26 Oct 2017

Life really does take over sometimes...

How long has it been? Too long!

Well…what has lead to the delay…at first it was because I went on holiday, a lovely two week cruise to Greece, Italy, Croatia & Montenegro…and when I got back I delayed posting about it because just two weeks later I was heading to my first cross stitching retreat so thought I would blog about both on my return…and then I lost my stitchy bug for a couple of weeks and when it came back I was stitching – I have even managed a small finish and done some stitching on bigger projects….and then…I was feeling under the weather, I was quite fatigued – and any of you who have followed this blog for a while will know that I have Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and you can suffer with fatigue quite a lot. Since I have been on my meds it has lessened but I have been the worst patient this year and put the fatigue down to that and told myself to start back on taking my medication regularly – ideally before my next hospital appointment where I could be a great example of a good patient. However, I was having nausea too and the thought of swapping the RA side effects for the hideous medication side effects meant I thought I would tough it out because…I also had some bloating (not just period bloating) but the kind that I had when I had an ovarian cyst and so I was wondering if I had another one…then I had sore boobs and cramping for about three weeks with no period and that’s when I knew I must be starting the menopause! My mother started in her late 30s so it is not so unusual.

So before I just started back on my meds (I hadn’t taken them for a good 6 months), I thought I should make sure that it wasn’t menopause symptoms. How do you do that? You eliminate all other causes of the symptoms. So fatigue, nausea, bloating, cramping, sore boobs….hmmmm….any ideas?
Well….I do know that these symptoms can all be a sign of pregnancy too…however, I am overweight, over 40, I have been told in the past that I would not conceive without medical intervention, I have only one ovary remaining since the cyst and that ovary is polysystic…so that is definitely not an option…but…the brain works in mysterious ways and once I get the idea into my mind I have to take the test, it used to happen when I was younger, the only way to get the idea out of my head was to take the test and it would be negative every time and I’d then get on with eliminating more possibilities.

Well…I walked to a nearby shop during my break at lunchtime and they sell tests, so I grabbed one and went back to work…peed on the stick…waited for it to be negative and then…I was sat open mouthed, pulse racing, sweat across my brow as the test came back positive! Luckily it was a two pack so I could take the second one and prove it was a false positive….the second test was also positive! I immediately texted my sister saying OMG! What does this mean? (she has three kids) and I also texted my boyfriend (another long story), after returning to my desk I began googling causes of a false positive on a pregnancy test….menopause (highly likely), Ovarian tumour (definite possibility), immune system disease (RA!) and so yes, that provided me with some relief to know that all of those options could be the cause. I had spent the last 20 years coming to terms with not having children so that was a very scary thought indeed.

My nest step was to take some more tests and by Friday morning (4 tests down – all positive), I ran the doctor – but the way it works where I live is to get a dr’s appointment you need to phone at a certain time of day, then get interrogated by the self-important receptionist, who then decides if you can have a call back from the locum doctor, you then answer the locum doctors questions and they decide whether or not to give you an appointment. Well I only managed to get to stage one where I speak to a receptionist who told me if 4 tests were positive then I probably am pregnant and need to see the midwife and fill in a form. Hmmm. I was not happy with this, but decided to fill in the form and my sister said I could book an early scan privately – not they aren’t that cheap but I thought it was a good idea as I could queue jump, in terms of then knowing it was menopausal or a tumour and so I booked one (had to wait three days) and filled in the midwife form as I knew I could cancel.
Fast forward to three days later and I am waiting for the early scan…I have had both external and internal scans as I had them when I had previous laparoscopy's etc. so I had managed to drink some water but then had to go. I got in there and told her my story and she said…none of those reasons mean you can’t be pregnant. Hmmmm. So I laid back and she checked from the outside – she said she couldn’t really see much but there was a sac there…wait what???!  So then she says she will have to do an internal one to get a better look, and that there is a sac there but quite often this can be from a chemical miscarriage etc. so I was OK and thought it has to be that then. So I am laying there staring off into the distance when she says…that there was a sac, fetal pole and something else…but it was all as it should be for someone approx. 7 weeks pregnant!

So….that happened! Much to my shock and that of my partner who was also not planning on children and well, we had only been together ten months at that point.

It has been quite an odd experience and I am currently 17 weeks and 5 days. I am not sure what is going on as I haven’t had an appointment since seeing the midwife just after 14 weeks…I have an appointment next week to hear the heartbeat (although I have seen it previously) and then two weeks after that is the anomaly scan and half way point. It is strange and I am still finding it all a little surreal and hard to believe. I hope everything is ok in there, but am not sure how I am supposed to know exactly. I have yet to start feeling anything (around 18-22 weeks on average for FTMS) and I am not really showing (due to being bigger to start off with) and I haven’t gained any weight. So basically it is a waiting game to see….I have had some tests and had the Nuchal Translucency test – and they have all been fine so far. So its just a matter of waiting for kicks, popping out and the 20 week scan.

So….that has been quite a roller coaster ride as me and my partner came to terms with the situation and what we were going to do – we had already decided we would move in with each other in a couple of years and use that time to save up to buy some where and for the interim, continue living with parents and having weekends away…but we have had to speed up that timeline and are in the process of buying a house. Another huge change! It will mean I will be living in a market town, and everything will be new to me so that’s going to be a learning curve with a new house, a new baby and a new town but that’s life!

And so at the risk of boring you even more…I shall end here and post later this evening with photos from my holiday, the stitch weekend, my finish and my wips….I definitely should have started this post with are you sitting comfortably…

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