Thursday, March 20, 2008

My Scientific Conclusions

Science is rational. Experiments are performed to gather numerical data from which relationships are derived, and conclusions are made. As my study shows above, beta patterns that follow the same past data equal predictable outcomes. My third beta went up from 68 to 145. Just like my IVF#1 ectopic went up on the third beta. So yes, it doubled, but if you connect the dots, all you get is a broken heart. 

So why do I still read through beta bulletin boards trying to find stories of success with low rising betas? What is it about humans that either need to torture ourselves or are innately hopeful? I've read about a zillion online posts with the same desperate plea of finding hope in low rising betas. I tend now to just skip to the last post where I inevitably find the "So sorry" because the person's story always ends in ectopic or miscarriage. Sure, there were a handful with the success stories of a vanishing twin or just slow rise that made it to a heartbeat, but those posts also tend to stop before really knowing if they made it to a live baby. 

Right now, miracles and faith don't seem to work on my graph. I tried to fit them in but they certainly aren't data points, they are generally off the charts. So I find myself trying to stay one step ahead of this doomed outcome. I am constantly trying to reconfirm I am right all the time that this is going to end badly because it gives me some satisfaction. It makes me feel like I am in control and that I've won. Yes, it's like some arm wrestle between all this bad evidence against that sliver of unknown we call the future. I can somehow take all my bad evidence and slam the arm down saying that you can't fool me. I can predict the future and I can be ready for the news so you can't hurt me. 

This is opposite to my husbands outlook, who's graph would be quite different. He would have my beta points plotted and then say, "Waiting for next step." So simple, so clean, no mess, just very open to what the future brings. I am amazed by that. I can only be this Tasmanian devil of cynicism whirling around saying, "I told you so, I told you so. I knew this would never work." So what is the next step you ask? Monday we meet with our RE and I assume he'll do another beta and ultrasound. It's probably too early to see anything, so we probably won't see anything. Then he'll say come back in a couple days and we'll look again. Then we'll do another ultrasound because my betas will continue to rise and we will see nothing. Then I will have to make the hard choice of getting surgery and losing a tube or going through the hell of the methotrexate shot and wait endlessly for beta to get to zero, all the while worrying I might rupture. Did you notice? I'm doing it again. I am finding satisfaction in predicting the future because I can say, "I was right." 

So with all this confirmation of being "right," I still find myself hoping I am wrong. How much do I want to write "SUCKER" on my forehead whenever this feeling comes to me?! It's amazing what the heart keeps trying to do to make the story end happily, even an already broken heart.

P.S. I want to send out my most sincere thank you to all of your outpouring of support and sympathy. I know all of you really understand what this disappointment means and how hard it is to get through without some kind words. I also realized that writing is truly a good friend to me and that if I abandon that, I will be left with no spirit. It's hard enough to try to walk away from trying to have your own biological baby, that I think I must keep writing.


Melanie said...

I had to smile when I read your post because I too spent days going through every IVF post and forum and message board looking for the words "slow rising hcg" or "vanishing twin" or "miracles happen," etc. It's the need to protect yourself vs. the equally important need to have hope; to be one of "those" situations that defied the odds. I think being in limbo is the hardest part because you can't make plans or take next steps or feel any sense of control. How difficult to find center when you don't have any idea what the center is going to be.

Hang in there as best as possible. Know that you are being supported and held up.

Megz said...

I have been following you story and you and I are very similar in our negative way of thinking (protecting oneself). I just got through a horrifing heterotopic pg and do understand. I do not want to give false hope by no means. I did put you numbers in beta base and if you had them done every two days than I have your doubling time at 62.1 hrs. All the info I ever found was that a doubling time under 72 hours is ok. So, with that I will say, you protect yourself the best way you know how and I will pray for the positive for you.

Ahuva Batya said...

I've been thinking and checking here daily, waiting anxiously for word from you; I am glad you see the value of your writing, which is so beautiful, expressive, and sincere, and that you will not turn away from it in a time of need. Thinking of you, hoping for the best, knowing that the odds are against us.

alicia said...

I am so glad you are continuing to write. I understand your arm wrestle too. Control is something I am constantly looking to obtain during IF. I end up having panic attacks and huge anxiety issues over trying to predict the future. I am trying to give up the control, but that is so hard to do. Good luck with everything and all choices you have ahead of you. I'll be reading!

Fertilized said...

I am sending you warm thoughts and hugs. I wish I had a 1/3 of an ounce of your wonderful writing skills. I look forward to your posts

luna said...

you are just brilliant tabi. and you're right, there's no place on that graph for the plot points we encounter in our hearts. glad you're still at it. ~luna

Aurelia said...

Sweetheart, it's not over til it's over, so as hard as it is, don't predict disaster until there is one.

I've been there, more than a few times, and you can't live on fear, you'll just make yourself nuts.

Try to find something, ANYTHING, to distract yourself this weekend. TV, movies, getting out, retail therapy, whatever it takes. Just don't think about it as much as you can.

peesticksandstones said...

(Sigh) I could very well have written this post myself. This last time, I realized I had actually memorized all those desperate message board pleas regarding low betas from the LAST two times I hunted through them madly in the middle of the night looking for answers.

I wish so much I knew what to say to help. Waiting for the next blood draw, ultrasound and knowing you'll be back after that is such a unique kind of hell. I am so sorry you're going through this.

Anyway... it's not over 'till it's over. Hang in there -- you're totally not alone!

Duck said...

Hope is a hard addiction to break. I wish i had some wonder story to share with you.
Take Care of your self.