Friday, June 24, 2011


School is finally over!  I've been out for a little over a week now, and I've definitely been enjoying all the extra free time at home.  I'm definitely jealous of all you SAHMs!  It's always hard to go back in August, and I have to keep reminding myself that I like my job--lol.

I'm currently 25 weeks 2 days.  Pregnancy is going great.  I really can't complain about anything.  The nurse gave me an "A+" on Wednesday for how everything is progressing.  She even commented on the fact that my comments section on my chart was almost empty, whereas a lot of women are already on a second page of comments from the number of times they have to call in and ask about stuff.

DH finally got to feel Caleb move a week ago Sunday!  I think it was more exciting for me than it was for him.  I felt like our conversations were always the same: Me-"Did you feel that?"  DH-"No."  And so on and so on.  So when he finally sad, "I think I did feel something," I was ecstatic!  Nowadays whenever I put his hand on my belly so he can feel Caleb move, he's not all that enthusiastic about it.  But as my sister pointed out, we'll have the rest of our lives to feel Caleb. :)

We're going to the beach tomorrow--a much needed vacation!  DH's uncle is renting a beach house for the week (7 bedrooms for 15 people).  I went out and bought a new bikini 3 days ago since my butt and boobs are too big for my old ones--haha.  I don't really care about covering up my belly at the beach.  I'm planning on using lots of sunscreen, and I don't have any stretch marks (yet).  The only thing I do have is the linea negra, which darkened at the beginning of this week.  The nurse said it was common in pregnancy and should fade after Caleb is born.

I'm still praying for all you ladies--especially the ones waiting for babies.  I have a feeling that I'll be back in that category after Caleb is born.  In a way, I still classify myself as a sub-fertile.

Here's me last week at 24 weeks 3 days, hiking in the Shining Rock Wilderness:

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Been MIA for too long & 21 weeks

Seems like I was just apologizing for this in my last blog, but taking a break from blogging has been very easy.  I think I was over-ambitious in trying to subscribe to so many blogs.  I think what I'm going to do is only read the blogs from people who subscribe to mine and not try to keep up with everyone under the sun.  I've even noticed myself taking a facebook hiatus and only logging on a few times a week instead of every day.  I think it's been good for me to have the extra time to spend with DH and lounge around to read.

I'm 21 weeks today.  We're having a boy!  Caleb Wade is due on October 5th :)  Here's an ultrasound pic from 2 weeks ago:
I'm in love <3

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sorry I've been absent!

So sorry I've been gone for a while!  It was easy to get out of the routine of blogging after a week's vacation, so I gotta get back at it!  Here's my little quick takes:

1. I won't post too much about Mother's Day since that seems to be rampant in the rest of the blogs, but I wanted to say that I wish my church had added something in the petitions along the lines of "for all women longing to be mothers".  It seems like the focus is always on biological mothers, and women who want to be mothers are left in the dark.  I did appreciate that when my church asked for mothers to stand up and be recognized, they said "mothers, stepmothers, grandmothers, adoptive mothers, spiritual mothers, godmothers, and mothers-to-be".  I liked that it included every kind of mother you could possibly think of!

2. I got a few of the "next year will be your first REAL mother's day!" comments.  It was a little hard to take, but I shrugged it off.  Baby, apparently you'll be REAL next year, even though I can feel you fluttering in my womb.

3. Yesterday I had my ultrasound done by my neighbor at the local community college.  DH couldn't come with me, so I brought his cousin, J.  I told her that I didn't want to find out the gender until my doc appt tomorrow when DH and I could find out together.  But I did get to see the baby moving and kicking and all four chambers of the heart!  It was the coolest thing I've ever seen.

4.  My mom bought us baby furniture as our big gift.  We assembled the crib in the living room and found that we couldn't get it through the door into the baby room--it was 5/8 of an inch short.  Go figure.  So DH took the door off the hinges and the back off the crib, and we were able to wiggle it into the room.

5.  Don't ever tell a pregnant woman that she's fat, even in a roundabout way.  It's rude.  Too bad I didn't have the guts to say that to the person who told me.

6. One of my IRL subfertile friends isn't returning my calls or texts.  I'm trying not to take it personally because I know I couldn't handle pregnant women when I was TTC.  I still miss her, though.

7. I promise I'm reading your blogs, even if I don't get a chance to comment!  I love reading all your thoughts and stories.  I don't know what I'd do without this community of women!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Lenten Prayer Buddy Reveal

I've been on a blogger hiatus for a week, but I had to pop in once I realized that we were doing the prayer buddy reveals!  This Lent, I had the privilege to pray for Faith Makes Things Possible...Not Easy.  I had never seen her blog before and was delighted to find that we share the battles of PCOS, so I felt like I could relate to her more on that front.  I won't mention her prayer intentions, but "Faith"--know that I prayed for each and every one of them!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

2nd Doppler & Spring Break

We had our second Doppler yesterday at 16 weeks!  Baby cooperated much better this time--the nurse was able to find him/her right away without searching on my abdomen for a while!  She said that my baby was already so well-behaved ;)  The heart beat was 156 bpm.  At 8 wks 2 days, the heart beat was 163, and at 12 weeks, the heart beat was 160.  So we're slowing down a teeny bit, but the nurse said it's still within the healthy range.  While we were listening to the heart beat, every so often you would hear this static blip for just a second, and the nurse said that it was caused by the baby kicking and moving.  It happened 4 times in the span of a minute!  I have a very active kid :)  After the Doppler was over and we were done going over all the 16 week updates, the nurse left to get my prenatal prescription.  At that point, DH mentioned that we should have recorded the heart beat.  I told him that I knew we weren't allowed to record the ultrasounds, but I didn't know about the Dopplers.  DH had to leave at that point to go back to work, so I asked the nurse about it when she returned.  She said that we were allowed to record the Doppler.  Oh well.  I guess we'll do it next time!

Today, Holy Thursday, is the first day of my spring break!  Since I work for a Catholic school, our spring break always starts on Holy Thursday and goes through the week of Easter.  The only downside to this is that this is the first year that DH had a different spring break then I do, since he works for the county schools.  Their spring break was last week.  DH decided to stay home on the couch for his break, but I'm heading south to visit family in Georgia and Florida.  I don't know how much time I'll have to blog and read blogs, but I'll try to get caught up when I get back.  Today I'm heading to Atlanta to visit my cousin K and her family (including my godson!), and tomorrow I'm heading to Gainesville to visit my SIL and meet her new baby!  I'm really excited about this trip but sad to be leaving DH behind.

Have a blessed Easter!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

TTC Cycle #15

TTC Cycle #15: November 13, 2010-December 11, 2010 (29 days)

CD 3- Appointment with Dr. C to check my ovaries and see how they're doing.  I still have some excess fluid in there from the previous cycle.  Dr. C thinks it may have been caused by the Clomid from 2 cycles ago, so he decides to prescribe Femara for me.  He told me that it's actually prescribed for pre-menopausal women going through breast cancer treatments.  Apparently one of the side effects is causing women to ovulate.  I decide to give it a shot, so I take 2.5 mg of it on CD 3-7.

CD 11- Another appointment with Dr. C to check and see if I'm responding to the Femara.  Ultrasound shows one 8mm follicle on one ovary and 5-6 un-developing follicles on the other ovary.  Diagnosis?  Not ovulating.  I have PCOS, and they're doing a progesterone check on CD 21 to confirm.  Great.  Dr. C prescribes me 1500 mg of Metformin, which is an insulin sensitizer.  I have to take 500 mg for the first week, 1000 mg for the second week, and then the full dosage after that.  The biggest downside to this medication is that I can't have any alcohol :(  One upside is that part of the warnings on the label said, "Warning: May increase the risk of pregnancy."  Haha!  I'll take that risk!!! ;)

CD 14- My nephew, E, has his baptism.  My sister L asked me and DH to be the godparents.  It was a lovely ceremony, and everyone kept saying what a great mother L is being.  I had tears in my eyes by the end of it, wishing it was my own baby, but I held it together.

CD 15- Celebrating Thanksgiving in Florida, and I go out with my friend J to watch the FSU v UF game.  Six margaritas and one victory shot later, and I'm trashed.  DH drives me to a friend's house so we can hang out just the 3 of us.  Once I get there, I decide it's a good idea to make myself throw up so I won't have to do it later, so I do.  I somehow end up lying on the living room floor when A & K walk in the door.  Since it was supposed to be the 3 of us, they were the last people I expected to walk through the door.  K is six months pregnant now.  I was drunk, and I lost it.  I couldn't handle being in the same room with her even though I had just seen her the day before with a large group (about 15 people).  I made an excuse that I needed to call my friend L to check up on her and took my cell phone out to the front porch.  L didn't answer, so I called DH's cousin to sob to her for a while.  My friend J called me 30 minutes into the conversation, and I was bawling my eyes out at that point.  I tell her that I'm stuck there, and she says that she'll come and get me with her DH.  As soon as I hang up, attempt to dry my tears, and walk in the door, DH, K, & A are all walking out to leave.  I say good-bye to them, get in the car with DH, and proceed to start crying again.  DH was so upset with me for leaving the room (I'll admit it was rude of me, but I was drunk and mourning the fact that I wasn't pregnant).  He couldn't speak with me for the rest of the night, and we woke up first thing in the morning to make the 8 hour drive back home.  He still couldn't speak with me then.  I felt horrible the next day (just emotionally, no hangover luckily), and I was devastated that I was letting my sub-fertility affect me so much.  Later on, I'm able to talk about the weekend with my therapist, and she and I both agreed that I probably wouldn't have acted like that if I wasn't drunk.  Sub-fertility sucks.

CD 21- Appointment at OBGYN for a blood draw for a progesterone check.  My progesterone level was 1.5, confirming that I didn't ovulate.  Ugh.

CD 29-30- Head to Atlanta for my godson's baptism (my cousin's son).  I now have 2 godsons within the span of 2 weeks.  This ceremony was a little easier for me to get through since I know it took my cousin 2 years to conceive him, whereas with my sister it was an "accident."  On the day of the baptism, I get my period :(

Sunday, April 17, 2011

An unusual proposal, not my engagement story with DH (although I'll have to write that story eventually).  It was actually from my neighbor!

We live in a 3rd floor condo with 4 units on each floor.  I know everyone's face, but not all the names.  I know about half of the names.  We've been living here for almost 3 1/2 years, and I STILL don't know everyone's names.  Embarrassing, I know.  The lady living diagonal across from us is one of them.  I know lots of things about her...such as 1) She works in the medical field, 2) She doesn't have any pets, 3) There's a random dining room chair outside her front door that has a year's worth of pollen and dust on it, 4) One time she gave a girl in  our neighborhood some bus money to get away from her boyfriend that was beating on her in the front yard (with lots of witnesses not doing anything), 5) She's divorced and in her 60s.  However, I don't know her name.  I've had lots and lots of conversations with her though, and she somehow knows my name, so we must have introduced ourselves when we first moved in, and I don't have any memory of that conversation.  It's gone on so long now that I don't feel like I can ask the lady her name.

This evening I got home from working a WW meeting, and she was getting into her car as I was heading upstairs.  She stopped me and asked if I had a baby bump and congratulated me on my pregnancy.  Then she asked if she could do an ultrasound on me.  I'm like, wha???  Apparently she's in school to be an ultrasound tech (I think), and before she graduates on May 13th, she needs to do an ultrasound on someone in their second or third trimester in order to pass her certification.  I told her sure, but that I was leaving for Florida on Thursday and wouldn't be back until May 1st.  She said that was fine and that we could do it when I get back (I'd be almost 18 weeks then).

The problem is, I still don't know her name.  I mentioned to DH how embarrassing this was for me, and he suggested looking her up online since I know her address.  I successfully found her name from the White Pages online.

It's Judith.

But does she go by Judith or Judy?  Ugh!

*Side note*--It's amazing that my doctor's office charges $335 for an ultrasound when my neighbor is offering to do one for free!  Crazy stuff.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Mother Teresa on NFP

This was such a touching quote that I had to re-post it here: Mother Teresa on NFP

I love, love, LOVE this picture!  Such happiness <3

Monday, April 11, 2011

Infertility in the media

I just finished watching the newest House episode.  For those of you who watch House and haven't seen it, come back and read later...

The episode was about a man with unexplainable symptoms (as always) whose wife ended up getting sick just like him.  The doctors went to the couple's home to test for toxins and such, and one of the doctors found a baby outfit in the bottom of her bedroom closet (where the hoarding had started).  Apparently the wife had infertility, then later you find out that she had 3 miscarriages that she didn't tell her husband about.  The miscarried babies is what triggered the hoarding.

Watching this reminded me of a post by Matching Moonheads about infertile women portrayed in the media.  For the woman on the House episode, infertility made her crazy, so she started hoarding everything.  It really bothered me, so DH had to pause the Tivo while I ranted for a minute before resuming the episode.  Matching Moonheads responds to this topic so much more eloquently than I can, so head on over to her blog to check out her post on this topic.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A trip to McDonald's

I went to McDonald's today for the first time in like, 5 or 6 years.  I was meeting up with a friend who has one almost 4 year old daughter and 2 foster kids (2 year old girl & 3 month old boy).  We had been meaning to do a coffee date in such a looong time, but she was never able to get a sitter and felt like she was over-using her mother to watch the kids.  As a result, my friend (L) finally suggested doing a coffee date at McDonalds so the 2 girls could play on the playground while we chatted over coffee with the baby.

It ended up being a great visit.  I got to catch up with L and give the baby a bottle as well.  She's currently 4 weeks pregnant, and we talked of babies and the difficulties of sub-fertility (L has had 10 miscarriages in the last 2 1/2 years.  She's my IRL sub-fertility friend.  Prayer Buddy--if you could pray for her instead of my intention, that would be greatly appreciated!).

At one point I left to use the restroom, and on my way there I passed by a mother and her 3 year old daughter.  The daughter pointed me out to her mother as I passed by and said, "Is she a mommy too?"  To which the mother replied, "I'm sure she's a mommy to somebody."

And I am :)  That somebody just happens to be in my womb...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

TTC Cycle #14

TTC Cycle #14: October 14, 2010-November 12, 2010 (30 days)

CD 2- I go in for the routine ultrasound to check and see if my ovaries are back to normal so I can get another round of Clomiphene.  It was normal the last two times, so I had no reason to think that this appointment would be different.  Dr. C starts the ultrasound, and there's A LOT of black on the screen.  He starts saying "Hmm...hmmm......HMMM...." to himself.  I'm like, WTF is going on and why isn't he saying anything to me?!?!  Apparently he found a bunch of free-floating fluid in my abdomen, like TWICE as large as my uterus. He said that it wasn't good, and that I should be in a lot of pain. I told him I felt bloated, but I figured that was from my period, but it turns out it wasn't. He thinks I may have had a cyst that burst.  He ordered some bloodwork done and didn't prescribe Clomid this cycle to give my body and break and figure out what the hell is going on.  I get home and cry and cry and cry.  DH gets home later on, and the sweet man decides to skip playing in his soccer game that evening to stay home and be with me <3

CD 10-11- Camping with friends.  K doesn't come because she doesn't want the extreme cold to affect her pregnancy, and I'm secretly glad that I don't have to see her.

CD 13- Doc appt again for another ultrasound. On that ultrasound, my left ovary looked polycystic because there were 4-5 undeveloping follicles/cysts. On my right ovary there was one maturing follicle that was 19 mm, so I would probably ovulate out of that one.  Dr. C said it was a good sign that I'm ovulating naturally this cycle. Also by the length of the maturing follicle, he said that I'd have a 29-30 day cycle, which was also good. He also told me to have sex that night (Tues), skip Wed., and have sex Thurs, Fri, and Sat. So we did, and now we wait...

CD 29- I'm reading a book in the teacher's lounge during my lunch break, and one of my co-workers starts teasing me and talking to me saying "Who did it?  How's it turning out?" in regards to the book I was reading.  I just smiled and told him I'd let him know at the end.  A half hour later, I'm back in my classroom with my students for their lunchtime, and the same teacher pokes his head in my doorway and says, "So, did it happen yet?"  One of my students hears him say this to me, and shouts out, "ARE YOU PREGNANT?!"  I was in complete and utter shock.  Of course, my classroom erupts into chaos, and they all start yelling and talking excitedly that their teacher is pregnant.  It took me a full 10 seconds before I got my wits about me and was able to quell the room and tell them that I'm NOT pregnant.  Having 16 nine and ten-year-olds all get excited about my "pregnancy" really got to me, and it was all I could do to not start bawling in the moment.  I luckily held it together and got to bawl on my DH's shoulder in the privacy of my home later that evening.

CD 31- I got a call from my mom in the morning saying that my health insurance company had called her looking for me to talk with me about my benefits. I'm like, what??? So I call the number that they gave her and finally get a hold of a person. I explain the situation and ask what they were calling me about. The lady replies, "Oh, we received a claim from your doctor, and it says that you're pregnant now. Congratulations!" I'm like, WTF I'M NOT PREGNANT!!! There's ANOTHER Katie with the same last name at my doctor's office who is currently pregnant. I know because they mixed up our charts back in August and the nurse kept talking to me like I was pregnant and we finally figured out it was a different Katie. So this is the second time they've mixed up our files, even though they put a "name alert" on our files. Anyway, so it's all I can do not to hang up on this woman because I know it's not her fault, so I give her my correct phone number, end the conversation, and proceed to sob into James' arms. Later that day I got my period. *sigh* I can't catch a could this happen to me TWICE in one week?!

I'm not really in ranting/raging mood like I appear to be in the post, but I wanted it to reflect my feelings at the time.  Everything is fine and dandy here, and I'm 14 weeks pregnant :)

Thursday, March 31, 2011

TTC Cycle #13

I've been procrastinating on writing this post for some time now.  Mainly because this cycle was the absolute lowest point of my TTC journey.  Debated putting such personal information out here, but sub-fertility isn't pretty, so I decided to go with it...

TTC Cycle #13: September 13, 2010-October 13, 2010 (31 days)

CD 3-7- Taking 100mg Clomiphene for the 2nd time

CD 8-  I wrote this letter to a close friend, so I'm just reposting it here and editing the names...

So I seriously screwed things up this weekend and basically had a nervous breakdown on Saturday night. A & K (A is DH's best friend/man & K is his wife) visited us this weekend, and she's 17 weeks pregnant. I thought I could handle seeing her, but I couldn't. It actually started on Friday night- about ten minutes before they arrived, I started picking a fight with DH. He called me out on it and asked what was wrong, and I confessed that I was anxious about seeing K pregnant. He asked why I didn't mention anything to him, and it's because every time I get sad about hearing that someone else is pregnant, he tells me that I should be happy for them and not so selfish. So I don't feel like I can talk about it with him. So I bailed out on hanging out with everyone after the beer festival on Saturday night, and DH told them the reason why I bailed. I think the thing that started it all was on Saturday afternoon during the festival, DH & A walked up to the group, they were each carrying an iced water, and they handed both of them to K. It was so irrational, but I was like, why isn't he giving ME a water? I'm his wife, not K! I feel so stupid now, but I don't know if it was the hormones from the fertility meds, the alcohol, or a combo of both. Spent most of the night crying. DH is stressed. I'm stressed. I tried to talk to him on Saturday night when he got home, and he said he couldn't handle talking then. I tried during the day on Sunday, and he still wasn't ready.  We finally talked last night, and he said he's still so numb from the whole experience. Yesterday I made inquiries of my insurance about receiving counseling services, since they require an authorization before you make an appointment. The guy I talked to sounded like a suicide hotline person, and asked me if I felt like hurting myself or others. It was true on Saturday night, but not now, so I told him no. I honestly scared myself so bad, I just wanna make this right. My sister has an "Employee Assistance Program" thing where her employer has prepaid the cost of the initial evaluation and brief counseling session(s) for employees and immediate family. So I called them and made an appointment today at 2:30. DH thinks I need therapy, not counseling, so I can learn how to manage my emotions. I'm thinking that any objective 3rd party would be better than none. DH also said that he wants us to abstain from trying for a baby this cycle until I can get my emotions under control. I feel like it's a wasted opportunity for making a baby since I just took the fertility meds, but I wanna be better. Blah. I'll let you know how the appointment goes...

So I stopped charting for the rest of the month and went to that appointment.  She referred me to a Marriage & Family Therapist who specializes in infertility.

CD 12-13-Camping with DH.  We hadn't gone camping just the 2 of us in over 5 years (we always go in groups with our friends), so it was nice having the one-on-one time together.  We have sex that night, but in retrospect if DH had realized what CD I was on, he said that he wouldn't have done it since he wanted us to abstain from trying this cycle.  I thought that was the beauty of NOT tracking--that we didn't have to worry about when we're having sex.

CD 17- First appointment with B, the marriage & family therapist.  DH came with me, and it went well.  I cried for most of the appointment, but I felt like we were just getting to know each other for the first appointment and learn my TTC background.

CD 32- I get my period.  We didn't actively try this cycle, but I was hoping for it anyway.  To make matters worse, DH told me today that his sister is pregnant.  Apparently she was pregnant when we saw her in August, but she didn't tell us. She was waiting for me to get pregnant so we could both be pregnant together. I obviously wasn't happening, so she called DH and told him. Then DH decided to wait and see if I was pregnant or not this cycle before he told me about her pregnancy.  And of course I get my period, and he tells me then.  My SIL had a baby last December, and so her babies are going to be 16 months apart. According to DH, my SIL and the baby daddy only had sex "one time" over the summer and apparently one time is all it takes for her to get pregnant.  It's funny because when she stayed with us in June 2009, she told me that her biggest fear was getting pregnant immediately after she had Baby #1 and not leaving the baby daddy (who is unstable), and that's exactly what happened.  Sigh.

I wanted to end this post on a positive note, so I'm adding a bit here :)  I'm currently 13 weeks pregnant.  Baby has fingerprints now, and if she's a girl, she already has the 2 million eggs in her ovaries that she'll have for her lifetime.  It's so wild!

I'm getting TONS of "How are you feeling?" questions at work.  One of my co-workers told me that I'd get sick of them after a while, and I kind of already am...

Last Monday I told DH that my stomach has tripled in size.  He pointed out that I was complaining.  I totally didn't mean to, since I obviously have been wanting the baby for FOREVER, but it's hard shaking the mentality of "don't gain weight."  I work for Weight Watchers (working for them means you had to have been a member before, lost weight with WW, and stayed at your goal weight--I lost 20 lbs in 2007), so seeing the scales go in the opposite direction has been harder to handle than I previously thought.  Duh, I want the baby.  Duh, I know you gain weight in pregnancy.  But when I see my belly sticking waaaaaaaay out, and I know the baby is only 3 inches long, I also know that that's just my gut and nothing else.  It's really playing with my self-esteem.

And I swore I wouldn't complain about my pregnancy.  Ugh.  Got to stop whining.

Offering this up for you, prayer buddy!  I'm sure you'll get lots of extra graces for the amount of turmoil I'm putting myself through :)

Okay, seriously ending on a positive note now...

I've made it to 2 out of the 3 stations so far this Lent.  Going to the 3rd one for me tomorrow!  I actually have gotten a lot out of going to stations this season.  The first Friday I went, I skipped the "soup & substance" part and just went straight to stations.  After stations, I went to the side chapel for adoration.  I was by myself, so I removed the curtain from in front of the monstrance and put it off to the side.  I prayed the rosary silently, meditating on the Joyful mysteries.  When I got to the third mystery (the nativity), someone turned on the light behind the stained glass window above the monstrance (it's a stained glass window on an inner wall, so it doesn't get outside light), and the nativity scene lit up before me!!!  It was so amazing :)  Then by the time I got to the 5th mystery, the Spanish choir started rehearsing their music for their stations, so I got to listen to them singing and playing the guitar while I finished the last decade.  It was such a beautiful evening!  Looking forward to stations again tomorrow...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

My first Doppler

Yesterday I had my first Doppler to listen to the baby's heartbeat.  After seeing the heart valves open and close on the ultrasound last time, I was looking forward to actually hearing it instead of just seeing it on a screen.

This was actually a drastic change for me, so I'm going to sidetrack here...almost every single time I had to go to a doc appt from June-January, I somehow ended up waiting in the sub-waiting room which is adjacent to one of the two ultrasound rooms in my doc's office.  The first time I heard a baby's heartbeat from another woman, I about lost it.  It went on for over 15 minutes!  I'm like, who in the world needs to listen to that sound for such a looong period of time?!  If I ever needed to be tortured and interrogated for anything, all you would have to do is put on the sound of a baby's heartbeat and I would be a goner and confess anything just to get it to stop.  The sound was excruciatingly painful for me to listen to--like it was making a mockery of the fact that I didn't have a baby, no matter how badly I wanted one.  I know, not rational, but that's how I felt.  The first time it happened to me, I immediately texted (because you're not allowed to use a cell phone in the waiting room) 2 of my closest friends about my awful situation.  One friend suggested bringing my iPod next time, and the other just gave her sympathies since she was also experience sub-fertility and has gone through that many times before since we both go to the same OBGYN.  It was all I could do not to get up and leave the room.

Fast forward to present day...

Now I get to hear my own baby's heartbeat.  HUGE change in attitude about hearing a baby's heartbeat.  I'm actually really excited!  DH was able to come along to the appointment, which made it all the more special.

The nurse has me lie down and puts the gel on my abdomen.  She explains that she's basically looking for a moving target since the baby currently floating around in my uterus and said to not be alarmed if we don't hear the heartbeat right away since she has to find the baby first.  So we wait and listen...there's lots of static, then suddenly, thump, thump, thump really fast.  It only lasted for a second, then the baby moved again!  This time we heard my heartbeat first, more static, then the baby's heartbeat through the static.  That happened about 3 more times before the nurse was satisfied and turned the Doppler off.  Baby's heartbeat was 160 bpm (last appointment was 163), which the nurse said it within the acceptable range of 110-160.  I'm wondering if the old wives' tale is true about girls having a faster heart rate.  My next appointment is on April 20th at 16 weeks for another Doppler, and I'll have my 2nd ultrasound sometime mid-May to find out the gender!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Conversation with a student

A conversation last Thursday...

Student: How big is your baby now?
Me: About 3 centimeters.
Student: Awwww!!!  That's so cute!
Student: ...Wait, if the baby's only 3 centimeters, then why do you have a belly?
I smile and try to think of the best way to answer the question.
Me: Well, you don't gain all the weight at the end of the pregnancy when the baby is big.  It's spread all throughout the pregnancy.
Student: Oh.  Okay.

DH said that I should have instead told my student that I was eating her lunch behind her back :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Sister-in-law in labor!

I'm here asking for some sister-in-law is in labor and is currently at 9 cm.  She's doing a home birth with a mid-wife (specifically, a VBAC).  Please pray for her and her baby girl!  Thank you!

UPDATE 2:30pm: No baby yet.  Midwife is a little worried that it is taking too long.  Please continue to pray!

UPDATE 9pm: Baby Girl was born at 7:30!  Mom and baby are doing well :)  Thank you Jesus!  I don't know the weight or length yet since she had her at home.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Don't send your sick child to school

This morning I noticed a 2nd grader with very flushed cheeks.  I thought it was odd since he had just gotten to school and hadn't even had a chance to run around yet and get hot.  10 minutes after school started, I was in the office shredding some papers when the 2nd grade TA brought the child into the office to call his parents and send him home.  The office manager took one look at him and made me leave the office immediately (I think she's a bit of a hypochondriac [not sure why she's working in a school], so I decided she was just being paranoid).

After I left the office, the OM came down to my classroom.  She told me that she called the child's father, who then told the OM that his son has Fifth Disease and that he caught it from his younger sister.  Then why did you send your child to school?!?!  The OM told me that Fifth Disease is dangerous for pregnant women and that I should call my doctor and let him know that I've been exposed to it.  I decide to Google "Fifth Disease" so I can learn more about it.  According to Wikipedia, "In pregnant women, infection in the first trimester has been linked to hydrops fetalis, causing spontaneous abortion."

Now I'm starting to freak out.  I still have 2 weeks left of the first trimester.  I call my doctor's office and leave a message for one of the nurses explaining my situation and that I've been exposed to Fifth Disease.  They usually call back by the end of the day, but I got a call back FOUR minutes later!  The nurse told me that they tested for Fifth Disease with my bloodwork almost 3 weeks ago, and I'm immune to it (thank God!).  She said that they usually do this test with people who work with children to make sure they're okay.

I'm soooo thankful that I'm immune to it.  But I also believe it's extremely irresponsible to send your sick child to school when you KNOW they're sick and what they have.  It's just putting the well-being of others through unnecessary risk.  So to all the parents out there: Please don't send your sick child to school.  Thank you.

Friday, March 11, 2011

TTC Cycle #12

TTC Cycle #12: August 14, 2010-September 12, 2010 (30 days)

After many prayers and talks with DH, we decide to go ahead with Clomiphene.  I take 100mg on CD 3-7.  It makes me a bit looney.  The worst part during it was when I had a meltdown in the kitchen over cutting up vegetables.  I just started sobbing, "I can't do it!!!"  and DH starts to smile at me.  I'm like, "Why are you smiling?  I'm crying!!!  Boo-hoo!".  He says, "Katie, it's just vegetables,"  and I started laughing in between sobs, realizing how ridiculous I sound.

CD 11- I have my very first ultrasound to check and see if there's a mature follicle and if my ovaries are over-stimulated or not.  I'm kind of excited and nervous, but my doc says to not expect it to work the first time.  So I get a UTI the day before (yuck!), and it's convenient that I already have an appointment scheduled today.  I give the nurse the urine sample for testing, and she starts chatting with me.

Nurse- It's common to have UTIs now since there's a lot of stuff going on down there.
Me- Huh????
Nurse- You know, with pregnancy.
Me- I'm not pregnant.  I'm TRYING to get pregnant.
Nurse- Your chart says you're pregnant.
Me- ?!?!

Apparently there's another Katie with the same last name as me at their office.  She was born in the same year as me and also weighs the same.  The other Katie is pregnant.  I'm not.  And they accidentally switched the files.  (Hippa violation!!!)  So that was depressing, to say the least.

My ultrasound shows 2 maturing follicles--one on my right ovary that is 19 mm and one on my left ovary that is 15 mm.  Doc says that I'll ovulate in 3-5 days!!!  I'm on track to have a 29-30 day cycle.

CD 12- I get a phone call from my friend K (her husband is A, DH's best friend/man) saying that they're 13 weeks pregnant and having a boy!  We talk for about 30 minutes, and I tell her about my ultrasound yesterday.  I actually didn't cry, and I attribute that to her keeping me on the phone for so long and talking me through everything.  I'm hopeful that I'll get pregnant this cycle so that our babies can be close in age (silly, I know).

CD 17- My sister, L, gives birth to her son, E, on August 30, 2010, one day before her 20th birthday.  Baby E is perfect healthy!  L asked me and DH to be the godparents, and we of course say yes :)

My maternal grandmother, Vovoa (Portuguese for grandmother), is hospitalized, and it's serious.  There's a hole in her colon, and they're not going do surgery.  She's in the same hospital where L and E are (where my dad works as well).

CD 18- August 31, 2010.  Vovoa dies 2 days before her 80th birthday :(  3 out of her 5 children (including my mom) were there with her when she passed.  She had spoken about being ready to meet Jesus, but it was still a hard time for us all.

CD 21-25- Travel to FL for her funeral and family time.  I was planning on just taking sick leave, but my principal tells me that they do paid bereavement leave, so I'm able to stay an extra day to be with my mom.  I help her out sorting through my grandmother's clothes and belongings.

CD 31- AF :(  What a horrible cycle.

On a lighter note...
The Sunday Schoolers use our classrooms at the Catholic school next door to meet on Sunday mornings. They're notorious for going through my students' desks and taking stuff. I had a meeting this afternoon, and when I got back to my classroom, this was on the board! :)

Friday, March 4, 2011

My morning prayers & another pregnant friend!

One of the things I love about teaching at a Catholic school is that prayer is included in our daily routine.  We start the day off with Morning Prayer every single day!  During our Morning Prayer, we have petitions where the kids can pray for whomever/whatever they want.  Some of the prayers are actually very thoughtful...for example--people with lead poisoning, all the souls in purgatory, for the homeless and hungry, anyone who is depressed or lonely, anyone who is sick and dying, children waiting to be adopted, etc.  And that's coming from 4th graders!  Some of the kids' prayers are a little different, like, for us to do well on the test, or for my dog so she doesn't have to wear a cone anymore, or for me because I'm hungry (lol).  At the end of the petitions, I also include the one that says, "For all the prayers we hold in the silence of our hearts."  During that time, I ALWAYS would pray this to myself:

For my marriage, for Your will for us to have a baby, (then whatever else I think of that needs prayers at the moment).

Except that even now that I'm pregnant, I STILL catch myself saying the exact same thing--for Your will for us to have a baby.  And then I'm like, I DO have a baby!  I don't know if I'm saying it just out of old habit, or if the pregnancy still hasn't sunk in yet, or what.  So when I do catch myself saying that, I change it to-"for all subfertile women and for my pregnancy".  I'm hoping that the change of prayer will help.

I posted our pregnancy news on Monday on Facebook.  The next morning, my friend J, said this:
So, I did not say anything yesterday because we were planning to share today, lol, but we are due within the same week, and go to the same OB! Maybe we will be in the same hospital at the same time! YAY! Congratulations, Katie! I am so very excited for you! :^)
I spoke with her for an hour on the phone today, and it turns out that she and her DH had been TTC for over a year, but they didn't tell ANYONE.  I was so shocked to hear that!  I had a fellow sub-fertile friend, and I didn't even know it!  It was great being able to catch up and talk about our struggles of conceiving and how our pregnancies are progressing.  I don't think it's a coincidence that we're pregnant at the same time :)

P.S.  I think I'm procrastinating writing about the next few cycles of TTC.  A few of those cycles got a lot more dark and depressing--the lowest point of my entire journey of TTC.  But I know that I have to get it written out, no matter how painful reliving it might be.  I promise I'll continue with them eventually.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

My very first pregnancy appointment & ultrasound!

Yesterday was my very first pregnancy appointment and ultrasound!  I was 8 weeks and 2 days.  They said to expect the appointment to last 2 1/2 hours, so I took the day off from work.  DH took off from his morning job as well to be able to come with me.

First they took my weight and blood pressure (I've gained 5 lbs already and blood pressure was 110/62), followed by a nurse asking me ALL of the exact same questions that I filled out on the medical history forms they mailed me after I called about my pregnancy.  She said the reason why she had to do that was because most people aren't really thinking about it seriously when they're filling it out, and then they suddenly remember something that they didn't put down on the form.

One of the big things the nurse said they're going to do is to check and see if I have an immunity to chicken pox.  Both of my sisters had it at separate times when we were kids, and I never caught it from either of them.  I finally got the vaccination when I was 13, but I never got a booster shot when I was 23 because that's when we started TTC.  The other big thing is DH has a genetic blood disorder called HHT.  HHT is a disorder that causes abnormalities of blood vessels.  It basically means that DH gets a lot of nose bleeds that take a long time to stop, and he can't take ibuprofen.  Sometimes it's his lip if it's super cracked.  He's never been officially tested for it, but he has family members who have.  The doc said that it shouldn't affect the pregnancy since I'm not the one with bleeding problems.

I also asked the nurse about exercise.  All the information that the office gave me said to not let my heart rate go over 140 when exercising.  However, when I wore a heart rate monitor at the gym on Thursday, I barely broke a sweat trying to keep my heart rate between 140 and 145 for 45 minutes.  It was not a good workout at all.  She said that I shouldn't go above 140 because then there is less blood flow to my uterus, which isn't good for the baby.

After the long round of questions, the nurse gave us a ton of freebie reading material, and we went to a sub-waiting room for a 1/2 hour till the doc was ready.

Once we saw the doc, I asked her the same question about exercise.  She said if you go by the books, it's 140.  She also said that it's a number that was made up by a patriarchal medical society over 40 years ago, and there's not a whole lot of research to back it up.  She told me about a couple of marathon runners who, when they were pregnant, had to "back off" to a 6 minute mile because pregnancy slowed them down a bit.  I can't imagine going "down" to a 6 minute mile!  My personal best is 7:37.  Anyway, she said that if I was overweight and not active at all, 140 would be the number.  However, since I am active, she's okay with me going higher as long as I can be aware of how my body is doing.  I was so delighted to hear this!  (Side note: I told my mom about this later, and she told me that I shouldn't go over 140.  I'm like, Mom--you're not a medical professional, and you're only basing this off of feeling because you're being a worry wart.  I'm healthy!  She told me she wasn't happy with it, but agreed to drop the subject since I asked).

After that, the doc did a pap smear since my last one was 9 months ago, and I can't have it done later in pregnancy.  She gave me a pad afterward, saying that my cervix was super sensitive and will bleed for a while and to not be alarmed because the blood is coming from me, not the baby.  That was good to know.

Finally came the ultrasound!  This all happened in the span of 10 seconds, but it felt like an ETERNITY to me.  Here's what she did followed by my thoughts (in italics):

Doc: Here's your uterus.

Me: Where's the baby?!

Doc: Here's the sac (black on the screen).

Me: WHERE'S THE BABY?!?!?!?!  Oh my gosh, it's not there.  I've got an empty sac with no baby.

Doc: And here's your baby!

I'm speechless.  There in the middle of the screen is a little peanut with a beating heart.  I can even see the valves opening and closing!  The doc measures the peanut.  She's (I'm using the pronoun "she" instead of "it", and it's not because I have a feeling that she's a girl because I don't care either way) 16.3 mm long, and the heart rate is 163 bpm.  I can remember those numbers because they're exactly the same :)  The baby measured at exactly 8 weeks, even though I'm 8 weeks 2 days.  Doc said that they'll still keep the same due date, October 5th, unless the measurements put the date off by more than a week.

Apparently I conceived with the follicle on my left ovary, which was the smaller of the 2 from my ultrasound on CD 14 (right ovary had a 19 mm follicle and left ovary had a 15 mm follicle).  If I had to guess, I would've said I conceived with the one on the right ovary since it was bigger.  But the corpus luteum is on my left ovary!  However, my right ovary had a cyst on it, left over from me taking Clomiphene.  Doc said it should go away by 20 weeks.  I'm hoping she's right.

Doc showed me the baby one last time before turning off the monitor.  It was so surreal.  I can't even feel it, but there's a growing life inside of me.  After the doc left the room, DH and I embraced.  We finally have a baby.  There are no words for that kind of happiness.

After leaving the ultrasound room, I go see the lab tech to get 4 vials of blood taken for testing.  The tech told me that if I don't hear back from them, no news is good news.  My next appointment is on March 23rd (12 weeks).  They'll only listen for the heart beat with a probe, so no ultrasound on that day.

I'll try and add the ultrasound picture later.  I haven't figured out how to hook up the scanner to the laptop and make it work correctly (only works with the desktop for now).

Thanks to everyone for all your prayers!

UPDATE:  I finally got the pictures uploaded!
16.3 mm & measuring at 8w0d

heart rate is 163bpm

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

8 week update & TTC Cycle #11

First, a quick update on how things are progressing...

I'm 8 weeks tomorrow.  I had to host my school's Math Fair today, and here's a picture of me introducing the finalists:

One of my close friends (and coworker) told me that I was starting to show.  I'm like, really?!  I've been eating nonstop and have gained 5 lbs in the last 4 weeks.  It's too early to start showing with only being 8 weeks along, so it's just my big gut hanging out making me LOOK like I'm showing- lol.  Oh well.  I had to eat a few crackers during the event, and one of the teacher assistants came up to me at the end of the fair.

Here's how the conversation went:
TA: Eating crackers, huh?
Me: Yep.
TA: There's only one reason I know of that you would be eating crackers (she's smiling now)
Me: (Maybe because I'm hungry?  But I can't say that.  I'm bad at lying) Yep. (I've only told my principal and 2 close friends/coworkers.  Keeping it a secret at least until after my ultrasound on Friday)
TA: Well, congratulations!
Me: Thanks, but we're trying to keep it a secret for now, so don't say anything.
TA: Gotcha.

So it looks like I'm going to have to say something to the faculty sooner rather than later if people keep asking questions like that.  It's kind of hard to keep it a secret when all your coworkers are a majority female and nosy!  Haha!

In hindsight, I see now that I'm wearing a shirt with the band underneath the breasts, which is what pregnancy shirts usually look like.  Oh well.

TTC Cycle #11: July 11, 2010-August 13, 2010 (34 days)

CD 1- Luckily I get my period the day AFTER my sister's baby shower instead of the day of.  I think the Lord was looking out for me on this one.

CD 3- Drive back from FL

CD 4- 4 year wedding anniversary <3  DH and I have a lovely evening going out to eat and having drinks downtown.  I love him so much!

CD 5- 1 year anniversary of TTC

CD 6-8- Beech Mtn, NC.  Spend a wonderful weekend with friends at a mountain chalet!

CD 9- I had my follow-up appointment today. I was so emotional and started crying as soon as my doc started talking about options with me :\:\ Basically he said that we can just keep trying naturally and that I'll get pregnant eventually, or the first baby step is to start on Clomid. He gave me a prescription to take it for Days 3-7 of my cycle (medium dosage of 100 mg) and then to see him on Day 11 to see if there's a mature follicle. I don't know if I'm going to get on it just yet...still need to talk with DH more, research it, and pray. I still have a while before we need to make a decision.

I spoke with my doc about how I thought we tested too early (Day 21) for ovulation when it occurred on Day 25 according to my charts. He said that I may have ovulated later, but most cycles past the 35 day length are anovulatory (my most recent one was 38 days). So I've probably had some ovulatory cycles and some anovulatory cycles since TTC. Doesn't help the odds of getting pregnant.

I was also diagnosed with oligomenorrhea. I only had 10 cycles in the past year of TTC instead of the normal 13 cycles per year that the average woman has. Everything I read about it says 3-9 cycles per year for oligomenorrhea, so I think I'm on the high end of the spectrum. 41 day cycles still suck, though.

CD 12-15- Spend a 3 day weekend at one of my student's family's mountain home!  DH and I haven't had a vacation (just the 2 of us) since our honeymoon that didn't involve friends or family.  The point of the weekend was to relax and focus on just us.

I can't imagine owning a home like that!

 My babies (Penny & Riley)

CD 14- I find out the DH's cousin's wife is pregnant via a text message.  Should've turned my phone off for the weekend.  I cry for about an hour, and DH talks about how I shouldn't let it ruin our weekend.  I finally stop sniffling and try to put on a happy face.  TTC for a year with no baby, and people all around me are getting pregnant.  It's such a harsh reminder of my reality.

CD 20-28- St. Augustine Beach, FL with my parents.  During the trip, DH and I talk about whether I should take Clomid.  After a few discussions, we decide to go with it.

CD 26- My 25th birthday (Aug. 6th).  My mom, DH, and I went to the St. Augustine lighthouse, did the beach in the afternoon, went out to eat, then DH took me out for drinks on St. George Street and bought me a white rose :):) Awesome day, all around.

CD 28- Stop by to see SIL on our way back home.  Nephew, S, is 8 months old now!

CD 29-32- Jonathan Creek Valley, NC with one of my bridesmaids and her DH.  Spend her birthday going to different breweries around town (just like last year!), but I'm not the DD this time (I'm already convinced I'm not pregnant this cycle).  Didn't want to relive the EXACT same birthday for her with me not drinking all over again.  We buy water shoes, drive up the road, and go lazy creek tubing for a 1 1/2 miles and end up in her parents' backyard :)

CD 35- AF arrives :(

Friday, February 18, 2011

TTC Cycle # 9 & #10

TTC Cycle #9: May 6, 2010-June 2, 2010 (28 days)

CD 4- Mother's Day.  I do okay during church until the end, when the priest asks all the mothers to stand up and the whole congregation applauds for them.  I start tearing up and manage to keep it in until I get to the car.  Why can't it be me?!  We've been trying to conceive a child for 10 months with no results.

I only wrote this on my chart: "28 day cycle! Never have had one of those before!"  I guess the rest of the cycle was uneventful.

TTC Cycle #10: June 3, 2010-July 10, 2010 (38 days)

CD 9- Last day of teaching for the school year!!!  We have a much needed "girls' night out" tonight.  I have many drinks throughout the evening and don't get home until 3am.  The hangover the next day was well worth it- haha!

CD 12- I got a call from the OBGYN's office today reminding me about the appointment on Wednesday. The receptionist asks me if I have called my insurance to see if they'd pay for the appointment. I'm like, huh? So I call my insurance....

They won't pay for a fertility consult.

I start crying (and this is 11am, and I'm at work!). I can't call DH because he's teaching, so I call my mom so I can have someone to cry to. She offers to pay for it!!! I didn't even call with the intention of asking her to pay, I seriously just didn't want to cry by myself. So then I'm worried about the cost because they couldn't tell me how much it's going to be. I know they want to do an ultrasound to see if there's a mature follicle. My friend Jen had an ultrasound when she had her miscarriage, and it cost her $600!


CD 14- So I went to the appointment yesterday...and it was amazing! He took me into his office and we talked for 20 minutes about my history before he even took me into a patient room. He said that I have sub-fertility, not infertility, and that he thinks I'm perfectly normal. He said only 75% of couples will conceive within a year. If I was 38, we'd be going at this aggressively, but since I'm only 24, he says we're going to take baby steps (haha). He told me all the things we would try as we go along and I'm still not pregnant. I got a referral to the Center for Applied Reproductive Science (CARS) to get DH's semen analyzed. Insurance won't pay for that, so my mom said she'd take care of it too.

Next week I'm going back on Day 21 of my cycle to get lab work done and check my progesterone levels to see if I actually ovulated. Insurance will pay for that because he's coding the visit as a "fatigue" complaint. It was funny... he's like, "Do you feel tired?" "Sometimes." "Do you feel like you could use an extra hour of sleep every night?" (Now he's winking at me). I'm like, "of course!" haha :):) I have a follow up visit on Monday, July 19th. Insurance probably won't pay for that because it'll be actual fertility stuff, not just an office visit (I only had to do a $40 co-pay for this visit, thank goodness). I feel like we're on the right track :D:D 

CD 17- Attended wedding #1 of 2 this week.  The bride and groom got Celtic wedding knots tattooed on their ring fingers!  They rented a house with 10 acres of property to get married and hold the reception at.  Gorgeous!  AND they went to Germany on their honeymoon :)  They asked DH and I advice about it before they left, since that's where we went for our honeymoon 4 years prior!

CD 21- First bloodwork ever done today. Everything was normal except for my progesterone levels, which were low. They said I wasn't ovulatory.  I kinda wasn't surprised because this cycle is probably going to be a long one. So not sure if "not ovulatory" means I don't ovulate or I hadn't ovulated by that point. They tested me on Day 21 because for any "normal" cycle, women ovulate on Day 14. Of course, my body can't be normal.

CD 23- Head to ATL for wedding #2 (my cousin's wedding).  Here's a dancing picture from the reception.  I'm the one on the far left.  L is in the middle (30 wks pregnant), and my cousin K is on the right (24 wks pregnant).  Can I say that I want a baby too?!?!

Sisters!  E, Me, and L

CD 25- According to my chart (tracking basal body temp and mucus), I ovulated today. So I don't know.

CD 26-30- I go to the beach with DH's cousins and uncle (minus DH since he had to work :( !)  It's a much needed vacation from my sub-fertility. 

The house!

I <3 the beach!

CD 32- I was talking with DH about it, and I think Dr. C should have done bloodwork on Day 21 AND Day 28 to see the progression of hormones throughout my cycle. I think I'm going to mention it to him at the next appointment. I'm already on Day 32 now, so it'll have to be for the next cycle.

CD 34- DH's SFA today.  It came back normal!  Praise God!  It was only $110, which is much cheaper than what I expected.  We paid for it ourselves, even though my mom offered to pay initially.

CD 35- I head to FL by myself (plus my dog, Riley) to visit family and help host my sister's baby shower on Saturday.  HP7 on 17 CDs (21 hours) keeps me company.

CD 36- Beach with my sister, E!  I promise there's sand behind the boulders- lol :)
Notice the barrier to keep the oil off the beach :(  Luckily, it worked!

CD 37- Scalloping!  It's a favorite pasttime of my family :)  One of the things I miss about living in FL...  The video was made for my mom since she couldn't come with us.  L is about 32 weeks along.

CD 38- L's baby shower.  Notice that I'm dutifully writing down all the gifts like a good big sister.  My grandma is on the other side of L.  I survived through the afternoon.  I should get some kind of award for that.

CD 39- AF returns :(  At least it held off until today instead of coming yesterday.  That would've made an already sad day even worse.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Prescription/Insurance Fiasco

My doctor gave me a prescription of Prometrium (progesterone supplement) back in December.  The prescription says "take one capsule on days 14-28 of cycle."  I filled the prescription on CD 2 (December 13th) but ended up not taking it that cycle because my ultrasound on CD 11 (December 22nd) showed that I wasn't ovulating this cycle.  So I saved the bottle for the next cycle and took it on CD 20 (January 17th).  13 days later, I'm pregnant(!!!!) and refill the prescription since my doc said to keep taking it if I'm pregnant and stop if I'm not.  I refill the prescription with no problems.  14 days later (yesterday), I have to refill it again.  I'm thinking it's annoying to keep refilling a 14 day prescription, but I'm using up the rest of it.  However, I call the automated CVS refill, and it won't refill it based on the quantity pills.  Now I'm thinking that it'll make me wait another 2 weeks before I can fill it.  I head down to CVS yesterday and speak with a pharmacist.  She tells me that they can call my doctor in the morning (today) and get a new prescription filled that won't be a 14 day one.  I thank her and go home.  Problem solved, right?

After lunch today, I call CVS.  They called my doctor and got a new prescription, but they can't fill it because my insurance won't let them (even though it's covered).  The earliest my insurance will fill it is Feb. 17th.  But I need it now because I took my last pill yesterday.  The pharmacist suggests calling my doctor to see if they have any extra samples I can take in the meantime.  So I call my doc.  They don't have any samples, and there's nothing they can do about my insurance.  So I call my insurance.  They say that it will be filled on the 19th, not the 17th, and that I have to get my doctor to fax and submit a "letter of medical necessity" to them with the doc's letterhead on it stating the drug name and reason why I need it.  Then my insurance will put an override on the prescription hold.  So I call my doc.  They say they can do that.  I ask the receptionist if it can be done this afternoon.  She says, no, and it'll probably be later this week!!!  That defeats the purpose of doing it in the first place.  So I call CVS again and ask them how much it'll cost me for 5 pills.


Sheesh.  I should've asked that in the first place.

Now I'm home with my 5 pills and my new prescription prenatal meds which are supposed to help with nausea.  Which started today.  Not complaining, just stating.  DH commented on it this morning when I had to stop eating breakfast.  He thought I said I wouldn't care about nausea once I was pregnant.  I told him that I didn't say I didn't care, just that I'd make a conscious choice not to complain about it.  Which I haven't :)  I do care that I'm nauseated, so I went by the grocery store this afternoon and picked up some saltines.  The only problem is that my students will ask me why I'm eating crackers throughout the day, and why can't they eat too?  I'm not ready to tell them I'm pregnant yet (I'll be 7 weeks on Wednesday), so I was thinking I'll just say I'm nauseated and that the crackers help.  I don't think they'd make the connection to pregnancy, but I'm thinking that if they go home and tell their parents, the parents will figure it out.  I'm not sure if there's a better way to go about explaining it to them or not.  Any suggestions?

P.S.  I have this gut feeling I'm having twins.  I can't shake it.  My CD 14 ultrasound showed one 19mm follicle on my right ovary and one 15mm follicle on my left ovary.  I'm pretty sure I conceived with the right one, but I don't know about the left.  I don't want to set myself up with the idea that I'm having twins only to be disappointed that there's just one.  Am I crazy, or what?!  I keep telling myself that it doesn't matter because I've still got a baby to love no matter what :)

P.S.S.  I'm having a baby! HA! :D

Thursday, February 10, 2011

TTC Cycle #7 & #8

TTC Cycle #7: February 22, 2010-March 25, 2010 (32 days)

I contacted the Couple to Couple League last cycle and asked them to analyze our six charts of TTC to see if they could give me any advice or help.  They say that they will and also ask me to submit a one week food journal.  The letter I get back from them is very disappointing.  There was nothing medical, just behavioral advice. She wants us to stop drinking alcohol altogether (which I don't do after I ovulate now anyway), de-stress by quitting my job as a 4th grade teacher (but she's not offering to help pay the mortgage) so I can learn to garden and cook, eat more meat (DH is a vegetarian and the primary cook, so I mostly eat vegetarian as well), and postpone TTC for at least six months, maybe longer, to prepare nutritionally and possibly de-stress from my job (we've already been TTC for seven months).  She thinks the stress is what's causing my long cycles (I later find out that it's not the stress, it's other medical reasons).  I personally think quitting my job would make me MORE stressed about paying the bills, not less.

I would LOVE to stay at home. But when I say we can't afford it, I mean we really can't afford it. DH has two part time jobs, no benefits. We went to a free health clinic on Wednesday, and he would have qualified for services if we weren't married because with my job it's considered household income and bumped him over the bracket.

We don't fit the CCL's standard of "traditional stay-at-home mom family setup".  As much as it is my dream to do that, it's not practical for us.  I'm discouraged with their "help", and I'm not renewing my membership for now.


In other news, I started taking Mucinex for the first time ever to help my mucus quantity/quality during Phase 2.

We visit DH's best friend, A, and his wife, K, for a weekend (they're 3 hours away from us).  They know we've been TTC since July 2009.  I was an open book back then, telling everyone that we were going to get pregnant and have a baby.  K and I talk about my unsuccessful endeavors, and I ask her if she's going to start TTC anytime soon (they've been married for a year and a half).  She says no, and that it'll probably be a few more years.

I decide to stop taking pregnancy tests, even for the ridiculously long cycles.  I keep torturing myself seeing "negative" over and over again.  I can't put myself through it anymore.

TTC Cycle #8: March 26, 2010-May 5, 2010 (41 days)

I continue with Mucinex for this cycle.  My temperature spikes twice--once on CD 20 and once on CD 29.  My charts seem to be more and more random.  It's really frustrating.

A friend recommends I see her OBGYN, Dr. C, to see if he can help me.  He's pro-life and familiar with NFP.  It takes me a while before I finally call and make an appointment.  I think I put it off because it's finally admitting to myself that there's something wrong with me.  The first available time they have for a new patient is 7 weeks away, on June 16, 2010.  I'm disappointed that I have to wait that long, but I'm glad that I finally called and scheduled an appointment.  At that point it'll be 11 months TTC, and I know from research that the standard time is 1 year if you're under 35.  We're still within the acceptable range of amount of time of TTC, but something in my gut tells me that I'm not normal.

On Easter Day, I get a text from my cousin, K, saying that they're 12 weeks pregnant with Baby #2!  I don't get depressed over this news because I know it took her 2 years to conceive Baby #1 and another 2 1/2 years to conceive Baby #2.  I'm thrilled for her.  Her baby is due six weeks after my sister's baby is due.  Lots of pregnant people in the family...

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

TTC Cycle #5 & #6

TTC Cycle #5: December 7, 2009-January 11, 2010 (36 days)

I don't have a whole lot written down on my chart for this cycle. I did get to see my nephew (DH's sister's son) for the first time ever when he was around 3 weeks old. Holding that baby was something else. I caught myself pretending that he was mine a few times.

TTC Cycle #6: January 12, 2010-February 21, 2010 (41 days)

CD 1- It's the day of the Haiti earthquake. I got my period. It's a rather depressing day, but I'm feeling okay overall until my sister, E (who is 21 at the time), talks with me on facebook chat about our other sister, L (who is 19 at the time) [yes, I saved the conversation, and I'm only using initials for privacy]...

E- have you talked to mom or L recently?
Me- no. is something wrong?
E- uh oh
E- i thought you knew
Me- mom called me last night and left a message, and i called back and left her a message
Me- call me!!!
E- L is preggos
Me- ?!?!?!?!
E- yep
Me- freaking a
E- and keeping it
Me- and i can't get preg
E- B (E's boyfriend) said she should just give hers to you
yeah just thought id lighten the mood
but yeah shes pregnant
dont say anything yet to anyone

I call E at this point, BALLING my eyes out. (I still can't believe she told me over facebook chat when I told her to call me!). My baby sister is pregnant. She's not married, boyfriend is in jail again (because he didn't do his community service as part of his parole), and it was "on accident." I know I shouldn't be jealous of her situation because all I want is the baby. But I can't help it. I sob. And sob. And sob. Eventually I get off the phone with E and just continue crying on the couch. DH isn't home from work yet. 20 minutes into my crying session, my mom calls me (I don't know if E told her to call or if she was just returning my call at the right moment). I'm sobbing and hiccuping into the phone, and she says that she's sorry for me and wishes she could hold me and make it all better. I agree. This sucks. I've been trying for SIX months and L gets pregnant "on accident"?!?! It's not fair. Life's not fair. I'm pissed off at God and the world. I get off the phone with Mom right before DH gets home. He looks alarmed seeing me sobbing on the couch. He thinks someone died. He rushes over to me and I tell him L is pregnant. DH says, "I didn't see that coming." (being totally honest about the reason why I'm crying- not sarcastic at all). I cry. And cry. And cry. Until there are no tears left. I'M the responsible one. I'm married. I have a salary job. I have a mortgage. I planned everything out. And SHE gets to have a baby?! I'm drowning in sorrow and jealousy.

CD 33- DH and I drive to FL to be with his family for our nephew's open heart surgery.
CD 34- I have to leave the hospital room every time they do an x-ray for S (nephew) because I MIGHT be pregnant.
CD 35- 2 month old S has successful open heart surgery. It's a very emotional day. Lots and lots and lots of prayers.

CD 41- I post this on the facebook NFP group:
Here's the background situation: I'm currently on TTC Cycle 6, Day 41. My longest cycle ever was 39 days with the average being around 35. I bought a PT on Friday. I was planning on testing yesterday, but DH doesn't want me to. He doesn't want me to test positive only to start my period three days later. He'd rather us not know if we conceived to spare us the heartache of a miscarriage, which I imagine would be one of the most painful experiences of my life (seeing that we haven't been able to conceive yet). I think doctors call it a chemical pregnancy. Anyway, he'd rather me wait a week to test (next Saturday) when it's more probable that IF their is a pregnancy, it will last (he's all about numbers and statistics). That way if I start my period in a few days, it'll just be a late period and not a miscarriage to me. The only problem is that I want NOTHING more than to test and find out its positive right now. I'd rather know I had a baby and lost it then never knew it existed in the first place. My question is how many people test really soon and get a positive, only to get their period a few days later? Secondly, would you rather have not known you were pregnant to spare yourself the heartache?

The second thing is for people that take a long time TTC... how do you not get discouraged? DH says it's totally normal for us to be trying 7 months and not be pregnant yet, and I understand that every woman's body is different. But he's also saying that if I'm feeling this hopeless at 7 months (6 cycles), how can I keep trying for 1-2+ years and not keep reacting the way I do every month? How can I change my attitude when I feel so depressed?
CD 42- Post on facebook NFP page:
I started my period this morning at 7:15am. Had EXTREME cramping from 12:30-2:00pm. Like, I wanted to scoop my uterus out with a spoon kind of cramps. And I've never had menstrual cramps a day in my life!!! I always brag about it to my friends ;) Got home and took a pregnancy test at 3:45pm to confirm just in case. It was negative.

I never took the pregnancy test yesterday or the day before out of respect of DH's belief/opinion. But I'm wondering if the cramping was a sign of a miscarriage??? Now I'll never know :(

I emailed CCL copies of my six TTC charts. Don't know how long it'll be before they get back with me. Has anyone ever sent their charts in for review before?

TTC Cycle 7, Day 1. Thanks for all the prayers.
Another woman comments that heavy cramping doesn't necessarily mean it was a miscarriage.

I respond:
Thanks for the info- that's good to know. I actually had a friend just tell me about her own miscarrying experience. She had two positive tests while she was miscarrying- one the day it started (tested at the dr's) and another a few days later at home. She said that if I was pregnant the hormones would still read positive for a few weeks afterward. Since I tested negative this afternoon, that's another indicator that I wasn't ever pregnant in the first place.

Friday, February 4, 2011

TTC Cycle #4 & total amount spent TTC

TTC Cycle #4: October 29, 2009-December 6, 2009 (39 days)

CD 19- I had to get off my prescription acne meds in the spring before we started TTC. Needless to say, my face broke out and I looked like a 14-year-old with the amount of acne that was on my face (apparently my body didn't understand that I'm 24). Even an insensitive co-worker asked me "Aren't you too old to be having acne?" I'm using salicylic acid OTC acne stuff, and I'm not happy with the results. So I make an appointment with a dermatologist to ask if there's anything that I can be on that's safe for TTC. Her answer? No. It's all I can do to not start bawling in the patient room. I'm so self-conscious about my face, and it's really affecting my self-esteem. She tries to cheer me up by saying that I could even be pregnant now! Um, no. I'm already feeling depressed about not conceiving. I'm sacrificing coffee on a daily basis, alcohol after ovulation, and acne meds for a baby that doesn't even exist yet, and I feel and look like crap. I pay a $40 co-pay for absolutely nothing. Luckily I made it to the car before I started crying.

CD 30- We're in Florida. It's the day after Thanksgiving, and I'm at my SIL's baby shower. She's not married, family doesn't really like the baby's dad at all, and she's due December 23rd (DH's birthday). The shower is being held at the small, hippie private school that DH and his sister attended and MIL still teaches at. I'm struggling to get through the shower, but for the most part I'm okay because she conceived before DH and I started TTC, and I'm hoping that we conceive soon so the cousins can be close in age. During the shower, I get a call from a friend. She says that another one of our friends is pregnant with their 2nd child, and that they just announced it on facebook. We talk for a while and hang up. I rejoin the festivities with tears in my eyes, but I knew I could hold it together if I didn't have to talk to anyone (I only knew a couple people anyway- the rest were strangers to me). I last for about 10 minutes until DH asks me, "What's wrong?" I shook my head. I couldn't answer him without breaking out into tears in front of a room full of people. He takes me outside to the front of the school, and I lose it. I start weeping in his arms, and it takes me a few minutes before I can tell him about the phone conversation. I'll spare you the messy details. DH eventually calms me down, and we head back inside 15 minutes later. I look like I've been crying, but thankfully everyone leaves me alone. It's all I can do to hold it together while watching SIL open more baby presents.

CD 36- Even though SIL was due on December 23rd, she has the baby today on December 3rd via emergency cesarean because he was in breech and her water had broken. Turns out that the baby also has Down syndrome and an interrupted aortic arch that requires open-heart surgery (she had ZERO pre-natal care [which I disagreed with but won't tell her what to do], so she could've known about these ahead of time, but didn't). We didn't know about the latter until later, and he actually could've died after they took him home. It's a miracle he survived.

CD 40- I get my period. My cycles are so freaking long! I was really hoping that since it was taking so long, I was already pregnant. Wrong again.

I was curious about the amount of money that we spent TTC, so I thought I'd add it up...

Co-pays for OBGYN visits: $275
Co-pays for sessions with therapist (started seeing her after 14 months TTC): $100
Prescription medications (Clomiphene, Femara, Metformin, & Prometrium): $220.97
Seminal Fluid Analysis: $110
Pregnancy tests: $56.22
Clearblue Easy Fertility Monitor and test sticks: $104.55
Pre-natal vitamins: $50

TOTAL: $906.74

Having a baby: PRICELESS!!!! :)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

TTC Cycle #3 & update on pregnancy at 5 wks

TTC Cycle #3: September 23, 2009-October 28, 2009 (36 days)

This cycle I am now due June 30, 2010. Calculating a new date gives me hope. I'll have a summer baby, and it'll be great! Now I can have my summer break plus 12 weeks off the beginning of the school year :)

I read Fertility, Cycles & Nutrition (3rd edition) by Marilyn Shannon. I have a short luteal phase, so I start taking 100mg B6 to help with that since it's what she recommends.

I make a goal this month to have sex every other day during more fertile mucus. I write "MAKE TIME!!" :) on my chart. It didn't happen, but I'm still hopeful that I'm pregnant.

CD 5- We got to Lexington, KY for a UF vs UK football game. Loads of fun!

CD 11-12- Camping at Graveyard Fields off the Blue Ridge Parkway

CD 14- First time my thermometer battery died since I started charting 2 years ago! Replacement cost a few bucks at Radio Shack.

CD 34- Breasts hurt and nipples are tender. I'm thinking these are pregnancy signs and start to get very hopeful.

CD 37- Get my period :(

Present Day:
I'm five weeks pregnant today (according to the ever popular 'count from your last period' that the medical community uses). I peaked according to my Clearblue Easy Fertility Monitor on CD 18 & 19 (it gives you 2 days of Peak fertility). According to the 'count from your last period', I'm due October 5, 2011. I'd personally add 4 or 5 days (knowing from when I peaked), but I'll just wait till the first ultrasound to confirm. Which is on February 25th at 8 weeks 2 days. They told me to expect the visit to last 2 1/2 hours!!! Ultrasound can't be more than 15 minutes, so I'm assuming the rest of the time will be spent talking and doing paperwork.

Yesterday I went in for some blood-work so my doc could check my progesterone levels. I'm currently taking 100mg Prometrium per day. Last cycle when I didn't ovulate, my progesterone level was 1.5. Today it is 56.6. Doc said that it's very encouraging, and he's happy with the numbers but keeping me on the Prometrium for now.

In other news, I had a hair appointment today because I hadn't gotten my hair cut in 11 months. I walk in the door, and the first thing my hairdresser says to me is, "Are you pregnant?"!!!

My draw drops.

Me: "Yes."

Keep in mind that I haven't seen this woman in 11 months, and I hadn't told her that we're TTC.

Hairdresser: "Have you had the baby?"
Me: "What? No..."
Hairdresser: "So you're pregnant now?"
Me: "Yes. I'm 5 weeks."
Hairdresser: "OH!"

It was a weird conversation.

Then at yoga tonight, my instructor asks the class before we begin if anyone has anything about their body that they'd like her to know about. A few people raise their hands and talk about neck and lower back issues. I raise my hand and tell her I'm pregnant. My friend who goes with me is shocked that I just announced it to a room full of strangers (but I don't really care about the strangers- just the people who actually know me). The teacher says it shouldn't really affect me now, but that I should be aware of what my body is telling me throughout the class. Later on in the pregnancy, I need to make sure my core temperature doesn't rise too high as well.

Prayer Request: For a friend who is losing a foster baby this Friday after raising her from 3 days old until now at 6 months. My heart aches for her.