Wednesday, October 28, 2009

First Ultrasound

I won't keep you in suspense...we had our first ultrasound this afternoon, and we saw 1 beautiful bean with a beautiful heartbeat at 112 bpm!! The bean measured exactly 6 weeks 1 day (which is what I figured as well). Here is a picture of our newest little bean:

We will be closely monitored because of all the problems we had during the last pregnancy. My first full OB appointment will be around 8 or 10 weeks. The next hurdle is the triple screen/NT scan. I'll do that around 12 weeks (early December).

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Whistle Down the Wind

Okay - the title may not be totally appropriate for this post, but, hey, I thought the Broadway reference would entertain my father when he gets out of the hospital (hopefully today). You see, today I have movie references and my Grandma "Cookie" on my mind. Do you ever think that some habits/actions of lost loved ones are somehow...reincarnated in our children? Perhaps it signals as a reminder from those who are gone.

You see, Grandma "Cookie" could not whistle. There is no judgment in that - neither DH nor I can whistle either, so clearly, it would be a genetic challenge for Micah to acquire the whistling acuity of HIS grammy (my mother). Cannot whistle, you say? Well, why didn't she just put her lips together...and blow? (Are you smiling, Dad?) Funny thing is, she did. All the time. Mostly unconsciously. It was actually quite an annoying habit. If you asked her to stop whistling, she would tell you that she could not whistle. It started to become so awful her last few years that we would sit around and mimic her. Often when she wasn't with us, one of us would start making that infertnal...blowing...noise. Even now that she is gone, every once in a while, one of us will still do that as we smile and fondly remember Grandma "Cookie."

Why am I reminiscing about Grandma "Cookie" today? Naturally, it is because of Micah. You see, regardless of ability, he too, likes to sit and "whistle." He puts his lips together and makes that same awful noise. He sometimes does it incessantly! This morning, for example. He was sitting in his high chair, absentmindedly...."whistling." And I thought about Grandma "Cookie." I hope she is smiling.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Belated ICLW Post

I don't know where the time went - I don't think I got a note this week reminding me that it was the beginning of ICLW - International Comment Leaving Week - but as you can tell from my last post, it has been a crazy week, filled with hospital visits. So, for those of you who are new, here is my little "blurb."

I'm Tkeys and I have PCOS and fibroids and my DH has MFI (severely impaired sperm motility). We were ttc#1 for over 1 year, went through surgery for fibroids, Clomid, IUI + Injectibles, and finally IVF w/ ICSI before we conceived our son, Micah, who was born in December 2008. We recently began ttc#2, figuring it would take at least another year. While we filled out the paperwork and did the testing to resume treatments in January, we started trying "naturally" - using only the CBE Fertility Monitor, natural progesterone cream, and Instead cups. We were told we had *maybe* a 3% chance of getting pregnant on our own. Much to our surprise and amazement, we actually got a BFP on our second month trying!! We are quite stunned - and just do not believe this could be happening after everything we went through before. So far, my betas have been normal, and we are anxiously awaiting our first ultrasound on Wednesday to figure out if this is a viable pregnancy.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Craziness!

All I can say is "What a week." On Thursday, Micah and I went to our gym class. There is a part of the class where we have the babies all stand up, and we let go. Micah stood on his own for 15 seconds!! He sat down, and looked a little scared afterwards, but I was amazed - that is the longest I've seen him hold a stand on his own so far. I'm pretty sure he'll be walking before he is one year old.

Lately, Micah is obsessed with his Daddy. He howls and runs to the door and bangs on the screen door screaming "Dad" or "Dada" when he steps out. It is kind of adorable. He also has a new trick - he likes to feed mommy food from his tray and he laughs hysterically as I "gobble" it up.

Here is another recent video of a few of Micah's "tricks":

video

And Micah playing peek-a-boo:

video

So...onto the crazy part. Micah and Daddy had a private night together on Friday - while I went out for a girls' night for my friend's birthday. I made her a cake - we bought her a mah jongg set for her birthday, so mah jongg was the theme! We went out to an Indian restaurant that was more like a Morroccan restaurant. They had a Bollywood/belly dancer, and we sat on cushions low to the floor and shared big plates of food (with no silverware). We had so much fun!


On Saturday, we were supposed to go to a birthday party, but the weather was lousy and it was canceled. Saturday night, we went out to our friend's annual "Black tie potluck" event. We got all dressed up, and my parents came to sit with Micah for an hour or two while we went out. When we got home, my Dad was complaining that he had the chills. I took his temperature, and it said 101. I immediately suspected he had swine flu, and I sent them off to the hospital. Needless to say, I was worried for him, for Micah, and for this baby. After a long wait, and a CT scan of his sinuses and a chest xray, they decided he had pneumonia. No cough at all, just fever and chills. They admitted him to the hospital and put him on IV antibiotics. Unfortunately, he does not seem to be responding, so they added more antibiotics - he is now on 3 of them. I'm hoping he starts to respond better by tomorrow. If all is well with the bloodwork tomorrow, they'll release him.

I also think I have a sinus infection - so sickness seems to be going around. Nausea has been coming and going. My mom's friend was in town today, so she came by to see Micah. We went for a long walk, and I really thought I was going to collapse afterwards - I was shaky, my body hurt, and I was exhausted. I crashed for an hour, but then Micah woke up, and I was back to mommy duty.


My ultrasound is scheduled on Wednesday. I go from being nervous to excited and back again. One minute, I think things are fine...and the next, well, I'm not so sure. I just keep reminding myself "three more days."

So...feel better, Daddy!

ETA - I decided to take myself to the hospital tonight, too. I seem to have developed a case of bronchitis, and I thought I should hurry up and get antibiotics. After the doctor was incredibly rude to me (and informed me that I probably had h1n1), she finally wrote me the script for antibiotics (and a prescription for Tamiflu, and explained that I would be killing my baby by not taking it). I mean, seriously? I'll take the Tamiflu if I develop flu symptoms - but I just have a low-grade fever, my chest hurts, and I *know* that I have a sinus infection/bronchitis. I had a mild cold last week, so a secondary infection following a cold is par for the course for me. Ridiculous!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Swine Flu and Baking

It is official - we have a case of swine flu in Micah's daycare class. Apparently, a child went home sick on Friday, and he and his parent have been diagnosed with swine flu. I'm hoping that since we have shown no signs or symptoms yet means we have passed the incubation period and all is well. To make matters worse (as if I'm not already freaking out about germs), the caretaker in Micah's class had a cold yesterday. Yes, a cold. I went to pick Micah up, and she was all stuffed up, coughing, and well...sick. I'm sure it isn't the flu, but really - did she HAVE to expose Micah to her cold? He just got over being sick last month! And I certainly don't need to be sick with this pregnancy and all of the traveling I'm doing. I do not need my lungs compromised in any way if there is a chance I could catch the flu!

I hate all this fear about flu. I've never worried about the flu before - in my life, I've only had it 2 times. It has never been a big deal. It is funny - I catch everything else, but I've been relatively flu-free most of my life. I've never gotten the flu vaccine either. I am still not concerned about the seasonal flu, and to be honest, I am just not that excited about H1N1. For whatever reason, if I catch it, I just do not think it will be a big deal. Perhaps I should, but I feel like I'll go to the doctor, get Tamiflu (although I'm not sure if I'd take Tamiflu during the first trimester), go on antibiotics if I get a lung infection, and all will be well.

In the midst of all of this, the H1N1 vaccinations have arrived at our pediatrician's office. Both Micah and I cold get vaccinated, but they do not yet have the thimerosal-free (and squalene-free) version yet. So - do I give Micah the vaccine now, or wait an extra month for the safer vaccine? What about me? I'm disinclined to do the vaccine because of my needle phobia, but I do have a pregnancy to think about, too. I certainly don't want to harm the baby by taking the vaccination, but pregnant women seem to be in a higher risk category. Also, this baby will not be old enough to get the vaccine in the Fall, so getting the vaccination while pregnant could help protect my little one after he or she is born. I hate these kind of decisions!

I am currently leaning towards waiting (at least for the thimerosal-free version). Most of the cases of swine flu seem to be no worse than regular flu. Some of the information I have read seems to say that pregnant women are hospitalized more often as a precaution, not because they are actually sicker. I certainly do not wish flu on either one of us, but part of me feels that getting the flu might be safer than taking the vaccine right now. I am also not certain that Micah did not already have swine flu last month when he was sick (although, I suppose DH and I would have caught it, too, if it was swine flu).

This morning I called the pediatrician to schedule his second dosage of the regular flu shot - and was told I should call back in November. I should mention that I have called about a dozen times this week. I called a few days ago, and was told they could not see the schedule that far out because of sick appointments. I called back yesterday, several times, and was told the computers were down. I called early this morning, and was told to call back after 9. I called back after 9 and was told to call back in November. Seriously? Don't they think they could have started with that and saved me all the phone calls? I am so frustrated by all of this!

Even worse, they would not give me information about which version of the H1N1 vaccine they are currently using, or when they expect to get the thimerosal-free version. Based on the research I've done, it does not appear that the thimerosal-free version has been released yet. I just cannot get good information about what to do. The CDC recommends vaccinating, but declines to comment on either thimerosal or squalene at this time. While they will not approve these ingredients in other vaccines, the FDA has suspended most of the guidelines for the H1N1 vaccine for the next six months. I'm sorry - if something was unsafe last month, and it will be unsafe again in six months, isn't it unsafe now?

On the one hand, the studies show there is no connection between thimerosal and autism in children. Fine - I believe that. BUT, they believe autism is caused by impairment of brain development in-utero - so perhaps the vaccine would affect this pregnancy? We are encouraged NOT to feed children fish with mercury (or eat it during pregnancy) because even the low doses have been shown to affect brain development. Okay. I can accept that. Then how is thimerosal in the H1N1 vaccine safe? To make matters worse, due to the shortage of vaccinations, there are adjuvants that contain squalene in this version of the H1N1 vaccination to boost immune response and incrase the effectiveness of the vaccine. Apparently, there is some relatively new and untested research that indicates that adjuvants *might* cause autoimmune disorders in both adults and children. Until better research is done, how can I comfortably give such a vaccine to Micah? Or expose this baby? Several states have banned doctors from administering the H1N1 vaccine to pregnant women and children under 3. Moreover, this vaccination has been rushed to market prior to FDA approval and without testing. It is presumed the vaccine will do no harm because it was developed with the same techniques as the regular seasonal flu vaccine. But, with different ingredients in the vaccine, how can they be sure?

In other news, I'm busy cake-baking. I have a cake to do for a friend (I'm making a pumpkin chocolate chip cake) and next weekend I have a cake for my niece's second birthday, and my friend's son's first birthday. I'll be baking my pants off this week in order to get everything finished on time! The good news is that it appears my edible image printer should be back in order! We purchased a new printer head, so tonight I will attempt to replace it and hope that it starts working again. I'm not sure how I will get through the next week without it. I'll post cake pictures soon!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Happy Birthday, DH

Today was DH's birthday - his first one as a Daddy. I'm sure I don't ever say this often enough, but DH is a wonderful husband and father. He is absolutely one of the kindest people I know, and it is clear to everyone how much he adores Micah. We always manage to have fun together, and I am so glad to be sharing my life with him!

Unfortunately, I think today was a bit of a disappointment, though - it was an entirely underwhelming birthday. A lot of that was my fault - it has been crazy around here, so I did not plan anything really big or special for today. I was having a hard time coming up with a gift idea, so I finally just asked him what he wanted and told him I'll order it later this week. I've been racking my brains trying to think of a good idea, and he always goes so far out for me, and I feel awful. I was toying with taking him out to dinner tonight just the three of us, but we decided to reschedule family dinner for my mom's birthday (and DH's) to tonight. So, we braved horrible rush hour traffic to meet my parents, brother, SIL and nieces at the Olive Garden that is halfway between us (my brother and SIL live an hour away). Fancy dinner, right? We needed a good family restaurant, so it really was perfect. Micah enjoyed breadsticks, pasta, minestrone soup and pizza. I love watching him eat real food! The girls were adorable, and we had a fun night.

I think DH also got a bit short-changed on the cake. I had grand intentions of making him a Bugs Bunny cake this year, but with my edible image printer broken, I just don't seem to have the bandwidth to freehand the bunny. Since we were also sharing the celebration with my mom, DH didn't even get his own cake - it was a joint cake with my mom! (I guess my mom was short-changed, too - she had to share the cake with DH!) I just made a very simple cake - a delicious chocolate truffle cake decorated simply with buttercream icing and chocolate icing. I made some pretty fondant stars on wire and had them spraying out from the cake. It tasted yummy.

In better news, we do have a fun night planned for date night - we are going to a nice Indian restaurant for dinner, and we'll wander around for dessert and enjoy the beautiful weather. Perhaps we'll also grab a movie if there is time. I did come up with one good idea that did not exactly pan out as I had hoped. We've been wanting to go eat at this really fancy restaurant for a while, so I called and made reservations. Unfortunately, the first available Thursday night reservations were not until October 29, so I took those and plan to take DH to part two of his birthday celebration there. When I mentioned this to him, he said he'd rather go in November and celebrate our anniversary there, so perhaps my fun birthday surprise will become an anniversary gift instead.

In Micah news, we have entered the world of diaper acrobatics. Trying to change Micah's diaper is a major undertaking. He flips over, climbs up the walls, stands - pretty much anything to make diapering impossible. Half of the time, we diaper him while he is standing! The diapers are never on properly, and it is a constant struggle while he complains loudly and fights us. We've tried toys (for some reason, he seems to enjoy playing with the thermometer the most), but those no longer seem to be holding his interest. I think I'm ready for potty training! I have to say, sometimes he even gets mad and hits me! I really need to teach him that hitting is not okay - while it kind of makes me want to laugh right now seeing him that mad about a diaper, I don't want him to develop a hitting problem.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Beta #2

I've been going NUTS waiting for beta #2. I got up early on Thursday morning and found a lab in Miami. I was kind of surprised - no one speaks English there! I have to say, trying to fill out the forms and explain my needle phobia in Spanish was quite a challenge! Not to mention, they have a very different sense of time there. I was waiting 30 minutes before they even gave me the forms or asked for my script. While I was waiting, they asked me to fill out the center evaluation - it had questions like "How long was your wait time" and "Did they use appropriate cleanliness standards" and "Did the tech do a good job of performing the test." When I explained I couldn't fill out the form until AFTER my appointment was finished, they told me it was no problem - I should just mark the box that said "Extremely Satisfied" for everything. Uh, you are kidding, right?

Anyway, the woman did an okay job of drawing my blood - she moved the needle after inserting it and I nearly went ballistic, but she did do it quickly and with one stick. Anyway, I went about my conference meeting, flew home on Thursday night, and waited patiently on Friday for my results.

And waited. And waited. Friday afternoon, I finally called up the office and asked about my results, and the nurse said she'd pull the results and have a midwife call me back. I told her it was really important for me to know the results before the weekend because I was afraid of bad news. Before I realized it, 5:00 came and went...and no phone call. I was so PISSED - how could they torture me like that all weekend?

Needless to say, I've been going nuts all weekend. I woke up early this morning and called the office again. The nurse checked the computer and informed me...the blood test results were missing. Yup, that is what I said, missing. I had to give the nurse the information about the lab I went to in Miami, and she said she would check into it and get back to me. At 1:00 pm, I called the nurse again, asking for an update. She told me they had finally gotten a copy of my results, but the midwife was out to lunch and would call me back later.

So, I waited. And waited. And waited. Until she called a few moments ago. After everything I went through, the beta on Thursday was....

319!!!!

It did the requisite doubling (I took the first test on Tuesday at 2:30 pm, and the second test on Thursday at 8:00 am). I am SOOO relieved that at least things are doubling okay. I am about to call and schedule my ultrasound, and if all is well there, I will go in for an appointment around 8 or 9 weeks.

ETA: First ultrasound is scheduled for October 28 at 1:45 pm!!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Infertility is a strange thing

Despite this recent run of good news, and despite the joy that is slowly starting to creep into my emotions, I have to say, I'm struggling with two other warring emotions - FEAR and GUILT. Let's start with FEAR.

I'm afraid because things like this don't happen. I am afraid of getting hopeful and excited, only to be devastated later. I am afraid that if we lose this baby, I'll never get pregnant again, naturally, with fertility treatments - at all. I am afraid that after getting giddy, I'll have to readjust my mental state, and go back to hoping it could happen naturally again. And at what point do we draw the line again and return to fertility treatments? And how hard will it be to convince DH to put our money into more fertility treatments now that we've experienced...THIS. But mostly, I'm afraid it is all too good to be true. I find myself wanting to bargain...if this baby is okay, I'll be a better person, or I'll...something? What could possibly be a worthy bargaining chip? Do I commit to some horrible thing later? Well, who wants that?! Fear is awful - I lived in fear most of my pregnancy with Micah, and I hated that. But I am so afraid of getting crushed emotionally. I tend to protect myself - I don't like to put myself out there until it is safe. I think investing in hope is so horrible for all of us who struggle with infertility - because it seems it is the hope that nails us every time.

Now, let's talk about GUILT. I feel guilty that I'm experiencing "easy." Hello - we're supposed to be "one of us" not "one of them." Easy doesn't happen in my world. Simply using instead cups, a monitor and progesterone cream and getting pregnant is kind of a joke, right? Where were the specimen cups, test tubes, needles, magic wand visits, and room full of people? This can't be for real. Where are the cameras? Or someone jumping out and yelling "You're on candid camera!" or "You've been PUNKED!" How does someone with an ovulation issue get pregnant by a guy whose sperm don't swim? Kind of reminds me of the scene in Sex in the City, when she asks how a woman with only 1 lazy ovary got pregnant by a 1-balled guy. I think most of all, I don't want to hurt anyone else who is still in pain, waiting to TTC #1. I remember how I felt when I read stories like this while TTC'ing #1. I was happy for them, and it gave me hope that miracles can happen...but then the touch of bitter would hit, and I'd think "yeah, for everybody else but me." It isn't that I wasn't happy for others...it just made me more sad for me. I don't think this is fair - I'm torn between thinking "THANK YOU!" and "Why me?" So, I am feeling guilty - like I just got a windfall benefit at someone else's expense. Ridiculous, right? And then I'm afraid to feel too guilty like it is gloating - you know, pride goeth before the fall (see FEAR above).

So, for those of you reading this who are thinking "WOW, congrats" and "why doesn't this happen for me?" at the same time, I hear you. I understand that. I don't have a good answer. But maybe, just maybe, you, too, can be on the other end of this one day. That is my hope, no matter how this pregnancy ends for me - if the tables can turn for me, they can turn for others, too! I guess most of all, I'm trying to take away some hope from this experience. I hope it ends well, but if it doesn't, I hope that IUI could work for us, and that we WILL get pregnant again one day. And I have hope for all of you, too.

One last story. A friend of mine (same age as me) was married for 10 years. They couldn't get pregnant, and sought fertility treatments. Even with medical intervention, they just couldn't get her to ovulate. They attempted one IVF, and it was cancelled due to failure to respond. So, they threw in the towel on fertility treatments. They went down the road of adoption, and adopted a beautiful baby boy! Their son lit up their lives. About 1 1/2 years later, they got a call from the birth mother - she was pregnant again, with a girl - did they want her baby again? Joy of joys, they had a complete family - a boy and a girl, who were biological siblings. What could be more perfect? Except my friend wasn't feeling well. She went to the doctor because she was worried about her health. After some testing, she learned she was almost 4 months pregnant! Ironically, she gave birth to a beautiful boy this morning. I wonder how many times these kind of "miracles" happen? Infertility is a strange thing, isn't it?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

And the magic number is....

***SPOILER ALERT - IF YOU HAVEN'T READ MY LAST 2 POSTS, START THERE!!***

The midwife called, and my beta is....

165!!!!

I can hardly believe it. I know there is still a long road ahead - we need to have doubling, then a heartbeat, then a good NT scan at 12 weeks, but we passed the first hurdle!

Going Crazy

***IF YOU HAVEN'T READ MY LAST POST, READ THAT FIRST!***


I forgot how hard this part is. On Sunday night, I switched from the Natural Progesterone Cream to the Crinone gel I used with my last pregnancy. I have enough progesterone for 6 days, so I decided to use it.

I woke up on Monday morning, and actively decided NOT to POAS. I didn't want to spend the day comparing lines on tests, or getting upset because I *thought* the test line looked lighter than the day before. I decided to call some doctors and see if I could get the progesterone, an early ultrasound at 6 weeks, and possibly some betas. My first call was to the midwives - I left a message, and waited for them to call back. And waited. And waited. And waited. I was cramping and uncomfortable, and spent the whole day wondering if I SHOULD POAS. I don't think my attempt to avoid POAS helped my psyche any...

To be honest, I really did not just sit at home and wait all day. It was a federal holiday, and Micah was not in daycare. DH & I took him to a special "Columbus Day" performance at our favorite music class, and we got to spend time with some friends. We came home and he napped for 3 1/2 hrs!! While he was napping, the midwife (the one who delivered Micah) called me back. She said I should come in on Tuesday, and she'd order betas and they'd get me a prescription for progesterone. She also said they would be happy to write me a script for an early ultrasound (at 6 weeks) to verify a heartbeat.

I spotted a bit on Monday night (can we say freak out?) and I debated taking an HPT to see if I was still getting a +HPT. I resisted the urge, and hung on until morning.

Naturally, Tuesday was insane. I had to leave in the afternoon for a conference in Miami. To make matters worse, I had forgotten that my driver's license expired (I learned that on my last trip when they weren't going to let me through the airport), so I had to get up early to get it renewed. I was up and out of the house before 8:00 am. I waited in line forever, finally got it renewed, and then went racing down to my appointment. Naturally, traffic was HORRIBLE - it took me 45 minutes to make a 15 minute trip. I finally got to the office, and DH was there waiting with Micah (he needed to hand Micah off so he could go to a meeting). Unfortunately, Micah had a big old stinky diaper going on (DH conveniently didn't smell it), and he did not want to sit still while mommy had an appointment. Oh - and did I mention it was Micah's nap time AND DH forgot to bring a bottle for me to feed him? I got my exam (everything looks "normal"), I got my progesterone script, I got an u/s script, and I got a script for 2 betas. After struggling with Micah the entire appointment, I took him to the car, strapped him in, and had a decision to make - we had class at 11:45, and it was already 11:00. I was 10 minutes from my house, and 15 minutes from Micah's class. I needed to decide if I should go straight to class, or try to drive home (10 minutes), get a bottle and some lunch food for him to try and feed him in class, then drive back to the class (about 20 minutes away). I knew from experience, going home would mean Micah would wake, up, not nap well, and we would be late for class. I decided to hope Micah napped and could hold out for his bottle until after we got home from class.

Instead, I drove up to the class, stopped for gas (I was on empty and needed a refill to get to the airport), and then realized I was STARVING and stopped for some lunch (Burger King was the only drive-through in the area...so veggie burger it was!). Naturally, I was late getting to class. We went inside, and Micah had fun, but he was very clingy - probably hungry. After class, Micah had a total melt down on the way home - he was sobbing as if to say "Mommy, I'm starving and going to DIE if you don't give me a bottle." It was heartbreaking - I kept telling him I was trying to get him a bottle, but he just did not understand.

When we got home, I realized that it was already 1:15. I gave Micah his bottle, fed him lunch, and started to try and plan the rest of my day. I knew I needed to leave for the airport by 3:30, and somewhere in there I had to finish packing and go get bloodwork done. I called DH, and he said he'd "try" to be back by 2. I was upset, because DH is ALWAYS late. So I called my mom, told her I needed to get bloodwork done, and asked if she could come by (she was taking off work early anyway to take my dad to an appointment near our house). She asked if something was wrong, and I LIED. I felt terrible - I said I needed to have some bloodwork done for the fertility center on certain cycle days, and I hadn't realized it would coincide with my trip, so it was a last minute thing. When DH heard I had asked my parents because I didn't think he'd get back in time, he insisted he would be there and made me cancel my arrangement with my parents.

Much to my surprise, DH showed up relatively on time...only 10 minutes late. I still had to finish packing and load up the car and then I ran off to get bloodwork done. I actually got in and out pretty quickly, and the woman did a pretty good job drawing blood. I headed to the airport, only to find out my flight was delayed 30 minutes. We finally took off, and the flight seemed to last forever. My stomach was bothering me, and all I wanted to do was go to sleep. About 15 minutes before landing, the girl in the seat next to me accidentally ate some salmon (she tasted something the little old lady at the end of our row offered her)...and she is allergic to salmon! She had an epi pen, but didn't know how to use it (apparently, her parents had always administered it in the past). The flight attendants were freaking out when she asked if someone else could give her the shot, so I stepped up and offered to do it. I mean, how much different could it be than a Follistim pen? Or any of the bazillion other shots I've done. So I grabbed the pen, quickly skimmed the directions, ripped the top off, lined it up, gave her warning and hit the trigger. I had benadryl around, so I gave her some of that.

She was worried about what to do when she landed, so I told her I'd call my friend (with whom I was staying) who is a thoracic surgeon and double check with her what she had to do next. Upon landing, I called my friend who said it was all good, but encouraged her to continue taking benadryl for the next 24 hours. I felt like such a mom - I was explaining to this girl how to transfer her prescription refill down, and I gave her benadryl to take with her, and I made sure she found her boyfriend who was picking her up. She seemed so scared - she was only 22!!

Anyway, last night I went out with my friend to dinner - we ate at a place called Yuca, and it was delicious. I was so exhausted, though, and when I got back to her condo, my stomach was really upset. I did some work, then went to bed at 1:30.

We woke up this morning, grabbed breakfast together, then I came to the conference. I've been sitting in boring meetings all day. I've been so anxious about my beta - on the last break, I finally called and asked if I would get the results today. I have to say, I nearly killed the assistant when she said "yes, I have your results, but I cannot tell you what they say - the midwife has to review it and get back to you." Seriously? I told her I didn't need a medical opinion. Just the number. Or better yet, fax me the entire sheet and I'll figure it out. No dice...so here I wait, going crazy.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Do miracles really happen?

I'm not even sure where to begin with this post...I'm sitting here, once again stunned, wondering if miracles really do happen. As you all know, we've been sort of ttc'ing #2 - or, as I have preferred to think about the process, killing time until we start IUI in December or January (which is really just killing time until we do IVF next August). On some level, DH and I believed that ttc'ing early would increase our odds - we aren't quite ready to be pregnant yet (Micah is not yet one year and we need to either move or renovate to make room for another baby), but, we figured nature has a sick sense of humor, so inconvenience has to increase the odds! Last week, I contacted my RE and asked to start filling out the paperwork for IUI. I found out I have to re-do some tests, and I planned to start scheduling them once AF arrived. I'm traveling so much the next few months that I thought I would need one or two cycles to get the tests done on the "right" days.

Last cycle, I started spotting at 5dpo. Because of all the spotting, (and after a moment of insanity and thinking I *might* be pregnant) I figured I either was having PCOS issues (giving me a LPD) or that my fibroid was back in my uterine lining. I decided that this cycle, in addition to the instead cups, I'd use natural progesterone cream to try and reduce the spotting (and perhaps set me up for a better ovulation next cycle). About 1 week before ovulation, I started spotting for a few days. I assumed this was a clear sign that the fibroid was the culprit. Much to my surprise, I ovulated a day earlier than the previous cycle. Our timing was kind of lousy, though. We bd'd the first day of high on my monitor, nothing the 2nd day, and we bd'd again the first morning I hit peak on my monitor. We were going to bd O day, but Micah had other plans for us.

The day after ovulation, I started using natural progesterone cream. Day after day went by, and much to my surprise, no spotting. This morning came around - no spotting yet (not unusual for me on the progesterone cream). A friend of mine sent me some of those internet early pregnancy test strips for good luck a few weeks ago. Since I did not have any other tests in the house, I decided to use one of those internet tests to confirm I was not pregnant so I could comfortably stop using the cream - it usually takes 2 days for AF to show after I stop the cream, and I didn't want to prolong my cycle. I woke up this morning, peed in a cup, dipped the test, and saw this:


My heart stopped. I figured internet test, had to be an evap line, right? I woke DH up, showed it to him. First he said he didn't see anything, and then he said "well, maybe." Micah and I had plans to meet my parents and nieces at a pumpkin festival, so off we went! We had such a good time - we played, took a hayride (Micah ate straw and loved it), and enjoyed our day outside. I'll save the rest of the details for another post, but he was so excited watching his cousins jumping on the moon bounce - he was in the Ergo carrier, and he was also bouncing on the outside edge while watching them play!

We got home around 2, and Micah kept me running the rest of the afternoon while DH was at a conference. He came home around 5:45, and I crashed hard while DH fed Micah dinner, played with him, then put him to bed. Around 8:00, DH ran to the store for an FRER. Here is what we saw:

We're stunned, and don't know what to think! Clearly, that is positive. I'm going to start calling doctors tomorrow - I know I need progesterone support to carry a baby, and I am also at a very high risk for an early miscarriage or a blighted ovum. I'm going to try and schedule an ultrasound at 6 weeks and get that progesterone prescription. In the meantime, I still have progesterone left from my last pregnancy. WOW - things like this just don't happen, do they? I think you could probably knock me over with a feather. Hello - they said we had a 2-3% chance of getting pregnant on our own. This can't end well, right?

In the meantime - we now have to make some decisions about whether we move or put an addition on FAST! I kept joking about how the only way DH would make a decision is if I got knocked up. I think we are both in denial right now.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Simchat Torah

This time of year is packed full of holidays for us. It starts the New Year, followed by the celebration of the Harvest (a holiday called Sukkot - you build an open-top hut and are supposed to dine outside under the stars and enjoy the harvest). Tonight was the start of another special holiday called "Simchat Torah," which means rejoicing of the Torah. "Torah" is the Hebrew word for the bible, which includes the 5 books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. The Torah is a scroll - two sticks wrapped with a very long piece of parchment with the bible handwritten in Hebrew. It is what many Christians refer to as the "Old Testament." The holiday marks the completion of reading of the Torah from start to finish, and starting all over again. In synagogue, the final chapter of Deuteronomy is read, and then the first chapter of Genesis is started.

This is considered one of the two most festive holidays during the year. Tonight, we went to the synagogue to celebrate. It is tradition to bring all the different Torahs out of the ark (the place where they are stored) and march them around the synagogue while singing and dancing. We circle the Torahs around the room 7 times (called 7 hakafot, the Hebrew word that means circles). There is a prayer that is sung while each circle happens, and then everyone breaks out with additional singing and dancing for 5-10 minutes before the next circle. Everyone can take a turn holding the Torahs, and there are usually little mini-Torahs for children to carry (and stuffed toy Torahs).

My nieces happened to be in town staying with my parents, so all of us went to synagogue together. We had a stuffed Torah (think stuffed animal, but a Torah), and they all took turns carrying it around. DH carried Micah in the baby bjorn, and we danced and sang and my nieces ran around. They had flags to wave, and they were handing out candy, and there were shots of vodka and gin for the adults. Kids were running all over the place laughing and playing and dancing and twirling, and it truly was a wonderful evening!

Last year at this time, I was pregnant with Micah. I had just been placed on bedrest, and was unable to go to synagogue to join the festivities. It was so much fun to bring Micah with us this year! He was grinning from ear to ear, he held a flag in his hand the whole night and flapped it up and down, and he was "singing" along with everyone. He loves to make singing noises and he would intermittently squeal with delight. I was amazed he had such a good time - it was after his bedtime, but we got him to take a very late nap today and he seemed to do just fine.

So, chag sameach! (That means happy holiday!) This holiday is the conclusion of our Fall celebrations...next holiday, Chanukah!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Dance, Dance, Dance

I'm constantly amazed by what a "big boy" Micah has become. He definitely understands words, and he will also mimic me when I talk or do things. If you tell him "No" - he understands (but often chooses not to listen." He loves to dance, so if you say to him "dancing, dancing, dancing" he'll start bouncing and dancing! Here is some video proof:

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He also loves to laugh - he laughs all the time, and he has the wonderful big belly laugh that just burbles up from deep inside. I melt each and every time I hear that wonderful sound. He sounds just like he did as a little infant - only louder. I caught a bit of video of him giggling because the dog was touching him. He LOVES interacting with her, and he squeals with delight any time she nuzzles or licks him.

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Lately, his new game is to follow me around the house. He also will try and climb up the stairs every chance he gets. He climbs over, goes straight up the stairs, hangs a right around the railing, and usually heads straight to our bedroom to play with his toys. I chase after him multiple times a day - who needs a stairclimber? We have GOT to get those baby gates installed ASAP. We've started telling him it is time to go upstairs for bed or a bath and letting him climb up on his own. We tried to capture that on video tonight, but he was hamming it up for the camera. Here is the footage we did get:

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On Sunday, we went to a BBQ at a friend's house. Micah decided to head off on his own and go exploring - up their stairs. Here is some video of Micah in action:

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For good measure, here are some pictures. We never made it in for his 9 month pictures - between my computer dying, Micah getting sick, and my business trips, it just didn't happen this month :(. I might go this week for his 9 month pictures, and then go in 2-3 weeks for his 10 month pictures. Not quite accurate, but who cares!




Sunday, October 4, 2009

Stories....

Sometimes, when Micah is relaxing and cuddling, or just playing, he makes these cooing....pigeon noises. It just makes me laugh. He has also become an expert at "so big!" - we just have to say it, and his hands go up in the air.

Recently, he has started to play peek-a-boo on his own - he grabs a towel or a blanket, and he covers up his eyes and then yanks it back down. It is just so cute to watch HIM decide to play with US.

Micah loves his bath. For quite some time, he has loved to climb the stairs and go straight to the bathroom, but the other morning, while I was getting ready, Micah went into the bathroom and climbed into his bath tub that was sitting on the floor.

We are also starting to have issues with Micah and opening all of the kitchen cabinets. It is time to baby proof the house!