She’s Here!!!!

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I’ve attempted to write this several times over the past four weeks but, ya know, the demands of a newborn and all…. I certainly can’t complain! We are absolutely in love with our daughter and are so in awe of her and all that she has brought to us. 😀

On March 21st at roughly 10pm, our little baby girl finally made her entrance and, while almost nothing went as planned, it was still a wonderful experience. Let me first say that I had hopes of a water birth at the birth center but gestational diabetes made me give that hope up early. I really wanted as little intervention as possible but we went into week 41 and our little overdue baby was way too comfy inside me and didn’t seem to want out, which meant that we had to start planning an induction and, inevitably, we ended up with a c section. Not the route I was hoping for but we have our healthy little baby girl and, while I still mourn the birth I had hoped for, at the end of the day, her being here and healthy is really all that matters.

Since she was late, we had an induction scheduled for the 21st but they had me do prostaglandin gels the three days prior. On Sunday the 19th, I started having some surges (I did hypnobirthing so this is what we called contractions) but they went away after a few hours. On Monday the 20th, after the final round of gel, I started have more surges starting around 7:30pm. They weren’t regular or consistent but they definitely got my attention and I couldn’t lay down to sleep later on that evening so I sat on my birth ball and breathed through the surges as best I could. At 11:30pm my water broke and let me just say that I was so lucky that it broke while I was on the toilet and not sitting on my couch! Phew… After my water broke, I called the midwife and texted my doula (and of course woke up my wife). She wanted to shower and things were still relatively calm so I let her get showered as I got our bags together. Surges still weren’t regular but things seemed like they were getting started and I was excited that this may mean we didn’t have to do the Pitocin the next day.

When we got to the hospital, they checked me and found that there was meconium in the amniotic fluid. I was moved to a room and, although I had brought several comfort measure items that we learned about in the comfort measures class that I took (rice sock, frog togg, etc.), I had started having pretty constant lower back pain even between surges. I had been having the feeling during surges but as the night went on, it just seemed to stay in between surges and really was something that I wasn’t able to take my mind off of. I mean, let me be frank, this shit just plain hurt! The hypnobirthing tried to focus on the fact that birth wasn’t painful but this back pain was painful…no two ways around it! About this time, I really wanted my doula there because Shit. Was. Getting. Real. She got there around 4 am and was awesome! I’d definitely recommend a doula and I would definitely spend the money for one in the future. She walked me through some things, did some massage, and encouraged me throughout. She was just a great resource and a constant throughout.

I had previously told my wife and the doula that I didn’t want meds if I could avoid them and that I should have to ask for meds like three times to make sure I really wanted them. I remembered this and quickly started mentioning meds because I was like, fuck this, I need all the meds and I need them now! My wife and the doula were all, “You can do this!” and “You’re doing great!” and I’m all, “No, seriously, I want fucking medication… “ But, I held out for awhile. During the morning, I was really just over the back pain and I said fuck this, I’m not even talking about it with the doula and my wife and I just asked the midwife. She talked about some drug options but also told me about an option that involved saline injections. She told me the shots would feel like bee stings but I thought it would be worth trying. What I didn’t realize was that this involved FOUR shots and that each one felt like a bee sting. I will say that the bee sting pain was pretty quick and fleeting and after all the shots, I felt like I was on cloud 9. I was like, yaaaasssss….this I can do! I finally felt like I could get up and do some of the things I had wanted to do. I changed into the gown I had brought, put out some items I’d brought from home (pictures, etc), and got out my music. I was finally feeling more in control and like this was going to be closer to the experience I was hoping for….but that feeling didn’t last long. Of course the second I felt better they were all, lets start Pitocin… I really really really did not want Pitocin but I knew this was a possibility since I was overdue and had GD so I didn’t really have any option because this was the day they would induce either way.

Once that Pitocin kicked in, shit somehow got even more real and the surges were coming longer and stronger and I decided that I needed way more medication. Everyone was saying how good I seemed to handle the surges and that I looked very focused and calm and I was like, I don’t give two shits what I look or seem like, I need an epidural and I needed it yesterday! I found out that I needed to take a full bag of saline before getting it but the anesthesiologist came in and said she’d do the epidural and it was like the heavens opened up and angels were singing. Of course my lovely nurse pointed out the saline hadn’t all gone in and she was trying to argue whether I got the epidural. The doctor almost deferred to her and I was two seconds from gauging this lady’s eyes out but she didn’t argue and I got my epidural. The relief was so great! After the epidural I couldn’t feel anything. Like, nothing. I mean, my legs felt like two hams were lying in the bed and it was so bizarre. I wasn’t able to move around like I had wanted but, in all honesty, I had stopped wanting to move around after they started the Pitocin. In this situation, I’m so glad I got the epidural but if it hadn’t been for the Pitocin, I really think I would have been fine without the epidural.

After getting the epidural, I could finally get some rest and things started progressing and by 7 pm on the 21st, almost 24 hours after the surges started, I was finally at 10 cm and we started pushing. I literally could not feel anything so pushing was a real challenge because I didn’t have that urge since I couldn’t feel any of the surges or the baby as she was moving down. After about an hour of pushing, her heart rate wasn’t doing well even in between pushes and the backup doctor for my midwife came in told me that we needed to do a c section. She was actually pretty rude about it and basically said something along the lines of, “listen sweetie, this isn’t gonna happen and you need to do a c section” followed by telling me that she and another doctor had been watching for the last hour and she didn’t even realize I was her patient but they were saying how “this one” was going to section. I was pretty annoyed at this, especially since the midwife said that maybe the doctor would check me and see if the baby was far enough to be vacuumed out but she wouldn’t even check me. I stayed as calm as possible and asked some questions. We weren’t going to be able to do skin to skin right away, no delayed cord clamping, my wife couldn’t cut the cord. It really sucked because we had literally had every single thing we planned go out the window. Like I said, I wanted a water birth at the birthing center with minimal intervention and I got a c section at the hospital after Pitocin and an epidural. And having the c section meant that I knew I’d never get the birth I wanted because I am not not able to do a birth center birth. I can certainly do a VBAC in the future but it will have to be at the hospital and honestly, I’m pretty bummed about it. I have this beautiful experience in my head and I’ll never get to have that experience and it kind of sucks but I know that I’m just so lucky to even be in the position of having a baby so I’m trying to just look at the positive side. I have this wonderful baby that I get to watch grow and become an amazing person and that’s really all that matters!!

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40 weeks and counting

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Well, half of my pregnancy has passed since I last wrote and I’m so happy to report that all is well! We are just waiting on little miss to make her arrival. My due date was yesterday and I currently feel like I have a bowling ball in my pelvic area so, yeah, that’s fun! 🙂

I was able to manage the gestational diabetes with diet and exercise so that has been good. It’s definitely been an extra hassle having to prick my fingers 4x a day and going to the specialist on top of our regular visits. Especially these last few weeks when we’ve had weekly appointments with both! But….all of this, all of the ups and downs, the waiting, how long it took to get here…it was all worth it!

Can’t wait until we are holding our little baby in our arms and that should be coming very very very soon! I’m sort of hoping for Wednesday during the day because my favorite midwife is on call that day and would be with us for the birth. So long as she comes before we get to 41 weeks, we won’t have to worry about an induction so that is all I really want to make sure to avoid at this point.

Looking forward to the next update which I’m sure will come after she’s here! 😀

 

 

22 Weeks and Counting!!

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So it’s been a long time since I’ve posted! We’ve had a lot going on but I’m happy to report that all is well! We found out that we’re expecting a little girl and I am so thrilled because we both have so many boys in our family.

The only bad thing is that they diagnosed me with Gestational Diabetes. What stinks about that is they found it early (they tested early since my dad is Type 2) and since they found it early they are telling me they count that as regular diabetes and I have to do my birth at the hospital. This stinks because I was hoping to do a water birth and really wanted to be at the birthing center. I had picked up an A1C test at the store after getting the results to see what it indicated and it had showed as if I was not diabetic or prediabetic the 3 months prior so I do think it is GD…but I did this when I first found out a few weeks ago so who knows what my numbers will look like now. I’ve asked if they can run A1C to see if they can determine that I didn’t really have diabetes and if I could possibly stay at the BC and they did do that so I’m just waiting for the results. I wish they would have told me sooner though so we could have done the test earlier. Obviously, all that matters is that we are having a healthy baby but I can’t help but be bummed about the fact that my birth plan is not going as planned. If there was any sort of risk, I totally get it but if I’m able to manage with diet and exercise then I really want the opportunity to birth at the BC. I guess we’ll see what the A1C says and we’ll go from there!

Besides that, I’ve been busy getting our registry together and that has been super fun! 😀 Also, the baby shower is scheduled and everyone officially knows about the baby. And I’ve been feeling her move a lot more lately so that has been exciting. Things are starting to feel real!

I must say that I had no idea how expensive daycare is and I also didn’t know that I should have been placing myself on a waitlist like 6 months before getting pregnant! Here I thought I was getting stuff done early by reaching out now and everywhere has 1-1.5 year waitlists or they are nowhere near my home or job. I’ve got several e-mails out so I’m waiting to hear back and hopefully something will work out! Of course, after we’re signed up I have to figure out how we’re actually supposed to pay for what will amount to the cost of a second mortgage payment each month….

That’s all for now!

 

 

10 Weeks!

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10 weeks and 1 day today but, whose counting? 🙂 Things are stilling going well. We went to the OB/GYN last week and got to hear the heart beat for the first time…while we’ve seen one before, we’ve never heard so this was great! The doctor was nice but, even though my wife and I were both there and the paperwork had nothing filled for the “father section” and indicated using donor sperm, she asked my if the “father” was tested for cystic fibrosis. I said the donor was tested for many things and pulled out the paperwork from the   cryobank. It’s funny, the fertility specialist made us meet with a counselor before we got started and one of the things specifically discussed was that we shouldn’t refer to the donor as father/dad (which we hadn’t planned to do anyway), but the point is they clearly understand that it’s important that we just refer to the donor as a “helper” or something of the sort. And then here we go to the doctor who is asking us about a father. It’s just funny how some of the doctors are not up on these processes and the appropriate way to respond to same sex couples.

Anyway, besides that, everything was good. The reason we wanted to go to the OB/GYN was because we wanted to see the baby again since we’re just worried about the possibility of miscarriage but their ultrasound is really not as good as the fertility doctor’s. At first I didn’t see anything and I was like what the hell?? Then I saw the little blip of a heart but still the picture she printed and what we saw was not very clear. Oh well, just happy to see that little flicker of a heart beat! We also went to the OB/GYN thinking that they’d do all of the first term genetic testing (nuchal translucency), but we found out they’d send us somewhere else anyway so we’re just going to go to the birthing center for our scheduled appt. this week and continue with them from here on out.

We visited the other birthing (Bay Area Midwifery) center in the area and I definitely prefer the first one we went to (Special Beginnings). Don’t get me wrong BAM had bigger and somewhat nicer rooms but I didn’t realize they were so associated with the hospital. They’re a freestanding center on the hospital campus but they still do most (75%) of their births at the hospital. I asked if that was by the women’s choice or for some other reason and they said mostly the women’s choice, but it still seems odd. For those who do want to do a birth in the birth center, everything is right on top of each other. At special beginnings there is an upstairs where only those giving birth would be and a downstairs where people going for regular visits go, so it’s pretty separate. Also, there are 4 rooms at SB and the upstairs is almost like a full one floor house with a kitchen that people can go to that is not right on top of the rooms…I mean, it’s close, don’t get me wrong, but the one at BAM is literally right in between the two rooms used for birthing with no hallway so anyone who comes to visit us would be right outside the room and could probably hear everything instead of being down a hallway somewhat. Another big turn off is that they don’t have a birthing tub at BAM and I really want to use one. It’s funny, they said they don’t have one because their rooms are smaller than SB and they have nowhere to put it for people to use but then we go look at the rooms and they’re actually bigger! They do have jacuzzi tubs but I want the birthing tub because it’s bigger and deeper. The one good thing about visiting with BAM is that I found out about the place they send people to for the NT test and I like it better than where the OB/GYN was going to send us. BAM uses the Center for Maternal and Fetal Medicine which I like because they obviously specialize in pregnancy and these tests. The OB/GYN just wanted me to go to one of those imaging places that does everything from MRIs to CT scans and other general imaging scans so I just feel like they aren’t as specialized. Not that what they would do would be bad but I just feel like I’d prefer to go to a specialized place.

So, next steps are an appt with the birthing center, then the NT scan in about 2 1/2 weeks, and then we’ll be out of this dreaded 1st term and able to share our news with more family and friends! Can’t wait for that. 🙂

Graduation Day!

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Well, we graduated from our fertility doctor’s office today!! Best. Graduation. Ever. 🙂

I was really nervous leading up to this because this is how far we got last time. But when the picture came up, I saw the little flicker of the heart beat and the doctor said, ‘how cute!’ and I was like ohmigosh, that’s our baby!!

So, next we get to go to our doctor or midwife. For birth, we do want to go with a midwife and we will be doing one of the birthing centers. However, we’ve decided to go the rest of the 1st trimester with our OB/GYN. For one, they seem to be able to get me in much quicker since I called this week and was able to get an appt for next week. Two, with our previous miscarriage I just feel super antsy and want to see the baby on an ultrasound again so I figure we’ll go and get one visit with an ultrasound and then we’ll do the genetic testing there around 12 weeks, which we would have had to go elsewhere if we just went through the birthing center anyway and it will give us another ultrasound. After that, we’ll transfer and make all remaining appts at the birthing center. We also want to visit the other freestanding birthing center before we make our final decision and, again, they just seem to take longer to get appts so that was made a few weeks ago but is the same day as our 1st OB appt!

It’s just so astonishing to me how big our little baby is already. Just a few weeks ago our baby was the size of a sesame seed(!) and I was eating a sesame bagel going, hey look at all these babies on here! lol…I’m a goofball. Anyway, today we grabbed a bagel before the appt and I know the baby is around the size of a raspberry and I’m like, wow, look how much bigger our baby is now?!

 

Numbers

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Went to the doctor for our second beta and everything is looking good! HCG Numbers are at 1028 today. One more blood test Monday and then we’ll be on to doing a sonogram–I can’t wait! Of course it is a little bittersweet since today is actually the due date for the baby that I miscarried back in December. Mostly, I’m just happy though and focusing on the positive news we have in front of us.

I have been feeling a little bit more symptoms this time around then last time. The first time I had next to no nausea but would need to make sure I had snacks and didn’t get hungry, had sore breasts like once, and other than that, no major symptoms. This time around, I’ve been having sore breasts daily for the past week or so, still not too nauseous, but I definitely need the snacks, I’ve had horrible heartburn, weird feelings in my stomach at times (like little pings or something), and trouble sleeping the past few nights. Although I don’t want to get too sick or anything like that, I kind of like having more noticeable symptoms because it’s a little reassurance that things are still going as they should and baby is still growing.

I’ve updated the apps that I had started using with our last pregnancy. I’m pretty sure I checked out like 10 different apps to see what I liked best. I narrowed it down to three that I use (I like them for different reasons) and I’ll put them below in case anyone else is looking for a good app. My favorite part though is seeing the little pic they have of the baby and what s/he would look like. I put in the date of IFV transfer and got my due date as March 10 so it’s saying I should be 5 weeks today. We’ll see what the doctor says I measure at when I go back.

I’m also looking at where we want to birth. I’ve been pretty certain for years that I would want to use a birthing center over the hospital. We have two options in our area–Bay Area Midwifery and Special Beginnings. Special Beginnings is a little further but my nephew was born there so I’ve been there and I also like that there’s a little more transparency with what to expect and what they have to offer on their website. I can’t find anything on on the other one’s site. So we signed up to do the tour in a couple of weeks for Special Beginnings and I guess we’ll decide if we want to also tour the other place.

Okay, so the apps I like are:

-Nurture by Glow (or Glow by Nurture?? I don’t know) but I mostly like the cute little picture it puts of what the baby looks like as soon as I open it. It has some nice log features that you can fill out about your health, etc. too.

-Pregnancy+ I also like this one because of the picture it shows of how the baby is growing. This one looks a little more realistic. When you open it up it also has areas where you can read about what to expect for the week, etc. You can store names you like for the baby and put important phone numbers and health items in it.

-Ovia Pregnancy – the pictures on this aren’t so great. They don’t pop up automatically like the others do so I just don’t get the same excitement when I open it. My favorite thing about it is that you can customize and put a nickname in (or the actual name if you’d like) and when you read about what’s going on, it incorporates that into the narrative. That part of it is pretty cute and it does have good info to review as well.

All for now.

It’s Official!!!

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Well, the day seemed to stretch on forever as I not so patiently waited for the call. Finally, at 2 the familiar number flashed across my screen. I never answer it on these days…I just don’t want to be on the phone with someone if it’s negative news. My heart started pounding pretty quickly as I waited for the voicemail to finally come through. I was expecting a yes since we did the pregnancy test but it was awesome to get the confirmation that This. Is. Really. Happening. I still can’t believe it and there’s this part of me that’s scared because of how it turned out last time but mostly, I’m so freaking happy!! We have told our moms and my best friend but besides these few, I think we’ll keep it a little more hush hush this time. At least until we “graduate” out of Shady Grove. The HCG is at 477 now and I’ll be going back on Friday for the second test.

I realize I never mentioned how many were able to be stored. We had 5 of the 13 cryopreserved, which isn’t bad. I’m a little surprised that we didn’t have more stop growing by day 5. I was thinking since so many were still good on day 5 that we may have had more to store but 5 is still plenty! And if everything sticks with this little one, we’ll have a good number leftover for future sibling attempts.

All for now, just wanted to share the good news. 🙂