Monday, October 31, 2005

Never in My WILDEST Dreams...

Notice anything funky with the blog banner, anyone? Yes. I am here with a Halloween report of the most insane example of trick-or-treat ever.

I went to a new RE today, for my 8 millionth second-opinion appointment. When I scheduled it back in JUNE, I was irritated that there were no available appointments till Ocotber, but figured, "oh what the hell, I'll probably still be infertile by then." I was a teensy bit spooked that the day they offered was Halloween, and I even joked about it with the receptionist; she had no sense of humor and said something like, "well if you don't take that slot, she can't see you till 2008." So, I took the appointment and I went today.

The new RE was very nice. We had a long chat about what my problem might be, yada, yada. She was concerned about the size of my uterus and wanted to measure it. I said, you know this chemical pregnancy I'm having right now is really dragging out. I'd love it if you could give me some sense of where I am with that, while you're checking out everything else.

SO she gave me a physical, including a breast exam and a pap, poked around at my cervix, took a few uterine measurements through the speculum and then fired up the old ultrasound to confirm the manual measurements...whereupon there was not just a clear gestational sac but a HEARTBEAT!!!! And, a super-stat beta reveals that my HCG levels have done something like quadruple daily since last week. They're not perfect, but thery're literally 10 times higher than they were, rather than only 3.5 (which is what you;d expect from betas taken 7 days apart.)

We are in certified miracle territory here people. No one knows quite what to think. But my pulse is racing and I am, for the moment, beside myself with anxious delight. Happy Halloween Everyone.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Please Continue to Hold...

A Brief Dialog Between Anne and the Representatives of Uncooperative Uterus Incorporated

"Ring Ring, Ring Ring...

A: Hello?

UU Inc: Hello! And welcome to Uncooperative Uterus Incorporated. Thank you for your call.

A: Um, hello? Is this a recording?

UU Inc: Your call is very important to us. We here at Uncooperative Uterus Incorporated know how to squeeze out a woman's dreams. We remain dedicated to providing you with the same high level of quality and service you've come to expect.

A: Some quality! Hello? Could I please get someone live on the line?

UU Inc: Please continue to wait. Your call will be answered in the order in which it was received. To access our automated menu, please choose one of the following options. To request the onset of menses, please press 1. To register a complaint about unproductive cramping, please press 2. To report an absence of spotting, please press 3. To speak to a service provider, please stay on the line. Or press * for more options.

A:!#@%!!! Sigh. *

UU Inc: Due to unusual call volume, we are unable to process your request for a miscarriage at this time. Please try your call again later."

Yeah, ain't nothin happinin here, unless you count the onset of depression as an indication that my HCG levels are finally getting the idea and starting to drop. Anyway, thanks so much to all of you for holding me in your thoughts. *Please* continue to hold!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Get Out Your Haz Mat Gear

Well, the beta is back. Although it is higher than last week, it is so very low that this is without question a bio-chemical pregnancy, nothing more. The doc is not even worried about an ectopic with numbers this low. Soo, now I just have to wait for my body to catch on and start cramping again. I am thinking about having a bio-chemical hazard symbol tattooed across my abdomen. There's something kind of snazzy about those trefoil circles, doncha' think? It could be a good look with a croptop and the right pair of low-rise jeans (as soon as I loose the pudgy bloat from my "well vascularized" uterus, of course). I also might order a few hazmat placards to post on the apartment door in lieu of Halloween decorations. They sell a nice selection at:

P.S. You will note that I have already updated my banner to say 4 miscarriages instead of 3. A bit premature, I know, since I have not yet actualy undergone the miscarriage. And, of course, there are those who would disagree about whether or not this quick one even "counts." But hell, I'm counting it. The bed post has been notched this last week. And there ain't no way to glue those wood shavings back on.

Monday, October 24, 2005

New Topic: Ectopic?

Hi. Well, first of all, I don't really have any news. My RE put me on ectopic watch based on last Wednesday's numbers (i.e. go home, rest lots, drink plenty of fluids, take your baby aspirin just in case we get a miracle, and call me the very second you have any pain). We agreed not to do another beta till today cause at 4 weeks 2 days, 4 weeks 3 days, etc. it was only driving me nuts without really telling us anything. And basically, I didn't feel symptoms of much of anything at all, positive or negative, all weekend.

Soo... I just had another ultrasound and apparently my ovaries look normal, my uterus looks well vascularized and "very pregnant," and we have no visible sac or anything else in there. I won't have new (hopefully more informative beta results until late tonight). Basically, we don't know what the hell is going on and I am very glad I spent the weekend sleeping. Dr. Cookie Pie (see 4/2/05) actually told me this afternoon, "I want you to go home and chant, 'I am not having an ectopic. I am not having an ectopic.' Chant it over and over." So those are my new lyrics...Anyone suggest an appropriate tune?

Thank you so much for your comments. I've stayed off the net completely since my last posting, so I got to come and find all your comments at once this afternoon. If there is any silver lining whatsoever in all of this, it's having stumbled into this amazing community of women. I wish you all many fluffy pillows and long naps. In the meantime, having called in sick to work today, I'm off to take another one myself.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Sharpening the Knife: Updated

Looks like it will soon be time to carve another notch in my bedpost. Today's beta was just 90, whereas it should have been something more like 110. The slow-rising beta, as we all know, is an ominous sign. At this point the number is too high to call this a plain old chemical pregnancy. So it looks like I'll soon be able to boast about my fourth miscarriage. Another upside: I may lose this one before I have the chance to get good and ill... The real twist of the knife, though, is that this ultra-early miscarriage is NOT following my usual pattern of strong early betas then loss after heartbeat at 8 weeks. What that means is that this coming loss will probably be the result of the same suspected uterine scarring to blame for my recent conception problems (for which I would have undergone dx this month if I hadn't conceived) rather than relating to whatever the hell is my basic problem. It is all just so discouraging.

Henry! Fetch me a baby! (There's a hole in the bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza...)

Another lousy beta today (Wed.). Going to take some "cave time." See you next week...

Now Playing on the Inner Ipod

My subconscious has a sound track. And it's tuned to all baby all the time. Have you ever noticed HOW many love songs refer to the beloved as "baby"? Talk about wishing baby was here? About losing sleep over wanting baby? It's staggering, really. There's the Four Top's, "Baby I Need Your Lovin'," sample lyrics:

"Baby I need your lovin'
Baby I need your lovin'
Although you're never near
Your voice I often hear
Another day, another night
I long to hold you tight
'Cause I'm so lonely
Baby, I need your lovin'
I got to have all your lovin'
Baby, I need your lovin'
Got to have all your lovin'
Some say it's a sign of weakness
For a MOM to beg
Then weak I'd rather be
If it means havin' you to keep
'Cause lately I've been losin' sleep
Baby, I need your lovin'..."

Just change that one little word "man" to "mom" and you're all set. Then there's the great and incredibly apt "Be My Baby," by the Ronettes:

"So won't you, please, BE MY BE MY BABY
be my little. baby MY ONE AND ONLY BABY
Say you'll be my darlin', BE MY BE MY BABY
be my baby now. MY ONE AND ONLY BABY

I'll make you happy, baby, just wait and see.
For every kiss you give me I'll give you three..."

That last one was featured on the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, a veritable treasure trove of baby-themed love songs (cause, remember, the main character's name was "Baby"). Bruce Channel's "Hey Baby" isn't half-bad:

"C'mon baby, give me a whirl
I want to know if you'll be my girl
Hey, hey hey baby!
I want to know if you'll be my girl
Hey, hey hey hey hey, baby
C'mon, baby now....."

Sing it as "I want to know if I can be your girl" and it really does say it all. I especially like the wail on the "come on baby no-ow-ow."

Also from that score, the Zodiac's "Stay" is working really well for me this morning. They don't actually SAY the word "baby" on this one, but I think the mention of how mommy and daddy are feeling clearly implies that the "you" being addressed in the song is none other than a modest embryo considering the question of whether to stay and implant:

A-a-a-a-ah, just a little bit longer
Please, please, please, please
Tell me you're going to
Now, how your daddy don't mind
And your mommy don't mind
If we have another dance
Yeah, just one more
One more time
Oh, won't you stay
Just a little bit longer
Please let me hear
You say that you will
Say you will "

So, the beta was 75 at 15 days post-o (17 days post HCG shot). Not horrible but not terribly reassuring. The progesterone was a comfortable 25. But since I'm cramping and ever so faintly spotting this number doesn't mean as much as it should. (My husband, who at first didn't think I was pregnant because the first First Response I took had *such* a light pink line now declares that the spotting is an even lighter pink and says he doesn't understand when I got so good at squinting. But I know what I know, ya know?)

So I went for another beta today. It's too soon, of course, to know whether it's doubling properly. But if it falls, we can pretty sure that this little embie hates the Zodiacs and really wishes I had better taste in music...

I will report the new numbers when I have them. In the meantime, I would be very grateful for any additional musical selections you may wish to suggest for the Recurrent Miscarriers Mental Playlist.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Cue that Cheesy 70's Song

Here I am
At 6 o'clock in the morning
Still thinking about you
It's still hard
At 6 o'clock in the morning
To sleep without you
And I know that it might
Seem to late for love
All I know

I need you now
More than words can say
I need you now
I've got to find a way,
I need you now
Before I lose my mind I need you now

Here I am
Im looking out my window
Im dreaming about you
Can't let go
At 6 o'clock in the morning
I feel you inside me
And I know that it might
Seem to late for love
For love

But I need you now...

You will not be surprised to learn that I have in fact been awake since 3 AM, tossing and turning and waiting for it to be late enough to pee on another stick with "first morning urine" instead of that weak late-afternoon stuff. Right now, right this moment, before anything has had time to go wrong, before I start feeling horribly ill, is the very best moment of pregnancy. I want the chance to tell these few cells, "I'm dreaming about you."

But this song is also for you my readers or what's left of you anyway... Because I really really am going to need you now. Thank you so much to Susie and Pixie and Kath who already found and commented on the post I made less than 12 hours ago.

I know that for many many people struggling with infertility, the quest for two pink lines is an end in itself. They think (and often rightly so) that if they could just get that second line they'd be home free. I hate to think that this news of mine could be paining anyone because I know all to well how even the internet can seem part of the great conspiracy to make you feel like everyone is pregnant but you.

I can only stress that I am *not* home free: under house arrest is more like it. Like Julie, who found at the hard way that there IS such a thing as being "a little pregnant," or Jill, who has been knocked up only to get knocked down, I too have learned through bitter experience that "almost only counts in horseshoes and hand gr*nades." I started this blog as a way to face the stark probability of another loss with enough courage and determination to try again anyway. This is the moment I’ve been waiting for.

So I hope you’ll be willing to be here with me through this time. Till this point, I have held off from posting a lot just as a way to try to control my own obsessive need to think about pregnancy every minute of every day (a hobby that was seriously eating away both my personal and professional life). Now though, I can promise you lots and lots of posts in the days to come (though I can’t promise little mini-essays anymore, cause I’m way too over the edge for that already now). Apparently, emotional support is a key predictor of pregnancy success after multiple miscarriages and that is the reason I’ll be here spilling every day.

What I can’t promise is to be cheery or dreamy. That song there was one of last servings of soft cheese I’ll be having for a very long time. This is not a bunnies-and-butterflies moment in my life. It’s more a close your eyes and jump off the cliff screaming and hope to hell the water below is deep enough to save you kind of moment. I hope you’ll all be there when the time comes to wade in and help pull me to shore.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

One Small Step for Anne...One Giant Step for Anne's Kind?

I'm almost trembling too much to type. I have a very very very faint second pink line. I will let you know more as I know more. Thanks for hanging in there with me. I've been too down to post much lately. Feeling cautiously happy just now, though.