Life is marvellous and that would be putting it mildly. I love feeling our little man move around and he's getting stronger by the day. When things go right, pregnancy really is wonderful. It took us so long to get here so I really am trying my very best to enjoy every second of this pregnancy. I am feeling good and am happy to report that our beautiful boy is growing perfectly.
Here are some of the things that I'm feeling at the moment:
Baby's size: over 30cm from head to toe (crazy!)
(780grams according to our ultrasound at 25 weeks)
Symptoms standing out this week: The skin around my navel is beginning to be sore and dry so I'm moisturising it a lot to avoid scratching. Some hormonal rants. Hips continue to be sore.
I'm feeling: Just really, really lucky. We've recently moved house and that combined with work had me stressed for quite a while but now I'm sitting back and reminding myself everyday just how very lucky I am!
Food love: Cake... In any form and Nutella on bread/croissant
Things I'm loving at the moment: Feeling baby move all over the place, feeling baby hiccup this last week, my growing baby bump, deciding on baby products and furniture.
Things I'm not loving: My impending PhD submission deadline, the thought of winter when I'm in postpartum phase.
Currently living in: The stripe dress in the photo above (photo at 24 weeks) and a grey Monrow maternity dress from Shopbop... Heaven help me come cooler months - pants are so damn uncomfortable.
Looking forward to: Buying more baby things and furniture... Especially the Purebaby coat we found the other day.
Dreaming about: Weird things, as usual! The latest one was that I missed the opportunity to start breastfeeding because I had worn my new bras the whole after the birth.
At this point, I can happily report that I am healing up nicely although the last week has brought extreme exhaustion with it. Given it's winter here, I have been amping up my vitamin C intake just in case but I am attributing this to my body healing itself. I cannot say I am without pain, I have some internal bruising on my right side that is not budging!
Since my last post I can happily report that we have experienced a return to optimism in this house. Daniel and I have decided to treat this surgery and discovery of endometriosis as a very possible cause of our infertility. Rather than rushing into IVF we have decided to see if we can do this again ourselves.
This decision was spurred by a couple of things... Things got real and real fast, ladies! Our doctor has increased the length of our proposed IVF protocol to now include at least two months of 'down regulation'. This means that I would be in a menopause-like state before we start stimulation for IVF. The purpose of this treatment is to kill all endometrial tissue anywhere in my body. My doctor told me this with a nervous laugh and then went on to explain all the truly lovely side effects... dry everything(!), mood swings, hot flushes... After hearing all this the prospect of IVF this year started to feel stressful, overwhelming, yucky and a huge impediment to my PhD progress.
On top of all that, Daniel and I just need a break. We need a break from all the driving to appointments (now 1.5 hours away) and all the stress of treatments. We are both so drained from the last six months of IUIs, scans, tests, surgery and on top of all that, we have lives to live! When you're in the midst of trying to conceive everything else can start to be pushed aside including work and any kind of quality of life. My doctor has told me on several occasions to stop putting so much pressure on myself to fall pregnant and after all this time, I can finally understand what she has been telling me. So now the pressure is off and the focus is back on living. We each have a lot going on with work and we also need to settle in to our new town more but most importantly, we just need some 'us' time. The 'us' around here has definitely been neglected and has become a little frayed of late.
Unless we are advised otherwise, we are thinking IVF will have to wait until March or April next year. In that time I will have finished my PhD thesis, Daniel will have finished his first book and it should be published, we will have saved more money to make IVF plus a possible baby more possible and enjoyed life together a whole bunch more - sounds damn good to me!
Thank you to everyone who has sent me well wishes, I truly appreciate it!
I sit here nursing four incisions and a bruised up lower belly.
The long and the short of it: my doctor found a small deposit of old endometriosis tissue behind my left ovary.
For those of you wondering: No, I didn't ever have definitive symptoms that pointed to endometriosis. That said, I was curious because my body has NEVER been the same after our first miscarriage and D&C. I used to lay in bed crying at night cursing our old doctor and sending searing hate to her over my altered internal body. Daniel, our current doctor and myself are all very curious if my symptoms will fade now that this tissue has been removed.
So what now in terms of babies?
I haven't got a straight answer on that one. The jury is out in the scientific community in terms of the correlation between endometriosis and infertility. The jury is also out on whether or not this was the reason we have had such trouble conceiving. The jury is out on whether IVF is needed or not.
Our doctor seems to think we can get pregnant on our own with the caveat that she's really not sure how long it will take... I cried when we had that conversation. I think it was the combination of severe pain and a huge cocktail of anaesthetic and drugs... I just want definitive answers damn it!
I have to say it is damn well tempting to hold off on our date with IVF in November as we had planned... See what happens the old fashioned way now but another part of me is scared that we'll just be wasting precious time by waiting.
So yes... Watch this space.
For those of you curious about a diagnostic laparoscopy and removal of endometriosis:
I have experienced a lot more pain than I thought I would. Mostly because the deposit of tissue was in a hard to reach place (I'm thinking). Prepare for at least a week of feeling like rubbish; I spent one night in hospital as I was in severe pain and then the next few days on the lounge at home. I am almost a week out from surgery and feeling more mobile and less pain ridden but still very tired and glad I'm not working again until next week.
The best things I did to prepare:
I made sure our cupboards were stocked to the brim with everything
I made lots of soups the day before surgery and ate a mostly liquid diet for a few days (you don't want to be eating a three-course meal after that surgery and painkillers will constipate)
I washed all my big baggy tees and pants for lounging (you won't want anything tight rubbing your incisions - I actually have my pants slung like a homie-G because of the incisions)
Bought lots of panadol and nurofen
Bought stool softener
Things I wish I had done:
Made jelly and other liquid-based foods (I got mega over soup... thinking about soup makes me nauseous now)
Bought some nighties or baggy t-shirt dresses (pants are just so damn uncomfortable on my incisions)