My First Glimpse of (VERY TINY) Baby P

Happy Friday, friends! I had to make another trip to the doctor today. The pain I had earlier in the week got 10 times worse yesterday. I didn’t even want to walk around or stand up. When I woke up this morning it was much better, but my doctor wanted to see me anyway. I feel incredibly lucky to have such a proactive and overly cautious doctor taking care of me.

After a very thorough ultrasound, he determined that everything looked great except my right ovary. I still have several cysts on it. My right ovary has been the bane of my existence for as long as I can recall. You might remember that the constant ginormous cysts it produces resulted in cancellation of two of my earlier cycles. I thought that once I got pregnant it would calm down, but apparently it’s still fighting the good fight. You almost have to admire its tenacity.

The good news is that while these cysts are causing a lot of pain, they are not dangerous and will not affect the baby. That’s all that matters to me! My doctor asked me to take it easy for the rest of the weekend and stay off of my feet as much as I can. The best part about my appointment today, though, was that I got my very first glimpse of the baby!!!

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Baby P!

The big circle you see is the gestational sac, which is filled with amniotic fluid and will be the baby’s home until he or she makes their debut. The smaller circle inside of the big circle (on the left hand side) is the yolk sac. The yolk sac supplies nutrients to the baby in early pregnancy. Then if you can see that object that looks like a tiny grain of rice and stretches from inside the bottom half of the yolk sac down to the bottom of the gestational sac, THAT is our baby!

I know it’s really small. You’re probably squinting and still can’t see what I’m talking about. But it’s there. That’s my sweet little angel. It’s hard to believe that within the next 34 weeks that tiny little grain of rice will develop and grow into a fully functioning human being. Until then, I will do everything in my power to nourish and protect that little baby and give it everything it needs to prosper. Now the real question is…who does Baby P look like? Mom or Dad?

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Dad on the left and Mom on the right

Or do you think it’s too soon to tell? 🙂

The Most Beautiful Little Sac I Ever Did See

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There it is in all its glory…my beautiful little gestational sac! I was originally supposed to go to the doctor Thursday, but I started having some really sharp pains on my right side yesterday afternoon. I called the doctor, who said he felt confident that the pain was due to my ligaments stretching out to make room for the baby but asked me to come in a day early just to be sure.

I barely slept last night because I was anxious to make sure everything was ok and excited about seeing our baby or babies’ sacs today. Matt and I were extremely giddy when the ultrasound tech called us back. We couldn’t wait to see something…anything! Before we knew it, this beautiful little sac came up on the screen. How are we so lucky to be blessed with this miracle?

The ultrasound tech said the sac looked perfect and she could even see a very defined formation of the yolk sac inside of it. She checked around to make sure there weren’t any other sacs. Since there is 1 sac, we know that only 1 of the 2 embryos we transferred actually implanted. We are most likely expecting 1 baby, but the doctor said there is about a 20% chance that the embryo split and there are identical twins inside of the sac. They couldn’t tell yet, but we will be able to see inside of the sac next Thursday!

I am mesmerized by that beautiful picture. I came home and framed it immediately. It’s crazy how much I already love this tiny little baby. I am beyond grateful that everything is developing right on track. I will never take this gift for granted. I feel so lucky that God entrusted us with this precious child.

As much as I wish we could have gotten pregnant the easy way, I do have to admit that it has been cool to watch this process unfold. Most OB patients don’t get their first glimpse of their baby for another 2 and a half weeks. First, we got to see the embryos. Then we got to watch the embryos go into the uterus on ultrasound. Then we got the positive pregnancy test. This week we got to see the gestational sac. Next week we get to see what’s inside of the sac and the following week we get to hear the heartbeat. It’s like opening a new present every week. I can’t wait to see what comes next.

I do have one little soapbox and/or disclaimer, though. A few people I’ve told this morning have said, “Aww it’s only one?” or, “Oh it’s JUST one?” No. It’s ONLY the most beautiful miracle I’ve ever seen and JUST one more baby than I thought I might ever be able to have. People asked if we were disappointed. Is that a real question? How could anyone, especially a couple who has yearned and struggled for a baby as much as we have, EVER be disappointed to see their child for the first time? Please.

Anyway, on a happier note, we got to celebrate Matt’s first Father’s Day this weekend.

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Happy 1st Father’s Day, Matt!

He loves to fish, so I embroidered 2 outfits (boy and girl options) that said “Daddy’s Fishing Buddy.”

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Daddy’s Fishing Buddy

I also decided that I want to take weekly bump pictures and make them into a collage for the baby book. I enter a new week of pregnancy every Sunday, so I thought Father’s Day would be a fun occasion to take the first.

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1st bump picture. The belly is really left over from all of the IVF meds and not from the baby yet.

We have been having a lot of fun with the journey and enjoying every moment. I plan to savor each step of the pregnancy. I couldn’t be more thankful for this incredible opportunity. All of you continue to be in my prayers. Hopefully I will have a picture of the (very tiny) baby to show you next Thursday. Have a wonderful rest of the week! 🙂

Weekly Check-up

Hi, friends! I hope you’re all having a great week. I went to the doctor today for my first visit since the positive blood test. I had to get repeat blood work to make sure my hCG level was doubling and a blood flow study to ensure my arteries were pumping an adequate blood supply to my uterus. Additionally, they were going to perform an ultrasound today to see if they could see the gestational sacs. Since I’m only 4 weeks and 4 days pregnant, they told us it was highly unlikely we would be able to see the sacs yet. We hoped we could, though, because that would tell us if we are going to have one baby or two. I was excited about the possibility of finding out so soon, but that didn’t matter all that much to me. Most importantly, I wanted to hear that my levels had risen appropriately and my blood flow looked good.

I got my blood drawn and then started off with an ultrasound. The tech told us it was too soon to see the sacs. I think Matt was a little disappointed, but I was more focused on the task at hand. Tell me that baby or those babies are healthy! Then it was on to the blood flow ultrasound. They checked my blood flow laying down and standing up. As it turns out, my arteries are doing a great job of pumping a nice blood supply to the uterus. Alleluia!

Once that was finished, we waited for an hour until the blood tests came back. I was so nervous! What if the levels hadn’t doubled? What if something was wrong? After what seemed like an eternity, the doctor called me into his office. My original hCG level last Friday (7 days post transfer) was 49. The hCG level only needed to reach 200 today to indicate a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby or babies. I prayed he would tell me the level was 200, but he didn’t. IT WAS ACTUALLY 465!!! Such amazing news! God just keeps blessing us at every turn.

My estrogen and progesterone levels were also right where they were supposed to be (FINALLY!). So, I can stop taking the daily injections and switch to cream and pills. I just can’t comprehend all of this good news. We are so blessed and all the glory goes to God for every positive thing that has happened to us.

The outpouring of love and support from family and friends has been almost impossible to digest. This baby or these babies are so incredibly loved already. Thank you to each and every person who has called, texted, prayed, come to visit, mailed us cards and gifts or reached out in any way. We are eternally grateful. My heart is still overflowing with joy, and I can’t believe this is real.

For the first few days it hadn’t sunk in at all. It’s finally starting to sink in, though, because I have been experiencing a lot of morning sickness, migraines, fatigue and food aversions. I feel like I am starving and then as soon the food is in front of me, I can’t even look at it and start gagging. The cool thing about going through infertility, though, is that even when your head is hanging in the toilet bowl, you have a smile on your face. I will gladly be sick every day until delivery if it means I get to hold my precious baby in my arms.

I am going back next Thursday for another ultrasound. The doctor said they will definitely be able to see how many babies are growing inside of me then, so I’ll keep y’all posted. Matt thinks it’s twins and I go back and forth daily between 1 and 2.

I want to share one more thing that is very personal. The day I found out my first fertility treatment didn’t work was the absolute lowest point I hit throughout my journey. I was so confident that it was going to be successful. When it wasn’t, I was shattered. I sobbed for an entire day straight and just didn’t know if I could pick myself up and keep going. It was probably the saddest I’ve ever felt in my entire life. I looked in the mirror, and I saw such a void of happiness in my eyes. It scared me, and the last thing I wanted to do was take a picture. I decided that I needed to take one, though, because one day I would come out on the other side. I could take a picture the day I found out I was pregnant and put these pictures side by side to see just how far I had come. Here is that side by side comparison for you:

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I’m not sharing this because I think it’s a cute picture. I’m well aware of the fact that it’s probably the worst picture I’ve ever taken. The reason I’m sharing is because I want to inspire all of you who are still struggling with infertility or any other issue in your life. Maybe you have hit rock bottom and you feel like nothing will ever go your way again. It will. As Winston Churchill said, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” You might look and feel like the picture on the left today, and that’s ok. But I promise you, one day you will be the girl on the right. Keep trying, keep dreaming and keep your faith in God. Sending love and light to each of you! ❤