Well, it’s finally happened! I’m pregnant! This has been such a long, painful, exhausting journey. But, thinking about the life that is growing inside of me, all the pain was worth it. Some days it still doesn’t feel real, some days it does. Tomorrow I will be 5 weeks along. I found out so soon that I don’t have many symptoms yet, I still feel pretty normal. I have so many fears that I have to lay at the feet of Jesus, every morning…then a few hours later…then a few hours after that!
I was so excited when I called Mike to tell him that the home pregnancy test was positive, but both of us had a hard time believing it. It’s like when you pray for something so long, your prayer become a little robotic. I honestly didn’t believe this was the way God was going to give us children. I had already contacted a couple of adoption agencies.
See, we have been trying to conceive for two years. We started trying in September of 2008. In January of this year, my OBGYN started me on a pretty high dose of Clomid, an infertility drug. Clomid works by impacting hormonal production, by influencing the “fertility hormones” (estrogen, FSH, and LH) that precipitate ovulation. Like many prescription medications, Clomid works by “tricking the brain” into believing that estrogen levels in the body are low. This in turn encourages the brain to send signals to release more Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone (GnRH), which causes the pituitary gland to produce more FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) and LH (luteinizing hormone). LH is the hormone that facilitates ovulation (the release of the egg), and it’s also the hormone used as the marker in urine ovulation testing. (http://www.ovulation-calculator.com/clomid.htm)
The Clomid had some pretty yucky side effects, most of which I did not get. The biggest side effects I got were severe pain in my ovaries and it made me super emotional. Sometimes the pain was so sever that I could not breathe. During the days of my cycle I was taking the medication, I did not feel like myself. I would cry and tell Mike that I didn’t think I could do it anymore. The pain was just too much. Then, I would ovulate and feel much better, my cycle would start over and I would decide that I would try it again. When I spoke to my doctor about how long I could take the Clomid, she said that she would let me do it up to 12 months. After reading up on the long-term side effects of taking Clomid for a long period of time, Ovarian Cancer being one of them, I prayerfully made the decision to stop after 9 months. IVF and other infertility treatments were not an option for me; those treatments have the risk of multiples, even more so than Clomid. Clomid still has the risk, but much less than, lets say, IVF. After the 9 months, we were moving on to looking into adoption.
I conceived on my 8th month of taking the Clomid. I have searched online for other women who have had the same thing happen with them and I have not found many. Most women, I read, get pregnant usually the first few months taking it, some up to the 6th month. I feel so extremely blessed that the Lord allowed me to conceive before we gave up hope!
I had my first appointment on Wednesday last week, but I only saw the Nurse Practitioner. We went over the medications I have been taking – I have to stop all of them, which I expected. She gave me some prescription samples of prenatal vitamins with DHA. They are HUGE! When I opened the box I had to laugh. I thought the prenatal vitamins I have been taking for 2 years were big. These are the biggest pills I have ever seen in my life.
Luckily they have a sweet coating on them, so they don’t taste too bad. Sometimes it does take a while to swallow them and if it turns in my mouth before going down my throat, it can be a bit painful. But if this is going to make my baby healthier, then I’m all for it.
Like I said, I have had to stop taking all of my normal medication. The adjustment has been difficult. I take an anti-inflamatory pill twice a day, then on occasion, when my back gets really bad, a Tylenol with Codeine or a muscle relaxer. I have been very careful not to over exert myself. Moving too quickly or twisting or bending can throw my back out, and not being able to take those medications, recovery could take me weeks, even months, I suppose. I fear what my pain level will be as my pregnancy progresses, but I am so thankful for this blessing, I will endure the pain.
My sister is 11 weeks pregnant, and I am so incredibly blessed to be able to go through this journey with her! I would tell you a little of her story, but tomorrow I am helping her start a blog so you can read all about her as soon as she gets it up and running. I can’t wait to see our bodies change – Steph’s is already changing!! – and I love that I will be able to experience being a first-time mommy with her.
I think that’s about it for now. I know I’m not showing at all, but I wanted to take a starting picture.
Here I am at 4 weeks 🙂 Don’t mind the unmade bed!