Month one of hormone break. After two months of fertility treatments and almost a year of taking progesterone, I wanted to give my body a break. Honestly, I was concerned progesterone was preventing ovulation.
Our OB scheduled an analysis for my husband–we found it’s not him who is preventing conception–and is planning a sonohysterogram for me. I’ve had one prior to conceiving E and V and it was not fun, so not looking forward to it again, but whatever it takes.
Day 25 of month one.
A food aversion caused me to take a pregnancy test. To my surprise, I had the darkest positive line. A call to my OB and an HCG test later, 1330. She also requested a progesterone test, which came back great, but to be safe I’ll continue to take progesterone at night. Two days later and my HCG almost tripled to 3819! I have an ultrasound scheduled for week six.
Pregnancy, or rather hormones in general, seems to be the great equalizer when it comes to some neurodivergent people, at least for me. Normally I’m not able to understand when I’m too hot unless there is sweat. I sit here, typing, in minimal clothing as I’m HOT! There will be some adjustment as one of my regular comfort/safety items are hoodies. Considering I can barely wear a tank top, I don’t see hoodies as an option any time soon. But I’ll be honest, I’m not complaining as I’ve wished and prayed for a positive test for well over a year.
Pregnancy, or again, hormones in general, take away my ability to mask–or at the very least, it’s greatly reduced. I become more sensitive. This was my first sign that something was different and yet I don’t really know I’m unmasking, because it’s being my true self, but it’s just an inability to mask even when I believe I am. I was really having a difficult time with touch, it’s been too overwhelming. This was really difficult for one of my daughters who relies on me for comfort through rocking cuddles. I tried to balance her needs and my own with breaks. Usually, we read for long periods of time, but we would break it up a bit more so that I was able to regulate. This allowed me to better meet her needs as well, as you can’t pour from an empty cup.
My memory also seems to be impacted. Normally my memory is absolutely fantastic–but not when pregnant.
So, I promised to share all I do while on this journey, and I will, but be prepared to judge me. It’s okay, I’m used to it as I get a little paranoid and I’m a little bit crunchy, haha.
One, I started wearing a radiation shield–I wear a belly band all day and use the blanket when sitting at my computer. Radiation fried my thyroid and it’s just something I’m super cautious of. I’m aware of the research and, even if it’s hoopla, it sets my mind at ease.
I continue my workout but just switch to a prenatal. With E and V I did some Denise Austin Fit and Firm Pregnancy, but my main workout was Alexa Jean pregnancy PDF workouts (she now has an app called Bode my Lex). This time I’m doing the Sweat app and Kayla Itsines’ pregnancy workout. While I normally work out in the morning, I switch to a little later to accommodate the lower blood pressure and nausea. With the girls I workout out until I was 35 weeks and only stopped due to Braxton Hicks. (I was being extra cautious being pregnant with twins and really wanting to avoid a c-section. FYI, I think c-section mamas are the absolute strongest people as I was absolutely terrified of taking that journey!)
With E and V I needed to eat high protein and high fat (I ate more protein than my body-building cousin!) and tracked what I ate on an app called My Fitness Pal. I have a hard time with interoception and rely on reminders to eat, so I usually use this app in order to ensure I’m eating a balanced meal and what I need to. That’s the thing with interoception-related challenges, you have to be mindful that it doesn’t go too far one way or the other–I want to ensure I’m eating what I need but also don’t want to eat until I’m sick.
I generally try to eat mostly nutritiously dense food, but during pregnancy, I try to greatly limit chocolate (caffeine) and sweets in general. This is due to me trying to control what I can to limit my chances of gestational diabetes and also, hopefully, pop out a kid who will eat their vegetables, haha. There are studies that suggest this. I think this is why E and V love sushi as that’s what I craved my whole pregnancy–eating only vegetable and tomago (cooked egg) sushi of course.
When I drink decaffeinated coffee I only have water processed and only when away from home. (I’ve tried this one and it was great and they seem to be ethically sourced, which is important to me.) However, what I drank when pregnant with E and V, and will with this pregnancy at home, is this. I only need 1/8 cup for a whole pot and I carry the tea bags with me for when I’m out and about.
Six weeks pregnant.
My symptoms have stopped. I have a six-week ultrasound scheduled and they can’t get me in sooner, so they have requested HCG blood work to see if it’s still rising. So blood draw, skip a day, and another blood draw. It is still rising, thankfully, but now it’s just under doubling rather than nearly tripling.
Ultrasound day and there’s only one heartbeat.
Week eight, another ultrasound. A huge part of me hopes that we’ll see two heartbeats this time. There is not. Now there is no sign that there were ever two. One little gummy bear-looking dear with a strong heartbeat. I feel grateful for our little one and yet guilty for the one that isn’t.
I’m experiencing a great deal of challanges when it comes to food. As I shared, I rely on a food app and reminders to ensure I eat what I’m supposed to and when I should. But with morning sickness, or rather afternoon sickness, I am so frustrated. My doctor made some suggestions, such as smaller and more freuent meals. With the sickness I wonder if I’m feeling hunger? I don’t really know how to discribe it what it feels like, but there are times sourdough toast helps a great deal. So was it hunger I felt? It’s os confussing and frustrating to not trly understand ones own body and its needs, haha.
Unless requested, I think this is an end to this mini-series. Thank you for joining along!