So after 7 hcg blood draws, 3 estradiol and progesterone checks, and two shipments of my blood to Dr. Kwak-Kim’s lab to check immune markers, it appears that this pregnancy is continuing as it should. My arms, however, look like they belong to a heroin addict. And since I’m already getting called out by people for looking “exhausted” (thank you for telling me!), I can’t imagine the unvoiced thoughts going on in people’s heads.
I, of course, don’t give a crap what they think, because I’m just ecstatic about the fact that this is the farthest we have ever gotten. But I still can’t help thinking that this pregnancy is going to just stop at any minute.
I question everything I do, wondering if that’s the thing that’s going to cause all this to end. Did I wait way too long to eat lunch yesterday? Did I take my morning pills a half hour too late? Was my morning walk too long? Too fast? Too jumpy? Did that hour stuck in traffic cause my cortisol to rise to dangerous levels? Is last night’s frozen yogurt freaking out my immune system. Should I not have eaten any bread? Did I just plop down on the couch too hard? I can’t help but scrutinize every little thing, thinking it’s the thing that’s going to send my current world crashing down around me.
Adding to all this pressure are the strict orders coming from the Dragon Lady. As soon as I notified her that I was pregnant, she had her receptionist email me a list of instructions of what not to do. No baths or hot tubs, no lifting 5 pounds or more, no heels, no vacuuming, no running or aerobics, no exposure to detergents or cleaning products, and no sex for 14 weeks. That last one is a big one. So big in fact, that she asked her receptionist to email me a second time just to reiterate: No sex!
I do feel pretty great about the fact that I have a legitimate excuse to not vacuum or clean the house for the next several months. Unfortunately, she said nothing about whether or not I should avoid doing dishes.
When I went for my first appointment with the Dragon Lady after the big news, she personally pummeled me with more orders.
DL: No mushroom. Mushroom cause inflammation
Me: Really? Wow, okay. (immediately started counting the number of times I’d had mushrooms in the last week)
DL: You no have sex! Sex make uterus contract. You tell him. No sex!
Me: You got it. I will let HIM know.
DL: I so worry you trip and fall. No trip and fall!
Me: I can’t remember the last time I tripped and fell. I’ll be fine
DL: (pointing to my flip flops laying in the corner) You wear flip flop, you fall all over. I worry.
And, of course, she wouldn’t be the Dragon Lady if she didn’t leave me with one final zinger.
DL: 309 high first beta. You stomach big. Embryo split, two babies in there.
Oh, Dragon Lady, here we go again.