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Archive for June, 2009

Graduation Day

Following yesterday’s ultrasound, we met briefly with Dr. Goodman, L’s reproductive endocrinologist at the Reproductive Medicine Group. She seemed genuinely thrilled about our success… complete with an ear-to-ear grin and hugs for us both! Up to this point, she’d been mostly “down to business” (which I appreciated), but I have to say that L and I have been very favorably impressed by the RMG throughout. They’ve been both technically competent (obviously) but also demonstrably caring.

In short, we’d highly recommend the Reproductive Medicine Group.

Now returning to regularly scheduled programming…

Yesterday was also graduation day for us. This was (thankfully / mercifully / hopefully) our last trip to the RE office. We’re now just a “normal couple” expecting their first kid. So, L will be headed back to her regular OB/GYN practice (after confirmation w/ Dr. G that it was “recommended” by her).

L’s first appointment at the OB’s office is next Wednesday. I think I’m planning to attend this appointment too. My schedule should allow for it, as I have a short business trip (leaving tomorrow, returning on Tuesday) to a conference.

Here’s a gift for the lovely parting contestants.

WTEWYE -- The Book

As a graduation gift from the RMG, we were given a copy of “What to Expect When You’re Expecting.” I’d been tempted to order this on Amazon, but then I opted not to because I’d read a lot of reviews that said (paraphrasing) “this book will scare the shit out of you.”

Not exactly something I thought we’d need. :-)

That said, having now read a lot of it, I think it’s only scary to the uber-fertiles, who are generally (as we all know) completely and utterly ignorant about matters of conception and pregnancy compared to their IF counterparts. I was surprised by both how much I already knew (good Paul!) and how much we’d already been through (good news!).

Conception: Ha! (ROFL) Check. (After writing a large one.)

Dietary changes / restrictions: check.

Activity restrictions: check.

Symptoms: check, check, check.

First month: check.

Second month: check. (Well, nearly over…)

Knowing that shit can go wrong: check. (All too familiar).

So, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” isn’t too scary at all (and an easy read).

No more PIO shots! Ohhh… maybe not!

Finally, we learned yesterday that L could stop the IM PIO shots, if she wished, and move on to Crinone (a Vaginal gel), but when we called the pharmacy we got a crazy price for the product ($405 for a 12 day supply, which we’d probably need to order twice).

Libby’s attitude: “Fuck that! I’ll stick with the shots.”

So, it seems that we’ll continue the PIO shots until: 1) we find a lower price for Crinone, 2) we get Crinone covered by my medical insurance (possible as this is for pregnancy, not infertility), 3) our doctor switches the prescription to a lower cost alternative, or 4) we simply make it through the end of week nine (when all progesterone support ends).

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First Ultrasound

Here’s the picture!

Our Baby!

The “B” stands for, “baby.” Singular.

How cute is he / she? :-)

Everything remains on track. We saw (and heard) the heartbeat: 153 beats per minute. The growth rate seems good. All in all a very healthy pregnancy.

No twins.

After much speculation, given L’s strong beta scores, it turns out twins were not in the cards for us. As both “only children,” we always thought of ourselves as the likely parents of one child… maybe two at the most. So, this probably means that we’ll only have one kid.

Am I disappointed? Not really. Well, maybe a little. In truth, I’m probably 10 times more relieved than disappointed.

I’m confident that we can handle a singleton. Twins seemed far more daunting.

My rationale (in football metaphor form as this is “Adventures in Fatherland” after all): when I’m not traveling on business, we’ll be able to keep the kiddo under mostly double coverage. And, when I’m away, L can play man-to-man. In contrast, twins would have meant that we’d be playing man-to-man in the best of times, and L would likely have to play zone defense when I’m off the field.

Clearly, this is flawless logic. :-)

We’re just grateful.

In the end, we’re just thrilled to have a nicely rising bun in L’s oven.

Our dreams are becoming a reality. I can’t ask for more than that…

I’ll post more tomorrow about our: RE’s reaction/congratulations, first pregnancy book, “graduation” from the ART clinic, and next steps.

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The New Math of “Due Date” Calculation

Today, I decided I’d try to figure out L’s expected due date.

As I do with most attempts to understand the universe, I consulted Google.

Unfortunately, most “due date” calculators are based on the date of expectant mother’s last menstrual cycle. I had no earthly idea when that was given that 1) I don’t normally track such things, and 2) I found it even less useful in the midst of an IVF cycle.

Not to be deterred, I next searched for due date calculators for IVF cycles.

Bingo! I typed in “May 19, 2009” (retrieval / conception date).

Up popped the answer: “Congratulations, you’re 7 weeks, and 1 days pregnant. Your due date is February 8, 2010.”

What the fuck?

Ok, I’ll admit that despite having a Ph.D. in Information Systems, I’m not the best programmer in the world. I’m passable… but that’s not my strength (I’m more of a strategy / ideation guy). That said, I know darn well how to write a JavaScript applet to calculate the difference between two dates.

Man, this application must be totally fucked! It thinks L is 7 weeks pregnant, when clearly she’s only 5 weeks pregnant (May 19 to June 24… you do the math).

Time to try another calculator. Same result: “Congratulations, you’re 7 weeks, and 1 days pregnant. Your due date is February 8, 2010.”

Another one? You must be kidding.

Is everyone stupid? No. It turns out that only I’m stupid.

You see, due dates are calculated from the date of last menstruation. So by the date of conception, everyone is approximately two weeks pregnant.

It’s like New Math. Or Voodoo Economics.

Makes perfect sense right? Ummm… no. Not to me. But, I’ll roll with it.

Good grief, we really do need to buy a book! I’m an ignorant git!

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Weekend Getaway Recap

The Bahamas trip was nice: relaxing and uneventful.

The morning drive down to Miami was pleasant.

Port of Miami

We enjoyed lunch aboard after embarking, explored the ship (very similar to the NCL Sun from last April), and then promptly took a nap. We awoke for the muster drill (least favorite part of cruising), had “drinks” at the Atrium Bar while sailing out of Miami (note: L’s never really been a consumer of adult beverages, so the prohibition on alcohol during pregnancy is a non-event for her), went back to the cabin for the PIO shot, and then ate dinner at Il Adagio (the ship’s Italian eatery). Later in the evening, we went to the “Welcome Aboard” show, during which I became part of the act after being brought on stage by the ship’s comedian.

NCL Sky's Atrium

Saturday morning we arrived in Nassau. We awoke and enjoyed an early al fresco breakfast at the Lido deck buffet, known as The Great Outdoors. We explored downtown Nassau in the morning hours and returned to the ship in time for lunch. This was followed by a repeat of day #1: reading, nap, drinks, dinner (this time at Cagney’s, the ship’s steakhouse at sea). We skipped the evening entertainment.


Sunday was at NCL’s private island, Great Stirrup Cay (how apropos, no?). We’d just been on the island last October. So, we opted to avoid the crowds and enjoy having the ship to ourselves. Once again, the day pretty much consisted of a string of meals, followed by periods of reading, talking, and relaxation.

Great Stirrup Cay

We returned to Miami early Monday morning and drove home.

We’re normally overseas for at least part of June. And this trip certainly doesn’t compare to last June’s 23-day European odyssey (not that we thought it would!).

But, all in all, it was a fun mini-holiday.

Best of all, it was uneventful, which I greatly appreciated as I had some mild anxiety about “things going wrong” with the pregnancy while at sea. This gives me confidence about our planned trip to London in August. Of course, we’ll have to see what the next few weeks bring.

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Weekend Getaway

Congratulations, you’re pregnant. What are you going to do now?

Go to the Bahamas!


This weekend we’re headed down to Miami for a short cruise to the Bahamas aboard Norwegian Cruise Line’s Sky. It was a “last minute” thing, given the low rates (about $180/pp for 3 days). One of the advantages of living in Florida: easy access to cheap, last minute deals in the cruising capitol of the world.

We had actually planned on going to Japan this June, if the IVF cycle hadn’t worked out. My thought was that it might be good to get away: out of sight, out of mind.

Of course, we did have success.

So, I (happily) bagged that trip.

That wasn’t a big deal. I just cancelled the award tickets and hotel reservations and put a couple hundred thousand frequent flier miles / hotel points back into my account. Note: this is one of the few—but valuable perks—of traveling often and widely on business.

Travel Geeks

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before, but we’re avid travelers. How avid? Well, for example, we’ve been to Europe on vacation about 15 times in our nearly 12 years of marriage. We have a goal to visit together all 7 continents, at least 100 countries, and all 50 states in our lifetime. (Note: it doesn’t count if only one of us goes or we’ve both been separately)

Travel—whether the good, bad, or indifferent—has brought us tremendous joy. Indeed, sometimes the misadventures (like the “apartment from hell” we rented in Venice, Italy) have made the best memories.

We’ve also always dreamed of taking our kid / kids to all 7 continents before they finish high school. Admittedly, we’re travel geeks… but really, how cool would that be?

It’s funny: the dreams parents (or want to be parents) have for their offspring.

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