What a Difference 5 Weeks Makes

I do have quite a bit that I need to write but I am super busy with work and life right now, so for now… here’s a photo journey of ultrasounds. The most recent was this afternoon, 10w4d. 

EDD October 22, 2015

Oh, aaaaand I heard the heartbeat today, which was so different from seeing it. I held back tears, and of course this is the first ultrasound that Rob missed, but we’ll be sure to get him to the next one. Hearing the heartbeat. Holy shit. I can’t wait to make it to week 13 and shout it from the rooftops (that’s a topic for a whole other post!)


Why You Shouldn’t Bother to Go to the Grocery Store During Your 1st Trimester

Walking up and down the aisles at the grocery store during your first trimester is about as futile as dusting a mirror. 

I sat in the parking lot for half an hour before going in, trying to decide what to make for dinner this week since nothing that resembles real nutritious food sounds good to me right now. I called Rob, frustrated, and he said just focus on tonight and tomorrow and we can shop during the week based on my taste (or lack thereof). He also offered to make risotto tonight. I settled on this recipe for tomorrow. That took the stress off and I finally went in. 

Actually going inside did not make it any easier. The strangest things seemed to keep making their way into my cart, but an aisle or two later, I would remove them and quickly stash them on the wrong shelf, thinking, “ugh, I don’t want these anymore…” 

Somehow I did manage to buy fruit, vegetables, and chicken… but I also managed to buy the following items:


Wtf with the hot cross buns, right? But I love them and I never buy them. Almost Easter + pregnant = hot cross buns in the shopping cart. No regrets about the Hawaiian Punch – I haven’t had this stuff since like 1987 but it hit. the. spot. All I can say about the soda pop gummi candies is that I could smell them as I walked down the candy aisle and I think I was so thirsty that I caved. They were, predictably disgusting. 

Here’s the thing; I haven’t eaten red meat in almost 20 years and I have kind of been craving London broil and fast food roast beef sandwiches. 

Sigh. It may be cliche but the pregnancy taste buds are in full swing. Or maybe it’s just my normal taste buds but now I have an excuse to give in.

The Belly Book

A few weeks ago, I purchased the pregnancy journal, The Belly Book, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal.

It is divided by trimester and has a very playful tone about it while still capturing all of the important milestones. Today, at 9 weeks, I finally got the courage to start writing in it. 

While I certainly don’t plan to post every page, I will pick and choose, here and there. Here’s a glimpse at the first page. ☺️

A New Acronym

I thought I was well versed in TTC and pregnancy lingo, but last night I added a new acronym: SCH

Subchorionic Hematoma. (Also known as: Scared the Crap out of Holli).

Also known as blood clot that hemmorhages and makes you think the worst.

Around 9 last night when I had finally sat down on the couch to relax a little, I started getting period type cramps. They were on the mild side but noticeable enough that I went to the bathroom. And what happened was the “wipe” we all dread. Fresh, red, and flowing freely. I yelled down for Rob to come up. He must have heard something in my voice became he came charging up the stairs. I barely choked out that I was bleeding and I melted, a sobbing mess, into his arms.

After a few minutes of him holding me, we decided it was best to go to the ER. It was a full house in that waiting room and I won’t even get into the nuances of my inner monologue as we sat there and waited. 

In triage I had the awful question of “Is this your first pregnancy?” (“First uterine pregnancy. I sat in this very room the day my tube ruptured last August.”). Then more waiting.

ER doc was no George Clooney or McDreamy. He inverted a bedpan under my hips to lift my pelvis and let’s just say he wasn’t very gentle on the internal. It was the first time I’ve ever had a vaginal exam while lying in Rob’s lap. The speculum looked like a light up glow in the dark noise maker. (And later at a more appropriate time, Rob commented how “cool” it looked, confirming that, yes, he is indeed male). 

After what seemed forever, I was finally being wheeled to ultrasound. The bleeding was slower but still present. The tech so so gentle and sweet. She inserted the wand and immediately asked if I had a c-section. I explained about the tube removal and she turned the monitor toward her and continued to click and click and type and click in deafening silence. Rob held my hand and once we met eyes and I could tell we were both thinking the same bad news. And finally after the longest two minutes of my life, she turned the screen toward us. She turned the screen toward us. And even on my exhausted and emotional state I knew they don’t turn the screen toward you for bad news. 

“There’s baby,” she pointed. Clear as day on the high tech machine, unlike I’ve seen in my doctor’s office. Measuring in at exactly 8 weeks (perfect), with a heart rate of 157 (perfect). I cried tears of joy and breathed for the first time in three hours. 

At the end of the night, my awesome nurse (who started my IV line on the first try!), whispered to me, “I am so so happy for you. I’m 13 weeks pregnant and the same thing happened to me when I was 6 or 7 weeks.” I wasn’t discharged until almost 3am, but I didn’t mind. This awful night ended with the best news it could have. The radiology report showed a clot about 1cm (which is small as far as clots go), and I do believe I passed it this morning. All of my bloodwork came back normal, and I have a follow up appointment at my clinic this afternoon. 

I’m exhausted and poor Rob had to go in to work today (I took a sick day), but I am happy. I have a million more things to worry about now and I’m not out of the woods (are we ever?)… but last night had a happy ending and that’s all that matters for now.

8 Week Lack-of-Bumpdate

Obviously no bump yet, but I still had fun making this little collage.

I have been very Libra – indecisive – about how  I want to do my weekly bump photos. First of all, this outfit is so blah… but it is clingy and stretchy and I know it will work throughout the pregnancy. 

The chalkboard updates that people do are so adorable but I am not artistic. No, not even with assorted fruits and vegetables. I think I will stick to using an app on my phone. And maybe one day I will look presentable enough to keep my face in the picture. (Maybe I need to move picture day from Thursday night to Saturday afternoon. 😎)

Other updates:

  • omg the boobs – I can confidently state that the best part of my day is taking off my bra 
  • a little nausea, but eating and/or resting usually helps
  • fatigue continues
  • crazy vivid dreams continue
  • I have an appointment scheduled with the big girl OBGYN at the end of the month 
  • I bought the pregnancy journal “The Belly Book,” but haven’t started to fill it out yet
  • I am touring a new gym facility on Tuesday and can’t wait to get active again
  • I still get a pang of envy/jealousy when people announce their pregnancies on Facebook. I don’t really understand this, but I guess the scars of an infertile are forever. 



Today ranks way up there. I think I accidentally let myself believe that I am actually pregnant!

We got to see Doodlebug (and heartbeat) again:

And we saw about a week of growth, give or take a day in either direction depending on which measurements we go by.

Also, the weaning off of Estrace and progesterone has begun!!! Down to 2x Estrace and 1cc of progesterone. This is GREAT news; I think I squealed with excitement when I heard the voicemail.

There was and awkward moment when I told my doc that I needed two seemingly contradictory notes: one that says I need to take a medical leave from teaching aerobics, and another that cleared me to exercise in case my new fitness center asks for one. (I decided this was the best decision for me and baby, ultimately. I want to exercise, but high impact aerobics is not my best option right now). However, I was stumbling over my words and didn’t explain myself well and he made a strange face but had the nurse write the notes anyway. 😜

Looks like my IVF clinic will be breaking up with me in a couple more weeks (though they call it “graduating”). I chose the hospital I want to deliver at, and by the end of the week, I need to choose an OBGYN group and make an appointment! 

Here’s to cautious optimism…

The Day When…

…you were too tired to go inside when you got home from work, so you napped in the car for a few.

At 7w4d, fatigue remains my front running symptom. The boobs-they are growin’! To be accurate, the right one is growing significantly more than the left.  Also, I feel full all the time, even when I know I’m not.  I don’t think doodlebug (named by my fabulous sis after she saw last week’s ultrasound pic) likes to share room with food. Oh well, at least it’s not coming up. Thank goodness for that! 😉

My acupuncturist assures me that my treatments are what’s keeping any sickness at bay. I like when she calls me “mama-to-be” as she fills out my chart.

Oh, and then there are the dreams. The super vivid, practically every night, dreams. Last night’s was about having to turn down a role with my favorite director (community theater) because I would be showing too much by show time. And in my dream, I was really upset that I had to give this part of my life up, and even regretted it a little. Oh, the subconscience!

Ok, I guess I do have some symptoms.

Ultrasound tomorrow. Always a nervous and excited wreck on Ultrasound mornings!

Out damn spot.

The day of my blood BFP (and day after), I had some mild cramps and brown spotting. I only needed one panty liner and it was enough to worry me but then it went away.

I haven’t had any more cramping or bleeding until two nights ago at 6w6d. I actually said to my husband, “something is wrong.” We ended up doing my PIO shot and then I got right into bed and crashed (which seems to be the routine). Last night I had more spotting and this morning more still (all brown), with definite mild AF cramps in the background. Which are getting stronger as I write this.

I’m talking myself into believing that my uterus is growing and my cervix is a little angry for this, that, or the other reason… but I CAN’T SHAKE THE NEGATIVITY.

I virtually have no symptoms other than boob stuff and being tired, which can both be attributed to the progesterone. My skin looks better than usual, my pee schedule is normal, no cravings or aversions or sensitivities. I know this can be normal, and trust me, I do NOT want to puke, but at the risk of sounding like so many other women, it would be reassuring to feel pregnant. 

Last night my PIO shot ended with spurting blood. The kind that soaked the top of my pants in the back. I’m guessing it is because the area is so bruised, but it was not pleasant. Not for me, or for Rob, who is queasy and squirmish about giving me my shots on a good night…

I guess I am just in a low and anxious place right now. I don’t want to be. I want to feel grateful. I want to be ecstatic and glowing and pregnant.


I think I’m ready… what are your favorite pregnancy books and journals?

Seeing the heartbeat is the milestone I was waiting for, but it still feels like it’s all going to get pulled out from under me at any monent. And if I order a book, I’m sure to jinx it.

Yes, I know that’s irrational. Send me your recommendations and by the time I research them all and choose, maybe I will have one more ultrasound under my belt. 😬

6w5d Update & Exercise ?

We got to see the tiniest little flicker of a heartbeat this morning! My gosh that thing was cute! Too early to measure or hear but it’s definitely beating and I’m so relieved about that. Not that I ever feel truly “relieved.”

I am measuring a few days behind, at 6w 2 or 3 days. The doctor said not to worry. I will do my best to take this advice but google is at my fingertips. :/

What I am so hoping for is to be told later that based on my blood work, we can reduce my progesterone from 1.5cc down to 1cc. My hips are literally burning and there’s nowhere new left to stick me. 

The next decision I have to make is if/when to resume teaching aerobics. The doctor cleared me for low impact and cautioned that I must keep my heart rate below 120. My husband does not want me to chance it. He doesn’t want me to teach at all. We have been through so much to get to this point and it seems ridiculous to do anything risky. On the other hand, exercise is good for mom and baby, and can make pregnancy and labor “smoother.” I really am not sure what to do. Weigh in if you have any insight. Thanks! 💪