How my journey began (the Cliff’s Notes version):
Pregnant via IVF – successful first time – how very lucky for us!
Here’s the slightly longer story of my first day of pregnancy (and what has happened to me since then!)…
I won’t bore with you all the information about the IVF process, but needless to say it’s a long, laborious and expensive process filled with paperwork, self-injections, ultrasounds and blood tests (no one said it would be fun and they were right!). I will pick up my story from 4th February 2011… The day I discovered I was pregnant!
After leaving the Assuta Medical Centre (at around 9am) after having what I hoped would be one of my final blood tests (would this one give me the answer I was hoping for?), Avi and I set out for the hairdressers to keep ourselves occupied for a few hours. We had to wait for the lab to process my blood and do whatever it is that they do in order to tell me if I’ve got a bun in the oven.
We were told that we’d get a phone call around 12.00-13.00 the same day with the results, so we had a few hours to kill. Hours that stretched for an eternity. Whilst having a pampering colour and cut (yes I am a real blonde, just have a little bit of extra assistance sometimes!), I must have looked at my phone 1,000 times.
Avi’s haircut was finished long before mine and so he said he was off for a little walk as sitting and waiting was driving him mad. He seemed to be gone for ages and when my stylist had finished and Avi hadn’t yet reappeared, I started to convince myself that he’d received “the call” and it wasn’t good news. When he arrived back at the salon, to get me (and pay!) it was approaching midday and there had been no sign of a phone call. We went home to wait.
After half an hour we tried to call the lab a few times, but with no success. We were going stir crazy, so we decided to go for a walk. Somehow we ended up at the counter of our local Superpharm with a pregnancy test in our hands. We had resigned ourselves to the fact that we wouldn’t get the call until we’d spent more money on yet another home testing kit.
We bought the kit and headed back home, bumping into some friends on the way (that’s you Mel and Stef!). Avi said to me, as we approached them, that as soon as we’d start talking to them, we’d get the call… and we did.
Avi briskly walked off and answered his phone and I made up some crap excuse that it was a work call. The next 2 minutes of conversation are all a blur (sorry Mel and Stef), as I just wanted to go and see what the call was about. I made my excuses (probably very lame) and left them to go find Avi, who had wandered down the street.
He was getting off the phone as I approached him and he looked very serious. My heart sank. And then he told me I was going to have to do another blood test in 2 days (it sank further)…. But then he calmly said that if all was good we’d be parents in October!
I screamed (I think), it was all al blur. We hugged and I jumped up and down and we cried as we walked briskly home to call our parents. I have to say, it’s a weird feeling to be told by your husband that you’re pregnant – after all it’s normally the other way around!
With the folks on speakerphone we told them the news… Avi’s mum cried with joy and my mum screamed (also with joy!). We also called my dad and sister and that night we also told Avi’s sister (in person!). It was the best day ever!
I still took the home pregnancy test – well it was already bought and it was nice to finally see one with a positive outcome!
That was the easiest day of my pregnancy.
I won’t bore you with all the facts, but needless to say since 4th February 2011 my pregnancy has become increasingly more strenuous and arduous (ooh fancy words!).
I was off work for 2 months with what doctors called mild Hyperemesis Gravidarum (mild my arse). Wikipedia’s description of HG is “A severe form of morning sickness, with unrelenting, excessive pregnancy-related nausea and/or vomiting that prevents adequate intake of food and fluids… Estimates of the percentage of pregnant women afflicted range from 0.3% to 2.0%”.
Oh what fun that was – of course I had to be in the 2% of women that get it! I was in and out of the medical centre being replenished with liquids as I was dehydrating a lot from being so ill. As I wasn’t eating properly either I became anemic! Another joy!
So in 2 months I had lost 7kg and turned a lovely shade of Tippex (and they say pregnancy makes you glow – I think not!).
There were not many highlights during the early stages of my pregnancy. I am sad to say as I basically felt shitty 24/7 for more than 2 months and although now I am more than 6 months into my pregnancy, I still feel nauseous a lot of the time.
However, one highlight (a pathetic one I grant you!) was when the cleaner was at our flat one day whilst I was home sick. I had to vacate the bedroom so she could clean it, and so she helped me to the couch and tucked me in with my blanket (bless her). This moment really touched me.
One low-light was quick to follow, when she stole my “sick” bucket so she could mop the floor – how dare she!
As I returned to work, I found my pregnancy started to progress quite quickly. We went to several (and by this I mean a ridiculous amount of) baby shops searching out the perfect pram.
We stopped people in the street to quiz them on their chosen pram to find out which was worth the stupid amounts of money they cost here (double the price from the UK!!!!).
We eventually narrowed it down to 2 choices and I made the final decision last week – so now we have to go back to the shop, haggle on the price again and get it ordered. But shopping is actually the fun part of pregnancy (when you have the energy to move around the shop).
I am still undertaking many tests, but I’ve already passed my amniocentesis with flying colours. I wish I could say the same about my glucose test – which I failed miserably – TWICE!
The first time my sugar reading was slightly higher than normal (and I do mean ever so slightly – the limit for a normal reading is 145 and I was 147.3), so I had to take the longer and more disgusting 3hr test (oh come on!).
After fasting for 8hrs and having 5 test tubes of blood taken (for various other check ups), I had to drink 100mg of a sickly sweet glucose solution which made my throat burn. The idea is to wait an hour and have a blood test, then wait another hour and have another blood test and then wait a third hour and have a final blood test… with no food allowed during this period.
I made it 55 minutes into my first hour before I threw up the glucose solution. Needless to say my test was over after this and I went home to bed feeling thoroughly drained, nauseous and pissed off.
So now I have to do a home diabetes test 7 times a day for 2 weeks to measure my sugar levels. Today is officially “Day One” of testing and so far it’s going ok.
Yesterday was supposed to be day one, but I couldn’t figure out how to work the testing machine. After Avi and I pricked our fingers a total of 11 times to test the machine, we gave up and Avi went to the medical centre the following morning to be shown how to use it properly.
In all fairness we were 95% correct with what we were doing and the diagram on the instruction leaflet was very misleading. Anyway – it’s all sorted now and I am (not so) happily pricking my finger before and after every meal.
Avi says that having to go to the medical centre for instructions on how to use the machine was very embarrassing and he won’t let me live it down. I say – suck it up – I’ve had to endure far worse on our beautiful journey into parenthood, and we’re not even there yet!
I’m now showing and people are now offering me their seat on the bus as I look pregnant and not just like someone who’s let themselves go! Which is nice!
Another great thing about being pregnant (even better than the whole seat on bus anecdote I just told you) are the kicks. I am feeling them all the time these days (even at 4am, which isn’t always appreciated at the time). My little one even managed to kick the remote off my ever-expanding belly last night which made my day! Is that a little sad?
The best way I can describe a baby kick is that is starts of as a rippling sensation across the belly, a little like having butterflies but slightly more intense. I wasn’t sure what it was at first and blamed it on gas (delightful I know), but as they got stronger I realized it was my little one punching me (lovingly) from within.
Anyway, those are my main thoughts from my pregnancy so far. I’m sure there are many more stories to come, but due to my brain being frazzled by this pregnancy, I can’t think of anything more to say right now.
So I shall sign off, but I’ll be back soon, no doubt with funny stories of pram buying, nursery decorating oh yeah and the delivery – can’t wait for that one!