Monday, December 26, 2011

A few pictures of Alexandra Marie

Introducing Alexandra Marie, born on Friday 12/23/11 @ 8:56AM
Weighing 5 lbs 12 oz, 19 1/4" long

Me getting a peak at all of her precious baby parts - 10 long fingers on her tiny hands, and 10 sweet baby toes!

In her mommy's arms, exactly where she belongs!

My first chance to hold the little my arms :)

So tiny and precious

48 hours old!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Alexandra arrived @ 8:56am, and I'm sitting in a chair!!!

C-section went well this AM and I was in recovery within 40 mins of being taken in there! Doctor said that when he got in there, the placenta was along the back wall of my uterus so he didn't have to cut through it to get to the baby. BUT it was completely covering my cervix, more than they had thought, which means I had a complete previa! So we are all very grateful that we didn't attempt a vaginal birth and that I didn't end up in an emergency situation.

Around lunch they brought me a tray of liquids. I took a few bites of jello, a few sips of broth, and a sip or 2 of Gatorade. Then promptly got seriously nauseated and almost threw up. I called the nurse and asked for Zofran, but unfortunately I'd had a dose in the recovery room and couldn't have another. So I had to do Phenegren, which I really didn't want to take. Once it was in the IV I promptly spaced out and then had a fitful few hours of rest. I'm not really a back sleeper and couldn't roll over, and kept waking up suddenly realizing I'd been holding my breath. Anyway I made myself wake up enough to check-in with my IP's who were down in the NICU. They came up to visit for a bit, then headed back down when Michael and the kiddos showed up for a visit. Unfortunately the kids couldn't see the baby which had them highly disappointed. But we had a short visit and then they left for dinner.

Michael is home and getting them to bed and said all is going OK at home.

And here I sit, watching a movie and fighting to stay awake. I'm hoping to get a good night's sleep, but not holding my breath. Right now I'm really needing to cough, but every time I try, I can't get it out. *sigh*

I'll post some pics tomorrow when I've been able to go see the baby. Please keep her in your thoughts & prayers, for her lungs to quickly get stronger and for her health to rapidly improve. (Btw, her apgar was 8-9, and we all thought she was perfectly fine, but she rapidly started having trouble and after 6 hours of observation in the NICU, they admitted her).

Prayers that y'all have a great Christmas Eve and I'll update more later!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Just 2 more sleeps!

And the little miracle will be here, in her mommy & daddy's arms, where so belongs!!!

Yesterday was my final OB check, at 36w2d. We didn't have an ultrasound, but all of my stats and baby's were exactly where they should be. I talked to Dr. R and got specifics about a few odds & ends regarding the c-section. Turns out that I will be given a "spinal" rather than an epidural, which will leave me completely numb for about 24 hours - sounds good to me! After the numbness wears off, the nurses will be getting me up & moving (uugghh!!!) and then we'll be doing oral pain management. And depending on how that goes, I may get to go home as early as Christmas day!! Altho, knowing me and my lack of a pain thresh-hold, I may be there until Monday, who knows?

Today I did the pre-op blood tests and my blood pressure was super-low (surprisingly). I have about 6 loads of laundry to tackle before bed, and will be squeezing in dinner at some point.

Tomorrow I will be packing the kiddos up for what may be a 7-8 day vacation from home. They will stay with my in-laws on Thursday night, which will allow for me to be at the hospital by 7:30AM on Friday. My MIL will bring them up to the hospital Fri evening after everything & everyone has settled in at the hospital. Hubby will have them on Fri night, then they will be tossed around on Sat between hubby and my in-laws, and will celebrate Christmas eve at their house. Home again with daddy to sleep in their own beds, then up (at the crack of dawn) to see what Santa has brought. Michael will then load them up and take them to my sister's house for a day to be spent with my family, including their grandparents :) From there, everything gets foggy, as much will depend on when I am released from the hospital, but next week will be a fun week for them with my sister and her fiance', likely in Austin! I'm really looking forward to the quiet time at home to rest and recuperate before they return and we gear up for a few crazy weeks of me not being allowed to drive, but juggling schedules.

Hm, should be an interesting next month around here! But, bring it on!!! I'm ready :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

35w update

There are no changes since my last post - we are still scheduled for our 12/23 c-section, and baby B still looks fabulous at 5lbs 4oz. As long as we can get through the next 10 days without issue, I will be spending Christmas Eve & day in the hospital with this precious little miracle and her mommy (and daddy & big sister when they come up for visits). We've pretty much settled all of our own plans here at home and have made the necessary arrangements for the kids and visiting family. So bring on the 2011 holiday craziness!!!

To say that I am excited is an understatement!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

34 weeks and counting....down!

Today we had our 34 week u/s and OB check. Baby, as usual, looked beautiful - and happy :) - as is evidenced by the big smile she gave the camera today! She measures a little petite, but already weighs 4lbs 7oz. She also seems to have a head full of hair - some measured as long as an inch!!! I love seeing that pouty little face - that still looks ALLOT like her big sister. I love getting to see her, but I really love watching her mommy or daddy light up when they see her on the screen :)

Also had the ever-so-lovely Strep B swab and the blood work for the HIV and CBC panel that go along with it. Oh yes, and the getting-more-painful-by-the-week PIO booty shot :( Can't say I'm going to miss that at all, honestly!

And finally, we have scheduled our c-section! While we were really hoping for 12/24, because its a Saturday, the doctor couldn't convince the head nurse at the hospital to schedule that day - which happens to be IF's birthday! So we had to "settle" for Friday the 23rd. Yep, little miss Alexandra Noelle will be making her grand entrance as an almost-Christmas baby! Assuming, that is, we can get through another 2 1/2 weeks without issue. We are all really hopeful this will be the case, as giving her a few more weeks to bake and grow will be the most ideal. At that point, I will be 36w5d - not quite what is considered to be full-term, but darn close. And less risky to me than waiting another week or 2.

As we are nearing the end of this ride, I've been thinking allot about how tough this journey has been - and thinking about my attitude along the way. I am not a complainer by nature. I tend to look for the positive in everything, even when there doesn't seem to be anything positive to find. But I realized that I have done a bit more complaining that I should have, and for that, I am truly sorry. I feel so extremely blessed right now - to have made it this far without issue, to be carrying such a precious little girl for such a remarkable family, for having my health and nothing more than some inconveniences along the way, and for my beautiful and supportive family!

I cannot say enough positives about how well my kiddos have handled the ups & downs of this journey; they have done such a great job of being "little grown ups" when mommy has been on bed rest, or not feeling good. They have each stepped up and done big & little things around the house, helped me when I've needed it, and been real troopers when things haven't gone quite as we were expecting them to. They have given up things, and done so willingly, even if not always joyfully, all for the sake of the health of this baby girl. They each pray for me all of the time, which I love, and truly believe that God is in control. I love seeing these traits bloom within each of them. It hasn't been easy for any of us, but they've done a remarkable job of handling each hurdle as it has come. Even when we talked to them about our "normal" Christmas plans being interrupted, they all jumped on board with the change of plans and are happy to postpone opening presents with mommy & daddy until I am back at home. Of course, Santa will still come on Christmas Eve. And as an added bonus, my entire family will be in town on Christmas Day offering to help care for the kiddos while mommy is recuperating in the hospital! Christmas Eve will be handled by Michael's family, adding to the blessings I feel for the support system we have all around us.

And to my wonderful husband Michael, words just cannot express the gratitude I have for him. He has truly been my rock when I have crumbled under the pressure, and has stood by me through each step of this journey - the highs and the lows. It hasn't been easy for him, and I don't take a single second of his support for granted. I know he is a rare treasure, and I truly thank God for him each & every day.

And finally, for my family & extended family, friends, and acquaintances: I would like to say a very humble thank you. For the words of encouragement, the prayers, and the support. There have been times when I couldn't have gotten through the day without you.

So, now that I have waxed all sentimental, I would like to tell my wonderful IP's that I am grateful for you as well. I know that we haven't had it easy, and that we've had our moments of doubt and fear, but God has brought us farther than we could have seen just a few months ago, and I know He has us securely in the center of His very large and capable hands. We have made a very long journey, and can now see the light at the end of the tunnel - and its not a train :) God is so very good!!!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

32w & 34w belly pics

32 Weeks!

34 weeks! Is it me, or do I look considerably bigger???

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

32 weeks and nearing the end....

I had my 32 week OB appt and ultrasound this morning, and as usual, baby looked perfect :) She is measuring around 3 lbs 14 oz and heart rate was 136. Grow baby grow!!!

And now for the ongoing saga: I've been contracting - allot - this past week, and the doctor said he's worried. And while he didn't mandate bed rest, I had to swear and promise to lay around and take it easy. (good thing I'm not hosting Thanksgiving this year!) Anyway, he said that we are still just waiting to see what happens, but he won't be surprised if I start to spot or bleed before 35 weeks rolls around, based on the fact that the blood vessels are still interlaced over & around my cervix. And he also said he won't be surprised if we meet this little girl before Christmas day! (on Cmas day I'll be 37w) So, while we can't make any definite plans right now, or schedule the c-section, we are anticipating her to be here very soon. Obviously the longer I can keep her baking, the better. But he's not going to wait around for 38-40w either. We'll be doing an u/s at every visit to check for placental "grading" and once we get to 3 and the doctor has confidence that she is mature enough, we'll be heading into the OR and giving her a birthday! On the other hand, if I start bleeding, he'll take her sooner than later depending on the degree of emergency. If they can control the bleeding, I'll likely be in the hospital for a bit, but that's just a wait & see situation too.

I'm excited and nervous and worried and happy all at the same time....its a weird mixture of emotions. But most importantly, I know that God has this all planned out and that HIS timing is perfect, and obviously not the same as ours :)

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

We Made it to 30 Weeks!

Had my 30 week appointment today :) Baby B looked great on the ultrasound, strong heartbeat at 138, and measuring about 4 days smaller than my date (but with really long legs). My placenta hasn't moved or changed, so the doctor solidified that we will, in all likelihood, be bringing her into the world by c-section. The hope is that I continue to have no complications, bleeding or spotting, and that I can keep her baking for another 6-8 weeks, but at this point, its just a day at time. Complication free means we'll schedule the section when she appears to be mature and ready to meet her mommy, daddy & big sister! But he said he won't allow me to go into labor on my own, if we can help it, as it will pose a greater risk of emergency.

I had my 3rd PIO shot and the 1st of 2 steroid shots today. My 2nd steroid shot will be tomorrow, and I will continue with the weekly PIO until delivery. My next OB check & u/s is scheduled for Thanksgiving week!

Now, if you'll excuse me while I go sit on a heating pad :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

28 week update

Well, more of the same today, with the exception that I got a shot in the booty!

We weren't actually on the schedule for an u/s, so we saw the OB first. Dr. R said that since I'm still truckin' along without any issues, he wanted to postpone the steroid shots until 30w, which would put us closer to our delivery mark. He said that Angie, the u/s tech, told him that it looked like the placenta was trying to move, based on our last scan, so he's hopeful that it will and we can get another 10 weeks or so. But he didn't really say much else, which leads me to believe we are still trekking toward an c-section unless there is a change between now & 35 weeks.

But anyway, after he left, we went to the u/s room and got to watch Baby B for a few minutes. She looked perfectly healthy at 2 pounds 10 ounces, heartrate was 130 (was 137 on the doppler), and measurements were perfect. She didn't seem to want us messing with her tho - her arm and hand were across her face the entire time, so no good pictures this go around. Of course, the placenta is still where we last left it - moved off of the cervix, but the blood vessles are still right on the edge, and therefore too close to comfortably proceed with a vaginal delivery....but I'm holding out hope for better news the next time!

After the u/s, I went back to the room and took the 1st of 5 weekly progesterone shots. I was really worried about it as I'm still so messed up from PIO during the 1st trimester. Oh, and the fact that Dr. R said it would be better and less painful to use the larger gauge needle (18 in stead of 22). He just said that pushing the oil through the smaller needle makes it take longer and hurts more, but I just didn't believe that would be the case. I've been stabbed by the 18 gauge before, and it was very VERY unpleasant! However, I will have to apologize to him at my next visit - I didn't even feel the shot! I am going to insist that this nurse (who happens to be a student) give me all of my injections moving forward....I was sure to tell her what a great job she did :)

And that, my friends, is our 28w update in a nutshell :) Nothing exciting, but boring (for a change) is good :)

28w belly shot!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

27 weeks & counting!

Well, I just received a package with my new progesterone oil in it (hydroxyprogesterone in castor oil) :( Doctor wants me to start weekly injections to keep my uterus relaxed and to try to prevent early labor signs. I will also be getting back to back steroid injections over a 24 hour period next Tues & Weds to expedite baby's lung maturity. *sigh* I'm really dreading the shots....I have been having major issues in my butt/hips since my last round of the PIO, which had me crying with every shot those last 2-3 weeks. Pretty sure I have permanent nerve/muscle damage after 3 rounds of 12w daily shots. As of last week, I had a weird flare-up in that area on my right side - was hot & red & inflamed, and it lasted for about 4 days and hurt like he--! Oh well....its all for a good cause, and while I'm not looking forward to it, I will survive and know it will all be worth it to get this little girl here healthy!!!

On the upside (and I hesitate to say anything so as not to jinx myself), its been a relatively quiet week for me so far :) I have been to the doctor weekly since week 17, whether it was a scheduled appt or for some weird "issue" I was having at the time. I'm praying that this week remains calm. I am experiencing a few Braxton-Hicks, almost daily now, but nothing to write home about. Thankfully no swelling or other issues! And I'm fairly certain the placenta is still where it was - baby seems to be really high up under my ribs. U/S showed her up high last week since the placenta is occupying the lower part of my uterus :( But, since she's not sitting on my bladder, I'm only having to get up once or twice a night to pee :)

And I've been horribly neglectful about getting my weekly belly shots, so I promise to post one as soon as I get it taken - hopefully I'll remember tonight.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

26w2d Update

Well, not really anything new to report. Placenta hasn't moved any more than previously, so no change in plans for the time-being. But Baby B looked perfect :)

Looking ALLOT like her big sister in this picture!

Sweet hand & both feet :)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Relieved, but still itchy...

Well, yesterday I posted about this constant, horrible itching situation I have. And I also updated to say that the OB ran some labs and we were waiting for the results.

I got the phone call that I've been waiting on and the results are in: labs were NEGATIVE for cholestasis!

Now, while I said nothing in my previous post about cholestasis, I have to say that you can Google it if you so choose. But it is basically an issue that 1% of pregnant women deal with, and its nothing short of scary. Basically, your liver quits functioning as it should, and the bile backs up into your system. One of the symptoms is itching without a rash - generally on the palms of your hands and bottoms of your feet, but it can be generalized to any part of your body. And since I have no apparent skin irritations/rashes, doctor said this would be a good guess at a diagnosis.

I am so very thankful that his guess was wrong this time! I am so very grateful to NOT have a diagnosis :)

His comment to me yesterday was "if the labs come back negative, then you're likely just going to itch and there's not much we can do about it". And you know what, while the itch is miserable, I'd much rather itch than know that we were facing yet another obstacle to bringing this precious little girl into the world safely!!!

God is good!

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Itch

I can't really say that I have a rash, because its not visible on my skin. But what I can say is that while there is nothing visibly wrong, I can't quit scratching! I have been miserable since Thursday afternoon, and spent the weekend taking Aveeno baths and slathering smelly anti-itch lotion on my entire body. Nothing has helped, unfortunately :( I tried taking Benadryl on Fri morning after my shower, and about all that resulted in taking it was that nothing happened around the house...because I was passed out....for 3 hours....then another 2 1/2 after the kids got home from school - from 1 stinkin' tablet! I can't take Benadryl unless its bedtime. But even that isn't helping really since I spend the night tossing & turning & itching.

The weird thing is that while there is no rash apparent, I can't fathom that this is just a case of dry skin. Its my entire torso, neck, and even inside my ears! I've even tried non-medicated body lotion (the severe dry skin, cocoa butter kind), and haven't had much relief. Any experienced pregnant mamas ever have a situation like this???

I think I'm calling my OB again this AM - called on Fri and nothing she's suggested has worked :(

*Update: I've been to the OB and they are running some labs. Once we get the results, I post an update. But until then, I am asking my friends and blog readers to say a prayer that the results are negative and that all will be OK. Thanks!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

24 weeks!

Yesterday was my 24 week OB appointment & ultrasound. Not much to report this go around - the placenta has moved slightly, but is still just 1/2" away from my cervix, so still too close to plan for a vaginal delivery. Doctor said he is still planning for a scheduled c-section at this point, but said he is hopeful that will change in the coming weeks. I am scheduled for another u/s & OB check in 2 weeks, so only time will tell!

On the other hand, sweet Baby B looked perfectly happy and content to be snuggled in for what we can only pray is the long-haul! We found her way up high, almost underneath my ribs, with her feet folded over her head, so too hard to get a good length measurement. But, she weighs approximately 1.6 pounds already, and the measurements we could get of her bits & pieces shows her to have long legs and a small torso :) Heart rate was still at a firm 143...seems to be her typical rate for the time being.

Thought I'd post a couple of cute pics of Baby B from yesterday's appointment, so enjoy!!!

Smiling for the camera, looking so peaceful :)

Sucking on her fist
(Michael said it looked like she was trying to pick her nose - Men!!)

Precious baby feets :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

22 week update

We had our 22 week appointment today :) Baby's heart rate was 142. I'm not having any complications so no u/s today. But we had the chance to talk with Dr. R about a few things.

My IM asked him whether it was necessary to go see a Perinatologist since this pregnancy is considered "high risk" and wanted his feedback on the topic. He said that many OB's refer to a Peri when they either don't want to spend the extra time with a high risk patient, or don't feel comfortable dealing with a high risk delivery. He said many times its just a matter of their comfort level. His comfort level is high and he said he sees no reason to see a Peri, unless that's what they/we would prefer to do. And while a Peri's u/s can sometimes be more detailed, he has nothing but the utmost confidence in his u/s tech (Angie) and said he has never had a Peri's u/s show anything different than what Angie tells him. So he gave us the name of 2 that he would recommend and left it open to us. (M & I discussed this over lunch and are likely not to add a peri to the mix, but I told them that I would willingly make an appointment if they would feel more comfortable).

We also asked him to clarify the difference between a "complete previa" and a "partial previa" and then asked which I have. He said without hesitation that I currently have a "complete previa" :( All of the u/s we have had show that the cervix is completely covered, and while he said it is still unlikely that this will change, we are hoping & praying that my u/s on the 27th will show differently :)

So, we are still sitting on "wait & see" with no changes for me at this time - basically I do a whole bunch of nothing and just spend my time resting and taking it easy for the time being. The goal is to reach 28 weeks without incident (which is (holy moly Batman!) only 6 weeks away), then begin the steroid shots to help baby mature quicker, and progesterone shots to keep my uterus relaxed. We will be doing lots & lots of u/s at that time, waiting to see how quickly my placenta and baby mature, then deliver by c-section somewhere around 34-36 weeks if we can get that far. So between praying that the placenta will just move, then praying that we can get into December without incident if it doesn't, we are doing lots & LOTS of praying!!!

I'll keep y'all posted :)

Sunday, September 4, 2011

20 weeks & 21 weeks, respectively

I forgot to post my 20 week belly shot

But we officially 21 weeks today :) God is good!!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Livin' on a Prayer

Every time I think about having finally hit the 20 week mark, I think "Wow! We're half-way there!" And then inevitably, Bon Jovi pops into my head :)

But seriously, I feel like this is my theme song right now. My life, and the life of this precious unborn baby, is being sustained only by God's mighty hand, and allot of prayer from family & friends - and even total strangers! We are literally living day to day, praying.

And today's 20w doctor's appointment proved to just reinforce the need for more prayer.

I have really been looking forward to this appointment - for so many reasons - but mostly because I knew that I would finally get to see my IP's again :) I haven't seen daddy since our 9w u/s, and its been about 6 weeks since I've seen mommy. So on top of the fact that today would be our 20w u/s, I knew I was going to get to visit and laugh and hang-out with the baby's parents for a bit.

Our u/s went well - baby girl B didn't disappoint - she moved and wriggled and looked as tho she was sucking her thumb. She gave us a good shot of her little girl parts confirming what we already thought we knew, and then played hide & seek with the u/s technician for a bit, covering her face every time we tried to get a good picture of her. Heart rate was 133, and her measurements were right on target for her age. She is healthy :)

But after spending allot of time oohing and aahing, we got down to business and headed south to see where the placenta was. And guess what we found? Its pretty much where we left it the last time! It may have moved up slightly, but there is still a web of blood vessels covering my cervix, which means we are still dealing with placenta previa. And at 20w are now staring down the barrel of "high risk" and probably a c-section.

Because M&A were there with me, we all had the chance to chat with Dr. R about the situation and were given the good, the bad & the very very ugly odds. While its still possible that the placenta will move, its likely it won't. This means that if I manage to miss-out on any bleeding & spotting episodes along the way (and so far, so good!), around 28w we will begin steroid shots to help Baby B mature a bit faster. Around 30w (I believe) we'll begin weekly progesterone shots (different than what I've already used for the IVF process), and if we can keep her baking until somewhere between 31 & 35 weeks, Baby girl B will make an appearance via c-section sooner than we had anticipated. Dr. R said we can't really pinpoint exactly when he'd deliver her since he really bases his decision on what the u/s shows maturity-wise, but we are all crossing our fingers that we can get to, at least, December before we see her sweet little face.

Prayers would be much appreciated as I am now facing several new bits of news that none of us had anticipated at the beginning of this journey. Of course, I will do whatever it takes to keep her baking for as long as we can, but it is painfully obvious that I have absolutely NO CONTROL over this situation. I am completely as His mercy and am being forced to trust that He will work everything out for the benefit of my family, and M&A's family. This precious baby girl that I carry is a true miracle baby, and a blessing & a gift. Let's just hope we don't have to unwrap her until Christmas - or afterward :)
*I took a pic of the u/s photo with my iPhone, thus the lousy quality.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Unexpected OB appointment

Beginning on Sunday afternoon, I started not feeling well, and was having some weird pains in my stomach. Not like contractions or cramps, but little pinches here & there. Totally weird. I decided to just take it easy on Sunday to see if they would subside - they did for a bit but really just came & went all evening. Monday was more of the same - coming & going every now & then. Honestly I was a little perturbed, not by the pains so much as the fact that I wasn't feeling any movement. Movement is my way of knowing that most-likely everything is ok. So anyway, by 4:30 Michael had talked me into calling the OB. His words were "at least you'll have some peace of mind if they want you to go in". So I relented and called, just knowing they would say "head to bed". Thankfully that wasn't the case. They asked me to go in for a quick check, but since I hadn't showered, or even changed out of my pajamas all day, I asked if I could wait until today. The nurse laughed at me, but said yes, with the caveat that if the pains got worse, or I started to spot/bleed, I'd head straight to the ER. I agreed, and the appointment for today was set.

When I arrived, Angie (the u/s tech) took me back and got the party started. Baby looked perfect :) The heart rate was 140 and the measurements showed the baby to be 18w1d. We got some awesome pictures and had fun enjoying the view. Angie also did a check and measurements of my placenta & cervix. While the previa is still there, she said the placenta is only overlapping the cervix by an inch. So that gave me some hope - its off-center so there is a good chance that it will move up as my uterus grows. WE WANT IT TO MOVE!!! Altho there is still a slight chance it'll stay put, exactly where it is, or only move slightly. BUT WE WANT IT TO MOVE - ALLOT!!!

Anyway, all-in-all, it was a great appointment that showed nothing out of the ordinary. All is well on the baby/surro front, and we are still set for our big 20w appointment on the 30th :)

Meanwhile, enjoy some pictures of sweet baby B!

Where's the baby??

There SHE is!!!

Sweet baby toes :)

Precious baby fingers :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

17w2d update

Well, I can't say that I'm necessarily surprised that my doctor's appointment wasn't what I expected. Because honestly, it seems that is the common theme for this journey - expect the unexpected OR don't expect anything at all. In either case, it just didn't leave me feeling all tingly and happy :(

For starters, the nurse that I had was either new, or just dumb. In either case, she was weird. I didn't like her. But I digress....when she took me back to the room, she asked the typical questions and then did my blood pressure. All was fine. She laid me back and did my "fundal" measurement - 34cm. Um, I don't think that was even close to correct...but I didn't say anything figuring that another nurse or the doctor would correct it later. (for those that don't know, 34cm would be 34w preggo - I am not that large!) Then she starts the search for the heartbeat. FIVE MINUTES LATER she finally found it, listened for a split second, and then said "Ok, we're done!". I was like "um, any chance you'd fill me in on the heart rate?" It was 114. I wasn't happy with 114, that seemed low, so I asked her to note that I wanted to discuss that with the doctor. And while she assured me that anything over 110 was perfectly normal, I didn't buy it.

When the doctor came in about 20 minutes later, he squinched up his nose, looked at me, and said "I'm not happy with that heart rate, so I'm sending you over for a quick scan. I want to see the baby and be sure all is OK, which it probably is, but I want to be sure." I was good with that, so off I trotted to the u/s room. The tech took a quick look and announced "heart rate is 146, not 114, and baby looks great!" *relief* But then she kept looking, and eventually took another measurement. I told her "you aren't allowed to look so serious and take measurements and be so quiet...what's up?". She told me that my placenta was laying directly across my cervix and that I had placenta previa. She said she was going to get the doctor so that he could chat with me further.


So the short version of our conversation is that right now, my cervix is covered by the placenta. Not good. I have not been mandated to bed rest (yet) but have been told "no exercise, nothing strenuous, no heavy lifting, etc. etc. etc." Basically, I'm not allowed to do much of anything. And honestly, I'm OK with following his orders in order to keep this baby safe and healthy. But "not doing much of anything" throws a major wrench in my duties of being mommy & wife. Its a tad inconvenient if truth be told. But the biggest bummer with all of this is that I can't travel for a while. Why is this a bummer? Because the kids & I were supposed to fly out to South Padre Island for 5 wonderful, beach-filled, fun days with my dad & his wife. The kids have been counting sleeps for weeks in anticipation. They harassed me all day about packing. But I finally had to break the news....we're having to cancel our trip because mommy's belly isn't doing what its supposed to do and I have to take extra special care of Baby B to be sure he/she stays healthy. And while they understand the "why we can't go" reason, none of them are happy. They are downright sad and keep trying to come up with ways to make the trip happen. Its sad that they are so disappointed. But it is what it is. And we will all cope and make due and do whatever we have to for the time being.

SO, I need prayers from all of you: prayers that this placenta isn't solidly attached right on top of the cervix. If its off centered somewhat, as the uterus grows, the placenta will move up. We want it to move!!! I do not want this to end up with me hospitalized for days/weeks on end trying to keep this baby baking for as long as possible, potentially ending up in a premie birth by c-section. We want a normal, healthy 39+ week baby, delivered the "regular" way! So again, I would appreciate your prayers.

Our next scheduled appointment is in 3 weeks - it will be our 20 week u/s where we will confirm the gender of Baby B, and check the status of my dang placenta and its where-a-bouts. And while the u/s tech told me what she believes the baby to be, I'm not sharing the news right now. Its a secret :)

Meanwhile, I'm off to sit....

Monday, July 18, 2011

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

12w2d Ultrasound

Yesterday was our 12w ultrasound. Baby looked perfect for his/her age, and we got a good report - again! There were guesses made as to the baby's gender, tho I will stay mum about that for now :) Its still very VERY early to make a solid decision, after all!

Both of these pictures are actually pictures of the u/s photos that I took with my phone camera. Not the greatest quality, but you can see him/her and a cute, pouty profile :)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Just need to clairfy...

...that I am not carrying twins :)

When I refer to "Baby B" I am referencing the baby's last name that begins with a B, not the fact that there is also a "Baby A". There is just 1 healthy little bean in there - and I'm very happy about that :)

But I appreciate all the kind words, thoughts and prayers. Its been a bumpy ride this time around, but all seems to be settling down now. Here's to hoping for a boring 28 more weeks!!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Ultrasound #3

We had a great OB appointment today! Baby B is perfect and Dr. R said he has allot of confidence that this pregnancy will be a good, long one :)

Baby measured 11w1d (we are 11w2d), and heart rate was 154.

God is so very good!!!! I am feeling truly blessed today :)

Baby looking straight at the U/S wand :) Has his/her right arm up by its head.

Profile of Baby B with its leg straight up in the air - which is where it was for most the u/s! He/she kept jumping, and every time he/she did, his/her arms would go flying. Was so stinkin' cute to see!

A perfect profile :)

Our next appointment is actually scheduled for next Tuesday - it will be our 12 week screen (u/s and labs). Yea for getting to see him/her again so quickly!!!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

11 Weeks!

Our ultrasound is scheduled for this Tuesday!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

10 Weeks!!!

We are a quarter of the way there :)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

We passed the point...

....of the last pregnancy's miscarriage! Praise the Lord, He is so VERY GOOD!!!!

Today was our 9w3d mark and our 2nd scheduled ultrasound. We had a perfect appt - baby measured 9w3d and his/her heart rate was 174. The "large side of normal" yolk sac has shrunk to "normal" and the SCH we saw has decreased some in size, tho its still there. Not a concern to the RE unless I start to have heavy bleeding - and I don't anticipate that happening. The RE officially released us to my OB, so our next appointment is scheduled for 6/28 - 11w2d :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Nail Salon Conversations

Girl: Are you going to have a baby?

Me: Um, yes, I'm pregnant...

Girl: When are you due?

Me: Well, not until January.

Girl: *look of surprise while smiling*

Me: *thinking to myself...dear God! I'm only 8w6d pregnant and I've just been asked if I'm having a baby! Thank God I could say yes....but seriously? I'm already being asked? Just how big does this belly look to everyone else?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

1st Baby Belly Pic

I've been a little hesitant to post a belly shot just yet - I did it so much earlier with our last pregnancy! But here is one that my son took today while we were sitting on a bench....yep, had to go buy maternity shorts today :) Now I can sit & not have to unbutton my pants!!!

Quick Update

Everything is going as it should around here - I'm weaning off of estrogen and my numbers are rising, which means that I'm producing it on my own now :) Yippee!!! Now if I could just be done with the PIO shots, I'd be a really happy camper *sigh*.

Ultrasound is still scheduled for next Weds and I'm anxiously waiting to see Baby B's heartbeat again :) At that u/s, if all is well, we will have surpassed the point of the last pregnancy's miscarriage and I will finally be able to take a little breath. Until then, I'm holding it and praying!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Today was our first scheduled u/s and we are considered to be 7w2d at this point. And to my relief (and yes, tears) we saw a beautiful little heartbeat. The baby measured 7w0d and the heart rate was 134 - perfect for this stage! The RE said everything looked OK, but she said she would watching the yolk sac, as it measured "on the large side of normal". When the IF asked her why this would be of concern, she explained that generally an enlarged yolk sac indicates chromosomal abnormalities and could point toward miscarriage. *sigh* So, while we got to take a quick breath and a sigh of relief, we are back to holding our breaths and waiting another dreaded 2 weeks for our next u/s to see if this little one will continue to grow strong while the yolk sac shrinks!

Thank you all for your encouraging words and prayers...please keep 'em coming! This roller coaster ride isn't over yet!!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Another beta....

...yes, ANOTHER beta :) We have postponed the ultrasound that was originally scheduled for today because of a schedule conflict for my IP's. In lieu of having a confirmation u/s today tho, they agreed to allow me to do another beta so that I could try to put my mind at ease a bit while waiting.

Drum-roll please....

Today's beta was 5021 :) We were hoping to see at least 4080 (based on the last beta doubling appropriately). So we surpassed what we were hoping for!

God is so very good!!! Based on the numbers, it appears we have a healthy, viable pregnancy :) Now we just need to get to 7w2d and that darn u/s so that we can see a beautiful heartbeat!!!

Saturday, May 14, 2011


This morning was our 4th beta and the hope was that it would be around the 150 mark. It took the office 4 hours to call us with my results - I was a basket case by that point!! But we finally got the good news we were praying for - the beta more than doubled and was 170!!! Praise the Lord!!!

So now we are in the "wait" stage 2 - waiting for ultrasound, scheduled for Mon the 23rd. I will be 6w1d at that point, so we are praying that we not only see a sweet little pea in my pod, but a strong heartbeat to go with it.

Thank you all for your kind words and prayers!! Keep 'em coming :)

Thursday, May 12, 2011

3rd Beta... 79! We are heading in the right direction!!! Going back bright & early on Saturday for another blood draw. If we hit around 150, they will schedule ultrasound :) Guessing it will be around 5/23 as we will be 6w1d at that stage.

Thank you all for the emails & prayers! Keep 'em coming...this is a roller coaster ride I wasn't anticipating....

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

2nd Beta Results

Short & sweet...the beta went up! We are now at 44.6 - not quite double, but still up from 2 days ago. This sweet little pumpkin is doing its best to hold-on and stick around! We have another beta scheduled for Thursday :) Please pray that number continues to rise!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Unexpected Yummmmm!!!

Look what arrived this afternoon!
(and yes, there was 1 already missing when I took this picture!)

I love my IP's so much :) You guys rock!!!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Results are In!

I started testing at 4dp5dt, which is way early, but I couldn't help myself. I had allot of cramping this time around, and early on, and was really hoping to see an early positive! Well, instead of seeing the pretty pink 2nd line, I was seeing nothing but the control line. For 3 days and 7 tests, nothing. To say I was disappointed was an understatement. With this result at this stage (4dp, 5dp & 6dp) I had pretty much convinced myself that the transfer must have failed. I wanted to be mentally prepared for the negative beta so I stopped testing and had reconciled myself the fact that I wouldn't be hearing good news. I had 2 more tests so I decided I would do one on Sat night and the 2nd on Sun morning.

BUT, thanks to my surro friend Jenni, she convinced me to test again on Fri (7dp), for no other reason than I was feeling horribly nauseous. She was convinced it would be positive! So when I finally got home, I peed on a stick, threw it on the bathroom counter and walked away. About an hour later when I went back into the bathroom, I glanced at the test and thought I saw held it up and looked, and squinted, and stared, and changed the angles a million times. I definitely saw an ever-so-faint-barely-there 2nd line! So, this made me obsess...and I tested more. Every test resulted in a slightly darker, yet still faint, positive.

Ok, so now I had hope again....I couldn't decide if this was good or bad! If the beta was negative, then we'd know the ++ HPT's were just a fluke. And if the beta was positive, would a low number give me more hope or less?

Well, I have my answer....beta this morning at 9dp5dt resulted in 25.6. Our clinic likes to see at least 50, so VERY low, but a positive beta! So, I am chosing to be cautiously optimistic at this point, and will wait & see what happens with Tuesday's repeat beta. I am praying that I am definitely pregnant and not dealing with a chemical pregnancy or blighted ovum or another potential miscarriage situation, and am hopeful that this little baby wants to stick around for the next 36 weeks and make my uterus his/her new home!

Prayers are appreciated - obviously :)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Well, do you or don't you???

She doesn't. M doesn't want to know what my HPT results have been, so therefore you don't get to know either! But its safe to say I have tested, quite a few times actually. And no, that's not a give-away to whether they've been negative or positive, because when they are positive, I keep testing (because I inherited my friend Jenni's sickness for HPT's), and when they are negative, I keep testing in hopes of seeing a positive! So yes, I've been testing...allot...since 4dp. Yes, that's early to test, but its MY sickness and I'll do with it what I please, thank you very much!!!

Stay tuned...BETA is in just 2 days... Sunday @ 7:30AM. Results will be in just a few hours past that.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Take 2!

Transfer went well this AM, but not without a stupid-me moment! Thankfully I didn't end up on the toilet again - altho I was told to stop drinking when my stomach got upset, and had to chew 4 TUMS to get it calmed :) But there's nothing like being situated on the bed, having the staff come in to get me prepared - and to be told "um, you left your panties on"! Yep, totally forgot to lose them before going into the room. Had to remove them under the sheet - with everyone watching - and pass them off to Michael to put into his pocket! Anyway, not nearly as embarrassing as the last transfer, but yet another story. Altho, in my defense, I'd had taken my valium by that that's what I blamed it on :)

Anyway, we did an FET and both embies thawed with hardly any degeneration! One had only re-hydrated to 60% but they felt certain it would continue to improve once transferred, the other was 100% and almost perfect :)

So, I am reclined in bed and resting, and praying that these little babies stick & grow!! I'll probably starting peeing on HPT's by Weds - if I can wait that long!!!

Thanks to you all for your well-wishes and prayers!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Milestones in my Journey

1 year ago today, this precious little miracle was born, and met her mommy & daddy for the first time!

Happy 1st Birthday sweet Emma!!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Ultrasound & Labs Today!

Well, today's ultrasound was as good as I hoped it would be - lining was 12.9! Anything over 8 is great :) So now we're just waiting for the lab numbers to come in, but are really hoping they are much higher since the lining looked so good. Holding my breath!!

Update: Estrogen was 522! And lining was 13.2 not 12.9 :) We're officially scheduled to transfer on 4/29/11 @ 1:30!!!

Monday, April 11, 2011


I had my first lab today - estrogen was low (20) and I am not happy :( My estrogen usually is way ahead of the game so I expected more of the same. Not the case this go-around. The RE nurse said that this is typical when you've had a miscarriage and it just takes your body a little time to respond - sometimes a little more time than is typical. So, we will keep on schedule, for now, and hope that my labs next Monday will be where they should be! I'm a bit of an over-achiever, so I'm bummed out.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Take 2

Today was my first Lupron shot for my 2nd surrogacy journey, our 2nd try :) So happy to be at this point, again!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Better late than never!

Yep, I should have updated this LAST Wednesday, but I'm running a bit behind these days. We now have a new plan of action: I will start Lupron 3/28, follow the calendar for other meds including Vivelle Dots and PIO, and our transfer is planned for 4/29.

After discussing the 4/15 transfer date with Michael, he alerted me to the fact that would place my due date at 12/31 - 39 weeks on 12/25. Not the best time to plan to have a baby when it comes to helping Santa out and doing all of the fun family activities that fall around those dates. So, I talked with M&A and they agreed to allow us to push transfer by 2 weeks. Of course, I know this won't do much to relieve the stress of the holidays since I'll be 37 weeks on Christmas day, but at least my "due date" won't be right between Christmas & New Year's right? If all goes as it usually does, we'll have a due date of 1/15/2012!

So now I'm waiting for the pharmacy to call and schedule my med delivery :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Moving Forward

So, Aunt Flo arrived on Monday :) I let the RE's office know and they responded back with the following instructions: begin BCP's on Weds, go to scheduled hysteroscopy next Weds the 16th, begin Lupron on the 21st, stop BCP's on the 23rd, and we're shooting for an April 15th transfer! Woohoo - the show is on the road...again!!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

We're in a holding pattern!

But still looking forward to our next transfer :) After my post-op visit with my OB, he suggested I wait for at least cycles before we start the IVF process again, so I passed along that request to the clinic and to M&A. Aunt Flo arrived, lightly on Weds, and heavier over the weekend, so I alerted the clinic to it today. She said that this is my "wait cycle", so it sounds like we'll be good to go next month - or at least I'm assuming as much!

I'm really ready to get this show on the road....again!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Jeremiah 29:11

Just needed to let everyone know that my OB appointment yesterday didn't go anything as I had thought it would. During the ultrasound, we discovered that the baby had passed - there was no heartbeat. He/she measured only 9w1d and I was 10w2d, so we are estimating it happened about a week ago. It was very sobering and shocking as I had no indication that anything was wrong, and of course, never expected to miscarry what seemed to be a perfect pregnancy.

Today I underwent a D&C with M & my hubby by my side. I am home resting now and hope to be feeling better tomorrow.

BUT, we have all talked and are already focused on another try. The IVF clinic said we could be looking to transfer again within 2 or 3 months! So, until then I'm going to heal and prepare to begin the process again :)

Monday, January 3, 2011

We're 1/4 of the way there!!

Again with the funky pajama pants :) Oh well!!