A different kind of two-week-wait

Trigger warning: This post discusses a positive pregnancy test, which means that I’m now one of those annoying ‘pregnancy bloggers’ I used to avoid like the plague. My sincere apologies.

You’d think that after finally receiving our first ever positive pregnancy test, the anxiety would have subsided. After all, this is what we’ve been working toward all these years, right??

Wrong — what we’ve been working toward is a fully formed, living and breathing baby, and we’re still quite a ways from having that in the bag.

I’m not complaining, of course — a positive test is the first necessary step, and it’s one that eluded us cycle and after for >60 months (not that I’ve been counting). But after working so hard for it, and waiting for so long, the very real possibility of a miscarriage has not escaped my notice.

I realize, of course, that the odds are in our favor — which is definitely the first time I’ve been able to say that in this whole painful process. But while being a member of the online infertility community has been a HUGE support, I think I may have finally discovered one downside. In particular, seeing daily posts from other women having trouble getting (or staying) pregnant has given me a heightened awareness of everything — and I mean everything — that can possibly go wrong*. (Having severe cramps in the middle of the night on Wednesday didn’t help either.)

2nd blood test (‘beta’)

Luckily, one good thing about getting pregnant through (donor egg) IVF is that we’ll be followed fairly closely through the process. Our mythical Big Fat Positive (BFP) was originally confirmed via an HCG blood test (‘beta’) over a week ago now, and last week we had a second beta to see how things were coming along.

In a normal pregnancy, the level of HCG in the blood should double approximately every ~48 hours. With an initial beta of 160, and a second beta scheduled for 6 days later, I was therefore hoping for a number greater than 1,280. From the amount of dizziness I was experiencing, and from peeing on sticks like a madwoman, I was pretty sure my HCG was rising — I just didn’t know by how much.

Have you ever waited to hear if the only pregnancy you’ve ever achieved — a pregnancy which took multiple years and donated genetic material — was still viable? I can tell you that it’s not completely stress-free, no matter how much you want to ‘Just enjoy it!’. After a tense day of glaring at my silent phone, and multiple communication issues between my local clinic and Ghent (one involving a fax machine, because apparently it’s 1995…), I finally got word from the nurse: My second beta came back at 4,815. I’m definitely still pregnant – or at least I was as of last Thursday!

Another two-week-wait

What they don’t tell you is that after you get pregnant, the two-week waits don’t go away — they just change into a different form. Now that the clinic is satisfied with my HCG level, our next step is a 7-week ultrasound. That means another two-week-wait, which I’m finding nearly as nerve-wracking as the first one.

Part of the problem is that ever since that bout of bad cramps last week (which were the night before my 2nd beta), the dizziness I experienced in the first few days has mostly gone away. Since that was really my only symptom, that means that I no longer feel particularly pregnant. I’m really hoping that it’s just the normal ebb and flow of symptoms, but it’s hard to know so many women who have experienced losses and not be a little paranoid. I may come to regret having said this, but right now, I would really kill for some morning sickness.

xx

*For example, if you are in the very early stages of pregnancy, I highly recommend NOT — under any circumstances — googling ‘blighted ovum’.

8 thoughts on “A different kind of two-week-wait

  1. HUGE CONGRATS!!
    I know how difficult this time is (I have my 2 month old miracle asleep next to me right now after 4 years of trying!), the anxiety can be all consuming! And it didn’t get easier for me during the pregnancy. Things that helped me stay calm: stay off Google! Feeling anxious at this time is just an early form of ‘mummy worry’, it’s normal and shows that you’re already a great mum!! Remember that every breath you take is nourishing your growing baby and taking you one step closer to holding bub in your arms. Best wishes xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congrats! I wouldn’t worry as much about the morning sickness. My first pregnancy (the one we sadly lost at 17 weeks because of cervical issues) never gave me morning sickness. I had some slight nausea and that was it. The pregnancy was healthy. My cervix was not.

    My second is also not giving me anything but slight nausea. I think I’m one of those women who doesn’t get that and maybe you are too. The only symptom I really have now are achy, sensitive boobs.

    I finally got my third beta today and it was hell, absolute hell to wait for that. It must be hard staying sane. I just got told “It’s still good” and I’m already like, “BUT WHAT ABOUT NEXT TIME?!”

    This proves to me that hell is a waiting room. I mean, what is a worse torture?

    I am wishing the best for you and your family.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for your blog. I am also in the second two week wait after the transfer of my third and forth frozen embryos gave me my first ever bfp. I am going through the exact same mental process as you are, from panicking about lack of ‘enough’ morning sickness to complete stress that my 7 week scan will show nothing and that a miscarriage has been masked my all this extra progesterone… Wishing you all the best of luck in your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

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