Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pintrest - IVF

So today I was bored and just randomly typed IVF into Pintrest.
Aside from the fact that you can get IVF baby onsies (my personal favorite: http://www.cafepress.com/ivfbaby.73800403), posters, books, IVF vacations, movies,religious opinions, and film adaptations, you can also find some of the following cartoons:

IVF babies :)
Pinned Image
www.bfpgear.com  adoption and IVF onsies.  Adorable !!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Celebrity IVF Club

I never would have thought that I would have something in common with one of the K. Kardashians, but as luck would have it - I do. 

I was at Stop & Shop the other day and found myself face to face with Khole Kardashian and the US Weekly headline that Khloe and Lamar are preparing to undergo IVF treatments. Sources say "With Kim Kardashian by her side for moral support, Khloe gave up some blood so the docs could evaluate her hormone levels.  She’s waiting for the results, and will then get a stylized treatment program." 

Well I don't know how "stylized" her treatment program will be or how fashionable she can make nightly injections look, but I'm sure where the rest of us common folk get sticker shock by the cost and apply for financial aid through Fertility Lifelines, this will just be a drop in the bucket for Khloe and Lamar. *sigh*. I'm also fairly certain we will be able to follow her step-by-step process on her reality show. Yay! (barf). 

Similar to Khloe, I can also understand how seeing those around you get pregnant no problem can stir up a wide range of emotions from sadness to just plain ill-willed. I don't follow them to closely, but I know her sister is pregnant with or just had her second kid. When pregnancy and birth overlap with someone else's infertility and frustration, it is enough to make you crazy. I wonder if she will give up Facebook too. 

Other famous IVFers are Marcia Cross (Desperate Housewives), Jane Seymour, Emma Thompson, Celine Dion, Courtney Cox, and Brooke Shields.

Petry's first 5K

In other news, I ran what will probably be my last 5K until 2013. Sunday was the NY Giants Run of Champions at Metlife Stadium. I didn't really have many expectations, but finishing in less than 30 minutes would have been nice. The race was pretty awesome because the finish line was the Giant's end zone. When else will I have the opportunity to make a 100 yard run on Giant's turf. 
Finish Line -
done in 29:30

My friend Allie, from the gym,ran with me and if you were fast enough to register, you could meet with former Giants before and after the race. I did see Amani Toomer while we were wandering around and getting registered, only I didn't recognize him. He was extra skinny from training for and running the ING NYC Marathon. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Placenta praevia

DJ and I just got back from our 20 week visit and as with most things there is never a dull moment. Petry is clocking in at 11 inches and 11 ounces (the size of a very large banana) and mommy is weighing in at 130 pounds - up 10 lbs from her original weight.

Today we learned I had Placenta Previa, "an obstetric complication in which the placenta is attached to the uterine wall close to or covering the cervix". (see picture below). It can sometimes occur in the later part of the first trimester, but usually during the second or third. It affects approximately 0.5% of all labors and is common in women who 1) have several children, 2) are over 35, 3) have had uterine surgery, 4) had prior c-sections, 5) are carrying multiples, 6) smoke, or 7) conceived through IVF (ding!). The annoying thing is all these categories of women (smokers discounted) have gone though enough crap already to get pregnant. Now life decides, "hey, I didn't think you were stressed enough - here is some praevia to go with that".

Placenta Previa

The doctor doesn't seem overly concerned and said there is a 99% chance this isn't anything at all, but as with everything it is better to be safe than sorry. We go back July 23rd for our 24 week visit and another chance to see Petry in utero. 

There are three types of placenta praevia. 
Complete Previa: the cervical opening is completely covered
Partial Previa: a portion of the cervix is covered by the placenta
Marginal Previa: the placenta extends just to the edge of the cervix. 
Previa often corrects itself by the end of the pregnancy . The placenta itself doesn't actually move but as the uterus stretches it is not as close to the cerivx as it was earlier in the pregnancy. Of course like everything from morning sickness to leg cramps, the cause is unknown but "can be blamed on several factors". Did someone have to go to medical school to tell you that? Thanks doc. 

All of these words: complication, hemorrhage, bleeding - make the issue sound a lot worse than it is, but it is something that should be taken seriously. The doctor today said there is a very good chance the placenta will move, opening the baby's exit through the cervix or, if it doesn’t, I can just have a C-Section and all will be good. This occurs in 1 in 250 births so when you think about it, it’s not that uncommon.

For some perspective you have a:

11,5000 to 1 chance of bowling a perfect game

5000 to 1 chance of getting a hole in one

3623 to 1 chance of sustaining an injury from mowing the lawn

2232 to 1 chance of slipping in the bath or shower

563 to 1 chance of catching a ball at a major league baseball game

250 to 1 chance of having a baby genius

175 to 1 chance of being audited by the IRS

and (I think this one is kind of scary)

117 to 1 chance of being on a place with a drunken pilot.

We are also at the halfway point of the pregnancy and at this stage Petry can hear sounds and recognize my voice, and can react to loud sounds from inside the womb. There is also some movement in there which I can feel from the inside out, but DJ has yet to feel anything from the outside in. Taste, hearing, smell, sight, and touch are also beginning to develop so I hope Petry likes oatmeal, bananas, peanut butter, and 80's music.

Petry on head. (I don't know how to rotate the image)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Vernix

Petry is well into his/her 19th week of development and we are almost at the half way point of gestation. Yay!

At six inches long and about eight ounces, Petry is the size of a large mango. In comparison, I have gained somewhere between 6 and 8 pounds depending on the day and how much I indulge the night before. In the morning, when I get up for the gym and off to work, there is a little pooch near my belly button BUT as the day goes on, it swells and after dinner I have a whole different look going on. Between the full stomach, indigestion, and muscles movement the pooch expands dramatically in the evening and the deflates overnight. Its very weird.

Fetal Development Week 19As of today Petry's arms and legs are in proportion, neurons are connecting the brain and the muscles, and cartilage is turning to bone. I am also told that women can start feeling the baby move at this time but it may feel like a gas cramp, which since I am usually gassy has been difficult to differentiate.

Petry is also covered in a protective substance called vernix caseosa (translated in Latin, this means "vanish cheese" - yum). This greasy, white substance is made up of lanugo (a downy hair), oil from the baby's glands, and dead skin cells. The vernix protects the baby's skin from the amniotic fluid . This prevents the baby from looking very wrinkled at birth. 

On my end, other than indigestion which really only occurs after dinner and before bed, I seem to have developed restless leg syndrome and leg cramps. 

At night my legs take on a life of their own and it takes me about 20 minutes of trial and error to figure out what position they would like to be in. Sometimes they want to be elevated on pillows, other times curled in a ball, or even dangling off the side of the bed. These positions satisfy my legs for about an hour and then we have to start all over again in an effort to accommodate them. 
If RLS isn't the issue, then my legs decide to cramp. I have never had a Charlie Horse, so I am not sure if the pain is similar but a jolt of pain will radiate down the back of my thigh down to my calf for no apparent reason. It ususally doesn't last long, but depending on the timing - it can make for some very awkward stretching in public places. 
As with most pregnancy symptoms, one can blame hormones or "the unknown". Cramping falls into the "unknown" but some think it could be my leg muscles are more fatigued than usual or that the blood vessels that carry blood to and from my legs are compressed by the growing uterus. Either way, both RLS and leg cramping seem to be nothing compared to some of the other pregnancy troubles women face and can be calmed with a little stretching and patience. 

Saturday, June 2, 2012

They grow up so fast

As a parent, I will support my child in whatever he or she decides to pursue whether it be sports, the arts, academics, or some other arena of life that I am familiar or unfamiliar with. This said, there is a short list of professions and hobbies, I would rather not see my child participate in, although I will still support them should these be the avenues they take.

1. Cheerleader - no offense to those out there, even at the caliber of "Bring It On", but I just don't get it. I will be a parent, I will be your cheerleader - get on the field and play a sport! Unless said sport is:

2 A Boxer - As a future parent, I think it would be incredibly difficult to watch my son or daughter beat the crap out of or get the crap beaten out of them (this also includes UFC fighter, but does not include WWE wrestler because maybe he/she could introduce me to The Rock)

Danny - The Shining
3. A child actor in a scary movie. - I think I would have a hard time looking at my kid the same if they were the REDRUM kid in The Shining or Linda Blair from the Exorcist. An exception to this is Hailey Joel Osmund in The 6th Sense - yes, it was a horror movie but he was cute, not creepy.

4. An Alaskan King Crab Fisherman - With a show titled The Deadliest Catch following those with this profession, I don't think I need to say much more.

5. A clown - See #3. No exceptions.

6. A cast member of a reality TV show with the exception of 1) The Amazing Race (that would actually be my dream), 2) a game show that doesn't involve roommates or "7 strangers", or 3) a home improvement show.

7. A gamer. I have nothing against a video game here and there, but once I see them inside on a beautiful day or speaking in World of Warcraft tongues, changes need to be made ASAP!

8. A pro athlete for a Philadelphia sports team

9. A porn star, stripper, "escort", exotic dancer, or any other euphemism for that line of work.

10. An acoustic guitar player - Now if this hobby keeps your kid off the streets or leads to a multi-platinum record, then its cool with me but if my child is the kid at the party that takes out his/her guitar and struggles through "Freebird" in someone's basement with a bunch of stoner friends, I would rather not hear about it. I think those people are so cheesey and its an awkward buzz kill for everyone who could care less about you and your guitar.

11. An Abercrombie & Fitch Employee (added 5.28.13) - Aside from the flagrant douche baggery associated with the clothing chain, recent comments made by the CEO have turned me off to the store entirely and all associated with it. Not a looker himself, I was disgusted to read  this comment made by Mike Jeffries: "In every school there are cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids...We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of finds. A lot of people don't belong [in our clothes] and they can't belong."

PS. Today I am 18 weeks pregnant.