Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Staving Off Potential Gender Disappointment?

Hubbs had a rough day today. He didn't want to get too in to detail, probably because he'd start crying again, but he apparently had a bout of sadness about Lumpy, and possibly about the new baby as well. I know from our talks after Lumpy died, that he really wanted a son. He mourned all of the things they would do together and I know now, a large part of him wants this baby to be a boy so he doesn't miss out on those things. 

Whenever the ladies on my birth boards would talk about gender disappointment, I would silently think to myself, "wtf, just be happy you have a baby at all, you ungrateful wench". I never understood it. I'm excited for this baby no matter what genitals it happens to have. I guess I didn't really think about the possibility of Hubbs having gender disappointment. We're so early in this pregnancy and have a long way to go before we can find out what it is, but now I'm wondering if we should be team green. If we wait till birth, Hubbs will be so thrilled that there is a baby, that he'll forget to be sad if it doesn't have a penis.

Perhaps it would be better to know early and that way he can mentally prepare himself for another girl? I don't want him to feel like I'm trivializing his feelings... but come on, at least we get to have another baby! Why should it matter what sex is it? I don't get it. If it's not a boy it's his fault anyway, he should have had a long chat with his sperm and only pep talked the boy ones. Hopefully we can talk it over and make him feel better about everything.  

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas Stockings

Last year, we announced our pregnancy just after Thanksgiving with a little Christmas Stocking photo. It's a little weird this year knowing there really should be 5 stockings hanging up instead of 4. (Yes, the dog gets his own stocking too, obviously for when Santa Paws comes, duh). If all goes swimmingly, next year again there will be 5.

We also had the stunning realization that I will have been pregnant in 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016. Holy hell. Making babies takes a lot of time! Hubbs and I are both really excited for this last baby adventure and while there are the typical pregnancy nerves, we are optimistic and hopeful.

I still have about 3 weeks before my first OB visit. Interestingly, my symptoms have been completely different from the first 2 so far. I'm not sure if it's because this is my first pregnancy after my c-section or what, but more lower back pain and less round ligament pain. I had terrible headaches the first few weeks with 1 and 2, but not this time so far. There's still plenty of time for awful symptoms to pop up, I think I'll try to enjoy the peace and quiet for now though.

Merry Christmas! If you don't celebrate Christmas, I don't give a hoot, have a Happy, Joyous, Merry, whatever adjective Christmas Day anyway, don't be a dick!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Definitely Pregnant

Digitals make everything so nice and clear, no squinters here!


I couldn't sleep, so I got up and prepped Hubbs' Christmas Eve Eve present. Now I wait for him to get home from work. I feel so sneaky!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

It's a Christmas Rainbow!!

Sure today was snowy, and rainy, and cloudy, and gross, but there's a rainbow on the horizon!!

It's faint, but it's there, and as any ttc pro can tell you, a line is a line! It was in the middle of the day only after about a 3 hour hold. Yes, that is a bathroom stall at my work because I just couldn't wait any longer and bought a test on my lunch break.


I have a sneaky plan all set up to tell Hubbs tomorrow morning after I confirm with a digital. I'm going to slip the test and a 0-3 month sized batman onesie I picked up today in here.


It says To: Daddy, From: ?? Bah I'm so excited. He'll probably get home from work around 7am, so hopefully there's enough time to poas and drop it in there to hand to him and say something all causal like "Santa dropped this off for you". 

It was all very confusing because I had some spotting very briefly yesterday, but it must have just been some leftover implantation spotting or something. I kept feeling like AF was coming, but I'd had this sneaking suspicion for weeks now that I just might be pregnant. I've got skills.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Checking In

Wow, I really sucked at blogging for the last two months. I'd like to say that it's because exciting and magical things are happening, but that is not the case. I think it's a combination of being too busy, lazy, and overall blah to do any blogging.

My life is boring at the moment. Work is the same, although in October, I secured myself a monthly performance-based bonus, then starting this month, I also scored a little hourly bump as well, so that was nice. It definitely makes you feel appreciated and important when co-workers complain to management that they need a raise and are handed a print-out of job listings... yes, that happened.

Ducky is doing amazingly well. She says so many words and almost full sentences. She loves coloring and painting and all things art. She is very demanding about pre-bedtime cuddles and gets more opinionated and yet adorable every day.

Hubbs started a new job, it's night shift, and long hours, so I only see him for a few minutes before I go to work, when he gets home to go to bed. We do usually have time to have dinner together as a family though before he heads out, so that's nice. He wanted to complain about the hours, but getting a paycheck for one week's work that is the equivalent of mine for 2 weeks makes it worth it in his eyes.

I was going to go back to school, but there's a small snafu with my grant and I'm not sure that's going to happen anymore. I'm registered for classes, they start in about 2 weeks, but the powers that be are still deciding. Hopefully I should hear by next week.

Now that it's been the medically recommended time-frame, we are TTC again. It's surprisingly difficult timing things appropriately when you don't see each other that often. Coming up on CD 30 now. Somewhere in the next 2-5 days AF will probably show up and shatter my dreams until next cycle when we start all over again. I haven't been temping regularly, but will try to be more diligent. I'd forgotten how frustrating everything was. Trying to guess when the big O happens and was that twinge possibly something good? My cycles and everything definitely seem different from having my C-Section. I'm not sure if that's common or not, but things definitely seem out of whack. It'll take a few more months I'm sure before I know what's normal and what's not.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Sabotage

I've been sabotaging my weight loss all month.  I'm not sure what's wrong with me.  The food I'm cheating with isn't even good, I just shovel it in my face and regret it afterwards. 

I talked to my therapist about it yesterday.  I think part of me is afraid to lose the weight. I've been fat for so long, it's just been easier that way.

This morning I resisted the temptation of bad foods. I think I'll just start telling myself that I don't need that.  I might want it,  but I don't need it.  If I don't start today,  I'll look back weeks,  months from now and wish I'd started today. I'm going to take it one day, one meal,  one snack at a time.  Be good,  eat the things that fit in to my macros and if I slip up,  don't throw the rest of the day away,  just start again at the next meal/snack. I have control. I need to make the conscious decision to choose better foods.

35 more lbs to my first goal, which is a lot less than the 50 lbs it was just last month. I can do this.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Cheating

I made the mistake of getting popcorn at the movies today.  Hubbs was all "oh,  it won't be that bad,  just get a small and don't eat any other carbs for the day". While I was shoveling it in my face in the darkness of the theater, it was ok,  not good, not bad, just there.  Afterwards though, in the light of day,  I felt so incredibly nauseated.  I didn't even have room for dinner,  I just felt so gross. 
Lesson learned.  Do not cheat wirth carbs.

I also hadn't weighed myself since Wednesday because I was being naughty and weighing myself every day after the week 2 miserable 1lb loss... I was stupid and decided to weigh myself tonight.  Ugh.  Bad idea. Definitely not going to count it though until the official weigh in on Monday. 

In brighter news,  I did start learning how to crochet today.  I have 3 little flowers and 4 pathetic,  uneven squares to show efforts. Flowers are definitely easier,  I suck at counting my stitches. It's just day one though,  so hoping to get better with time and practice. 

Friday, October 2, 2015

Crochet

I've decided I'm going to try to learn how to crochet.  I had a friend who taught me how to knit in high school, it's similar right?  That was many many years ago,  but I'm good at following directions.  I think one of those little starter books,  supplies, and YouTube videos will guide me just fine. 

I definitely spent to much time on Pinterest pinning adorable things I can learn to make.  Maybe I'll get super fancy down the road and learn to spin Thor's wool into yarn. Getting all ambitious up in here.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Cake Month and Keto

Well today starts my favorite month. It's birthday month (aka cake month), Halloween, the delightful crisp air with a hint of magic, the trees start to change color and everything just seems homey.
In a span of 5 weeks, our combined families have 6 birthdays, hence calling it cake month. This year will be tricky though, because Hubbs and I are so very low carb now. We're thinking about cheating with some low-carb cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory, but we'll see if it pans out. We'll forego trick-or-treating and handing out candy because the temptation will be pretty great. I think I'll still like this month though.

It's only been 2.5 weeks since we've started the low-carb, high-fat revolution in our house, and I have to say I've been impressed so far. It's really not that hard to hit the daily macros and I definitely don't feel hungry all the time. The scale shows numbers that aren't terrifying. I was at my heaviest probably right before I got pregnant with Ducky, and as of today, I am 30lbs down from that. Over around 13 of which has come off in the last 2.5 weeks. It's still going to be a while before I hit that 50lb goal, but 37 lbs seems more doable than 50 lbs. Maybe after all of these years I just needed to find the proper motivation to lose the weight. Babies are great motivators.

In other news, this month I find out if I got in to the college I applied to for the winter semester. (fingers crossed), and Hubbs has many new job possibilities on the horizon. He's testing for two different jobs next week that will definitely be a big step up for him, so I am nervous and excited, but I'm sure he will do well. The man got a 1560 on his SATs, I'm sure these tests are a cake-walk compared to that.

This month may also be a little difficult. It's almost 5 months since Lumpy passed away and almost a year since I got pregnant with him. I'm doing better with therapy and learning to express my feelings and learning to accept that emotions are ok. Sometimes, when you're hurt for a long time, you build up a huge wall to stop the bad feelings from coming in, but that wall also stops the healing feelings from coming out. I've been shielding myself from pain for so long that it's hard to allow myself to feel it and show that vulnerability, but I'm trying. I'm practicing actually letting the tears come instead of stopping them in their tracks.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Keto Week 2 Weigh In

I only lost one pound this week, which I guess I can't be too sad about. It's a decent average for most people, and really isn't bad considering that most people stall on week 2 and don't lose anything. Tiny victory for me, still hoping next week I put up bigger numbers though. If I only lose one pound a week, that means we have to wait a year before we try for our rainbow baby.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Week 1 Keto Weigh In

Well trust readers, I weighed in today. I'm sure a good majority of the weight was in water, but in one week of eating Keto, I'm down 8.5 lbs! Eeeek! At this point, I've lost all of the baby weight and am nearing my lowest pre-pregnancy Primal/Paleo weight! Hurray for me!
I thought I was a little crazy for trying to give up the delicious carbs cold turkey, but it really hasn't been terrible so far. I'm conscious to read labels before I buy/eat anything, and make sure that the macro ratios are good. I'm feeling good, feeling excited, and looking forward to sharing in the rest of this weight-loss journey with you guys.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Lazy Rainy Day Picture Post

Today I am feeling lazy and sleepy. It could be a combination of going to bed too late last night and keto flu. Either way, here are some lazy pictures of mountains and clouds and pretty things from the rainy days we've been having here.



Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Bob Ross and Crafty Things

I'm not sure what it is about him. Perhaps it's his soothing voice, or the way he delicately explains what he's doing with each brush-stroke or that he says reassuring things like "you have to make the big decision here" and "it's your world, you can put whatever you like in it", but I am just transfixed. If you don't know who Bob Ross is, he had a public access painting show called "The Joy of Painting" and most (if not all) of the episodes are on YouTube. Here's one from this week that wowed me.

In trying to think of ways to otherwise preoccupy myself other than eating, I think painting might be a good one. Obviously it's not very practical for when at work, but I think it's something I would like to do none the less. I've also picked out a few coloring books for adults and colored pencils that I think I'll take quick little breaks with here and there when I feel the urge to eat. Art has always relaxed me, even though I'm not good at it. Pretty much any activity that requires the use of my hands in a craft-type fashion.

I built the rabbit hutch, I've put puzzles together, sewed a plush companion cube and pair of fuzzy dice companion cubes, in college I built beer pong tables. I like to create things with my hands, which is why for a while there, I dabbled in welding as a potential profession. The fumes and hot slag in your eyes though really cuts down on the enjoyment of joining metals together. Crafty creations I think is the general area in which I will choose to apply my free time. I think that's why I enjoy tending to my succulents as well. I cut, propagate, arrange, and fiddle with all of my little succulent plants. I started out with 6 total, just in the small pots, and have multiplied that several times over now. Hell, I turned one aloe plant into at least 20, sure they're not huge yet, but they are distinct separate plants (and great for sunburn too).

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Willpower

I'm sure it's because it's only day two of our "lifestyle change" and I've got a motivational high going on but I've resisted both free donuts at the office and my favorite pizza food truck parked outdide. I am seriously so proud of myself. Now I just need to keep it up for tomorrow and the day after that and so on and so forth. 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Keto Day 1

Well, I've made it through the first day of Keto. It had some advantages in that I felt nauseated all day, left work early, and didn't eat anything until around 1pm.
My goal is to eat 5% carbs, 20% protein and 75% fat. I'd say I got pretty close to that today.

 
This is just the first step in another very long journey, but I am hopeful and feeling positive, which is definitely a good thing. I stocked up on Primalized Keto goodies on my way home and definitely have enough in the snack department that I won't feel like I'm "dieting" while at work. 
I'm still supposed to be thinking up different options for when I feel the need to comfort stuff my face with terrible food. I do feel good though that I resisted the urge today to eat the candy bar still in my work desk, or swing by Little Caesar's on my way home and demolish an entire pizza by myself. I know that the first few weeks are always the hardest until you get in to the groove of everything. I really hope I can stick to it. 

When Hubbs and I started Primal (aka Paleo with dairy) last year, we were off to a pretty good start. Both of us have just stalled though. Me through not following the rules, and him just because I think he's close enough to his goal weight that it's harder for it to come off now. 

Last year, I weighed 299 lbs, even after a pregnancy, I managed to get down to 269 lbs at my lowest. Since Lumpy died and I shoveled whatever food I could find in to my face, I've gained back some and currently weigh 281 lbs. This leaves me with about 100 to go. Remember though, I'm going to try to relish the small victories, and as long as the number consistently goes down, I'll be happy. I think I'll celebrate every 10lbs as a milestone and share with all of you in my small victories. 

I was thinking about posting a before picture (which I did take today), but I'm going to wait until there is some progress before posting one. It's always nice to have a side-by-side comparison. 

Here's the progress from when we did Primal. As you can see, he got way thinner than I did. His loss covers 3 months, mine is a year. I got pregnant about 3 months in, so he started taking pictures alone.


Sunday, September 13, 2015

Goals and Rewards

Well AF has arrived yet again and I am definitely not pregnant. Oe thing that got me thinking is that even though we've given ourselves a time-frame for baby #3, that perhaps we should wait until I'm at a healthier weight. We've been planning for a few weeks to switch from a Primal diet, to a Keto diet. Primal was good, Hubbs had great results, but my loss was significantly slower. Over the last 2 weeks or so, I've gained quite a bit back.
Starting tomorrow, we are moving to a primal diet, with keto ratios. It's going to be hard, and but hopefully I can stick to it. I'm just tired of being huge and miserable. I plan on taking some before pics tomorrow, but I'll wait until there's an after to share them.
So the goal is that once I've lost 50lbs, we can start trying to have another baby. I'd lost 29 from when we'd started Primal, but since Lumpy died, I've gained 14 back. I have a lot more than 50 to lose based on my height/frame/etc, but 50 will be the halfway point and I hope to be significantly healthier once I get there.
Good luck to us!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Negative

I took a pregnancy test for funsies today. I don't have many of my typical pregnancy symptoms, but I've just been feeling off. AF isn't due for another few days, so it easily could have been a false negative from testing too early.

I have to admit though, I was really disappointed that it was negative. As I was waiting for the window to display the results, I was saying to myself "It's going to be negative, and that's ok". I still just felt kind of crushed when it actually was.

A few years ago when Hubbs and I were trying so hard and getting negatives month after month, you start to dread even POAS because you just know it's going to be negative even though you want that positive so badly.

I know that I tested early, but I really was hoping for a BFP. AF is due Saturday, so I'll just wait until then, or knowing my luck, it will start in about 30 mins, which always seems to happen when I bother taking a test.

Going to have to wait a little longer for our Rainbow.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Random Bouts of Sadness

Today marks four months since Lumpy passed away. I'm not sure if it's the anniversary or because lady time is due over the weekend, but I have been fighting back the tears all day. Luckily, work got busy enough that I was able to distract myself, but for the most part, today was really hard. Hoping for a slightly better tomorrow.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Ruminations on Vacations

My recent "vacation" definitely made me realize a few things...

1. Blogging on a phone sucks. 9/10 would not recommend.

2. Traveling anywhere, for any length of time, with a toddler is so tiring.

3. Non-baby-proofed grandparent's houses are a toddler death-trap. Practice hyper-vigilance.

4. Nothing is better than sleeping in your own bed after several days away from it.

5. Clouds during sunsets are pretty (Thanks to Hubbs for manning the camera while I drove).



Thursday, September 3, 2015

Vacation

Omg I'd typed this huge long draft on my phone and it didn't autosave. Lame.

I failed at blogging yesterday because we were in a huge rush after work to get on the road. We spent 6 hours driving down to my parents' house, which naturally, Ducky hated. She's normally so good if we leave right before her usual bedtime, but now that she's so routine-focused, I think it confused and angered her.

I will try my best to post while we're here. We're sticking around until Labor Day, so it might be a bit of a challenge. I'll make it work.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New Starts

I've mentioned this before, but I like the start of a new month. New week, new day, new year, any occasion to get a fresh start. With blogging it's because I inevitably failed to blog every day the month before and always promise to try to do better in this shiny new month.

Every day now I wake up and wonder if today is the day I'll feel less like that lady whose son died and more like myself. I hope that day comes, but it hasn't yet. It's been almost four months and I am amazed at how little time has gone by, but to me, it feels like so much time has gone by. I had a baby four months ago, my incision has healed nicely and thanks to my fat roll, you can't even see it. I feel it though. It's like a little itch that I can't scratch, a solemn reminder of the events that transpired.

Every once in a while, when Ducky does something new and adorable, it still makes me want to cry. I put on a brave face for her and give her a hug and stall my tears in their tracks. It makes me feel so guilty that seeing her thrive gives me pangs of sadness.

Hubbs and I have been talking about no longer actively stopping the potential for getting pregnant again (aka stopping birth control and just seeing what happens). We're going for it, it's exciting and scary, but hopefully it all works out. We decided to give ourselves four years after Ducky was born to have another child. We did that, but think it would be nice to actually be able to raise another one. We're sticking to the same timeline, so we have 2.5 years from now to have our last child.

Welcome to the new readers, hello to the long-time listeners. When I started this blog four years ago (Happy Belated Bloggiversary to me), I never imagined that I would be where I am now and experienced an insane roller-coaster of life in that short time. This blog is a little random and sometimes repetetive, now that it's no longer about infertility and more about life in general, it tends to jump around a bit. I hope that somewhere in the medley, you find a something that speaks to you, a common thread that we share. Welcome (and welcome back) to my corner of the land of IF and I hope you'll stick around and join in this journey with me.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Therapy

I have very limited experience with therapists. I went to one in college because my grades were low enough that it was a requirement to stay in school. It's just weird to me spilling your innermost thoughts and feelings to a complete stranger.

I decided to go this time around because I'm not sure if I'm handling things as well as I could, or should. I don't know how an average person should feel just 3 short months after a part of you dies. I'm not sure how well our first session went, it was more of an introductory get-to-know-you kind of thing where I blurted out all of the things that have happened to me over the years leading up to this moment.

Things I realized about myself (whether I was aware of them before today or not) during the session were :

1. The face I show the world and my true face are not the same.
2. I've spent a lot of my life being emotionally beaten down.
3. I have a problem expressing my feelings and emotions.
4. My personality is a tangle of contradictions. 

I'll be meeting with her for the next few months on a bi-weekly basis. I'm not sure what I'm hoping to get out of it. Maybe a sense of comfort in knowing that it's normal and ok to not be ok all of the time, and allow myself to ask for help. I'm big on being strong and not needing help. Emotions (like sadness) were a sign of weakness, needing help just proves that you're not strong enough. These are things that I need to get out of my stubborn head. 

I guess I can give myself a pat on the back for recognizing that getting through this is something that I cannot do on my own. It is ok to ask for help, it doesn't make you weak, if anything, it means you were strong enough take that first step towards getting better.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Handy Day

There I go again forgetting my blog exists. I've been pretty busy with work and building a little home for our future furry family member. It's been a long time since I got to play with power tools, so it was fun. There was a bit an trial and error as well as agony once I realized I purchased too few 1x2's, but overall, I am pleased with how it turned out.

I started with a pile of wood and supplies that cost around $40 and a used cage I got off of a Craigslist equivalent for $15.
Pile of Materials

I had planned on making the nesting box from Ana White. (Click here for plans). I tried to do the math to tweak the plan of what I wanted to add to it, but had to change my build plan a few times during assembly.

I assembled the frames for the sides/legs first, and went from there. Essentially, you make a sandwich around the vinyl lattice with the furring strips. 
Front View
You can see the ramp that leads in to the weather protection area, which will be filled with straw and other snuggle materials.
Side View
Once I built the modified nesting box, I realized with the way I'd constructed the sides of the base, that I wouldn't be able to attach it to the back. I had to tweak the plan from here, it took a big of finagling, but I think I came out of it all with a decent design. I decided to flip it and have it longer rather than taller, because the bunny will need more laying down room in that portion of the hutch.

Rear View
The back portion of the nest box has a hinge on the top and a lock on the bottom. It'll be easy to open and clean out.

It's a little smaller than recommended, the bunny will have a little over five square feet of living space, but will get plenty of exercise time outside of the hutch as well. All that's left now is to get the feeder and watering system in place, pick up some hay and straw, and go rescue our little friend from the shelter. Oh, and get the HOA to fix that stupid loose slat in our fence. They claim it will be done on Monday, I'm not convinced.

How about all of you? Any build or redesign projects not go quite according to plan but still wound up satisfied with the results? What did you try to build and what went wrong?

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Five Years

Tomorrow, Hubbs and I will have been married for five years. I look at our engagement picture that hangs on the wall in our office, and see bright, young, happy, optimistic faces. Granted, Hubbs and I were a bit older than some of the newlyweds around here, but still young.

Five years later we've journeyed through depression, infertility, anxiety, poverty, joy, heartbreak, growing-up, change, parenthood, and more. We've had days where we'd cry from laughing, and days where we'd laugh amidst tears of sadness. Through it all, I feel as though we are stronger than we ever were. As time passes, we learn from and grow with each other to strengthen our marriage and our family. We open the lines of communication and make an honest effort to empathize with and understand the other's feelings.

Often times, Hubbs and I marvel at the incredible series of events and coincidences in our separate lives that led us to each other. Call it fate, call it destiny, call it plain dumb luck, but it feels like the two of us were just meant to be. I couldn't have chosen a better husband and a better best friend. I couldn't have chosen a better father for our children.He has some of my weaknesses as strengths and I his. He and I, while not perfect, are perfect for each other.

A happy five years to us with hopes and wishes for many, many more. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Fights

Hubbs and I rarely fight, and when we do, it's because one of us was stupid and let something insignificant boil inside us for too long and it explodes briefly, then fades.

After five years of marriage, I'm not sure if that's a good or bad thing. The majority of the very few fights we've had over the years are something over very minor and we both act like adults and promise to fix whatever it is. For the most part, both of us wind up promising to actually talk about our feelings and stupid things like that.

What are some silly things that you've fought with someone about? For instance, I fight with my parents because they are convinced that Taylor Swift was on American Idol. I have shown them several bits of proof from the grand interwebs, and they, in their old age, are convinced that THE ENTIRE INTERNET is wrong.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Plans

I feel like I'm always making plans. Hubbs and I want to buy another house and convert our current home to a rental. We want to raise quail, chickens, rabbits, and possibly snails. We want to learn to garden and grow some of our own food. I applied to go back to school in the hopes of switching careers and doing something useful with my time. Hubbs and I always talk about what would happen if he got his promotion, or if I finally ever get mine. We make plans for retirement and vacations, plans for when Ducky is older.

I'm starting to wonder, in all this planning, am I forgetting about today? I keep thinking about plans for the weekend, what to cook for dinner tomorrow, when to go grocery shopping. Shouldn't I just stop and sit and enjoy what I'm doing now? I'm always thinking about what I should do next before I've even finished something.

Maybe I'll make a promise to myself, as I do pretty much every time the new month rolls around. I promise to take at least a moment, activity, meal, whatever, once a day and really just be present. Just enjoy (or not enjoy) what I'm doing, and focus solely on that and nothing else. Ideally, I would do this during some sort of family time with Ducky and Hubbs, but the day may not always work out that way. Spend the time, be present, do the thing. Maybe "do the thing" should just be my new motto.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Surgery Part 3

Had surgery on my right arm today, about a month after the left one, which was a month after my c-section. Really hoping I can stay out of ORs for a good long while now. Obviously, it's kind of annoying to type with one hand, so I'll take a break until I can type comfortably, which should be Monday.

Hopefully August's posts will be a little less depressing. Hubbs and I have our 5th anniversary next week, Ducky turns 1.5 next week, Hubbs and I have both applied for new jobs, I officially start my second job as a Notary Public, and I just might finally win employee of the month for once.

Thank you for sticking with me in July. I look forward to attempting to post every weekday in August, and I hope you'll come along for the ride.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Scars

Sometimes I'm glad I had to have an emergency C-section with Lumpy. I can look at my scar and remember that he was here, that he was real, and the last few months haven't been just a horrible dream.

I have pictures and little mementos here and there, but a scar is a permanent mark that shows the world that you were once in pain. Sure I have to lift up my little fat roll to see it so I'm the only person who ever will on a regular basis, but it is etched in my skin forever, just as my son will forever be in my heart.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Guilt

I did indeed stop by Lumpy's grave on Saturday. It made me sad but not in an overwhelmingly opressive way. I stood there thinking about him and how much time had been taken from us. Even though I know he's in a better place and not actually there,  not really, it felt weird leaving him. I kept thinking I should stay one more minute and them one minute more and so on. 

I feel a bit guilty now when Ducky does something adorable and new.  It's a bittersweet moment. I'm so glad that she's growing and learning and testing new sounds and abilities.  At the same time, I get a little pang of sadness knowing that it very well may be the last time I see a baby become a toddler and grow in to her own as a miniature,  very opinionated, person.

I sometimes dream that I'm nursing a baby.  When I wake up, I'm so sad that it wasn't real.  Ducky never got the hang of nursing and she was losing so much weight we had to give her high calorie formula every 2 hours for several months.  I had hoped that I'd be able to nurse Lumpy. My boobs definitely wanted to as well, it took almost 2 months to completely dry up.

I feel like I'm trapped in a weird place of mourning for the past, longing for the future, and just trying to make it through the present.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Graveside

I have only gone to my son's grave once since the funeral. After the headstone was put in, we went the next day to go check it out. Even though I pick up Hubbs at the cemetery, I haven't stopped. Sometimes I'll drive by the section where he's buried, but I keep driving. Tomorrow I have to head up that way, I'm taking my test to be a licensed notary public. I think I'm going to stop by and see his grave. It's still just such an odd thing to comprehend. Since Hubbs works at the cemetery, he swings by and makes sure Lumpy's headstone looks good and that it's always cleaned off. That was part of the decision to bury him there, so that Hubbs could look after him in a way.

Perhaps I just dislike the concept of graves in general. Even as Lumpy was dying and we were just talking to him, I told him we weren't going to be slaves to his grave. I just feel sorry for all of the people I see constantly visiting when I go to pick Hubbs up. Every holiday, every week, you see the same graves with new flowers or decorations. Believing what I do about the afterlife, I just can't see the point in it. My son is waiting for me in the great beyond and he wouldn't want me to dwell and linger on his body, when there is so much more to him than that.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Great Battle of Yesterday

The new Lord of Letters stands triumphant over its fallen enemy, leaving the poor mangled corpse of a once great public servant on the ground defeated, after what I can only assume was a great and terrible battle. 
Really they just installed a new mailbox and left the old one there so we could read our mailbox number off of it that corresponds to the number on the new one. I like my version of events better.

Monday, July 13, 2015

In Bed

It's an interesting thing that when I'm out in the world I put on a brave face and for the most part am able to forget my sadness. I distract myself at work and keep myself busy. When I'm home, I play and cuddle with Ducky and forget about the world. 

When I lay in bed though and try to fall asleep, all of my walls crumble and the sadness finds its way back to me. I fully feel the loss of my adorable little baby boy.  Tears start to well in my eyes. I try to stop them but there's something about the comfort and safety of being in bed. I curl up with my four pillows and know that here I can let my emotions flow.  No one will know, it is a fluffy and comfy fortress of freedom where I don't have to be brave. 

Sometimes being brave is so very tiring. Part of me wants to stay here forever, but the majority of me knows that he wouldn't want me to wallow. The world keeps on turning and so too must I.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Office Supply Request

On Friday I made a request for an office supply that I never thought in a million years would be approved. Since I got re-promoted, I've definitely noticed an increased stress level, which apparently I hold in a knot just above my shoulder blade, to the left of my neck. For shits and giggles, I wrote an e-mail to our office manager for a neck massager. In the e-mail, I mentioned the stress knot and said, that it couldn't hurt to ask. She ran my request up the chain and the owners of the company approved it. I was floored. Now I'm not sure if I'm getting my own personal one, or if we're just getting one for office use, but I am excited. Goodbye stress knot.I'm not going to start asking for random things all willy-nilly, but every once in a while, go for it. You'll never get a yes if you never ask!

Friday, July 10, 2015

The Apocalypse

I realized today that your first real post-partum period is quite similar to a disaster movie's scenes involving mass looting, riots, and lawlessness surrounding a confirmed apocalypse.

Your uterus is like "fuck it, we're all gonna die, let's destroy everything, it's the end of the world aaaaahhhhhh"

Not to get all TMI up in here, but holy hell, I have double protection right now and fear every small movement and potential sneeze checking everything every 2 hours to make sure I'm not ruining my outfit.

Which did happen once, it was awful. Ahh, the joys of being a woman.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Fish as a Dish, Fish as a Fear

I am absolutely 100% terrified of fish. Anything much larger than your standard goldfish freaks me out. Even when they're dead, wrapped in plastic, and in the frozen food section, if it still has a head on it, I secretly believe it can come to life and kill me. I know it's stupid. Logically, I know it probably, most likely, really could never happen... but a tiny part of my brain is still convinced it can.

I bring this up because yesterday Hubbs caught a fish, his very first fish, and he was incredibly proud. His friend taught him how to gut and clean it (and for my sake, remove the head). His friend even kindly threw the head in the dumpster down the block instead of leaving it in our garbage can, where in the night, it could obviously make its way upstairs and into the bedroom to attack and try to eat me.

We baked it in the oven stuffed with slices of lime, butter, and just a dash of salt and pepper. Let me tell you, that brown trout was absolutely scrumptious. Next time, he's going to go catch some rainbow trout. I certainly welcome many more fresh caught headless fish into our home for delicious dinners.

I know the fish fear stems from my traumatic snorkeling expedition as a child, eventually it morphed into a fear of a majority of things that live in the ocean. Some part of me is even convinced that there's a secret trapdoor shark tank in every pool and one day someone will press the release button while I'm swimming. To this day I get freaked out and refuse to swim in a pool alone, no matter how shallow it is. It really seems quite pathetic now that I say that out loud. I'm weird I guess, and that's ok.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Work Stress and Wishes.

Two weeks ago I was recently re-promoted back up to my old job title. At first I dreaded being back to those job duties, but over the last few weeks I've grown to like it sometimes. 
I typically don't ever really feel stressed, I feel a sense of urgency relating to some tasks or duties, but I am not one to easily feel overwhelmed or freak out. 
I have noticed though that since I've been back, I have this terribly painful knot in the muscle just above my shoulder-blade and to the side of my neck. I'm sure sure if it's from wearing a sling for the last two weeks or having to awkwardly hold my healing arm at an unfamiliar angle. I suppose it could also be getting used to my new desk (next to a window! A WINDOW!). Technically I have my own little mini-office at the front of the building. It's quite nice. Hopefully it's not stress, but maybe it is. 

In other, probably TMI news, lady time has returned. I thought it had come back a month or so ago and I was definitely right. It's only been two months since I delivered, my OB recommended waiting at least that long before trying again, but said waiting six months would be ideal. Call us crazy, but considering the fact that since it usually takes us a long time of actually trying to even get pregnant, we're thinking of starting now. We're not trying to replace the baby we lost, because we love him and know we'll get to spend time with him in the afterlife, but lately I've had this strong feeling that we're supposed to have another child. If the OB doesn't see anything wrong with it, and we're willing to try, we're gonna go for it. I'm not going to bother temping and charting because both times we've gotten pregnant so far, it just happened naturally without much thought to it. I'll still keep track of my wildly irregularly timed cycles just to get a rough estimate of whether or not a pregnancy test is warranted, but nothing too in depth. Wish us luck!
 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Eating Primal

When we first moved in to our new house, Hubbs and I decided to act on our plan to live well and eat healthily. We did months of research and eventually decided that eating Primal would be a good idea. Primal is basically "Paleo with Dairy". I love dairy, and if I was going to give up my delicious carbs cold turkey, dairy was going to stay. No processed foods. No added sugar. Grass-fed and pastured meats. No corn. No wheat. No soy. Rice and potatoes are a "sometimes food". Eat good fats (avocado, bacon, butter, etc). Basically eat whole food whenever possible.  

We found a local farm and bought ourselves one half of a grass-fed cow and a new freezer to go with it, we switched from 1% to whole milk, only good oils like Olive and Avocado, we use a whole lot of butter (grass fed when we can find it), and eat bacon and eggs for breakfast. We're working in finding pastured eggs, but they're hard to find around here. It's also hard scanning through the cheese and yogurt shelves trying to find the high fat stuff, EVERYTHING is low fat and it is supremely annoying. (Hello Noosa yogurt and hello Kerrygold butter and cheese)

Hubbs is obsessed with  Mark's Daily Apple and I bought him the cookbook for Father's Day this year. Eating Primal took a bit of a backseat while I was pregnant with Lumpy, but now we're getting back in to the swing of things.

Giving up delicious things was difficult in the beginning, we started making substitutions here and there. When you start, you're hungry all the time and feel like you're starving. Eventually, your body gets used to the idea that it's supposed to burn fat for energy and goes to work. After a while, you don't even miss the foods you gave up.

Since we started last August, Hubbs has lost 30 lbs, and I have lost 27. Granted, we haven't started exercising at all yet, and I was pregnant for 9 months of that. Overall we're pretty pleased. Hubbs is getting close to his goal weight, and I still have a bit to go. When I was pregnant, I pretty much ditched the diet and was eating garbage, so I'm hoping the numbers will continue to go down now. It's not all about weight though, we just felt better. We had more energy and felt less weighed down. We stopped hitting the snooze button and it was great to see our month-to-month progress. I'm really excited to get back to it and finally start being active again (Hello Roller Derby, oh how I've missed you).

How about all of you, have you ever made any life-changes to try to eat more healthfully or start an exercise regimen? What worked for you? What did you hate? What did you love?

Monday, July 6, 2015

Slurpee Time

While I have given up sugar for the most part (Hubbs and I have gone back to eating Primal. It's Paleo, but with dairy)... this was the only thing that helped me make it through the incredibly slow and boring work day. I essentially had to look busy for the last 4 hours because there was literally nothing to do. Trust me, I checked. Luckily, the things that inhibited me from having work to do today will be done by the time I get in tomorrow morning, so I will be plenty busy then.


Just say yes to the Dr. Pepper Slurpee

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Yesterday

I was pretty sure that yesterday was going to be a hard day. Ducky kept me distracted for the majority of the day as she fussed over her fever and demanded extra cuddles with Mommy. Hubbs went to the family BBQ without us, and then we switched halfway through. I was distracted by the food and listening in on other people's conversations for a while. There were moments during the fireworks though, when it was quiet and no one was talking. I focused on the bright, explosive colors and the smell of smoke. I couldn't help but think how different this 4th of July should have been. Instead of being outside getting mauled by mosquitoes, I should have been inside making sure my baby was fed, happy, and not freaked out by the loud noises. If everything had gone according to plan, and we remained healthy during my pregnancy, he'd be just 2 weeks old now. In reality, he was born and died almost 2 months ago.

Only one person mentioned him. I don't know if it's because people think it would be too painful to bring up or if it's just an uncomfortable thing for them to talk about. I think back to the Infertility walk a few weeks ago, when one of my co-workers asked about Lumpy and genuinely wanted to know about him, it was so nice. If felt so good to share and talk about what an adorable little fighter he was. I miss him, but getting to share his memory kept him present in a way. I wish I could talk about him more, but I fear people don't want to hear it. 

Friday, July 3, 2015

Family Time

It was nice to spend some time together as a family on a weekday. Ducky spiked a fever last night, which had gone down, but came back in full force later in the day. Poor little girl was miserable. The on-call nurse just said to keep an eye on her and make sure she's hydrated and to call back if it gets to 105. That seems excessively high to me. If it doesn't go away in a few days we're supposed to make an appointment for her.

I had a little movie date with myself, something I like to do on occasion. I saw Tomorrowland, which is basically a prequel to Wall-e if you think about it. It was entertaining, but seeing it once is definitely enough.

I feel like tomorrow is going to be a weird day. One, being surrounded by extended family is always very taxing for me. I don't know if it's my anxiety or that I dislike being around strangers. I consider people I've only met once pretty much strangers. If I had my way I'd just sit in the corner and observe every family function I attend, but people insist on talking to me. Plus it's hard to wrangle my increasingly independent toddler. Two, tomorrow was Lumpy's due date. It's weird thinking that he was born almost two months ago. It will also be the first large family function since he died. I dread people asking about him and at the same time, I dread them pretending he didn't exist.

The 4th of July and fireworks are a fond memory for me. I spent the summers of my formative years at a sleep-away camp. Every Independence Day they'd sit us all on the beach on the lake and put on an impressive fireworks show from the other side of the lake. We'd shout Oooooh, Ahhhhh, Ohhhhh as a group, timed with the colorful bursts in the sky.

Hubbs mentioned today that fireworks are always awesome as you're a kid, but when you're an adult, if you've seen one fireworks show, you've seen them all. He said that as a parent, they hold a new special meaning as he gets to watch Ducky experience them for the first time and appreciate the sense of wonder and awe that she'll have. It's kind of cliche, but I definitely think it's true that when you're a parent, you see the world in an entirely different light. You witness how wonderful it is for your child when they experience everything for the first time or when they learn something new.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Accidentally High

I have a prescription for pain killers from my elbow surgery last week. I've been taking just one every 4-6 hours as needed, even though the bottle says I can take two.
This morning at work, I accidentally took two while slamming 4 Ibuprofen (because I need to take 800mg every 8 hours for the swelling and inflammation). Anyway. After about 30 mins, I realized that I was feeling a little loopy and after 15 more minutes, realized I was definitely high.
It was interesting sitting in my little front office actually doing work all the while feeling a little floaty and dreamy. I definitely won't be doing that again, but it made for an interesting start of the end of the work week. Luckily it wore off after about 3 hours.

Hubbs and I both have the next three days off, and I'm excited to get to spend some good quality time together as a family. If it's not too hot, we might even go to the park, and if it's super hot, maybe we'll go to the park with the splash pad. We're going to see a lot of family on the 4th because there happens to be a family reunion for the older generations this weekend, so some of them will stop by.

Ducky has a fever, which I hope clears up shortly. I would hate for her to miss out on all of the festivities because she has a mysterious ailment. On the brighter side though, it looks like we've successfully weaned her off of her allergy medicine and her chronic hives seem to have gone away. She'd had them since November, so it feels pretty good to see her looking less like a pink leopard and more like an adorable toddler.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Hello July

It's a new month, and that means I make myself a promise that I'll try to blog every day. I do try, but sometimes just fail.

Over the last few years, big things have happened in July. This July, was the month of Lumpy's due date. Last July we bought our first house. The July before that we announced our pregnancy with Ducky. Hopefully next July will bring good things as well.

After forcing myself to go back to work last week and really just tough it out, I feel much better about everything. I got re-promoted to my old job title and dove in to the work. I keep myself busy and that does mean I think about Lumpy much less during the day. When I get home and play with Ducky, in the few minutes before I fall asleep, and other random times I still think of him and the things that might have been, but I don't get as sad.

We ordered a necklace from the funeral home. A lady came and took a little big toeprint from Lumpy and made it into a pendant for me, it has a little tag with his name etched on it and a small emerald which was his birthstone. I haven't taken it off since it came in the mail. I hear it jingle a little when I walk or move around a lot and I think of him fondly. My imperfect but perfect little boy.

I had elbow surgery a few days ago and am recovering nicely from that. I have a mummy arm and it still hurts a bit but I think it's healing well under there. I only have to wear the dressing for another week.

I'm looking forward to having a four day weekend. Hubbs has off and it will be nice to spend some time together all as a family. We keep trying to do our nightly walks but it has been brutally hot and Ducky has been fighting naps at daycare, so she now goes to bed at 7pm. Hopefully in the fall we can pick it up again.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

For Realsies This Time

I forced myself to go back to work yesterday. I sat in the car after dropping Ducky off at daycare debating about it. I procrastinated by going to the gas station to pick up a soda and sat in the car some more. I stared at the pebble/rock landscaping on the freeway off-ramp and debated the pros and cons of going. It took me a few more minutes, but I mustered the courage and went to work. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Volume is low and I'm going some refresher training to go back to my old job title and duties which I will start up again next week.

Management kind of called into question my reliability and really wanted me to be sure I was ready. I'm not sure I'll ever actually be ready. The job doesn't hold the same enjoyment that it used to, but it's something to keep me busy, keep my mind off things, and keep those benjamins rolling into my bank account.

Tomorrow I'm getting surgery on my elbow. It's technically a "subcutaneous transposition of the ulnar nerve", which sounds fun. Hopefully this means my cubital tunnel syndrome will be resolved and my pinky and ring fingers will no longer go numb and tingly. I do have to get both elbows done, but the Dr decided to do the left one first since it is the worse of the two. So wish me luck with that.


Monday, June 22, 2015

Going Back to Work

I'm supposed to go back to work. Technically I was supposed to go back today. This is the 2nd or 3rd time I've changed my mind. I just can't.

Hubbs and I were talking the other day, and while he thinks of our son occasionally, I think about him all the time. I can't make it through more than an hour without thinking of him. Wondering how big he'd be now, if he'd be teething early like his big sister, how I would spend my days with him. These thoughts of him aren't all consuming, and they don't make me burst in to tears, but it does make it incredibly difficult to focus on anything else. I've realized that I zone out when people are talking and let my mind wander way too much.

It's been almost two months and while my body is mostly back to normal except for a random numb spot on my stomach, my mind just hasn't caught up yet. I don't want to force myself to go back to work, but maybe I should. It just feels like I should be ready by now, but I'm not. Perhaps I'm hiding from the real world a little bit, which is something I occasionally like to do.

Does anyone have any advice? I feel like I'm just grasping around wildly in the dark and I just need to grab a hold of something to lead me back into the light.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Light-Bulbs

The light fixture in our office has two light-bulbs, one of which is currently burnt out. I would just change it, but since this is our new house, I don't actually know how. This light fixture, I now realize, is a metaphor for our lives right now.

Hubbs is the side with the light-bulb that works. He's glowing and carrying on, and lighting the room for the both of us.

I'm the side with the burnt-out light-bulb. I can't change it myself, I can't just turn it back on. I'm still connected to the wiring, and trying to send the power through, but the filament is broken, and I can't keep on doing what I've always done. I can't make a burnt-out bulb light up, no matter how hard I try.

I need someone to show me how to change the burnt-out bulb so that we can both light the room.

                                        

 Side note - bulb is a really weird looking word.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Craft Day

Welcome to Craft Day. I'm trying something new out here today, and might make it a regular thing if it becomes popular, so let me know what you think!

Since everything I plant (but succulents) dies, I decided to make a little succulent project with all of the cuttings I've experimented with growing. I'll post another picture once it's grown and filled in a bit, but here's how I spent my afternoon yesterday.

Step 1 - Get out supplies.  Succulent cuttings, letter planter (from Michael's), garden soil, trowel, wet moss.


 Option Step - I plan on hanging my planter on our door outside, so I screwed in two of these thingies. I'll hang it with twine once the cuttings have securely taken root.

 Step 2 - The wire on the top was stapled down, so I used some pliers to pull up the non-essential ones to fill the planter. I put a layer of gardening soil and filled the rest with moss. I replaced the wire and hammered one staple back in at the top to keep it secure. 


Step 3 - Fill planter with cuttings and make sure the roots are nestled in the moss. 

 Step 5 - This picture is fuzzy and I was too lazy to go back downstairs and take another one. Here's how it looks for now. I'm going to let the cuttings take root and then hang it on the door outside. Hopefully the sun and delightful summer weather help it to grow into a lush and delightful decoration.


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Getting Drilled (and not in a good way)

I'm cranky because after my trip to the dentist today, and yesterday, my jaw is sore, my mouth hurts, and I have several bruised spots on my gums from where they had to stick me multiple times to get enough local anesthetic in there. Local anesthetic is not my friend, I've always had problems with it, I either need extra shots or they need to wait longer for it to kick in. Most of the time it's both. Lucky me.

Hubbs took half of the day off because his appointment was right before mine. We decided to take a trip to the movies to see Spy. It was surprisingly funny. I knew the reviews were good, but it definitely exceeded my expectations and kept me entertained the whole time. Really that's all I look for in a movie nowadays. I'm so easy to please.

A grief newsletter/magazine thing arrived in the mail today from the hospital. Apparently you're not supposed to make any major life decisions (moving, quitting your job, etc) during the grieving process. I'm going to exclude my applying to college from this list. One because it can only better my future, two because I wouldn't start until January, and three because me getting in is a real long-shot anyway. I'm going to stay on track and go back to work, as well as become a notary. My employer okay-ed it as a side-gig, so I'm going to start that soon. It would be nice if I could stay home with Ducky and just do it in the evenings. Realistically, I'd only have to go out and notarize 2-3 times a week to make as much as I make now (subtracting our daycare costs). Hubbs is on board with this plan but would prefer that I rake in as much money as possible since is job is currently seasonal. Hopefully that too will change in the near future as his workplace expands.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Preggo Bellies

I didn't think it would hurt to see my friend's pregnant bellies, but it does. It reminds me that I should still be pregnant. I miss my big ol' belly even though it made me extremely uncomfortable and difficult to sleep. Seeing bellies and newborns still gives me a pang of sadness. I'm sure it will for a while.

I took a trip to the craft store today to make our little memorial to Lumpy. It'll be a little while I think before I finish it, but I'm kind of looking forward to starting it. I also picked up a shadow box to display all of our keepsakes and things. It will be nice to have reminders of him out in the open, right now they're all hidden away so Ducky doesn't play with them.

The second half of this post is probably TMI. Oh well, reader beware. 

Today I'm also headed to the dentist to get my first round of cavities filled (the next round is tomorrow) and later getting my legs waxed. Just decided to make it a day of pain. lol. I'm seriously growing a forest on my lower legs and am far too lazy to shave.

I thought I was healing OK from the C-Section and that most of the healing process was over, apparently not. I'd stopped bleeding a week or so ago and was sure it was done. Nope, not done. I'd actually thought I'd gotten my period back, which is crazy talk. The bleeding is pretty bipolar though and seems to only happen sporadically throughout the day. I could do without the cramps as well. It certainly feels like a period, but I'm sure it's just my uterus trying to shrink back down to a normal size. I've only ruined one pair of pajama pants so far though, so that's a victory, right?     

Saturday, June 6, 2015

IF Walk

I participated in a 5k today that was a fundraising event for a few couples going through infertility. We were sponsoring a co-worker of mine in a raffle for a chance for her to win a free IVF cycle. She didn't win the cycle, but got 2nd place, which was $1000 towards her treatment. Hurray for that.

I walked the whole time pushing Ducky in her stroller with an older co-worker. We decided to be the walkers of the bunch, everyone else took the whole running thing way too seriously. It was nice, she actually asked questions about Lumpy and we talked about him a lot. She asked if I talked about him much, and I said no and that I thought it was because people didn't want to bring it up and would rather pretend he didn't exist. It felt good to kind of get some of it out there.

It was an interesting reminder participating in that event. I started this blog almost 4 years ago because I was infertile. Almost four years later I've had two babies. It's pretty crazy. I know I have a lot to be happy for. It was also nice just to spend some time outside and feel like I contributed to something good.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Your Mom Goes to College

I applied to college today. Sure I left college 7 years ago and have been working at jobs I hate since then. Yes, most people hate their jobs, blah blah. Call me crazy, but I'd like to enjoy work for once. I won't know until October if I got in, but I feel like this could be a good thing.

Maybe it's because I'm 30 and just don't know what to do with myself anymore, but I've always had a dream job in mind, and now seems like a great time to go for it. I can prove to myself and to my daughter that it's never too late to go for your dreams.

I'm sure it's foolish to make life-changing decisions when you're in the process of grieving, but I'm going to do it anyway. I'm going to keep my current job (obviously), but hold out hope that this new plan works out. Hubbs is on board and is still trying to figure out what he wants to do with his life. As cheesy as it sounds, I know as long as we're together we can accomplish anything.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Movie Date with Myself

I took myself out to the movies today to see Pitch Perfect 2. I figured it was a pretty safe movie to see and would help lighten up my mood. It did the trick. I found myself kind of rooting for the "villain" team though. Flula Borg stole the whole movie as far as I'm concerned, that dude needs his own franchise.

People/TV shows/movies/etc like that always make me slightly annoyed with myself. All of these talented people doing awesome things, and I'm mediocre at a few things. I have yet to find the thing that I am amazing at. Every time I had even a remote opportunity to be in a talent show, I was complete at a loss as to what my talent would be. Total lack of talent over here. Before I got pregnant with my son, I'd started hula hooping. Maybe I'll stick with that and get awesome at it. It could happen.


 


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

More Leave

I thought I was ready to go back to work. I went back last Tuesday. I only worked until Thursday, but every moment I was there, I just couldn't focus. I kept thinking about my son and just getting sad and realizing the complete pointlessness of my work. I wanted to yell, "I don't give a flying fuck about your mortgages, my son is dead". Luckily, I did not shout that from my cubicle, I just sat in silence trying not to let my despair take over.

I had to take a long weekend because our daycare was closed Friday and Monday, and we had all of our dentist appointments yesterday. I went back to work this morning and realized I really just am not ready to be back. I need more time to recover mentally, and even still physically. On meds, my blood pressure had gone back to a normal level, but I took it this morning and it was high again. I don't know if it's stress or something else, but I'll need to keep a closer eye on it.

I'm going to wait until after my 6-week check up with my OB just to make sure everything is OK before I consider going back again. We have enough of a safety net in savings that financially we'll be alright with just Hubbs working. He seems to be doing fine. Sometimes he gets sad, but I think overall he's doing much better than I am. Sometimes I just feel like a wreck, like a shell of my former self. Other times I'm fine and happy. I am on medication for the anxiety and panic attacks I was having. I know sometimes that particular medication is also used to treat depression, I don't think this is PPD though. I think it's just a normal response to something absolutely soul-crushing and heart-breaking.

For now I'm just going to take my extra maternity/bereavement leave and try to keep myself focused on healing and try to keep myself busy with things that I enjoy. I'm going to try to create a little shadowbox or scrapbook or both, to put all of the little trinkets and memories of our son in. We want to be able to remember him often and keep the memory of him in our home prominently. We don't want to hide or diminish his existence in any way (like my parents seem to want to do). I'm going to play WoW, read, watch terribly cheesy and awful horror movies, and relish the little victories. I emptied the dishwasher, I remembered to water the flowers, I took a little stroll around the neighborhood, etc. Today, I stood up for myself and my health. Go me. *high five*

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

The Things You Don't Think About

My son's social security card came in the mail today. As did a condolence letter from the Children's Hospital and the photos from our good-bye. I've never seen complete heartbreak captured in a photograph before, but I now have. It's awful seeing yourself in that much pain.

Even going to the movies is hard now. The last two movies I've seen in theaters feature the death of a child. Mad Max and San Andreas. Remind me to screen movies a little more carefully before attending in the future.

When I went to the dentist today, I had to explain that my gums still kind of bleed a bit extra because I was recently pregnant and had a baby. When they asked where he was (since all 3 of us had appointments at the same time), I had to tell them that he passed away. 

Now that we're in to June and on to July, I'm sure there will be more sad little reminders along the way. Father's Day. The date they were going to induce by if my blood pressure didn't behave. My Dad's birthday, which is the day we'd hoped he'd be born. His actual due date.

I'm still just shocked at how different everything is now from all of the plans that we'd made. I should only be halfway through my maternity leave now, and instead I'm already back to work (which I still think was a bad idea). When I'm with Hubbs or with Ducky, or especially when we're all together, I feel better and hopeful. When I'm alone or at work I just feel like I'm going through the motions. I don't know if that's normal or good or bad. I just don't know where to go from here. 


Monday, June 1, 2015

Long Weekend

Daycare was closed Friday and today, so I got to spend 4 straight days home with Ducky. It was really nice to spend so much time with her. Occasionally frustrating, but nice. She's grown so much in the last few months and I'm glad I get to see the person she's becoming.

Tomorrow all 3 of us have dentist appointments, which should be interesting. Hubbs hasn't been to a dentist in about 8 years. I'm about a year overdue, and obviously Ducky hasn't been yet. She has 16 teeth and could probably use a good cleaning. I love going to the dentist, I know Hubbs hates it, and Ducky most certainly will hate it too.

Hubbs and I are taking the rest of the day off, we'll drop Ducky off at daycare after the dentist, and go on a little movie date to see San Andreas. We both have a great love for the Rock and all of his movies, so it should be fun.

Having this much time off work though is kind of making my dread going back. I'm still just not sure how I feel about it and if I'm actually ready. I suppose I'll just keep going through the motions, but my heart definitely isn't in it. The fact that at one point it was kind of bothers me. I feel like my heart definitely has better things it could be doing.

I'm going to try my best to blog every day this month. I think it might just be helpful to sort out my own feelings and it will be nice to one day look back and see how far I've come. Sure now it's all grief and aimlessness, hopefully one day there will be joy and direction again. For now, I still just take it one day at a time and hope for the best. I think that's all you can really do when you just don't know what to do. 

Sunday, May 31, 2015

End of the Month Thoughts

Who am I now? I was briefly a mom of two, now just a mom of one. I don't have the same enthusiasm I had towards work. Mortgages just seem pointless and all of the small little things that occupied my work day seem so trivial now. I'm sad that I'm there and not spending more time with Ducky. Financially, Hubbs and I both need to work, I just wish I could do something that actually mattered. Something that made a difference. Perhaps I just should have taken more time off of work. I probably wasn't ready to go back. Luckily, it's slow there, so there wasn't much work to do. That made it worse though. It was nice to just buckle down and finish this daunting list of tasks when we were busy. When we're slow, it's more try to find things to do and look busy. It gave my mind a little too much time to wander. While I am still in line for my promotion, it involves so much customer service, and if there's one thing I hate, it's customer service. I purposely left customer service when I originally took this job. Hubbs says I should stick it out until our new corporate merger has kicked off and we see a huge increase in volume. I should be able to last at least that long.

I'm not depressed, I've been that before, I'm just... I don't know, indifferent to the things that don't matter. I had a son and he died. I don't want that to define me, but for now, I feel like it does. I think about him every day with differing levels of sadness. I look at my daughter and it's bittersweet because while she is growing and learning, he never will. We picked out his tombstone on Friday. A small little monument for the giant hole in our hearts. My son is gone. My beautiful little boy who looked so much like his big sister. Hubbs and I think that when they were older, people would have mistaken them for twins.

I'm torn between wanting to try again right away, or taking the time to heal property and get in better shape. I'm still down about 27lbs from when I got pregnant with Lumpy, so I am healthier in that sense. We've started going for walks and getting back in the habit of eating well. My OB last time was fine with us trying again right after Ducky because it took us so long to get pregnant with her. It took us 6 months of trying to get pregnant with Lumpy. When I talk to my OB at my 6-week check-up, we'll go over it. I'm sure since I had a C-Section, he'll want us to wait at least a little while. Hubbs and I did agree to stick to the same timeline though. We said we'd give it 4 years after Ducky was born, and if it didn't happen by then, it wasn't going to happen. We don't want to have kids beyond the age of 35. So we've got 3 years to give it another go. Missing my son really did help me to realize that I do want another baby at some point. The newborn stage is so precious and it's so amazing to watch your baby grow. Hubbs and I would both be sad if we didn't get that opportunity again.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Two Weeks

Two weeks ago, my son was born. I can't believe how much my life has changed in just two weeks. From taking my glucose test, to "let's check on the baby", to "ok, we need to operate right now", and that was just the first two hours of this life-changing journey. I'm healing well, both physically and emotionally. I get moments of sadness, but I don't cry. I really do feel like the funeral and saying goodbye one last time did give us some closure. Hubbs has the distraction of work, which I hope to go back to next week.

I occasionally think about the things I should be doing, and not the things I'm actually doing. I should be sleep-deprived from night-time feedings. I should be holding and rocking my newborn to sleep. I should be gazing at and getting to know my little man. I'm not doing any of those things because he was taken from me. It's true I think that everyone wishes for more time. In our case, that just would have been incredibly selfish. He was hooked up to a ventilator, had horrible edema, they had to give him blood and blood products so many times just to keep his little body going. I know that letting him go was the best thing we could have done for him.

Still, I miss my baby boy. I'll always wish he was here with us. Two weeks ago our world changed forever, but the earth just keeps on turning.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Closure

My son's funeral was Friday. Hubbs and I were talking about it and we really feel like it gave us some closure. We were able to say farewell to our son, surrounded by supportive friends and family. I still feel an ache in my heart when I wake up in the morning, but I don't weep. I'm able to remember my brief time with my son fondly and I will always treasure those memories. He was a beautiful baby and looked just like his big sister. I generally don't post much on here about my religious beliefs, but I have to believe that I will see my son again. It is simply too cruel to think that everything is just over. He is in a better place, and one day, I will see him again.

We're trying to come up with little ways to remember him. We had a little embroidered lovey/cuddle buddy/blankie kind of thing for him, which we have given to Ducky. I'd made a wooden letter name plaque for him to match Ducky's. We're thinking about adding some picture frames and putting a few of the better photos we have in them and hanging it in the living room.

It's an odd thing recovering from a C-section and not having a newborn with you. I'm actually sad about not having to get up in the middle of the night to feed a crying baby. I miss my big old pregnant belly, even though it didn't get as big as it should have. I kept putting off taking belly pics, so I think the last one I even have is from 16 weeks along.

I'm debating about when to go back to work. Since I just work at a desk, my Dr said I can go back whenever I want. I think I'll definitely ease back in rather than jump in. They gave me an extra 2 weeks of paid time off, which I think I will have used up by the end of this week. Perhaps I'll plan for trying to go back next week. Hubbs said it was helpful for him to go back to work, I'm sure it would be for me as well.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

One Day

My son would have been a week old today. I'm sure one day, there will be a day where I don't wake up or go to bed sobbing with an ache in my chest and a gaping hole in my heart, but today is not that day.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mother's Day

I used to hate Mother's Day, mostly due to the terrible relationship I had with my own mother. After Hubbs and I got married, I hated Mother's Day because we were dealing with IF and were told we would never have kids. It was still just a sore subject for me. Last year, I had my first enjoyable Mother's Day. I was finally a mom and it was nice to celebrate. This year was by far the worst Mother's Day ever. Four days before, my son had been born. Two days before, my son had died. The next day, I'd be at the mortuary and cemetery planning his funeral. Hubbs and I got by with some extra cuddles from Ducky and a good cry with each other.

Today wasn't as terrible as I thought it was going to be. We went to Hubbs' work and picked out an absolutely perfect plot. His boss is pulling a few strings for us and we've really gotten a great spot. We met with the mortuary and they were wonderful, apparently they don't charge for infant funerals, and since they know Hubbs, are giving us the casket/vault combo at cost. The service is completely free and they are taking care of everything for us. We went to the monument company recommended by Hubbs' boss, and they're giving us a significant discount, which is great as well. Everyone involved has made planning this a little less painful by taking such good care of us. The funeral will be Friday and I'm hoping it will be short and sweet. Hubbs and I are really hoping to avoid anyone talking to us at all. I just don't want to hear cliches and things that are meant to be helpful but are really just awful. I know people mean well, but sometimes they say stupid things.

I came across these empathy cards on the interwebs, and two of them totally made me laugh out loud, which is impressive considering how ridiculously sad I am. (You can find them here)




Family is going to start trickling in and I'm kind of dreading it, all of the comments and questions. Since we were the only ones who actually got to meet our son, our grief feels private and personal. Having other people share in it when they didn't know him at all feels intrusive in a way. I'm sure it's because they love us and are sad for us, but they definitely can't grasp the depth of our despair. Even at the funeral home, they were talking about how few infant burials they even do and what a rare occasion it is.

I think the worst part is that my milk came in the day after he died. Yes, I'm recovering from surgery, and have a huge line of stitches and an impressive amount of swelling and bruising on my abdomen to remind me... but having leaky boobs is worse. It just reminds me that my baby is supposed to be here with me. I'm supposed to be holding, nurturing, feeding, and getting to know my son. It's just not in the cards for me. I could have tried to pump and donate my milk to a milk bank, but I think it would have been harder. I'm just hoping it dries up as soon as possible. It's hard to hug my daughter and snuggle her before her bedtime with engorged and extremely sore boobs.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Our Son

We'd known for a few weeks that he had a tumor which would make delivery complicated, but it was difficult to diagnose the full extent of it before he was born. We met with his teams of doctors who would wait until he was born to run further tests.
I'd gone in for my 3-hour glucose test, and realized I hadn't felt him move in a while. I was sent to Labor and Delivery for observation. He had a strong heartbeat, but wasn't moving, and they didn't see the typical accelerations in heart rate that they like to see. They did a Bio-Physical Profile, which he failed. He wasn't taking practice breaths and wasn't moving at all. The tech noticed something on his brain as well, which was not in the scan the week before. The doctors decided he had a better chance outside than in.
My son was born via emergency C-section less than an hour later on 5/6/15 at 1:44pm. He weighed 6.1 lbs and was 16.75 inches long. Extremely big for a 31.5 week old baby. We didn't get to hear him cry, because he wasn't breathing on his own. The NICU team was standing by and was able to stabilize him. We knew because of the tumor, that he would have to be transferred to the large hospital upstate. I was wheeled into the recovery room, and he was rushed off to the NICU. They prepped him for transport and I was able to see and touch him in his little incubator before they took him away on the helicopter.
I spent the next 2 nights in the hospital, very worried, but the staff did a great job keeping me informed. I was discharged on 5/8, a little early, because it was becoming increasingly clear that the situation with our son was very critical.
We were able to go up and visit with him for a while before meeting with his teams of doctors. The tumor made it so that his blood was unable to clot, this lead to a bleed around his brain that they were unable to stop. By the time they were able to have him stable enough to run a CT Scan, the damage was extensive. If our son were to live, he would essentially be comatose for his entire life.
We were given the decision to continue or stop care. We chose to let our son go. We were able to hold him and see him one last time. He passed surrounded by love and his family. He may have only been with us for a short period of time, but he will forever be in our hearts.
The staff at both hospitals were incredibly supportive and took wonderful care of us and our son.
We are making arrangements and the funeral will be sometime this week. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the March of Dimes. We thank everyone for their prayers and support during this time.