Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Boy, Oh Boy...

This post is going to be all about our journey to get Baby #2 here!  And let me just tell you, it's been quite the process!  I've been wanting to write about this for quite awhile now, but you know,  life happens and honestly, I've been waiting for the right time.  A part of me felt like maybe I didn't need to write about it, cause everyone close to us knows our story, and they're all that really matter anyway, right?  But then I thought about how much writing down the process, and the little details would mean to me, my husband, this precious baby and our future children down the road.  And I don't want any of us, especially this new baby, to forget just how much we wanted him!  I also feel like maybe, somehow, me talking openly about our fertility struggles will help someone else struggling, to not feel so alone.  Cause trust me, the road to overcoming infertility can be a lonely one.

So here we go...

In my last post, I had mentioned that I had miscarried a pregnancy last November.  I believe that is where I left things... So, jump ahead to a couple of months later, back in January of this year, where I found out that I was actually expecting again!  We were so, so excited as can be imagined!  But, towards the end of February, I found myself in my OB's office, where they weren't able to find anything on an ultrasound.  I would have been about 6.5 weeks along.  I was heartbroken.  Again.  To go through that once already was devastating, but then a second time?  Extremely difficult.  I asked them why I kept having these really early miscarriages, or "Chemical Pregnancies" as they called them.  They weren't really able to give me a clear answer, but blamed it on my PCOS and irregular hormones.  Lovely. 

Fast forward to May.  After taking a little break for a couple of months from trying so hard, I had the thought that maybe it was time to try again, but with some extra help.  Jace and I discussed the situation and decided that we would have a consult with the Utah Fertility Center in PG and see what they could do for us.  They gave us the option to try their "most affordable" treatment plan, that would in the end still be costing us close to $700, all out of pocket.  Now I know that $700 may sound like nothing in the world of fertility treatments, seeing as some couples pay thousands and thousands of dollars just to get one baby here, but for us, that $700 was a huge deal.  I mean, my husband does work extremely hard to provide for us, but we aren't millionaires by any means.  Despite the money, I still felt like it was definitely something we needed to do.  I was all in.  Jace on the other hand, (aka, Mr. Frugal) felt like we were being a little too aggressive, and was very hesitant, but that's a story for another time :) So after much thought, prayer and talking to our families, we decided to go for it.  

For the month of June, I was given a medication called Femara, which is like Clomid, but supposedly a little better for you.  I was monitored via ultrasound to check my follicles weekly and had routine blood tests done.  Once my follicles were mature, I had to give myself what they call a "trigger shot" to make me ovulate, and Jace and I were instructed to have timed intercourse (takes the fun right out of it, let me tell ya).  Then we waited for two weeks... (Longest two weeks of my life!)  After two weeks had passed, I was scheduled to go in for my HCG blood test.  This would tell me if I was pregnant or not.  The result came back later that same day, and it was negative.  If you thought we were devastated before, you can only imagine our disappointment this time around!  Trying so hard and being unsuccessful sucks yes, but it really, really sucks 10 times more when you tack on a $700 price tag.  

I was sad and heartbroken, yet again.  I felt defeated.  I felt broken.  I felt alone.  I felt like no amount of money would be able to get our baby here.  And after seeing the outcome, I completely understood why Jace was so hesitant in doing the treatment.  And then I was just mad.  Mad that it hadn't worked.  Mad that we spent all that money for nothing.  I wished we hadn't done it.  I was mad when I saw friends announcing their pregnancies.  I so badly wanted that to be me.  And I was mad at the insensitive people that kept asking us when we were going to give Ava a sibling.  If only they new how hard we were trying to make that happen.  I was pretty bitter for a time, and was ready to give up.  In fact, I came really close to doing just that.  Then I thought of a lesson we had in church a few weeks prior.  The lesson was on prayer, and there was one part that really stuck out to me: 

"Often God gives us the power to help answer our own prayers. As we pray for help, we should do all we can to bring about the things we desire."

As I read that over and over again, the anger I was feeling slowly went away.  Yes, it sucked that we spent all that money and were unsuccessful.  But we were TRYING.  Yes, $700 is a hefty amount to fork out for nothing, but we WERE able to do it, and not break the bank.  Maybe that treatment at the center did help my body get regulated in some way, we will never fully know, but we were doing ALL THAT WE COULD to bring about our desire to have another baby, and our Heavenly Father recognized our efforts.  I was ready to try again and move forward with faith.

Before doing another month of treatment with the fertility center,  I decided to go back and see the OB I had when I got pregnant with Ava.  Just to see if she could do anything different for me.  My meeting with her was so refreshing.  After months of so much heartbreak and negativity, she said things to me that gave me hope again.  I remember specifically one thing she said was, "Don't stress.  You've done this before.  You'll do it again.  We'll get you pregnant."  Such wonderful, encouraging words to hear after feeling so defeated.  

She put me on Femara, the same medication that the center used, but at a higher dose.  Because of my PCOS, I was taking a medication called Metformin and she increased that dosage as well.  Then she sent me on my merry way, and said good luck!  I was a little shocked.  I felt like there needed to be more to it.  After the weekly ultrasounds and blood work I had done at the center, I felt like just popping a few pills a day wouldn't be enough.  But, I went with it, and trusted her knowledge.  And I think the most important thing I did was RELAX.  

3 weeks later, I got a positive pregnancy test :) 

I felt every emotion possible with that pregnancy test.  I was happy, excited, and overjoyed!  And at the same time I was nervous, anxious and terrified.  Terrified that it wouldn't last.  After miscarrying twice before, it's almost something you expect to happen again.  I called my OB right away and scheduled my first appointment, which would take place when I was 6 weeks along.  The 2 weeks leading up to that appointment were hell.  I was an anxious mess.  Everyday expecting the worst.  The day of my appointment couldn't come soon enough.  But when it did, oh what a joyous day it was!  When we saw our little peanut on the ultrasound screen, with his perfect little fluttering heartbeat, the relief we felt was indescribable!
We knew we had a long way to go, but actually having proof of a viable pregnancy, really helped to ease all of our doubts and fears.
I was seen again 2 weeks later, when I was 8 weeks along, and everything still looked great!  

And then we went to Disneyland! (A trip that was already planned and paid for 6 months prior).  Perfect timing eh?  No matter how hard you try, you CANNOT plan this baby business!  And trust me, we tried! 
Despite the 100 degree temperatures, being 9 weeks pregnant, and sicker than a dog, we did have a blast.  But that's a whole different post in and of itself. 

So, here I am.  17 weeks today.  Due in April :)
This pregnancy really has been SO different than my pregnancy with Ava.  I think I threw up maybe once with her.  It was a glorious pregnancy.  But this time around, I was much, much more sick in those first few weeks.  To the point of retching so hard (sorry, TMI) that I ended up in the emergency room.  Thankfully, that was a one time thing.  But how grateful I was to be sick!  Sounds silly I know, but that was a wonderful confirmation to me of everything working as it was supposed to!   Around 12.5-13 weeks, I started feeling tremendously better.

We found out we were having a boy when I was just over 14 weeks.  I went into the ultrasound appointment almost expecting to find a boy just because of how different I had felt and how sick I had been.  Some may call it an Old Wives' Tale, to think that gender can affect how you feel during pregnancy, but I believe it!  

As to be expected, Jace was over the moon excited to find out he was getting his boy :) Ava said she wanted a sister, not a brother and it took me a few days to wrap my head around it!  But now that we've had time to let it sink in, we are ALL over the moon!  This little man is going to be so, so loved!
And my new little boyfriend is quite the mover already!  I started feeling his little flutters around 15 weeks!  Much sooner than with Ava, but I've heard it's normal to feel the second baby sooner.  It's been so fun and such a relief to feel him.  His favorite time to move around is at night, right before I go to bed :)  

And I can't forget to mention what an angel my wonderful firstborn has been.  She is so excited to finally be a big sister, and has been such an amazing helper already.  Oh, and she's 3 now!  Where did the time go??  She and baby brother will be 3.5 years apart, which is a bigger gap than we originally intended, but I think it will be perfect.  The Lord works in mysterious ways, and I know now without a shadow of a doubt that this little boy is coming to join our family right when he is supposed to :)

And now I'm going to end this novel with a fun little series of Baby Bump pictures!  Why? Because I can :)

And yes, I forgot to take one at 14 weeks.  
Welcome to pregnancy #2 :)