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Archive for the Tag 'men and infertility'

Paul Exhales…

Well, I’m back from my brief trip to Washington, D.C. This month is going to be a whirlwind of (business) travel, followed by our planned annual (vacation) journey to London in early August. I actually have a lot to bring you up to speed on: telling the fam about the pregnancy status (and IVF history); first “normal” OB/GYN appointment; update on the PIO shots, etc.

However, I don’t have the time or energy for all of that tonight. I just need to relax… and unwind.


That’s what I need! To take a breather, which we all need from time to time.

This seems especially apropos, as my first column at Exhale Magazine came out today! Yup. That’s right. I’m now one of the regular writers for this smart online magazine for people who have either lost babies or struggle to make them in the first place.

So, I’ll have more to say tomorrow. But, in the meantime, why not go Exhale with me tonight?

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One Down, Eight To Go

After the whirlwind IVF cycle and anticipation of awaiting the outcome, life seems to have settled back into a steady (and rather pedestrian) rhythm.

Thus far, L’s pregnancy has been very uneventful. Some of the earlier symptoms, like nausea and cramping, have subsided more-or-less completely. The fatigue and swollen/sore breasts continue. Note: I’ll refrain from any editorial comments on the “swollen” part as that seems inappropriate to speak of someone’s mother as such. Note #2: A female friend / colleague of L’s did comment on her suddenly more ample cleavage yesterday: she wondered if L had a “boob job.” Note #3: Really, this isn’t a bad side effect. Enough said. Sorry. I’ll say no more.

The PIO shots continue as a nightly but now rather blasé ritual.

What a difference a month makes.

That’s right: we’ve been pregnant one month!

We still haven’t really told anyone in “the real world” about our success yet.

Of course, we hadn’t really told anyone about our struggles with infertility either. We made the decision to wait for a few reasons. We’re certainly not embarrassed by infertility. It’s just that we’re fairly private people (by nature, despite evidence of this blog to the contrary) who lead fairly public lives (by profession). As such, we didn’t want to have to make a lot of small talk about the status of fertility treatment.

On a more personal level, we didn’t want to involve our families, because we realized a couple of things. First, it would simply add stress to their lives (which in turn would add stress to our lives). Second, there’s nothing they’d be able to do to help resolve the situation. So, in the end, we opted to spare everyone the grief.

We intend to execute the “public relations campaign” once we get past the ultrasound, starting with our families and closest friends.

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Beta #3 Results: 4,415

Today was the third and final beta. Another good score: 4,415. Everything remains on track.

We have our first ultrasound scheduled for Friday, July 26.

At that time, we’ll hopefully see a fetal heartbeat and learn that everything is still going well.


Or, maybe we’ll see two fetal heartbeats. It certainly remains a possibility.

Of course, it’s impossible to say conclusively from these beta results. I saw this post at A Few Good Sperm today: she had a somewhat similar beta #3 score and discovered they were expecting twins today. (Many congratulations!). Likewise, Julia (of “Another Julia” fame) believes that we have two “popping fresh rolls” in the oven. (And, for the record, I believe everything Julia tells me, as she’s batting 1000% for us. Hint: lottery numbers next, please.)

Time will tell. Singleton or twins, we’ll be thrilled either way.

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Ignorance is bliss?

Tomorrow is beta #3. And, assuming all goes well (as one would expect), we’ll then have the first ultrasound approximately two weeks later.

The pregnancy train seems to be moving down the track.

Yet somehow I remain apprehensive. Can this be right? Like magic, it just worked? I just can’t seem to get my mind around it.

I think we’re still in shock. Here’s proof: we own zero books on pregnancy.

Knowledge is good.


Yet, we’re utterly ignorant. I can’t even make myself hit the “checkout” on Amazon.com.

This is very odd behavior… especially for us. We both love books. Indeed, I’m positively addicted: a bibliophile to the core.

I just did a quick survey: we have approximately 2,500 books in our home library on a variety of topics. We own the complete works of [insert almost any major author here]. We have “how-to” books on activities we’ve never engaged in (faux finishing!), as well as travel guidebooks on places we’ve never visited nor really ever planned to visit (example: Papua New Guinea – though I would like to go to Papua… now… behold the power of books).

Shit, I have no fewer than five (five!) books on the topic of the Irish Potato Famine!

I’ll even manufacture reasons to buy books, especially bargain books (“well, I might need to know how to build a wooden boat, starting from logs, someday”).

You get the point. It’s almost a sickness.

And, now you understand my concern. This needs to sink in. It has to start seeming “real” – something that’s actually going to happen, not just something that we hope will happen.

Yup, it’s time that we find out what to expect, now that we’re expecting.

Amazon: here I come.

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Moving on…

This has been an odd weekend.

On the one hand, life has pretty much continued on status quo. Running errands. Doing chores. Even sticking L in the ass with the PIO shot. It could have been last weekend. But, it’s not.

On the other hand, it’s very different. We’re officially “pregnant.”

Obviously, we’re happy. But, it’s also a little difficult for us to comprehend. We’ve been “not pregnant” for so long. Indeed, this is one of the reasons why L decided not to POAS (pee on a stick) before the beta. Fuck the sticks. She’d never had good news from those “devices of disappointment” anyway.

Now that should all be behind us. Happy days are here again. Or, so we hope.

But, we’re a little afraid to exhale.

I wonder if this is a normal reaction: trying to get past it being “too good to be true.”

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