It feels like standing on the edge of a precipice, writing this entry. Even though many of you know already...it’s still scary. One step closer to Real, praying we’re not jinxing it by ‘going public’.
So there’s been alot going on behind the scenes for Brad and I the last 15 or so months. By ‘behind the scenes’ I mean, stuff we haven’t told you about. We’ve kept it on the down-low for reasons I don’t fully understand myself, but when you consciously drag your friends and family through everything going on, it sometimes makes the whole trip just that much weightier for you. When it’s hard enough as it is. So there you go. Not an apology, not even much of an explanation. But it’s the one I have, for better or worse. And MUCH of the reason I haven’t written alot these last several months.
Brad and I are currently 18 weeks, 2 days pregnant. After returning to the fertility clinic late last year for the first time since 2007, many many meetings and tests with psychologists and nurses and doctors, painful and anxious attempts to secure a gestational carrier (otherwise known as a surrogate with no genetic ties to the baby) that ultimately didn’t work out, we participated in an IVF cycle using a donor egg at the end of October that resulted in one golden embryo that is blooming into one golden baby.
So far things are going well, recent heartbeat measurements have been within 130-140, baby usually moves alot during ultrasounds (except this last visit when (s)he didn’t and both Brad and I thought - here we go - but (s)he perked up towards the end). The entire venture has been wrought with a sense of disbelief that it worked and, since the positive pregnancy test, largely with fear and anxiety that it will be over at any moment. The simultaneously paralyzing and can’t-sit-still kind of fear and anxiety. The kind that has caused me to go into the doctors office for a live baby check once a week from weeks 6-15 because it can’t possibly be still alive, can it?
We are considered a high-risk pregnancy after Anna of course, so are being seen by the high-risk specialists. They consistently tell me I’m no different than anyone else who’s experienced “a late loss” but it doesn’t really help to quell the constant current in my head that says ‘it’s just a matter of time, how far will you get before the appointment with the bad news, you had french fries - the saturated fat probably just coagulated in the umbilical cord and you just killed your baby’. No joke. THAT’S the mind of woman who’s only previous experience with pregnancy resulted in the baby dying at the last second. Objectivity doesn’t get a role.
The fear & anxiety is a bit better now that I can feel fetal movement, but previously have found space to breathe with a few good friends, some of the women from our infant loss group, and believe it or not from the blogs of other women who have had a child die in utero and are now pregnant again. Just this week I read the following from Alexa Stevenson on Flotsam, “...to be quite frank, being pregnant after a stillbirth leaves little room for thoughts of anything else, and I am working so hard to believe that Good Things Are Ahead! (i.e. the baby won’t die)...” Amen, sister.