Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Walking on Sunshine

Woooah, and don't it feel good! 

*happy dances*

Finally getting around to updating again and boy have a lot of things changed!  Last time I blogged, a real blog not just a quick announcement, I was gearing up for my mid-cycle ultrasound preceding my 3rd round of IUI.  The ultrasound went great!  I ended up having 3 follicles (future eggs) ready for release.  One large one in my left ovary and two slightly smaller but still mature ones in my right.  Basically this meant the Clomid worked like a charm!  
Basically, this is what the follicles look like via ultrasound. 
Besides finding out I had a few good eggs, I also was informed via afternoon phone call that my blood test indicated I was actually having my LH surge and that I would need to come back in the following morning for the IUI.  This came as somewhat of a surprise considering the OPKs (Ovulation predictor kits) were still reading negative.  I had explained to my doc that I felt I was ovulating earlier than the OPK was predicting the previous months, and don't you know that a woman knows her body way better than any instrument of science!  Basically what I'm saying here is that I was right!  

When the doc called me with the surge news, he also informed me I would no longer need to take the Ovidrel shot he had prescribed me.  Since this shot is for inducing ovulation, and I was obviously once again ovulating on my own without a hitch, this meant the shot was obsolete.  Well, I hate to admit this, but I took my fertility into my own hands at this point.  Although I was about to ovulate naturally, I read that some docs still had their patients take the shot as a little "extra boost."  I figured what the heck?  Couldn't hurt right?  Basically I wanted to guarantee that I ovulated within the right time-frame of my IUI and that all three of those eggs would release.  I know this increases the chance of multiples, but it also, more importantly, increases the chance of pregnancy as a whole.  And this being my 3rd IUI, I was ready for this to work!

I thought long and hard about taking the Ovidrel shot, did my research, weighed my options, and at 12:30pm I injected myself.  I felt I was truly making the right choice, and I had already proven once that my intuition was correct.  I did not however inform my doc of this move during my IUI the following morning.  Now I need to say here that I in no way condone making these types of decisions for yourself unless you are really comfortable with it and willing to accept fault if something goes wrong.  I have always been remarkably in-tune with my body, probably all those years of being a ballet dancer, and I just knew I was making the right decision.  Well, I guess I was once again correct (or it could just be coincidence) because I am pregnant!!!!  Okay, trying not to get ahead of myself, so I'll backtrack to the IUI.

I am the kind of girl who feels things deeply and takes things as signs (INFJ remember?).  My mom is Wiccan and I have a great deal of Pagan in me.  Mother nature gives us all kinds of signs, and there were several this month that pointed to a positive outcome.  Here is a brief synopsis of those:
Just knew this was going down!

  1. My nieces stayed with us over the weekend post ultrasound and pre IUI.  My youngest niece is learning the art of reading Runes.  Her first simple reading, asking a simple yes or no question, revealed the answer as a very strong positive!  She informed us afterwards the question was about whether or not I would be pregnant this month.  The force is strong with that one!
  2. My IUI, for the first time, went off without a hitch.  My cervix gave the doctors problems on both the first and second ones.  The first time it just wouldn't open right and it took two tries to insert the catheter.  On the second one my cervix pushed the catheter back out and once again it took a second try to do the injection.  On this 3rd go round the catheter went in with no resistance whatsoever!
  3. My doctor told my mom in the hallway after the IUI that he would be seeing us in two weeks for my pregnancy blood test.  No word this time to call if I started my period.  It's like he even knew that this time was the right time.
  4. I found my lost fertility gris-gris my mom gave me (remember I said she was Wiccan).  It had mysteriously disappeared out of my purse and mysteriously reappeared in my office chair a few days after my IUI.  And call me superstitious or whatever, but I immediately placed it under my mattress so it could work it's magic on my girly parts at night.  
  5. My nipples never stopped hurting the entire two week wait.  This same symptom had occurred with my first IUI.  That was the one where I mysteriously started my period 6 days post IUI and a good full week ahead of schedule.  That was due to my uterine lining not being as thick as it needed to be to maintain a pregnancy, hence why they put me on meds to fix that issue.  I swear that first IUI worked, and I started bleeding (excuse the TMI) around the time implantation should have occurred.  In  my head I just know the two are connected--egg was fertilized, tried to implant in a non-ready uterus, and boom, fail!  I could be wrong, but I find it awfully coincidental that the sore nipple symptom was extremely prevalent in the first and third IUIs.  After both of them I just felt like it had worked.  I never really felt that way after the second one, although I maintained a positive outlook just the same.
  6. My boobs began to swell.  I'm not a large girl, so any increase in breast size is definitely noticeable.  And they started to get sore after about a week and a half.  I just knew that was a good sign! 
So there you go, all my signs that to me were indicative of a successful IUI.  So when did I actually find out I was preggers you ask?  I had the IUI on July 16th and on July 24th I decided to test with an HPT (Home Pregnancy Test).  No, I wasn't expecting it to pick up any pregnancy hormones at this point.  This test was just to see if the Ovidrel shot had left my body yet.  You see, the Ovidrel contains hCG, the pregnancy hormone, and it can give you a false positive on an HPT if it has not yet left your system.  So when the HPT came back negative, I knew that any test showing a positive after that one would not be a false positive.  By that Friday, the 27th, I was itching to take another HPT!  I just knew in my soul that it was going to be positive!  I got up that morning and went straight to the bathroom to do the deed.  However, I then realized I was out of HPTs...the horror!  So I did the next best thing and pee'd on an OPK.  Now an OPK cannot reliably predict a pregnancy.  It is designed to pick up the LH hormone but can also pick up the hCG hormone.  Those two hormones have almost identical chemical make-ups.  One website describes them as being identical twins except that the hCG twin is wearing a hat.  
http://www.peeonastick.com/opkhpt.html

An OPK can pick up the hCG hormone along with the LH hormone, but an HPT can only pick up the hCG.  This is why you are not really supposed to use one in place of the other.  But I was anxious and used the OPK anyway.  And low and behold it was showing a faint positive line.  Normally I do not have a faint positive unless I am getting ready to have my LH surge.  So I took this as a very good sign and on the way to work I stopped in at the drug store and picked up some First Response 6 Days Sooner tests.  These are supposed to be the most sensitive ones on the market, so they seemed liked the right choice.

After getting to work, I waited about an hour and then couldn't stand it any long...I had to pee on one!  And the result?  A definite, albeit somewhat faint second line...a positive line!  WOOHOO!!!!  At 3:30 am, after waking from a dream that this was all in my head, I had to pee on another one...the second line was darker.  At 2:30pm later that day, I did it again...and once again the line had gotten darker!  I definitely was not crazy, all sticks pointed to a baby!
Top one is from the 27th and bottom is from the 28th!

Monday morning I called my doc and they had me come in for my blood work on Tuesday the 31st.  I anxiously waited all day for a callback.  At 4pm I finally got that callback.  My hCG levels were at 242.7, a very good number if not a little above average for where I am in my pregnancy.  I now have to go in again tomorrow for a second blood test to make sure my hCG levels are rising as they should and also to check my progesterone levels to make sure they are in the normal range.  

Needless to say, I am overly joyed and bouncing off the walls!!!  So far I am not really having any major pregnancy symptoms except for fatigue, needing to pee a lot, swollen boobs, and of course the ever fun bloating!  My progesterone meds also cause bloating, so I'm doubled up in that respect right now...literally!  But no morning sickness or weird cravings or other such stuff as of yet.  I'm sure those will be kicking in within the next two weeks, so you'll be hearing about all that soon enough.  

Well once again that catches everyone up to the present moment.  I would have blogged about it sooner, but just wanted to hold off knowing that the next time I got on here I would be sharing tremendously terrific news!  Hopefully everything will continue to go smoothly and I won't have any problems.  I am perfectly aware that there is always a chance for miscarrying this early on, hence why a lot of people choose not to announce a pregnancy till after the first trimester.  Some would say it is even bad luck.  However in my case, since I have chosen to document everything as it occurs, I felt it important to go ahead an announce the  news.  I will deal with things as they come, but I have that deeply felt intuition that everything will be hunky-dory!   
So amazing!  Best week ever!

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