Thursday, May 17, 2012

TTC: 12 Weeks of Pregnancy

We were 5 weeks along when we found out we were pregnant. Our emotions were all over the place! Excited, nervous, happy, scared…but it didn’t feel real quite yet. And I wasn’t sure when it would. When a doc says I’m pregnant? When I feel sick?  When we have an ultrasound? When I start seeing a belly? I had no idea. But it didn’t matter. We were having a baby. The stick said so.

In the coming weeks I would experience things I could never imagine. Both incredible and devastating. Nausea was no joke for me. I could not kick it…ginger beer, ginger ale,  preggie pops, constantly eating, nothing helped. I hoped and prayed that I would not be cursed to have it the entire pregnancy. And the exhaustion was out of this world. I could barely make it through my workday without falling asleep. I was sleeping 10-12 hours a night.

Our 7 week ultrasound was priceless. Seeing our blueberry with a fluttering heartbeat was beyond amazing. Now it was starting to feel real.

Around 10 weeks we started sharing the news. We also started writing down names we liked. And thinking about the future and what our life will be like once our kumquat enters this world…

Then December 5th rolls around. It was 12 weeks exactly. I started to have an uncomfortable amount of bleeding (I had some spotting earlier in the pregnancy that wasn’t an issue) so I called my OB. She had me come in right away for an exam to make sure everything was okay. It wasn’t.

I was having a miscarriage.

Devestated. Heartbroken. Upset. Angry. Sad. Furious. If I could even begin to try and describe how the news made me feel, these are the words.

Why me?! Why did this have to happen to me?! What did I do wrong? Is it really gone? Maybe they're wrong and this is all a terrible nightmare. But it wasn't. The next few hours and days were literally the worst days of my life. Nothing can prepare you for the experience. I opted to let the miscarriage happen naturally versus having a D&C (minor surgery) or meds to make things progress faster. Though it was tough, I’m glad I made that decision.

Of course I had heard of miscarriage before but didn’t know how common it actually is (30 – 40% of all pregnancies end in m/c) and never thought it would happen to me. Our OB explained that they are so common and there’s no way to know why it happens but it was most likely a ‘chromosomal abnormality’.

Dean and I decided to share our experience publicly and the outpour of support was overwhelming. It turns out that I know MANY people that have had a similar experience. I’m thankful beyond words for encouragement and support that I’ve had.

Another question I had was when could we start trying again. If I asked 5 people, I got 5 answers. Ultimately the most frequent answer was ‘when you’re ready’. We decided to let one cycle come and go to make sure things were working properly again and give my body some time to recover and heal. And since we conceived on the first try, we were sure it would happen fast again. That’s what I needed. To be pregnant again. That’s what would help me move on from the miscarriage.

Monday, May 7, 2012

TTC: Our Journey to have a family

My mind is racing and doesn't know where to start. My fingers are typing though and the words are coming out faster than I can comprehend...

 Dean and I began our relationship in 2005 at the ripe young ages of 21 (me) and 22 (him). We have always been on the same page about having a family once things fell into place and once we were married. And so on the 10th of September in 2011 we said 'I do' and took the first step toward creating our family. We had discussed that we would start 'trying' to get pregnant right away. We agreed that we were ready for it but that we also didn't know what the process may be like for us.

 The interesting thing about that last sentence is that neither of us knew anyone close to us that had difficulty getting pregnant or staying pregnant. Actually it was quite the opposite.

 As October 2011 rolled around, my cycle was a few days late. That wasn't extremely abnormal though as my cycle length was known to fluctuate within a couple days. 3 days late. 5 days late. The first thought of 'could I be pregnant' started to creep into my mind. But I thought 'no way, we just started trying'. I also had some spotting which is a normal indication for me that I'm about to start so I was sure now that I definitely wasn't pregnant. I was going to start my cycle any day now. The day that AF (aunt flow) was 5 days late I had a tuna sandwich from Subway for lunch and I felt sick almost immediately after I ate it. Again I thought, 'could I be pregnant' but I quickly associated feeling sick with the tuna being bad or something. That was a Friday. Saturday came and went with no AF. Finally on Sunday I decided to get some cheapo HPT's (home pregnancy tests). Dean was with me when I took the test. So I POAS (peed on a stick) and waited for the results. We had no clue what it was telling us. We didn't know how to interpret the lines. There's one going up and down but not side to side...what does that mean? We went to bed that night not really knowing anything.

 The next day (Monday) Dean started a new job so things were very exciting and it nearly made me forget about possibly being pregnant. But on my way to work I decided to pick up some more tests that would be a bit easier to interpret. Into the bathroom at my office I went. Again I POAS and waited. This time I was going to get Yes or No. There's no misinterpreting that....

 3 minutes later it was clear - YES! 

I was in complete shock. I couldn't believe it. I took a picture of the test on my phone and headed to my best friends desk (I happen to work with my best friend - huge bonus of the job). We had normal casual conversation for several minutes until I put the picture of the test in front of her. At this point Dean didn't even know the news! It took my bestie half a second to realize what I was showing her and we both started to cry tears of joy and shared a great hug.

 Despite taking 4 tests at this point I still wasn't 100% convinced so bestie and I went to get more tests over our lunch break. These were the Pregnant or Not Pregnant kind. This is what I needed. I took both. Both said Pregnant. It was starting to sink in at this point that maybe this is real. I really am pregnant! Since it was Dean's first day at his new job, it was the perfect way to surprise him with the news. I got him a congratulations card and put a baby ruth, the HPT's and a cute little baby book in a gift bag. I didn't talk to him literally all day because he was super busy on his first day. But we carpooled that day and I knew I'd see him right after work. I couldn't wait. I gave him his gift in the car right after I picked him up. I pulled over in the parking lot of his office and told him to open it. It was just a 'little something to say congrats on your first day'. He started opening the gift and read the card first. Then he opened the tests I had wrapped. It took him a few seconds to realize what they were and what they said...then he said 'oh shit! Are you really?' with a huge smile. I said YES and we were both overwhelmed with joy.

Earlier that day I looked online to determine my due date. It was June 18th, 2012 according to my LMP (last menstrual period). I was five weeks pregnant which means we conceived on our honeymoon.

 As we rode home we talked about who we should tell and when. I knew it was VERY early and was a bit unsure of telling anyone quite yet but Dean wanted to tell his parents. Without much of a chance to object he called his parents and put all of us on speakerphone. 'We're pregnant' he exclaimed. His parents were thrilled! We asked them to keep it to themselves for now as we needed to decide how we want to share the news. I told Dean I wanted to do something special to tell my parents and sisters so we waited to say anything to anyone else.

 ...To be continued

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Testing testing 1 2 3

Does this thing still work?! Well folks it's about time to dust this 'ol thing off. I haven't written in quite some time. This blog originated as a place to document mine and Dean's travel around the globe and I love looking back on those entries and reliving the times we've had frolicking around different countries. Now as we enter a new phase of our life, starting a family, I've convinced myself that I want to have this 'on the record' as well. I want to vividly remember what this process is like for us and if there's any chance this catches the eye of someone going through something similar, that's an added bonus. That being said, I won't go into detail in this post but I will be starting to blog about our trying to conceive (TTC) journey. This journey is very emotionally charged and is bound to rip at the heart strings including my own as I venture back to memories I'd rather not have. But in the end I want to be able to look back on this time and remember how far we've come... Feel free to join me.