Shifting Focus

Tonight is my last Clomid pill for this cycle. The Prometrium was much worse than these by far – causing me to have intense anger/irritability at J for imagined slights against me (sorry baby) and a resulting epic blow-up for no reason at my mother-in-law at lunch on Sunday for which I am still feeling horrible. Perhaps this is why I do not have periods regularly – because hormones literally make me an INSANE PERSON! LOL I feel sorry for J once I’m pregnant and have those hormones coursing through my system. Yikes!

The Clomid has definitely still been affecting me, though. I’ve been bloated and crampy/twingey in my ovaries. I had a headache the first day but that could have been due to the thunderstorms moving through our area. I’ve had some nausea/loss of appetite but that could definitely be due to feeling rather crappy fighting off a sinus infection/head cold for the past few days. I’ve also been peeing a lot more lately but I’m sure that is also due to the 3 cups of raspberry green tea I’ve been drinking every day at work. Because of this, I told J that I won’t know when I’m actually pregnant because I’d imagine this is much what it feels like: peeing all the time, weird feelings in my insides (weird for me, since I don’t get regular periods or ovulate naturally, I don’t really know what this is all about!), general ickiness…

We’ve also been dealing with a lot of stress: worry over cutbacks/furloughs at my job, J struggling to juggle her super busy job and our super busy toddler by herself all day every day, spending oodles of money for the baby-making, J and I working on some relationship and self issues, both of our moms are needing or have recently had surgery and scary health issues, etc.

In all of this we’ve kind of let the baby-making journey thus far go to the back-burner of our minds and haven’t really had a chance to think about it or get excited. We’re going through the motions, visiting the doctor, but our focus really isn’t on it. It’s not fair to ourselves or our growing family to basically be ignoring the fact that we are trying to gain a new tiny human! This should be a time of excitement and instead its been a time of extreme stress and discouragement and shit hitting the fan all over the place.

J, Jax, and I went out to dinner last night and did some shopping, and we just spent time together and talked about any and everything. We just took the time to reconnect and get excited about this next step in our lives. It is exciting! It is important! And it’s time we start treating it that way instead of letting everything else get in the way and bring us down.

Not to say the other things aren’t important, but making a new tiny human for our family is pretty darn important too and deserves our attention. Besides, in the midst of this maelstrom of negativity, we need to focus on something positive and happy.

So in shifting our focus back to baby-making, today’s the last night of Clomid for me, and Monday is my follow-up doctor’s appointment to check on my follicles. I’m nervous and excited! J thinks I will be ready to go and they’ll have me do the Ovidrel trigger shot that night and come in on Tuesday or Wednesday for the IUI. Of course there’s no way to know until Monday but we’re staying positive, focusing on enjoying this journey toward Baby #2, and trusting that everything will work out when it is meant to. The happiness is what deserves our attention, not the millions of other things stressing us out that we have no control over. And it’s about time we let ourselves get excited about something for a change!!

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Normalcy

TMI warning… 🙂

Ten years ago, I had just turned 18, and went to the gynecologist. I’d only had three periods since my first one at age 13, and no doctors would see me for this until I turned 18 or became sexually active. So once I turned 18, I made my appointment. I went through the uncomfortable ordeal on my own with no idea what to expect and when asked about my prior periods, I was embarrassed to say it had been years prior. I had an abdominal ultrasound (no cysts and everything looked fine), some bloodwork drawn (I think my FSH was a little low), which led to being diagnosed with PCOS and bluntly told that I’d probably never be able to have kids, so here take some birth control pills. I was devastated and thus began the vicious cycle of my adult life in which I’ve never had a period without being on progesterone followed by birth control, which always gave me severe migraine attacks within a month or two of use. As soon as I’d stop the birth control, my period would disappear until I started progesterone again.

Needless to say, I’ve gone through being on and off medication over the past 10 years, and seen two different gynecologists. My second doctor, which was also J’s doctor during her pregnancy with Jaxson, kept checking my bloodwork routinely to monitor and we tried so many different types and brands of birth control with no success in preventing the migraines. Also apart from the initial abdominal ultrasound back in 2004, I’d never had another to check out what was happening in there, nor really underwent any testing other than routine bloodwork since I wasn’t actively trying to get pregnant. Also, due to the PCOS I’ve struggled with my weight since I was a teenager. A couple years ago I’d lost weight and gotten down to 200-215 pounds which brought my period on – for two months straight. Needless to say I’d had enough after two months and went to the doctor to ask her to please make it stop. Enter birth control pills again and after a month or so, the severe migraine attacks began, and finally I said “forget it!” and ditched the birth control completely, around the time when J got pregnant with Jaxson. I figured I’d worry about it all later, when it was closer to my time to try to get pregnant, because I just didn’t want to suffer through birth control pills and all their fun side effects again, especially while trying to deal with a pregnant wife. 🙂

Finally last September after Jaxson was born and we’d had time to acclimate with life with a baby, J and I decided we’d start focusing on ourselves and getting healthy again and losing weight. In the year since, we’ve both lost about 50 pounds, and I actually had some spotting on my own in June 2014 which only lasted about a day. It was promising though and I was excited that maybe the weight loss was going to work and I was going to start functioning normally. July and August came and went without a period, until last night when I had some spotting. I woke up this morning discouraged that I hadn’t gotten a heavier flow and thought I’d just have a one day deal like I did back in June. Then at lunchtime I went to the bathroom and BAM there’s my period. I just had to lose weight and get healthy, and now I’m looking forward to my gynecologist appointment next week with my new doctor. I’m armed with some information to share with her, and I’m hoping that having a fresh pair of eyes look at my information will lead us to some answers. I’m super excited and optimistic that as I continue losing weight I will only become more regular and therefore more ready to get pregnant. Because for the first time in 10 years, I feel hopeful that I will be able to get pregnant because my body is finally doing what it’s supposed to have been doing this whole time. It’s empowering and satisfying, and I am so very happy, despite the cramps lol. It sounds silly, but after being told for years that you have no choice but to be on medication to be “normal” and that children may not be a possibility…well I’ve at least proven that I can function without being pumped full of hormones and that feels pretty damn good. 🙂

13 Weeks

Lucky Number 13…well for me at least! I can’t believe the first trimester is already coming to a close and we are zooming into the fourth month this week! Not to mention, we get to see our baby again this Friday and I can’t wait. We go in for our first trimester screening and might even get to find out what it is although its still a little early (hey, you can’t blame me for being hopeful!) J and I both just want to know if its Madilyn or Jaxson growing in there! 🙂

In Mommy news, J has been having issues breathing lately and her asthma and allergies have been acting up. She’s been having to sleep with two pillows and while she’s not hugely pregnant she’s still having some pressure in her abdomen which is giving her trouble. She doesn’t handle wearing tight clothes anyway and now that everything she owns is getting a little snug it is really frustrating for her. We bought two pairs of maternity jeans but one pair was way too long and the other pair just didn’t fit right in the legs. So we have to return those and try again. At least the work pants we got worked out well enough. I know she’s just upset to even have to be in maternity pants already but I think once we find the right fit it’ll be better. Regardless, I know its getting to be tight quarters in there, the baby is the size of a peach and her uterus is now as big as a melon! Baby’s definitely taking up a lot of real estate in there!

I have been passing the time planning my portion of the upcoming baby shower. I’m so excited! I know it is still a couple of months away but man time is flying and it gives me something tangible to obsess over. Last night, we were discussing cake options and decorations and I think we may have finally narrowed it down to something really cute. But who knows, it could change again in a month or two! I just can’t wait; I know it will be a blast and we are looking forward to getting all our girls together for a good time. 🙂

Last night as we were discussing baby shower stuff, J was STARVING so she decided to have a turkey sandwich. As she finished the sandwich, she yelled out. It startled me, so naturally I asked her WTF was her problem. LOL She laughed and said, “I think you will think I’m crazy, but I think I just felt the baby move. Like, really MOVE.” The look on her face was one of utter disbelief, and it didn’t happen again. I can’t begin to judge or imagine what the peach-sized being inside of her is or isn’t doing in there, but that’s a pretty good-sized baby so it could be true! She said it felt like when someone flicks you with their finger. She thinks because she was kind of scrunched up on the couch that maybe it was just a fluke that she could feel it, but she was definitely put off guard. Apparently the baby was happy to have a turkey sandwich! And speaking of food the baby likes, it is most definitely my child, regardless of my DNA not being involved. Not only does J get sick whenever she eats beef products (a trait that I unfortunately have, despite my love of a good steak!), but now she has begun craving tomatoes (my all-time favorite food ever!!). This kid is definitely taking after me. I wonder if it will look like me too? We did pick a donor with similar features after all. 😉

Baby is the size of a peach this week,  is about 3 inches long and weighs just over an ounce! This is the final week of the 1st trimester and baby’s body is finally starting to catch up with the size of its head, which is now only one-third of baby’s whole length. Vocal cords are already forming and baby now has fingerprints on those tiny fingers!

We’re one-third of the way through – about 6 months until we get to meet our wee one!

Fingers & Toes

Today was our long-awaited regular OB appointment. Technically it is our first prenatal appointment for all intents and purposes. Most pregnant women don’t get to see the doctor to confirm their pregnancies until around this point, and even though we’ve been at this for 11 weeks already with the poking and prodding, it was still all crazy and new and nerve-wracking. We weren’t even sure if we would get an ultrasound until we were in the exam room! In fact, Dr. Connors did the ultrasound “unofficially” so we wouldn’t even be charged by the insurance. Of course, that meant we didn’t get any take-home pictures since it was “technically” to follow up on J’s ovarian cysts (gone!), but we still got to see the baby and that is all that matters.

What a difference from the last ultrasound at 7 weeks!! I wish I had had the forethought to record it on video with my phone, but we were both just so amazed and in awe of what was playing out on the screen. There was our baby and this time, it really looked like a baby! And we are just getting to the point where you can begin to see details of the head and body. You could see where the eyes are , and a tiny nub of a nose on that little face. The heart was beating away perfectly in that little chest and boy, was he/she ACTIVE! Twisting, turning, punching and kicking – and since the baby was head-down again this time (this seems to be the position of choice for our little one) I said it looked like it was break-dancing. Apparently it gets its dance-skills from Mama J, since I’m not the most coordinated individual.

Dr. Connors said everything looks perfect, and she was so excited for us. You can really tell she just loves her job, even after the 100s of babies she’s delivered over the years. She sat and talked with us for a while about genetic screening options and the prenatal blood work and tests that J has to get done before our next visit in 4 weeks, on August 21st. She is sending us for our next ultrasound at the hospital on August 10th and J has to do another 1 hour glucose test on August 11th. We will be one day shy of 14 weeks when we go for the ultrasound, and I keep saying that maybe we will find out the gender of the baby as my birthday gift! Man, that would be AWESOME! I understand that we could have a “shy” baby that won’t show the goods, but I’m really hoping it is not as modest as Mama J so we can find out sooner rather than later! 🙂

Oh and our updated due date is February 10th…so I think we’re just banking on sometime in February at this point since it keeps changing. J is hoping for February 12th because it is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. I wouldn’t mind! 🙂

Even though the doctor’s appointment took almost 2 hours, it was a really great visit and a a really great day. I was so distracted when I went back to work and I couldn’t wait to tell everyone that we got lucky enough to get another ultrasound. I really wish we had gotten a picture, but definitely next time. After work, I even went to see my Dad at his work so I could tell him the news in person. He loves to hear the updates firsthand and seeing his face light up and being so happy about the good news was just priceless!

The other priceless moment of the day was seeing those ten little fingers and ten little toes on the ultrasound screen. It was so amazing how detailed they were, almost like the baby was waving at us to say “Hi Moms! Here I am!”

I can’t wait to kiss each and every one of those little piggies. 🙂

11 Weeks

Our baby is the size of a lime this week, about an inch and a half long already! Baby’s bones are beginning to harden this week and tiny teeth are getting into place under the gumline already. While you can’t quite feel it yet, baby is doing water ballet inside the womb and may even be having his/her first hiccups! Baby’s skin is still transparent and thin but will start to thicken once baby puts on more weight in the coming weeks.

Our little baby is almost fully developed now!

J really doesn’t like limes. It reminds her of a bad night in college involving waaaaay too much tequila and the resulting aftermath. That’s okay though, because the little limey guy (or girl) in there hasn’t cost her her cookies yet.

Thankfully, J has had a pretty easy pregnancy so far aside from coming down with whatever sickness we had the last two weeks. We are both finally feeling back to normal; well as normal as J can feel with the little one growing inside of her! She keeps having weird dreams about … um … having man parts which of course make her extremely distressed first thing in the morning. Apparently in her dream the other night she asked me if I would still love her if that happened. When she woke up and told me, I assured her that the chances of it happening were slim to none so I didn’t think we had to worry about it. And of course I laughed at her…a lot. Love you baby! 🙂

Of course, everyone is saying that maybe the weird dreams are being contributed by our little man in there…if he is indeed a HE. I hope so! At least then it would justify the weird dreaming so J would feel better about herself. Alas, it is too soon to tell and apparently lots of pregnant women have odd dreams as a result of all the hormone fluctuations going on in their bodies. Some of them have even dreamed about giving birth to kittens! LOL I guess when my time comes we’ll have to keep tabs on the odd dreams I have and compare.

Regardless, nothing much has happened the week other than recovering from the sickness of doom, weird dreams on J’s part (oh and I had a nightmare about ghost hunting with someone from high school, the result of eating Oreos right before bed I’m sure!), and a growing baby. We have our next appointment on Tuesday and it just can’t come soon enough! We are excited to know if we get to see our little one again or not, but I know that whether or not we get an ultrasound we get to hear the heartbeat at every appointment. We tried to use our stethoscope the other day to hear it but all I could hear was J’s stomach grumbling and digesting. LOL She says she can feel it moving sometimes, like a fluttering, and I can’t wait until I can feel it too.

And of course, we are getting impatient at finding out the gender! We tend to call the baby a “he” because that’s what we want (and what I think it is) and people say we are going to damage it if it ends up being a girl. I highly doubt that. Rest assured, we will call it the appropriate gender once we know for certain! Speaking of gender, the testosterone or estrogen wash will be happening soon. Usually it happens between 12-14 weeks and this is when the baby’s brain gets washed in the dominating hormone which speeds development pertinent to that gender. Of course at this upcoming doctor’s appointment it is most likely going to be too soon to tell, so I guess we will just have to wait and see, and as you all know patience is not our strong suit. 🙂

So that is all for now. I will make sure to post once the doctor’s visit is over Tuesday. I can’t believe the 1st trimester is coming to a close – only 2 more weeks to go!

10 Weeks

I can’t believe we are already 10 weeks – that means we are 25% of the way through this pregnancy. Unreal! Some days it feels like the time is just flying by and at other times, it feels like we still have so much longer until we get to meet our little one. Just the other day I was reading What To Expect When You’re Expecting and it suddenly dawned on me that we are in the 3rd month. Maybe its the sickness or maybe I’m just a little bit slow (sometimes!) but I just hadn’t really thought about us being this far along already. It is so exciting to be on this journey but sometimes I wish it would speed up just a little! It is always tough in the weeks leading up to the next doctor’s appointment, so I’m impatient for that. I know that after next Saturday it will start hurrying up again for a few days before our appointment with Dr. Connors on the 24th. I hope we get another ultrasound at this appointment coming up. They said that we probably would since its our first visit with our regular OB. Honestly, as long as we get to hear the heartbeat and its perfect, I will be just fine. 🙂

Our next big milestone is finding out the gender of our little kumquat…we probably won’t know until September-ish by what I’m reading…maybe we will find out sooner in August and it can be my birthday present! I still think we are having a boy, and I think I’m starting to sway J to think the same. Her mom keeps calling it a her on purpose, trying to will it to be a girl! LOL Guess we will have to just wait and see, but in the meantime, it is a fun game to wonder about the little person in there.

And in other news this week, I came down with the horrible, terrible, no-good, cruddy sickness J had and was running at 101 degrees for a whole night – that was fun NOT. But I got in to see my doctor right away and she gave me a Z-Pack which is slowly doing me some good. I still have such a horrible cough and OH – no voice…which is super fun. J is still coughing real bad and since she had to be on such low doses of antibiotics she’s still feeling terrible too. We are a mess…but at least we are getting it out of the way early on so the rest of the pregnancy can be a (hopefully) sickness-free ride. 🙂

Our little kumquat is a little over an inch long and weighs a quarter of an ounce. Baby’s length will nearly double during the next three weeks! Baby is also getting the first tastes of what J is eating and drinking as the baby is now beginning to drink the amniotic fluid. Baby’s arms and legs can now bend at the joints and is beginning to kick around in there! The webbing is completely gone from baby’s fingers and toes and tiny fingernails are beginning to grow as well. The umbilical cord is formed and providing nutrients to baby as the yolk sac disappears and the liver is now producing red blood cells.

Our little one is growing so fast!! We can’t wait for the next ultrasound so we can see him/her again.

Keeping Up With The Joneses

Hello everyone! Today it is finally officially official….I am now Bethany Jones! I began leaving my old name behind a couple weeks ago when I got my new Social Security card and today I finally got down to the DMV to update my ID and car registration. After an hour long wait due to a power outage and general system issues at the DMV (its always something, right?) I left with my new ID and name in hand. Tonight I changed my name on all my accounts and the last things to update are our banking and my workplace. It feels so good to finally have this all done and not be stuck in limbo between the two names. 🙂

In total, it only cost me about $60 for everything, which is great because some people in our grand anti-gay state of Florida have had to do legal name changes through a court order which can cost a boat-load of dinero, or go a roundabout way and get a Passport name change first and then go to the DMV for a new ID. I decided to take my chances and hope to be treated like any other American and did my name change the old-fashioned way – I took my marriage certificate and updated Social Security card to the DMV and asked for them to change it…and they did! It may not sound like a big deal, but for me, it was a tiny personal lesbian victory! I have to say it was a lot less stressful than I thought it would be and for once I didn’t feel singled out, discriminated against, or “gay”; I felt like Bethany, a happily married woman who gets the same treatment as anyone else in this country, just like any of us deserve to be treated.

Life is good. 🙂

Now we just need to get our wills, powers of attorney, health care directives, and all that other legal stuff taken care of so our family is solid in the eyes of the law in preparation for Baby Jones’ arrival in February. Although my name change was a small personal victory, our state is (sadly) a long way away from equal rights and recognition for gay and lesbian families, hence the need for all of the legal paperwork to make our family “official” too. It sucks to have to validate our family this way, but alas, we have to do what we have to do until Florida catches up with the rest of civilized world.

Speaking of name changes, I’ve changed the title of the blog. While we are still lesbians making babies (YAY!), we are also now a united front, the Joneses. I thought it was fitting. One of our idols, Suze Orman, says that women often don’t realize the power of their own name. So having that in mind, this blog has a new name, and I hope you continue reading along and Keeping Up With The Joneses. 🙂

Ultrasound Thursday…we can’t wait!!

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