Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Hospital fun

I went into the hospital on Sunday for a routine 20 minute CTG scan - they hook you up to a fetal monitor that traces the babies’ heartbeats and also checks for contractions. To make a long story short, they became concerned because some contractions were showing up on the trace – I knew I was having them, but I hadn’t worried since they were so mild and so irregular (especially since they can last for weeks and mine had been going on for several days without worsening).

They put me on nifedipine to stop the contractions and I spent the next couple of hours periodically hooked up to the CTG – things settled down a fair amount but not all the way, so they kept me in for observation and further monitoring and treatment for the next 2 nights, which was about as thrilling as you might imagine ( food...).

Possibly the worst photo of me EVER. Hopefully the enormous bare belly isn't too disturbing...

By yesterday afternoon everything had smoothed out, so they did an ultrasound to double check that all was OK (along with the most painful internal exam I've ever had - OMG the doctor was awful) and then released me with a prescription for more meds and instructions to do even less than I had been before, which basically means I can do...well, nothing, really. I don’t have to stay in bed, but I’m not allowed to do much else.

The part of all of this that has me upset is that they’ve also adjusted my due date forward. For some reason, the hospital has taken my original due date – May 3 – and added five days to it. I asked three nurses and two doctors why the date was different, and none of them could give me an answer beyond, “That’s what it says here. Besides, five days isn’t that long.”

Well maybe it’s not that long to THEM, but the date I deliver on is a little tricky. My hospital will only take births from 36 weeks onward – anything before that and I will be transferred to a hospital that is a 45 minute drive away (that's the best case scenario – if they didn’t have space, I’d have to go to Sydney). So changing my due date means that in order to stay here, I have to hold on for another TWO weeks instead of one...and frankly, at the moment that extra week looks stunningly difficult.

I’ve been steadily focused on April 5 (the day I hit 36 weeks, which is considered term for twins) for months; it’s been such rough going and I've been hanging on with teeth and nails for the last few weeks - having that date to count down to has meant a lot to me. So for someone to suddenly switch the goalposts is just...well, it’s very hard to deal with, even if it is only a week...I've cried over this more times than I want to admit, I just feel so disheartened.

I’m seeing my OBGYN tomorrow and am going to discuss the date issue with him. I don’t know if he has any influence at the hospital (he used to work in the high risk clinic there and is still respected by many of the staff), but I really hope that somehow they’ll change the date back to May 3. Personally, I think it was probably a simple transcription error somewhere along the line (‘3’ and ‘8’ do look similar) since May 8 doesn’t even match up with any projected dates from any of the bajillion ultrasounds I’ve had, but no one will admit that’s a possibility. If they won’t change it, well...these kids will come when they feel like it and I don’t know if holding on for another two weeks is realistic at this stage, so if we have to go somewhere else, then that’s how it will have to be.

We're so close to the finish line now - please wish us luck...

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

37 Weeks and the Countdown is ON!

Ok, last week I was so anxious and worried about what was going to take place this week, and I'm so happy to say that I have no reason to be alarmed anymore, or at least for the moment! The little man has turned back around and according to both my midwife and the ultrasound he is fairly firmly planted deep between my pelvic bones... HEAD DOWN! Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou! Thanks to everyone that commented on my last post and wished me good luck- it worked!

We are back on track and now I'm just trying to make it through the days and enjoy the little time left with this baby safe inside. I don't have a ton of time to enjoy it, but I'm really trying to save a couple of hours late at night to spend with my husband just relaxing. It's hard when there are visual reminders of the chaos our lives are in right now under my nose at every turn.

My husband is unfortunately not working very much right now as he is between jobs, and although I'm not worried about this being a long term thing, I am worried about the transition that will take place once the baby comes. It's fairly stressful being the main income when I could pop at any given time without notice. I take overtime when I can and try to stay calm about it all, but I keep thinking about the time it will take for my benefits to kick in and my husbands next job to pay him... Thankfully we have a great support system around us and I know that we won't starve, but you know.... I just don't want to think about this right now especially when I'm really starting to slow down and even though I love my job I would rather be able to work six hours a day if I need to than try to do ten... Ah well, what doesn't kill you, right?

My feet and ankles have started the swell! I don't find it painful necessarily but it certainly looks strange! Other than being unable to get up sometimes from a laying down or sitting down position and the aggressive heartburn I actually feel better than I have in months! I feel a little more tired than usual especially when doing errands or packing or cleaning, but I could handle this for a bit longer!

The renovations are coming along very nicely and should be completed just in the nick of time provided the baby doesn't come early. I'm so proud and thankful to have such great friends (and husband) that helped us out with everything from plumbing to drywall! I will never be able to repay them, but they are in my thoughts every day! The house should be livable in about two and a half to three weeks and we are getting so excited to see it coming together from an empty shell.

We are going to start painting really soon and that means that I (haha, I mean my husband) can start moving our stuff into the house even if it's just in one room and kept in the boxes. I want to have our rental house as clean as possible so that our landlords can show it, and also so that the cleaning will be done before baby.

I still haven't quite made the connection that after I go into labour there will be an actual baby to take care of after. I am totally ready for the labour part of things and am actually kind of excited (in a sick way) to experience the challenge of this birth. However, then what?? I hope I naturally get that mothering instinct thing, but right now it just seems crazy that there will be a little person to take care of soon!

Anyway, I have an appointment tomorrow so I will update again soon :) Thanks again for all your kind words last time! I think they helped!


Friday, March 26, 2010

Picture Perfect

I had a really good appointment today as you can all see! My EDD is November 4th and we can't wait to take the first picture of our son holding this baby! My Dr. ordered a sonogram today to take a closer look at the baby and make sure that everything is on track, and everything looked good. I am so thankful that I had my son along today so he could be there for our first look at his new baby brother or sister... it was such a special moment!
He had a lot of questions for the radiologist, everything from, "Where did you get your computer?" "Why do you have to put lotion on Mommy's tummy?" And, "What is that weird thing you are holding?" He also informed her that "Mommy's baby is tiny and Aunt T's baby is big!" (We have been showing him pictures every week of what the baby looks like compared to my sister-in-law's baby.) The radiologist also let him take the pictures out of the computer which made his day... he told her then that he was a really good helper, and she agreed!
My next visit will be pretty routine but my Dr. is contacting a high risk OBGYN in a bigger town to discuss some issues that I've had with blood clots. She feels that it may be necessary to run another round of blood tests to check for any possible problems we may face with clotting. I am relieved to finally feel as though I am being taken seriously and that I truly am being given the kind of care I expect.
At 8 weeks I am still nervous about making it past the 1st trimester but feel much more at ease this time around. I will continue to do what I can to make sure that my DS gets his happy ending too!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I Have a Secret

I have a secret and I'm finally ready to share it w/ you all! After a year and a half of trying.... I'M PREGNANT! I am still very early (only 8 weeks today) but since we have made it past the dreaded week 7 (which in the past has been a not so lucky week for us), I feel I can finally breathe a sigh of relief and share my oh so exciting news!

I have known now for about 3 weeks but have been really hesitant to share considering my past experiences. When AF was late, I thought nothing of it because of my recent weight loss. After a week or two I started feeling really crumby and decided to bite the bullet and take an HPT which turned out to be positive. Even w/ that positive result, I still was a little nervous about getting too excited.

I called my Dr. right away and tried to make an appointment. The nurse that I spoke to felt since I was still so early that there was no point in making an appointment until I tested positive in the Dr.'s office, then we could go from there. (As you can imagine, I was a little annoyed w/ this response but decided to go ahead and do as she had advised and go in and take the urine test.)

I was scheduled to go in on a Friday and do the test. That morning, I spoke to one of my girlfriends and told her what was going on. She works in a doctor's office and gave me a bit of advice on what she thought I should do. I called the office right away that morning and asked to speak to a Dr. when I came in. I explained to the receptionist that I have had a few previous complications and would feel much more at ease if I was able to actually talk to someone that day. I was given an appointment w/ no questions asked, and blood work was done that day!

I went back on Monday morning to do another round of blood tests and everything came back looking good. My progesterone and estrogen levels were where they needed to be and my HCG was rising. I was then given an appointment to come back on Friday of this week (tomorrow). I am looking forward to my appointment, every chance that I get to see my Dr. gives me a little bit more confidence that this time we will go full-term.

This pregnancy has been a little different compared to my previous pregnancies. I have been really sick this time... when I'm not nauseous I have diarrhea! I'm not complaining though... the more sick I feel, the more tender my boobs are, the more I fall asleep on the couch, the better I feel about finally getting to be a Mommy again!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Twins' nursery: the big reveal!

I'm feeling pretty excited today because the twins' nursery is officially finished! We kinda left it down to the wire, so it's a relief to have it done before they arrive.

Here's what the room looked like before:

There was nothing wrong with it per se, but it was a bit...boring. Here's what the room looks like now:

What do you think? It's not fancy by any means, but it's cheerful and happy and Mr Bibliosaur is especially proud of the gigantic pirate ship decal, which put up (I wish both it and the paint color photographed better with my little camera, because they look quite cool in person). A few details:
  • Paint - the color is Secret Blue by British Paints (an Australian brand) - the blue is lighter and brighter than it looks here, and can also have a green tint depending on the lighting.
  • Cribs - 'Harbour' by Childcare (also an Australian brand)
  • Changing table - DaVinci Jenny Lind in white, bought secondhand
  • Bedding - Citrus by Babylicious. I love that you can buy their bedding sets without the useless bumper, plus they're very reasonably priced. You can buy them online through Target, or from Baby's In Style like I did (I highly recommend this store - the owner is very helpful and patiently answered my million questions).
  • Wall decal - Huge Pirate Ship w/ Monogram (we got it without the monogram initial) from etsy seller Humsandtiddlypoms.
  • Artwork - all prints are DIY and were created in Photoshop. The orange initials are temporary and will be replaced with something similar but different after the babies are born (I need to know their birthdates and weights before I can finish it). The L-O-V-E poster is a shameless rip-off loving tribute to this poster (I loved the idea, but at $45 + international shipping for an unframed print, there was no way I was buying the real deal - my version only cost $20 for the frame).
  • Rocking chair - a freebie that I got from a generous friend, and we gave it a little facelift with some paint and new fabric:
What do you think?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Passing the time

Once you have a miscarriage, all innocense is lost. It´s not possible to approach pregnancy as care-free as the first time. It just isn´t. And try pregnancy after multiple losses....well I´m a basket case, or on the verge of being one.

I´ve spent some part of everyday these past few days running to the bathroom to check that my underwear is indeed still free of blood. It doesn´t help that the progesterone supplements make things a bit wet down there....I´m trying to keep myself busy and distract myself with others things. I´ve been to town, run errands only to suddenly feel like there might be something happening down there and rush home to check, only to breath a sigh of relief that yet another hour has passed with out anything happening.

I feel like I am waiting for the inevitable to happen. A really great approach to pregnancy, I know. I am very thankful to be pregnant, and I am thankful for each day that passes. But that joy like I experienced the first time the stick turned pink seems to elude me. Sweet thoughts of this baby spending its first Christmas at home with us creep in, only to be quickly dashed by that pessimistic/realist in me that says, your chances of success must be less than 50 percent....

I want to scream stop to those nasty thoughts, I really do. I´d much rather start googling the best infant seat to have, find out which hospital offers water births, or research breathing techniques for labor. Heck, I´d love to read a good pregnancy book without the snarky inner voice that says "so normally today your babie´s amniotic sac is the size of a grape, but is yours?"

Today marks the 4w6d point in my pregnancy. I´m filled with apprehension about reaching 5 weeks because three times I have gone to the bathroom at 5w1d and 5w2d only to discover blood. It´s like a critical point is approaching. The make or break of this pregnancy. The very rational part of me says that this time could be different, that my past does not dictate my future, but that evil voice of doubt creeps in....

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Five things

Although I have a few things to write about today, none are really long enough to justify their own post, so I'll just sum up here...

• I had another measuring ultrasound last week - they're getting more frequent as my doctors need to make sure the boys are growing at the same rate, which is always a concern with twins who are sharing a placenta. And OMG - I have big kids! My doctor was confident that it's nothing to do with the gestational diabetes - they're not really fat, just big. One of them weighed 2.45kg (5.4lbs) and the other was 2.428kg (5.3lbs). This means they're already nearly at the average birthweight for twins who are delivered at 36 weeks (5.5lbs), and they're also both over 1lb larger than the average singleton is at this stage. I know that ultrasounds can be off with weight estimates, but yikes! Their heads are still measuring ahead too - both are measuring a bit over 36 weeks.

• My doctor also told me that at this stage he's now confident that if something happened and I were to go into labor tomorrow, the boys are big and strong and would likely be just fine - perhaps they'd need to be on oxygen for a few days, but otherwise he feels good about their progress. This has made me feel more confident and relaxed; I'm now at the very end of week 33 (week 34 begins tomorrow), so while of course it would be ideal to hang in there until 36+ weeks, I feel better knowing that my little ones are now far enough along and well developed enough that if I suddenly went into labor they would be OK.

• My PUPPP rash is now covering most of my torso (belly, chest, arms and sides) and parts of my legs - after discussing it with another of my doctors, he prescribed some hydrocortisone cream for me to use. And oh is wonderful! There's still some discomfort and a mild itchiness, but NOTHING like what it was before. I know that a lot of women who have PUPPP try to avoid the steroid creams, and I did try the natural remedies I've found online, but none of them helped and I'm just so happy to get some relief from the crazy itchiness! 

• I've spent the last week cooking extra meals, and Mr Bibliosaur and I now have enough dinners in the freezer to feed us both for a week and a half after the babies arrive. I don't think we could fit any more in there, so I might call it quits now!

• The nursery is soooo close to being complete! We just need to get the bedding sets (which should arrive tomorrow) and reupholster the cushions of the rocking chair, which my lovely mother-in-law is going to help me with this week. In the meantime, here are a few teaser shots:

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Facing the Baby Stuff

My sister-in-law (who I love and adore) is about 34 weeks pregnant! We are having a shower for her tomorrow and I have been able to be involved with the planning, which is wonderful and hard all at the same time! Planning for a baby shower involves lots of baby-related stuff (obviously), and it isn't always easy to face all the pretty pink and blue things when you are TTC!

I have managed to keep my emotions under control so far but I am concerned about facing all the things that go with a baby shower like the cute little outfits, the other pregnant girls and the family members gushing all over the expectant mom! I sound so selfish right now and it's not that I am not happy for her, because I am and I'm happy for me too! After all, I get to be an aunt again!

I just want to be a Mom again too... is that too much to ask for?! Wish me luck as I face all the baby stuff tomorrow!

Oh the waiting

I managed to pass the time until my doctor´s appt. ok. My doctor did an ultrasound to see if she could see anything, which she couldn´t. But I don´t think that´s too surprising at 4weeks. She said my lining looked good, but didn´t measure it. I guess there wasn´t a need for that. She made me take another hpt so she could see the result. It came back positive. She gave me a presciption for progesterone to take before bed, but she didn´t do any bloodwork. She tried to call the University Clinic, but it was too late and nobody was there, so she gave me the number and told me to call and make an appointment.

I haven´t called yet. I visited my dermatologist yesterday to get some different acne creams that can be used in the first trimester. The dermatologist urged me to go ahead and make the call, and she urged me to find someone to talk to. As she put it, 40 weeks is a long, long time to be pregnant under normal circumstances, and after multiple losses it must seem like an eternity.

I haven´t had many symptoms really. Just sore breasts and some serious bloating, gas, etc. The bloat and burping seems to come and go. It´s hard not to over analyze what´s going on. Every little twinge, cramp and pain seems to let doubt and fear creep in. I wish I could find a way to just not think about it. I got out a book about pregnancy and started to read about what was going on for my stage, but then I began to wonder if it was really happening. It´s so hard to believe that I am really pregnant and that there is really a baby in there. Is there really a baby in there? I know that only time will tell, and that there is nothing for me to do except try and relax and sit tight. It´s out of my hands, and the only thing left for me to do is wait, and wait and wait.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Back to Breech...

Hmmmm... just when I was able to report that everything was progressing without a hitch.... the baby turned BACK to breech. I was so relieved and excited that the huge risk of c-section was gone, and now it's back with a vengeance.

I even made my husband promise not to tell anyone because if his mother finds out and even says one word about it to me I will lose control. I'm mostly joking, but I really will find it hard to bite my tongue if she were to say anything to me in that regard.

We went in for our regular appointment last week and a midwife that was filling in for my usual one felt for the position, and was having a really tough time between the braxton hicks I was having and the baby itself. She started to get worried that the baby had turned breech again and wanted to schedule an ultrasound at 36 weeks to confirm it. Unfortunately the hospital had other ideas and was booked all the way into my 37th week which would not have given us much time to try any natural methods of having the baby turn on his own. Needless to say I was a little anxious..... Thankfully, I just got the call today that my appointment was switched to the day the baby is 36 weeks! So, if we do find out that he is in fact still breech we can try natural methods of turning him for a week before we need to try an ECV.

The natural methods to turn a baby include:
  • going in water with your head down feet up
  • laying on a board with your feet elevated higher than your head
  • Moxibustion- a chinese medicine tool that consists of a herb used near your baby toe
  • Acupuncture
  • Webster Technique done at the Chiropractors

And there are more that I have missed I'm sure.

Now, the scary thing is the ECV. It stands for External Cephalic Version and consists of an Obstetrician manually turning the baby from the outside using their hands and kind of pushing the baby around. They begin by prepping you for an emergency c-section (great) and giving you drugs to relax your uterus (also great). They have to make sure to lift the baby out of the space between the pelvic bones and tuurrrrrn the baby so that the head is down. The part that doesn't bode well for me is the rate of success is 58% and also the success rate goes down for first time pregnancies.

The complications include the placenta separating from the uterine wall (resulting in a emergency c-section), the risk of the baby's heartbeat dropping (resulting in immediate delivery), and/ or cord prolapse. Sounds fun, doesn't it? Many babies turn back even after the ecv, and apparently it hurts... It definitely doesn't look fun based on the you tube videos I may have looked up. Ah well, I would rather try to get him turned around naturally first, manually second, and still aim for a natural birth. However, if it comes down to a c-section I will be disappointed, but blah blah blah all that matters is a healthy child. I'm practising to say that to people because I will be really sad if I don't get to have the birth I want.

So now for a weekend of waiting. Although with everything going on right now I'm not sure I will have that much time to actually think about it.

I have to pack up most of our house so that we can move it to the house we are renovating. Unfortunately this is difficult because I would really like to have at least one room done in which to put stuff so we don't have to move it ten times... but alas we have to complete painting and trim in minimum the three rooms that are the closest to finished. However, I suppose I could just pack everything up and keep it at the house we are living in until those rooms are completed.

I mainly need to make a place for donating stuff, throwing away stuff, and keeping stuff. I need to purge because I don't want to bring a ton of clutter into a new place. Maybe the nesting energy will kick in! Fingers crossed!

I also need to go shopping for the things that are most critical in preparing for this baby like a diaper bag and the stuff that we need to take to the hospital. I need to buy some nursing tank tops and something more comfortable maternity wear wise to wear around the house. It feels like my tummy is growing out of everything these days! I know this to be true because of the excessive stretch marks that seem never ending! I have a lower stomach that is almost entirely tiger stripes, so hot....

In between the packing, cleaning, and shopping I will need to make time for resting and homework as well... I have a feeling this weekend is going to fly by and the ultrasound will be here before I know it!

Has anyone had an ultrasound at 36 weeks? I assume it will be much different from my 20 week one, and I'm wondering how much detail you can see? Facial features?

Hope to report great news next time! Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Trying to go with the 'Flo

Last night, I burst into tears after watching an episode of Law & Order, SVU. I looked at my husband and said "I guess my period is coming." I've felt teary off and on for a couple of days now. Today at work, I was absent-minded and I was dropping things more frequently. I also feel fatigued and irritable. These are all calling cards of my old "friend" Aunt Flo.

My temperature hasn't dropped yet. I suspect it may do that tomorrow or within a few days. AF will be here the day after the temperature drop. My CBFM has given me low fertility readings everyday so far this cycle. I sometimes cling to the small hope that I may have had a short LH surge and that the machine missed it.

TTC and charting has certainly helped me to get to know my body a lot better. My cycles have been so irregular lately that I'm glad I have these advance warning signals of AF.

Last cycle, I didn't even have a chance to use a HPT before AF showed up. It looks like the same thing may happen again. This is very disappointing, to say the least. However, I would much rather have these shorter cycles (today is CD18) than a long, drawn out 53 day cycle. We are able to start trying again so much sooner with the shorter cycles. I feel like we need all the chances we can get.

One exciting bit of news - I got a Fertility Specialist appointment for next week! They had some cancellations otherwise I would have been waiting a few months. I really hope that the FS can help us to conceive. I am starting to get discouraged that we won't be able to get pregnant again.

Good Bye

This last year has been a little crazy for me. This time last year I was going through my surgery and learning about HPV. Since then we bought a house, I got accepted to graduate school (I start this fall),went off birth control, decided to try for a baby and got diagnosed with PCOS. Being diagnosed has given me a sense of relief because now we have options. My RE recommend starting with clomid. We have given it some thought and then decided since we have a Vegas trip coming up in June and we are not going to make any decisions until after the trip. We are self pay since our insurance wont cover anything. They aren't even covering the diagnostics tests like they said they would.

Anyways, my cycles are just a little too crazy and I am not even sure what is going on with my ovulation this time around. Not knowing makes it hard to blog about because every week has been the same thing, the unknown. Normally I can pinpoint my ovulation but this cycle is different. I gave up caffeine and alcohol for lent and my body is adjusting by giving me all sorts of twinges in uterus and ovary area so I am not sure if I have ovulated yet.

Mr. Relaxasaur and I are just baby dancing when we feel like and are trying to not put more pressure on ourselves. This whole process has taken a lot of the romance out and has made it sort of mechanical like. We want to shy away from that and just learn to appreciate our life the way it is, not the way we wish it were. It is not that we are taking a break we are just not in a rush. Because of all this I am not going to be blogging on Pregosaur anymore. I will come here everyday to check for updates and I wish everyone trying or KU a healthy pregnancy, delivery, and baby.

The luck of the Irish

Today I am pregnant and I love my baby. This is my new mantra. I called my ob/gyn this morning and was able to get in for an appt. this afternoon. She said she would be working on getting in touch with the University Clinic in town so that I can be seen by one of their doctors and hopefully get in on a study. I´ll be asking her about starting progesterone supps. because I´ve heard they can´t hurt and might help. The same is true of low-dose Aspirin which I assume I´ll be put on again because of my clotting risk. I don´t know about starting heparin shots, but I know it standard practice for someone with a clotting disorder and a risk of recurrent miscarriage. All things to find out. I have no idea if she will do a beta draw, but I suspect not since I`ve never had one before. Maybe that´s a good thing, and maybe not. I´ll just have to wait and see. I´m counting down the hours until my appt. at 4.30. Will it come soon enough?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Things I've learned

I feel like lately I've been focusing a lot on the negative parts of this pregnancy, so today I want to take a minute and talk about some of the good things - the positive things - that I've learned over the last 33 weeks.

I've learned patience.
Not just the patience that comes with time spent trying to conceive or growing a baby (or two) for nine months, but patience with my own limitations. This pregnancy has forced me to slow down and take things as they come. I've never been one for dawdling, but these days I couldn't move quickly even if I wanted to - it's just physically impossible. I'm ponderously slow, to the point that I've started giving myself an extra 10 minutes on top of my usual traveling time, just to accommodate my walking speed. And surprisingly, instead of feeling frustrated, I feel immensely calm about this. There's no need to rush. I'll get there.

I've learned to let go.
I'm a planner. A super planner. It's not that I dislike spontaneity, but I truly enjoy planning. But with any pregnancy, you can only plan so much. I never planned on miscarrying with our first child, and I certainly never planned on having twins! I've learned to be more adaptable, more flexible, more relaxed when things don't go the way I thought they would - or should. A LOT of our plans changed when we found out all those weeks and months ago that we were having twins. Everything changed, from our budget to practical considerations like which bedroom would be converted into a nursery. I've become far more accepting of things that I cannot control.

I've learned that anything is possible.
When we found out we were having twins, I told myself, "Well, that's your thing for this pregnancy. Your unusual thing. Everyone has one, and twins is yours." And then I got gestational diabetes, and I told myself, "OK, it wasn't the twins, it's the GD. That's your thing." And then I got PUPPP and in between bouts of trying not to burst into tears from the itchiness, I tried to figure out just how the hell I managed to beat the odds to get identical twins, GD and PUPPP. None of these things are super common, and the odds of getting them all must be...well, it's got to be ridiculously high! But it's not just that kind of thing that I've learned is possible. I didn't know I could ever feel so strongly about one little person, let alone two, that I've never met,  so ferociously loving and protective that it catches me off guard sometimes. I'd wrestle a tiger for these babies - these precious, amazing little people that I've yet to meet face to face - if I needed to. I cannot begin to describe the pure depth of emotion that I feel toward them, and it surprises me sometimes...after all, this is me, the baby hater. I never would have thought this was possible.

Friday, March 12, 2010

My Naturopathic Consultation

Yesterday, I went to a Naturopathic Fertility Clinic for an initial consultation. I had found the clinic by searching on the Internet for somewhere nearby to purchase PreSeed. When I went to buy the PreSeed, I was very impressed by the calm, relaxing atmosphere in the clinic. Since I am waiting to see a Fertility Specialist, I decided to try some naturopathic support in the meantime. Both Mr. Pharmasaur and I prefer to enhance our fertility by natural means before starting drug therapy. This is interesting since we are both the in the pharmaceutical field!

I really liked the Naturopath (ND). She was very warm, friendly, understanding and knowledgeable. I had filled out a 12 page form with all of my pertinent information to bring along with me. The ND asked me questions related to this and did some Chinese medicine work (looking at my tongue and taking the pulses in my wrist.) She asked me about lifestyle choices such as waking, bed and mealtimes. Then the ND made her recommendations.

She encouraged me to try to settle into a routine for waking, bed and mealtimes which will help support my adrenal gland function. This will be tricky with my current work schedule as my hours vary consistently even within the same week.

As for exercise, the Naturopath urged me to continue walking. She said if I could fit in swimming once or twice a week, that would be great. She didn't recommend starting an intense exercise routine as it could disrupt my system even further. I love to swim and I am looking forward to getting back to the pool soon.

Then the ND made her nutritional recommendations:

Breakfast - protein, fruit, dairy and grain

Lunch - protein and vegetables (at least 50% of the meal!)

Dinner - protein and vegetables (sometimes a grain: limited to brown rice, quinoa or buckwheat)

Snack - fruit and/or vegetable with protein

She also recommended eating raw ground flax and raw pumpkin seeds every day. Raw chia, sunflower and ground sesame seeds are also encouraged occasionally.

I am supposed to consume 1 to 1.5 L of water each day. Clear, herbal teas can be included in this total.

The ND recommended an herb called vitex agnus castus (or chastetree/berry) to help increase my LH production and thereby increasing progesterone levels. This herb needs to be stopped as soon as I get pregnant.

As for supplements, the ND suggested that I continue with my prenatal vitamin and vitamin D. She recommended zinc, vitamin B6, calcium capsules, co-enzyme Q10 and fish oil supplements.

By analyzing my history, my current cycle irregularity, my tongue, and my pulses, the ND suspects I am deficient in zinc and progesterone. The chasteberry should help to regulate my cycles. Hopefully, by the time I get in to see the fertility specialist, my body will be more hormonally balanced again.

I am going back to see the ND in one month for a followup visit. The Naturopath wants to try some acupuncture then. She assured me that once I follow the diet and supplement plan that I will feel fantastic. My biggest challenge will be decreasing the sugars that I eat. I know that this new plan is healthy, balanced, sensible and simple. Even if it doesn't help me to conceive (fingers crossed that it will!) , I feel that it will improve my overall health.

I am very glad that I went to the clinic. I have done a lot of research on foods, herbs and supplements for fertility. I have read about many options on the Internet. I wasn't sure which combinations were right for me, so I'm glad that I have a health professional's recommendations and follow up care now.

Meet Baby Citysaur!

Introducing Benjamin James, aka Baby Citysaur. Born 3/10/10 at 6:24 PM. Weighing in at 7 lbs 15oz, 20 1/4 inches long.

I mentioned in my last post that our midwife wanted us to kick start labor on Wednesday...well kick start we certainly did! We started out at 8:45 AM with her stripping my membranes. Then we did some nipple stimulation and took an hour power walk. At 11:30 AM, the midwife broke my water. We did more walking as we went out to have lunch and gather our bags at home, then back to the birth center. By the time we arrived back at the birth center at 1:30 PM, I was having contractions that were 2 minutes apart and was most definitely in labor!

Not the most flattering picture of me, but here we are, in the early part of active labor, just after arriving at the birth center. I did not look this good as the day progressed!

I won't go into the whole, explicitly detailed birth story, but I'll summarize from here. I labored for about 3 hours before pushing, exploring various positions including the birth ball, the shower, the tub, and hanging off the bedpost. About 4:30 or so, I went to the bathroom at the suggestion of the birth assistant, and I started to feel the urge to push. Pushing lasted about two hours, and was the most exhausting part of the experience. The only downside to not going into spontaneous labor was that Ben hadn't quite descended, so I had to work extra hard at getting him down. That part was difficult, because every time I'd make progress during a contraction, he'd slip back when I went to rest in between.

Eventually, after pushing for a while in the tub and hanging off the bedpost, I got into the bed to conserve energy. I almost had to go back to the bedpost, but when I realized they were about to make me get out of bed, I gave it everything I had, and he began to crown. And that's when things got serious.

Ben came out with the cord wrapped tightly around his neck. He was fine until right at the end, when his heart rate plummeted. When the midwife looked at me and said that we had to get him out now, and that I had to push without the help of a contraction, I knew she meant business. Even though I was beyond the point of exhaustion, I found the strength to get him out fast. They cut and clamped the cord from around his neck as soon as he crowned, and then a few pushes later, he was born. Daddy got to catch him, and he put Ben on my belly, but a split second later, the midwife whisked him away to the resuscitation table to work on him. He was born in distress - white as a sheet, depressed heart rate, elevated breathing and low body temperature. Daddy helped the midwife, and after 45 long minutes, he was finally up to snuff. They placed him on my belly and I fell in love!

Family portrait...that's my mom (Ben's Nana) in the pink, and my father in the picture. He couldn't be with us physically, but he was definitely there in spirit!

I want to say thank you to everyone who has followed my pregnancy journey here. I've really appreciated the support, and I've enjoyed sharing everything with you all. I don't want to say this is my last post ever (because I may still have a few things to wrap up as I gather my thoughts in the next few weeks)...and perhaps I shall continue on Littlesaur? Time will tell, I suppose!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The girl who knew too much

The first few days after my new niece was born were fairly rough on me. My husband has definitely noticed this in me and instead of our usual plans to BD, we had a heart to heart.

He was pretty worried about me and how I get so emotional about ttc sometimes. Usually it's just before I "find out my fate" each month but I've also been greatly affected by this new baby too.

I told my DH that I just wished there was a way to stop getting so emotional about ttc and thinking about it all the time. I know that it's a matter of me just choosing to stop feeling sorry for myself or worrying about the future or being jealous or whatever it is that is causing my pain. We talked about how everyone has a cross to bear in their lives, and no ones cross is exactly the same as someone elses. We both feel that God is using this situation to help me learn and grow in my relationship with Him.

DH has been feeling like things were becoming too mechanical in our approach to ttc. Honestly, I had been thinking about this for a little while now, and the new baby situation has simply been the catalyst for us to sit down and talk things through. He thinks that ttc is coming between us in our relationship, and that something has to change. That I need to start focusing on the familiy we DO have instead of dreaming about the family that MIGHT be.

He really cut to the heart of the matter...

We decided after our talk that it's time to stop ttc. It's been a year since I started temping my bbt again, and it's been a good thing since it prompted me to go see the doctor and get some answers. Then after that I was on clomid for those 3 months, so I needed to track my bbt and ovulation date etc. But now, we're done with that chapter of our lives and it's time to get back to basics.

I need to feel spontaneous again when it comes to intimacy. No more focusing on timing and the infamous 'fertile window.' I refuse to let that get in the way of the closeness I share with my husband.

It's time to move on and focus on my family 'as is'.

I threw my thermometer in a drawer and was done with it. It was such a relief...a breath of fresh air. Freedom!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Over the weekend my belly started itching, especially around my stretchmarks. The twins have been growing and stretching my skin a lot lately, so I didn't really worry about it much - just slathered on lotion and continued as normal. And then it got worse. And worse.

I had an appointment with my OBGYN on Monday and asked him about the itching. He said it wasn't unexpected since my skin is stretching so much, and suggested trying lanolin cream for some extra relief. So I did. I tried regular lotion, baby oil, lanolin, even calamine lotion - and it kept getting worse.

Over the last 2 days, it's developed into a full blown rash that covers my entire belly, parts of my breasts and thighs, and even some of my arms. And the itching...oh my god, the ITCHING.

Last night I completely melted down. Mr Bibliosaur came home and asked me how my day was, and I just lost it. I can handle the pelvic pain. I can handle the gestational diabetes - the diet, the insulin injections. I can handle the back pain, the exhaustion, the sheer weight of the babies dragging at my body...but I CANNOT handle this. The itchiness is unbelievably agonizing. It's like the worst burning itch you've ever experienced, and it will.not.stop. I can barely tolerate a shirt touching my skin. Mr Bibliosaur can't even put his hand on my belly, and barely on any other part of my skin lest it set off some kind of itchy chain reaction.

So after lying in bed in tears last night, unable to sleep due to the rash, I called my OB's office first thing this morning and managed to get in to see him today. When I showed him my belly, he made an unhappy face and said that he had been worried at my last appointment that this might happen, but hadn’t wanted to say anything just in case the itchiness really was due to the stretching.

He mentioned Cholestasis of Pregnancy, which 1-1.5% of pregnant women get, but from what I’ve read (and yes I KNOW I’m not a doctor) I think it’s more likely that I have PUPPP, which about 1 in 200 pregnant women end up with. I think this mostly because CP doesn’t normally present with a rash but PUPPP does – plus, with CP the itching is usually concentrated in your hands and feet, but with PUPPP it often starts on your abdomen and then progresses to your legs, breasts and arms, as mine has. They both cause intense itching, and for both of them the only cure is giving birth. CP, however, has significantly more risks – it’s caused by bile acid buildup in the bloodstream – including premature labour and stillbirth, so he may just be playing it conservatively by wanting to monitor me for this.

At any rate, as these things can only be treated but not cured, for now we're just trying to deal with the symptoms, so my doctor has given me Phenergan. This won’t take the rash away but hopefully it will help control the unbearable itchiness. If this doesn’t work, we’ll have to try steroid pills or creams.

And now I'm going to do something I thought I'd never do - I'm going to post a big ole bare bump photo on the internet so you can take a look at this rash, along with all of my swollen stretchmarks. I'm warning you - it's not a pretty sight, so feel free to stop reading now.

Still with me?

You sure?

OK then - here you go:

This photo really doesn't capture just how bad it is - how red, how swollen, how painful, how ITCHY.

I just....I am just so over this right now. I know I only need to hang in there for another 3.5 weeks, but I've got to be honest - that is looking like a LOOOOONG time right now.

Are Your HPT's Laughing at You Too?!

When we first started TTC, I bought HPT's monthly and used them monthly! Every time was the same, another BFN followed by a visit from AF! The last time I used a test I vowed to not do it again until I felt I had a valid reason... only, my valid reasons always seem to get the best of me! So once again, I unwrapped the last of the stockpile in our medicine cabinet and prayed for two lines... and like every other failed attempt, got a BFN! is a wonderful site full of good advice for those of us TTC. I stumbled across this earlier this morning and I swear whoever came up with it must have a camera in my bathroom! Follow these 15 easy steps and you too could look as hopeless as me when taking a HPT!

Step 1...Pee on the stick. (must be sure to hold it under urine stream for a heartbeat longer than recommended just to be sure).

Step 2...Stare at stick while you continue peeing. Feel heart jump when urine passes over the spot where the line would be and it hitches for a second, then gets a dark line...then keeps going, taking your dark line with it to the test window.

Step 3...Place on bathroom counter. Pretend not to stare at it. Let's try to give yourself busy work to keep from looking at it. In fact, your toilet now gets cleaned once per day.

Step 4...Tell yourself you are expecting a BFN. Then start to mist up when you see that it is, in fact, a BFN. Stare at the blank spot for a full minute before picking it up.

Step 5...First, go to window and check it under day light.

Step 6...Now, stand on toilet to be closer to light in ceiling. Check strip.

Step 7...Close one eye. Squint other eye.

Step 8...Turn on several lamps around house. Hold strip under lamp. Check strip.

Step 9...Hold strip OVER lamp. Check strip.

Step 10...Hold strip in front of lamp so light shines THROUGH strip, just in case.

Step 11...Pull stick apart. Hesitate for a heartbeat when you realize you are holding the still wet "wick" in one hand, then continue the destruction.

Step 12...Repeat Steps 5-9.

Step 13...Throw stick away.

Step 14...Pick stick back up out of trash.

Step 15...Repeat Steps 12 and 13 the rest of the day!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The end is near?

So when I last left off, our midwife was telling us we had a big baby, and sent us in for a growth ultrasound for "size greater than dates". The ultrasound confirmed her suspicions, as much as it was able to. The tech was great at explaining to us that the weight measurement is just a guess, because they can't see fatty tissue, only bone. But all his bone measurements, including his skull, were measuring ahead as well. In sum, they put me at 15 days ahead of my due date, which would technically put me at 40

There's a possibility that, had we chosen to go with a traditional hospital birth, we'd be talking to our doctor right now about inducing. Thankfully, we didn't go that route. We're delivering at a birth center, and that word hasn't even been brought up. Instead, they moved tomorrow's 38 week appointment from the afternoon to the morning, and they're going to "do some things" at said appointment to hopefully kick-start labor. Then send Mr. Citysaur and me home with some "homework".

Now, to most people, I've just been telling them that I'm not being induced, they're just going to do some voodoo magic on me. It's easier (and not TMI) to explain that way, especially to coworkers. But as this is a pregnancy blog, how about the real truth? I'm not 100%, because the midwife went over this rather quickly last week, but I believe the voodoo magic includes massaging the cervix and stripping the membranes. I'm not sure what else the midwife has up her sleeve, but I'm pretty sure I caught mention of those two at least.

So, perhaps Homer is right, and the end is near. I'm off work tomorrow, because after the appointment, we're supposed to go home and see if anything progresses. I was already 2 CM dilated as of last Thursday, so it's not totally out of the question that this could work. But even if it doesn't, I think it's likely he'll be coming some time in the next couple of weeks. It's still just a waiting game!

Le Sigh...

I have such a range of emotions happening right now and I can't seem to sort them all out..

I don't know if you remember, but I posted earlier about my plans to be there to help my sister-in-law when she delivers her 3rd baby. Well, that didn't happen...for a few good reasons. And I'm thinking, it was better this way.

Here's the story...

Dear sis-in-law (SIL) was due sometime between March 2nd and March 9th. (You know, the whole cycle vs. ultrasound due date thing?) March 2nd (ultrasound DD) came and went and I was on stand by to race to the hospital at any moment. We waited and waited (nothing new when it comes to having babies, of course) and it was getting closer to the weekend. The monkey wrench in the plans were that my family and friends had planned a 30th birthday bash for me on Sunday, so obviously wouldn't be able to make it on that day. We had different back up plans for if it happened on the weekend, so it was totally fine, but I was hoping it wouldn't happen while I was gone.

Of course, SIL started having regular contractions on Sunday morning. I conceded to the fact that I wasn't going to be there for the birth. So I went on with the day, excited about the b-day plans that my wonderful DH and best friends had put together. It was a fabulous day full of great famiily, great friends, and great food and gifts.

We got periodic updates throughout the day on SIL's situation. She never actually checked into the hospital, because she wanted to labor without being hooked up to machines laying on a bed. She wandered the hospital all day long...poor thing. Finally, that night when her contractions started getting further apart they told her she should go home. (Keep in mind that we live 30 minutes from the nearest hospital) So she and my brother-in-law went home for the night, taking the big walk of shame out of the hospital.

To make a long story short, she was laboring throughout the night and then decided at about 6am yesterday morning that they needed to start heading back to the hospital. Her hubby was determined to wait until her water broke, but that still hadn't happened. She was having a lot of back labor and knew she needed to go back. Well, they did make it to the hospital...the hospital parking garage, that is. Baby decided to make her grand entrance in the car inside the hospital parking garage!!! Craziness.

Baby girl and mama are perfectly healthy and happy, thank the Lord!! I went and saw them yesterday afternoon and she is as cute as can be...all 8 lbs & 21 1/4 inches of her.

Now that it's all said and done things are starting to hit me. I am so happy for them...but I'm on the verge of tears at any moment. I knew back when I found out that she was pregnant that it would be pretty tough on me to see her with brand new baby in hand, especially if I still didn't have any prospects for a new baby of my own. And of course, that's the situation I find myself in...

Like I said earlier, I really don't know how to sort it all out. For now I keep this dream close to my heart and I continue to pray that it becomes a reality.

by A Fine Frenzy

Running the race
Like a mouse in a cage getting nowhere
but I'm trying
Forging ahead
But I'm stuck in the bed that I made
so I'm lying

But if you keep real close
Yeah, you stay real close
I will reach you

I'm down to a whisper
In a daydream on a hill
Shut down to a whisper
Can you hear me still

Eager to please,
Trying to be what they need
But I'm so very tired
I've stopped trying to find
Any peace in my mind
Because it tangles the wires

But if you keep real close
Yeah, you stay real close
I will reach you

I'm down to a whisper
In a daydream on a hill
Shut down to a whisper
Can you hear me
Can you hear me still

The sound tires on my lips
To fade away into forgetting

I'm down to a whisper
In a daydream on a hill
Shut down to a whisper
Can you hear me
Can you hear me

I'm down to a whisper
In a daydream on a hill
Shut down to a whisper
Can you hear me
Can you hear me still

Monday, March 8, 2010

Today's post is brought to you by the number 4

Can you believe it? We only have 4 WEEKS TO GO! Just one month! Well, OK - I'm 32 weeks along, which means that technically we have two months. But if these boys stick to the average and make their debut at 36 weeks, that means we only have four short weeks to go!

It could be as as long as six weeks if the twins decide they'd like to be baked a while longer, but my doctor has informed me that he probably won't allow me to go past that, not only because of the stress on my body, but due to the gestational if we do make it to 38 weeks, I'd be looking at an induction. However, he also thinks it's fairly likely that I'll naturally go into labor before then, so right now we're just focusing on making it through the next month and hitting that 36 week goal.

There are a few reasons why we're trying to hang in there for the next month. First, after 35 weeks, your baby is basically done developing. Sure, they'll be smaller than a 40 week newborn, but for all intents and purposes everything is finished growing and the baby won't need to go to the NICU. The second reason is a bit more personal: the hospital in my little town will not take births before 36 weeks. If I go into labor before April 5 (Easter Monday), then I will need to call the maternity ward at my hospital to give them a heads up before I arrive, and they will then transfer me in an ambulance to an alternative hospital in another town about 45 minutes away. The maternity ward in this second hospital has a great reputation, so I'm not worried about that, but from a practical standpoint (such as ease of driving for Mr Bibliosaur) it would be preferable to stay in our town.

Some days - like today - it seems like it will be so easy to make it to 36 weeks. My Braxton Hicks contractions have significantly reduced since I stopped working (I didn't realize just how much stress simply going to work was putting on my body, but I was getting BH contractions all.the.time), I'm lying comfortably on the couch, most of my bodyparts aren't hurting, and I'm well rested. Other days, it seems like there is simply no way in the world that we can make it another month - when the pain in my hips is so bad that I can't sleep at night, when my stomach muscles are screaming for this strain to end, when my multitude of stretchmarks are growing as wide as my little finger because the babies have run out of room to grow upward or forward and are now stretching my belly and my skin sideways (and oh my god but those stretchmarks ITCH!).

So for now, I'm taking things the only way I can: one day at a time. Some days are easier, some days are harder, but every day is another step toward our goal. Wish me luck, and send some "stay in there for another 4 weeks" vibes!

Friday, March 5, 2010

A Little Boy's Wish

I've held on to this piece for some time now. I always wanted to use it in my personal blog but never had the courage to post it. I feel this is a better place for this post and hope it gives a little better insight as to why having another child is so important to DH & I.

I feel pretty lucky to be the eldest of five children. Sure there were times growing up that I didn't always feel this way. The time my little bothers decided to drive a remote control car through my hair... not so much! The many times people would ask how old my daughter was... never too excited to answer that question. But now that my siblings are all grown up, (almost anyway), I feel truly blessed to have them in my life. 

It's hard for me to imagine life w/out siblings. My hubby waited twenty years for a little sister... I'd say it was well worth the wait! DH and I had always said that we would wait till DS turned two and then begin trying for a brother or sister for him. God has had different plans for us and at times that wait has been almost unbearable. Still, we hold out hope that one day it will be the right time for us.

A few months ago I read an article in my Parents magazine about a little boy who was wishing for a brother or sister. The parents had been trying for years to conceive a second child and had almost given up hope. The boy had never mentioned that he secretly longed for a sibling and it was only after a PT conference at his school, that they discovered his wish. The parents were asked to look through a group of drawings done by the boy's classmates and himself. They were to find the picture that their son had drawn... the pictures were family portraits. After looking and looking the mother finally picked a picture of a family consisting of a mom & dad, a little boy and a baby. She had picked right.

When the parents asked their son why he had drawn the baby in their family's portrait he told them he was the only child in his class w/out a sibling and that he hoped someday he'd have one too! The boy got his wish and the article went on to tell about an essay the boy had written about his little brother. It was very moving and as I stood in our kitchen in tears, DS looked at me and asked, "what's wrong Mommy, why are you crying?"

The thought of DS growing up alone breaks my heart! We've asked him several times if he'd like to have a baby brother or sister and he always says yes but he's very young and until we had this conversation, I thought it was just an answer.

I watch a little boy a couple times a month. He has been coming to stay with us since he was only 4 weeks old. DS loves spending time with him! A few months ago, DS and I were busy "talking through the animals", as I like to call it... (it's play that involves the both of us pretending to be an animal and saying the things we think they'd say to one another.) DS was a bee and I was a dragonfly. The bee asked the dragonfly if he had a brother, I answered "yes", (for the dragonfly). The dragonfly asked the bee if he had any brothers or sisters, the bee answered, "Yes, I have a little brother. He doesn't sleep at out house but we take care of him and I wish he lived w/ us."

I went on to explain to DS that "baby boy" would miss his Mommy and his Mommy would miss him. He then asked if we could have a baby come live w/ us... I wasn't sure what to say. I told him that Daddy and I would like that very much and we would try really hard to make that happen for our family. And that's what gets me through all of the frustration and heartache that comes w/ TTC!

The "To-Do" List

A while back my DH and I saw a commercial for a new sitcom about married couples. I can't recall now what the show was called but a one-liner stood out to me for obvious reasons. The wife said to her husband, "Do you feel as though the romance has sort of vanished now that we have to add sex to our to-do list?"

Does anyone else feel this way? I totally relate to this character every month when our week of "hopeful baby-making" comes. Both calendars in our house have this week marked in different colors to show which days are more important that we stay awake long enough to try. It's not at all about showing each other love and affection anymore but rather about making sure that we are giving it our best shot for the month!

I think we are both a little relieved when the week has passed, the pressure's off and neither one of us have to worry about being in the mood or not. We can do what we married couples do, watch sitcoms and go to bed early!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

On to Cycle #7.....

Mr. Pharmasaur and I have returned from Mexico where we had a nice, relaxing holiday.

We didn't invite AF along on our trip, but I was prepared, just in case she decided to join us. A few days into the trip, I had several days of spotting and at first, I was hopeful that it was implantation bleeding. I religiously kept taking my BBT while on vacation. That means I was taking my temp at 4:45 a.m. local time each morning! When I saw my temperature take a nose dive on the Saturday morning, I knew that AF would be visiting on Sunday morning. And she did. We flew home Sunday morning so she wasn't too much of an inconvenience while we were on our trip. Except for the spotting. I was disappointed that I didn't even get to take a HPT this cycle. My CBFM gave me a peak reading for the first time last cycle. FF thought I O'd on CD11 and said our intercourse timing was good. So, I got my hopes up and started to get excited at the possibility of maybe getting pregnant again.

You can take a peek at my FF chart here if you are interested.

So this is now Cycle #7 of TTC since the miscarriage on July 24, 2009. On February 24, we were in Mexico and it was the first time I didn't think of the anniversary date of the miscarriage. I remembered when we got back home and I felt guilty for not thinking of it on the actual date. I was distracted by being on holiday and perhaps I am starting to heal from the loss. But I still get teary and wistful thinking about the precious baby that we lost. And I sometimes still feel angry, frustrated and question "Why us?" I wish no one ever had to go through this devastating experience.

I had seen a gynecologist on February 9th who was referring me to a fertility specialist. I called the Fertility Clinic today and they have no record of the referral. So, I need to call the gynecologist back and ask them to fax the clinic. I imagine it will take several months to get an appointment with them and I'm not getting any younger!

I made an appointment for next week with a Naturopath who specializes in fertility issues. I think she will probably make nutrition and lifestyle recommendations. She also uses a lot of acupuncture and homeopathy in her practice. I imagine she will also recommend some supplements for me to take. I am doing everything I can think of now, so Mr. Pharmasaur and I have agreed to take these next steps.

I will continue to use my CBFM, chart on FF including my BBT, and do the BD every other day (at least!) until my O is confirmed by FF.

Any other tips you can share that helped you to conceive would be most welcomed!

I like to have things spelled out

In all things fertility, I like to have things spelled out for me. And the clearer and simpler, the better. Hence, why I purchased the CBEFM, which I great big puffy heart right now. No, really. My CBEFM is the boss. Whatever it says, goes. When it says my fertility is high I know it´s time to get down to business, and when it says Peak, well then it´s time to really, really make an effort. In the past I relied on temping and my VIP membership at Fertility Friend to help, but I let my VIP membership lapse and just used the basic features for charting, doing the guess work on my own. Totally do-able if your cycle is fairly regular and you´ve gotten the hang of things, but not as much fun as letting someone else do it! But I do love that they´ve already figured out my due date for me--always the optimist!

I logged into my FF account to add my fertility signs and my monitor readings and discovered that Fertility Friend had given me another 5 day trial! What perfect timing as I actually had some data to use. I love the calendar, and I love that it spells everything out so neatly. So my test date is March 18th. Now I have no reason to test early because FF has so very kindly spelled it out for me.

Oh, and should I not get KU this cycle, my predicted O date is April 1st....could this be an April Fool´s joke? I guess we´ll find out, or not.

I love the testing count-down shown on my chart. It would probably be more fun to look at my chart if it actually had some temperatures in it, but I gave that up in December. Maybe I should start again? Nah, my monitor is way more fun.

And last but not least, the cycle wheel. I´m such a nerd. You can never have to many graphics to represent your cycle....

Lose the Weight, Gain a Baby

My story is really pretty simple! Girl meets boy, they fall in love, get married, have a baby, buy a house, move to the country... and spend over a year TTC a second child! I guess that last part is where things get complicated!

Our first pregnancy wasn't planned, infact, we were on BC at the time! I always thought that avoiding pregnancy would be more of an issue for us than TTC. Boy was I wrong! After our son was born we immediately got back on the pill and about a year later went off again. I have had some problems with blood clots and my Dr. thought it was in my best interest NOT to be on the pill anymore.

For the first year we explored other options of BC but when our son turned two we decided it was time to start trying for a second child... he will be four in October! We have had some "success", (I guess you could call it). Last January we discovered that we were expecting and two days later, we weren't expecting anymore! In March we decided to try again but again at seven weeks we were no longer pregnant!

In July I made an appointment to see my doctor. I decided at that point that maybe it would be a good idea to have some blood work done. Everything came back normal and we were told to start trying over the counter ovulation kits. We did this for awhile with no success so we stopped spending the extra money and started using an online ovulation calculator.

In January (of this year), I decided that instead of calling a specialist (like my friends had all suggested we do), I would go on a diet. I have been watching what I eat and working out for the past two months and have lost over 30 pounds. I truly believe that my weight has affected our chances at conceiving and I hope that with losing the weight, we'll gain a baby!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Big Baby?

My midwife suspects that I'm growing a large baby. Hopefully not quite as large as the statue above, however.

Yesterday I had my 37-week check-up. According to some sources, I'm now officially full term. Other sources prefer to call that near term, and peg actual full term at 38 weeks. Either way you look at it, I'm pretty darn close to having this baby. And if you listen to my midwife, he's pretty much ready to come out!

Now, I do take this with a grain of salt, because any estimate of fetal size is a guess - perhaps an educated one, but still a guess. But yesterday at my appointment, after palpating my uterus rather extensively, the midwife told me she thinks Baby Ben is already approaching 8 lbs. We have a growth ultrasound scheduled for tomorrow afternoon - but again, I've heard plenty of stories of people who were told after an u/s they were going to have a large baby, and the baby ended up weighing 1-2 lbs less at birth than what they were told.

So, I'm staying calm and not getting up in arms about it. I'm going for the ultrasound, and am actually pretty excited about it. We've only had one other, and I honestly thought that would be it. So we're excited to get to see our son (and, you know, double check that he really is our son) one last time before delivery.

Due date is three weeks from today, and if this large baby thing is true, they'd like to see me go early rather than late. I wouldn't mind that either way, honestly. But since we're using a birth center, they won't be inducing any time soon. So it's still a waiting game, either way. Come on, (Big?) Ben! We want to meet you!

Ovulation Time I Think?

Being diagnosed with PCOS makes sense. My cycles jump all over the place. Last time I went from 63 days to 28 days and today is day 29. I was supposed to go to the RE's office last Monday to see if I had ovulated but I wanted to wait and see if AF came on her own. I was getting the right CM around day 14 which would be on par for course for a 28 day cycle. My CM even dried up for a few days but then it started getting creamy. Monday the Mister and I went and saw a movie at lunch time and when I went to the bathroom I checked the t.p. (because that is what people who are trying do) and saw EWCM. I thought maybe it was a fluke. After the movie I of course had to go again and there it was again. So I told the hubs to get ready for baby dancing tonight.

Although I thought I may have ovulated earlier I never felt ovulation pains which is weird for me. This time I felt it last night so I am pretty sure I ovulated last night plus my EWCM continued big time yesterday, it was the most I have seen yet. So hopefully that is a great sign and we have been baby dancing every day since Monday and will continue until Friday.

Mr. Relaxasaur and I have been talking about fertility treatments or the possibility of just waiting. Some people say to just wait because our insurance wont cover fertility treatments. Humana said they would cover diagnosing but now I am getting billed $764 because they are denying the claims. We have been torn but sitting and waiting for my ovulation is exhausting because you never know when its going to come. We decided that we were going to wait this cycle and if it doesn't happen then we will go in for the clomid treatment.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Living with GD

No one wants to get gestational diabetes - that really goes without saying. But it does happen, and I'd like to say one thing about it: it's not that bad.

No really - it's not! I'm not just saying that to make myself feel better or to downplay the risks it brings to your pregnancy (because it does bring some risks). But it's really not as bad as it sounds, or as difficult to live with as you might think.

Let's talk about food. While it's true that you do have to cut back on refined carbohydrates (sugars, white bread, potatoes, white rice...basically the white foods), it's not like there's nothing left to eat. I can still eat carbs - in fact, I HAVE to eat them because your body and your babies need a certain amount of carbs at every meal - but they're in a different form. Instead of regular potatoes, I eat sweet potatoes. Instead of white bread, I have wholegrain bread. Instead of white rice, I cook Basmati rice (which to most people looks and tastes virtually the same as white rice anyway). I can still have pasta, as long as it's a reasonable serve and not a massive bowl - in fact, last night I had delish homemade mac&cheese as a side dish!

My guidelines from my dietitian are that I have 30 grams of carbs at breakfast, 45g at both lunch and dinner, and 15-30g at snacks (at least two snacks per day, between meals). It's important that the carbs are paired with a protein, which helps to slow the sugar's absorption into your system. Here's what I might have on a typical day, just as an example:
Breakfast: yogurt with 1/4 cup of muesli, or 2 scrambled eggs with a slice of toast and a glass of milk
Morning snack: 2 wholegrain crackers with cottage cheese (my crackers are quite large, so you may need more depending on what kind you have), or some mini pretzels with cheese
Lunch: chicken or tuna with lettuce on wholegrain seeded bread and a handful of grapes, or a chef salad that includes mixed beans, cheese and some kind of meat
Afternoon snack: apple with 2 tablespoons of peanut butter, or a pear with a few slices of cheese
Dinner: Thai chicken curry with basmati rice on the side, or maybe a couple burritos with beef, beans and other toppings (reduced carb tortillas are my new favorite thing!)
So as you can see, I still eat good food, and plenty of it - there are even a ton of delicious dessert recipes out there (helloooo cheesecake), so you can still satisfy that sweet tooth! I actually feel a bit odd even calling this a "diet" since it's really just the way we should all eat normally anyway.

All of this said, I will be honest: the last two weeks have been frustrating. Not because of the food, but because of how my body has been reacting to it. My doctor wanted to try controlling the GD with diet alone initially, so that's what we did. And it wasn't working for me. I was very, very careful with my meals - everything was weighed or measured to make sure that I was getting the correct portion sizes - and my blood sugar levels were still all over the chart. In fact, I could eat something one day, get a great blood sugar reading, then eat the exact same thing the next day and get a ridiculously high number. No matter what I did, I just couldn't get it to stabilize - and for someone as habitually in control as I am, this is immensely frustrating!

So yesterday I saw the doctor who is overseeing my GD, and as of today I'm on insulin. It may sound strange, but I was actually pretty eager to start the drugs - I want to get this under control, and I want to do that as fast as possible, so once it became clear that food alone wasn't going to work, I was impatient to move on to the next step.

Because both my fasting and post-meal blood sugar was high, I've been prescribed two different types of insulin. The first is a rapid release dose which I take three times a day, 10 minutes before each main meal - this helps my body absorb and cope with the sugar from the food I'm about to eat. The second is a once-a-day dose that I have at bedtime - it operates in the background for 24 hours to keep my fasting sugar levels stable so I'm not on a sugary roller coaster.

I don't have a needle phobia, but I was still a little nervous about having to inject insulin into my abdomen four times a day. But it really isn't that bad - in fact, it's actually less painful than the finger pricks you have to do to check your blood sugar. You use an epipen (or, in my case, two different epipens for the different insulins), and the needles are quite small and thin, so aside from an initial light pricking sensation, you don't really feel anything.

So there you have it! I hope it gives everyone a better understanding of what living with GD is like, and I want anyone out there who has just been diagnosed to see that it's really not that bad - you don't have to survive on bland food while being stabbed with 5" needles. And best of all, it's not forever, but just until you give birth!