“Now, Justin…be prepared. I’m probably going to cry either way – if we hear a heartbeat, or if we don’t. I’m just warning you now. And when I do start crying, just hold my hand, so I don’t look like an idiot crying on the table alone. ”
This was me trying to prepare Justin for the surge of emotions I was sure to experience at the doctor yesterday when we had our first ultrasound and viability scan.
To everyone’s shock, there were no tears in the room. But I’ll get to that part later.
The impact of infertility and pregnancy loss did not end when we finally got our two lines on July 2. And, in a way, it actually stole the joy of that moment. I never really told the story of us finding out we were pregnant, but it was not a tearful, jumping up and down moment. It was a “let’s not get our hopes up just yet” kind of excitement. Even after several consecutive days of positive tests, we still were guarded. Me, especially.
It’s hard to explain, but I feel like I am constantly waiting for the ball to drop. Bad news has got to be lurking around the corner, because there is no way that good things are finally happening.
Over the course of the next few weeks, repeated lab tests showed that my HCG levels were growing quite rapidly – doubling every day or so as they should be. Still…I had not seen the heartbeat, and therefore was remaining cautious in my excitement. Don’t get me wrong, I was all smiles on the outside, but a nervous wreck on the inside. I obsessively checked for blood every time I went to the restroom. And since I was now peeing every 5 minutes, I had ample opportunities to obsess.
Yet time was passing with no ball dropping.
About a week ago, I had one of the most scary moments of my life. The morning was totally normal. I had some work meetings which ended around noon. I stopped and picked up some egg drop soup (a totally random craving as I don’t know that I’ve ever even had it) on my way home. All in all, I was feeling pretty good. Even though I had planned on saving half of the soup for later, I devoured the entire thing in one sitting and then crashed on the couch for my daily nap.
Without warning I was startled awake by a horrible cramping sensation. I had still yet to throw up, so I thought: this is it – this must be what it feels like. I ran to the bathroom, where I promptly fainted. I have no idea how long I was out, but when I came to, I was sitting on the toilet, slumped against the wall, and my foot was in the dogs’ water bowl (I think this is what snapped me out of it).
I called my husband hysterical and freaking out, but actually feeling, other than a little weak, physically okay at this point. The cramping had passed and there was no blood. However, as it would of course have to happen, my doctor was already closed for the day. I convinced Justin that I did not need to go to the ER, and that I would call them in the morning.
Again, some terrifying time passed with no ball dropping.
We never really figured out what caused me to faint. My nurse that I spoke to the next morning said it was probably a vasovagal response to the pain I experienced. She gave me a few things to watch out for and reassured me that everything was okay.
I still had almost a week to go before my first ultrasound, at which point, based on my HCG levels, they determined I would be about 7 weeks.
Then time essentially stopped. I just wanted to hurry up and see it for myself – that everything was okay.
The night before our appointment, I couldn’t sleep. I spent the majority of the night with my hand on my stomach just trying to sense the heartbeat.
When Beverly called my name in the waiting room, my heart literally jumped into my throat.
And maybe the reason I didn’t cry was because it was still in my throat when the doctor said, “What we have here is twins. And before you ask if I’m sure, yes, I’m sure – two babies, two heartbeats.”
“Excuse me, what?!”
“Take a deep breath and hold it, and we’ll listen to Baby A’s heartbeat.”
We listened to the swishing sound in total shock while he took all the necessary measurements, before moving onto Baby B.
So, when I say there were no tears it was because both Justin and I sat there, the entire appointment, looking like that emoji with the saucer sized eyeballs.
At this point we are still not out of the woods. We go back in two weeks to make sure both babies are still viable. He said we have about a 20% chance of Vanishing Twin Syndrome. However, both babies had a good heart rate, and are measuring the same size, so we’re taking that as encouraging news. Also, it turns out, we’re not as far along as we initially thought. Those high HCG numbers were not due to how far along I was, but rather the fact that there are TWO!
As of today, we are 6 ½ weeks along, with a due date of March 18th.
For the first time, I can say that I am incredibly happy. An over the moon kind of joy. I am still worried and in desperate need of all the positive vibes for the next two weeks.
And, it appears, despite all my worrying about dropping balls, we’ve finally caught our break.
Life is good.
And as I type this, I am finally crying. Happy tears, y’all. So many happy tears.
(seven. twenty-six. twenty-two)