"...suffering is one of the universal conditions of being alive. We all suffer. We have become terribly vulnerable, not because we suffer, but because we have separated ourselves from each other." -- Rachel Naoimi Remen

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Baby 8. Journal 1.

I cried as I walked out of the OB's office this summer.  Well really it was a GYN visit, nothing obstetric going on at the time.  No longer suffering from anxiety or depression, this took me by surprise.  Given my history, though, I wondered, would I ever be able to visit the OB/Gyn's office without crying?  Without remembering? 

My pregnancy losses aren't something I think about everyday anymore.  I don't think of them often at all really.  But they're still part of me, like a bad ankle that gets sore pretty easy when you roll it off the curb the wrong way. 

Conception comes easy for us.  A few short months later I find myself needing to call the OB's office for another appointment... Let me tell you how it happened:

Well, we were trying to get pregnant, using Natural Family Planning.  Unfortunately, my temperature curves were not showing a definite shift.  Everyday I had an excuse about why one temperature might have been higher or lower than it should have been, if I were in an ovulatory cycle.  More quickly that I should have, I got discouraged.  Fearful that my ovulatory years had passed, I am thirty-five after all.

Nevertheless, I took a pregnancy test six days before my missed period each month, just like the box says I can.  My rationale behind this early testing was to start hormone suppositories as early as possible to support the pregnancy, should it occur.

This month, six days before my missed period in the absence of a clear temperature shift, I took another negative pregnancy test and felt discouraged again.  We left that afternoon for vacation and I didn't think much about it again.  Two days into vacation, my temp was higher than it had been all month, and so my spirits lifted.  I'd brought tests and hormones with me, so I tested, and one pink line again I saw. 

That afternoon I enjoyed the hot tub with my little kid and I thought only a little about my family planning.  Let go and let God, right?  We enjoyed the rest of our vacation. 

When I returned home unpacking, I saw the pregnancy test I had taken while we were away.  I didn't want to throw it away in the trash there because I didn't want anyone to see it and know how seriously we were trying.  So before I threw it out I glanced at it again, and noticed a very faint, second pink line. 

Shocked, I grabbed another test and peed again.  Quickly, two lines appeared.  I ran outside to show my husband in disbelief. 

How quickly I had become discouraged.  I am ashamed of myself. 

How quickly we conceived, again.  It is surreal.

We are excited, but not like before.  We talked about names once and I toss names around in my head from time to time.  But, I am cautious.  I'm not trying to be cautious, I just am.  I am only a little excited.  A protective layer of caution surrounds me.  I think I might have a baby next summer, but I'm not daydreaming about him or her too much. 

I wish I wouldn't have gotten in that darn hot tub.

I am religious about my regimen.  My hormone, anti-inflammatory medication, aspirin and vitamins.  One caffeine per day, no more.  I am eating really well. 

But I don't feel any pregnancy symptoms and boy I wish I would. 

My temperature remains up but not up as high as I think it should.  I remember it being higher during my previous pregnancies... but of course those didn't end with babies in my arms, so maybe I don't need to worry about that. 

I have no pregnancy dreams like before and yet I know I have sufficient progesterone, because I'm injecting into myself each night.  My boobs are smaller than ever.  I do have ligamentous left pelvic pain - thank God for that. 

I wait a couple days to call my OB's office and make the first appointment. 

"Name, birthdate... First day of your last menstrual period..."

"And, what pregnancy is this?"

I stutter, "Seven, I think."  Seven?  Seven?  Can that be right?  I have one biological son.  I had five miscarriages.  I am pregnant now.  1 + 5 + 1 = 7.  Yes, seven.  Wow, seven. 

I have less children than many of my friends but I have been pregnant many more times than most of them.  So many times.  The disbelief persists.  I cannot explain it.  I try to explain it to my husband. 

I don't call my sister or my mom.  I hope my friends don't ask. 

So back to the phone call with my OB's office.  I make the appointments and get off the phone.  They had to call me again and asked those same four questions.  I giggled the second time they asked what pregnancy this is.  A nervous giggle - that's what I do.

The absurdity that this is my seventh pregnancy.

After that phone call with the OB office, I am anxious.  For the first time in many months, actually it's the first time in two years, I have chest tightness and near panic.  My breaths are quick and rationale thoughts don't calm me down.  In about thirty minutes it subsides.  It's been a week since then and I'm thankful that it hasn't returned. 

That night I told my husband the whole story.  My anxiety and all. 

Here we are.  Waiting, time passes slowly.  I know this feeling. 

I don't know what's next.  How will it end? 

I decide to do therapeutic journaling on my blog.  I may or may not publish once we know the chromosomal compliment of this baby. 

Date written: 10/20/15.  Naming this journal "Baby 8," to include my six previous pregnancies, my adopted son, and this, my eighth baby. 


  1. Wow! I felt like I was RIGHT there with you. What a powerfully written journal. I'll definitely be praying for you!!