Amber and Aaron

Amber and Aaron

The Fun We've Already Had...

  • Graham Tomas born July 31 at 5:04 P.M. weighing 8 lbs, 12 oz.
  • December 2, 2011: PREGNANT!!!
  • Paisley Kate arrived August 21 at 5:38 P.M. weighing 7 lbs, 9 oz
  • DUE DATE: August 25, 2010!!!
  • Dec. 14, 2009- PREGNANT!!!
  • Oct. 07,2009- Had elective D&C.
  • Sept 28, 2009- No embryo on ultrasound. :(
  • Sept 15th, 2009- We found out we're PREGNANT!!!
  • Sept '09- Aaron had varicocele repair.
  • July '09- IUI #1 with HCG shot= No such luck
  • April '09- Ovarian drilling surgery, followed by hospitalization for uterine infection
  • Jan-Mar '09- metformin + 3 rounds of clomid= no ovulation
  • Dec. 11, 2008- Hysterosalpingogram (Fancy word for shooting dye through the ovaries. OUCH)
  • Nov '08- Sent to RE. Tried metformin alone for two months (No ovulation)
  • Oct '08- Diagnosed with PCOS based on amenorrhea and crazy hormone levels.
  • June '08- Aaron convinced me to start trying.
  • June '04- Got Hitched!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Grief

Yesterday I was numb with shock and disbelief. I saw patients which kept me from being able to feel everything. As soon as I was alone, I fell apart. The reality of it all hit me like a hurricane. And I know grief is part of this, but I thought I'd handle it all better.

Today, I woke up knowing that my world was changed. The smile that has graced my face every morning since I found out is now gone. I had gotten used to reaching down to touch my slightly protruding belly throughout the day, but now I avoid even looking at it. It's like a cruel reminder that although my body still thinks it's pregnant, it's all over.

I know everyone is trying to be helpful with all of the encouragement, but right now it just doesn't help. I don't feel comfort in knowing that "at least I got pregnant", or "next time it will work out", or that "there was probably something wrong with the baby." It might never work out. I know it and anyone else in this situation knows it. This might be just another step to nowhere for us. And I will always mourn this pregnancy. The next one won't replace this. It won't just fix it.

I still don't have any cramping or bleeding and my stupid HcG levels had went up to 30,000 so we're repeating an ultrasound on Friday to check the situation. Before I get a lot of hopeful comments about this, that number sucks and my ultrasound showed NO embryo. Hope is kinda out the window here. We'll decide Friday whether I'll have surgery to clean things out or wait for a natural miscarriage which could take up to 6 weeks. I'm voting surgery. I can't even begin to work through this right now since it hasn't even happened.

We're angry and sad and frustrated. My way of dealing with this is to shut myself off from the world. I don't feel like talking and acting like life has carried on. Mine hasn't. And it won't for a while. We're going to be fine, we just need time to ourselves. I still love the comments and e-mails. Just don't be upset when I don't respond right now. I just can't. Emotionally, I feel like I'm drained. Just working is exhausting me. I'm so sorry if I've hurt anyone's feelings or let anyone down. Please bear with me. Normal Amber will be back...

Monday, September 28, 2009

Another door closes

We went in today expecting to see our baby's heartbeat. It was supposed to be the greatest day of my life.

Walking into the infertility clinic, I thought it might be my "graduation" day. Time to move on to an OB/GYN. Time to be a mommy.

We've endured so much heartache, disappointment, and sadness over the past year and a half, I thought it was the beginning of a new journey. We'd completed our mission, earned our pass to the next step. Apparently, we were very wrong.

I could tell it on my doctor's face the moment he saw my uterus on ultrasound. Things were not okay. There was only a tiny little sac. No fetal pole. No heartbeat. Not a 6.5 week embryo. In that second, I knew. We were no closer to becoming a family. All of our new hopes and dreams and expectations were crushed. No amount of praying, begging or pleading could change it.

Not a single step of this has been easy. I have fallen into the sucky minority of girls who experience everything bad. Only 5% of girls have PCOS, only 20% of those are thin, only 15% don't ovulate on clomid, only 1% get an infection following surgery, only 15% have a miscarriage... You get the picture.

Your support has been great. It's not the words you say or the advice you give, it's just knowing that you all care. We're not alone. Even though in times like these it can sure feel like it.

I'll be okay eventually. If there's one thing that this has done for me, it's made me stronger. It's also made me less hopeful, more jaded, and far more pessimistic. There is nothing fair about any of it. There is nothing in this world that will make it okay. It will always hurt. And we will always miss this little one who we never got the chance to meet.

I was supposed to see my baby's heartbeat today...

Bad news

My ultrasound was not good. I'll post more about it later. Looks like I'm either waiting on a miscarriage or to have a D&C. I can't believe how much this all sucks and how angry I feel. So sorry to let everyone down.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Big Day

Tomorrow is finally upon us. We'll get to have our first ultrasound where we are actually hoping to see something in my usually vacant uterus. And hopefully, we'll get to see that precious little heartbeat. I'll post tomorrow to let you all know the results. If anyone wants to talk at about 3 am, I'll bet I'm wide-awake. And I will probably get to the doc's office about an hour early...

Friday, September 25, 2009

Way Better than Karaoke

Aaron and I headed to the fair this evening to hear one of our all-time favorite singing groups..... Boyz II Men. First I had a little temper-tantrum because everyone in front of us stood up and I couldn't see anything but big butts. Granted, I would have blocked their view if I had the chance, but nevermind that... I may have gotten a little teary-eyed for a moment, but then I was able to crawl up on top of a concrete pole and had a great viewpoint. They sang for 1.5 hours and I got to hear all of my favorites!!!

Keep in mind that this is our THIRD try at seeing them in concert. We bought tickets 9 years ago during college and they cancelled due to illness. Then it was rescheduled soon after and cancelled again. So I just knew something was going to happen again!

I can't believe how many of their songs take me back to a special moment in my life... a first slow dance, missing a friend, surviving a break-up, enduring the teen years. They had so many songs that almost captured my youth. And they're actually releasing a new album. I'm totally on board!

Call me dorky all you want, but I still love my groups from the 80's and 90's. And apparently so do a lot of other Okies. We all stood out in the drizzle on a Friday night to see them. And I got to eat an Indian taco and spend time with my best friend. What a wonderful day!!!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Friends

My feelings have been all over the place since those double lines appeared on the test. I have truly felt almost every single emotion possible in a much more exaggerated manner. On the outside, I probably seem secluded at times. What's really going on is I'm focused.

I'm focused on ignoring the stress around me and making sure my body stays calm. It's crazy how much my world changed. The only thing that I care about right now is protecting this baby. I'm not as worried about myself or my own emotions if I lose this pregnancy, but feel sad that we'll never meet this little one.

I have been truly blessed with the best support system. I'm so incredibly sorry that I know so many people who have experienced infertility or miscarriages, but you all have given me the best advice and understanding possible. One of these friends (KW) had dinner with me last night. She is one of the most unselfish and caring people I know. She has endured her own loss this year, but is still a fantastic cheerleader for my pregnancy. It's so nice to have someone who truly understands all of my emotions and doesn't need me to explain why I feel a certain way. She's already been through it, thought it, or felt it before.

I'd also like to acknowledge another friend (BB) who recently had a miscarriage. Your words of encouragement mean the world to me. Somehow hearing them from someone who just went through what I'm obviously fearing the most helps me to feel at peace. You are one of the voices of reason that help me to feel calm about all of this.

I'll be posting some baby bump pics really soon as well as our first ultrasound on Monday. Hope everyone is doing well!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Can it be Monday yet?

We're about 5.5 weeks now and I'm definitely getting some symptoms.

  • I suddenly LOVE tomatoes. Always liked tomato products (spaghetti sauce, pizza,etc) but now I love whole tomatoes.
  • Pretty much continuous nausea. Very mild and no vomiting.
  • Newly improved breast size, very painfully tender. Sending in my Playboy pics soon. :)
  • Bloated belly and increased reflux. Sexy...
  • Lots and lots of fatigue. I am one sleepy girl.

I've had three sets of labs drawn... kind of my newest addiction... and my latest levels were good again. HcG= 10,003 and P4= 22.1. I just love to see that number go up.


I'm definitely looking forward to my ultrasound on Monday. To see a healthy beating heart is my dream come true. I'm so incredibly worried about everything right now. I know a lot of people don't get it, which amazes me. If something takes you this long and this much effort, you'd do anything to make it work. And you can't help but feel constant fear that you may lose it all. I appreciate you girls so much who know how tough this is. You've offered such incredible support. This has been such a tough road and I feel like I have SO much on the line to protect right now. Each day is one day closer...

Sunday, September 20, 2009

How it all went down

One of my dear blog friends suggested that I further explain what we did this month to get pregnant. (Besides the obvious, people. What kind of blog do you think I'm running here?) I think that's a terrific idea and I'm going to do just that.

It all began on a warm, summer day in August. The 15th to be exact. I had a period. Cycle Day 1. For those that don't know, pregnancy is actually measured from this day on. I had decided that we were taking 3 months off while Aaron recovered from his upcoming surgery and I only took my temp every now and then.

Medication wise, all I took was my prenatal and metformin three times a day. No ovulation meds, etc. We didn't do any IUI's, IVF, ultrasounds, labwork, etc. Totally unmonitored. I didn't even see my infertility doc this month. Interesting how the world works. I had written off the chance of getting pregnant this month. Apparently that was a good method.

Screw the intensive monitoring. Throw the charts out the window. Flush the pills down the toilet. Give up completely and forget all about it. This plan would probably not EVER work again, but it sure was nice.

For those who've asked, we were already pregnant when Aaron went in to surgery. Oops... No wonder I was loving the vending machine food while waiting for him to come out. Have you all had spicy cheetos? They are fantastic!

As for everything we've been through, most of it was still necessary to get here. I would not have ever ovulated if I didn't do my surgery. We're just "patiently" waiting until our ultrasound next Monday. And I'm still cheering for my little one to hang in there and grow.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Can I get a guarantee on this pregnancy?

I'm finally settling in to believing that I am actually pregnant. The moment that urine hit the test and the double lines immediately appeared... my life changed. Not trying to be dramatic, but the world seemed to stop moving around me and all that matters now is my uterus and these little tiny dividing cells. It's literally all I can think about and I can hear the seconds tick by. (I should be nominated for a soap opera award.)

My emotions change from excited to fearful to hopeful to worried about every 2.7 seconds. It's quite exhausting. I feel like I look at the world in a whole new way. Things that seemed so important now seem silly. My body even seems different. My emotions have changed, and I have feelings inside that I can no longer explain. ("Is that normal?", "Should that concern me?", "Is that just gas?")

The realization that this could end in miscarriage is at the forefront of all the emotions. I just found out about two of my best girlfriends having miscarriages this month. And there's not a single thing I can do about it. I can hope and pray and beg, but it doesn't give me any guarantees. Nobody can. It's literally the most painful waiting game in the world. There's never been so much at stake.

I'm not quite sure how the human race hasn't went extinct. This seems SO difficult. Why can't we be like chickens? You just lay some eggs and here come baby chicks. Not sure how I'm going to lay eggs (ouch), but this sure doesn't seem like a good plan either.

So, if my misbehaving little uterus would just play nice for about 8 more months and provide a loving and nourishing home for this little embryo, I'd be incredibly grateful. I'm doing my best from this point of view, laying around and trying to relax. And you all have done excellent at keeping my hopes up and my spirits high.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

2nd HCG levels

I drew my 2nd levels today (48 hours later) and what you're hoping for is a doubling of the numbers. Well, mine tripled!!!

First hcg: 647
Second hcg: 1,823

So, what do I do? Freak out. I can't just be excited that the numbers more than doubled, I start worrying that they're increasing too quickly or too much. So I called my OB/GYN who is a co-worker and she said it's great. Nothing to worry about.

What does she know? There's a ton for me to worry about. I suddenly have the most important job in the world- incubating a human being. But I'm totally excited!!!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

You Won't Believe This!!!

So, this weekend my husband and I caught a nasty little stomach bug which caused fevers, abdominal pain and vomiting. Great fun and well-used toilets. But that's not the important part of the story.

The important part of the story is that I was late for my period and I ignored that fact since I was actually worried about dropping over dead this weekend from the vomiting. (Pretty sure it's possible.)

Well, I took a pregnancy test at work today thinking that something may be brewing, and guess what? It was POSITIVE!!! I am pregnant. Never thought I'd get to write that on my blog without it being April Fool's Day, but here we are.

Pregnant.

Got my levels back today for those who care and/or know about them:
HCG: 647
Progesterone: 21.7
Doc is thrilled, I am thrilled, Aaron is thrilled. We are hopeful and terrified at the same time. I'm definitely in the scary window period, so I'm asking for LOTS of prayers and positive thoughts in the upcoming weeks. And some hand-holding and encouragement if this goes wrong. You all have been the best support system I could ever have asked for and I love each one of you SOOO much!!!

I'm hoping this blog turns into my journey through stretch marks, weird cravings, and bad attitudes. Nothing would make me happier... I'll be getting a 2nd beta on Thursday to make sure my levels are going up and then my 1st ultrasound on the 28th. (My pics are hard to see completely because I didn't take pics until 8 hours after I took the test, but the test line was darker than the control.)

Hang in there, little embryo!!!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Amber= quiet, adaptable, and sensitive

Aaron and I had a huge craving for some sushi tonight so we went to one of our favorite restaurants. I got my smoked salmon sashimi and spicy salmon roll, which made my belly very happy. Afterwards, we got our fortune cookies which is always lots of fun.

We love to read our fortunes and the ones that have the "learn chinese" on the back are extra fun. Mine tonight was perhaps a little off...

"You are quiet, adaptable, and sensitive to others."

Let's start with quiet. For those who don't know me, I think I have been called many things but NEVER quiet. I started a blog to talk to anyone who would listen since my "real-life" friends probably get tired of hearing me. And as for volume control, my voice registers right under a chain saw on the decibel charts...

Adaptable... pretty sure that I have very few circumstances when I've possessed this trait. I like to pretend that I "roll with the punches", but when it comes down to it- I hate change. Makes me crazy really. I like my life to be nice and predictable. Some call it boring. I call it low-maintenance.

Sensitive to others... this one makes my own mother crazy!!! She is incredibly sensitive to others and about her own feelings. And I've definitely hurt those feelings a time or two. I care about others, but apparently that is quite different than being sensitive. I tell it how it is and forget that not everyone likes advice delivered in the blunt form. I've never really understood sugar-coating. It's the same message with a lot of crap thrown in to protect someone.

Point of this is to say that maybe, just maybe, fortunes aren't actually that accurate after all. And I possibly have some areas for improvement. At least it didn't say "quiet, adaptable, and fertile."

Friday, September 11, 2009

Let's just ignore this fertility business

I realized the other day that I don't find myself caring anymore about all this baby business. This "break" that we're on has been great for my mental health. I didn't even know what cycle day I was on or when I should start my period until I finally looked on a calendar the other day. What sweet relief!

It's not that I gave up, it's just not my focus. I have learned to accept that this is my life. This is my situation. Worry and sadness will not help anything (I've totally tried those approaches.) And I'm savoring my peaceful mornings sleeping in late, and the spontaneity that we still have.

And I'm trying to take things one day at a time and not just assume that we'll never have a baby without IVF. If the day comes when that is our choice, we will deal then. But for now, I'm just happy being left alone. :)

On an unrelated, but more exciting note, I'm super excited that my Cowboys are doing well this year so far! It might make me a tad more interested in football. (Doubt it though).

Monday, September 7, 2009

Who are these people???

Just recently, I realized that a lot of my blog readers are people who have stumbled across my blog or found it through friends, so you don't all know a lot about us. I thought I'd dedicate a post to telling a little about our story for those that are new. And I'd also like to thank everyone who takes the time to read our updates, pray for us, and offer us encouragement and advice. It means the world to me. :)

Well, we are both 1980 models, making us both 29 years old. I was raised in OKC by a single mom while Aaron was raised in OKC with both parents and a younger brother and sister. I was a cheerleader/dancer/gymnast, while Aaron played soccer and tennis. I was outgoing and wild, Aaron a little quieter and well-behaved.

We met in 1998 right after we graduated from the same high school. (There were 601 people in our class so we did not know each other at all). But we did have a lot of the same friends.

He went to OSU that first year of college and I stayed at OCCC, but transferred to OSU my 2nd year (to follow him, pretty much). College was our favorite time and I still miss it. We made such amazing friends during that time and still talk to many of them.













We were both biology majors and took a lot of classes together. After our undergrad degrees, he went on to veterinary school which is another 4 years. I took some time off to do odd jobs for a while, then I went to PA school (physician assistant). He graduated in 2006 and I graduated in 2007. Those were some tough years, since we were both so busy with studying and rotations, etc.

We got married in 2004, right in the middle of vet school. Crazy way to start a marriage, but it worked for us. We had an awesome wedding in Ponca City at the Marland Mansion. It was tons of fun! Then we went to the Dominican Republic for our honeymoon, which we both loved!!! Still our favorite trip destination.












He is now a practicing veterinarian in OKC, seeing small animals and exotics. (No livestock.) I work in Midwest City with an internal medicine doc. Both of us would love to find a way to go ahead and retire, but that opportunity just hasn't hit yet.

That brings us to what you all already know. We started trying to have a baby in June of 2008, assuming that it would go as planned. But as you know, that hasn't happened. We've dealt with it through humor and our relationship is as strong as ever.

Stay tuned to see where this story will take us next...

Thursday, September 3, 2009

What kind of drug cocktail did they give him???

Aaron's surgery went well today- surgeon said everything went as expected. He made an incision in his lower left side and was able to successfully tie off the problem-child vein.

He's feeling pretty good right now, just watching old episodes of So You Think You Can Dance. We've eaten lunch and he's definitely walking better than I did. He's already asked when he can start running again. We'll see how things go when the medicine wears off...

Speaking of the medicine, this guy has been flat-out mischievious since recovery. He's asking me tons of questions and pestering me about everything. What did they do to my sweet husband??

I sure hope this works. I hope he no longer has any discomfort from the varicocele. And I hope that this will get us the baby we've been waiting for all this time. We will never, ever take a single day for granted.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Time for Aaron to go Nighty-night

Surgery is tomorrow. Everyone keep Aaron in your thoughts and prayers. He's going to do great, and this is just more proof of what an incredible dad he'll make. Haven't we proven ourselves yet???

I'll update you all tomorrow...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I have such a way with words

So, I learned an important lesson this week. Apparently, if someone is having surgery and you have taken off work to be there with them, you do not refer to it as the "long weekend". The above named person might not agree with that title, and may even feel a little offended.

I guess I should be more sensitive. It's just that I had surgery 4 months ago and have already replaced the actual events with a much more pleasant memory of how things went.

On a totally unrelated note, I met the neatest people today. Both were patients of mine in the clinic. The first was a beautiful 18-yr-old girl who recently won a local beauty pageant and will be competing for Miss Oklahoma in June. She also got added to the Guinness Book of World Records lately for doing the most turns wearing tap shoes. (Previous record was 16, her record was 36.)

The second was a 50-ish- year-old lady who was a contestant on the Price is Right several years ago before Bob Barker left. She not only got chosen as a contestant, but she won the whole showcase showdown. The only prizes she has left are two violins. She sold the car she won. Lucky lady got to live out my dream!!! And she has 4 kids... Some people have all the luck.