At my first official OB appointment a few weeks ago, he assured me that after the first trimester, women who get pregnant through IVF are considered at no greater risk then women who get pregnant "naturally". The one exception is that there is a slight trend for IVF pregnancies to more often end in a cesarian section. Also, because of the PCOS, I am at higher risk for gestational diabetes, but this not a given. He assured me that this should be a "normal pregnancy".
Since this time, I have really tried to take this message to heart. I no longer require three monitoring appointments per week. I no longer require blood draws so often that my arms stay permanently black-and-blue and I begin to develop scar tissue. I no longer require extra testing, monitoring, or supervision. I am off all extra medication. No more shots, patches, or vaginal suppositories. Only a multi-vitamin.
I want to be normal. To feel normal. When neurotic friends ask if I've had the additional genetic testing offered to certain high-risk groups, I politely explain that this wasn't recommended for me. I didn't push for it either.
I had my nuchal translucency test and blood work this past Thursday. This was offered, although not strongly recommended one way or the other, as a low-risk screening option. We agreed because a) knowledge is power, and b) it's one more chance to see the little one. The test went great, although the baby wasn't nearly as jumpy as last time which was a little disappointing because I loved seeing him/her move around. The ultra-sound technician was wonderful. She pointed out every little feature, gave a lot of compliments on the little one being so cooperative (by not moving), and was generally very enthusiastic about the whole experience. I give her a lot of credit for the enthusiasm because, personally, I'm not sure I'd be able to express that much excitement for each little baby I was screening day after day. The heartbeat was in the 140s and the measurement of the fluid behind the neck was 1.5 something, where the cutoff is 3 something, so this was great. I should get the bloodwork back in the next day or so.
No other early testing was recommended, which means we will not be finding out the gender earlier than the normal 20 week anatomy scan. As far as I understand, this will be the next and final ultrasound unless there are issues. I am completely fine with both of these facts. This is the normal procedure. I want to be normal.
I am soaking in the normalcy of it all. No glitches. No extra precautions required. No red flags or warning signs. I am only hoping that, eventually, my emotions begin to catch on and accepting this as the truth - that is alright to begin to feel normal.
My sharps container is still sitting on the dresser. The box of leftover medication and needles and syringes is still sitting prominently beside my bed. Next to it is a bag of maternity clothes that I finally had the courage to buy, but still haven't had the courage to wear. At some point, will I be able to close one chapter to fully delve into the next? Or will the two realities of being infertile and pregnant continue indefinitely?