December 26, 2012

Week 13: Peaches and Spaghetti

How far Along?
13 weeks on 12/26/12

How big are the Twinkies?
According to the The Bump, the babies are approximately the size of:
 
 
At our last sono, on 12/24, the Twinkies were measuring just a hair away from 3 inches.  (showing that they are two days ahead)


How am I feeling?
I am finally feeling "normal" again.  Yes, I still have days where I'm tired; but most days, and most of each day, I have a desire to get something done or go out and do something.  It's way different from a few weeks ago.  My mood is normal.  My emotions feel much more calm (besides the tears).  I strongly believe that it has a lot to do with also finally feeling like this is real and happening now.  I don't have constant concerns about every little thing.  I feel the Twinkies a lot stronger now.  So, I feel that everyday, all day, I'm reminded that I am indeed pregnant with twins;  I won't wake up one day and have 'this dream' to tell Chris.  
I feel completely blessed and thankful!

Weight?
  At my prenatal appointment, on 12/24, the scale actually showed that I went back down a half pound!  (Let's see what happens this week while our family enjoys some vacation time together...)
 

What do I miss?
Having a drawer full of underwear to choose from.  Yeah, a bit silly, I know.  But it's something I've been missing lately.  I'm kind of tired of the same 'ol maternity underwear (even though they are super duper comfy).

Sleeping on my tummy.  Have I already mentioned this?  It's a big one for me.  I was a tummy sleeper and it's tough falling asleep any other way.  I do, however, wake up, every now and then, on my belly.  I freak out, feel bad that the Twinkies might be smushed, and then realize they are still okay.  :)

Symptoms?
Insomnia.  :(  Stuffy nose.  My lower back issues are flaring up.  Headaches.  Heartburn and reflux.  Endo aggravating me and flaring up way too often.

Annoyances?
Routine doctor appointments.  I understand they need to check on me and the babies; but do I really need to go in to the office to talk about what prenatal vitamin I'm on and pee in a cup, again, to confirm that I'm still pregnant?  My first prenatal appointment was a complete waste of time, I felt.  First of all, it was Christmas Eve morning. 
I waited almost an hourI got a canvas tote bag, with the practice's name on it (so it's definitely something I'll never use again), filled with pamphlets and magazines that I don't need.  I didn't even see my doctor that visit.  It was just a nurse visit and we went over my, and Chris's, personal and family medical history.  We were briefly told about the prenatal testing that is recommended with each trimester... Something that could have been done at my first visit with my doc, or the one that is coming up.  I don't know.  I just don't want to overdo going in to the office when everything is going well. 

Cravings?
 Cantaloupe.  Spaghetti and meat sauce!!! Dunkin Donuts.  Barbacoa breakfast tacos.

The only thing I have given in to, so far, is the cantaloupe, once, and the spaghetti, once.  I do, however, plan on getting a lot more cantaloupe!!  ;)
  
Highlights of the week?
We went to Ikea and bought the cribs! :D   

Getting my 'good-mood' energy back has been such a wonderful feeling this week!

Another highlight was definitely when my mom went with us to our sono appointment, on the 24th.  It was her birthday and we thought it would be a great experience for her to remember.  It was wonderful having her there with us, sharing that joyous moment.  

 Belly Watch:

December 19, 2012

Week 12: Plums and Wiggles

How far Along?
12 Weeks on 12/19/12.Yay!

How big are the Twinkies?
According to the The Bump, the babies are approximately the size of:
 

(On 12/16/12, they measured approximately 2.7 inches)

How am I feeling?
Today, I started to feel more like "myself" again.  On 12/16, I went to the ER from another pregnancy scare (placenta previa; everything checked out ok.  I was told to stay in bed until the end of Monday, or until bleeding stopped.).  Then the very next night, 12/17, I went back to the ER because all day I couldn't hold water or food down, I was having horrible stomach pain (like my actual stomach —not just belly pain in general) and my temp was rising.  I was concerned about dehydration and I wanted to make sure the babies would be okay.  So, finally, today was the first day with a normal temp and no stomach pain.  (ER doc said I probably picked up stomach bug when I went in to the ER for placenta previa —go figure!).  
I'm sure the next few days will only get better. ;) 
Sad, "down in the dumps", feelings are gone; but mood swings are much more sensitive.  

Weight?
 Okay, okay, I've finally gained half a pound.  :(
  It probably has something to do with the fact that I've been eating chocolate now...?  Or the fact that two little humans are growing inside my belly?  Either way, I need to keep my sugar intake in check —more than I did this past week.

What do I miss?
Not being concerned about every little thing (am I drinking enough water?  Am I eating enough fruits, veggies, protein If I go run errands or do housework, will the bleeding start up again?  Am I feeling both babies move or is that just one? ...)

Symptoms?
Bleeding/spotting (just a few days from placenta previa).  Extreme nausea (from stomach flu).  Hip pain (I'm assuming my body is making some extra room for the growth that is about to take place?)

Annoyances? 
Noise.  Smells.  Restlessness.  Insomnia.  Being stuck at home.

Cravings?
Pizza (which I have not given in to —yet).  Sweet bread (which I have not given in to —yet).  Chicken noodle soup.

 Highlights of the week?
Ending our first trimester!  We can't believe how quickly it's going by.
Chris felt the Twinkies move, for the very first time, on Saturday, December 15th! (and a few more times since)
We bought our very first baby items on Saturday, December 15th:
KJ felt the Twinkies move, for the very first time, on Monday, December 17th!
I can now feel the Twinkies move every single day, almost all throughout the day, and they sometimes even respond to my belly being rubbed or poked!!  :D  (oh and when I sneeze, they go nuts!!!)  I absolutely love it —every single moment.

I feel so incredibly honored and blessed that God has allowed me to experience these little miracles!  (If you don't already know, I have prayed for twins since I was six years old.  Crazy —I know!  So, this is just beyond amazing.  It's like God showing me His love, in a very tangible way, every single day.  I'm still in awe.)

 Belly Watch:

December 13, 2012

Week 11: Limes and Chocolate.

How far Along?
11 Weeks on 12/12/12.
It's really going by too quickly.  :(

How big are the Twinkies?
According to the The Bump, the babies are approximately the size of:
 
I'm so amazed that they went from prune-size to lime-size in just one week!  Wow.

How am I feeling?
There are days when I believe I'm pregnant; but most days, I feel like I'm just dreaming about being pregnant.  Still.  I wonder when it will feel real everyday, all day...

The nausea simmered way down.  But my emotions are playing crazy games with me.  I feel so sad and down a lot right now.  I should be happy.  I should be on cloud nine.  I have my moments; but mainly I just feel bummed out and "ugh".  :(  I'm thinking that maybe it has to do with the fact that my car isn't working and I'm just stuck in the house until the weekend, or until late evening, once hubby comes home.  I also think that it might have something to do with feeling super overwhelmed with decisions about choosing an OB or midwife... so much information for both sides.  A lot of decisions need to be made and I feel so lost and not in control of the situation.  I know we still have time; I just feel overwhelmed at the moment.


Weight?
 The numbers still haven't changed... yet.  :)
*But I'm also still working on cutting out sugar, fried foods, carbs, and other junk food —as much as possible.  It's not always easy, but I see those numbers staying the same and I'm loving it!!  I know soon enough the numbers will change.  I just need to keep doing my part.  

What do I miss?
Sleeping on my tummy and sleeping through the night.

Symptoms?
Exhausted.  I just want to lay down all the time.  I started spotting/bleeding (with some clots) and it's just been off and on.  Depends how much I move around, I think.  But the doc says Baby A's placenta is right on top of my cervix.  I'm hoping it moves soon.  My chest got super duper sensitive again!  What's up with that?!  They had started to feel normal —but then out of no where it came back. :(

Annoyances?
Almost everything right now.  :(  The dogs.  KJ's meltdowns and "challenging" moments.  Clutter that I just don't have the energy to take care of right now.  Back pain flaring up again.  Crazy sharp Endo pains.  :(

Cravings?
I'm still craving Hot & Sour soup from a local restaurant.  New craving of "safe" sushi started —out of no where.  Orange juice.  

 Highlights of the week?
Getting to see the Twinkies wiggle and dance around on the sonogram.  That memory will never go away!  Also, I was able to see (and feel) a jolt happen in my belly!  It was amazing and I can't wait to feel more!!

Oh, and I had my first taste, since August, of decaf coffee and some chocolate!  It was more exciting than it was delicious.  lol.  I think I missed it more because I cut it out completely.  But it was great that I felt ready to have a taste.  I felt comfortable and safe, not concerned and afraid like I had been feeling earlier on.  That's a HUGE step for me.  :) 

 Belly Watch:

December 7, 2012

12/7/12: The Twinkies are already giving me white hair!!

What should have been a nice relaxing day of hanging out with a friend, crafting with our kiddos, turned into the first big scare of the pregnancy...

I thought I just needed to tinkle... and then everything changed.  Blood... clots... light cramping... a nervous call to my doctor... pack up the kiddos... hurry over to my doctor's office... pray, pray, pray for two heartbeats!!!

My friend was such a HUGE blessing today.  Chris and I are still down to one car right now, so she picked me and KJ up so that we could go to her house to spend the day.  Then she ended up driving me to my doctor's office and waiting for me, while taking care of KJ and her two kiddos.  I can't thank her enough!

Dr. R checked my cervix and confirmed that it was still completely closed but, yes in deed, there was blood.  He did a transvaginal sono and found two beautiful heartbeats and a very very wiggly Teeny (baby A), again.  Tiny (baby B), once again was just floating around, waving every now and then.  :)  What a RELIEF! —they're okay!!  Praise God!!  Dr. R checked the length of the cervix and the lining and said it all looked great.  He then checked the position of the placenta and it is right on top of my cervix.  He says that is more than likely the cause of the bleeding and clots.  The placenta is still expected to move upward; so it wasn't a concern, he said.  I was just told to take it easy all weekend and not to over do anything.  I was so glad when he told me that I didn't have to be in bed all weekend but I definitely need to rest as much as possible and take it easy.

So, that I can definitely do!  I sure know how to take it easy around here.  Ask Chris!  lol  ;P

The great thing about this emergency is that I walked out of the office with a beautiful picture of each little Twinkie.  :)  (and since it was transvaginal, it is a much better quality than yesterday's pic)


December 6, 2012

12/6/12: 10 weeks 1 day. First OB visit

Seeing our babies is the best thing EVER right now!!! :)

I went back to my regular OB/GYN, Dr. R (he's been my doc for almost 8 years now).  He's who referred me to the fertility clinic; so I was really excited to go back to share our excitement.  It was all very normal and typical.  Weight, which I have not gained (yet)!!  Blood pressure, also the same as usual —great! :)  Leave a urine sample.  Can you believe that they actually ran a pregnancy test?!  Even though they have access to my entire medical file from the fertility clinic!  I thought it was a waste of time and just an easy way to charge the insurance some extra $$.

Dr. R was very happy to see us back.  I got my usual hug and kiss, on the cheek, from him (something that was kind of strange to me for a while) and Chris got a huge hand shake and "big bear hug"!  We quickly talked about our experience at RMA (the fertility clinic) and then I told him I have a list of questions for him but that I'd love to check on the babies first.  So, to the sonogram machine he went!

I was expecting the usual transvaginal ultrasound, but was completely surprised and excited when he started the transabdominal.  He said that we should be able to see them just fine, since they were 10 weeks now.  He was right!  They were dancing away... well, Teeny (baby A) was the wiggle worm!  Tiny was just calm and resting —waving an arm or two every few seconds.  But nothing like Teeny.  LOL!!  Teeny was trying to do back flips already.  hee hee  It was absolutely the best thing I've seen so far!!! :D

Teeny's heart rate was 174 at the 8 week check up and today, it was 179.  That was a surprise.  Tiny's heartbeat was right about the same, in the low 160's.

Because it was not an actual "sono appointment", we didn't get pictures printed out.  Now, I'm sure if I would have asked for some he would have done it for us, but since he took an extra long sono, so we could record it on our phone, I didn't want to ask for more.  And, unfortunately, Chris thought he was recording all the movements and wiggles but then realized that he somehow stopped recording six seconds into it. :(  Thankfully, Dr. R was waiting for us in his office, to answer my list of questions, and was willing to come back in and do another sono for us to record.  Again, unfortunately, during the second sono, Teeny was already done with the "show" and was back to resting.  So, the recording we have does not have the same wiggle-wiggle movements that we saw the first time. :(  BUT... we love having that memory between just the two of us.  We will never forget that moment!

A screen shot from the recording we got. 





So, about the many questions that I had for Dr. R...


Basically, I want a VERY natural birth experience.  Now, I am aware that things can come up and change what I want.  However, my goal is to have someone with the same goals, or be just as supportive.  Dr. R is only 100% on board with that plan as long as both babies are head down.  He says that if one baby is breech then it's a scheduled c-section.  He said there is no time frame requirements and that he will confirm baby positions up until I go in to labor.  But I really really really don't like that he doesn't even try to turn them before going through with a c-section.  :(

I had/have a midwife in mind and I hear that she is the best midwife, when it comes to delivering twins.  I was all on board with looking into a home birth even...  But now, after hearing all the "scary" scenarios that Dr. R presented, Chris is not so much on board with me anymore.  Honestly, even I didn't feel so sure after hearing what Dr. R said.  However, I know that, if I still took time to talk with the midwife, she would, more than likely, be able to have better scenarios to present to us because it's her area of expertise.

I feel like Dr. R told us what he did because he does not agree or even understand the point in birthing at home.  He did say, however, that if I was pregnant with a singleton then  he would say that was a great option for us.  But that because it's twins it just shouldn't even be an option.  He compared it to buckling up our kids in the car or not letting them ride in the front seat.  He said that we could choose not to buckle our child in the car because we might not experience a car accident... but we just don't even take that chance because of the serious risk it would be.  Same with a twin home birth, he says.  There is that slight possibility that everything could go well but why even take that chance?!  —The risks would be too great to chance it.  He said that he's been my doctor for a very long time and he knows all that we've gone through to get to this point —pregnant.  He wants everything to go as smoothly as possible, with the best possible results.

So, can you see how it jolted my thoughts just a bit.  I agree with what he says... BUT it's hard for me to accept that it's the only option.  He says that a twin pregnancy is a high-risk pregnancy.  I have a hard time agreeing with that too.  I see it as a pregnancy... because I believe that there can be very normal, healthy, twin pregnancies.

I don't know.  I need to talk things over with my bff (who's an awesome doula!!).  I'm sure she'll be able to help me sift through all these confusing thoughts.  BUT all in all, I was happy to see Dr. R again and share our excitement.

Our next appointment with Dr. R is scheduled for Christmas Eve, at 9:15am.  What a GREAT Christmas present... seeing and hearing our little Twinkies again!

November 26, 2012

8 weeks 5 days: A beautiful day of hearing heartbeats (with video!)

I don't know that I have many words to describe that special moment, other than "amazing", "emotional", and "exciting"...

Of course, I didn't get much sleep at all.  My bff came over last night and that always means that we stay talking and "catching up" for hours!  We visited until 3am.  By the time I got to bed, I had only 4 hours of sleep available to me.  Of those hours, I woke up to tinkle several times and I tossed and turned, anxious about our appointment.  Needless to say the phrase "I am tired" is an understatement.

My adrenaline and excitement got me up and running right away.  It was almost time!

Chris and I had already discussed that KJ would sit outside of the room until we saw the update and then we would decide when it was best for her to come into the room to check out her future sibling(s).  She was just as excited for the appointment and she kept saying, on the way to the appointment, "I'm so excited; I can't wait!... I'm more excited than both of you!".  She understood that there was no way to know if both babies have heartbeats until after we see the new ultrasound.  So, her hopes were the same as ours "I hope the babies are okay!".

Signing in was easy and routine.  We were called back a bit late, but we all jumped up quickly and followed down the hall.  I did the usual and then sat and waited, anxious to check on the babies.  I know that I normally wait just a few minutes (no more than five, normally) for the doctor to come to the room, but this time... it seemed like and hour!!!  lol  It was more like 10, maybe 15, minutes of sitting there and waiting.  It was when I got really anxious, butterflies in my stomach, tears in my eyes, etc.  I just needed to see the babies already!!

A light knock at the door and I knew it was time!  Within a few minutes we were staring at TWO growing babies with TWO beautiful heartbeats!!!  Oh, only God really knows how extremely grateful and thankful I was at that exact moment.  I just stared and cried.  I was so amazed, in awe... there they were, two incredible little lives, miracles, growing inside!!  What a blessing.  God is SO amazing!!

As soon as the second heartbeat checked out, Chris called KJ to come in and join us.  The very first thing she said, as she walked through the door, was "Are there two heartbeats?!"  I replied with a smiley, teary-eyed, "YES!".  She squealed, "eeeeeeeee!", with so much joy (and huge eyes lol.).  The doctor went back and found both heartbeats again, so KJ could see and hear them.  As soon as she heard the second heartbeat, Dr. B. asked her if she was excited.  KJ replied with, "Yes, but if you don't mind, I was about to win the level so I need to go back and finish now...".  We all laughed so much over her short lived excitement over her siblings. LOL  She probably figures that there's nothing more to check on, since all she's been curious about are heartbeats.  She heard them both, saw both of the babies, and then that was it.  She was happy and content with the results, so then it was back to her video games... hahaha. 

Once we were done with our ultrasound, Dr. B held out her hand for a hand shake and said, "Congratulations!  You have officially graduated!  Everything looks beautiful."  I shook her hand and got all teary-eyed, again.  lol  We got our printed sono pics and then I went to get my new instructions about the progesterone injection.  I'm so very happy to have a "last day" set!!  I am to continue daily shots until Wednesday and then switch to every other day until Tuesday.  Tuesday, of next week, will be my very last progesterone injection, for this pregnancy!!!  Oh, praise God! :D

So, if saying "it was a great [or fantastic] day!" could really truly describe how amazing our day has been then it would be easy for everyone to understand how we've felt all day.  But it's not.  I honestly don't know how to say how amazing our day has been, other than "TODAY HAS BEEN AMAZING!!!".  lol.

Here are some photos and video of today:
I've been meaning to get a picture of this.  This is the sink in the restroom at our fertility clinic. ;)

KJ checking out her siblings, which she has now nicknamed Teeny and Tiny!  lol

(the video was taken sideways -sorry.  If you watch carefully, you can even see the little white flicker of the heart beating!)

Our beautiful babies!


"Teeny"


"Tiny"

"Teeny and Tiny" together ♥

Proud daddy. :)


Adding the new photos, of her siblings, in her "Big Sis In Training" photo album.

November 9, 2012

6 week and 2 days: Our first ultrasound and sharing the news with KJ

I didn't sleep much at all (between getting up to tinkle every so often and my nerves and excitement of the appointment.

KJ, with her bunny, playing at the computer.
My alarm went off at 6:45am. I showered, woke kj up (she was in a great mood -yay!!), and got dressed. Chris woke up to get dressed as I got some breakfast items packed, for kj. We actually left on time and there wasn't any traffic!  We arrived early; waiting was the worst! Every person that walked through the door caused me to turn my head and made my stomach turn, anticipating hearing my name, that it was our turn to go back.  Kj stayed playing at the computer, as she usually does. Then, finally, I heard my name... Nerves, dry-mouth, nausea, and light-headedness all kicked in immediately. Lol  I was sooooo extremely anxious and nervous.

It was Dr. A, the one who has been super rough the only two times I've seen him. I had prayed all night that he would be patient, not in a rush, sensitive to our excitement and nerves, and that he would be in a great mood to help us enjoy the very special moment... And what do you know? God is awesome!!! Dr. A was all of those things plus more! :)  He asked me how I was and I told him "Super anxious and excited...I've been so extremely nauseous all morning." He said that he was excited too and was glad to hear that I was nauseous, because its a good sign (lol). So, we got started and I had my phone ready, to record "the moment". As soon as we started, I knew what I was looking at. Two dark spots...TWO...  He asked me "Okay, so, what do you see?" And I just replied "I see two?" He confirmed that I was correct and I just cried and said "Thank you Jesus!". I was so calm and happy...so extremely grateful for getting to have that very moment.  I couldn't see Chris's reaction or expression because he was sitting next to the doctor (doc was between us, standing at machine). I really wish I could have seen his expression... I'll never know what that moment looked like. And he's not one that will really express it in words.

Dr. A, unfortunately did not zoom in very much on the babies. He just confirmed that there were two yolk sacs and that everything looked great so far. I reeeeeally wish he would have zoomed in to see if we could see the flickering heartbeats. He said we won't know anything about the heart beats until another two weeks. (What a long time to wait to confirm heart beats.).  Dr. A also strongly suggested NOT sharing the news just yet, until we confirmed heartbeats, in two weeks. However, in the very beginning, we had already decide to share our entire IVF journey -good and/or bad, no matter what happened along the way.  So, we are sticking with our decision.  Dr. A said if we shared too early, there's still a chance we could go from two babies down to just one and that we wouldn't want to have to explain what happened, to everyone we had already shared the news with.  But we don't have a problem sharing anything.  This journey is incredibly unique -with a lot of amazing moments.  This is one of them! If anything changes in the next two weeks, we will still be so thankful that we were able to experience seeing two beautiful little lives forming today. Every single moment is a memory along the way -why keep it to ourselves?!  Right now, we have two little lives growing, and right now, we are incredibly grateful and excited! We are takin this one step at a time... Enjoying every moment and remembering that each day is a gift from God.


Sharing the news with KJ:
Remember how I mentioned, a few posts back, that KJ didn't want to know if we were pregnant until after the first sonogram?  Well, we've been doing our best to keep the pregnancy hush-hush around KJ.  We have been anxiously waiting for our first sonogram, praying we'd see little bitty ones growing, so we could finally share the news with KJ.

We finally made it!

We rushed to Babies R Us, hoping to find a "big sister" card or frame. (Yes, we should have already had something, but I just wasn't ready to buy anything like that until I knew for sure there was something really growing in there -lol.). We didn't find anything. We rushed to HEB.  We had to "rush" because we were planning on dropping by to surprise my parents at their house, before Chris had to head back to work.  Chris ran in and was able to find a card.

When we got to my parents' house, we gave KJ her card.  We asked her to read it out loud...
She read the card and quickly responded with "You're pregnant?!" and then we hugged for a really long time, and I cried and cried.  It was an amazing moment.

For the rest of the day, she would be totally fine and okay and then, out of nowhere, she would squeal again, saying "I can't believe I'm going to be a big sister!" or "I can't believe that you're actually pregnant!" —and she kept her card close by and would look at it often.  :)


I finally don't have to be hush hush, in my own home, about this exciting part of our lives —but it takes some getting used to.  I've been quiet for three weeks so it actually still feels like I'm not supposed to be saying anything out loud.  haha  I will admit, things FINALLY feel real now... I'm actually pregnant... this is real!

Eeeeeeeeeeeeehee hee!!!  Praise God!  Thank you Jesus!
:)

November 5, 2012

IVF #1, Day 38: "5 weeks 5 days" of pregnancy

We are only three days away from our first pregnancy ultrasound!

I keep saying "pregnancy ultrasound" because I have had so many "non-pregnancy" related ultrasounds —so I just want to be very clear about it.  hee hee ;)

Last night, we were looking online at some really cute "Big Sister", "I'm going to be a big sister", and "Only Child —Expires [due date]" shirts.  We had planned on buying one and gifting it to KJ this Friday, as long as the ultrasound showed happy results.  We looked on Etsy and found some great ones . . . I got all emotional! lol.  I just couldn't help it!  The thought of KJ opening up an unexpected present and then seeing, and reading, one of those shirts was too much for my emotions.  However, after realizing that, first, we don't know for sure if we are correct on the estimated due date of July, and, second, what if we jump too soon and then get stuck with a shirt that says "July 2013" —and not get the news we are praying for on Friday...?  I know that I am "supposed" to be thinking positive, but I am also trying to stay very realistic.  I don't want to get my hopes and excitement up too high only to then have to gather emotions and deal with the complete opposite.  I'd rather just wait before getting 100% excited and ready to celebrate.  You know?

So, we decided on another great "suprise" gift for KJ, after we see what the ultrasound shows.


Lately, my emotions have been everywhere!  I don't like not feeling in control of my emotions.  I'll feel real sad, depressed, frustrated, irritated, anxious, etc., for no specific reason.  Now, when I feel full of joy and happiness, I know there's a very specific reason ;).  I have been doing my best to keep my emotions calm and comfortable to be around (lol).  I'm not too sure how well I'm doing...

Other Symptoms/Changes:
  • Nausea still just comes and goes —mostly right after I eat.  
  • (embarrassing symptoms: gas... too much! lol and I'm no longer "regular" and I don't like it!)  
  • I no longer fit into my undies comfortably —along with my clothes :(  but I'm too hesitant to wear maternity clothes right now.  I'd feel so silly.  (I've gone up about 2-3 sizes, all in about two weeks! :(  I don't think it's OHSS because I don't fit any of the symptoms, but the extreme bloating is ridiculous!)  But I'm sure I look pretty goofy trying to stretch my clothes out the way I have been.  haha So... I prefer to just hide out at home, inside.  *hm, maybe that has a lot to do with my low moods?! lol.  I'm just now piecing this together.*  
  • Endo pain creeps in throughout the day and night if I put too much pressure on my belly (bending, laying, sitting, stretching out too much, etc).  
  • Most confusing changes right now is a perfect tie between my taste being way "off", things just don't taste the same right now (jalapenos, my favorite did NOT taste right yesterday and even smelled like lettuce instead of spicy! lol.  Menudo used to be something I really enjoyed and now I can't stand it! :(  Oh, and I really don't like peanut butter right now —which is just NOT normal for me... I used to love peanut butter.  How sad.), and being sleepy all day but not being able to fall asleep at night... I just don't understand these changes.
Oh, and I just ordered a refill on my progesterone in oil, syringes, and needles, which will arrive tomorrow!  It feels awesome, and is such a blessing, to be refilling the progesterone because we are pregnant —not because we are prepping for a frozen embryo transfer (FET), which was our "Plan B" if the first IVF cycle wasn't successful.  Thank you Lord for every single day of this blessing!!


Chris and I have really come even closer together.  I really didn't think that was even possible right now.  We've been in such a great place in our marriage —I had no idea it could just keep getting better and better.  Praise God!!  **But we definitely aren't perfect.  Since my moods are everywhere, there have definitely been some moments of frustration, or losing our "cool", over silly things.  But the fact that things get resolved very quickly and we still feel all giddy and in love —that's the GREATness I'm thankful for.  Sorry if it's too corny . . .wait, nope, I'm not really sorry.  I LOVE being corny and in love with my husband!! :)


We are currently taking a poll on our Life Happens facebook page, asking what you think we will see on our first ultrasound, this Friday, November 9th: One baby?  Twins?  Triplets? or even More?  (wow)  Remember, it's all in fun; so stop by and place your vote!


November 1, 2012

IVF #1, Days 32-34: bloated like a blimp!

Day 32, 10/30:
I went in for my second Beta.  It didn't double but the nurse said that it is rising wonderfully.  :)


Took two 1 1/2 hr naps, trying to make it through the day.  I don't remember being so exhausted when I was pregnant with KJ.  (I'm thinking it may have a lot more to do with the daily Progesterone in oil injections.  I read a lot about "fatigue".)


Day 33, 10/31
Happy Halloween!  We were a nice concoction of fun.  hee hee!

Psy (Gangnam Style), a scarecrow, Cleopatra, a bumble bee, and a hotdog! :)

I also made my first "pregnancy" purchase, a "Beband" (to wear over my jeans, since I can't button them up anymore).  I like to think of it as "IVF bloating purchase" because the bloating has only gotten worse over the last week (my belly button is actually almost flush with my skin, because of the amount of bloating I'm dealing with!).  :(  I don't fit into my regular pants anymore.  Even the ones I bought a few weeks ago, to help ease my bloating discomfort!  I just look fat right now and all I'm reading about IVF bloating is that it doesn't really start to go down until about the time you actually start to show your baby bump... so, I'll look fat for a while and then just fatter.  LOL!  Trust me, I'm not complaining —just preparing myself for what I'll see when I look in the mirror over the next months.

Once my belly firms up a bit I'm sure it will ease my frustrations.  I just want to "feel" pregnant, instead of super bloated.  I look forward to that change!


Day 34, 11/1:
I'm so happy it's November!  October feels like it was all about IVF and this month, I look forward to everything pregnancy! :D  It's like a whole new chapter!!! (finally.  Praise God!)

I have to order more needles, syringes, and progesterone in oil.  That definitely feels like progress.  :)  It's much, much, better than having to re-order IVF meds (which I had been preparing myself for —just in case.).

I also have to figure out how to get out of this exhaustion funk.  All I want to do is sleep and lay down.  I have so much cleaning to do and no energy or motivation to do any of it.  My hubby works all day and I would love for him to be able to come home to a nice clean house... but lately, he's been coming home to one chore being partially done and finding me in bed.  I feel so bad.  :(

We are only eight days away from our first "pregnancy ultrasound".  It just seems so strange —the idea that there should be a baby (or two) in my uterus, this time around.  I can't even count the number of times I have had an ultrasound, due to endo, pcos, or IVF, over the last four and a half years, and seen an empty uterus.  I really have forgotten what it will be like to see life in there!!  We are SO extremely excited, and thankful to God, every single day!! :D

Last night, as we were getting ready for bed, I told Chris, "Hey hun!"
"What?"
"We're pregnant!"
In a very monotone voice, he responded with a very short, "yup."

lol.  He says he is past the point of not believing it anymore.  I guess I'm the only one still in the "I can't believe it" stage.  Oh well... maybe I'll believe it more once I see what's going on in there, next Friday.  :)

October 29, 2012

IVF #1, Days 29-31: Recap

Since we received the wonderful news, not much has changed.  I still feel like I'm talking crazy, saying, "I'm pregnant".  I don't "feel" pregnant.  I mean, yes, my body feels different, sore boobs and sore and tender lower abdomen (endo is way more sensitive right now, with every movement), I'm extremely exhausted all day every day, and some nausea and nasty indigestion has definitely kicked in.  Oh, and I'm struggling to fit into my pants because I'm soooo bloated! ...but it's not to an extreme where I feel it's not my norm (from IVF meds or endo).

I want to be super duper excited, but I'm still just a tad hesitant because it's all so surreal.  I wonder when and if it will ever feel real.

I will go in for my second Beta test tomorrow.  I'm praying that the numbers are doubling as they should.  If I get great news again tomorrow, then maybe I'll feel a little more like it's real?

KJ, still doesn't know because she made it very clear that she does not want to know until there is an ultrasound to confirm that everything is going well.  It's been really tough not saying anything in front of her.  We've been very careful about not letting her overhear our excitement or conversations.  I can't wait until we know our first ultrasound date so that I will at least know when we might be able to share the news with KJ.

Symptoms:
  • complete scatterbrained and forgetful
  • exhausted/sleepy/tired
  • bloated
  • indigestion and nausea
  • super emotional
  • hot flashes —right after my nightly progesterone in oil injection
  • very sensitive lower abdomen (I assume it's due to endo, because of the pain)


Here are some other things that have gone on:

10:27:
When we got "the phone call", we were at La Cantera.  We had just left Build-A-Bear and we were buying a soft pretzel, talking about the two for one special they had going on.  I heard the phone ring and saw the caller ID . . . my heart started racing.

The nurse told me that my numbers looked "Fantastic", beta was 500, and that everything looked great with my progesterone level.  Then she said, "So, I want to say, congratulations!  You are pregnant."  I immediately said, "oh yay!! Praise God!! Thank you so much!!"

As soon as I hung up, I jumped up and down a few times, while gripping Chris's jacket, beginning to cry, and said "Hun!!!... She said everything looks fantastic.  My Beta is 500!!  Hun, it's real!!  We're pregnant!!"  (of course I said this quietly, but with a ton of joy and excitement.  I needed to make sure KJ would not hear.  She was off to the side, playing with some of her new stuffed pups —she was lost in her world of imagination).  Chris was so happy he stopped what he was doing, ordering or paying for his pretzel, and hugged squeezed me.  It was a great moment.

Jokingly, he said "I just found out my wife's pregnant!", to no one in particular.  He didn't care who was around...  Yes, we got some strange looks from the lady that handed us our pretzel and drink, but we didn't care.  We were so giggly and excited as we walked back to the car.

Then we were off to Austin, for my nephew's first birthday celebration!
road trip to Austin

I knew I wanted to tell my mom and sis in person.  So, I waited until the party was over and everyone was gone (or at least at their car).  I shared the news with my mom and sis and it was perfect!  We all cried and hugged and it's that special moment you always think about.  :)
*If I would have waited one more minute, before telling them, Chris would have exploded from holding it in from 11am until around 4:30pm or so.  Lol  He was being so silly (we were joking that he was just like the "surprise lady" from SNL!! LOL




10/28:
As soon as I woke up, thanks to a picture on facebook, of sausage for breakfast, I was immediately wanting to eat bbq sausage links and egg.  Here's the really crazy part... I don't really like sausage.  I'll eat it when it's covered in mustard, wrapped in bread or a tortilla.  But Sunday morning, I really, really, wanted some blackened bbq sausage with a side of scrambled eggs.

Chris stopped at HEB, on his way home from another errand, and he bought some sausage links.  I cooked them exactly how I wanted and I enjoyed my plate of sausage links and eggs.  I didn't want anything on the sausage, not even mustard.  It was just perfect!  —and then the nausea kicked in...

In the evening I was forced to go to Fiesta Texas (lol).  I say forced only because we had to go get our passes done so that we wouldn't miss out on the free upgrade/perks, that ended on Sunday.  So, KJ and met Chris out there.  (he had already been out there with a friend).

I was nauseous the entire time I was there.  I couldn't ride a single ride with my KJ :(.  It was so frustrating.  The only thing I could tolerate was sipping on my ice cold water.  Oh, and everywhere we walked, there was a strong smell of people, turkey legs, roasted corn, popcorn, hamburgers, pretzels, etc... and did I mention people!! Ugh!  It did not help!

Visiting Fiesta Texas for the last night of Fright Fest

Once we all got home, and I got my nightly injection, Chris went back out with his friend to a haunted house.  KJ went to bed and my bff came to visit!  :)  It was so nice to have some girl-time in a quiet house.  She gave me such a sweet and thoughtful gift:
"morning sickness relief kit"
Includes: Ginger chews, Peppermint oil, and Sea-Bands.  :)


10/28:  Info I was reading in one of the [many] books my sis lent me.  Our embryo(s) will be 22 days this friday, 11/2!!  The early stages of life are truly amazing!

October 27, 2012

IVF #1, Day 29: Beta

Today has been a very long day (Spent the day in Austin for my nephew's first bday!)... So, I'm getting straight to the point today.

Here's the update:

October 24, 2012

IVF #1, Day 25 & 26: We're pretty convinced...for now.

Yesterday and today, our minds accepted the fact that we are "currently" pregnant —according to our hpts!!

It still feels like crazy talk if I just flat out say "I'm pregnant".  I've been dreaming about these days.  The days when I take an hpt, see the two beautiful pink lines, and run out to Chris, crying and saying, "WE'RE PREGNANT!!!".  However, that's not how it's gone down.

Chris says that it's "no surprise" because we transferred two embryos into my uterus.  I, too, agree that it's not really a "surprise" —but I still really think it feels so unreal... like a really long, very realistic, dream.

Yes, we still know it's super early, and that things can change from one day to the next, but for now... we are pregnant and as happy as can be! :)

Saturday, we will go for my blood work and get our results later in the day.  I'm praying that our blood results match with our hpt results.

**side note:  yesterday, we asked KJ when she would want to know "the news", if we ended up pregnant.  I asked her "would you want to know right away or would you want to wait until it's a bit more certain, like with a first sonogram or something?" (because we have talked with her about "pregnancy loss".  She understands what it all means, but we understand that she is still just a child, and a loss of that type would be tremendously hard for her.)  Surprisingly, she said that she would rather find out once it's more certain, with a first sonogram.  I told her what a mature decision that is.  (I was really surprised.  With as much as she talks about it, just about everyday, I really thought she was going to say she wanted to know asap.).  It's going to be very difficult for me to NOT spill the beans too soon!!!  lol

How I've been feeling:
  • Not too much of a headache today —just off and on for a little while.
  • Super sleepy.  I just want to stay in bed all day (but I can't.)
  • Still super thirsty, all day long.
  • More endo pains and pull-like feelings in my lower abdomen.  (I expected to feel something but I'm kind of annoyed with the endo pains right now.)
  • Crazy sweaty-hot flashes
  • irratable
I am still on nightly 'progesterone in oil' injections.  I did have to switch back to my right side last night.  My left side is a wimp and just can't handle the pain as well as my right side.  Although, tonight it REALLY hurt again.  :(  Maybe my butt muscles have just had enough!?  A one and a half inch needle piercing through the butt muscle, every single night, is pretty annoying at this point —but we will continue for as long as we need.  Anything to help the baby(ies) make it further and further!!

I still can't believe that the possibility of a little life (or two), growing inside of me, is real... like actually happening, right now... It's not just a dream anymore.  I'm so very very thankful to God.  Every single moment that we can continue this journey is a true miracle and blessing!!!

Here are our current hpt results:

October 22, 2012

IVF #1, Day 24: Well, well, well....what do you know?!

Tonight's line was.... DARKER!!!  :D

True excitement came out tonight.  I feel more confident that we are going to get the results we want.  We still know, because it's so early, that things can always change.  But tonight, we allowed ourselves to be giddy and excited.

Chris still didn't share any words or expressions of excitement.  How I knew he really was excited was when he immediately wanted to take a picture of yesterday's and today's tests, to show the progress between the two.  I told him I knew he was secretly excited and then I saw that little side-smirk he gives when he is trying to hide something... hee hee!!!

We are just super anxious to hear "official" results from our doctor, this Saturday.  Then I might feel comfortable saying the phrase, "I'm pregnant".  Right now, it still just feels so unreal.  All I can really say, comfortably, is "the test is positive" and "it's getting darker; that's great news!". 

Tonight was our 11th, consecutive, butt injection of progesterone in oil.  :(  (my left side really can't handle the pain the way the right side did.  I just might need to go back to the right side again.)

Today's symptoms:
major migraine all day long :(
severe thirst (no matter the constant water intake)
tight pulling on my ovaries (endo pain)
exhaustion (even though I really did nothing)

Oh, and last night, I actually didn't have any dreams, that I remember.  I tossed and turned all night long and got up three times to tinkle.

Counting down the days... super excited for Saturday's Beta test!

October 21, 2012

IVF #1, Day 23: Too early to test?

Yes, that's all I've been thinking of today... crazy?  Normal?  Should I?  Could I possibly wait another five days?!

So, I did a LOT of "googling".  I searched for "how early can I test of 5 day transfer?", "5dp5dt", "how long before hcg trigger is out of system"... and several other different ways to word it.  Everything I read, stated that the trigger shot (which has hcg) should clear out around 10 days after the shot.  Today, is 12 days past having the shot.  I also read about several (many) positive pregnancy tests at 5 days past 5 day transfer (5dp5dt).  That's where we are today, 5dp5dt.

After Chris got home, from buying me some crunchy Taco Bell tacos (which I threw away, and called to complain about, because they tasted fishy!!  UCK!!!) and some glazed HEB donuts, I've been really craving both for a about a week now, I asked him what he thought about testing tonight.  A week ago, he said he did not want us to test early.  Tonight, he said "Test if you want!".

We went upstairs, together, to test...

I was SO nervous!!  I was already choked up with emotion.  I dipped the stick and set it down.  I stared at it and within less than a minute this is what I saw...

Two beautiful pink lines!! (Our first "BFP", big fat positve").  We are just praying it lasts...


I started crying and shaking immediately.  I really expected it to be negative because it's so early.  I am also still a bit concerned that it is only positive because of my hcg trigger shot.  Even though it should be out of my system, can you blame me for still having my doubts —even though it's obviously right there in front of me?!  (oh, and Chris's reaction, when I asked him how he felt about it, as I was trying to gather all my thoughts and calm myself down, "Well, it's no surprise!" —lol, typical guy reaction to first IVF cycle??)

I plan on testing again tomorrow, hoping to see a darker line!! :D  (and again around Wednesday —because I now only have one test left and I need to order more!)

So, "Yay, praise God!!", for now . . . I'm really hoping and praying this lasts!!! :D

(we weren't sure about posting this info so soon —because of the possibility of it not lasting...  But since this is part of our, very real, IVF journey, no matter what the outcome is, I felt it was really important to document it...I know I'm not the only "IVFer" who just can't wait to test and is anxious to know if the early positive is "real"... )

I'm thankful to God for tonight's positive (because I really never ever thought I'd get a chance to see two beautiful pink lines —a second time ... even if they don't last) but I also do understand that this is His plan and we don't know the final outcome...  *so I'm super shocked and excited —but I'm trying to stay calm until it's "officially" confirmed (so don't get too excited just yet ;) hee hee).

October 20, 2012

IVF #1, Day 19-22: The waiting game continues...

Tears, tears, and more tears...

I thought I would be emotional from the menopur, follistim, ganirelix, etc; instead, I'm emotional while on progesterone.  Is that normal?  I'm flustered often and feel "blue" most days.  So many thoughts run through my head and I work at staying occupied, to avoid more emotions and thoughts.

We are currently down to one car (and it's the one that is in worse condition) —Bummer!  Also, we are looking to re-home our adorable German Shepherd puppy, that we got for KJ.  —I feel so very sorry for KJ.  It's not her fault, nor the puppy's, that my health and capabilities are not where they need to be in order to raise a puppy, her size (approximately 35-40lbs, maybe more?).  I can't risk throwing my back out again.  I can't risk being layed out from severe endo flare-ups.  And most importantly, I can't risk, messing up this round of IVF over a pup —no matter how adorable and fun she can be...  The fact of the matter is that she is more than what I can do right now and I don't know what kind of limitations my future may hold.

On top of all the other stuff, I have not been working, so things are getting tighter and tighter right now.  I have to say, thankfully, we are in a very good place in our relationship, because last year, all these things, piled on top of one another, we would have been at each others throats, with intense silent treatments, daily —probably.  So, praise God for growth and unconditional love! 

We got through the first part of "the wait".  Now, we just have to make it 'til Saturday...  I really think this week will be tougher than the last.

I haven't been sleeping well at all —tossing and turning all night long, with sweaty-hot and shivering-cold flashes.  Also, I've been having very intense, uncomfortable, dreams (where I or my family are in danger).

Today is day 22.  We are still on 1cc of progesterone, nightly.  Tonight was the first night I needed to switch to my left butt cheek.  Tonight's injection was our 11th progesterone injection (10 were all on my right side, all bunched up in about the size of a quarter).  Last night, I think Chris passed through a blood vessel or something, because it's super duper sore AND has a puffy green bump (reminds me of when I used to pop blood vessels, on my wrist(s), when I used to play volleyball —but on my butt. lol)  It HURTS!!! :(

side effects that I've notice:
super sleepy (like needing several hours of a nap during the day to make it through 'til bedtime)
I get crazy "munchies"
Super thristy
sore "boobos"
very irritable
more random endo episodes
...so basically, it's like a very long stretch of PMS  (poor Chris and KJ!)

Sorry I haven't been blogging everyday, these past few days.  It just feels a little depressing that my only updates, really, are "very emotional again today"... lol  I hope it ends soon.


October 18, 2012

IVF #1, Day 20: Oh what a morning!

What a day it's been already!

Horrible endo pain woke me up at 5:32am.  I had been rolling around, in bed, trying to let it pass, hoping to just stay asleep.  But this was the kind of endo pain that makes you wonder if your ovary is about to explode!

The only way I can explain the pain, for those who don't know what endo pain is like, is... Imagine your ovaries are balloons.  Normally, you aren't even aware of where they are because you don't feel them in any way.  However, these "balloons" feel as though they are just tiny water balloons that someone is over-filling.  They keep stretching and expanding, fitting more and more water.  They felt as if they are to the point where they are riiiiight about to explode.

If you can imagine that kind of burning, stabbing, pulling, twisting, tearing, -like excruciating pain —that's the kind of pain that woke me up at 5:32am. And I'll tell you what caused it.  It might be TMI for some of you... (but if you've been reading my blog long enough, you'll know that my version of "TMI" might be some what different than 'the average bear's'.)  When my intestines fill up, as in, I have to "go potty", it causes endo pain.  When my bladder fills up, it causes pain.  When I empty my bladder, everything re-shifts and causes another episode of pain (most times).  When I "go potty", my intestines are now empty and re-shift and always causes another episode of pain.  Sometimes the 'before' pain is so much worse than the 'after' pain.  Sometimes the 'after' pain is so much worse than the 'before' pain.  And then sometimes they are both just as paralyzing.

I've been regretting not getting another surgery before IVF only because it won't "just go away" —unless someone lasers it out.  So, if I end up pregnant, which is exactly what we are praying for, I will have to fight these pains every.single.day. of my pregnancy, and for a while afterwards.  If we don't end up pregnant from this round of IVF, I feel very strongly that I will opt for a surgery first, to get rid of as much endo and lesions as possible, before starting a "FET", frozen embryo transfer (since we had one embryo survive long enough to be frozen!).

*endo pain and full episodes can also occur, for me, if I go from a sitting position to a standing position too fast (get up too fast), switch laying positions too fast, lean too far forward while in a sitting position (polishing toenails, picking something up from the floor, lean forward to tie my shoes wrong, do a full-body stretch (laying or standing —arms over head while both legs are straight.  Also, too much walking, standing, or movement (sweeping, yard work, vacuuming, mopping, or even recreational, etc.).  Sneezing causes pain, if I don't crouch down or curl up somehow, before, to brace for the forceful explosion, along with coughing, gagging (I do unfortunately have a very sensitive gag reflex and gag every single time I brush my teeth. lol).  And here's the real personal one... I'll share it only because I really try to spread awareness of how extreme endometriosis/"endo pain" changes a person's life.  After every single orgasm, I suffer with 20-45 mins of a painful endo episode (typical endo "episode": entire body tense from excruciating pain, have to focus on breathing to help keep nausea away.  When any extreme episode finally passes, I am EXHAUSTED, no matter how energetic I felt prior to the episode, and my whole body tingles from finally relaxing and getting good blood flow.)  Now, that really puts a damper on things, if you can imagine!  It's one thing to mess with my personal daily life, but it's really upsetting when it messes with my relationship! 

If you, or someone you know, experience anything similar to what I just described.  Please do NOT brush it off as "menstrual cramps" (because, yes, it does flare up even worse around 'that time of the month'); make an appointment with a doctor and tell them exactly what you experience and that you are concerned you might have "endometriosis".  And here's another important part to this:  if they don't do anything about it (look into it further) keep going to new doctor until you find one that will listen and take you seriously!!

I was 12 years old when I had my first signs of this horrible disease.  We thought it was just horrible menstruation — little did we, my mom, sis, and myself, know that "horrible" menstruation is the first sign to something being "wrong".  (I didn't get [correctly] diagnosed until I was 26!)  It's not normal. (now back to my blog... lol.  I just absolutely felt the need to share from my experiences and perspective.)


I got up to "go potty" and, a whole 28 mins later, the pain started to calm down.  I crawled back into bed, knowing that Chris's alarm would be waking him up in 30 mins and my alarm would go off in an hour and a half.  It took me an entire hour to fall back to sleep.  Thirty minutes later, my alarm went off.

KJ was the worse grump, when I went in to wake her up!  Cranky, yelling, complaining, whining, crying —very extreme this morning.  I did my best to help her be positive, but it didn't seem to do any good.  (I did my best to keep my blood pressure down and avoid "stress", as instructed after the transfer.)

We managed to leave on time and it was perfect —no traffic!  I had to be at RMA, Medical Ctr., by 9am, to get my progesterone level checked.  Everything was going so well... until my car started acting up.  I had already driven for 15 minutes; I only had another 10 minutes to drive, but I knew I wouldn't make it safely.  (my car refused to accelerate into fourth gear.  The engine just revs instead of jumping into fourth gear.  Then, at times, it would'n't even accelerate past first gear!)
   
"Don't stress...don't stress..."

There I was, 10 minutes away from my destination, parked in an unfamiliar neighborhood, crying.  I called and had to have my appointment moved to tomorrow.  I prayed and got back on the road, heading home, driving mostly in "2", second. —not "D"... that scared me too because I was afraid I was messing up my car even more, but that was the only way my car would accelerate enough to keep momentum.)

I reminded myself that there must be a reason for this —because on the way home, my car worked just fine, going into all the needed gears, most of the way.  If only I could have kept driving to my appointment!  It did, eventually, start acting up again when I was just minutes from my house, but still on the highway!

I made it home safely, by 9:17am, put some eggs in a pot to boil, and I'm now trying to "relax".  Car trouble is never a way to "relax" though. lol   

Today is "2dp5dt" (two days past 5 day transfer).  I have 9 more days before we test for pregnancy!


'To a better day!