May 272009

and I’ve got answers. But before I get to them….

Our blood pregnancy test (also known as “the beta”) is tomorrow morning at 9:00. This test is very important because it confirms the pregnancy, and it will be repeated in two days to determine if the pregnancy is progressing normally. They want to see the HCG level double, to rule out the chemical pregnancy phenomenon. A chemical pregnancy is very brief – usually just long enough to get a positive result on a pregnancy test. It typically occurs when the embryo implants, but is not strong enough to continue dividing. We’re praying that this isn’t the case!

Based on how barfy I feel tonight, I think that all is well. To make me feel better, my very sweet husband went to the store to buy me something that I never, ever drink normally, but absolutely love during pregnancy – strawberry milk. When I was pregnant with Bee, I drank it by the gallon. With Cakes I preferred regular milk, but I craved it so much that I actually carried a half gallon around with me when we took Bee trick-or-treating that year. I didn’t care what people thought either. I needed my dairy! When I’m pregnant, all of the things I usually love – chocolate, sweets of all kinds, vegetables – become revolting to me, and things I can usually take or leave – like meat and dairy – I can’t get enough of. Weird.

After the blood test I’m getting a haircut, because my hair has suddenly gone completely mad. A few days ago it was quite normal, but over the weekend it decided that it simply isn’t sufficient for me to be fat and bloated and puffy – I must have insane hair too. This morning when I got up, it was standing up all over my head in a series of peaks and horns. Bee actually laughed when she saw it, and then she very soberly instructed me to go brush it, because she was embarrassed to be seen with me at school.

Speaking of school, today was Bee’s very last day. When I picked her up, she was bouncing off the walls, and her shirt was covered with tell-tale signs of ice cream. She informed me that she had two bowls of ice cream at the end-of-the-year farewell party, and she also came home with two bags of candy – one from the office, and one from the lunch ladies. Wow, thanks school officials! So nice of you to wind the kids up tighter than 50-cent watches and then send them home for the summer!

I’m just kidding. I know they mean well.

Now that Bee is home for the summer, it just occurred to me that I will have to take both girls everywhere. Oh dear. We all know how that goes.

On a related note, have you all seen the credit report commercial, with the 745 that looks like a wriggly, quivering puppy? I love that commercial because I think it’s just a very clever concept. I seriously laugh every time I see it, because I love when the credit score is bad, and it chews up the armchair, and piddles on the carpet before scuttling away. We’ve taken to calling Cakes “509” when she does something naughty, as in “bad 509!” Hee hee. This has nothing to do with anything, I just think it’s funny. Anyway…..

I have a confession to make. I’m completely obsessed with the “Shark Steam Mop.” Now, I never, ever buy anything on TV, but my husband and I occasionally watch infomercials because we find them hilarious (we especially like the “Magic Bullet,” and any of the Time Life music ones with the aging 80s pop star hosts). I hate to admit it, but I’m totally transfixed by the Shark, because my Swiffer WetJet, which I used for spot cleaning my wood floors in between hand-washings, broke in half a few months ago. I didn’t replace it, because I object to the waste and expense of the refills, but I really do miss the convenience of it. The Shark just uses tap water, and the pads are machine washable, and I read great reviews of it online. The downside is that if you buy it on TV, it costs “4 easy payments of $24.95,” plus S&H. But, I read that Bed, Bath & Beyond sells it for less, and I have a 20% off coupon, and I got a $68 check for advertising this month, and my husband says I should buy whatever I want, so hmmmmm…….I’m very tempted. Has anyone tried the Shark? If so, do you think it’s worth the money?

Now, on to your questions (finally!):

Sarah asked – “Should I send some baby bows too?!!!?”

Yes please! Sarah is making super-cute hair bows for my girls, for no reason except that she’s a sweetheart, and for some unknown reason, she likes me. Thanks Sarah!

Several of you asked – “Have you told the girls yet? What did they say?”

We did tell the girls right away, because we thought they should be the first to know. Cakes said, “OH!” and then went about her business. I don’t think she had any idea what we were even talking about. Bee was incredibly excited, and she’s praying hard for a boy. She also asks every day how I’m feeling, and she tells me how I need to rest! She also asks lots of questions about how I felt when I was pregnant with her, so I told her about the strawberry milk phenomenon, and how I couldn’t stand the smell of bananas or fish. She seems very interested in those little details.

Narelle said – “I’ve always wondered why you can find out you’re pregnant via IVF earlier than a ‘normal’ pregnancy…”

I’m not sure why either, except that when blastocyst embryos are transferred, they’ve already been cultured for 5 days, which may have something to do with it.

Tater asked – “Wait, please explain how you figured out 4 weeks and 2 days. I don’t get how that works.”

Pregnancy due date is calculated by the first day of your last menstrual cycle, which is why I’m already 4 weeks pregnant. I know that’s confusing – I didn’t even realize it until my second pregnancy.


“Because of the IVF do you know the sex already? Could you have even chosen?”

At the time of our fresh IVF cycle, gender selection was not offered, though it’s more common now, due to increased demand. So no, we don’t know the gender of the baby. We do plan to find out though, as we did with both girls, because we’re planners, and we’ll want to shop at garage sales for baby clothes. We still have all of the big stuff – crib, changing table, swing, car seat – but no baby clothes up to age 24 months. I either gave them away or sold them on consignment, because as I said, I was having a crisis of confidence, and I really didn’t believe that I would get pregnant again. This just goes to show you that Erma Bombeck’s “motherhood insurance” theory is correct. The minute you give away your baby stuff, you’ll get pregnant!

Anonymous asked: “You mentioned once that some people think IVF is wrong, and even that it could be considered murder? How can this be?”

I have encountered people with many different, and sometimes disturbing opinions, such as:

IVF is murder -You are intentionally subjecting your children to a procedure in which they have a very small chance of survival, because embryos in an IVF cycle have only a 27% chance of survival. Also, because some people don’t use all of their fertilized embryos, or donate them to research, they are committing murder.
IVF is perversion – because a doctor is involved in impregnating you.
IVF is playing God – If people don’t get pregnant, it’s because God doesn’t want them to have a child, so they should just suck it up and get over it.

Many of you also asked if we have names picked out, and well… we do and we don’t. My favorite boy name is Daniel (my dad’s name), and my husband likes it too. Amazingly enough, he can’t come up with any bad nicknames or playground taunts for it, and believe me, he’s tried. However, in the girl department we got nothing. I love the names that we chose for our girls, and they were easy to pick, but now, when I look at baby name lists, nothing jumps out at me. I know that I want to stay away from really common, trendy names, because I grew up with one of those, and while I like my name now, when I was a kid I always wanted it to be more unique. So….I’m open to suggestions. What’s your favorite girl name?


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