Thursday, August 15, 2013

Small Victories, Not Ectopic

Ladies and gentlemen (like there are actually gentlemen who read this),
Breathe easy. It is not ectopic. Previously mentioned ectopic phase is over. Confirmed via ultrasound at 5w4d. Ocho Cellito is planted firmly within my uterus, just north of center. So, that's the good part. I don't know if there is a bad part but J and I left the clinic feeling like utter doomsday. It was a shitty appointment instead of the celebratory jig it should have been. It left me confused and completely freaked. Here's how it went.

This time, I specifically requested that I see my RE, Dr. M, instead of whoever was available at the clinic that day. After I checked in, a 15-year-old called me and introduced herself by her first name - Kristen, not Dr. Kristen - and said that she was Dr. M's student. Fine. University teaching hospital. Both my parents worked and taught at teaching hospitals. They incredibly important institutions, at the forefront of research, blah blah blah. All good until it involves my uterus. I'm asked to undress from the waist down, as per usual, and J pipes in "Me too?" to break the ice. I laugh. Less nervous. I casually remark to J that I'm feeling very que sera sera about the whole affair and I actually believe that it's true. Dr. M and Kristen come in and Dr. M says "I hope we get you off this roller coaster soon." I concur. I assume the position and Kristen takes the lead. She searches and searches with the dildocam and finds nothing. Not even something resembling a uterus. Dr. M remarks, "Having some problems finding your uterus," with a smile. "Pretty sure I haven't lost any major organs lately!" I'm fucking dying. Finally Dr. M takes over and quickly locates the large object attached to my cervix. In it, an obvious gestational sac and yolk sac. Excellent. It's much larger and more obvious than last time. Dr. M points to an invisible white dot that he says is most likely the beginning of a fetal pole. I couldn't see it. Ovaries clear. Sitting up sans violating wand, I asked Dr. M if everything looked ok. "Yeah," with a shrug. What about the size of the sac? He looks at the print out a while and after a while says, "On the small side of normal." Upon leaving, he said, "Well, we'll see what's going on next week."

That's it. That was our first ultrasound. Nothing terribly negative but no one passed out cigars, either. I don't think Dr. M smiled once. I left feeling horrible. Small side of normal echoed in my head. It sounded too much like my 6 week ultrasound with my first pregnancy - measuring behind. I should focus on the "normal" part. Everything that was supposed to be there was there. Why the doomsday approach? Why act like the search was for a malignant tumor instead of the hopeful beginnings of a baby? Was he underwhelmed by my betas? The petite gestational sac? Or was he just bashing me over the head with the fact that the 5.5 week ultrasound isn't a particularly telling signifier of pregnancy outcome? Two pink lines and an ultrasound does not a baby make.

I'm starting to get pretty fed up with my clinic. Yes, there are some stellar caregivers there but the overall attitude sucks. I feel like their motto is "Shit happens." Sure, but can we at least fake a tiny orgasm when things don't appear to be circling the drain?

Today I'm feeling better than yesterday. There's nothing I can do but wait it out and take care of myself both mentally and physically. My next ultrasound is scheduled for Tuesday, 6w3d. I've been holding out for that ultrasound as the one that leaves me feeling finally confident. I need to let go of that expectation. Every glimpse should be uplifting but its unreasonable to expect that a single event will make everything better.

Tomorrow my best girlfriends leave for our annual summer vacation. This year they're headed to Santa Fe, NM. Very sadly, I won't be joining them but for good reason. I know that flying is theoretically safe during the first trimester but I'd rather take a bubble wrap approach this time. Should I miscarry again, I don't want to have anything hanging over my head. I'm staying put for my sanity and my growing embryo. As I've told them, the only thing I'd rather do than be on vacation with them is get knocked up. Well, bitch be knocked up. On the other hand, my sister asked me to come up to our parents' cabin with her this weekend to celebrate her birthday. Just us and the hubbies. I don't think my nerves over my fledgling pregnancy will be soothed at all by three days spent around her jubilant, glowing belly. Also, I haven't told my family yet. I am waiting until things feel a little more settled. Maybe next week (see previous paragraph) if/when I see a heartbeat. I'm going to respectfully decline the invitation and tell some white lie about work. Or not. Maybe the truth. Undecided.

Physically - 5w4d, still pregnant. Waves of nausea that last for an hour or an afternoon with no rhyme or reason. Tender boobs.
Mentally - Juggling cautious optimism with unease. F-ing terrified to miscarry again. My brain and heart would explode.


  1. Glad it's not ectopic, I hope the cautious optimism becomes the biggest emotion you feel :)

  2. Ummm your clinic sounds like it SUCKS. They could have waited one or two more days to get you in to see the heartbeat and fetal pole. Don't despair- you had an early ultrasound where it is not likely that you would see everything yet. Crossing my fingers that next week's scan is better and that your Dr. suddenly gains a bedside manner!!

    1. So, my clinic likes to do a 5.5 week to confirm gestational sac AND a 6.5 week for heartbeat and fetal pole. The early US is just a little extra torture.
      I don't know that my clinic sucks (although they are certainly at times pretty shitty) but I know that I'm very over them.

  3. "Two pink lines and an ultrasound does not a baby make."

    HA, this could totally be the IF community mantra. Who says that?! We do, that's who.

    Glad to hear everything went well at the appointment, though I can totally understand your cautious optimism. When you've been to hell and back, you come to expect that you'll return. But for you, I'm just not seeing that. I'm holding out hope for a nice, strong heartbeat next week. Yup, that's what I'm thinking here.

    1. Yes, I feel like the rest of the sane world buys a pack of onesies after said evidence. We IFers are equally likely to purchase a Herve Leger bandage dress BECAUSE YOU NEVER KNOW. Morbid fuckers, aren't we?
      Thanks for your optimism. Everyone's well wishes really do make me feel more confident.

  4. Honestly, I cannot wait for 6.5 more weeks of your pregnancy and can leave this clinic, graduating to a real life doc. It is encouraging to hear that the nausea and sore boobs means that ocho cellito is continuing to grow!