Sunday, January 5, 2014

Holy Balls - Or Not.....

Holy balls that it's been more than a month since I posted! I would use the holidays as a defense, but let's be honest-I am just a crappy blogger. :(

That said, completely OPPOSITE of balls - turns out my baby is a girl! WAHOO!

We would have been thrilled either way, but just knowing is amazing. I can now refer to my baby as "she"or "her" instead of "it." I never ever thought that I would be a person who would find out the sex - I ALWAYS wanted to be Team Green, but now that I know, I don't regret it for a second.  As someone who still struggles on the regular with "infertility brain," I feel like for me, this has helped me bond with my baby.

Bonding aside though, this still doesn't feel real. I'm almost 19 weeks pregnant, which means I'm almost halfway to the finish line, but I don't feel even remotely prepared. Sometimes I think my kid will be sleeping in a dresser drawer with paper towels taped around her butt unless I start getting my OWN butt in gear! It's all so overwhelming, I am just not even sure where to start. Between figuring out childcare, insurance, maternity leave benefits, moving into a new apartment, keeping up with Dr. appointments, and getting all of the practical necessities in place (like a crib), I feel like I can barely keep my head above water!

In addition to that, I need to share some cold, hard truths about pregnancy. Let my preface this by saying that I have had a REALLY easy pregnancy. Not even one upchucking incident, generally feeling pretty good, no complications, and an overall healthy baby. This is NOT a series of complaints - just a series, of "huh, so that's what happens?"commentary.

1) My boobs have stretch marks. Pinkish, angry looking stretch marks. Yay! My boobs are bigger! Boo! They look like they went through a blender.
2) I constantly look like I am nipping out. Despite wearing multiple layers of fabric over the girls, for some reason my nipples always seem to be popping out to say hello.
3) Farts happen. There's no real way to handle that one gracefully.
4) Everything is dry. Yep. EVERYTHING. I have been moisturizing parts that I don't even want to admit to moisturizing.
5) Walking up stairs feels almost equivalent to running a half marathon.(Not that I have actually run a half marathon. But in my mind's eye, it's the same thing.)
6) Sleep, while sporadic and unreliable, requires no less than 6 pillows shoved in various angles under and around almost every limb and body part.
7) Nesting is a real thing and it will make you crazy.

I've learned SO much in the last 18-ish weeks and I still feel like the learning curve is steep. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

We've Got a Live One!!

So it seems that I'm keeping up with my terrible "once-every-two-and-a-half-week" posting average. Yay me! I wish my life were interesting enough to post more regularly, but if I posted daily you'd be hearing tales of what I ate for breakfast and the kind of socks I wore. And let's be one wants that.

Since I last posted, a few things have happened. Most excitingly, I had my NT Scan this week! Last time I saw my baby, it looked like an upside down melted gummy bear. Cute, nonetheless, but essentially looked more like a Rorschach test than an actual human being. This time, the minute the screen lit up, I saw my baby's profile and little legs kicking away! It was absolutely unreal. Check out that cute little nose and those lips! I am so in love!

While the baby is growing, my gut is definitely growing too. I can still fit into some of my jeans, but why bother when maternity pants have the stretchy waistband that doesn't show the muffin top?  My face was a wreck in this photo, so instead, I give you this.....13 weeks on the dot!

By some stroke of luck, my OB does an initial anatomy scan at 16 weeks in addition to the complete anatomy scan at 21 weeks, thus, in about 3 weeks I may know whether this little nugget is a boy or a girl! We did not tell our families if/when we are finding out the sex, so my hope is that I can surprise them at Christmas with a wrapped/framed ultrasound photo with either a blue bow tie on the neck for a boy, or a pink bow on the head for a girl. I always, always said I wanted to wait to find out the sex at birth, but now that I'm here, I just don't think I have the patience to wait. 

Speaking of Christmas.....I know it's not even Thanksgiving yet, but I can't.freaking.wait for Christmas! J and I haven't put up a tree or decorated in 2 years.  Between traveling home for Christmas and not being able to celebrate here, we just haven't put the effort in, but this year, we are starting new Christmas traditions as a family. Saturday, we are going to pick up a REAL Christmas tree and today, I started decorating. I made a wreath, and also hung our stockings. Here they are: 

The wreath was made with thick cable yarn, silver glitter pine cones, silver bells, and a wooden letter with silver glitter. For the stockings, I picked up some twine wrapped initials for each of us, and since we don't have a chimney to hang them from with care, they are hung from wall sconces. Improvise, I say!  I am so excited to decorate everything else! We are going to go with deep cranberry red, silver, glitter, and pine. I think it will be beautiful!

Finally, because this post was generally serious and we all know that's not totally my style, I'll leave you with my tragic moment for the day; I nearly shit my pants while sitting in stop and go traffic on the way home from the store. If it wasn't for a lot of ass-cheek clenching, I would have had a disaster on my hands. Things are going south. I'm skeered. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Filling in a Shit Sandwich

That's what the last few weeks have felt like. How's THAT for descriptive??

I've been insanely busy with work for the last few weeks, counting down to our biggest event of the year. I have hated nearly every moment of the preparation, especially while riding a near constant wave of nausea, but hallelujah! The event is over! And for the most part, so is my morning sickness! Woohoo! I feel like I should knock on would and avoid jinxing myself, but the last few days have been substantially better, which has me hoping that things are on the upswing and maybe I'll even start to get some energy back soon. I'm still tired most of the time, but I'll chalk that up to the work craziness, and hope that goes away with the conclusion of the event as well.

So while I can safely say that life should calm down a bit going forward, I couldn't be happier that I am a few short minutes away from this day being OVER! I put in a 16 hour day yesterday, a 12 hour day today, spent the evening cleaning up vomit (not my own), and returned home to find I had locked myself out of my apartment......and my husband is out of town for work. Yeehaw! I lost a credit card in the process of trying to break in, and pissed of my Super by waking him up, but I am in. In my pajamas. And planning a well-timed half day tomorrow. AND I just ate Aunt Jemima blueberry waffles. So there's that.

In terms of pregnancy updates - I'm trucking along at almost 11 weeks, which is kind of mind blowing.

I found an OB and have my first appointment as a "normal" pregnant woman this week. I am hoping that I'll get to see the baby again, but don't really know what to expect. IF brain still gets the best of me sometimes, and I feel like I need the ultrasounds to rely on in order to believe that everything is ok, but I know that after hearing the heartbeat 3 times that the odds of anything going wrong are very small. 

I'm also getting "thick." That's just a word I use to make me feel better about the fact that I am so bloated on top of having been 20 pounds over my "happy weight" before I even got pregnant. Grrr! Thick is probably not the right word though. I look like I have a toddler's pool floatie around my waist. 
If all goes well at my appointment, I'm planning on telling my boss next Monday, and making it Facebook official on Wednesday at 12 weeks. The whole thing is kind of scary, because that makes it real, but it will also be kind of nice to stop hiding it. 

Randomly, my sister heard a fun fact on the radio, that when people announce they are pregnant, a ridiculously high percentage of people immediately think of the pregnant person having sex with their partner. First of all, I refuse to believe this, because I have never done that.  Secondly, we DIDN'T have sex to get pregnant, so haha, weirdos! You're barking up the wrong tree! Surprise! Imagine a petri dish, and you're right on target. :)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Oh Hai - Remember Me?

Yeah, I suck at life.

The last several weeks have been........interesting? Enlightening? I'm not really sure. But essentially, I have been ridiculously busy and finally decided, enough is enough....I NEED to update my blog or people are going to start judging me for being a terrible blogger. Oh.....wait.......

Anyways, here's what's new in my world:

1) We got to see/hear our baby for the last 3 weeks! I have no idea what I am seeing when I am looking at the ultrasound, but there is a blob there, and it has a heartbeat, so I'm pretty confident that little chicken nugget looking thing is my kid! It's probably one of the most amazing things ever. I have pretty much counted days between ultrasounds, just to hear that little thump, thump again and know that at least for now, everything is ok.

2) I have felt like poop. Literally. I am bloated, farty, nauseous most of the time, have heartburn, am exhausted, and generally feel like a lesser version of myself. My pants don't fit, my boobs feel like bowling balls, and I am breaking out. I am not going to lie and say that I love every minute. No matter how much I hoped and prayed and waited for this baby, being up all night essentially dutch-ovening yourself while you cling to the stack of saltines by your bed and pray you don't vomit on your sheets, is less than fun. That said, the time is really flying by, and even more than wishing first tri away because of the aforementioned fun stuff, I really am wishing for a little bit greater feeling of being "out of the woods" so to speak. I have no reason to think that things won't be completely ok, but getting past that 12 week mark just symbolically means something.

3) I graduated from my RE today! That in itself was a big step, and really pretty bittersweet. I didn't know what to do with myself. Kind of like this scene on Talladega Nights:

I mean.....what do you do to say thank you to someone that gave you a miracle?  It didn't feel right to say "thanks" and then leave. It also didn't feel right to cry while clinging to my RE for dear life, which is what I kind of felt like doing.  I decided that I will send a thank you card and a box of cupcakes, and follow that up with a baby picture come June.

4)Work, Work, Work. Oy vey. I have been working overtime, evenings, weekends, and even in my sleep, it seems. This is perhaps the busiest time of year for us, and I have to keep up. The last month has been intense, and it will be 2 more weeks of racing towards the finish line before things let up. Oh, and one more thing - I'm trying to interview for another job in there too. So that keeps life interesting!

Overall, I am hanging in there, and clearly setting the bar high in terms of expectations for this blog.  I hope that at some point, I can gussy it up a bit, pull my head out of my ass, and start contributing more.  In the mean time, adjust your expectations accordingly. :)

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Day 6...

Six days ago, I heard the most amazing words since my husband said "I do." I got the phone call that said, "Congratulations, you're pregnant." I am still in a state of disbelief. I want to preface this post by saying that if you are hoping that this is a bouncing off the walls post - this won't be it. I'll explain....

When I went in on Monday for my blood draw, I was feeling optimistic because of the positive tests, but I was still cautious because I didn't know if the hcG trigger was causing the lines. Since IF trains you to become used to disappointment, I'm of the mindset of preparing for the worst. My first beta came back at 75. While it was a good first beta, I couldn't really allow myself to feel much of anything until I went back to see if it doubled. On Wednesday, the number came back at 180, and my estrogen and progesterone levels were good. so it started to feel slightly more real.  My family knew that we were going through IVF, so they had been waiting to hear the results. Needless to say, they are thrilled for us.

And here I am, wanting so bad to be excited. Trying so hard to believe that this is real. But stupid infertility brain is doing everything it can to protect me from disappointment. To make me assume the worst so that when what I have always expected is the inevitable happens, I won't be completely crushed. It's a horrible feeling to have. On top of it is the guilt that I am not bouncing off the walls. How can I NOT be thrilled when the thing that I have been wanting and praying for for nearly 3 years has finally happened. I know that this isn't right - I know that I need to adjust my thinking. I just feel so conflicted. I want to enjoy every last minute that I am pregnant, no matter how long it lasts.  I need to have faith that this is our take home baby.

For now, I am pregnant.  I have been pregnant for 6 days. And I love our baby.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

My Last 10 Days in Pictures

So, a week and a half ago, I went to the RE for a checkup, and they were all like "Drop your pants and spread 'em!" And I was like:

BUT, as usual, I obliged. They took a look at the real estate and told me that everything looked awesome and I should come in on Saturday to double check things, but to plan for the embryo transfer on Monday!  So I was like.....
But inside, I was like:

So, I semi-patiently waited till Saturday, and then until Monday. My transfer was supposed to be at 12:30, but at 2pm, I was STILL waiting. 

Finally, they brought me back for the procedure. Before the transfer they showed me a picture of the embryo they were transferring.

How cool is that??! That's MY baby! Ok, really, it's my ball of cells, but it's the closest to a baby I've ever come. As I was spread-eagle on the table with my legs in stirrups, the embryologist showed me the embryo on the screen. It was actually hatching! I could see the bubble on the side showing where it was breaking out and getting ready to implant. Perhaps the coolest thing ever.  After the transfer was done, I laid around for about 30 minutes, and then got an ass-shot of hcg and was sent on my way, with a picture of what was referred to as my "excellent quality" blastocyst and instructions for the next week. Which essentially consisted of returning to my normal activities, sans caffeine and alcohol.  Although I've done a whole lot of this as well:

My betas are tomorrow. TOMORROW. That means tomorrow I will know whether this worked. Whether, for the first time ever, I can say "I'm pregnant." I've NEVER been able to say that before. Ever.  And as much as I hope and pray for a positive result, then a whole new set of worries set in. Namely that I have a successful pregnancy. And then that the baby is healthy. And from there the list goes on. I had told myself that I was NOT going to test before my betas, because I didn't know how long the hcg would remain in my system, and I didn't want to worry about a false positive. BUT thanks to a lot of peer pressure, I caved. I tested yesterday and this morning. And the good news is that it wasn't negative. SO, all this means is that it's not a DEFINITE no.  Now I wait for betas, and wait to know if this is real.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

I Hate Grocery Shopping

I would rather clean the bathroom than go grocery shopping.  Especially in the vast metropolis in which I live. Going grocery shopping now involves far too much strategy as compared to what it did in my previous suburban habitat.

First - the grocery store here runs out of carts.  Running out of carts means one thing - there are hundreds of individuals perusing the grocery aisles, either completely unaware of their surroundings so as to cause traffic jams, or moving at an aggressive pace that often results in cart-on-cart collisions or injuries to the achilles tendon.

A trip to the grocery store requires an assessment of other external factors so as to achieve optimal timing. 1) Is the football game still on?  2) What is the weather like? 3) Is it a traditional meal time? 4) Is it a holiday weekend?  Adding to the frustration is that often, the most optimal timing for a grocery excursion is around 7-8pm. However, this is also the time frame in which most people are parking their cars in the limited number of street parking spaces available within the neighborhood, so vacating a space to get to the grocery store may result in a substantially longer trek with weighty food stuffs upon return to said neighborhood.

In my fridge, there is currently a carton of milk, string cheese, and a bag of grapes that are too old to be eaten.  Yet here I sit, paralyzed by the dread the comes prior to any necessitated grocery store excursion. Wish me luck, friends. I've gotta take one for the team......