Trying for another baby

First of all, I have been amazed by all the comments I receive on this blog, almost daily it seems.   It makes me so sad in some ways to know how many other women are experiencing what I experienced, and yet knowing that putting my story out there is helping or giving hope to so many of you….it feels rewarding in a way.  I appreciate you sharing your stories with me.  I’m always happy to offer a listening ear, advice or answer questions.  I remember how much I wanted to talk to someone about this and yet it seemed like no one else really understood.  Well I do….so please keep sharing your stories with me.

There has been an interesting development in our lives.  When we had our older son, there was no question that we wanted a second.  And we went through a lot to get my little Elliott, and he was worth every bit of it.  But then we had to decide if we wanted a third child.  Honestly, there has been a lot of discussion about it.  My husband has had many good reasons why we should stop at 2….and yet, I just don’t feel done.  I don’t feel like we are complete.  The other evening, my husband surprised me by saying that if we were going to have a third child, he’d rather that we did it sooner rather than later.  While I had some reservations about having our kids so close together (I really like the 3 yr age difference between our boys), I wanted to respect his opinions (plus, he was finally saying YES!)

So, just 3 months after it was put in, the doctor removed my IUD this week.  We will be waiting 3-6 months before we start trying.  I truly feel like my IUD was at least a contributing factor to all my chemical pregnancies.  Primarily because it thins out your lining and after all the testing I went through, the only thing they could find was that I had really thin uterine lining, pre-ovulation.  I was very hesitant to put the IUD back in, but since I was (and am still) breastfeeding, my only birth control option was the mini-pill and I was TERRIBLE about taking it at the same time every day.  I knew I would end up with an accidental pregnancy and personally I prefer to have more control over when I get pregnant than risk that, so I got an IUD in February, thinking it would be in for a year or so before we started trying.  Well, 4 months later it is out again.

I must say I am electrified and excited about the thought of being pregnant and having another baby.  But I am also TERRIFIED about having to go through all of THAT again.  Hopeful that maybe I won’t have to, but how do you know??

I did contact Dr. Bruce Lessey in Greenville, SC again.  He was the RE that put me on the medicinal protocol that resulted in my successful pregnancy with Elliott and he is going to prescribe those meds to me again when we are ready.  So that makes me feel better.  But I’m scared.  I don’t want to go through that again.  I don’t want to go to that place again.  I was so devastated, so obsessed, so consumed.  I think those feelings were normal, but it was just such an insanely difficult time.  But, my Elliott was worth it.  If I have to go through it again to get another I will.  So far my odds of a successful pregnancy are 1 in 3.  I’ve had 6 pregnancies and I have 2 kids to show for it.  But I DO have 2 amazing little boys…and they are my hope and inspiration.  I feel, I HOPE that if I have more losses that somehow it won’t be quite as devastating because I know it will work out for me.

And I know it will work out for you too…..you HAVE to keep hoping and trying.  After my first loss, I wondered if I would ever hold MY baby, if something was wrong with me.  Then I had my Ethan and those fears were temporarily put to rest.  But they we went for #2 and after my fourth loss I began to despair, but then I got my Elliott.

You will get your baby too…..I have known many women, online and in person, who have been through this madness and with time, each of them has eventually had a baby.  Even after 10+ losses.  You will too.  And so will I.  Never give up.  I didn’t and my boys are amazing and I can’t wait to meet my third baby who is just a figment of my imagination now, but I WILL hold that baby.

If you are reading this, it will be ok….

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26 thoughts on “Trying for another baby

  1. Su says:

    Hi Amy,

    Thank you so much for writing this great blog. I couldn’t stop reading it and I finished all of them this morning (well expect for some technical parts that involve hormone tests 🙂 but will definitely come back and read them more carefully). The information you provide is invaluable. I admire your courage, wisdom, perseverance and your proactive attitude toward seeking the truth. You are a true fighter!

    I had two chemical miscarriages in a roll in 6 months. Of course the first time everyone was telling me not to worry about it. But when it happened again, I realized it might not be a random event. I don’t want to take any chances next time. I want to get my hormone levels and utero lining checked but my OB is not very supportive. Do you remember what hormone levels you have checked, the ones that can be easily done in a normal lab? I’m looking for a good RE in Atlanta area; don’t know if you have experience coming across any REs here? Your blog gives me a lot of hope and your willingness to help really touches me. I will update you and I hope we can keep in touch.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Su,

      I’m glad you found my blog and that it has been helpful to you. I’m so sorry to hear about your losses. I hope your next pregnancy brings a healthy baby into your arms. Its very frustrating when your OB/medical provider does not seem to take you seriously. Usually they require 3 losses to run the Recurrent Pregnancy Loss panel, but perhaps you can push and get them to run it sooner. That is the basic panel. Also, have they checked your progesterone levels at 7 days past ovulation? That would also be a good, easy thing to check and a simple ultrasound can check your lining pre-ovulation. Are your periods heavy or light? If they are very light, that is also an indicator of a thin lining.

      There are lots of great REs in Atlanta. Dr. Toledo at RBA (Reproductive Biology Associates) is excellent, Dr. Perloe and Georgia Reproductive Specialists is excellent and several of my friends have been treated successfully at Atlanta Center for Reproductive Medicine. The problem with seeing an RE for this problem is that their specialty lies more in helping people with later miscarriages and the protocols get pricey very quickly. They will also want to run extensive testing on you before starting a monitored/medicated cycles. This isn’t a bad thing, its just a matter of if you are ready to make that step, mentally and financially, or try to pursue other (less expensive) options. However, they do provide excellent monitoring, so they could check your lining during a normal cycle and see what it looks like. If your insurance covers diagnostics and initial consultation then it might not be a bad idea to try.

      Hope this helps, please keep me posted!

      • Su says:

        Thanks Amy. I’m going to ask my OB to run a panel and check progesterone. my period is usually mild to moderate, definitely not heavy. I heard some docs don’t believe the lining theory, but I’m a huge believer, I think the environment of the uterus has be healthy for implantation. so I’m going to push it.

        I was referred to see Dr. Toledo by my gyn and I’m glad you heard good things about him. I’m debating because I know the bills of RE protocols can add up very quickly. My insurance does claim to cover diagnostics but i still want to call them just to make sure. Thanks for the info and I’ll keep you posted.

      • rowanthefrog says:

        Su,

        Dr. Toledo is excellent and he has some experience with this sort of problem. I intended to switch to him but his office did not take my insurance, but we talked for awhile about my issues and he had some interesting ideas on the causes of my m/c and seemed willing to dig in and solve the mystery with me, which I appreciated. My insurance also only covered diagnostics, but that was all that I needed since I never ended up pursuing the more expensive protocols (IUI, IVF, injectibles, etc.) If they are willing to provide monitoring for some medicated cycles, then that may be all you need. That is what worked for me in the past.

        You may also want to consider contacting Dr. Bruce Lessey in Greenville, SC. He is the RE who prescribed the protocol that ultimately brought me my second child. He was very flexible about working with me remotely, though I did go for one appointment at his office. Its only 3 hrs from Atlanta, so its not terribly far.

        If you let either Dr. Toledo or Dr. Lessey know that I sent you their way because you have had similar issues, then it may help, I’m not sure. I have known Dr. Toledo for a very long time, I used to babysit for his kids!!! I will email you my full name 🙂

  2. Arpita Gajria says:

    Hey I have been goign through this loss for the fifth time now. Nothing seems to be proper in my life. I lost my first baby in january 2010 after forty five days of pregnancy but no gestational sac was visible. Then in march 2011 I missed my periods by three days tested negative for preganancy n suddenly 10 days after my cycle bleeded again. This time tested positive with HCG count 850 that double in 48 hrs. My doc said its healthy preganancy n gave supportive hormones, but gestational sac was still not visible n finally it ended in ectopic pregnancy. after on e n half months trauma i took methotrexate to kill my own baby. Again january 2012 i had chemical pregnancy. My doc gave me infertility treatment for four months till may 2012 and i couldnt conceievd. approached other docs n they said i shoud go for laparoscopic investigation but after two complete regular cycles.(advised to try natural way till then) Too my hard luck now in june 2012 I got my periods three days delayed(june 20th 2012). same story started bleeding on june 30th.tested positive with 50 counts. n loosing again……bleeding drop by drop.N the best part is i have to travel for my office n cant share this with people , they think i have travel phobia!!!I m totally sick now. have lost all faith n hopes……wish some miracle happens to me.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Arpita,

      I’m so sorry to hear about your losses. How incredibly devastating and frustrating. Have they run any testing on you? It sounds like you have had a variety of losses at different times during the first trimester, perhaps there is something else going on like MTHFR or a blood clotting disorder? Also, the ectopic is a problem within itself. Are you seeing a Reproductive Endocrinologist yet? I think they will be able to help you further, though I suspect they will recommend IVF due to the ectopic. I really hope you get your miracle soon and I’m so sorry for your losses.

      A

  3. Nikki says:

    Hi, I have been following your blog for a while now. I am kind of going through a similar situation and just have so many questions. I have a perfect 19 month old son. We got pregnant on our first try with him and I had a pretty normal problem-free pregnancy that lasted 40w3d. When my son was about 9 months old we decided to start trying for another baby, this was in August of 2011. Well, we didn’t have any success until November. I always knew exactly when my period was due because my cycle is 28 days, like clockwork. So, on day 28 I took a test and low and behold it was positive!! We were so excited. Exactly 2 days later I started bleeding and I just knew it was over. It was like a very heavy period with clots (sorry tmi). After a lot of research I found out that this kind of “chemical pregnancy” was quite common so we didn’t really let our spirits get down. We just decided to keep on trying. In January we fell pregnant again. I was cautious but very excited thinking “there is just no way that can happen twice in a row!” This one lasted a little longer. I believe I made it to 4w5d compared to my last which ended at 4w2d. This time I was frusterated and completly heartbroken. I couldn’t help but think something was wrong with me. I made an appt. with my OB and had a million questions. Of corse he fed me the whole line about how “this is common” and “women can have 3-4 miscarriages before having a healthy pregnancy.” He said if it happened again, he would write me a script to get the “recurrent sponanious abortion panel”…which i think is an awfull name for the blood tests but hey what do i know?! Ok so we cautiously kept trying. Come April, what do ya know…pregnant again! This time I thought it was “the one” I made it all the way to 5w1d. Then low and behold, the spotting/bleeding began. I was in my OB’s office within the next 2 days demanding the bloodwork. I had done a lot of research and was wanting ALL the tests. Not just the RPL, but the genetics, thrombo panel, MTHFR test….etc. Well he seemed to think it wasn’t necessary so just tested me for Lupus Anticoagulants, Anitiphospholipids, and thyroid issues. They didn’t even call me with the results I had to call a couple weeks later for them to tell me “oh yea they came in but like Dr. R suspected, they are all normal”. And that was it…he wasn’t willing to do anything else for me. So i took matters into my own hands and made an appt. with an RE…i wanted answers! Well my appt. was for June 1st….fair enough…it would be a nice break from TTC until i could get more figured out. Well after my 3rd chemical I was waiting and waiting for my period (with all the others my period came exactly 25-28 days after my bleeding began). So come day 29 (after the bleeding began) I took a test and it was positive. I was freaking out! (This was May 14th). I called my new RE and they said they could get me in on the 21st but that was the soonest they could do. I agreed and thought ((well thats going to be too late anyway)). But the 21st came and I still had NO signs of miscarriage. I was so nervous but hopefull. I really loved this RE… he did all the tests my other doctor refused to do and also prescribed me progesterone suppositories as a “just in case”, gave me a script for extra folic acid, and told me to take a baby aspirin. In the meantime he was testing my HCG every other day. My first level cameback at 738 which the nurse said was great! The next was 1700, even better! After my numbers were obviously rising they schedualed me for an u/s. At 5 weeks i could see the yolk sac and gest. sac but thats about it. This worried me but my RE reassured me it was probably too early to see anythign and to come in next week. Well the next week we saw a heartbear and a baby! I was so exacited! He had me come in every 2 weeks now, since a heartbeat was detected. At my 9 week appt. (8w6d to be exact) I saw the baby again, with a strong heartbeat of 183 bpm and it was even starting to wiggle a bit. I cried tears of joy, this was it, we were finally going to get the second baby we dreamed of. He schedualed us for our NT scan 2 weeks later. I had been feelign amazing and wasn’t even worried about this scan because we had now seen the heartbeat twice. Well, as soon as the image came up I knew something was wrong. The baby didn’t look any different than the last time and the doctor could not find a heartbeat. I felt like someone punched a hole through my heart. How could this be happening, I havn’t had any cramping, bleeding, spotting, nothing and I just saw my baby full of life 2 weeks ago. He termed it a missed miscarriage and said I could either wait for it to pass or scheduale a D&C. I wanted the D&C because I didn’t like thinking about my baby inside of me, no longer living, it terrified me. Well today is Sunday and my D&C isn’t until Thursday (a whole WEEK from when we found out). I still have had no bleeding, cramping or anything. Im just depressed and upset and wondering why this happened. I dont know if it has any relation to the chemicals but the whole things just doesn’t make sense. I have a list of questions to ask at my “pre-surgery” consult and the doc said he would send the tissues for chromosome testing. Im worried though, if it is a chrmo. problem does that mean that is what caused my chemicals? Will I ever have another healthy baby, a sibling for my son? Can I do this again and face yet another miscarriage? Sorry this is so long I just needed to vent and maybe get some opinions on my situations and see if you had any advice and maybe even advice on things i should be asking/finding out.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Nikki,

      I’m so sorry to hear about what you have gone through and are currently going through. My worst fear when going through all of that myself was that I finally made it past the chemical pregnancy stage, only to miscarry again. Simply devastating. I am deeply sorry for your loss.

      Honestly, the CPs and your later miscarriage probably are not related. I think that they have different causes and hopefully the chromosomal testing will tell you why you lost this most recent pregnancy. It is true that 1st tri m/c are common and you apparently drew the short straw by having to experience both multiple CPs and then a missed miscarriage.

      I know how you feel about wondering if you can go through all of that again or if you should stop. Its hard and scary to think about starting all over and then those weeks once you are pregnant of worry and anxiety.

      What I have found is that we are capable of dealing with so much more than we ever realized (or wanted to realize.) And you can do this again if you want to. Through my contact with women through this blog, personally, online in other forums, etc I have “met” or talked to SO many women who have been through what I have, what you have, and worse. But the ones who have persevered, EVERY SINGLE ONE has eventually carried a baby to term. Sometimes big measures such as IVF, PGD, Intralipids and other things were necessary…but they did eventually have a baby. And you will too.

      Take the time you need to grieve and for your body to heal. Enjoy a break from TTC and the madness that comes with that. When you are ready, sit down with your doctor and look at the whole picture.

      If you have any other questions, please let me know. Best of luck, you are in my thoughts.

      A

      • Nikki says:

        Just wanted to update…..I went to my follow up appointment and although the results of the fetal tissue has not come back he did let me know that my karyotyping was abnormal. He said he didn’t think it would be a problem with the most current pregnancy because “everything was going so great” and I had made it past the point of my chemicals. But it turns out I am heterozygous PAI-1. He said if the fetal tissue comes back normal then this has likely been the problem and I will need to be on Heparin for future pregnancies! Sheesh! I wish he would have told me this sooner and put me on the blood thinners with my last pregnancy but what can ya do. I go on August 20th for a saline ultrasound to make sure I dont have any scarring from the D&C and then he said we can discuss trying for another baby. So much information to take in!

      • rowanthefrog says:

        Nikki,

        That is a lot to take in. However, its good to know you have a cause, and more importantly, a solution. I have known MANY women who have taken Heparin during their pregnancies that have healthy babies….I know you will be too. Please keep me posted on your progress.

        A

  4. Erin says:

    Thank you for putting this together. I wish I had found it sooner. (I am sort of a blog addict, especially related to TTC, so I’m not sure how I didn’t stumble across you sooner!)

    We just found out today that we are having our 5th chemical pregnancy since November. All but one of our pregnancies resulted from inseminations after trying for 18 months unsuccessfully. (We had one “surprise” pregnancy between treatment cycles.) We’ve had the “full” battery of tests (according to our doctors), and all show that we are both reproductively in good shape (according to our doctors). Except for, you know, 5 dead babies. They seem to think just continuing to try is the only option at this point.

    We are at a loss for what to do now. We plan on seeking a second opinion, even though the next nearest fertility clinic is an hour away. We refuse to give up, but we have very little hope left.

    Anyway, I just wanted to thank you for your openness on your blog. I plan on reading through past posts, and seeing if I can find any information or tests here that we haven’t tried yet. Best of luck to you as you try for your third.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      I’m so sorry for your losses Erin. It is extraordinarily frustrating when everything seems to be “fine” except that you keep miscarrying over and over and so you know SOMETHING must be wrong. I hope that perhaps you will find some additional avenues to pursue here and that you can find a doctor who is willing to dig in and try to help you. Please keep me posted on your progress.

      A

  5. jelleke says:

    I found your blog after looking up recurrent chemical pregnancies. I just had my second one in a row today. This is my third pregnancy. I lost the first one at 9w4d. We TTC 3 times and I got pregnant each time. I’m so scared something is very wrong with me and I’m also scared of having all these tests done. I’m trying to go see my doctor next week if he has a spot left for me. I really do hope I will get to hold our baby, as soon as possible. I hate feeling like this, feeling like a failure and grieving over 3 babies already.

    Thank you for this blog.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Hi there,

      I’m so so sorry for your losses. I can empathize with feeling like something is wrong, having tests done, etc. Its a scary, dark place to be. However, sometimes you have to dig in and hunt for answers. If you can find out what’s wrong, then you can find out how to fix it, and the good news is that if something is wrong, there is a solution, you just have to know what to do.

      You are not a failure. Not in the slightest. I think that we grow up thinking that when its time, we just get to get pregnant and have a baby…and so many do….but its hard, so hard for so many others, more than you would imagine.

      I know you don’t have a lot of hope left, but I will hope for you…I know you will hold your baby one day. Work closely with your doctor. Ask him/her every question on your mind. If your doctor isn’t willing to dig in and help you find answers then find one who will. No one cares as much about you getting pregnant than YOU (and your partner) so FIGHT for it. I fought every step of the way for my second child and I’m thankful every day that I did.

      Keep me posted.

      A

  6. Leah says:

    After going through a recurrent pregnancy loss panel over the past 6 weeks, we finally had our appointment at Seattle Reproductive Medicine yesterday to discuss the findings. I have been very nervous for many reasons, but mostly scared they wouldn’t find a reason for all of our miscarriages (5 CP’s in less sthen a year). Well, I had nothing to worry about because they found a few things

    The first thing I came up positive for was a low Protein C level. Mine was 32 and it should be between 82-165. If I become pregnant again I will immediately start giving myself a shot of Lovenox (40mgsq) along with baby aspirin throughout pregnancy. This will be the first thing we will try.

    The next thing I came up positive for was low Anitmullerian Hormone (AMH). This correlates with a low ovarian reserve. When it started to sink in what she was telling me, I think I went into shock. This means that my egg quantity is extremely low for my age. The quantity I have is closer to what you see in a woman who is 40. It is basically premature ovarian ageing. This has been hard for me to swallow because it is the one thing I overlooked when researching over and over again why I keep miscarrying. I am getting pregnant easily and only 30 years old….so it wouldn’t be anything wrong with my eggs. Not to mention, our son was conceived so easily.

    We were too late this cycle, but if we do not get pregnant we are going to start Femara with the next cycle. This is so much to take in. Any advice? Have you heard of anyone with diminished Ovarian Reserve having so many CP’s? Most research I have done shows that people with low AMH have a hard time getting pregnant. We get pregnant almost every time we try, it just won’t stick.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Hi Leah,

      I’m sorry I’m just replying to your posts and I see you are pregnant now so congrats!! Let’s see what happens with this one….I’m rooting for you!

      A

  7. Leah Crews says:

    We conceived very easily and had a happy, healthy 9 months with our son in 2009. We began trying again 1 year ago and have since had 6 chemical pregnancies. I can’t seem to make it past 5 weeks. Pregnant easily, but won’t stick. After seeing an RE and having a bunch of testing this is what was found:

    Low Protein C

    AMH of .85

    Had 6 follicles (on CD 9 or 10)

    I found out I am pregnant last week an immediately went on Lovenox. I am spotting and this is how all of my past CP’s have started, so I am really nervouse. However, it has slowed down. My RE has also recommended Femara (I was already too late in my cycle to try this time). I have seen other women with low AMH who also seem to miscarry often. My RE said I am not a good candidate for IVF because my follicle count is so low and to be honest, I’m not sure that is an affordable option. And with the fact that I get pregnant so easily, I’m not sure IVF would end up with another CP anyway. Also, I was 27 with our first and am now 30 years old. This blog has been so amazing to read. Thank you.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Leah,

      Thank you for commenting and fingers, toes, everything crossed that this one sticks. I know that with our history, spotting is SCARY but it doesn’t always mean the end. Please keep me posted on your progress. I really hope this baby makes it into your arms.

      A

  8. Candice says:

    Hi there, I’m hoping you can help me out by telling me a bit more about Dr. Lessey and how you went about getting a hold of him and him helping you. I live in Michigan and I’m seeing a RE but I’m now on my 7th chemical pregnancy. I feel like I need to get a second opinion and help from someone more experienced with chemical pregnancies. Can you contact me through my email so we can chat more? I really appriciate your help!
    -Candice

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Candice,

      I’m so sorry, I just saw this comment from you, I’m not sure how it slipped through. If you still want to get ahold of Dr. Lessey then reply to this and I will send you an email.

      A

      • Kasey says:

        I would also love to contact him; my husband is in medicine and we would like to know which tests to order. Thank you so much.

  9. April says:

    I just found out today that I’m having my fourth CP/miscarriage in a row and all in the last 8 months. We have two boys, 4 and 3 (just 14 months apart) – and weren’t trying for either of them. In fact with our second, I was on the mini-pill and still nursing. I have PCOS, but we’d never had troubles conceiving until this year. I had a CP in January, and then again in March. I got pregnant with a genetically normal girl in April. We were delighted – saw the heartbeat and she was growing on schedule and ended up with a missed miscarriage at almost 11 weeks. She stopped developing at 8 weeks 4 days. Devastated, it took 8 weeks after the D&C for my HCG to drop under 10. We were so excited to find out that I was pregnant again a week ago – only to be losing this one too. Anyway, thank you for all of this information. And for helping me to know I’m not alone.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      April,

      I’m deeply sorry to hear of your losses, it is incredibly difficult. Have you had any blood testing done? You are not alone. I felt very alone until I posted this blog. I knew of 2 other women who had been through something similar and now I talk to women all over the world who are going through the same thing. While it is incredibly sad, it also helps, somehow. Please keep me posted on your progress.

      A

  10. Kasey says:

    Crying. Thank you. I’m on my 5th loss today. Not sure if my eggs are just not good, can’t afford IVF, and I have endometriosis. Have yet to find a doctor that can help. It’s so draining to go through loss so often, especially after feeling those pregnancy symptoms. Thank you so much for posting your personal journey. I’m wondering what tests to order and where to get them done. Very difficult thing. I don’t think anything can fill the place in my heart that I’ve reserved for this baby. Thank you everyone for sharing. It’s wonderful when women can lift one-another up and give hope.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Hi Kasey,

      I’m so sorry for your losses. It’s horrific to have to go through that over and over. I posted a list of tests here. Many are ones that can be easily run in a regular lab like Quest and LabCorp. There are some more specialized tests that are run through MILab in Chicago. There is a link in the post. I hope you find that helpful.

      Best of luck and keep us posted! I hope your next pregnancy brings a baby into your arms.

      A

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