This will be quick; super long and detailed post to follow.
Molly Marie Harding entered this world today, June 23rd, 2014 at 1:32 p.m.
She weighed 5 lbs, 6 ounces, and was 18.5 inches long.
We love her beyond words.
The bathroom is finished!
It’s been finished for a little while now, but I’ve been a lazy blogger. I’m also easily overwhelmed, easily winded, and I cry at the drop of a hat. But despite all of this, I’m pretty excited about my new bathroom.
First, a quick reminder of the “before:”
Oh, yeah, that’s the hotness right there.
Yayyy! There are still a few things to finish (of course). We need towel bars, a tp holder, some art, shelves, a clock… just a bunch of annoying little things. Plus the trim and the doors need to be painted. But, the majority of the work is done, it’s fully functional, and I’m not brushing my teeth in the kitchen sink anymore. I call that a win.
Huge new linen closet (needs some organizational help, but again, my motivation levels are low these days):
And this I’m really proud of. We found two single vanities on clearance at Home Depot and had a friend seal them together. Want to know how much they cost? $150 each – for the vanities, the countertops, AND the sinks. The full priced versions of the same brand, similar styles were $350 and up… each! So we scored a custom double vanity for $300, all in. That’s my savvy shopping moment of the year, for sure.
Love my vanity most of all:
So that’s it!
And before you even ask the burning question…
Yes, as of yesterday, the nursery is painted!
On the eve of 37 weeks, I have a (mostly) empty painted room. I told you we’d be cutting it close, didn’t I? Hopefully a post in the near future will announce the news that the nursery is done, and hopefully that post will precede the one that says, “She’s here!”
But hey, only time will tell.
My baby shower was on Saturday.
Though it feels inaccurate to describe it that way. Baby downpour, perhaps? I wasn’t showered with love and gifts. I truly feel that I was deluged. I’m still overwhelmed by the thoughtfulness and generosity of my friends and family. It was too much! Plus, blog-based burnt toast gifts? I mean… come on!! Everyone is just too kind.
It really made me think. I’m sure if I had been fertile and I would have had a baby shower years ago, it would have been lovely. I would have been happy. We would have received nice stuff. But this… I mean, with all we went through, and with everyone following along with the drama every step of the way, this felt like finally getting to where we were headed. People weren’t excited… they were ecstatic. They weren’t happy for us… they were overjoyed. Every emotion was heightened to an extreme because it’s been SO LONG and we wanted it SO MUCH. So again, not that I’m happy for being infertile, but in a way it just made everything super dramatic, and yes, incredibly, inexplicably happy.
But pictures are worth a thousand words, right? So below I snapped photos of the decor, along with some of the gifts.
The theme and the decorations are all courtesy of my sister, who everyone agrees has missed her calling as party planner. She did such a good job. It was beautiful. The theme was POP! – complete with homemade popcorn favors and cake pops and plenty of other pop stuff. It worked, too, because I do look about ready to pop.
I was “that girl” who probably bored everyone to tears opening gifts for like three hours. But she got a MOUNTAIN of stuff. I mean… just know that each of these bags is full to bursting with stuff. And suffice it to say she will be a thousand times more well-dressed than I, and has enough clothes that she’ll never need to wear the same thing twice. Like, ever.
Every gift was special and amazing. Here are a few.
First things first – I GOT MY PETUNIA PICKLEBOTTOM DIAPER BAG!! Wooo hoo!
Hand painted art from a dear friend:
Star Wars stuff to make daddy happy:
Ok, here’s a good one. Despite how overwhelmed I was, I managed not to cry. Until, of course, I pulled out a picture my sister made to honor the babies I lost to miscarriage. AND she thought it was a good idea to give it to me during this event. Yeah, I freaking lost it, sobbing, with everyone staring at me. Oh, well.
And then there was the TOAST STUFF! My friend Sarah even custom designed onesies to match my blog. How thoughtful is that?! I’m already planning multiple photo shoots for all of these items.
Finally, they pulled out a gift from Eric. I’ve never heard of that before – the husband buying his wife a gift. And this was so thoughtful and considerate… I had just seen nursing necklaces the other day on zulily, and they sound awesome! So the fact that he got them handmade on Etsy… and the card…I managed to hold back the waterworks this time, but just barely. He scored major points for this one.
So that was it. The most amazing day. Just when I thought I couldn’t be more excited about her arrival…
Due date: one month from today.
We are so, so blessed.
Hope everyone survived May 11, 2014 relatively unscathed.
You know, I was really impressed with the way my church handled things today. And last year, for that matter.
First of all, during the homily the priest made it a point to mention that we should take a moment today to think of the women who want nothing more than to be mothers, and who may not have any children. Then they took things a step further during the Supplication part when we prayed for specific things (Followed up with a “Lord, hear our prayer.”) One of the supplications today was, and I quote, “For all women struggling with the pain of infertility, that their hearts may find comfort and that their prayers may be answered…LORD, HEAR OUR PRAYER.”
It was nice. We were recognized.
Last year, they had all the mothers stand up. This might have been awkward as I had just suffered my miscarriage and was gearing up for IVF round two. But then the priest clarified, “And when I say mothers, I mean can all of the mothers, grandmothers, godmothers, aunts, or anyone who has ever shown love and motherly compassion towards a child please stand and be honored.”
Pretty cool. I felt OK standing up. I’m definitely a godmother, an aunt, and I’ve definitely mothered children. And yeah, this year I might be more noticeably a mother, but I’m no more a mother than I was last year.
So on this day, I want to continue that tradition. Because whether or not you’ve physically birthed a child makes no difference. We are the mothers – the ones who have mothered a child, any child at all, or even the ones who have longed to.
This is our day.
So yesterday was my 30th birthday.
I’m going to preface this by saying that I’m going to complain again. When we were TTC, and experiencing loss, and when I was staying up nights crying into the darkness about how I’d do anything for a baby, hearing anyone complain about pregnancy made me irate…and understandably so. That’s why I just want to acknowledge, again, that I know complaining may sound ungrateful and it may cause some of my homegirls to want to punch me in the face. That’s OK. Please feel free to skip these posts (or, you know, punch me in the face if you really think I deserve it). But I have decided that since I’m all about honesty, and since this is my blog, there’s no use in sugarcoating the ugly reality of the third trimester and how uncomfortable it’s been making me. I’m not glowing…I’m dripping with sweat. I’m not all belly…I’m pretty much obese. And HAHAHA! is what I have to say to the me of several posts back – it turns out you CAN look pregnant from behind. I look pregnant from behind. I definitely do. Do I know it’s going to be worth it? Heck yeah. Do I take back asking for all of this? HECK NO. But still, to properly document my life, I must tell it like it is right now. And right now… it’s rough.
I take birthdays very seriously, and not only do I take the day off work (I now have a 30 year streak of never working on my birthday, and I don’t plan to break it anytime soon), but I also force my mom and sister to take the day off and hang out with me. Generally the plan involves going out to breakfast (by far my favorite meal of the day) and lots of shopping, and then going out to dinner. Most years we drive an hour and a half to the King of Prussia mall (KOP, affectionately), which as anyone in the Philadelphia metro area will tell you is pretty much the best mall ever. It is MASSIVE. Any store you could hope to shop is there.
This year I knew my limits well enough to know that KOP was out of the question. I have a list of nursery needs that I’ve been carting around, and I figured these items were best procured from a discount store, like Marshalls or Ross or Big Lots or Christmas Tree Shops. These are my favorite places to shop lately anyway.
We started out our day running two hours behind schedule just because that’s how it worked out. The birthday crew included my mom, my sister, and my two nieces (aged almost 3 and just turned 1). We drove to my favorite breakfast place, paid for parking, dragged the kids out of the car, walked over and… it was closed for renovations! Boo, hiss. Loaded everyone back up, consulted Yelp real quick, and ended up finding a perfectly respectable place with yummy food. Crisis averted.
We went to Marshalls and spent a couple hours hunting bargains. I was pretty disappointed because of course last time I was there I found a TON of items that perfectly matched my intended nursery decor (and of course I didn’t purchase anything because I wasn’t ready to commit to the theme or the fact that I was actually having a baby just yet), but this time I found nothing. Strangely, they had a lot of cute boy nursery items but not as many things for girls. The one thing from my list that I did find was a robe and comfy pants for the hospital so I don’t have to take pictures in the ugly hospital-issued frock. The robe is black and white, made of a really cool and comfortable stretchy microfiber, and it was $12.99. Score one for Marshalls.
Even though we were running behind schedule, we still had time to go to a few more stores. I should mention here that by this point, after approximately 2 hours of shopping and walking and standing, my feet were completely miserable. These days I can’t help but think of a friend who was pregnant a few years ago who wore these intense white orthopedic shoes every single day, even with skirts and dresses. At the time I was thinking, Oh, weird, if/when I ever get pregnant I’ll never do that. But do you know how much I would have paid to have orthopedic shoes yesterday? Infinity dollars. My feet were K-I-L-L-I-N-G me. My sister and my mom were apparently laughing behind my back because usually on Birthday Shopping Day I’m the one dragging them around and rolling my eyes at how long it takes them to do everything. Yesterday was a huge role reversal, and I was the one constantly seeking out chairs and bathrooms and walking at the speed of molasses. I couldn’t even handle the checkout line, and opted instead to go sit in the car and wait for them.
They came out of the store and started sorting out everyone’s items and loaded up the little girls into my sister’s car (she had driven separately because she had to leave earlier). Then all of the sudden, my sister ran over in complete hysterics. She had accidentally locked her keys and her babies in the hot car, windows up.
The whole thing was so scary. I mean, when I say hot car, it was 65 and sunny, not like 90 degrees or something. Otherwise we would have found a brick and broken the window. But as it was, it was pretty terrible watching the kids cry and sweat in there with no way to comfort them and no way to open the damn doors. We called 911 and the cop came and used some giant hanger looking thing to pry the lock. The whole experience felt like it took hours but really it was only about 25 minutes start to finish. Sweaty girls were comforted, water was distributed, and we ventured on.
We were supposed to hit like four more stores but after all the drama of the morning and due to the fact that my feet felt like I had just climbed up and down Mount Everest 14 times, my heart just wasn’t in it. We stopped in two more stores quickly, but again I didn’t find anything. Honestly, the most stuff I got was at Wegmans about an hour later. Leave it to a pregnant chick to do her birthday shopping at the grocery store. (Favorite purchase of the day: Turkey Hill All Natural Mango ice cream – a new flavor!).
As I may have mentioned, Eric is away on a business trip in New Orleans, so he wasn’t even there to celebrate with me. I guess it’s not that big of a deal and we can just celebrate later. He did send me lovely flowers, which were waiting for me when I got home. I had just enough time to put away my groceries before heading back out to dinner with my parents, sister + fam, and a friend I haven’t seen in a while. It was a nice way to end a physically and mentally exhausting day. Well, that and the ginormous bowl of mango ice cream I indulged in later on.
30 feels a lot like 29, except when it feels like 85, which is to say every day lately. I’m so run-down and exhausted and I hate that I can’t physically do the things I need to do (LIKE…SHOP). I don’t know why I was kind of expecting this in the last two weeks or so of pregnancy, but totally was not expecting it for the entirety of the third trimester. If I had to do a pregnancy breakdown, it would go something like this:
Weeks 1-4 – Hope against hope.
Weeks 4-12 – Absolute terror that something will go wrong.
Weeks 12-16 – Ok, all right, this is pretty cool. Cute bump!
Weeks 16-18 – Wait… why am I getting so fat?
Weeks 18-22 – Seriously, I need to stop gaining so much weight.
Weeks 22-26 – Ice cream is a food group, right?
weeks 26-30 – Now I feel stupid for saying people can’t look pregnant from behind.
weeks 30-34 – Feet! Oh, my feet! Is there somewhere I can sit down? I just need to sit down.
I’m pretty sure the solution is to be more physically active from the get-go, which would allow me to be more physically active now, which would just make me feel better overall. If I ever get pregnant again, that will be the goal. My excuse for not doing this is that I was so terrified in the first trimester that even low-impact exercise seemed ill-advised. That, and I’m a little lazy.
Anyway! My mom loved her thirties. My 87-year-old grandmother called to wish me a happy birthday and said that her favorite years were 30 to 35, which is pretty specific, and seeing as how she’s lived through almost 8 full decades I’m thinking she would know.
All in all, turning 30 isn’t so bad.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about our embryos in storage.
Right now they’re chillin’ (ha, I’m hilarious) in New York City, at the same clinic where we participated in that clinical trial and got our free IVF. We have three day-5 frozen embryos left. We want future children (according to my husband, he NEEDS a son). The hard, invasive, expensive part is done now… it only makes sense that we continue to store them until the not so distant future day that we choose to expand our family. And now I’m a helluva lot more confident in my ability to do so, too. No gluten. No corn syrup. Lovenox for at least 15 weeks. No sudden or abrupt movements. GOT IT.
Anyway. New Hope gives you six months of free storage from the date of your last monitoring appointment (for me, apparently, that date was 11/11/13). After that they offer long-term storage for the low, low price of $1,200 per year, but as they like to joke, “The rent in Manhattan is so high! If you wish to seek alternative storage, that is your right and we understand.”
Our six months free is up in May, so I figured I’d start calling around to see what my options were. Since I’m not going to be getting a free embryo transfer in the near future, I thought it made more sense to have them sent somewhere in Pennsylvania. But that’s where things get complicated. The clinic near me that we went to originally (where we were formally diagnosed and all that) does not offer long-term storage. They use a facility in Missouri, who I did call, and it turns out the storage fees are $400/year, or $700 for 2 years. Shipping is $215. Oh, and I already got a glimpse of the consent to ship form, which has all kinds of scary language such as “We have been informed that such a transfer may affect the embryos resulting in unknown kinds of injuries or damage that may lead up to their death.” YEAH. I know that’s all just liability stuff, but whoa. Talk about precious cargo. The woman from the place in Missouri said insurance was extra if I was interested, to which I automatically replied yes, but then I sat down and thought about it – insure what, exactly? If they’re lost, there’s no getting them back. No amount of money can replace those specific embryos. How does that even work? What exactly am I “insuring?”
Here’s the weird part, though. So I just kind of assumed that doing an embryo transfer would be cheaper in my neck of the woods (Pennsylvania: land of the Amish!). It has to be, right? Um, no. New Hope quoted me $2,400 for a transfer plus $800 for monitoring, while the place near me gave me a quote of $4,000. What the what?! Even with bus fare and Metro cards, I’m better off at New Hope. Soooo I guess that means I’ll have to keep calling places in my general vicinity, hoping to find someone cheaper. Sheesh.
This whole process has been very frustrating and time-consuming, and I caught myself getting very annoyed that I had to go through this. “Normal” people don’t have to worry about embryo storage. “Normal” people just make more kids when they want more kids. But then I started thinking about some of my favorite women of the blogosphere… women who are still waiting to get pregnant, women who just got terrible news of a failed transfer, women who are waiting patiently to take the next step in their journey. And then I felt crappy for complaining. It’s a good problem to have – too many good embryos. Yeah, it does suck that I have to pay for storage and it’s a huge pain the ass to figure out where to keep them until we’re ready to do this all over again. But I’m one of the lucky ones, and I need to keep that in mind.
In other news – Eric cleaned out the spare bedroom this weekend! There’s still no paint on the walls and no furniture set up, but at this point the room is 95% empty, which makes me feel a billion times better. We have a ski trip in Vermont this weekend with my whole extended family and some friends (they’ll be skiing, I’ll be reading/napping/visiting the Ben & Jerry’s factory and taking the tour several hundred times, harassing the tour guide about their liberal use of high fructose corn syrup in basically every single blend they make). But next weekend the calendar is clear, so I’m hoping to at least get some painting done. Baby steps here, baby steps! I think the weather has a lot to do with it, actually – I feel more motivated to clean/get moving when it’s sunny and mild than I do when it’s freezing cold. I need spring to hurry the hell up already.
Hope everyone had a good St. Paddy’s Day! Can we talk about how I’m like the only person who came in to work wearing green? And I’m not even Irish! It’s just a sign of respect, I think. And it’s fun.
Yes, you already know I’m gonna make you scroll for it.
First, let me tell you about the whole crappy morning. Yes, crappy! This magical appointment was SO not what we had imagined.
This morning it was snowing. Heavily. No, this is not Atlanta (sorry, Atlanta), but the roads were sketchy enough that even Eric said to me, “Are you sure we should really go?” He had already committed to working from home today, and my car is the only one with all-wheel drive, so he agreed to brave the dangerous roads if I promised to call out of work. That seemed like a reasonable compromise, so I did.
The roads were not great, but he’s a good driver, and like I said… I have all-wheel drive. We live in Pennsylvania; it snows a lot. We’re used to it. So anyway, it took us about an hour to go 15 miles, but we managed to get to the appointment right on time – 8 a.m. And it’s a good thing I made an early appointment because we found out later they were closing the office at 11. And this was at a HOSPITAL. So you can imagine how treacherous it really was.
We went back into the room and got introduced to our ultrasound tech, who shall henceforth be known as BUZZKILL (BK). She immediately started in on us, questioning why the hell we would risk life and limb to come in for this appointment “after all we had been through.” Um… excuse me, what? Do you know my life and what I’ve been through, or did you glance at my chart and make assumptions? Wow.
Anyway, we mentioned that we were really excited because we had this whole gender reveal party planned for tonight with our families and we were going to cut a cake and blah, blah, blah… nope, wrong answer. BK was appalled that we thought of it as a “gender scan” and just kept reiterating that it was a medical procedure to check the baby’s health, not pink or blue party time. She made it sound highly unlikely that she would get a shot of the girly bits or boy parts, but she would write it down “if she could find it, maybe, probably not, but maybe.”
Let me be clear: She KNEW that we didn’t want to know, and that we wanted it written down. After chastising us a few more times for having the audacity to drive in 3 inches of snow in our all-wheel drive car and shouting out the names of bones as she found them, she dropped the bomb.
“It’s a ____.” Then she wrote it on the screen.
I could have punched her! We were stunned into silence. Seriously, BK, seriously? Then Eric said something about being disappointed, and she thought he was talking about the gender, so she started berating him for that. She said, “Oh, I just can’t believe you would say that, after all you’ve been through.”
No, lady. He wasn’t disappointed about his baby’s gender. He was disappointed that he had to hear it from you, in a totally anticlimactic tone, completely out of the blue, when we’ve been planning and anticipating this party since I made the appointment two months ago. THAT’S why we drove through the snow. Even after all we’ve been through.
She realized her mistake about ten minutes later, and stopped all of the sudden and said, “Oh my gosh, you wanted me to write it down, didn’t you? Oh, I’m so sorry. I haven’t made that mistake in years!” And then she said, “…Oh, well.”
Yup… “Oh, well.”
Of course, we made the best of it. We got to see baby’s face. We slowly let it sink in – our baby had a gender. Everything else about the scan also looked great, which was a huge relief. But later during the appointment when Eric and I were talking about the miscarriages, she stopped and said, “Oh, you’ve been pregnant before?” So when she was going on and on about all we’ve been through, she was just talking about IVF… she didn’t even know the whole story! Imagine if she had… she would have thrown us out of the office on our ears.
We drove home. We started to get excited again. A small part of me was worried that we may have to cancel the gender reveal party since it was still snowing heavily, but luckily everyone in my family AND Eric’s family lives in a 5 mile radius, and the plows worked hard all day.
So without further ado, may I present the results of the gender reveal… in photos.
Ryder and Bird made the first guesses of the day:
Yellow plates, pink lemonade, and blue cups…because you never know.
Our beautiful cake, made by Aunt Deby.
Guesses for Team Pink:
Guesses for Team Blue:
Our “guesses” (pretending not to already know):
We let the grandmothers cut the cake, so at least someone was surprised. And inside, it was…PINK!!!
A 3D image of our baby girl, Molly Marie Harding.
We simply can’t wait to meet her, and we’re feeling overwhelmingly blessed. So in the end, the day was very, very good. A daughter. Our daughter. I wish it was June!
…than the flicker of a fetal heartbeat? No sir, I do not think there is.
Absence of the f-bomb in the title should tell you that today went well. Today went perfectly! But here’s the part that may shock you: I knew it would.
Yes, Ms. Worrywart, Ms. Anxiety, Ms. Worst-Possible-Case Scenario was remarkably calm in the days leading up to this appointment. I even tried to worry, but was met with a resounding voice from the inside that said, “Everything is going to be OK.”
Seriously… I wasn’t even that nervous until I actually arrived at the appointment. The lab makes you arrive with a full bladder, which is stupid, because everyone knows that at 6 or 7 weeks they’ll end up doing an internal anyway. After exclaiming over just how WELL I filled it (I think he said, “Wow! It’s huge!”) the tech did some quick measurements and photos before – you guessed it – telling me that we’d need to do a transvaginal ultrasound. I love when they ask if I’m “familiar with that.” HA! Infertile girls could probably do them on themselves.
Anyway, when he was still using the external doppler thingy, I couldn’t really see anything in the sac, so I did have a brief moment of panic where I was afraid he’d say, “Uh oh, there’s nothing in there.” But really, it turned out to be my enormous bladder in the way, I guess (did I mention I’m up to 2 gallons of water a day?). I had already given a bit of background and pleaded that he tell me anything he saw, to the extent that he could. Two agonizing minutes later, the internal started. There was a baby, measuring exactly where I expected at 6 weeks 5 days (this information he volunteered with no prompting. Incredible!). Then there was the flicker. The beautiful, magical, intoxicating flicker that he pointed out and even complimented. Then there were the tears of relief. It felt so amazing to hear good news for once.
Something else that I got today that no one has ever given me before (officially): a due date. Based on measurements, it’s looking like June 18th. But because I’m banking on this kid being a girl, and because every girl in my entire family is born on a Sunday, I say June 15th. Which is…drum roll, please…Father’s Day. Is there anything more perfect than that? I can’t even express how badly I want to give Eric this gift on that day.
Yes, my friends, I’ve gone from worrying about day-to-day viability to predicting a due date. Am I crazy? I can’t explain it, I just feel… calm. Zen. Like everything is going to work out. And yes, I have a lot of emotional attachment to this little ‘un. I don’t want to say, “This is our baby,” because that would imply that the previous ones weren’t. But I think this IS our time. It’s the right time. I just have a really good feeling about it; I can picture it happening. We still have a ways to go before I’m actually content and out of fear’s way, but today was a huge step in the right direction.
Symptoms, I have few, like pretty much nonstop nausea that’s not reached the point of actual puking yet, but is mildly uncomfortable. The thought of eating is quite repulsive. One particular problem is a sudden and intense aversion to all meat besides bacon. Which is a huuuuge problem because meat is one of my main sources of fuel on this crazy bland diet. But ugh…even the thought of meat of any kind makes me wanna hurl. Well, everything except bacon. Eggs are still tolerable, so at least I’ll have some protein, but I worry a little about proper nutrition here. After 12 weeks, I plan to experiment a teeny tiny bit with adding things back into my diet, like gluten-free snacks and stuff. I’ve never wanted brownies so badly in my life, but those I really can’t have. However, they do make a gluten-free version, so yay! Maybe gluten was my problem this whole time. That really blows my mind.
I’m getting ahead of myself. Technically, we haven’t made it any further than we did before, since my last “bad” ultrasound was at 7w1d, and today is earlier than that. BUT last time I had bad signs leading up to that. Last time at this point, I had the “heartbeat too slow” ultrasound. I know it’s so stupid to get my hopes up here, but I feel like this day is a milestone. Just like next week will be. The week after that? Huge.
One thing that I do know is that positive energy is helpful, so I’m just going with it. I hope I can keep this good attitude going. And survive a whole week until the next go ’round. Please let it go quickly….haha, yeah right.
Well… I’m pregnant.
I know, what’s up with that? No exclamation marks? No joy? Nope. Not for this girl. Pure, unadulterated terror over at my house. Eric barely glanced up from what he was doing when I told him this morning. “Not a shock. Now let’s get to twelve weeks so we can really celebrate,” was his reply. I don’t blame him. I feel the same way.
I’m grateful that I can get pregnant easily. It would seem that I am my mother’s daughter in that respect. But unfortunately, I also follow her pattern of RPL. Now I just need to find a way to make it stop, once and for all. After that I’ll study up on how to be less of a control freak, which I so clearly am.
I got back the results of the clotting disorder tests: all normal. Just as I figured they would be. I’m going to keep taking the Lovenox as an added precaution, because I already bought it, and because I’m a glutton for punishment? I don’t know. I just can’t bear to do everything the same this time around and then wonder why it goes wrong. I have to try something.
So much thanks to everyone who offered advice on making the shot more bearable, especially Ashley who gave me a whole paragraph on what to do differently. It went sooo much better last night (except that Eric kept making me giggle as he said, “sloooowwly, oh so slooooowly” and it’s very nerve wracking to giggle while you have a needle inside of you). Below is my bruise pic. The big one is from the first night, the tiny little dot below it is from last night. For some reason the other side didn’t bruise one bit.
So what’s different this time? Let’s see, I knew I was probably pregnant because my throat is being funny already. It’s nothing like last time… not even close, but I couldn’t help but panic a little. It got that “weird feeling” after drinking my water with lemon, so I nixed lemons from my ever dwindling list of things that are OK to eat. It also happened after a salad, so avocados got cut from the list, too. One of the great things about an elimination diet is that you are so, so sensitive to what’s bothering you that it’s easy to figure out what the culprit is within hours. It’s also one of the crappy things about it. Bake sale today at work = no fun for me at all.
I’ve also been chugging water. Because I got up so many times to fill my cup at work, I brought in a half gallon pitcher to keep track of how much I really was drinking every day. Yeah… I’ve been drinking more than a gallon. Almost two, probably (I don’t measure at home). Is that even healthy? I can’t figure out if I’m really that thirsty, or if I’m just desperate to stave off “weird throat feeling” because I’m so terrified of it. All I know is I hit the bathroom upwards of 10 times a day and it’s terribly distracting. This should not be the case when you’re only 3 weeks pregnant.
I’m trying my best to remain calm. Beta tomorrow. Important beta Monday.
But for today, I’m pregnant.
Ever have one of those weeks where you think to yourself, “Where am I and what happened to my life?” That’s how I’m feeling right about now.
First – the new job. Without giving away too many specifics, I will tell you that I’m working for a pretty big cigar retailer as their first official full time copywriter. Me, a girl who has had approximately two puffs of a cigar in her entire life is now tasked with speaking eloquently about a topic that has a shocking number of insanely knowledgeable devotees. Intimidating? Yeah, a little. And lest you think I’m sitting there filling out new hire paperwork and smiling sweetly, the answer is no, I was thrown right into the mix with a gigantic amount of copy to write on my very first day. My motto of the week? Fake it ’til you make it, baby, and hope like hell that these cigar dudes don’t see right through me. I can’t help but compare it to a fertile Myrtle introduced to an infertility blog with no compass, attempting to decipher “ZOMG the bitch got a BFP after my BFN on an HPT on 9dp5dFET after an IUI, good CM, primo SA and so now I hope AF doesn’t come before the beta!” That’s me, at work, except it’s all like puro and figurado and ligero and I just look at them like, “Whaaaaa?”
Granted, my employer knew my level of interest/exposure to cigars (um, NONE) prior to hiring me, so they must have just liked something about my writing. Or, they made a terrible mistake. Hopefully not the latter. So far it’s been fun, and everyone clearly loves working there, and I feel important and respected with less than a week under my belt. So it’s not bad, it’s just… different. Just wait, in 6 months I’ll be this kickass cigar smoker with a terribly refined palate. And if you’re a true friend, then right now you’re saying, “No, Amanda, in 6 months you’ll be pregnant and not smoking cigars at all.” Right?!!
Next – I got my period today! And a week early by my count. Which is good, because I was about to bust out the zipper on my fat jeans (you may recall that I’ve done this once before) and have been crying at Zillow commercials for the past few days. Good to know it’s for a reason and not because I’m going cuckoo for cocoa puffs. Aaaanyway, the first thing I wanted to do when AF showed up was call the doctor, because seriously, doesn’t everyone call the doctor when they get their period? I texted Eric and said, “We need to talk about my period,” to which he was understandably confused, but yeah I just felt like more action was necessary. I have spent the entirety of 2013 calling people to announce the advent of my period. Literally, since January. I’ve either been pregnant or getting ready to get implanted. This is my first break all year… it was weird to accept. But I did sit down with me and ask, very gently, if I even wanted to call New Hope. And the answer was no, I’m not ready. I know we had already decided to wait, but I was secretly worried that when the time came, I wouldn’t want to wait. The truth is that I do need to wait, and I want to wait. So it’s alllll good.
And of course a tiny annoying voice kept saying, “Maybe you’ll conceive on your own this month,” and of course I was like, “Shut up, stupid tiny voice, what makes this month different from the freaking two and a half years preceding our IVF cycle?” It’s not. I mean, the difference is that I’ve been pregnant. So now I think my subconscious got cocky, and she’s like, “Girl, we got this.” But we don’t. I got pregnant from pre-fertilized embryos, not from a glass of wine and an OPK. It’s just insane to think it could happen. But damn, that would make things so much easier.
Which brings me to my next weird moment. Today I was perusing my new benefits package when I came across a line that made my little heart stop with hope. Under Infertility Services it said “covered in full after deductible.” Which is totally too good to be true, and which isn’t true at all, it turns out. I went running in to Eric squealing like we hit the Powerball until I saw the next line, which said Assisted Fertilization: not covered. Why are those two things separated out? Could it be any more unclear? I’m assuming it just means they cover the testing and not the treatment, because they are total and complete assholes, but did they really have to get my hopes up like that? I guess I will have to ask to confirm (hello, awkward conversation with HR department at a new company).
One thing that is surprisingly covered, however, is infertility drugs. They give you up to $2,500 for your lifetime. Of course we’ve already spent more than that, but there’s more to come, and that’s pretty good. Better than what I had before ($0), so no complaints here. Why are they covering drugs and not treatment? Because they suck. Insurance companies: blah.
That’s all for now, dear friends. I no longer have time (or, ahem, permission) to sit there catching up on blogs and Facebooking all day, so I’m frantically trying to catch up on all my feeds at night while still doing the cooking, general household maintenance, and oh yeah, working later in the evening. Phew. Is it Friday yet?