Saturday, April 14, 2012

Ripping off another bandaid...

So I promised myself (and some friends...thanks for the push!) that I would eventually rip off another bandaid and start officially blogging about this baby. After a great anatomy scan this week, I feel like I need to put on my big girl panties and do it.
Before I go forward talking about how thrilled we are (and believe me, I don't think it is possible to be loved more than baby E already is!) I have a
lot to catch up on. Not only the past24 weeks, but before. I've blogged for awhile on a private blog. I'm not ready to share that one, as it was the place I emotionally unloaded and to be honest, I'm not the most proud of how those emotions came out at times. I used it to vent, and I'm not ready to make that public.
In a nutshell, though, I will say that this process was a painful lesson that sometimes things aren't as easy as they seem. Add this to the fact that I am high anxiety anyways and it is a bit easier to understand why the joy seems tempered at times.
Now, the back story on Baby E: Even though I have been too nervous to officially blog online, I've blogged on my phone. So the following is the synopsis
of the last couple months.

December 30th: Here we go again.
I got a positive test this morning. Barely. You know, because I am testing obsessively even though my beta isn't until Tuesday. I know, it is early. I am trying not to get my hopes up too high this time. I am resisting the urge to run out and get a beta draw today. I figure, I am doing everything possible to give this little bean the best possible chance to stick around. So I will hold tight, pray a LOT and try to stay as calm as possible (yeah, right!)

January 3rd: First Beta
Oh. My. Goodness. I got my first beta draw back today. 261. And progesterone was 46. Both are WAY higher than I have ever had before. I've never even had a first beta in the triple digits. This makes me even MORE nervous for the next draw. I seriously feel like my heart is going to pop out of my chest.

January 5th: Second Beta
Yup, I cried on the phone with the nurse today, after I made her repeat the number three times. 623. What??? More than doubled. I am relieved and terrified all at the same time. We scheduled that my ultrasound for the 16th. Ugh. A week and a half??? Really? Still feeling really crampy. I'm sure the car ride to TN will not be too fun tomorrow!

January 14th: Ugh...spotting
Perfect timing. Away for the weekend at competition and I wake up spotting. The good news is that it was very, very little. I'm trying to take it very easy, disappear into the back and put my feet up and drink lots of water. Monday seems forever away. Praying my little bean holds on.

January 16th: "That's not your heartbeat"
So, we had our ultrasound today. I was so terrified. The drive to Indy was the longest ever. And of course, once we got there, the doctor was running like a half hour late. I was so convinced that we were going to get bad news.
We went into the u/s room and the doctor came in. Man, do I just adore him. He asked how I was and I told him I was terrified. So no more small talk, and he got right to it. I couldn't even look at the screen. Or at Ryan. I just stared at the ceiling and prayed. Then I heard a heartbeat, but I knew that my heart was racing and that it was probably just mine.
"That's not your heartbeat." Tears. Everywhere! Yes, we have a nice strong heartbeat, where it is SUPPOSED to be this time. Meet Baby Mason:

Please stick around little one. We love you so much already.
Now, the bad news: I have a cyst. 8cm. I have to be very careful it doesn't rupture. No lifting. Pelvic rest. Take it easy as much as possible. I don't think that will be too difficult, though, as I feel like I could sleep for days!

February 3rd: We graduated!
Well we graduated from our RE today! I'm so excited to be this far along, but also so sad, because I just adore him.
We had our second ultrasound. The bean is measuring perfectly, with a heartbeat of 179! Here s/he is:

However, as a "graduation" present, I ordered a doppler. I promise I will NOT freak out if I can't find the heartbeat this early. Bwhahahaha...yeah right.

February 8th:
The doppler came today. I already have a love/hate relationship with it. I *think* Ryan found the heartbeat. But at 9 weeks, 2 days, I know it is still early.

February 21st: 
I ended up going to the doctor today. I was having lunch at Panera between teaching labs. And I got these horrible shooting pans in my belly button. I still found the heartbeat on the doppler which is conforting, so I think it was a gastrointestinal issue, but better safe than sorry. I officially like this office way more now that I am pregnant. I promise not to go around firing doctors right and left like I did before. They got me in (with my Dr even!) the same afternoon. And so I got another sneak peek at Baby Mason. Squee! I hate that Ryan missed it. S/he was moving all around and looks SO much more like a baby. Oh, and they officially changed my due date to Sept. 6th. Which puts me at 11 weeks, 5 days! SOOOO close to being out of the first trimester! Anyways, the baby looked great, heartbeat of 162, and apparently my stomach just was upset. 

Oh, and the dr gave me the "ger excited, relax and enjoy this" talk. I looked him square in the eye and told him he was on something. 

February 23rd:
I spent years wanting to know why we were going through the struggles we did getting pregnant. I think I might have picked up on one reason. I'm a WAY better pregnant lady now. I think I would have been horrible had this happened for us years ago. Now...I could honestly spend from now until September continuously puking and I'd be be happy as long as the bean was okay. I've been very lucky in the morning sickness department though. Some sickness, more nausea, but really nothing too bad. The exhaustion though...whoa! Did not expect that AT ALL!

February 27th:
I had by first OB appointment today. Well, kinda. It was with a nurse, and they just asked a ton about family history and such. Oh, and went over dos/don'ts. I'm sure it is helpful for people who do not compulsively read the literature. But when I had to tell the nurse what the medications on my list did, I start to worry. I definitely chuckled at having to take a urine test to "confirm pregnancy." Yup, pretty sure the ultrasound you guys did in this office less than a week ago probably confirmed it better than a pee strip would, but whatever. I'm officially 12 weeks 4 days. And the nurse freaked out about not having an appointment until this point (they usually do these appts at 8 weeks). She freaked out even more when I told her I'm not on prenatal vitamins, at the advice of my RE. Bwhahaha. Either way, my first real, normal people ob appointment is tomorrow.

February 28th:
I knew it was going to be a good appointment when Laurie got me out of the waiting room instead of one of the regular nurses. Laurie is the u/s tech. Dare I hold my breath for u/s number 4? YUP! Yay! I had my dr again and he wanted to not freak me out by trying to find the heartbeat on the doppler (so glad our little talk last week got through to him apparently).The pic from this one is definitely not as clear, but the bean was wiggling away with a great heartbeat of 161.

The rest of the appointment also went great. No issues whatsoever. Although I am really nervous, as I'll be stopping my progesterone at the end of the week. I *know* I don't need it anymore, but I am so nervous about stopping!

March 4th: ER
Well, I ended up in the ER today. After ripping off the bandaid and starting to tell some people since I was officially in the second trimester, I went to the bathroom and was greeted with...spotting. Cue absolute emotional freakout. The only thing that kept me even remotely together was the fact that I could find the heartbeat on the doppler immediately. But off the the ER I went.

The physical exam looked great. The doctor saw some spotting, but it had tapered WAY off my now. I got another peek at the bean too! Awesome pics this time, the tech was so great! Which, honestly, was a complete surprise, because when we were in that same ER a year ago the tech wouldn't even turn the screen to us because of "protocol". This time, we watched the bean dance away, being totally uncooperative with the measurements we were trying to get! S/he had us all laughing (through the scared tears of course). No reason was ever found for the spotting, and the bean was measuring 3 days ahead with a heartbeat of 166. So I'm just sticking with taking it easy and drinking lots of water, along with continuing to pray for the best.

And if we're counting? Yes, this is ultrasound number 5. This little one hikes having his/her picture taken.

March 5th: And more spotting
Really? I cancelled my afternoon class. Me and the couch are going to be BFFs. I thought the second trimester was supposed to be easier?

March 6th: And more spotting
More spotting. More cancelled classes. Another dr appointment. Another u/s. Everything still looks perfect. Heartbeat of 167. No way to identify why exactly I am spotting. Grrrr...

One good thing, though, I LOVE the nurse from today's appointment. And the doctor was good too. But the nurse, wow. She and Ryan were talking while I was in the bathroom about how it must be hard for me to hold it together with what we've been through. A compassionate nurse at the office? I'm so impressed.

March 19th: Little one is....difficult
So we had an elective u/s today at one of those boutique u/s places in Chicago. It was my birthday present. Yes, I am too impatient to wait 3 weeks until my anatomy scan. It was supposed to be a 15 minute ordeal to determine gender. The set up was awesome, big screen TV instead of trying to look at a little screen, etc. I was SOOOO excited to find out if we had a boy or a girl in there. Even though I was sure it was a boy.

This is so my kid. 45 minutes later s/he had flipped and flopped and wiggled all over, but kept his/her knees tucked to the chest and ankles crossed. We tried EVERYTHING! Arg.

We did get s 3D pic of him/her. I can't decide if I'm totally creeped out by these or not, but here is is.

March 20th: "Out" at work
So I "came out" to work today. I told my department chair first. To which he asked "is this a good thing?" I guess my enthusiasm is lacking. Trying to explain that we are very excited, and yet pretty darn nervous too is  interesting, especially without getting too personal.

Telling the rest of the department was easier. They broke out in cheers and were all super excited. I need those around me to start getting excited, it makes me transition from fear to excitement a little more each time.

I also had an ob appointment today. They used the doppler for the first time to listen to the heartbeat. I would totally be lying when I said I was a little sad that I didn't get an u/s. Yes, I know that 15 weeks 5 days and already having 6 u/s I should feel very lucky. I told Ryan I wanted a home ultrasound machine. I even googled them. He was not amused by me AT ALL.

March 21st: Movement
I felt the baby move today for the first time! I was in the car driving up to Western, when it felt like a fish was swimming around in my pelvic area. I love this feeling!

March 24th:
Told Black today. I was a nervous wreck. Saying those words is still just crazy difficult. Of course everyone is excited, but the more "out" we get, the more neurotic I feel.

March 27th:
I have the best husband ever. We went to Chicago, again, to get another u/s ( was FREE!!!!). And 15 years (almost to the hour) of when we started dating WAY back in High School, we were shocked to find out that we are having a little...GIRL! Tears. Everywhere. We are so in love with her already we can barely stand it.

April 2nd:
Okay, another doctor appointment. Not like I can go from scheduled appt to scheduled appt without a freak out one in the middle. I'll save you many of the details, but over the weekend, I freaked out, thinking that I was leaking amniotic fluid. I was just convinced that was the case. So I went to the doctor. Turns out, it is just an infection. Easily treatable. But of course I had to google it, and one of the things that came up is that it increases the frequency of second trimester miscarriages. Cue freakout...again. Good news, I'm on antibiotics now, and baby is doing great. But man, the worry is just constant.

April 11th: Anatomy Scan.
So, anatomy scan day. I'm terrified. Shocking, right? I just want so badly for this little one to be okay. Laurie came out and got me, and we started right away. The good news is that everything looked absolutely perfect. The bad news is that we're seriously spoiled. The pics and the view just was nothing like the ER u/s or the elective ones we got. So it was still awesome, but not quite the "experience" many people talk about.

Oh, and the little one is still a girl. We didn't tell them we knew already, so I think that Laurie was a little disappointed that there wasn't a bigger reaction. We'd just used up our crying hugging overly emotional spree earlier.

Like I said, the pics weren't great, but we did get a really awesome one of her hand.

We then went to Babies R Us to start our registery. We pretty much registered for everything pink that we could possibly find. We also quickly realized that we are baby morons. Seriously. I don't get baby gear. So basically, we made a first pass, got really overwhelmed, and then went to Olive Garden (since that is SO my new obsession!). I definitely need to pick some brains to get this straightened out. I have no idea what we need.

May 1st:
It is a big day. First of all, this morning, Ryan felt the baby kick for the first time! I'm so excited that he finally got to feel her!

AND I had an ob appt today. Everything looks great. I'm measuring on track. Heartbeat sounds great. blood pressure was a little high. Cue freak out and frantic googling about pre-eclapsia. I know, if the doctor isn't worried, I shouldn't be either. But I am. So bye bye salt. No more. Drats. I was doing so well.

May 4th:
Had another meltdown about my blood pressure. I ordered a cuff off amazon so that I could monitor at home and was getting CRAZY readings (like 220/150...I would be DEAD!). Turns out it was because I used rechargable batteries. Once I got the correct ones, I was down to 132/80 and kept dropping from there. Arg. Just wish I could honestly relax for once.

Okay I am now up to date and promise to post more regularly!

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