Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Feeling Too Good to be Pregnant? (Oh, and I Might Lose My Job.)

I’ve done 5 ART cycles before (4 IVFs, one FET), and I’ve gotten pregnant three of those tries. And I have ALWAYS felt like crap. Crappy when I was pregnant. Crappy when I wasn’t. I’ve never kept a symptom log or anything like that, so I’m not really sure what symptoms came with what results. But I do know that sometimes my bad symptoms stopped abruptly, and it seemed that that corresponded with the decline of the embryo.

Here’s the thing: I feel really good. Not completely pain-free, mind you, I still have some cramps and twinges. But I feel strong, clear-headed, and energetic.

This worries me.

Here is a list of what I have always thought were my pregnancy symptoms:

Tender breasts

In fact, the insomnia and tender breasts have been my most reliable symptoms. After my FET last year, which was my last pregnancy, I had insomnia and very sore breasts for days. Then I tested positive, but it was a very faint line. I knew it might not last, but hoped for the best. Then one night, before I even had my beta, I slept like a baby, and when I woke up my breasts didn’t hurt (they always hurt the worst when I’m getting up after lying down for a long time). And I knew that my embryo probably had died. And I was right.

Now? No such symptoms. Nada. I’m a bit fussy at night, but I think it’s more due to stress and worrying than anything else. And I’m having some mild occasional cramping, but nothing serious. Even my lower back pain seems to have disappeared. But most upsetting—my boobs feel fine, normal, not a hint of soreness. (And yes, I’m constantly feeling myself up to check.)

Does this mean I’m not pregnant? Does it mean it didn’t work? Or were all those symptoms just symptoms of my impending PMS? Were they never pregnancy symptoms in the first place? Does a healthy pregnancy feel different from an unhealthy one?

Or maybe this is all just because I’m so much healthier than I was a year ago. Or maybe, though this seems a stretch, this is all because I did a cycle with lupron? Does lupron change things that much?

I’m not going to lie—I’m going to be pretty devastated if this didn’t work.

On a wholly unrelated note (related only in the sense of can-you-believe-this-fucking-timing?), I might lose my job before October. Our office is conducting massive layoffs—as many as 20 attorneys out of 200. And while I have put a lot of years into this job, I work in a very exclusive division in which I’m the baby. So odds are that if my division has to lose one position, it’s going to be me.

This is a threat that’s been hanging over my head for more than 6 months. It’s so upsetting to me that I haven’t even wanted to mention it to you. In May, our union voted to give up our 4% pay increases and 2% bonuses for next year to prevent them from laying off 12 attorneys. Now, just a few short months later, the government is back for more.

This is a shitty fucking time to be looking for a job. The only people in the area hiring are the Feds, and it can take more than a year to get into one of those jobs even after you’ve been selected (which takes forever too).

And this isn’t such a great time for me, either. Can you imaging job hunting pregnant? Losing all your saved-up maternity leave? Or going into a job knowing you need to do more IVF—with the inconsistent schedule, hormones, and everything else involved. The bottom line is that I feel ill-equipped to change positions now. I’m used to being able to come in late if I have doctor’s appointments, work from home if I need to. And I’m used to being able to wear sneakers all day (bad back), which I can’t do if I’m in a job where I’m in court all day. And I don’t want a high-stress job, but that seems to be all I’m qualified for.

On top of all that, it’s a real blow because I fucking LOVE my job. I had planned to stay in this job for the next 30 years, no joke. You give up a lot to work for the government—money, prestige, support staff, office supplies. The tradeoff is supposed to be job security.

So this sucks, big time.

But you see what I mean, right? This news alone should have me all physically fucked up—I don’t react well to stress, and this is as scary as it gets. But I feel okay. Calm. Capable. Energetic.

I’ll know about the pregnancy on Saturday.

I’ll know about the job by the end of the month.


annacyclopedia said...

Well, I don't have the experience to compare pregnancies, but I've heard many times that each pregnancy can be very different. So I am holding hope for you that all your good feelings are an omen of good news to come on Saturday and the beginning of something really wonderful for you.

As for the job stuff, that just sucks. I don't know what else to say other than I'm thinking of you, and sending secure job vibes your way with all my might.

Io said...

That has got to be really scary - I hope your division gets to keep everyone.
I wouldn't worry about the lack of symptoms - I'd like to just repeat everything Anna said!
Sending you all my love.

Kate said...

I hope things work out on both counts. Sounds like an awfully stressful time for you. As lo says, maybe your division won't have any layoffs. Or maybe they'll think so highly of you that someone else would get the boot instead.

Ms. J said...

I wholeheartedly agree that each pregnancy can be a very different experience. Mine have been, though I haven't gotten far in previous attempts.

As for your job ... I am gonna pray doubly hard that you are pregnant -- it will make it harder for them to get rid of you, since any lawyer worth her degree would immediately begin hinting at pregnancy discrimination and begin pondering filing a claim with the EEOC.

Rambler said...

It's hard not to examine all the symptoms and wonder if haveing one or NOT having one is a positve thing. Augh! You're only a few days away from beta so not too long to continue the waffling thoughts. :)

As for the job...that bites! I totally know what you mean about finding a job and a office you really enjoy and could see yourself at until retirement. Plus the flexible schedule sounds like an added bonus. I know you said you are the baby of your group but that's not always the position that goes. Sometimes is the person who has more vested in the company and makes more than you do!!

Rebeccah said...

I'm holding my breath for you on all fronts!!

luna said...

big week, big month! best of luck on all fronts.

Good Egg Hunting said...

Okay, I know it is crazy-making, but it seems like the bottom line is that there is no rhyme or reason when it comes to symptoms. Everyone is different, and every pregnancy is different. So try (I said try) not to read anything into your lack thereof. I have several friends who didn't feel a thing for months while pregnant, and everything I've felt has been extremely subtle, like if I didn't know I was pg I wouldn't necessarily believe it. I think you are doing a great job of managing all this stress...I will be keeping everything crossed for you that you get your BFP AND keep your job.

kate said...

woah. Big news on the job front. That SUCKS. RIght now, I seem to be feeling like the worst part of it is the not-knowing, but that's also because I am on the eve of my HSG, feeling every inch of the WHEN THE FUCK WILL THEY TELL ME SOMETHING GAAAAAAH phase, you know? I tend to project my feelings. I mean, not that I want devastating news (nor would I imagine do you), but shit. At least it would be news.

As for your lack of symptoms, I want to shit sunshine and tell you it'll all be okay, but the only thing I know about pregnancy symptoms (which is pounded into my head with every guilty episode of "I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant" that I watch) is that every pregnancy is different. Who knows? Maybe this time your body is all happy-jazzed at the professionally hired sperm. Maybe you've hit the threshold of things your body will allow itself to endure and it's retaliating by just not letting the symptoms come through. Maybe hope is winning this time, flooding your body with endorphins that subdue the exhaustion you've felt in the past.

At least that's what I really hope is true.

Count on me to be abiding with you through this Saturday (well, and always, too) as you find out the results of this cycle.

(Does it mean anything that my word verification is twinator-- twin senators? twin robots sent back from the future? Are there twins in there, great Word Verification Gods???)

Newt said...

And don't you love it when people tell you to relax for the sake of the cycle? Oh, if only.

It's the helplessness that's so awful, isn't it? You just have no control over either situation, and it's waiting and worrying and what the hell good does that do anybody anyway?

Keeping all fingers and toes crossed for you on both counts. I can't do much, but I hope it helps to have some company while you wait.

Ally said...

I like the idea that, since you feel fantastic right now, this is an awesome sign of a fabulously healthy, normal 9 month pregnancy ahead. This is where I am putting my money and my energy, friend.

As for the job, I am so sorry. I will wish and hope that all is well and stays well in that arena for you.

Shinejil said...

Okay, this is just my experience but with the ectopic--major symptoms; with the healthy pregnancy--diminishing symptoms and the ones that stuck around were identical to the warm-up to my period. So I think these things can vary from pregnancy to pregnancy. And with the new protocol and your improved health, it may be that you're just feeling better in general.

I'll be cheering for you on Saturday.

The job stuff is fucking awful. It just sucks in terms of timing.

Malloryn said...

I really hope that in this case, feeling "different" is a good sign. I'm sorry to hear about the job stress too. That is a burden that you don't need right now. I hope that your division makes it through ok. *hugs*

peesticksandstones said...

Argh -- I remember playing this game with myself so many times, though I swear I really had NO distinctive symptoms when I was actually pregnant.

This time around, with a pregnancy that DID work out, I tried so hard to keep a mental tally in my head of how it felt so I'd know for next time, but shee-it. I forget already. Anyway, I will be thinking of you and crossing every finger and toe I can find!

Also wishing you all the best with the job situation. I actually endured the world's craziest, most woman-hating boss who threatened my job on numerous occasions throughout my pregnancy, but somehow managed to hang in there. And then HE got fired right before the kid was born. Hahahaha.

Take care, lady! I look forward to some damn good news from you soon.