/ The RE's Muse: June 2006

The RE's Muse

After 4 years of infertility, 2 surgeries, 1 miscarriage, and 19 months of high risk pregnancies, hubby and I now have two little women in our lives--one a toddler, the other not far behind. Buckle your seatbelts, it's gonna be a wild ride.

Thursday, June 29, 2006


Yawn. Yeah, things are that boring around here these days.

The brown sludge continued to haunt me for a few days earlier this week but now seems to have gone away again. I could panic about it but, really, what good will that do me? Instead, I just calmly tell myself that up to 20% of normal pregnancies have spotting or bleeding of some sort (yes, that's some Dr. Google info there). And, yes, bright red blood with J, seven days of it.

Other than the disappearing/reappearing sludge, other symptoms have amped up and, unlike my pregnancy with J, nausea has made an appearance. At least several times a day I am struck with overwhelming waves of yuck, an urge to puke, and the like. Then I usually eat something or have a drink of water and it leaves. I have been ravenous as well, a regular eating machine. So I guess what they say about no two pregnancies being alike is true.

J is home sick from daycare and with the July fourth holiday thrown in there, she doesn't go back to daycare until the 5th. We'll stay close to home, visit the beach, a park, a local fireworks celebration, and the like. On Monday, I've got my first OB appt. Given the hope that all is still okay in my nether regions, I will be a little over 7 weeks along. I wonder if the doc will even try to listen for the heartbeat on doppler? That would go a long way, especially if he found it, but I realize it could be way too early for such goings on. A girl can wish though.

U/s #2 with my RE follows on Thursday. It can't get here soon enough. Later that same afternoon, we leave for Key West for four blissful lazy days with friends and no.kids. Of course, earlier in the year, when waxing poetic about how much fun we were going to have to the friends we're going with, I commented on how I couldn't wait to relax and enjoy a few tropical adult libations. Recently, some of the friends we're going with reminded me of this statement. So, um, yeah, about that....

And with that, I realized that--come next week--I may have to spill the beans to those closest to us (two couples). I've already bowed out of a night of 40th birthday revelry for one of these friends this coming Saturday under the guise of not having anyone to watch J (A is going on his own while I stay home with the wee lass). Hell, why wouldn't I want to go spend a night sucking in secondhand smoke at a local waterfront hotspot while my friend gets shitfaced in honor of her big 4-0?

For now, though, A and I continue to hold onto this delicious secret...and I continue to hope for the best. One day at a time.

Friday, June 23, 2006


That whoosh you heard all the way from here? That was the sound of me exhaling in relief.

Today's u/s found one appropriately sized and located gestational sac, one appropriately sized embryo, and one gloriously beating heart.

Today marks 5w6d, and the embryo (!) is measuring a few days ahead, which makes sense since it's quite possible that implantation took place around day 8 or 9 as that's when my initial cramping began. Given the variation in measurements, my EDD is varying between the first and second weeks of February.

In other news, the spotting has stopped, hopefully for good but we'll see. I'm back for a second u/s with the RE on July 6th and I also have my first OB appt on July 3rd. I still can't believe this is happening. Sometimes I think that I'm imagining this. If anything though, today's appt confirmed that I'm not. It is real and, yet, surreal.

Thank you for your kindness and your support. It means the world to me.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


Now that the weekend has come and gone, I've been able to return to normal from 'party planning' mode. The party was a success, the girl was happy, and the cake was all but annihilated at her fingers. Despite my joy at the goodness that was Sunday's baby girl birthday party, something potentially wicked this way came.

Tuesday morning saw the start of brown sludge on my panty liner from time to time. Not a great amount by any means, a smudge here and there, some light barely discernible marks on the TP. But once you've seen them during a pregnancy, you check the paper fanatically every time you go which is just what I've been doing. What can I say? I've done this with every pregnancy (listen to me--like there've been so many). I didn't spot at all with doomed pregnancy #1, I bled bright red for a day and then spotted for a week with J, and now brown sludge off and on since yesterday with this one. I still feel pg--my boobs hurt, nausea comes and goes, I cry at the drop of a hat, NO cramping, etc., but I can't help but worry about the sludge. Yes, I know that many successful pregnancies have bleeding or spotting episodes, and that brown blood is old blood, etc., but the worry is still here nonetheless, eating away at me. Most of the time, I just try not to think about it. I tell myself it's nothing and it may very well be nothing but we won't know for sure until that first u/s Friday morning.

Less than 48 hours to go until I hopefully get a wee bit of peace of mind.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Another day, another draw

With shock still rampant in these parts, my second beta today came back at 5,754. Number crunching on http://www.ivfer.com/hcg.htm shows this represents a 31 hour doubling time. In addition, my progesterone has increased from 10.2 to 19.6 so no supplements and no more betas.

I managed to get my u/s date moved up to the 23rd, though it means I will have to drive an hour to the main office and do so very early in the morning but that's a small price to pay for peace of mind so I'm so not complaining. Oh, and in case you're wondering (as I was), EDD is 2/17/07.

I'm not exactly sure what to make of these high beta #s. Sure, there's one school of thought that maybe it's more than one, or perhaps just one, but there's also more sinister thoughts swimming in my head--of Down's or a molar pregnancy or who knows what. Googling high hcg levels will do that to a girl, silly me.

But there's not much I can do about these thoughts for now. Until the first u/s, I'm basically in limbo. So I will stay here, swinging from my vine, getting through each day, thinking NBHHY, and being grateful for every minute.

And I will spend this coming Sunday basking in the glory that is J's first birthday party. We'll be at the beach, cooking out under a seaside pavilion, sharing the day and that glorious little girl with those who love her and us so very very much. I can think of no finer way to spend a day of my wait.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Still standing

Well, heck ladies, if you were surprised by my last post, imagine how surprised I was when I saw two lines on the pee stick. I honestly didn't expect that. I just figured I was having a wacky period. My non-reproductive endocrinologist, Dr. Pepper--even though I've seen him every three months for the past year--always asks the same question each time I see him: "And you get a period on your own each month?" And each time my answer is the same exasperated yes. (Dude, read my chart.) Apparently, given my hormonal issues in the past, the fact that I menstruate on my own is surprising to him. So when I started what I thought was my period Friday and then it stopped on Saturday, I thought that perhaps it was the start of me not getting a period on my own as Dr. Pepper assumes should be the case for me. So, hey, let's pee on that stick, I thought. It's the only one I had so I figured I'd use it to get rid of it.

I couldn't quite believe what I was seeing as the two lines appeared within seconds of the pee creeping across the window. I had to leave the bathroom, go fold clothes, try to wait the requisite 3 minutes. But it was still there when I went back in. And I still am in shock. Utter and complete shock, and terror of course. Your kind words are greatly appreciated, and a few even gave me a chuckle (Cricket and Brenda, thanks for that).

My second beta and progesterone will be done this Thursday morning. Yesterday's progesterone was a not-so-whopping 10.2 but the nurse said my doctor likes to see anything over 10 on an unmedicated cycle (which is what they told me the first time w/J so I know the nurse wasn't just blowing smoke up my ass) so no supplements for now. With J, my initial prog was 10.4 and I then got to enjoy p4 suppositories until 12 weeks. I'll know if I go this route again given the results of Thursday's bloodwork.

And in what seems like a cruel joke, my first ultrasound has been scheduled for June 30th--yes, more than 2 weeks away (when, if all continues, I will be 6w6d). Apparently, it's the only day my RE will be at my satellite location for the rest of this month and he wants to be the one to do the scan the first time. Yes, he did this last time too but I didn't have to wait so long (5w6d was J's first u/s, followed by a second to see if we had a hb at 7w exactly).

Until then, I'm just trying to stay positive, to keep thinking NBHHY. I can't stop the fear, the worry, but I am trying to keep it at bay. Trying to pretend I'm normal, that this is a normal process, that I can get through this day by day. I still don't really believe it--I feel fine, sure I'm a little tired now and then but my boobs don't hurt, no nausea, and so on. When all is said and done, I guess my heart is just afraid to open up to hope. Because then--well, then there will be something very real at stake...something that will take a piece of me with it should it all go bottoms up.

Monday, June 12, 2006

The CD1 that wasn't *UPDATED*

So, within 24 hours of CD1 starting, it stopped. And left behind this souvenir late last night:

After an emergency call to the RE's office to get me in this morning for bloodwork, I now wait for THE CALL. I'm terrified to hope...and trying to remember to breathe.

*Updated: Today's initial HCG was 1,333, this at either 16, 17, or 18dpo (not exactly sure which). I go back Thursday for a second check and they will schedule my ultrasound tomorrow for one day next week. I'm buckling my seat belt, holding onto the handrail....

Friday, June 09, 2006

Over before it started

Woke up this a.m. and it was apparent it's CD1. So much for that then. But if this picture doesn't put a smile on your face today, nothing will. It's her 'official' first birthday picture taken recently.

While this morning's news was a crappy start to my weekend, it's all good. J actually--wait for it--got her first tooth two days ago! So there was indeed something to celebrate in our house this week. It's a bottom right tooth, so cute, and just in time for her b'day party next weekend. No wonder she's been so cranky lately (yeah, so I guess I suck at reading my kid's clues/moods).

Um, so since my kid had no teeth up until recently, we have never brushed 'em for her. Which means that now that there's a. lone. tooth, we will have to start brushing it--any tips on how to make this process easier? I will say that J does not like it when you put your fingers in her mouth--it's met with much raspberrying and spitting to get. you. out. Should make for fun times brushing then, huh? Any helpful hints greatly appreciated.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Houston, we have liftoff

Dear sweet mercy. The girl, she is fully mobile. Did you hear that? FULLY MOBILE as of last week.

It was like watching the evolution of man but in a shorter timeframe. First, she crawled, then scooted, and one day she stood up. The standing eventually led to cruising, and then walking upright assisted, and last week found her looking at us as if to say, "I don't need your assistance, I can walk by myself!" and she was up on her own, surveying her domain. Light sockets? Check. Dogs' water bowl? Check. Kitchen cabinets? Check. Dishwasher? Check.

So let us please pause for a moment of silence in honor of the life I used to know. But hey, at least now maybe I'll shave those last pesky 10 pounds from my frame with all the increased movement I'm doing. The girl, she is damn quick! And so darn small to be walking around but also so darn cute doing it that I find myself smiling, fully unaware that I'm doing so.

In addition to the walking unassisted, there is much jabbering (too bad we can only understand a few 'words'--if you want to be generous and call them that), and none--that's right, ZERO--teeth sprouting from her smooth, shiny, unbroken gums. Sister can still crush the crap out of food so not having them hasn't slowed down her voracious interest and ability to partake in the enjoyment of our 'adult' foods. Suddenly, baby food is passe and non grata in her mouth. Her ped isn't at all worried about the lack of teeth so I'll try to quash my own concerns until the doc informs me that it's time to freak out.

There is also much temper tantruming (oh look--a new verb!) and I mean, real honest-to-goodness throwing herself down on the floor and pounding her little fists. It's actually kinda cute and makes me laugh. Although now we don't allow ourselves to laugh at her when she does it as it's a reaction and a reaction is exactly what she's looking to get when she pulls this stunt. And, for the love of all things holy, g-d help you if you take away something she wants or try to stop her from doing something she has her mind set on (like my new favorite! pulling! everything! out! of the changing table cabinet!). She will scream, she will wail, she will 'cry' but sans tears. And then, almost as quickly as the storm came, it will shove off and she will lose interest in whatever it was she was so intent on getting/doing.

She wants to run, and to jump off the top pool step into deeper water, and play with the big kids...and when I look at her sometimes I don't know where my baby went, where this emerging 'big' girl is going, and that's okay. The ride will be a fun one, among other adjectives I'm sure.

Two weeks from today, she will be one. Two weeks from today, I will look back on everything this first year has brought us and laugh, and cry, and savor it all, even the crap parts. They made this journey what it was and is and it wouldn't be the same without them. And I will think about what the future may hold for her and just hope like hell that I don't let her down. I'll do my best, and I'll love her unconditionally with everything I've got. She will never doubt my love for her, she will never not know it. Every day, I tell her that I love her. I didn't have that growing up and that memory hurts even today. As a result, Juliana will know just how much she is loved, wanted, and treasured. Really, is there any greater thing we can give a child?

P.S. Thank you for your comments to my last post. They meant a lot to me and I truly appreciate your kindness and support. We'll see what happens. This Friday will be 13 dpo and I may do some POAS for shits and giggles. I'm not expecting much but I've got a new FRER (the test formerly known as FRED) hanging out, waiting to get a little action so why not? Why not, indeed.

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