I confess: I cheated. The whole purpose of this blog was to keep our friends and family up to date on our many goings-on, to share the news that's sometimes awkward to share, like our struggles with infertility. But when it came down to it, I had trouble writing down some of the biggest breaking news, like the results of our first pregnancy test...which actually came on December 23rd.
Yup, that's only 11 days after the ZIFT procedure. I had been warned not to take a home pregnancy test, because they're not always accurate that early, and my nurse actually went through emotional hell herself when she was going through IVF and peed on a stick and initially got a negative result -- when in fact she was pregnant.
Somehow I managed to stay calm until the 23rd, and calmly went in for my blood test that morning. Then my dad (who was visiting!) and I went down to Palos Verdes to have lunch with Hana and her parents, which was quite lovely and a perfect distraction. The test results were going to be in that afternoon, around four, so I left my cell phone turned off -- I just couldn't deal with the prospect of answering the phone in front of ANYBODY and getting news of a negative result. I asked that the nurse leave a message instead, which Mark and I could then listen to in private.
But...when I checked my messages... nothing. And Mark tells me the only message he heard, on our home machine, was the nurse saying, "call us." I had asked them to leave me a message with the results, so this was all very vexing. And wouldncha know it, it's after 5pm and no one's picking up at the clinic.
So, nerves drawn tighter than ever, I emailed both my nurses in hopes that someone would get our plea for an answer.
Within the hour.... I had it: we were pregnant.
...sort of. It was INFINITELY better news than NOT pregnant. As good a start as we could hope for. Christmas was not the nightmare I thought it might be. But looming in the next two weeks were more blood tests, to a) confirm we're still pregnant and b) make sure my hormones were rising appropriately -- i.e. at least doubling, every three days.
There was nothing to do but hold our breath each time. And with each positive test, each hurdle cleared, we grew more hopeful. In fact, my hormone levels were skyrocketing to the point where Mark seriously began doing some research... and found that my numbers suggested we had twins in the oven. (That doesn't sound right....)
Then, on January 9th, it was the moment of truth: our first ultrasound. At this point, I was (theoretically) six weeks pregnant, so the heartbeat should be visible. Maybe there would be two...or more heartbeats.
But there weren't. There was just the one. But oh man, what a relief it was to see that one, beating away at a healthy 160 beats per minute! Our little peanut:
And this peanut has been busy growing. Growing into a fava bean, at 7 weeks...
...and the craziest of all, into a "big bouncy baby"!!!!
OK, so you can't see it bouncing, but I swear that when the doctor was scoping it out, taking measurements, our little baby moved its arms (yes, arms already!), did a little jig, and flipped over. It wasn't just me, we all saw it and yelped HEY! Hello to you too!
So....that was at 9 weeks. Tomorrow we'll be at a full eleven - almost the end of the first trimester. I'll have the last ultrasound with our fertility doctor next Friday, just after 12 weeks; after that, we'll be with our prenatal care provider... which is a whole other, um, thing. Plus, we got genetic testing coming up (for Down's and other abnormalities) -- all nerve-wracking.
But, for now, we're just thrilled we've made it this far.
When is your due date? September 3rd -- a few days before, haha, Labor Day.
How are you feeling? I feel nauseous on and off throughout the day, but if I can figure out what to eat, I can keep it down. The weirdest thing has been going through a citrus phase, and also now an anti-shrimp, octopus and squid phase. And I loooooooooove shrimp. So weird. Otherwise just sheer exhaustion kicking in at around 6pm, but that's actually already easing up -- I've been getting by lately without full-on naps.
You weren't going to West Coast IVF were you? No. The now-infamous Beverly Hills clinic, behind the recently born LA octuplets, is not where we went. But I do remember seeing that clinic on our list of options last fall. Yikes. I love our doctor. I mean, yes, I love him because he successfully guided us through making it all happen, but I've thought about this, and I truly think that even if we hadn't gotten pregnant this first time -- I think we would have felt we got the best care possible, and made the best decisions possible together with our doctor. Which can be a pretty rare thing to feel. S0, ask us any time you or a friend is looking for fertility treatment or egg-freezing.
'Nuff for now. Dinner's on the table, and I've got to eat for two. Or at least... one and a big bouncing baby.