Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Pilgrim's Regress

I managed to score my first OB appointment for 10w1d, and they plan to do an ultrasound. Rock the fuck on! I will request another at 12 weeks, so that will get me through the first trimester without more than 2 weeks between sneak peeks. Go industrious me!

I told a close friend about my newly delicate condition* and she immediately overnighted me some pregnancy books. Whoa. I did NOT know this required homework. I started reading the ACOG book, skipping past the "getting your body ready for pregnancy" chapter (that was a year-and-a-half process, check) and the "fertility" related chapter (fuck you, ACOG -- I'd like to introduce you to ASRM). I cruised through until I got to the birthing chapter and have only been skimming there. I don't want to spoil the surprise! No, really, I just got stopped in my tracks by an artist's rendition of an OB performing an episiotomy with a pair of scissors slicing through a perineum like it's a scrapbooking party. Heebie-jeebies. Birthing is scary. I don't have the faintest idea what my birth plan will be at this point, only some vague notion that it will be "natural."  I am considering hiring a doula, but I haven't talked it over with KB yet and I want to know how he feels about it. I know he wants to be involved, but he's a bit squeamish and hates seeing me uncomfortable, so having someone else to coach and take the heat off of KB might be welcome. But that's getting ahead of ourselves. I'm trying really hard not to do that. This is a marathon, not a sprint.

* I am most decidedly not delicate. Showering every day has become both a chore and sometimes optional. Too much work. I think I bother blowdrying my hair about once per week. I go to the Starbucks drive-through for a smoothie and breakfast sandwich in my pajamas underneath a coat. I have created a spectacular ass-shaped imprint on the couch where I veg for hours each day, waiting for nausea to pass so I can work or eat. It's a glamorous life.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Relax?

Graduation day! My RE, who is (like me) a Michigan alum, came into the exam room humming the fight song today. And there were hugs, which is weird when you don't have any pants on. And she reminded me that I will have to wait months between ultrasounds from here on in. Shite. I am counting on a 12-week NT scan, and then a 20-week anatomy scan, and then I suppose dopplers will have to suffice. I may keel over and die from withdrawal. Trust.

I also got clarification on our due date today. We actually get to use the date of conception rather than the LMP, or tides, or lunar calendar, or whatever medieval methods OBs like to count on. So I am a couple of days ahead of where I thought I was. How about that? Now the beanie baby's measurements (8w4d today!) don't seem so far ahead. Although, and I admit I'm biased, I do think Baby B is a genius and is going to be a superstar. Obviously. We got a nice tour of the visible anatomy on the scan this morning, and could actually pick out a few structures. S/he has a spinal cord! A brain! A beating heart! A giant head! S/he is in the shrimpy stage now -- or as I dubbed him/her this morning, Big Head Todd.

I am slowly beginning to understand that I am having a baby. I'm fully aware that I'm pregnant -- my malaise is dialed up to 11 and my nausea is ridiculous, even with Zofran on board* -- but I don't think I believe that we are really having a baby yet. I am not excessively worried about the "what ifs," but I think I am holding a lot in reserve until we get a little further into the pregnancy. I'm deeply envious of women who can relax and feel pregnant and start buying furniture and onesies and rubbing their belly in public and generally enjoying their knocked up status, but I think IF just flat out ruined that for me. Out of necessity, I can live with that, because bringing home a baby in October is all I really want. The rest is fluff.

* Thanks to everyone who had suggestions or info about nausea and constipation. I am pleased to report that, while the nausea is still sucking my soul out one precarious belch at a time, the pooper situation is resolved. Prune juice, baby. Actually, I have to cut it with apple juice since neat prune juice is a little too, uh, earthy tasting for me. We named my cocktail the Mudslide. Or the Poop-shooter. Or the Ca-ca-cocktail. You're welcome.

Friday, February 19, 2010

ReLAX

WARNING: TMI! TMI! TMI!

Now you've been prepped, so here's the deal: I am constipated beyond all belief and am ready to deliver a poo-baby any minute now. Boil some water and get fresh towels. Uh, if only I could. The hormone cocktail circulating in my serum apparently slows down digestion and, um, movement, and it is decidedly not good. I am taking a nasty, RE-approved laxative (Miralax) that forms a nice gritty paste when you mix it into 12 oz of Gatorade, but at least the odd salty flavor is masked by the thirst-quenching electrolytes. Two days so far of Gator-paste therapy, no action. Gawd, I just want my midsection to be rolled and squished like getting the last dollop out of a tube of toothpaste, to get rid of this bloaty, full, packed-to-the-gills feeling. [urp]

I knew about nausea and sore-boobedness, but I was not properly warned about traffic jams on the Hershey Highway. Christ, what else was I not told about? Is a giant melon-sized head going to squeeze through my lady canal in 8 months or something? Ha, that would be hilarious. [sigh]

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Drugs are Good, Mmmmkay?

I have 2 boxes of Follistim 900 IU that I would like to unload for a very fair price, at a deeeeep discount. If you or someone you know is interested in 1 or 2 brand-spankin' new, unopened, properly refrigerated boxes of Follistim containing 900 IU cartridges that expire 12/2011 (and a bonus injection pen for free!), please clicky on the email link and let me know. I am happy to cover overnight shipping on ice; a check from a trustworthy blogger or payment via PayPal from anyone with an account would be just dandy.

FYI: Follistim = Gonal-F, and they cost about the same.

Thanks for listening to Tradio!

Wish List

Here are my high-level bullet points for the day. I wish....
  • ...I wasn't half-waiting for the other shoe to drop
  • ...I can just once get through a meal without feeling urpy
  • ...I had ultrasounds every other day (every day = excessive)
  • ...every blogger I know gets a positive pee stick to post about
Baby B is an overachiever today, measuring ahead at 7w5d with a heart rate of 145 bpm. I'm so going to pre-order some of those "My Honor student is smarter than your _____" bumper stickers.

We have one more visit with the RE and then I am pronounced a normal pregnant person. Holy shit. I will have to wait weeks, ne months, between ultrasounds. I'm just gonna have to go TomKat and buy a machine for home use. I made sure to score a Zofran script today, in case I forget next week (remembering things, such as why I turned on the faucet or why I am holding a pencil or why I am standing in the kitchen, is becoming a chore) since it will be a while before I see the new OB. Cause Mama B is seeeek.

"Morning" sickness is the biggest lie of all time (after the Grassy Knoll and Santa Claus), because it merely starts in the morning. It always sounded kind of adorable when other people talked about it, like some quaint rite of passage, but it is not. It is an unholy torrent of nausea that comes in waves and causes headaches and makes you want to diiiiie. At least for a minute or two. Mine seems to be an all-day affair that comes and goes with the precise timing of my hunger: as in, oh I'm so hungry so let's make a sammich...nom, nom, nom good first bite....oooohhhh I'm seeeeeek....But it is a reminder (however unpleasant) that Baby B is doing just fine and that all is right with my wombfruit (this week: a blueberry!).

So all is well. Except my stomach. [urp]

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Opposite of Parenting

John Mayer and The Racist D***s: So okay, the guy can play guitar. But he's a total he-skank and a top-notch asshole, so it was with considerable shame that KB and I went to see John Mayer play last night. (We bought the tickets months ago, long before the asshatted Playboy and Rolling Stone interviews catapulted him to new heights of douchebaggery.) Anyway, he's pretty good live. He has a kickass band backing him: Steve Jordan, anyone? Drum solo? Yes-please-and-thank-you. What I didn't count on was a wave of nausea overcoming me halfway through the show, buoyed by the kid next to me rocking his seat so hard back and forth that it moved the whole row -- effectively creating the exact conditions of seasickness. I kept my cookies to myself but I gave KB the bat signal and we left around 10:30. Losers. Earlybirders. But we beat the post-concert traffic jam! Silver lining! I felt a wee bit guilty that the first concert experience Baby B had was this one, but I also feel vindicated by the fact that Baby B is just forming ear buds now; so no harm, no fowl. The next concert will be U2 in June, so that will be the first real live music experience for Baby B.* 

Nature versus Nurture: More facebook pictures posted of my stepsister's son! They were from his 3rd birthday party, which was held at.....for the 3rd year in a row.....wait for it.....HOOTERS. [sigh] I shit you not. My facebook feed was jammed with my Dad's pictures of the kid being passed around a group of crop-top-and-shorty-short-wearing, humongous-betitted Hooters waitresses. The volume of pictures, and labels such as "____'s Hooters Birthday Party" suggest they are PROUD of this achievement in poor parenting (and grandparenting). Oh.My.Gawd. All I can do is shake my head and vow to never let Baby B spend unsupervised time with Grandpa. Because they'd probably end up at the strip club to celebrate Easter. KB and I have been having some interesting conversations about plans after the baby is born, about parenting and "ground rules" with our families, and this just adds a new dimension. I guess we have to add "no trips to establishments with half- or whole-naked people" to the list of rules. Jaysus.

* My live musical taste isn't usually so vanilla...I've seen Super Furry Animals! Kings of Leon! The Strokes! Flaming Lips! Wilco!
I swear....

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Sweetest Thing....

....beats 116 times per minute. We'll get a more accurate measurement next week, but Baby B has a heartbeat. And measures perfectly. I could have watched that tiny flicker all day.
Mama B is relieved. And happy. And nauseous. And happy.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Drug Buddy

I called my pharmacy to refill thyroid meds and prescription prenatals and ended up in a 15-minute conversation with the pharmacist because....she noticed we have the same doctor. Which means she goes to my infertility clinic. Which means she is infertile. This is the first time I have talked to a fellow infertile not on the interwebs. It felt strange, now that I am on the "other side." I was trying to process and filter everything I said very carefully, to avoid saying anything that might sound insensitive or platitude-y.

She has a child and didn't expect any trouble conceiving a second, but then got pregnant and miscarried. She couldn't get pregnant again. Her diagnosis is unexplained infertility. You know: "there's nothing wrong with you, except for whatever's clearly wrong with you." We chatted about how much money we've spent on drugs and clinic appointments, and she confided that she's just exhausted from trying and doesn't feel like it will ever work. I gave her my best heartfelt suggestion: take a break, then get back on the horse. My 3-month break from everything but vitamins did me a world of good, and I remain convinced it contributed to improved egg quality.

She congratulated me and wished me luck and I felt a little stab in my heart, because I have muttered those words bitterly many times.

IF just changes everything. Even after you beat it. Really.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The "S" is for Super

Or perhaps Stupid. Or Suckah. Or Screwed. Hehe.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Say Hello To My Little Friend

Without further ado: Baby B -- well, his/her gestational sac, anyway:
Words cannot express my A) excitement, B) joy, and C) relief. In no particular order. Now we wait to see the heart flicker. One week.

Monday, February 1, 2010

It Gives You Wiiiiings

Or, You Connect the Dots in a Rambling Post

We had a lovely weekend in Chicago to celebrate our anniversary, bookended by a kilo-assload of work completed by Thursday night and a sinus infection and head cold starting Friday through today. But everything in between was bliss!

Because we are serious nerds, we spent all afternoon Friday at the Museum of Science and Industry. Among the exhibits was a human body tour, complete with real cross-sections and organ displays. Seeing the yardage of your intestines in their gray, stringy glory when you are already both nauseous and hungry is a special treat. There was also a display of fetal development in utero, which included week 4 through week 37 "specimens" collected from autopsies in the early 20th century. Once we got past the inherent creep factor, it was pretty cool and KB seemed to especially appreciate seeing the remarkable changes from early to late development. The 37-week baby was both terribly interesting and terribly sad to look at, since it was obviously a stillborn infant. By the time we reached that little vat of formaldehyde, the creepiness won and we moved on to something less gross, like a colon and anus.

Friday night we discovered that our hotel did not have ice machines available, and I needed to ice my rump down for a PIO injection. I called room service to request an ice bucket and it never came. Dicks. I rummaged through the minibar and noticed some metal cans that seemed pretty cold. So, I stuck a can of RedBull in my pants to numb my butt and holyshititworked. And to the next guest who raids the minibar to make a vodka and RedBull: enjoy. Compliments of my ass.

On Saturday, we ate for the second time at our new favorite but so-expensive-as-to-be-quite-occasional restaurant: Alinea. Twelve-course meal and SO GOOD. Anytime you are presented with a course called Truffle Explosion and cautioned to eat it with your mouth firmly closed or you'll be sorry, you know you're in for a treat.

As the weekend progressed, my cold took a little turn and I developed a low-grade fever, which naturally turned me into a Very Paranoid Person. After moaning that my uterus might very well be an actual oven, KB made me page the on-call nurse at my clinic to ask about acetaminophen. Which I already knew is totally fine to take. But still needed to hear it from someone else. Because, I don't know. Paranoia makes you do crazy shit. The nurse, who I'm fairly sure was calling me back from a bar, assured me that my 99-point-something temperature was no big deal and that I could have all the acetaminophen I desire. So, okay. Crisis averted. Narrowly.

I'm feeling better now but still keeping an eye on my temperature. You know, hourly.

One and one-half days (or two nights) until we get the almighty confirmation we need. I keep telling myself to assume all is well, because what else can you do? I just want to see to believe.