Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Updates of All Sorts

Hi, y'all.

I always wondered why so many bloggers suddenly stop posting as much after successfully getting knocked up. I figured mostly it was an abrupt slowing of narrative -- particularly compared to the flurry of data that was IVF, early pregnancy is pretty low-key, leaving less that needs urgent discussion. What never occurred to me was what I think now must be the real reason, at least for some people besides me: crazy exhaustion.

I can't complain much about my symptoms thus far -- I do spend at least part of every day trying desperately to avoid vomiting, but it's nothing like as bad as some have it; my waist vanished surprisingly early, despite my having lost several pounds in the past few weeks (not just OHSS weight, either), but I'm not sure my waist was ever one of my better features; my boobs hurt a lot, but I also love how they look -- but heavens, I am tired. If I get any more low-energy, I may actually become a houseplant. And at the moment, I am a houseplant trying to teach summer school and plan a wedding.

Which is to say, sorry for posting less. Things will likely pick up in two weeks, after I stop waking up at night to fret about the number of tables in the church hall we've rented or why my mother has decided we need a bubble machine.

Yesterday, however, was not a slow day. Yesterday, I learned that how you get results from the OB practice that has been saying they'd call you back for the better part of a week and won't let you even try to make an appointment (and at least this one takes both your insurance and new patients) is to have a hysterical, weeping tantrum about how upsetting it is that you can't get signed up with them, the RE has dismissed you from the clinic (so your insurance is done with them), and now you're spotting and have no where to go.

Suddenly, I had an appointment an hour later. I may not love the manner of the receptionist, but I must admit she did right by me.

The wee bean is fine, by the way. The sonographer was so sweet. She played the heartbeat for me when I couldn't find it on the screen and asked after it in a terrified voice. She printed out a very fuzzy picture without my asking. We had talked about IVF, and when I half-apologized for freaking out about what really was a very tiny amount of bleeding, she said, "You've been through a lot."

I met with an OB who isn't the one Dr. Baby Factory recommended, but I like her well enough, I think. The practice rotates all OB patients through all doctors, so I don't suppose it matters much who the main one is. She took my history and did a standard gyn exam, since it's been a year since my last pap. Paps, really, since I get to have two -- lucky me! She felt my uterus and said, "You feel pregnant!" That was surprisingly lovely to hear.

The less lovely part was when she said that my double-door womb situation may make a vaginal birth impossible. On one level, that's not surprising: obviously, I don't need a baby trying to come out of both cervices at once. Hearing it out loud was a bit of a gut-punch, though.

...and I have too much to say about *that* subject to possibly wrap this up in time to make it to school. So we'll have to pick that thread up later. The doctor did say "may" not "will," and we agreed to discuss it another time.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Hi everybody. Sorry it's been so long. We have been experiencing serious wedding related stress. But anyway . . . .

We had an exciting Monday! We went for the first ultrasound and saw a tiny pulsating 2 pixels on the screen (apparently a beating heart) and even heard the teeny tiny thing!

Here is our embryo, which, since it looks like a very small blob inside a slightly larger blob, looks like every other embryo, but hey, it's ours:

Friday, July 16, 2010

Bitchy Spam, Symptom/Crazy Watch, and So On

Dear Chinese spammers,

I know, I know, you don't read the blogs you spam. And it's true that I'll delete your comments no matter what, since they all contain those silly links that are long strings of ellipses. (While we're on the topic, the rule is three dots when the ellipsis falls mid-sentence, four if it ends the sentence. There's no call ever for using 15-20. I will deduct points for this error from now on.) Nevertheless, I'd appreciate it if your comments were at least not obliquely discouraging. Take my last post, for instance, the one where I was happy that my beta went up, even though I know the pregnancy could still end. I am fully aware that while the beta is a good sign, it is no guarantee of continued progress. Your comment, "one swallow does not a summer make" was frankly rude. I will expect better in the future.

Dear Rest of The Internet,

Hi. Sorry for the posting slow-down. Obviously, we're very happy (so far, knock-wood, spit-on-a-swallow) with the whole being knocked up thing, but it is true that compared to the daily shots and blood-draws and dildocamming of an IVF cycle, it's pretty uneventful. (Outwardly. I'm aware that in principle the Bionic apple seed is developing a circulation system and probably also learning the basics of Newtonian mechanics or something in there, but how in the heck do I know that, except that BabyObsessed.net or RUKILLINGURBAAAAAYYYYYBBBBEEEEEEEE?????.com or whatever says so? It's pretty hard to believe.)

So here's your update:

I am still intermittently convinced I've made this whole thing up. This is partly because I'm always paranoid I'm doing the wrong thing socially, and the most wrong thing I can think of in terms of the scheduled trip to the RE on Monday for a first u/s would be if I'd somehow misunderstood everything they've told me and am going to be up on the table with no pants for no reason, and someone will have to explain it to Sugar, so she can gently take me home. AWKward.

My boobs are mostly a comfort to me, as they are full and painful and the nipples are definitely looking different. But then yesterday morning, they were smaller and not that painful, leading to a wee nervous breakdown. (Hmmm, when has that happened before?) By evening, they were back to their new old selves. I keep chanting Shroe's "sanity-defying logic all their own" wisdom in my head.

The whole idea that I can't trust my body to tell me what's going on is very difficult to get used to. I'm accustomed to being able to figure out a fair amount by paying attention to small signals -- a certain sore throat means a virus is settling in; wacky vision means a migraine is coming -- and trying to ignore what seems like real information is unsettling.

I am having periods of nausea from time to time, most enjoyably during my 2-hour commute via a variety of public transit conveyances and hot waiting areas. No vomiting, but lots of sucking on ginger candies and fretting.

I can't say I'm having cravings per se, but I do have these moments when a very specific flavor will arrive in my memory (with no outside stimulus) and I have to spend a while thinking of what it is before I can do anything else. The first few times, the flavor proved to be beer, so I attributed the whole experience to my brain's liking beer and not understanding why we can't have some. Yesterday, however, the long-forgotten flavor that possessed me halfway through class was elementary school cafeteria fish sticks.

For that, I have no explanation.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

So Far, So Good

today's beta = 2988

So that's:

14dpo = 137
21 dpo = 2988

Doubling time = 1.57 days

Everyone at the Baby Factory seems happy with those numbers. (But the nurse I had today, whom I like a lot, seemed happy from the get go. She kept acting like I was pregnant, imagine that!)

U/S Monday after next.

Holy Shit.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Practicing Belief

Thank you again for all your kind congratulations and general huzzahing. I have read and reread the comments an embarrassing number of times. You are lovely.

Not much new to report around here. Crampiness seems to have tapered off. Have flirted with nausea a few times, but nothing serious yet. Might be having some new strangeness vis-a-vis temperature regulation, but it could be just that it's sensationally hot around lately. Progesterone has me sleeping like a drugged kitten.

I will but tease you with the suggestion that changes are afoot in the nipple region.

We will go in for a second beta on Saturday. Part of me is, of course, steeling for bad news. Why shouldn't the news be bad? Plenty of other news has been, for plenty of people. And just because my body has seemed pregnant this week doesn't mean everything couldn't be going south...right...NOW.

On the other hand, why shouldn't the news be good? People do have babies, after all, or at least that is the rumor. Pregnancies progress normally. Embryos become fetuses become infants. These things happen. To plenty of people, as well.

Since I can't know and there's not a thing I can do at this point to influence the situation (at least positively), I am for now practicing believing that the news will be good. Practicing believing there is a living tadpole of a creature in me now, that it will stay put and grow appropriately and come to meet us after a sufficient number of weeks.

Practicing believing those things doesn't make them true, of course, but it's a lot nicer than my usual habit, which is to practice believing everything will go terribly wrong. So I will spend tomorrow and at least half of Saturday doing that.

And staring at my nipples.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Blog Trouble

Quick inside-baseball post:

Blogger is eating my comments. As in, I get a nice email with your nice comment in it, but it never shows up on the blog itself. Which is sad, because some of you are really funny.

It's only been happening since last night, but I'm already driven a bit batty.

Has this happened to you?

If so, did it fix itself or did you have to do something?

Is this all a sign that we should pull up stakes and move to wordpress?

If so, is that hard?

If you have an answer to any of those questions, would you drop me an email? Theoretically I'll get your comments, but I'm losing faith in this whole blogger business....

bionicmamas AT gmail.


PS, THANK YOU for all your lovely comments. We love reading them, even if only in my email. Y'all rock.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Perfect Moments

Hey, y'all. Chez Bionique = still reeling. Happy, befuddled, occasionally panicking...never a dull moment, as they say.

Symptom watch includes mild (but not so mild that I wouldn't take an Advil under other circumstances) cramping, some fatigue, and -- I'm going to count this -- the biggest MFing cold sores I have had in easily 15 years. As in, where did the left side of my upper lip go? Yuck. Dr. Baby Factory says no taking anything, even L-Lysine. (Confession: I took some before I asked. I guess I'll not take any more. Probably.) Your miracle cures welcome.

I don't think I've ever managed to participate in Weeble's Perfect Moment Mondays, but Sunday had a couple of moments that bear recording, I think.

Here is Sugar, under the triumphal arch near our place:

A Piano At The Plaza

Piano courtesy of Play Me, I'm Yours

My father is a pianist. He played Beethoven, Chopin, Mozart, Bach every night of my childhood. Some of my favorite baby pictures are with him at the keyboard, in a carrier on his back or pounding the keys beside him like a real hambone. He put neon green stickers on the ends of an octave's worth of keys to teach me their names; I don't remember ever not knowing. For reasons related to the crippling shyness that characterized my early childhood, I never took lessons, so while I can play a little, not much, really. (Let's not go any further down that road, lest the crying start.)

Even when we were first "dating" (misnomer for typically lesbian reasons), I was comforted to think that Sugar's ability to play represented a kind of redemption on that count, that there would, after all, be someone to play for our children.

Which brings me to this:

Yes, I surely did go out and by the pricey kind only when I already knew what it would say. What of it?

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Pregnancy Test Day

Yesterday was Pregnancy Test Day. Which we also spent getting lost in Queens, driving all around Long Island and, for me, photographing the inside of an old couple's house.

We went to the clinic in our borrowed car and Baby got her blood drawn for the test. Then we proceeded to try to go to the beach at Robert Moses State Park, but first ended up shooting across the Queensboro bridge and not finding 495 at all. We eventually did get on the expressway and found the beach, but then we only had an hour before I had to go to my photo shoot.

The nurse had told Baby, "we'll call you in the afternoon, or maybe earlier." Turns out it was earlier because when we were once again on the road - I was actually navigating the roundabout when Baby noticed her missed calls - we had a message from the clinic.

"Should I check this?" she asked me.

"Yes!" I said. (Thinking: WTF, why would you wait even one second, like even to ask me that question?)

So she did, and then went through a whole series of facial expressions, from happiness to actual weeping, in about 7 seconds.

"Is it bad?" I asked.

"No! It's good!"

So, OMG BABY IS PREGNANT. For now. We realize that this is not the time to start telling the world (except for the internets, of course) but OMG! She has to go in for more tests next week, and in three weeks, an ultrasound to check for heart beat. HEART BEAT.

This does not feel completely real right now. But I'm sure it will soon.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Feeling Blue

When I woke up this morning, my boobs were no longer big and painful (nor as awesome-looking, I should add).

I don't understand how that can be the case, when I'm sticking 200mg of progesterone up my hoo-has three times a day, but as it is exactly what happens three days before my period every month, I'm not exactly brimming over with happiness.

Beta is Saturday. Not planning to POAS before then, as the thought of having to go in for the test when I know it's negative seems exquisite torture.

Yes, I know I have quite a few embryos in the freezer, but if I can't get pregnant with that embryo, the one that looked like it belonged on a fertility factory website (and it did; the picture I put up here was fuzzy, but I saw it onscreen), and with my "beautiful" lining, then it's hard to feel terribly hopeful.