Friday, April 5, 2013

16 weeks: Genetic test results and managing

*Once again, here's your friendly warning about a pregnancy related post. If you are not in a good place or if reading anything pregnancy related is a trigger, skip it. There will be other posts. Take care of yourself first and foremost.

Today I am 16 weeks pregnant. And none of this has sunk in. Granted I'm no longer able to button my pants, finding a sleep position is becoming more difficult and I know logically that the Beats are healthy and growing. Still, I'm detached. Grey thinks it has to do with me still being afraid.

The truth is, I am afraid. Though I'm beyond grateful to be pregnant and for things to have been so uneventful for the most part, I still feel like I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. With each ultrasound, I still hold my breath. With each twinge or cramp (which I now know is directly related to me being dehydrated) I pause. Yes, I know I have no reason to be paranoid. That I should be at a point where I'm embracing all of this more. But the truth is, I'm not.

Last Thursday, Grey and I went in for another appointment with our wonderful new doctor and Nurse J. On the schedule was meeting with the nutritionist, discussing vitamins and future appointment and an ultrasound. In addition was a mental health inventory. Between talking with the doctor and all the staff, I filled out the inventory, being as honest as possible. It didn't take long after I handed the inventory to Nurse J for her to return to the exam room and sit down with us to talk.

Here's the deal: life is very uncertain at the moment. My postdoc is very much in limbo, with me having no idea on whether funding is going to come through. I know I'm lucky because 1) if funding does come through, I have the position and 2) my postdoc advisor is currently hunting for other options just to get me started (and yes, she knows about the Beats). Still, not knowing what our future looks like has been stressful.

On top of all of this, home repairs still have not been completed. Grey and I are 3 months in to sleeping on the couch and the contractors don't seem to be in a hurry to complete this project. It seems silly to complain about this, but I really want to sleep in my own bed again and be able to access my clothes or use my kitchen. I also want strange people to no longer be in my home when they decide it suits them. So far, this has mainly fallen on deaf ears despite acknowledgement that 3 months for this size of project is way too long.

And then there's the fact that the individual responsible for all of this is snooping around. The warnings of a lawsuit have only worked so well at keeping him away and it's clear his looking for inside information. I'm waiting for the day I find him inside my home . . . .

Anyway, Nurse J was helpful. She reminded both Grey and I that there was only so much we could do. She was glad that we are seeing David and Dee to help us navigate through the stress of all this. Still, she told me sternly that I need to start taking it easy, reminding me where my priorities need to lie. She also reminded me that things rarely work out as planned in life and that the best course of action isn't always to push.

A hard reminder for your's truly.

Beats are still measuring a day ahead, with lots of growth and movement. Beat A even spent some time showing us how well he/she could use their fingers, moving those digits skillfully prior to sucking his/her thumb. Grey couldn't take his eyes off the screen the entire time.

In other news, we heard back about the Fragile X screen. Based on the karyotypes, our age and other factors in our favor, Grey and I have decided to hold off on the MaterniT21 screen unless something comes up. The Fragile X screen was one of those determining factors. Though I received (and interpreted) the results at 6 am, it was nice to hear the a happy tone from the genetic counselor when she called later in the day. All is normal, which is wonderful news.

I'll end this post with a question: what advise do you have about Fish Oil? Grey and I have been hunting for information, as the recommended daily dosage is 300 mg DHA for a pregnant woman. The capsules have this as well as EPA. There is some suggestion that pregnant women shouldn't have any EPA, but then there's a few sentences about how women with APA syndrome need both.

The concern is that I may be over doing it on the anticoagulents. I need to talk more specifically about this with the MFM, but my SIL (who happens to be a surgeon) has cautioned that I should be mindful, as she has seen patients on too many blood-thinners lose up to 3 L of blood following injury. Still, part of me wonders if this is the reason things have gone so smoothly. Hence I'm torn as I don't want to harm the Beats in any way.



  1. Sorry I don't have any helpful information on the fish oil for pregnancy.

    So happy that the babies are on track and 16weeks? WOW! Every week you make it even further, I am so beyond happy for you. Seeing you struggle so hard the last few years has hurt my heart and now there isn't anything more in the world I want to see other then your happiness as a mother.

  2. All I know about the fish oil is that I was recommended to use it for my endometriosis and cardiac issues years ago.

  3. No helpful fish oil info here, either, but I do want to cheer for 16 weeks! I know how HARD it is to embrace this, and I have not been through half the heartache you have been through. I also can sympthaize so much about your future being up in the air while you are pregnant - it is a hard hard hard place to be. I can tell you the same thing I told Shelley - that we are only human. We are going to have good days of faith and hope and bad days of doom and gloom. Maybe instead of fixating on the bad days and how you could have/should have done better, we should focus on those GOOD days and knowing that on, for example, Monday we felt such love, such happiness and such optimism that we KNOW our baby/babies felt it. Hang in there and I hope some security with the post doc comes soon, along with an exit of the construction crews. xoxo

  4. So glad to read that the babies are continuing to do well, but sorry that you're going through so much stress and uncertainty.

    I don't know anything about fish oil with regards to APA, I'm afraid. All I can tell you is that I've been taking it throughout my pregnancy. I just make sure to buy the purest form I can to avoid toxins. I've read conflicting advice about fish oil during pregnancy, with some resources (like What To Expect...) saying it should be completely avoided, while others (like the American Pregnancy Association) highly recommend it. I tend to put more faith in the latter rather than the former, so I've kept taking it.

  5. Hey! This is a great post Cristy - I like the advice Nurse J gave you. And the Beats are doing great! I am so excited for you!!!! Crummy about the home repairs ... I would be so pissed about this!

    It sounds like you and Grey are in a transitional phase... Making the leap from walking on eggshells about this pregnancy to understanding that this is really happening! I have a huge smile on my face for you guys. It's going to be so awesome!

  6. I am trying to remember which blood thinners you are on - heparin/Lovenox? Low-dose aspirin, too? I didn't have a positive APA test, but in my RE's kitchen sink approach I was on the aspirin and the heparin so I figured fish oil would probably not add much, maybe even be too much. Will be interested to see what your MFM says about it.

    I hope the stressful parts ease up on you very soon so that you can continue trying to let it all sink in. I think I know what you mean, as I still think I remained in somewhat of a state of disbelief for pretty much my entire pregnancy. Grateful and thankful as hell, like you said, of course, but also looking around for another shoe suspended and waiting to drop. If you're not already feeling movements, that will probably help a lot when it starts up. Go, Beats, go!!

  7. My vitamins had DHA in it but I don't know about EPA. I would follow your Doc's instructions.
    On the other stuff - I am so happy for you. I am smiling that you are 16 weeks and seeing those pretty babies moving. I know it's hard to fully embrace this pregnancy, but it will come. Give yourself a little more time. I think as viability comes you will find more peace, but don't let this time pass you by. It will be something you want to cherish and remember. Call me soon!

  8. Glad to hear things are progressing as they should for the Beats. Not so happy about the snoopy snoop.

  9. I am also struggling to figure out the whole fish oil thing -- I really thought taking supplements could be nothing but good for a growing fetus, but there's a lot of conflicting info out there. Please update us if you come to any conclusions on that! Also am totally feeling you on the detachment issue... I only ever dealt with one ectopic, but I guess that scarred me more than I thought it would; I'm 11 weeks now and convinced our 12-week scan is going to bring horrible news, and I don't even feel pregnant or anything. I find it hard to let myself get excited and then friends/family get mad at me for not just "letting go and having faith" in the baby, which only makes it worse. Sigh.

  10. I had been taking fish oil with DHA and EPA prior to pregnancy, and have continued to take it daily for the past 25 weeks of being pregnant. No adverse side effects that I know of! Both my Ob and RE were very pro-fish oil, but I have never heard about possible issues with EPA. I did a lot of research on the safest/purest fish oils to take, and found that Metagenics was one of the highest ranking, so that's what I take. It's a bit more expensive, and needs to be refrigerated, but it's worth it. It also has a fresh lemony aftertaste which is quite pleasant!

  11. So know that feeling that you're waiting for things to go wrong, even when they aren't. This I think is one of the changes that infertility has forced on us, and that those who don't go through this really don't understand.

    You must really focus on the good news and keep repeating this to yourself. When you are feeling scared, work out what it is that is causing these feelings and look at what evidence you have to support it. If the evidence isn't there, try and let it go.

    So easier to write then to actually do in practice.

  12. Hi Cristy,

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  13. I was very detached about my pregnancy, too. I kind of had to be to survive. I certainly understand your feelings.

    That completely SUCKS that you are still sleeping on couches! You have every right to want to sleep in your own bed. I'm sorry :(

    But glad everything is going well with the Beats. I never took Fish Oil. I don't know if the research was at the point it is now on that front...

  14. This all sounds so tough and stressful. I can't imagine having to sleep on the couch for three months, and especially while pregnant! Wow, you're quite a trooper. So glad to hear that the test results came back normal. That's great news. I have been taking a prenatal DHA supplement every day for the past four years. I guess I haven't really done much research on which one to take and I don't know anything about EPA...I just keep taking it. I guess I assume that since it's DHA specifically for pregnant women, it's probably safe enough. I was on blood thinners during my pregnant with my daughter. Not sure what you're on, but I had those same questions - what if I get hurt? I guess I played the odds game and decided that it was unlikely that I would suffer an injury that would result in a lot of blood loss, especially since I wasn't doing anything risky or dangerous due to the pregnancy. But you never know. It's a tough call.


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