Thursday, May 24, 2007

There are times when Dr. Google is a good thing

Sorry I have been absent. I have been trying to keep my anxiety about this pregnancy at bay and worried that writing about it would just exacerbate it. I have been following along with you all, though, and YAY Bumble!!

I've been feeling what I think are "normal" pregnancy symptoms, like exhaustion (I finally brought a pillow into my office for naps on the floor) and some nausea. And there has been no spotting or cramping. But still, it's like waiting for something bad to happen. I am trying really hard to be nothing but positive, but it's so hard to trust my body.

This afternoon I had another u/s. The wanding went on forever (and again, I inserted my own wand). The tech said, "so, there's two, right?" I must have looked flabbergasted, since then she said something about the last u/s report saying something about there being another sac. She poked and prodded that thing in me and even called another tech in to look at the ultrasound. After much consultation, they decided that there was only one. And that one is looking pretty good, measuring roughly on track (okay, a few days behind, but I'm trying not to worry about it since measurements at this stage are fairly inexact) and the heartbeat was strong at 160. But there is a weird band or piece of tissue or something running through the sac, sort of making it look like two. There's nothing in the other sac. Or band, or whatever.

Of course K and I were freaking out about the band or sac or whatever it is. Our RE, who rocks, said that it's likely nothing to be worried about but we're going back for another u/s on Saturday morning at the regular hospital u/s department, which apparently has 3D u/s and doppler and will be able to tell us what's going on. On the u/s requisition form she said it was to "rule out amniotic band".

So, like the good little researcher I am, I ran back to my office and immediately Googled "amniotic band". There is something really scary called Amniotic Band Syndrome but it's really really rare and would probably not be able to be detected this early and our u/s pictures don't look like it. I think it looks most like a synechia, which is usually totally benign, but since I don't always trust that Dr. Google went to a certified medical school, I'll wait until Saturday for the real report. But, for once, perusing the internets did make me feel better.

Who even knew that this was something to worry about? I hope it's like the limo explosion. Not something I thought to worry about beforehand, but ultimately will have no real effect on the outcome. Hanging in there for now. Positive thoughts and prayers from blogland much appreciated.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Joy and Pain, Sunshine and Rain

Sadly, Grammy passed away yesterday morning. She was in bed with my grandfather, and when the nurse went to check on her early in the morning, she had no heartbeat. When my aunt arrived, my grandfather was upset, saying that she was supposed to die in his arms. So she got him back into bed, told him that perhaps she had not died just yet, put his arms around her, and he was able to be at peace with the thought that she was in his arms as she died. It makes me cry so much thinking about what that scene must have looked like and I am so grateful that my very loving aunt even had the presence of mind to allow him that moment. The funeral is tomorrow morning, so we're heading to Boston tonight.

My grandmother was an incredible person. She had six children. My father, the fourth child, was born 10 months after the aforementioned aunt. What they were doing having sex a month after birth with a newborn and two toddlers running around is beyond me! She managed to hold out after my dad was born, since my uncles after him came 6 and 11 years later. The funny thing is that my grandmother always claimed that my father was an ectopic pregnancy. Clearly, that's medically impossible, but I'm curious as to what the real story was.

Growing up, we lived about an hour from my grandparents, so I was fortunate to know them well and have very many fond memories. Grammy was known for her amazing chocolate chip cookies, for which my cousin and I got in trouble for sneaking from the fridge. And I'll always chuckle at her admonishment that I would always regret the fact that I had double pierced one of my ears when I was 16. She and my grandfather celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary at our wedding two years ago, and were even able to dance at the reception, which was wonderful.

I will really miss her, but am comforted by the fact that she's now pain-free and is at peace. Two days before she died, she woke up from the deep sleep/semi-coma state she had been in and out of and really wanted to get her hair done. She was convinced that she was heading to a party. The nurses were able to get her into a wheelchair and downstairs to the hair salon. Amazing. If only we could all pass into death feeling as though we were going to a party!

And then, this afternoon, I had my first ultrasound. The baby measured about 6w1d and there was a little heart flickering away on the screen. The juxtaposition of my grandmother's heart stopping beating yesterday and then seeing this little heart today is almost too much to bear. Life really is miraculous, and there is so, so much more to this universe than we will ever understand.

Monday, May 7, 2007


All afternoon I was stressing out about why I hadn't heard from the nurse yet about beta #3 from this morning and convinced myself that they called to give good news first and waited for the bad news calls, which was why she hadn't called yet. As much as I was trying to stay positive, all day has been spent worrying. Worrying, worrying.

But then I came out of my meeting, and there was the message on my phone. And the order of calls was clearly just something my anxious brain invented. Because beta #3 was 2837. Which is a doubling time of something like 35 hours.

I am overjoyed, and terrified, and cautiously so, so excited.

In very sad opposite end of the lifespan news, my Grammy is in her last few days of life. She's at home, and has hospice care, and all of her children and my grandfather are with her. She's been so sick for so long and has been suffering so greatly. I am relieved that she is being released from her pain. But, oh, how terribly we will miss her.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Having faith

Everything is seemingly going okay so far. I do have some symptoms, especially being very tired in the evenings, and that gives me some sense of reassurance. I am starting to understand why Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes bought their own u/s machine, though. The comfort of being able to make sure that everything is okay in there whenever you want to would be marvelous.

Or maybe it wouldn't. Sometimes, you just have to have faith that everything will go as it needs to. And if it means that this pregnancy ends early, well, I'll just cross that bridge if I come to it. Worrying ceaselessly about the worst case scenarios is not helping. My mother thinks I'm crazy. I asked her if she worried about m/c when she was pregnant and she said that she didn't. I can't imagine being so blissfully unaware of all of the things that could possibly go wrong. I think I know too much.

But, I should just take a lesson from my own wedding. Some things that you DO worry about, don't happen. Like worrying that the flowers won't be delivered or that you won't fit into your dress on your wedding day. And then, there are some things that don't even occur to you to worry about, that happen anyway, like your limo exploding into flames en route to the church*:

But you know what? We still got married. And now we have an awesome story to tell. And worrying about all the things that could have gone wrong would have been pointless, because at a certain point, it's out of your control and you just have to have faith, and hope for the best.

So that's what I'm trying to do. Have faith. Be positive. Imagine that there will be a real live baby in January. And take lots of deep, even breaths. And just enjoy this new chapter.

* We were all fine, including my 8mo pregnant bridesmaid and the 4 year old flower girl, but had to run from the limo and to the church. In the rain. Luckily, we weren't that far away.