This one will be long - its the last few weeks of entrys that I've not published. I typed these as the days went by, to publish them all in one giant reveal.
3 weeks 6 days
So, after a couple weeks of wondering, waiting, taking a million and one tests and worrying if something is wrong with me - its official. We're hopefully having our rainbow baby.
"What is a Rainbow Baby?
A baby born after the loss of an older child. The beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of the storm. When a rainbow appears, it doesn't mean the storm never happened or that the family is not still dealing with its aftermath. What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and clouds. Storm clouds may still hover but the rainbow provides a counterbalance of color, energy and hope."
This explains how we feel perfectly. The excitement and wonder of being pregnant again doesn't eliminate the greif and sadness we continue to feel for Gabriel. This doesn't make Gabriel's story disappear or vanish into thin air, we are still learning to live without him. Having this new baby will hopefully bring some light into our lives as we continue to greive over the loss of our precious son. His short life still lingers fresh in our memory, but hopefully having this new baby will bring a new sense of excitement and hope into our lives.
Please know that we are not simply "moving on" or "over" Gabriel's journey. Gabriel's journey is still very fresh in our hearts and minds. Being pregnant again may bring out some raw emotion. We will feel more fear, be more scared., and have vivid flashbacks and memories of our time with Gabriel. But, among all those feelings, we are excited to welcome a new bundle of joy into our lives and view this pregnancy as a whole new baby.
For a long time, we were too afraid to even think about being pregnant again. But Jan Glidewell said it perfectly: "You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the present." This is exactly how I feel except that I couldn't have written it so well.
We are going into this pregnacy with hopeful hearts. Our journey with Gabriel is far from over, but our journey with this new little one is just beginning. I've already created a song in my head that goes something like this:
"grow tiny kidneys, grow!" to no specific tune. I'm hoping and praying that this baby is a healthy one...
The best I can guess is that we should be due sometime around February 20th... But my system has been whacky so that is subject to change.
And for those who are wondering - yes the weddng is still on for August 17th 2013! Our baby should be around 6 months old at that time and we'll make it work.
4 weeks 1 day
Two days ago, we found out we are expecting again! We are beyond excited to be due somewhere around February 20th. I'm so nervous I could pee my pants (nerves, hormones?). Today I fear what will happen if in the next 2 weeks this baby doesn't develop kidneys... GROW KIDNEYS GROW GROW GROW!
This new baby will never know Gabriel like we have, this baby will only know him by stories and photos. I hope to have Gabriel's scrapbook done by the time this baby is born.
I haven't made an appointment yet. I need to go in to have betas drawn for my insurance, then I'll talk to Dr Landers about how she'd like to proceed from here.
For those of you who are wondering - the wedding plans remain the same. The only difference is that we'll have a second child involved in the wedding instead of just Evelyn!
4 weeks 6 days
We are BURSTING at the seams! We have chosen to tell a few people but we are trying to keep it mostly quiet for a little while. We're just nervous of something wrong happening.
We both agree that we don't really see the point in waiting to tell until 2nd trimester. Our thinking now goes like this: "We learned that it doesn't matter how long you wait to tell, just being out of 1st trimester does not guarantee anything. A loss can happen at anytime. So if we wait until we have talked to our doctor, got bloodwork done, and seen or heard the heartbeat then at that point we'll just come out with it."
Being pregnant again has helped a lot with my jealousy of other pregnant women. After Gabriel was born and passed, it seemed like everywhere we turned there was yet another pregnant woman or a newborn baby. It was heartbreaking and hard to not be jealous. For the most part we'd just control the jealousy and I'd just cry and be emotional to Derrick. For some reason, knowing I'm pregnant again has eased that feeling. I don't know why, seeing as how we don't know if this baby will have its body parts or not.... But its still helped - just a little bit.
The part thats hard still though, is watching how innocent their pregnancys seem to be. I realize that they have stories too and some may have had infertility issues or losses themselves. But they just appear to be so excited, to have no worry of loss or something happening. I feel like people will see it in my eyes and be able to read the fear on my face. I hope that the anxiety will subside and eventually we won't have such fear. I hope that we'll be able to just enjoy this pregnancy with the same type of innocense that others do.
So far with this pregnancy I've had a bit of cramping. I wonder if its happening more this time because just 6 months ago I was pregnant full term. I had some other aches and pains but otherwise have been feeling good. I can feel the fatigue kicking into overdrive - although that could be from a busy busy weekend too. At 4 weeks the baby is the size of an orange seed! Its crazy to me that in two weeks the baby has gone from microscopic (tip of a pin) to the size of an orange seed. This is my 3rd time and it still surprises me how everything happens!
5 weeks and 1 day
I told Dr Landers that I wasn't sure if I was 9 weeks or 5. It was one or the other. So she had betas drawn and Amber called the next day with 610 as the number - which is consistant with late 4 or early 5 weeks. I was a little nervous because this seems a little lower than I expected - but from what I'm reading its in the normal range. Truly, the number doesn't matter as much as the doubling, since I won't have another draw we'll just assume its normal.
She wants to schedule us for a dating ultrasound in about 2 weeks. When I do my ultrasound they will also try to do a kidney ultrasound on Evelyn just to make sure she doesn't have any abnormalities in there. They'll also want to do a viability ultrasound a few weeks later to make sure everything is ok. Then we'll start checking for kidneys around 12 weeks.
This week is a little nerve wracking because this is the week when kidneys start to develope. Grow kidneys grow grow grow.
I'm dying to spread the word - I really really want the prayers for this little one, but I want to wait to tell most people until we've seen a hearbeat. We've shared with some immediate family and a few close friends, but we are waiting to really come out with the news.
Everything seems to be going as normal for now. I still don't have much for symptoms except the cramping off and on, but even that seems to be subsiding.
6 weeks 5 days
Tomorrow I have our dating ultrasound. I've never been so nervous for an ultrasound before now, they used to be so innocent, so exciting - a chance to see our growing developing baby - now they are just terrifying, I'm so afraid they are going to find something wrong. I guess its just one thing at a time - for now we are just looking for a heartbeat, we'll deal with the kidneys in a few weeks.
Last week I had some pretty intense cramping that had me seriously worried, but after drinking a ton of water I seemed to be fine again. It comes and goes a bit and is worse than it was with any of my other pregnancies, but I suppose that is normal for a third baby.
Seeing others coming out with their pregnancies already is killing me! I want to tell so bad! I think we'll go ahead and spill the beans after our initial ultrasound tomorrow as long as everything looks ok. I need to finish telling the parents and immediate family first though. I'm just so excited!
6 weeks 6 days
Never ever ever expected this shock. I'm a mumbled mess at the moment! I can't even believe this!! Went for our ultrasound today. Everything was good, took awhile for the tech to say anything to me and I was getting concerned that something may be wrong. But nope - TWINS!
She was crying, we were crying, this is insane! Never in a million years did I imagine it would happen to me, ever! They will be fraternal not identical, hoping both babies survive and grow stong and healthy.
I will write again, I'm just in such shock right now I need to put my thoughts together!
Ok, so now that I'm not freaking out and in shock so much anymore, I can talk about this without being a mess!
We went in this morning and first they checked Evelyn, they wanted to do an ultrasound just to make sure she has 2 healthy functioning kidneys - which she does.
Then it was my turn. It seemed to take forever for the tech to say anything to me (we are familiar with her and really like her). I started asking "what do you see???" She just kept telling me she hadn't looked and she was just doing measurements and stuff on my ovaries. After like 20 minutes Finally she said "Ok so here's what I see" And turned the screen so I could see this:
I took a photo on my phone while she said "Baby is measuring 6 weeks 4 days with a heartbeat of 103 - everything looks good." This is a few days behind what I thought but no big deal. After photo taking she said "I wanted to show you this:"
She said she had to double and triple check to make sure before telling us (the whole time we were talking about Gabriel and loss and everything related). She knows our story. She was teary eyed, and excited for us.
They have two separate sacs, no idea if they are fraternal or identical at this point. My hunch is fraternal, but since there are no twins in our families its hard to say!
On the way out the door Derrick says to me: "So, one baby bjorn on the front and one on the back? Or how is this going to work?" And we had a good, nervous laugh.