26 Weeks

Good afternoon-  I am officially 26 weeks pregnant with my miraculous Little Rabbit. That also means officially 6 1/2 months, though I have been saying that for the past 5 days anyway.

Pregnancy symptoms

  • Sore back: traveling makes this much much worse. I have a pregnancy pillow that has helped a lot but it is SO massive (U-shaped) that I really can’t bring it anywhere- so sleeping at hotels isn’t good for my lower back. Neither is flying! After 10 hours of airplane time in the last 48 hours, I can definitely say that my back is really affected by those uncomfortable sardine seats.
  • Heartburn: My heartburn is pretty frequent, but it’s a minor-to-moderate irritation/annoyance.
  • RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME: This started about 2 weeks ago and it has been the most brutal part of pregnancy thus far. It happens at night, and I have had a terribly hard time with it. You can’t go to sleep, no matter how tired you are, when you feel like your legs are burning/itching/being zapped or electrocuted. It’s the strangest thing. I may have found a possible solution though. I have compression socks that I sometimes used for running, and I have worn them the past 3 nights- they have been a TREMENDOUS help so far, but I worry about jinxing it.

About 3 days ago, one of my best friends gave birth to her son! He came early, though she was already scheduled for an early C-section due to the fact that he was breech. She was miserable and swollen the last few weeks of her pregnancy, and so far, her recovery has been very good. I’m so happy for her and I have the chance to see him next week which is very exciting.

One thing that caught me off guard, though, when she texted about his birth, was jealousy. It was so strange. It’s not because I’m miserably uncomfortable and want to get this show on the road- I’m not (despite the RLS). It’s much different than that. It’s that she already knows. She already knows that her baby was born healthy, is thriving, isn’t preterm, and that her recovery and birth process went well. Although there is no indication that LR won’t be perfectly healthy and full term, anxieties plague me often. I’ve had a challenging time this entire pregnancy fully letting go and acting like a “normal” pregnant person who doesn’t have a care in the world. I still get hesitant about buying baby things, but at this point I also know I need to get her nursery set up! I’m immensely grateful to be where I am right now- tho I know all too well that really anything can happen and nothing is guaranteed. But this is true in ALL of life, not just pregnancy. So I’ve been working on my meditation and just general ability to sit with my feelings and immerse myself in the joy of baby girl’s kicking.

Being so busy has helped as well. My boss sent me on a whirlwind trip to DC this week, complete with multiple layovers and getting home at midnight. I was upset about it at first but it actually ended up being a pretty interesting trip. I am tired, but more functional than I worried I might be- since I had to get up at 4 to catch a flight, have 12 hours of intense meetings, and manage to get home into my bed after midnight the next day. Work is important to me, though. It’s nice to have reminders and experiences that are different or bigger than pregnancy, and I can get out of my own head about it and experience my regular life and contribute in a way I feel good about.

And I have even more travel coming up! Next week I am spending time out of town for work, which I actually get to merge with seeing my brother, who I don’t often get to see. Then, Mr Upside and I are going on a mini babymoon to San Diego! We are staying at his parents’ place right by the beach, and they won’t be there.

Then I have 1 more work trip and presentation at the end of June- and after that I am quitting flying until I have the baby. Looking forward to that.

 

Hopping Along at 21 + 4 Days

Little Rabbit has been hopping around my uterus for days now. I cannot get enough of feeling her! It’s the most amazing thing to not just know she’s in there, but to feel her. Last Friday, she went really quiet and I really worried. So Saturday morning, as I drove up to Dallas to see my grandmother, I called my OB. The nurse asked me if I had feel her move at all and I said yes, because I had, but she was a lot quieter. Basically the nurse said that was all fine, and that I should not be expecting CONSTANT kicking and moving at 21 weeks- but that some movement was a great sign all was well.

And then by the next day she was kicking like crazy! She is continuing even as I write this. Every day she is bigger and bigger so I expect to continue feeling her for the duration of the pregnancy. It is a blessing .

We have our next check-up in 15 days which sometimes feels like forever- it’s our anatomy scan so its an extremely important one.

In other news, my grandma is officially out of the hospital and on hospice. She is definitely dying, and we are just hoping she is as comfortable as she can be. The great thing about hospice is they are there for palliative care and will not send her to a hospital again once things get bad. We are honoring her wishes.

Grief is an Ocean: Part 2

Last September I lost my Gran. She was one of my biggest supporters ever- from when I was a little girl to when I was an adult. I was very close to her, and continued to be even through the cruelty of Alzheimer’s. She may not have remembered her relationship to me in the end, but her face always lit up when she saw me.

I am not sure if I wrote this here yet, but Little Rabbit is due on her birthday. What a beautiful, special thing. We are absolutely giving L.R. one of her names (first, middle, maiden- we haven’t decided) as her middle name.

I had been thinking of all this ‘circle of life’ stuff recently when my family got a series of bad news. My uncle passed away on Saturday of stage 4 esophageal cancer that no one knew he had until about 10 days prior. My heart breaks for his wife and kids. It was far too soon to lose him. We spent all day yesterday trying to figure out logistics and travel for the funeral, which is held about 40 min outside of Myrtle Beach and is pretty tough to get to.

This morning my mom called me at 7 am to tell me my other grandmother, my only still-living grandparent, was found on the floor in her nursing home with a heart rate of 27 bpm. She is currently in the ICU and doctors have suggested at-home hospice care. Her heart is failing and there is very little they can do for a 90 year old. My dad is talking to a cardiologist this morning about the possibility of a pacemaker, but who wants to do surgery on a very frail 90 year old?

In the coming days we will know more but it’s all pretty stressful. And strange to be carrying this perfect miracle, knowing she will come into a world while some family passes on.

**If you’re a into sending positive vibes or prayers, please send some to my cousins and Aunt Sandi as they cope with the loss of my uncle.

18 weeks 5 days: Catching up!

Hey blog world! Long time no talk. I have been neglectful of this blog for no other reason than sheer busyness. Work has been wildly crazy and I had 2 personal trips as well. In fact, I just flew in yesterday from a girls weekend in Palm Springs. I had planned to get back Monday, but I had a layover. Due to the weather in Texas, my 2nd flight didnt work out. I was able to catch a flight yesterday back home, but they rerouted my plane in the middle of the air ALLLLL across the state, in the opposite direction! A 35 min flight became nearly 2 hours. For a fearful flier like me it was not fun.

BUT all that aside, things are still going well with Little Rabbit as far as I can tell! I am growing bigger and bigger and although I have felt no kicks yet, i do feel some butterflies or gas-like bubbles in my tummy. I think that’s her.

Our next appt is in 8 days for my nearly-20 week scan. BUT I don’t get my anatomy scan until 24 weeks! So it’s a little disappointing because we have to wait even longer to see how everything is measuring. But I am hoping they can tell her general measurements next week and their percentile. If we’re lucky.

I am feeling very thankful for feeling well and for not having any scary symptoms. I think I am coming down with something, unfortunately, but probably just a cold. I can handle it no problem.

Hoping all is well in your worlds! I will have a better update after our next appointment. With seeing the baby just once a month, and leaving the weirdness of the 1st trimester behind, I feel like I have less to update about! I’ll take it. I have been hoping for a ‘boring’ 2nd trimester and am thankful to get it.

8 weeks, 4 days: I Love This Community

Today I checked the mail and received something very special from a fellow infertility blogger– The EcoFeminist! Inside the envelope was a beautiful print from one of her favorite local artists, Tamara Adams.

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Aimee, I can’t thank you enough! The print is beautiful and I will hang it in my office (I work from home). But I also hope one day to move it to a nursery 🙂

So lucky to have found a great supportive community like this as we all faced and continue to face something very life-altering and challenging. So much gratitude for found friendships.

Two more days until my next sonogram….

Baby Fever

I’ll cut to the chase this time: my beta rose perfectly. I’m somewhere around 5 weeks, 4 days with a beta of 8,755. I am deeply, deeply thankful.

Unfortunately, this morning I woke up with aches all over my body. Then came the chills. I got concerned that a fever could be bad for the baby so I bought a nicer thermometer than the ones we have lying around the house- those I used to temp with more than a year ago! (Crazy to remember that- temping every morning actually made me a crazy person with anxiety, and I’m glad I quit it way back when).

My first reading was 100.4. Then I got up to 101.2. I was in one of those feverish states, rolling around in my bed shaking and talking to myself. A real shame Mr Upside had to work today and couldn’t take care of me!

So I called my nurse and she told me taking Tylenol was fine, and to go to the doctor to make sure I didnt have an infection that would require pregnancy-safe antibiotics. So I took 1 pill instead of 2 and honestly I feel…not great but more human than earlier. And I went off to urgent care at my GP, where I was subjected to a crazy flu test involving long, thin Q-tips being shoved ALL THE WAY- all the way- up each nostril. It was one of the craziest feelings! Leave it to me to continue to pile on more insane medical tests even outside the fertility clinic.

Anyway, I don’t have the flu. And they say I don’t have an infection, like bronchitis, strep, pneumonia- so that’s great. Cant say they were too helpful beyond that, but its pretty difficult to diagnose a typical cold virus, so hey.

I just want to get back to feeling better- not exposing Little Rabbit to my body’s extra high temps, or rolling around in bed unable to work, etc. But all in all, even with how AWFUL I have felt today- and its been rough- I wouldn’t trade it for anything, since I know that my beta is good and Little Rabbit nicely, safely nestled in me.

New Year, BIG Surprises

It’s strange for me to be writing this post. I hope whatever words I use won’t hurt anyone who reads this. I’m very nervous and confused.

And thankful.

I started spotting on Christmas day. It was too early for my period- or at least I thought, but its kind of hard to know since I was on a natural, unmedicated cycle for the first time in over a year. I told Mr Upside that I hoped my full flow would hold off for a few days longer. We were about to hop on a plane to California and if I got my period early, I worried it would mess up the timing for my estradiol and baseline for my forthcoming FET.

Well, it did hold off. The spotting continued for a few days and I chalked it up to my well-known progesterone issues.

Then the spotting stopped.

Then it came back. Brown and tacky.

We flew back from California on Dec 30. On New Year’s Eve, I went about my business preparing for dinner and cocktails with Mr Upside that night- keeping it low key.

At that point, I was what I calculated to be a few days late. On a whim, I casually pulled out a Wondfo and half-heartedly peed on it. I’d been down this road before- but hey. Why not. Then I hopped in the shower and forgot about it for a bit. When I looked, there was a faint pink line.

Which I chalked up to an evap. I hadnt looked at it in the right time frame. But it is hard to squash hope when it rises in your chest.

So an hour later, I took a FRER.

There were two lines.

I was shaking and lightheaded. I called Mr Upside down from the upstairs and he looked at them. “Um, I think we’re pregnant,” he said. I called my on-call IVF nurse and told her I had just tested. She was floored and told me to get a beta the next day. So, my NYE was alcohol-free and I got up at 7 am to drive to the only lab open to get my blood draw.

My beta was 177. I. Am. PREGNANT.

I just had my second beta results: 483. I AM STILL PREGNANT.

I was shaking and crying when I first got those lines. Now, I am stunned, flabbergasted, in disbelief.

A year and a half of infertility…failed femara, triggers, IUIs, even IVF/FET. And when I didnt temp, when I didnt time anything- I got pregnant.

I am 4 weeks and 4 days today. It is SO SO early and anything could happen and I am acutely aware of that. But for someone who has never seen 2 lines in my life, I am beyond shocked and thankful for this little miracle.

I nicknamed it Little Rabbit. I have a habit of trying to wake up in the new year saying “Rabbit Rabbit” for good luck. I think its a british thing? Anyway, I did so the morning of 2017, hours before my beta.

Little Rabbit, my big miracle, please grow healthy and strong.

Musings on a Natural Cycle

(note: my actual boobs are not as generous as this photo ;-D )

So, this cycle is my “break” cycle as most of you know. And its entirely natural. No hormones, pills, injections, suppositories of any kind. Not even birth control! Its been a year and a half since my last fully natural cycle. Its weird, to be honest. I find myself in moments of panic like WAIT- did I forget to take a pill? It takes me two seconds to realize- I don’t need to. No estrogen. No femara. No BCP. No crinone. No chemicals. Nothing at all.

I am currently on cycle day 11. I know this because I actually re-downloade a fertility app that I deleted a year ago, once I realized natural conception was totally out the window. And frankly, I re-downloaded it because I forgot how long my “natural” cycle was and wanted to track it. Its weird to think I could ovulate on my own in a few days. Not that anything would come of it- and to be honest, I don’t know if my body would ovulate on its own after a year of nonstop drugs.

I thought, briefly, about using my old ovulation sticks this cycle. To track it, see if I O, and maybe even try TI again…but the reality is, I wanted this cycle to be a REAL break. No TTC. No stress about timing sex. Just hanging out and letting life take its course.

So I guess thats where I am. Day 11 of a completely natural, hormone-free, stress-free cycle. I don’t know what to expect, and quite frankly, I have no expectations. And at the end of the day, I think thats a good thing for me.

I’ll update everyone once I hear about the results of my second biopsy. We’re really really hoping for “receptive” this time.

Slowing Down for Christmas

Happy December everyone. December is one of my very favorite months, because despite not being religious, Christmas is absolutely my favorite time of year. I love Christmas music, I love lights, I love Christmas trees, you name it. Mr Upside is ethnically Jewish, but TOTALLY non practicing, despite the fact that his uncle and aunt are Rabbis….but still, I like to throw a little Hanukkah in the mix 🙂 The first year we were married I made like 100 latkes for Hanukkah, which I have to admit, were pretty good for a shiksa.

I suppose I love holiday traditions of all kinds.

It’s keeping me busy. My mind occupied. After my second (horrendous) ERA biopsy, there really isn’t anything to do but wait. I got my period* yesterday but this is the first time i haven’t had to call my nurse about it- December, for me, will be a completely natural cycle. No hormones, no pills, not even birth control. I can’t remember the last time that was the case.

I suppose December is meant to be this way. I chose to not have the transfer, and although the decision ate at me for a few days, I am now 100% convinced it was the right one- even with how painful the biopsy was. This is where I am meant to be right now: under the lights of my tree, snuggling with my cat, finishing up work projects, writing holiday cards, enjoying drinks with my husband, making travel plans for Christmas. Now is not the time for 1-line panic attacks, for symptom spotting, for over-analysis of my body.

Whatever holiday you celebrate, or if you celebrate none, I hope you are all restful and peaceful during this last month of 2016. So many of us have had it so very hard, and I wish you calmness and grace these last few weeks. Thanks for always being there for me ❤

 

 

 

 

*I am pretty sure its my period. I was on 6 days of Crinone and then 2 days of provera. My RE wanted me to do 4 days of provera but I only did 2, half because I timed it that way and half because I honestly forgot. Yesterday my flow was relatively heavy, had some clots, etc.  Today is seems very light which is odd. Keep your fingers crossed for me that I get my next period close to NYE for an early-mid Jan transfer. ❤