Wednesday, August 22, 2012

No comments

The blob was still there at Tuesday's ultrasound, but there was nothing in it.  The creature we put everything into couldn't hang on.  There's nothing there anymore.  It's as though the money and science and our hearts have just dissolved.
No comments, please.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Ever anxious

That was a long pause.  It started out bad, and now I guess it's not, and we're back to waiting.

Last Friday, Heather had the third blood test of the week, displeasing the fertility powers-that-be with the results.  That Monday, she'd been at 163; Wednesday, 349; Friday, 529.  That was not good.  Heather and I spent our lunch break home in bed, weeping over what we felt was an imminent miscarriage, and mourned off and on through the weekend.  Heather felt certain we were done, while I felt ashamed that I was holding out just a little hope.  We both planned out Monday afternoon, anticipating the blood test results around 12 with a swift exit from work to go home and grieve without distraction.

If, the Nashville crew told us, the hCG levels on Monday morning hadn't advanced significantly, we probably weren't looking at a viable pregnancy.  If the numbers improved, Heather would need an ultrasound to see where the embryo had implanted.  So we spent the day sitting around, vibrating with anxiety.  Lunch was the most painful experience possible, with neither of us able to do anything but stare at each other like caged animals.  Well, caged animals who occasionally cry and compulsively check their phones.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Paradigm shift

Dude, we're pregnant.  We are.  Let's give the ol' fuck-you to "maybe" and "kind of" and "tentatively," because Heather has a growing embryo in her uterus and that makes her pregnant.  It's a plus-sign, a second dark line, an hCG number that increases on schedule.  Fuck it.

After yet another voicemail marathon yesterday-- "Debbie, I'm sorry, I know we just spoke, but it's 4:10 and I'm worried you guys are going to close before we get today's results"-during which I was camped out in my boss's office because I was terrified to answer incoming work calls lest I miss incoming Nashville calls, I finally spoke to Jennifer (Jordan and Martha apparently out of pocket), who said that Heather's hCG level had more than doubled, from 163 on Monday to 349 on Wednesday.  Super, right?  "We're still concerned that's a little low."  Motherfucker.  The numbers doubled like you wanted; isn't that the important part?

Jennifer elaborated that the doctor was concerned about the possibility of ectopic pregnancy because of the combination of those levels and her cramping incident on Monday.  Per Jennifer's question, I explained that Heather's cramps had gone away shortly thereafter and not reoccurred, but she didn't seem to feel any better about it.  Motherfucker.  I don't even...

She asked if we were still using the progesterone.  I said yes, that we'd just gotten a new vial that morning ($150 + $15 overnight shipping).  Good, she said; keep it up-unless it's hurting much, in which case we can discontinue.  Per Jennifer, there's no need for it at this point, but that, if there's a miscarriage, we can't help wondering if that's a cause, "just psychologically."  What?  What?  But anyhow we have it, so we're going to use it.

The conversation ended on what, for me, was kind of a sour note with the whole "numbers too low"/"ectopic pregnancy" business.  It's an interesting comment on the situation that Heather, given just raw numbers, was completely delighted, while I had already taken the kinda/sorta
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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

"My breasts feel fluffier."

One dear lady-- whom I did not pay-- fulfilled my deepest, darkest fantasies by saying she was reading the blog like a trashy romance novel.  My heart glowed like those pictures of Jesus.

An important distinction, however (other than the fact that I was happier than Jesus looks in those pictures), is that she said she didn't regularly read trashy romance novels, while I have spent the last twenty-four hours incessantly reading the final book of the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy.  I've been afforded the opportunity because Heather has been incessantly sleeping.  Every now and again, she wakes up to turn on a movie or the Olympics, then fall back asleep while it plays, so at least my sleazy reading has had a patriotic soundtrack.

Monday, August 6, 2012

"Cramps can mean so many things."

Heather has legendary menstrual cramps.  They're ridiculous.  Or she says so, anyway.  Today she's building a new legend wherein she has brutal... pregnancy cramps.  Obviously, we had to page the on-call doctor.

That's kind of an unfair way of putting it.  Heather wasn't being hysterical (an apt word, under the circumstances), and whatever she was, I was right there with her.  She came home from work late, slumped on the couch, and said her legs and lower back were hurting terribly.  At around 2:30, I'd spoken to a nurse in Nashville who said that Heather's hCG had nearly tripled-- from 55 to 163-- so we should continue to be cautiously optimistic.  I asked when we could be fully optimistic; she said it would have to wait for the ultrasound, which will be around the 17th.

Metal mouth and other auspicious symptoms.

We've got another few hours of waiting ahead of us, and it's going pretty well.  Much better than Friday, anyhow, when we knew absolutely nothing.  It was an encouraging weekend-Heather, of course, continued her daily home pregnancy tests-so we're approaching this afternoon's results with enthusiasm.  It's a big step for me and I'm hoping I won't get kicked in the stomach with bad news.

Yesterday, Heather told me her mouth had this metal taste to it and nothing made it go away.  Pregnancy symptom.  She's been drinking orange juice like a... like a citrus fish, I guess.  Yesterday she ate only the lemon-flavored sour-star candy she bought at Garden Ridge (where they wisely pack the long, long check-out line with candy of all types and where I was also called upon to carry a 15-pound ottoman because Heather is in a delicate state or maybe just lazy).  I mean, the sour stars were quite mild, but Heather isn't a fan of strong lemon flavors, so that was a pretty good sign.  She's also sleeping funny-crashing out at 9:30 or so, then waking up around 2AM, totally unable to sleep for another couple hours.  From what I can tell, she mostly spends those hours taking pregnancy tests and waking me to tell me the results.  Her mood is a little inconsistent, too, which I guess I should appreciate as a sign that she'll soon bear my child.  I don't appreciate it just yet.

I'm enjoying the fantasy very much.  My mom is, too, having so far not just hinted of Friday's results to my sister, but also a work friend and my aunt.  (I saw that my aunt asked my mom if she was "ready for grandma-hood, but didn't see the reply.)  My dad has said nary a word to me on the topic, which could be an indication that he still hasn't accepted the situation, worries that he'll inadvertently offend me, or simply doesn't know how to talk to me in general.  I continue to approach that the same way I did with getting a cat: yes, it's unauthorized, but once it's in his arms he'll mellow out.  If only Heather's hormones would allow her to do the same.

Sunday, August 5, 2012


My sister and I have been on kind of rocky ground lately.  I contend that no two people who share, or have shared, a bathroom will ever be completely at peace with one another; the emotional consequences of shampoo- and toothpaste-centric battles can be devastating, years and towels later.  If you think someone has used your satsuma soap without authorization, well, you just can't come back from that.  Trust is trust, yo.

Heather has shared bathrooms with her own siblings, so she was duly surprised this afternoon to get an encouraging text from my sister.  She called my desk breathlessly. 

"Your sister sent this really nice text.  I guess your mom said something.  Your mom might have as big a mouth as you do."

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Pregnancy by the numbers

We're pregnant.  Mostly.

Heather says I need to stop with my doomsday attitude and focus on the fact that she is actually pregnant, which she is, instead of getting caught up in the hCG numbers that Nurse Jordan says are "a little low."  Heather scored a 55 when the goal was 100 (apparently measured in something like milli-international-units per milliliter, or some such shit), and now the hope is for her number to triple by Monday.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Drinking at work

While drinking at work is (in my workplace, anyhow) discouraged, taking Xanax is not.  I'm not sure how much it's going to take me to get through tomorrow and I can't help thinking it would be more efficient just to drink.  Rules is rules, though

Yesterday was painful.  I ached with anticipation the way Heather's body ached with hormones.  She continued, and continues, to tell me about all her symptoms and what percentage of certain she is, while I marshaled my own forces to fight off that confidence.  It seems like setting myself up for disappointment, or maybe it's the Christmas-morning thing: I don't want to think about my presents until I'm opening them.  The one time my sister encouraged me otherwise--"Okay, what did you ask for?  What did you say you really wanted?  Now, what size might that box be?"-- I found the unwrapping of my Barbie motor home anticlimactic.  A Barbie motor home should never be anticlimactic.  Those fuckers are miraculous.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Do your job.

I have confidence in me!

With each step I am more certain
Everything will turn out fine
I have confidence the world can all be mine
They'll have to agree I have confidence in me!

I like to talk shit about how Heather is impatient, prone to cheating on home pregnancy tests, and unable to savor the anticipation, but I'm on board now.  This is excruciating.  To hell with the savoring.

Yesterday over dinner at the Olive Garden, I realized I was grumpy and negative and had hit my wall.  Heather is getting more positive every moment-- 80%, she says-- just a week since she and I wept together about what it would mean to get another "no."  And that's the game, kids: you careen from moments of hope to total despair, day in and day out.  I texted Heather's usual Wednesday-night dinner group to ask them to please not cancel because I needed her out of the house.  The only way I can get the baby stuff out of my head is to be away from her, and I need it out of my head for at least a few hours a day.  I'm grateful that she understands.

Maybe she understands because she believes she's pregnant, so my anxiety seems adorable.  She's been walking around today with this beatific expression, as though she was getting a wonderful foot massage, but telling me that her body is aching and swollen.  The two aren't unrelated: the pain and discomfort might be symptoms of pregnancy, and swollen breasts are a small price to pay for fueling that fire.

Yes, I hear how creepy and bitter that sounds, as though Heather is delusional.  My point is that I'm souring rapidly, as though Friday is the exact moment that I will lose my shit if I don't know for sure if she's pregnant.  I just can't do it anymore.  And the idea of getting another "no" makes me mad, like we can't catch a fucking break, blah blah blah, and I'm kind of itching for a fight with the fates. 

Believing Heather is pregnant, silently, is bad enough, but I'm terrified of saying it aloud, so I don't think about it if I can help it, and I try to avoid talking about it, too-- not (obviously) the situation, but whether I believe it's legit.  There's maybe some iffy evidence that could support that theory, and maybe Heather's confidence should encourage me.  "At this stage," she said, "I would be surprised if I wasn't pregnant."  That scares the bejesus out of me.  I like that she's happy, but seeing her so joyful is such a treat that I don't want to watch her face drop.

FYI, guys, the blog is going to go dark starting Friday for probably a few months.  If we get a negative, I won't want to talk about it for a long time, and, if we get a positive, I don't want to jinx it by saying it publicly.  I probably will, though.