Compromised

Social Media is so powerful.  I am so grateful for the ways that blogging plus social media has been able to connect me to so many amazing women going through infertility.  Seriously what a blessing that has been the past three years of blogging.

I honestly wasn’t really sure what would happen to my blog after my pregnancy.  I have loved having this as a safe space to deal with the struggles of infertility and now pregnancy and was hoping that could extend to parenthood as well.  I wasn’t totally sure how that would work given that I know for some still in the throes of infertility seeing posts of babies and parenting can be difficult, however I have always loved to hear about the next chapter for those who were finally able to realize the dream of parenthood.

I decided early on not to share this space with my real life friends and family (except you D, for obvious reasons), because I did not want to have to sensor what I was writing.  Three years ago when I started my blog I was just trying to figure everything out.  I was overwhelmed and confused.  I was constantly hearing the typical comments from those friends and family such as just relax or go on vacation.  Those people who wanted to support me didn’t know how, and I didn’t know how to let them.  They didn’t get it.  They didn’t understand the science of it all, the emotion of it all, the cost of it all, or the true struggle I was going through.  I needed an outlet and this was it.  It was like free therapy to just write it all out and have it read by an audience that really understood.  My response to each friend or family member that unknowingly said something insensitive needed to be individualized to that person, not something that I distributed over the internet for my whole real life community to read about.  For that reason, and many more, I decided my blog needed to be separate.

With that said, this blog, my safe space, has been compromised to eyes that were not meant to see it.

Thanks in part to Instagram’s new update meant to connect us with more people, my insta account, and by extension my blog address, were made known to people I did not want to have this access.  Truthfully I am very open to my friends about my journey.  Over the years I have found ways to share with people and handle the possibly uneducated or hurtful comments that might come, and provide appropriate feedback.  My journey to pregnancy through ART is not a secret, but it’s also not something I put on Facebook.  I believe for this particular part of my life that a personal conversation serves much better than a social media interaction with friends and family.  Further, for professional reasons, I needed to keep my experience with infertility private from social media.

While my blogging insta account was not connected to my Facebook, last name, or my regular email address, I did make it so that I would be able to switch between my primary insta account and my blog insta account without logging out.  This somehow made it so the blogging account would come up as suggested account to my primary account followers.  I have made my blogging insta account private, which I really did not want to do, and blocked those people who have followed the account from my real life.  If you are one of them, it’s not personal.  I am not hiding anything from you.  That account is for me, and I still post updates on my regular account.  I also found that people who I don’t actually know, but are connected to me through others, have discovered the account, which is the bigger issue.   I am not hiding anything, as would be obvious by the posts I have made, however I doubt that you have decided to follow my blogging account because you are interested in my journey.

With that said, I will continue to post pregnancy updates every other week(ish) as I have been.   I will continue for now to post to my blogging insta account which is now private.   After that, I don’t know what will become of this blog or that account.  Maybe I will start a new one.  Maybe I will just stop blogging out of sleep deprivation.  Maybe I will just use my primary insta account.

As far as past posts, I may make some of those private, but I had really hoped that this blog could be a resource for those just starting their own journey with infertility as so many other blogs were for me.  I do know that I do not want this blog, my story, to be the source of gossip for others.  Since my audience has now changed, I will tell you, if that is how you choose to use it, shame on you.

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20 Weeks Updates

The past few weeks I finally hit the sweet spot of pregnancy.  I actually feel good most of the time.  I have energy!  My constipation issues are gone (for now at least).  I am actually able to enjoy food again.  Its been magical.

We had an anatomy scan on Monday and both babies are doing well.  They were measuring about 5 days ahead.  We will have another growth scan at the beginning of August with perinatal.  I am also loving that so far my OB does a quick US at every appointment.  Its so great to see the babies so often.  This time my stepson was able to come with us to the appointment so he got to see the babies too.  I think that was a really important experience for him.

Right now I see my OB every 4 weeks and I get growth scans every 4 weeks.  I thought this would feel like forever in between appointments since I had such frequent appointments earlier in my pregnancy, but the time between goes really fast.

We spent the 4th of July week on a staycation.  My dad and brother came to visit and my stepson was with us the whole 10 days as his mom was in Hawaii.  My brother and husband took him to do some fun things like bowling and a water park.  We also took him to the movies and my husband took him to Six Flags.  We wanted to do some fun things for him since we aren’t doing a big family vacation this year.  My brother was also able to help my husband get a few things done around the house including building the nursery dresser.  We had some painters come in and paint the room and we got new carpet in our front room!  It was a really productive week!

Later this month we have our hospital tour scheduled and I will be going to Colorado for my family shower.  I know its early but I did not want to take a 3 hour flight any later in my pregnancy.

 

How Far along: 20 Weeks (on Saturday)

Total Weight Gain: Only Down 1 pound from pre-pregnancy weight!

Maternity Clothes: Yes tops and a few dresses.  Still able to wear my normal shorts, leggings, and maxi skirts.

Movement: I found out at my anatomy scan that at least one of the placentas (Baby B on top) is anterior, which explains why I haven’t felt a lot.  I do feel some flutters here and there, especially lower on my stomach.  Baby B’s head is also on my upper right side (per the ultrasound) and I often get a lot of pressure there.

Stretch marks: No

Sleep: Getting harder to be comfortable and waking up a lot more.

Best moments:  Seeing the babies at my OB appointment last week and then again at my Perinatal appointment this week.  Getting our nursery painted and some of the furniture assembled.  Spending the week with my dad and brother.

Miss Anything: Nothing major.  Sleeping comfortably!

Food Cravings: Asian food, iced tea, tacos and cheese nachos

Anything make you feel queasy or sick: Still not loving meat, but its getting better.  Chicken is the hardest.  I have to eat frequently or I start to feel queasy.  I was cleaning our entertainment center last weekend and randomly had to throw up.

Showing: Yes!

Gender: Finding out on Saturday

Labor signs: No

Symptoms: Still occasional nausea, feeling very full after eating which makes sitting upright at my desk difficult, Gas (but no constipation so yay!)

Belly Button: Definitely flattening out.

Wedding Rings: On

Mood: Happy. Occasionally moody.

Looking forward to: Our gender reveal this weekend.  My first shower at the end of the month with my family.

 

Reflections on 20 weeks of Pregnancy

This post is entirely about being pregnant. If you aren’t ready to read it, then please don’t as it is not meant to hurt anyone. I know what it’s like to be in the throes of infertility. Somedays you just can’t. But I always loved hearing the positive things from those whole finally got here after hard fought battles. It gave me hope.

Also this is about my experience with pregnancy. And the gist really is that everyone’s experience is different and embrace it so it works for you.

 

How could it be? Just a few days shy of 20 weeks pregnant. There were so many times that I prayed for this. So many times I wondered if this was in God’s plan for me. And here I am.

To be honest I didn’t know how I would really feel about pregnancy itself. I mean I have a weak stomach, horrible motion sickness, and basically broken digestive system as it is, so I was pretty nervous about how pregnancy might take its toll on me. There are a few things that I have been surprised, or not so surprised about in my first twenty weeks that I wanted to document.

You can be totally completely happily miserably pregnant. There are just moments that aren’t fun, but you can endure them while they make you feel physically horrible and still be incredibly happy at the same time.

There are really two kinds of “morning sickness”. There is the kind that has you down for the count for hours/days feeling absolutely miserable constantly. There is also the kind that comes up on you like a ninja at the most unexpected and inconvenient time and then goes away as soon as you empty your stomach…..and it will happen and it will happen RIGHT NOW. Carry bags just in case.

Eat your fiber. Lots and lots of fiber. If you need a little motivation imagine yourself having to go to the ER or Urgent care for an enema (this was VERY close to reality for me a few weeks ago). You may have been very regular before, but the hormones can really cause some disruption. Eat your fiber.

Sometimes you need to call the nurse advice line. I am seriously not the type to complain or seek medical help for things. But your body is going through some crazy shit and Dr. Google will either scare the crap out of you or make you think you are fine when you really should see someone. Call the nurse because you will be very upset with yourself if you don’t and it’s actually a serious issue.

Your doctor may be perfect for you, and not right for someone else. I like my doctor. Our personalities are compatible. She knows her stuff and I trust her. She also isn’t the type to coddle you or chit chat about your day. That is totally okay with me. She gets a lot of flak on some of the local moms groups Facebook pages because of her bedside manner. I get that. She isn’t rainbows and ponies. She is smart, qualified, and I feel she will give me the best care. She is a great doctor for me, but she might not be for someone else. So when I read or hear about other’s experiences I do not hold it against her or let it sway my opinion of her. That being said, if you aren’t comfortable with your doctor, find a new one.

Everyone wants to tell you what is going to happen to you based on their own experience. I spent the first 4 weeks after finding out I was pregnant feeling pretty normal other than being tired. Literally everyone told me I was so lucky because that meant I wasn’t going to have morning sickness since I had made it to around 10 weeks. And then I spent the rest of my first trimester and the beginning of my second feeling crappy almost 100% of the time. Everyone told me it would pass at 12 weeks, then 14 weeks, then 16 weeks……finally at 18 weeks I started to consistently feel good.

When the worst of Morning Sickness has passed, you might still have your moments. I still get that spontaneous need to throw up every now and then even though I feel pretty good most of the time. It may never go away.

One of my friends told me that she felt that when she got pregnant it wouldn’t be hard for her to eat completely healthy because she loves healthy food. I laugh. Hard. I used to eat mostly paleo. I spent the last 4 months unable to eat meat most of the time, which is the staple of paleo. What you crave, or what you can or can’t tolerate may have nothing to do with how you ate before you were pregnant. Honestly my biggest cravings have been iced tea and Asian food. The thought of French fries is appalling to me but I would take mashed potatoes and gravy in a second. Surprisingly I haven’t really wanted a lot of sugary foods, but I have loved fruit. None of it makes sense. Try your best to give your body and your baby(ies) protein and nutrition in any way you can. Give yourself a break if you want a donut.

Everyone’s body reacts differently. I had dinner with a few expectant twin moms a few weeks ago. We are all due within a week of each other. We were all showing completely differently. One woman was very self-conscious about how big she was already while I was feeling self-conscious because everyone kept telling me how skinny I looked. The truth is you have no control over how your body might react to growing babies. All you can do is take care of yourself and please don’t compare your body to anyone else.

People will touch you. Seriously they will just come up to you and put their hands on your belly. I have a feeling I’m only at the beginning of this, and I promise I will never be okay with it. It is so uncomfortable and I do not understand it. My mother-in-law is the worst of them all.

If you want to, you should celebrate the heck out of your pregnancy. Infertility does a number on us. And I seriously understand when people who have gone through infertility or miscarriages are very hesitant to even tell anyone they are pregnant, much less celebrate all the little things. There is always a fear something might go wrong for anyone, and then that feeling like we don’t want to be “too happy” because of all of our friends that are still waiting for their miracle. I am big on the golden rule and I will be honest all of the 4 plus years I was struggling I never had an issue with someone celebrating their pregnancy, especially my friends who struggled to get there in the first place. So if you want to, have the gender reveal, post on Facebook, take a poll to guess the genders….or don’t. Do what makes you happy. I have found myself being way more “public” about things that I could have ever imagined, especially because I am pretty private, but honestly this is the moment I have been waiting for literally for years and I am going to CELEBRATE every minute of it without apology.

Pregnancy is a bag of the unexpected every day. Sometimes it’s amazing and wonderful. Sometimes it’s scary. Sometimes it’s kind of gross. You don’t have to love every minute of it. Be real about it. Laugh about it. Appreciate it. And try to find moments of pure joy in it. I particularly love to look at my belly in the shower. It just makes me feel so happy to see it there. Sometimes it’s still so surreal.

Much love to you all!!! Here is to another happy and healthy 20ish weeks.