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zelda
I woke up and started crying this morning. I just want my period to arrive so I can get this over with. This is the very worst time of the month for me, bottom line. I just *know* it's going to come any minute; I can feel it, and I just want the disappointment to be over with, so I can start thinking about next month. Plus I just fucking hate having my period.

I'm spending the day hanging out with a friend...that will distract me.

Sorry...just needed to vent.

Oh yeah, and I got a huge pimple on the side of my nose. Greeeeeaat.
Michelina
Fookie, you don't even sound close to being a nut. Expressing feelings about the frustrations of TTC and having thoughts like the one you described are probably what keep you from becoming nutty! :-) I am thinking of you too during your wait.

Zelda, I understand. I am so glad you have a distraction today. As hard as it will be, try to talk about something else when your mind wanders in that direction (and it certainly will!) I sometimes find that the more I talk about it, the worse I feel. I think it's because it often gets beyond just "getting it out" and becomes something I dwell on. And you don't know for sure this month was a bust. As hard as it is, remind yourself that this is part of the TTC adventure. It's not over until / unless your period rears her ugly head.

I know what you mean about hating your period. At one point in this last cycle, I sat on the toilet and stared at my tampon and cried. I just felt this huge amount of hatred toward that piece of cotton on a string.

Oh and what's with the zits? I had several this cycle too - felt like I was back in high school. Stress and hormones combined?

Julie, I agree with you about the symptoms women report in retrospect. I am sure everyone who is pregnant could come up with some "symptoms" and I'm sure almost all of them could be explained by something else. I actually felt crampy last night and the thought crossed my mind that it could be a symptom. Then I remembered I haven't even ovulated yet! A friend of mine didn't have any symptoms at all, and then realized suddenly that her period was late (by 5 days!). She took a test and was pregnant. Her symptoms kicked in between 5 and 6 weeks. I bet she is more the norm than the exception. I only wish I could be as relaxed about the TTC thing as she was.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that GP's in Canada do more of the work that would be done by specialists in the US. For example, pap tests and basic fertility workups (like Fookie mentioned) are done by GP's. They also deliver babies for the most part, and OB's only are involved if the pregnancy is "high risk." Fookie, it does seem a little silly that all of your tests were repeated, but maybe they just wanted them as up-to-date as possible? Zelda, I hope you can manage to find a place that will do the analysis without the consultation. I see your hesitations in going down that road already.
zelda
Michelina, thank you...your kind words were just what I needed to read as I got ready to leave for the day. You are right, it will be good to have a distracting day planned that I am actually looking forward to (hanging with this friend).

Your friend sounds like another friend of mine who was so sure she was not pregnant she proceeded to get drunk multiple times during her "two week wait" because it was the holidays. She had no symptoms until about 6 weeks. I suppose it is possible, but I'm having PMS symptoms right now, too...zits, irritability, emotional wreck, crying every five minutes. My classic PMS symptoms.

Well, I will let you know either way...of course!

As for your question about the health care system...it's actually hard to find a GP because there is no money to be made in being a GP thanks to the private insurance racket in this country...so most docs choose to specialize because that's where a decent living can be made. I can't even remember the last time I went to a GP. I have a GYN for well woman care, a dermatologist for some skin issues I have (mild psoriasis), and Mr. Z has an ear, nose, and throat guy for some ear issues...crazy, no? That's the American system.

Will do more research on the jiz analysis tomorrow, but for now it's off to the shops!
ananke
Fookie, i totally do the 'worst case scenario' thing! Or at least, i did prior to the pregnancy. I think it was part of the depression for me, because it's backed off a bit.

Zelda + Michelina - I hope it goes well this cycle. It's such a hard wait.

Eyelet - you must be so close! I know what you mean with the mental energy thing, although for me I'm just getting less and less social. All I want to do is curl up at home and let the world go by.

I've got my last scan today and we decide on the date for the induction. I'm a little nervous to be honest. My hands started swelling and getting puffy yesterday (not so bad today) but I think my vision is a little blurry though. It's really hard to tell because I'm extrememly short sighted so blurry = normal. I went in to work yesterday to pick up some books and talked to my boss and everything is going well. Except the swine flu panic.

I'm going back to bed until I have to get ready for the appointment. I am so damn tired.
zelda
Well, my period is due today and it hasn't shown...yet. But it will, I think. This morning out of curiosity I took my temp. I have not been temping this cycle, but it was low, around 97 degrees. So I think that's a sign that it's only a matter of time. I had cramps yesterday and the runs this morning...argh.

On the positive side...I found a urologist that will do a semen analysis of Mr. Z's semen for $100 and Mr. Z does not have to see the doctor to get it done. He can give the sample at home as long as he gets it to the doctor's office within 2 hours of collection. And he's close to our house. That makes me feel more proactive. I think it will help Mr. Z feel better, too.

I had an acquaintance get puffy just before delivery, Ananke...but it went away as soon as the baby arrived. Hang in there! I saw my BFF the other day, and she said, "It just hit me that I am actually going to have a baby." Granted, not for about 4 and a half more months, but now that the amnio results are back and all is normal, she is really realizing this is...real! Exciting and scary at the same time.
recentlysequined
Bonjour mes amies! Well, in spite of my resolution to wait and tell people, I got into a totally emotional conversation with my sister this Sunday after hub and I got back from our 10th college reunion (just too wierd) and while I cried, she suddenly said, "oh my god, are you pregnant?" and it was kind of hard under my emotional duress to coolly say no. Then she cried, and I cried some more, and we both were basically massive messes.

But she's sworn to secrecy and the plan is still to start telling people 4th of July. I'll be 11 weeks by then and through my first OB visit and basic tests - so it should be ok by then. And it's actually been nice to be able to talk to her about what's happening (mostly just swollen tits and, uh, constipation).

Hey, here's a question for the pregnant ladies: how much shopping around for your OBs did you do? I feel this wierd obligation to scour the heavens for the perfect person, but I am also feeling like I need to get going on my testing and diagnosis and unless I can't stand something about the MD/group my GP recommended, I'm kind of thinking I'll just go with her.

What do y'all think?
zelda
Recentlysequined, my BFF just went to an OB of a friend...I would think personal references would be the best way to go. If you can, find someone you trust and ask them who they used. I know my BFF liked her doc right away, so she didn't really "shop" for one, but I would think if you did go to someone and you weren't pleased with them, then definitely look somewhere else!

My period showed up this afternoon, right on schedule...well, it usually arrives in the morning. I had a long talk with both my parents, and they both said the same thing...I have to be more patient. That four to five months is really nothing at all. They said it would be crazy for Mr. Z to even consider a semen analysis right now although they don't know about his pot habit, so...

Then again, the more I think about that, the more I don't think the pot would make much difference. I was reading about Willie Nelson the other day, and I found out he has like 9 kids - one of which was born when he was in his 50s. And he's a huge pothead! So... :-)

I guess I will leave the decision about a semen analysis to Mr. Z and if he really would feel better about getting one, he can go.

So anyway, both my parents were like, "You have to relax. You have to give it more time. Remember what the doctor said."

I'm not that upset, oddly. I'm just like, okay, this month down, let's move on. My dad said that at some point my neurotic mind will get so exhausted from worrying that it will give up. I hope/think he's right.

I just wish I'd never told everyone we were trying. I really do. Argh. If I could go back in time, I would change that.
zelda
Okay, so to distract myself from feeling blue, I decided to clean out the bathroom cabinet. I ended up finding a whole, unopened box of tampons I'd forgotten about in there. So I have, like, hundreds of tampons. My cat is watching me as I organize them all on my bed according to absorbency level. I am laughing through the tears.

:-)
julie124
zelda, I don't know whether to laugh or virtually hug you given the tampon-counting scene. I'm sorry this wasn't your month but I'm glad you seem to be able to maintain your sense of humor. And try not to beat yourself up too much for telling people about your trying. I never told my family about trying and (to their credit) both my parents and my in-laws were SO GOOD about not hinting for grandkids even after mr. julie and I had been married for more than 5 years, and I STILL felt this weird pressure that we had to GET ON IT, now! The pressure would have come from somewhere.

recentlysequined, I would ask friends first before just going with someone you've never met before. Also, sometimes people will post stuff about their favorite docs in the area on message boards, but personal recommendations are better. I had a gynecologist already but when I got pregnant I decided I wanted someone closer to where I lived. But I wasn't telling anyone about being pregnant yet, so I just sent a message to all my girlfriends in the area that I was "looking for a new gynecologist closer to home, and since I'm thinking about kids in the future, want to pick someone who does obstetrics as well - whom do you go to, do you like her/him, do they do obstetrics?" The OB I ended up picking is part of a three-woman practice that does NOT refer out (so, one of the three of them will deliver the baby, not some other doc I've never met before) and actually happens to be the OB/GYN of my pregnant friend (who had not yet announced her pregnancy). Another thing you may want to think about is at what hospital(s) the OB has privileges, and make sure you're comfortable with delivering there.

I think it's worth doing a little homework, as you'll be spending some quality time with this person over the next few months and I think it would be difficult for me to change docs mid-pregnancy if it didn't work out. That said, don't scour the heavens - just ask a few friends (especially ones who may have had gynecological issues or have had babies before) and pick one of those or the group your GP recommended.

Rest up, ananke - hope the last scan goes well. I know lots of friends who puffed up in the last few weeks - they didn't have preeclampsia, either, though it did give them carpal tunnel. It went away just about right after delivery.

Here's a fun new symptom I've discovered: I now have to be really careful when I feel a sneeze or cough coming on, because YEOWCH! Sharp stabby pain in my lower abdomen when I sneeze or cough. It's my ligaments, so nothing to worry about. But kind of a nasty surprise when I had a particularly violent sneeze this morning.

Fookie
Zelda!!!!! Damn those tampons and their varying absorbancy levels (I'm glad sorting them made you laugh ... I just choked on my green tea reading about it). Someday, sooner than you think, you'll be having a tampon/thermometer/pregnancytest burning party b/c you'll be pregnant. I'm so sorry about the stinkin' period. FUCKER!!!! (I find myself screaming that out loud the day I get my period, so I'm screaming it for you right now. It makes me feel better - I hope my doing it for you somehow makes you feel better.). Despite how crummy you feel right now, you are really soooooo very early in the process. Do not lose hope.

I had period twinges yesterday, so I have no doubt mine is also on its way. If I have a normal cycle, we're looking at monday or tuesday. At least I get my weekend, but then again, finding out at work always really sucks. They seem to frown upon employees walking around growling FUCKER at the top of their lungs!

Michelina, thanks for the vote of "not-nuts" confidence. I sometimes wonder. I did a GoDaddy domain-name search for www.imightbegoingcrazy.com the other day. Surprisingly it's available. Ha ha. I started feeling sane though so kind of forgot about it. Maybe I should snatch it up before someone else does. I'm sure I'll have enough moments of insanity over the course of my life to populate a blog about it all.

Your description of sitting on the toilet, staring at your bloody tampon and crying ... my goodness ... it drew a tear. I feel your pain. It got me thinking that someone should do an art installation about trying to get pregnant and its related mental travails. Bloody tampons, thermometres, negative pregnancy tests, etc. and put them all in a crib or something. Kind of twised (but then again aren't we all a little twisted?) but I bet some shock-jock of an artist out there could do it well and make the kind of statement

Ananke, congrats on the final scan and setting the induction date. Is that date an "if you don't go into labour before then" kind of date? I'm so excited for you. Woo-hooooooo!

RS: Good for you for telling your sister. Those first 10-12 weeks must be so filled with stress and what-ifs. I'm glad you have someone to share with (even if it is just about constipation at this point!). And I'm sure your sister couldn't be happier for you or more thrilled to be the first to know. How exciting to be able to tell all your friends and family. I can't tell you how many different perfect ways I've dreamed up to tell my sweet partner and later our familes when our time finally comes. I can hardly wait to hear how it all goes. Do you have anything special planned?

Julie, OUCH! The first thing I thought of when you described that pain was "I hope you don't have allergies." Any idea what the pain is from? Baby pressing on a tender organ, I'm guessing. How much time do you have left?

Thank you for all being so wonderful. This board is such a zen place to come to at the end of a hard day. You're all gorgeous and I'm wishing you all every bit of happiness.

***edited to create extra paragraph breaks so you didn't get nauseous while reading
zelda
FUCKER indeed, Fookie! So funny. Thank you for your kind words.

I was able to go and truly enjoy a margarita with some coworkers this afternoon, knowing that I am not harming any existing fetus. smile.gif

By the way, Michelina or Fookie or anyone TTC, do you take baby aspirin? I've heard an 81 mg dose once a day from the time of ovulation until your period is a good help because it thickens the lining of the uterus and makes implantation easier. I don't know...I think I will try it this month along with the digital OPK test I bought (Clearblue easy). I haven't used an OPK in three months, so I figured I'll try it again this month.
Fookie
Zelda, when I first started to look for somewhere to vent/share/support online, I ventured into some of the scary places ... and so many people were taking baby aspirin. I never knew why. Now that I know, I may just add it to my regimen next month. My naturopath has me rubbing Castor Oil into my lower belly and liver area every night. Days 1-14 she has me taking a really good quality fish oil (for CM) and days 15-28 she has me taking primrose oil (to calm the uterus). I'll have to talk to her about the baby aspirin. Thanks for the info.

I realized I didn't answer a question earlier about GPs in Canada ... in general (excuse the pun) they can pretty much do it all. I live in a large urban centre, so my GP refers to an OBGYN after a certain number of weeks of the pregnancy. She doesn't do the deliveries. I am hoping to opt to go the mid-wife route, so that won't be a concern for me (unless of course I end up with multiples, then my options are limited.). In more rural areas of the country, GPs still do deliveries (sometimes even house calls). We have an incredibly poor patien to GP ratio in Canada so a sad majority of Canadians do not have family doctors. They rely on walk in clinics and hospital emergency rooms. My understanding is that in certain areas of the country the situation is so bad that financial incentives are offered to doctors NOT to specialize and to move their practices to these towns/regions.
Michelina
(((Zelda))) All I can say is that you are not alone. And your parents are right - it is early in the game to look for something wrong. This is normal. Remember the average is 7 to 10 months of TTC. I repeat those words to myself often and it really helps. I hope you and Mr. Z. do something special this weekend and get your mind off it. (Of course, changing one's tampon every few hours is a nasty reminder!)

Fookie, I loved your idea of art depicting the emotions surrounding TTC. The tampon I was referring to was actually an unused one, but the bloody tampon would create much more of an effect in an art piece. It's such a good idea. Are you an artist? I am not, but I wish I were. I am way too right-brained and logical. Although I do love to play music (piano and very beginner guitar), I must have the notes in front of me or I'm useless.

I hadn't heard of the use of aspirin unless it's in early pregnancy for those with a history of miscarriage. It's an interesting idea. I may try that one too. I am going to start my cough syrup soon. It kind of works out that I happen to be sick with a cough now. I'll start my OPK tests soon too. My doctor told us to abstain for 5 days. Seems like a lot, but we'll give it a go.

Fookie, I'm a little confused about the primrose oil. I thought that I read it shouldn't be taken past ovulation because it can cause contractions of the uterus. Well, your naturopath would know best. I am just curious.

I am very lucky to have a great GP. In a time where it is very hard to get a GP, I totally lucked out. She has taken on Mr. M. too. She delivers babies, but if she didn't, I think I would use a midwife with an in-hospital delivery. I am seriously thinking I will get a doula. I know someone who had a natural birth in hospital with a doula and it was fantastic.

RS, I think it's fantastic you told your sister. Has she been pregnant before? Either way, it'll be nice for you to have someone besides Mr RS and your virtual friends (us!) to share your good and not-so-good experiences of early pregnancy with!
Fookie
Hi Michelina,

The primrose oil was a contentious issue between my naturopath and I when she first prescribed it. When I Google it all I can really find are the mentions about it possibly causing uterine contractions. I did find the odd mention of it calming the uterus too though. That being said all the negative mentions I came across were somewhat wishy-washy and seemed to indicate this was not a common side effect, but a rare potential one.

My naturopath reassured me that it would help support my LP. She has been bang on right about soooooooo many things that I've decided to trust her on this. She's been doing this for a long time and actually focuses on women's medicine. I have noticed that when I actually do remember to take it for most of my LP, I don't spot at all, and I don't really get PMS symptoms. So I'm going to stick with it, for now.

As for whether or not I'm an artist ... I think I am in my heart. I am a writer/journalist/book editor, which does require a fair bit of creative energy, but I've never delved into visual interpretation. As for music ... I own a guitar which I haven't touched in many years (and never well before that). I have two parents who are insanely musical and in-laws who owned a music store until they retired ... but aside from a really good ear I don't know how to read music (or really want to learn) and I just don't have the motivation to pick up an instrument, even though I fiercely with I did. Like visual art, I'd like to convince myself it's in there somewhere, just waiting for the right time in my life to come out. I was a "sporty" child. All my extra-curriculars were sports, by choice. My school didn't have a music or art program, so it just never really happened back then.
zelda
Michelina, I went and got some cough syrup today (the correct kind) and I think I will try it along with the OPK tests this month. To be clear, your doc suggested Mr. M refrain from ejaculating for five days before you start trying, right? I will suggest this to Mr. Z as a possible plan. :-) Does seem like a long time though.

Fookie, I am a writer, too. I worked as a journalist for several years before becoming an English teacher. I currently freelance for a few medical journals (boring) and write two blogs for Village Voice Media. I'm also trying to find an agent for a young adult novel that I've recently completed. Right now three have requested to look at my stuff (beyond my query letter), so that's good. We shall see. In fact, my writing and teaching keep me occupied beyond the land of TTC. I looooove having the summers off from school, but sometimes all my free time gets me on the worry train.
eyelet
Here's another kind of 2 week wait...the last two weeks of pregnancy. I think I've already mentioned that my LMP based due date is 6/9, but based on the baby's age at the 12 week scan, it was estimated to be 6/4, so I'm in serious limbo.

I have done everything that really has to be done around the house and even caught up on shipping out all my orders and doing all my bookkeeping for the business. My in-laws from England have been in town for over a week and since they can't go on walks and outings to entertain themselves in this Texas heat, they are surely getting bored (my Mr. is trying to finish a lucrative project of his own before the baby arrives so is too occupied to hang out with them much).

I find myself faced with too much time to think and to get anxious about what's ahead. Keeping very busy is one of the ways that I avoid the worrying syndrome that several of you have mentioned. So this peaceful time to relax, while perfect for me now physically, is a little weird mentally.

My best friend has taken an annual family trip that falls this weekend and though she is prepared to fly home, I would rather she not have to, so it would help her if it falls on Monday or Tuesday. But seriously, if I have to wait until Monday or Tuesday I might go bonkers.

The midwife has another client due on 6/9, so my latest worry is that we'll go into labor on the same day and I will end up with a back-up midwife I've never met (avoiding that scenario was my whole reason for choosing home-birth over the birthing center).

I'm also feeling really bitchy. Oh well..as usual must suck it up and just deal with it.
smile.gif
ananke
Well, I just spent two nights in hospital - blood pressure went up again and I was feeling like crap so I was admitted for rest and observation. My blood pressure came down over the two days so I'm back home under instructions to rest and to not worry about the fact I turned up glucose in my urine and a high blood sugar result on friday. it could be nothing or I could have been one of the few missed in the gestational diabetes testing and I've had it the whole time or I might have developed it recently. My ob. pointed out that it doesn't change anything other than adding heel prick tests to the rest of the testing and monitoring she'll get once she's here, and that worrying won't help.

Which is annoying because it is rather hard not to worry and freak out about these things.

There were also arguments about using the machine vs. old school blood pressure testing machines (ob. strongly prefers the old school, the nurses tried telling him they don't use those anymore and only went and got the portable one when he asked where he would need to transfer me to get my blood pressure tested properly). Everything is still going ahead like planned though - 11am on Tuesday we head in to start the induction with gel, and he'll drop in in the vening and hopefully everything goes smoothly.

I'm having a baby in three days time and I'm not allowed to clean my house or go shopping or any of the things I want to do. And i'm not supposed to worry!

eyelet
Hi Ananke-How frustrating! It sucks to be in the hospital and to have all these worries swirling around in your head. I'm sure everyone is just erring on the side of caution, but it's still stressful. I'll be sending good thoughts your way.
zelda
Good grief, ananke! Hang in there!

I know you must feel the urge to really nest/clean/prepare, but I have a feeling once the babe is here, all those thoughts will fly out the window. Honestly, though, I know you wish you didn't have to go to the hospital, but I'm just glad you've got what sounds like great care.

Eyelet, I like the idea of the two week wait at the end of the whole process as well...a funny kind of bookend. It's so interesting to watch Michelina and Fookie and myself at the beginning of the whole process and then you and ananke at the end, and julie and jenny and everyone else in the middle...one of the most interesting things about this thread.

Hang in there the both of you, and let us know what's going on!
ananke
Thanks! The Marital Unit has been great - making sure I nap and eat and all that stuff. And he just went and got me coffee. Even though he hates the smell of it. And on top of that he's come down with some flu thing and so has my mother...I'm getting visions of me and NerdBaby on one side of glass with Maman and Mr A in scrubs quarantined on the other side.

Aw, he got me croissants as well!

Eyelet, I hope things start progressing for you soon! The range of experiences in this thread are so incredibly fascinating, but it'd be awesome if we had babies at the same time!
zelda
Funny story for those TTC...my dad told me that he has a guy at work whose wife is pregnant. Well my dad being nosy asked how long it took them (because he knows I am stressing).

The guy told my dad 3 months, then said, "The deal is, we weren't even trying. But our neighbors were all obsessed with taking temperature and timing it and stuff like that, and it took them 8 months."

One of those stories you don't know whether to love or hate.

And I have to say, I'm laughing over my dad talking about TTC with his coworker!
ananke
God I'm glad my MIL lives in Egypt. After I didn't answer an email and a facebook message about the baby (y'know, being in hospital and all) she sent one to me and Mr A about keeping her in the dark. So i sent her the details and she updates her facebook status to: "is now thinking of Ananke and Mr A and looking forward to Tuesday - probably more than you Ananke :-) well parts of it anyway..."

...

I just do not get this woman. Mr A just tells me she's crazy, but Christ woman, you are not, in any way, looking forward to the birth of my DAUGHTER more than me. I get that she's making commentary of the crappiness of labour, but reallly, I'm sick of this thing where it's healthy to be terrified of it and to encourage that fear. I'm nervous, but not terrified. But, she does live in Egypt now so I don't have to worry about her turning up at the hospital...
Michelina
Ananke, the comment your MIL made and her status update would annoy me too. Good thing for the distance! Good luck on Tuesday. Will be thinking of you and excited to hear your news!

Eyelet, I hope your two week wait goes by quickly.

Zelda, your dad sounds so cute. That made me smile! As far as my doctor's advice, she says we should abstain for 5 days then have sex two days before ovulation, the day of, and two days later. We are on our abstaining now and I am testing with OPK. I guess we'll start again once I get a faint line as it will indicate ovulation is coming. I am presently at CD13 and have some CM, but no line on the test yet. I am usually ovulating on CD17. Then I'll be back to the two-week wait!
eyelet
Well, I said I'd go bonkers if I had to wait until Monday or Tuesday, and I am. Everyone is calling and emailing and watching me for any signs of anything. I'm restless as hell because I'm torn between wanting to get this show on the road and knowing how not fun it will be. I had painful contractions last night. They feel alternately like the worst period cramps ever and the worst case of the runs ever.

I've developed a mean rash on both of my distended calves. I don't know if it's PUPPS (the late pregnancy rash), because it's only on my legs and didn't start on my torso. I'm afraid it might be just another side effect of my liver having a hard time keeping up with the demands placed on it.

I think I'm going to do something totally out of character today and instead of work or clean or assemble the stroller, I'm just going to go spend some money on myself for a change. And maybe I'll have some chocolate while I'm at it.

Zelda-I know telling people about TTC makes you have to live with it out in the open, but it also means you have people thinking and hoping for a happy outcome for you, and I think that has some kind of cosmic influence.

Ananke--you might beat me to the punch and have your baby first. If so, wait a few days to tell me the whole truth, lest it freak me out. smile.gif
julie124
(eyelet) and (ananke)
I'm sending all my good thoughts and wishes to both of you right now. Eyelet, that plan for your day sounds divine and I think you should absolutely do it. You deserve to treat yourself! Plus I hear a little walking is good for moving things along. Ananke, hooray for coffee and croissants, and supportive Marital Units!

I am hoping that we will have happy healthy baby and momma news from you both this week. Go babies!

Zelda, I am amused and impressed that your father is talking with people at work about babies. My dad is kind of old school...even hearing him say the word "pregnancy" sounds weird.

I'm starting to worry that my friends are going to be exhausted from my excitement about being pregnant by the time this is over. My childless by choice friend listened patiently to me this weekend as I showed her all the cool maternity clothes I found at a yard sale, and asked me all kinds of questions, and generally was the awesome friend she always is, but I worry that soon she will be thinking, "omigod, let's talk about something ELSE, for the the love of all that is holy!"

I think baby might be on a growth spurt - my hunger level went up drastically over the weekend, and I feel, well, slightly more bumpy. Or I could be making that up. Do fetuses have growth spurts?

Michelina
Julie, I am sure they do have growth spurts! As far as the excitement, I don't think you should hold it in. I bet your CBC friend is so happy for you that she doesn't mind at all. I am sure she expects you to be full of positive emotion - this is a big deal! She sounds like a wonderful friend and support. As the pregnancy advances, you probably will just naturally find yourself talking about it less as you become accustomed to being pregnant. And at the end, you'll be full of a number of emotions, I can guess!

I wonder how Ananke and baby are doing!

Eyelet, how are you?

Zelda, has Mr. Z. decided about the sperm analysis? This morning I woke up to discover that Mr. M smoked a lot of pot lately. Well, a lot relative to his usual. I questioned him about it, and he admitted that he is going through it quickly although he was not sure why. I think he just has more time on his hands now that he is only taking one course in school. I told him that I am very concerned about that quantity of weed and its effect on his sperm count and mobility. He said he will stop smoking pot until I am pregnant. I am so happy and relieved!!! I said he can treat himself during my pregnancy and then of course, we will need to talk again. I am not sure I want a baby and a stoned husband. :-)

Fookie
Hi everyone!

Ananke!!!!!!!! You must be a mamma by now! I can hardly wait to hear all about it. Please post pictures and news as soon as you can. Make sure the Marital Unit keeps that croissant supply stocked!

Eyelet ... all eyes are on you ... even on the Internet! I'm definitely waiting and wondering and sending all sorts of good thoughts your way. I must admit that by the end, I'd be feeling a bit like I was on display. I think that people often don't think twice about the things they say/ask pregnant women (not to mention all the people I've seen touching bellies without warning). I have to admit to finding it a bit hard not to stare wistfully at the woman who's pregnant where I work. Did you end up having a glorious day of shopping? How did you spoil yourself? How is the rash? I got my first rash ever a few months ago (hot yoga and the resulting lake of sweat apparently was not appreciated by my entire chest area ... despite a prescription cream, the itch still persists, though the rash looks to be gone ... all this to say that I FEEL for you).

Julie, I'm sure your CBC friend is beyond thrilled for you. Don't hold back your excitement. This is such a wonderful wonderful time for you. Any friend of yours will be more than happy to bask in your giddiness. I don't know much about inutero growth spurts, but I don't see why it would be any different than post birth. They must have growth spurts before they're born. Have you had any interesting food cravings? I always feel silly asking this, since most of the time people say "no" and I'm more or less convinced that the whole "pickle ice cream" thing is a myth ... but I'm so fascinated by the mere possibility that I just can't help myself.

Michelina, I hear you on the pot smoking and worrying about it affecting fertility. My partner comes from a long line of proud scotch drinkers and he made a habit of having a scotch when he got home from work. I'm French and come from a long line of wine-with-dinner drinkers, so he would partake in that too, and then often have a beer later in the evening. So in general, not much of a concern, but since our fertility is now officially called infertility, it really started bothering me. I had worked myself up over it and over the very fact that I would have to ask him to consider toning it down until after I'm pregnant ... well, sure enough the second I brought it up he agreed. It was a total non-issue. I'm glad your partner was so easy to persuade. I tell myself over and over that alcoholics get pregnant all the time and hard-core drug users do too ... but in the end, I didn't want to deal with what ifs, on top of everything else my brain was processing with the infertility diagnosis and the subsequent litany of doctor's appointments, injections, and ultrasounds.

Zelda, I think it's so cute that your dad is talking to his friends. Yay dads! This Christmas that just passed, I decided that although it goes against every instinct I have, I needed to share our situation with my mom and dad, and step mom. Most of my good friends knew, and my partner's sister knew, but for some reason I just didn't want my parents to know. Anyway, knowing that I was about to embark on all the injections and ultrasounds and everything that goes with IUI and injectables, I thought I should tell them. That maybe having their support would mean something. My dad, asks me how it's going and what htey're doing to me and what that does to me etc. etc. every time he calls. i just can't believe it. I never would have pegged him for it. It's just so sweet I could cry. My mom never asked and I finally said something to her, and it just turned out she wasn't sure if it hurt me to talk about it (I get it, but it also makes me shake my head ... after 33 years, she still hasn't figured me out!). My stepmom also asks regularly. All so very lovely and sweet of them. My friends have also been quite incredible.

Congrats on finishing the novel, Zelda. My years as a journalist temporarily squeezed the prose out of me, but I'm finding my stride again. I have no novel ambitions, but I have been re-writing quite a few children's books for my publisher. I seem to have a talent for quirky, funny stuff that appeals to kids. I'm thinking I may have a kids book in me at some point. I'm in awe of anyone who can sustain a story for more than 48 pages, so kudos to you. I'm so very jealous of your summers off. I've often thought about going back to school to become a teacher. Because I have an undergrad I would only have to do one year to get my teacher's certification. The sad thing is that because of the way things work here, your teachables have to relate to specific university credits in. So despite the fact that I've worked as a writer and editor for more than 10 years (I did a post-grad diploma in journalism, so that doesn't count b/c it wasn't university), I would never be allowed to teach English. I have a BES (environmental studies), which gives me science and social science as teachables. So I'd be allowed to teach history which I have no particular skill at, and even science, which was such a minor part of my BES that it's laughable. It's so frustrating. Of course I could just teach primary school and not worry about teachables. Who knows ... maybe one day. Having summers and holidays off, especially once you have kids seems ideal!
zelda
I am wondering about Ananke and can't wait to hear the news!

Fookie, it is like that here in terms of teaching and your undergrad degree...I was very nervous that my journalism degree would not let me teach English, but fortunately the credits did translate! Phew! I do love my job SO much, and the summers off are marvelous. We work our tails off for 3/4 of the year, so I feel we deserve it since we're underpaid anyway (at least in the US!). :-)

Michelina, I'm glad Mr. M has decided to quit completely. Mr. Z has really cut down, but he is still smoking. He smokes maybe half a joint (if that) at night a few nights a week....a couple of drags but not much more. He doesn't drink much at all (a couple of drinks a week if that), so I feel like he's entitled to his pot seeing as I have a drink or two a day and haven't stopped while TTC. It's frustrating to me that pot's illegal, and he's already told me things will have to change in that department if we do have a baby, but right now I'm okay with him smoking a bit since it's hardly any at all AND since he has a history of being able to get someone pregnant (back when he was smoking pretty much every day all day!!).

In my gut I don't think it's a problem, but I do know he is curious. After we try this month, I'm going to give him the name and number of the urologist who will do a semen analysis without a visit (you just drop off the sample and pay $100.) It is up to him to go, but I think he will. But I want it to be his decision.

As for me, I am comfortable trying for a full year, and if it hasn't happened by then, we will definitely have the work up done. He's already told me he is willing to quit smoking pot if test results show there's something wrong. I suppose I should quit drinking, but I really need that glass or two of wine each day! (Is that bad??)

I know countless pot heads and full blown alcoholics who have had kids...I don't know what to believe. Again, if it proves to be a problem, he'll quit, but until we know for sure there's a problem, I'm okay with him smoking a bit.

We shall see.

I'm concerned about trying this month because Mr. Z may have to work the night shift next week...hopefully we can squeeze in at least a few rounds of doin' it! :-) I have the OPK tests, so that may help...haven't used them the last three months, so it should be interesting. So far, we've been mainly doing it on cycle days 11 and 13 with the thinking that I ovulate on day 13 out of a 27 day cycle...the OPK tests should hopefully help confirm that. I'm wondering if trying for days 10 and 12 would be a better strategy. We shall see...

Fookie
Hi Zelda. So glad your journalism credits translated. Mine is not a degree, but a two-year post grad diploma. I couldn't have gotten it without an undergrad, but it's still college versus university, so a no-go in terms of allowing me to teach English ... and frustrations of all frustrations is that I work with several people who have English degrees who can name every book Alice Munroe ever wrote, but can't put a sentence together. They'd be allowed to teach English, and I'm not. Argh. It's not like I don't already know life isn't fair though.

I realized after submitting my earlier (giant) post, that I really hadn't updated myself. So here goes: I got my period right on schedule yesterday, so tomorrow is my day 3 baseline testing/appointment at the fertility clinic. So blood and internal ultrasound to make sure all the cysts are gone and I'm okay to start injections tomorrow night. So ... think of me hard? Honestly the early part of it is never tough, it's by the 10th-11th day of driving half an hour each way to the appointment, of telling my boss I need the mysterious time off, of having blood taken from the only vein that plays nice (so by day 10 a nice giant, painful bruise) that things start to get tough. This is the first month that I'll be sharing the journey online and after having seen how amazing this forum is I have no doubt this will be a breeze.

Zelda, it looks like you and I will be more or less on a very similar cycle this month. How long are yours usually? Mine are 28 days, though this month I'll be adding progesterone suppositories (lovely, right? i'm not even sure which hole they go in yet ...) to the mix and they will hold back my period by a few days, so most likely a 30-31 day cycle.
julie124
Wow, sudden flurry of activity here!

I'm hoping that the fact we haven't heard from ananke or eyelet in the last couple of days means that they both are busy with happy, healthy bebehs. Sending all our good thoughts....

I've had an up-and-down week. The other night I had a terrible nightmare that had me waking up saying, "no, no, no..." So glad that it wasn't real. I've since decided that I need to stop reading stories on the Internet because I think it has crept into my brain, along with my regular fears. (In my dream, I had the baby but found out he/she had died by reading it on a website.)

The ups are that I have been a baby-gear collecting MACHINE! My friends who have two toddlers - and have decided they are finished with having kids - had my preggo friend and I and our spouses for dinner and a little preview sale before they sell stuff in a garage sale next month. We could have bought even more, but we bought a crib, pack and play (playpen), nursing pillow, sling, and a couple of breastfeeding and new parent books. And I had already scored a bunch of baby gear the weekend before at yard sales. (At bargain prices, I might add.) Now I feel like I need to slow down, because I'm only 16 weeks, there's still a lot of time, and I'm sure our families will want to get us some stuff. Plus right after I collect a bunch of stuff I start having bad fear-laden thoughts, like, "what if I get all this stuff and I find out something is wrong with the baby?" Yep, definitely need to quit reading stories off the Internet.

Fookie, I am "thinking hard" (with good thoughts) for you! I'm glad you're sharing the journey with us. I'm hopeful for all our TTC Busties this cycle!
Michelina
Zelda, lately everytime Mr. M takes a hot bath, puts his laptop on his lap, etc. I have this sinking feeling like his sperm count just can't be good. I really don't believe intellectually that the bit of weed or heat exposure is truly hurting his swimmers, but I am finding my thoughts are wandering to the most negative lately. He doesn't have proven fertility and lately he started smoking more instead of less! I think he is the kind of person who is tempted when it's around and he has time. So quitting all around is probably going to be easier for him than having it around and simply cutting down.

As far as booze, I am going to continue what I am doing - cutting back after ovulation. Mr. M likes the drink too, and we agree that he should go on with drinking what he wants, which is pretty minimal too. It sounds like you and Mr. Z have also done some excellent negotiating over what you are both comfortable and happy with. The option of the sperm count sounds like an excellent one. If there is no problem, then your mind can be set at ease. If so, there is something that can be done.

Julie, I imagine the dreams are a pretty normal part of pregnancy. And good for you for collecting lots of things! I think I would do the exact same. It must be so exciting!

Fookie and Zelda, looks like you two are now cyber cycling. I had a positive OPK today and am gearing up for ovulation now. I must be about a week ahead or so.



zelda
Michelina...fast question for you...did you end up using the cough syrup this month? If so, what did you do?

I worry about Mr. Z's swimmers even though he managed to impregnate someone once. He doesn't use a laptop, take hot baths, or ride a bike, and he wears boxers. So I'm hoping all of those things cancel out the pot smoking!

;-)

I'm willing to bet Mr. M's sperm is fine...the good news is that from what I've read, even if it's not, men's fertility is slightly easier to deal with. I have an acquaintance whose husband had low motility sperm. For a few hundred dollars they did a "sperm wash" in which they ran his sperm in a centrifuge (I think) making the good sperm rise to the top, then they shot those puppies directly inside her!

How romantic!

:-)

But it worked!!!
Michelina
Zelda, I had no idea that such technology existed! That is really interesting... and positive! Not the most romantic, true, but hey whatever works. :-) I did try the cough syrup this month. It didn't seem to make much of a difference, although I did notice that my CM didn't "glob" up like usual. I had wondered how sperm could possibly make it through that! So I guess only time will tell if it worked.

I am hoping to have at least a 12-day wait this month. The wait is torture, but it sure beats the worrying about a luteal phase defect. I ovulated yesterday at day 17, right on schedule, with ovuation pain and all.

I feel a lot more positive about the whole baby thing in general right now. I learned recently that adoptions from Ethiopia are quite fast, which has put a more positive spin on my idea of adoption. Recently, I seem to hear nothing other than how long and grueling the adoption process is. We shall see, but Mr. M and I are very much on the same page about the adoption issue. Of course, at this point we are still hoping for a natural child. We haven't given up hope this early on.
zelda
Michelina, there is some crazy technology out there! I actually know of two women who have had success with the sperm wash (one of them I don't know personally...just know of it through a mutual friend). It seems that for the men the problem should be easier to fix unless he literally has no sperm.

I told Mr. Z that tomorrow was Cycle Day 10 so time to start gearing up for some baby making. Days 10 to 13 are our critical window, I think, although I am doing the OPK strips this time to know for sure. I'm also going to drink cough syrup and take baby aspirin. Basically the opposite of last month when I did nothing at all!

The only thing I'm not doing is taking my temperature. I did it that one month and it just made me more crazy.

Michelina, I am crossing my fingers for you!
zelda
I am really proud of myself...Mr. Z suggested we do it, and when we got into the bedroom, he suddenly couldn't perform. Baby anxiety. He looked like he was going to cry.

I remained really relaxed and told him we have months if not years to try and have a baby...he told me I was being perfect and it was just him...I changed the subject and we started talking about books we were reading and other things...then after about 20 minutes had passed and we were relaxed, I started paying a little extra attention to his wang dang doodle (if you get my meaning - if not, I'm talking about his penis) ANYWAY soon he was ready to go, and we did it!

Yay! I think the fact that I did not freak out really made it happen!

It's actually a little early in the game, but at least it worked today. His performance anxiety is definitely something that has been an issue, but I think I am dealing with it the right way...
zelda
I am wondering how anake and eyelet are doing??
Fookie
Hi!

Michelina, Mr. F's "job" in our whole fertility roller coaster is to give me the daily injections of Puregon (I can't deal with the sight of a needle going into skin ... you should see my trying to watch Intervention ...) and then once they trigger me with the shot that makes me ovulate (or I ovulate on my own, whichever happens first) Mr. F. has to make "deposits" for two days and I get back to back IUIs (intrauterine insemination) one day after the other. The process Zelda was talking about is necessary whether or not he has motility/count issues b/c when they shoot it up inside you (via catheter up through your cervix) they have to split the sperm from the seminal fluid. When you go it the natural route, only the sperm swim up through your cervix. They have to split off the seminal fluid from the sperm or you could end up quite sick. A by-product of the process is that only the strongest/fastest survive the "sperm wash" which again ups the odds, especially when you're dealing with motility/count/quality issues.

Zelda, Mr. F. also has occasional performance issues. I was really worried that he would find the "perfromance-on-demand" aspect of the IUI days stressful, but he's been wonderful. We live close enough to the fertility clinic that he can do his "thing" at home and then just drive the bottle up to the clinic. I think your new approach to Mr. z's occasional performance anxiety is perfect. You guys are gonna be just fine smile.gif

Well I'm on cycle day 5 now, (3rd day of injections ... not too bloated or moody yet) and feeling pretty good. Each IUI cycle has been a learning experience and I'm feeling like this one we'll finally have the dossage right and by adding the progesterone for the two week wait I won't have to worry about my body keeping up with it on its own. I'll be doing accupuncture on days 8 and 15 of my cycle and my naturopath is very pleased with the way things are lining up. I'm not going to get tooooo hopeful, but at least this cycle finally feels like we're on the right track. I'm almost tempted to think of it as my first IUI cycle, rather than my third.

So ... I have an ethical question for you ... as you may well imagine all of this can be quite costly. While the Puregon (injectables) are the most expensive, they are 85% covered through insurance. The rest I pay for out of pocket... the sperm washes are $200 each (so $400 each month). Well ... the first month, I was on a lower dosage of Puregon and I happened to ovulate before they could trigger me (actually a good thing, I think it only surprised them b/c most of their patients have ovulation issues ... I do not) so they had to leave a message on my home machine telling us to come in for the first IUI the next morning. Somehow we never ended up having to pay for the sperm wash (I found out the next cycle that it's b/c they make you pay for it when you pay for your trigger shot to make you ovulate). First cycle was in February. They go into my file constantly, I pay for Puregon at the payment desk constantly and nobody has said a thing ... I am not feeling overly guilty about it ... we're pretty broke ... I would really like to just forget about it ... I'm a believer in karma though and have this fear that I won't get pregnant until I pay it ... but I'm also committed to just giving the $400 to charity once we're back on our feet financially ... what do you think? Would that reset the karma?


zelda
Fookie, I think you are perfectly entitled to use your karma points here...I would be just like you; I'd feel the need to pay the $400 back somehow...why not pick a favorite charity and do that? If you're putting it back out there, I think it's okay.

I have a question...if you don't have ovulation issues and you ovulate naturally, why do you have to do the shots? Why can't they just sperm wash Mr. Fookie's sperm and send it up to you when you ovulate, if you do indeed ovulate regularly? I seem to remember my acquaintance didn't have to do the shots, just the IUI when she ovulated.

Feeling relieved we were able to do it this morning despite the performance issues at first...we went out and now we're too tired for any action. I got a negative OPK today (am using those stupid ones with the smiley faces), but I know it's still possible to get pregnant from action before a positive OPK test. Will keep on doing them and hope to get action in there at least once after a positive read.
Fookie
Zelda, Mr. F. and I have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility. The goal now is to increase the odds significantly. Studies have shown (there was a huge one out of the UK last year, I can track down the link if you're interested) that in cases of unexplained infertility, just doing the IUI doesn't improve chances significantly for us unexplained people. The thought is that by increasing the egg count we're increasing our odds. With unexplained infertility, the thought is that we're just waiting for the "right" egg. In something like 60% of "unexplained" cases, within three years there is a viable pregnancy even without doing anything. We waited two years before going down the treatment path. I'm all about natural medicine, organic food etc. etc. So this was a very difficult decision to come to terms with. It just got to the point where I was doing the math in my head and decided that I needed to speed up the odds so that if I ever wanted a second I wouldn't already be over 40 (I want a few years of space between my kids ... my sister and I are 18 months apart, and some bad parenting aside, I really think our closeness in age and personalities did not mix. We're still not close and it sucks.)

The very frustrating part of the unexplained diagnosis is that it's only unexplained to the point of where technology has advanced and is affordable. If we could afford IVF we'd be able to to check a whole slew of other possible issues. So we just kind of have to have faith that the IUI plus injections will work. The average number of times if it's going to work is four. Back when I was checking the "other" forums, I saw a woman get her positive after 10 tries. I'm not sure how much disappointment I have in me. My fertility doc has wanted to do a laparoscopy to rule out endometriosis. Since I have no symptoms of the disease and not even a hint of it has showed up on any ultrasound, I've very hesitant to do it. I've given myself the deadline of four cycles before seriously considering it. I am oddly convinced that I would be the person that died from a freak incident during this operation only for my husband to find out that I didn't even have endometriosis!!!

As for the unpaid for sperm wash ... I think I will pick a favourite charity and put it out there that way!
zelda
Oh, I see Fookie...I guess the reason that woman I know didn't do the shots is because they knew for sure that the trouble was her husband's sperm. The crazy thing is that they went on to get pregnant (again) naturally a year later...the mysteries of the human body.

I understand about wishing you could try IVF, but there's a part of me that would be scared to go down that road because of my fear of multiples. I think Mr. Z and I could handle twins, but I know we couldn't handle more than that, nor would we even want to. And I don't think we could afford IVF either, so it's besides the point.

I try not to let my mind go there, but I do sometimes think about what we'd be willing to do to get pregnant. I think if there was something clearly wrong with Mr. Z's sperm and we could deal with that, we would. I've read that there are some things a man can do (taking certain supplements, for example) that enable them to get their partners pregnant with regular intercourse.

But if there was something wrong with me that was more complicated or involved the risk of multiples or was crazy expensive, I don't know what we would do. Part of me thinks we would just go the adoption route, but you never know until you are in that position.

This morning I woke up with an itch down there. I don't know if it's a yeast infection coming on or what. I hope it goes away so it doesn't interfere with baby making this week.
Michelina
Fookie, thanks for the info. I had no idea that IUI consisted of sperm washing prior. You answered a lot of other questions I have also had. It's amazing the things one can learn from this forum! I am crossing my fingers for you for this cycle. Glad to hear that it's feeling more like you're on the right track. It sounds like it's best to consider this cycle the first try. I am sure, if nothing else, it will make you feel more positive. As far as the money and karma issue, I second Zelda's suggestion. A contribution to a charity is a great idea.

Zelda, I am always impressed by how, although from your posts it seems you are a very feeling person, you don't let your emotions take over. You seem to have a rare ability to really think things through before reacting. It is a fantastic trait. I am so glad to hear that the performance issue was quickly resolved. And I'm sure that it was resolved quickly because of your reassurance and logical thinking. Have fun "BD-ing" over the next few days! :-)

I just found out that an old friend from high school is pregnant. She is the last person I ever expected to have a baby. I'm happy for her, and jealous too.

On another note, my nipples are sore this cycle. I know it is waaayyyy to early to have symptoms (only 3dpo!) but I am trying to be more positive this cycle. I know we definitely nailed the timing, and hopefully the few days of abstainence helped.

eyelet
Greetings friends. Baby and I are well, but it has been a really long week. I started having true labor contractions at 2am on Tuesday 6/9. We called the midwives at 7am and until about noon it looked like it was going to be an easy labor. I was managing the pain well with the help of the birthing pool and the apprentice midwife measured me at 4cm. They were all joking about whether I hadn't done this before. Then some time in the hours that followed, they had brought be to the bed for a dilation check, assuming that soon I'd be ready to push. I was back to 2cm.

The contractions got more frequent and more intense, and I hadn't been able to keep down any food or fluids. I lose track of what happened from afternoon on because I was in a delirious state that was all about riding the waves and trying to have an out of body experience. I was told I was at 9 cm at around 7:30 or 8pm and could start pushing. I pushed for two hours and got nowhere. The lip of my cervix had reversed to 7cm and wouldn't budge. By 10pm the baby's heartbeat was starting to be irregular during the pushes, so the midwife called it and we loaded up and headed to the hospital. In the final hour of pushing at home they had breast pumped me and given me labor intensifying meds, so the contractions in the car were unbelievable. I only made it there with the knowledge that I would be getting an epidural. We still had planned on seeing if pitocin could dilate me further and I could have vaginal birth at the hospital.

I had to register and and wait for bloodwork at the hospital and though it was probably only an hour wait there, it felt like several. When I finally saw the anesthesiologist walk in the room it was a moment of profound relief. They gave me the epidural and my friends and family said it was as though I returned from some distant place. Unfortunately the pitocin didn't take me any further and the cervix had begun to swell from so much pushing, so they took me into surgery.

The baby was born at 1:49 am on June 10th. Her father was with me and saw her come out. She didn't cry but made a cute baby sound, at which point I finally cried. They cleaned her and brought her to my face where I kissed her and nuzzled her like I was an animal. She was all warm and content and looked me straight in the eye like she knew exactly who I was. They put her in her father's arms to carry her to the nursery and he came back in to attend to me while they finished.

Her name is Elowen. She was perfectly healthy and weighed 9lbs (large head as predicted).

We have been home since Friday and are spending every moment nursing and getting to know each other. I've been up and down emotionally and feel very beat-up physically, but am beginning to get back some semblance of my normal personality.

There are many other details to the story of what happened, that I will want to talk about over the days to come. Just wanted you guys to know that we are okay despite things not going exactly as planned.

Will write more later.

ananke
Hello everyone! I'm doing well and so is my beautiful baby Fallon Maree. She was born 0052 on the tenth (so I ended up giving birth just before you eyelet!). Photos are here.

On tuesday me, Mr A and Mum made our way to the hospital at 1130 to start the induction at 12, but not only had all the labour rooms filled up, but my obstetrician was delivering a baby after having done a c-section that morning. He came in after that delivery and told me to go and have a good lunch because the entire maternity ward had been swamped and it was already 2pm and I needed my strength so rather than doing the gel now and again late in the night, he'll put the gel in at 1800. So Mum, Mr A and I went to a little cafe down the road where they wouldn't let me have a coffee (both of them decided it's bad for some reason...) but I was really uncomfortable the whole time and when I got back I had a bit of show. While we were waiting in the antenatal ward a post-c-section patient came in and was raving about her obstetrician and it turned out to be mine as well! That was pretty heartening.

At around 1830 my obstetrician came in to start the induction. He checked my cervix and applied the prostin and warned me I might start getting pains from it. He also said I'd have probably spontaneously gone into labour the next few days anyway because I was about 2cm dilated, soft and thin, but this way they can keep monitoring the blood pressure since it spikes when I'm stressed. So he made a note on my chart and spoke to the midwives on duty to explain that even though I'm a first timer and being induced two and a half weeks early, I may go into labour overnight and they need to be aware of that and check out any pains I have that aren't typical prostin pains - I started getting them almost immediately so I thought I had a pretty good handle on what they felt like (odd kind of burning/cramping right beneath my pubic bone). He also talked to the anaesthetist on duty and signed an authorisation for an epidural if I needed one in the first stage before he would be attending. I went on the CTG at that point as well, to take advantage of the hour I had to spend laying down. Mum and Mr A were sitting with me at this point and we were chatting away. After an hour and a half Mr A made ihis way out to the desk to ask if it's okay for me to move yet - they hadn't come to check after the prostin had been in for an hour and we were waiting for that til I could move. So I started walking around and sitting up but my back started hurting really badly. I figured it was from laying down for so long on a crappy hospital bed but Mum said she thought it could be contractions - we both figured the midwives would be able to tell.

I started occasionally get cramping in my belly as well and thought it might be contractions and called a midwife in around 2100 to explain the pains to her and check on what I should be doing. The midwife who came was the one who helped with the prostin and she said I should take some painkillers and sleeping pills to get through the night because I wasn't getting contractions and I wasn't going to get through the labour tomorrow without sleep. She also told Mr A and my mum they should go home because nothing was going to happen tonight. I figured she knew what she was talking about and I was there when my obstetrician told her to take the pains seriously, so I trusted her that the pain I was describing was prostin pain. Mr A and Mum went home at that point, because I was in the antenatal ward which has no beds/comfy chairs for support people so staying was going to be really difficult. About 2200 the pain got pretty bad so the midwife brought in some painkillers, my blood pressure meds and two tamezepam for sleeping. At 2215 and I had some bloody show so I went to call the midwife again when my waters broke. A different midwife came in and I told her about the bloody show, the pains and the water breaking and asked if I should call my partner - she told me to lay down for the CTG and said I should sleep,. I was a little cranky at this point and said there was no way I could sleep at all with this pain so she went to check my chart while I rang Mr A to come back in and then she came back with a shot of pethidine. She was setting it up when I started frantically saying no because I hate hate HATE the -dine family of painkillers (codeine constipates me which was great since that's what the first midwife gave me, and the one time I had morphine I tried to scratch myself repeatedly with a broken wrist). She explained that they give you something to stop the vomiting but I kept saying no and said I wanted the gas. she said we'd have to go to the birthing room if I wanted the gas and I said that's fine. The CTG wasn't working because when a contraction hit I would raise off the bed as all the muscles in my hips and lower back would tighten. So I came off the monitor and tried to walk to the birthing room - it took me a while to get there because every time a contraction hit I couldn't keep walking.

When I got into the birthing room I started pacing around between contractions. A different midwife was there and she started praising me for walking around but then got me to lay down for the CTG. She kept telling me to be still and I explained that the pain was really bad, the gas wasn't working and that my body was tightening and I couldn't stop it. She said I needed to breathe more deeply of the gas and that no position makes labour comfortable. I told her there was no way I could breathe deeper and that i could not stay still when a contraction hit. Mr A arrived just before midnight and immediately began rubbing my back - everything got better after that. The midwives were telling me to lay down for the monitor and stop moving and that the gas will help. I said I couldn't help my body trying to push and they started yelling at me for pushing and explaining all the damage I'd do if I pushed. After the next contraction I hauled myself onto my knees leaning against the top of the bed and kept saying "I can't I can't I can't" and one of the midwives asked Mr A what I was talking about, I still had a long while to go and I was doing well. He told them I was saying I can't get the gas working and I can't stop myself pushing - she said the contractions weren't that big and that I just needed to breathe harder for the gas. She told him to try it to show me how to so he demonstrated that the gas was not working and it turned out that the midwife didn't turn the machine on properly. After hearing that I still had a long while to go and that my contractions weren't very big I told Mr A that he had to go get me an epidural that I couldn't deal with the pain for much longer. The midwife who couldn't work the gas also kept telling me that I shouldn't be pushing but the other midwife said I could if I wanted. At this point they FINALLY DID AN INTERNAL EXAM instead of using the CTG and realised that I was well into second stage. Not still in first like they thought. They frantically rang my obstetrician, who fortunately lives close by. About 0030 he arrived, gowned up and rubbed my back and asked me to start pushing hard.

After having spent an hour fighting my body, pushing felt so so good. Having effective pain relief probably helped too.

Everything went much better from there. I pushed but because I'd spent so long trying not to the first try didn't work so well and she crowned but went back in - they called Mr A down to watch the next push when she made her way out with the cord around her shoulders. He cut the cord while she was still coming out - he said watching her come out was the most amazing thing he has ever seen. At this point Mr A and my obstetrician helped me over to lay back and the midwife injected the oxycontin (?? whatever it is they give you to facilitate delivering the placenta) and then they put Fallon on my chest. My obstetrician checked me over while we waited for the placenta which came out pretty quickly and very easily (Mr A said it was very impressive to see me just raise my hips and push it out with so little effort) (he also said the placenta was the worst thing he has ever seen in his life and gags a little if we talk about it). I had a second degree tear so they injected me with some local anaesthetic (the conversation went like this "Ananke, you've got a little tear so I'm just going to give you some local to numb the area while I give you a few stitches" - "yeah, okay, I don't feel local anyway, it doesn't hurt me" - "uh...you can have the gas if you want" - "no, the injections don't hurt for some reason, the local numbs me good and proper"). There was a part that didn't get numb and they got a little startled when I said "um, doc? That bit isn't numb" but Mr A gave me some gas at that point. They also finally found the heating for the room but I was shivering really badly at that point as well and both Fallon and I were chilled.

After that the midwife took Fallon to be weighed and for her blood sugar to be checked - Mr A went with her and it turned out her blood sugar was really low so they gave him some formula to feed her to get it up again. He took her to get her vitamin K and all that, but her body temperature was still a bit low so she had to go into the nursery to warm up. One of the midwives and the obstetrician stayed with me while that happened and they started covering me with blankets because I was shivering so violently even though I'd only lost about 200ml of blood (if that). They also brought me some food and a cup of tea - I was so not hungry at all, but Mr A made me eat at least half of the sandwich and the tea to get me to stop shivering. Then while he was feeding Fallon her second lot of formula one of the midwives got me up to have a shower but I refused to do anything until someone could come with me because I'd been falling asleep sitting in the bed. So once Fallon was fed and in the nursery inder the heaters Mr A came and helped me shower and dress and get back to the antenatal ward because there were no postnatal rooms available. I nursed Fallon for a bit after she'd warmed up, and hand expressed some colostrum for her as well. Her poor little face was all bruised from her quick delivery (her head isn't moulded at all) and my perineum was bruised as well and I had a bit of incontinence over the next few hours (usually if I sat trying to breastfeed for ages and forgot about peeing!) but that's pretty much cleared up now. The midwife who couldn't work the gas and told me not to push also asked me if I was planning on spending the rest of the morning staring at the baby...

In the morning my obstetrician came to see me and check on how I felt and congratulate me on a quick delivery. And to remind me to start pelvic floor exercises right now! He said I delivered about 15 hours before they'd expected me to, but that I did really well. He was quite concerned that I'd want to go home early, as he wanted my blood pressure monitored fairly heavily just in case the hypertension didn't clear up after the birth, but I was happy to stay for the five days they have set as standard anyway. I needed a fair bit of help with breastfeeding and ended up using a nipple shield because although Fallon has a great latch, I've got a great supply and she's a strong little thing, my nipples are really flat and if she stops sucking to breathe/swallow the nipple has a tendency to flatten out meaning we need to relatch again until there's enough suction and stimulation that my nipple stays erect. I got to speak to the lactation consultant and she thinks that my nipples will pop out soon enough. That first morning the paediatrician came to see us as well and he said she's a very healthy and strong little girl and he's not overly concerned about the cyst but he needs to see the ultrasound to be sure. Mr A and Mum took Fallon to the specialist ultrasound that afternoon and they said the cyst was smaller again than the last ultrasound I had and definitely on her ovary. So we'll be taking her to get another ultrasound in a few months, but she's pretty much in the clear. I spent another day in the shared ward before a room became available and until Sunday I spent my time sleeping, eating, feeding Fallon, staring at Fallon, cuddling Fallon and talking with my Mum and Mr A.

So, all in all I had a bunch of shitty midwives (one who randomly decided I was inducing for social reasons and wrote that on my record even though every single time I was attended I was asked the reason for induction and replied 'high blood pressure' and that was prominently noted in my charts) and I love my obstetrician. Although I wish he'd been able to stay the whole time, but I figure the man had to sleep at some point. I'm pissed off at the midwives, but I had a short and relatively easy labour and damn, I love my baby and she makes up for any number of idiotic mistakes other people made.
Michelina
Congratulations, new mommas Ananke and Eyelet! Thank you for sharing your birth stories with us. So glad to hear that everyone is well. I love both names. And Ananke, Fallon is a beauty!
zelda
I love reading the birth stories and I love the names! CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!

Such a treat to read these...and amazing, too. And a little scary. ;-)

I can't wait to hear more. It is so cool to experience this with you both!

Now ladies, I am going to vent for a moment quite simply because it is 1 am and I am awake and depressed and a mess. I feel bad even doing this after reading birth stories, but because this thread has almost become some sort of live journal for me, I need to just let it out.

Craziness to follow...I truly hope you do not mind...do not read if you have absolutely anything better to do...

First of all, I am 99% sure I have a yeast infection because I am so itchy. I did a Vagisil test, and it's not bacterial, so that's good. But I feel like we are already doomed. First of all, I itch, so I'm not exactly feeling sexy. And even though everything I've read on line suggests that yeast infections don't affect the ability to conceive in any way, I have literally zero EWCM even though at this point in my cycle I am usually full of it. I still haven't gotten a positive OPK although I should be ovulating tomorrow or Tuesday.

That's bad enough, but tonight Mr. Z suggested we Do It tomorrow before he leaves for work. I was pleased seeing as how he had performance anxiety yesterday, and I wasn't sure how to approach our next "round" and I am tired of always being the instigator. I go to bed, can't sleep for the itching, and walk into the kitchen...and find him jerking off to porn in the adjoining family room!

Now normally I have no problem with Mr. Z doing this, but if we're supposed to Do It for baby in 8 hours, he can't be jerking off now!

Despite our wonderful relationship, it is still awkward to walk in on my husband jerking off to his old school 80s big hair porn from college. He was immediately humiliated as I stood awkwardly, unsure of what to do next.

He immediately apologizes, is all flustered, etc...and I am like, "I have no problem with the jerking off, but if we're supposed to do it for baby tomorrow, this is probably not a good idea."

He goes on about how he forgot, and he feels embarrassed, and he hikes his pants up...I asked him if he wanted to do it with me now, but he was like, "I was just doing it to go to bed...I'm not sleepy." I really do think he forgot, but I was still so frustrated!

Now he's embarrassed, I'm embarrassed, we probably both won't sleep well tonight, and I'm sure he will not be able to perform tomorrow morning...I told him not to worry about tomorrow, he said it would be okay...

My God, I feel like our once great sex life is utterly ruined right now, and even if we do manage to do it soon, my yeastie beasties are sure to ruin it.

I'm sorry to be such a negative defeatist, but I have half a mind to truly and completely give up! I am so tired of this! I know I try to be rational and calm and rely on my years of therapy, but right now it is 1 am and I just don't even know what to do anymore!!!!!

Okay, I will shut up now.

Sorry.

Thanks for reading if you even got this far.

Sigh....
ananke
Oof, that sounds harsh zelda - I'd totally be feeling pissy in your situation. And it is just awkward to bust your partner like that, regardless of the TTC thing. With that as well and a yeast infection, I'd be up at 1am as well! Nothing makes me more snarly than an itching quim (except for a constant headache) and with emotional crap on top of that? I'd be kicking back with a glass of something tasty, a trashy book and giving up on thinking. Deal with it tomorrow if it still needs dealing with.

And I agree that Elowen is a beautiful name! I should have said that in my first post, sorry eyelet! I was just blown away by how close we were with the labouring!
julie124
Just popping in to say congratulations to new mommas eyelet and ananke! Thanks so much for sharing your birth stories...always helpful to have a reminder that even when nothing goes as planned, things tend to work out in the end. And I love your girls' gorgeous names....Fallon and Elowen, how beautiful.

Congrats, enjoy your daughters, and I'll pop back in later to chat more. Much love to Busties big and small!
eyelet
Hi Ananke-many congratulations. I'm so glad it went well for you, despite some mixed experiences with the hospital staff. And it's very cool that our babies have the same birthday!

Zelda-that's so hard. I feel like masturbation is one of those things that neither partner wants to stumble onto and it would be especially weird under these circumstances. I'm sure he feels just as badly as you do about it.

I am having a very difficult day emotionally. I told my birth story, not because I feel any sense of pride or happiness around it, but because it was my story, whether I like or not.

I feel on some level that I failed, not only by not being able to have the baby at home, but by not being able to deliver vaginally. I don't see anyone else as a failure that has to have a C-section, but it has hit me hard. This was my only baby and my only birth experience. As you remember, one of the reasons I chose home birth was because I am uninsured, and now we will have to pay for both births as well as suffer the negative aspects of both types of births (the long painful labor of natural and the drugged up, wounded side of c-section).

My edema hasn't gone away because of all the drugs I had pumped into me and my milk hasn't really come in with vigor, in part also because of the c-section. I am having to supplement the baby's feedings with formula, and though she still prefers nursing and is getting most of what she needs from me, once again I feel a failure.

All my best intentions have been turned on their head. My partner and I are doing fine, but I wouldn't say we've had much opportunity to bond over this. It was all really quite traumatic and though he technically did everything right, it feels like he and I are a million miles apart right now.

My midwives didn't screw up, but I still associate them with my failure. Both of the other women from my birthing class successfully delivered at home, and I am angry that I am the statistic.

Well, I have to go pump now for 20 minutes to make up for the formula she got this morning.

Maybe later I'll write again when not in the middle of a hormone surge, and I won't sound nearly so negative. Will also post some pics later.

sniff.
zelda
Eyelet, I had a friend of mine who had a similar experience - an unplanned C section, then issues with nursing because she has breasts of uneven sizes (due to bone structure issues). She went to a La Leche League meeting and said she felt like a 'failure' when the LL leader talked about how only vaginal births taught women how to be real mothers.

Nothing against La Leche league in general, but clearly this woman was INSANE and my dear friend left the meeting horribly upset and never went back.

I know this is something you're going to hear a million times, but you did NOT fail. You were strong for your baby. You carried her for nine months, even when it was painful. You nourished her and prepared a home for her, and now she is here and you are caring for her with all your love and resources. That is achievement by anyone's standards.

Your hormones are still wonky, most likely, and I am sure that is contributing. Please hang in there and just come here to vent whenever you need, like I did at 1 am.

I cannot believe I blabbed on about Mr. Z's masturbating habits in the middle of the night. Please know i have no problems with him jerking off, and he is so clueless sometimes he truly did forget that he shouldn't masturbate during baby time. Needless to say we were too tired to perform this morning...maybe this afternoon. I have literally no mucus I think because of this yeast infection...we shall see. I truly think this month is a total bust.

I woke up, sobbed, went for a swim, and am now home.

Eyelet, hang in there...you are lovely. So is your wee one.
Michelina
Eyelet, I think many women feel disappointed, frustrated, and angry when an unplanned c-section happens. Your feelings are perfectly normal and understandable. It is a sense of loss - a grief that you will never get to experience a vaginal birth. You tried your best, did everything you could, and it just didn't happen for you. It's not fair. Please take Zelda's advice and feel proud of yourself for what you have already given Elowen.

Zelda, your frustration about what you witnessed last night is completely understandable. And to top it off, you are dealing with a yeast infection and a somewhat irregular cycle this month. You have every right to vent no matter what is going on with anyone else. We are here for you! Every month feels long and it's hard to think of missing your chance, but I don't think you should consider this month a write off yet. Your lack of CM may just be indicating that ovulation is delayed, which could be a good thing in this case. I hope you feel better after your cry and your swim. A release of emotion and some good exercise seem to be a wonderful cure. Thinking of you...

Someone should write a compilation of true stories about the trials and tribulations of TTC. (Sigh)

I am 4dpo and am continuing to experience sensitive nipples, which is completely new for me. I am trying to be nothing more than cautiously optimistic. I want this so badly!
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