Completely plastic-free!

I spent today finishing up my outline for UCC Secured Transactions, mopping floors, and updating my to-do lists.  One of the big things I started last year when overhauling my environment and diet was to completely rid our home of plastic food storage.  Today, I can say that is finally complete.  Next up is replacing plastic wrap and plastic storage bags with reusable beeswax cloths.  The featured picture is a set of adorable ceramic bowls I added to my glass food storage collection.  I got them from Amazon.  They have a silicone ring around the bamboo lid to seal them up.  I wouldn’t turn them upside down or anything like I can with my pyrex bowls with plastic snap lids (I still consider them plastic free since food doesn’t touch the lids and I don’t reheat anything with the lids on).

I also have odds and ends of the old Corelle baking and storage dishes from mine and Scott’s childhoods with lids.  My mother-in-law has a white set that they got for a wedding gift, still in the box, that she gave to me as well.  Why did I do away with all the plastic in my house?  Well, mostly because we spend a metric fuckton of money for IVF treatments and if there is even the tiniest chance that the chemicals leeching from the plastic in our home is disrupting my oh-so-volatile hormones, I’m all for eliminating it.  Also, both my daughters got their periods at 8  years old.  Yes.  8 years old.  Their pediatrician said it was within “normal.”  What? So, after reading up a bit, I decided to eliminate plastic as well as any food products treated with added hormones.  It might not actually help; the science is suggestive, not causal.  However, it doesn’t hurt to use more sustainable materials.

I’ve been feeling sluggish and having a difficult time waking up in the mornings.  I’m hoping it’s my hormones getting back to normal from the pregnancy and miscarriage.  I would like to get back into the habit of cooking breakfast for my family now that I do not have to spend my days at the law school.  I bought a hydrangea to plant in the back yard by the gazebo.  I am slowly, but surely, finding  myself as a mom and wife again after the intensity of law school.  I know my people are proud of me, but I cannot help but feel like I somehow cheated them out of the best of me for three years.  Here’s hoping it pays off.

 

My BhCG Levels are Finally Zero. My last Class of Law School. Old Fashioned Goulash, and Our Next FET.

Today’s blood test showed my bhCG levels were finally zero.  My period has started and I start back on birth control pills this Sunday.  I finally feel like the miscarriage is over and we can start looking forward to our next cycle.  My protocol hasn’t changed.  I will stay on oral birth control until about 6-8 weeks before the next transfer in August.  We are in queue to have embryos created already, and my next SiS (Saline Sonogram) and blood work-up is in June.  Hopefully, my uterine cavity is still clear and we will be good to go without more surgery to remove polyps.

My period is pretty sluggish and light, as it was prior to this pregnancy.  I am hoping this means that all the years of heavy bleeds were from having polyps.  I cannot complain.

I am officially done with law school classes.  I have 5 finals, then graduation on the 12th.  I am so looking forward to seeing my mom!  She’s coming for a whole week!!  It’s the first time in my life that I have had a home big enough to house all my kids in their own rooms AND have a spare guest room.  This will only last until we have another child.  Kids will then have to start bunking up when we have company again.  Or one may actually move out – not likely in this economy.  I expect we will have a house full of kids ranging from 20’s to toddlers in a few years.  I will love every minute of it.

I have semi-started cleaning my diet up since the miscarriage.  I allowed myself to eat whatever floated my boat in my misery.  Back to organic, no added hormones or preservatives diet for us.  I will have to give up the diet coke after finals.  I imagine I will feel better again once I start eating better again.  I also started going back to acupuncture.  For now, we are focused on getting my hormones back in line.  I will go once a month until six weeks before the next transfer, then I go once a week.30850025_10212907616018643_1984478643_o

Tonight’s dinner is courtesy of my Facebook feed!  I saw a recipe video for Old Fashioned Goulash, which I have not made or had in years.  Here is the link to the recipe from My Incredible Recipes.  The changes I made were to use grass-fed beef; organic produce; organic tomato sauce and diced tomatoes; high fiber elbows; paprika instead of Adobo; organic beef broth.  I substituted the entire box of broth for the water/broth mixture the recipe calls for.  One box is equal in volume to the liquid in the recipe.  I normally shred my own cheeses off blocks, but I am not quite that “back on the wagon” yet.  Baby steps are better than no steps!!  Any positive change is a step in the right direction.

 

What They Didn’t Tell Me About Miscarriage

I am almost a full two weeks past my D&C.  I was fully prepared for the roller-coaster emotions of the loss, but nothing could have prepared me for the difficulty of the physical recovery.  I was 9 weeks the day I had the D&C; the baby measured 8w3d.  The procedure itself was a breeze physically.  I was under conscious sedation and my doctor and the staff at my fertility clinic are some of the most compassionate humans I have ever met.  My doctor took the time to sit with Scott and comfort him after my procedure.  They called and checked on me the next day, and my nurse regularly e-mails me.  The first two days after the procedure were cake as well.  I felt pretty good and had minimal spotting.  I didn’t bleed much at all.  Sporadic spotting for about a week and a half.

What I was not prepared for was the debilitating cramping, diarrhea, and exhaustion that hit me on the 3rd day after the D&C.  My boobs felt like milk was trying to come in.  It was an awful experience.  On top of the still raw emotional pain, I felt so bad physically that I could not return to school or regular activity.  I simply did not see this coming.  When I e-mailed my nurse, she gently reminded me that I was fairly far along and that it would take WEEKS to recover.  Yes, they told me my hormones would crash and that it would take anywhere from 4-6 weeks for my period to return.  They did not tell me the hormone crash and my uterus shrinking would cause bowel distress, extreme fatigue, and over-all feeling of soreness.  I felt absolutely awful.  It felt like I would never be able to put the miscarriage behind me.  Last Friday, I was still feeling awful and found out my hCG was still over 90.  That was good, it meant my levels were coming down appropriately.  I am hoping by my blood work tomorrow, my levels are <5.  They follow me to 0.

We have already chosen another donor, and are in the process of creating embryos for the next FET in August.  Even though we are still devastated by our loss, we also know that it happens frequently.  We are overjoyed that my uterus still works just fine.  Our nurse simply said “it’s a matter of when, not if.”  This donor has had resulted in a couple with a live birth, a pregnancy, and two negative outcomes.  I am not bothered by the negatives.  I had two myself that were due to mistiming the embryo transfer.  I am one of the people that need to transfer 12 hours prior to the “protocol” mark.

We are guaranteed two embryos; we could get more.  It can take up to 4 weeks to get 2 healthy blasts to freeze.  Once those are snug in the freezer, I will feel better.  We aren’t planning to transfer again until early August.  AFTER the Bar exam.

 

Heartbroken

We had our 8 week 5 day ultrasound this morning. Baby measured 8 weeks 3 days with no heart beat. We knew it was possible. We know the 1st trimester statistics. We knew the unexplained bleeding was not a good sign. And I had a feeling of impending doom all along. Sometimes we just know. Our bodies tell us somehow.

I opted for the D&C, which is scheduled for Friday morning. We will take time to let my body and our hearts heal, then we will try again. There’s nothing wrong with me. Sometimes even screened embryos arrest. They dint know why. We are not having any testing done on him/her. These things just happen and they actually happen often. We both had all the recurrent pregnancy loss testing done prior to starting this journey 2 years ago. At least o know I’m not broken.

Just heartbroken.

Heart Rate 119 bpm.

All went well today. Sonography tech told us everything looks great. Nurse said I can slowly increase my activity, but to keep it light. Pelvic rest lasts one full week after a bleed, so until Sunday as long as I don’t have another episode.

I ordered a rolling briefcase because my textbooks weigh close to 40 lbs. I have 60 days until graduation.

Just 2 weeks until the last milestone ultrasound and 3 weeks until I graduate to regular OB care.

I’m annoyed that the medical community steals joy. Of course anything can happen. Why should that stop us from celebrating and being happy and thankful for today? Today the baby was healthy. Today the baby was on target. Today I am pregnant. I could get hit by a bus tomorrow. A freak accident. Random heart attack. Tomorrow is never guaranteed, so why allow them to damper or steal my joy for what I have RIGHT NOW?

I’m working on that.

Staying positive during the terrifying first trimester.

I have had a lot of time to think. Way too much time. I have been in bed almost a whole week. I have moderate to severe anxiety disorder. No matter how many times my husband tells me the baby is fine, I am constantly in fear of the worst. I realize I have done everything possible since 6 months before the transfer to make this baby’s environment rich and free of toxins, acupuncture, yoga, chemical free beauty products, toxin and hormone free organic food. The egg donor is a proven donor, we have seen the heartbeat. There is really no reason other than unexplained intermittent bleeding- which I have read is really common in IVF pregnancies- to think anything will go wrong.

I have had 3 babies already. There is nothing hormonally or structurally wrong with me.

I plan to stop reading and researching miscarriage and bleeding and start reading about staying positive in the first trimester.

I just have to make it to Wednesday. I’m hoping my RE lets me off bedrest and return to normal life. I hope the baby has grown and his/her heart is still beating away nice and strong. I hope she says the bleeding isn’t a cause for worry.

My husband and kids are being so wonderfully supportive. I feel truly blessed

Houston, we have a heartbeat.

I had another small bleeding episode this morning, so they had us come in. Baby has grown a ton since Tuesday and we clearly saw his/her heartbeat flickering away.

No sign of bleeding in my uterus or cervix, which is still nice and long. Guessing it’s coming from around my cervix/vagina.

Back to bed for me and another ultrasound Wednesday