Friday, December 28, 2007

How yuppie am I?

A few weeks ago, as I was poking around looking for a diaper bag, I happened upon an extremely cute one from K@te Sp@de. (Okay fine, I "happened" upon it at katesp@de.com. Whatever.) Anyhow, I've been wondering just how ridiculous it would be to get it. I mean, I'm sure there are much more practical, cheaper bags that are also cute. But I just thought this one was really cute. I mean, look at it:

Well, yesterday my aunt and I were shopping around and I wandered into the K@te Sp@de store and she bought it for me. (I actually felt a little guilty. I wasn't showing it to her asking her to buy it. I was just looking for someone to tell me I wouldn't be utterly ridiculous for getting it myself. But I confess to being really excited about it now that I have it! :-)

Sadly, I'm not really very hip, so this will likely be the only cute thing I'm toting around as I wear my $9 T@rget sweats, but whatever. It's still awfully cute.

Not much else to report from the holiday week. I've been enjoying having some time off and loafing around. We did the obligatory family visits on Christmas Eve and Christmas, which were fine. Nothing to dramatic to report from either, which is always a good thing.

In pregnancy-related news, I did pull the ligament that attaches to the right side of my pub1c bone last Friday when I was shopping for hubby's gift. I wasn't able to walk for a full day. Good times. It's definitely gotten better, but it was a cruel reminder that, not only can I not do the things I used to, but I guess I also can't do the things my 90 year old grandmother can. A small price to pay, to be sure.

Other than that, the stickies seem to be doing well. We had an ob appointment on the 26th and the heartbeats sounded good. It took this doctor a little more time than I'm comfortable with to find sticky A's heartbeat, but when she did it sounded great. And my blood pressure is still looking good, which is always comforting.

The only thing that's been making me a tad nervous is that I've been having what I like to call "uterine awareness" lately. I can't say I'm feeling cramps or anything, but I'm feeling something going on down there. I've been poking around and haven't noticed any uterine tightening, so I'm pretty sure (I think) they're not contractions, but still. I hate to feel anything other than kicks. I'm hoping that they'll just go away, but I have a feeling as I'm getting bigger and bigger by the second that I'm going to feel lots of odd twinges. I wish there was some sort of alert that went off to let you know when you needed to worry, though. Otherwise, I feel like I just worry all the time.

Speaking of getting bigger, at my Wednesday weigh-in I was officially up 30lbs. Wow. The doctor is really happy with my weight gain, and it appears to be right on track based on what my twin books say, but wow. 30lbs. I officially weigh more than hubby. I feel E-N-O-R-M-O-U-S. I'm trying not to even think about it because I know it's good for the stickies, but it's hard to suddenly turn off all of the societal pressure to be thin just like that. I am trying to keep my spirits up, though, and have turned it into a game. I've been having weigh-offs with hubby and my brother. Now that I've bested hubby, I'm telling my brother he should watch his back. He thinks he's safe at 185, but since I'm tipping the scales at 172 right now, I'm liking my chances.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Two quick updates

First, thanks so much for your thoughts on whether you share your blog with people irl and how much, if at all, it causes you to censor yourself. You definitely gave me some additional food for thought. The long and short of it is, I'm not going to share, selfish as it may sound. For lots of reasons, but mainly because I just don’t think I’m ready to have people I know reading and checking in on this. (And, frankly, I’m not sure I’ll ever be.) I actually went back and read all of my posts (which was fascinating, btw—what an interesting account of the past year) and realized that there are so many posts that are just raw and that I’m sure I’d couch very differently when talking to people irl.

I think most of us think of our blogs as a “safe space,” and on some level that would be changed if I knew someone else was reading everything I wrote. Sure, I know that, since the url is technically public and searchable, I’m exposed to some risk, but that’s much different than willingly giving the address away so that people know its me and check in on it regularly.

Second, I think it's been a while since I've updated you on the stickies, but they seem to be doing well. I had another ultrasound today (I’m 23 ½ weeks), and I feel really good about how it went. Despite the fact that both stickies are breech right now (though that can apparently change at any point now), they are otherwise looking good. They weigh 1.5 and 1.6 lbs, respectively, which is apparently the average for a singleton at this point (wahoo!). And it looks like my weight gain is on track—I’ve gained about 23lbs (yikes!) and I’m supposed to gain at least 25 by week 25 or 26 (I can’t remember exactly). And I was truly excited to find out that my cervix was more than 4cm long, which they were thrilled about as well. (They like to see anything over 3cm, so they were pretty happy with more than 4.) I go back for the next u/s in three weeks on January 2nd. (Can you believe that the new year is in three weeks?!) After that, I guess they’re going to want me to start coming in more frequently to make sure everything is still on track through the end. Fingers crossed that it is!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Aliens and a question for you

Have you ever thought about how similar being pregnant is to the movie Aliens? I mean, there is this…thing…growing inside of you. And one day it bursts out onto the scene.

How sci-fi?

I was thinking about this as I sat in a meeting today with the co-CEOs and one (or both) of the stickies was using the inside of my belly button as a punching bag. You could actually see my belly button jumping up and down and I thought that s/he might be trying to bust through. (And I kept chuckling to myself about it—I was quite certain they thought I’d lost my mind.) :-)

Speaking of aliens, I’m convinced the cousin of mine I told you about the other day has been abducted and replaced with some strange alien life force. One that has caused her to lose all sense of reality and common sense.

The latest is that she’s no longer dropping out of school. She has, however, been arrested for shoplifting and possession of pot.

?!?!?

And, when my mom asked my aunt what the hell was going on with her, my aunt replied, “she just got caught, all of her friends shoplift.”

Oh, so that makes it okaaayy.

On second thought, maybe it’s my aunt who’s been abducted and replaced by a pod person.

Oh, and she’s also transferred to an “independent” (read: drop-out prevention) school. Now, on the surface, I’m sure this seems like a good—hell, downright reasonable idea. But I’m not convinced. Here’s why: she was failing out not because she was struggling with the coursework but because she wasn’t going to class. And now she’s transferred to an independent public school that lets everyone work at his/her own pace and graduate on their time. Of course, most students who go there are balancing other things—like teenage parenthood or full-time jobs. My cousin has neither. In fact, she just quit her job, so she has even less responsibility than she did. So, I fail to see how putting fewer boundaries and expectations on her is going to help.

I realize I should just be happy she’s still moving towards getting a high school diploma. But I guess I’m not overly optimistic that this is the path that’s going to get it done. This girl has been screaming for boundaries for years—it’s really upsetting to watch, actually, because my aunt has repeatedly refused to give her any. So, I feel like, on some level, this school rebellion has more to do with seeking out help as she tries to seek her own limits and decide what’s she should and should not be doing. And my aunt just hasn’t stepped up to the plate to actually parent. And, I fear it’s going to continue to make the problem even worse. (Exhibit A: Her recent shoplifting. It’s a felony offense. And she’s already on probation from a ticket she got for underage drinking. It’s not me, right? The writing on the wall couldn’t be any clearer, right?!?)

But, enough psycho-babble for one day, huh?

In my final random thought of the day, I mentioned the other day that my sister-in-law is starting down the lonely road of fertility treatments. She and I talk a lot about it, and there’s something I’m really struggling with right now. Namely, do I introduce her to this blog? I have been thinking more and more lately about how she might appreciate having this kind of support network, and that she might appreciate reading about some of the things that I’ve struggled with.

But, here’s the dilemma: NOBODY in real life has (to my knowledge) ever read my blog. Hubby knows about it, but never reads it (doesn’t even know the url), and nobody else even knows it exists. So, telling her about it would really be putting myself out there in a way I never have before.

So, my question to you is, do people irl know about your blog? And, if so, how do you feel about them reading it? And, how much (if any) do you censor yourself because of it?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Remembering

Today is December 4. Had my first clinically recognized pregnancy gone differently, today we would be our baby’s first birthday.

I remember passing this milestone last year and feeling particularly sad, desperate, and lost. I can still remember how raw the pain felt, and how December 4th brought that pain to the surface in a way it hadn’t been since right after the miscarriage. I can remember talking to hubby in the month or two before the 4th and saying that I just didn’t know what I was going to do if we weren’t pregnant by the time our “due date” passed. I can remember one particularly painful conversation in the days leading up to the 4th. I was expressing the desperation I was feeling, and I think it was just getting to be too much for him. He was beginning to feel the pressure of the last pre-due date cycle and he was telling me that I was basically overreacting and I needed to get over it. Needless to say, we had a big fight about it. (Funny that I brought this up the other day and he has no recollection of it. Ah, to be a man sometimes…)

Of course, last year’s due date came and went with no two pink lines. And exactly one week later, this blog was born.

I guess, in some ways, starting this blog was my way of "getting over it." It was clear from that conversation with hubby not that he didn’t or couldn’t understand, but that we processed all of this so very differently. And I just needed an outlet to work through my thoughts.

It’s probably cliché, but I didn’t and couldn’t possibly have realized at the time what a profound impact having this blog would have on my struggle with infertility. It’s all of you who have helped me feel connected through some of the darkest days and some of the biggest disappointments. And it’s you who have helped me keep my feet grounded and my hopes up when I needed to remember that all was not lost. And it’s really made me realize that one of the most empowering things you can find when you’re struggling with something is someone who can patently and honestly say to you, "I know exactly how you feel."

And the truth is, since I’ve gotten pregnant—-or at least since I’ve settled into this pregnancy a bit—I haven’t known how to talk on this blog anymore or what to do with it. It’s been strange and something I think you know I’ve been struggling with. It’s just that I’ve been trying so hard not to say something that comes across as insensitive—-I feared doing the blogging equivalent of putting a giant inflatable stork on my front yard. You know, the kind of thing that seems like it’s just fun and harmless—-no doubt what my neighbors thought last December 4th—-but something that could end up causing pain to someone else.

(Of course, as is frequently the case when you use avoidance techniques, I fear that my silence or attempts to dance around something for which so many of you are still struggling has ended up being more insensitive in the end.)

So, on this December 4th, I want to take a moment to remember. I want to remember everything that we’ve been through that’s brought us to where we are now because, for better or worse, who I am today is a product of where I’ve been and what I’ve been through. And I want to remember the baby that might have been.

But mostly, I want to remember the reason I started this blog to begin with—-to find an outlet for my thoughts and struggles and to share those with a community of wonderful women (and men) who can truly understand how tenuous even the most "boring" pregnancy can feel to an infertile.

And, I want you to know that I think of you all the time—but especially when I go shopping and the only spot that’s left is the lot is the "parking for expectant mothers" spot and I just refuse to take it. (I still hate those damn things. They’re right up there with inflatable storks in their insensitivity, as far as I’m concerned.)

Thanks, ladies, for making the past year tolerable! And for virtually sticking with me despite all of my quirks. :-)

And, speaking of remembering--don't forget to pop by and wish Becks and Amy good luck. Both have their retrievals tomorrow and could use a wonderful holiday surprise!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Photos of the stripes...

As promised, here are a few shots of the paint job hubby was working on for "that" room. the first few are the "works in progress" photos:













And here are some finished product photos. I feel like the lighting doesn't really do it justice, but it came out really cute. Again, there are three blue walls, and one rose accent wall. (I am apparently in an accent wall phase. I have one in the living room and our bedroom, too. This is our first foray into stripes, though. Go hubby.)

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Transforming "that" room...

I think many of us have "that" room. You know the one...it's not that you leave it completely idle or empty, but you're not necessarily looking to do much with it in the hopes that someday it will be transformed into something else.

Well, I'm both proud and terrified to say that last weekend we began our first steps towards that transformation. In short, we found out that with the holidays it could take up to 10 weeks to get a crib once it was ordered. (Don't ask me why, exactly. It seems utterly ridiculous.) So, we figured it was time to stop letting my paranoia get the best of us and we ordered two of these:

I’m pretty excited; I think they’re pretty darned cute. (Never mind that the room is barely going to big enough to fit us now, let alone two cribs…)

And, I'm trying not to think about how terrified this makes me. After all, whether or not we order cribs or otherwise prepare will have NO effect on how things progress. (That's my mantra...)

And, as if that weren't enough, as we speak, hubby is upstairs painting "that" room. We decided to go with blue and deep rose (a deep rose accent wall with three blue walls). And, hubby's being so adventurous that he's actually painting stripes. I know it sounds like a catastrophe in the making, but I think it's going to look pretty cute. He's gotten a combo of flat and glossy paint in each color and he's alternating between the two. Here's the effect we're hoping it makes on each wall:

I'll post a photo once it's finished.

And we’re getting new carpet for the whole upstairs on Thursday. (Okay, this is only marginally related to "that" room. We just have needed new carpet since we moved in. And since we moved a bunch of furniture to the basement last week, we figured now was as good a time as any to get that done.)

But wait, there's MORE! We also started a registry yesterday. (!!!) You see, it looks like my mom is going to throw a shower over MLK weekend in January and she wants to send out invitations this week. So, in order for her to let people know where we're registered, I had to actually start registering.

I know what you're saying, "that seems downright optimistic. What have you done with our ordinarily cynical sticky we've all come to know?" She's still here...she's just trying to move beyond her cynicism. Of course, there's a small chance I've overdone it this weekend and may freak out later in the week. But for now, we're keeping pretty busy, which is keeping my mind off the terror.

In other news, I had a prenatal massage today. It went pretty well--they had a table and pillow setup that allowed me to lie on both my stomach and my back at different times. I enjoyed lying on my back, but I found it kind of strange to lie on my stomach. I think it may have been that I'm a bit too tall for the table. So, in order to fit my stomach into the hole, my head was basically falling off the table. So, that was a bit weird. Otherwise, though, it was great fun.

And, at the risk of TMI*, I finally got a bikini wax for the first time in a few months. It's been far too long and I can't exactly navigate the area on my own anymore, so I feel a bit better about that.

So, all in all, a fairly eventful weekend chez sticky, doggie, and hubby.

*I'm guessing that we all past the point of TMI long ago on all of our blogs. :-)

Friday, November 30, 2007

The world doesn't need another stirrup queen!

Last January, we got a call right after New Year’s that hubby’s sister and her husband were expecting. It was the first month they had started trying, and they had barely been married six months.

I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t a little jealous at how easy it was for them, but I knew how much she wanted to be a mom. She was ready to have lots of kids and be a stay at home mom. And this was happy news.

Then, just a few weeks later, we got the call that they had lost the baby. I think they were around 7-8 weeks, but the baby had stopped growing earlier. Because it happened naturally, she hadn’t had any u/s or b/w so doesn’t really know exactly when.

Like so many of us, I think she thought—or at least I thought—that they’d get pregnant again quickly. After all, she was young, they got pregnant quickly before, everything would be fine, right?

But, like so many of us, month after month has passed with nothing.

She went in for initial fertility testing a few months ago and found out that she has a hypoactive thyroid. Now’s she’s on medication and it seems to be worked out—she’s ovulating normally, and her hormones are now fine. But still nothing. And so she’s feeling like it’s time to get off the DIY roller coaster and do *something*.

Today she had an appointment with her RE to decide whether they would start cl*mid tomorrow, and she sent me an email saying while she was happy to do something new, she was really sad to think that this is what they were going to have to do to get pregnant. She had always pictured it just taking the two of them, after all.

My heart just broke for her. I really do know exactly how she is feeling—we all do, much as we wish we didn’t. She’s at that point where you have to make the awful decision: do I think this will happen naturally, or do I need to enter the unenviable world of fertility treatment? And it’s such a crappy and scary decision to have to make. It’s just so unfair.

Of course I hope for them that, if they do start cl*mid, that they’re among the lucky few who get pregnant right away. But my cynical side can’t help but fear for them that this might be a longer journey than they’re expecting right now.

Here’s hoping that cynicism is wrong…

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

On grandmas and thanksgiving

My grandmother was the greatest woman in the world. Seriously. She was a saint and wonderfully loving and funny as hell. She passed away when I was 8, but I still cry when I think about the fact that she’s not here—that she didn’t get to see me graduate, even from 8th grade. I still remember, the day before she died, even though she was feeling crappy (crappier than any of us knew at the time), she made my grandfather drive her an hour to come watch me at one of my swim meets. I mean, how wonderful is that? I don’t know if you’ve ever been to a swim meet, but for a spectator, it’s fantastically boring. I swam probably two events for a total of about a minute and a half. But she came. To support me.

Damnit. Crying again…

Anyhow, the point is, my grandmother, even though she was only around for a short period of my life, had a profound impact on it in so many ways.*

And, one of the things that she always used to tell me was “don’t wish your life away.” At 8 I can’t imagine what I was wishing—maybe to turn a year older, or for Christmas to come—but she always made a point of telling me that all of those things I wished for would come eventually (though they wouldn't always look like what I thought), but that I’d be sad if I spent my life's journey just wishing away my time and not enjoying what I had. (I'm paraphrasing, of course, and I do realize it's not a unique idea, but still...)

Because I still can hear her voice telling me that almost 24 years later, I do really try not to wish things away. Before I met hubby, for example, even though I knew I always wanted to find the right guy and get married someday, I didn't spend my time wishing I was married. I just tried to enjoy my carefree 20s and all it brought with it.

And when we first started trying to have a baby, I tried to do the same--tried to enjoy the "last" holiday without kids, or the "last vacation" where it was just the two of us. (Needless to say, that attitude didn’t last...and those "lasts" were anything but...)

But now that I’m pregnant (still hard to believe I can say that), I realize that I’m doing exactly what grandma advised against—I’m wishing away this pregnancy. I find myself looking at the calendar, no matter how far along I am, and seeing nothing but the weeks that stretch out before me and wishing they would go by more quickly.

Lately I’ve been thinking about my grandma, though, and remembering her sage advice and I’m realizing that (assuming everything goes according to plan and god-willing), this is going to be over before I know it, and that I'll never be able to get it back. And I'm at risk of wishing away all of the miraculous moments that I spent so many months/years of infertility wishing for. Like the stickies’ movements, which are getting stronger by the day and which hubby can now feel from the outside. (How wild is that?!) Or hearing the fabulous little heartbeats at each of my doctor’s visits. Or seeing the stickies on the ultrasounds. Or getting the stickies their first stuffed animals.

So, in this belated Thanksgiving post, I want to make sure I’m taking the time to be thankful for what we’ve been blessed with. For the stickies (extra fingers and all). For this pregnancy, which seems to be going okay. For having the greatest hubby in the world. For this blogging community which, even though I find myself a bit mute and lost between infertility and pregnancy doesn’t let me forget that you’re pulling for me and thinking of me. (And I can’t tell you how much that means.)

But most of all, I’m thankful for the 8 years I had with my grandma as she took care of me when my mom went back to work full time. And here’s to trying to live up to the wisdom of the advice she gave me more than 24 years ago.

* I could tell so many funny and heartwarming stories about my grandma, but one thing that always makes me laugh now is how I remember her. Since she passed away when I was 8, she was much taller than I was at the time, so that's how I picture her. But, in reality, she was barely 4’11”….and I’m 5’10”. Oh how memory can play with reality!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Ticker

Okay, I've had a few requests to add a ticker to my sidebar, and I finally did it. I have to tell you, I just previewed it and almost had a heart attack, though. I can't explain it, but I somehow feel so raw and exposed now or something. I know in my head that's silly, but for some reason it still feels so hard to make me believe I'm here and that something won't happen. And, even though I realize that the ticker has nothing to do with whether anything happens, it feels like the one thing I can control, so I've been scared to add it.

But, I do love checking in on other's tickers to see where they are, so I'm going to try to keep it. I warn you, though, I may wimp out. I'm weak, I admit it.

Enough about that. I'll come up with something more interesting and less wimpy to say soon. :-)

Saturday, November 10, 2007

21 fingers and other updates

There's actually much to update you on in this post--what a change from my silence of late! I'll cut right to the chase with the pregnancy related news, though. (No point burying the lead, I suppose.)

We had our anatomy scan yesterday and, thankfully, it went really well. I think I cried on and off the whole time for so many reasons. I cried because I couldn't believe that we are actually here. I know so much can still go wrong, but I just felt this overwhelming sense of gratitude and good fortune. I just felt very lucky.

I also cried for Ann, because I know it was at this scan just a matter of days ago that her life was so cruelly and inexplicably changed. And it just made me cry for just how unfair life can be.

And, I cried everytime I heard the word "normal" come out of the tech's or perinatologist's mouth. "Normal" heartbeat, "normal" bladder and kidneys, "normal." It was like the single most beautiful word I'd ever heard, and as far as I was concerned I couldn't hear it enough.

I also cried when they told me that twin A was a little girl and that twin B was a little boy. I just felt--what have I done to deserve this good fortune? I just felt so unbelievably lucky, and so undeserving.

And I cried when I called my parents and told them that, no matter what happens, right now they have a little granddaughter and grandson.

I've continued to be weepy--in a good way--since the scan. I felt some flutters on the train into the city today and started to cry all over again. I'm sure everyone around me thought I'd lost my mind (because I was, of course, alone on the train. Ah, well...who cares.)

So, all in all, I couldn't have asked for a better scan.

Well, except that the little girl apparently has an extra little finger. Crazy, huh? All hubby could say was, "Well, 11 is better than 9!" True story. But, how funny, right? I mean, we all have our quirks--I had extra teeth, hubby a third nipple. (Yeah, that's right--an extra little nubbin, just like Ch*ndler on "Friends".) So, it stands to reason, really. And, frankly, I really don't care one way or another as long as the stickies are healthy and growing.

That's the good news.

The irony, though, of finding out that one of the stickies was a little girl was that I also found out that this cousin of mine is planning to drop out of high school. She's been spiraling for a while, but COME ON! Dropping out of high school?! She has every advantage in the world and she's just throwing it away. And, frankly, it pisses me off. I've dedicated my entire career to working with underprivileged students who don't have one-tenth of what she has and to working to make sure they are prepared to succeed at and graduate from top tier colleges and universities. And she can't even be bothered to finish high school? She tried to give me some sob story about how hard her life has been, and all I could say was, "we buried two of our students this year...so far. You don't know from hard."

I of course to mean to belittle things that have been hard for her, but at a certain point you can't use that as an excuse for such ridiculously self-indulgent behavior. And, it's not even like she has a plan. It's not like she's always wanted to do something different that she's going to dive into instead. (I dated someone once, for example, who dropped out of high school because he really wanted to be a carpenter. And, now he's an expert who was hired by the Clinton's to renovate their Georgetown townhouse. I'm not saying I agree with the dropping out decision in any situation, but at least if she had some dream or plan or work ethic it *might* seem less self-indulgent.)

In any case, I hope to g-d she changes her mind. We're all trying to figure out what's the best way to get her to see that she's lost her ever-loving mind and making a catastrophic mistake that's going to make her life so much more difficult than there's any reason for it to be.

So, that's the news chez SB, hubby, and the stickies.

And, don't forget to congratulate Sarah from For the Flavor, who gave birth last week to a beautiful little girl. Proof that sometimes there is a happy ending to these infertility woes. Congrats, Sarah! I wish you much happiness! :-)

Friday, November 02, 2007

So unfair

Ann at the Unlucky 20 Percent had a terrifying visit with the perinatologist today and
could use some support. Ann--I really hope Monday's visit brings better news. I'm thinking of you...

Thursday, November 01, 2007

18 weeks

Hubby's favorite number is 18. And, today, we're 18 weeks--potentially the halfway point for twins. (I've heard twins are considered "full term" at 36 weeks, so my hope is to get to March 4. 18 weeks from now.) I feel really lucky and just hope that our luck continues. Fingers crossed. Tightly.

In other news, one thing that's added to my quietness lately is that work has been INSANELY busy. So much has been going on, including that my organization hired someone who they tried to put above me and basically take over the management of my team. A team that I built--from scratch. A team that I've managed for two years and that has the best retention rate in the org. And, so, because I've put so much blood, sweat, and tears into this, and because I report to the CEO and am not looking to be demoted, I just wasn't having it.

And, I couldn't help but think how ironic the timing was--I'm about to go on maternity leave and have kids and they start to strip away responsibility? I don't THINK so.

Anyhow, the good news is that they've seen the light and have stopped the bullshit and are now building my team out underneath me. (It is MY team afterall, and I've done a good job. DAMNIT.)

Anyhow, I feel a little better, even if I'm still a little miffed at how it all went down.

In other news, remember this friend? Well, I did finally talk to her. I actually didn't talk to her until I was about 11+ weeks, so I literally went almost three months. I was just still so hurt by how she handled the whole thing. I did break down and tell her why I was upset (and avoiding her). The conversation went okay, but she still didn't get it. After I explained everything to her, I told her that I was pregnant, but that I was really nervous because of the hematoma and the 2.5 years of infertility and the failed fertility treatments, etc. To which she responded, "I know EXACTLY how you feel."

Um, really? Exactly how I feel? Because you got pregnant on your second try and have had a perfectly healthy and uneventful pregnancy? Yeah, let's not call that understanding "exactly" how I feel.

But, helas. She's a good friend, and I've gotten over myself. I even went to her shower two weeks ago, which I'm really glad I did.

So, that's the latest. Nothing too exciting...but I'm happy to be boring right now. :-)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

On Moose and Pregnancy

For reasons I can’t fully explain, my whole adult life I’ve wanted to see a real, live moose. Up close and in person. Moose sort of fascinated me—they seemed so huge and like they should be so scary, but they’re really just dopey animals that amble around harmlessly. And, did I mention they’re HUGE? With really skinny legs that barely hold them up? I mean, who wouldn’t want to see that in real life?

So, two weekends ago, hubby and I went up to New Hampshire for the weekend to visit hubby’s sister and brother-in-law. As we were driving up, I remarked at how cool it would be to see a moose. And, miraculously, we did! We were just driving down the street and there was a moose on the side of the road. We pulled over to get a better look and saw him just ambling around munching on leaves, staring at all of us like the fools we are.

But then, as we got into the car, I felt almost a little lost. Here was something I’d been talking about for so long. Something that had taken on an almost mythical status in my mind. And all I could think as we were driving away was, well…now what?

Then, as I was falling asleep last night, I realized that, while obviously so fundamentally different in magnitude of importance, there were some similarities between my moose sighting and my newfound pregnancy. You see, pregnancy had certainly risen to the level of myth in my mind—it seemed like something so unattainable that I would spend my life in pursuit. And my life had become so much about the pursuit that now I feel a little lost, wondering, now what?

And, of course the “now what” conversation about pregnancy is obviously so huge and carries so many plans and hopes and dreams that it seems even scarier to think about. And I’m realizing in a very real way that all that time I was in pursuit, I never really let myself think about what I’d do if I actually got pregnant…and brought home a real, live baby.

And so now it still feels too soon to think too far ahead, even though I realize that's beginning to border on the ridiculous. Not allowing myself to think of life with baby(ies) was what got me through the pursuit. And now I feel a little like my friend the moose. I feel like I’m ambling around mindlessly just staring blankly at all of the fools* who think I should actually be thinking about cribs and registering and all of the “now what” things for which I know in my head I should start to plan someday in the not-too-distant future.

What’s more—and I know bloggers far more eloquent than I have talked about this before—but I really don’t feel like I fit into the pregnant club. And I know that I no longer fit into the trying club. And so my silence is brought on more from a place of not knowing how I’m supposed to feel or what I should say. It’s not that I don’t have things to say, it’s just that I still feel a little lost. You’d think I’d be better able to get used to this by now, no?

But, I’m 16 weeks today. 16 weeks! I remember looking at the tickers of my fellow infertile but pregnant bloggers who got up to 16 weeks and thinking, “wow. You’ve made it so far!”

But for me, it still feels early. I mean, I can’t bring myself to put a ticker up. Isn’t that ridiculous!? I mean—according to some books—I’ve entered my FIFTH month. FIFTH. What the hell am I waiting for?

*sigh*

I guess it just continues to amaze me to this day how infertility has affected me. And how I’m still struggling to heal the wounds, and wondering if they’ll ever really go away, or weather they’ll live on (less obviously, I hope) as sometimes painful reminders of how our journey was so. much. different. from so many others and from what it “should” have been.

On a happier note, though, I am 16 weeks. I mean, on some level, wow. F’ing 16 weeks! And, the time has mercifully started to go by more quickly. For the first twelve weeks, I can honestly say that I checked in on websites and tickers everyday to see how far along I was, even though I already knew. And every day felt like an entire week. But now, it feels a little less desperate. (That work has been INSANELY busy has helped a bit, I suppose. But I’ll save that drama for a different post…)

I am also officially in maternity clothes. None of my old clothes fit. At all. Which terrifies me just a bit…I mean, with twins, I’m going to get HUGE, huh?

And, my sleeping has started to feel a little less comfortable, so I have erected a bit of a pillow fort around me so that I can prop myself up (and stop from sleeping on my back—which had always been my favorite way to sleep before, but now makes me feel a little weird). I think hubby’s afraid if I get any bigger he’ll get kicked out of the bed entirely. I can’t say his fear is unfounded. I mean, damnit, I need my sleep. J

Also, just to throw a monkey wrench into all of those textbook pregnancy symptoms, I had a virtually symptom-free first trimester. No nausea, very little breast soreness (other than right at the very beginning), not much going on. Now, in my second trimester—the time when they say you’re supposed to feel your best—I feel pretty crappy. The “digestive issues” as I like to call them have gotten worse. Now I have to eat very specific combinations of foods or I feel crappy (nauseous and constipated). Good times… And for some reason, some foods that I’ve always eaten don’t sit well with me. Like I can’t have cereal in the morning anymore, I have to have protein. If I don’t I feel sick for the rest of the day. Isn’t that weird?

Oh, and while I did flirt with the idea of renting a Doppler, I’ve resisted the temptation. And I’m glad I did. I was able to hear the heartbeats once at my last doctor’s appointment two weeks ago, and it was very cool. But I know myself well enough to know that having one of those magical machines in my house would do nothing but promote obsession. Something I’m trying (with some success) to avoid.

Anyhow…that’s the update from SB-land. I have my next doctor’s appointment on the 1st and the anatomy scan on the 9th. I’m really looking forward to that scan. It will be good to get another look at the stickies and I hope everything will look great. And, after that, I just might have to think about doing some “now what” planning… But, for now, know that I’m reading all of your blogs all of the time.

And if I’m quiet it’s only that I’m still struggling to find my voice given my new circumstances. J

*I realize these people aren’t foolish. They’re right. But, damnit, I don’t think I was foolish to stop and watch the moose either.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Suddenly silent

It’s been a while since I’ve posted, and I'm so sorry for becoming suddenly silent. I’ve actually started about five different posts, but they all seemed so unbelievably trite and boring, I couldn’t bring myself to post them. You see, the truth of the matter is that I have virtually nothing to say, which on the one hand isn’t the worst thing in the world since I’m usually just bitching about something. ☺

On the pregnancy front, things have been mercifully boring since my last scan—no appointments, no scans, no spotting, nada. (A trend I hope continues indefinitely.) So I'm working to take no news as good news—but I still haven't been able to bring myself to let my parents tell the rest of the family. And I haven’t told most of my friends yet (except those I talk to or see all the time). I know—I’m a freak! It just still feels all so surreal. We do have a big 90th bday party for my grandmother in two weeks, so I’m going to have to let my dad spread the news before then. I think I’m just still not ready for all of the congrats calls from more distant people. It still feels so personal that I want to hold it closer to the vest.

Oh, and on the fear thing—yeah, it’s still there (bla, bla, bla). But, it’s (mercifully) starting to fade to the background, if only a bit. The only way I can think to describe it is like the aftermath of a panic attack. I don’t feel the ongoing panic—the rapid heart rate and difficulty breathing—but only because there’s only so long that your body can stay in that constant state of panic. At some point the fear has to fade to the background and make way for life. And it’s not that you feel better, or that you’re over it per se. But you do find a way to move on. And, in this case, I’m hopeful that the excitement will start more and more to fill in that space.

In other news, I’ve had to break down and buy some maternity clothes—three pairs of pants, to be exact. Two for work and one pair of jeans. They’re super comfortable—I actually recommend them for anyone. I swear, if I had had these on those extra-bloated days, my “fat” wardrobe would have been transformed. I realize that the secret to these pants is that they fit elsewhere, so aren’t super frumpy. They just have a fabulous elasto-waist for more give in the stomach. I seriously think they should just start selling them as pms pants.

Oh, and in other random news, I was at a wedding this weekend and the woman who sang at the wedding—whom I’d never met before and whose name I don’t even know—came up to me as she was leaving and said, “Is there a baby in there?” I was stunned. Particularly because this was my boss’s wedding and there were work people all around and I thought I was working my ass off to cover it up. And, since when is that an appropriate question? I swear, had she ever come up to me when I was bloated post-cycling, I would have wanted to drop kick her. Instead I stood there like a deer in headlights and denied it. Nice, huh?

So, there you go. I promise to think of something more interesting to blog about—and to stop dropping off the face of the blogosphere for days at a time. ☺

Friday, September 14, 2007

So far, so good...

It’s sort of amazing what 2.5 years of IF can do to a person. I mean, things seem to actually be going well with this pregnancy. And yet, I find it nearly impossible to believe.

Take today, for example. Today was our NT scan. It went really well. Better than I could have hoped. There was no clear evidence of the hemat*ma, the nuca*l fold was thin and well within the normal range, we saw the nasal bone—which is a great sign, particularly it’s early and you don’t always see it at 11w—we saw two beautiful heartbeats (one about 140 and one about 175), a 4-chamber heart on one of the stickies, the outline of the two hemispheres of the brain, hands and feet and cute little fingers. And you know what my take away from this was? Well, we still have two weeks left in the first trimester, so anything can happen.

While true, GOOD LORD! When did I become such a pessimist?

So, I got a little depressed as hubby and I were driving home. Not because I wasn’t thrilled and relieved about how everything was—I was thrilled and finally felt like I could exhale for the first time since my bleeding episode. Nope, I was depressed because this is what IF has taken away from us—the excitement and wonder of pregnancy. Rather than being excited and thrilled and making plans and buying some cute baby/maternity stuff, I’m paranoid and afraid to plan anything for next March or April. I just can’t seem to let my mind wander there. And that made me really sad.

So, as we were driving back, I told hubby I wanted to stop at B*bies-R-Us. I wasn’t going to buy anything—I’m not there yet—but I wanted to let myself think about what we might do if this pregnancy does indeed lead to two real, live babies. We didn’t go crazy, but we did look at cribs and cute nursery themes, and we let our imaginations wander for just a few minutes. And it felt really good.

Sure, it’ll be a while before I buy anything maternity-related, or before I let anyone buy us any gifts. But for today, I tried to let myself get used to the idea that, at least for now, I’m pregnant. With twins. And, so far, so good.

Wow.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Hair trauma

There’s something you should really know about me: I’m obsessive about haircuts. I freak out almost every time I get one. As a result, after a few bad haircuts in my adult life, I became too scared of another tragic hair mess and I just let it grow and grow. So, for the past couple of years, it’s fluctuated a bit between just below my shoulders and halfway down my back. But, there’s only so long I can have the exact same haircut. I need some kind of change. So, today I decided to cut off a few inches. I still wanted it below my shoulders, but I wanted to clean it up a bit. And, since I finally found a hairdresser I liked up here, I thought I’d go for it.

Big f’ing mistake. I hate it. And now I don’t have the ease of a ponytail to save me from the bad hair days I now know I’m doomed to have. Sure, it kinda fits. But barely. And it doesn’t look good.

Grrr… Why must I subject myself to this same torture over and over again? You’d think I’d learn and just keep my boring ‘ol long hair. *sigh*

In other good news, I wasn’t able to get an ultrasound appointment until Friday. Double grrr… Basically, last week when I called the hospital to schedule it with the perinatologist, the woman told me I’d be too early on Monday. She said I needed to get it done between 11w and 13w, and that I’d only be 10w4d on Monday. I told her that my doctor told me Monday would be fine. She scoffed a bit and said, “well, I’m telling you it’s going to be too early, so I’m almost certain you’d just have to come back for another one.”

Really? I’d have to come back for another u/s if Monday was too early? (She says while maniacally laughing to herself about her good fortune in finding a clever way to sneak another u/s in before week 20.)

I was THIS close to scheduling it anyway. But then, I panicked. I mean, what if I went in, then freaked out because things didn’t look good with the NT measurement? I mean, sure I could try to reassure myself that I knew it was too early, but I’d have a hard time believing me. And, it’s not like I need to subject myself deliberately to any additional stress, right?

So, I decided to be good, and I scheduled the appointment for Friday. I could tell that the woman wanted me to wait until at least the next Monday, but I just couldn’t bear another whole weekend without some confirmation that things are okay. So, the compromise move, as I saw it, was Friday. I’m disappointed that I won’t get another peek at the stickies as early as I wanted, but hopefully everything will look just fine no matter when the scan is…Here’s hoping! (Hang in there, l’il stickies!)

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Transitioning...

We went to the ob appointment today and, as I feared, there was no u/s. Crap. Stupid regular ob’s. I guess it all went well, though I have to admit to being pretty spoiled by Smirky’s office for the past few months. While he’s quirky, I really like him, I LOVE the nurses there, and it’s the most efficient place I’ve ever been to in my life. (If they think you might have to have to wait for 10 minutes for an appointment, they literally call you ahead of time to see if you want to reschedule. I’ve NEVER had to wait, even when they thought I might have to. For a doctor’s office, that’s just stunning.)

Needless to say, I did have to wait at this ob’s office. My appointment was 12:40, I got there at 12:30 to fill out forms, etc., and they didn’t take me back until about 1:10. *sigh* I miss Smirky already.

The nurse did the usual—urine sample, blood pressure, weight check. (PS, that was awful. I really don’t want to know how much I weigh already, because I know for a fact it’s due to the bed rest and extra double-st*f ore*os. I know better than to blame it on “pregnancy.”) Then they took me into see the doctor. He asked a bunch of questions, and we told him about our SCH. He seemed utterly un-phased. I guess that’s a good thing—he seems them quite a bit, and I guess they’re usually not that big a deal. But he did of course give the requisite, “well we can’t be sure it’ll all be fine, but…” Thanks. Helpful.

I guess the moderately good news is that I can go for the nuchal screening as early as Monday, which means I’m not TOO far off from another peek at the stickies. So, I’m going to try to get in there as early as I can. But, the bad (read: terrifying) news is that he warned me that, after that, I wouldn’t likely get another one until I was around 20 weeks. WTF?!? 20 weeks! That would be like a month and a half?!

When he saw the stunned look on my face he said, “yeah, we usually have to wean IVF patients off the monitoring.”

Humpf.

Anyhow, I don’t mean to sound negative. He seemed okay. And, most importantly, Smirky thinks a lot of him, so that’s big in our minds. But, this transition is going to be damn hard. Don’t get me wrong, I’m HAPPY to be at the point where we need a regular OB, but I’m going to miss my little clinic bubble and it’s going to be weird to be among “regular” pregnant women. Even today, I found myself looking at the baby bumps in the waiting room and thinking, “this is bullshit, you probably got knocked up by accident or on your first try. Bitch.”

Oops. Did I just say that out loud? ☺

Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor Day

Can you believe it’s Labor Day already? I feel like this summer—hell, this year—has just flown by.

This time of year I always find myself getting a little sad. You see, I love, love, love the warmer weather. And while I like the fall, I detest winter. So, once Labor Day rolls around, I know we’re on a short slide into shorter days and colder weather. (Optimistic, aren’t I? ☺)

Almost as if to punctuate the end of the summer and the beginning of the fall, this weekend was one of the most beautiful in recent memory. The weather in our neck of the woods was perfect. Sunny, breezy, no humidity, high-70s. Perfect. It’s almost as if you could feel the winds starting to shift and the seasons starting to change, even if it's a bit early.

As I was lying in our hammock in our back yard, desperately trying to take advantage of this picture-perfect day, I couldn’t help but think that, while I’ll be sad to transition from flip-flops and t-shirts to long sleeves, sweaters, and shoes, if everything continues to go according to plan with the stickies, I am hopeful that this winter might have a much different feel than any in recent memory. I usually associate winter with feeling cold, lonely, and sometimes even a little desperate, particularly lately. But if g-d willing the stickies continue to grow and the SCH magically resolves itself, this winter will have a more hopeful air.

That said, I still have such a hard time picturing the end game. My nurse keeps telling me I have to stop that—there’s a mind-body connection, after all, she reminds me. But it just still seems SO far away. I’m 9w4d today. On the one hand, that’s nearly twice as far as I’ve ever been. But on the other hand, all I can see are the weeks and weeks stretched out before us.

It doesn’t help, of course, that I’ve had a bit of spotting the past few days. Nothing major, and it’s all brown (no red), but still. Even though Smirky warned me that I’d likely see more spotting or even bleeding and not to worry, let’s face it, that falls on deaf ears. After all, I’d really prefer to have seen NOTHING for nine long months.

We have our appointment with the high-risk Ob tomorrow. I’m still hoping that I’ll get an ultrasound and another peek at the stickies, but I can’t be sure that’ll happen. So, keep your fingers crossed that they’ve got a wand handy and can check things out!

And, be sure to pop over and send positive thoughts to Erin and Leah, who just had their retrievals this weekend, and to Becks who’s coming up on her beta for IVF#2. I’m thinking of you, ladies and really hoping for the best!!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Mixing it up...

I’m utterly at a loss for what to write about. It seems almost silly to “update” you on what’s been happening because, well, nothing has. I’ve been working from home this week. The bleeding has (thank g-d) not returned. I am being weaned off progesterone, which terrifies me a little, but seems to be going okay.

So, really, nothing to report.

Yawn.

So, in the absence of, literally, anything interesting to say, I’ve decided to spend my time making a new mix. I realize this isn’t an original idea here in the blogosphere, but I used to make mix tapes all the time when I was trying to sort through my emotions and so, I figure, why not revisit an old standby? Plus, I think it's fun to sort through my library and find songs that speak to me right now.

I’m calling this my, “I’m not really buying that this journey is going to be as important as the destination” mix, and it's sort of a nod to where I'm coming from in this IF journey and the lighter place I hope to be headed. Enjoy!

1. There is no try, Yoda*
2. Hell, Squirrel Nut Zippers
3. Mr. Blue, Yaz
4. I wanna be sedated, The Ramones
5. No One Is To Blame, Howard Jones
6. I will buy you a new life, Everclear
7. Over The Hills and Far Away, Led Zeppelin
8. Lie in Our Graves, Dave Matthews
9. Don’t Stop Believin’, Journey
10. Closer to Fine, Indigo Girls
11. The Only Living Boy in NY, Paul Simon
12. The Boxer, Carbon Leaf
13. I am a warrior, Pat Benatar
14. Somewhere Over The Rainbow, Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo’ole
15. Send Me on My Way, Rusted Root

*This is a nod to Sarah’s shuffle game from WAY back in the day. This came up randomly for me in the game and I always thought it was so funny. So, in honor of that shuffle, this audio clip made it into a prime spot in this mix as well.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Rock On...


I’m a little late to the game, but I was very honored to be nominated as a rockin’ girl blogger by JJ and Amy (So, when will you have kids?). You could blame the hormones, but I sincerely almost cried—I’m all over the place, what can I say. But, it's not only that, it's also that I'm such a huge fan of both of their blogs. So, many, many thanks, ladies! It was a very nice surprise, and a much welcome distraction. ☺

Now, I turn to nominate five additional rockin girl bloggers. As you all know, there are far more than 5 rockin’ bloggers whom I’d like to nominate. And, I know many of you have been nominated, so I apologize if I’m duplicating nomination, but here’t goes:

1. Sarah at For the Flavor: I started reading Sarah’s blog very early on and have been a For the Flavor convert ever since. And, I’ve always been just a little sad that we never met when we were both living in DC (and hanging out at the Crow Bar). She writes with such sincerity and honesty and all of her posts really speak to me.

2. Becks at One Miracle Needed: Becks is a thoughtful and honest writer, a world traveler, and the person who helped me really stop drinking coffee by being SO DAMN GOOD and giving it up cold turkey. I always enjoy her posts and am wishing with all my might that her little sausage and mash grab hold tight for a nice, long 9 month trip!

3. Chris at Love, Hope and Faith: I’ve been introduced to Chris’s blog more recently, and am so glad that I was. Chris has such faith and such a wonderfully positive attitude and is so supportive of her bloggy friends, even when she’s down. She’s about to embark on IVF#1, and I’m wishing her all the best and hoping that this is her cycle!

4. Tam at Peanut’s Journey: I’ve been reading Tam’s blog since I started blogging and feel like I know her, even though she lives halfway across the world. I’m always touched by her writing—by her descriptions of her struggles, by her love for her hubby. All of her posts are heartfelt and relatable.

5. Somewhat Ordinary at A Somewhat Ordinary Life: While we share the (exact) same anniversary, I sometimes wish that I shared her courage and strength. She has had to deal with quite a lot in her IF struggles, and has done so with strength of character—to the point where she’s put herself on the line and went public with her IF struggles in her local community as a way of helping others who struggle in silence. That just simply rocks.*

*This isn’t just a ploy to figure out how to get to her blog either. Though, if you’re reading, SO, I’d love to be able to get behind the password protection and see how things are going for you. ☺

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Scared...

That just about sums up how I feel right now. Scared. And kind of pissed. Scared because, thanks to Dr. Google, I know roughly how much a subch*rionic hemat*ma (SCH) increases my chances of miscarriage…or worse.

I was able to find two seemingly well-done studies that put my miscarriage risk around 20%. And I’m pissed because I was only able to bask in the glow of having seen the heartbeats for two days before my chances of miscarriage went right back up. Not to the point where it was initially, of course—which is good—but still. I was pretty excited about getting down to the less than 10% chances.

I’m also pissed because I have to be happy about this news. It is, after all, not nearly as bad as it could have been. And for that I am TRULY grateful. But, again, why is it that we infertiles are always left to feel good about the better of the bad news? When really all we want to know is why the fuck do we have to get bad news at all?

What’s more, the two studies I found said that there was only one factor that had a statistically significant impact on the outcome of the pregnancy. And that was the gestational age of the fetus at the time of the diagnosis. In one study, the outcome of the pregnancy was far better if the diagnosis happened after 8 weeks; in the other it was after 9 weeks.

I was 8 weeks to the day Thursday. That puts me on the worse end of the statistics. In both studies (though admittedly only marginally in one).

Fuck.

And on the fear thing, well now I’ve had a glimpse of how bad it’ll be if something does happen to this pregnancy. And it wasn’t pretty.

On Wednesday night, when I started spotting, I came out of the bathroom and just started to cry. I found hubby and I just sobbed into his chest and asked “WHY?!”

Then when I woke up in the middle of the night and had the bout of real, actual bleeding, the sobbing got worse. I just felt so sad and so empty and so scared. It just seemed so spectacularly unfair. And I cried some more.

Hubby keeps telling me he just thinks everything is going to be okay. And I so hope he's right. More than anything, I hope that this is just a story we can one day tell our children about how we worried about them right from the very beginning.

On our side, I haven’t had any bleeding since Wednesday night, and only had brown spotting for about a day afterwards. I’m hoping that that’s a good sign that maybe this is healing. (And I'm going to try to put out of my mind for now that, from what I’ve read, the size of the SCH and amount of bleeding isn’t as significant as the gestational age at diagnosis.)

The good news is that the modified bed rest has been going pretty well. My parents and hubby’s parents stopped by at different points this weekend to spend some time with us, which helped pass the time. And I think I’ll just work from home this week to be safe (though the doctor didn’t insist on it).

I have my first appointment with the high-risk ob/gyn on September 4th, and between now and then I’m hoping with all my might that this stupid thing just resolves itself by then so I can go back to being a "normal" pregnant infertile... You know, the one who worries about those regular pregnancy fears--that I still don’t have any real symptoms (nausea, etc.). That my breast soreness has all but gone away. That I just don’t feel pregnant.

*Sigh*

So, keep thinking of the stickies. And hope that this is just a blip in an otherwise uneventful pregnancy. (PLEASE just be a blip. Please?!)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

A subchori-what?!?

First, thank you so much for all of your good thoughts and prayers. I cried as I read them (I actually cried quite a lot today) and can't tell you how much I appreciate your support.

So, here's the two minute update: I just got back from Smirky’s office. First of all, despite his pessimism during my stims cycle, I’m a big Smirky fan. He just really seems to know what he’s doing, and he’s a straight shooter all the way.

Since today was the only day Smirky was going to be in the office, they asked me to come in at 1:45, which I gladly did. They took us right on time, I told him what happened last night and he said, “okay, let’s check it out” and gave me an ultrasound.

The good news is that the sticky buns were still kicking. One was actually facing us and you could see his/her little arms and legs and beautiful heart beating. The other (the shy one from the picture) was of course turned away, but measuring well with a nice strong 175bpm heartbeat.

The bad news is I have something called a subchorionic hematoma. Basically, shy sticky looks like s/he’s got a little blod clot between him/her and my uterus. That’s where the bleeding came from last night. (And, while the bleeding has stopped, the chances I’ll bleed again are actually quite high because there’s still blood in there.)

The other bad news is that having this puts me at a higher risk for miscarriage and all kinds of other unpleasantness if it doesn’t resolve itself.

We don’t know what caused it, but I can’t help but think that last Friday’s accident didn’t help the situation. (Although, I guess we didn’t see it on Monday's scan, so who knows.)

In the end, I guess it doesn’t matter what caused it. I’m on modified bed rest for now basically hoping that this thing heals itself over the next few weeks and that it has no effect on sticky 1 or sticky 2.

*sigh*

So, the news is better than I thought it was going to be as I sat in the ER last night, but obviously not as good as it could be. And we’re just hoping that this is the last trick Murphy plans to play on us during this pregnancy. He’s such a prick.

Hang on sticky buns! We're trying to take good care of you!

Murphy

If ever I’ve wanted Murphy to go f*ck himself, it’s right now.

Starting yesterday, my doctor wanted to start weaning me off the PIO shots. So, I took my regular 1cc on Monday and Tuesday before bed, was supposed to skip yesterday and go in for b/w today to see what my levels were like.

I never got there, because of the 1:30am trip to the emergency room due to the bleeding.

At 11:30pm, as I was about to go to bed, I went to the bathroom and did my ritual obsessive TP checking.

Spotting.

I freaked out. I cried. I told hubby. I kept just asking why. We debated calling the doctor, going to the emergency room, etc. Ultimately, though, I decided it was minimal and, since I had an appointment first thing in the morning to get my blood drawn, I should just go to sleep and wait for the morning to do anything.

Then at 1:00am I woke up with some cramping (I’ve had some off and on, but have been blaming it on this RIDICULOUS const*pation I have. Nice.) and went to the bathroom. Bright. Red. Blood. And not just on the TP.

So, I woke hubby and we went to the emergency room. (In hindsight, I sort of wonder why we bothered. They’re pretty useless.)

Anyhow, by the time I got there, I wasn’t bleeding as much (it was never that much, actually. But enough to actually reach the toilet and stain a pad, so definitely not good). The doctor did an internal exam. My cervix was still closed, so he diagnosed a “threatened miscarriage.” I asked for an ultrasound, but he said he’d have to page an ultrasound tech for an emergency, and that it wouldn’t really tell us anything useful at this stage, so he didn’t think it was worth it. (The only reason he’d order one at this stage, he said, was to rule out ectopic. And, since we saw the heartbeats, there was no need to do that.)

So, I came home and we decided to do the PIO shot (No fucking around with this one.) and we went to bed. At 4am. Nice.

This morning I called Smirky’s office to tell them what happened. I talked to the nurse and she’s going to talk to Smirky and see what he thinks we should do. I'm waiting to hear back. For now, I’m on bed rest and I’m terrified.

Amazing that I can go from a better than 90% chance of things going well to a 50/50 chance of things working out in two days flat. That’s Murphy’s Law for you.

Please pray for our stickies (particularly since you know it’s hard for me). I’ve never wanted anything to work out more than I want this to, and it’s the only thing I can think to do to help.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Naïveté

Last night, I gave hubby a card. It was a card that I had bought for him more than two years ago when I got my first positive pregnancy test. We had just recently started trying, and that June, I took a test and got a very faint positive. I was thrilled and excited and nervous all at once.

And, because I was as type-A then as I am now, I immediately went to the local Safe*way and bought three more HPTs. And this card for hubby.

It was June—the month of father’s day—and I had visions of giving him this card as my way of telling him we were pregnant. I pictured us crying together and making plans and calling everyone we knew.

I still remember, when I got to the checkout counter the woman working there scanned the HPTs and asked me if I was hoping for a positive or negative. It was a bold question, and it annoyed me even then. But, I nervously and shyly answered that I wanted it to be positive. And she gave me some ridiculous advice about how I should eat crackers tonight, because that would make the baby really grab hold.

Even in my naïve pre-infertile state, I rolled my eyes, paid, and left.

When I got home, before I filled out the card, I took another test. Negative.

Then I looked back at the first test I had taken, and the line had disappeared.

I felt like I was losing my mind. That line was there! I certainly hadn’t hallucinated a second line…had I?

I called the helpline and they said that, while the line was supposed to stay for at least 24 hours, a line was a line and I was most likely pregnant.

I was excited, but now more cautious. I decided to wait and retest the next morning before giving hubby the card.

Of course, we all know now how the story went. I retested several times; all negative. AF came a few days later.

Despite the months and years that have passed between that first illusory positive and last night, and despite my cynicism, which has grown with each passing day, I never threw the card away. In fact, I kept it in the back of my drawer, even through our move, hoping to one day be able to give it to hubby, if only as a joke.

So, because we did see two heartbeats yesterday, I gave it to him, though obviously without all the naïve pomp and circumstance that I had envisioned when I first bought it. In fact, I told him I felt ridiculous even giving it to him. First, I felt like a fraud. But also, it seemed downright ridiculous. The card was so cheery and sappy and represented a me that doesn’t really exist anymore—a me that naively believed that getting pregnant would be easy, and that pregnancy was blissful and always resulted in a cute baby at the end.

Of course, that’s not me anymore. That early naiveté has been replaced by cynicism and a touch of bitterness. I now know how hard it can be to get pregnant. In fact, I’m so acutely aware of how difficult it can be that I now count myself extremely lucky that it “only” took two and a half years, four IUIs and one IVF.

And, what’s more, I no longer believe that pregnancy always equals baby. On the contrary, I’ve experienced some pain of my own, and witnessed or read about horror that goes well beyond what I’ve experienced myself. And so, rather than blithely looking at this pregnancy as our golden ticket to parenthood, I find myself so scared. Hopeful for the first time in a long while, but so. very. scared.

And, more than anything right now, I wish I didn’t know how bad things could get. I wish in some ways that I could go back to being that girl who bought the card and thought that a positive HPT always meant decorating a nursery and bringing home a baby nine months later. Because, unfortunately, the knowledge I now have can’t help me and can’t help the embryos. There is nothing I can do to prevent any number of the painful things that could happen. And so that knowledge serves no purpose for me except to remind me, even when I’m happy, that I shouldn’t let my spirits soar too high. Because the higher they soar, the farther I’ll have to fall…

Of course, I can’t let myself think that way. First of all, it’s exhausting to be scared all the time. Second of all, it doesn’t help. Fear of the worst won’t prevent it and won’t cushion the blow if we experience it. Not at this point, anyway.

So, while I’m wishing away the rest of the first trimester and hoping that my future appointments and scans bring the same reassurance that yesterday’s did, I’m going to have to find a way to live in the moment, experience some joy and excitement, and not let the terror take over. And hope—ah, hope—that we’ll be among the extremely lucky ones to have things go according to plan.

Monday, August 20, 2007

*Insert clever title here*

I’m just back from the scan and off to work, but wanted to post a quick update. First, I don’t think I’ve ever been more nervous about anything in my entire life. We got to the office and sadly, Smirky wasn’t there (I think he’s on vacation), so there was another doctor. He was nice and all, don’t get me wrong, but I like my routines. I had gotten used to Smirky and his little quirks. And this guy turned the monitor towards himself so that I couldn’t see it. I almost screamed. I kept saying, “um….what are you seeing? Does it look okay?”

I’m sure I sounded like a total freak.

Anyhow, the good (fabulous, fantastic) news is that our little sticky buns appear to be thriving. They are both measuring perfectly (7w5d—I’m 7w4d today) and they had lovely beating hearts. (One had 180bpm, one had 148, I believe.) The doc and nurse both said that both heartbeats were in the perfect range and that everything looked great.

I’ve never heard more beautiful words in my life.

I don’t think the terror will ever completely go away, but I can’t even begin to explain how relieved I feel. I know how important seeing the heartbeat is and, while I know we’re nowhere near out of the woods yet, I feel like we’ve crossed one of the most important milestones.

Of course, you know how paranoid I am about jinxing, so I won’t let us talk to much in the future tense, but I’m cautiously and hopefully optimistic.

And I think I exhaled today for the first time in almost two months.

Below is a photo of the buns (so feel free to surf away). Clearly one is more of a ham than the other, and the picture isn't great so you can only see one well, but they are actually both the same size, etc.

As always, thanks for your love and support! You guys are my rocks and I sincerely appreciate all of your cheering on and support, even when my pessimism has gotten the best of me.

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Sunday, August 19, 2007

That'll teach me

Remember how I mentioned that I was out of debt? Well, yeah, the next day I got rear-ended while trying to merge onto I95. Now the back of my car is pretty banged up and is going to need some serious repair to the back end. And, in part because we just paid off the rest of our debt, we don’t have a lot of cash lying around to pay for it.

Murphy’s Law. Do you see now why I'm so afraid of jinxing myself?!

What’s more, I freaked out. I haven’t gotten into an accident in years, and now that I’m pregnant, I get rear-ended. Three days before the viability ultrasound. Argh. I was really nervous all weekend that the accident had done something to the sticky buns. I know it’s probably nothing—I was stopped and the guy couldn’t have been going faster than 15mph, but still. Give me something to worry about, and I’ll just run with it.

And speaking of which, I’m freaking out just a bit over tomorrow’s ultrasound. Okay, more than just a bit. Quite a lot, actually. I feel like I felt right before the first beta: scared, pessimistic, unsure. With all of my heart, I hope our little sticky buns have been growing and thriving over the all-important past two weeks.

Hubby and I agreed that, if all goes well, we’ll tell our siblings tomorrow, and probably a few close friends—just those close to us who we feel strange not being able to share the news with. And now I’m scared that we won’t be able to.

It doesn’t help that I don’t really have any symptoms, other than sore breasts (which really haven’t been all that sore lately). No nausea. Sure, I’m tired, but again, aren’t I always? I’m just really hoping that this lack of symptoms is luck and nothing more.

Please keep your fingers crossed for us. And, given the new blog-blocking at work, it’ll probably take me a while to update afterwards, but I will let you know how it went as soon as I can.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Cramping my style...

On Tuesday, I was at work, blissfully (sort of) going about my day. And, as I usually do when I’m looking for a quick break, I tried to check my bloglines account to see how my sisters were doing.

Blocked.

Curious, I thought. So, I decided to go directly to a few of your blogs.

All blocked.

Fu*kers. They’ve blocked all blog-related websites—bloglines, technorati, blogspot.com, etc. Now I can’t get to any of them, which is making my daily blog reading, commenting, and writing a lot trickier than I imagined. And the worst part is, it’s not like I didn’t do my work. I poked around only when I needed a bit of a break. But, sadly, the man has decided I can surf no more.

Of course, this new blocked content also makes me PARANOID. I feel like I have a scarlet B on my computer or something—like they know about my blog and are blocking me particularly. I realize that’s probably ridiculous. It’s more likely they blocked the sites from the kids, but whatever. That doesn’t stop me from being paranoid.

In other news, today is a red letter day in the life of sticky bun and hubby. Today, just after lunch, I sent the final check that will zero out the last of our credit card balances. You see, hubby and I racked up (separately) ridiculous amounts of debt in our twenties, then combined all of that debt on our wedding day. Romantic, huh?

(We used to joke that a prenup for us would just be about shackling one of us with all of the debt rather than getting or keeping any money. It really was a shockingly large sum—one that if I told you, you’d probably think I was the most irresponsible person in the world for living so frivolously when I was making nothing and in grad school.)

But, today, we paid it off. And I feel really proud.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Vying for good parking and dogs...

I don’t think I’ve ever shared with you before my pure unadulterated hatred for the reserved parking for expectant mothers that have been popping up in the parking lots of my favorite stores all over town. (Okay, maybe they’ve always been around, but I have started noticing them more and more with every month of our infertility.) Everytime I've gone to the grocery store or Targ*t or the mall for the past I-don’t-know-how-long I’ve been tricked by one of these fake-me-out spots right near the door. And everytime, I drive up to the front and just as I'm about to pull into my fabulous parking find, I'm faced with the reality that there is yet another thing we infertiles can’t have: good parking.

I mean, come on, they’re already PREGNANT, do they really need to rub it in our faces by taking all of the good parking, too?

Anyhow, yesterday hubby was being SUPER cranky, so I decided to escape to Targ*et for some fun afternoon shopping. (Why do I love you so, Tar-jay?) And, when I came upon the “parking for expectant mothers” I was THIS close to parking there. I mean, I know I don’t have a fancy baby bump, and I know I haven’t seen a heartbeat, but fuck that. I got a positive pregnancy test and damnit, I deserve the good parking that goes along with it, right?*

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In other news, several of you were terribly excited to learn more about our smooshy dog. I don't blame you, really. He's the most interesting member of the family.

Unfortunately, we're not big take-lots-of-pictures-of-the-doggie kind of people, but here's one that's fairly cute (though it doesn't show his full smooshiness). But he is the greatest dog ever. We really feel like we hit the dog lottery with him. Which was a good thing, because he was actually our second attempt in 2006 to get a dog.

Our first attempt was the month after our miscarriage in April when we adopted a dog from a local private non-profit. When we began looking, we told the woman who ran the non-profit that, above all else, we needed a dog with no history of aggression. While we were certainly willing to work with certain training issues that we know can come with adopted dogs, aggression was a non-negotiable. We're first time dog owners and I knew we weren't equipped to deal with that, not least of which because we have lots of kids in our life (and want some of our own) and could never forgive ourselves if something happened to any of them.

The woman understood, and said she's only recommend we meet dogs that had been fully temperament tested, etc.

So, we met one dog we liked decided to take the plunge.

Two weeks after we got him, we found out that he had not only had a serious history of aggression, but had bitten three people in a year, the most recent of which was an adult who needed 15 stitches in his face. (Thankfully, he had not done anything while we had him, though he did have two strange episodes that seemed a touch aggressive--enough that I actually emailed the woman back to ask again about his history.) Our vet told us, as responsible dog owners, there was only one thing to do--to put him to sleep.

So, right after our miscarriage, the day of our second anniversary, two weeks after we got our new dog, and after many calls to the humane society, SPCA, etc., all of whom said they couldn't take a dog with a known history of aggression, we had to put him to sleep.

It was, needless to say, very upsetting.

Finally, in October, we got up the courage to try again to get a dog. This time we went with a breeder instead of trying to adopt. It was initially more expensive, but it was the right decision.

He was 10 months old when we got him--and fully trained (how lucky, huh!). The breeder had been showing him, but he had grown a quarter inch too tall for the breed standard, so couldn't show him anymore. And because she is only a small hobby breeder, she couldn't keep him.

He's a pretty funny dog, too. He's got funny little quirks that match our family pretty well because, well, we're quirky, too.

And, aside from this blog, he's been the best distraction and catharsis during our IF journey. And so I'm hoping it's a good omen that for us, the second time's a charm...

*Sadly, I’m way too much of a wuss. Also, because I’m such a believer in jinxing, if something ever did go wrong, I’m sure I’d be certain it had something to do with my flagrant disregard of Targ*t’s parking rules. *sigh*

Friday, August 10, 2007

Paranoia—it’s not just for breakfast anymore!

First, thank you for your well wishes and thoughts for hubby’s family. The funeral was, as you would expect, awful. It’s the second funeral for a suicide I’ve been to, and I have to say that this was awful for some similar (and obvious) and some very different reasons.

The first was awful because, well, suicide is awful. But, that one included a very beautiful service with a wonderful tribute to his life and family. And it was a full military funeral, complete with 21-gun salute, which was beautiful. (Yes, I bawled my EYES out incessantly, but it was a beautiful tribute to a beautiful man.)

This one was….well…just kind of strange. It didn't feel like the same kind of a tribute. In fact, his mother gave a eulogy during the service and she was just pissed. I know that anger is one of the stages of grief, but it just came off strange.

I know that you have to give the mother of the deceased full-reign to act however the hell she wants because I can’t even BEGIN to imagine how she’s feeling, but it’s definitely not what I expected. (In fact, I can’t even imagine speaking during a loved one’s funeral, let alone your 22 year old son.) No judgment--It was just hard to wrap my own mind around. And made it sort of clear that there was much more to the story than we'll ever know...

And, for a number of other reasons, there was just a strange gloom and doom that fell over the day. It’s tough to describe without going into too many details, but it just left a very strange feeling at the end of the day. And it just really made me feel sad for hubby’s cousin. And, I just hope that the family is able to find some peace at some stage, as hard as I know that's going to be so very hard for them.
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In other news, I’m 6w1d today. I wish I could say that I felt great and zen about everything, but, well…you all know me better than that by now.

So, yes, I’m freaking out. I have virtually no symptoms, other than breast soreness. And, that means if my breasts are any less sore than they’ve been, I freak out. (Like this morning, for instance. I was able to roll over onto my stomach without flinching in pain. You’d think that’d be a good thing, right? No way. It just freaked me out and made me wish more than anything that I could have an ultrasound today. Or everyday, really.)

I guess I’m also exhausted, but really that could be due to any number of things. Like the fact that I had to drive 8 hours round trip to a heart-wrenching funeral Wednesday. Or that work has been so busy lately. Or that I’m just always tired.

And I know I should be glad I don’t have nausea—and I will, if everything turns out to be okay—but I just don’t feel right feeling fine, you know? I kept holding out hope that when I passed the magical 6w mark, I’d feel….something. But, still nada.

I really hope that has nothing to do with anything. You hear all the stories about how symptoms--especially nausea--are a great sign of a strong pregnancy. Then when you don't have them, it's scary. Hopefully I'm just lucky, but it’s just still so hard to believe that's going to be true.

So, I’ve still got a week and a half before our next ultrasound, and I need something else to pass the time. So, who's game for helping me change the subject? I’ve seen bloggers before open themselves up to “interview” questions. So if there’s anything you’ve always wanted to know about the life and times of Sticky, hubby, and our smooshy dogs, feel free to ask away. And if there are any questions, I’ll blog on them in future 2ww posts as a way of passing the time between now and the 20th.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Some sad news

Hubby's family got some very hard news this past weekend. One of hubby's cousin's took his life on Saturday morning. While it wasn't a cousin that he or his immediate family was very close to, this is obviously something that's going to be very hard for his uncle's immediate family, and for his extended family more broadly.

We're heading up to be with the family for the funeral, etc., so I will be out of range for a couple of days. I'll check in with everyone when I get back.

In the meantime, please keep hubby's family in your thoughts.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Il y en a deux

Hubby and I went for our first ultrasound this morning and, lo and behold, there were two gestational sacs, each with its own yolk sac. !!!

One was measuring “normally” and one Smirky told us looked “small.” So, it seems like sticky #2 is a little more tentative than sticky #1, but we’re really pulling for both of them. I’m hoping that sticky #2 will be prodded along by his/her sibling and catch up by our next ultrasound, which will happen in two weeks.

So, we’ve officially gotten further along than we’ve ever been with this whole pregnancy thing. Still, I’m feeling like everything is extremely tentative and that much can still go wrong, but my cautious optimism does continue to grow. (And that, of course terrifies me because, as we all know, the higher you climb, the harder you fall.)

Even Smirky was downright optimistic today, though. Or, at least as optimistic as he ever gets. He was asking if we had an OB and if we knew where we wanted to deliver. Ha! That’s certainly a change from his undying pessimism that was our two weeks of stims. (And, repeating a theme, even talking about that terrified me as well. I didn’t want to jinx us talking about such plans this early! I realize that he just wants to make sure that, assuming the next u/s goes well, that we have a good to whom we can graduate. But still… It seems too far away to even imagine…)

So, for now we’ll just be happy with our two little sticky buns and hope with all of our might that we see two strong heartbeats on the 20th. Grow, l’il sticky buns!

Friday, August 03, 2007

Jumping on the bandwagon

Click to view my Personality Profile page


I've always wanted to take the Myers Briggs but never have, so I decided to jump on the bandwagon and take the test online. Apparently I'm an ENFP.

ENFP - The "Advocate"

ENFPs are introspective, values-oriented, inspiring, social and extremely expressive. They actively send their thoughts and ideas out into the world as a way to bring attention to what they feel to be important, which often has to do with ethics and current events. ENFPs are natural advocates, attracting people to themselves and their cause with excellent people skills, warmth, energy and positivity. ENFPs are described as creative, resourceful, assertive, spontaneous, life-loving, charismatic, passionate and experimental.

Seems mostly right on in terms of being "expressive" and "passionate." (Although, let's face it, that's really just code for extreme and/or emotional, but whatever.)

It's funny, when hubby and I did our pre-marriage counseling, we both had to take a values test separately, then talk about the results together to see if there were major things we disagreed on that we hadn't ever discussed. It was one of these things where you had to rate about 200 statements according to a scale from "strongly agree" to "strongly disagree." The deacon we were meeting with laughed the whole time because I rated just about everything as either "strongly agree" or "strongly disagree." Whereas hubby was much more steady and go with the flow.

What can I say, I feel passionately about things. And, hubby complements me (read: puts up with me) pretty well.

Of course, I'm about as creative as my dog (no offense, buddy). But hey, you can't win 'em all!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

5w0d

Today marks one week since beta #1. It's hard to believe it's only been a week; it seems like so much more time has gone by than that. (Perhaps because I've sweat every single day...er, every single minute, rather.)

The good news is that we got our beta results back and things still look like they're progressing well. I'm at 3,455, up from 1,224 Monday, which is a doubling time of exactly 48 hours. (Way to be precise there, sticky buns!)

To say I'm relieved is an understatement. In our first pregnancy, by beta #3, things were already starting to fall apart and I was already starting to miscarry. So, to have crossed that third beta--and that our numbers are way higher than we've ever gotten before--feels really, really good.

On the other hand, it's still so early and it's hard to believe how many more weeks of pins and needles we have to sit on. (Trust me, I'm so not complaining! I feel so wonderfully fortunate and blessed. But, that terror that things might somehow take a turn is still there. I hope it wanes with time, but I seriously doubt it'll ever completely go away.)

On the news front, one of the tough things right now is that I know a handful of people suspect we're pregnant, and keep trying to get me to tell them. At the wedding this past weekend, one of my friends turned to me at the end of the night and said, "by the way, you're not fooling anyone" and gave me a hug. (Damnit! I thought I was acting my ass off during the champagne toast!) She and another friend called me last night and kept bringing pregnancy up, and I knew what she was trying to do. And a third emailed and did likewise.

The problem is, I'm nowhere NEAR ready to tell anyone outside of my parents and one or two very close friends. It just all feels way too early; too tentative.

The funny thing, though, is that, if things went south, these are friends who I would likely share my story with. And yet, I'm not ready to share in the good news. It almost seems unfair to them. And to me! Like, I'm more comfortable at this point commiserating about bad news than getting excited about good. Isn't that funny?

Anyhow, for now I feel good. I can even almost say "I'm pregnant" out loud. (Almost.)

So, for now, here's to our little sticky buns and that they keep on keepin' on! And, here's to a very successful step 3! Step 4 (the first ultrasound to see the gestational sacs) is on Monday.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Dangerous games

I’m officially obsessed with hcg levels. Despite every caveat I’ve read on every webpage I’ve visited that’s said “you can’t read much into hcg levels in early pregnancy,” I’m doing the opposite. I’m trying to read all I can into my two hcg levels, and trying to predict what Thursday’s level will be (assuming everything looks okay). I have set up levels in my mind that will make me (somewhat) happy, and those that will terrify me to my core.

It’s an emotionally dangerous game.

Interestingly, though, despite most doctors’ insinuation that you can’t glean anything worthwhile from early hcg levels, it appears that at least a few studies have found links between early hcg levels and the long-term (or at least first trimester/20 week) viability of the pregnancy. For example, one study seems to have found that, for IVF patients, those women who did not have a level above 100 at 16 dpER were most likely not going to have a viable pregnancy at 13 weeks. (For women whose pregnancies were not viable, the average hcg level at 16dpER was 56 and at 18dpER was115.) And, the average hcg for women who had viable pregnancies at 13 weeks was 169 (16dpER) and 401 (18dpER), respectively, for singleton pregnancies, and 348 (16dpER) and 798 (18dpER), respectively, for multiples.

Another study found that women with hcg levels greater than 200 at 14 days past embryo transfer (they didn’t specify in the part I could read whether it was a 3-day or 5-day transfer) were much more likely to have viable pregnancies at 20 weeks than those who did not. (Of course, this study also found a 19% miscarriage rate with their IVF patients. A frightening, if not altogether surprising, number.)

What I found perhaps most interesting about these articles, though, is that they really squared with the experience I had with my miscarriage. (Granted, an n of 1 is anything but statistically significant, but whatever…) My first beta level was taken somewhere between 18-20 dpo and my level was only 125. (I’m not sure exactly how many dpo it was, because that was in the days before I charted, and it was the month before I got the ovulati*n monitor—ahhhh, remember those naive days?) And, while the number did more than double between the first and second number, had I been armed with this information beforehand, I think I would have known better what such a low beta at almost 5 weeks portended and not been quite as surprised when beta #3 dropped back down to the level of beta #1.

Of course, since I’m far more jaded than I was way back in the day, I’m hardly taking these articles to mean that everything is going to be just fine. I know better. I’ve watched as far too many women—irl and in the blogosphere—who have run into problems that had nothing to do with these early beta numbers.

And, that’s why this is such a dangerous game.

Speaking of dangerous games, hubby and I started playing another extraordinarily dangerous one this morning. It’s called the “start talking about what life might be like next April assuming everything goes according to plan.” We found ourselves wondering over breakfast whether my mother would indeed be willing to take on some of the daycare responsibilities (as her mother did for my brother and me when I was little), and wondering where we’d have to cut down on expenses to make ends meet.

And this game is more terrifying than the first because it means that hope has officially taken up residence in my heart and is measuring for drapes. I can’t escape her now. And we all know what that means. On the one hand, if everything does go according to plan, it’s wonderful. But, if it doesn’t…well, then it’s just devastating.

Two more days until beta #3… Two + weeks until we could even hope to see the heartbeat (I think)… And eight weeks until we’d be out of the all-important first trimester.

I’ve never wanted to fast forward through the rest of the summer so quickly in all of my life…