Archive for August 23rd, 2006

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symptoms and ambivalence

First, I should say that I don't think I'm bleeding or spotting anymore. I've gone about 36 hours without noticing any and I've been looking pretty closely, morbid or gross as that may sound. I'm still cramping but not nearly as often, nor as severely, so that's also a plus.

Yesterday I kept having to leave my desk to pee. "Aha!" I thought, "A pregnancy symptom!" Yeah, but um, then I realized I'd had about 4 liters of water to drink that day. So yeah. Not quite. So now I'm wondering if severe, unquenchable thirst is an early symptom of pregnancy. I don't think so, and I've never heard of it, but I'm kind of curious. Because I was THAT kind of thirsty yesterday. It's not every day that I drink 4 liters of water!

Also I'm queasy. Not really nauseated yet. And I'm not throwing up. But my stomach is a little skiddish.

There's a theory that it's possible I will stop getting migraines when I'm pregnant. Well, so far that hasn't proven true, but the other day I read something that suggested that migraine relief is primarily in the 2nd and 3rd trimester, so I wouldn't be getting that benefit yet anyway. Yesterday I had a horrendous migraine. There are, of course, limited things I can take for it, so there wasn't much relief other than sleep. I'm truly hoping that the theories work out and that I'll be migraine-free in the second and third trimesters. You know, if I make it that far.

My allergies are ridiculous. This is another one of those "theories". The theory is that since pregnancy is a state of immunosuppression and allergies are an immune response, allergies are often better during pregnancy. Again, this is more likely to happen during the second and third trimester when the natural steroid levels produced by your body are increased. Yet another reason to pray that someday I make it to the second trimester and beyond.

In other news, I'm a bit ambivalent about my current status. On the one hand I want to be excited. On the other hand, it doesn't seem real yet, and I don't really trust it. I'm hoping that if all goes well at my ultrasound on Friday, I'll be able to allow myself a little tiny bit of excitement.

I'm nervous though, because I don't think I was quite prepared for this. I was so absolutely sure that the fourth IUI had failed. I was so sure that the fifth we had planned would fail and I was already mentally prepared for an October IVF schedule. I feel like all of a sudden I'm reaching the end of my safety net at the Fertility Clinic. I have no idea at what point they will turn me loose to an OB, though I suspect it will be 8 or 10 weeks. I don't know if I'll ever see my RE again after Friday. I feel foolish asking, but WANT to ask, "okay, so if this all works out, and I have a baby, how long do I wait before I call you back up and start all over?" I feel pessimistic asking, "Okay, so if this doesn't work out and I miscarry after you've released me, how soon before I can come back?" but I want to.

Worse, I have no idea where to go once I'm released to an OB. I don't even think I WANT an OB. I will not go back to my OB/GYN practice. My doctor really gave me a serious attitude about going to the fertility clinic "behind her back" (I did no such thing). And she makes me feel like an irresponsible person for getting pregnant or even trying to get pregnant, before losing weight.

You know what? I'm fat. I get that. I do eat a healthy diet. I was an athlete for a long time (though no more). I know how to take care of myself. I DO take care of myself. And when I was 22, I gained 60 pounds in 5 weeks for absolutely no good reason and then put on another 30 over the next year or so, again for absolutely no good reason. At the time that I gained that weight, I was at the gym 5 days a week and walking several miles a day to and from the train station. Am I that active anymore? No, I'm not. You know how hard it is to maintain that level of activity with an extra 90 pounds to carry around? The bottom line is, I've finally gotten to a point where I'm maintaining. I'm not gaining weight (though if this whole pregnancy thing works out, I'll be gaining some weight, of course), I'm maintaining. And my primary doctor is completely happy with me just maintaining and told me to stop blaming myself for not doing more. I'm fat. I get that. I also get that I'm relatively healthy. The health problems I do have don't have a thing to do with my weight. I have good vitals, low blood pressure, slightly elevated triglycerides (which is normal with PCOS whether or not the patient is overweight), and good cardiovascular health. My OB has no right making me feel irresponsible for thinking I had a right to try to get pregnant.

So the point is, I'm not going back to my OB/Gyn Practice. Even if I didn't have those personal issues with them, nearly every woman I know that's used them as an OB practice (and I know over a dozen women who have gone there) has ended up induced or having had her membranes stripped in at least one pregnancy. Now, I get that sometimes, that's just the way it goes. But it sure does seem like it is simply the normative practice of the group and that irritates me. It could very well be that if I make it that far, I'll be all about saying "Just take the kid out, please!" But I certainly would prefer that it be a discussion, not something that's taken out of my hands. (I know at least one woman who was told at the end of one of her prenatal appointments with this practice, "by the way, I stripped your membranes, so don't be surprised if your water breaks soon." No discussion. No permission. It just seems invasive to me)

Right. So I don't know where I'm going to go. I feel ridiculous calling so early to find a practice to go to, because gosh there are just so many things that can go wrong at this point! But you're supposed to have your first OB appointment between 8 and 10 weeks, and I'm at 5 1/2 now and I know sometimes there are long waits for first appointments because they are so long. But if I make those calls, then I start committing myself to this whole thing and frankly I'm not quite over the whole, "I'm infertile, I'm never having children" thing yet.

And I keep thinking maybe I'd like to go to The Maternity Center at least for my pre-natal care, but then I realize they're in Bethesda and if I have to deliver in a hospital I'd have to go up to Shady Grove which is far, instead of Holy Cross, which is only 2 miles away, and then I remind myself that I'm getting completely ahead of myself because for all I know, I don't have a real, live baby growing inside me and I shouldn't count my chickens before they hatch. But then I think, well, that's just dumb, of course you should count on this working out. And don't you think ENOUGH doctors have been involved getting me to this point at all? Don't you think I should be allowed to have a midwife who is going to support my desires to have a natural childbirth if possible? Who will be my advocate and not my enemy?

Or am I just being stupid?

Phooey. This is ridiculous. I just need to get to my ultrasound on Friday and ask my RE what she thinks about some of this stuff, right? RIGHT?

Le sigh.

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