20 Week Anatomy Scan – Good & Bad

First the good…

Baby is perfect!  It was so fun to watch her wiggling around during the ultrasound, sticking out her tongue and swallowing some of the amniotic fluid.  She was sure busy!  The technician was very detailed, measuring each organ and body part and explaining all in detail.  She estimated baby’s weight at about 14 oz. today which is right on track developmentally for 20 weeks.  We received several cute pictures, but I’ll post those separately once I have a chance to upload them.

I did ask about movement, or rather my lack thereof, being it’s been on my mind so much.  The tech confirmed I have an anterior placenta, meaning it’s in front of the baby closest to the front of my abdomen and thus the reason I haven’t felt much movement yet.  My doctor confirmed that since I have an extra barrier between baby, I might not feel definite movement for a few more weeks, but that I shouldn’t worry.  The ultrasound confirmed baby is healthy and active.

So now the not so great…

One of the measurements the ultrasound tech needed was the length of my cervix and whether it was closed or open (dilated).  Thankfully it’s still closed, not dilated, but it is much shorter than it should be at this stage of pregnancy.  Basically the cervix should be about 4cm throughout pregnancy and shorten (efface) during labor.  Well, mine is already effaced to 2cm, which is apparently not good.  At first the tech thought maybe she just wasn’t getting a good view of it, so out came the dildo cam.  Yes, and here I thought I was finished with ‘those’ ultrasounds.  Oh the memories!  The second ultrasound showed the same though…

My doctor explained the risks of a shortened cervix at 20 weeks, mainly miscarriage and pre-term labor.  My regular OB contacted a high risk physician and it was decided that for the time being we’ll try progesterone suppositories, as they have been known to stop effacement (further shortening of the cervix).  The problem though is, nothing has been known to increase the length, so getting to 40 weeks could be problematic.  Side note, I’ve heard from fellow IVF bloggers that progesterone suppositories are nasty messy, but in this case going back to the injections isn’t an option, as we need the localized effect of the vaginal suppositories.  My directions are to use them nightly, beginning tonight.  I’m sure I’ll have some great stories for you all soon!

So going forward…  I pray the progesterone stops the shortening of my cervix.  In three weeks I’m to return for a repeat ultrasound to check my cervical length.  If it’s the same, I assume I’ll stay on the progesterone.  If it’s shorter we’ll have to be more aggressive.  My doctor mentioned perhaps bed rest, steroids, stronger medication to deter labor, etc.  I didn’t ask a lot of questions about what’s to come, maybe I should have.  For now, I’m going to focus on the next three weeks.

Eric was with me today during our ultrasound and appointment, and thank God, as he understands all this medical stuff so much better than me.  Problem with him sometimes though, is that nothing serious really seems to phase him, as serious to him is about dead.  He did seem worried today though…  As we walked out of the doctor’s office he said, “We just need to get to 30 weeks for baby to be healthy, that’s only 10 more weeks.”  Um, frankly, I’m still holding out for my 20 more weeks.  I am not about to assume at this point she’s coming early, nor am I ready, on any level, for her arrival in 10 weeks!

11w3d – Nervous

My ultrasound and MaterniT21 blood draw are in less than two hours.  And I’m nervous.  I feel like I’ve come so far this time, but still so scared this can all still be taken away.  And the last thing I want to do is start all over.

Will I always fear ultrasounds, always have flashbacks to June 5th when the ultrasound tech said, “I’m sorry, but I don’t see a heartbeat.”  The chances are in my favor that this baby is healthy, right?

Eric’s last case today started later than expected this morning, so to add to my anxiety is him missing this appointment.  Please God…

If you have any prayers to spare, I’d surely appreciate a few.  I’ll update later tonight after my appointment.

6w6d

I haven’t written in a while, and due to the first item below, this post will be a bulleted list of what’s new in my world. No energy to make this post creative, sorry…

Morning Sickness:  I officially suck as a pregnant person.  Beginning last Monday, so almost a full week now, I’ve felt sick pretty much non-stop.  I’ve yet to actually throw up, but the almost constant nausea is really wearing on me.  And yes, I realize it’s only been a week.  The only times I’ve felt some relief is when I’ve been up and around, moving, walking, etc.  I feel sick as soon as I sit or lay down.  I’ve tried peppermint candies, ginger, acupressure wristbands, B6, crackers, nothing seems to help.  Sitting all day at work is hard, as is bedtime, since lying down is awful.  I’ve been trying to keep busy, stay upright, even cleaned today so I wouldn’t have to sit much, but then I just find myself exhausted.  I keep telling myself I’m lucky since I’m not actually throwing up, but a break from time to time in this nausea would be nice.  I’m trying to eat small amount every few hours so my stomach doesn’t get empty, but most things don’t sound at all interesting to me.  Any suggestions, I’m all ears.  I hear there is a new medication specifically for morning sickness, but I assume it’s only prescribed for those who can’t keep down food and drink, and so far, I have found some items I can tolerate.

7 Week Ultrasound:  It is tomorrow morning (Monday, October 13th) at 8am.  I’m both terrified and excited.  If you remember back to this post, where we learned there was no heartbeat at our 7 week ultrasound with our last pregnancy.  Needless to say, I’m very scared of a repeat.  I definitely feel different this pregnancy, lots of symptoms I wasn’t experiencing last time.  But I realize symptoms are no guarantee of a healthy baby.  Please pray for us, for a strong heartbeat tomorrow.

I’m slightly apprehensive about our appointment tomorrow for another reason…  Remember N, the awful male coworker of mine?  Remember the comments he made about racing to see who could get pregnant first?  Clearly he is beyond immature, in my opinion and has no concept for those struggling with infertility.  Anyway, their 12 week ultrasound is tomorrow morning, at 8am as well.  Please God, don’t let me see them in the waiting room, although it’s inevitable, right?  They tried all of two months and are sailing along in bliss.  Something I don’t want to see.  I just simply can’t relate to their experience and I certainly don’t want to be reminded of it tomorrow morning when I’ll be feeling super vulnerable.

Building:  Last weekend Eric and I were back in Cedar Falls to meet with two builders in an effort to narrow down our choice to one, and to decide on a lot.  I think we’ve come to a compromise on a lot, although it hasn’t been purchased yet.  It’s not all that large, although plenty big for the house we have in mind to build.  It’s pricey for its size though, probably because it is set along a pond with a fairly good view of such.  Oh, and there are few lots in Cedar Falls, so I assume most, if not all lots, are more expensive now than in the past.  As far as a builder, we still haven’t decided.  We are stuck between two that have both built a number of gorgeous custom homes in the area.  I think the hold-up at this point is getting an estimate from the second builder on a floor plan we have in mind.  And when I say in mind, we haven’t actually picked one.  Both builders know the general style we are drawn to, and I found a plan online which has many, many elements we love.  I posted pictures of this proposed floor plan under a new page named Dream Home from my main menu or you can view the pictures by clicking here.  I don’t expect us to build this exact home, but I’d really like to maybe start with this plan and make alterations as necessary.  I assume the majority of our coming weekends will be spent in Cedar Falls as both builders would like to start digging November 1st, which is quickly approaching.

Part-time:  I did have a chat with my boss in regards to me working part-time instead of full-time.  If you remember, I drafted an email to my boss…  I never ended up sending it.  She actually called me into her office the day after I posted that draft and we got on the topic of my workload.  I decided then was as good a time as any to share my concerns.  To my surprise, my boss was actually all for me going part-time.  Probably because I pointed out I can still complete all my work, in half the time, for half the pay.  Yeah, I’m that good.  Anyway, she cleared my part-time status with her boss so far, who was also all for it.  My boss’s boss is now supposedly talking to higher-ups and HR.  I kind of expected to hear something last week, but not a word yet.  Maybe this week!  I’d love to start part-time sooner rather than later, especially since my days feel so long now since I’ve felt so sick.

I definitely feel like I’m forgetting some update…  But for now, I just ask for more prayers for our ultrasound tomorrow.  I’ll update as soon as I have results.

FertilityBlend® for Women

***  I feel as though this post requires a disclaimer.  I’ve attempted to break this post into specific sections as to accurately share the study details separate from my own thoughts and opinions.  I certainly don’t want to cloud the actual study with my own feelings, as I have no medical/infertility-related training.  The sections which do include my opinions are just that, my opinions based on only my own personal experiences.  Let me also add that I am in no way completely against ‘natural’ or ‘unconventional’ infertility treatments although I will admit I’m rather skeptical as to the ‘proof’ which is portrayed on the internet, and thus I asked my husband to search for published studies out of pure curiosity.  Attached is the only article he found published, although please keep in mind his search was limited to chasteberry (also known as Vitex) and its effects on infertility.  Also please note his search was limited to those published within the US, but only because he has greatest access to such publishing.  This study does make mention of studies completed and published out the US.  To date there are no clinical trials related to Vitex, nor is it FDA approved as of this post.  ***

A little background before I get to the actual study…  While our search was limited to chasteberry and infertility, the study itself focuses on FertilityBlend® for Women, of which one of the ingredients is chasteberry.  There are several other ingredients in this supplement, so feel free to review those details and others about this specific product which can be found on the maker’s website.

Also of note on the website is a customer testimonial section, however, none of the sources provided qualify as medical journals, and therefore I have not included their data in this post…  I’m specifically writing in reference to the attached study found within the Bio-Medical Library Periodicals.  More information on the source is available on the third page of the article; the entire article is attached here.  Feel free to download and read at your leisure, I double-checked that we’re not infringing on its copyright 🙂

Okay, so the study…  I wanted to copy and paste the highlights, but since my copy is a PDF, I unfortunately can’t.  Below is a brief summary, I’ve tried to only rephrase to save space so PLEASE let me know if I’ve misrepresented the actual study in any way, as that was not my intention.


 

Purpose:  To determine the impact of nutritional supplementation on female fertility.

Introduction:  Vitex agnus-castus (chasteberry) is an herb that has been used for gynecological disorders for centuries.  It can decrease prolactin levels, increase luteinizing hormone (LH) levels, and result in better development of the corpus luteum.  Clinical studies in Europe (references 2-4) show Vitex increased progesterone levels, improved fertility, increased pregnancy rates (reference 5), reduced PMS symptoms, and regulated menstrual cycles (references 5-7).

In another study (reference 10) it was found that drinking green tea, known for its antioxidants, over caffeinated beverages, increased the chance of conception per cycle by 2-fold.

L-arginine, an essential amino acid, helps improve circulation to the reproductive organs (reference 20), which may enhance oocyte development and embryo implantation.

Materials and Methods:  A thorough literature review of all ingredients in FertilityBlend® for Women demonstrates a long history of safe use for women with a variety of gynecological disorders, as well as for potentially pregnant women.  The AHPA Botanical Safety Handbook (reference 23) states that traditional use of chasteberry includes prevention of miscarriage during the first trimester of pregnancy in cases of progesterone insufficiency.

Ninety-three (93) women, aged 24-42 years, who had tried unsuccessfully to conceive for six to 36 months, completed the study.

Results:  After three months, the FertilityBlend (FB) group of fifty-three (53) women demonstrated a trend toward increased mean mid-luteal progesterone, but among the women basal pretreatment (progesterone of <9 ng/ml), the increase in progesterone was highly significant.

The average number of days with luteal-phase basal temperatures >98˚F increased significantly in the FB group.

Both short and long cycles (<27 days or >32 days before the study) were normalized in the FB group.  The placebo group (P) of forty (40) women did not show any significant changes in these parameters.

After three months, 14 of the 53 women in the FB group were pregnant (26%) compared to four of the 40 (10%) in the placebo group.

Three additional women conceived after six months on FB (total of 17 of the 53; 32%).

Of the 21 total who became pregnant: mean age 34.3 years; TTC 18.2 months; 52% had low initial levels of progesterone <9 ng/ml; 19% later experienced a ​miscarraige, although this percentage is among expected values in all patient populations.

No significant side-effects were noted.

Conclusion:  Nutritional supplements could provide an alternative or adjunct to conventional fertility therapies.


 

First let me say, after reading the study, I ended up ordering a 6-month supply of this product.  And for those of you who really know me, this was huge for me!  I’m not without concerns regarding the study though, which include:

  • the study only included 93 women, which in my opinion is certainly not enough to come to any true, ‘proven’ conclusions
  • while the mean TTC of the women included in the study was roughly 20 months for both the FB group and the placebo group, the mean of any population doesn’t explain the entire picture; those of you who have taken statistics understand this…  some women in the study had been TTC for only 6 months, therefore, in my opinion, I don’t consider them to necessarily have an infertility issue

Other general concerns I have include:

  • the product is ridiculously expensive when you consider the actual active ingredients; these items could be purchased separately for a fraction of the cost
  • I did not purchase the ingredients separately, mainly because I’m lazy and cost is not significant to my budget, but that being said, they are certainly ripping off women looking for a ‘cure’ who may be more desperate (no offense) than the average consumer

So ultimately I purchased this product simply because it could help me.  Again, I’m not against unconventional treatments, I just often feel the internet portrays them as miracles without the data to support their claims, this again being one of those, as 93 people does not prove a miracle, in my opinion.  I would not have purchased this product if I had not first reviewed each ingredient in it with an MD, in this case, my husband.  There are several sites on the internet, for example, webMD, which states chasteberry is not safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding, but my only assumption is they are required to state this due to liability concerns.

Please let me know if you have any questions 🙂

AMH Results

I just received an email that a new test result is available for viewing in mychart, my AMH results.

My level is 2.021 ng/mL which appears to be within the normal range for my age of 34.  But um, the range for 40-45 year-old is less than 6.282 ng/mL, so I’m feeling pretty awful about my result.

And a quick search on google tells me my results signify low fertility…

Hopefully a nurse calls me soon to discuss…

Well look at that!

So I know what they (my doctors) and everyone else told me…  I probably won’t ovulate my first cycle after my miscarriage.  But, I decided I was curious, so when I got my <2 beta on Monday, July 14th I decided to call that day CD1.  I started tracking my BBT right away, and I started OPKs last Saturday the 19th.  And check out my chart here, or there is a permanent link to the right on my homepage under the thumbnail view of my chart.  Anyway, Fertility Friend totally thinks I did ovulate this cycle!  Is there hope?  I don’t know, maybe, maybe not, but I was just happy to see something that resembled normal.  I won’t get too excited this cycle, but based on the data, I can expect my period around August 6th, which also means that could be the start of our next IVF cycle!!!  I’ve never been so excited!!

Test Results ~ Protocol

I added another menu item above, Test Results ~ Protocol.  This page was originally going to be private, more as a way for me to keep track of my own results and such, but then I figured, I tell the entire world everything else, why would I keep this private!  I left out all the STD testing which was required by our clinic, but now that I think about it, I’m not sure why, as it was all negative 🙂

This page is still a work in progress, so check back whenever you’re curious.  I still want to go back and add in my ultrasound results from each of my monitoring appointments, might be nice to compare from one cycle to the next.

Clinical Trials

I was so hoping I’d hear from my doc today with the results of my AMH test.  Maybe they will wait until Friday to call me so my weekend can be ruined.  I think at this point I’m rather be in denial than know that my ovarian reserve is actually low.  But, if this process has taught me anything, it’s to never assume everything is fine.

In my last post regarding the answers my doctor provided during my consult, I mentioned his view on supplements, acupuncture, and other methods thought to help increase odds of IVF cycle success.  I think this topic in and of itself is touchy for many, so please know I don’t mean to offend anyone. We obviously all have our opinions, values, and life experiences which support our actions.

To date I have not invested in any supplements, nor I have seen a specialist for acupuncture treatments.  I try to stay active by exercising regularly, but this is really more for overall health and wellness, not just simply to facilitate a pregnancy.  On Monday when I asked my doctor if there was anything I could be doing in the meantime, before our next cycle officially starts, I didn’t specifically mention anything, he brought it upon himself to list these topics.  I can only assume they are topics he is used to discussing with patients, but again, I’m assuming.

My doctor’s advice was, in a nutshell, not to spend my time or money on these items.  He did make a point to say they aren’t going to hurt me, but his real focus was on saying they weren’t going to necessarily help me either, pointing out that no studies have proven a correlation between their use and IVF success.  So, allow me to explain this…

My clinic is part of a University teaching hospital.  Faculty and staff, including all of the REs I see there, are required to perform research.  This is something you don’t always see in private practice.  For example, my husband is a Urologist at the hospital where I’ve been seeking treatment, therefore he also has been forced to incorporate research into his career.  He personally has little interest in research, and I highly doubt he will continue doing such once he’s finished at the University and working in his own practice, but for the time being, he is forced.  So, over the past five years my husband has had quite a few papers published in a variety of medical journals, some far more prestigious than others.  Keeping that in mind is important, because not all research is created equal.  Most any physician, or really anyone, can study something, write a paper, submit it to lots of journals, and chances are a few of those journals will publish it.  No seriously, Eric has completed lots of so so research he wants to trash, but he’s been forced to submit it, and next month another of his works will appear on the cover of something, I forget which one now.

Okay, this is becoming long with no real point yet!  My point is, not all research is created equal.  For example, Eric could easily do a quick inventory of all my fellow bloggers, take their IVF success rates and attempt to correlate it with a list of factors, say those taking a certain supplement.  He could probably get the results published, but would you trust it?  Such a paper would be called a study, which is the vast majority of anything you’ll find on the internet.  Studies aren’t proof, they aren’t regulated…  I’m not saying they can’t and don’t disclose valuable information though.  Some do, but I have to assume a lot don’t.  Real proof comes from clinical trials, which are expensive, timely, highly regulated, and so much more, as they more often lead to FDA approved ‘things’ for lack of a better term.  Again, I’m not saying something has to be FDA approved to be worthwhile, just trying to explain the difference here.

In getting back to my doctor’s comment, I have to assume he was referring to clinical trials, of which I haven’t been able to find any supporting acupuncture or supplements, etc.  I assume that a line has to be drawn somewhere as to what a physician is willing to recommend.  Our resources (time and money for the most part) are limited, therefore I assume it’s in our doctor’s best interest to only recommend proven solutions.

On a more personal note, I’m honestly not sure how I feel about ‘unconventional’ infertility remedies.  I often feel stuck between a rock and a hard place.  I’ve tried to keep an open mind as I read many of your blogs.  But then there is Eric in the back of my head telling me not to waste our money.  I can’t fault him though, he’s been trained to think as such.  Not saying it’s right or wrong, it’s just how they are trained, they crave proof, which does strike me as odd since they call it practicing medicine!

So, will I try any of these methods during our next IVF cycle?  Honestly, probably not, but not because I’m 100% against them.  I’m trying more and more to watch what I put into my body, and while I’m far from perfect, I guess I just don’t see the point in ordering something off the internet and trusting its makers.  It reminds me of all the times I’ve wanted to buy something, Eric looks at the ingredients and says, yeah, it’s just ‘fill in the blank with something pointless like water’, don’t bother.  Fancy names sometimes though!  As for acupuncture, I have heard a lot of good things from fellow bloggers, but finding the time might be the issue.  I feel stressed enough with finding time for all the IVF monitoring appointments.  I’m not sure I need more stress of finding more time off work.

To close, I truly hope I haven’t offended anyone.  If you have had positive experiences with any specific products, I’d love to hear more about them.  I’m always open to learning 🙂

Consult – Some Answers

I’m fairly overwhelmed, and upset with some of the information I was given today at our consult.  Maybe later I’ll post on my feelings and reactions, but for the time being, below is simply a recap of the answers.  These questions probably weren’t in a very good order, so I apologize for the awkward flow.  Those in quotes are very close to my doctor’s words, but I was writing fairly quickly!

 

Eric and I passed on all genetic testing for him and me, as well as our embryos…  Is there anything you’d suggest at this point?

Genetic testing on Eric and I won’t have an impact on the success or failure of our IVF cycles, only on the health of children, God willing we ever get to take some home.  I assume this is why Eric and I passed on this testing initially, as if we’d had children the ‘traditional’ way, for lack of a better term, we wouldn’t have been pre-tested.  This testing isn’t all that expensive, well, relative to IVF treatment as a whole, so I decided to go ahead with this today.  It’s an easy blood test, which is drawn at the University and sent away, so heck, why not.  The testing service used is Counsyl and the diseases they test for can be found here.  I should have these results in 2-3 weeks.

Testing of our embryos may be something we want to look into, but our physician wasn’t overly concerned yet.  Perhaps this is dependent on the results of another blood test I had drawn today, the Anti-Mullerian Hormone Testing of Ovarian Reserve, more on this topic below.

 

After our positive pregnancy test, I was prescribed both progesterone and estrogen supplements, why?

“Both your levels were too low on the day of your first positive beta.  This is not uncommon with an IVF cycle, as even though we are trying to mimic the natural process, it’s almost impossible and thus we often need to supplement hormones the body would normally make on its own during the cycle.”

 

Does this reveal any link to why we weren’t getting pregnant on our own or with the IUIs?

“Hard to say since we didn’t test your levels during your IUI cycles.”

 

Throughout our monitoring I was repeatedly told, and shown on ultrasound, I had 15+ follicles, why did we only retrieve 6 eggs?  Were all 6 mature?  Does this relate to egg quality, some defect with me?

“All 6 were mature, although only 4 fertilized, although we never expect a 100% fertilization rate.”  Male factor infertility is not an issue for us.  “As to why we only retrieved 6 eggs, hard to say, but this and other signs point to a low ovarian reserve, basically you’re running out of eggs and/or you have too few good quality eggs.  Other signs include your cyst and high estradiol level which caused your first IVF cycle to be cancelled, and your miscarriage which can also be an indicator of poor quality eggs.”  My FSH was 7.7 when tested last, which my doctor says is good, but not always the best test, hence the Anti-Mullerian Hormone Testing of Ovarian Reserve (AMH) blood draw was done today.  I should have the results by the end of the week.

 

Was the timing of our retrieval too soon or too late after our trigger?

“Very hard to say.  IVF is not an exact science.”

 

Do you believe our miscarriage is in any way related to our unknown infertility issues?  Or do you view our past IVF cycle as a success which just unfortunately resulted in a miscarriage?

“At this point we only possibly suspect poor egg quality related to low ovarian reserve.  If you experience two miscarriages in a row we’d need to look into the cause further.”

 

Do you suggest we change the medications we use in future IVF cycles?

“Yes, we need to use a stronger protocol in an effort to ‘wake up’ more follicles in the hopes of retrieving more eggs.  Next time we will use the micro-flare IVF stimulation protocol.”

 

Will we be allowed to transfer two embryos in a future cycle, even if transferring at 5 days?

“Yes, since we transferred two embryos in your past cycle without success we would allow you to transfer two embryos in the future, either at 3 days or 5 days depending on embryo quality and grading.”  My doctor stressed the risk of multiples, a 39% chance of twins when transferring two, and a 3% chance of triplets, as IVF embryos are somehow more likely to split.  How and why, I have no idea!

 

Do we have any reason to suspect immune issues?  Is it possible to test just to rule them out?  Anything else we can test to rule out?

“You don’t have any risk factors, I see no reason at this point to test.”

 

Is there any possibly link between my infertility issues and those of my sister (no biological children), my aunt on my father’s side (no biological children), and my grandmother on my father’s side (difficulty conceiving)?

“Very difficult to say without digging into their medical histories, which we don’t have access to.  Some fertility issues are hereditary, such as Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), but you do not have this condition, nor any other which is considered hereditary.”

 

What are our next steps, how soon can we start our next IVF cycle?  Anything I should be doing in the meantime?

“As soon as you get your next period, call and we can get you started on birth control pills and then right into the stimulation drugs 4 weeks later.  No need to sit out several cycles, as at 7 weeks pregnant when you miscarried, you’re body wasn’t under stress and therefore doesn’t need to heal.  You’re more than welcome to spend your money on supplements claiming to improve egg quality, or try acupuncture, but there are no medical studies which prove any link to improving IVF success.”

This Weekend

Last night Eric told me his brother and wife (whom I adore and haven’t seen in way too long) and some other friends as well are meeting up in Des Moines this weekend for Brewfest.  Sounds fun right?  Sorta…

I haven’t seen Eric’s brother and wife in quite a while, and I would love to spend some time with them.  Unfortunately though, it’s a package deal.  If I want to see them, which I do, I also have to see several others who, to be quite honest, annoy the shit outta me.  Okay, maybe that’s not quite fair to say.  I’m not all that close with these other friends, so perhaps I don’t know them well enough to judge…  Anyway, last night I told Eric I wasn’t all that thrilled with the idea of spending his first weekend off in quite some time, with (some) people who I’m not all that fond of.

This morning I was thinking, Eric and I so rarely get to actually go out and do something together, maybe we should just go.  I’ll suck it up and put on my happy face and finally have a chance to see his brother and my sister-in-law, even if I have to deal with the others.  So I booked playcare for Kona and a hotel for Eric and me.

Fast forward to earlier tonight, Eric got home from work at a decent time, around 6:15pm and was starving so he suggested we head out for dinner.  We’re diving to a Mexican restaurant and Eric, very nonchalantly says, “Oh, by the way, so and so are pregnant.”  I looked and him and just stared, as this is one of the couples we’d be seeing this weekend, one which I’m not all that fond of in the first place.  So, I was already faking wanting to see them, and now I’d have to slap a smile on my face and say, oh, so happy for you.  I was pregnant 6 weeks ago, and now I’m not, after a hellish time getting pregnant, but yes, I’m happy for you, how about we go get you a baby gift!

Sorry, that sounds really mean of me, but as my therapist says, we can’t control our feelings, only how we react to them.  And my reaction in the car, on the way to the restaurant, to this news, was bawling.  Yes, I don’t know what came over me, I just started crying.  For losing our baby, for the 22 months we’ve been trying, for the terror of having to start all over… it just all kind of came back to me.  Along with hurt that Eric wasn’t more considerate when sharing this news with me.  Did he not think this might be difficult for me to hear?  Did he not think that maybe the plans we’d just made for the weekend maybe weren’t the best considering what he and I have been through recently?  Six weeks is still recent, right?

So we obviously didn’t go to dinner, as I was a mess.  Eric picked up fast food for himself, I’d lost my appetite, and we came home.  We talked a lot tonight.  More than we have in a while, which was good for us.  I feel like our marriage is already stressed with his awful work schedule, and throwing infertility into the mix is just too much sometimes.  I love him, I really do, but man, he’s oblivious sometimes!  Is that all men??

So our talk…  Eric explained how he thinks about this infertility struggle.  He feels we are doing everything we can right now, we have our appointment Monday, and we will do another IVF cycle, the best treatment for infertility…  He says this is a numbers game and if we do enough cycles we will get our baby.  And maybe he’s not wrong in his thinking, but he’s so…  Thinking like a doctor!  Why can’t he consider the feelings involved??  It’s more than just treatment and a plan!

And sure, we have our appointment Monday, which I’ll attend alone since he can’t rearrange his patients with this short of notice.  But who knows what they will tell me.  I assume we will formulate some plan, but what about in the meantime?  How do I go on day after day, seeing babies, and pregnant women?  How do I find a way to be happy for them when I’m still so sad for me?  I can’t avoid those with babies and bellies forever!  Can I??

And I cancelled our hotel room, although Kona will still go to playcare, as it is non-refundable this close to her scheduled arrival time.  No idea what Eric and I are doing this weekend now.  I searched the internet for ‘fun events in Iowa this weekend’ but all I got was alcoholics anonymous and Brewfest.  No seriously.  Remember when I was pissed about Eric wanting to stay in Iowa?  Okay, I’m still pissed about that, but this is why!  It’s like, we have a free weekend, and what the crap are we going to do now that I clearly have to avoid pregnant ladies!?