Sunday, July 31, 2011

It was a very busy week

Thank God Stella did not have hand foot and mouth disease.  She also didn’t have any more bouts of night terrors.  I’m also feeling better.  Some of the fluid has dissipated and I no longer am quite as uncomfortable.  My mom’s visit was great over the first weekend Tim was gone.  The week went by fast, and we did miss him, but we also had some fun.  Dinner with friends on Monday, a great walk with Bea on Tuesday and good evenings together the rest of the week.  I even got to take the day off on Friday and take Stella to her music together class.  I really have not given Tim enough credit for taking her the past weeks.  Totally not his thing at all!  We sang together and did silly things and the kids ran around.  Not that he can’t be silly, but it just shows how much he loves that crazy little girl that he sat on the floor and sang silly songs and made faces with another group of adults.  We met up with friends Saturday morning for a short park play session and then Stella and I both had great naps before Tim and the team returned Saturday evening.
I haven’t heard all the stories, but the mission trip was successful.  Homes were repaired, new connections made and the whole group really got to experience the transformative power of faith and being the hands and feet of Christ.  The girls apparently rocked at manual labor and wielding tools.  The pig at the home where Tim and his team worked even friended the them on facebook.  Not too bad for a week’s work! 
We’re hanging in there for the ultrasound on Thursday.  I’m not feeling great.  There is cramping and a little bit of spotting, so I’m trying to be hopeful without being unrealistic.  We’ve been talking a little bit about what it might mean if this round is also a no-go.  I’m not sure what that would be, yet.  We’ll cross the bridge when we need to.  Most importantly, even if this is a flat-out bust, we’re in this together and I’m so grateful for my wonderful husband.  I had to wait a long time to find him, I guess waiting even longer to build the family we so desire isn’t the worst that could happen!  
Stella has been extra cute the past few weeks, and that makes me want a second child even more.  I know that another child will be his/her own person and not exactly like Stella, but having daily reminders of how amazing it is to bring a child into the world and nurture their growth just reinforces parenting is worth all this bother. 
Now, it's off to bed for my very, very, very early morning flight to check out some flour mills.  The new job in quality is always keeping me on my toes! 

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Not getting any worse . . .

So that’s doesn’t sound terribly exciting – not getting any worse – but believe me it is a step in the right direction!  Tim left today for ASP (mission trip, Appalachia Service Project) and will be gone all week.  So Stella and I get to hang out and do our thing together.  This hardly ever happens, although Tim and Stella spend a lot of one on one time when I travel.   I was really looking forward to this week until I started feeling so crappy with the OHSS stuff.  Mom is here for the weekend, and will take Stella to day care on Monday before she heads home, so that takes some of the pressure off.  I really need to go to work on Monday. 

I’m also trying not to obsess too much about the beta test on Monday.  The thing is, we’ve been here before.  At least one of the pregnancies that didn’t make it had betas where the numbers weren’t quite going up as they should.  I don’t recall all the details of those cycles as I they were so stressful and sad that I didn’t keep track of all the details, let alone remember it.   I know we are incredibly lucky to have Stella and to have had one positive outcome.  That doesn’t cure me of wanting more of the awesome magic that we get to experience every day.  It’s almost more difficult because life with Stella is so great.    

Great in so many ways, except that she was exposed to a kid at day care that was diagnosed with hand, food and mouth disease.  Oh Lord, please do not let her have this!  I can’t deal with a sick kid when I’m barely dragging my butt around.  I also need to go to work, not take the week off because she can’t go to day care.  Oh yeah, the other thing I’m praying for is that no one else at day care gets it because half the kids there are Margie’s own, and if they are contagious, Stella can’t go.

 The other new, fun twist is Stella is experiencing night terrors.  These are the scariest things I have ever seen.  It is seriously like she is possessed.  Her eyes are wide open, she is screaming at the top of her lungs and practically foaming at the mouth.  She’s not awake and you can’t wake her up or soothe her very easily.  Not sure what to do about this.  The only thing that has worked so far has been to rock her and take her to the guest bedroom and hold her until she calms down.  She’s incredibly restless after that, but not screaming and going stiff as a board.  No one gets much sleep.  I’ll have to talk to other mothers and see if anyone else has dealt with it.  Hope I’m in a better frame of mind tomorrow! 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

When Ovaries Attack!

What happens when your ovaries overreact?  They get very angry and take it out on you.   Mine are quite miffed about having to work again for this cycle and the transfer.  They have overreacted and I’m experiencing Medium Ovarian Hyperstimulation (sure would hate to see severe!).  That means my abdomen has swelled so large with fluid that I look 6 months pregnant and I’m incredibly uncomfortable.  The nurse said after my ultrasound today “I’d be really uncomfortable if my ovaries looked like your do.”  I stayed in bed all day today and still don’t feel any better.  The extra blood work and everything seems like there isn’t any imminent danger, so I’m just supposed to take it easy.  Can’t really sit in a chair for very long, so going to work is out . . . trying to see how much work I can actually get done.  Very curious as to why the hyperstimulated ovaries result in abdominal fluid accumulation.  The reaction is supposed to peak at 3 weeks after the trigger shot (next Monday) so we'll see how well I survive. 

There is some (potential) good news.  The first beta test was 67 – very decent for me and in line with what we saw with Stella.  The second today was only 119 – not doubling like they want it to do.  We’ll retest on Monday and see where we end up.  I’ve been so sure (inside) that this round was going to work as well, that I’m a bit stunned by this non-doubling.  Still – it is what it is – and nothing I can do will change it.  We’re not down and out yet, but definitely not out of the woods.  Ultrasound on Aug. 4th will be more telling and then we’ll have an idea if the embryo has a heartbeat (which is should) and is progressing as it should otherwise.  We leave for our fabulous Maine vacation on the 11th.  Cutting it close – I know – but it’s how all the timing worked out.  We do have trip insurance if I’m going to miscarry, but that would totally suck in several ways.  No baby and no vacation.  Praying so hard it doesn’t come to that! 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Ugh! Who wants ovaries the size of hens eggs?

So your normal ovary is the size of a walnut.  Mine are currently at least the size of a regular egg, hedging toward tennis ball size.  Try stuffing that into the same space that was once a walnut.  My belly is so bloated that I look pregnant already.  Oh joy -- I really do want to look pregnant -- when I'm actually pregnant! 

I have one whole vial of Follistim in the fridge that I didn't even use.  I'll donate it to the RE practice as they will give it to someone who can use it and doesn't have coverage.  I only used about 50 IUs out of another vial, but that one can't be used by anyone else.  Such a waste of tiny little tubes that cost $400 each!  (Now that we're through the deductible, the meds only cost me 10% -- thank goodness for a bit of insurance coverage.  Our fist two cycles we paid full price for them out of pocket.  That really hurt!)

The process of getting through the last bits of monitoring and getting ready for the transfer really messed up our holiday weekend.  I had an appointment on Sunday morning.  Because it makes more sense for the holiday for the office to not do ultrasounds on Saturday and instead do them on Sunday.  Let's give everyone Saturday off, have them work Sunday and then have Monday off?  Not sure how that works, but such is life.  After the appointment on Sunday, the nurse told me to make an appointment for Tuesday morning for more monitoring.  Did that and took off to Chicago to see Kate, Jen and their families.  Just as we got to Chicago, the nurse called and told me the "good news."  No appointment on Tuesday, but I needed to do the trigger shot Monday night -- those specialty pharmacy meds were still in MI because the didn't need to be used until after that Tuesday appointment.  Sigh, we had to leave Monday afternoon to get back home in time to do the trigger shot.  All in all, we were in Chicago for less than 30 hours. 

We still managed to pack in quite a bit of fun into those 30 hours.  The kids played hard.  I've never seen Stella so busy.  She was the youngest there (the next in age is 2 1/2), but the older kids were great with her and she loved trying to mimic them.  Monday morning all the kids were so very tired, they practically fell asleep over breakfast.  We saw a great parade with, count 'em, three marching bands!  I do sure love me a parade with marching bands :-)  No fireworks, though, which really bummed me out.  I love, love, love fireworks.  Tim found the New York City ones on TV, and we watched them.  Outstanding, even on TV.  It made me remember all those years ago that I went into NYC with my friend Ivonne and watched the fireworks from a rooftop where a friend of hers lived. 

Embryo transfer is scheduled for Friday at noon.  Hope I survive until then with my achy swollen abdomen.  I seem to remember that this ovarian distension persisted for weeks after the transfer and into my pregnancy -- not sure if it was with Stella or with the previous pregnancies. Still, I'll take all of this and more for the chance to have another child. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Stella is a genius -- and we're in trouble!

One of the best things about parenting is the entertainment value in seeing your child learn and grow.  There is also usually some pride associated with it, like, "look at my kid!"  Today Stella hit a new milestone, one she is very proud of.  Me, not so much.  She learned how to take her diaper cover off.  For those of you who aren't familiar with cloth dipes, that means that the soggy, poopy cotton diaper was exposed and there were some suspiciously damp spots on her sheet.  She was very happy waking up from her nap and when I went in to get her from her, handed the cover to me with a great big grin!

Not a catastrophe, yet.  She hasn't learned how to take the snappie (the ingenious doohickey that holds the diaper closed) off.  Once that happens, well, we're in for even more fun!  Especially if it's a poopy diaper . . .

She's definitely hit a growth spurt in terms of learning how to do things.  She can now go up and down the shorter steps on the deck by herself.  She uses the railing to support herself and keep her balance.  She doesn't want to crawl down any set of stairs any longer, she waits for us to give us her hands so she can 'walk' down like everyone else does.  She's also decided that her sippy cups are no fun for water.  She wants to drink her water out of our sports bottles.  She's quite logical -- when she knew Daddy was in the back yard, but couldn't see him, she went to the window in the bedroom (at the other end of the house) to get the right angle to see him.  She's never looked out this widow before, but she just kept going until she could see Tim.  Give her enough time, and she can just about figure out how anything opens, or closes or which buttons to push to make it work.  And, she's loving the new iPad Tim has for class next year.  I hear toddlers understand how to make it iPads work really fast!  All of this is on target for her age (almost 18 months), and it is really keeping us on our toes. 

In other news, the drugs are still making me crazy, I've just started to get used to it.  Mostly I've just been eating a lot.  I call it eating my inner bitch into submission.   It's working, so far, but I can't continue this without a big weight gain.  One of the purposes for losing the baby weight and then some was to be at a healthier weight for this cycle to support a better chance of pregnancy.  

Our big plans for the weekend now won't start until Sunday afternoon because of the crazy holiday weekend schedule for the doctor's office.  They won't do ultrasounds on Saturday, but they're happy to do them on Sunday.  Huh?  Whatever, it is what it is, and I just have to suck it up.  I have a 7:30 appointment in GR (1 hr away) so it's an early start to the day, but that means we can get on the road early too.  There is a pretty good chance the next appointment will be Tuesday, so I hope we don't have to come home early. 

Happy 4th of July!  Hope you get to enjoy some great fireworks.