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This blog was started in 2008 when we did IVF for the first time to build our family after 5 1/2 years of infertility. We now have 7 and 2 year old boys (thanks to modern medicine) and we are enjoying our blessed life as parents ♥ In the summer of 2016 we took another huge step and moved across the country from Oklahoma to New York! This blog is about life and everything in between



Thursday, April 30, 2009

Baby Shower Pictures

Ok loyal followers--I have finally uploaded my selection of baby shower pictures into a nice, easy to view slideshow. Feel free to enjoy and comment!




PS. You will also noticed I finally posted a 32 week belly picture :)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

8 Weeks Left, and NIAW

32 weeks is here, and I am still in awe of how fast everything has gone by. Here are the updates:

By now, your baby weighs 3.75 pounds (pick up a large jicama) and is about 16.7 inches long, taking up a lot of space in your uterus. You're gaining about a pound a week and roughly half of that goes right to your baby. In fact, he'll gain a third to half of his birth weight during the next 7 weeks as he fattens up for survival outside the womb. He now has toenails, fingernails, and real hair (or at least respectable peach fuzz). Her skin is becoming soft and smooth as she plumps up in preparation for birth.

I had my first baby shower last Saturday, and it went great! The snacks and cake were delicious, the presents were bountiful, and all of my favorite people were there. Bradley got all kinds of wonderful things that I can't wait to use with him. I did take pictures but I will have to put them up later on. Check back!
As for NIAW...those who have been TTC for awhile are familiar with this special time of year. It is National Infertility Week, and for this year it is this week. My blog-friend Sarah has been posting her story this week so I thought I would follow suit and tell you all a bit about my story in case you didn't know it.

* * * * *
Nick and I met in about 1998 and were married in the beginning of 2003. I was pretty young at the time but I knew what I wanted and I wanted a family. I had always been very regular, and had never been on the "pill" so we just used contraceptives for the first few months. After that we stopped and just kind of let nature take its course. Well after several months of nothing I started doing some research on the subject...this was the beginning of the downward spiral.

First I took basal temps. For months--like 2 years worth altogether. I tried getting healthier, taking vitamins, he stopped wearing briefs... After I started college, my OB had us do some basic testing. All of mine came back normal, his were a little on the low side but nothing to worry about. We tried Clomid for 6 months with still no success. I had an HSG that was normal. We are up to the middle of 2006 now and have been TTC for about 3 years so far.

I read as much as I could on any little "symptom" I thought I had, and everything kept coming back normal. Finally after I became a nurse and got real insurance, I made an appointment with a highly accredited Reproductive Endocrinologist that was affiliated with my hospital. At my first appointment I broke down and cried from all of the disappointment we had been through already with still no clue as to what the problem was. Unfortunately we were not very well prepared for all of the out-of-pocket costs and we delayed further appointments. My job changed shortly after and TTC'd on our own until the summer 2008 when we made an appointment with a different RE. He was very understanding, very experienced, and got right down to business. I had more hormone levels done and different ultrasounds. We didn't want to repeat the SA just yet since it had looked OK in the past.

The first eye-opening test we had done was the postcoital test. Basically he didn't see any "swimmers" on the slide. So after that we did a sperm test for antibodies and also another SA. This was the answer we had been waiting for!! After over 5 years of trying we finally had our answer--no he didn't have antibodies but his count and motility were very low.

At first we were pretty upset that his first SA a few years back came back ok but evidently they didn't do as thorough testing as the infertility center so the problem was never identified. We tried not to dwell on it and went forward with our treatment. Our options now were IUI, IUI w/donor sperm, or IVF w/ICSI.

Throughout this ordeal we had always said we weren't going to blow money on IVF because adoption cost about the same and had a better success rate. The IUI w/donor sperm was out because hubby was very against the donor part. And a regular IUI would really have no more success rate than regular intercourse for us. So that left us with IVF or adoption.

We really had to weigh our costs here...most of you know how expensive IVF is. And there is no guarantee. Not to mention the physical stress of the hormonal stimulation you have to go through. But since this was our last possible option to have a biologically related child, we had to give it at least one try before we could really give up and accept adoption.

We applied for the infertility loan and got it, and told our doctor to schedule us for our IVF! We got a start date of late September and I ordered all the meds. Go to this posting to read the first of many blogs after my egg retrieval.
In short, out of two embryos, one implanted and has grown into the little boy that will be here in just a few short weeks!! Thanks for reading :)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Nursery Pictures

You are finally going to get a sneak peek of how the nursery is coming along! We finished painting it last week, and this week we painted our other 2 bedrooms and I put the curtains up in the nursery.


Now, let me tell you about these curtains...you recall the sewing machine I recently got? Well I decided to make my own curtains for our bedrooms, and the nursery curtains were first on the list. The walls are green so I picked a contrasting color for the curtains. I used red thread with a zigzag stitch for the hemming, then got the bright idea to embroider a safari animal in the outer corner of each curtain panel!! They turned out FABULOUS:


But the windows are not quite finished. I am registered for a coordinating valance that will tie it all together. My baby shower is Saturday so if I don't get them there then I will buy them in the near future and put them up. But for now you get the gist of it!

PS: The crib arrives next week!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Navel Oranges and 9 Weeks Left

31 weeks is here, and the countdown continues! All is going well so far, here are the updates:

This week, your baby measures over 16 inches long. He weighs about 3.3 pounds (try carrying four navel oranges) and is heading into a growth spurt. He can turn his head from side to side, and his arms, legs, and body are beginning to plump out as needed fat accumulates underneath his skin. He's probably moving a lot, too, so you may have trouble sleeping because your baby's kicks and somersaults keep you up. Take comfort: All this moving is a sign that your baby is active and healthy.
The nursery is officially painted! I also finished sewing and embroidering the curtains and they will be hung on Tuesday. You can expect pictures shortly thereafter. The crib should be ready for pickup next week.
My first babyshower is this Saturday, and I am getting very excited about it!! I can't wait to have a whole day to celebrate Bradley's pending arrival. I will also take pictures of that for you (and my scrapbook).

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Finally!

Well after much debate and one episode of being "out-of-stock", I finally purchased the crib for Bradley.


Of course this is without the drop down rail but you get the idea. It is a 4-in-1 and makes a very nice looking full-size bed. It should be ready to pick up in about 1 1/2 weeks.

Last night was our first childbirth class. No this is not Lamaze...they call it "Prepared Childbirth". It educates us on what the body goes through during labor/delivery, our options throughout everything, where things are in the hospital, etc. Everyone in the group seems very nice, and I even have a coworker in there with me! Out of about 10 couples, we are one of two that are having a boy. Nick, being the slightly antisocial creature that he is, was very nervous and out of place at first...but after they gave us some punch and cookies, he loosened up a bit! I think he'll do ok :)

My plan for today is to go to our future house and prepare the room for painting! Just picture a house from the 1960's that hasn't been updated/redecorated since then, and probably hasn't been dusted since Reagan was in office. So my job today is much dusting, vacuuming, and masking off trim. Tomorrow Nick and I will do the painting, and hopefully get two of the bedrooms knocked out. Next is curtains, then furniture...I can't wait!!

Monday, April 13, 2009

The Countdown Begins! --10 weeks left

30 weeks is here, and I still can not even believe I am pregnant!!! It has absolutely flown by and I'm sad to see the end of pregnancy coming near. But on the other hand, I can't wait to hold my little boy! Here are the updates:


Your baby's about 15.7 inches long now, and he weighs almost 3 pounds (like a head of cabbage). A pint and a half of amniotic fluid surrounds him, but that volume will decrease as he gets bigger and takes up more room in your uterus. His eyesight continues to develop, though it's not very keen; even after he's born, he'll keep his eyes closed for a good part of the day. When he does open them, he'll respond to changes in light but will have 20/400 vision — which means he can only make out objects a few inches from his face. (Normal adult vision is 20/20.)


Little Bradley is doing well--his bedroom will finally get painted this week! I hope to buy his crib within a couple of weeks. I was going to do white furniture, but I have changed to oak-colored just for ease. I recently bought a fancy new sewing/embroidery machine, and will be fashioning custom curtains and cushions (among other things) for the nursery soon.

My 7 1/2 month checkup was today and thank you Jesus I do NOT have gestational diabetes! My blood pressure is still fabulous, and current weight gain is at about 17-18lbs. No stretch marks either :) I think I'll do maternity pics in a few more weeks when I get a little bigger.

Lastly, we went ahead and listed our house on the MLS today. It has been for sale for about 4 weeks now but has not been on the MLS because we wanted to see how it would go. Unfortunately now if a realtor sells the house then we have to pay them 3% on top of our fee to our realtor. But on the upside, our house will get tons more exposure, and there is still a chance that a buyer will find it and buy directly through our people! We are praying it sells quickly.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

One of Those Nights...

Just posting an update on how my overtime shift at work was going...I am in charge tonight and was helping a nurse with her new patient. In a nutshell, the patient was VERY disoriented and became combative so three of us were in there trying to hold her down in the bed. Unfortunately I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and she caught me right in the belly with her right hook.

Being the ball of emotions that I am, I freaked out and sat down trying to think of what to do next. My good friend Lisa (who just got off maternity leave) called Labor and Delivery for me and they said to come over and get checked out. So she slapped me in a wheelchair and hauled me over there, then hung around until they said what they were going to do.

Basically they took my vital signs and did a non-stress test to watch the fetal heart rate and for contractions. The doctor said I needed to be monitored for 4 hours after the incident, so I had no choice but to stay there. And since I was in charge, I had to make a few phone calls to arrange for the admissions we were expecting.

As for the father-to-be....he was not very happy. He was ready to drive up here and take matters into his own hands! I assured him I was fine and would call him if anything changed. I stayed there till 2am and they said the heart rate looked great with lots of movement, but they noticed a few contractions toward the end. They said if they get worse/stronger over the weekend to come back in. I see my OB on Monday morning so she will check me out more if needed.

So far everything is going ok, I feel fine--just a little shook up. No more crazy patients for me!! And Bradley can't come yet anyways cause I still don't have a crib!! :)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Ultrasound, GTT, and Invitations

Yesterday was a big day for the growing Pierce family! In the morning I went to my doctor's lab and began the adventure of the 3 hour glucose tolerance test. I got my blood drawn 4 times all together, and was there from 9:30am till almost 1:30pm (no food or drink mind you). So I was VERY happy to leave. Let's hope I passed!!

The repeat 3D ultrasound was supposed to be at 1pm, but since I was held up at the lab, I had to reschedule it for 4:45pm. So thankfully I had time to go home and eat beforehand! Nick and I got there and they were all ready for me. At first, Bradley was in a semi-cooperative position to see part of his face...

^3D side of face and hand

^Front of mouth and nose giving a BIG yawn!

...but unfortunately, he quickly caught on to us and flipped over, replacing his limbs in front of his face. We tried again for almost 45 minutes, but we all concluded that he was not going to give us a prize shot. I'll just have to wait until he comes out!!

^3D of arm in front of face

Last but not least, my friend Sara finished hand crafting my baby shower invitations last night so here is a sneak peak. The shower is April 25, and we are all very excited!!



Monday, April 6, 2009

Butternut Baby

29 weeks is here, and only 77 days to go until Bradley is due!! I asked Nick the other day, "Is it bad that I want him here now so that I can hold him?" HA! He's not quite done cooking yet but he's getting close. Here are the weekly updates:


Your baby now weighs about 2 1/2 pounds (like a butternut squash) and is a tad over 15 inches long from head to heel. His muscles and lungs are continuing to mature, and his head is growing bigger to make room for his developing brain. To meet his increasing nutritional demands, you'll need plenty of protein, vitamins C, folic acid, and iron. And because his bones are soaking up lots of calcium, be sure to drink your milk (or find another good source of calcium, such as cheese, yogurt, or enriched orange juice). This trimester, about 250 milligrams of calcium are deposited in your baby's hardening skeleton each day.

Tomorrow is our repeat 3d ultrasound, so keep your fingers crossed that his appendages are not covering his cute little face! If all goes well, I will post the pics afterwards.

Otherwise things are going well for us. Nick is doing good in school--still looking for part time work which is harder than it sounds right now. I have been keeping busy with my job. I am still doing the 12 hour shifts 40-50 hours a week. Might as well keep it up as long as I can! I'm very thankful that the pregnancy has been so kind to me.

It really seems right now that literally everyone around me is pregnant! At work, there is a day nurse who is 2 weeks ahead of me, a night nurse who just found out she is expecting, and my friend Tammi, our night tech, who is two months behind me. Then there is like 2 respiratory therapists who are pregnant, and the xray girl just told me she's pregnant....good Lord. I tell you if my IVF hadn't worked I would be going insane right about now!

As for me, I am up about 16lbs now, and tomorrow morning I am going to try and get in to my lab to do the stupid 3 hour glucose tolerance test. Ugh. Not my idea of a fun morning. And next week is when we start the childbirth classes! My baby shower is in about 3 weeks, and the second my friend Sara gets the invitations done we are mailing them out. My work friends are throwing a shower for me the beginning of May. That's it for now, check back tomorrow to see how the US went!
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