Friday, March 25, 2016

For I am involved in mankind

I’ve let more time pass than I intended.  I know the people who still read this understand.  So, to catch up!  I am now 19 weeks pregnant!

January was rough.  Max got a cold, which turned into an ear infection, which turned into a ruptured ear drum.  The literal next day, a pipe burst a few floors up and caused a massive flood in Max’s room.  Max had to sleep on a pack n play in our room.  That night he woke up at 4am, coughing…. Except he wasn’t coughing, he was puking.  Yep, gastroenteritis on top of the ear infection/rupture.  After he got over that, Rajeev caught it, and so did our nanny.  Meanwhile, I caught the cold, but couldn’t take anything for it because pregnancy.  I got so sick, I was convinced I had strep throat, but after a waste-of-time visit to an urgent care, I learned it was just a virus.  Get plenty of rest!  Yeah, right.  Why do they even bother saying this to the mom of a sick toddler?  My in-laws insisted on coming to “help” one day, but Max was so clingy with me that there wasn’t much for them to do… other than catch Rajeev’s gastroenteritis, which is just what they did.  It was horrendous.

Thankfully, February got easier.  First off, we got the results of our Mat.erniT21 test – no anomalies, and we’re having another boy.  I sort of assumed from day one that we would have another boy, so this was not a big surprise, and I was so happy and relieved that he appears to be healthy.  But I’m not gonna lie – I did have 30 minutes or so of mourning the loss of a mother/daughter relationship.  My sister asked me if I was sad about the outcome and I said, “No, I’m not sad at all that I’m having another boy.”  This doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t have been nice to have a girl, but I’m honestly okay. 

 We went for a nuchal translucency as well and the little cookie was moving around like a little firecracker.  The tech actually struggled to get the measure of the nuchal fold because the kid just didn’t feel like cooperating. 

 I talked with my OB about whether I should do an initial anatomy scan this time.  Last time, that's the scan where the doctor thought maybe Max had club feet and made up some statistic about how there was a 35% chance that he had it and we freaked out for a month.  Dr. R understood my concerns and said the main reason to get a scan now is that they can almost always catch major brain or heart defects at 16-18 weeks, but that it is totally fine to wait till the full anatomy scan at 20-22 weeks because we would still have time to deal with any major issues. 
All that being said, Jeeves and I agreed we would rather know sooner than later.  So I went for the initial anatomy scan and everything went perfect.  Perfect, perfect - could not have gone better.  Our tech struggled a tiny bit with getting a shot of his spine, but ultimately did manage.  In another couple of weeks I'll go back for the full scan and hopefully everything will continue to look good.
Pregnancy has been pretty boring.  I had severe fatigue during the first trimester, in some ways worse than the first time because now I’ve got Max to chase after.  But I had no food aversions, no bloating, nausea, etc.  And now that I’m in the second trimester, the fatigue is gone.  My belly finally popped out and I have to wear maternity clothes or bigger shirts and elastic waist stuff.  And now I can't sleep on my tummy or back, so just yesterday I pulled out the old body pillow.  It's taking some getting used to.  But it sure is cool to feel a baby moving around in there again. 

Anyway, I’ve been worrying lately about handling two small children and how hard things are going to be.  I’m definitely anxious.  And although I feel insanely lucky that we got pregnant with the first IUI this time, part of me wondered if we could have waited.  That thought was replaced after I finally received my medical records from our RE.  My AMH this go around was a 1.89, which given my age (almost 38) is actually pretty good.  And because I knew my AMH, I never bothered asking what my day 4 bloods were - figured it didn't matter.  When I was flipping through my records, I saw that my FSH was something like an 11.5.  That's a good deal higher than it was 3 years ago when I was doing this.  And I realize that one FSH level doesn't necessarily mean anything, that  combined with my declining antral follicle count definitely made me realize that we made the right decision to go for a second child when we did instead of waiting another year or more.  I'm not young in terms of childbearing and my body was slowing down.  We got very lucky.
That's what life has been like here.  No complaints.  I've been feeling a little depressed about the level of political discourse across the board.  Yesterday John McCain wrote an op-ed piece in the NY Times that made tear up at work.  It's his tribute to Delmer Berg, who was the last living member of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade (Americans who fought against the fascists in the Spanish Civil War).  Berg was a Communist.  Obviously John McCain is not.  But McCain clearly has a lot of respect for what Berg did, and notes that after he returned from the war, he went on to start a business and spent his free time working for causes he believed in.  It's not very long, and worth a read.  To that end, I have been musing on the quotes that McCain included from Hemingway and John Donne, so I'm including the latter here, the themes of which I am trying to carry in my heart to teach my own kids, even when it's so different from what I'm hearing everywhere else.
No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thine own
Or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.