I am very
pasty deathly sickly-anemic white fair complected. I also bruise very easily. I have been taking baby aspirin since the last miscarriage and even this makes me bruise severely from acupuncture needles. Pathetic, I know.
The Lovenox shots are an even more powerful blood thinner, and you
stab gently administer the pre-filled syringe into your abdomen. The main short-term side effect is bruising at the stab injection point. You can imagine how I might look after a few weeks of this; it is pretty ugly even after one day.
Hope is here and it comes in the form of a cheap blue icepack. Per my nurse’s recommendation, I iced the injection site this morning, then injected myself (without pinching the skin this time) and then immediately put the ice pack back on it. Et voila! No hideous bruise! Less pain! No residual stinging!
I was up until 3AM grading papers (it took me a long time because, uh, it was really hard to concentrate on poorly written undergraduate papers when you, uh, have something else on your mind) and then I feel into a deep sleep almost instantly. I woke up feeling … emotionally good. I even reminded myself that my first beta was kind of sucky, but I still felt good (a few recitations of the mantra helped, too).
I tempted fate and POAS. The line is darker than yesterday. Not a huge difference, but definitely darker. My levels, therefore, are at least not going down. This afternoon I peed on an OPK and the second line is now very dark (almost positive) and is considerably darker than yesterday. This all means a whole lot of nothing, but it isn’t bad news.
I have not freaked out. I have not fallen apart. I have not crumpled from the stress.
I am now, however, going to take a nap.
And my boobs are KILLING me.
Dr. Google is a bastard. A BASTARD, I tell you.
Some doctors in his group say a beta of 25 is needed to confirm pregnancy; others say 10. Some say the “average” for 12 dpo is 50; others say only the rate of increase matters.
Here is what I am doing: trying not to think about it.
My new mantra:
I have no control over the ultimate outcome of this pregnancy.
This is happening at a cellular level and is not yet even visible to the naked eye.
I am doing absolutely everything I can do, which in the scheme of things is not much, to ensure a healthy pregnancy.
I had to test early, in order to know when to start the RPL (recurrent pregnancy loss) protocols. I was not a masochist on purpose.
I was actually getting hopeful, because I had a wave of nausea and increased boob soreness. Then I remembered that I am on progesterone. Rats.
I can’t take the HCG injections until after Wednesday (beta #2 is scheduled for 8:45AM), because, obviously, it will negate the beta. If the beta is good, I start the HCG injections (twice a week) and that will forever end my POAS obsession.
I have taken 12 pregnancy tests and several OPKs.
I am not doing a good job of not thinking about it, am I?
(MANTRA. Lather, rinse, REPEAT.)
Dr. Short-but-Sweet does not mess around. He means bizznazz.
I showed up at 9:01 today (they are open at 7AM for procedures but do not answer the phones until 9:00) and told them that while I was aware that I was supposed to call in advance for an appointment, it wasn’t going to happen this morning. I am here. You will see me. Okay? They were okay.
I knew about the baby aspirin, progesterone, prenatal vitamins (duh!? when trying to get pregnant? really?), and the Lovenox ($125 a month WITH my insurance) but I didn’t know they would also put me on HCG injections ($90 a month WITH my insurance) for the first ten weeks. My poor stomach almost retched just looking at the box of injections, because HCG and my stomach are sworn enemies.
They also drew the blood for the beta. The nurse told me to call back at 11:00 for the results. I patiently waited until 11:03 (because I was stuck in two different pharmacies trying to get the medications, not because I am patient) and then she told me that the lab had not “run” my blood yet so I should call back at 11:30. I have 13 minutes to kill.
In the meanwhile, I am going to shove another progesterone suppository up my bajingo and then read through my “RECURRENT PREGNANCY LOSS MEDICATION PROTOCOL” one more time.
I patiently waited until 11:37 and then called back. Still no results yet. Apparently the lab technician this morning is “a little slow.” What I said: “When can I call back, then?” What I thought: “FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY AND RIGHT IN THIS WORLD PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE HIRE A FUCKING EFFICIENT LAB TECH.” I can call back at 12:30PM.
HCG = 15.5 (11 or 12dpo)
Progesterone = 22
TSH = 2.58
HCG sounds low to me; last pregnancy I was 35 at 11dpo. Dr. Google says anything above 100 on 14dpo is good. FUCK. Mine does not sound so promising. Please, please, please let it shoot through the roof in the next two days.
I am not going to freak out. Instead, I am going to give myself what I hope will be the first of many Lovenox injections. Repeat beta on Wednesday.
DAMN that hurt!!! I did it all by myself. It only bled a little, but it still smarts. DAMN!!
I POAS tonight and it was positive, but just barely. Granted, it is a different brand and I was not using first-morning urine, but it will still disconcerting.
Then, to make myself feel better, I peed on an OPK. In theory, if you are pregnant, and OPK should be positive, too. Mine was negative.
And the cramping is getting worse.
I have a horrible fear that I my beta is going to be very low, or non-existent. I know the progesterone will stop any flow, but good golly this is stressful.
So I am off
to sleep to lay in bed and close my eyes.
This gesture is only so I can POAS in the morning with more concentrated pee and then start obsessing over everything all over again.
I must be a brand-name snob because once the “First Response” pregnancy test turned positive this morning, it felt real. Not “I am going to have a baby” real, but “I now have HCG in my system” real.
I called my RE per his orders (“Call me AS SOON as you get a positive pregnancy test”). I assumed since he is an RE with a God-complex (a prerequisite of the job, I am quite sure) that he worked on Sunday. I got through to the nurse-on-call, who told me to double the progesterone dose (200 mg twice a day instead of once a day) and call “first thing tomorrow” for an initial beta and a prescription and lessons for my Lovenox injections.
I am surprisingly calm, all things considered. I am sure the freaking-out will ensure in the next few days. Either that or I will start bleeding and completely fall apart.
Here is what you are not allowed to say:
1) “The third time’s the charm.” Please, please, please don’t say that or I will hate you forever.
2) “I just know everything is going to work out this time.” You don’t know. You think you may know, you may want to believe it will work out, but you don’t know. If you perhaps do really know, you should be doing bigger things with your omnipotent power than reading miscarriage blogs.
3) “Just keep thinking positive.” Yeah, that doesn’t work. Biology works in mysterious ways. If thinking positively could change the outcome of things, there would be no miscarriage/infant loss blogs.
I was a winner of Niobe’s give-away so it is now my turn to pay it forward.
GET A SNAIL-MAIL SURPRISE FROM MC!!
The only rule is that if you “win” you need to make the same offer available on your own blog. (Oh, and if you win, you also need to give me your snail-mail address. I will e-mail you for it if you are a winner.) (Wait, YOU ARE ALL WINNERS. What I meant was if you are a winner of this particular contest.)
The first five people who self-nominate themselves in the comments section win!
Here is what I will not mail you:
1) The negative pregnancy test I impulsively took today at 7dpo.
2) Any negative pregnancy tests for that matter.
3) Anything that you pee on.
4) Anything that will remind you of miscarriage, dead babies, or other sad things.
5) Dental floss.
As it was Fertility Eve, I was grading my midterms (26 all-essay undergraduate exams) in order to prepare for our week o’lovin and, as luck would have it, Ms. Planner also nominated me for the “8 Things About Me” meme. I am done with all my grading, we are lovin’ed out, and now I finally have time to post this.
Thing #1: I applied to and almost went to the U.S. Naval Academy. I did get a congressional nomination, but, alas, I did not get in because I wear glasses and did not qualify for a vision waver. In hindsight, it would have been an awful fit. At the time, I was devastated. Now, people that know me think this is hilarious because it was obviously such a spectacularly bad idea.
Thing #2: I was raised Episcopalian. My husband is Jewish. We will raise any future children (should we ever get to that point) as secular humanists.
Thing #3: I have an unhealthy obsession with office supplies. Seriously. Not the computer kind, but the real kind: pens, sticky notes, folders, notebooks, etc…. I could easily drop hundreds and hundreds of dollars in an office supply score and spend the rest of the day giggling gleefully over my purchases.
Thing #4: I am 5’9″. I have been this height since I was 12 and no, junior high was not fun. Now, I wish I were taller by just a few more inches. I think 5’11” sounds like a lovely height — tall enough to be tall but not quite 6′ tall. In the meanwhile, I am 5’11” in my “power boots.”
Things #5: I do not regularly wear shoes that cost less than $100. My favorite brands are Dansko, Paul Green, and Cole Haan. I really want to wear high heels as I appreciate their aesthetic, but I have very little tolerance for discomfort.
Thing #6: My husband and I were married by a female judge. Neither one of us cared where we got married and we did not want a religious ceremony (although the same can not be said for my uber-WASPy parents). I also do not believe in engagement rings, but if I tell you why, you will think that I sound like a raving crazy because I will use words like “patriarchal,” “commodity” and “superficial expression of emotion.” Not wanting a huge diamond apparently makes me a bad WASP. Instead we spent money on a 10-day honeymoon in Paris.
Thing #7: I once watched “That 70’s Show” so often that I regularly had dreams I was a cast member. I was always Hyde’s girlfriend, but I also got along really well with Donna.
Thing #8: I am a complete slob and an utter perfectionist. An unlikely combination, I know, but I think that I so completely anal-retentively obsess over some things that I have no time or energy to care about others. In my public life I think I come across as very organized; my living room, bookshelves, and bedroom are, however, a complete cluttered mess. The kitchen is only clean because Mr. MC keeps it that way.
I now nominate Babystep for the “8 Things About Me” meme. Babystep, you’re IT!!
I would really, really, really like an overpriced Fourbucks drink right now. Something iced, caffeinated, milky, and filled with lots and lots of sugar. It is 10PM and I still have 8 papers left to grade for tomorrow.
Iced drinks are bad for colitis.
Caffeine is bad for colitis.
Milk is bad for colitis.
Sugar is bad for my immune system, which is ultimately bad for colitis.
Instead I am having hot organic herbal ginger tea.
This is what I have been reduced to at 32 years of age: I now sit around at night, sip unsweetened herbal tea while mumbling a feigned “mmmm” with every sip, (pretend to) grade undergraduate papers, fantasize about overpriced coffee drinks from a chain coffee shop, and write on my miscarriage blog to avoid having to actually grade said papers.
I thought my ulcerative colitis was getting better, but now it is undeniably getting worse.
I have been taking the full retinue of my colitis medicine for two weeks, and usually it has started working by now. I even took 15mg of prednisone (the dreaded steroid) this evening — desperate times.
I am torn because I was having colitis issues right before my first pregnancy, and as soon as I was 2 weeks along, it threw me right into remission. Most doctors, however, do not recommend trying to conceive while actively in a flare because there is a chance that pregnancy can make it worse. It was only one month ago that my poop doctor actually advised me to get pregnant as soon as possible because my blood chemistry was so good.
I am on cycle day 3 so I have about a week to get this flare under control. Stress is not good for colitis, so I can not stress about getting this flare under control.
I am completely off of caffeine for the short-term, though. It is bad for colitis and bad for fertility.
The absolute worst way to try and not to worry about something is to tell yourself that worrying about it will only make it worse. I feel quite awful, and I have so much work to do. This was supposed to be one of those productive weekends; instead I laid around in bed, except, of course, when I was in the bathroom.
The thought of having to wait another month before trying again makes me frantic and depressed. I feel like all I have done is wait. If it is grammatically possible to even say this, I am all waited out. I got my period after miscarriage #2 on July 10. It is now October 7th and for one reason or another, we only “tried” in August. It’s not that our excuses weren’t good — waiting for the thyroid medicine to kick in, hospitalization for a collapsed lung, etc… — but I just can not wait any longer. This is not even waiting for a healthy baby. This is waiting for the opportunity to try for something that has only a 1/5 chance of actually working, then waiting to see if it worked, then waiting to see if it sticks, then waiting to see if everything is okay so far — and that is only the first 6 weeks.
My therapist says that I believe in “magical thinking.” I feel that if I worry/obsess over something enough, I can effect the outcome; if I don’t, bad things will happen due to my lack of attention. It sounded weird when she said it, but I guess it is true. When I let my guard down, when I dare to be happy for a pregnancy or a long period of remission, bad things do happen, it seems. Perhaps it is more comforting to think that I did something to cause it instead of the reality that bad things just happen. Perhaps it gives me fleeting sense of control?
I have been playing phone tag with my allergist’s office for days. I have not been in to their office since this time last year, when I was a few weeks pregnant with pregnancy #1. I finally spoke with them today to find out why they are not refilling my vial of immunotherapy drops. Apparently, it is because they want me to redo all of my skin testing.
Me: “Why do you need to redo all of my skin testing?
Office Lady: “Well, we just want to make sure that what is being put in your allergy vial is still what you are allergic to.”
Me: “Why would it have changed?”
Office Lady: “After the baby is born, sometimes the mother’s allergies change — new things can pop up and other things can disappear? Pregnancy is a very powerful thing!!”
Me: “So I hear. Don’t worry, I had a miscarriage. And then another one a few months later. I am quite sure I was not far along enough either time to change anything.”
Office Lady: “Oh, er, uh, oh, ummmmm, I am so sorry. (Dramatic pause; quite sure I am able to hear a pin drop in background.) Ummmm, can you stop by tomorrow to pick everything up and just meet quickly with the nurse practitioner? We obviously need to update your records.”