Last week I picked up my last box of progesterone suppositories for this pregnancy. One way or another, there is a conclusion to at least part of this process that is becoming visible. Clearly visible, countable now, two at a time, if I would count, in the ever-diminishing number of suppositories left in the little white box. Dr.Best thinks I could've halved the dose starting this week, but the extent to which I am apparently willing to live dangerously is skipping this morning's dose. I am going back to two doses a day tomorrow, but will skip a dose here and there if it's more convenient from now on.
What is weird is that this may be the calmest, or most detached, I have ever been during a pregnancy. I can actually go for long stretches of time without thinking about it, without even being aware of it. Every time before this time there was always this soundtrack, this awareness, due, I think, to the brief roller coaster ride that was my first pregnancy. This time, there are long stretches without.
It's not like I go on for days without remembering. I am not even sure there are stretches of uninterrupted hours. I know every time I go to the bathroom, and I check the toilet paper, yes I do. I know when I am getting dressed, although all of the pants I was wearing in December still fit, and am I ever grateful for that. I know, too, obviously, when it's progesterone time. I know when I am hungry, and oftentimes when I am otherwise inexplicably tired. Or nauseous. I started bringing a lemon to work for if I need to suck on it. But the last one I brought has been sitting on my desk for three days, perfectly whole-- I haven't been nauseous enough to need its services. But I remember when I see it. I don't always remember when I see obviously pregnant women, at least not right away.
When I first realized the difference in how I am moving through this pregnancy, my first instinct was to pat myself on the back-- way to go in holding off teh crazy. My second was to call it a detachment and to wonder how healthy it was, and to promptly decide that I cared more about surviving than about healthy right at the moment. But then it occurred to me that the place of the constant soundtrack, constant awareness? That place is taken by the one about how my son is dead. Truthfully, I can probably find moments when I am not consciously aware of that soundtrack either, but these are rare and far between, and they have to require my full mental capacity. So the times I am actually teaching, in front of the class, I am mostly fully in the moment (mostly because the time we were talking about that miscarriage paper from a few weeks back clearly doesn't count). Will it always be like this? I seem used to this soundtrack now, and am not so sure I want to hear that it goes away.
I am not sure whether the upshot of the above is still me bragging about how I am rocking the unawareness thing, or just some musings. But if I was bragging, I should've really done it sometime before today. Because today, right around the time I was supposed to be leaving my office to go teach my section, I got hit with some nasty gastrointestinal distress. I was late to my class, and on the way I recalled similarly thorough episodes shortly before the onset of labor with both of my children as well as right before my miscarriage started to make itself noticed. And so it began-- working myself into frenzy over whether this pregnancy was going to prove another fool's errand.
Remarkable thing was that I still managed to not think about the pregnancy for the duration of my class. After it was over, though, and after I nearly gave myself whiplash thinking about whether to call or not, I called and asked to come in for the first doppler listen of this go-round. Result: audible heart beat heard, somewhere between 160 and 170, and one symptom of doom and gloom, now with much less predictive value. The nice nurse practitioner working triage today freaked me right out by talking about "[my] baby." I didn't correct her, but let me tell you I was not exactly on board with that designation.
It has not escaped my attention that the freakout followed fairly closely my experimental no morning progesterone protocol. I am, however, tempted to declare any connection between the two events to be purely coincidental and in no way causal.