Friday, July 31, 2009

Growwwwwwwwwwwwwly

The weirdest thing happened last night. My stomach actually growled so loudly that it woke me up from a deep sleep. At 3:00 am.

Is that not one of the silliest things you've ever heard of? It's almost as bad as tooting so loud in your sleep that you wake yourself up.


Image source.


I have noticed that lately I've been more hungry than I was earlier in this pregnancy.

However, the nausea and food aversions are still present, so this makes things tricksy. If I do not have a "second dinner" before I go to sleep, I will wake up at night very hungry and nauseated. I may even puke (yes, I did that on Monday night from this very thing!).

So, I'm thinking I'm just going to have to embrace my inner Hobbit and start forcing myself to have second dinner in addition to my second breakfast.


Image source.


Anyone want to help with forklifting me to the hospital at the end of this pregnancy? Because that's where it's headed, people!

Things I've learned...

I was sitting here today, thinking about some of the things I've learned since I started TTCing. Honestly, I was pretty naive when we first decided to have baby (you have sex, you make a baby, right?), so the list is pretty long! I've narrowed it down to just a few that are about my personal experience so far:

Charting doesn't make me stressed. A couple of cycles ago, I was super stressed - I had a few people tell me it was probably due to charting, so I stopped temping, thinking that not worrying about my temperature every morning would help. And it didn't change a thing.

Ironically, I think it probably made me more stressed. I'm hypereducated - I like having as much information as I can. Charting gives that to me. This is why I tend to get an annoyed twitch when people tell me to "relax, stop charting, don't worry!" I'm a nerd - I do things like this for fun. That said, I don't regret not charting that 2WW - if nothing else, it clarified for me that it's not the charting that's causing me stress - it's the uncertainty, and there's no way I can escape that! This doesn't mean that charting is for everyone, but it's right for me.


People need to shhhhhhh. Why is it that everyone who knows you are TTCing thinks they know the best way to get pregnant? (No, I'm not talking about the awesome readers we have for this blog, because I value your opinions - I mean the real life busybodies.)

Have lots of sex - every day! No, have sex every other day! Put your feet up! Don't put your feet up! Stop stressing and relax! (Side note: is there a single phrase in the English language that can automatically make you more stressed than that one?) Do it under a full moon! Get drunk! Don't drink! Spread mayonnaise on your stomach and whistle I've Been Working on the Railroad backward while wearing tap shoes! OK...not really on that last one. But you get my point. Everyone has an opinion, and everyone thinks they're right. Depressingly, this will only get worse when we actually have a baby. Not that that's going to stop us from trying, haha!


Symptoms don't mean much. Honestly, unless you're vomiting your head off every day, it's really, really hard to tell if you're knocked up just by your 2WW symptoms (not that that keeps us from obsessing!).

Example: these are the symptoms I had when I got my BFP. Since then, I've had cycles where I had cramps and didn't have them, had gas and didn't have gas, felt fatigued and didn't feel fatigued, had heartburn, had tender boobs, was bloated, etc, etc. Hell, I even get creamy yellow CM every single cycle (yes, every one), and that's supposed to practically be a sure sign. But so far, nothing but BFNs after my miscarriage...so at this point, the only symptom I'm going to be believing in is two fat pink lines on a pregnancy test!


Time doesn't heal all wounds. I still think about my miscarriage every single day. I think about what I would have looked like by now, how much my baby would have developed, whether it would have been a boy or a girl.

I miss my baby every day. Some days are easier than others (like when I'm feeling hopeful during the 2WW) and others are devastatingly difficult (like when Aunt Flo shows up and I have to face yet another failed cycle and yet another physical reminder of my miscarriage). It does get easier with time, but I will never forget that first little one - not for as long as I live.


I wouldn't stop trying again for anything in the world. Unless we get to the point where we've been trying for years and discover that we have insurmountable fertility problems, we're going to keep trying. BFN cycles suck, but Mr Bibliosaur and I both want a baby enough that we're not going to let that get us down.

One of the sucky things about TTCing is the disappointment that happens when Aunt Flo shows up...but one of the awesome things is the rush of hope you feel the rest of the time. Hey, you never know - this could be the cycle!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Thirteen Weeks


Well, technically I am 13 w2d...almost officially to the second tri! I got back from our work seminar in Detroit on Sunday evening and was so exhausted I slept 12 hours! I took Monday off and headed back into the office on Tuesday morning. All was well until the afternoon when I started to see spots while working on my computer. I blinked my eyes, added contact lens rewetting solution, closed the blinds and even turned off my overhead lights. No help! Then I got worried. My coworker stopped by and asked why I was in the dark and I told her what I was experiencing. She asked if I had a headache and mentioned that it could be high blood pressure causing my visual issues.

I called the advice nurse at my doctor's office and she said I should go home and take my blood pressure and call her back. I called my house and my mom answered (she lives with us) and told her I was seeing spots. She said, "You're spotting?!" and called out for my husband. With both of them on the line I explained, no not spotting, but spots in front of my eyes. They drove out to my office, my husband picked me up and drove me home in his car and my mom drove mine home. Once home, I took by blood pressure (my mom has a digital, at-home cuff) and it was quite low. My husband called the advice nurse and she said that I should lay down and rest and then retake my blood pressure again a bit later. I slept for four hours! Upon waking, we took my BP again and it was perfect. WHEW! What a relief. I have no idea why it was low or why I was seeing spots. The advise nurse said it could have been low from working too hard at the conference and the spots could have been caused by eye strain. So now, I am wearing my glasses at work, rather than my contact lenses and all is well. As for working too hard, yeah...16 hour days on your feet are tough whether you're pregnant or not! Thankfully, all is well and as of tomorrow, I am officially in the second tri!

According to BabyCenter:
Fingerprints have formed on your baby's tiny fingertips, her veins and organs are clearly visible through her still-thin skin, and her body is starting to catch up with her head — which makes up just a third of her body size now. If you're having a girl, she now has more than 2 million eggs in her ovaries. Your baby is almost 3 inches long (the size of a medium shrimp) and weighs nearly an ounce.
And from The Bump:
Baby's now the size of a peach!Your fetus is forming teeth and vocal cords...savor this, their nonfunctional phase. Baby is approaching normal proportions, with his head now only one third the size of his body. And intestines are in the process of moving from the umbilical cord to baby's tummy -- much more convenient

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Playing the waiting game

Well, I've finally found a few minutes to sit in front of the computer and write about my first prenatal appointment on Monday.

It was largely uneventful. We went through my family history, Mr. Legalosaur's family history, and then an annual physical. Including the lovely internal exam and pap … that we all love to hate. I got a bunch of requisitions for all sorts of medical tests, including a full STD panel (oh joy!) and blood typing.

She didn't bring the Doppler into the office with her. I asked if we might try to find the baby's heartbeat, explaining that I knew the chances at this point in the game were only 50/50 of being successful, and promising that I wouldn't freak out if we couldn't find it. She agreed that we could give it a whirl, but with my retroverted uterus and the stage of gestation, she didn't hold out much hope.

Unfortunately, she was right and we were not able to find the heartbeat with the Doppler. My uterus is still snug within the pelvic cavity and she thinks the baby was just hiding. She did tell me my placenta sounded very healthy, and that the size of my uterus for 11 weeks is excellent. Since there's no ultrasound machine in that office, that was that.

Despite her encouraging words, I still feel like I'm hanging in limbo, or my own special form of purgatory. She told me last time, with my miscarriage, just a day before we found out our babe died three weeks earlier, that everything looked good and felt absolutely normal. This just proves to me how little we humans really know about pregnancy and gestation, despite thinking that we're all that and a bag of chips. (And I really do trust my doctor, she's a good physician, so I'm not convinced that it was human error last time.)

So now what? What else...? I wait. Wait until I go back on Tuesday to try again. At least she's letting me come in weekly to see if we can catch the heartbeat. I know some doctors send you away for a good 4 weeks before seeing you again. I couldn't deal with that.

Being that I've waited so long to tell my parents and my sister about this pregnancy, I've decided to just wait until we can find the heartbeart before sharing the news. I still don't feel like telling them, especially dealing with my mother asking me if I'm eating properly and telling me what to do. And with no ultrasound on the horizon except for the one I have scheduled at 19 weeks, the heartbeat is all I can rely on until then…

It's going to be a loooooooong next 6 days…

"Are you Ovulating or Something?"

This is what Mr. Bakersaur asked me yesterday. Since I don't chart or temp, I have to guess and my best guess would be this week or next week. So that is 2 weeks of FWP!! As a result of me now jumping on Mr. Bakersaur every chance I get, he finally asked... "Are you ovulating or something?" I couldn't help but laugh!
He decided a long time ago that he wanted absolutely no knowledge of how that whole process worked. Since then, he's gotten a general idea, but he mostly just doesn't want to know when I'm ovulating. He doesn't want to feel pressured :-) He usually stays pretty clueless...but this month he seemed to catch on pretty fast so I had to confess.

I don't mind him not wanting to know. Actually it makes it easier for me too because it takes a lot of the pressure off of me too. We both want this baby so bad. And after the miscarriage, we only want it more. We both tend to a lot of pressure on ourselves and I know it's not helping anything so we've made it our mission this week to quit stressing about it and just let it happen.

I have Blogger issues.

I can't post comments. I haven't been able to for several weeks and I can't quite figure out what the problem is. I tried just posting with my name and that worked a couple times but now it's not working either. So I just wanted to say welcome to the new Pregosaurs and congrats on all the BFPs! Just don't want you to think I'm not trying to be supportive. I read everything and I'm thinking of you all!

And tons and tons of baby dust to Bibliosaur for cycle #5!

Sweet relief

Since I got my BFP, I've been cautious and wouldn't allow myself to get to excited or plan for the baby because I was so afraid something would go wrong. Even though everything looked fine on my six week ultrasound and we saw the heart flickering, I wouldn't let myself get too excited. It's weird to think that there's really a baby growing inside you when you can't see, hear or feel any of it. I have had very mild symptoms - just slight nausea, food aversions & cravings, and tender nipples. They're mild enough that if I didn't know I was pregnant, I probably wouldn't really notice them.

As you can imagine, the countdown to my NT scan was agonizing because I'm super impatient, and because I was so anxious and excited to see our baby looking like an actual baby, rather than a little blob. I was literally counting down the days and they could not have gone by fast enough. Finally, yesterday was the day. And it was fabulous. I teared up when I saw our baby for the first time. It was so surreal. And it was the greatest feeling to find out that so far, everything looks great! Baby is measuring another 2 days ahead (12w instead of 11w5d), but it won't change my due date. We got 6 photos printed and a DVD of the whole scan. =D

Here's baby, waving at the camera (you can see 3 fingers above the nose):


We definitely want to find out the gender because we're totally planners and we want to be able to decorate appropriately. There's a theory about the "angle of the dangle" where you can determine the baby's sex at about 12 weeks. In females, the nub points down at less than 30° relative the the spine. In males, the angle is greater than 30°. Here's our first look:


The arrow points to the nub, which clearly looks girly. It looks just like the girl photo from the website I linked to above. This image was taken by the tech. After she did the whole scan, the doctor came in and asked if we wanted to know the sex. We said we thought we knew so he took a live look and snapped this image:

Doh! Now baby is looking like a boy! He looked again and baby moved and then looked girly again. Plus, the doctor said that the heart rate (which was 165bpm) made him think it was a girl because he said girls tend to have higher heart rates. So now we just don't know. We'll find out in another 4 weeks for sure when we have a 3D ultrasound. Yet another thing for me to countdown to!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I'm going to stop worrying

I have come to realize that almost every newly pregnant woman can relate to the picture above.

I've always had a habit of overeducating myself. Wanting to know all the information, from every angle. Of course pregnancy is no different.

Today I am 5 weeks and 6 days pregnant. I have known about this pregnancy for over two weeks now. And I still have not let myself truly feel joyful about it - because I am too busy worrying that something bad is going to happen.

I believe that the internet is equal parts blessing and curse. It can be extremely reassuring to have a group of people out there experiencing whatever you're going through. It's great to be able to google a symptom and find out within moments that it's perfectly normal and that 1,878 women who are also pregnant had that very symptom just yesterday.

But there is another side to this information overload. That is the side that feeds the worries, even when there's seemingly nothing to worry about.

These are the stories of heartbreak...of problem pregnancies...of miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies and so much more.

Don't get me wrong - I think these stories deserve and need to be out there. For people who have experienced them, writing and sharing their experiences can be extremely cathartic. And for people who are going through them, having someone to learn from, to grieve with, or simply to get support from, is solid gold.

But for someone who is newly pregnant with her first child, these stories can be nothing short of sheer terror. They cause undo worry and suspicion and, in my case, keep you from truly enjoying this great gift and joyous time in life.

I find that I am measuring this pregnancy in time between now and my next appointment (August 18), when I can gain some much-needed reassurance that everything is A-OK. Mr. Citysaur is frustrated with me because I can't just sit back and relax and enjoy the fact that we're having a baby! I know this feeling never truly leaves, I just hope it will subside in the coming weeks when I get that reassurance.

In the mean time, I have sworn off any site that might add to my worries, and I am focusing on the positive - the fact that right now, today, I feel exhausted, my boobs are sore and enlarging, and I can't sleep at night. These are all signs that something is growing inside me, and in about 8 months, we're going to have a baby!

Well, I got my answer

The spotting I posted about last time is Aunt Flo on her way.

I've been spotting off and on for the last four days, and PMS aside, this is making me pretty cranky - spotting two days before AF was bad enough, but now it's up to four days? Gimme a break! I also had a massive temp drop today, which means that Aunt Flo is right on schedule to show her face sometime tomorrow - all of which is making me one pretty sorry 'saur right now.


On the upside, this means that I was correct about my ovulation day, even if I did have to wrestle with Fertility Friend about it for a while. On the downside, it's means we're on to yet another TTC cycle.

Here's hoping #5 is our lucky number!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Early Pregnancy

I've been a really bad Pregosaur. I don't know why, but I keep saying that I'm going to come home from work and blog, but then somehow I always end up putting it off until "tomorrow." Then before I know it, weeks have passed and I still haven't blogged about anything. I promise to be a better Pregosaur from here on out...

It actually wasn't too long after I started blogging on Pregosaur that we found out that I was pregnant. In fact, it was just a few days after I published my first post on this blog that we confirmed it. You might be wondering why I didn't just come out and announce it immediately. I wanted to shout it from the roof tops, I really did. I chose not to, however, for two reasons.

The first reason was because things are so uncertain in the beginning. So many things can go wrong and the miscarriage rate, I was surprised to find out, is about 20-25% in young, healthy women. I wanted to make sure that everything was okay with the baby first before making the announcement. That said, if something had happened, I think I would have blogged about it as an outlet for my emotions. Thankfully, everything has been progressing really well so far.

The main reason I wanted to wait before announcing my pregnancy was because I wanted the opportunity to blog about my IF journey. No matter how long or short, it's not an easy path to take, and I wanted to share my experiences with others to help those who have found themselves on that path, and for those that are not - to help raise awareness about IF.

I was really surprised how quickly the pregnancy symptoms came upon me after I got my BFP. I was immediately making trips to the bathroom at night to pee, something I had never done before. I always thought that the increased urination doesn't occur until the end of pregnancy, when the baby is pushing on your bladder. Turns out that your increased blood volume, in addition to the increased blood flow to the uterus will cause increased urination early on in pregnancy as well.


The fatigue was also overwhelming. I'm usually a night owl, staying up until midnight or 1am every night, but as soon as I was pregnant I found that I was ready to go to bed between 8-9pm!!! This wasn't something that was intermittent, either. I was consistently feeling fatigued every night after I got home from work, regardless of what my work day had been like. I was really surprised that a little being consisting of just a few small cells could be taking such a toll on me!


My breasts also started to become tender almost immediately, and I could already tell that they were growing. I always thought that the majority of mammary development occurred in the third trimester, but apparently for many women, it starts early on.

Those were my main pregnancy symptoms early on. Luckily, I did not have any morning sickness during the first few weeks. I was thankful for this, but at times it was hard for me to really feel pregnant. I know that every pregnancy is different... some women never get morning sickness and some get morning sickness with one pregnancy but not the other. Some have mild nausea, and then others are vomiting multiple times a day, requiring medications.

Regardless of which symptoms I had or did not have, I was thrilled to finally be pregnant. This joy was slightly hampered by the ongoing worry that something would happen to my baby and I would have a miscarriage. I had no reason to believe that things were going awry - I had not had any spotting or cramping - just mild twinges as my uterus was growing. Yet it was still so hard to keep the worry from the forefront of my mind. The five week wait for my 9 week ultrasound was even harder than any other 2 week wait I had previously endured. I just had to constantly remind myself that we had waited so long to finally be here that I was going to do my best to enjoy this pregnancy...

Scary Day

My normal morning routine has changed since I’ve been pregnant. I used to be able to sleep all night without having to get up to go to the bathroom. Not anymore. I’m getting up at least once, usually twice, to go to the bathroom. Usually by 4:30 am I’ll roll over and stumble out of bed and into the bathroom, go pee and stumble back into bed. I’ve gotten pretty good at doing this in the dark. Yesterday morning, on my third trip to the bathroom, I decided to turn on the lights. Much to my horror, I saw that I was spotting. It wasn’t a lot and it was brown, old blood, but it was enough to scare me wide-awake. My Mayo Clinic book said that it was fairly normal to spot during the first trimester and that I should call my doctor if it lasts longer than a day. I still got on the computer and researched everything that I could about spotting. Of course that scared me even more. I decided to give the computer a break and try to stay positive. I kept checking through out the day and I had very minimal spotting and none so far today. My first appointment with my doctor is tomorrow afternoon. As long as it doesn’t start up again, I’ll let her know about it then. Hopefully I’ll get some reassurance that Baby Luckysaur is ok while I’m there. I know that mother's have an instinct to protect their children from harm. Until yesterday, I didn't know that it started this early in pregnancy. I'm ready to do whatever is necessary to make sure that our little lentil bean comes into this world healthy and happy.

Have any of you ever experienced spotting during your pregnancy?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

I've Been AWOL!

Sorry guys! Since this was an "out" month for me I didn't have much TTC-related things to post and then I went on a little "vacation" where I managed to go a whole week without interenet! But it was that vacation that brought me back for this post.

What I call a vacation was really a week spent volunteering at the summer camp I used to go to/work at many years ago. My first summer there was in 1992 (as a camper) and my last was in 2000 (as a counselor). So I've been away 9 years and with a baby planned for this next year I began to realize this may be my LAST year to go back. I was planning to work there but with my shoulder injury had to turn down the position I was offered, but they welcomed me, gimp arm and all, with open arms as a volunteer this past week.

I really miss summer camp. But more then I miss summer camp, I miss kids. I miss working with them, being around them, watching them learn and grow and experience new things... pretty much everything about kids I miss. What I love about camp, especially the camp I went to, is that it's a safe and very welcoming environment. It's a place where kids can just let go and have fun. And it's a place for me to see kids of all ages and how they are developing and maturing and what the age groups are like.


Photobucket
Me, on the right, during "Crazy Day" in 2000

And I have to say- I'm I've never really taken the time to think very far ahead. All of my energy has been focused on getting pregnant. I'll even admit I don't think too muh further then pregnancy. I definitely never thought about what life would be like having a toddler! So all week I was looking at the kids and picturing what life will be like with one of them. I spent most of the week working with the teenagers and realized that I want a teenager. I never thought I'd be looking forward to the teenage years, but even the more diffucult teens in my group were amazing, wonderful kids that I hope someday my own children grow up into. This realization makes this little game of TTC even more difficult. I want a baby right now. I want a that skinny, dirty little 8 year old right now. I want that moody, awkward little 12 year old right now. I want that head strong, confident 16 year old right now. I'm impatient beyond believe! I also feel way more prepared for parenthood then I have ever felt before. I think this past week has been a great thing for me. Yes, I was disappointed that it was an "out" month, and I'm still sad that next month is an "out" month. But after that, I feel like I can go forward without the hesitations and worries I had before this week.

And so now, I hop on a flight tomorrow, and I will give my husband a big hug and kiss and tell him that in two months we are going to FWP like never before! Because I want my 16 year old!!!!! :)

On to Cycle # 6 I go...

AF arrived this afternoon. I am not terribly upset, since I have been mentally preparing myself for BFN's every month, but still a little morose.


I am giving it one more month before DH gets his next SA. Until then, I plan to continue acucpuncture and wear a medal of Rita of Cascia, the patron saint of infertility. Hey, at this point, I don't see the harm.

An Introduction

Hi! My name is Bakersaur and I am so excited to be a part of Pregosaur!

Little bit about myself:

I've been married to Mr. Bakersaur for 2 years and we live in Arlington, Texas. We have a dog (pit/chihuahua mix) and 2 cats. We had been TTC for almost a year when we finally got a BFP in April. We were so unbelievably excited and were making lots of plans. Unfortunatley, on June 1, 2009 I had a miscarriage. I was almost 6 weeks along.

It is my goal to do this naturally, without temping, charting, etc. These will be my last options.

Mr. Bakersaur came from a large family (he's one of 9 siblings!) and I have 1 sister but we seem to have compromised on 2-3 children. Growing up I always said I would never have children. I was impatient and easily agitated. Since I've gotten married I seem to have mellowed out quite a bit. I now enjoy playing with kids and can't wait to have one of my own!

I call myself Bakersaur because for the last year I was working at a wedding cake bakery. Baking is my passion :-) Today, I run a very small cake business with my mom out of her house and I work at home doing data entry with my husband for his business.

I am pretty sure that this week will be my "O" week, so I will be a little busy this week ;-) My dr. confirmed that it would be okay for us to try again this cycle so that is exactly what we will be doing.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

A little pampering...

Today, I'm sitting on the couch with a laptop while I have a cleaning service scrubbing, dusting, vacuuming and steam cleaning my house. YAH BABY!



I actually feel pretty good today, so I'm a little guilty that I'm splurging to pay a cleaning service to give the house a good once over. But I figure I deserve it today. After all, today we're 11 weeks, little baby bean! I hope you're fist pumping and flipping about in my tummy enjoying our down-time.

Reaching the 11th week is both happy and terrifying for me.

I think I'll get into the terrifying bit first, and end on a happier note. This week is terrifying because in the 11th week with our last pregnancy, that's when I started spotting. And that's when we had an ultrasound that gave us the devastating news that our baby had stopped developing and had died. It was a really, really difficult week. Especially when we were so close to our first prenatal appointment, and we were so excited to share our news with everyone. The pain was crushing, although with time it feels more like a distant memory and something I can talk about without crying now.

I have had stabs of fear that this week a similar traumatic event will happen, even though there's really no reason for it. I just try to push these thoughts out of my mind. No point on dwelling on things that are beyond my control. After all, I still have fairly strong all-day-sickness and fatigue. However, things are changing these days which is a new development. Now I have times where I feel completely human again, like my "old self". And that's a little scary for me, because that's how I felt last time (although I never had awful morning sickness last time like I do this time).

However, this week is happy too. I'm super excited about my first prenatal appointment (two days!). I cannot wait to hear our baby's heartbeat on a doppler, it's an experience I've been waiting for. Waiting for a very long time, it feels like. And I'm excited to start showing, which I think it not too far away. I have a pretty swollen belly as it is (bloat!), but I don't think that I'm truly "showing" yet. It's more a factor of my inner organs getting smooshed up to accommodate my growing uterus. But I don't think my uterus has popped out of the pelvic cavity yet, at least I can't feel it. And I'm pretty stoked about feeling better again, being able to eat like a normal, healthy human being (yes, I still have wicked food aversions), and getting my energy back. At least until the third trimester.

Yes, there's a lot to look forward to. But there's still quite a bit that I need to get past first. I think I will start to stop worrying so much about the baby and his/her development once I'm past the 12th week, into the second trimester.

Maybe it's not such a bad thing to pamper myself a little bit, since I'm still not feeling 100% and I have a lot on my mind. In fact, I made a little promise with myself, if we can hear the baby's heartbeat on Monday. I will treat myself to a pedicure, FINALLY. I haven't gotten one yet this summer, and my feet are dying for it.



I'm not going to lie, though, part of me wants to continue the pampering today and just go get that pedicure NOW! (And no, my feet don't look that bad, PROMISE.) However, I'm a little superstitious and so I think I'll wait.

Not sure whether to celebrate or cry

Well I'm spotting a tiny bit tonight, so one of two things is happening:


#1:
Fertility Friend was right about my ovulation date, meaning that I'm actually 2 days further along in my cycle than I thought, making this is my usual 12dpo spotting leading up to Aunt Flo showing her very unwanted face on 14dpo; or



#2:
I was right about my ovulation date and this is potentially implantation spotting.

I know which one I'd like it to be, but tomorrow we shall see which one it actually is...

P.S. I just removed my O-date override on my Fertility Friend chart, and suddenly FF is agreeing that I probably did ovulate on CD13 (it wouldn't do this two days ago, so I'm not sure what's changed since then?). Ugh. I really have no idea what to think!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Happy Day

It's been a bit of a rough week. For starters, I've just been completely and totally exhausted - an exhaustion like I have never known before. I'm not sleeping well at night - tossing and turning, vivid dreams and nightmares, the whole lot. So I've felt behind on my sleep all week. Add to that the emotional fallout from last Sunday, which I blogged about in my last entry, and a husband who's been on my case to tell the whole world we're pregnant, and it's been a rather rough past few days.

Today, however, has been a fabulous day. I'm so happy my face hurts from smiling so much. Why am I so happy? It's an accumulation of good things that've been building up to the phone call I received from my father today. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start with Monday, and the beautiful flowers that were delivered to me at work from a good friend who knew I was upset. Funnily enough, she doesn't even know we're pregnant yet!

Tuesday, we got a card in the mail from my best friend, congratulating us on our pregnancy - with our first baby gift inside! She sent us a $25 gift card to Babies R Us, which we're already itching to spend.

Today was the cherry on top of my happiness sundae. It began with a team celebration at work, a Fun Day we have once a year to get the 14 of us out of the office to promote team bonding. This year, we went to a local dive bar for drinks and lots of fried foods and then across the street to another bar with a collection of vintage arcade games. Only one coworker knows so far, and I was rather proud of myself. When the waitress came to take our drink orders, I whispered to her to get me a vodka/cranberry without the liquor, and told her that my coworkers "didn't know I'm not drinking yet." That and a wink definitely conveyed my message, and it felt kinda cool being conspiratorial like that. So that was a nice feeling.

But the piece de resistance was the phone call I received from my father this evening, a few minutes after I got home from the bar. He's been keeping a journal to record his thoughts on his cancer journey, and he wanted to read us the entry from Sunday. It was the most beautiful and comforting thing I've ever heard.


He wrote about how his initial reaction was one of overwhelming sadness...finally feeling the world whizzing past him and seeing real evidence of what he'll be missing out on. But after he gathered his thoughts, he realized what a wonderful gift this new baby will be. He told me that seeing my mom bounce off the walls and buzz with excitement this week has been fabulous. She's already talking about needing another new sewing machine for all the embroidery she'll have to do for the baby (as if the two top-of-the-line machines she already has aren't enough!). My father said this was the best gift we could've possibly given her. He finally feels completely at peace knowing that she has something to look forward to, something to keep her from feeling lonely after he's gone. And he's so excited about experiencing the pregnancy with us.

What a wonderful, incredible feeling of happiness I have in my heart now. This baby, our baby, is already doing amazing things, and he or she is barely an embryo yet.
Edited to add: I just had to put a tag on about how wonderful Mr. Citysaur has been through all this. Yes, he's itching to tell the world we're pregnant, but only because he's So Incredibly Excited that we're expecting. Last night, I went out with a friend to see her husband in a musical...and Mr. Citysaur stayed home and cleaned the house, did the dishes, and did my laundry, among other things. He's just been amazing to me, and he's another very good reason why this week has made a turn for the better. I feel very blessed right now!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Twelve Weeks



Today makes twelve weeks...almost the end of the first trimester! I am in Detroit this week for business and hoping I can make it through these 16 hour days I have Thursday-Saturday. I am pretty sure I am not going to make it, considering I either have to nap for two hours in the afternoons to make it to 11 p.m. or senza nap I am hitting the hay at 9 p.m. OY!

At least now, everyone I work with and work for knows I am knocked-up, so I hoping they'll cut me a little slack here! Surely I can skip out on the evening activities after making my initial appearance?! Everyone will be drinking anyway, so I think that gives me a natural pass, no?

I am also waiting to see if I'll actually be able to get a NT Scan. Turns out the doctor my doctor was sending me to is on vacation for a few weeks. So they're checking with another doc. UGH! So frustrating, since my window is closing for that time frame they can do it in and get an good reading. I am beginning to wonder if I should press for the scan, since my doctor obviously didn't think I needed it in the first place. She usually does a Triple Screen between 16-18 weeks. And I have already had two ultrasounds, so perhaps she's got the bases covered? I dunno. I wish we had discussed it. I will be 35 two months before the baby is due, but apparently my doc isn't treating me as AMA. I don't really know what to do at this point and I am totally unsure if my insurance even covers the NT Scan. They're supposed to call me on my cell this week, so we shall see.

Other than that, that's pretty much all that's going on with me this week. Here's what's happening with the Little Being:


From BabyCenter:

The most dramatic development this week: reflexes. Your baby's fingers will soon begin to open and close, his toes will curl, his eye muscles will clench, and his mouth will make sucking movements. In fact, if you prod your abdomen, your baby will squirm in response, although you won't be able to feel it. His intestines, which have grown so fast that they protrude into the umbilical cord, will start to move into his abdominal cavity about now, and his kidneys will begin excreting urine into his bladder.

Meanwhile, nerve cells are multiplying rapidly, and in your baby's brain, synapses are forming furiously. His face looks unquestionably human: His eyes have moved from the sides to the front of his head, and his ears are right where they should be. From crown to rump, your baby-to-be is just over 2 inches long (about the size of a lime) and weighs half an ounce.

This one is for my ladies

I started to write a very different kind of post. I've had a bad day. No real reason. Just bad.

Sometimes it’s hard to write about miscarriage. A lot of people seem to feel that after a certain point, you should just get over it, especially since other people’s misfortune is only interesting for so long – after a while, it just becomes annoying. No one wants to be the Debbie Downer who constantly whines about how hard life is and how low they’re feeling; heaven knows I don’t want to be that person, and sometimes I worry that (for this blog at least), I am.

On the other hand, I feel like it’s important to be honest and open, that it does a disservice to the emotional devastation you feel after a miscarriage to always pretend like everything is OK – it diminishes the importance of what happened, and I don't want to pretend like it didn't affect me or dismiss it like it didn’t matter. It’s been over four months since I miscarried, and I still think about it every day. Every single day.

So today, I sat down to write about that. But halfway through, I erased everything I'd written. Because today, I don't want to focus on the negative - I want to focus on something positive.

For me, one of the hardest parts of miscarrying was the sense of loneliness and isolation. I have never felt more alone in all my life. I didn't know anyone who I could talk to that had gone through the same thing. None of my friends had, to my knowledge. And as far as I know, I'm the only woman in my family for at least three generations who has miscarried. I was devastated and alone and felt like there was no one I could talk to who could really understand what I was - and still am - going through. Mr Bibliosaur was certainly there for me, but I needed someone else who had physically and emotionally experienced what I was dealing with.

And then I found someone. Lots of someones, actually. I started posting on an online forum for women who are trying to conceive again after a loss - and I cannot even begin to tell you how grateful I am for these ladies. They're strong and brave and supportive, and most importantly of all, they've been there - they understand.

These women have celebrated with me when I'm feeling joyous and optimistic, and commiserated with me when I'm feeling low. They have been my lifeline, and have held my hand through every part of this.

I can tell them everything I'm thinking and feeling, and I know it's safe and welcomed because many of them are often thinking and feeling the same things. I can vent and rage and encourage and celebrate. There's no judgment or sentiment that I'm being unreasonable or or a downer or should just get over it already, and I am deeply and eternally grateful to them for their support. I honestly don't know how I would do this without them.

So today, I'd just like to say: you ladies are awesome. Thank you.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Telling the parents...

If I have learned anything about my husband and myself in the week since we found out we were pregnant, it is that neither of us is very good at keeping secrets!

Realizing full well how early it is, Mr. Citysaur and I decided to go ahead and tell both sets of parents this weekend. Since his parents are five hours away, we had to do that reveal over the phone. It ended up being an elaborate set up that he cooked up with his sister and she carried out with the help of her three-year-old daughter. The two of them went over to my in-laws' house, and DH planned it out so that he called just after they showed up. After both parents were on the line, DH's sister gave her daughter the signal, and she told her grandparents "I'm gonna be a cousin!" My mother-in-law's first reaction was "What? You're going to do what with the carseat?" After saying it a second time, we got a "Congrats, guys!" from DH's dad, and a "Who's pregnant?" from DH's mom. THEN she caught on! To be fair, DH's brother-in-law has other siblings, so it could've been a cousin on her other side...and I just don't think she was expecting a pregnancy announcement from us just yet. So we definitely surprised them.

For my parents, since they're in town, we decided to do the big reveal in person. I browsed CafePress and ordered them each a button, which I then put inside a card for them.

The package from CafePress barely made it to me in time...in fact, it took our mailman an extra trip to the package center and a special delivery to me to get it in my hands in time. Two thumbs up to the USPS in this case!
So I had it all planned out. We arrived at their house super early to catch the first showing of Harry Potter with them. I wanted to wait until after, so we could have plenty of time to talk. After turned out to be almost 2 PM, once we were all finished with lunch at their house. The waiting was torture! I was nervous all morning, all during the movie, and even while eating lunch. Poor Mr. Citysaur didn't help either. My mom noticed a change in his behavior almost as soon as we got to their house, and even called him out on it on the way to the movie! We tried to play it off, but she never bought it, not really.
So I finally handed her the card, and her very first reaction was "I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT!" Then I got a huge hug and she said "My baby's having a baby!" She is thrilled for her first grandchild, and wanted to wear the button to work tomorrow! I asked her to hold off for a while, until we're ready to announce it to the world, and she reluctantly agreed.
Things were a little different with my father. I know in my heart of hearts that he is thrilled for us. But I think it was difficult for him to share in this happy announcement with us, not knowing whether he will actually get to meet our baby or not. After listening to us talk for a while, he went to his room and napped for a bit. Before we left, he made sure and told me that he's really, really happy for us, even if it didn't seem like it. I know he's telling the truth.
It is such a strange mix of emotions - the highest highs and the lowest lows. The joy of a new life mixed in with the last months of another. At times, I wonder what I've gotten myself into. I'm already seeing that I'm now not only going to lose my father soon, but I'm going to be doing it with the crazy hormones of a pregnant woman. I ended up leaving my parents' house in kind of a funk, and it's been a down day since then. I know that's just the life of someone affected by cancer...and the raging hormones certainly don't help.
The good news is that Mr. Citysaur has been absolutely beyond amazing through all of this. If I could've imagined exactly what I wanted in a husband/father of my children - even that wouldn't have come close to him. I know it sounds cheesy, but he has shown his true colors through all of this, and I know he will be my rock, no matter what happens. For now, I'm just going to try to revel in the still-new fact that we are PREGNANT! and not dwell too much on the other things.

When is enough enough?

I´ve been having lots of deep thoughts lately, but this weekend in particular. Yesterday I watched the latest episode of 16 and Pregant on MTV´s website. It´s the episode with Catelynn and Tyler who decide to give their daughter up for adoption. It made me cry. Not in a bad way, but in a good way. If you haven´t seen it, it´s actually a really good episode. For once I didn´t feel like screaming or shaking anyone. It struck a chord with me.

Adoption is something I´ve been thinking about off and on lately. My husband brought it up a few months ago when I was in dispair that it might never happen for us. I sort of blew him off but mentioned what he´d said, to my therapist. She actually told me she thought it could be something for me to hold onto kind of like a parachute for a fighter pilot. You hope you don´t have to use it, but it´s there for you if you need it. That´s not exactly how she put it, but that´s how I summarized it. As she said I´m not there yet, but maybe checking it out, researching it online might put me at ease. I ignored that suggestion, but kept thinking about it off and on again. It´s a thought that just wont go away.

I´ve been thinking a lot about when I´ll get to that point of having had "enough". When do you call it quits, and when has it been enough? Dr. Leslie Regan says in her book on miscarriage that you will know when you have had enough and are ready to quit. I haven´t had enough yet, but I´m almost there I think. I don´t know if this will be my last try, or if I would be willing to try just one more time. But I have reached that point where I know that I´ve almost had enough. I´m not quite ready to leave this game and I really hope that my next pregnancy works out, but if it doesn´t then I´m one step closer to reaching enough.

Yesterday evening Mr. Lillysaur and I went to the video store and I picked up "Then She Found Me" with Helen Hunt, Colin Firth, Bette Midler, and Matthew Broderick. I didn´t really read the synopsis on the jacket, just looked at the cover and said that´s the movie I want to watch. We brought it home, popped it in the DVD player and began watching. It seemed silly enough in the beginning, but about 15-20 min in I knew it was actually a pretty deep movie. When Helen´s character April longs for a baby, can´t seem to get pregnant but refuses to adopt she says some things that really hit home. When her character then goes on to experience a missed miscarriage I realized this movie was about me in some ways. In the end she accepts her situation....

If it doesn´t work out for me it will be very disappointing, but it wont be the end. I´m not saying that it will be easy. I´m not that naivè. But maybe, just maybe there is a child waiting out there to be adopted. It´s a thought that darts across my mind now and then.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

One quarter of the way there!

Today I am officially 10 weeks. That's right, one quarter of the way there! This is HUGELY exciting for me. Double digits people, I'm pumped.

I'm going based on how far along our ultrasounds said we were, not my due date based on the date of my last menstrual period. If I went with my LMP, I'd still be in the 9th week. But it sounds so much better to me to be in the 10th week, so here I am.

Here's a little excerpt from Babycenter about what the 10th week brings:

Though he's barely the size of a kumquat — a little over an inch or so long, crown to bottom — and weighs less than a quarter of an ounce, your baby has now completed the most critical portion of his development. This is the beginning of the so-called fetal period, a time when the tissues and organs in his body rapidly grow and mature.

He's swallowing fluid and kicking up a storm. Vital organs — including his kidneys, intestines, brain, and liver (now making red blood cells in place of the disappearing yolk sac) — are in place and starting to function, though they'll continue to develop throughout your pregnancy.

If you could take a peek inside your womb, you'd spot minute details, like tiny nails forming on fingers and toes (no more webbing) and peach-fuzz hair beginning to grow on tender skin.

In other developments: Your baby's limbs can bend now. His hands are flexed at the wrist and meet over his heart, and his feet may be long enough to meet in front of his body. The outline of his spine is clearly visible through translucent skin, and spinal nerves are beginning to stretch out from his spinal cord. Your baby's forehead temporarily bulges with his developing brain and sits very high on his head, which measures half the length of his body. From crown to rump, he's about 1 1/4 inches long. In the coming weeks, your baby will again double in size — to nearly 3 inches.

OMG, it feels so surreal to think that there's this little being inside of me, who's dancing and swallowing and has fuzzy hair already!

Overall, I'm feeling fairly good. My pregnancy to this point has not been terribly hard, but it hasn't really been a bed of roses either. Maybe roses with some thorns. *lol*

My all-day sickness (I refuse to call it morning sickness, because it really is with me all frickin' day!) is pretty much constantly present. The only time I don't feel ill is, surprisingly, when I first get up in the morning. I'm able to eat my oatmeal or cereal without any problem, and even down a glass of orange-peach-mango juice (LOVE IT!). But after eating, I feel nauseated and it sticks with me.

The worst time of day for me for my all-day sickness is late afternoon and into the evening. I pretty much cannot eat anything for dinner, because my food aversions make it impossible for me even think about food without gagging or vomiting. So, I just try to eat more of my food earlier in the day, and eat pretty lightly or not at all in the evening. The one thing I seem to be able to have all the time without being sick is ginger ale. But it has to be Canada Dry brand. Schweppes makes me SICK! Odd, huh?

I am finding the fatigue comes and goes now. Some evenings I can stay up until 10 pm with a few yawns. Other days, I am in bed at 8pm and still not ready to get up for work in the morning. But I'm having really fatigued days only about half of the time, compared to every single day a couple of weeks ago.

Since our BFP and especially more after our bleeding scare that ended us up in the ER, Mr. Legalosaur and I have not been interested in having marital relations due to fear that we could cause a miscarriage. Of course, we wanted to several times, but the fear always held us back. However, last night we took the plunge for the first time since getting our BFP and had sex. I have missed that closeness with him. And, so far, there's been no bleeding or spotting and I'm so glad for that. We were very gentle and I think that must have helped. I hope that this will become more regular for the rest of this pregnancy.

And, finally, I have allowed myself to do some SHOPPING for the baby! I figure I held off shopping with our last pregnancy for fear of jinxing it, and that didn't really help since we miscarried anyways. So this time I've been keeping my eyeballs peeled for good deals and I've been taking the plunge. So far I've bought some clothes, a nursing pillow, a sleep sack, a pearl-white knitted blanket, a bathtime baby support, 10 cloth diapers aaaaaaaaaaaaaaand (the biggest purchase and the one I'm most excited about!!) a gently used Phil & Ted's Vibe stroller with the doubles kit for 50% off retail from Kijiji!

And despite my feeling more upbeat about this pregnancy these days and starting to get excited, I still don't feel like sharing so I haven't told anyone else that we're expecting. My parents and sister still don't know, but I still just don't feel like it's the right time to tell them, not yet...

So, that's it for me and my update! I have a doctors appointment next Monday - it's my first prenatal appointment at 11 weeks and 2 days. Let's hope the Doppler works for us!

Here we go again...

So, today I finally got crosshairs on my Fertility Friend chart. But they're not the ones I want. Here's what my chart looked like right after I added in the high temp this morning:

The problem is that I am 99.99999999% positive that I ovulated two days later, on CD13. This is based on my cervical mucus and lack of a temperature rise until CD14 (yes I know there's a random high temp on CD10, but based on my CM and temps after that, I'm convinced it's an abberation and not really indicative of anything).

The thing that's messing up Fertility Friend is the postive OPK on CD10. Normally, you'll ovulate 24-48 hours after a +OPK, but we all know what happened to me last time: the big O showed up a full 72 hours after I got a positive, and it looks like the same thing is happening this time around (24-48 hours is only the average, and there are always exceptions - so for my last cycle and this one, I just seem to be outside of the usual curve).

The first thing I tried to get Fertility Friend to switch the date was to remove the +OPK on CD10. This worked, but I ended up with dashed crosshairs instead of solid ones:

Yet again, the problem is due to OPKs. I took one on CD13 for no real reason, just out of curiosity since it didn't look like I'd O'd yet and I wanted to see if the surge was building up again. Obviously not! So I didn't feel any real compuction about removing it, since it was really pretty meaningless and of no charting value.

And voila! Solid crosshairs!

I was 99.99999999% positive that the other chart was wrong, and I am 99.99999999% positive that this one is right.

Of course, instead of doing all of that, I can just manually set the ovulation date and coverline, so now that's what I've gone back and done (which probably makes this entire post kind of useless, but oh well - some people collect stamps, other people watch birds, I play with Fertility Friend). I prefer to leave the OPKs in because I like to add my completed charts to Fertility Friend's chart gallery so other women can see them - this way, just in case there's another woman who is having the same problem with ovulating later than usual after a +OPK, she can see that she's not the only one.

It might not make a lot of sense to go to all of this trouble, especially since we're covered with FWPing either way. But I don't want a repeat of the confusion and disappointment with the negative HPTs last cycle, when I thought Aunt Flo was several days late because Fertility Friend estimated my ovulation date way too early - so if there's any question about the matter, I'd rather err on the side of later.

Worst case scenario, AF shows up a few days earlier than I think she should - if that happens, I'll just go back into my chart and change the O-date back to CD11, like Fertility Friend thought it should be. If she shows up on the date that I think she should, then I'll know I'm right and I'll leave it as is. And if she doesn't show up at all, well...that would be the best!

P.S. I feel like I should add that Fertility Friend is normally pretty good at what it does...but on the other hand, it is still just a computer program, not an intuitive human being, so it just doesn't deal very well with unusual situations - and I seem to be presenting it with a lot of those lately, haha!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Second U/S - 11w2d



Here's our Little Being...kind of hard to see what's what because he/she was chillaxin' upside down and sort of twisted. The heartbeat was good and strong at 154 bpm. My doctor hadn't planned the NT Scan (which I had asked the nurse about when we had scheduled this appt.) and since I've requested it, she's sending me to the doctor who can do it for us. Unfortunately with me being gone next week the first chance to do it will be at 12w6d, which might be on the "late" side. She said it should be okay, but will check with the doctor who does it. I am annoyed because this is the very reason I asked the scheduling nurse about it weeks ago! UGH! I will be 35 in November, but my doc is not treating me as AMA. Anyway, since I asked, she has requested it along with other screening tests. Otherwise the ones she does in her office are at 18 weeks and I don't really want to wait until then to at least check to see if there are any "markers."



Other than that, the appointment took about 10 minutes. Everything looks great and she said the baby is just perfect. I am feeling good about spilling the beans at work tomorrow (and on my regular blog and Facebook)...I think. I've ordered chocolate and vanilla cupcakes that will have white frosting with pink, blue and yellow sprinkles and topped with a blue or pink plastic baby item (rattle, diaper pin, pacifier, or carriage). Should be cute. I hope so. I think the ladies at work will flip.

Positively Positive

There's no doubt in my mind anymore...





Mr. Luckysaur went out of town after our little experiment the other day. I was hoping to be able to surprise him with our positive result when he came back. Apparently he has been just as excited and anxious to find out if we are having a baby because he checked out my FF chart last night (I knew that I should have waited to enter the positive result!). Poof...there goes my little plan of giving him the happy news when he got home. I still have this waiting for him (on his computer, because I know he will see it there)...



In case your interested these are the symptoms that I've had up to this point:

  • Fatigue- mostly in the evening
  • Gas- not unusual for me
  • Bloating- could be beacause of the gas or the fact that I haven't made it to the gym as often because of the fatigue
  • Cramping- AF-like cramping that I've had on and off (mostly on) since ovulation

Baby Luckysaur's estimated due date- March 24, 2010!

It's a real blog, I promise!

Eeeek! I just got a warning email from Blogger saying that this blog has been marked as spam! I have no idea why this is, and their info in Blogger's help isn't that useful since it doesn't seem like any of the spam blog indicators apply to us. I'm not even sure if this post will show up, but I thought I'd give it a shot.

I've used their reply form asking them to unlock the blog, so it should be fine once the site is reviewed in two days (or so I'm told). Anyway, I hope this post makes it out OK, so if you try to visit the site and get an error message, don't worry - we haven't gone away!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Eleven Weeks

It seems in the past week or so my "symptoms" have worsened, just when, according to my pregnancy books and sites, they should be lessening up a bit and I should be feeling good. Not. My skin has broken out worse than ever before in my life! Today, I've counted 10 zits on my face, when "normally" a breakout for me is one or two.

My fatigue is as strong as ever and the past few days I have found that despite getting to bed early I still struggle in the morning to get up. I have resorted to setting FOUR alarms at 15 minute intervals to finally rouse me from my sleep. Perhaps I am extra tired because I am not really sleeping well. Between midnight trips to the bathroom and crazy dreams that make me feel like I have been working all night rather than resting, I cannot say that I am awakening in the morning feeling refreshed. We have started keeping our two pugs out of the bedroom at night in an effort to make the room more restful (and to train them, in advance of the baby's arrival, to sleep on their own in the living room).

My appetite vacillates from voracious to absent and my nausea really kicks in around 4:00 p.m. so I try my best to eat the majority of my food by lunchtime. Staples are whole grain tortillas, low fat cheese, crackers, grapes, strawberries, low fat yogurt, OJ, high fiber cereal with milk (sometimes it upsets my stomach though) and occasionally, steak or chicken. Notice no vegetables! Despite my general love of all green veggies, the very smell of them these days turns me green, and not in a good way. I swear, I am consuming the diet of a 3 year old. I am praying that as the end of the first trimester draws to a close, that my energy will return, my skin will clear up and my appetite will normalize so that I can enjoy an evening meal of grilled chicken and broccoli once again!

Speaking of the end of the first trimester, we have our 2nd ultrasound appointment this week on Thursday. Technically I will be 11w2d. I asked if they were doing screening tests and got kind of a convoluted answer from the nurse. She said, yes they do screenings but didn't tell me which ones. So we shall see.

If everything goes well I plan to announce my pregnancy at work on Friday. I know it's a couple of weeks before the official end of the first trimester at 13w3d, but given that I am working a week-long conference next week that we're sponsoring, I want my colleagues to be aware of my pregnancy. Especially because it's a demanding schedule. We're scheduled from 7:30 a.m. until 10:30 p.m. each day with one hour breaks for meals. I am definitely going to need more downtime than that and already talked to the one person I work with who is also going and already knows I am pregnant. We're in charge of this conference, including the scheduling and we've worked it out so that I can have more breaks throughout the day. But I don't want my other colleagues to think I am slacking. I figure that if they know that I am pregnant, they'll know why I am not scheduled to be moving heavy equipment or why I'll need to take a 15 minute break at 4:30 p.m. or why I might not be at the evening events for the entire time. I am lucky in that I work for a 100% women run organization. I plan to ask my doctor for a note just to keep everything on the up and up, but I also know that the women I work with will be more than understanding and most likely, excited to know that I have a baby on the way.

Here's hoping I make it through next week in one piece! I already plan to have snacks on hand to keep my nausea at bay and my energy levels even keeled. You never know what you're going to get with hotel conference-style banquet food. Some sort of overcooked veggies and meat with sauce, not doubt. Blech! If worst comes to worst I plan to order room service and get eggs and toast or some other fare that is less offensive and more edible. We are going with business casual dress, so I can bring my Cole Haan - Nike Air flats and leave my heels at home. I am hoping I can get through the week without exhausting myself. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
Here's what's happening with our Little Being this week. From BabyCenter:
Your baby, just over 1 1/2 inches long and about the size of a fig, is now almost fully formed. Her hands will soon open and close into fists, tiny tooth buds are beginning to appear under her gums, and some of her bones are beginning to harden. She's already busy kicking and stretching, and her tiny movements are so effortless they look like water ballet. These movements will become more frequent as her body grows and becomes more developed and functional. You won't feel your baby's acrobatics for another month or two — nor will you notice the hiccuping that may be happening now that her diaphragm is forming.

Guess what?

I'm...



That's right...the Citysaurs got their BFP!

Funnily enough, Sunday night I was feeling our chances were pretty dismal. My chart had displayed not one, but two huge dips below the coverline.

When I temped Monday morning, and saw it shoot way back up...I just couldn't hold out. I groggily looked at Mr. Citysaur at said "Should I test?" He said "Go for it!"

We started with an old Target test I had leftover from some time last year. It's one of those "two lines if you're pregnant" tests...and I got a very faint line. I told DH "They say a line is a line." We decided to go ahead and test again with the digital I'd just purchased last week. I drank a bunch of a water and tested again 20 minutes later, and - lo and behold - I got my BFP!

It really hasn't sunk in yet for me. On the other hand, Mr. Citysaur has been busy telling people left and right! The deal was, we each got one person to tell right away. His was supposed to be his sister...mine was my best friend. I e-mailed the picture to my friend, who called as I was finishing up my shower. She's extremely excited, and can't wait to be an "Aunt." DH, on the other hand, not only called his sister at lunch, but also told his physical therapist (he's recovering from ACL surgery), his graduate school professor, AND his best friend. Somehow, his one person turned into 4!

So I'm cautiously optimistic...ecstatic...and so very, very thankful that it happened so quickly for us. I know we won't be out of the woods for a long time (or ever, really, once you have kids, right?). But I can't help feeling like this BFP happened right away for a reason. I feel that my father is meant to know this baby...to at least get to see little baby Citysaur before he passes away. I'm not tying all my happiness to that thought, but it sure would be nice. Stick, baby, stick!

 Pregnancy Ticker

Positive...I think

In my previous post I told you how I bought some pregnancy tests from Amazon. I used them to test at day 10 and 11 and wasn't getting the results that I wanted (yes, I know that was really early). I did a little reserach and found that First Response was shown to pick up the lowest amount of HCG. I ran out and bought a box of 2. I used the first test with my FMU on DPO 12. I dipped it and waited. There was something faint that showed up, but DH and I weren't certain that it wasn't an evaporation line. I used the second test the next morning. Again, the same faint line. Yesterday I ran out and picked up another box of First Response tests, a box of 3 this time. I tested again this morning (14 DPO) with my FMU and got the same faint line. Still unconvinced that the faint lines we were seeing were positives and not evaporation lines, DH and I did an experiment of our own (a la Bibliosaur). DH peed on one of the 2 remaining tests so that we could see if he got the "evaporation line" too. Guess what? No evaporation line, absolutely nothing, nada. I think that means they're positive. I still have one more test to use. If I can hold out I may wait a couple days to use it and see if I can get a darker line. What do you all think?


Monday, July 13, 2009

Bibliosaur and the Great OPK Experiment

For the past couple of days, I've been running a bit of an experiment with my OPKs - and now it's time to reveal the results!

I got the impression from using OPKs during previous cycles that I seem to have an unusually short LH surge - a lot of women can get a positive OPK for two days in a row, but I never have. In fact, even when testing precisely every 24 hours as recommended, I've still managed to miss the surge completely. So this time around, I thought I'd try ramping things up a little and taking an OPK not once, not twice, but THREE times a day: morning, afternoon and night.

There were three things I wanted to try to determine with the Great OPK Experiment:
1. Exactly how long my peak LH surge is;
2. What time of day is best to catch it (most OPKs recommend testing at around 2pm, but the digitals say that although afternoon is best, you can test any time of day, as long as you test the same time of day each time);
3. As a sort of secondary test, I wanted to try to see exactly how the digital tests work. No real reason - I was just curious. I'd noticed during my previous cycles that the second blue line got darker as the test became closer to positive, just like a regular OPK strip, and I was curious to see if the digital interpreted the second line the same way I would. (Note: I tried googling, but couldn't find any official info about the digitals actually work - is it simply a digital "eye" that interprets how close the lines are in color/shade to each other, or do they test for the surge in some other way as well?)

So, I donned my sexy scientist outfit and went to work!

Experiment Day #1 - Cycle Day 9
I took the first two tests on CD9 - there was a second blue line on the afternoon test, but it was so faint that it barely shows in photos. I added arrows in the second image to try to make it more visible, and then polarized the third in Photoshop so that the line really shows up:

It's probably hard to see here, but at 8pm the second line was actually slightly darker in color than it was earlier in the day - but only very slightly:


Experiment Day #2 - Cycle Day 10
When I took the test first thing in the morning on CD10, the line was a bit darker than the previous day, although still pretty light - so far, the digital test seems to work the same as the traditional ones, maybe with some kind of digital eye comparing the blue lines and reporting back with a negative if they're not the same shade (or close to it):

But that afternoon - tada! A smiley face and two solid blue lines! The second line is lighter than what I'd interpret as positive on a traditional OPK - I'd probably have called this a negative if I was using a regular strip:

By 8pm that night, just 6.5 hours after the positive, the test was negative again - I was actually pretty surprised when I ejected the test to take a look at the lines, because they were more or less identical to the positive test I'd taken in the afternoon - this makes me think that instead of my digital eye theory, maybe there's a secondary way that the digital tests for the hormone (like how with digital HPTs, a negative test can still show two lines).


Experiment Day #3 - Cycle Day 11
At this point I figured that the surge had probably peaked and I wouldn't get another positive, but I decided to keep testing the next day anyway, just out of curiosity. The morning test was negative again and the second blue line very faint:

By the afternoon, it had gotten even lighter:

And by the evening, the second line had nearly faded away altogether and I resorted to polarizing the image in Photoshop again - the surge has definitely passed:


So, what answers did I get out of this?

1. Exactly how long is my peak LH surge? This completely confirms my suspicion that I seem to have an unusually short LH surge: less than 12 hours long, and probably even shorter than that (note: this doesn't affect ovulation, just my ability to get a positive OPK). This explains why I've managed to completely miss it during past cycles - I probably just tested a couple hours too early or too late.

2. What time of day is best to catch my surge? I don't care what the digitals say in the instructions about testing any time of day - the afternoon was clearly the best for me, and I'll be sticking to that in the future.

3. How exactly do digital tests work? A digital eye that compares the shades of the blue lines, or something else as well? I'm still not sure. The second line is definitely at its darkest when the surge peaks, but it's still lighter than what I'd call a positive on a regular OPK - plus it was just as dark on a negative as it was on a positive. This leads me to believe that there must be some kind of secondary test...or maybe the digital eye is just more sensitive than my human one and it distinguished a difference between the shades on the negative and positive that I couldn't. The moral of the story? If you're using a digital, trust the expensive smiley test, and don't worry about the lines!