waiting for a miracle

19 – 20 weeks

19 weeks:

Wow! We have made it this far! People keep saying things like, “you must be so excited!” “are you enjoying the pregnancy?” “I bet you are relieved and relaxing now?” “You’ll be right, you’ve come this far, nothing can go wrong now.”

And sure, I have moments of excitement, and don’t get me wrong, I am loving being pregnant. I love each day and each new thing, the good, the bad and the painful. I thank God for everything (literally everything). However, I can’t really allow myself to feel excitement yet. Not the true excitement feeling. Why? Well I am not so innocent about pregnancy as I was say 7 -8 years ago when I truly was excited about being pregnant for the first time, before we had ever felt the loss of losing a baby, the future you had planned with them. Six miscarriages later, and the excitement has been stolen. What I feel is mostly fear of losing this baby. Each day I thank God that we have survived another day, that our baby is still alive. So what I truly feel is great fear, but great thankfulness. Am I enjoying the pregnancy, you bet ya! But that fear is always, always there, lurking and waiting to pounce. The checking the toilet paper/undies, that hasn’t changed and I doubt it will any time soon! Those who have been through a loss, especially multiple losses would probably understand this feeling. I guess many pregnant women feel fear about what will happen after their child is in this world. I am excited to be at that moment because it will be such a sense of relief for us that finally our miracle will be here. We’ve had years and years to discuss parenting styles and many issues that couples may not get a chance to discuss until their child is here – so for us that side of things isn’t a huge fear or worry. Sure things will come up along the way, but we know our core values are the same.

 

This week marks a new chapter again with medications. I am now off progesterone (and still scared about that!) and down to 10mg of prednisone. Nice to be easing off… just praying that my body now takes over and does what it needs to do.

 

So the last week our boy has been super active. Scott and I have really enjoyed feeling his movements. We like to call them high fives, because our boy isn’t a kicker or a puncher. 🙂 He is a peacemaker, not a war maker. 🙂

As you all know (or you will now) that I am a dog trainer. One way to train is through targeting (google “dog training targeting” if you want to see how cool this is). Many theorists that have greatly influenced the educational field (think Pavlov, Skinner, Piaget and many others) have based some of their observational studies and experiments on animals and then applied it to human behaviour – mainly how children learn. So that gives you a background as to why I tried what I am about to tell you. 🙂

I was lying in bed one night this week, feeling our boy moving around in my belly. I decided to try targeting with him, thinking that he’s probably too small to be interactive just yet. I felt a push on one part of my tummy, so I moved two fingers to about two centimetres away from the last movement and I gently pushed down on my tummy and released. I waited and a few seconds later I felt a high five from our boy. So I moved my fingers about two centimetres away and pushed down gently and then released. And again I got a high five. This continued for a few minutes. How awesome is that?! At 19 weeks, our boy is able to interact with me and essentially is able to participate in targeting? If I didn’t have my training background I would never have even had the idea to try this – and how awesome hey?! That at 19 weeks he is communicating with me and me with him, yet medically he is still not recognised as a baby. Now that is crazy! He will only officially be recognised as a baby between 22-24 weeks. I think that is crazy.

We had our 19 week ultrasound this week with our favourite sonographer. It took over an hour and was pretty incredible to see how much he had grown and to see that he is on track for this stage in the pregnancy and he is even measuring over a week ahead for some things. That sure is a relief! The place where we decided to go was back to our IVF clinic – they also do ultrasounds outside of IVF. We could have gone elsewhere but we decided that if we can, we will go there for all of the ultrasounds. They take such great care and really know what they are doing, plus they have seen our little one grow from a tiny follicle into what he is now, so it means something to them too – we aren’t just another scan. They are so thorough and take the time to get all of the photos and measurements accurate. This same scan which took 1 hour, some places do in about 8 minutes – because some places rush. And this 19 week one is super important – they measure literally everything to do with the baby. It was so cool to see the spine structure and the hands and feet and so many other parts of our boy and my body. Great to know that all seems to be on track. Praise God! So many answered prayers.

He is raising his hands here.

He even gave us a high five! What a cute little hand beside his head!

Here is a photo of his head – if you look closely you can see the cutie.

Side profile.

This week I have also gotten the flu or a very bad case of the cold. Thank you for sharing people! Haha… Scott managed to get me in to see a doctor on Saturday morning. He put me on more antibiotics because it seems I have another infection (probably due to my low immunity). I hope that they kill off the infection and don’t harm our little man. Did you know that in pregnancy, a woman can’t take much to relieve symptoms, even eucalyptus drops are not safe (these are a natural throat ‘lolly’ that you can suck on instead of taking medications). Also, the flu can cross the placenta which can greatly endanger a baby’s life? Many stillbirths can be caused by the flu. So if you are sick, please stay away from pregnant ladies, and also please spare a thought for the many people who are immune compromised – they (I also fall into this category before pregnancy but even more so now with the immune suppression that I am on) probably won’t be able to fight off viruses and infections like a strong person can. What could leave you in bed for maybe one day could send us to bed for days or even weeks, sometimes months.

I just love these inspirational quotes.

This weekend, which is a long weekend here in Australia, has seen me visit the doctors and spend the time in bed. At least I can be in bed! I’m very thankful for the extra time to recover in bed so that I can rest. I’ve found the vicks vaporiser has worked wonders to help me breathe at night. There’s a good tip for anyone with a stuffy nose!

The pain in my leg from a week or two ago has only increased, too. Again, not complaining. One of the wonderful things about pregnancy – things that you don’t think are connected to being pregnant actually are! I walk around, well no, I hobble around like an elderly lady already. And Scott still loves me. 🙂 A glimpse into the future perhaps. 🙂

 

So we also had flooding at our house during the insane rain dump over the weekend. We made the most of it by taking our dogs out onto the property for a walk/run in the rain… I hobbled around but the others had some exercise. 🙂

Happy dog!

Happy Jen and Scott!

Making the most of the puddles – endless drinking and splashing water for the dogs.

So peaceful!


Here’s a video from our ultrasound.

20 weeks:

Scott was a way for work this week so Mum came to give me my nightly injections. She did a great job! I still can’t inject myself – that needle phobia hasn’t gone away. Thanks Mum for doing the needles for me each night!

The nose bleeds have started up again. They had stopped for a little while (a few days) there but they have started up again. Not really an issue, just means that I have to duck to the bathroom and control my nose bleeds! Pregnancy (and clexane) do some amazing things to the body. You should see (or rather even feel) my bruises now! Some very lumpy and colourful bruises. Pretty cool 🙂 I wear them with pride for our son. 🙂

Our little boy is becoming so active in there and my belly is growing bigger and bigger! I still find pregnancy so fascinating!

I’ve read about many others also on a similar journey to us. Some have been on the journey for a couple of months and some for years. If you fall into this category, know that everything happens in the right time. It may not be what we think is the right time, but we don’t know the future, we just have to stay positive.

 

I’ve been very still in bed!

For those of you in a ‘no’ time right now, be still and know that there is a better ‘yes’ down the road. Our journey is living proof of this.

Sometimes it is hard to understand all of the ‘why’ questions that we have, but maybe it is better not to know the answers until later on down the road.

Something else that is totally weird is that my teeth are super sensitive since being pregnant. Apparently it is due to all of the extra blood and blood flow around the body. Sometimes the pain is excruciating but I also just think it is totally incredible how the body does whatever it needs to so that a baby can grow and grow and grow. It’s fascinating!

137 days to go… seems like forever but also so soon! Bring on 26 weeks when there is more that can be done to save a baby. Really hanging out for that time!

After our miscarriage last year, when we were starting to think again about another round of IVF, we were handed a yellow envelope from a friend. Inside was a letter and a sum of money that left us gobsmacked and in tears at their generosity and thoughtfulness – nothing could change our history, but they were wanting to help us create a future. I haven’t spoken about it because I didn’t want people to think that they need to give us money! 🙂 Or anything really! We know that God provides for our daily bread so we don’t want to ever ask or need stuff from others. Anyway, this gift was just so incredibly kind, thoughtful and generous, and totally unexpected! We really didn’t expect it and were so shocked that someone would do this for us. That money went towards some medications and our first obstetrician appointment prior to the IVF round which has produced this little boy. We will never forget their generosity at a time when we were struggling to think where to next and how to afford the next chapter. The ongoing medical interventions to make this pregnancy get as far as what it is have been huge. Very huge! And financially crippling at times. But we are so thankful for these interventions. And so incredibly thankful to the generosity of others. The financial gift that helped get us started, the baby capsule from a generous couple from freecycle, the clothing and baby things handed down to me from my sisters and my parents, some other baby things from friends. Each and every thing is so much appreciated and totally unexpected, we never thought that anyone would just give away their things so that we can use them. Most of all, we love that they are pre-loved things that can continue to be used in a family ready to give love to our new baby one day. 🙂 So to everyone who has been behind the scenes in this, thank you all! There really is some great kindness and generosity in this world!

Thanks again so much for your prayers and support! We can never ever say thank you enough! Each day God is hearing a thousand prayers from around the globe (many many many from us here lol!). He never tires of hearing us come to him.

He would now be about 300 grams and about 25cm long.

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