26 week milestone

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Today we’re officially 26 weeks…me and the boys.  They could be born today and have a 80-90% chance of surviving.  This decreases my anxiety quite a bit, but, as I’ve read, we IVF Mom’s tend to worry more than other Moms every single step of the way.  We’ve been through enough heartbreak and tragedy that we do not take any of this journey for granted.  That being said, I’m having a lot of fun.

They have gone from little butterfly kickers to rabid weasels tied in a pillow case.  They are actually PAINFUL.  One likes to cuddle up into my ribs and decrease my lung capacity to half and the other thinks Bertha (my uterus) is his personal DoJo.  I have gone from a little paunchy to freaking humongous.  I no longer fit into my size 10 pants at one point, so I brought out the 12s.  I no longer fit into the 12s, so I bought size large maternity clothes from thrift shops.  I have now OUTGROWN MY #@^$% MATERNITY CLOTHES and have had to buy a new set in XL.  Apparently, my ass is pregnant too.  There’s a set of twins back there, presumably girls, just to keep things balanced.  And, speaking of “balanced”, there’s no such thing in pregnancy.  I am truly a T-rex, just flailing around, running into everything, knocking stuff off tables and shelves, then just staring at said items. “What falls to the floor, stays on the floor.”  My hubby told me to stand up straight for our last couple of belly pictures, so I had to look in the mirror to see what he was talking about.  I straightened my low back to a normal bend and promptly fell forward.

Sleeping is always an adventure.  I run a humidifier because the pregnancy congestion makes me mouth breath and snore otherwise.  I have a full bottle of Gaviscon in arm’s reach for the deluge of acid that likes to sit in my esophagus.  (There’s actually a bottle in every room at this point.)  Then, I have 5 pillows that need repositioning whenever I turn.  I tried one of those big pregnancy “U-shaped” pillows, but the shape and bulkiness is just not flexible enough for my needs.  Now, let’s talk about the turning in bed. I’ve started sleeping on what a nurse would call a “draw sheet” so that I can pull on it and help myself turn.  Otherwise, I’m just a turtle on its back.  Don’t want to have to wake up hubby to help.  He’ll get his turn at sleep deprivation when the boys come.

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But, with every hardship and every pain, I just smile and thank the boys for being there and being healthy.  How can I complain?

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Hurry! This sale won’t last for long!

Attention! My clinic is having a huge blow-out sale. Buy 2 get one free!

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That’s right! If you act fast, they will implant two of your hard-earned, perfect little embryos and you will end up with 3, count them, t-h-r-e-e gestations. They each come with their own gestation sac, yolk sac, fetal pole and heart rate between 100 and 115!

So, yeah. My special little fraternal twin boys turned into a very confusing set of triplets.

WTF?!

We took quite a bit of time contemplating this. The extra guy could be a naturally produced embryo. He could be a hitchhiker embryo that the embryologist accidentally loaded in the tube. He could be an identical twin. BUT, from what I’ve learned, any embryo that splits after day 6 would have a shared gestational sac and ours clearly have separate, individual sacs:

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This left us scratching our heads. First off, the only time we, er, um, could have produced a natural child was on the very date we learned I was pregnant. That would put an accidental baby at 14 days younger than the rest and currently, A and B are 6 weeks and C is 5w4d. So, that is out.

Secondly, when they transferred my two embryos, I SAW TWO on the US screen. I didn’t expect that, but there they were! So, the hitchhiker theory is out.

DH and I went to separate computers for a while, trying to suss out the mystery of the extra embryo. It’s then that it hit him. We’ve been thinking inside the box all this time. We should have been thinking…inside the egg shell. When an embryo splits before it hatches out of the zona pellucid, how could it possibly create two separate embryos, each with their own shells? Wouldn’t it just continue to grow as two separate entities until it hatched? Take a look at our hatched embryo on the bottom:

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I never really paid attention to the funny little line on the bottom, or the cleaving at the top. But, when you combine the two, it really does look like two separate embryos just squished together. Alternately, the top embryo, hatching in this picture, could have been mechanically cleaved during the trauma of transfer. Who knows? At least now I know why all I want to do is sleep all day.  It’s those three little trouble makers.

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TWINS!

It’s twins, Beatch!

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(…and a shadow of something that could either be nothing or a triplet, cheers!)

Addendum:

…and, just did some research.  In order for it to be a diamniotic/dichorionic twin, it would have had to have split at day 2-3 and they were 6 day blasts.  So, there you go.  Still don’t know what that was hanging out in the back, but we’ll know more next week.  Maybe it’s an alien.  Maybe my kids have stalkers already.  Maybe it’s a skittle.  Personally, I prefer M&Ms.

Vastus lateralis muscle

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I got tired of being impaled in the same two muscles every day.  “Choose a different spot!” I says to myself.  I’ll tell you right now that myself is really stoopid.

I decided to give my progesterone in the thigh…the vastus lateralis muscle.  Now I can’t climb stairs, stoop, or…pretty much anything.

Will someone please remind me not to listen to myself any more?

The Final Countdown

Today is the day.  I’ve tolerated the deluge of white, chalky discharge.  I’ve learned to trust my spouse with a 1 1/2″ dagger pointed at my flesh, filled with honey.

Any number of things could go wrong. It seems so remote that it all will work perfectly.  In times like this, I understand the lure of a belief in a micromanaging, omnipotent being.  I feel so impotent.