Sunday, September 30, 2007

I'm being a b!tch

I think I'm avoiding people. On purpose.

My mother is high on the list. We normally talk daily, or every-other-day. She lives near Chicago, and I live in Michigan. She tried to help by coming to visit the day after the miscarriage (2 1/2 weeks ago, might I add.) I think it made things worse.

For one thing, I cry. I like to cry a lot. Always have, always will. My mom? Not so much. So, I tried not to cry in front of her. Stupid, I know.

She knit a baby blanket while visiting. It's what she does in her down time. Watches T.V. while knitting. Usually, a good use of time. But why the hell would you do that when your daughter just lost a baby? I know it was not out of malice. But... hello? A little sensitivity??

I could go on. She means well, and I know I'm being harsh.

I haven't spoken with her since Tuesday. She called and left a message on Friday, and I have not returned the call. I'm not really upset with her. It's more like, I really have nothing to say. I have no further information as to what our next step will be, and I know that will come up in conversation. I don't really want to discuss my sister and her adorable, sweet, precious new baby.

See, I told you... I'm a complete bitch.

More wine tonight. I'm limiting it to 2 small glasses... I have to go work out tomorrow morning. Ugh.

Friday, September 28, 2007

I did it...

I had the unfortunate experience today of joining my local "women's only" gym today.

It's not fair! I should be 14 weeks pregnant, and enjoying getting my maternity clothes out. But instead, I had to face reality.

I'm fat. And I'm gonna keep getting fatter unless I do something about it. Only, I shouldn't have to be doing anything about it right now!

It's adding insult to injury! Salt in the wound! Somebody help me!

After miscarriage #1 (sad that I have to make a distinction!), I gained 20 pounds. Just ate anything and everything I wanted to, and didn't care. My attitude was "clearly, life's too short... eat, drink, and be merry!."

When I was then faced with fertility issues, it was suggested that perhaps it would help to lose some weight. So, off came the 20 pounds, and a few more. I was then at the same weight I was when we conceived our son.

Over the past 3 1/2 years of trying for #2, my weight has yo-yo'd. Not by much. But I know myself all too well. I had been thinking of joining this ladies only gym for a while now. Of course, then I got pregnant... and I was so happy that I could keep putting it off! But we all know how that ended.

Let it be known.... I have tempted the fates by paying for a year's membership IN FULL. NO REFUNDS.

My first work out was this morning. I hurt already.

Oh, and this isn't your typical old ladies gym. I think it's geared for a "younger" crowd. They have tons of cardio equipment, and then the typical circuit training. They also have "free" (included in your monthly dues) yoga, pilates, aerobics, etc. classes if you so desire. So, I like to think I joined a hip women's gym. Yea, that's it.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

"Just So Sad"

My whole life I have struggled with a lack of organization/order/neatness in my life. Don't get me wrong, I love when my house is neat and in order, but it is beyond me on how to get it there, and keep it there.

One thing I have mastered is how to cram, and pull an all-nighter. Much like when I was in college "preparing" for an exam, except instead of studying I clean. I had one of those sessions last night. And now I'm paying for it.

My son's best friend and his mom and baby brother were coming to our house for a play date. We met them last year at pre-school, but for whatever reason, we've always went to their house for play dates. So, a year later, I decided it was finally time to reciprocate.

The problem is that every time we went to their house, it was immaculate. This lady has a 4 year old, a 1 year old, 2 big dogs, and 2 cats. Not to mention she babysits for a couple of other kids a few days a week. I don't know how she does it.

And my house? Not so neat. I try, really I do. And in my 30+ years on this planet, I'm learning that my life would be so much easier if I were more organized. I'm a work in progress... in so many ways.

Now, it doesn't help that my son is like a tornado. He enters a room... BOOM... instant mess. It is a sight to behold.

And I count my husband's mess as if I have 2 other children. He wears a size 14 shoe. He leaves several pairs laying around, and... BEHOLD... instant obstruction!

The dog... a Golden Retriever... need I say more?

The reason I bring all this up is that I did stay up all night cleaning for fear of scaring off our guests. The real problem was that I had to clean every corner of our house. We have a finished basement, so I figured the kids would probably head down there. Of course, our main level, where we would eat lunch, etc. And even the upstairs. The little guy's bedroom and majority of toys are there. I also had to clean the nursery, because the one year would need to nap.

I had been sort of using the nursery as a storage room. If there was something laying around that didn't have a designated home... into the nursery it went. I've been packing up summer clothes and getting out fall clothes, and using the nursery to sort through everything.

So I cleaned it all up. It looks beautiful.

My friend went to lay her baby down. She commented on what a beautiful room it is, and that "It's just so sad..."

"Yea," I nodded, "it's sad."

I've been contemplating for some time now on what to do with that room. About 6 months ago I had considered selling all of the furniture and making it my craft room... or maybe a toy room for my son. But, I decided against it. I was hopeful. I figured that eventually the fertility treatments would work, and that we would have a baby to put in the crib.

And then, to our surprise, a pregnancy on our own in July.

And now, emptiness. And very little hope. I don't know if we're ever going to have another baby.

And in the midst of grieving my little baby, I'm also grieving the loss of a dream.

And trying to figure out what to do with the crib.

Monday, September 24, 2007


On my never ending googling quest to find answers, I stumbled upon this tidbit. Interesting:

Women are more likely to suffer recurrent miscarriages if their first child is a boy

Madrid, Spain: Women who give birth to a boy as their first child are more likely to suffer subsequent miscarriages than women whose first baby is a girl, an international conference of fertility experts heard today (Tuesday 1 July).
Dr Ole Christiansen, a consultant registrar at the Rigshospitalet Fertility Clinic in Copenhagen, Denmark, told the annual conference of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology, that giving birth to a boy first was not only a risk factor for subsequent miscarriages, but for women who suffered unexplained secondary recurrent miscarriages (SRM) it could mean that they never managed to carry a child to full term again unless doctors gave them appropriate treatments.
Dr Christiansen said: "Giving birth to a son is known already to be a prognostically negative factor in many obstetrical complications. Therefore we wanted to assess the impact of the gender of the first child on the outcome of subsequent pregnancies among patients with unexplained secondary recurrent miscarriages.[1]"
He studied 204 SRM patients admitted to clinics between 1986 and 2000, and obtained information on subsequent pregnancy outcome in 181 patients admitted before 2000. Among the patients admitted before 2000, only 54.4% of those who gave birth to a boy in their first pregnancy had given birth to a second live baby by January 2002, compared with 73% of women whose first child was a girl.
Amongst a subset of women who did manage to have a second child after a series of miscarriages, those whose first child was a boy had an average of 3.9 miscarriages before achieving a second birth, while women whose first child was girl had 3.5 miscarriages before delivery of a second child – a small but statistically significant difference. Average birth weights of the second children tended to be 181g higher where the first-born was a girl.
Dr Christiansen said: "Our study shows that the majority (54.4%) of those who gave birth to a boy in their first pregnancy go on to have a second child. However this percentage is lower than for those who gave birth to a girl first. Among my patients I have at least 50 who never have a second child after the first birth of a boy, whereas approximately 20 patients did not experience another birth after having a girl. So there are patients who will never get a second child in both groups, but the risk is larger among women whose first child was a boy."
He believes that the way women's immune systems react to male foetuses is the explanation for his finding and that therefore it will be possible to treat successfully women who suffer from SRMs. "These women may have raised an immunological reaction against tissue types that are expressed on the surface of the placenta in pregnancies with boys," he said. "The placenta is created from the foetus and if it is a boy it will carry these male-specific tissue types. The mother's immune system may be reacting by forming antibodies, but also the mother's white blood cells may be reacting against the placenta."
The first pregnancy is able to proceed to full term because the pregnancy is safely established by the time the mother's immune system starts to react to the male foetus. However, it is possible that the immune systems remains activated after delivery and affects subsequent pregnancies, believes Dr Christiansen.
"This is an epidemiological study, so we cannot be sure that such an immunological reaction is the explanation for our findings. However, no genetic disorder following the known rules of inheritance, can explain the findings. The impact of the gender of the first-born child on successive pregnancies is suggestive of something that has memory and only two tissues in the body are thought to have memory: the central nerve system and the immune system. Together with a PhD student, I have planned a series of genetic studies and immunological experiments to confirm or reject the theory of an impact of male specific antigens on the reproductive performance of women with SRM."
However Dr Christiansen believes his theory is probably correct because he has conducted two placebo-controlled trials in which infusions of intravenous immunoglobulin have been given to women with SRM to try to make their immune systems tolerate the male-specific antigens. This treatment increased the live birth rate by a factor of 2.3, whereas no effect could be detected in women who had never had a child and who suffered recurrent miscarriages.
"For many years it has been well-known that pregnancies with boys carry an increased risk for a long series of obstetrical complications compared with girl pregnancies. We believe that our research will be able to clarify whether these complications may be related to immunization against male-specific antigens. If this turns out to be the case, then I believe that we already have a quite efficient treatment, as our trials have shown."

I did everything right, right?

So, I'm coming on the 2 week mark... 2 weeks ago I was blissful, naive, and pregnant.

Now, I'm sad, bitter, and not pregnant.

What I can say after this loss, that I never could after the first 2, is that I really think I did everything I could to avoid losing this little one. I've compiled a list. Why? Not sure, but these random thoughts were floating through my head all weekend at work.
Reasons I did not cause this miscarriage:
1) Number times I forgot to take my prenatal vitamin, extra folic acid, progesterone, baby aspirin, and metformin? ZERO

2) Number of cups of coffee I consumed this pregnancy? ZERO

3) Number of sandwiches containing deli meat I consumed this pregnancy? ZERO

4) How much seafood did I consume this pregnancy? NONE

5) Number of times I had intercourse from 7/19-9/12 (day I found out I was pregnant, to the day I miscarried) ZERO

6) Number of diet sodas consumed? ZERO

7) Number of times I saw a doctor throughout duration of pregnancy? approx. 9 including ultrasounds... did I mention I had 7 ultrasounds in this 12 week pregnancy? All of which the baby looked "great"

8) Length of my hair roots since my last hair appt. (which I think was back in June), and of course I didn't get my highlights redone once I found out I was pregnant... approx. 2 inches!

OK, I'm sure I'll think of more later. But, I can honestly say, I don't think I can blame this loss on anything that I "did" or "didn't" do. Instead, I'm blaming myself on things I have no control over... perhaps the cause of all of my losses is autoimmune? Perhaps I'm clotting? Although all of the tests come back negative.

I guess the bottom line is that I just want a freaking answer!

Friday, September 21, 2007

First Day Back...

I had to go back to work today. I was dreading it. I really shouldn't complain... I work every other weekend (Fri., Sat., Sun.) as a Hospice nurse. I really love my job. Sure, it has it's moments... people are grieving and often misplace their anger (ha, sounds like me!), and it can be very stressful. But what I was really dreading was the lack of eye contact, the stupid "it wasn't meant to be" comments, and the sense that people are avoiding you because they just don't know what to say.

But... I had a pretty good day at work!

I was met with true compassion. People hugging me... and saying nothing. Co-workers making comments such as "I can't believe this keeps happening to you," with tears in their eyes. Wise suggestions... such as a woman who's daughter has had 4 miscarriages and is now 14 weeks pregnant and using acupuncture.

What a relief!

I can say that infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss has made me a better nurse. More empathetic, and more sincere. These three little one's have helped their mommy obtain so much wisdom and compassion in the few short weeks that they were with me.

On a different note, I was a naughty nurse... I looked up my medical records. Why, why, why, do I like self torture? The pathology report was back... "Immature male fetus... all findings negative." Still waiting cytology. Sigh... I should have 4 little boys : (

Two week post-op is on Tuesday. What a waste of time. There seem to be no answers.

Changing subjects again, thanks for the comments ladies! I was so touched to see the responses. I have to admit I am new to blog world... but I'm so happy I've found it! Feel free to come back anytime and listen to me whine and ramble!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Sloppy Drunk

So much has happened since... May?!?!? Where has the time gone?

For one thing, in early July, we found out we were pregnant. On our own. No drugs or inseminations were needed. We had sex, I got pregnant, the way it suppose to happen.

I won't elaborate too much, as it is now September, and I am no longer pregnant. I miscarried this little one just over a week ago. I was 12 weeks along. I'm heart-broken. Sick. Come March, I won't have a baby... again.

Not only am I grieving this loss, but I'm grieving the idea that I probably will never have another baby. Ever. No doctor can give me an answer as to why this keeps happening... it takes over a year plus to get pregnant, and have had 3 consecutive miscarriages at 9 1/2, 8, and 12 weeks. We saw the heart beating on ultrasound with all 3 babies. "Less than 5% chance of miscarriage now" my ass.

So, I've been wallowing in self-pity for a little over a week now. And rightfully so I might add. And the inevitable happens... my sister has her baby 3 weeks early. I've been trying to prepare for the babies arrival, but I thought I had a few more weeks.

My sister and I have a unique relationship. I love her. I do. But we're not really that close. There's 6 years between us, and we are half sisters. Although that's really irrelevant, as she lived with us full time growing up. We're just different. If we weren't sisters, I don't think she and I would be "friends."

Now, I know she has probably been busy nesting and such, but never once did I receive a phone call, card, e-mail, NOTHING stating "I'm sorry to hear about your loss." Now to her credit, I had kept this pregnancy pretty quiet, but I know my siblings are aware of the miscarriage (my brother left me a "I'm sorry" message... thank God for brothers!).

I received the phone call from my Mom on Tuesday morning, stating the baby had been born Monday night. Great, now what do I do?

I guess I expected my sister to call me sometime on Tuesday to tell me the details, but that never happened. It didn't happen on Wednesday either. So last night (Wed.), I'm thinking what a horrible person I am for not calling and offering my "Congrats."

So, I sucked it up. Became the "better person." I called the hospital and asked for her room. It literally was a two minute conversation. I couldn't stomach anything longer. I had recited the conversation, and had decided that if she tried to turn the conversation to a "I'm sorry" tone, I would quickly state, "thank you, but I don't want to talk about me right now..."

But, the "I'm sorry" part of the conversation never happened.

Is it wrong to have been expecting it? I mean, she just had a baby for God's sake.

Instead, she told be the baby's middle name will be "Grace." The middle name I have been reserving for my baby for the past 4 years.

And thus, I got sloppy drunk last night. Not intentionally. At least I don't think so. Three (very large) glasses of wine, and it just happened. I have to say, I felt better. Now, not so much, but in the moment last light, I was oblivious to all emotion. Good or bad? I'm not sure.