Thursday, May 22, 2014

My conception story...

The evidence
   Yay for a picture of pee on a stick! Hey did you know they sell pregnancy tests at the dollar store that actually work?? I had my doubts because I wondered why there are $15 dollar ones at Walmart if these exist. What a rip! Way to take advantage of hopeful couples all over the world, jerks. Do yourself a favor and just go grab a handful of these bad boys and call it a day.

   Anyways, as I was telling you in my last post, I'm super proud of my pregnancy success stories. You may be wondering how I could feel so confident in getting pregnant when this is only my second time around. Not exactly. I actually had three successful tries. I guess I was a little misleading with the title of my last post when I said it was my "second pregnancy", because technically this is our third. Last year, exactly one week sooner than I ovulated this year, I conceived. Turns out I had a blighted ovum and ended up needing a D&C. It was a very sad time for us for obvious reasons but the hardest part for me was that Steph and I were finally pregnant TOGETHER which has always been a dream of ours! What helped me cope, (other than my amazingly supportive family and friends) was that there was no baby lost. I didn't hear a heartbeat at one ultrasound and then it was gone at another. It was never there to begin with because the embryo never developed. The egg and sperm successfully joined, and implanted into my uterus, but for some reason (usually severe abnormalities with one or both the egg/sperm) the body is able to tell something isn't right, and it prevents the cells from developing into an embryo and the gestational sac is the only thing that continues to grow. So that's what helped me cope through this miscarriage-- that I didn't have an embryo/baby TO lose. So my heart truly goes out to those who have had miscarriages where there was once a heart beat. I'm so sorry. :/

     Anyways, if any of you have more questions I'd be happy to tell you more (I'm an open book) but I don't want to depress you any further with sad news when this was supposed to be an uplifting, encouraging post. Lets move on.

   So, if we talk on a regular basis, then you've no doubt heard about me obsessively rave about how cool the Take Charge of your Fertility book really is. I've talked to many struggling women about "charting" (aka taking your temperature every morning and monitoring your fertility "signs") and I have to emphasize that anybody can take their temp, but if your chart shows you ovulate every month and you still aren't getting that positive sign on that pee stick that you so long for, then its the book that can help you understand the why. For me it was obvious I didn't ovulate every month since I rarely got a period (before Eli), but it was the book that helped me put all my "signs" (changes in cervical fluid, tender breasts, cervical position, etc) together to determine a time frame for my most fertile moments. It only took 2 cycles (or 9 months in my case, waaaah!) to figure this out and then on 3 separate occasions that we "tried," I got pregnant. To me this is like having someone whisper in my ear the winning numbers of the lottery before its even played! I have a few friends who by charting learned that their luteal phase (the weeks after ovulation, before your period arrives) was too short for the fertilized egg to successfully implant. By charting, they were able to follow up with their physicians and do what was necessary to lengthen that phase, and then went on to have successful pregnancies. I had one friend who would have sex on day 14, 15 and 16 of her cycle, only to find out that although she had a 28 day cycle, she had a 16 day luteal phase and actually ovulated on day 12 of her cycle. See what happened in her case?? Month after month she couldn't get pregnant because the egg was dead and gone long before she had sex. Once she realized this through charting, the following month she had sex on day 12 and guess what? Successful pregnancy! Every person's struggle is different and not all "infertility" issues should be treated the same like the medical community is apt to do. I call it "cookie cutter care." Try to avoid this by becoming the expert on YOUR own body. Knowledge truly IS power.

      For 2 years after Eli was born, I was able to use my newfound knowledge of how my body works, to prevent pregnancy as well. I was able to use a natural form of birth control that didn't wreck havoc on my body or finances each month. The pill always made my heart race and caused my BP to go up so I hated being on it. You may be thinking "who wants to get up at the butt crack of dawn to take their temp every morning for the rest of their life as a form of birth control??! Not this girl!" But let me assure you that it's easy peasy, lemon squeezy! Now that I know how my body works, when I start to get my signs of impending ovulation, I know I have a 4 day window before that egg arrives (now that's for ME, MY body. Don't go thinking YOU have a 4 day window as well, because I don't want to get hate mail stating you had an unwanted pregnancy because I said you were safe for 4 days! YOUR charting will tell you YOUR window. With that being said...) Its only then that I start taking my temp, and abstain from sex. Once my temp-taking confirms I ovulated (by the thermal shift) then I wait another 24hrs (to ensure the egg is dead and gone) and then I'm "safe" to have "relations" again ;)  Voila! I'm only inconvenienced for a week max. (Of course you could turn to condoms during this time if you wanted.) Make sense??

    So what do you think? Awesome-sauce or am I off my rocker? Don't answer that. I still expect to see a baby boom next year! Ha ha. Just kidding. Baby making is supposed to be fun. Lets get back to that. Bow chicka wow wow! Aaaand cue Marvin Gaye: "Lets get it onnnnnn...." :)

I gave my hubby this shirt along with the positive test to let him know we were pregnant

ha ha. What a good sport

Hi honey! 20 week "selfie" ;)

Yay!! Someone's excited for a brother!
On that happy note, toodles!

P.S, when my method fails next time and I have an "oopsie" I'll tell you all it was planned. Ha ha ha. j/k. Muuuuah!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

My second pregnancy!


Proud big brother!
    Lets see if I even remember how to do a blog post, it's been so long! Like I mentioned last time, I found Facebook and now Instagram to replace my need to blog. Well with this second baby (BOY!) coming along, I definitely want to get back into it since I LOVE looking back on Eli's beginnings. Steph will ask me a milestone question regarding her son Liam and I'm always like "jeeze it feels so long ago since I was in that stage. I'd have to check my blog..." --Good Old Faithful coming to the rescue, recapping the little things that have long been cataloged into the deep recesses of my brain. I love this little blog and I really do love blogging.

    So where do I start? I'll do a separate post to describe my conception story since most of you already know my beginning infertility issues I discussed in this post and I'm super proud of it. When I told my husband we were indeed pregnant after our first month of trying in January, I said, "more than anything else, don't you just feel an amazing sense of accomplishment??" Ha ha. We both laughed because it was so true. There was a time were I was that girl "trying-to-conceive" and now I'm completely confident in my ability to not only GET pregnant but to NOT get pregnant while not using the traditional birth control methods. (I'm not saying all this to boast, or be cocky, but in an attempt to give other ladies out there struggling in this department, HOPE.) Stay tuned if you fall into that category because the next post will be for you :)

    Welp, I'm at the 20 week mark (as of Monday). I can't even wrap my mind around the fact that I'm half way there! Currently I feel amazing, like I'm not even pregnant, unless I feel a kick (which is all the time now.) The baby is still really low in my pelvis, and each kick makes me instinctively reach to feel so if you catch me Al Bundy style, don't judge, ha! I can't say the same thing for the first 14 weeks though. Ugh. Was that ever a dark period in my life. The long, brutal winter didn't help matters either I'm sure. I'm so thankful to still be married because I'm positive my hubby had to remind himself "through thick and thin, through sickness and in health..." multiple times a day because I was awful. I was awful and I knew I was awful, and yet had no control over how I was feeling. I had zero energy (with a toddler to chase), horrible mood swings (sorry!!), many food aversions, everything stunk (easy on the cologne/perfume people!) and all day queasiness. We went to Hawaii when I was 9 weeks pregnant and although I enjoyed it, now when I think of it, I get nauseous. Such a sad way to remember a beautiful place. I think my hubby should take me back when I'm not pregnant so I can make new, happy memories :D

     I found a fun pregnancy questionnaire online that I thought I'd go through and answer so here it is:

How far along: 20 weeks!
Total weight gain: I'm up 10lbs
Maternity clothes: Heck yeah! I even wore maternity pants for comfort before I was pregnant (see above about not judging, ha ha)
Stretch marks: None yet. I did end up with a nasty "star burst" looking stretch mark under my right breast after Eli was born. Probably from the NASTY engorgment I had when my milk came in. But now its completely faded and I have to really search to find where it was.
Sleep: sleeping great but I have an earlier bed time.
Best moment of this week: having our 2o week ultrasound to find out the sex of the baby and to have so many friends anxiously awaiting the announcement as well.
Miss anything: Sandwiches. I really want some deli meat but the fear of listeria will keep me from eating one until after the baby comes.
Movement: SO much movement. Little "thumps" started at 15 and ½ weeks and they've gotten progressively stronger ever since. 
Food cravings: just like with Eli, everything sounds good. I'm gravitating more towards sweets but right now I can't open my fridge without grabbing a handful of the 4 lb box of green grapes that I got at Costco the other day. Good thing I bought the big one...
Anything making you queasy or sick: Nothing now except thinking of Hawaii. (So sad!) In the beginning it was black beans & tortillas that were the strongest aversions but really everything was unappealing. I had to remind myself that I loved certain foods and to just eat them. Once I started eating I was fine. It was the getting-it-into-my-mouth part that was a struggle.
Have you started to show yet: Yep. I was super bloated at 9 weeks! (See pic below.)
Gender: Boy!!
Labor signs: No. And stay that way for another 19 weeks. Pleaseandthankyou.
Belly button in or out: It's completely gone already! I was in the 30 wks range when that happened with Eli. Yikes!
Wedding rings on or off: On, but with the warmer weather on the horizon, probably not for long.
Happy or moody most of the time: Now I'm a happy camper. I feel like I have a pretty good sense of humor usually, but while pregnant, everything is 100x funnier. Not sure why that is...
Looking forward to: dressing the bump and watching it grow. I'm obsessed with baby bellies!
9 wks in Hawaii. My face says it all. Yowzers!
How great is this ultrasound pic?? Baby #2 at 10wks