Friday, 11 August 2017

14 Weeks

Today's been a bit of a landmark day today for several reasons.

Firstly, I'm now officially into the Second Trimester. This means I'm supposed to be seeing an end to the sickness, fatigue and sore boobs.

Of course, the steroids and ondansetron are taking care of the sickness right now, even if I am still suffering with crazy nausea; I'm not sleeping through the night so I'm still pretty fatigued; and my boobs didn't hurt much in the First Trimester but they're ramping it up now.

Oh, and you're supposed to stop needing to pee all the time. Well, dehydration had put paid to that for most of the last two months but now I'm drinking reliably, I'm in a constant state of wanting a wee. It seems worse when I lie down, which is helping neither the sleeping, nor the fatigue.

On the whole though, I am feeling a little more like myself. The other night I sat in bed and played with my watercolour paints. I might even try reading again this weekend.

The second milestone is the fact that I went to work every day this week.

Now I'm actually ashamed to admit that I don't remember the last time I managed a full week at work. Okay, a couple of times those partial weeks have been down to holiday or appointments, but mostly I've been too ill to go in. This Monday was the first I managed in I don't know how long!

This has been frustrating for several reasons. One, I never used to have absences. I was two years there before I took a sick day and it was because I was in hospital after narrowly avoiding being airlifted off the island. Two, I actually enjoy going to work and I like my colleagues, missing work makes me feel out of the loop and like I'm not doing my best, and I'm nothing if not an overachiever.

But I managed it this week. And apart from one 3am puking session on Tuesday, I managed it with only a few retches and no puking in the ladies' loos. This was actually cause for celebration with my team leader this afternoon; she clearly believes in celebrating personal achievements.

And thirdly, our final milestone of today is this:


Our first official Baby Bo purchase! And it was an absolute bargain!

I've said all the way along that it's cost us enough money to actually get Bo, so we're being pretty frugal about buying stuff for him. And with that in mind I've been keeping an eye on a local Facebook group where people on the island pass on or sell unwanted items.

In the last three months two cots have cropped up there, which I passed on because it seemed a little too early. But I still keep checking, just in case.

And yesterday that beauty showed up. It's a Clair de Lune moses basket, with a rocker stand, for those of you in the know about these things. So I guess we can make sure Bo gets over any tendencies towards sea sickness nice and early which'll come in handy living on the island. This was listed for the handsome price of £20. And that seemed like too good an offer to reuse.

After a quick discussion with the spousal unit (via Facebook Messenger, since we were in different rooms and are a thoroughly modern couple who weren't even in the room together when our child was conceived so why should we deal with this face to face?) He agreed we should go for it. And we did.

All that's left to spring for is a mattress which will bring the full thing to well under what we had been planning to pay for a basket, basic stand and all.

Oh, and you see the beautiful crocheted shawl I've oh-so-elegantly draped over the edge for the photo above (you can tell I'm getting better, I'm staging photos again)? That was handmade by Bo's Great-Nanny. It'll be hanging out in the basket for the next six months, waiting for Bo to join it.

Friday, 4 August 2017

13 Weeks Pregnant

No, I'm not a day ahead of myself. Bo is. We had our dating scan this week and our due date has been bumped up by a day!

Speaking of which, Hello World:


I've not posted because of a combination of reasons; I got sicker, my Mum came to visit, I got even sicker.

I've had a bit of a battle to get further treatment for the hyperemesis which saw me hitting complete rock bottom on Monday but luckily I saw a brilliant consultant on Wednesday who spotted signs of liver damage, got me on more medication and started treatment for malnutrition as well. I narrowly avoided another hospital admission but all this is for a much longer blog post.

Bo has been totally unaffected by all this. If anything he's been thriving, possibly because he's doing everything I have. He's now a day ahead of schedule and expected to arrive February 9th instead of 10th.

He's got arms, legs, a brain, a stomach and a beautiful little beating heart. He had a little stretch and a wiggle, then got bored with the whole being scanned thing and rolled over to turn his back on us. Of course, he may still be a she, but for now we'll go with he for simplicity's sake.

We next get to check in on him at the end of September which seems at once both really near and an an eternity away.

I'm hoping I continue to respond well to the new meds and as I'm now able to do more than just lie in a dark room, perhaps I'll even be able to get caught up on blogging again.

Keep everything crossed.

Saturday, 8 July 2017

9 Weeks Pregnant

Well it's been an eventful week at Chez Click.

Just to give you an idea of just how eventful it's been I'll begin by saying I'm writing this post from my bed in hospital in Paisley.

But first let's rewind a little way back to Monday when I discovered I could not stop throwing up. I've had pretty bad morning sickness but this had started on Sunday and I was no longer keeping anything down.

Cue a trip to the doctor where I was prescribed Stemetil which, once I doubled my dose, helped improve things enough for me to get to my scan on Wednesday.

There was that heart stopping moment when the nurse had the scanner in me (it was at the ACS Unit so it was an internal scan, of course) and she said something about the heartbeat. For a moment I wasn't sure if she was seeing one or not but then she turned the screen and there was a little heart-shaped thing flickering away and accompanied by this brilliant whoosh whoosh whoosh noise.

We got to see Bo wiggling away quite clearly though he'd flipped round by the time she came to take a photo so he's looking decidedly blob-shaped here. But that is a baby, honest.


We could also see evidence of the second sac/bleed which is still there but smaller now.

On the whole it was a very successful day.

Sadly the following day, Thursday, was less successful.

I managed some toast for breakfast and then began throwing up about three hours later. And couldn't stop.

I came home from work early, sobbed and vomited my way through the evening and agreed with Mr Click that I needed to go back to the doctor the following morning.

The doctor prescribed Cyclizine and asked for a urine sample, which I couldn't provide until much later in the day, and recommended drinking lots of flat sugary drinks.

Eventually I was able to pee and hand in my sample and expected that to be it for the day.

But it wasn't.

A couple of hours later Mr Click got a call asking to bring me and an overnight bag to the hospital. I was woken from my nap and was rushed in to see the midwives who set about arranging for me to come to Paisley.

Which meant rushing to catch the 4pm boat, being bundled into a waiting car and hurried up to the Maternity Unit.

Where there were rushed off their feet but were really fantastic. I had a long wait but after two hours things moved very quickly and within the next hour and a half I was admitted, hooked up to a drip and began the first of so many bags of fluid I lost count of them all.

And then I got moved up to the ward I'm on now.

For those who know about these things, my ketones were +4 when I was on the island and admitted to hospital. I think that means my body was basically breaking itself down for fuel.

After being permanently attached to a drip all night I was down to +3 and after lunch I was +1.

Now, at almost bedtime, I'm all clear. At last. So I'm set for a discharge tomorrow morning. I can't wait.

And did you notice the meals? That's right, I've been eating again. Proper food as well!

Here's hoping the rest of 9 Weeks Pregnant is a little less eventful though.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

8 Weeks Pregnant

Don't worry, I'm still here. The first trimester is just well and truly kicking my butt. I'm pretty much getting up every morning and counting down the time when I can get back into bed (6.30pm every evening). I also have morning, noon and night sickness and despite being the world's biggest baby about throwing up, I'm kind of loving it in a weird way. Oh, and don't suggest ginger for goodness sake, it's everyone's answer to morning sickness and it does nothing for me except burning like hell on the way back up!

First I'll catch you up with what's been going on here because although Seven Weeks was relatively calm, Six Weeks proved to be a little dramatic.

You'll remember that I started Week Six with a spot of bleeding. Well it was all good until the Monday when I tried to return to work. Getting out the car I felt a little 'wetness' so I moseyed on to the loo to discover bright red blood and not just a little of it.

I was 6 weeks 2 days, a full week on from the massive bleed which prompted the end of my pregnancy with Olaf and Elsa. I felt panicked and yet strangely calm because somehow this felt different to what I'd felt that time. I called Mr Click while I was on the loo, told him to come back for me, wandered through to tell my Team Leader I had to go and then headed over to the midwives at the hospital. It all felt a little like deja vu but just with less crying this time.

The midwife we saw, K, was lovely. She was so calm and reassuring, even though at first blush it WAS a lot of blood. She got us booked in for a scan at the Early Pregnancy Unit the following day (the earliest they could take us as scans are only scheduled for the morning) and even called me later in the day to see how I was getting on.

Luckily the bleeding tapered off over the course of the day and by the following morning I was just getting the tiniest bit of spotting. We headed off to the mainland for the scan not really knowing what to expect.

What nobody likes to tell you is that bleeding in early pregnancy is incredibly common, particularly in IVF pregnancies because of the effects of the medication you're taking. Doesn't make it any less scary when it happens to you.

We knew there was a whole spectrum of things that could be happening from a miscarriage right through to a bleed which just happens without any real reason. We knew we should see a baby on a scan at 6 weeks 3 days but it could be too early to see a heartbeat in which case it might be a little inconclusive. It was nerve-wracking to say the least.

Surprisingly it was an abdominal ultrasound rather than an internal one. And the moment she put the scanner on my belly I could see the gestational sac. Even better, before she zoomed in I could see there was something in it. Being the obsessive IVF patient that I am, I've been googling these things.

But the far better moment came just seconds later when she zoomed in on the contents of the sac and there was the perfect flicker of a little heartbeat just merrily doing its thing. I called it before she did!

That's our Bo. He's nestled over towards the right hand side of my uterus.

And the bleeding? Well that appears to have been coming from a second gestational sac so it looks like Luke tried to get going but couldn't for whatever reason. Whereas Bo's sac was nice and round with a nice dark background, Luke's was an odd shape with white bits in it. This was labelled detritus and could have been blood in the sac.

I noticed she did take a measurement of a little long narrow bit in that sac which might have been an embryo at some point. It was slightly smaller than Bo and it didn't have a flicker of a heartbeat.

Strangely I don't feel too sad about the prospect of a vanishing twin. I'm actually glad to know that our second embryo implanted and I'm glad we know what happened to him. It also justifies that little niggle of unease that I had about putting back two embryos. What if we'd only transferred the one and that was the one we put back? Instead of seeing a heartbeat on the scan it would have just been that sad looking sac. The fact that one took and the other didn't makes me think that chromosomally something wasn't quite right and I can cope with that. I'll miss my little Luke but I know he tried.

And it told us where the bleed was most likely coming from and also that we might expect another one (thankfully not so far) as the blood would either come out or be reabsorbed. All in all, as scans go, it was pretty perfect.

And as if to prove it was all okay, Bo kicked up the morning sickness that week. We progressed from nausea to full on vomiting. Usually I spend an hour in the bathroom from about 5.30pm onwards. Sometimes he starts it around 4pm to keep me on my toes. I'm becoming very well acquainted with the bottom of the loos at work!

This week Bo will start to look decidedly baby-like.

We've got a scan scheduled this week so I'm hoping to see that little heart still doing its thing as well as some little arm and leg buds and maybe even some movement. 

Speaking of arms and legs, the Ovia pregnancy app I get these pictures from has this section which shows you your baby's hand and foot size relative to what it's likely to be when they're born. Of course the hands and feet don't actually develop until around Week Eight so I've been waiting rather impatiently to see what this feature looks like.

I have not been disappointed, look at this tiny hand:


And this little dot is the actual size of a foot this week.


I actually beg to differ on this one. I have massive feet for my height, clearly I'm part Hobbit, so I suspect any child of mine will have feet twice as big as the average so as not to let the side down.

What with the tiredness and the sickness and my incredibly limited diet at the moment (oh, and the insomnia, hence the writing of this blog post at 1am, about the only time of day I can keep my eyes open), I'm definitely feeling pregnant right now. And I'm hoping to stay that way for a good while yet.

So keep everything crossed for a nice strong heartbeat this week.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

6 Weeks Pregnant

Today I'm officially six weeks pregnant and according to my app the baby (or babies) will be looking something like this soon, if not already:


This is from the Ovia Pregnancy app and apparently I'm having a character from The Simpsons as all the growing baby images are yellow.

The app tells me that this week a tiny little heart should be beating in my offspring's chest. The baby itself will be about the size of a ladybird and the heart smaller than a poppy seed. My mind is seriously blown at both how tiny this is and also how much it has grown in just three weeks.

This week's been a bit of a mixed bag. We started it with the confirmation that I was definitely pregnant thanks to the hospital blood test, we also made it through the equivalent days when everything went pear-shaped with Olaf and Elsa, and then finished up our last day of Week 5 with a bleed.

It was small but scary and entirely not what I wanted to be seeing following the week when I'd bled and ultimately miscarried. I immediately took the day off work, put myself to bed and have remained there ever since. It seems to have done the trick.

As if to reassure me that all hope is not lost, this evening saw me with my head down the loo, retching up a storm, while I alternately laughed and cried. I've been feeling nausea for about two weeks now but this is the closest I've come to throwing up.

I'm sure I won't be saying this in a few weeks time, but for now, I hope it continues for a while.

I've also got some major good aversions. As in everything except chips. I have a theory that since we went to McDonald's immediately after transfer, the embryo(s) believe chips are the only real food. Mr Click served up chocolate spread on toast for breakfast and my immediate response was to hurl though once I started eating it passed.

Happily I can stand small quantities of dark chocolate but most sweet things are a definite no right now.

Except for sour gummy worms... or tangfastics... I could really go for some of them right now.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Taking the Test

The 'Two Week Wait' is a torturous time between your embryo transfer and the date you've been given to test on. Different clinics ask people to test on different days, some ask people not to test at all and instead have them go to the hospital for a blood test.

Even between my four transfers I've been given a range of different days to test on, from nine or ten days post transfer right the way up to 12 or 14 days after. Of course this time was the longest I've had to wait.

When an embryo implants it takes a little while for the hCG to build up in your system to be at a high enough level to be detected by a pregnancy test. This starts to be produced around day five or six after transfer but isn't really measurable until day nine, which is the first day you could expect to get a result on a pregnancy test.

With this in mind I carefully calculated that June 3rd would be the earliest I could possibly get a positive test. I'd planned to test early mainly because my official test day was a Thursday and I didn't like the idea of getting the result and then having to go to work straight afterwards, particularly if it wasn't a good result.

The Saturday seemed like the best day to do it, since we would have the whole weekend to come to terms with the result. It was also early enough not to completely ruin my hopes if it was a negative, it might have just been a little too early for it to show up, but by the same token it would help to cushion the devastating blow the following Thursday.

Mr Click and I discussed it. At first he wasn't keen on me testing early, but then he came around to my way of thinking and agreed that testing on Saturday seemed like a good idea.

On the Thursday before I was all for testing but then the following day I felt completely zen about the whole thing. I wonder if this was a little like the overwhelming feeling of 'I'm pregnant' that I got with Olaf and Elsa at about the same point. I sort of felt like I didn't need to test, I could wait until the following Thursday, it was all good.

But then I woke up at 3am on Saturday. Now, if you're not familiar with pregnancy tests, you need to hold your pee for a while before you take the test. They recommend about four or five years to allow the hCG to build up. I worked out that if I was going to take the test, it would have to be then, there'd be no way I could hold on until 7/8am later that morning.

So I dragged myself out of bed. Peed in a little container for the purpose, dipped the test, turned it over and waited three minutes.

And this is what I saw:


That was taken virtually as soon as I'd turned it over and it was a total squinter. The camera wouldn't even focus on it properly unless I stuck my ring on the thing to give it something to focus on.

But it was all I needed to give me a little hope, so I kept watching and after about five minutes it looked like this:


Bear in mind that these photos were taken in awful lighting in the bathroom at some unholy time of the morning. In daylight you could see the line without even squinting:


I think that was when I truly believed that we might just have done it.

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Currently...

Suffering...
... with a suspected UTI.

I think it started on Monday when we took our trip to the hospital to pick up a fresh supply of my meds. I was aware of the fact that I didn't want to be needing to pee all the way into Glasgow so I drank less than usual which seems to have had an adverse effect on me.

The problem is a sore lower back, needing to pee all the time, and feeling generally run down pretty much describes all my pregnancy symptoms so I sort of hesitated on whether or not it was worth going to the doctor. Yesterday I thought it was nothing to worry about, but this morning I asked Mr Click to make the call and he decided a trip to the doctor was worthwhile.

I'm glad he did.

To paint a wee picture (no pun intended), I filled up a sample bottle. Within ten minutes I needed to nip to the loo again. As well as ten minutes after that. About ten minutes after that we left to go to my appointment (five minutes up the road), by which point I abandoned the spousal unit to check me in so I could nip to the loo again. And then another ten minutes later (right when I was due to go in to see the doctor) I had to nip in again.

I've got a short dose of amoxicillin and we're waiting until Monday for my results to come back in case I need to take something stronger. I have a funny feeling this won't be the last time I'm getting a UTI during this pregnancy.

Reading...
... After the Crash by Michel Bussi.


It's this month's book club book and I'm finding it to be one of those 'one more chapter books'. It's told in both the 'present day' (late nineties) and through a journal which one of the characters is reading. This means that inevitably a chapter ends and you have to wait until halfway through the next one or the one after it to pick up the strand of the story you've been reading so you just have to keep going.

I managed to read about one hundred pages straight off at the weekend though I've slowed down a little since then.

I'm also reading a Mother & Baby magazine, because why not? Mr Click picked it up for me today (I think to cheer me up after the UTI and antibiotic stuff). Our baby doesn't even have feet yet, but I'm going to be hot on tips to help them learn to walk when they get here.

What's keeping you occupied this week?