As you might remember, I first hinted to being pregnant with the title "Keep it Secret, Keep it Safe". Well, now here is the reveal of "the secret" and everything that's been going on for the last month or so.
We started TTC #4 at the beginning of October. I randomly got my period that month even though I was on progesterone-only birth control pills, so I figured I would ask Shmuel if I should refill the birth control pills, and he said to chuck them...so I did. We didn't know if it would be one cycle or ten or even more, considering our history. With the twins it was two years and numerous infertility treatments before we got pregnant. With Tzipora we tried naturally and got pregnant in three months. I guess Shmuel wasn't convinced that Tzipora's conception wasn't just a fluke. And to be honest, there were times I thought it was a fluke myself. But honestly I had faith that it would work again this time...the "regular" way. And I was right. After three cycles (again!) I was staring at a BFP in disbelief. I had an inkling at 7 dpo when my temperature chart showed an obvious implantation dip, but I didn't want to get my hopes up at that point. But on 10 dpo I took a test, and I would have sworn I saw a very, very faint second line. At 11dpo I took more tests...and I figured that they were all defective. That I was imagining things. That since these tests were expired they were completely useless. I mean, it didn't matter every other cycle they were completely blank and now they had second lines... So I popped into CVS after Shabbos (12/22) and bought a slew of non-expired tests and a package of digital tests as well. And I took them...
Ok, fine. I couldn't really argue with that. So I figured it was time to tell Shmuel, and I brought in the digital test to show him. He was skeptical and asked if it could be wrong...so I brought him the one you see at the bottom. He was still skeptical, so I offered to show him the other ten tests all with second lines on them. He declined that... lol
Since I was planning to leave town on the 24th, the only way to get a beta drawn was Sunday the 23rd. And the person I spoke with on the phone also offered to give me a "prescription" for more blood work that I could take with me on my trip. I wasn't sure how that was going to work, but it was something. Either way, at 12dpo (12/23), my hCG was 80 mIU/ml, and my progesterone was 26 ng/ml. If you're keeping track, both levels are higher than Tzipora's at the same dpo. However, I believe I implanted a full day earlier than with her, which can definitely make the difference.
I left on my trip to Missouri on the 24th and then had a great first Christmas Eve and Christmas celebrating with Heavyn, Toby and the Curtis family. I think Sister Curtis had the best reaction to a pregnancy announcement that I've ever seen. I wish I had a video of it, because it was classic. She basically screamed , jumped up and down, and started dancing. She was then recruiting her daughters to dance with her all around the room. Toby and Kaleb were both trying to get me to name the baby after them. Good luck with that, gentlemen...
I was taking HPTs the whole time from Christmas Eve onward and was incredibly frustrated and nervous when they were going lighter then darker then lighter then darker. I couldn't get my next blood draw till the 26th because of the holiday, but luckily my doctor had written an order for it and the hospital near there took it with no problems. I went back and got my results in person the same day... 273 mIU/ml! Perfectly doubled, almost exactly - doubling time of 40 hours. If you remember, Tzipora's and the twins' levels doubled more quickly, so I was hopeful it might be a boy this time. (Some people say boys have lower hCG levels and that the numbers double slower than with girls.)
Two days later (17 dpo) I was back at the medical center for my next blood test. I actually waited there for the results, and they were done in an hour. Very fast work! We were now up to 620 mIU/ml! Still doubing in just about 40 hours. I was so relieved that all was going so well so far and that my numbers were doing exactly what I was hoping they would.
I had to wait the weekend for my last blood test (20 dpo). It was snowy, and the Curtises were out of town for the holiday, so I actually borrowed Heavyn's car and drove myself down to the medical center. The roads actually weren't that bad - they got much worse that evening. That result was 3245 mIU/ml! Nearly double what I was expecting and now doubling in 30 hours.
All went well for the end of my trip, except of course that I hate flying and was nervous and nauseous all that evening (the 3rd). Unfortunately for me it didn't end there. At that point I was only 5 1/2 weeks pregnant, but I was starting to be nauseous each evening, which each night getting progressively worse. Until the 8th (6 weeks) when I was just nauseous all day long...and the 9th it got worse. I'm honestly the worst person when it comes to nausea. I just can't take it. And I was super lucky with the twins and Tzipora. It was never all day and usually just struck at dinner time. And it really didn't peak until about 10 or 11 weeks and then quickly dissipated. But this is a whole new ballgame. I don't know if it's because I was dehydrated or what, but I gave up and went to the ER for fluids and IV nausea meds. I had been taking oral meds (the same stuff they give in IV), but it wasn't working...not even a little bit. I felt LOADS better after getting some fluids in, and of course the doctor insisted I go for an ultrasound...and who am I to argue, right?
They don't have neat ultrasound printers in the ER, so I snuck this pic in with my phone. You can see the gestational sac in the middle and a little baby blob at the bottom. Baby #4 is an overachiever, measuring in at 6w4/5d when I was just 6w1d (or really 6w2d since it was nearly midnight). And little baby had a heart rate of 118 bpm, which is perfect for how far along I was.
My morning sickness (well, it's never in the morning, though, just the rest of the day and especially evening) has been a nightmare this time around. When I started dry heaving one evening at around 7 1/2 weeks, I gave up and went back to the ER for more fluids. Unfortunately, while I felt better initially, I felt just as rotten going home as I did when I was on my way there. The fact that it was 2am probably had something to do with that, though, as I was beyond exhausted. The one good thing that came out of it was another ultrasound, which the tech let me tape a little part of. She was super sweet, too.
You can see the heartbeat going along at about 160bpm, and the baby was measuring about a day or so ahead. So, just perfect!
I've already had my first prenatal appointment with the midwives, and I'll see them again around 12 weeks. I'll also have my next ultrasound at that point for the nuchal translucency screening. Can't wait to see the little one then! In the mean time, if you've stuck around for the whole post, you can now go and join in the baby pool. Winner will get something cool, though I don't know what yet. Probably will get to hold the baby or change a diaper or something. :-D
When Photographing Newborn Twins . . .
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