We finally did it! We made a baby!
After 18 months, 3 surgeries, 1 miscarriage and failed ovulation induction cycles, we finally did it! We made a baby!
So as most of you are aware, in June I decided to get a second opinion and as a result I had my third surgery in 13 months to improve my fertility and decrease our chances of premature birth – a hysteroscopic D&C and septum resection, a laparoscopic excision of endometriosis (which after two previous surgeries I didn’t even know I had), and dye studies. We were then told to wait 3 months to let my body heal and give us the best chances of conceiving our rainbow baby. While this whole experience seemed like another step backward (and it was), I truly believe it is the reason I am pregnant today. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that getting a second opinion and finding a doctor that I trust and who was willing to get to the root of our problems was imperative to our success. I mean, it’s amazing what can happen when endometriosis is properly diagnosed and removed, hey!?
So after 2 months of allowing my body to heal, we decided to just ‘not NOT try’, and see what happened. I ovulated on my own like a big girl, but my period arrived like a bitch on Father’s Day. The next month I booked our follow up appointment to see Dr Yoong (aka the previously mentioned amazing Dr Y) but decided in the meantime to just give it another crack. This time my ovulation was super strong; sex was painful, the cramping was intense and the cervical mucous…I’ll just leave that there! I feel like we timed that shit to perfection…and then we waited. After 10 days, I just knew I was pregnant. I’ve only had that feeling once before, and that when I fell pregnant with James. I never had that confidence with either of my unsuccessful pregnancies. I can’t even pin point what it was, but the feeling was so strong that I pee’d on a stick and hopped straight in the shower, as though I didn’t even need to see that double line (when I got out of the shower I of course snuck a peak, smiled like a kid at Christmas and did a silent squeal slash dance in the bathroom, before sending Scott in to have a look for himself and see his similar reaction!)
Unfortunately, as always with pregnancy after loss, the excitement didn’t last long before the need to protect ourselves from heartache officially sank in. This is the shitty part – the waiting, the not knowing, the anxiety and the what if’s. I’ve always said that it’s impossible to whole-heartedly celebrate a pregnancy after experiencing a loss, especially when that is also associated with infertility. Scott was cautious, and rightly so. He started using the words ‘if’ and ‘but’ and I could see he was shielding himself from the worst case scenario. I vividly remember him saying ‘I will not feel comfortable until the baby arrives’. Unfortunately, this is the cruel reality. You might think I’m being dramatic, but I won’t sugarcoat it – pregnancy in our world wasn’t sunshine and rainbows, it was apprehension and fear. It was excitement, but it was strained. I was trying to be optimistic for the both of us – I had the benefit of that ‘gut feeling’, not to mention the nausea and tiredness – but deep down I was petrified too.
I messaged Dr Yoong the next day and he replied immediately with a congratulations and told me to get a blood test that day. My first HCG (at approx. 12dpo) was 107, progesterone 86…perfect (and much more reassuring than our previous first level of 7!) We busied ourselves for a couple of weeks until we could get that ultrasound, but my levels were rising dreamily each week to 2,153 and then 18,857. Eventually Dr Yoong said it was time for the ultrasound, and I was ready – I needed that final piece of reassurance. Scott, however, was not! He was so concerned that we would once again be told there was no heartbeat, to the point he couldn’t bring himself to be in that room. When I arrived I didn’t feel much at all. I thought I would be nervous or frightened, but I think I had switched it all off. But thankfully, as I was called into that room and the probe was placed on my tummy and zoomed into my uterus, the very first thing I saw was the flickering of our babies tiny, perfect, heart. It was all suddenly so real. This was bloody happening! Our little tadpole measured just 6 weeks, but that heartbeat…oh that heartbeat!! It was the beginning of everything, a weight lifted from my shoulders and a sigh of relief.
And here we are, two weeks later, feeling more blessed than ever. I still worry every day and I still don’t believe it at times. My heart is still racing sharing our news this early and I know we still have a long way to go. I still catch myself checking the toilet paper each time or questioning every tummy cramp. As much as I wish the hardest part was over and we could have a long, stress-free pregnancy, unfortunately that won’t be the case for reasons I will explain in my next blog. We have an appointment with Dr Yoong this week to discuss what will be a high-risk pregnancy, but for now, we are over-the-moon happy and counting our lucky stars every day.
I do want to mention that while I will be sharing this journey with you all every step of the way, I do find it hard knowing that others are still waiting for their happy ending. My biggest anxiety about sharing our story is not being open and letting you all in, it’s not the worry that something might happen…it’s knowing that these posts can be really difficult to swallow for someone experiencing infertility. I’ve been there, I get it. I’m only recently on the other side of it. But I can only hope that seeing what we’ve been through and knowing where we are now, that these posts can somehow inspire you and give you hope. And I hope one day, when your turn comes, that you will do the same. Because God knows we deserve to celebrate!