Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Baby Jellybean - In Person!

It's hard to see a lot right now, but the good news is that everything is looking good. Jellybean's head is to the left and the tail is to the right. In some pics you can make out arm and leg buds. The heartbeat was 164, which is exactly where we want it and I'm measuring right at 8 weeks.

Just in case this isn't good enough for you, clicking on any of the pictures will make it larger and you can read all the fun writing on them.

We did see a small pleat or "tear" in my uterus, but the tech said it was nothing to worry about. Said it may cause some spotting or bleeding (and that the Lovenox may do that as well), but that it should take care of itself. Worst case, we'll be looking at a couple days of bedrest (not good at this time of year, but what can you do?), but it typically resolves itself on its own.

So, all is looking good. We'll go back on Tuesday, May 10 for another set of pictures and a doctor's appointment :)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy Easter - Belated

We traveled to see my family this weekend and Katie had another Easter/Birthday fun fest. It's going to be hard to convince her that Easter is not always the same week as her birthday after this.

Overall, it was a pretty good weekend. A lot of rain and storms, but a nice time. I wasn't allowed to talk about or tell anyone in my family about my pregnancy (Mom's rule), so that was really awkward and uncomfortable. I'm sure many of them guessed since I wasn't drinking (with the exception of water - and let me tell you, during a weekend with that family it's rare to see me without a beer or caffeine). I will be really happy once we get out of this trimester and my husband and mom finally allow me to acknowledge this pregnancy publicly. Until then, it's all silence except for this blog. I know they're just worried, but it pisses me off. I mean, it's not like I'd make a public announcement prior to the end of the first trimester, but - let's face it. Good news for us is huge. I should be able to share it with friends and family without doing it behind the screen of a computer. That's the sucky part.

I'm doing better overall. I still have a lot of back pain, but it's not the nausea inducing type, so I'm pretty sure it has to do with the stretching of muscles and not with my kidneys. I had back pain very early with Katie, as well, so it's not unusual. Other than that, I'm pretty good most of the time. I'm not nearly as horribly exhausted as I thought I would be (and I credit a lot of that to the show - I think being busy doesn't allow me exhaustion time) and I'm not as sick as I've been in the past. That leads me to think that either there was something really wrong with previous pregnancies (as we have already established) or that we may have a boy coming...but we'll see :)

Tomorrow is our second sonogram. I absolutely guarantee that we will post both pictures tomorrow because I will have to scan them in for others. With any luck, JellyBean has grown from a bean to a little gingerbread cookie. If we're really lucky, we'll have some fetal movement and have cleared yet another hurdle. If all goes well, we'll have another sonogram AND doctor's appointment in two weeks.

Katie also has a doctor's appointment tomorrow for her three-year check-up. Considering she's about 40inches tall and 34 pounds, this should be interesting. I'll let you know all the news as soon as I know :)

Have a good week.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Why do I even say things like that?

Nothing too terrible, but it has been a bit scary for the past fourteen hours or so. Why does everything happen when doctor's offices are closed? What a pain.

In any case, after enjoying Katie's birthday yesterday, I started to feel nauseous. Like REALLy nauseous. I tried to pass it off on something I ate, but it just kept getting worse and worse. It all seemed to come from my low back - I couldn't tell if it was pain or what, but whatever it was made me so nauseous that I was crying and praying to vomit.

After many many hours of this, the sun finally came up and I called the doctor. Turns out to be a kidney infection. That's good fun. I've never had one of those, and I honestly hope to never have it again. The good news is that I have nausea meds and antibiotics. In addition, they checked my cervix just to be safe and everything there is closed tight and doing exactly what it should.

So, the real bummer was having to take a sick day today. That's the one really tough thing about working 45 minutes away from home...when you're sick, driving just doesn't happen. It can make things so much worse. Right now, being the think-ahead and plan person that I am, I'm trying to save any sick day I have because Lord knows I may need them in the fall. If Bean stays where s/he should, then we're looking at a delivery anytime after the first of November (and class doesn't end until midway through December). So, those would all be sick days. Then, I'd like to take off the eight weeks until spring break to be with the baby (which would give me just a little under three months if Bean sticks to the due date - more if s/he decides to make an early appearance like Katie). As it stands, I have ten weeks (counting what I will get in August). Not quite enough...

Need to sock away a lot of money this summer. Oh well...can't stress about that. Just have to take it as it comes. I do have two internet classes that I'm teaching in the fall and the spring and I intend to keep them whether I'm officially working or not, so hopefully we can create a negotiation of like a half sick day each day or something (since I'd still be "teaching"). My dean is really good about this kind of stuff, so I think it will be ok, but my mind always likes to worry.

Anyway, off to take some much-needed medication and to sleep. I'm absolutely exhausted.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Not much to report

Which is good. Since it's too early for good signs, this means there haven't been any bad ones. Everything is pretty much the same - nausea, exhaustion, food aversions and cravings - it's all playing out as it should. That's the first time I've been able to say that and it feels pretty good.

Depending on who you listen to, I could be at any of the following:
Sonogram photo: 6.5 weeks - 7.2 weeks
What to Expect: 8 weeks
Your Baby This Week: 7 weeks

I always find it amusing that they all use the exact same info and come up with different counts. The important thing to note is that we are AT LEAST halfway through the first trimester (possibly more). By Memorial Day we should be out of this nasty little segment and into a more secure place.

In shot news, I have a bit of bad news. It turns out that they don't get easier. Yes; typically shots would get easier with time; however, we forgot to take into account the side-effect of these shots: bruising and not-clotting. Therefore, the more bruised my belly becomes, the harder it is to find a non-bruised spot to stick. And the bruises don't feel very good when you stick a needle in them. It makes that two minute time in the morning quite unpleasant, but what is two minutes compared to 23 hours and 58 minutes...or compared to a lifetime?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Stupid Nikki

Is apparently STILL no good at following doctor's orders. After picking up Katie last night, I found that I really hurt my back. I mean - REALLY! Damn it hurts.

Sadness...I can deal with most restrictions, but this is a tough one.

Time to limp home and collapse into bed again.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

It's a Great Day!

For the first time since we found out we are pregnant, I was able to have a good night's sleep and I woke up feeling awesome. Removing the majority of those nerves has made a tremendous impact on my quality of life and I'm loving it! I had a feeling a lot of the nausea and queasiness was due to nerves, but I wasn't able to be sure until now.

Don't get me wrong - that nausea still likes to pop up. Typically, it chooses really inopportune times. The most frequent offenders seem to be:
* When I get to Morton on the interstate. I understand this. Morton is enough to make a healthy, non-pregnant person nauseous. Apparently, my system is just picking up on this and going with it.

* Mid class. Typically right in the middle of an important concept or statement. That's always fun. I think I might have mastered how to finish speaking while simultaneously not throwing up. Of course, immediately thereafter, I have to run for the restroom (and in the Tech Center - where I'm always at the far end - this is like a sprint down a straight track). In keeping with my pregnancy with Katie, I have a feeling many students may indicate they have an incontinent instructor on their evaluations. (I'm just that good a teacher that they have a vocabulary like that :)

* Walking down the hall. Randomly. This typically causes me to stumble or to trip over my own two feet. Just call me Grace.

Surprisingly, most of the nausea occurs at school, although this really shouldn't be a surprise. After all, when I'm at home I can sit a lot and just lounge around. And we're still at a point in rehearsal where we spend a lot of time standing in one place or sitting. Also, school has the extra bonus of occurring during the morning - prime time, but definitely not the only time.

In any case, I'm feeling good and happy. Today I caught myself fantasizing about the holidays when little Bean will make his or her appearance. Will it be Thanksgiving? Finals week? Mid-December? Earlier? Later? In any case, Bean is the best Christmas/Thanksgiving present ever :) Katie will be thrilled when she finds out - she's been asking for both a little brother and sister for her birthday. We'll just have to push it off a bit (oh - and she's NOT getting one of each :).

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

It's Good!

There was a good strong heartbeat! Thankfully, everyone in the office knows me by now, so they know what I'm looking for. The sonogram tech had me in and gave me the answer within about 90 seconds. These people are absolutely amazing.

Jellybean (or Bean - as the little person will henceforth be known) measured a teensy bit small for it's age, so they figure the dates are a bit off. We appear to be at five weeks and five days based on size. That little white heart was just pounding away - they guessed at about 108 beats per minute, but since it was so little, that might be inaccurate.

Everything else looks great. It is in the uterus (again, another win) and everything inside looks cozy and comfortable for Bean. It's another milestone - and a BIG one - passed.

Once you are lucky enough to get a heartbeat, your chance of miscarriage decreases. At this point, we have a less than 5% chance of losing it. Our chances improve if, at 8-10 weeks, we see fetal movement. And, as the doctor said, once we get out of the first trimester, we're pretty much "normal." Of course, people still lose babies at any point, but this is HUGE for us.

Thank you all so much for your thoughts and prayers! I know they have helped us so much! I'll scan in some pictures later, and you can see why our new darling is named Jellybean :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

As I knew it would be....

The last few hours are definitely the hardest. Knowing that by tomorrow at this time there will be some sort of answer is terrifying. I know it should be exciting, but I'm absolutely terrified. I'm so afraid it's going to be the answer I've heard so many times before. I don't know how I would handle that. And I certainly don't know how I would pass on that information.

Thankfully, only a small group knows at this point; however, telling my mom would kill me. She's anything but excited at this point in time. I take that back; I'm sure she's excited, but she's as terrified as we are. I can tell that every time I call she is afraid to pick up the phone because she thinks it will be the miscarriage call. And I don't blame her. I didn't want to let her know about the last three because of this exact situation...it's rough to feel like I don't have that support. I mean, I know I do, but I know that she's expecting the worst and I feel like I'd be letting her down.

Oh man...I don't know how I'll sleep tonight. More importantly, I don't know how I'm going to get through my classes tomorrow. Last week, I was so nervous before my appointment that I thought I would throw up (pregnancy nausea doesn't help - but see, that's a good sign!). I'm going to be a total mess in my two reading classes and I absolutely hate to teach when my head's not in the game.

So, in short, I'm scared. It should be good. There's absolutely no reason to think it won't be. But experience makes me scared...

Praying hard tonight. I really really hope to have good news (and pictures) for you tomorrow!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

And the results are....

Inconclusive :)

Oh well. The bright side is that both the doctor and the nurse practitioner think that all is going very well and that there is no predictable reason why the sonogram should show otherwise. That was good to hear. On the down side, it was just a shade too early to get a good picture inside the uterus, so we have to wait until Tuesday afternoon for a second look. At that point, hopefully we will see everything we need to.

It was a good visit though. We did a full medical and pregnancy history...I've now been pregnant five times. Wow! That's a lot. The nurse went over signs, symptoms, family histories, etc. She said all the numbers are still looking good and that there's no reason to worry about the dip in progesterone. Apparently when you first get pregnant, there's a surge, and then it drops and eventually levels out. The progesterone that I'm taking is a precaution to keep it high.

Met with the doctor and she did a pelvic and said everything felt like it should. She also told me that by the time this is all over, my belly is going to be one big ugly bruise. Oh well. I'll take that. She tried to help me with my nerves by saying that we're pretty well out of the woods for another ectopic. She said that would have presented as slow doubling or not quite doubling numbers and that the progesterone would have been almost non-existent. It's nice to know that this issue might be out of the running :)

In other news, she said that there was no reason to think that things weren't developing properly or that there wouldn't be a heartbeat next week. Of course, that's qualified with the always-present, "You can never be 100% sure," but it's good to hear that there's no apparent reason anything should not go according to plan. She feels very certain that if we can get out of the first trimester - mid May - that we are good to go and should have no real issues. That's good.

So, we have to wait a few more days, but she did calm me down a bit. That was helpful. I had a lot of blood drawn for standard test (HIV, STD's, Iron counts, etc - all mandated by the state), and we don't expect anything weird to come back (maybe a low iron level).

We did find out that I may have to be referred to a maternal medical specialist (whatever that is) due to these complicating factors. That means I may not get a choice on whether to do quad screening and other tests like that (these are tests that look for cystic fibrosis, down syndrome, etc and are done around 16 weeks). That only concerns me because there's a good chance of a false positive - which then requires more invasive testing. But, it's good that the doctor is covering all the bases and carefully watching everything.

No exercise still. She said I can walk but can't exert myself or do anything close to exercise. Bummer. I guess I'll just continue to expand in peace :)

I did get my Similac New Mom bag today with all the fun goodies (coupons, day planner, magazines, etc). That was another milestone for us. In addition, I found out that this will be one well-photographed fetus. Starting next week, we will do a sonogram every two weeks until week 12. Then we do one at Week 18-20 (somewhere in there) to check gender. Finally, we do one every other week or so starting at week 28. This is especially important for me because of the risk of pre-term labor (apparently a big deal that we will have to discuss when we make it out of the first trimester. Since I have a history of pre-term labor, this is a serious issue for us - pretty dangerous.) At least I will be well taken care of and will see a lot of the little person. I also have my at-home fetal doppler for all the in-between, pre-kicking times.

So, that's the news for today. With any luck, the time will fly by and Tuesday will be here before I know it and we'll all breathe easier. Thanks again for all your thoughts and prayers! You guys are such an awesome support team!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Trying very hard to just stay focused on the positive. As of now, my symptoms are not only strong, but they continue to increase. There is no cramping or bleeding. Everything seems to be doing what it should.

Tomorrow is the new baby appointment - again, a monumental feat for us. I'm nervous and hoping they do an ultrasound (and hoping we see everything we need to see). If I get that heartbeat, I'm good. I know I can still lose it at that point, but it feels safer. After all, this is still the farthest we've made it since Katie. Oh, to be that stupid and ignorant again...what a nice change that would be...

In other news, my jeans no longer fit, which leads me to believe that this may be a significant weight gain pregnancy. It seems only fair since I lost so much weight with Katie, but I also remember that I gained all of my weight with her in the first trimester. After that, I just lost weight (thanks to her sitting on my stomach all the time). I've also found that my belly is very very bruised and tender which makes tight pants not so fun. However, I refuse to pull out anything maternity until I know that we're on a good road. I'm all about not jinxing anything.

Tomorrow we go in at 8:30. Hopefully I will have good news for you afterward. Thoughts and prayers, please!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Good Morning Nausea

So nice to meet up with you again.

I'm not going to complain, because you are a good sign; however, I am going to make the request that you allow me to do three things today (and any other day you decide to be my friend):

1). Please don't let me puke in front of my students. Last time you came, you were nice enough to allow me to always make it to the bathroom. I simply ask for that same courtesy this time as well.

2). Perhaps you and your BFF "dizziness" could take a small breather when I have to drive? That would be enormously helpful and certainly appreciated by all the other drivers (who, I should point out, are getting very pissed with my spaced out driving).

3). My final request is that you just give me back a little bit of my brain so I can stop looking so damn stupid in front of my students when I can't talk, answer simple questions, or even make coherent thoughts.

I have enough trouble with #3 without any additional help, so feel free to back off there :)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Oh - And :)

The shots are actually becoming rather entertaining. Each one now leaves a bruise that looks EXACTLY like a little bullseye. So I have little targets all over my stomach - it's simultaneously creepy and cool :)

And Katie has decided to help with them. Her job is to tell me it doesn't hurt and to put a band-aid on (because band-aids...especially those with princesses on them) make everything better. If nothing else, at least this might take some of the fear out of her own shots at the doctor.

My thoughts...

Overall, I'm in a very good place. Although I'm often uncomfortable and had forgotten about many of these fun little symptoms, it's not bad. I take each one as confirmation that everything is doing what it's supposed to, and that helps a bit.

I'm not going to say I'm not nervous though. It's now up in the air as to whether we will have a sonogram this week (since we are supposed to do one next week after starting the progesterone). I'm really hoping we do one so that I can settle down a little bit. By that point in time, if I'm still doubling (like I'm supposed to) then I should be at about 2460 - anything over 2000 should be visible on a sonogram. At that point we should be able to see a yolk sac, fetal pole, or even a heartbeat. Obviously, the heartbeat is the most important thing to me. Since I can't see anything or feel anything it's important to have that confirmation that it's ok. Until that point, everything could still disappear.

Ok, yes. It could still disappear after that. But in most cases, having a heartbeat is a significant win. You are less likely to lose a baby after seeing a heartbeat. Of course it happens, but it's not as likely.

I'm still very nervous since we don't have that. Enough people know that I would have to go through the horrible ordeal of...remember when I said I was pregnant...well, I'm not anymore. That sucks and I'm totally dreading it. I get stress rashes at night because I'm so freakin' terrified.

I feel like we passed two huge hurdles: I have doubled my numbers and I have no clear signs of trouble - that's new for us :) I try to stay focused on that and not the "what-if's" (since those will drive you nuts!) I just want to pass that one other major hurdle and see the heartbeat. After that, it's just get out of the first trimester and things should be good. But I feel like if I get a heartbeat, the trimester is a breeze :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Better Today

No noticeable problems today, thankfully! Hopefully that was just a little fluke to tell me to not do so much, and everything will be fine.

Saturday, April 2, 2011


Some cramping and bleeding today. Hopefully that's either from the small amount of walking I did this morning or from the new medicine. Hard to tell.

In any case - keep us in your thoughts and prayers. I'm a bundle of nerves and I'm sure that isn't helping.

Friday, April 1, 2011

You know...

It's interesting. I was so determined that no matter how sick I was, I was going to enjoy this pregnancy. And I am/will. I don't appreciate the extra stress, but I do enjoy it.

I didn't fully anticipate how sick the extra medicine would make me. The new one causes drowsiness and dizziness and the other one still makes me queasy, but it's not unbearable. Just weird.

Brian keeps telling me this is all good and all going according to plan. He said we wanted a doctor who would monitor us closely and fix things as they popped up. It's good to look at things from his perspective rather than my own fatalistic tendencies - he's far more positive than I am.

At this point, I don't know if we're still going in on Thursday or if we are now waiting for the sonogram in two weeks that she told me about yesterday. I'm really quite anxious for this point because it will be the first concrete sign that things are doing what they are supposed to. Granted, my levels doubled and things were good there, but to see a heartbeat would make all the difference in the world. That doesn't mean we're out of the woods, but at that point, we're as safe as anyone can be in a pregnancy.

So, I'm tired and I'm nervous, but I'm trying to remain positive and look at things from Brian's perspective. I pulled out my backpack with wheels so I can look like a total dork and have removed all caffeine from my diet. At this point, I am honestly doing everything I can do and I just have to have faith that it's enough.

It's hard when you're not in control :)