Moving through my life one repetition at a time.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

New blog

The purpose of this blog has shifted as my husband and I start the fertility journey again. If you'd like to follow that journey please visit:

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

It's not just about the gender!

I get it. Once you find out your pregnant you initially are super excited and wonder how life will change. You then start wondering what the gender is, what you’ll name the kid, and how you’ll decorate the nursery. I understand pregnancy is exciting, well for most, but is also one of those things where so much has to go right it is sometimes amazing to think about how many people are on this earth! Yeah you’re right most couples do not even ever let this thought cross their mind but if you have been faced with heartbreak and realize things don’t always go as planned you can’t help to think about it.

Most couples once they get past the 12 week mark and tell their family and friends their expecting the next question people ask is “are you going to find out the gender?” These days this is a typical practice. Not many parents or anyone who knows the baby is surprised at the time of birth of the gender or name for that matter. Yes, I understand why one would look forward to the 20 week ultrasound but what people don’t realize is that this ultrasound is not performed for the sole reason of finding out the gender of their baby. The priority of the ultrasound is not for finding out the gender nor is that a requirement.

The 20 week ultrasound is actually referred to in the medical world as a level II 20 week anatomy scan. The purpose of this very important appointment is to look at all the anatomy of the baby. There is an entire list the ultrasound technician is taught to follow and check out. They look at the heart, brain, kidneys, stomach, hands, feet, leg bones, arm bones, etc. They make sure the locations of the organs are on the correct side of the body. And lastly if the baby is in a good position they will look at the exterior sex organs.

The reason they look at all of these items of the body is to pick up any potential soft markers that might indicate a problem with how the baby has grown. Coming from a pregnancy where I had a level II ultrasound at 15 weeks for the sole reason of looking for soft markers and then an amniocentesis, I can’t say I have been in a normal 20 week anatomy scan but what I can say is that every new area the ultrasound technician looks at in the future I’ll be holding my breath just waiting for their response on whether it looks normal or not because who am I kidding I can barely make out the basic anatomy of the head, rump, arms, and legs of an ultrasound photo.

So to all my friends I’m super excited for you and your new little one on the way but regardless whether you decide to find out the gender (props to all of you who don’t, I don’t think I could do that!) when I ask how your 20 week ultrasound went I don’t want the first thing out of your mouth to be to be “it’s a girl” or “it’s a boy.” I’m asking because I have been one of those women who have sat there watching soft markers show up on the screen. I have also been there hearing stories from friends who went into that scan hoping to confirm the gender and walking out not even knowing or caring because of what else was discovered. I want to know everything is looking good with your little bundle of joy because I worry for everyone whether they worry themselves or even know I think about them often. In my book, the first thing I want for everyone is a healthy baby regardless of the gender including for myself although I understand you can want one gender over the other. I cannot deny I have those preferences as well but only after clean bill of health of course! So please tell me everything looked great and then tell me the gender (if you found out) so I can start planning a creative baby gift! 

A word of caution to anyone in the future who asks me “what I’m having” after my 20 week ultrasound, I will not reply girl or boy whether I know or not and regardless whether my husband and decide we will share the gender news with friends and family. I will simply reply “it’s a puppy.” :) 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Am I a hypocrite?

Ever since Mark Zuckerberg and countless other friends and celebrities have announced their struggle with miscarriages, pregnancy loss, and infertility I've felt empowered that I shared my story. I didn't announce I was expecting until I was 14 weeks. And I was one of those naive women who thought to myself "I made it to 12 weeks - I'm in the clear now! I can't wait to tell my family and friends." Never did I imagine that what would happen the follow week would a a harsh reality that I would be faced with.  After all I thought it was a simple blood test.

At the time I wasn't sure if I would share the truth about everything my husband and I went through that fateful week in May. But after some time went on we realized after several conversations we couldn't continue on living a lie. We had to be truthful and shed light on the tough decision we made for ourselves but also in the hope that others who might be faced with the same decision that they are not alone.

At the time I was very confident in sharing my story. Both of us received so much support from family and friends that helped us get through that tough time. In hindsight had I not shared that I was expecting, I doubt I would have had the love and support from so many people nor do I think I would have been as willing to share my story so openly. So although some have said to me, "It's too bad you just announced a week or so earlier." I am glad we did. Our little girl was sent lots of love although it wasn't in the human touch form.

Now as I am moving beyond the past and healing more everyday, I wonder to myself will I be as willing to share that we are expecting again. Do I want to be caught again "with my pants down" in the event that something happens again? Would I rather only have a few people know in that event or would I rather once again have my entire social network know and once again shower us with love and support? Will I offend someone who is also struggling with infertility and is jealous we were able to get pregnant again and they are still working on getting that second pink line for the first time?These questions cross my mind daily.

Of course, then I come across articles like this that make me want to cheer these women on. But here I am pondering whether I'll announce at all let alone at 12 weeks or sooner. Am I a hypocrite or what? Right now the jury is still out what I'll do if/when I am blessed with another pregnancy.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Year One in Reflection

Where did the last few months go? I feel like as soon as June hit time as flown by. I actually feel like the last 7 months since I started this blog have been years rather than months since so much has gone on. My husband and I recently celebrated our one year wedding anniversary last month. This was a perfect time to reflect on the things we’ve done together in the last year as well as look back on the challenges we’ve overcome together.

After our wedding we traveled to Disney World and Harry Potter world and realized we are too old for intense roller coasters. We had an enjoyable football season at the temporary playing location for our beloved alma mater. We took advantage of my work trip to Denver and got to experience the Rocky Mountains for the first time. We enjoyed the holidays together as a married couple and then traveled to the other side of the world to Australia. We survived two 12 hours plus plane rides and 24 hour travel days together. We explored three absolutely new cities together in a foreign country. 

Since the turn of the new year we've been on quite the roller coaster ride. We began our fertility journey and got really lucky with success on the first try. I think we all know what happened in May when we said goodbye to our little one without being able to say hello. After that we were able to get away to Florida for a holiday weekend with my family. Once we returned I had a cyst removed from my face that had been bothering me for months but I had been putting off. We also had a lot of work done around our house which kept us on our toes but also set us up for some great pool parties and sunsets this summer. 

Once I was finally cleared to do any activity again I decided to take full advantage of it. We gathered some friends and went to skyzone. I took advantage of being in LA for work and took a trip to Disneyland and rode all the rides. The 2015 All-Star Game was in our city and we did almost every fan event. We went on a scavenger hunt around the city for the All Star Mustaches. We spent a morning exploring All Star Fan Fest. Since the game month coincided with anniversary month we choose to exchange tickets for both the All Star Game and the Home Run Derby. After all the tickets were "paper", right? We also experienced the zip line that went through the entertainment district near the ball park. All Star week was quite the adventure and so exciting to be a part of. 

Now August is here and I can't believe that summer is almost over. Reflecting on the last year as a married couple (which might be my new year in review timeline vs. the new year) and specifically the last few months life has presented us with many challenges. We have been able to overcome those challenges and I think they've only made us stronger together. Yes, this is getting a little sappy but I really cannot imagine life any other way. I wish some of the circumstances had gone a little different but in the end we seem to be happy, healthy, and doing well. Some days are harder than others and some situations continue to challenge us. I know we will continue to carry on and we'll be ready to tackle that next bump in the road whenever we might hit one again. 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Walk a Mile in My Shoes

Within the last year a lot has changed in my world as well as the world around me. Personally it’s been almost one year since my husband and I got married. It’s been over 6 months since traveled across the world to the land down under. And now it’s been over 2 months since we said goodbye without being able to say hello to our baby girl. It’s been a month or more since the Supreme Court ruled in support of gay marriage. There are now over 20 presidential candidates who are daily trying to make their way to top. And Bruce Jenner is now known as Caitlin Jenner. These news stories have stirred up quite the amount of opinions and thoughts across social media and daily conversation that sometimes make me cringe in disappointment or embarrassment for some of the comments that are said.

I’ve learned to live by trying my best not to judge someone based on my own life experiences, beliefs, or opinions. I have realized I have absolutely no idea how I would feel or react in a situation unless I have lived it.

I will never understand how it feels to be in a homosexual relationship and not have the ability to get married. I personally don’t think anyone else should really care that much if two males or females want to get married because they genuinely love each other and want to make a public commitment to each other in front of their family and friends through marriage. It doesn’t affect my life except I know that there will be more love in the world and hopefully in result of that love the world will become a happier place.

I realize I will never know how it feels to have lost an infant child. I have never been in that position. How can I judge how one grieves, how one might struggle through holidays and birthdays, and how one longs to fill that void in their life. Yes, I have suffered loss but in such a different way that I can’t even try to compare my feelings to that situation.

Can I understand why someone would not want to have more than one child? No. I don’t understand their circumstances or feelings on the decision. I cannot even begin to think about how it is to juggle motherhood, a job, a marriage and a social life with one child let alone two. I simply cannot judge someone who feels their family is complete with one child. Nor can I judge someone who says motherhood is hard. I haven’t been in that situation although someday I hope to be so I can realize their struggle was real and these are real life issues people deal with day in and day out.

Should I have the right to judge another woman who was sitting at that clinic with me who was in a totally different situation than I was in? I have no idea what their reason for being there that day was. Was it because they financially couldn’t afford to raise another child? Did they know that they were in a situation where the child would not be safe when coming into this world? Were they in fear of what their parents would do or say to them if they had found out and knew this was the best decision for them? I don’t know. I will never know and honestly I may not always agree with their decision but I will however not judge them. They were strong enough to know that this was the best decision for themselves, their family, and the baby’s life regardless the reasons behind it. I can only respect them for making the best decision for them at the present moment.

Should I expect someone to attempt to put their selves in my situation and hypothetically determine what they would have done? Of course people have and I’m sure they have judged me and not agreed with my decision. I understand it is hard not to try to understand by trying to put your own feelings and thoughts in those tough situations. But I will advise from my personal experiences don’t judge someone until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes. Be conscious of the things you might say as they might be offensive and unintentionally hurt someone else. Now I’m not saying you’re not entitled to your own opinion I’m just saying sometimes those opinions are better expressed in different ways or different situations.  Everyone has been given their own life to live and navigate. Just like no two snowflakes are alike no two people’s lives are going to be exactly the same. This is was make life so interesting and exciting. There are always new things to learn and new people to meet and learn their story. Keep on experiencing life and sometimes realize you may not understand someone’s struggles or successes until you have walked a mile in their shoes.

Thursday, July 16, 2015


In order to even get pregnant with our angel baby we had to go through some fertility treatments which were obviously very successful as we got pregnant on the first try. Now that we are in the position of healing and determining what we want to do or need to do moving forward we went to meet with that miracle doctor to get his thoughts. I had actually called the doctor’s office a few days after the termination to let them know the news. The doctor himself called me later that day to send his condolences and reassure me if we needed him again for help he had no doubt I could get pregnant again relatively quickly. He said come back and let’s talk when you are ready.

So we arrive for our consultation. It was eerie to be back in the office once again with no baby in tow. Never did I think I would be back here so soon. Of course I thought once I had the baby I’d go visit and then potentially need to come back when we wanted to expand our family again but never did I think I would be back less than 3 months later in a totally different situation. We sit down with the doctor and he asks how we are doing, we say fine. He then replies with some condolences and a phrase I never thought I’d ever hear from a medical professional, “all you can say is f**k” in reference to receiving the news that the baby had trisomy 13. He goes on to explain there was nothing anyone could have done differently. It’s one of those situations where all you can do is say f**k! (This totally reminded me of the song "Totally F**ked" from Spring Awakening. If you haven't seen it please add it to you list and then look up the song). He then asks how we are doing. I explain I have been writing this blog and it has been a great release and healing technique. We then told him that we decided to share the details and actual story with the “world” although it might have been somewhat controversial. He replied, “Controversial? What do you mean the baby had maybe days, hours to live if it made it that far? The disorder is incompatible with life.  That’s not controversial at all.”  Hearing this, to be honest, was a breath of fresh air. Although, many cannot even fathom what they would have done in our situation we are satisfied with our decision. We have no regrets. We know this was the best decision for us. We couldn’t control what cards we were dealt. It does no good to ask why and dwell on the reality we were in. We had to keep moving forward.

I always knew I choose this doctor for his honestly and straight to the point answers but at that moment I knew he was the right choice to help us get the family we desired so badly.  He was straight forward and no bull. He gave us some advice moving forward. I’m sure many are wondering when we will start trying again to get pregnant and right now I don’t think I’m going to share those journey details via my blog. I plan to continue to write them but will delay publishing the post for some time. Maybe it’ll be once we are pregnant again or maybe sooner I’m not quite sure yet. There is a lot of unknown ahead of us and for now I think I’m going to keep the majority of it private as it is a stressful and sensitive process. I will continue to write my thoughts in the meantime. I have saved a lot of articles over the past few months and have a lot of thoughts I’d like to share from my point of view. Stay tuned!

Monday, July 6, 2015

The Risk Moving Forward

The final amniocentesis results finally came back about 10 days following the FISH results. These unfortunately left us with additional unknown and several questions. For the final amnio results the cells were left to grow for 7 – 10 days and then they were to be tested to determine the exact karyotype of the baby’s chromosomes. Well 10 days later the cells never grew and therefore we ended up with inconclusive results. We obviously felt once again like the exception rather than the rule but our genetic counselor proceeded to tell us that this was something she’s seen in trisomy 13 before so although it’s rare it is common. I’m not sure how one can use rare and common in the same sentence but we went with it.  So now were left with the question of what type of trisomy 13 was it? Was it the genetically inherited type where for some reason either my husband or I had an extra piece of the 13th chromosome attached to one of our chromosomes?  Or was it in fact a genetic fluke in that it was a random event and had a small chance of occurring again? And lastly was it full trisomy 13 or was it mosaic, which we’ll never truly know but odds are it was full trisomy 13?

We were left asking ourselves, what now? I had read a lot about what other genetic testing could be done in the event we found out we were indeed a carrier for something. This would involve going down the IVF route and doing pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) of the embryos before they inserted back into the mother for implantation. Which I’m sure if you have any idea how much IVF costs this only would increase that cost significantly as well as complications.

Luckily, we had great resources available to us that recommended we do parental chromosome analysis to determine if my husband or I have any chromosome anomalies. So after some fight and several conversations with my ob/gyn I was able to get us both a prescription to get this blood test performed. All we had to do was go to one of the hospitals labs to get it drawn. Now herein comes even more complications. Evidently the hospital doesn't run these tests very often so the first attempt to get the blood drawn was halted due to the staff not knowing how much blood to draw or the correct tube to use. After several phone conversations the following day we finally were able to get our genetic counselor to straighten out the test requirements with the lab.

My husband and I went back the following evening to get our blood drawn. Now anyone that knows my husband knows he does not do needles well. He knew we wasn't going to be able to give nor watch the fertility injections and he has a history of passing out with getting blood drawn. We made sure the lab staff knew his history and we made sure he was laying down during the procedure. Once his blood was drawn we made sure he sat in the chair for some time and after a few minutes he said he was feeling well and let me get my blood drawn. As soon as I was finished my husband said he was getting lightheaded so we immediately had him sit back down. Two minutes later he was passed out and went in and out of consciousness a few times. In my opinion one of the scariest things I’ve seen him go through before. I’d rather not see that again so I was hopeful that this was the last time either one of us would have to get blood drawn for quite some time.  

Two weeks later, we finally received the results. Both of our chromosome analyses were normal. We were not carriers for trisomy 13. This was quite the relief. Now the only chromosome we were concerned about what the 7th chromosome. We still wanted to know whether I was a carrier for cystic fibrosis. This was supposed to be tested back in April but wasn't for some reason. Luckily, if I was not a carrier my husband would be spared of any needles so we were hoping for that based on the previous experiences. But as far as trisomy 13 we were now at a 1% chance of having trisomy 13 happening again in a future child. That 1% is significantly high based on the typical risk for other 29 year olds who are having children but we weren't scared. We knew we wanted a family and we were willing to go whatever necessary to get there this was just part of our journey. 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Embracing the Present

In attempt to embrace the fact that I was not pregnant any longer, I told my husband I wanted to do all the things I could not do while I was pregnant.  That included eating sushi, having a few drinks, eating lunch meat, doing all workout movements I wanted, and lastly going to Skyzone. I figured if this is the present state I was going to be in I was going to take advantage of it! It wasn't my ideal situation but it was the cards I was dealt so I was going to roll with it.

I successfully hit one of those pregnant avoidance's the day after our termination at our favorite sushi joint with a large plate of sashimi. I secondly enjoyed a nice glass of red wine in Florida the week following. I've definitely had my fair share of lunch meat and have been doing every high impact workout activity as soon as I was release to exercise again. And lastly a month following the termination I made it to Skyzone to jump on the trampolines and do some flips into the foam pit.

Now don’t get me wrong I wish my situation was different but I am trying to continue to live my life to the fullest. I’m going to take advantage of every opportunity I’m given. I happened to have a work trip planned to California and then Arizona and my sister had planned to tag along for the first part of the trip to spend some time in the Cali sun. At the time we had not planned to go to Disneyland since I would not have been able to ride the rides but since my condition had changed we decided to go to Disney’s California Adventure. I made sure we rode all the roller coasters and any other ride I could get my sister to ride. I was getting my money’s worth as well as soaking up this opportunity that had been presented.  

So presently as my husband and I are grieving, healing, and trying to look at the brightside of life  we are going to enjoy some fun times together as a couple and with friends and family. I found comfort in this quote by the one and only Budda,  "Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment." This is what I will try to do for the next few months as I adjust to my life experiences in the last few months and try not to think about the future of our family too much although I know that will be the hard part. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

A Humbled Reflection on Sharing My Blog

It's been almost one week since sharing my blog. I would have to assume most who were going to read the blog have read it by now. And “wow” is the word that comes to mind when I think about all the support I’ve gotten after posting my story. I am truly humbled by the amount of people who have read it and been brave enough to send their love and support over a tough subject for many to think about let alone talk about.  Although, I know not everyone will agree with my decision I do believe that sharing my story has really helped my husband and I heal tremendously even in the few short days since I have posted the blog to social media. Never did I imagine so many people would actually click that link and then actually read the posts. I'd like to THANK every single one of you who have taken any amount of time out of your busy lives to read anything on my blog. 

Moving forward I plan to continue to post about life and the journey we have moving forward in our healing process. Hopefully, I have some more positive stories to share in the future. In fact, I know I will because my husband and I have been keeping positive thoughts for the future and we have continued to fill our life laughter, love, and fun times. 

My favorite Disney movie happens to also have my favorite quote to live by, 
"Keep Moving Forward."

Thursday, June 18, 2015


Since this is the post that will be at the top of the blog once I post this to the social media world I wanted to give some brief words about why I wrote this and why I posted this....

I'm not posting to have people feel sorry for us. I'm not posting to receive attention. I'm not posting to call attention to any person or persons. I'm not posting to start a debate on my opinions vs. your opinions on my choices.  I'm not posting in the intent that hundreds or even one person even reads this blog.

I am posting to tell my story. I'm posting to get this big secret off my chest. I'm posting to allow myself to heal. I'm posting in hopes that someone will read it who has faced this situation and realize that they are not alone.

My only goal is to tell my story and allow myself to have an outlet to help myself heal and keep moving forward. If you feel compelled please join me in reading about my journey through life one rep at a time......

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Don't Try to Compare Loss

After the procedure I had no regrets but I did feel alone in my experience. Don't get me wrong I knew of several friends who had lost babies due to miscarriage but my situation was different. It wasn't a spontaneous loss of the baby. I didn't feel comforted by people who said they've been in my shoes. I highly doubt they have been. I didn't enjoy comments that told me miscarriage happens 1 in 5 pregnancies. It hurt when people would ask if I forgot to take my pre-natal vitamins. It killed my soul when someone would say maybe it had to do with what kind of workout activities I was doing although if they knew anything we went through to get pregnant they would have known I've been very restricted.

It became very apparent either people had experienced loss and I respected that and glad they were trying to be comforting or they had no idea and would immediately insert mouth into foot with an ignorant comment. Luckily I had a thick skin and a good friend who had told me as soon as everything started to happen that she apologized for the ignorant comments people would say to me. 

Now don't get my wrong I appreciated every single thoughts, prayer, note, card, text, and flower that was sent to me. They were all meant well and I know no one was meaning to be hurtful but sometimes things people said were not helpful. I just was struggling to really connect to anyone else who has walked in my shoes. I just wanted someone to eventually open up and say I've suffered loss but in a little different way similar to my situation. 

In attempt to not feel alone I started searching around on the Internet for articles, books, blogs, etc. that would help. Here are some of the resources I found that made me realize I wasn't alone in receiving some hurtful comments and advice but this also helped me realize I had to come clean and tell the whole story. 

There Is A Story Behind Every Loss

I am the face of a Heartbreaking Choice

My Abortion at 23 weeks

Our Heartbreaking Choices

In conclusion, a piece of advice to myself and anyone else who has a co-worker, family member, friend, etc. experience loss. Don't try to say something that might make them feel better. Just say I'm sorry for your loss. Ask them if you can do anything. Ask them if they want to talk. I unfortunately experienced this first hand on the other side as a friend of a bereaved parent almost a year ago when one of my best friends lost their son. I didn't know what to say or do but I knew the last thing I wanted to do was accidentally offend them in some way shape or form. I quickly realized these items were off the list of things to say:

Six Things Never to Say to a Bereaved Parent

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Coming Out about our TFMR

Unfortunately, we realized over the past year based on events that have happened to friends that life is not fair. It's hard to think that things don't happen for a reason especially since that is what everyone always says.  But no one is immune to suffering and asking why won't change the situation. Knowing why won't change it, however, you can change and choose to find the message in it all. We couldn't change the cards we were dealt but we did have the choice to make our decision moving forward. Beyond deciding to terminate our pregnancy we have decided to share our story and experience. Talking about any type of pregnancy loss or struggle to get pregnant is taboo to speak of in our society and through abortion into the mix and you might get into a heated discussion but it happens this is life. We figured we'd rather have love and support from friends and family then them left wondering and filling in the blanks themselves. So this is our story. My husband and I have come along way through the first year of our marriage. We've experienced things we hope no one else will have to go through. We became part of the one million people who have an abortion each year. We added to the statistic that states 1 in 10 abortions are made for medical 
reasons. And now we've become some of the few people have decided not to be silent. We don't need people to agree with us or debate with us as to why they think we were wrong. It was a decision that was for us to make as a couple. We do hope people will have a new realization that things aren't always as they seem. We hope people will express compassion to everyone they know and not be to quick to judge others. Do not think you know what you would do in someone else's situation until you are faced with it. Be a better friend and help them if they are in need. Let them know you are thinking about them.  

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Always Knew Love

Many ask "how did you decide to choose what you did?" My husband and I have always been on the same page on when comes to choices that affect our life together. We knew our baby girl was given the diagonsis in which if she had made it to full term would have been very short and would have consisted of physical pain for her. We wanted a baby so badly but we knew what we had to do. We knew when we became parents at day one after conception we were responsible for the the welfare and protection of the life inside me. We decided to take on the lifetime of emotional pain ourselves so that our little one would not have to feel one moment of physical pain. Never did we imagine when we elected to get the screening test done we would make the decision to terminate but love is a powerful motivator and will make you bring great heartache upon ourself to spare a loved one from suffering. We feel we were given the opportunity to learn about our baby's condition in order to act upon it out of compassion and love. So that's what we did.  We ended a lifetime of suffering for our baby at 15 weeks and 5 days. Myself nor the baby felt anything. She was never touched my fear, she was never cold, never hungry, never alone and more importantly she always knew love.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Saying Goodbye without being able to say Hello

4:30 AM
Alarm goes off, shower, get dressed, no breakfast allowed today

5:00 AM
Get into car start drive to Louisville

6:00 AM
Stop at McDonald’s to use restroom and grab dear husband breakfast, still no breakfast for me

7:00 AM
Arrive in downtown Louisville. Drive around the block to locate the destination and scope out the protestors. I luckily am a great Googler and had found out that this clinic was very well known for large protests pretty much every day. There are already at least 10 protestors hanging outside of the clinic carrying very disturbing signs. We knew this was going to be quite the experience.

7:15 AM
Start to walk to the clinic. Stopped by the clinic escorts telling us the clinic will not open their doors until 7:30. It’s best to stay in our car to avoid having to listen to protestors scream at you while waiting to get inside. One of the escorts would come up to let us know when she saw the clinic staff arrive.

Waiting the 15 minutes seemed like an eternity. I was very anxious. I had step my upcoming day into four steps. And getting into the clinic past the protestors was step 1.

7:25 AM
Escort comes to get us from our car. We start out from the parking garage to the clinic front doors. As soon as we get down the stairs outside of the garage protestors are standing there waiting for us. They start to rattle off their propaganda, “We can help you. We have other options.” They said they have a facility nearby that can help us save our baby, etc. You get the idea. The escorts attempt to comfort us by saying we don’t have to listen to them and let us know that we almost to the front doors. This continues until we reach the front doors at the clinic where we are greeted by someone opening the door for the incoming patients.

7:30 AM
While waiting in line you can see the protestors through the tinted windows. I could not believe some of the chants or songs I heard. One patient was unlucky; she got followed by a rather intense protestor. He literally screamed in her face the entire way down the sidewalk until she reached the front door.

7:45 AM
Checked in and sitting the waiting room while the rest of the patients get registered.

8:00 AM
All patients are brought back into the facility alone. No friend, husband, family member is allowed back beyond the waiting room doors. We are told to sit in another room with chairs to wait to be called to for our procedures and then to get our lab work and ultrasound done.

8:15 AM
I am first to get my payment taken care of. The clinic director also proceeds to tell me that since I am here for a therapeutic termination that my husband can come back to sit with me until it is time for me to go into the procedure.  This might have been the best news of the day. I wouldn’t be alone sitting waiting and neither would my husband. After getting my payment taken care of, I then got my vitals taken, blood drawn, and ultrasound performed. I was absolutely dreading the ultrasound. I did not want to have to look. Luckily, there was not a screen other than the one for the ultrasound tech.

9:00 AM
My husband got to join me inside the clinic and in a private waiting room where we were separate from the other patients.

9:10 AM
We get to watch a video about the procedure. We then are taken into a counselor’s office to discuss any questions we had, the procedure, and to make sure I was making this choice myself and not anyone else was pressuring me to have this procedure performed.  We then went back to our waiting room until the doctor arrived.

9:45 AM
The doctor had arrived and I was taken back to a private room for to have the first part of the procedure completed. We were lucky to have found out the diagnosis as early as we did. I was just under 16 weeks and between 12 – 16 weeks the procedure was one day. After 16 weeks it turned into a two day procedure.
The doctor spoke to me for a few minutes. She first gave her sentiments that our baby had trisomy 13. She asked why we came traveled to Louisville. She was surprised to hear that there were not any facilities near where we lived. I told her I was glad to have a great ob/gyn practice that was although not able to perform the procedure themselves but were willing to help me do what I wanted and ultimately find this clinic for me.
She then explained the first part of the procedure which I had read a lot about online so I felt prepared. She inserted the laminaria into my cervix which are thin sticks made from a special seaweed material that widen as they absorb moisture from your body. This was probably the most physically painful part of the procedure. Immediately, I had some cramping and really felt uncomfortable. I then went back to waiting room. I was to keep the laminaria in for 2 hours before the second part of the procedure would occur. This was my step 2. Step 2 done and two more to go.

10:00 AM
For the next hour and a half my husband and I hung out in one of the waiting rooms away from the rest of the patients. On this particular day there were around 15 women there getting similar procedures to terminate their pregnancy.  Some were very early on in their pregnancy and would be given medical abortions to stop their pregnancy. And the others were there for surgical abortions which would require surgery including general anesthesia. During this downtime, my husband tried to catch a cat nap while listening to music. I watched a movie to help pass the time and keep my mind from thinking about what was really going on and the pain I was in. I couldn’t bear to cry in the clinic. I put on my strong face and carried that with me for the rest of the day.

11:40 AM
It was time for other patients and me to be moved downstairs to surgery prep. At this time my husband was to go back to the original waiting room with the other people who were there accompanying their respective patients. We all went down stairs and were told to change into gowns. We were given lockers for our belongings. Then we told to move onto our hospital gurney.
Waiting in this cold room was quite a lonely experience and somber. There were 6 other women in the room awaiting their turn for surgery. We were first greeted by the doctor and then the anesthesiologist. We signed that we understood the risks involved with the anesthesia. Then one by one the nurse inserted an arterial catheter for and IV. A few of us including myself were given Pitocin via an IV to help the cervix dilate even more.
One by one were wheeled into the operation room with about 15 – 20 minutes between each patient from what I could estimate without any clock or watch. This was the hardest time for me. I was left with only my thoughts. Nothing to distract me: no noise, no talking, nothing to watch, not even a clock. I spent a majority of the time holding back tears and emotion as the room was so silent you could have heard a pin drop. I actually was so tired due to the lack of sleep over the past few days I kept drifting to sleep for a few seconds and awaking back up. 

12:30 PM
It was finally my turn. The nurse wheeled me into the operating room. I was assisted onto the table and my legs were placed in stirrups. My D&E procedure was ready to be performed. All of the proper tools that assisted the doctor had been put into perfect location and new sterile tools were being opened for me.  The anesthesist said she was going to hook me up to an IV that would make me sleepy. I replied that I was so tired I'm just going to close my eyes. Step three was complete and I was drifting off to sleep for the next ten minutes with the procedure was completed. 

12:50 PM
The next thing I remember was waking up in the recovery room. I vaguely remember being helped off the gurney into the chair in recovery. The only reason I recall that was because I remember the nurse telling my to hold my sanitary napkin in place. Now step four was upon me: get awake and stay awake so I could be released from recovery. I knew the best way I would come out of anesthesia was to talk based on previous experience. So I'm pretty sure I was asking all kinds of questions and might have been chatting with another patient in the room. I felt as if I drunk so who knows what I said. I also remember wanting to get the catheter out of my arm. I was told several times I had to keep it in my arm until I was changed. 
The nurse handed me  Advil and ginger ale once I seemed awake enough. I refused the Advil as I cannot swallow pills but gladly accepted the ginger ale. I was so thirty as I hadn't had more than a few ounces of water upon waking up which at this time was seven hours ago. I was also slightly hungry but the only thing they had to offer was crackers and being gluten free I just asked for more ginger ale. 

1:00 PM
I'm not entirely sure how long I was in recovery but it couldn't have been long. Before I knew it I was being asked to use the restroom and then change back into my clothes. This was quite the experience as their was a step back unit the locker room. I am pretty sure I almost fell over getting back in there. The feeling of having a fun night out of drinking was still present. I successfully changed back into my clothes and then was told to come back to the recovery room so remove the catheter. It felt so great to have this removed. After that the nurse said I seemed so alert, from talking of course, that I was ready to be released. She went over the post-op instructions and gave me a prescription for antibiotics. I was then escorted back up to my husband and we were free to leave. 

1:20 PM 
After a big hug, we were on our way back to our car. The protestors were gone and the city was quiet. We arrived back into the car I immediately took some pain medicine along with a snack and large bottle of water. We were on our   two hour drive back home together and I was no longer pregnant. 

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Heartbreaking Decisions

So what now, you might ask? Well the preliminary amnio results were due back 3 days after the test. The lab would do a FISH test. FISH stands for fluorescent in situ hybridization. FISH testing is a relatively new cytogenetic technique that allows a cytogeneticist to determine how many copies of a particular chromosome are present without having to go through all of the steps involved in producing a karyotype. For example, FISH analysis can quickly tell you how many number 13 chromosomes are present, but it cannot tell you anything about the structure of those chromosomes. In our case that is what we needed to know. Was there an excess of the 13th chromosome in the baby’s DNA. The final results which would be the full karyotype of the chromosome including the structure would not be available for at least 7 -10 days as the cells had to be left to grow.

In the meantime we discussed our options and made our plan A., plan B., etc. Now this is where our story gets to the point of major decision that no one should ever have to go through. Do you carry the baby to full term and hope it can live for a few days, weeks, or months? Or do you terminate the pregnancy to save the baby from suffering if it does make it to full term?
 I think my husband and I made this decision on what we would do depending on the results we were given after the testing the first night after learning about the possibility of the trisomy 13. We had gone into the original screening test saying we wanted to know if there were any problems ahead of time so we could plan accordingly. We bot are engineers who are very scientific and know that advanced in modern medicine have been huge. We determined we would be part of the population that utilizes the advanced testing regardless whether we were “at risk” for anything or not. I t was covered by insurance it was a “no brainer” to us. Never did we imagine we would be one of those couples that were given heartbreaking information that would make us choose.  

We knew that carrying a trisomy 13 baby to full term was already not likely. We knew even more that bringing a trisomy 13 baby into the world was not going to be much of a life for the baby. We didn’t want to bring our child into this world just to suffer. We wanted this baby so badly and we had gone through a lot to even get to this point. But we knew we had to follow our heart if we did receive the some of the worst news that any parent could possibly receive.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Ultrasound and Amnio

At this point we have had an ultrasound at 6 weeks, 8 weeks, 10 weeks, 12 weeks, 13 weeks and 4 days, and now at 15 weeks and 2 days. This baby might be the most photographed baby in the world. What we never expected was that this day in our life that everything would change.

The ultrasound first started with the technician looking at all aspects of the baby. If she saw anything alarming, she didn’t share with us .The doctor then came in started to navigate her way around the baby as well. She noticed something did not look right with the nose. To the naked eye it appeared very large. I my mind it looked almost like a rounded bird beck. I knew something wasn’t right. The doctor decided to perform a 3D ultrasound to get a better look.

The result of the 3D ultrasound was one of the two images I wish I could get out of my mind. Looking at the baby from the front profile was quite disturbing. Something was absolutely not right with the nose and mouth. It very well could have been a cleft palate but it was too hard to really determine exactly what it was at this point in time. I this point my heart started to race. I knew things were not looking great for the diagnosis.

At this point we definitely wanted to proceed with the amnio. As the doctor and ultrasound tech prepared for the test I was just ready to have this procedure over. I knew it was going to consist of a large needle being inserted into my stomach and probably some intense cramping. I was nervous but knew this was something I would have to just get through. Just like everything else thus far in our journey of creating a family.

I had decided that I did not want to see anything that went on during the procedure so I placed the scarf I wore that day over my face and just tried to control my breathing to help myself relax. My husband has prior experience with fainting after giving blood and was unable to watch me give myself shots during fertility treatments so he decided to turn his chair towards the corner until the procedure was over.

The second image I think I will vividly recall for a lifetime is what we saw after the procedure was done. The doctor needed to monitor the baby’s heart rate and movement to make sure nothing occurred during the procedure. While this was happening we got a closer look of the hands. They were not clenched but there indeed were extra fingers on each hand. In between the intense cramping from the procedure and the new found soft marker that was discovered I was not feeling well. As soon as the doctor felt the room I fell to tears. I was in so much pain physically and emotionally.  We knew the possibility of the baby having trisomy 13 was unfortunately very likely at this point.

Once we were done at the hospital I was very glad my husband and I had driven together. I don’t think I would have been able to drive home solo with the pain I was in. We hadn’t eaten any lunch so we stopped to get some food on the way home. We spent the rest of the night hanging out and resting. I of course did a lot of googling and thinking about all the what ifs moving forward. 

Learning things we never thought we would before.

At the genetic counselor’s office we were explained the science of trisomies and the calculated risk for our situation. We originally thought that the screening test meant there was a pretty much 100% chance we had a baby with trisomy 13. She explained that in fact based on my age upon conception, the age I would be at delivery, and the gestational age of the baby our risk was actually only about 1 in 6 or 14%. Hearing this statistic helped us a bit but we knew we wouldn’t be for sure until we went through the level II ultrasound and then the amniocentesis.

The level II ultrasound, which most pregnant women have done around week 20, would be a very detailed ultrasound that looks at the anatomy of the baby. At this time I was only 15 weeks and 2 days but we were hopeful the ultrasound would be able to confirm or deny any of the trisomy 13 soft markers such as polydactyl (extra fingers or toes), clenched hands, clubbed feet, cleft lip/palate, heart defects, enlarged kidneys, and neural tube defects.

The amniocentesis (amnio) is prenatal test where a small amount of the amniotic fluid is removed for testing. The sample of amniotic fluid is removed through a fine needle inserted into the uterus through the abdomen, under ultrasound guidance. The fluid is then sent to a laboratory for a full chromosome analysis. The amnio can be done between after 15 weeks. The accuracy is about 99.4%. There is a small risk that an amniocentesis could cause a miscarriage (less than 1%, or approximately 1 in 200 to 1 in 400). But at this point the risk of having the amnio done was less than the risk of us having a baby with a trisomy so we knew we had to go through with the testing. 

We decided to proceed with the ultrasound and then based on those results we would then get the amnio done following the ultrasound. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

What is a trisomy?

Trisomy 13, also called Patau syndrome, is a chromosomal condition associated with severe intellectual disability and physical abnormalities in many parts of the body. Individuals with trisomy 13 often have heart defects, brain or spinal cord abnormalities, very small or poorly developed eyes (microphthalmia), extra fingers or toes, an opening in the lip (a cleft lip) with or without an opening in the roof of the mouth (a cleft palate), and weak muscle tone (hypotonia). Due to the presence of several life-threatening medical problems, many infants with trisomy 13 die within their first days or weeks of life. Only five percent to 10 percent of children with this condition live past their first year. Trisomy 13 occurs in about 1 in 16,000 newborns.

Trisomy means three copies of one chromosome. In this case, for trisomy 13, it would have been three copies of the 13th chromosome. Trisomies can occur with any chromosome, but often result in miscarriage, rather than live birth. For example, Trisomy 16 is the most common trisomy in human pregnancies, occurring in more than 1% of pregnancies; only those pregnancies, in which some normal cells occur in addition to the trisomic cells, or mosaic trisomy 16, survive. This condition, however, usually results in spontaneous miscarriage in the first trimester. The most common trisomies are trisomy 21 (Down syndrome), trisomy 18 (Edwards syndrome), trisomy 13 (Patau syndrome), trisomy 9, trisomy 8, and trisomy 22.

Most organisms that reproduce sexually have pairs of chromosomes in each cell, with one chromosome inherited from each parent.  Humans have 46 chromosomes (i.e. 23 pairs of chromosomes). Half from the mother and half from the father. If the chromosome pairs fail to separate properly during cell division, the egg or sperm may end up with a second copy of one of the chromosomes.

Monday, May 11, 2015

It's just a simple blood test, they said.....

We finally got the test results back from the genetic screening blood test I took about 10 days prior. I knew on this particular Monday we would most likely be getting a phone call with the test results. I had been anxious to find out the gender of the baby but never did I really put any thought into the real reason behind the test. It was to screen for the potential for any genetic disorders that might be present in the baby.

The test was called the Progenity test. It is a non-invasive prenatal test that can determine with a high degree of accuracy whether your baby may have certain genetic disorders, such as Down syndrome, Trisomy 13, and Trisomy 18. The test requires only a blood draw, and is safe for mother and baby. During pregnancy, some of the baby’s DNA crosses the placenta into the mother’s bloodstream. DNA is the blueprint of life—it holds all of the genetic information needed for our bodies to function. DNA carries this genetic information on chromosomes. Healthy humans have 23 pairs of chromosomes. Any more or less can lead to problems. The test screens for the most common chromosomal abnormalities, which can cause serious birth defects, intellectual disability, or other problems in the baby. These disorders are not typically inherited. Instead, they are usually caused by a random error during formation of the egg or sperm, or during the earliest stages of the baby’s development.

Around 4 pm that day I get a call from the doctor who I spoke with before the test was administered. I can remember the words clearly: “Your baby tested positive for Trisomy 13.” I immediately started to google the condition while the doctor was still talking. I had previously briefly looked over what the test screened for but I really didn’t know what the conditions were besides Down syndrome. The doctor proceeded to say that she was going to recommend me to meet with the genetic counselor at the hospital and I needed to call to set up an appointment.  She said I would then have the opportunity to get a Level II ultrasound completed to further evaluate the screening results by looking at the baby. I then would have the ability to get an amniocentesis performed to get a diagnostic of the baby’s chromosomes. The doctor then said you know sometimes there are false positives sometimes on these tests but they were rare. I was stunned but knew I had to call my husband immediately to tell him the news.

After calling my husband, I decided I wasn’t going to get anything else done at work so I went home. Once home, my husband and I sat on the couch, talked, and sobbed together. We did some research about the condition and talked about the what ifs. We talked about the next appointment and what we wanted to accomplish. We decided we wanted to get the amniocentesis completed at that appointment. We determined the risks of the amniocentesis were less than the risk of not getting confirmation of what the baby really had or didn’t have.  Never did we ever imagine we would be going through these discussions. After all we just wanted a “healthy baby” but more and more we started to realize that may not be the reality we were dealt.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Announcement to the World!

At 14 weeks I finally started to feel better. Several foods started to sound and taste better again. I was finally in the second trimester. I also started to let myself get a little more excited about the expectation of a baby come this fall. At 14 weeks, we finally announced the arrival of baby to the rest of the world including social media. We had done a photo shoot at our alumna mater’s football stadium that was currently under construction. We tagged along with the fact that the stadium and our baby were going to be “completed” in fall 2015. We posted the photo that we had taken on campus with a baby onesie with the school’s mascot on it on social media. We photoshopped the words “Baby Under Construction: Estimated Completion Fall 2015.” We could not have been excited to share this news with our friends and family. We had held this news a secret except to immediate family and close friends until we were knew we were in the clear, aka the second trimester.

Friday, May 1, 2015

The peach revealing some personality at 13 weeks!

I went in for a routine appointment to get screened for genetic disorders. My husband and I decided we would rather know ahead of time whether our child had the risk for a genetic disorder prior to birth so we could be prepared. So we elected to get the screening done. We were told all it would be was an ultrasound. I sat down with the ultrasound tech and got the warm gel applied to my tummy to start the screening. Well low and behold our baby was currently hanging on its tummy vs. its back where it needed to be for the measurements to be taken. The tech tried to jiggle the area to get the baby to flip. Well this morning the baby decided to be a little difficult and not move. It must have been comfy and personally I don’t blame it. I love lying on my stomach although that is not an option currently.

She said they give the baby three tried to flip around. She told me to wait 10 minute in the waiting room and we’d try again. I figured maybe if I’d empty my bladder the baby might have some room to move around so I went to the bathroom in hopes that might help. The second round proved that the baby was able to move around better now but was still lying on its side vs. back. Once again no luck in moving the baby.

After this try, I decided to walk around outside the office in hopes that might help. I also did a little jumping around praying anything would help. During the third ultrasound the baby had indeed moved onto its back but it was more upright than lying down and this still was not the right position. I guess after the second fail the tech had spoken to someone else in the office about the options for me. As I was already 13 weeks and 4 days and the test was only able to be done until 13 weeks and 6 days so rescheduling the appointment wasn’t an option. Since I had not started at this office until the week prior I really missed the key window of opportunity.  She mentioned that there was a new test available that just collected the mother’s blood and was able to pull the babies blood from the maternal blood and examine the chromosomes. The only caveat was that this test was not yet implemented as an option in this office. They had not talked to all the doctors about the test yet.  

Luckily, the staff was willing to talk to the head doctor about my situation as they had planned to start offering the test in the next week or so anyhow. They were able to fit me in to be counselled about the test my one of the OB doctors and also were able to secure the right paperwork and testing equipment for me to get the test completed today. So shortly after filing out some paperwork I spoke to the doctor confirmed that the test was just blood and would have a minimal cost. It would test for all genetic disorders and also happened to be a little more accurate. Oh and it also would tell us the gender of the baby if we elected to find out. The nurse came in after speaking to the doctor and drew my blood and I was on my merry way about 90 minutes after I first arrived at the office. Since was obviously not how I had intended to spend my morning but I was glad a solution as found and everything worked out. We already have realized this child is going to give us a run for our money and is already taking some of our personalities that we express at times! And who knows we might be finding out the gender sooner than expected but that will be a secret that we will not be telling anytime soon! 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

I ran and jumped rope for the first time in 4 months!

I ran! I ran for the first time since the beginning of my journey 4 months ago and I could not be happier! I also did double unders! Never did I imagine I’d be so excited to run and jump rope. Even up the dreaded hill that we have from the main street to our street and house. I was really curious on the heart rate when running and I’m happy to report at my normal pace I’m right under 15-155bpm.

First run was about 2 miles at a 9:30 – 10 min pace and I’m perfectly okay with that performance. That is all I need! I cannot wait to get some more running in around my neighborhood ! 

Friday, April 24, 2015

12.5 weeks

At 12.5 weeks we had our first encounter with our new ob/gyn practice. We choose the practice due to a recommendation by our RE doctor and the proximity of the office to the hospital we intended to deliver at. There are five doctors at this practice so we will see all five during the time before delivery since when I deliver the doctor we have will depend on who is on call that day.

The first appointment was good but a little longer than anticipated. Up until this point I had been able to avoid the dreading pee in the cup and regular well women checks. Well this practice was not letting me slip away from that anymore. First we had an ultrasound and got to see our little plum. (We have a name each week based on the size of the baby according to the bump app). It seemed to be either sucking its thumb or trying to hide its face as its hands were constantly moving to and from the face. We also got to hear the heartbeat which once again was pretty cool.

We next met with one of the doctors. She asked if I had any questions and of course the first thing on my mind was her suggestions on exercise and activity. She said she recommends women to do no more than what they were doing prior to pregnancy. So I told her my history and that I had been limiting myself to working up to 140bpm and avoiding running and jumping. I asked if I could raise that heart rate a little more and add some running and jumping into my routine. She said if you feel well enough to do so, go for it. The main goal was to not over exhaust yourself and make sure you can breathe during the exercise.

I decided that I would self-impose a heartbeat limit on myself of 160bpm or so. I knew this would be far enough on the heart rate scale for me to really get in some better exercise that didn’t make me want to go to sleep as one of my friends stated. I was so excited to be able to run and jump rope again. I was getting really sick of rowing all the time at such a slow pace!

Overall, the appointment went well. I was sent off with a bag full of paperwork and information to read. I of course got through the material fairly quickly and realized this is what normal women get earlier on rather than having to rely on Google to answer pregnancy questions. 

Friday, April 10, 2015

Graduation day at 10 weeks!

When we were 10.5 weeks we went in for the anticipated last appointment with the RE doctor. We officially graduated onto the regular ob/gyn office! We got to see our little nugget on the big screen and was even waving. We also got to hear the heartbeat for the first time which was pretty cool. After our ultrasound and a clean bill of health from the doctor we go our parting gift – pregnancy magazines and form to fill out once the baby is born so they know what we had and the name. And of course a big congratulations and good luck from all the staff. Although we will miss the great staff at the RE office we could not be more happy to moving onto the next step of our baby journey. As I said when we left, our baby graduated before it even made it out of the womb!  

Friday, March 27, 2015

8.5 weeks!

We were told to schedule another ultrasound at 8.5 weeks and we were excited to see the progress on our baby. We went and the nurse said everything looked great. The baby was measuring good and we were able to see the heart rate flutter. The baby was most definitely bigger!

Our RE doctor asked us if we had chosen a normal ob/gyn because he wanted us to schedule an appointment 4 weeks from now which would put us at 12.5 weeks. He wanted to see us back in 2 weeks. The hope was that at this 10.5 week appointment we would graduate from his office and be able to complete the pregnancy at the ob/gyn's office we have chosen. At this time we were very excited and also knew we still had several weeks to go until we were out of the first trimester. All we could do was continue to wish for the best. 

I personally at this point in time started feeling pretty crappy. After a dose of the stomach bug for the second time this year I ended up with a pretty much all day mild sickness. I didn't feel nauseous but I did feel blah and struggled to eat several foods. I ate what I could and decided that for the time being my paleo lifestyle was going to have to be but on hold to make sure I was actually eating. But I want to maintain a gluten free diet as I knew gluten would just make matters worse. So I discovered a full line of several gluten free products and so far have helped to keep me well fed, almost a little too fed in fact. But I know I can't get wrapped up in gaining weight quite yet. As I know the extra pounds had to have helped me get pregnant in the first place even if I had to go and buy new pants and bras at week 8! 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

My New BFF

After my 6 week ultrasound I was permission to increase my activity but I had to keep heart rate under 140bpm. So I had to invest in a heart rate monitor. I quickly realized that the 140 bpm wasn't very high when doing any form of cardio or moderately lifting at high reps. I had to learn how to breathe slower and find the best ways my body recovers so I could continue with working out.

Anyone who's don't CrossFit knows in a metcon the goal is usually to go as fast as possible. Well know with my new limits I was focused more on quality vs quantity and/or speed. I actually felt like I spent more time waiting for my heart rate to decrease than I did working out at times but I knew I was still doing my body good. I also knew this was the safest way to keep my baby safe and healthy in the womb. So embraced the new challenge and realized something was absolutely better than nothing! 

My new BFF! 

Monday, March 9, 2015

Six Week Ultrasound

We were super excited for the first ultrasound. I knew at this point being pregnant would feel a little more real versus a figment of my imagination.

We did get to see our little embryo and the nurse was able to see a flutter of a heartbeat. When we talked to the doctor he said everything looked great. I was also now able to get back into some working out. I was still restricted on any impact movements but I could now do some moderate weightlifting and rowing. This was fantastic news although I was given a restriction on keeping my heart rate under 140 bpm. I knew this was pretty low but it was better than nothing! 

We were told to schedule another ultrasound at 8.5 weeks. Hopefully at this point we could see a heartbeat. We also knew the baby would be much bigger than the what we saw at 6 weeks! 

Friday, February 27, 2015

Second Test Results

My second blood test results came back great! My hcg levels had increased from 638 to 1400s in 48 hours! This was great news! We were then set up with an ultrasound for two weeks later when I would be 6 weeks pregnant. We would then be able to see our little offspring on and possibly even see a heartbeat.

At this point everything was really starting to settle in that this was real and we were really on the road to being parents in 9 short months! :) 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Once the 16th day after the IUI came I almost couldn't sleep I was so excited and nervous. I think I woke up about three times throughout the night and finally at 5:30 AM got up and tested. I can recall being very nervous by having to use the bathroom so bad I didn't have any stage fright.

I was given a generic pregnancy test from my RE so it had only a line to look for. I dipped the stick appropriately and waited the recommended time to see if the extra line would appear. Immediately I could see two faint lines which meant I was pregnant. I told my husband to come see what he thought as I wasn't sure if I was seeing things out of belief or if the lines were real. He said he couldn't tell but it looked like there was two lines. 

We decided to run over the grocery store and pick up another test just to be sure. So at 5:45 AM we ran over to buy another test. I bought one that was a little more explicit on the results; a cross vs. just lines. So once again I took the pee on a stick test twice and quickly the cross showed up! At this point, I was really excited and also in disbelief. Was I really this lucky to get pregnant the first time going through fertility treatments?! 

Of course right at 7 AM when my doctors office opened I called with the news and curiosity on what to do next! I had to go right away and get a blood test taken. I went to a local lab and got my blood tested before work so I could get the results back that afternoon. 

D-Day continued

Of course after the first pee tests and after talking to the doctors office we updated the people that knew today was the day for us to test. A group message for my family, a test to my husband's mom, and a few text messages later in the day to those few girlfriends who knew what I was going through. Everyone was so excited but knew we still had awhile to  go before we were in the clear and could really share the news!

I got the first blood test results back around 2 PM (beta was 638) that day and immediately scheduled my follow up test two days later. This second blood test would measure the levels of hcg. These levels should double every 48-72 hours while pregnant and continue to increase until the second trimester. This test would show whether a healthy pregnancy was developing. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Two Week Wait: Week Two

The second week was a little less eventful but we had plenty of activities going on that kept our mind off the unknown. I did however have to go into the doctor’s office one week after the IUI to check my progesterone levels. This was a short and sweet appointment and only had to leave a little blood behind to be tested. The results really weren't going to tell us anything except whether my body was producing enough progesterone in the event I was indeed becoming pregnant. 

I wasn't allowed to test until 16 days after the IUI. Most people are told to test after 14 days but I guess since they weren't entirely sure when I would have ovulated they rather you be safe than sorry with a false negative. So I knew the closer I got to that date the more likely I would see blood in the result I was no pregnant so naturally I was checking very closely every time I went to the bathroom. By the time I made it through Monday with no hint of not being pregnant I felt a little better and slightly hopeful but knew I still had one more day to make it through and I had no idea how my body would react to anything since I have not had a period in several years.