Monday, May 17, 2010

Another Day, Another Bloodtest....

So, first...I have to get this off my chest.

I am sorry.

If you are reading this and you have lost a child, I am sorry.

If you are reading this and you have lost a child, and are trying desperately to have another child, I am so, so sorry.

I now that what you are feeling is unique to you, but I promise you that I am somewhat familiar with hearing pregnancy announcements from everyone and their uncle (and I mean that--two words: PREGNANT MAN) since 1999. That's over TEN years. TEN years of cycling and charting and testing and proceduring and attempting (and failing) to adopt.
I know the desperation of wanting to be a mother.

I know the desperation of BEING a mother...only to a child you had to bury. Before you even got to hold him. And I know the desperation of being that mother--while trying to be a mother to another child...a child that you would give the world for the simple privilege of raising him or her. I know the desperation of literally begging God for His favor on this cycle, with this medicine. I know the deals you make with Him if He would just grant you another miracle.
I know how much it hurts when the deal isn't accepted.

I know how hard it is to put on the happy face with every new announcement (and there have been a lot of them, doesn't it seem?) and truly be happy for them--but so, so, so jealous at the same time. Desperate for that to be YOU. For you to be back in a club that isn't just FILLED with sorrow.

I'm so grateful that I have only had to know that unique desperation--infertility before AND/OR after a loss--for a few months since Matthew died...and not longer like so many.

And I am so, so sorry if you do. I know that sounds so surface--and I wish I had a way to convey just how truly heartfelt my sympathy is. I know I can't...words just don't do my feelings justice.

But I just want to say, that I am not sorry that I am pregnant, by any means, but if you are trying and are struggling....I am so, so, sorry that you are not.

I say this because I realize that reading about pregnancy stuff may not be easy, at least it often isn't easy for me. And while I haven't stopped reading any blogs because the writers were/are newly pregnant, there are often days that I just have to come back and share their joy a little later...after a few of my own tears.

I also say this because if you read this, and it turns out that you just can't stomach it, I get it. And I wish I was talented enough or had enough time to do what so many amazing mothers do and have separate blogs for their living children and their buried children, but I just can't. I started this blog mainly because we were going to adopt from Kyrgyzstan and I thought I'd just journal stuff. Along the way, I *met* and fell in love with so many different families and stories...I learned all sorts of stuff (like being able to upload your blog into a book for publishing!) and found some venting value in writing, even if only for myself. As Kyrgyzstan turned into the sad situation it still is, and IVF came into play, I kept writing to document for WHATEVER child would be our own. It turned out it was Matthew! And I wrote many posts so he'd know his mother...her heart, her love for God and her love for her precious little boy. Long after I was gone, I wanted him to always have something that was straight from my mouth and my mind.

When he died...he took such a big, big part of me with him. And I really didn't plan to write here any more because he was gone and so was my will to document ANYTHING....all I had to document was dark and hurting and frankly, I had enough on my plate as it was, without having to worry about what others thought of me if they really knew what was going through my mind.

But a good friend sent me a FB message and told me she prayed I still would...that this was our family's story...and it is sad and heartbreaking, but it is OURS...and one day, Matthew's brother or sister would treasure the brother they'd know because they'd know him through my words.

And so it went from Lori Does MD (in hindsight, I'd SO change the the time, I was just thinking about how NOT fond of Maryland I was and how I was muddling through!) to Lori Does MD...And Waits For Matthew! to Lori Does MD...Our Family's Story.

And because it is first and foremost our family's story, it will be all about our family...our loved ones gone and our blessings to come.

So, if you find it hard to read or follow updates on Miney and Moe, I get it.

And I'm sorry. Truly, truly, I am sorry. To quote my RE, if I had a magic wand, I know SO many women with whom I'd use it...I just don't. Lacking the wand, know my prayers are solid and strong for you.


We had our second beta test this morning. My number today is 2971. A good, solid, strong number.

I am still feeling like it's one, still feeling she's a she.

Basically, these numbers monitor HCG (produced by the baby as it grows) and more specifically the rate, time and percentage of increase. A good indication of a nice, strong baby (or babies) growing can be made on these numbers, but not necessarily confirmed until an ultrasound (next Wednesday).

They'd like to see a doubling rate of every two days, or 48 hours (meaning that two days after the first number, the second number is double or higher).

My doubling rate was 1.59...meaning my levels are doubling a little faster (which is nice!), or every 38.3 hours.

Here's more info:
Assessment: The Two-Day hCG rise was 139 % and is considered adequate.
First hCG: 806 mIU/ml Second hCG: 2971 mIU/ml
hCG Difference:
2165 mIU/ml
Time Difference:
72 hours
Total hCG Increase:
2.69 % (3.7)
Daily Rate Increase:
54 % (1.54)
Two Day Rate Increase:
139 % (2.39)

1st Day hCG As If:
1241 mIU/ml
2 Days hCG As If:
1917 mIU/ml

I'm of the opinion that the rise is a little better than adequate, but I admit, I'm biased.

Here's another chart that gives an indication that my levels may be a bit higher/doubling a bit faster (mine's the little red line at toward the top).

A lot of people use beta numbers to make predictions of number of embryos implanted. It's not really as accurate, as the rate of rise is more important than the numbers themselves. For instance, though these numbers are high, they are not as high as Matthew's were on these days of the pregnancy. The clinic kept saying, "Two! Two!" and he was ONE perfect little bean. (Honestly, I just feel that my children are much like me--overachievers from the get-go...)

Which is why I'm not getting too worked up over a twin pregnancy.

The average hcg level for a single pregnancy 18dpo, which is what my first was, is 407 (mine was 806).
The average hcg level for a twin pregnancy 18dp0 is 801 (as I said, mine was 806).

The average hcg level for a single pregnancy 21dpo, which was today, is 1219 (mine was 2971).
The average hcg level for a twin pregnancy 21dpo is 2500 (again, mine was 2971).

The average doubling time for a single pregnancy is every 45.45 hours.
The average doubling time for a twin pregnancy is every 42.82 hours.

Again, my doubling time is every 38.3 hours.

So...I won't rule those of you saying twins out...but I'm still feeling one.

After what happened to Matthew, though, I don't trust a single, solitary thing I 'feel' and will just wait until the ultrasound to know for sure.


  1. Wow, that was a really AWESOME Math and Science lesson, complete with Graphs! I feel like I sort of understand this beta thing now. I'm so glad you had a good blood test. I am very glad your sonogram is next week, cause I don't think I can take this waiting :-)Praying for you continually!

    p.s. There is nothing wrong with being an overachiever :-)

  2. You are so right about the HCG thing. Mine was high of course, but not as high as a friend who was pg with one. And mine actually DID'T quite double in 48 hours...904 (17dpo) to 1706 (19dpo), and still twins. I totally thought one (and my friend thought two for her), but we were both wrong. So I am just praying for you to have a super happy and healthy pregnancy (and beyond), with however many children God has given you. Love you friend.

  3. Mine was high, and I had a singleton. But your numbers are definitely looking great!!

  4. You are so technical! I love it! :) I can't wait for your ultrasound. :)

  5. You're so compassionate....I loved how you premised this. I love how you're so thoughtful of others while still being deep in grief. I remember feeling so guilty when we found out we were pregnant after losing Ayden because I knew how many women were reading my blog who were in the same place as us...desperate for the child we lost...and desperate for that child's future sibling. I felt guilty because we didn't have trouble getting pregnant while some women were questioning whether it would ever be possible at all. I was so afraid of hurting someone, but I had to embraace my joy, too, and hope that they understood. Luckily, I was met with overwhelming grace....grace that I felt so undeserving of. I believe others will receive your news as well. As you said about us and our situation - "It's FAIR" for's "RIGHT and JUST" for you guys to be blessed with this child/these children (I'm hoping twins!). And while it's fair, right, and just for many others, it's especially fair, right, and just for the ones who have lost a child.

    I know you're all the way in MD, but gosh I'd love to see you guys sometime :) I want to give you the biggest hug!!! I'm so excited for you guys. Praying that all is well. Looking forward to hearing about next Wednesday!

  6. as always... well said, spot on, and so heart felt.

    ok, can i laugh at you now? :P YOU ARE SUCH A TEACHER!!! hahahahahaha love the math lesson.

    word verification: quean (as in QUEEN! you are His)

  7. I think you are funny. :)

    I loved our chat today. Wish we could do it more often.

    Hope "the flu" goes away and you are feeling tip top again as soon as possible. Mine lasted for fifteen weeks. Boy, I sure hope yours does not.

    Try to relax while J is off on his Texas adventure. Love you!

  8. Well, you know....God restored DOUBLE everything Job had lost. I just find that so interesting, because several people I know are chosen to carry twins after losing a baby. It will be interesting to see if this is the case for you too! Can't wait to hear.

  9. Hey, Lori,
    You deserve every bit of happiness and there is no need to apologize for it. You have been through such hardships. I am so, so happy that you are pregnant. May you have a happy, healthy little baby!

  10. What great numbers your producing there mama! Anxiously awaiting Wednesday!

  11. It's so interesting to see all those numbers! I eagerly await hearing the next round of good news. :)

  12. I am so happy for you and can't wait to follow your journey. xx

  13. I love how beautifully you are able to write. Everything reads like you spent hours on it ... so detailed, but genuine and tender. I don't know you, but I know your love for your Matthew and your new treasure(s) growing ... it's so evident. I'm sincerely happy for you. Always praying. XO

  14. you are so sweet -- and so caring of others -- the way you started this post -- i totally get -- that feeling -- of feeling the need to apologize --
    this is really really exciting about your doubling rate!! can't wait to hear 1 or 2...

  15. i'm so happy for you and i hope to be joining you soon, best of luckwith the scan on wed, lots of love, anne xxx

  16. I am so happy for you and John! What great numbers! One or two, he/she/they are sure lucky to have you as a mommy.

  17. Sweetest Friend,

    "Holding" you in this moment for being wonderful, thoughtful, emotional, supportive YOU. Yes, those of us who are awaiting our miracles, Rainbow miracles, as no child can replace the first miracle, do struggle with announcements. BUT, the heart has to be open, loving and receptive to the blessings of others in order to be the recipient of a blessing...or, at least I feel that way :)

    I know the feeling of wanting to appologise for being pregnant and feeling JOY and wanting to share it. Just last night I had a 2 hour conversation with a dear friend to celebrate her adoption (they were selected by the BM on Friday) and then she asked about me and my app't at the fertility clinic and was encouraging me along. I wondered "how" me going forward with the possibility of an Earthly bilolgical and talking about it was affecting her. I only want to celebrate her JOY right now and would never cause her any pain. So, I get all that you said and it touches my heart. BUT, I can say this:

    I am filled with JOY for you and know that my day will way or another :) Just endulge in this moment.

    And, as for my friend, let's just say that's one baby shower that I won't miss! I'd come to yours too if I could :)

    Now, on to miney and moe...I have no opinion as to whether or not you will have twins. I only pray for the safety of these embie(s) and the safety of their precious Mother who holds them. And, I remember Matthew with you and honor his life and pray for his sibling(s).

    God bless you my angel on earth friend, as you deserve this happiness. Not to mention, I LOVE checking off the list in my head of who's trying and who's successful! It reminds me that good things DO happen :)

    Much Love and Lifting you up continualy...

    ps. don't spell check me, as there are a zillion mistakes :)

  18. I just can't wait for your u/s! And I can't wait for your 3rd beta tomorrow. :)

  19. One or two.... You're pregnant and thats what I'm excited about. And good grief I'm a OB/L&D nurse and you are way better with those numbers than I am:)

  20. Awesome numbers!!!!! Praise God!!!

    I understand your sympathy for those still trying/those still childless. It's such a fine line, I still am so sensitive about that. You have such a sweet spirit.

  21. Lori,
    I came upon your blog through a friend of mine and have followed along for a few months now. I have thought about commenting many times, but haven’t because I thought “Lori, doesn’t know me…she’s going to think ‘who is this crazy stalker person who is following my life that I don’t know?’” Now, I see that I’m not alone, so there is comfort in numbers (of others who are fessing up about their following along as well). : )

    I have been so heartbroken for you through your loss of your precious Matthew and I pray for you and your husband often. I have been amazed by your faith in God.

    Sometimes it has been hard to read, because I see how very sad you are. I ache for you. I’d like to believe that God doesn’t take precious babies from their mothers. I know that isn’t so.

    I have two wonderful children, but had a miscarriage before having my first and it was an awful unbelievable pain. However, I know that doesn’t even touch the surface of your pain. You will remain in my prayers.

    When I read your pregnancy announcement (and excellent beta hcg) I thought about posting. Then many people were thinking possible twins and I wanted to comment that I have a friend who did IVF, transferred 2 eggs, both took and one split so she had triplets! I was thinking it but didn’t post it. Then read the post after the pregnancy announcement that your due date is Jan 16. The triplets were born on Jan 16, too. I considered that a sign that I just needed to post a comment. I know multiples is scary and you’d be over the moon with just 1 happy, healthy baby, but thought it was too coincidental not to at least mention. So, mark me down for that guess so that if it does happen, I can say “yes! I knew it!”

    I pray that you will let yourself be as happy the second time as you were the first time and not let your fear hamper your joy. Oh, I know how happy Matthew must be for his Mommy and Daddy!

    You deserve this! Enjoy every second of it!


  22. Lori, you are too considerate, and too sweet! You are right, it is hard, and I know you know how hard it is to see people bring home healthy babies, much less announce pregnancy. I am just grateful to have such a sweet friend who considers others even before herself. I know that I've been very leery to post pics about Cala and her nursery and all of that, as I worry that it might hurt someone else! You are an angel!

    Now, on to Miney and Moe... those numbers are great, and I'm of the thought that it doesn't matter what you get, YOU'RE PREGNANT!! So the rest is not important. I'm praying you through this next part of the story, and can't wait to hear how it unfolds! And just so you know, I think it's a girl too (maybe more than one!).

    Sending you love!!!

  23. Wow, that would be so cool to have twins!! Eeep! :)

  24. I really hope it all works out for you! I can't wait for when you find out if it's a boy or a girl!