Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Old Wives Tales and Myths.

If you are ever searching the internet (like my Mom) or listening to Ellen (my Avo) then you have run across some pretty silly ways to predict the gender of your baby. So I thought I would try some of these tall tales and we will see in a couple months if they come true.

1st theory: heartbeat

"If you're having a girl, then the fetal heart rate will be above 140. A boy will have a heart rate below 140."

My baby has always clocked in around 150 sometimes even 155. So by this theory, girl.

2nd theory: Craving Something…Sweet?

"Many people believe that your cravings are caused by the sex of your baby. So, if you can't get enough chocolate, you could be having a girl. Does the idea of drinking straight lemon juice sound delicious to you? Then those sour cravings are a result of the little boy inside of you."

I haven't had to many cravings if any at all. I do however enjoy really fresh fruit. I have never really been that into chocolate. So we can either say I am enjoying sweet fresh fruit because its finally summer and they are in season or we can say this theory predicts a boy.

3rd theory: Weight gain

"Thankfully, this one doesn't refer to your weight gain. The belief is that, if your husband puts on weight during your pregnancy, then you will be having a girl. If he doesn't put on a pound, then you're carrying a boy."

Well I am not going to throw hubby under the bus here but I will say he does have sympathy hunger for me so according to this theory, girl.

4th theory: Is the face round and full?

"Some say that the shape and fullness of your face during pregnancy can indicate your baby's sex. Every woman gains weight differently during pregnancy, and every woman experiences different skin changes. If people tell you that because your face is round and rosy you are having a girl"

This is a hard one because I have always had a very round face. I also have very fair skin so any type of physical activity brings on a very rosy tint to my face. So by this theory I have always been pregnant with a girl.

5th theory: What Your Urine Says

"Just take a sample of your urine and mix it with Drano. Depending on the color change of your urine, you will have a boy or a girl."


6th theory: The Necklace

"Hold a pendant over your hand. If the necklace swings back and forth, you're having a boy. If it is more of a circular motion, then it's a girl. This can also be done by suspending a ring on a string above your belly."

Okay, let me go get a necklace. *also a quick stop to the ladies room* I did the test. Trying my best to not in influence the necklace I would say it made more of a circular motion. So, girl.

7th theory: Just Ask Yourself

"In a study that asked women with no previous knowledge about their baby's sex, the moms-to-be correctly guessed the sex of their baby 71% of the time."

I can honestly say that I have NO IDEA what I am carrying. I don't have a feeling in either direction. And when I dream about the baby, there is no clear sign in my dream what gender.

I do know that when the moment comes and they tell us either boy or girl it won't matter to us. We are just happy to have him/her after all these years.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Half Way Point.

We made it to the half way point, well, a couple days after the half way point. There is a nice round bump to prove it. I officially only wear maternity clothes now and thanks to my Mom's visit I have a couple new shirts to prance around in. My Mom also held a bra intervention with me at Pea in the Pod and I now sport the best new bra ever!! Seriously, did you know Spanx makes bras? Either did I. Well, the one I have is super comfy and as my Mom put it "contains" the situation I have growing on my chest. I had no idea I had moved up the ladder of letters on the bra scale but I am happy to report I didn't freak out to bad releasing I was now a D... besides D stands for 'damn good' =)

Speaking of my Mom we had such a great visit while she was in town. She is such an amazing Mom and I am so lucky to be able to share this experience with her.
I feel she is the third person in this infertility mess we went through. She was always the first person to get the sobbing phone call when procedures didn't work. I look back now and that was a lot of baggage she took on. Never once complaining about being my sounding board and always being available to me. She took on so much emotional stress for me and I am so grateful for her support. So having her here to decorate the nursery and be here for the big ultrasound seemed VERY fitting. Thank you Mom from the bottom of my heart!

While my Mom was here we had the big ultrasound! It was fantastic! We had to schedule the appointment for 7:15am so hubby could get to work. Needless to say I was up at 4:30am just way to excited to sleep! Here are some snap shots:

The ultrasound tech said the baby looked great and everything was working the right way. We were able to see everything BUT the gender. Hubby really wants to have the big surprise although I am not the biggest fan of this idea I understand where he is coming from and respect that. I also look at this way, he went through so much during the infertility years and gave me so much to have this baby I think not knowing the gender is the least I could do. We did get some news from the ultrasound which I have been trying to process the past couple of days. It appears our baby is in the 97% range in weight and height!! Even though I lost weight during the first and part of the second trimester the baby was still able to grow and grow. Genetics is the factor here. Hubby and I are tall and both were very large babies. Me @ 9lbs 3oz and hubby clocking in at healthy 10 pounds! The baby growth even bumped us up a week. I was 19 weeks but the ultrasound tech that the baby's growth was at 20 weeks. We will see if this makes my amazing doctor move up the due date. *crossing fingers* it will! I wish we could of stayed at the ultrasound appointment all day. While watching the screen a certain song kept playing in my head. The chorus mostly: "wild horses, couldn't drag me away and wild horses couldn't drag me away" *song below*

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

30 Minutes of Wonderful

My Mom is coming in tonight. We are going to get the baby's room all ready. Pick out furniture and get my registry all ready for the baby shower. My Mom is the queen of registry and I couldn't imagine trying to go at it without her. She will also be here for the big 20 week ultrasound.

So I needed to get the house all clean for her visit. I don't know about you but I don't clean without a movie on. I know this sounds odd but I need something to distract me from the fact I am cleaning. So today HBO was showing a movie I have seen over three hundred times. And that is not an understatement. I think all the women in my family have seen this movie so many times we could act it out at family functions.

As I am dusting the dinning room table the scene where Shelby tells her mom she's pregnant comes on and hits me like a ton of bricks. Just that line:

"I would rather have 30 minutes of wonderful then a lifetime of nothing special"

*the scene starts at the 3:30 mark*

Although I can't relate to Shelby completely, she has type 1 diabetes and is advised not to have a child because of the huge complications and toll it would cause her already failing body. I understand her plea that her life wouldn't be fulfilled without a child of her own. As if her time on the earth would be wasted or in vain.

I have re-watched the scene a number of times today. And I placed myself in her mom's shoes and then again in Shelby's. Explaining her desire to someone who never had to struggle seems to be a common theme in other infertility blogs I read. There always seem to be a wall to break through or a person to convince. But like Shelby I think the choice is personal and one that has to be made with or without the support of others. I just feel after watching the scene I am lucky to have had the support of my family and friends and even the support of people I have connected with on this blog. In the end we are all searching for a those '30 mintues of wonderful'.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Dorothy & Me.

Last night laying in bed unable to find sleep I started thinking about my favorite movie, The Wizard of Oz. Yes, I have loved this movie since the age of 4 and still find myself watching it when it comes on TV and even jamming out to the soundtrack in my car. I mean come on, I walked down the aisle at my wedding to 'Somewhere Over The Rainbow.' This movie is in me.

Well, after much thought and analyst on my late night brain. I found a lot of connection between Dorothy's journey home to my journey with fertility. Yes, I can take a movie for kids and use it find fertility meaning behind it. Just like I can take any family drama, event or business transaction and relate it to the Godfather. Some may call this odd, I simply call it talent.

Here's my thought process:

Dorothy goes on this journey she never wanted to be on in the first place. Thrown into this whole new world full of strange people and she is forced to second guess everything she has ever known. Hello?!?! Does that not sound like a girl we! I didn't want to go down the infertility journey but there I was two years ago staring at my own yellow brick road. Meeting very strange doctors and nurses who keep feeding information about baby making that didn't match up to what I was taught in school.

So there's Dorothy needing guidance, someone she can trust. In comes Glinda. I relate Glinda to your best friend or your Mom.. a girlfriend that takes the journey with you. Never giving you more advice then you can handle but always had the right answers for you when you needed them. At least that's how I see my Mom. She tells you that the path your on is the right one all the while fighting the evil witch of infertility with you.

Yes in this story infertility is played by the Wicked Witch of the West.

So you go on the journey down the yellow brick road. The first person you meet is your normal, everyday run of the mill OB/GYN, or the Scarecrow. Most women go to the same OB for years. There is a bond there, you're comfortable with them. But as I experienced most OB's have no clue where to begin with infertility. They give you a line just like out of the movie "You could go this way, or you could go that way"

You continue down the yellow brick road of fertility in the direction the Scarecrow gave you. Where does that yellow road lead? A big tall steel building that lacks heart and human emotion. You get to meet your first infertility doctor or as I like to call mine the Tin Man. If you remember in the movie the Tin Man had no heart, lost it. Just like the doctors I met. They forget about the human condition - that longing for babies, their heart doesn't see you only their wallets. What does Dorothy have to give the Tin Man to even move, oil. What did I have to give the doctors to even sit with me, money.

The Tin Man leads you even deeper down the yellow brick road. And this is where you meet yourself. You've come so far, you are almost there and then you start to doubt. Do I have the courage to continue? Am I strong enough for this? The doubt eats at you, your isolated in a forest of emotion just like The Cowardly Lion.

But you push through. And with infertility there is ALWAYS a set back. There is always a way that the evil witch will hurt you. And just like the movie Glinda will show up and help you. (thanks Mom) She'll make it snow so that the poppies won't get you and somehow it picks you up enough to continue.

When you finally have made up your mind and you have the plan in hand you see the solution at the end of the yellow brick road. The Emerald City is in view!
You would be wise to note the color of the Emerald City, green. The color of money.

Dorothy finally gets into to see the Wizard. The Wizard puts her on another crazy journey. Or in my case, a flight to Europe. Where like Dorothy, I had to fight the good fight, get in there and get the job done. And just like Dorothy I slayed that evil witch of infertility. I got back on the plane and went back home.

On the journey Dorothy had to deal with her own misgivings about herself. Was she smart enough, have enough heart, brave enough to handle the path at hand. And just like Dorothy I had to learn the power to achieve my dreams was always inside of me. I took this yellow brick road unsure of myself and who I was as a person and in the end weather there was a baby at the end or not I learned to trust myself and trust the person I had become.

And when I read the positive pregnancy stick and my hubby placed his hand on my tummy in that moment we became a family. A family that truly defines the last motto of the movie, "There is no place like home."

Google Baby

So the hubby and I resubscribed to HBO so I could watch the third season of True Blood. My favorite show on TV. An added bonus to my love of campy, soap opera like vampire tales is we get all the amazing documentaries that HBO shares. The other night we were glued to the screen watching a documentary called 'Google Baby' here's the trailer:

I watched an Oprah a couple years back about a woman going to India to have a surrogate carry her embryos after several miscarriages. Basically this movie expands on that idea but shows the side of the clinic and the people who profit off of this procedure. The whole time I was watching this show I couldn't help but judge. I would catch myself judging the people but I had to always remember that I was apart of it as well. In a small way my husband and I participated in this culture of baby profiting.

I wasn't judging the women in India who were surrogates. The financial gain for these women is immeasurable. Many were able to help their own children attend school, raise their families out of poverty and for some gain financial freedom from their abusive husbands. The women also had a very spiritual connection to the process and a huge sense of pride.

I also don't judge the women who use surrogates. Just like myself, the desire to have your own child can't be measured. And sometimes the craziest methods to gain that child is what you have to do. There is and never have been any judgment there on my part.

My soul issue came from the men. The movie profiles a man in Israel who wants to start a company taking eggs from American donors, then using sperm from infertile or gay couples in Europe and making embryos. Then placing those embryos in the India surrogates. This crazy line of eggs, sperm and womb can have your head spinning if you haven't been knee deep in the infertility world. There is reason behind this globe trotting track to make babies. First, American egg donors are the most desired in the fertility race and second India surrogates are the cheapest. This man had pure dollar signs in his eyes. Not only did his eyes see green with this plan but the American donor company as well were all too willing to get there hands on that green.

A little back story: I know a girl who did egg donation. And it was a horror for her. The pay was miserable to what she had to do and learned quickly that she was just a uterus with eggs to profited on. They placed her on so much medication she didn't know which way was up or which way was down. In the end she provided the clinic with a mind blowing 15 plus eggs. So in my head when it was my turn to be shot up with infertility medication I thought I would have more eggs then I knew what to do with, right?!? I had 7 and only 2 survived. And in this movie they show a lady getting shot up with what I would say 4 times the amount of medication I took and she ended up with 30! 30 eggs!!! Why would I have only 7 and donors have triple that? One word: MONEY. The more eggs the clinic gets the more money it makes.

I guess what it boils down to for me and it always had since day one of starting my infertility journey that there is always someone who will try to profit off of desire and the people who are doing the most work or who are taking the greatest risk get the least out of the experience. There is always a middle man in this game. Someone making a lot of money off couples wanting a child. I don't think its just IVF patients or surrogates that get fleeced. You can look at adoption. It can be just as expensive to adopt as it can be to go though IVF. It's just heartbreaking to me.

But there was one more thing I learned from watching this documentary. NEVER, I repeat, NEVER have a C-section in this small India clinic. I nearly lost my dinner after those scenes. WOW!