Unfortunately it will be a few weeks before I can actually share this post. I sure hope I get to share it. Ever since losing our little one in February we decided that there was no time like the present to start "trying" to expand our family. Something about losing a baby we never even knew about made us feel like we were ready to make Claire be a big sister. At my post op at the end of March my doctor told me that if we were ready to try again to call her when I got my first period following surgery and she would schedule a HSG test to make sure my remaining functioning tube was good and open. She also said since we conceived without any "help" this last time she would give us 3 months before starting any type of fertility drugs. Lo and behold the very next day after I saw the doctor it arrived. I called that morning and they scheduled my HSG for the following Friday (the Friday before Easter). Long story short, great news the tube is open and looks great.
One of my downfalls is I have some minor control issues. I need to feel in control so when we decided to proceed I immediately started temping once my cycle returned and ordered some OPKs. Since I have never had regular cycles I had no idea what to expect this cycle. I got lucky and actually ovulated on day 19. I also was about 95% sure I ovulated from my "good" side with the functioning tube. Our timing was good too. Not knowing what to expect my doctor had already scheduled me for day 21 labs to see if I ovulated. Since I only ovulated 2 days prior my progesterone results fell in the "iffy" zone and the nurse said it didn't look like I ovulated. Well, this was one time I did know better than lab numbers so I wasn't overly worried. I really just didn't feel confident about this cycle though. I just had a feeling it wasn't going to happen this time. I told myself I was going to wait the full 2 weeks until I broke out the pregnancy test. Well, I lasted 10 days, haha. In retrospect I should have waited a few more days, but oh well. What really made me want to test that early was the day prior I was sitting on the couch with Claire. She went to get off the couch, but instead stopped and laid her head on my stomach and said "awww". I said "I love you too" and patted her head. Then she looked at me and said "shhhh". She put her head back down for a few more seconds and then looked up at me again and said "baby". I was stunned. I didn't know if she really did "know" something I didn't or if it was a fluke. I will obviously never know if she was trying to tell me something, but I like to think she was.
Anyway the next morning I took a cheap test that was bundled with the OPKs I ordered weeks prior. I *thought* I saw a faint line, but I couldn't tell if it was truly a line or the hope in my head making it appear that way. Ugh. So I held my pee another 4 hours and took another one. The line did appear faint again and maybe slightly darker. I immediately thought this is what I get for trusting a cheapo test. I decided to forget this guessing game and spend the money on a digital. I ran to the store and got one. Then I debated testing again the same day or just waiting until in the morning to take it. I just couldn't wait. I know digital tests usually aren't as sensitive so I wasn't very optimistic in seeing "pregnant" pop up especially since the other line was so very faint. I took it and walked away to get Claire dressed to go play outside in the water. I almost forgot to go back and check it before we went outside. I ran to go look and almost fainted when I saw the magic word "pregnant". I was seriously speechless. I immediately text Brandi and a picture and said "holy crap". Eric wouldn't be home for another 3-4 hours and I had to tell someone! I debated making a big deal about it with Eric. With what happened last time and the chances of this one actually being in the right place and sticking for the full 9 more months all I had was doubt in my head. Thank God for good friends. Brandi convinced me I would regret it if I didn't do something cute to share the news with Eric. So I ran out and found a "Big Sister" shirt. We always meet Eric in the driveway when he gets home from work. It's one of mine and Claire's favorite moments of the day. We are both so happy to see him and Claire's excitement is contagious. I wondered how long it would take him t notice her shirt. To my surprise he noticed almost immediately. He said "what does her shirt say?" I got a goofy grin and said "you know what it says". He said "how do you know". I said "a test, dummy".
So there you have it. Another Baby Westerman is on the way. I will call the doctor first thing Monday to do lab work and hope and pray this one is meant to meet us in early January. I am in such shock still and trying not to over analyze everything. I feel so very blessed and fortunate to have this happen so quickly. So many emotions run through me at every moment. I feel so undeserving of this miracle. There are so many women who have experienced many more trials and hardships than I have on their journey to create a family. I won't take one single moment for granted. (Friends, please remind me of this often especially if I start complaining about being uncomfortable later on). I can do nothing except give the glory to God.
Monday morning 4/30/2012 I went for labs and yay my HCG was 108! I have to go back Wednesday to make sure my HCG is doubling like it should. The nurse said the labs looked good and my progesterone level was high enough that the chances of it being another ectopic are low. Keeping my fingers crossed that everything continues to look good!
Wednesday 5/2/2012- Repeated labs. HCG doubled to 254, but progesterone dropped to 12. Starting me on progesterone supplements. I had progesterone issues with Claire too. So nervous about the dropping progesterone, but keeping my fingers crossed the medicine does it's job. I nearly passed out when I picked up the meds though. With Claire I was on an oral medication. Let's just say this one isn't oral and about 10x the cost! It is worth it though. Repeating labs on Monday and doing an ultrasound sometime next week to check to make sure the baby is in the right place this time.
Monday 5/7/2012 Repeated labs HCG has gone up to over 1800 which is great. Bad news is progesterone dropped again to 9.6. Doubling progesterone meds. Scheduled ultrasound for Wednesday. Panic is setting in. I am so terrified of losing this baby. I don't know if I can handle losing another one. I know God is in control and is the ultimate physician and I also know God's plans are greater than our own. Trying to accept whatever his plan is and know that he is bigger than lab numbers and meds.
Wednesday 5/9/2012 Did ultrasound. 5 weeks and 1 day. I had to do the ultrasound in the outpatient imaging center and not at the doctors office. Not too thrilled about that especially sense the tech is allowed to tell me anything argh! I will say though this tech was really nice and was able to tell me a little. She sympathized and said she had been in my shoes before. She saw the gestational sac and it was in the correct place. Did not see any signs of an ecoptic. Wasn't sure if she saw the yolk sac though which she said was normal being so early. Told me my doctor should call me before end of day. Longest day ever! Finally at 4:45 the nurse called. She said everything looked great. They DID see the yolk sac which was great. Baby is in the upper part of the uterus which is apparently better than being in the lower. Scheduled me to come back in 12 days to repeat ultrasound and hopefully see the baby and the heartbeat. I feel some relief after this scan. I was really not wanting to do one this early because I knew I wouldn't see a heartbeat which freaks me out even though it is normal. Knowing that everything looks as it should does make me feel better. I am still terrified of losing this little one. The first trimester really sucks. Even though it is technically the shortest trimester since I was already 1 month when I found out, but it definitely feels like the longest. I remember it with Claire, but pushed it to the back of my mind. I am so anxious for it to be over. I know things aren't guaranteed after the 1st trimester, but the danger does drop.
I forgot to add that we told our families on Mother's day! It was killing me not to tell my Mom. Longest 2 weeks ever! Mom isn't stupid though. I tell her everything and she knew I was too quiet! We made the Grandmother's a cute mother's day card with Claire wearing her big sister shirt. It took them a minute to figure it out, but they were both super excited!
Monday 5/21/2012 Today was amazing! I anxiously awaited the 1:00 appointment to see my little bean. Praying for a little beating heart. I see the sack, and the doctor moving the wand around to get a good look and then I saw it, the little flickering bean!! Measuring 7 weeks and 1 day. 2 days ahead of what I thought I was. Not a big difference, but still 2 days further along means 2 days closer! Gave me my official due date of January 4, 2012! I love that Claire was due 1 day after my birthday and this little one is due 4 days after Eric's and 3 days after my Mom's! December is full and I do mean full of Westerman birthdays. So if it comes early there is no telling who it might share a birthday with. I really like the doctor I am seeing. She is being extra precautious with me. Told me I could still work out, but to walk or use the elliptical. No running which is a bummer, but I will do whatever to ensure this little one's safety. She also knows how nervous I am about everything and said she would see me once a week for as long as I want! Wow! So for now I will get to go in once a week to check the litte bean's progress! Oh I almost forgot to mention. When I was pregnant with Claire I never got sick, not even nausous. Oh ,but let me tell you this one is completely different! I have been so nausous on top of having a UTI and I just feel blah. But I don't care. I count my blessings to have the little one.
Tuesday May 29,2012. My flickering bean is now a flickering teddy grahm. It's really cool to get weekly scans and see the amazing difference 1 weeks makes in it's growth. Its unbelievable that the little bean now has little stubby arms and legs and a definite head! Measuring 8 weeks and 2 days! What's cool is I have an ultrasound of Claire at the exact same time so I had fun comparing the 2 photos. Doctor told me that at 11 weeks I go could off the Progesterone. I'm excited to be off of it, but nervous as well. She assures me that the placenta will be starting to work by then. Going back in a week to check progress again. I love seeing the little one and checking on it weekly, but I know God has his hand on this baby.
I've now seen my flickering bean turn into a teddy graham and now at 11 weeks into a little alien ;-). I call it my alien because it looks alienish with it's little eyes staring right at me. Oh how I love this baby. Claire is always amused with my weekly appointments. I tell her she will see the baby in Mommy's tummy on the screen. Sometimes she pays attention other times she plays her games on my iPhone. The doctor assures me the baby looks amazing! Yolk sac is still there, but could see the placenta forming. Another anterior placenta like with Claire. No big deal just means I will feel the baby later.
The following 3 pictures are weeks 9, 10, and 11.
I go to do genetic testing on Monday 6/25. Not something the doctor usually does, but told me she will let me know whatever I want. Genetic testing will not change the outcome for us. Any baby is a gift from God. However for me and my control issues I would rather know as early as possible. To give myself time to research and learn as much as possible about any possible issues. Of course there is no way to know everything that could be wrong, but the testing will test for major chromosomal issues. With Claire we did the same thing and as a bonus we got to find out with high certainty that she was a girl. This time they offer the same test however it isn't free like it was with Claire. Which is a bummer. I would love to know at 13 weeks what this baby is however since I am now a stay at home Mom, saving the extra money is important and can go to several more needed things. Therefore we will be waiting until August to find out via ultrasound. Eric said he was just as content wating until the baby is born! I told him he is crazy! There is no way I can wait that long! I know it would be an amazing moment for all of us, but so will the ultrasound! We pretty much have agreement on a boy's name however if it is a girl poor thing may not have a name for a while! Therefore name suggestions are welcome! We can't agree on anything. I know it's super early to be thinking of names, but it's still fun!
So there you have it. A recap of the last 8 weeks. When I think back over everything I am still in awe of how amazing God is. Who would have thought that 1. I would get pregnant our first cycle trying. After trying for Claire I was convinced I was in for a long wait. 2. that I would get pregnant with only 1 tube immediately. I know that it certainly isn't impossible to conceive with 1 tube, but I being the researcher I am, learned that it usually does take longer than average. 3. No fertility drugs needed! I had 2 doctors encourage me after Claire that the second one can usually be conceived with no help. Not wanting to get my hopes up I didn't whole heartedly believe it, but WOW they were right! We are so excited to get to finally share this with everyone! With the exception of our immediate family and several close friends we consider our family no one has known. Our friends and family have been so super supportive and without their constant prayers and encouragement I don't know if we would have survived these past 2 months. We are so blessed to have friends and family we can call day or night and let us cry, share joy, and pray with us. You know who you are and we love you!