So where did we leave off…?
Two lines on a non-expired pregnancy test.
Upon discovering that the previously peed-upon expired test may not have been hurtfully wrong after all, I finally told the husband what I’d discovered. Like me, he was skeptical and doubtful, and basically every negative feeling that comes along with finding yourself in a situation in which you’ve been burned previously.
We didn’t talk about it much. I called my OB the next day (having discovered that my old RE no longer considered me a patient since it had been over nine months since they’d last seen me) and scheduled two blood draws for 48 hours apart.
The first came back – low, but acceptable at 29.
I actually breathed a little sigh of relief at that; in my previous pregnancy, the one I miscarried after eightish weeks, my first beta had only been 17, which was concerningly low.
I basically held my breath for 48 hours after that until the results of the second beta came back.
The OB nurse was extremely pleased, and said that the doctor was too. They’d see me in three weeks for an ultrasound. Congratulations, bye.
So then the husband and I were left to deal with that news. We didn’t share it with anyone initially. I was terrified that I’d miscarry again, that this little Jelly Bean wouldn’t develop and we wouldn’t know it until the ultrasound. We rarely spoke of the pregnancy to each other, though it loomed over us like an ominous dark cloud, full of the terrifying unknown.
Aside from the fear that I’d miscarry again, I was also afraid that my support group would find out. There’s a certain protocol involved in letting your group know when a member is pregnant, and I had no idea how to do that, since our group was basically ONE MONTH OLD. I also had no clue how to let them know that it was their host, their organizer that was the pregnant one! I started the group fully expecting to be the old infertile standby, reliable in my infertility and always a shoulder upon which to cry. I never expected to be the first victim of the group’s rule that pregnant members would leave the group after their first trimester.
That was the biggest reason I didn’t share my news sooner. That, and the crippling fear. Fear that this was real, that it might actually work out this time, and fear that it might not. Again. So weeks went by and I continued to keep this to myself.
When the day of the ultrasound arrived, three days before Mother’s Day, I was a wreck. I didn’t think I’d be able to function a full day at work waiting for an appointment, so I scheduled it for first thing in the morning. My bladder was full, and I was shaking.
The husband was with me when the sonographer put that little wand on my belly, and as I was telling her that I was only technically seven weeks and that I doubted she’d be able to see anything abdominally, there was the little bean, complete with a flickering heartbeat.
All I remember is her saying “there’s your baby, and there’s its heartbeat”, and myself saying “oh God, thank you” with half a sob. The husband was on the verge too, and he held my hand and kept me grounded.
We moved on to the good ol’ dildocam portion of the interview, which I was much more familiar with, and there was so much more to see. The sonographer was amazing, talking us through every little measurement she took, and showing us our baby at all different angles. She printed a ton of pictures for us, including some 3D shots which were very cool to see so early, and gave us some “baby’s first picture” magnets that she said we could give our moms for Mother’s Day if we so chose.
We had a perfectly measuring little bean on board. Based on the first day of my last period, they said I was 7weeks 1day, but I was measuring 7weeks even. Based on ovulation, which was a day later than their calculations allowed, I was 7weeks on the dot, and measuring perfectly.
Jelly Bean had a heart rate of 148, and is due on Christmas Day.
I cannot imagine anything more perfect.
So that’s it. That’s my confession.
I’m so sorry I had to hide this truth from you all for so long, and honestly, it was one of the hardest secrets I’ve ever had to keep. For weeks now I’ve simultaneously wanted to scream this from the rooftops with happiness, and come to my online family for consolation in my moments of darkest fear.
I’ve learned that keeping things like this to myself is not the best way to go for me, but for the husband and I and our situation, we needed to keep this close to the vest for a while.
After our 7 week scan, I was seen again at 10 weeks, where Jelly Bean had a heart rate of 180 and was waving his or her little arm buds around at us. I spent days and hours feeling terrified in my anxiety that something would go wrong, however amazing the scans have been. The anxiety has been crippling and exhausting, but things are still going well.
At 12 weeks, we had an NT scan with our hospital’s Maternal Fetal Medicine docs. Jelly Bean looked definitively more human then, and far less jelly-bean-like. He or she has a quick, strong heartbeat, and it both soothes and excites me beyond belief every time I’m able to hear it.
Tomorrow I will be 14 weeks pregnant, starting my second trimester. Surreal.
We’re more thrilled now, and less terrified, though the anxiety overtakes me regularly. My OB agreed to additional monitoring to help me get through the first trimester without having a panic attack (though there were some close calls), and they’ve been very accommodating considering my history. I didn’t suffer from much in the way of morning sickness, but I did – and still do – have a very real and pressing need to have food in my stomach at all times. Oh, and my sleep schedule is now 7pm to 4am with frequent trips to the bathroom, so that’s fun.
No really. I say a little prayer of thanks every time I wipe sleep-crusties out of my eyes and wonder why I bother to stop drinking water in the evening when my body is obviously turning into nothing more than a super-efficient urine factory. It’s all I’ve ever wanted, honestly.
Our families know – we told them on Mother’s Day – and they are thrilled for us. My support group has been informed, and though the feedback has been positive, there will be much to be dealt with in making sure the group members feel supported in their feelings, and in handing the reins over to someone else down the road.
We know that at 14 weeks, we’re out of the so-called danger zone, but of course we’re not fully out of the woods yet (are we ever?); however, we are optimistic about the future and all of the possibilities it holds for the collective “us” that is our family.
All in all, things are going well. I couldn’t ask for more than this, honestly. It was completely unexpected, and the shock of it nearly killed me with all of its ups and downs… but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
There’s more to the story than this, but I’ll leave that post for another day.
For now, please just know that miracles do happen.
Sometimes when you’re not even looking.
Sometimes when you’re thisclose to moving on.
Sometimes even when you’re white-girl wasted.
Twerk on, my friends.