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30 October 2011

Livin' on a Prayer

Wow!  I have been a bad, bad blogger.  No excuses though.

Last time I wrote I was nearly 12 weeks.  This was me today at 20 weeks (halfway there):

The 12 week scan went well.  Our Down Syndrome risk came back as 1:5700 so we felt happy to share our news.  Posting it on Facebook and telling people at work was an amazing moment I feared might never come.  Here is "Hernlet" at 12 weeks:

Health wise has been pretty easy on me so far.  Apart from the chronic tiredness (so far the 2nd trimester energy lift has passed me by) I've been feeling pretty good, although I never realised I could pee so much!  There have been a couple of scares though.  The first one was about 14 weeks: I went to the bathroom and noticed there was blood in the bowl.  Of course I froze.  Trying to keep calm I asked Joe to take me to the Royal Women's Hospital Emergency Department.  I thought this would be the quickest way to get help, given that there wouldn't be car accident victims, assault victims or people with random illnesses waiting there. Well...3 1/2 hours later we were finally seen by a doctor.  He examined me to see where the blood was coming from, causing me a massive amount of pain in the process (and almost causing Joe to knock him unconscious).  We had told him about my miscarriages and he then proceeded to tell us it looked like "the same thing might be happening again".  This was an incredibly stupid thing to say, as my miscarriages were all earlier than 9 weeks.  Further, while I understood that "threatened miscarriage" was just the medical term used for bleeding during pregnancy, Joe didn't, and was understandably freaked out. Luckily the Dr did give me a scan and there was Hernlet, moving around as if nothing had happened.  As we left the hospital Joe paged my OB who said that if it happened again I should just call him straight away and he would fit me in for a scan.

A few weeks ago it happened again.  I was busy getting ready for work and felt a gush.  For a second I thought I'd wet myself but I hadn't been feeling the urge to pee.  When I got to the bathroom I saw a big bloodstain on my underpants.  Joe called the OB and he said to come in at 9 and he would do a scan.  Again, Hernlet was moving around happily.

Now we are coming up to the 20-week or 'morphology' scan on Wednesday, which also happens to be our third wedding anniversary.  Feeling a bit nervous as I don't know how I'd cope if things went really wrong after getting to this point.  The fact that I've been feeling flutters on and off since about 17 weeks is somewhat reassuring...but that niggling doubt remains.  For now I can just hope that Hernlet continues to be the little fighter he or she has been so far.   Or as Bon Jovi put it:

31 August 2011

Almost 12 weeks

Apologies again for neglecting this blog.  Between some late nights at work and the fact that by the time I get home I'm basically "running on fumes" it has fallen by the wayside a bit.  But I haven't forgotten about my little tenant.  It's a bit hard to when I'm still using 2 pessaries a night and having weekly scans.

The last scan we actually got to see Hernlet moving, which was really bizarre, especially since I can't feel it.  I think s/he objected to dildo cam disturbing his or her serenity and tried to move away.  We get little photos after each of these scans, but because it is a fairly basic machine, you don't get a huge amount of detail.  Still, the sonographer was able to point out the orbits of the eyes and where the limbs were forming.  I have to say though, with the greatest respect to my unborn child, in the photo we got s/he looks a bit like something from "Close Encounters".   I would try to scan the picture but I'm really not sure it would come out.

Friday is the last of these quick pregnancy check scans.  Sunday (by my calculations) I will be 12 weeks.  Tuesday is the big one: the NT (nuchal translucency) scan.  This is where they measure the thickness of the back of the baby's neck.  This result is combined with the results of a blood test (which I had about 10 days ago) to give you a risk ratio for Down Syndrome and a couple of other chromosomal disorders.  As I'm 33, my age-related or 'background' risk is already higher than a woman in her 20s but all will come down to the results of these tests.  From my reading I believe that anything higher than 1:300 is considered 'high risk'.  If the result comes back as high risk we will be offered a definitive test: either amniocentesis, which is done at around 16 weeks or chorionic villus sampling (CVS), which can be done at 12 weeks.  Both carry a small risk of miscarriage.  I am desperately hoping that my results come back 'low risk'.  Joe and I have discussed it and we don't think we could continue the pregnancy knowing that the baby had DS.  But I think it would be incredibly 'cruel' - if you can use that word for something that's really bad luck - for us to get this far and get bad news.  I am trying not to think about it too much as I realise that worrying won't help.

Provided we get good news on Tuesday, I should be in a position to 'come out of the closet' and announce this pregnancy.  The idea of that is almost as surreal as seeing the Hernlet moving around on the ultrasound screen.  I realise that things can still go wrong after 12 weeks but I figure some time in the next month or so I won't be able to keep it a secret anyway (plus I think if I make them wait much longer, my parents' heads might explode!) ;)  At the moment I don't have a clear "bump", I just look like I've been to too many all-you-can-eat restaurants.

Anyway, here's hoping for a good result on Tuesday.  I will try to update then.

13 August 2011

Too Tired to Blog

Yes, it has been almost 2 weeks since my last post.  Turns out the baby books weren't joking about the first trimester tiredness!  I even find myself nodding off at my desk...which is kind of awkward when people don't know that you're pregnant and probably think you've been having too many big nights.  Doesn't help that I get pretty bored at work.  Did tell my boss about a week ago. He knows about our m/cs and was really happy for us.  Anyway, I'm finding at the moment that I have just about enough energy when I get home to have something to eat, collapse in front of the TV and then drag myself to bed (remembering to pop in a pessary before I go to sleep).  Can't complain too much though...Hernlet really hasn't given me too much by way of morning sickness (the odd queasy moment here and there, especially when the guy across from me at work has his tin of tuna for breakfast!)

Speaking of Hernlet, we got to see him/her again yesterday.  The machine at the place where I'm having these extra scans is a relatively basic one so you don't see all the detail but you could see enough to tell that a) Hernlet has grown! and b) Hernlet has a good, strong heartbeat.  DH was pretty amazed because the previous week the heartbeat had just been a tiny flicker but yesterday you could really see it pumping.

Anyway, depending on who you ask, I am 9 weeks either today or tomorrow, so Hernlet should look something like this:

On Tuesday we have our first OB appointment where we'll probably get to see Hernlet again.  We'll also get the referrals for the NT scan and blood test, so of course that's the next thing I'm worrying about.  Hopefully all will be ok and then we'll be able to finally share our news.

31 July 2011

7 weeks

Well, 7 weeks today, and apparently the Hernlet should look something like this:

Cute, huh?  Still looks like an alien though.  They say that once you see a heartbeat your risk of miscarriage goes down to about 5%.  As I've said, I've been on the wrong side of statistics before...My sister also lost a baby after having seen the heartbeat so I know it does happen.  Just hoping that all will be ok for us.  All in all this is a pretty helpless time...I can't have scans every day and even if I could, if something were wrong there's not much doctors could do anyway.  I don't have many symptoms either, and the ones I do, like tender boobs, could also be due to the progesterone pessaries.  I'm also peeing all the time.  In fact I may just relocate my reading, TV watching etc to the bathroom to save time.  Just have to convince DH to install a TV in the bathroom.

We have an appointment with the FS on Wed.  Not exactly sure what will happen but she may refer me to an OB.  Still trying to decide on who to go with.  Have decided to go to Jessie McPherson Private Hospital (all being well).  It's on the same site as a major public teaching hospital so if we needed special care they wouldn't have to transfer us.  I was going to see the OB my friend used with her twins but she has apparently booked up as the other female OB who delivered there has just retired.  When I first got pregnant I wanted to go to Cabrini Hospital, which has a reputation for being a nice cushy place to give birth.  The problem is that you have to book in with them as soon as you get a BFP which, after three miscarriages, I didn't have the confidence to do.  In any event, my priorities have changed...I'd rather have the best medical care available than the cushiest hospital room.

Will post again after our appointment on Wednesday.  Keep growing, little one...

26 July 2011

A Beautiful Heartbeat

Just wanted to do a quick update and let you all know that we saw a beautiful heartbeat of 110 BPM this morning. 'Hernlet' is measuring 6 weeks 3 days so 1 day ahead. I was too scared to look when she inserted DC so I kept my eyes closed until she said "see this". DH and I were shocked and DH actually had a tear rolling down his cheek by the end. I realise we still have a long way to go before we are 'out of the woods', but as this is the first time we have seen a heartbeat, we are now in uncharted territory.

25 July 2011


So the scan is tomorrow and I'm feeling a bit sick about it.  Every loss has taken something from me...a little bit of my optimism I think.  I'm worried that if it's bad news tomorrow I'm going to have to pull myself off the floor again.  I'm worried that this is going to affect my ability to do my job, go out and socialise, be happy for other people...Sounds like my priorities are a bit messed up, I guess.  But it's all part of self-preservation and reminding myself I'll be ok no matter what.

I realised I hadn't updated on the BT results last Monday.  HCG was 1406 and progesterone was in the 80s.  So the pessaries are definitely doing something.  I guess I'm one of those people whose HCG doubles every 3rd day rather than every 2nd.

Anyway, I'm hanging in there.  Send me any positive vibes, prayers etc.  I can use all the help I can get.

24 July 2011

Six Weeks Today

and two days away from possibly getting a better idea of whether this pregnancy is likely to be a success or whether it's going to be another cruel trick my body plays on me - the scan.  I have been trying to remind myself that it may be too early to see a heartbeat...even with dildo-cam.  By my calculations I will be 6 weeks 2 days which is borderline early for a heartbeat.  In fact my FS told me to go for one "so we could see if there was a sac".  She didn't mention anything about a foetal pole, let alone a heart beat.  So we shall see.  The memory of my last pregnancy scan is still clear in my mind; in fact, yesterday was the EDD for No 3.  I'm sure I will be feeling quite ill on Tuesday.

Been too tired to blog lately.  Joe and I have been working late and I've barely had time to eat, not to mention cook dinner or blog!  I read that progesterone is the culprit for the chronic tiredness in the first trimester.  Well, it's not surprising that I'm exhausted then since I'm taking a double dose of progesterone pessaries!

As for symptoms, they seem to vary a lot, but there always seems to be one that's prominent, which I guess is reassuring.  Yesterday it was peeing all the time.  Today it's feeling exhausted and incredibly thirsty.  Still not much by way of morning sickness, although on Friday I did feel quite unwell when I didn't eat between about 9 and 1.  It seems totally counter-intuituive to eat when you feel nauseous but I know that's what you're supposed to do.  I can't help wondering whether it's the progesterone causing the symptoms (2 x pessaries per day) or the pregnancy itself.

Yesterday I went to the dentist and then Rachelle and her gorgeous twin girls.  They seemed to find my 'pillows' quite comfortable and both slept on my chest at different times.  They are beautiful but it seems ridiculously hard having 2 of them at once, especially when one of them has a set of lungs that convince me she will one day be an opera singer!

Well that'll do for now.  Fingers crossed for the scan.  Will update then.