One of my favorite times of the day is right before bedtime which I know will drive me insane when you're an outside baby.  But most nights between 10 and 11 at night, I get to host the most wonderful dance party in my stomach.  Some nights it lasts for just a couple of minutes before you, my little Bean, are quiet again and very rarely I don't feel you at all.

Last night though, daddy and I were up late after a long day celebrating Roxy's birthday, doing house work, shopping and then going to a hockey game.  Just as the night was winding down you decided it was time.  No music necessary, you gave us your best moves yet.  For nearly an hour I got to feel kicks, punches and jabs on nearly every part of my tummy.  But the best part of all was when daddy put his hand on you and got to feel it all too.  

See you don't generally move a lot for him.  Last night was different though and there you were showing us just how much we have to look forward to.  So little Bean, keep dancing because in 3 short months everything is going to change for our little family.  

With all my heart, 

I'm a failure.  And I don't even have a baby at home yet.

I feel like no matter what I do it will never be enough.  Everyday I wake up, take my medication, get ready for work and go to a job that pays the bills.  That's it.  It's not glamorous, it's not even rewarding, but it has incredible benefits and I know what I'm doing.  My green padded walls make the DMV look like Disneyland.  But I trek on.  Most weekdays I'm also researching for when our little one arrives.  Where are the best nurseries, are they affordable, is there a wait-list, do we need a tour? What crib, stroller, diapers are the best and most affordable?  What gestational diabetes meal plans are recommended while I wait for my referrals?  When should I start a birth plan and how?

Each day I have a decision to make.  I'm not hungry, no this pregnancy has all anti-symptoms, but I eat still.  Small portions so as not to feel sick and healthy to make sure my blood sugar is where it should be.  I do this for breakfast, lunch and dinner because I need to be healthier more now than I've ever been.  When I get home I try to get dinner started which I do about 80% of the time and again it's always fairly healthy.  Plus it's within budget so we can save money for childcare coming up soon.  I try to be active with my dog because I don't want her to be sad.  Sometimes that means going for a walk but I'll be honest it's not every day.  

Then there comes a time where we decide if we're doing housework any particular night.  Does the baby's room need furniture built, something need to be cleaned up, laundry washed and folded?  Am I demanding too much of my husband who needs down time of his own.  Maybe he should play video games, I'd rather be the one to put the changing table together anyways.  

Sometimes our week includes family get-togethers that last much longer than they should.  But remember I have no pregnancy symptoms so what do I have to complain about for walking all day or being out all night?  I'm told I need to milk being pregnant but I'm a fighter and am trying to do things as usual.  

Every weekend I've been attempting to a yoga class not only to stay healthy but for some me time.  Time I can shut off my phone and zone out.  It's only an hour but it helps.  Most weekends also include grocery shopping.  Remember to be healthy, remember to keep it cheap.  Then there's the endless shopping trips to prepare the house for baby and to complete our move-in.  I wanted both these things so I shouldn't complain.  And if I'm honest with myself I want to clean every weekend but it seems futile.  One minute the whole house is clean and the next it literally looks like a tornado has gone through our living room.  Then again there's more work that I should be doing.  I can't leave painting solely to my husband, what about helping out on the shelving in all the closets, rearranging furniture?  

This is life for everyone, everywhere.  I just wish sometimes someone would say "Thank you, you're doing a fabulous job".  Instead I'm left apologizing to the baby for not being healthy enough, being stressed, tired, angry and emotional. But I'm having the perfect pregnancy so no one should see all of that.

There's no longer denying, I have gestational diabetes.  Let me start with my doctor's visit.  Leading up to this appointment, especially since the last one, I've been trying to grasp what could be for me and my little one over the next 4 months.  So when my OB reviewed my blood sugar levels and told me they were bad it wasn't as difficult to hear this time around.  He explained it to me this way: my placenta is creating a lot more insulin than I usually get and my body cannot regulate it.  My diet, albeit good, isn't really doing anything nor is Metformin which I am currently maxed out on.  He was very blunt but also very kind, not mincing any words yet keeping it professional.  

Babe was at the appointment with me so he heard first hand my new plan.  We'll have to continue to go to the perinatologists office that I hate but I'm going to try my best not to be seen my Dr. Rude if I can help it.  E also promised me that he would be at every visit and speak up when necessary.  I feel much more at ease this time around and am just hoping Bean turns out healthy.  We only have 16 weeks to go before this little guy makes his or her arrival and if a few sacrifices here and there ensure his safe arrival, I'm all for it.

***WARNING- triggers mentioned***

Today is my monthly OB checkup.  It's also been a month since we saw our Bean on the ultrasound monitor during our very stressful anatomy scan visit.  But as time has passed, I've felt the anxiety of seeing my baby once more lessen.  That is until last nights nightmare that pales in comparison to any fear I've had this entire pregnancy.  It may have been triggered by watching a certain TV show last night or the fact that my office is wearing pink in solidarity to honor our coworkers daughter today.  Whatever caused it, I hope it never happens again.

Like many past bad dreams, I woke this morning trying to remind myself that it was just a dream.  That my Bean is alive and healthy, growing strong in my belly.  It took everything in me to fight back tears a couple of times already. Thankfully this little spitfire is proving to me just how lively he can be.  Again, welcome kicks, punches and head butts to my abdomen that I wouldn't trade for the world in this moment.  As much as I'm scared of the images my mind conjured last night, I'm very much in love with this little being inside of me.

For years Babe and I have planned for our family and for years we were left with empty arms.  So when the surprise of a lifetime was given to us we already knew exactly what we were going to name him or her.  After all, we had years to discuss it.  That's what we thought anyway.  For a girl we chose a name I have loved all of my life and E was happy to jump on board.  It wasn't hard to convince him of the unconventional spelling, not obnoxious just rarely used.  And of course she would have her late grandma's name as her middle name.  When it came to naming a boy we'd always gone back and forth and soon decided on a less common name with ties to Disney (that's right, E is a huge Disney fan).  His middle name would have more than one family tie, it would be for his late great grandfather, his uncles on both our sides and so on.  

Then the other night we were sitting at dinner and E decided to tell me he wasn't too fond of our boy name.  That it was okay but that he wasn't in love with it.  Me too!  It wasn't that big of a deal for either of us so it's no surprise that we'd never discussed it before but now it was on the table again.  We talked about all sorts of other names, most vetoed by the other until we finally decided on one that we both love.  

Now don't get me wrong, we aren't planning on making one of the biggest decisions in our child's life in just a couple of hours.  However the new name is currently on the top of the list.  In the meantime we're trying it on for size to see if it's really the best out there.  So far, it's pretty darn good.

He's the size of a baseball hat!  Yes, that's right, no fruit sizing here.  A few months ago I came across this sizing chart comparing him to a toy soldier, a game boy and a baseball glove, all things E can relate to.  It's easier than saying he's the size of an heirloom tomato which vary in size and aren't an everyday food item in the DD household.  So this week, 21 weeks to be exact, our little bean is the size of a baseball cap and growing more and more each day.  

The kicks and the punches to my internal organs are at this moment a welcome treat that I get multiple times a day. I'm starting to notice what positions he either hates or loves because he's either ninja jabbing me to move or celebrating in his own little party.  And almost every morning when I wake up I linger just a few minutes longer in bed because like clockwork I receive one or two little stretches that say good morning and start my day off in ways I never imagined.  
Roxy I think is starting to notice the difference.  She's realizing lately that if she wants to cuddle the only way that can be accomplished is if I'm laying on my side on the couch and she lays/sleeps behind me.  There's no longer enough room in front of me for both her and the baby.  

Preparation for the baby's arrival is well under way and I'm starting to understand how much work is really involved. We've started our search for a day care facility since I will have to go back to work when Bean is 4 months.  It's really been an eye opener looking at the cost and comparisons of each.  Don't forget the need for you to be on a waiting list for some and requirement to take a tour for others.  Thankfully Babe is most worried about child care so he's willing to do a little extra work in this area.  

I've also begun researching registry items and asking friends their loves and hates.  It's great when you find a friend who has very similar ideas about what is needed and what isn't.  Remember E's cousin N I wrote about at the beginning of my blog.  Well she's pregnant with her second right now and she's been a great resource.  The bonus is her and her husband research the heck out of things just like we do and she's been sharing a lot of her resources with us at the same time not being too pushy.  It's been so helpful.  

And since we're in the new home we can finally start working on the nursery!  Babe and I finished painting the walls light gray and finally decided on a theme if you will.  We're going to decorate it with the circus in mind.  Pinterest has some of the cutest ideas that will help bring our vision to life and made it easier for us to both be on the same page. Hopefully my expectations aren't too high and I can get all of these done like this elephant mural that's too darn adorable and reminds me of Jumbo and Dumbo, this fun take on barrel of monkeys, this bright painted banner to bring a little extra color to the room and lastly this super cute homemade felt circus mobile.  Now that I write that all out I'm not so sure 4 months is enough to get through them all.

All that going on but the most exciting of all is the classes we've already scheduled.  We're planners and so it was awesome that our hospital not only recommended what time frame we should do them in but also allowed us to schedule them as far out as September.  So on the calendar already is our hospital tour so we can start to visualize exactly where everything is going to happen.  Then we have a 5 week labor class to help me and Babe plan for unmedicated labor.  And lastly is our infant/child CPR class.  We should probably do a refresher for adults too but at least we'll have one in the books for the littlest one in our life.  

Looking at this list I'm so thankful one of my symptoms hasn't been fatigue.  It's all so overwhelming but I know in the end it'll be such a huge payoff.  Now keep cooking little bean while we get everything ready for you.

I've been pretty lucky.  This pregnancy has been what everyone hopes for - lack of morning sickness, normal energy, no cravings or food aversions causing little to no weight gain, and overall a lot of feeling normal.  The most important part of it has been that Baby Bean is healthy and has passed every test thrown his way.  So if the worst pregnancy is a sucky doctor at today's appointment I will count myself blessed.  

Today we saw the perinatologist for my anatomy scan.  For those who don't know, they are the doctors who perform certain genetic tests as well as work with high risk patients.  I am considered both which I'm still having a hard time grasping.  Despite my feelings about the subject, the point to all of this is to make sure Bean is being taken care of and I would do everything in my power to make sure that's the case.  The appointment started off pretty typical for that office so my husband and I weren't surprised when the nurses scolded me for not having all the answers to their questions and being generally unfriendly.  I answered what I could and wrote it off as all being worth it to spend an hour or so watching my baby.  

We were then escorted to a room where the nurse began the ultrasound and taking pictures of the most obscure angles.  But then again I got pictures and I should be thankful so that's not even the worst.  Once pictures were handed over the nurse indicated that the doctor was not in the office yet and that as soon as she arrived we would be seen again to complete the ultrasound.  My mom who joined us for the appointment, my husband and I all looked at each other with confused looks on our faces.  Thirty minutes later the doctor arrived introducing herself and immediately began to berate me for not having brought my blood sugar monitor or logs in with me.  When asked what my fasting levels were I genuinely did not have an answer for her, not one that I was secure enough in knowing that I would have wanted to share at least.  So I said I didn't know thinking it would save me from the harsh words that were being thrown at me.  I was very wrong.  The doctor continued to list all of the many complications that could derive from poorly managed blood sugar including miscarriage, excessive or under weight, complications giving birth, etc.  I explained that my OB and I had already made a plan and that I would be working with them.  She did not like this answer and accused me of being antagonistic to which I was explained that I was tired of being lectured about something that isn't even an issue.  My blood sugar is managed and no one has seen any cause for concern including her.  At that point I was dumbfounded and all but completely shut down.  I was waiting for Babe or my mom to speak up but because both were silent I assumed that what the doctor was telling me about my attitude must be true.  So instead I stayed silent waiting the doctor out until I could see my sweet baby again.  

By that point the doctor clearly did not want me there any longer than necessary.  She rushed through what I've been told was the most exciting ultrasound of my pregnancy and said very little to any of us.  When she was done she said that everything about the baby's anatomy looked good and allowed me to clean myself up.  She broke the silence by telling me I had been snarky and that I obviously didn't want their help.  According to her, since I was refusing to be seen by their office any longer, I needed to sign a form titled "What Diabetes Does To My Baby" listing every possible outcome mismanaged diabetes could cause.  I spent the next few minutes trying to compose myself in the restroom while my family waited for me outside.  Wanting so much to tell the doctor off and knowing that no matter what I said it would not be heard.  I would be brushed off as having a bruised ego or being contemptuous.  Instead I met my husband in the waiting room where he and my mom were discussing what I thought I was making up in my own head.  
What I couldn't understand was how I went from not knowing all the answers, which I was never told to prepare for since I thought this appointment was simply an anatomy scan, to basically killing my baby with my poor diet and high blood sugar.  Why she would leap to such conclusions and add insult to injury by not just insinuating, but accusing me of having an attitude that I clearly didn't have, is beside me.  I left feeling cheated of having the experience many have said is quite possibly the best appointment you'll have your entire pregnancy.  I just wish I hadn't felt so alone in that room where 3 other people witnessed what happened.  Had I known I wasn't the only one who thought she was so incredibly rude I might have stood up for myself.  But again, the most important thing is that our baby is safe, healthy and incredibly loved.  

On a brighter note I think I know what we're having.  Babe wants me to divulge but I'm keeping it to myself for now. We'll see when he or she graces us with their presence in 20 more weeks!  

It's been so long and so much has happened since my last post.  We got to see baby bean again and he's doing so perfect. My OB actually said it was a perfect pregnancy which was so great to hear a couple of very frustrating appointments and a worrisome mama.  By the end of this month we'll be able to see him another two times, once for a standard appointment and another for my anatomy scan at the perinatologists.  Of course with every new appointment comes the added stress that they'll find something wrong followed by the relief that all is okay.  I'm trying to take one appointment at a time and relish in the fact that I have a healthy baby growing inside of me that will join us in just 5 months time.

Aside from baby we've been incredibly busy now that we're new home owners again!  Our houses closed on the 25th and 26th and we were finally able to move on the 3rd.  Thankfully Babe was understanding enough with both our health that we hired movers making it the most boring moving day ever.  I'm so not used to that.  But 10 hours later and Babe and I were on, unpacking boxes and making this new home ours.  It's been 5 days and we're doing pretty well with the transition.  Babe by the way is a rockstar when it comes to home maintenance and I never know why I'm so surprised.  It also bugs him that I am, sorry Babe, I don't mean to have little faith.  It's just, that man can locate just about any problem, pick up a tool and with only a handful of curse words and a trip or two to Home Depot have it fixed in no time.  He's definitely taking on the lion-share of housework/unpacking without one complaint after I ended up with swollen ankles and belly pain over the weekend.  

And now that we've completed that hurdle, I've been taken off of the baby related purchase ban.  Babe actually started it off by suggesting we stop off at the bookstore on the way home one day.  He said he needed a how-to book for the house and suggested I look around for a new read for myself.  Instead I walked to the very back of the bookstore to the children's section and set out to look for "My I Love You".  Five seconds later E strolls to the same section to look for the exact same book, the real reason he wanted to stop.  Of course I always ruin surprises and this was no different.  Except that both baby beans mommy and daddy had the same idea for his first baby item and it was still such a sweet surprise.

With that I'll leave you with two of my favorite pictures from this weekend.  The first is our new killer view from the back of the house and the second is the master bedroom accent wall which just happened to match my nail polish.  I swear it wasn't planned.

I was reminded of this again today and I can't help but share how much I love it.  It's a poem you may have read before by MaryAnn K. Cusimano called You are my I love you.  Many of the lines I've yet to experience but there were still a few as baby beans mom that are already so accurate.  

I am your parent, you are my child
I am your quiet place, you are my wild
I am your calm face, you are my giggle
I am your wait, you are my wiggle
I am your audience, you are my clown
I am your London Bridge, you are my falling down
I am your carrot sticks, you are my licorice
I am your dandelion, you are my first wish
I am your water wings, you are my deep
I am your open arms, you are my running leap
I am your way home, you are my new path
I am your dry towel, you are my wet bath
I am your dinner, you are my chocolate cake
I am your bedtime, you are my wide awake
I am your finish line, you are my race
I am your praying hands, you are my saying grace
I am your favorite book, you are my new lines
I am your nightlight, you are my sunshine
I am your lullaby, you are my peek-a-boo
I am your kiss goodnight, you are my I love you

In planning for our soon-to-be nursery, I've looked at many design ideas that have caught my attention.  But none I like more than the little library complete with cardboard books for baby bean and us to share.  Once we're moved in this will be the very first book I buy for it.  

Life is a whirlwind these days while we're buying and selling a house, working full time, packing and trying to plan for a baby and all the appointments it entails.  Don't get me wrong, I'm loving almost every minute of it and will absolutely be happy to reap the benefits.  The downside to moving when you're 3 months pregnant though is that your husband might not allow you buy anything for the baby until you're 100% moved in.  I've literally pored over page after page of cute baby clothes, nursery design ideas and how-to's on Pinterest only to be able to pin them to my private board.  No buying for this mama just yet.  No planning for a nursery for a couple more weeks.  And no hypothetically dressing my baby until there's a room to put said clothes in.  So although I'm super excited to be moving into our forever home in less than a month, I'm even more excited to be able to get into this pregnancy in real life, not just on the internet and in my mind.  

Speaking of real life.  We're getting so close to the end of 1st trimester (holy crap I JUST realized I'm 12 weeks already) that we put together a little pregnancy announcement for our friends and family.  Most know we're moving soon so we thought a great tie in would be a moving announcement by postcard.  Long story short, after dealing with social media and infertility, I really didn't want to share my own pregnancy with 1/2 strangers and people who would genuinely be hurt by the announcement.  The picture on the front of the postcard shows a picture of Babe, myself and Roxy standing on the porch of our current home with a box packed for the nursery captioned "We're moving...because we need a little more space".  It should reach family and friends from California to New York by early next week and we can again be another step closer to living life like a pregnant couple.

Then next Thursday we're scheduled for a series of appointments for the baby.  The first is the usual NT scan to check the baby for genetic disorders like down syndrome.  That will be followed by a high risk diabetes specialist.  It's a little too late now but for the past 4 years or so I have been treated for diabetes.  I tested once as a borderline diabetic and was asked to diet and exercise to bring my blood sugar down and it did.  The next doctor who saw the original tests then put me on 500 mg of Metformin.  Then at the beginning of the year another doctor ordered me to start taking 2000 mg (I might be forgetting a step in there too) because I was also struggling with infertility.  Fast forward to my first OB appointment and she's shocked that I've never really tested diabetic but there's nothing they can do for me now. So more than likely I'll be required to test my sugar for the remainder of my pregnancy to ensure Bean is safe.  While they're at it though they're going to take a better look at Bean's twin to see if everything is progressing okay.  I've been told that with a vanishing twin you can potentially have high blood pressure throughout pregnancy but am reading that there should be no other complications to little Bean.  Here's hoping everything looks great and I can see him kicking around in there again.

So yeah life is crazy right now but it's also just the beginning.

Is it possible to be even more blessed than you already are.  I mean, this feeling has been oozing out of me for a while but there have been so many more unexpected things happen to us I don't know how to contain myself.

As you know we had planned to move soon.  We were shocked to find we received an offer a week after putting it on the market.  Thank God, one thing down.  Since then we've been scouring the surrounding cities looking for the perfect house, with the perfect location all within our budget.  Babe and I had started to get discouraged because we couldn't quite find that combination until this weekend.  As soon as we saw it online we knew it could be our house but the day we arrived we realized the odds were against us.  In four days of being on the market more than 30 people had already walked through and offers had already been submitted.  We literally were sitting in our car outside waiting for our realtor watching cars slow down in front of it and pick up the phone.  

The house was as close to perfect as we could get.  The neighborhood was ideal, only 5 minutes from our current home but in a better part of town with better schools for baby bean.  The lot was large, large enough to have all our families over, let the dog run free, watch our little ones grow.  And the house, large enough to grow our family for the rest of our lives.  Good enough to feel cozy in, to make it our home.  It felt right, but we knew the competition was going to be tough.  So we did what any realtor would suggest of their clients, offer as much as you could.  By the next morning all our cards were on the table and we were nervous.  It would be a lot for us but it was doable.  I mean we'd done it before and if this was the right move, we'll never have to do it again.  

That same night we were notified that everyone would need to go back to the drawing board and come back with their very best offer.  E and I talked about it and realized there was nothing more we could do.  We'd already given them everything we could, we'd even written a letter to the homeowner directly thanking her for showing us around.  We took a huge risk knowing we would more than likely not be chosen.  We decided to resubmit the exact same offer.  

Last nights call came as expected.  Babe and I had resigned ourselves to not getting chosen because we didn't have any more to give.  We would just have to schedule more walk through over the weekend to find that right place.  But then our realtor said something that we had never in a million years expected, they chose our offer.  What?  But how? Why?  So many questions, some that we're okay are never answered.

Of course the second we get off the phone Babe begins budgeting, packing and planning some more.  After this years medical problems we've still been waiting receive the bills for his surgery, my fertility treatments and of course planning for baby beans impending birth.  So I promised I would call the insurance company first thing in the morning to find out what's taking so long on his surgery bill.  This morning I talked to John.  By the way, I could kiss John.  John told me that the insurance had already been billed and that we should never receive a bill for E's knee surgery. Seriously!  He also told me that when baby bean is born, we will not be charged one penny.  As I relayed the information to my husband I could literally hear the smile spreading across his face.  How great it is to hear his sign of relief.

I'm just at a loss for words at how good God is.  How much things have turned around for us when we were expecting such devastation this year.  That there are too many things to be thankful for to count.  But oh how I am.

I'm feeling particularly thankful lately.  Maybe because of baby bean or maybe because it's due to all the amazing things that are happening for us lately.  Either way  I feel like maybe I was never this thankful before, at least not to pour out of me.  

It's funny because every Thanksgiving my family likes to do this thing where you go around the table and say what you're thankful for.  I'm sure many people celebrate similarly.  Whenever my turn comes around though I feel so lame. Of course I'm thankful for my husband, my family, my home my job, why must I say it over and over again.  Is it ever okay to not be thankful?  I know that's how I felt last year.  I hate the expectation of having to share something especially when I really can't see the light at the end of the tunnel.  So maybe I'm making up for it, who knows.  

Really I just want a reminder later on down the line that there's so much to be thankful for.  Even in the darkest moments because it won't always be that way.  Just like the saying goes "on particularly rough days when I'm sure I can't possibly endure, I like to remind myself that my track record for getting through bad days so far is 100% and that's pretty good".

So here are just a few things I'm thankful for lately.  

Have you ever heard someone say that summer colds last longer than winter colds?  Have you ever had a summer cold?  They suck in so many different ways that the only good thing about them is they're not a summer flu.  Babe came down with a small cold in the middle of our Vegas trip two weeks ago.  It knocked him on his butt for a couple of days and since he's been fighting all the cycling symptoms which never seem to be the same from day to day.  And as much as we tried to avoid it, it finally caught up to me last week too.  Of course I can't just get a normal cold.  Nope, on Saturday night we wound up in the emergency room with me having an asthma attack that I just couldn't fight.  After just a couple hours, a breathing treatment and a prescription to treat bronchitis.  Luckily for me the medication is considered safe and is finally helping.  It's been pretty rough the last couple of days with very little sleep to get me through the day.

Besides having bronchitis, we're now in the midst of selling our house.  It's caused a lot of stress for Babe which I hope eases up soon.  Our house went on the market a week ago and we've had one interested party and a lot of lookie loos.  We've yet to find anything ourselves that meets all of our must haves but I'm sure we'll get there.  At this point we're no worse off if the house doesn't sell and we have to stay in it for a while longer. I just really hope E sees how much he's putting himself through by worrying and give himself a break.  There's a  lot going on and he's not responsible for fixing it all by himself.

I'm here.  I'm reading and I'm thinking about everything and everyone.  It's a touchy subject though being pregnant on an IF blog.  I don't know if avoiding is the right way to navigate this new world or if information is.  What I will say is I totally understand if dropping me from your regular list of blog reads is necessary to keep your sanity.  I've been there. What I've debated mostly is how to maintain this blog while staying true to the mission I had when I first started. Sharing the truth of my feelings and allowing myself a space to explore them.  I'm sorry if I hurt any feelings along the way and hope and pray that you're all not far behind me.  I've attempted to separate blog posts from IF to pregnancy with no luck.  I'll have to do some more digging because my Blogger dashboard isn't functioning properly for me.  In the meantime I will try to be as honest as possible while still being sensitive to anyone who may need it.  With that being said, I'm staying put.  

So this whole pregnancy after infertility is really screwing with my head.  My first HCG blood draw was 222 and 14dpIUI, my second a week later was 2607, his heartbeat was 117 bpm at 6 weeks and at that time was measuring just a couple days behind.  Those are all great numbers but I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop.  I'm happy, don't get me wrong.  I'm incredibly happy.  It just seems too good to be true.  The reality though is that our bean is extremely healthy and doing everything a baby bean should do.  What I need to do is keep thinking positive.  Keep appreciating all the good that has come from this.  There's nothing significant during this pregnancy that makes any of my doctor's think this is anything but a take home baby and all the worrying in the world won't make the outcome any different.  So my goal is to relish in the fact that life is growing inside me.  Hope for the best and enjoy every second of any discomfort I may be feeling.  Because in the end we have a miracle on the way.  

I've been dreaming about writing this post from the day I began blogging.  What would I say?  How could I, knowing the struggles of dealing with IF, tread lightly?  And really there's no one perfect answer.  What I do know is this, there will be some people that are happy for us and others who may not be and that's okay.  I've been and am still there sometimes and everyone is entitled to their feelings.  

So without further adieu, Babe and I are happy to announce WE'RE HAVING A BABY!

You've all read the nitty gritty about our struggles and what it took to get here.  It was long, weary and so very painful but in the end it's paid off.  On Thursday, the 11th I was awake from 1-4 with either really massive morning sickness or bad Mexican food.  As the morning wore on and I became more delirious I was convinced it couldn't be anything else but me being pregnant and every now and then coming to my senses that we had only a 5% chance to conceive this cycle.  I had always planned on testing in the morning but told Eric I wouldn't test until we were at home together that evening.  So after a couple hours of fitful sleep I finally drug myself into the restroom armed with one First Response and one digital pregnancy test.  In seconds I could see the first line start to pink.  The first line!  The left one!  The one that never turns pink.  To make sure my eyes weren't playing any tricks I quickly dipped the digital test in my cup and began to cry.  It turns out 5% was all we needed.  

To keep the illusion up I quickly got dressed for work and told Babe I had a lot of work and was going in early.  I kissed him goodbye in his oblivious state and went on my way.  After calling the RE to schedule my beta test I ran down to the nearest lab and had my blood drawn.  Then on my way back into work stopped by Target for a "Daddy Loves Me" onsie and early Father's Day card.  The rest of the day was spent in a blur.  But around 2:00 my RE's office called me back.  I was definitely pregnant with a HCG of 222 and progesterone between 50 and 60.  

By the end of the day I'd hoped that Babe would be late as usual, just this once.  Instead he called me at precisely 5:00 to say he wasn't going to miss me peeing on a stick.  After convincing him that we needed to get some yardwork/housework done before the sun went down and that once we were relaxed I would do the deed, he finally left me alone for a few minutes giving me the chance to do what I'd been planning all along.  After about 5 minutes I called him in the house to say that the paint we'd purchased looked a little funny on the new wall and could he take a look.  He stepped one foot in the room and couldn't believe what he was seeing.

It's been a whirlwind weekend since then telling our parents and siblings.  Everyone has been excited that there's finally a little DD baby coming along knowing our struggles to bring him here.  I only hope that the next nine months are as boring as possible so we can bring the little bean home.  
This TWW seems to be going slower now that we're only two days away.  I haven't usually been one to stress about this part of it but ever since Sunday I've been dying to test.  Originally we had planned just a handful of things to keep us busy, most of which consisted of movies that were coming out in the theaters.  Plus since I'm a book fiend E took me to the bookstore the Wednesday of IUI #1 to pick up a few new ones.  Thankfully with our impending move, there's lots to be done around the house which has left very little time to read.

So for our TWW we have gone to see Pitch Perfect 2, gone to see Aloha, caught up on the Jurassic Park trilogy in preparation for Jurassic World Friday, gone to Home Depot about a hundred times, celebrated three birthdays, watched Game of Thrones twice, had two meetings with our realtor, painted and replaced some facia boards in the house, re-grouted a portion of the bathroom and lastly filled in a wall opening, puttied and texturized it.  In fact, here are some pictures of Babe working on the wall.  I gotta say, my handyman is hot.  


Now if only I can get through the next couple of days without going insane I think it will be a good two weeks.

4 times, that's how many times I've been asked a variation of if I'm pregnant or not in the last week.  As if I haven't put enough stress on myself people have to go and add more. Here's the thing, no one comes out to ask those exact words so that they can't be blamed.  I know this because when I finally called out the fourth person in front of the first person neither of them recognized that they asked such an inappropriate question.  So can we please all just agree that any form of asking if someone is pregnant is bad form, off limits, should never be uttered.  Here are a few creative ways not to ask someone if they are pregnant.  

  • Is there something you want to tell us?  Seems innocent enough but you know what you mean and they definitely know what you mean.  So stop, just stop.
  • Do you feel pregnant?  No I feel like punching you in the face.  
  • Are you wearing maternity pants? What, no!  And now you're calling me fat so thank you for that double gut punch.  
  • Are you craving that because...?  I'm having a craving because I'm human.  Pregnant women aren't the only people who have cravings.
  • So why aren't you drinking?  Because it's none of your business.  But if you must know, I don't need to be a lush to prove I'm not pregnant. 
  • And lastly the tummy rub.  NEVER, NEVER, EVER reach for another woman's stomach to insinuate she might be pregnant unless she's given you permission.  First off I've never been one to understand strangers reaching for your stomach anyways but it's even more humiliating when you're not carrying a child.  

So rather than try to hint around asking someone if they're pregnant, just wait until they bring the subject up.  It's safer for you if you never ask these questions to another human being.  

P.S. All of the above have actually happened to me.  So yeah, that's not embarrassing at all.
Since we've become public with our IF struggles, Babe and I have been overwhelmed with so much support from our friends and family that we even decided to talk about going through our first IUI.  It was a quick decision actually.  My husband answered a question for us and from that moment on we decided to be pretty open about it.  Since then I've been nervous about having to go back and tell all those people if/when we end up not pregnant after this.  BUT I'd hoped people would be adults about it and respect that we would tell them if/when we become pregnant.  Our plan has always been to let those closest to us in on the secret and once we pass the a first trimester to let everyone else know.

What I didn't expect was that by sharing these intimate details of our lives that people we aren't close to would constantly ask for pregnancy updates.  I feel like I can't blame anyone but myself since we became so open.  The first time it happened it caught me off guard.  My coworker knew I was out for a doctors appointment and when I arrived in asked if I had any good news to share.  There are so many things I wish I would have said but all I could muster was "if I did I'll tell you when I'm ready".   The second time may have been fueled by alcohol but I doubt made that big of a difference.  I was left reliving the conversation and wishing I'd said all the rude things that slipped my mind the first time.  Like, do you really think you'd be the first to know?  No, are you?  I'm not but I hope you feel better by reminding me of that.  

I guess prying and unsolicited stories/advice come with the territory.  Thankfully my support system is much stronger than the rest of the idiots out there.  

I'm on the other side today and yet nothing feels different.  It all started Tuesday when I had my second ultrasound to see how I'd responded to the Letrozole.  Apparently pretty well.  I had two follicles growing nicely, the one on my right side was 19 mm and the one on my left was 17.5 mm.  Also my uterine lining was thickening on target and by CD 13 it was 9 mm.  So my doctor's office administered my trigger shot and sent me on my way with instructions to come back the next two days.  

Day one I was a ball of nerves.  Even though my appointment wasn't until 10:30 I woke up to take my temp at the usual time of 6:30 and wasn't even close to going back to sleep.  I spent the rest of the morning puttering around the house getting ready for our realtor and trying to distract myself.  We left the house at 8:45 to drop off Babe's sample and decided to go to breakfast while we waited for my appointment.  It started off as usual, with an ultrasound to see how everything was progressing followed by some pressure while the speculum and catheter were being positioned. A few short minutes later and the procedure was over.  Babe and I stayed in the room for about 10 more minutes joking and laughing until we were finally released.  E had to go to work in the afternoon so I spent much of the day lounging around and napping on and off.  It was awesome.  And other than cramping before bed, it was pretty much a breeze.

Day two was pretty much a repeat but I felt less anxious.  This time when I arrived no ultrasound was needed.  Instead it was just a couple of minutes and way less uncomfortable.  After the 10 minutes we were asked to speak to the nurse who gave us instructions for my Progesterone tablets and the go-ahead to test on the 11th.  We left the office feeling happy and hopeful.  Since it was so much later and neither of us were expected back at work, we decided to take in a matinee before dinner.  

Overall I feel good about the IUI's and am hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.  After all, the 11th isn't too far away is it?

We must be gluten's for punishment.  I mean who else would bitch and moan about having to refinance their house and then turn around and consider selling it?  Apparently us.  Well we had hoped that with the little bit of cash we took out, we'd be able to put it into a bathroom remodel as well as a couple other minor projects around the house.  We were very mistaken on how much money we would expect to spend.  The projects are essentially doubling in cost with less of an outcome than we were hoping for.  In turn we're in a home that I'm not particularly in love with in a location that isn't ideal and for the most part Babe is in agreement.  So on top of the three vacations we have planned this year, the fertility treatments we are undergoing and life in general, we now plan on going on the market for a new home.  Exciting and frightening all at the same time.  

With Babe's knee and my potential condition, moving furniture and heavy boxes probably isn't the best idea.  Plus I'm a little sad to see it go, nostalgia and all.  After all, it was our first home purchase.  I've been looking in all the rooms and I'm most terrified of moving our bed and my bookcase.  I would guess that we have about 350 books that I've avoided donating or giving away and now it's probably going to bite me in the butt.  

Speaking of books, I started a new one this week.  It received pretty fantastic reviews online and was, if I remember correctly, a recommendation to me by one of my hockey seat mates.  It's called Fingersmith by Sarah Waters.  This would be my 12th book this year minus two from the Dummy line of books that I'm in the midst of flipping through. Since I probably won't read them cover to cover I can't exactly add them to my count.  For now though, Fingersmith is proving to be very entertaining as was Goldfinch.  With only my Goodwill books and a few passed down from my mother-in-law I see a Barnes and Noble run in my near future.  At least to be sure I have something to get me through my two week wait.  

It's been so long but I'm back.  Is it me causing drama or do I really just have this bad of luck with doctors.  I start off loving them one minute and the next I'm arguing with them about one thing or another.  Over the last couple of months I had been emailing my nurse and occasionally the head nurse and financial consultant back and forth preparing for our IUI.  We'd stumbled a bit with them over some lab work but thought we had it all taken care of.  We even suggested that due to all the issues we have been encountering that maybe E and I should have a meeting with them before CD1.  My nurse said that everything was taken care of and so as idiots we believed her and didn't push it.  

Then on the day I started my period, by the way the most excited I've ever been to start my period, I gave them a call as they requested.  All I needed to do was set up an ultrasound appointment between days 2-4 to get a baseline of my uterine lining and my follicles.  Instead my nurse immediately starts the conversation by asking if I'd received authorization from my insurance company because it wasn't on file with them.  Apparently they had a note in my file that I needed to contact them two weeks prior to CD1 to get the ball rolling on it.  Strike 1.  Also they didn't have any time on day 2 and were closed days 3 & 4 so we'd need to make the appointment day 1 even though they stressed the importance of days 2-4.  Strike 1.1.  I was transferred to the head nurse after arguing with her about it.  Head nurse proceeds to tell me that because I haven't submitted for an authorization and because their office is currently under construction (Strike 2) they'd prefer to put me on birth control (BCP) so I go into a holding pattern.  For those unfamiliar with the process, BCP will basically put my body back on day one as soon as I get off of them.  That way we don't have to wait a full cycle, we could essentially restart my period in a week or two if necessary.  But since my body took years to readjust after getting off the pill, I didn't want to start them up again.  I was basically hitting a brick wall with my RE's office.  Eventually I was transferred to my actual RE who reiterated what the others were saying and after talking over me a few times finally listened to the fact that it wasn't me who dropped the ball.  We'd hung up with the promise of a call to come.

I then proceeded to call Babe in tears.  Neither of us could remember any emails aside from the handful from me begging please tell me if "there anything else that needs to be done before CD1".  Babe was furious and it took quite a bit of coaxing on my part for him not to call the RE himself.  Instead while I waited I did some research of my own.  I called my insurance and medical group and confirmed that I could not have possibly put in a request for authorization on my own as they had suggested.  I also found out that in that time, 20 minutes, my RE's office had put it in themselves for the very first time.  Then the call came.  The head nurse was calling to ask if I'd made a decision on the BCP's.  Thankfully I'd had some time to process everything and cool off.  Even though I was angry still, no longer was I emotional.  I asked her if she was aware I had been in contact with my nurse since March.  She responded that yes she was aware I had contacted them about my botched bloodwork.  No, not just the blood work.  I had literally been asking time after time if there was anything else that needed to be done before we started.  I explained that if anyone in their organization knew how disorganized their office had been with my case they would be embarrassed.  I also explained because of that I felt that they should take responsibility.  She believed that putting me on BCP was taking responsibility.  I disagreed.  Instead I asked that while the authorization was outstanding, they needed to proceed with the cycle and foot the bill until insurance came back one way or the other.  She hesitated and said it wasn't her call to which I requested to speak to the person who could make the call.  Our conversation finally ended after I was able to get an appointment for day 2 and with an agreement that my appointments would be taken care of until insurance responded.  Score me!

At this point we've already dedicated 7 months to their organization and have a plan in place.  I was too determined to let more time and money waste away while they got their act together.  If this cycle fails though, Babe and I will probably have to have a come to Jesus conversation about choosing a new RE for future cycles.  My hope is that we've seen the last of their incompetence.  Even more than that, I hope we don't have to proceed with any future cycles at all. 

We're pretty open out our IF struggles at this point, a far cry from just a year ago.  So last night when E turned down an offer for a drink from my brother-in-law it got the conversation going on our upcoming IUI.  For me it's been a bitter sweet topic of conversation.  I love the fact that people are willing to ask us educated questions and genuinely try to understand IF as a whole.  On the other hand, I'm completely terrified that people will be on the other side of our IUI waiting to hear the results.  What I have started saying is that if it's positive, we'll definitely let you know.  If it's not, we may need space to grieve and please just understand if we don't come out and tell you.

So this morning DH and I got to talking about it again and he explained why he doesn't mind telling people we're not successful.  As someone who's dealt with IF for a while now, you're so used to hearing the success stories because that's what most people share.  But if we're trying, let them see that.  Then the next time someone shares their IF with them they may understand.  Now let's take it a step further.  What happens if we're not successful after thousands of dollars and years of treatments?  Would that make them think twice before sharing the story of that friend who miraculously got knocked up as they were prepping for adoption, etc.  Maybe, who knows.  The point is, not every IF story has a happy ending and if we're going to open up that dialogue we might as well make it honest.  

There are times when I feel like DH and I are so different in our IF thinking.  But most of the time I'm happy and proud we are.  We learn so much from and have so much more to offer each other.  

Thank you all for visiting my blog in the last week.  I've realized more than ever that our support system rocks and E & I are incredibly blessed.  As I mentioned, I came out officially on Facebook even though I was insanely nervous.  It couldn't have gone better.  Immediately we were inundated with comments, personal messages, texts and emails from so many of our friends and family showing their love and support.  I think it touched a lot of people more than I was ever anticipating.  Other than a few adoption comments which was a great platform to educate, NIAW for us was a success.  

If you haven't been following the movement, just do a quick search of #NIAW on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.  I've found a few more amazing blogs because of it this week.  Also, check back on Resolve's 2015 Bloggers Unite Blogroll.  A lot of my favorites participated and I was able to find a few more because of it.  Also see how you can participate in upcoming events such as Advocacy Day or a Walk of Hope in your area.  National Infertility Awareness Week may be over but there's still so much more work to be done.  

In the midst of all of it we are still trekking towards our IUI in less than a month.  Babe and I had completed our blood work almost as quickly as they provided the order.  Then on Thursday I was informed that my RE didn't complete the order like they should have and had to request I get more blood work done right away.  I'm trying not to get frustrated with them but I must admit it's becoming difficult.  My concern is that something will have been missed and because this is our first time we won't know until it's too late.  I was just hoping that since spontaneous conception isn't in the cards for us that this experience would be a little more positive.  Hopefully going forward it can be.

When I started approaching the year mark I thought I needed to educate myself more on my reproductive system and picked up the book "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" by Toni Weschler.  Although I may have been a bit naive at the time, it's still quite possibly the best resource out there on the topic.   When I came across this next blogger I was sold as soon as I saw that she also recommended it.  Lisa's blog post 10 Tips for Surviving Infertility at Amateur Nester, suggests that your first steps are to educate yourself.  The list is less about the hardships of infertility and more about taking taking care of yourself, enjoying yourself and paying attention to your partner.  Things that are so often lost when you're overcome with the stresses of infertility.  For those of us who are actually dealing with infertility, you can also use the information when thinking about distractions during the dreaded 2WW.  There are so many practical applications for this post and I challenge you use them in your everyday life.  

So for my final blog highlight, 10 Tips for Surviving Infertility on Amateur Nester, please click on the picture below.  

Regina is a woman after my own heart.  I am often left wondering, questioning and reevaluating past experiences but in my case often to a fault.  In Regina's post What If... I Said What I Was Thinking on her blog The Broken Brown Egg, she suggests what I consider on a regular basis, what if "I said the first things that came to my mind?"  Recently I opened up to my mom and sister about my diagnosis and asked for their suggestions on something.  I was shocked to hear my sister point out how many things E and I have to think about on a regular basis.  Afterwards I considered what the conversation would have been like if I always just spoke what was on my mind to her.  Not negatively but honestly.  Would that be the easiest way to awareness?  Or would she be more closed off to our struggle thinking I'm constantly complaining?  What I also like about this post is that it's very clear how much infertility consumes us sometimes, even when we don't realize it.  

I encourage you to click on the picture below to read the full blog post What If... I Said What I Was Thinking on The Broken Brown Egg.

Today's reblog comes from a guest post written by Katie on Katherine's blog Proverbs & Pacifiers called Dealing with Infertility: A Better Way To Talk About Not Having Babies.  So often we in the infertility community don't share our struggle because of the negative reactions we receive.  Although most reactions come from inexperience and not ill will, we're frequently left feeling hurt or anger towards that person or situation.  

Often when searching the word "infertility" the results will produce dozens of lists about what not to say to someone with infertility.  This isn't necessarily a bad thing but I personally appreciate it when  the suggestions have a positive twist to them.  Katie's post, as well as others I will be highlighting later this week, are some of the most articulate and compassionate out there.  When I first came across it I was reminded of all the times I may have unknowingly put my foot in my mouth during other uncomfortable topics of conversation.  It's what we do as humans.  However Katie reminds us that there is a way to talk about infertility and by educating yourself you may find that it's not what you say but how you say it that makes all the difference.

So please click on the picture below to read the full post Dealing with Infertility: A Better Way To Talk About Not Having Babies on Proverbs & Pacifiers.  

For the next few days of National Infertility Awareness Week I will be highlighting some of the blog posts I've come to reference.  Each of these is posted on my NIAW Pinterest board but they mean so much to me I thought I'd share them here as well.  Like I mentioned yesterday no matter how infertility affects you, there are resources.

Today's blog post belongs to Chris and Candace Wohl from Our Misconception.  Candace and Chris have bravely shared their story not only on their blog but also with the world on numerous outlets including MTV's True Life, where you watched with much emotion, their final attempt at IVF. Their post Resolve to Know More About Surviving Infertility made them the 2014 recipients of the Hope Award for Best Blog from Resolve.  This post is raw and heartfelt.  It's the life, the heart and the mind of what it's like to live the life of infertility.  As you read remember that there's a reason the Wohl's share their struggle with us.  They do it for the other 1 in 8 couples like them.  To bring awareness to our disease so that others can find or be support in a community that is so often hushed.

So without further ado, click on the picture below to read the complete post Resolve to Know More About Surviving Infertility on Our Misconception.  

Our Misconception: Resolve to Know More About Surviving Infertility

Hello my name is Cynthia F. and my husband and I  are 1 in 8.

What I'm about to post comes after a lot of thought and plenty of nerves.  For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be a mom.  I've doted on our family and friends chubby cheeked infants for years hoping to garner practice for the time when E and I could have a baby or babies of our own.  Unfortunately for us life isn't always how we plan.  For the past few years we have struggled with infertility.  Something I personally have been afraid to say out loud for fear of sounding like a failure.  It has led to many doctors' appointments, tears and ultimately heartache each and every month.  For what seems so easy for others is not coming easily for  us and still our story is not over.

Infertility can be a cringe worthy topic to some, especially to be shared on social media.  We had hoped that given time, coming out about our infertility would be unnecessary because we would eventually fall pregnant.  Month after month we were proven wrong and the shame of it has kept more me than us quiet.  That is why I am writing this today. Infertility, be it primary, secondary, permanent, etc. should not be shameful.  It is a disease like many others, which robs 1 in 8 couples of realizing their dream of becoming parents.  It comes to the rich and poor, young and old, healthy and unhealthy alike.  It can be the result of one "issue", many "issues" and in numerous cases can be completely unexplained.  Regardless of the diagnosis behind it, each couple is plagued with difficult decisions, countless medical procedures, emotional ups and downs, and well intentioned stories and suggestions.

I write this to break the silence during this, National Infertility Awareness Week.  To provide a glimpse into our own struggle  with the hopes that it empowers others dealing with this terribly taboo topic.  To ask for your love and support in a way that allows you to see infertility in the real light as opposed to myths we see in movies and on television.  And to remind each and every one of you that although you may not struggle with infertility personally, 1 in 8 couples does and chances are you know one of them.  There are so many resources out there for you no matter how it affects you.

If you are also 1 in 8 my heart truly goes out to you. My best advice is to create a great support network for yourself. Unlike other diseases, support usually has to be sought out as opposed to coming to you. Visit, join a support group or prayer chain.  Believe me when I tell you, even though it hurts sometimes; it helps more than anything to tell your story.  You'd be surprised at the outpouring of support you will receive.  Also know that I am always here to talk whenever you may need it because you are definitely not alone. My prayers are always with you. And for your physical health do your research and find good medical professionals. Its amazing what they can offer you even if it's just peace of mind. For the rest of you, be the person that listens or that shoulder to cry on.   Educate yourselves for your loved one,  even the most well-meaning recommendations can wound someone dealing with infertility. also has resources for you as do countless blogs like Keiko Zoll's, Our Misconception, and The Broken Brown Egg.  Your support can mean the world to them.

Lastly I want to personally thank each and every one of you who has been there for E and I during this trying time. Some of you knew the full extent of our struggle and has touched us in more ways than we could have asked.  We love you deeply and promise that although we may not share every gritty detail, you will be the first to know when our family is expanding in whichever fashion it happens. 

CF/Dominican Dreamer

I was so excited to post about this new book that I made sure to take a photo of it the minute I walked in from the bookstore.  Only problem is, that was 2 weeks ago and I've been so busy preparing for NIAW that I totally forgot about it.  So anyways, here it is "The Goldfinch" by Donna Tartt.

I'm already a couple chapters in and loving it.  Of course I'm sure that's what I say about all my books though.  Actually this one was a recommendation from 3T many moons ago.  Since then it's been on my wishlist waiting until it comes out on paperback (I can't handle hard cover and book jackets).  Then for my birthday I got $75 in Barnes & Noble gift cards and of course already spent every penny.  But now that my weekends are finally starting to mellow out I can get back to reading on my free time and not just lunch breaks.  Woo hoo!

Stay tuned this weekend for my NIAW post and something else I'm super excited to share with you the rest of the week.  

So we're really doing this.  Yesterday we were given our orders to get blood drawn for infectious diseases, AMH, and a bunch of other necessary tests.  I also received my order for my cycle medications.  I've been given 100mg of Progesterone and 10000 units of HCG.  

So far the costs for all meds is coming to about $350 with shipping from a local fertility pharmacy.  However I'm debating trying to lower that cost by using a company called Town Drug Store that is based out of Israel.  Obviously I'm concerned that by cutting prices I'm cutting corners as well but I can't seem to find anything bad about them.  Does anyone out there have experience with them?  I'd love to hear your good or bad feedback to help me make my decision.  Now that all of that is out of the way, all that's left to do is sit and wait for this cycle to come and go.  If FF is to be believed I'll be starting the next one on May 15th.

On a completely separate note, I'm trying something new and loving it.  So TMI warning which shouldn't really be applicable on a blog that discusses cervical mucus.  I started using the Diva Cup this cycle.  It's this amazing little contraption that has so far worked wonders in stopping my blood clots and any leakage. Most of the reviews said it takes a while to get the positioning just right but so far I've had really great luck.  I've been wearing it for 2 days now and have decided I'm never going back to tampons.  Although I've been lucky enough to only have to use it at home so far and maybe I'm in for it this afternoon.  Either way, it's doing exactly what everything else claims to do and I only have to change it twice a day.  Score me!