I had my beta this morning and was told Nurse Chris would call me some time between 3-5pm.
If you remember, Chris was less than enthusiastic about my pregnancy tests, so I was a little nervous about the result.
I looked at my four FRERs, the last one taken three days ago. I didn’t know it was possible for the test line to be darker than the control line, but it is. This buoyed me a little and carried me through to today’s official test date.
Still, the doubts kept creeping in. Then I’d remind myself that my body is good at being pregnant, because it hung on to Bean for far longer than it needed to. Even in the face of the diagnosis of a missed miscarriage, it took two doses of Misoprostol for my uterus to relinquish its contents, and even then it took several days. What if I was pregnant before but I’m not now? I’d remind myself of all the symptoms I’m now experiencing: bigger boobs, hunger less than two hours after eating a meal, unquenchable thirst, getting up to pee at least once in the middle of the night. All familiar signs from my last pregnancy, but happening much earlier. Not to mention, we transferred two full hatched top quality chromosomally normal embies! (The peace of mind that PGD has brought us has been the biggest relief of all.)
I’ve been having vivid dreams, the most significant one being the other night. First my grandfather (he who I heard say gently in my ear It’s a boy last time) floated above stairs I was walking down. Then I heard his wife — my grandmother who died in September and whose death produced the funds for DEIVF — speaking to me from my external harddrive: The baby’ll arrive in October, some time between seven and quarter to eleven. In my dream I brightly interrupted her to say, Yes, the 15th! And then there was Nanny… My beautiful, beloved great-grandmother, whose death was the very first real loss I ever experienced, and whose genetic lineage I mourned by proceeding with donor eggs. Sitting in a church pew in front of me, she turned to look at me with a dazzling smile, and we hugged across the pews. I held her face in my hands, she held mine in hers. I sobbed as I told her how much I love her and miss her, and my crying awoke me, but I was crying with love and happiness, as well as a 22-year-old loss.
And mood swings… sheesh! One minute I’m on cloud nine, the next I’m in a foul mood (and probably am hungry again), the next I’m on the verge of tears. I’m finding it mostly easy to embrace this hormone-induced personality change, because I am just so dam grateful to be able to say those hallowed words, I’m still pregnant.
Except for this morning, when I woke up to find the dog had peed all over the bedroom carpet. (We have no idea why but I’ll spare you the distraction of our current theories.) Between the clocks going forward and new interrupted sleep patterns, I found it difficult to get out of bed to get to my beta appointment. I found myself cleaning up dog pee instead of eating breakfast, so I was in the worst mood by the time I rushed out of the house 20 minutes later…
It’s just hormones, I reminded myself, in time to catch the tail end of rush hour traffic. Chill out.
At the clinic, Frankie, the receptionist gave me a big smile and said I heard you had some good news! And when Cecy, the lovely nurse who draws blood, collected me from the waiting room, she hugged me and we walked with our arms around each other down the hallway, and she asked Did you cheat? I told her I was confident, because I had taken 5 pregnancy tests (digital one not included above).
But when Chris called at quarter to three, I was not expecting to hear my hCG levels were at 2,000.
Yes, two thousand.
TWO THOUSAND. At 4w4d pregnant.
To put this into perspective, anything above 100 would be considered a good result. Or, put another way, the normal upper limit of hCG for a 4-week-pregnant woman is about 436. Not 2,000.
Chris, actually quite cheerful and pleasant on the phone with me — I resisted saying See?? I TOLD YOU I WAS PREGNANT! — said it was so high that it’s possible I “…have two babies in there.”
I told her that I think it’s twins, but, having said that, I think I produce a lot of hCG because in my previous pregnancy my hCG levels were at 31,977 at 8w3d, which was 18 days after my baby stopped growing. And you know what she said? You obviously are very good at making a healthy placenta.
I never thought Chris would pay me such a meaningful and encouraging compliment as this, but I have been rocking out ever since. (Well, by rocking out, I actually mean having a nap, eating, reading, dreaming about twins…)
I have a repeat beta on Wednesday morning, this one to see how fast my numbers are rising. She said they expect to see the number increase by 66% every 48 hours, so I’m aiming for 3,320 by then. I’m guessing I’ll have an ultrasound scheduled for a couple of weeks’ time — I’ve read that hCG levels need to hit 2,000 to be able to properly see a gestational sac, so I’ve crossed that milestone already too! — when I find out whether or not it’s twins…
What do you think? Twins or singleton? Place your bets!