It’s not actually 9 months… (part 1)

Everyone says nine months and then baby. It’s not actually nine months. You get 2 weeks free (before ovulation). However, because it’s actually 40 weeks, that’s TEN months. And that sucks.

Don’t read any further if you don’t want to know gross body stuff (the same will be said about the birth story later). You’ve been warned.

Here’s how baby Rachel came about… (part 1)

Important historical information: I am 37 and have always (except when I’m on birth control) had irregular periods (this is really is important later, promise). My mother passed away in October 2012. And in December of 2011, I had a microdiscectomy of my L4/L5 – my surgeon was fantastic and assured me that this surgery would in no way cause any complications for future pregnancy. (Here’s my surgery story, if you’re interested.)

I stopped using the Nuvaring around May 2013. I was a little peeved since it was now free instead of my $35 co-pay and now I didn’t need it. It took a couple months to adjust to being without the Nuvaring, but it wasn’t too bad. My periods were still very irregular coming back, but we used Wondfo LH test strips (from Amazon) to track ovulation. The first (and only) time I got a distinct positive on these, we, uh, coordinated our plan of attack. It was successful. We had a streaky positive Wondfo pregnancy test on November 4 – it was the last one in the package. On November 5, we had a positive First Response test. That day, I called my doctor to get a blood test to confirm AND get treatment for the UTI I felt starting the night before. So that was fun.

A couple weeks later, after having been to Urgent Care to get ANOTHER antibiotic for my UTI, I ended up in the ER on a Sunday afternoon because of the pain from said infection, because we were afraid it might be ectopic. I had my first ultrasound that day, a little past five weeks, and they couldn’t see enough to verify it was a viable pregnancy, only that it was uterine and not ectopic. I got the usual “have you seen an OB yet” speech and the next day I called and got an appointment with the doctor my primary care physician had recommended.

I had taken October 28th off, since it was the second anniversary of my mom’s death, and I ended up taking several partial days off in the middle of November because of my nausea. And by November 21, I ended up telling two of my managers at the store because I was not doing well. I ended up getting Phenergan to help because the nausea was so bad. I’d get up early, take it, and then sleep for a couple more hours before work because the Phenergan made me so sleepy. But it wasn’t just the Phenergan. I was so sleepy for most of the first trimester. I started throwing up in the mornings, immediately after waking up (before even getting out of bed!) by December 5 (but at least this stopped the daily nausea). That didn’t stop until February 28. Every morning, Paul and I had a routine. We’d make sure the little trash can next to my side of the bed was lined with a plastic bag. In the morning, I’d wake up, wait a couple minutes until the urge hit, grab the can and puke while Paul got me a cold, wet wash cloth to wipe my face off with when I was done. As I recovered, he’d take the bag out to the trash and we’d put a new bag in the trash. Thank God it was winter.

On November 26, I had some bright red bleeding. Scared the hell out of me. But it also made it click exactly how much I wanted this. I had been doubtful and kind of regretful until then, primarily because I was so scared. But I know the day it changed for me. The day before Thanksgiving.

By February 17 and 18, I was finally feeling her move and I was sure it was her. On February 22, Paul was able to feel her with his hand on my bump.

To jump back a little in time here, I wanted to talk about the Harmony test that I took, with results received on December 30. This test checks the fragments of DNA from the baby that have passed through the placenta for genetic defects (precisely trisomy of the 13th, 18th, and 21st chromosomal pairs). It can additionally tell you the gender of the baby as early as 10 weeks of pregnancy. We did the test the Thursday before Christmas and received our results the Monday before New Year’s Day. This was something I was particularly worried about, being 37 years old, but everything came back low risk and, yay! it’s a girl! When the nurse told me over the phone, Paul and I were still in bed (she called at 8 am and we were awake but not out of bed yet) and we both listened when she said it and cheered. Both both wanted a girl and we got our fondest wish! I had to appeal the initial insurance denial, but it was eventually covered 100% as well!

We announced everything on Facebook on January 26th with this picture:
2014-01-26 Annoucement.

To be continued…

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