Journey to motherhood 2 – there were two?

After the good news from the blood test, I was arranged to go for an ultrasound scan first before seeing SF Loh. I couldn’t get a meeting at the private suite because he was going away for a couple of weeks. In fact I was seeing him on the day before he left, at Clinic D, on 12th October.

Before the scan, I experienced spotting on and off. At one time, it happened after I went running. Loh had told me that I should only go for brisk walking or swimming, and no running. But I checked WebMD and it said that if I had been running regularly before pregnancy, I could still continue. Still the spotting got me worried and I wasn’t sure what was the cause but decided to stop running. In fact I got a little obsessed with googling pregnancy websites to find out the causes and wondered if I had a miscarriage. The chemical pregnancy last year had left me wondering if this pregnancy would be viable again. My husband told me i was worrying unnecessarily (自己吓自己). I should take it easy, it doesn’t matter what the result would be. The most important thing is to have a positive mindset and leaves the rest to God. Yeah, I know but in this age of google and smart phone, can you blame me for trying to get more info? I even wrote to Loh to let him know about the spotting, and he only replied that it would be a problem if it was persistent; and he didn’t seem to think it was alarming. Maybe he got used to my dramatic antics.

I tried to adopt the que sera sera mindset, but still was skeptical when I went for the scan. I prepared myself mentally that the pregnancy might not be viable. There were 2 technicians in the room this time. One of them put the probe on my tummy, and pointed out there was a heartbeat, and there might be another one. The doubter here asked “really?” She then did a vaginal scan to check again, and true enough the other heartbeat was detected. This second fetus was smaller in development compared to the first: 5 weeks vs 6 weeks. But my husband was ecstatic. After we received the pictures of the fetuses from the technician, he took a picture of them using his iPhone and sent it to his parents. Unbeknown to me, he had alerted them of the positive blood test and the scan that day, I was like, “why do you have to tell them when it’s still early stage?” He didn’t see why not, especially since they are dying for a grandchild. So I made my mother-in-law promised not to tell any one else.

As usual consultation didn’t start on time. Apparently Loh was busy in the op theatre, and hadn’t even seen any patients at the clinic. When we finally saw him coming to the clinic, he was still in scrubs. But he didn’t stay long, off he went to the IVF center. When he came back, he saw us and came over to say hello. I said to him, “we’re waiting for you, are you ready?” To that, he slumped to the side of the chair and sighed, “no energy left!” That’s why you should exercise, that will help build your stamina. I remember during one embryo transplant procedure in early May, I told him I had been training for the 12km Passion Run, and wanted to know if I could continue with my training. He commented, “run? Even 100 meters, I also drive.” Alamak! He told us his daughter was ranked 4th in the nation-wide 12km race, and I could run with her at the end of the year but I had to stop training then. So there went my registration fee down the drain. Anyway I certainly don’t want to run with his daughter end of the year (think he was referring to the Standard Chartered race), ‘cos that will mean I’m not pregnant then.

When I finally saw Loh (moving between 2 consultation rooms), he took a look at the result and commented this was good news, but told me not to tell the whole world about it. (Too late, the in-laws already knew.) He was a little concerned that one of the fetuses was smaller in size, and apparently wanted to take a conservative approach. I thought the smaller one could be the result of natural conception, and suggested that perhaps we should get a discount from the IVF treatment. I asked Loh about exercise again, since I had mainly been walking so far and I thought I could run again. Besides despite the spotting, I had twins! But he reiterated that I should stick to walking and swimming. I told him WebMD had different view, like running was ok if I had run regularly before pregnancy. He got a little fed up, “you don’t listen to me. Anyway you can do whatever you like, it’s up to you.” Ok, my fault for pitting him against WedMD.

Loh asked me if I wanted to do the Down Syndrome test for the 2 fetuses. I told him my husband and I would accept however the babies turn out. But I thought I should still have a discussion with my husband regarding the test, and so the option lied with us. Anyway before I left, Loh told me he was happy for me. Thank you, I guess my earlier faux pas was forgiven.

My husband did some research and calculation using Bayes Theorem and found that the Down Syndrome test has relatively high chance of getting a false positive result. He concluded that there was no point doing it, especially since there was risk to the fetuses.

(Side note: a day after the consultation, I sent Loh an article of an American woman who participated in the Chicago marathon even though she was heavily pregnant. In fact she delivered a few hours after she finished the race. Loh replied, “Hello! Not IVF, not twins.”)

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