Archive for the ‘pregnancy’ Category

h1

Becky and Mabel: The epic struggle

September 9, 2009

Pregnancy discussed.

Lately it feels like I have multiple personalities, and they don’t get along. There’s Becky. She has two ponytails laced with ribbons and wears a pink cheerleader outfit. She has two giant pom poms and loves daisies, springtime, and kittens. Then there’s Mabel. She wears black, paints her fingernails purple, smokes cigarettes in the girls bathroom. She loves beating up freshmen, killing bunnies, and glaring. A typical day:

Becky: Nausea! I have nausea! This is good!
Mabel: Uh yeah, sure. If you didn’t eat so fucking much you’d feel fine.
Becky: The ultrasound will be so exciting!
Mabel: (Yawn) Because seeing a heartbeat means something right?
Becky: Ooh I’m getting stretchy feelings in my uterus, it must be growing!
Mabel: Or you’re about to have a miscarriage, you idiot.
Becky: Katery put up pictures of her crib. I can’t wait to crib shop.
Mabel: You are not her. You have no business dreaming.
Becky: But this could be it!
Mabel: But it’s probably not, so burn the damn pom pom before I stuff you in a locker.

For the past two weeks I’ve been doing pretty good about keeping Becky stuffed in the boys locker room. But Jack, he’s so hopeful lately and as much as I try to resist its contagious. He’s named it sunflower. He’s figured out the approximate due date. He talks to it. He didn’t do this last time. After we lost Speck he said he’d never do it again so I don’t get why he’s doing it now. I don’t want to tell him not to because seeing him excited fills me with so much warmth, but at the same time the fucking pom poms come out and I actually start looking at the gerber ad on TV and think I’m gonna hand make my baby food. These thoughts are always followed by a quick reprimand to Becky to stop this silly hope business. I’m fine with you sitting in a corner emitting gentle rays, but to leap up and start doing the macarena? No! No! No! You’ve had two losses and you’re at higher risk for a third. Protect your fucking heart. What the hell is wrong with you?

So yes, it seems that multiple losses leads to multiple personalities. I’m doing my best to manage both sides of myself, but if you see Becky jumping rope or flashing a toothy smile, trip her down the stairs, m’kay?

h1

Thoughts while treading water

September 2, 2009

Pregnancy discussed

Metal mouth. I feel like I’m sucking on a nickel. I think the raging hormones are emerging. Today, I folded my arms and told my boss I didn’t appreciate her giving me new assignments when I was quitting in four days. I felt this weird fury building up inside of me like I wanted to punch her. I never talk back to authority, I’m a sweet meek employee. My uterus is doing minor stretchy things which causes me to run in panic to the bathroom. Yesterday I drove home from work, gripped the banister as I climbed the stairs and collapsed in my work clothes into bed, out stone cold for three hours.  I have rational other explanations for all of these things, besides, how can I take comfort in those when I didn’t wake up to pee last night. The starting of nausea that trailed me all day yesterday is dissipating. The mild symptoms peeking at me give me hope but then they play hide and seek vanishing from my sight for hours or days at a time and I wonder if they’ll ever come back.  I want to know what’s normal. I want to know what to expect. My fingers enter and backspace into the blank space of the google search engine, because I don’t want to do the same old searching that induces sleepless nights.

I am not sitting around crying all day. I am busy closing out my job, visiting family, reading, writing, napping. And eating [I really need to get a handle on that one]. It’s in the off peak hours when I’m alone that the thoughts nag me. I’m a high risk preggo. My odds of a repeat m/c are higher. I remind myself that things are different this time: I’m taking lovenox. My egg is earlier so theoretically fresher. The lovenox remains a painful task. Strangely injections on my left side hardly bruise while my right makes me look like an abused woman. I asked Lovenox HQ  about this but they had no advice except don’t poke the area after. Thanks for that useful nugget. btw- can you carry on lovenox syringes? I’m flying Friday and can’t find information on this on-line.

It’s amazing how I see infertility everywhere. I just finished “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” and one of the characters, Sissy, has ten babies who die minutes after birth. Finally she adopts, falls pregnant but for this birth goes to a hospital where they have the technology to save the baby. Instead of seeing this technology as the reason, Katie, her sister says see? she adopted and boom she has a live baby! that always happens without fail! I’m amazed this is in a book written in the 1940’s.

Kate at I can’t whistle said she feels she writes about the same stuff again and again. I feel that way too today,  like I’m saying the same thing ad nauseum. But each day each old fear feels  new. Each day I have to learn how to cope again. Each day I feel tremulous with wonder that I am still pregnant. Each day I wait for the blood as though its normal to anticipate such things. As many times as I may see it, the pain will never feel old.

To the person/people who submitted my news to LFCA. When I experienced my loss. And this past time, when I learned I was the P word again, thank you for caring and for helping me get support. Here I go repeating the usual, but it bears repeating, I am not sure I’d make it through this winding journey without you. Thank you.

h1

The paradox of hope and fear

September 1, 2009

Thank you to everyone who gave me feedback on lovenox. I know that many of you brave women inject yourself regularly and I’m in complete awe. I sat with the shot for a good hour until Jack walked in and insisted on doing it. The pain of the needle going in isn’t horrible, it’s more this strange burning sensation once the medicine is inside. And the bruising! I look like someone kicked my stomach in. Still, I am grateful if it’ll help this one stick.

I feel funny today. I’m scared to call it nausea. It’s saliva and its constant and it makes me feel funny. I keep trying to attribute to something else, perhaps I didn’t drink enough water, or slept too little, or maybe its just the way the moon is orbiting. But maybe just maybe its a symptom of pregnancy. A real, live symptom, imagine that. I’m scared to imagine.

My friend said to me I’m not saying its related, but your negative attitude of not accepting congratulations, not wanting to talk about it, saying ‘if’ in terms of the viability of this pregnancy isn’t good. You could negatively affect the outcome. I hope that’s not true. I think its hard for someone who has not dealt with loss to understand my emotions. I don’t like talking about it. I try to find other causes for symptoms I might get. I’m not even signing up for ICLW next month because you have to submit three words to describe your blog and I can’t bring myself to write the P word. I mean, ICLW starts towards the end of September, I don’t know for certain where I will be come September! That probably sounds absolutely horrific, but its true.

BUT-  underneath the doubt, the fear, the anxiety, and the sadness, there is hope. It is a candle on low burning in the darkness. The flames are so small you could doubt its existence were it not for the quiet nights when I lie still and can feel its warmth radiate through my body.  So yes, I am afraid.  I’m deathly afraid. And yes, I don’t want to fucking talk about it because there’s something about hearing my voice travel the sound waves that amplifies this fear in my heart, but no, I’m not feeling hopeless. Why else would I have dared to try again? Each and every one of us IFers are living proof of this paradox. I may live in fear, but I float on hope.

h1

Fighting Fear

August 29, 2009

I’ve been calm and blase about this pregnancy until yesterday. I think it was the first lovenox injection. Lying down and enduring that painful injection (it hurts more AFTER the injection) it hit me: I’m pregnant. I don’t feel pregnant: no nausea, no tender breasts, no exhaustion of any extreme sort, my acne is gone. As someone with two losses, both in which I felt hardly any symptoms, I don’t like this common pattern. My mom never had extreme symptoms, maybe I’m lucky. Maybe its too early, I’m only 4.5 weeks, but given my background I can’t help but be afraid. I’m trying not to be afraid. I’m trying to prepare myself for a miscarriage and tell myself I’ll be okay if the worst happens but then I fight this urge because surely there is power in positive thinking? I remember Katery talking about not having symptoms in her first trimester and the ambivalent feelings of pregnancy after loss and she is in her second trimester now. So its possible. It’s possible. I want to believe this one will work. I hate my trembling hands when I check for blood when I go to the bathroom. I hate the feeling of inevitability. I know I’m taking lovenox now, the egg is theoretically fresher since I ovulated on time. . . I just can’t shake the fear.  I wish I knew what I could do to ease these worries.  I’m waiting until September 14 for an ultrasound and until then I need to figure out how to cope. I apologize in advance to anyone reading because though I will try to cope, I’m sure there will likely be other fear filled posts like this.

h1

Oh Cavity, why now?

August 28, 2009

When I get pregnant my gums and teeth start acting funny but this time the pain was slightly more acute and I knew I had a cavity. I went to the dentist and when I signed in I said, just so you know I’m pregnant. The receptionist looked at me and smiled I remember you! You thought you were pregnant last time you came. I stared at her with my jaw hanging down to my knees. I wrote about this May 2008, over a year ago. How I thought I was pregnant and had to do the walk of shame and say nope, just a crazy IF dreaming. It’s been over a year and she remembers. I felt like one of those mentally unhinged women who pretend they’re pregnantl. No really, I said shaking my head, I really am this time.

The dentist thinks I have a cavity but he can’t do any dental work until I’m in my second trimester. Come back when you’re four months pregnant, he said. It is a really fucking sad fact of life that I stared at him confused at how he could just say that. Shouldn’t he say instead if you’re still pregnant and don’t have a miscarriage, then come back in month four. I mean, really, that’s where my mind went instead of understanding the normal assumption that women who see positive pregnancy tests have babies at the end of it! I find it amazing how loss factors into even random ordinary interactions such as a dentist appointment.

I hope and pray the cavity stays a wee little cavity and doesn’t morph into root canal. I don’t know how one survives that for months on end. <– Look at me! Months on end! Hope: you are a sticky little sucker. (fingers and toes crossed)

h1

Fears and in-laws

July 24, 2009

I close my eyes to sleep tonight and the thoughts from this week swirl through my mind. I’m so sorry, you are having a miscarriage. Conversations about D&Cs. Accepting another miscarriage. The hurt was physical in equal parts as it was emotional. I hear my doctor’s voice as I lay in silence. I see my father’s e-mail comforting me. I feel Jack’s arms around me as I shake with tears. The next day. I remember telling the specialist No! I don’t want an ultrasound, my HCGs are dropping, why are you going to do this? I shudder to think if he listened. Will that moment when the tech tells me my baby is 6w1d with a 104 heart rate ever feel less surreal? Because right now all I can do is think of it and feel myself tremble with disbelief and awe.

I’ve been fine all day but now tears drip down my cheeks and I’m not sure why. This blog has always been my place to sort through my feelings so forgive me if this all seems silly or unnecessary. I try to tell myself not to be afraid anymore because clearly what is meant to happen will happen and I only have today so don’t dwell on the what if’s in the future. The problem is I’ve not only just had a miscarriage in April, I thought I lost the one I have right now. The HCG isn’t doubling. They must be concerned to do weekly ultrasounds. I’m trying not to worry about the Thursday ultrasound but I can’t help it. I’m scared. I want to believe the doctors when they shrug off my not having nausea or hardly any symptoms, but its hard when you’re so afraid. My lower back hurts. Is that okay? I wonder. I feel pressure in my uterus area. Not cramping but just pressure. I immediately consult Dr. Google and scare myself silly. Pregnancy post miscarriage is always more difficult since you know what can happen. Add a history of infertility and its a recipe for paranoia and fear.

My therapist encourages me not to name the baby (Too late, Baby Bug). He said I shouldn’t talk to it. I shouldn’t say things like she’s a fighter since it hurts harder if I lose it. That I should not pin all my hopes on this one pregnancy. Isn’t that natural though? How can I see the ultrasound and the beating heart and not feel overcome by love and the corresponding worry. Every instinct in my being wants to send it good vibes, asking it to keep on fighting. I can’t wave my hand and say well if not this one, the next one. I want this one.

I think I’m also feeling very emotional because after a long week like this what I’d like more than anything is to curl in bed all weekend and catch up on the sleep I’ve gone without this week. But I can’t do that. Jack’s parents are coming in town.  I’ve written a little about them here but to put it briefly we don’t get along and thanks to how they acted after my miscarriage we won’t be telling them the news until much later (please God let there be a much later).  I also have a weird habit of bleeding whenever I see them. Somehow whenever we would visit I’d get my period. I miscarried the weekend we were visiting them. After my miscarriage there was a big blowout and we haven’t seen them in over three months. Tomorrow they will be here and the house isn’t up to par clean wise, but I don’t have the energy, and well shouldn’t JACK be working on it considering its his parents? There is no food in the house, I haven’t cooked in advance. I’m usually a good host (even if they’re seldom impressed) but I’m just feeling overwhelmed and yes, I’m scared because of the whole bleeding when they’re here sort of thing. I know its likely just a coincidence but its a fucking scary as hell coincidence. And here’s the most awful part. I know they wish Jack married someone else. Someone who was a homemaker, who had kids right away, who was more religious, etc. Sometimes I feel so guilty that I have all these fertility challenges. When I see them and the hopes and dreams I did not give them, despite my intellectual awareness that they’re wrong,  despite knowing Jack loves me and we’re in this IF struggle together, I feel so guilty that their darling boy didn’t get the fertile bunny they wanted. I feel guilty I haven’t given them grandkids yet. I feel like a huge failure and disappointment. I judge myself through their eyes. These are thoughts I struggle with when I see them and I do overcome them, however I am worried about my emotional well being while they are here after a week that makes me feel like an NBA basketball.

I’m sure it will be okay. I just need to get through each day one day at a time. This weekend will pass. Thursday will come. The ultrasound will show what it will. I will be okay. Sigh.

h1

Three Months Post Miscarriage

July 12, 2009

When I miscarried I read women typically grieve hard for three months after they miscarry. At the time it felt both impossible that the pain would subside, or that I could ever try again. I remember lying on the ER table as the tech quietly informed me my uterus was empty and through my tears repeating I can’t go through this again. I can’t be here again. Just the memory of that day causes fresh tears to spring to my eyes. Today, we picked up the mail we forget to get yesterday and there on the top of the thin pile was an envelope from my insurance company. A final bill for my ER visit for my miscarriage. Gotta pay that $75 they are owed after all once insurance agreed to cover the rest ($3200). It was so strange to see this bill on the this anniversary of my miscarriage. So much has happened in three months. Today it still hurts but more like the prick of a needle rather than a sword through my gut.

Three months post-miscarriage I am pregnant again. This time its all so different. I’ve nicknamed my Baby Bug. I talk to him from time to time. But I don’t think ahead anymore. I no longer can’t wait to tell my friends at month three. They’ll know when I begin showing. I am not counting down to the end of this. I’m just accepting that all I have is now. This child is within my body so surely it senses my worries and fears. I know its morbid to consider I may miscarry again, but if I do, I will feel better knowing that while this new child grew within me it only knew calm and peace, not the strain and concern that haunted me last time. This time I’m emptying my fears from my heart and giving them Up to where they belong with the full understanding that I can only do as much a I can and the rest is up to Him.

I would have been approaching my sixth month with Speck. I would have known if Speck was a boy or a girl. I would have felt his feet kicking inside me. Though I am overjoyed to be pregnant again, I still miss my first.