Wednesday, March 24, 2010



So yesterday when I woke up I was feeling congested...I think it's allergies and since I can't take anything for it (or at least I'm choosing not to), I've been using my Neti Pot.  That's that genie lantern-like thing that Dr. Oz introduced us to on Oprah years back.  It's a simple process of draining the nasal cavity by running warm, saline water through one nostril and out the other.  For beginners, it can feel a bit like drowning, but once you get used to it, it's amazing and really cleans everything out.  My ears often pop and I'm left feeling great.

So I used my neti pot...ran the water through...and before I knew it, I looked down...

And there was a murder scene in my sink.

Blood clots (or maybe bloody snot) and watery blood pouring from my nose.


Only for a moment.  For I am well read where pregnancy symptoms are concerned and I know that bloody noses are very common at this time.

But I really didn't think that it would happen like that!  It was a mess, but as soon as I was done blowing it all out (after draining each nostril, you blow your nose and the heavens open up), the blood stopped.  Thank goodness.

And just now?

I sneezed.

And a little pee came out.

I'm officially falling apart.

And I'm loving every second of it.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A decrease in the crazies


OK, so it's been almost 2 weeks since my last HB monitor and I have 2 more weeks to go. 

And I am surviving.

Funny how a growing belly will help convince you that there may actually be a person living and growing inside of you. 

It's sinking in that this is really happening.  My mom cried on the phone the other day when I reminded her I was 16 weeks, not 14 like she thought.  She said "You're pregnant!"  as if it was the first time she heard.  I couldn't help but laugh - it's how we're all feeling. 

I was comforted to learn from my Baby Center weekly newsletter that at 16 weeks I'm on the cusp of a major growth spurt.  That will be reassuring to experience.

Am I still going crazy over-analyzing every little twinge that I feel?  Yep.  Inspecting the toilet paper?  Yep.  Thinking that there's no way the baby could be in there anymore?  Uh huh.  But it's getting better.

I'm hoping that as I become more secure with this pregnancy, I may even become available to others in my life.  For the past few months, I've been what I call "distracted".  Some might call it self-centered.  Basically all I can think about is baby stuff - both happy and scary.  I'm sure friends have noticed that I'm either talking baby or saying nothing at all.  Now in a crisis situation, I think I'm still all there, but the day to day stuff...I'm in my own little baby world...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Too many pokes


Who here has had more blood draws than me? 

It's not really a contest, but I'm just trying to illustrate the fact that I've had a crap-load of blood draws over the past couple years.  Let's see, there was the initial IF screening where they took no less than 16 viles of blood, my surgery, my 5 IVFs, my chemical pregnancy, a real pregnancy, and now crazy complications requiring more blood.  All I'm saying is that it's been many, many blood draws. 

So then why did it take the girl 3 different tries to get a drop from me yesterday???

She was a lovely girl, very kind smile.  She shared that she was about to start her 7th IVF, so we bonded instantly.  Too bad she couldn't find my veins with a map.  First a poke in my right arm and then all that lovely digging - you know how the needle is in there and then they dig around beneath the skin trying to find the vein?  No luck.  Let's try the other arm.  Same thing.  Great.  She claimed that she was in the vein but no blood was coming out.  Really?  Cause I thought I could feel my heart beating and I'm pretty sure I was alive at the time.  It's scary that no blood was coming out of me.  Finally she drew from my hand where I have super mama veins sticking out - my 4 year old nephew could have gotten the job done.  It didn't really hurt and I enjoyed talking with the girl.  I just don't get how after the zillion successful blood draws I've had, why she would struggle so much with it.  My theory is she was far too gentle.  The tourniquet wasn't even tight at all and isn't that what forces the blood out?  Who knows....  Incidentally the blood was for the 2nd part of the NT screening, full results in a week.

I went to my first prenatal yoga class yesterday.  I was excited to find a place close by and Russ and I even planned out that in the future he and I would walk up there together and then he could run while I'm in class.  The allow you to attend the first class free before committing to buy anything.  Thank goodness. 

Perhaps I'm naive, but that lady worked our asses out!  I'm sore today and can barely go and down stairs.  It was by far the most active I've been since before embryo transfer.  I know that real yoga can be tough.  In the past I've done Dahn yoga which is all about stretching and breathing and brain wave vibration.  There's a huge meditative piece to it and you leave feeling renewed. 

I left yesterday feeling nauseous.  Why?  Because downward facing dog and I are not friends.  And we must have spent a good 40% of the class in the position.  Being upside down does one thing: makes me dizzy.  Dizziness turns rapidly into nausea.  It took almost an hour of me sitting perfectly still to make it go away...I was miserable.

And so I'm disappointed.  I really wanted to love it.  Maybe I'll try another place.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Pee, pee, and more pee


So I got up to pee last night.  Every. Two. Hours.

I didn't think I had that much to drink before bed.

Want to know one of my insane theories?

The amniotic sac burst inside my body which then absorbed the liquid and excreted it all throughout the night, leading to frequent bathroom visits. 

I'm not saying that this is the theory I'm going with.  I'm just saying it crossed my mind as a possibility.

I luckily was able to easily fall back to sleep after each visit.  And now that I think about it, I think they were even more frequent than every 2 hours, but that's average.  I understand that this could get worse.  I'm up for it.  Whatever it takes.

Incidentally I dreamed (why am I wanting to use the "word" dreampt here?  That's not even a word, right?  And yet, when speaking, I'm sure I use it often) all about our IVF journey all night long.  Gave me a lot to reflect on.  Main message?  It's all worth it.  At least I pray so.

Monday, March 15, 2010

To doppler or not to doppler


So this will be the longest that I've gone without an ultrasound or at least a heartbeat doppler reading at my OB's office.  The last one we had was last Tuesday (3/9) and we don't go again until April 5.  That's forever from now.  So, the big question is, do I get a home doppler heartbeat monitor?  While the answer may be an obvious yes, I keep reminding myself that even the doctor has had a tough time finding the HB with their machine and if I can't find it at home, I will flip out and assume the baby is gone.  (I'm so extreme, I know)  Russ says no way.  But the next 3 weeks will be sooo very long without some acknowledgement that he/she is there.  Good thing is that I THINK (maybe) that I'm starting to feel some flutters and that should only increase so there are other things to let me know that all is well.  I'm just not sure what to do and if I do decide to get one, what do I get??  There are some great ones (at least they seem great) that you can rent for like $40 and then send back to the company.  I feel like these ones are better and more expensive (which is why you rent them).  Or we can buy one, but I worry that they won't be as reliable. 

Help please =)

Friday, March 12, 2010


15 w1d

I'm having a terrible time concentrating on work.  (I'm here now - shhhhh!)

All I can think about is the many, many decisions we have before us.  There is time left, but not a lot.  Before we know it, that baby will here.  I'm consumed with checking out cribs and day care providers.  I just want things done so I can relax and not worry.  I told Russ I was worried about finding furniture and he was so offended (sort of).  He couldn't believe that with everything we've been through, I'm allowing myself to let furniture bring me anxiety.  I know - but the crazy had to go some place, right?

OK, so my belly is deformed.  I have always had a pouchy lower belly - right under my belly button.  I've had this since birth practically and have proof in the form of a picture of me at 3 years old in a bikini where you can count my ribs but can clearly see my little belly under my belly button.  Since then, my little belly has become larger...which is why I have been known to say that I've looked pregnant for years.  The weird thing is that when I gain weight, I gain some under my belly button and some above it, but my "waist" (I'm considering that the place where my belly button resides) stays the same.  So now that I'm gaining baby belly weight, it's coming on in a way that I was afraid of.  Over and under but my belly button still goes in.  So I look like a round pillow where someone has sewn a button in the middle really tightly.  I sort of look like a donut - the kind where the hole isn't distinct because it's a nice, fat donut.  Anyway, I guess what I'm saying is that I just look fat.  And I need my belly button to push out so that I look pregnant.  And, no, I am NOT posting pictures of this! =)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

More doctors...


Back to the doctor AGAIN today...

Good thing is I have no crazy diseases that could explain my liver issues (Epstein Barr is pending but unlikely based on my symptoms).  Also, my liver levels were about 30% lower on Friday than they had been on Wednesday.  Sort of bad news is they have no clue why...Yes, my liver has a little bit of fat on it, but nothing to worry about and nothing to explain the levels being so high.  They're sending me to a specialist (ANOTHER doctor!) just to make sure they aren't missing something and to monitor me throughout so that if it gets worse, they can jump on it right away.

The baby's heartbeat is still going strong and I'm finally feeling relaxed about the fact they'll be able to find it each time we're there (this confidence comes from the fact that we just heard and saw the baby on Friday I'm sure, but it's a start).  Great news is that the initial findings of the NT screening are in and excellent.  Based on my age alone, the chances of us having a baby with down syndrome is 1 in 140.  The screening brings that number to 1 in 2700.  The other chromosomal issue went from 1 in 150 to 1 in 10,000.  I go for another blood test next week and they'll put the data together to make a final number but it looks great so far so we're relived about that.  With the next test, they can say that it's about 90-95% accurate, so there's still a chance that there could be a problem, but not enough that I think it's worth doing amniocentesis.

So we left the doctor's office full of joy...the sun was shining, it was warm and we took the top off the jeep and went for lunch.  We discussed lots of practical things at lunch - mostly day care ( a topic that makes me more anxious than anything else, including childbirth).  There is NO WAY we can afford for me stay home.  And I mean it.  People keep saying "Oh, just you wait til you have that baby in your arms, you'll change your mind..."  It's not a matter of changing my mind.  I will not choose to be homeless and that's what we'd be if I stopped working.  That is the one thing that sometimes I don't think people get.  They think that if we sacrifice, we could do it.  NO.  We really couldn't.  Or they think that with the cost of day care, it'll balance out.  Even with daycare, I'll still bring home over $50,000 that we NEED to LIVE and EAT.  Anyway, we know we'll figure it out, but it's scary thinking that we'll be paying a stranger a lot of money to take care of this baby we've been waiting so long for.  I don't like the idea, but we don't have a choice.  Could we move back home to Buffalo where housing is 1/3 of what it is here?'s an option.  But there are NO JOBS there, so we would likely be in the same boat.

Then we went grocery shopping and I, of course, have to pee the minute we walk into the store.  Didn't I pee at the restaurant you might ask?  Yes, I did.  And, yes, it was literally 7 minutes earlier.  Welcome to my world.  (Those of you who know me in real life know that this isn't so unlike non-pregnant me) 

So I come back from peeing and Russ is talking to this lady who is pushing the stroller we want - the Baby Jogger City Mini.  He is enthralled in conversation with her about all aspects of the stroller.  This is a quality in him that I LOVE. He is genuinely interested in this purchase and knows all of the questions to ask.  I started to ask questions (Is the handle high enough?  Did you get the car seat attachment?  Did you use it when the baby was an infant?)  He had already asked ALL of our questions!!  He knew the questions to ask and had it all covered.  Have I mentioned that I LOVE HIM?  Then, we're checking out and he thinks of another question, so he leaves me in line and stalks her until he finds her again to ask.  He is very into the whole shopping aspect of this baby thing and I am not complaining at all.  He rocks.

I need to tell you about my maternity jeans issues, but I'm too sleepy.  Basically Old Navy rocks and allowed me to return jeans that I had worn because they stretched out so much, they practically fell off.  So I get the smaller size and now I feel like a sausage in them.  I guess I'm in between sizes which sucks...But at least they'll take stuff back.  Motherhood is final sale, exchange within 10 days only.  Got some great pants there though... More on shopping another

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Liver update (or not)


Long story short:  They have no clue what's wrong with me, but the baby is great.  Read on for the details.

What a long day yesterday was!!  We go to the doctor and wait 2 hours to be seen!  Ok, so I understand that I was an "emergency visit" (their words, not mine) so they had to squeeze me in, but man it took forever! 

Basically I am showing no signs or symptoms of anything serious.  The doctor isn't so much worried about my liver...he's more perplexed.  He kept asking if I'd been to a third world country recently.  That tends to be a question one only needs to be asked once.  I mean you would remember if you'd been in a foreign country recently, right?  But he kept asking...He asked if I ate any strange street vendor food.  Nope (but, mmm, sounds good, what do you have in mind?)  He asked if any kids at my school had hepatitis.  Nope.  They don't let kids in school without records of immunization against it.  He kept asking if I'd been sick?  Vomiting?  Fever?  No, no, no.  Pain?  No.  My blood pressure was normal and everything looked good - including that baby of ours! 

So they sent us for an ultrasound of my liver and gal bladder.  Oh, wait, did they mention that you have to fast for 8 hours before having it done?  Yeah.  So after spending 3 hours in the office, I am told that I can't eat or drink (not even WATER) for another 5 hours.  Really?  Do they not know me and my hunger levels?  Especially in mid-afternoon?  When I haven't had any lunch?  Ugh...  Turned out to not be a real biggie though and I learned that I will not die if I don't eat for a little while.  Lesson learned.

The ultrasound looked good...exact quote was "no tumors and anything scary".  I appreciated this comment because liver cancer was all up in my brain.  She took pictures of EVERYTHING inside me.  I met my aorta, my pancreas, my liver, my gal bladder, my kidneys, and we even said a "what's up?" to our little peanut in my belly.  She agreed that there was no obvious penis and the baby was in a great position to look.  So my current theory is that we have a girl or an unfortunate boy who will hopefully have inherited Russ's charm cause he's gonna need it.  (sorry, baby boy, that's in poor taste...I'm sure that you'll be just fine)

In order to ultrasound one's internal organs, do you have any idea of how hard they have to press?  Holy crap, I thought I would break a rib.  Seriously.  I am so sore today, I feel I've been beaten and I'm sure the worst is yet to come.  It was beyond painful.  Who knew?

So I'm relieved that the doctor was so not-concerned about the baby.  He practically said "The baby?  Oh, you don't have to worry about the baby...we just need to figure out what's happening with you"  In other words, I might be dying, but the baby is just fine.  (I realize it doesn't work that way, but the idea gives me comfort nonetheless)  I have my regular OB appt Tuesday where they will continue to work on this.  The new blood work will be back as well as the u/s report. 

In other news, have I mentioned that I'm over 14 weeks now?  That's like a real pregnant lady.  That's me.  And even though my regular fat belly is covering up my baby belly, i can truly start to feel it especially when I laying down in bed.  Yay!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

High liver (or Hi Liver!)


So I went to get my thyroid checked out yesterday...pretty uneventful.  My TSH is high so I have hypothyroidism and will take synthroid to get it back in check.

What is troubling is that the endocrinologist called and said my "liver is high".  What does that mean?  Was it smoking weed or something?  She said she called my OB's office and they want to see me tomorrow.  Why the big rush?  What could it be?   I'm more worried with this because of the urgency that they seem to have regarding it.  She said "they want to see you tomorrow to find out why your liver is high".  Luckily (ha!) I'm overweight and lots of times people with extra weight have "fatty livers" as indicated by high levels.  Hopefully that's all it is...not that I want that or anything but it's better than the diseases that I saw when I googled which I will NOT do again.  One of the diseases said that the only treatment is immediate delivery of the baby.  Um...that's not happening.  I'm sure I don't have that.  I pray I don't at least.

OK, relax.  Be calm.  We'll figure it out.  My body is going through changes and I'm bound to have some bumps in the road. 

I go back to my original petition of the universe which is that when people like me have to go through hell in order to get pregnant, we should be blessed with healthy, uneventful pregnancies every time. 

On the bright side, maybe they'll have to do an ultrasound and I'll get to see the baby.  But that concerns me too because if they have to do an ultrasound, that would mean they're worried about the baby.  Let me have some disease, but please let the baby be alright.

Tune in tomorrow for an update...

(Incidentally, I've been feeling REALLY pregnant over the past few days...just thought I'd follow up from my last post)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Is it still in there?

I know what you're going to say.

I know.

But the thing is that I feel completely empty today.  I don't feel bloated or crampy or any of the little pains I've been feeling.  I realize that the baby is still in there because it certainly hasn't come out.  But why when I bend over it does not feel there's anything there?  Before (um, that would be yesterday) when I bent over I felt all this pressure like I might explode.  My theory is that my amniotic fluid has sprung a slow leak (as evidenced by the increase in moisture I keep feeling down there) and now it's all gone and the baby is on it's way out too.

(Time out:  I realize how crazy I sound....but I can't help but feel this way and YOU are the people I talk to about this stuff)

Logic and reason tells me that now I am in the 2nd trimester, things are looking up and I'm feeling better.  Isn't that what EVERYONE says is supposed to happen?  Yes, it is.

Then why can't I just be happy that I don't feel like crap?

And I've only felt nothing for like 18 hours or something!  For all I know, I'll feel like crap later. 

What's wrong with me?  I need to be more positive and I just can't think anything but the worst.  Ugh.

Sorry, I seriously know that I'm crazy and it must be getting old to hear about all my worries. 

But I have such worries so that's what you'll hear about. 

For now.