Thursday, June 21, 2012

where is that straitjacket?

Before I delve into the story of my morning, here is something that always makes Buster and I giggle:

And also, one more thing. I never knew straitjacket was spelled straitjacket. I have always typed "straight jacket" or "straightjacket". Apparently I'm a moron.

Ok, here we go.

After a long evening of shopping with my mother and sister (seriously, it was long. My sister hates shopping and wearing dresses, and both were unavoidable, as we were shopping for something to wear to a wedding. My mom tends to exacerbate the situation by throwing more and more dresses at my sister to try on. I am the mediator. Lucky me.), I came home exhausted. Completely drained. But lo and behold, the prized doppler had arrived!

So, I chugged two glasses of water, grabbed my aloe vera gel and the doppler, and headed into bed.

Finding a heartbeat is tough work. I think I found it at one point, after lots of searching. And you guys were right (Lisa!), it was soooo low. It doesn't even make sense how low. No wonder I was scared my baby would fall out spontaneously after I stopped the medicine... it's already halfway there!

Anyway, the heartbeat that I think I found averaged about 143 bpm. Which seemed low to me. My friends reassured me that it was not low, and that anything between 120-160 is normal.

Buster and I laid in bed and googled for a while. We both felt ok with the number after reading some stuff. I went to bed. He went to play League of Legends.

He came to bed at 2:00 a.m., and I woke up to pee. I couldn't fall back asleep, and terrible thoughts kept circling through my head.

What if the heart rate is low because my baby is slowly dying since I stopped my meds?

What if that wasn't the heartbeat at all, just some weird throbbing vag vein?

What if that was the heartbeat, but the baby was dying and is now dead?

Early pregnancy after a miscarriage is such a mind fuck. This shit is for the birds.

This morning, I awoke determined I would find a "better" heartbeat with the doppler. I drank my one cup of coffee (yes, I'm drinking one cup of coffee a day), took my shot of fish oil liquid (so delicious...where is that sarcasm key again?), took my prenatal, ate a bowl of Raisin Bran Crunch, and got back in bed with my aloe vera gel and the doppler.

I couldn't find shit.

Cue panic.

I just *knew* my fear from last night was true. You know, the one where I was hearing the last dying heartbeats of my baby last night, and today nothing. I just had to go off all that medicine...

I start shaking. My hands are shaking uncontrollably. I'm on the verge of tears.

I call my OB and ask for my nurse. I tell her that I'm having a freakout, and wondered if there is any way they could squeeze me in for a quick ultrasound just so I could see that my baby was still alive. After she speaks with the ultrasound tech, she tells me to come in any time today, and they will squeeze me in.

I love this clinic. The nurses, ultrasound technicians, and front desk staff are all so sweet to me. They all know my story (which is a tad disconcerting, but whatever), and they seem to genuinely care about me.

So, I hop in the shower and head to the clinic. I walk up to the front desk and sign in, and tell the woman that I really don't have an appointment time, that the u/s tech was squeezing me in. She instantly knew who I was, and asked if everything was ok. I told her that it has been going well, but that the morning had been a rough one for me, and I was freaking out. She told me she has had five miscarriages, so she completely understands. She wished me tons of luck and said that everyone in the office is pulling for me.

I sit down with tears in my eyes. I distract myself by texting a bit. Only five minutes go by before the u/s tech comes out and calls my name. I head back, and she smiles when she sees me. She asks how I'm doing, and I tell her not very well. I am starting to cry now, and tell her I'm not sure I can talk without crying.

She was so sweet, and comforting. I blubbered out a "thank you for squeezing me in" while hopping up on the table. She completely understood my (irrational?) fears, and made me feel as much at ease as I could.

She wastes no time pulling baby up on the screen. Baby has gotten much bigger! After a minute, she plays the heartbeat. I will never, ever tire of hearing that sound. 172 bpm. Phew.

I am 10w3d today, and baby was measuring 10w4d. I'll take it!

So then she spent some time (which she probably didn't really have) looking at baby. Arms and legs were in full motion. Legs were kicking, arms were waving. A hand went to the mouth. Then, the baby lifted its little butt into the air and back down! It was honestly amazing. It looks like a baby now, not a frog.

Here are some photos (which I will also add to the "baby updates page"):

That's a hand with fingers above the head, I'm fairly certain. FINGERS!
Baby lifting its butt into the air:

Bottom of baby's foot:
10w3d foot
I know many of you women are thinking "I told you so!"

And you should be! But I was desperate for some peace of mind, and was hoping the doppler would give it to me.

But now the doppler will remain on the shelf until I hit 12 weeks. From what I've read online, a doppler should have no problems at all detecting a heartbeat at 12 weeks. So, I'll give it another go then. But I also have my NT scan at 12 weeks, so I will not be relying on the doppler alone for reassurance.

So there it is. My freakout this morning, and a happy resolution after all. Obviously I'm feeling indescribably more relaxed. I think this will get me through the next twelve days. Here's to hoping, anyway...


  1. Hi. As another infertile who has followed your blog for a while, losses do mess with your head. I completely understand your fears. And it doesn't ever seem to get easier. Every time my new doc appt would roll around, I was scared as hell at what they were gonna tell me. They learned to check the baby before even trying to check my blood pressure and stuff. Also just wanted to tell you, don't worry about freaking over the doppler thing. Doc found our heartbeat at 10 weeks but at first the doc and nurse were getting scared cause they couldn't find it. Turns out due to a tilted uterus, the baby was further back so it was harder to find. So glad you got your fears relieved today though....

  2. Those pictures are so amazing. So glad you got to see the baby and that you can breathe easy.

  3. I had trouble finding the heartbeat until 15wks, so it varies. I had my share of freakouts and showing up at the clinic hysterical too.

    I'm so glad everything is alright. That's wonderful :)

    Also, fwiw, my little guy's HB was always about 140bpm from the end of the first trimester until the end. So it really is perfectly normal. It varies depending on what they're doing, lower when resting, higher when active or startled... so sometimes it may be lower, and other times higher. Perfectly normal!

  4. I was just having a conversation today with someone else where she said she couldn't hear her trips heart beats till 10wks and it was ever so faint that it made her freak out. I'm glad your OB could fit you in to give you peace of mind and glad the little one is doing just fine.

  5. Ugh, I hate that you had such a horrible morning. And I wouldn't dare say I told you so, cause I know how terrifying and remarkably crappy it is.. I remembered also that they move around A LOT when they are that little to so when you do start using it again, you'll notice the heartbeat come and go even as you keep the wand in the same spot.

    I even gave myself a heart attack when I couldn't find it once at 37 weeks. It was awful...

    But hooray for the u/s and tons of cute pics!

  6. Yay! Good clinic! Seriously, any clinic/dr worth their salt that works in obstetrics needs to be understanding of early pregnancy after miscarriage and how sometimes you just NEED to hear the heartbeat. So glad everyone was understanding!

    I would honestly say keep that doppler in the drawer until 15 weeks! Even my midwife had trouble finding mine up until about 13 weeks and then I didn't test out my doppler until 15 weeks when I already had a midwife appt lined up for the next day JUST IN CASE I couldn't find the heartbeat. I couldn't handle the stress of the possibility of not finding the heartbeat so I didn't even try!

  7. I didn't even buy my doppler until 13w5d! Because I knew I would be tempted to use it before then! Sometimes I would struggle to find it but after a few days I learned her patterns of where she would be. And don't rely too much on the accuracy of the screen because sometimes its right and sometimes its not. They are inexpensive for a reason :) Glad you saw your little one!

  8. YAY! I am jealous of your u/s pictures, mine are definitely not as clear as yours! Congrats momma!!

  9. I think we all freak about trying to find heartbeats. I couldn't breath everytime I went to the doctors until they found the heartbeats. Then my doctor reassured me that when she was pregnant she checked multiple times per day because she also worried. We are all the same and with your loss it s so normal to worry. I didn't stop until I was holding my babies in my arms. So glad you got reassurance and those pictures are awesome.

  10. I tried the same doppler yesterday too! I'm 11w3d and couldn't find a damn thing last night. Tried again this morning and *think* I found both babies. Ugh. Pure stress!

    Anyhow, SO glad you went and got checked lady. Looks like baby is healthy as can be. Congrats and best wishes!!

  11. I 100% understand your fears and glad your clinic was so understanding!

  12. I had one of those at 14 weeks (when I still couldn't find the heartbeat on the doppler consistently - it happens!!!!) and was distraught and couldn't function. My doc slipped me in as well and it was so, so nice. Glad you have a wonderful team that cares about their patients!!!!

  13. Look at that foot! That is adorable. Sorry you had a scare but I am so glad you got to see those lovely images.

  14. Awwww, look at that little baby! So cute!
    I'm so glad your clinic understands and was able to get you in ASAP to help reassure you.
    I'm sorry you had a freak out though *HUGS* Just remember that our little home dopplers aren't exactly the most accurate at measuring the heart rate. I personally never paid attention to it and just used it to listen :)

  15. I just want to tell you that I have the same doppler and I am not sure if its because its a "home" doppler or what, but my 2 babies consistently show slower heartrates than in the dr office and I have come to the conclusion its the machine. For reference I am 20 weeks PG with twin girls. Doppler was showing 120-135. Ultrasound showed 155 and 154 bpm. So, NOW, i am wanting to hear the sounds of the heart and I am not paying attention to the BPM... something to consider!!

  16. Adorable pics of the baby! I can totally see why you would get upset--I'd think you were acting strange if you didn't, given all you've been through. Hope time passes quickly until the NT scan.

  17. Oh, you poor thing! I'm glad you went and got the u/s done. Anything that will bring peace of mind, you should do it. Hugs <3 Such a cute baby! It's amazing how much they start to look like a baby at this point :-D

  18. LOVE your clinic! Yes, the doppler is not always a good thing... Try to stay away from that infernal thing... :)

    So glad to hear your baby is doing so well - adorable!

  19. I love oddities! and Edgar makes me giggle too. So glad you were able to get the U/S done to keep you from freaking out more. Beautiful pics!

  20. That was so wonderful that you were able to go in last minute and see the baby. How reassuring!
    I have that same doppler and have had a hard time with it so far as well. I thought I found it a couple of times and then it would fade away. Then I would find my heartbeat (under 80bpm) and then some other strange reading at around 125. Baby is hard to find and I am 12 weeks today. I will keep trying, but I refuse to worry if I can't find the heartbeat. It's not reliable when you only pay $60 for a home doppler. I figure if I get to hear baby's HB than I will be lucky.

    I love your baby's pics! I love seeing the fingers and feet.

  21. I;m glad your clinic is AMAZING!!!!

    What a cute little baby!!!

  22. Wow, who knew it was straitjacket???

    I don't think anyone who has ever had a loss would think "I told you so". Sorry you had to go through such a stressful morning, but happy to see such wonderful pics of the baby!

  23. I was almost in tears with you reading that! SO glad they squeezed you in, that's so incredibly nice! And Baby feet shots are my absolute FAVORITE!!! So cute!!!!

    1. By the was that comment was from me, it logged into the wrong acct, sorry.

  24. If you have been diagnosed as having a blighted ovum pregnancy then you may wish to know more about it and if there was anything you could have done about it. Blighted ovum miscarriages are quite common but this does not mean that it is not a traumatic event to anyone who goes through one


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