Wisehubby and I had been TTC for a while and, on a hunch, discovered his severe male factor infertility--basically, he has an army of mutant sperm. I'm also mutant; I have a clotting disorder: Factor V. We were on the IVF with ICSI track, and I gave birth to a beautiful boy after IVF #2. We've tried varicocele repair, too--ugh. Our frozen embyro transfer ended in miscarriage at 9 weeks 1 day. We don't know where the quest will take us from here.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

When you least expect it...

Here's a post that I wrote back on December 14, 2014:

As I grieved the loss of our miscarriage a few months ago, my sister told me that I could accept that this was it--that we were to be a family of three--but that she refused to accept it. She was convinced that we would end up pregnant when we least expected it. She imagined that our son would be headed off to college when we became pregnant. Her first prediction was right. Her second? Not as accurate.

The ACOG suggests you wait three months after a miscarriage to try to conceive again. Three separate doctors have reviewed our records and indicated that it is highly unlikely that we could ever conceive without intervention. Two doctors want me on Lovenox, a powerful blood thinner, when I am pregnant to prevent clots and loss. I had decided to take some time off of my prenatal vitamin and go back on caffeine and alcohol pretty hard for me. I was definitely not expecting a late period just one month after my cycle reset. Nor did I expect an elicit run to the drug store while on vacation with my in laws. Nor a positive pregnancy test while bathing our son.

Holy shit! We are pregnant, and we definitely didn't expect it.

Monday, September 29, 2014

On miscarriage

Miscarriage is a terrible thing. It doesn't respect your hopes and dreams. It doesn't respect your right to grieve.

Even if you're very open about your miscarriage, which I have been, there is no space for your grief in our society. My friends and family have been enormously supportive, and they have and will continue to hold me up, but it's still never going to be enough.

You see, our fetus, who never stood a chance at becoming a baby scientifically speaking, had two possible names. A due date. A nursery theme. A mother and a father and a big brother. A whole life to live.

Just because I know intellectually that with no heartbeat, this fetus would never amount to more than a tiny cluster of tissue and a few weeks of mild morning sickness and food cravings, that doesn't change the fact that, for one month, I was pregnant. I dreamed about my baby, made plans for him or her. Prayed for him or her to grow big and strong and become a beloved child of God. I bought maternity clothes and fantasized about getting round. I thought about purchasing a new breast pump through insurance, and whether or not we should spend money doing at 12 week NT scan, since it wasn't covered on our insurance. I started to plan my maternity leave and who would be my long-term substitute.

Now, I'm bleeding. I know it's the end. There is no more hope for those dreams.

What do I have to show for it? 10 pounds and a heart full of grief.

How do I get to say goodbye? By disposing of my dreams, one way or another. Take your pick: The baby and all of that hope will likely either be flushed down a toilet or thrown in the trash, waded up in a sanitary napkin. I likely won't even know when to say goodbye.

That is miscarriage.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

No heartbeat

We found out today that the fetus has no heart beat and is several weeks behind developmentally, so we're praying for a quick, safe, and natural miscarriage.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Our Little Engine that Could

Praise and thanksgiving! Our Little Engine that Could is making slow progress safe and sound in my uterus. I have an at risk pregnancy, but a pregnancy, nonetheless. I'm 6w3d pregnant from my FET, but the gestational sack and yolk sack measured proportionally at 5w2d. The amazing ultrasound technician said that there is a margin of error of about a week, and that she has seen slow developers go on to be healthy pregnancies before. She didn't make promises, but she said to be hopeful for two weeks until we return.

Dr. B basically said everything that the sonographer said, but with less tact. He was fairly polite for himself, but he just drops bombs in a way that Wisesister thinks is unnecessary, and I am inclined to agree with her. For example, he could have avoided scaring me half to death that I was having an ectopic pregnancy and was facing internal bleeding and certain loss. All he had to do was say, "Your blood work is irregular. Let's bring you in for a sono to learn more!" He did suggest that in his experience about 50% of cases like mine result in healthy pregnancies, which is a big improvement over the 15% we had been hearing for the last week.

We're proceeding as if we have a healthy baby. In two weeks, we'll have a make or break sono where we will learn if there is a fetus developing slowly in the the yolk sack. If there is a fetus and a heart beat, we won't necessarily be out of the woods, but it will be 8w3d, and that's a pretty great place to be. If not, then we'll know that we've lost the pregnancy and we'll be able to grieve and start to decide where to go from there.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Vermillion, Part 2

I was listening to my FET soundtrack that I never got around to posting on my way home from my very long day at work (Meet the Teacher Night), and one song stuck out to me. I know that it wasn't necessarily written about infertility, but the message felt very on point.

Ok, I'm not really a Slipknot girl, but they sing every once in a while instead of scream, and "Vermillion, Part 2" is particularly beautiful. I think the music video is pretty grim, but the lyrics really speak to me by themselves. I'll bold the lyrics that mean the most to me.

She seemed dressed in all of me, stretched across my shame.
All the torment and the pain
Leaked through and covered me
I'd do anything to have her to myself

Just to have her for myself
Now I don't know what to do, I don't know what to do when she makes me sad.

She is everything to me
The unrequited dream
A song that no one sings
The unattainable, she's a myth that I have to believe in
All I need to make it real is one more reason
I don't know what to do, I don't know what to do when she makes me sad.

But I won't let this build up inside of me
I won't let this build up inside of me
I won't let this build up inside of me
I won't let this build up inside of me

A catch in my throat choke
Torn into pieces
I won't, no!
I don't wanna be this...

But I won't let this build up inside of me
I won't let this build up inside of me
I won't let this build up inside of me
I won't let this build up inside of me

She isn't real
I can't make her real

She isn't real
I can't make her real

Monday, September 8, 2014


I've been half-grieving since Thursday, when I got the worst kind of news when trying to referee what could only be described as an epic Greek and Latin Stem Word Pictionary Battle. I was so caught off guard and in the middle of everything that I had to call back later when my students were working individually to process the information. Unfortunately, the second time around, the nurse's news did not improve.

My HSG, the pregnancy hormone, levels did not rise at the rate that they want. They look for at least 66% rise in two days, and mine had gone up just about 33%. What could it be? Well, miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, a healthy pregnancy that defies the trend (15% chance), or even more unlikely, our single embryo split into twins, one of whom was surviving and the other wasn't. What to do? Wait and repeat on Monday.

Today, I took the initiative and called when it was convenient, and on my school land line since the cell service in my classroom is terrible. I knew it wasn't good when the nurse hesitated to tell me anything at all since Dr. B hadn't reviewed my charts yet. Oh, shit, not the miracle I'd been praying for.

My hormones went up about 30% again, and they're at a good level for someone who is 6 weeks pregnant, but the slow rise makes Dr. B think it's an ectopic pregnancy. Yeah, that's when your baby is growing OUTSIDE of your womb.

Bad stuff. Risk your life to internal bleeding and destroy your lady parts if you don't end it bad stuff. Chose between poisoning your doomed baby with chemotherapy drugs or surgically removing your doomed baby bad stuff.

I go in for a sono to see if it's actually bad stuff, or just an oddity of modern medicine. Maybe we have a perfectly healthy pregnancy and weird hormones. Supposedly it happens (15% is the number that you see), even if it appears to be documented NO WHERE on the internet. NO WHERE.

So, I am trying to be hopeful, to not return my stack of new maternity clothes, to believe in this miracle, in this pregnancy, in the beautiful hatching embryo in the picture. It's hard though, since I am half-grieving. I can't be truly hopeful, but I can't give into the all encompassing grief. I am stuck in between, where no one has anything to say other than they'll be praying for me.

That's where I am. I suppose you can pray for me.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Feeling pretty hopeful

Y'all, I'm 10 days post transfer of a day 6 blast, and I'm feeling pretty confident that I'll have a baby in my arms come May 3! I've got a drawer full of positive pregnancy tests starting back at 5 days post transfer. I go in for my beta next week, which is exciting beyond belief.

I know that I'm feeling pretty hopeful because I just spent $212 buying eight beautiful pieces of maternity wear from Old Navy online. I know that seems excessive for someone who has been pregnant before, but much of my wardrobe was either a hand-me-down from my much smaller sister or a loaner from a friend, who I wouldn't dare impose upon a second time. I need some skinny jeans for work and play, a black skirt, two work dresses, and three tops that are so me!