The Real Week 5!!!

On Monday April 8th, we went back for a repeat ultrasound and finally there was a gestational sac and a yolk sac and believe it or not…a heartbeat!!!! We were shocked. The ultrasound nurse told us that probably the earliest any parent will hear their baby’s heartbeat. So though this little booger tortured us for about two weeks while we waited to confirm his/her existence, he/she surprised us with an early heartbeat!!! At this ultrasound, based on measurements of the yolk sac, they changed my due date forward one week, meaning I was back-dated from 6 weeks and 5 days to 5 weeks and 6 days based on the measurements. So that explains everything….why I only had a faint line when I took my first pregnancy test…because it was so early the test was detecting low hormone levels. Also clarifies why there was no gestational sac at the 4 week ultrasound, because I was only 3 weeks and you are not supposed to see a sac that early and lastly why my gestational sac was empty at my last ultrasound. It was all too early!!! Though I had kept close track of my periods and cycles, my cycles were still not consecutively every 28 days since being off birth control. So my estimated date of conception was actually about a week later than expected based on my last menstrual period (LMP), which threw all of my dating off. Now that we are on track, we can enjoy every second of this pregnancy to come. We are scheduled to see the OB in 4 weeks. During the first trimester, most OB’s will have you see them every 4 weeks to make sure everything stays on track. Can’t wait until our sequential ultrasound (first trimester ultrasound) on May 22nd, when I am twelve weeks along.
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So far, the only pregnancy “symptoms” I’ve been having is occasional cramping in my lower abdomen, which basically feels like the cramps during your period. Most of the time, this is just the baby implanting itself in to the uterine wall. Also because of the rising hormone levels, my breasts are extremely sore. What symptoms did you have/are having in your early pregnancy days???

5 Weeks Pregnant???

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Boy was that the longest weekend ever. Both my husband and I tried to put on our happy faces all weekend and act like nothing is wrong. We didn’t tell anyone anything because we had no answers and felt that there was no point to  have our family worry along with us. Finally, Monday morning came around. It was April fools day; but no one was going to fool us! We were dying for some answers. We went in for our repeat ultrasound and this time there was finally a gestational sac there!!!! gestationalsac

(Both images of my uterus with the gestational sac)

We were both so excited, but we weren’t out of the woods yet. By five weeks, that sac should be showing something in it, but my sac was empty. Thankfully, my OB is amazingly supportive and positive and she told us so far these are all good signs and we should just relax and enjoy the pregnancy from this point forward. And that is what we did. That night we went and finally told my parents! It was such a relief to finally tell my mom. I’m so used to telling my mom everything…from my deepest secrets to something stupid that happens in my day. To hold back a week of being pregnant without telling her was rough.

How we told my parents: We bought two onsies; one for grandma and one for grandpa. Thankfully it was around Persian New Year, so we told them it was a belated Persian New Year gift for them. They were both speechless. Luckily Keyvan caught it all on film so one day we can show the little booger how his/her grandparents reacted when they found out (and yes we call our little one booger…I don’t know how it caught on but we didn’t like the typical peanut so we thought whats cute, round and squishy!!!) onsie

AM I Really Pregnant???

questionmarkAbout a week before finding out I was pregnant, I was having severe sharp left sided lower abdominal pain. I didn’t think much of it. I figured I just had an ovarian cyst that was causing a lot of discomfort but because of my busy work schedule I did not have time to get it checked out. This is when I wish I knew less about medicine…the second I found out I was pregnant I got worried….could this pain be because of the pregnancy? I’m I having an ectopic pregnancy?

The day after I found out I am pregnant, I started to worry about all the things that could cause severe abdominal pain in pregnancy; including a miscarriage and an ectopic pregnancy. Later that day, Tuesday March 26th, I called my OB and explained my positive pregnancy test but with this associated left sided pain. Having similar concerns that I had, she scheduled me for a stat (right away) ultrasound and blood work. The following day, Wednesday March 27th, I went and had my blood work done (she was checking for my hCG hormone levels) and my first ultrasound. Unfortunately, the ultrasound did not show much. There was no gestational sac (the first sign of pregnancy), but thankfully there was nothing visible in my fallopian tubes concerning for an ectopic pregnancy. The fallopian tubes are the area of greatest concern for an ectopic pregnancy. After my ultrasound, my nurse practitioner told me to have a low threshold to go to the emergency room if my pain significantly worsened or if I began to bleed. My husband and I were devastated that there was nothing in my uterus. We went home and I basically cried that entire night. The following day, Thursday March 28th, we got to meet with my actual OB. That visit was a bit more reassuring. She told me my hCG level was 400, which meant I was pregnant, but it was early in the pregnancy. However, based on my last menstrual period (LMP), I was supposed to already be 4 weeks and 5 days, which in reality something, ie gestational sac should show on the ultrasound. We had a repeat ultrasound that day. Again, nothing in my uterus, but there was some signs that the wall of my uterus was beginning to get thicker, which is a sign of early pregnancy! With that being said, my husband and I were still nervous, but our hopes were up a little more. The doctor said to come back that following Monday for yet another ultrasound…

Pregnancy Test – Is a faint line considered positive?

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If you read my Missed Period post, you know that I took one too many necessary pregnancy tests to confirm I was actually pregnant.  I thought I would take a quick moment to explain a positive pregnancy test and the accuracy so you do not end up spending over $50 on pregnancy test confirming one after the next like I did. A pregnancy test is made to detect your bodies level of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) horomone. This hormone is produced by your bodies fertilized egg after conception…that is after you are officially pregnant. Point being, if you are not pregnant, your body will likely not be producing this hormone. That is why, even a faint line on a pregnancy test is still considered positive. There are several reasons a pregnancy test may be faint. It could be that you are earlier than you think. New pregnancy tests are made with immense sensitivity therefore they can detect even the smallest amount of hCG in your urine. In a normal pregnancy, the level of hCG hormone should double every 48-72 hours therefore if you wait two to three days after taking a pregnancy test that is faint, it is likely that if the pregnancy is viable, your repeat test will be more solid and obvious. So lesson learned…you do not have to take six pregnancy tests to confirm that you are pregnant. That one first positive pregnancy test is all you need. If you have a positive pregnancy test, please make sure to contact your OB-Gyn/primary care physician to schedule an appointment and development of routine care. Additionally, if you are not already doing so, start those prenatal vitamins NOW!!!! Make sure they have folic acid and DHA in them. See my prenatal vitamin post on vitamin details.

Side note: if your initially pee stick is faint and your repeat tests continue to be faint then a few days later the test is completely negative, you may have had an early miscarriage. This is not uncommon at all. It is estimated that about 20-30% of pregnancies result in miscarriage. In fact, often times it occurs before you know you are even pregnant. If you think you are having or have had a miscarriage, please contact your medical professional immediately.

Missed Period

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Friday March 22, 2013….my period is two days late. Didn’t think much of it at first but decided I should take a pregnancy test because generally I am on time.  I took a pregnancy test, it was negative. I thought I was in the clear. I enjoyed my friends baby shower all of Saturday which included several glasses of my fav…wine! The following day I celebrated Persian New Year at my parents house with my family. Again, I enjoyed some wonderful food and a few glasses of vino. In fact my cousin, who happens to be 28 days older than me, announced she is 8 weeks pregnant that evening!!!! Yippee we were going to have the first new addition to our family…what better way to celebrate but with a toast. Monday morning rolls along. I go to work; I was sure my period is on its way. I had all the signs of my usual period…my boobs were sore, I had cramps and I was hungry (lets be honest that’s not just when my period is coming :-)). I went along my business at work that day. Not for a second did it cross my mind that I could be pregnant…I had taken a pregnancy test on Friday and it was negative.

These are the times I wish I would think more medically when it comes to my own health. No matter what doctor you ask, a female with a missed period equals pregnancy until proven otherwise! Anyways, with that being said, while I was driving home I started to count how many days late my period was and realized I was five days late…which was not normal for me. Even at that point, I kept thinking to myself its impossible. I had a negative pregnancy test just a few days ago.

After work, I had plans to meet my friend for coffee, so I made a pit-stop home to change out of my smelly scrubs into something clean and comfortable. Somehow some common sense came over me and I decided to take another pregnancy test. I took the test…waited a few seconds, the first line appeared then the second line appeared but it was extremely faint so I didn’t think much of it. I threw the stick in the trash and started getting dressed. Then all of a sudden I took the stick out of the trash and looked at it again…a faint line is still positive? I should know this. I am doctor for the love of God…but when it comes to yourself, all your logic and knowledge goes out the door. Thankfully I had a few more pregnancy tests under my bathroom sink so I took another and it was positive too!!!! I started screaming and crying and frantically called my best friend…also a doctor…yelling I think I’m pregnant what do I do??? It was so unexpected that she kept asking me are you sure? Thank goodness for technology, so I texted her a picture of the two positive pregnancy sticks. She confirmed that she was seeing the same thing I was seeing. But I still could not believe it….so what did I do… I took two more pregnancy tests. When all four came back positive I finally accepted it was true!!!! I put all the sticks in a zip-lock bag, called my husband and asked him if he wanted to go on a date (ASAP) and cancelled my previously planned coffee date with my other friend.

peesticks(Those lines look a lot less faint in the pic now that I look at them again!)

Later that day, I took my husband to the spot where we had our first date and kiss thirteen years ago. I had a really romantic cute speech planned out in my head, but long story short, it ended up coming out something to the extent of, “our journey started here thirteen years ago and I want you to meet…” and around that point I just broke down in tears and pulled out a bag full of pee sticks and yelled I’m pregnant!!!! He of course was overjoyed and started crying, I was balling, we squealed a little, continued to cry, laugh and chatted about the future ahead. But it doesn’t end there! The crazy person that I am, I made my husband take me to the local grocery store to buy…yup you guessed it…another pack of pregnancy sticks! Then I had him stop at the gas station where I ran in and confirmed yet again that we are pregnant!

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(Excuse the puffy eyes…this was obviously after I told him :-))

Lesson learned…pregnancy brain kicks in right away! J/K but it’s truly unbelievable how all of my knowledge and logic went out the door when the tables are turned and I am dealing with myself and my own future baby.

We Are Pregos!!!!

KRAOUFI-20130519-00035-158Sorry I’ve been MIA lately, but I promise it was all for a good reason!!!! We are expecting, so I have been extremely preoccupied with the pregnancy, all the bumps in the way and dealing with my busy work schedule. With all that being said, I am back and excited to share my journey so far and the rest of the pregnancy with you!

My husband and I have been together for thirteen years and married almost five, but unfortunately with the demands of school and work, pregnancy was something we felt the timing wasn’t just right yet. Earlier this year we decided that we would start trying soon so I started loaded up on those prenatal vitamins! Statistically I knew we had about a twenty percent chance conceiving each month we tried and all our friends kept telling us it takes a lot longer than you think, so we figured we would start trying and whatever is meant to be will happen! I guess it was meant to be because it happened all right (yay)!!!!

As of today I am 20 weeks and 4 days along…though I am already half way along, I promise I documented the journey along the way and just need to fill you in!!! Because there is always a higher risk of miscarriage and complications in the first trimester, we wanted the beginning of the journey to be something private between my husband and our families.  Around the five week mark, we shared the exciting news with both of our families and a few of our closest friends. Otherwise, we waited until around the ten to twelve week mark to share the news with everyone.

Now that I am 20 weeks along, the first few blog posts are going to be a bit back tracked but soon enough we’ll be up to date and all the real fun pregnancy posts will start flowing!! I’m honored to finally share this amazing journey with you all!