A New Journey

We have been blessed. Beyond what I could even imagine.

In December 2014, we welcomed the most beautiful bundle of joy. She was 6lbs10z, and 20.5inches.

We have been incredibly lucky to breastfeed well (even through a cows milk protein intolerance) and just form an amazing bond to this wonderful new person in our life.

When my cycle came back in September, we had no real thought of getting pregnant again quickly, mostly because we figured that I’m not particularly fertile. Still, I could tell when in my cycle was more or less fertile, but wasn’t thinking much of it.

Until about ten days ago, when I realized that after several cycles that had not been longer than 29 days (short for me), I was suddenly on day 32, and feeling…odd. And I kind of knew. We got two pregnancy tests in Seattle, where we were for a wedding of a friend, and got both two pink lines and those magic words, “pregnant.”

Any woman who has dealt with infertility knows that even after the first baby is here, infertility still plays a role in how you think about family, babies, pregnancy. There are two women I know who had babies right after us, and I was really hoping to get pregnant before them, and a couple other friends who I know are trying and I wanted to be before them. Petty? Probably. But it’s the way it is. And now, it’s a little unexpected to be pregnant this quickly. I’m a little still in shock. But it’s good shock. The best.

But I need a place to process some thoughts, and I thought of this blog.

We won’t announce to the world for a while, and even though a few select people know (including immediate family), it’s a lot to keep in my head. So, watch this space for baby talk.

Due date is, funnily enough, the Shabbat of Sukkot. My daughter was born erev Hannukah, so always around a Jewish holiday.

Advertisements

A Pesah Miracle that will turn into a Hanukkah Miracle….

Well.

This was not a post I expected to write right now.

Erev Pesah (that’s Monday night for the rest of the world), I decided to take a pregnancy test on the advice of a friend of mine who knows about what we’ve been going through. It was the end of my cycle, lots of PMS symptoms, and there’s a lot of wine to be drunk at seder.

I have never been more surprised to see two lines in my life. I took the remaining digital I had and it came up as “pregnant” almost immediately. This was like, random 4PM pee, and it wasn’t even a squinter.

I walked out of the bathroom to my husband who was drying dishes from our prep for seder. I held out the stick. He about died from shock and happiness.

Of course, my in-laws are here and DH doesn’t want to tell them yet, so it’s been kind of delicate. Still, wonderful.

My due date is around December 20, which is the middle of Hanukkah. I’m just so blindsided by the whole thing. I had a sinus infection this month, DH hurt his finger, we traveled, I was super non-careful about my diet. And apparently, it all worked together.

We’re hoping very, very much for a sticky baby. It’s been 24 months of waiting to see a second line, so it’s hard to think that maybe it wouldn’t work – but nevertheless, this is the farthest we’ve ever gotten.

I’m just…aside from the fact that I have many, many early pregnancy symptoms (sore boobs, nausea, back ache, etc) it doesn’t feel real. And then I find myself wanting to plan everything and then I have to slow myself down.

It’s totally surreal, but wonderful. Twenty four cycles – and we got a BFP. Thanking God every minute for our miracle.

It’s not a competition

A friend posted an article that was heartbreaking – Love, Marriage, motherhood and other uncomfortable seder talk

An article about how an unfeeling woman, married with children, basically taunted her during the seder about her being unmarried and childless. Underneath the article were two or three of her friends commenting about it, and how they have had similar experiences.

How terrible. In fact, it sounds awful. To be alone when you don’t want to be sounds really miserable.

And yet, there’s the part of me that says, “At least you can talk about! It’s not taboo!”

For every awkward conversation like that, there’s the guy on our trip who asked how long we’d been married, and then, at the end of the meal, gave us a blessing that we would be pregnant by the end of the year. It breaks my heart to think about it, mostly because he was so awesome about it. He figured it out, he gave the blessing to us in a way that was private, and he was compassionate.

No one wants that kind of compassion – it’s only somewhat easier than the total heartlessness of others.

I just have to keep remembering – my struggle is not “better” than theirs. It’s just different. We live in a community that values marriage and children, and that makes some people less careful than they should be – those who have gotten both things without trying. I’m sure that same woman would look at us and start trying to give advice rather than a sympathetic hand and a blessing.

Maybe the only difference is that their struggle is more open – their status is known. Ours is just inferred, suspected, whispered. Neither is nice.

Here again

My appointment went well. Our trip was crazy and then I got a sinus infection immediately following. I feel like I’m still digging out.

In any case, he thinks it’s mild PCOS more than anything else. He wants to do some more testing, and then we start with clomid, trigger shot and timed intercourse. Right now, everything’s on hold because his initial ultrasound also found a HUGE cyst on my left ovary. Yay.

Unfortunately, it looks like the CD3 labs might be delayed due to the holiday of Passover – I can’t get to the doctor on two days next week, and assuming my cycle isn’t totally crazy, I’m sure it’ll be on those days.

I haven’t been able to temp at all because of the sinus thing. Only in the last few days have I had my mouth closed when I wake up, so I think I ovulated, but I have no real idea when. We also didn’t get to do the deed as much as usual. So there’s that.

The desire for a baby is so strong tonight. UGGGGGGH. I hate this process more than a lot of things I have hated in my life.

 

tomorrow…

So, my plan of putting two stressful things together has kind of worked.

My stress level is high, but I’m not feeling that sick sense of anxiety that makes me crazy. Rather, my head is buzzing like I have a beehive in there, and it’s not really letting me think.

Oy. But by tomorrow at about 6PM, it’ll all be done. Or really, I guess, 7PM. Once we’re in the air, for real, on our trip. We’ll have done the doctor’s office, gotten to the airport, gotten through security, and made it onto the plane by then. As long as we don’t end up as the next Malaysia air.

As for this cycle? Who knows. I’m probably going to end up being delayed in ovulation because of the stress of travelling. Although, it’s mostly about the time change – it’s a direct flight, so although it’s a 5 hour time difference (did I mention the potential job is in Europe?) I think the travel will be reasonable. And they’re paying for a car service for us to get to JFK so that won’t be too bad either.

My medical records are super interesting. I have to bring them tomorrow, so I have been pouring over them. I anticipate that I will need a few more blood tests and then I can see him moving into surgery. Granted, he may want to do everything over again, which since it’s been close to a year, I wouldn’t object. As long as we get the show on the road, honestly, I don’t mind what the heck we’ll do.

I’ll update when I can – it’ll depend on how much time I have at the airport and what kind of wifi access we have. Otherwise, see you on the flip side!

Underplaying

Do you ever find yourself totally underplaying your fertility situation?

This happened today to me and I was so uncomfortable with it, but the more I think about it, it was probably the right thing to do.

Situation: my coworker and I, who I don’t know well (she’s in another department that I don’t work with much), happen to leave work at the same time and are going in the same direction, which means the same subway. I know she has two boys (5 and 3) and they sound really sweet. I bet she’s a good mom.

She and I strike up a conversation about the fact that the office is moving and that it’s probably going to be around the same time that she’s moving (they HAVE to abandon the city for the suburbs unless they can find a huge money pot – and at a certain point, most people just want space). So our family comes up, and she asks how long we’ve been married. The thing is, at this point, it’s six and a half years, and it starts to feel like no one is going to believe that we haven’t thought about kids at this point. So I said, six years, pointed out that we’d been young and DH is still in school, and we kind of moved on.

It’s just crazy, because it was like giving an answer from two years ago. That was the truth then – I was on birth control for that exact reason. So it was like the truth, but an old truth, not the current truth. I didn’t want to confide in her, I didn’t want to bring anything like that into the conversation. But I’m still a little uncomfortable about how that conversation went.

This stuff is so hard, and so personal, that I feel like I end up censoring myself a lot. This was maybe the first time that it’s come up in a while, so maybe I’m just out of practice. Either way, what a weird experience – in a little over a week, we’re going to the big fancy doctor to get this fertility thing on the road, and here I am, downplaying what it all means to me.

Stepping Forward

I hope you guys will forgive all the “moving forward” themed titles for my blog posts, but I feel so good about what I accomplished this week.

So, what’s the update?

Well, as you know, I found out about the Managed Infertility Program on Tuesday. On Wednesday, I actually talked to my case manager, who I will call A (hopefully for AMAZING, but we’ll see, right?). She and I had a nice conversation, although I was kind of on edge both because of the subject matter and because of the fact that I was borrowing a colleagues office to take the call (I am in a cube…sigh.)

So – information so far. This insurance is likely to be better than my previous insurance in terms of out-of-pocket cost. We have a high deductible plan, but my work pays for 80% of the deductible, so that’s great – it’ll be about $600 out of pocket for us (outside of our regular contribution to the plan which is less than what we were paying before). After that it’s 90/10% coinsurance, which means we pay 10% of the negotiated rate of the insurance, up to another interval amount (which work doesn’t help with, so that’ll be a little more painful), and then after that it’s 100% covered.

Unlike my old insurance, they will cover treatment up through IUI. So that means, as many IUIs as they think necessary (so it requires their approval…) but no IVF stuff. It’s possible that they would cover IVF drugs, but I have to find out from the pharmacy people, since A doesn’t deal with that stuff.

Bottom line: it will still cost us money, but likely less than what we would have paid with the other plan, and the coverage lasts for longer.

She also gave us information on their “Centers of Excellence,” which as far as I can tell mean the largest clinics in NYC. One of them is close by work, but the reviews are consistently terrible, and their SART data is worse than the clinic I want to go to (29% v. 36% live births for my age group). There are other, very well regarded clinics in the program, but the transportation issues in NYC are very real – I could spend an hour or more each way,  and I just don’t have time for that, at least at this point. My case manager did make a point of saying that I could get a second opinion at any point, with no hassle – like always, I’d just have to tell her that I have an appointment. So that makes me happy.

Of course, the only time-critical bit of this is that I’m likely to only keep this job until my husband graduates from school – so sometime after June 2015. Hopefully, I’ll be pregnant long before then!! Given all my progress, and my research into the other clinics, I did make an appointment at the facility I wanted – March 20 at 1:30PM. We’re leaving for a trip that day as well, which is also stressing me out, so I thought I would combine stressors, lol. We’ll see how well that works/if it just drives me completely crazy.

The receptionist over the phone was very nice – I just need to bring my medical records (which we requested to be sent to me from the other doctor), my insurance card and my ID. I’m also considering bringing a summary coversheet with all the information – not because I don’t trust him but because I want him to get the full picture, and I know how busy these doctors are. So we’ll see how that goes – if I decide to do it, and what information I decide to include, etc. I feel like it could be helpful, though. I’ll let you know what I come up with.

So – how’s that for stepping forward? 11 days until my appointment!

Oh, and one lat thing I wanted to leave you with – last night, my work had it’s spring fundraiser. I was kind of dreading having to be there, but I ended up having a good time. They presented an award to a volunteer, who is also helping with the capital campaign to renovate the building we just purchased, and he said this at the end of his speech.

When you’re dealing with a big project, as we are with this building project, I have always said: Do what you can and let God do the rest. We have to do our part, as best as we can, and then have faith.