Beta #2

Generally the second beta is given 48 hours after the first one. But since the  first beta was last Friday, and the clinic I go to is closed on Sundays, I was asked to come back 4 days after my first beta. Which was this morning; 181.5. I was told not to worry about it, but coming in 98.5 points lower than the Dr wanted to see? Yeah that’s concerning to me.

Since my positive pregnancy test, Ive come to realize something. It doesn’t all end with a positive and then fade to whatever baby color that represents the gender and you go on happily ever after. There is a critical path, milestones to be met, a third beta, the first ultrasound, the heartbeat, because of my age a battery of tests that will come in November and December should I make it that long.

Somewhere around the 16th week I can start to feel safe. Maybe. Which for me, means it will be 2013, before I can stop worrying.

16 weeks seems a long way away.

Which led me to thinking about children. In IVF, you worry throughout the process, you are anxious about your levels, you bodies response, your results, your ability to make follicles/eggs, their quality, if there are male factor infertility issues, you worry about Everything. You change your diet, you take supplements that make you to produce the most expensive urine in the world. You worry about the cost, the toll it takes on your relationship, the toll it takes on you as a person.

Where does it lead? It leads to the elusive (you will worry about that too) positive test, and a whole new slew of worries and anxiety. Assuming the outcome is a live birth, you will then worry about that child for the rest of your life. I guess the upside of all the disappointments and anxieties that go with IVF and infertility, is that it prepares you better than most for parenthood.

What does it mean? I means I’m going to walk through my worries and anxieties 1 step at a time. I’m going to try to not to predict the future, because it isn’t written yet, and I’m going to do everything I can to get enough rest, keep stress at bay, eat well, and have faith.

From here on out, I am stepping into the unknown. I will be grateful for every day I have with this miracle.



Carnival Food

Day  8 Monitoring is tomorrow and I am anxious.

Anxious that if my right ovary does make a rare appearance that there will not be any follicles in it, that it will be empty, like a Kardashian’s head. Anxious that I will never have another normal cycle, or one that doesn’t scare the living hell out of me.

Because I am a control freak, I’ve controlled the heck out of my food intake today. Swallowed a handful of supplements, drank about 20oz of wheat grass juice and about 50oz of water, ate 2 pears, a salad, and some home-made split pea soup. I’ve had roughly 900 calories today, which probably isn’t enough. So I will have a little more soup later. I also went to acupuncture, where I was pinned, and then “adjusted”. Now physically, I’m tired, anxious, have a mask on my face, because as I said, its important while someone is looking at your girly parts that your skin is spectacular. I seriously have no idea why this matters to me.

Ive been on 50mg of clomid since day 3, and every once in a while I feel this weird kind of pulse/tapping in the area I imagine my ovaries are located. It only last for 10 or 15 seconds, happens on one side at a time and then disappears. Which I’m hoping means that the Walmart happy face  construction crew is back and that something worthwhile is under construction. But like a regular construction crew I imagine they take a lot of breaks, so this tapping weirdness isn’t constant. It only happens a couple of times a day. And no, I don’t mean an actual Walmart. I hate that place, its like the 9th circle of hell. Its worse than Costco.

I mean follicles. It’s so strange to think of primordial follicles that on day 2 or 3 are not visible via ultrasound can suddenly come into existence in just a few days, and grow between 1 and 2mm a day. I kind of like saying primordial, it’s not a word I normally use but look at me! I used it twice here and once in a sentence today. Broken ovaries and I’m still improving my vocabulary. A silver lining if I ever saw one.

If tomorrow is good news, then I guess I need to accept the last 2 cycles as my new normal and try to just stop worrying.

I will face whatever happens, but really, I’m anxious.

Carnival Swings

You know that swing ride at the carnival, the one that spins faster and faster and the swings spread out and rise through centrifugal force? That’s how I’ve been feeling lately. Kind of dizzy and light-headed.

I’ve been pretty calm since the Dr told me about the blast. I’ve been happy, calm, feeling really positive and good. Trying to eat right and catching up on my sleep.

Yesterday I started feeling anxious to get started again, I can’t do a transfer with just one blast, because well, I don’t know, I just think that banking is better. You see the more blasts you have the higher the chance that you have a successful pregnancy. Once I get pregnant I will then need to focus on not miscarrying as women of my age are at a higher risk of miscarriage later into the pregnancy. There’s also the amnio, and then, and then it all begins the spiral of crazy. Which I have promised myself I will not be going down again. I’m not a fool, yes I will probably have more meltdowns, but all this anxiety, is under my control. I can choose to give in to it, or I can choose not to. To continue with my little plan of one hurdle at a time. Which is what I have every intention of doing. Each step I get a bit closer to trading each little prize in for a larger one. Realistically, I’m still a ways out so pacing myself is important. In fact it might be the key to this whole endeavor.

Last evening, I wasn’t feeling that well, I was dizzy and tired and taking some stuff upstairs. I have 2 little dogs and they follow me everywhere. I was getting light-headed about halfway up the stairs. I stopped at the top of the landing, the dogs, kind of weaving through my feet, I was already kind of off-balance and I fell. Backwards. Down 16 polished concrete steps. I tried to grab the railing, my butt hit first, and then my head and fell all the way to the bottom. My husband was still at work, and as I lay there at the bottom of the steps, my eyes watering, with the dogs at the top of the stairs looking at me like I was an idiot I realized something. That I’m not doing well enough at taking care of myself. Eating, sleeping and exercising is one thing, but what about managing stress, anxiety, fear of failure and giving in to the spiral of “what ifs?”

4 months ago the overwhelming nature of these thoughts would have brought on an anxiety attack, a barrage of tears and a feeling of defeat. Today I just went to the Dr to make sure I didn’t really hurt myself, I made an appointment with my acupuncture Dr and I began researching meditation and visualization. Even though I feel foolish. I will do it because while I have done pretty well, I haven’t been doing well enough. If I am going to make it through the long road ahead, I must have some more tools at my disposal.

There is a Buddhist temple near where I live that’s so beautiful, and so incredibly peaceful, it doesn’t even seem like you are in Ca. It’s otherworldly. We went there during the Lunar New Year to see the decorations, its been on my mind ever since. I also went there today to clear my head and take in the peace of the place. Plus I took this picture of a statue of Buddha surrounded by children. All fat and happy.

Life wouldn’t be a circus if there weren’t a fun house, some questionable rides, disgusting food and those mirrors where you look all wavy and distorted. There’s some kind of parable or metaphor in this that I’m not articulating well but you get the general idea.