It's an oft-reported desire: "I wish I could just wake up one day and be X weeks pregnant." X varies from one person to the next, depending on personal history, exposure to the misfortunes of others, and general nervousness of disposition. Some would be happy to confirm rising betas, others want nothing less than a healthy, take-home baby in their arms. Most people want to get past the point where everything's fallen apart before. But one thing we have in common is our collective sigh at the end of this reverie, the one we make as we regretfully admit that it's an impossible ask - a wish that could never come true.

Except, holy crap, I just woke up one day and I was already nine weeks pregnant. And now everything looks normal at ten, and we've never lost anything before that looked normal at ten weeks. Which doesn't mean (she adds quickly, before the powers of the universe can so much as draw breath to say, "There's always a first time,") that things couldn't go wrong from here on in. Heck, some days that still occurs to me even as I watch the two-year-old Prata Baby, formerly known as The Foetus Formerly Known As Twin B, formerly known as Twin B cavort vigorously around the park. Always, forever, each day is a milestone and a triumph. In this uncertain life, it never stops.

Will I be relieved to reach the end of the first trimester? Yes. For that matter, I will be a hundred times more relieved if we get a healthy, take-home baby, or past the main risk period for SIDs. It took a whole 0.000005 seconds in the ultrasound room yesterday to go from "Yes!" to "Ok, now we have to make the next step..." But. But. And yet. We have never lost anything that looked normal at ten weeks, and there comes a point at which you're doing yourself a disservice to wish away those precious moments just to spare yourself from their uncertainties. For us, that point is - about ten weeks. I can't believe that, in addition to falling pregnant without treatment, I got to skip that more-stressful-than-it's-worth first half of the first trimester and just wake up to find it over and done with and everything looking dandy.

I just don't know why we should be this lucky.

I guess luck never has a reason.


It's amazing what I've learnt since I first stepped into a fertility clinic in 2005. On Friday and Saturday just gone, I found myself distinctly a-flutter. On edge. Tense. In times gone past, I would also have felt slightly out of my depth. "How am I going to cope with this rising sense of panic until Tuesday?" I would have asked.

Five years and many test results later, I simply thought, "Of course - it's 3-4 days until the test which will tell me what I am waiting to find out. If I concentrate on breathing for the next 36-48 hours, I'll feel fine again."

I went to work. I came home. I actually got around to putting away the pile of laundry that's been inhabiting the couch for longer than I care to admit. We have a second couch again now! It totally transforms our living room. I did a lot of dishes, I arranged an expedition to the shopping centre for... a single packet of breakfast cereal. I suggested a home movie night, complete with Pixar animation and popcorn, and set off to the rental shop. I shuffled around, packing Mr Bea off on his latest business trip. I breathed. Slowly. Carefully. Deliberately. And tonight, at only t minus 36 hours, I can feel that wave of tension subsiding again - just like I knew it would.

The last twenty-four hours are easy. You just have to learn how to surf there.

So yes, to back up a bit, Mr Bea has gone off on another business trip to a place many time zones away. Yes, this was one of the chief reasons I wanted to get this over with last week, together with the I-have-to-wait-how-long-for-an-answer factor. The whole process would have been a lot easier with his logistical and emotional support, but what can you do? Except get your child up before their natural rising time, drag them to the clinic in their PJ's with a picnic breakfast, and then hope the timing works out so you can catch your husband by phone as your ships kind of pass in the night afterwards? If the result is good, I'm not worried - everything else will just have to work itself out. I don't have a plan B for if the result is not good, but I am toying with the idea of going completely to pieces on my blog. Consider yourself warned, and if you have any other ideas, let me know. Bad scan results with husband out of town is one situation I never really learnt how to cope with.


One of the first things the GP said to me on Monday was, "Are you a nurse?" I had just given him the potted summary of my reproductive history, up to and including that morning's beta hCG result.

"No, why?" I answered.

"You just seem to be very good at throwing medical terms around."

I shrugged matter-of-factly. "I think most patients with chronic medical conditions get pretty comfortable with the language after a year or two." He nodded. Score one for the team, I thought.

One of the last things the GP said to me on Monday was, "So... is this... does this news make you happy?" He seemed genuinely confused.

"Yes! Yes. Oh, yes," I replied, emphatically, but from his expression he remained slightly less than convinced. Probably it's more accurate to say that the news so far - a positive urine test and a good, solid pregnancy panel - made me happier. I'll save "happy" for later on, when I feel more confident of how things stand.

At the moment, my worries seem to be focussing themselves around the issue of clexane. Clexane, if you remember, is what we used last time, because of our recurrent early pregnancy loss. I imagine it's not to late to jump around and get someone to prescribe it for me, but I haven't done so, for several reasons.

The first is that nobody has ever been really convinced I need it. The most likely explanation for our losses has always been a fault with egg quality, owing to excessive ovarian stimulation. Obviously, no such problem here. Secondly, we are very probably already at the point in the pregnancy where our doctors suggested we discontinue the medication. Although I insisted on injecting myself up to a full thirty weeks, and although they went along with it on the basis that it was unlikely to do any harm, the longest anyone actually recommended we keep going was up to the end of the first trimester. I've been thinking about my cycle since I got it back around PB's first birthday, and I've been very, very regular - 4.5-5 weeks each time, a calendar month plus a couple of days. The odds, at this point, are probably shortest on finding out I'm about 11-11.5 weeks already - which is too late to bother starting. (How can I have walked around that long without even suspecting? Testament to the depth of my expectation that it just couldn't happen to us.) Even if we're as early as eight weeks, we're beyond the recommendation of at least one of our specialists. And we're just... the numbers are so high. So unprecedentedly, for us, within the usual range. So very normal. Not that the last is any sort of rational reason for anything.

Still, I need something to focus my concerns on. At least for the next four days. And counting.


I had a brain wave earlier today, just after my last post. I remembered that my cousin, in addition to being an all-round top gal, is an experienced midwife/lactation consultant who currently practices (part time) in my very own home town.

Unfortunately she can't get me scanned any quicker.

But! she was able to talk reassuringly about my options for care, and I think I understand the system a bit better now. She was also able to give me an OB recommendation, and will do some delving for a few more names, based on the "profile" I gave her in conversation. At any rate, she managed to do the sort of professional hand-holding I missed out on due to my FS and my usual GP and my backup GP all being away on holidays, all at once, just when I wanted them.

**

Something has been playing on my mind. When I fronted up at the fertility clinic yesterday morning, I hadn't quite worked out how I was going to explain myself. Then I realised I still had the pregnancy test in my purse, where I'd put it the previous day on account of the fact that I was on my way home from dropping my sister at the airport when I used it. I mean, I didn't use it on the actual way home, obviously. I can't recall ever peeing in a car, even when really desperate, especially not a moving one containing other people and whilst driving? impossible, not even counting the part where you have to fiddle around with the stick - and the scenarios only get weirder when you consider our other transport options. No - I used it in a toilet at the airport before getting in the car. It would be more accurate to say I used it just before I started out on my way home.

The point is, I had it with me, so after opening and shutting my mouth a couple of times at the reception desk, I just pulled it out of my purse and sort of held it up, and the receptionist squinted at the two little lines and said, "I've never seen one of those before... are you telling me you've got a positive pregnancy test?"

And at the time I just nodded, still not quite able to speak, but afterwards I thought, hang on a moment - you've never seen one? I mean, I get that you prefer to go by blood tests, but in all your years as a fertility clinic receptionist (at the place with the best stats in the state, I might add), not one, single patient has ever thrust something under your nose after first soaking it with her own urine?

Do other people consider this... unseemly? I've never been at the forefront of social graces.


OhmygoodnessI'meighttotwelveweekspregnantandIhaven'tbeendoinganythingright.

This is what I thought about all last night as I lay awake nursing the headache I got through either all the excitement of the last twenty-four hours, or perhaps the sudden caffeine withdrawal. Despite hours of wakefulness, I still can't remember how many months ago I bought the two-month supply of prenatal vitamins I still have one months' worth of left. Since I have ended up getting only a couple of hours sleep and still have my headache, I am seriously thinking of avoiding the pregnancy-unfriendly workplace hazards I have been merrily striding forth to face without any special sort of concern or precaution these past few months, and using my pre-arranged childcare to nap it off instead. Or panic about more of my recent lifestyle choices. You know, whichever.

T minus 7 days.


In the absence of my fertility specialist, who would have finished doing the ultrasound about eight hours ago now, they are treating me like a... like a normal person. I ask you!

I can't get in to see anyone for an ultrasound til next Tuesday, shaving a whole twenty-four hours off my wait for FS to return from his holidays. I took it, because there's little else I can do. (Believe me, there was a whooooole frenzy of phone calls to see if there was.) I mean, twenty-four hours is twenty-four hours, right? It's still a gain... and eight days is still better than a two week wait. And with a beta of 96 000, my odds are a bit better, too. Or at least that's what I'll be telling myself til next Tuesday.

Thanks for all your comments. They help, a lot.


My hCG levels were about 96 thousand - consistent with a pregnancy of 8+ weeks according to this site, which I hastily and rather sloppily googled just now.

The "bad" news is that FS is on holidays, so I can't get an ultrasound with him until next Wednesday, although I may be able to do better through my GP. Certainly it won't be today.

This is good, but I want to see a heartbeat.


I'm not sure how to say this.

I'm pregnant. (Huh. That turned out to be a lot more straightforward than I expected.)

I'm not sure how pregnant. At least five weeks, because Mr Bea's been away on some business trips and I have to have conceived whilst he was in the country, but given that my last period was about three months ago I guess I could be... up to three months. But if I had to guess, based on my symptoms, I'd say about six weeks. But I'm not sure.

I'm not sure how it happened. I mean, yes, I know it must have had something to do with that "special cuddle" a daddy gives a mummy when they really, really love each other, but... we have no sperm. Right? I mean, last I checked that was true. We did four semen analyses over a period of five months, not to mention the checks they did every time Mr Bea was sampled during our over-eighteen-months of treatment and... there's not too many and none of them swim. They didn't even recommend normal IVF for us. They said we would have to do ICSI. And I didn't believe them, and I demanded to see the reports for myself, and I took them home and brooded over them and pubmedded myself into a frenzy of denial and disbelief before I gave in and accepted that it was true. I'm not sure how it could have changed.

I'm not sure how I feel about it. Stunned, mostly - I only did the test this afternoon, after two weeks of feeling "yuk" which I thought, at first, was a tummy bug the Prata Baby had dealt with only a few days before my nausea started, but which I had started to become slightly curious about. The final straw was the homoerotic dream. I mean, the cramps, the nausea, the tiredness, the heartburn, the nocturia, the food aversions, the occasional dry retching, the sore and enlarged breasts, the bloating - these come and go as part of my normal menstrual cycle. But the only other time (I mused upon waking this morning) I've ever had homoerotic dreams was during my pregnancy with the Prata Baby. Oh just do a test and put yourself out of your misery, I told myself with a roll of my eyes, and that's how I expected it to go down. But it didn't. It came up positive. And even though we had plans to start treatments again next month, I didn't really expect to be pregnant any time within the next six months, at least, and I had made a whole stack of plans based on this assumption. Travel plans. Study and career advancement plans. Renovation plans. And now I am confused, and I am up in the air, and I don't know what's going to happen any more. And I am scared, because we have had a lot more positive peesticks than we currently have babies. And I am elated, because I didn't think this could ever happen, and because no matter how things turn out, this conception will always be a miracle. And I'm almost daring to hope that we may have avoided IVF in the foreseeable future. And I am a little overwhelmed (I haven't stopped trembling since that second line appeared) and just a fraction teary. And I'm not sure how to feel all this at once.

I'm not sure how this is going to unfold. I'm planning to turn up, unannounced, at the fertility clinic at approximately the crack of dawn tomorrow morning and grab myself some blood tests and hopefully also an ultrasound. By tomorrow afternoon, I should know whether things look hopeful or not. I'm not sure what they'll find. I'm just not sure, of so many things. I'm not sure how this news will find you who are reading - in some cases trying, unsuccessfully. I just don't know.

I'll tell you more as I find out.


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