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, March 30, 2010

19 weeks...

The weeks really seem to be moving quickly now! I'm savoring every second that I'm pregnant and actually feel like maybe I'll be sad when it's over. We worked so hard to get here and it really is the most amazing feeling in the world!

I've started gaining wait now. I'm steadily gaining 1 pound a week, so I'm up to 6 pounds total. I actually expected more at this point, so I'm thrilled with that. Especially since I'll probably accumulate 50 pounds of fluid in my ankles in July and August...


The tummy really popped out this week. It's crazy how certain weeks it changes SOOOO much. Aaron even noticed the difference when he took the picture. It's the first week that we were really surprised by the change.
Pretty much all of my patients now talk about me being pregnant because it's obvious in EVERYTHING I wear. I was using charts to cover my tummy, just to save the time of answering the same questions over and over, but it doesn't even help anymore! So now I walk in, say "yes I'm pregnant, due in August, not finding out the gender, it's our first baby, no names decided on. Now let's talk about you."

I'm feeling really good overall. I have killer heartburn that I'm encouraging with lots of spicy food. Sleeping is getting tougher by the minute and I wake up way more frequently than ever before. And suddenly I LOVE sleeping on my back that I'm supposed to avoid sleeping on...

Putting on my shoes is a little less easy and I'm having to modify yoga poses to allow for a bump. My appetite has been nothing short of amazing recently and I could easily win a food-eating competition right now. Especially if it was pickles or mangos!!!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Blog Title

I've been thinking about changing the name of our blog. But after much thought, I've decided to leave it the same. Our stork really isn't great with directions. Sure, we're pregnant now and it appears that our journey really is leading us to a baby. But it's definitely not been the quickest, easiest path. We took many wrong turns, hit several dead ends, and ended up on detours for way too long. There's been too many tears cried and my heart has been broken time and time again.

It's been a long, hard road to get here and the stupid stork assigned to us put us through a load of crap to get to this point. I'm certainly thankful for the road we're on now, don't get me wrong. I'd do all of it 30 times again if I could be where I am now. (Money and biological clock allowing...)

But the title should stay the same. 2 years have passed, 3 surgeries, 1 hospitalization, my miscarriage, hundreds of doctor's visits, thousands of dollars spent. This blog has been my outlet, my safe haven, through it all. It's been my place to escape and talk openly about my feelings, good or bad. You all have been my source of support and encouragement when my world seemed to crash around me.

And now the tides have turned in my favor, but it's still just a blog about a girl who struggled to get here. And she's feeling like the luckiest person in the world. But she's still a little resentful towards that stork!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Anatomy Scan

Our anatomy ultrasound went perfectly today and like any really annoying new mommy, I'm going to show a ton of the pictures they took today and act like you really wanted to see them all!!! And if I can figure out how to download the DVD, I'll be torturing you with it later this week... It's even cuter than the pictures...That's a leg propped up in the right corner there.
This is the baby in a thoughtful pose. I'm sure he/she is sure to be a genius!

It's a..........


BABY!!!! (Did you really think I was going to ruin such a fun surprise?)
Little worried about the size of those feet in such close proximity with my fragile little ribs...



Being shy... We weren't camera ready for this shot! This leads me to think it's a girl. :)

Baby is measuring 9 ounces which is great for this point and all measurements were good. The brain measured the smallest which makes me think it has to be a boy. :)
The tech was easily able to tell what the gender is but she kept it to herself. It was the first time I've been tempted to know because all it would have taken is one word out of her mouth and I'd have known if I was having a daughter or son. But now that I'm home, I'm SO glad we didn't find out.
They'll scan me again at 30 weeks to check for size (I'm a lot concerned that this baby will end up humongous.) I can't believe I have to wait 12 weeks for another scan!!! What will I do with myself???
Oh, and I mentioned that I'm freaked out about cervical incompetence so she did a vaginal u/s (I actually volunteered for this) and my cervix is 4.8 cm and tightly closed. That made me feel a lot better!!! And it had been way too long since I'd had to take my pants off at the doc's office, so I felt it was overdue.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

18 whopping weeks!!!

We are nearing the halfway mark and I can't believe it. I'm actually getting to the point now that I almost want things to slow down a bit because I'm really loving the whole pregnancy thing. It's more fun to get dressed now because I have a new curvy figure, I don't worry that my belly looks "fat" in something, and I have tons of new/borrowed clothes to choose from.

Speaking of my new figure, here's what we're looking like this week. It's crazy how much Gil is already showing!

I went with a more forward view of the tummy this week to capture what is going on with my belly button. It's always been a serious innie, but we're working on popping out soon I think. And I'm starting to have some major curvature around the bottom of my belly which is super fun to put my hands on. I feel like I'm holding my baby!

We've got the big anatomy scan tomorrow (minus the genital anatomy portion) which I'm getting freaked out about now. I've been excited, but now the crazy-girl worry has set in and I feel like I'll be getting little sleep tonight. Are Gil's kidneys doing okay, is the heart normal, are the brain ventricles developing right??? I even had a fear that there wouldn't be a heartbeat even though I listen every day.

So, I'll post pictures tomorrow when we get home and let you know how it went. Thanks for all the votes so far on the baby's gender. It's pretty much tied up, so I guess you guys aren't quite sure!!! This will make it lots of fun!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Poll on Gender

Sarah from Baby Talk so kindly helped me figure out how to add a poll on to my blog, so please make your guess on what we're having. We're not finding out til the baby gets here in August, but I thought it would be interesting to see what everyone thinks!

Thanks Sarah! I really appreciate it.

Happy

My pregnancy hormones are definitely in a good place now. I'm no longer aggressive towards strangers (except for a little road rage at times), my husband is my favorite person in the world again (the mangos helped), and I feel just generally happy about everything.

The excitement over this pregnancy is growing day by day. I'm still scared, don't get me wrong. But I'm no longer checking the toilet paper every time I go, I don't listen for the heartbeat quite so many times a day, and I no longer cry unexpectedly because I'm just sure something must be wrong.

I can't believe the love I feel for this baby. What an incredible blessing it has been to be pregnant and watch the little one grow through ultrasounds. Best part of infertility is the increased number of ultrasounds you get! I was able to see Gil as a little gestational sac, then a tiny embryo with that amazing heartbeat, growing into a gummy bear, moving those little stubby arms/legs, etc.

And I can't wait for our ultrasound on Wednesday. It's my anatomy scan with the specialist and I'm so excited! I'll definitely post pictures when we get home. They have a great ultrasound and give me a video of it which I love. I still watch mine from my 12 week u/s with them.

Hey, do you girls know where I find the poll to put on my blog for whether my readers think the baby is a boy or girl? I can't find it but I definitely want to add one.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I'm too sexy for this snuggie...

What a fantastic evening I am having! I came home this evening exhausted from work only to look in the fridge and find that my dear husband went to the store today and got some stuff I really love. First I noticed the strawberries which are my #2 favorite and then I found my #1 favorite thing in the world: MANGOS!!!

They've been out-of-season since what seems like 8 years ago, but he dug through them all today until he found 2 softer ones. And they were absolutely heavenly!!! So I thought I'd include a picture of me enjoying this wonderful surprise.

You might start by noticing that I am wearing my zebra snuggie, very stylish alongside my slippers. Aaron also wants me to point out that I am using an 8 inch butcher knife to cut my fruit instead of one of our more manageable ones. He kept looking over and cringing every time I would cut a piece off since it would slip all over the plate. His money was on me cutting a finger off or stabbing the dog.

And yeah, I know it seems like a lot of fruit, but what you don't know is that I already finished the 4 giant strawberries before the picture was taken. And I'd just eaten a hamburger, fries and chips for dinner. :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

17 weeks

Wow, I cannot believe I'm 17 weeks. I know I say this every single week and you're getting tired of hearing it. But every single week is an accomplishment I never thought I'd reach. I remember reading blogs where the girl was 17 weeks and thinking how impressive that seemed. And I'm there.

7 weeks until viability. Seems like an eternity, but things are going so fast these days that it's really just around the corner.

My specialist's office called today to say that the 2nd part of my "triple screen" looked great too. What a relief. Now, we just have our Level 2 scan next Wednesday and I'll be feeling much better.

No movement yet that I am willing to definitively call "movement". There's some strange feelings at times but I'm known to be a little gassy, so I keep blaming that. Plus, I'm consuming massive quanitites of mexican food due to this little bambino's cravings. So, who knows?

Wow, I sure do love this baby.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Just a regular old couple expecting a baby

We ventured out into the world yesterday as expecting parents. And subjected ourselves to places that are known to have high numbers of new and expectant mothers. And I survived.


First, we went to the baby expo downtown which was overall really lame except I got the cutest maternity shirt. (It says "rockin' the bump" and I'm quite sure you'll see pics on here eventually.) Mostly it was 3D-4D ultrasound centers advertising. And we're not doing one. (We think they're creepy.) Point is, we were surrounded by baby bumps and strollers and I did not leave in tears.


Second, we bravely chose to look at Babies-R-Us for furniture. We still aren't buying anything until 25-28 weeks (our rule from the beginning), but I saw a set online that I liked and wanted to see it in person. Of course, it's probably their most expensive set but it's made of mahogany and seems to be really good quality. Plus it's the 3 way convertible bed. And I love that you can use the smaller dresser as the changing table.

Now, I got pretty excited looking at baby stuff while we were there, but every now and then if I thought about where I was for a minute, I'd panic a bit. Plus, how in the world do people afford babies??? Still cheaper than infertility, but come on. And they sell so much crap that I can't imagine needing!

So, we acted like normal pregnant people yesterday and it was kinda fun. We even parked in expectant mom parking at Babies-R-Us. Aaron didn't think I qualified because I'm not "big enough", but I worked hard for that parking spot and I insisted.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Looking Back

Yesterday, I realized even more how lucky I am to be pregnant. There is the obvious reason that I'm no longer in fear of never being able to get pregnant. Now, it's unfortunately replaced with the terror that something could happen to my baby, we can't afford a child, choosing daycare if we have to, things I'm eating, ways I'm sleeping, choosing safe carseats/strollers...

I've only had blood drawn 6 times in 4 months. And 3 were for HcG levels. This is a huge improvement from the million blood draws I had done the last 18 months. When the phlebotomist went to find a good vein yesterday, I remembered the days when I was having daily blood draws for IUI and we'd use the "least bruised" vein. And in the hospital when I already had an IV each arm and they were using "fresh" veins to draw samples several times a day. Those nurses get pretty creative. I was starting to look like a cocaine addict.

Most doctor's visits I get to keep my pants on. In fact, I've had 2 vaginal ultrasounds and my pap since I found out. Otherwise, my pants have remained happily on my body. Wow, I think my dignity may be finding it's way back! (Until childbirth that is. Then it's gone all over.)

My insurance only paid 50% for infertility. We wracked up $9,000 in bills last year alone. With pregnancy, I only pay a $30.00 co-pay once for the whole time. Hmm.... seems a little unfair doesn't it?

And the thing that occurred to me most is that when I roll over in the mornings, instead of seeing my stupid basal body chart and a thermometer, I now have my ultrasound gel and doppler to listen to Gil's heartbeat. I no longer even know what my temperature is. But I know very well how sweet my baby's heart sounds.

And that makes every single poke, prod, invasive exam, surgery, loss, hospitalization, and failure all worth it. I'd do it all over again a million times.



***To my friends still trying, I didn't write this to make you feel bad or to brag about my situation. I hope what you take from it is that I wanted to give up so many times. And I'm so glad now that I didn't. Hang in there. It's a long, hard road, but it makes you so much stronger and more appreciative in the end. I follow all of your stories and I hold my breathe each month hoping you'll get your BFP's.***

Friday, March 12, 2010

Bloodwork

I went to the high-risk specialist's office today for my 2nd set of bloodwork. We saw him at 12 weeks for the first triple-screen panel and ultrasound which showed my chances of birth defects to be around 1 in 10,000. I still chose to do the 2nd set as well, so I went in for bloodwork today.

Today it was all cute couples who looked like they should be parents. Last time, it was the biggest group of misfits ever. None looked capable of filling out their paperwork, much less bringing a child into the world. Somehow, I felt like I fit in more with the misfits. Walking into an OB office makes me feel like I'm cheating the system or lying to someone. I keep expecting someone to say, "ummm, you don't belong here. We only see pregnant women."

But that's me... I'm pregnant... And I'm actually showing... I do belong there. And I am starting to really LOVE the whole thing. I look forward to everywhere we go now because I get to pick out which cute maternity outfit I want to wear to best accentuate my growing tummy. Funny how I used to pick the one that would hide my rolls after I ate too much dinner. :)

So, labwork is done. Ultrasound is scheduled for 3/24 which will be super exciting. We're taking both of our moms to that appointment. It's the 1st grandbaby on both sides, so little Gil has some very eager grandparents waiting for his/her arrival! Both grandmas think they'll be able to see what the baby is, but we're very determined to keep it a secret. They'll just have to wait a little longer...

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

16 weeks..

I'm 16 weeks now which is crazy. I feel like time is finally moving again and we're getting somewhere. I also feel like my belly ballooned this week. One morning I woke up and thought, where did this bump come from??? It's too heavy to sleep on my back now and of course my tummy is out of the question. And my body pillow has become a necessity.

Showing off my very sexy maternity jeans here with the secret fit full panel belly. I really can't figure out who decided that jeans needed buttons and zippers that actually do something. Elastic is where it's at.
My books say I'm producing colostrum (1st breast milk) as of this week which is kinda weird. My boobs feel a lot heavier this week, so I guess I believe it. Does this mean they can start leaking? One of my friends says she never leaked before her baby was born. I'm hoping not to start lactating pre-baby. :)
Also, I know quickening (feeling movement) can start around now. I don't think I've felt anything yet, although I had two quick flutters last week. When did you all start feeling your baby move? I'm really eager for this so I'm hoping it's sooner rather than later.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Are you SURE I'm pregnant?

I just read another girl's blog who is 9 weeks pregnant. She's also had a hard road getting there and she talked about feeling detached from her pregnancy. Interesting post, and it kinda hit me that I can relate to it.

Every time I listen to the heartbeat or see the baby on ultrasound, I'm relieved that the little one is doing well. And it takes my breath away. But I feel like all that I can accept is that the baby is okay at that moment. I am not able to feel any sort of confidence about the future. Every now and then, you might hear me say, "when the baby comes", or "next year when the baby is here". But mostly I still think "if".

Looking at the ultrasound screen, I can't even begin to believe that the baby is actually in my uterus. That it's my baby. If I did fully believe it, it would make the fear of losing him/her that much more debilitating. And let's face it, there won't be a guarantee until that baby is in my arms. And then a new set of worry sets in...

I wouldn't necessarily take back what we've been through because I know it will make me appreciate this baby so much more once he/she arrives. But it sure does steal some of the blissfulness. I just kinda thought that a successful pregnancy would heal the wounds caused from the miscarriage and the infertility. I'd say maybe it just put a band-aid on it for me.

Now, I don't want anyone to read this and think that I'm not excited or that I'm not appreciative. I am SO fortunate to be able to worry about this baby. That much I will never forget. It's just so hard when you have so much to lose and you find yourself loving this baby more than anything ever. Especially after fighting so hard to get to this point.

I find that I don't want to talk about the baby alot, especially to people I'm not really close with. I think that it's just so important to me that I keep it a little more private than most things. And I'm so guarded with my feelings this time around. Most people don't/can't understand why I'm not 100% excited and my hormones are just not allowing for stupid/insensitive comments at this time. :) These are the same people who didn't really support me well through the infertility or the miscarriage, so why should they get to celebrate with me now?

Aaron has been my teammate throughout all of this. He's the only person who has truly been through all of it with me. So sometimes, I feel like this is just between the two of us. I have a hard time letting others in. I'm already tired of hearing advice and getting my tummy molested by non-friends. I guess I just worry that if people talk about the baby too much, he/she will get sick of it, pack up, and move on out. I feel like I'd like to do that at times. :)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Maternity Pants, where have you been all my life?

Today as I was squeezing my ever-enlarging tummy into my favorite pre-pregnancy jeans, and then squishing my way into my bella band that never seems to sit in the right place, and trying on pre-pregnancy shirts that are too small, and borrowed maternity shirts that are still too big... I came to the realization that I needed some clothes.

So we went to Target. Which failed miserably. First of all, the maternity section is TINY. And it's mixed in with the plus-size dept. Which gets confusing. The clothes did not fit well and made me look fat. Not pregnant.


Next stop: Motherhood Maternity. This is a store I swore I'd never enter pre-pregnancy. The mannequins in the window always looked frumpy and miserable. But I'm desperate, people. So in I went. Not only were the sales people SUPER helpful, they have some great stuff.



I found the best maternity shirt ever! It looks like something I'd get out of the Victoria's Secret Pink collection and it's my favorite color (pink). Plus it's really soft. I also got the best pair of jeans. All the other pairs I've tried on have been way too big, but these have the secret fit belly and they're actually really cute jeans.



So, my question is: why in the world do we not wear maternity jeans all of our lives???



A picture of my "Mom in Training" shirt. For my "real-life" friends, you might be seeing this one a lot. It's definitely a favorite! Oh, and this view reminds me... I'll post a picture of my belly button soon for those daring enough to look at it. It's always been a deep innie, but it's already kinda flat now and getting dark in color. Very creepy! (Don't worry, I took my belly ring out).




Side view of the growing bump. I absolutely love it!!! It makes me feel so much cuter and more special. And I can't tell when I've eaten too much food, because my belly is always poochy. But now it's firm, which is super. Plus, it balances out my "junk in the trunk". And I get to wear stretchy, comfortable clothing.

Here's a sexy rear view of what the maternity jean has to offer. Oh, and I forgot to mention how awesome it is when you go to the restroom and all you have to do is pull them down and then pull them back up. No buttons, no zippers. So simple. I'm never going back...

Friday, March 5, 2010

I Did Not Ask for your Opinion...

Funny how women have soooo many opinions about MY pregnancy. It's been happening everywhere since I started showing. Women just can't help but tell me their opinions about everything pregnancy/childbirth related.

Today, we had a new lady at work who continuously told me that I need to be reading to my baby all the time. Ummm, my baby doesn't currently have functioning ears. The baby is working really hard just to grow and develop vital organs, not read novels. Yet, I'm already being accused of being an unfit mother. :)

People like to tell me how my life is never going to be the same, I'll never sleep again, the baby will rule our household, my marriage is going to fall apart, to enjoy these last days with your spouse... I'm sure there is some truth to some of it, and lots of truth for some people. But we're all very different. Maybe you didn't plan on getting pregnant and maybe you don't have an involved husband. But we've been together 11 years and we've worked our tushies off to have this baby. Infertility has further solidified our marriage, and we welcome this baby whole-heartedly! I'm blogging at 9:30 on a Friday night. That's a good sign that a baby might just fit into my social life...

The biggest thing that I'm hearing opinions about is that we're not finding out the gender. People are not just surprised, they are apalled. It is unthinkable that a couple could actually CHOOSE to not find out until the baby is born. What is wrong with an old-fashioned surprise, people??? We will be so happy with either a boy or a girl, and I want to hear it for the 1st time when I meet the special little person. SO, it's set in stone for us. We're not finding out. Period.

Anyone else having a hard time believing that you're actually pregnant??? I just can't seem to wrap my mind around it. Seems like any day I'm going to wake up and find that the whole thing was just a dream. I can't find a sense of reality in the whole situation. And I'm also kinda weird about talking about it to casual acquaintances/coworkers/etc. I feel like this baby is our special little miracle and it seems weird to talk openly about it to others. Maybe I still feel like it will curse the whole thing. I'm thinking maybe the pregnancy hormones are just making me crazy!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Where in the world is Carmen San Diego?

How about we tell a little story about how incredibly dim-witted I can be at times?

Aaron calls me at work and tells me that they had an earthquake in Taiwan today. At this point, my mind starts spinning as I try to figure out what is wrong with the word Taiwan. I suddenly can't remember where I've heard it before and actually think he's pronouncing it wrong. Seriously. I wish I were kidding.

So I finally come to a conclusion about it, but need some reassurance. I ask, "In Mexico?"
Aaron pauses for a very long time and then replies, "what?" I again ask, "Mexico?"

His response once figuring out that I was unfortunately serious and that I am responsible for carrying our child, "Umm, China."

At this point, I realize that this isn't a Jeopardy type question and that I'm an idiot. Of course it's China. All I can figure is that my jumbled pregnancy brain was stuck on Tijuana. Which is indeed in Mexico. Or is it???

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

15 weeks... how time flies!

Hey friends,
Well, I've made it to 15 weeks which seems really crazy. I remember how incredibly slowly the minutes passed at the beginning. We were always waiting for another milestone. Will there be a gestational sac? Will there be a heartbeat? Will the baby make it past the crucial development weeks? We were literally counting days at that point. Now, I'm obviously looking to get to the halfway point, and then viability. Mostly, I still can't believe I'm actually pregnant and that this isn't all a big fairytale.


Warning: I had just eaten a lot of tacos before this week's shot, so I may be a tad bloated. :)

Let's cover that bump up!

So, I went to see the cardiologist today. Last week I had an episode where my heartrate was around 130 and I felt really dizzy and short of breath. My OB had me do an EKG and rhythm strip at work which showed some arrythmias. Then they hooked me up to a holter monitor for 24 hours to watch my rhythm and rate. Mostly I'm just having a lot of tachycardia (heart rate over 100), but I apparently also have a slight irregularity on my EKG that predisposes me to irregular rhythms. The episode I had last week was SVT which is when the heart beats very fast and causes those symptoms. There is a medication that can be given if I can't get out of the rhythm myself by relaxing, holding my breath, etc. Hopefully, everything else will come back as good (my echo looks fine), but I'm banned from exercise for now.
Good news is, I've only been to the gym twice since I found out I was pregnant. So, it really shouldn't be a problem. I'm just relieved that the cardiologist doesn't think that this condition will affect my baby or me. So, now I'm just hoping we can go awhile without any issues and just see the OB on a regular basis. Wouldn't it be nice???