Saturday, August 4, 2012
Pregnancy by the numbers
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.
Very much in the spirit of our experience so far, we spent 70% of Friday afternoon on the phone, leaving voicemails and juggling return calls. Even though the official voicemail from Nashville was only supposed to be in the 2:30-4PM window, we both started calling at 11. Said Heather, "I don't want to be stupid and find out the message has been there for hours." By the time three rolled around, Heather was grumpy and wanted to know what time we could start bitching at people. "What if they didn't get the test results yet?" So I accommodated, leaving a message (of course) for Jordan, asking if she could confirm that the results had arrived. And when she returned the call, they (of course) hadn't received any labs from Memphis. It was 3:45. This was followed by a call to the Memphis lab where I (of course) left a voicemail. The lady called Heather back to say the labs had been faxed at noon. Jordan disputed but took pity by volunteering to call them herself.
It was a weird few minutes in Heather's office, waiting for the call. "Bullshit," she muttered. Then it was another weird few minutes with Jordan on speaker-phone. We mostly got "yes, but.." from it. When we asked what it might mean that her levels were low, Jordan hesitated and said that it could mean an ectopic pregnancy, or a few other things, but she didn't want to speculate, and, no, there's nothing we can do but just keep up with Heather's medication (POI shots at night and estrogen suppositories in the morning) and see how things look on Monday.
Heather and I had debated about going home early after getting news yesterday, but both of us were discouraged enough that we packed up. It was 4:30 and we were tapped out. Once we got home, we curled up in bed to talk about it, then slept for a few hours. In some ways we needed to rebound from the stress, and, speaking for myself, it was a relief to stop thinking about what the test results meant and if we would ever have a concrete answer.
Heather woke up encouraged, impatient with me and my anxiety. "We're pregnant, baby! We've never been pregnant before! Enjoy it!" I still didn't have much enthusiasm to offer. Après nap, we were setting out to buy more pregnancy tests (because-- truth time-- Heather has been testing since last Sunday) when I stopped to call my mom.
"I want to be here for this!" said Heather, convinced that I was too grumpy and not to be trusted in explaining the situation. She sat right next to me, occasionally leaning in to interject. "Okay, yeah, but the important part is that we ARE pregnant!" Mom was excited, putting her in Heather's good graces where I certainly was not.
So, yes, we are pregnant. And, yes, the range of hCG scores can vary widely without it necessarily signaling the viability of a pregnancy. Mostly what reassures me is that Heather has been falling asleep around nine every night, only to wake up super-early, take pregnancy tests, and wake me up to give me the results. Then she has little to do but get ready for work. "Rachel, I've been on fucking time for days now. I can't help it. That sucks."