So, here's the story. After waiting almost 8 years to have children (completely against my will, but necessary due to the evils of dental school), Erik and I decided it was time to start "trying". Quite frankly, I'd had enough of this waiting game and wasn't getting any younger, and after a period of relative depression, he was willing to start a little bit earlier than planned.
So in September, I geared up. I joined Weight Watchers to try to lose the 18 pounds I'd gained in dental school. It's nice to be a healthy weight before this journey and I'd read about the benefits of losing even up to 10% of your body weight (if you were overweight = me) to help ovulation. By Decemeber I lost 13 pounds. I had my pre-conception visit with my doc and did a bit of reading to get ready for getting off hormones.
Come October, it was time to ditch the hormones but still use "alternative contraception". I started taking pre-natal vitamins and using the ovulation prediction tests as my doctor suggested. "Let's just make sure you're ovulating," he said. Ok. The first month was a little nerve wracking. I didn't know if I was doing it right and the lines were seriously hard to judge. I mean, the "same" shade of pink or "slightly darker" is pretty subjective. The first month I got a "maybe positive". Not too encouraging. Same thing second month. Grrr. And the temping thing was NOT going to to happen. It seriously interferes with snoozing. There had to be a better way. I did a little reading and decided to change my attack.
In comes the digital ovulation predictor tests. Golden. You get an empty circle if there's no surge and a happy face if there is. No shades, no faint lines, this sounds great. After a week of nothing, I decided to just keep testing as this kit was meant for use throughout the entire month anyway. And we were really trying this month. No more "alternative birth control". This also put me into a more laid back time at school where I got to sleep in a bit. So one morning, I woke up after 10am and just decided that I'd test a little earlier than normal. And I had my positive! A nice happy face.
So on we went, not really thinking much of whether this would work or not, because it's going to take months to get pregnant. That's just how it is. I took my finals, studied for my boards, we kept "trying", regardless of that test. Then I got sick a few days before boards. Do I take cold meds? Is Benadryl ok? Do I just suffer? Well, I certainly had to sleep, so I settled on Nyquil the first night which was ok, but not the best for a long night's sleep. Next day, Claritin D - the only thing that ever works for me. I took Benadryl the night before boards to make sure I slept. Then my boards day came. I took another Claritin D to make it through the day.
Then, as I walked out the door, I had a pretty intense pain below my belly button. I was convinced it was another cyst, but had no time for this because I had a 2-day test to take. In case I was actually pregnant, I settled on Midol and avoided the ibuprofen. I packed up my drugs and drove to Bedford.
The Midol got me through the test, but the entire way home, there was a cycle of pain, then mild cramping for a long time. Then some more pain, then mild cramping. What in the world? I got home and looked up possibilities. One of them was implantation pain. No way. Could it really be implantation? The timing was about right. There definitely was cramping...no bleeding. Even as I went to bed that night, there it was. Well it was totally gone the next day, so that was that. So I thought.
Christmas was just a few days away, but there was a lot to be done. In the midst of the shopping and cooking, I had an occasional unsettled stomach. Just a little hint of nausea a little bit after a meal, but mostly the afternoon and evening. This only piqued my curiosity as to what that pain was, but of course, I couldn't be pregnant. That would just be ridiculous.
Christmas Day came and the game totally changed. My brother and his wife announced that they were pregnant. She took a test two days before and decided to let us know. I can't begin to tell you what this did to me. With all the emotions of "will I be able to get pregnant?" flowing through my head for the past 4 years since I decided to hold off and become a dentist, this first month trying was already emotional. Will I even ovulate? How long will this take? Will my period start in 4 days like it's supposed to? If I wasn't pregnant, I was certainly pre-menstrual, so this was a battle of epic proportions. Lots of prayers, lots of "Lord, I would love to be pregnant at the same time" The next few days were filled with efforts to stifle the tears or hide the watery eyes. My mom questioned me while shopping the day before my expected period to make sure I was ok and I LOST it. I was an emotional basket case. We decided the roller coaster of natural hormones before my period wasn't helping the matter. The next day I gave a quilt to a dear friend and cried like a baby. When I said I was a little emotional lately, she asked if I was pregnant. I told her I'd find out in a few days. All the time, a little bit of nausea, a little tingle in my boobs. And I hadn't started yet. Every time I went to the bathroom, I held my breath and...nothing.
Wednesday came and went. Nothing. Thursday came and went. Nothing. Friday was New Year's Eve. I told Erik that if I didn't start my period by Saturday, I was taking a test. I made myself wait until it was missed. I just can't get too excited, right? It's not supposed to happen this fast.
I didn't even have to wait 2 minutes.
Today I'm 4 weeks, 5 days and I'll call the doctor tomorrow.
If we make it through the danger zone of the 1st trimester, we'll tell our friends and family.
It'll seem like forever.