Friday, July 30, 2010

It's like our first $ bill!

I just had to scan the notes K took while we were on the phone with Dr. Haney.  Yes, he has horrific handnwriting, but these were the highlights to him.  Someday we're going to look back on this and reminisce about the day that gave us hope!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Adjusting to the idea of a new future...

When I was pg with the twins, I tried to resume all my normal activities to the best of my ability - cook dinner for 40 people at church?  Done.  Move small furniture and deep clean the house?  Done.  Stand on a ladder and clean the ledges in our house?  Oh yeah, I can do it!!!!!  Being pregnant was NOT going to stop me.  I was not a fragile flower, I always hated "those" pregnant women.  I hated the ones who stood there like morons who rubbed their gut (not even showing) and stupidly stared into the distance.  I think years of infertility jades you to feel scornful at those seemingly normal "pregnant woman" things.

When I found out the test strip was positive and the bloodwork confirmed this time, I've been terrified to move.  Terrified.  I thought of the future, when I hit that dreaded danger zone starting at 17 weeks, that even with surgery, I would be on bed rest and terrified to move.  I'm afraid to pick something up for fear it will disrupt implantation.  I was looking toward spending my entire pregnancy in fear and in bed, until...

I talked to Dr. Haney today and he said things will be as if I were in a "normal" pregnancy.  When I get my bionic cervix, I can do all the things a normal pregnant woman can do - I can walk around the neighborhood, do yoga if I'm so inclined, stand in the kitchen for a couple of hours, do anything that I feel well enough to do.  This excites me.  I am not normally a super active person anyway, but it always makes me feel better emotionally and physically to get my blood pumping.  I'm looking forward to being mobile rather than atrophying away physically and mentally.

Phone Consult with Dr. Arthur Haney

We have hope!!!  Dr. Haney explained in very clear terms that what went wrong with Jonah and Noah was NOT normal, and was indeed caused by an incompetent cervix.  At this point, we are scheduling around Labor Day!  He carefully explained that there are basically a couple of ways of treating it.

1) The most prescribed way in modern America - the transvaginal cerclage (TVC).  It's placed preventatively around 13 weeks and is done through the vagina - basically your cervix is sewn shut near the bottom.  There is typically a full bedrest situation afterward, and is about 75-85% effective.  Effective, to the medical world, means live birth.  Even live births that are severely preterm with lifelong medical complications are considered success stories.  Full term, healthy birth is probably less than the 75%.  This cerclage is placed low on the cervix and the pressure of the baby can still push down, causing you to dilate and funnel.  There's a lot of pressure being placed on the cervix itself.  Water can break at any time and can even tear the cervix where the stitch is placed.  Here's an illustration, courtesy of

2. The less common, but more effective way is through the abdomen - the transabdominal cerclage (TAC).  A c-section like incision is made and a band (made of merselene) is placed tightly high on the cervix.  Dr. Haney said that you can lift a person off the ground with this band, it's THAT strong.  It can be placed pre-pregnancy (his preference) or during pregnancy (up to 11 weeks or so).  It's there forever, and will already be in place for future pregnancies.  I will ONLY be able to give birth via c-section. Recovery time is quick and as Dr. Haney said, "You will have a bionic cervix."  It won't go anywhere.  He said that he cannot prevent me from getting GD or pre-eclampsia, or any other kind of pregnancy complication, but he can guarantee that my cervix will be rock solid.  It can be placed via robot (Da Vinci) or laparoscopically, but the old school method is best - manual insertion by a skilled surgeon.  Dr. Haney said that in my situation, he would give me a 100% success rate for my cervix to carry to full term (38 weeks)!!!  Another illustration of the three different cerclages, again courtesy of

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Weekly Check-In

How far along? 4w5d, baby is the size of an appleseed!
Weight gain/loss: 0
Sleep? So far so good, trying to get into the habit of sleeping on my left side.
Best moment this week? Scheduling the phone consultation with Dr. Haney!
Movement:  Umm, definitely not!
Food cravings: None, still too early.
Belly button in or out?  In, hopefully for awhile
What I miss? Diet Coke
What I am looking forward to? First ultrasound in 10 days!  How many babies are in there!?
Milestones:  Doubling betas
What I'm nervous about: Everything, but mainly first things first - Phone consult with Dr. Haney, then the ultrasound.


Things are SO much different.  Last time, at 4 weeks pregnant, I was buzzing inside with excitement.  I felt like I had  a secret that no one could know.  I was hopeful; the two weeks before the first sono went quickly.  This time around, I'm just nervous and scared and want to lay in bed and not move.  I feel like the days are dragging by - 10 days still until the first sonogram.  I am scared to find out how many babies are in there!  K cannot get over the thought that there could be 3 in there and has been discussing what we'd do for vehicles and how many more cribs we'll have to buy. 

This morning, I scheduled a phone consultation with Dr. Haney in Chicago and we'll be talking to him this Thursday morning.  I'm nervous and I hope I'm a good candidate for the transabdominal cerclage (TAC) procedure that will take place around 10 weeks.

Friday, July 23, 2010

We are cautiously expecting again!

After losing our twin boys Jonah and Noah at 18 weeks, we decided to start trying again as soon as we were cleared.  My OB wanted us to wait only 1 cycle, and we conceived 5 months after losing the twins, on our 2nd Follistim/IUI cycle.

K wanted to take pictures of all the lined up tests for whatever odd reason.  I don't think he believed me when I said it was positive!  Normally he doesn't like me to test at home; he'd rather I wait for bloodwork at the RE office. 

IUI - July 8, 2010 - 2 large follicles (23mm and 19mm)
Tested @ home - faint positive at 9 dpo (July 17), strong positive at 10 dpo (July 18)

beta #1 @ 12 dpo (July 20) - 139
beta #2 @ 14 dpo (July 22) - 231
beta #3 @ 16 dpo (July 24) - 464

Our first ultrasound should be in a couple of weeks (at 6 weeks) and we'll know how many little buggers are in there!  I had two pretty large follicles, so my guess is twins again - K is terrified that there are triplets in there.  Now we wait...