice, but it is small - two OBs and a midwife and I read a lot of good reviews and kudzu and the medical review sites.  They work out of a smaller hospital, but I am okay with that.  I couldn't find many practices in our area that had midwives and could find even less that would deliver at hospitals I wanted to deliver at.  I did not want to deliver at the hospital closest to us - their c-section rate was crazy.  I also did not want to deliver at the baby factory, which is where both my husband and I were born.  I think they handle just too many babies and everything is a bit too routine for my tastes. 

I hope to get an appointment the week we get back from our cruise.  I'd really like to have one more appointment near the 12-week mark.  That way, we'll feel more comfortable telling people at work and at church. 

We are telling both the hubby's parents and sister and her family and my dad and his wife this weekend.  Tomorrow, actually.  I am super nervous.

I am extremely tired and I think I am finally getting a little bit of pregnancy sickness.  I feel fine when I'm sitting down, but as soon as I stand up, I feel slightly nauseated.  Ick.  But, I can't complain, it's not that bad.

Well, I hope you all have a great weekend. 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Time is Flying!

I can't believe it's already been a week and a half since our last visit to the doctor.  We are giong back to the RE on Wednesday.  I am not sure when he'll tell me I have to go to the OB.  I am still looking.  I have found some that look good and plan to take my list to the RE and get his two cents worth. 

I am extremely nervous about picking the person who will deliver my baby.  I would really like to have a natural childbirth.  I have read a lot about epidurals and I know that a lot of people have them.  But, I have read a lot of negative things about them as well.  Additionally, I have a serious fear of needles and the thought have having a huge needle stuck in my spine would give me nightmares before and after.

I personally would like to not even have an IV, but I don't know if I'll find any doctor or hospital that will agree with that.

So far, I don't have many symptoms.  I might have felt a little teeny bit queasy this morning before I ate breakfast.  But, eating took care of that.  I have been feeling a little weird in my head a lot.  I guess it's kind of like vertigo, but not really strong.  I don't have trouble walking or driving.  My boobs are sore and definitely bigger.  DH loves to point this out.  I can feel my jeans getting a bit tighter (yes, I can wear jeans everyday to work - it's one of the perks of working for a technology company).  A friend of mine is going to lend me her bella band in case I feel like I need it before I feel comfortable buying maternity clothes.  I did buy a pregnancy pillow after we had our first ultrasound.  It does keep me from rolling onto my back for the most part.  It's not quite as firm as I'd like, though.  It's amazing how much those things cost!

In other news, we are getting ready to go on a cruise with my sister, brother-in-law, and niece in 2 weeks!  Yes, we will be cruising the Atlantic Ocean on Thanksgiving Day!  I am pretty sure that DH and I made the perfect preparations today by working out in the yard and getting lovely farmers' tans!  HA!  We are going to Nassau, St. Thomas, and St. Maarten.  I was seriously looking forward to doing the water slide over and over and over...but alas, I will happily forego that experience because of the pregnancy.

We told my sister and brother-in-law last Friday.  My sister sort of took a minute to get what I said then I got worried because I thought she was having a stroke based on the expression on her face!  They are very excited for us.

Well, look for an update this week after we have our 9 week OB visit/ultrasound.  Can't wait to see that little baby again and hear the heartbeat!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Good Report!

Yesterday's visit went well.  There is a baby in there!  I was seriously worried about this.  But, whew!

The baby measured 6w5d but the gestational sac measured 7w2d, which is perfectly normal according to the doctor.  So, we went with the average of 7 weeks.  We knew we could not rely on the first day of my last menstrual cycle because I definitely did not ovulate on day 14.  Apparently I ovulated an entire week late, on day 21. 

God's timing is perfect.

We also heard the heart beat!  It was so cool.  Our baby's heart rate is 121.6.

Here is our baby's first picture:

The little fuzzy thing that has the plus signs on it is the baby.  The white blob up a little and to the right a bit is the yolk sac.  If we go with 7 weeks, our EDD is 6/12/13. 

Holy cow!  We have an EDD!

We are really excited.  I am still feeling nervous, and a little overwhelmed and unsure of how to feel.  But, definitely thankful for what God has done.

We are having dinner with my sister and her husband tomorrow night and as we're planning to tell them then.  We are planning the rest of our immediate family the weekend before we leave for our cruise, which will be around 9 1/2 weeks.  I am a little nervous telling them all so early, but it will be hard to get together with everyone before Christmas since we're going to be cruising over Thanskgiving.  And, we want to tell everyone in person.  Plus, we'll have already had another OB appointment at the RE by then.

Now, to find an OB.  Ugh.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ultrasound Tomorrow!

Our ultrasound is tomorrow!  I am excited, but scared to death at the same time.  I just can't help but think that we are going to get in there and there is not going to be anything there.  The doctor said that I didn't need to continue the intralipids because DH and I aren't do with immunology. I am going to have to ask about that.  I thought the intralipids were because of my elevated Natural Killer cells.  I am kind of confused.

I won't be seeing my doctor tomorrow though because he's on vacation.  So, I may have to schedule a consultation.

I need to pick out a new ob/gyn.  I have not had luck in this area that past few years...

Prayers please!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Great Report Yesterday

I went to the RE yesterday to get my HCG levels checked.  I went ahead and laid down for the blood draw, just in case and I didn't feel faint at all!  Yay!

Anyway, my HCG is 618!  That's way more than the minimum of doubling twice that I was hoping for.  My nurse said that based on the level, though, I ovulated way late (which is not surprising to me based on what I know of last month).  So, she doesn't want to schedule the ultrasound too early and not be able to hear a heartbeat.  So, we have it set up for 10/24.  Eek!  She said that there is no need to come back for another HCG check until then. 

Oh.My.Goodness!  Y'all, I have an ultrasound scheduled to look at our BABY!!!!

I am still feeling good.  No real symptoms as of yet...

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Y'all Are Not Going To Believe This

I'm pregnant.  I am pregnant.  HCG 92.4!

Okay, now that I have told the end of my story, here is the actual story.  Warning:  this is a VERY long post.

I finally heard back from the nurse at the RE's office in Chicago.  Yay!  My Anti Phospholipid levels are normal!  So, since I do have elevated NK cells, she said that I do have to do intralipids before and after embryo transfer during IVF, but not IVIG.  They are both IV drugs (boo), but IVIG is a blood-drug (like, it contains other people's blood) and Intralipids is made from soy and eggs.  So, it a lot less expensive!  Holla!

So, I asked for the Dr. to send me the test results and that took about two weeks.  So, I finally was able to call my RE  here in Atlanta and make an appointment for next Tuesday to discuss the test results and our next steps. 

Then, I realized that I'd been telling DH for over a week that my period was imminent.  I was having cramps, it seemed like it was time, etc...  So, I was asking him, casually, if he could remember if the last time I started my period was the Wednesday before Labor Day or the Wednesday after.  He was pretty sure it was the Wednesday before (so was I, BTW). 

I worked from home on Wednesday, so I had the quiet around me to allow me to think.  And, I finally looked at a calendar and counted days.  It had been 36 days since my last period.  So, I decided if I wasn't bleeding the next morning, I would do a test.

I peed in a little dixie cup because I wanted to have enough for a second test, if necessary.  I only had one "good" test and the other one was one of the freebies you get when you buy ovulation strips through mail order.  The "good" test immediately showed two pink lines.  I checked the expiration date.  No, it wasn't expired.  I went and dug out one of the freebies.  It took a little be longer, but it definitely had a second line too, but it was more faint.  I went into the bedroom and woke DH up and asked if he could come look at something.  (He was not really happy about this at first because on Monday morning I had awoken him to tell him we had a leak in the roof over our closet.)  He was like "wo-ow!"

So, I called my RE's nurse, and she called me back pretty quickly and moved my consult with the RE up to that day (Thursday).  They did blood work and we had the consult.  I passed out, very dramatically, I must add.

We all agreed that we need to do the intralipids even though we got pregnant without medical intervention.  So, there is a Walgreen's nurse coming out here this afternoon to do the infusion.  We were supposed to help some friends paint, but the RE told me I shouldn't go.  DH is going.  He was really worried about going while I was having the infusion, but our friends really need help and the nurse will be here the entire time.  I am nervous about it, but not as nervous as I was before the IV for my egg retrieval.  I that is mainly because since I have been taking Trental and baby aspirin every day for a few months, my veins are much juicier.  But, I am off the Trental since I am pregnant.

I am so amazed at what God has done.  He has orchestrated this entire thing in a way that we have no choice but to give him all the credit.  I mean, it's not like we wouldn't do that anyway, but wow.  Here are the facts:

1.  We JUST found out about the immune issues and the (hopeful) way to deal with them.
2.  I still don't know how I got pregnant.  The week that I would think I'd be the most fertile, DH had a virus.  We were barely touching, much less doing the BD.  Plus, I was working 12-13 hours a day because it's our budget time.  So, even once he started feeling better, I was too tired to be getting frisky.  We did the BD maybe one time all month, and while I don't remember exactly when that was, I think it was past day 19...which is the latest I've ever gotten a positive OPK.  I mean, I didn't even do any OPKs this mont because things were so nuts!  Not only that, but I have only gotten a positive OPK once or twice since the last time I did an IUI.

To God be the glory!

I am very well aware that I am only 5 weeks and that things are still very much shaky.  But, just the fact that I am pregnant is a miracle.  I am going back on Monday for another HCG test.  I wonder when I'll get to have an ultrasound?  Ooh...I'm so excited and amazed!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Still Here...

So, there hasn't really been a lot going on in the fertility corner for us lately.  We had a phone consultation with a Reproductive Immunologist in Chicago that my RE recommended. I am very nervous about her office because they seem very unorganized.  We had the records from my RE's office mailed from there and the records that we had already collected ourselves from every other doctor/specialist/naturopath, my hubby scanned and emailed to them.  We had to fill out medical history forms online and print a different form and write the answers in, sign them, and scan and email them to them.  We get on the phone and she doesn't have the records from my RE.  They were at a completely different office (this practice has several offices).  I felt like that was kind of a huge oversight.  Also, it was very clear that she had not bothered to review any of the records we'd emailed over OR either of the redundant forms that both my husband and me had filled out!  She asked me to list out to her the medicines I was taking.  That is a long list and I told her that I had put that on BOTH of the forms I'd already sent to her and she said, why don't you tell me now.  Then, she once she FINALLY got my records, she realized that there was another test we needed done and she really couldn't answer any of my questions until that one was done.  She didn't explain to me how that would work out since obviously I live in GA and they are in IL.  I thought she was going to send an order to my RE for the bloodwork.  Two days later, a box shows up at my house (with the word Infertility on there more than once, BTW) with the little blood collection vials.  I call my RE's office to make my blood draw appointment and they aren't sure what I need done and can I please call the Chicago Dr. back and verify.  Grrr...So, I finally get someone with a brain that informs me that my Dr. has a nurse.  Thank goodness.  So, I call the office where the nurse is and she actually comes to the phone.  Wow.  She knows exactly who I am and is all "I didn't have your insurance information" so she said I'd have to send payment with the test.  No, I have insurance and filled out that information on BOTH of the forms we gave to you, even though your office will not file with my insurance for me, which pretty much means I will never get that money back.  So, I give her my insurance information and she explains what to do with the box.  I still have not tried to file the claim by the way.  Guess I should do that.

So, that was SEVERAL weeks ago and I have not heard back from the Reproductive Immunologist's office.  I finally had free time at lunch today and called the nurse's office.  Apparently they don't believe in voicemail because the front desk, person said my nurse was seeing a patient and took a message manually.  I never heard back.  If I ever get to speak to this nurse again, I will ask her how I can call and leave her a voicemail without having to worry about whether or not the person who answered the phone actually gave her my message or if she's just not calling me.

I am still taking the jillion pills a day the my RE recommended to boost my immune health.  I don't think that it's helping.  I am trying to diet again and not feeling the motivation I had before.  So, I am not eating right either and I don't know  if it's these supplements, the Prozac, my diet, or just life in general, but I am TIRED all the time.  Like, I keep falling asleep in my boss's office tired.  Like, I have almost fallen asleep on the way home from work and on the way to work tired. 

So, it seems like lots of people are having babies.  All our friends that we see regularly have babies or kids now.  Sigh.  I am tired of feeling left behind.  I know that God has a plan for us.  I wish I felt like I knew what my purpose in life was.

For now, so long.  I'll update if I ever hear back from this RE.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

It's Been A Long Time

Hi Everyone.  I know it has been almost three months since I posted.  I am not pregnant.  I think that has been one of the things keeping me from posting.  It was just too much to have to type those words again.

We had a consult with the RE earlier this month and he wanted to do some autoimmune testing before we talked about IVF again.  I was kind of annoyed because a year and a half ago, when I'd failed our first IVF cycle, I asked him about autoimmune issues, and he told me that the testing was a waste because the results could be different every day depending on my cycle among other things.  He had told me that the problem seemed to be my stress.  Well, he did the testing and I have slightly elevated Natural Killer cells, but not enough that he wants us to jump in and spend $20K for IVIG treatments during our next IVF cyle.  I did have pretty elevated numbers of another type of autoimmune numbers (I will find the sheets and post on the exact stuff they tested some other time) and he prescribed Trental and told me to take a baby aspirin every day.  He also had me start on some immune-boosting supplements before he'd even gotten the test results back:  Myo-Inositol, Coenzyme Q-10, DHEA, L-Arginine, and Melatonin.  I will take these for a month then go back to have my levels tested again.  I feel like all I do is pop pills.  Then, my psychologist thinks that I am not getting anywhere with my treatment with her and suggested again that I take anti-depressants.  This led to a trip to my primary care doctor's office.  I met with a new doctor this time and asked her to look at my ears, which had been bothering me.  Apparently I have so much fluid build-up that I may need tubes.  But, to try to avoid that, she prescribed Prednisone (steroid), Augmentin (antibiotic), Zyrtec (allergy meds), and Flo-nase (nose spray) on top of my Prozac.  I am going back to her in a month to see if I can avoid a trip to the ENT.  The number of pills I take every day is ridiculous.

Today is my second day on the Prozac.  Yesterday, I was really sleepy, but I don't know if it was because of that or one of the meds prescribed for my ears.  Being sleepy did not stop me from going to see The Hunger Games.  It was pretty good.  I didn't think it was the best movie I'd seen, but it was good.  I felt like they had to squeeze it into such a short movie that they included all the important events, but the feelings just couldn't be portrayed like they were in the book. 

I had already listened to The Hunger Games on audiobook borrowed from the library.  I put my name down for Catching Fire and Mockingjay when I was done listening to the first one.  I didn't want to get them if the first one stunk or had an ending that really disappointed me.  Mockingjay came in within a couple of weeks, but I was number 80 in the queue for Catching Fire and the library system has 15 copies.  Earlier this week, (2 months later) I was #10 and I got a notice today that it is being held for me!!!  I can't wait to go tomorrow at lunch and pick it up!

Besides that I have been sewing and crocheting.  A lot of my friends are having babies, so I mostly have been making baby gifts - crocheted and sewn stuffed animals, burp cloths, and tag blankies.  I have also been crocheting to give to the Atlanta Pregnancy Resource Center.  I've crocheted a blanket and some booties and hats.  I am not very fast.  I am crocheting some little "tawashis" for my dad's wife, which are like these little wash cloths you can use as dishcloths or to wash your face.  They are fast to make.  I have the stuff to make one of those grocery bag holders from a pattern I found on Pinterest.  I am addicted to Pinterest.

So, I am hopefully going to post more often than every three months now.  I hope you will read and leave comments.  I have a lot more to say, but I figure I have said enough for now.