IVF #2: Beta Hell. Update.

I’m sorry I haven’t replied to comments on the last couple of posts or responded on Twitter. I haven’t been functioning like a normal human being. I’ve avoided talking about this BFP because I always thought I’d stop blogging with a BFP. I’m too conscious of what it feels like to be on the other side. However, I just about got out of the cold waters of infertility, only to find myself on a carnivorous island. The odds say I’ll be in the water again very soon, so I figured I’d write to let you all know what’s going on.

I never thought with my first ever BFP, I’d be sitting here waiting on an ectopic or miscarriage. Yes, I am glass half empty but it’s my way of protecting myself. I’ve thanked God everyday for the gift of pregnancy (the dent has gotten deeper on my prayer mat) but I haven’t celebrated. Every day I talk to this little being to tell it I love it, every night I read it Ayatul Kursi (protection prayer) – even if it’s unable to stay around long. I welcome it.

My fertile friends try to get me to be positive. They send me charts to show that low numbers are acceptable. Pretty big variation right? They say the doubling matters more than the number but there’s a study that shows numbers matter too. Quote “The median HCG concentration was 126 IU/l in viable pregnancies and 31 IU/l in non-viable pregnancies (P < 0.0001).” If you start with a number below 100 on 17dpo, it doesn’t bode well. Super Man tells me off by saying ‘It’s only one study!’

HCG levels in pregnancy

Of course there are the miracle stories (Jazmin left one on my last post – thank you!!) but there seem to be so few out on Google. Fertile Thoughts tweeted one earlier too.
Fertility Doll - Fertile Thoughts - Low Beta

I’d rather be realistic. The stories where numbers seem to catch up, still led to bad outcomes – blighted ovum or miscarriage around 8-9 weeks. I’m not sure if it’s related. I’ve also learned that ICSI betas can be slightly lower and that some women still had doubling betas with ectopics. Yet, at the same time you can have a high beta and it can still go wrong. Oh I don’t know!!! If I wasn’t mad before I officially am now.

Next Thursday I go for a scan. That’s when it’ll be big enough to detect (beta levels are usually between 1000-2000 when they can see something) and I’ll know my fate. In the meantime, Dr Oracle won’t let me have any more blood tests. We’ve done three. He’s pretty good at managing my expectations and hope levels. He didn’t forget to flag ‘The levels are still low for where we’d like to see them.’ So I’m sitting here fretting over my hcg levels falling without me knowing.

I’ve started to get light cramps – a stretching sensation. I wonder if the progesterone is the only thing sustaining this pregnancy. I’ve also been feeling a dull ache around my right side – near the ovary – and that worries me too (ectopic). My acupuncturist tries to reassure me by saying ‘You’re a creaky ship, adjusting to this.’

At first the tears were from a feeling of loss, now it’s fear.. fear that I’m really going to go through a miscarriage or ectopic. Fear for myself and my ability to cope with this. I feel like a time bomb. It’s funny to think if I didn’t have a beta, I’d be blissfully ignorant and hopeful now. I keep telling myself this..

Fertility Doll - Maktub

Maktub. It is written. Whatever is written will happen and I don’t have any control of it. Whatever the outcome, there’s a lesson in this pregnancy. I plan to get it engraved on a bangle as a reminder to help me get through this.

The crazy thing is that in 3 weeks, it’ll be my 10th wedding anniversary. That in 2 weeks my baby niece is due. Watch me fall apart splendidly.

All I can say is..

Dear Rainbow, Please stay and be healthy.

Ps It’s time I take a break from posting and deal with this. I won’t be on Twitter either. I’ll be back once I’m ready. Thanks to you all for the prayers, good vibes, unicorn armies and fairies. I’ll be deploying my unicorn army for each of you. x

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I opened Pandora's box and infertility entered my life.

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Posted in Infertility, IVF
60 comments on “IVF #2: Beta Hell. Update.
  1. redbluebird says:

    I’ve been waiting for your update. I can imagine how scary this is and I’m sorry. All you can do is wait– try to stay busy, try to stay positive, and let us all pray/wish/hope with all our might for you and that little one. I’ll be thinking of you. xo

    • Thanks for your prayers, lovely. I had to go silent as I was living beta at a time. I wish this post was a ‘woohoo everything’s amazing!’ post instead 😦 but we live, we learn x

  2. Haisla says:

    Wishing you all manner of good things during this wait. My prayers will be with you and the little rainbow. I’m sorry it has to be this hard for you.xx

    • Hey Haisla. Thanks for leaving a little note. I wish it wasn’t so hard to but I think there’s a lesson in this for me. Just have to find the strength to hold on. Rainbow and me appreciate the prayers x

  3. Mindful Muma-to-be says:

    Snap! Spent the last nine days in limbo land after a scan. Missed miscarriage confirmed On Thursday. Feeling surprisingly calm, not sure if it will hit me sometime soon or if I just really do believe the affirmation I’ve been saying to myself repeatedly:

    “I let go and trust that it is all happening perfectly I just can’t see the bigger picture yet.”

    Time will tell. Sat in Battersea Park after scan and then headed to the pub for my first cider in sooooooooooooooo long. 3/4s of a pint and I was completely blotto! Went for dinner in Clapham with the hubby and actually had a really nice evening.

    Now have to wait for it to start, they did offer a D&C for £2680 but I turned them down. (If in a month nothing has happened I can go to the NHS and have one for free.)

    I have friends who have come out the other side though and that pregnancies progressed normally keep strong xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    Naomi

    mindfulmuma@gmail.com

    http://www.mindfulmumatobe.co.uk

    • I am so so sorry for your loss. You sound like you’re coping really well. Much calmer than I’d be. It feels surreal to be going through this – you just never plan or imagine it’d happen this way. I didn’t even think about the cost of a d&c, guess I’ll cross that bridge if I have to. I keep holding onto the fact that something has happened at least – by some miracle a pregnancy did occur. I really do think this is ectopic, so I’m freaking out a bit about the likelihood of having another ectopic. Keep having to stop myself from thinking ahead. Hopefully meet you at the next support group. I just wasn’t in a good state to get on the tube and travel that day. x

  4. barrenbetty says:

    I hate that it is this hard for you. I’m doing all the prayers too and I so want this to have a happy ending. Lots and lots of love pal xxx

  5. Thinking of you and sending prayers.

  6. Take all the time you need. I hate that this is so unbearably hard… It’s so unfair that we can’t just sit back and relax like other people. We’re in your corner and we’re here whenever you’re ready to return.

    My heart and prayers are with you xxx

  7. Smile says:

    I hate this for you. Wish I could fast forward the next couple of weeks and make it end in the happy ending you so very much deserve. Will be thinking of you often and sending love your way.

  8. kiftsgate says:

    I really wish you could have had simple easy BFP. This is so difficult. You are being so strong and brave! I hope so much this is one more positive story to add to the internet (I’ve checked: there are a few more, but as always it doesn’t matter much what the internet says…). Sending lots of love your way. xx

  9. katherinea12 says:

    I’m so sorry you’re in this situation. It is such a hard place to be. Wish there was some way to make it for sure the happy outcome you deserve. Thinking of you and hoping for you.

    • Hi Katherine, Thank you for your kind thoughts. In many ways I wish I didn’t know my beta results but in a way I guess it’s given me some time to educate myself and prepare.

  10. steph50 says:

    I’ll be thinking of you xox

  11. knalani says:

    I’m so sorry. Thinking of you and praying for a miracle.

  12. hopingonhope says:

    Praying for you and the little one hon. Stick baby stick and snuggle nice and warm in mommy’s cozy ute.

  13. Isabelle says:

    I am so sorry about all the uncertainties. Big hugs to you.

  14. rosiedd78 says:

    FX that you are worried for nothing. Sending sticky growy vibes..

  15. Lisette says:

    I’m so sorry sweetie you’re going through this agony. I am hoping and praying along side you. Thinking of you all the time xxx

    • I am so sorry you are in this scary waiting place. I have been there too–my first IVF was ectopic. I pray that everything works out. Take as much time as you need and know that we are here for you.

      • Gah, this should be its own comment! Stupid phone…

      • This one’s for mypreconceivedlife. Eeeps I got all confused by where you left the comment. I’ve been wondering how you are. I hope you’re ok. I hate this place I’m in but it’s good to be able to draw on everyones experiences. It makes me less scared. I’m getting close to 6w and I’m really scared that this is when the pain is going to kick in. The scan can’t come fast enough. I’m expecting the worst and hoping for the best.

      • I hate that you are there, too. Glad you get to go in early for your scan and hoping you get some answers. If, God forbid, it is an ectopic, let me know if you need to talk. But really really really hoping you get good news. xoxo

    • Thanks so much Lisette for your prayers and being there. They really are appreciated x

  16. I am hoping so so much for you. Stay strong my love, you can do this, whatever ‘this’ is xx

    • We might not realise it when we are feeling battered and broken by this journey but “At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can” (Frida Kahlo) x

  17. ATK says:

    I just found your blog today. Wow. You have been through the wringer. Sending good vibes to you that this number will climb, and warmth and hugs no matter what. I am so sorry you are taking a break – although, of course, OBVIOUSLY – because how fun it was to see Maktub in a blog from someone in this cursed tribe. Kul shay maktub. Thinking of you and wishing you peace….

    • Salaam ATK, Thanks for the good vibes and much needed hugs. I used to think of myself as cursed but then I realised we all play our part in this world and I need to stop viewing it as 1) a punishment from God 2) that it makes me worthless in society. We are only cursed if we allow ourselves to be cursed. After years of carrying it, I dumped it. x

  18. Jasmine says:

    I am still holding out very big hope for you – after my 2 blood draws the wait for the first ultra sound felt like eternity. One day at at time – and everything crossed that you are pleasantly and happily surprised. Hugs, Jasmine

    • Oh Jasmine! I wish I could put your positivity in a bottle and drink it as medicine because I feel far from positive 😦 I sure hope I’m pleasantly surprised too. Thanks for all your support over the last couple of weeks x

  19. theauthoress says:

    I am praying for you – for a positive outcome, yes, but foremost for peace of mind and for strength for your heart no matter the outcome. I am here for you. Hope everything goes well.

  20. Fox says:

    I am very familiar with beta hell/limbo. Big hugs. Hit me up on Twitter if you need an understanding ear.

    • I’ve been roaming the Fertile Thoughts Ectopic forums, are you the main advisor on there? If so, I found it really useful reading your experience. I’m trying to prep myself for this so I know what to expect and do. I’m sure I’ll be poking you on Twitter on Thurs. Thanks for the hugs x

  21. Lisa Bagchi says:

    Whooof, this is rough, I’m sorry you’re having to go through it. Glad to see so much support here, may it carry you past the madness. Really hoping for the best for you.

    • I always joked my child was playing hard to get but I didn’t expect this with a BFP. It really does suck. I’m so grateful for the support here. I hope you and your babies are well x

  22. Lauren says:

    Thinking of you so much, and hoping you get the long overdue good news we all want for you xo

  23. GK says:

    I’m so sorry you’re having to go through this. I know first hand what it’s like and cannot imagine the pain of this uncertainty having gone through IVF to get this far. As others have said there are stories across the Internet of beta results like yours which became a successful pregnancy. I hope so much that this works out for you. For now you are pregnant and that is the first step x

    • I keep telling myself that ‘Enjoy the feeling of pregnancy’ but every twinge and cramp sends me into panic. I think I could deal with a miscarriage but the thought of an ectopic makes me sick. I feel like I’m having to kill something I struggled so much to create. It makes me very sad inside x

  24. Thinking of you. I always thought BFP would be the fairytale we were all hoping for but the cruelty only continues. I hope and pray your fairytale has a happy ending and that the heart ache is worthwhile xx

    • I know – I think i know it all and then something like this happens and I realise how naive I am to the whole process still. I’m keeping everything crossed for you and your little firework x

  25. Oh my god!!!!!!!!mabrooooooook!!! The best news I’ve received!!! I’m just so so happy for you xo. Maktoob.

    • Aww you’re cute. Alhumdullilah for the pregnancy but we’re not sure how healthy this pregnancy is and whether it’s the right place so I’m holding off on the congratulations x

  26. Holly E says:

    I don’t think the worry goes away. My first beta was high, like really really high and I panicked. My dr didn’t want to do a second to check if doubling, just went in for a scan @ 5wks, there was a sac, and a yolk sac but too soon to see anything else. Now i’m in limbo land until June 13th for another scan. So every twinge, every cramp, every symptom that isn’t there all freaks me out.

    I hope this is it for you, this is the one. I hope you finally get to a place where you feel comfortable saying “I’m pregnant” and get to enjoy it.

    • A sac and a yolk at 5w is a positive sign. Fingers crossed for your next scan. I hope whatever the outcome I’m at peace with it, I know with low numbers my chance of viability is low x

  27. julieann081 says:

    I don’t know what the right words to say are, but I just wanted to say that I care. I can’t even imagine what this feels like. I will keep you and yours in my thoughts and I am wishing you all the very best! ❤

    • Thank you, JulieAnn. It’s not a fun place to be I can tell you that much and my anxiety levels are through the roof. But I really appreciate your support and the support of others here. Thank you for leaving some love ❤

  28. ivfbegins says:

    Thinking of you and praying so hard you get your happy ending.

    I love Maktub. xx

  29. Stefanie says:

    I’ll be praying for you. I’m feeling quite similar these days… Still only 5w4d and I wake with fear each day.

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A potent spell. All women alike
Fight fiercely for a child.

~ Euripides, Iphigenia in Aulis, c. 405 B.C.

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