Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Still Broken

I don't like to speak for other people, but I don't think I'm pushing it when I say that at some point in the infertility journey, there's a point when you hope that you'll wake up and be fixed.  I know I had those moments often.  I knew pretty early on that something was wrong with me.  I didn't get my period until I was 16 or 17, and at the time I thought that was awesome.  It didn't hit me until later that this could be bad (it was actually a made for tv movie with Tr.acey G.old about infertility that opened my eyes to that fact).  My GP right before I got married told me not to worry, that a lot of people just need their cycles "reset" and after I stopped birth control I could very well be "normal."  I'd love to meet these people, because I'm really skeptical about their existence.  Anyway, I was really hopeful that I would in fact be fixed.  Not so much though.

As soon as I stopped taking birth control, my body slowly went out of whack again.  It took a little while.  I thought for awhile maybe I was okay because it took a couple months for my cycles to stretch themselves out and then stop again.  Some other things happened too though, the most obvious to me was the fact that my hair fell out much more easily then it ever had before.  Now I'm not saying that you could tell this by looking at me, but when I'd brush my hair or run my fingers through it, I'd be left with enough hair that I had to make a trip to the garbage can.  It was disconcerting.  And once I got diagnosed with PCOS, it became the only really daily reminder that I was broken.  My periods didn't come very often, so I could briefly forget I was infertile when I wasn't having one and physically, I don't have a lot of the other outward signs that some folks with PCOS have.  I count myself lucky for the fact that I don't have a lot of problems from the PCOS, but I know that I'll never be fixed.  I don't ovulate.  You can't make a baby if you don't ovulate.  So the hair falling out, it reminded me for 3 years that I couldn't make a baby.

Then I got pregnant, and my hair was beautiful pregnancy hair.  I don't think a strand fell out for 9 months.  It was pretty nice.  And since then I've been nursing, which has kept my hormones all wacky.  I finally got a period right around Easter and around the same time, guess what started happening?  Yup, the hair thing.  Now I never expected to be fixed after I had a baby.  I never thought that all the sudden I would be able to have as many as I wanted, whenever I wanted.  I just didn't have to think about it for awhile.  We weren't ready to think about more and I was thick in the middle of mama-hood.  I was happily ignoring my infertility, so it came and knocked on my door.  Just to remind me that it was still there, that I was still broken, that those silly little dreams I have of the surprise positive pregnancy test are just that, silly little dreams.  And so that's when I started thinking more seriously about going back to the RE, of what it would take for us to be ready, and I reminded myself of what all this was going to be like.  I can't say I was too excited when I really thought about walking into that office again.

So I'm curious to hear from those of you who have been through it more then once.  How was it the same or different the second time?  Is there any hope that it will be easier this time, or is that as foolish an idea as the dream of being fixed?  I'd love to hear from those who've been there.  Because maybe if I know the reality of it, I can stop fixating on this stupid hair of mine.

Monday, June 27, 2011

A summertime word of warning

We learned the hard way yesterday that sandboxes and onsies DO NOT go together.  I didn't even think about it when I let Bean into her sandbox wearing just a diaper and a onsie but before long she was shifting around, getting up and down, and looking uncomfortable.  I realized pretty quickly that her little diaper was filled with sand so I was going to take it off of her so she could run around in the back yard and get as much of the sand off as she could.  (For the record, our yard is fenced so she wouldn't be showing her naked self to the whole neighborhood.)  Well, I quickly aborted this when I realized that sand wasn't the only thing that her diaper was filled with which lead to a BAD situation.  It's impossible to clean a dirty little butt that's also covered in sand without causing a lot of discomfort.  Hubby tried briefly before she got pretty sad and we just plopped her into the bathtub.  Of course, at this point she was really sad and would only be happy if I got into the tub with her.  Finding yourself in a bathtub with a poo and sand covered baby is one of those situations that you just don't imagine when you have a baby!  Needless to say, I took a shower after our bath, but the whole thing was just such a disaster, so I'm putting it out there to save all of the rest of you (although you may be smarter then me and not do this in the first place.)  No sandboxes and onesies!  Put some pants on those kiddos first!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Being a mama

I've been thinking about this one for a long time.  I spent a long time longing for and working hard to physically be a mama.  This gave me lots of time to think about parenthood and my relationship with my own mother, which, isn't so great.  We don't have a horrible relationship, we just don't really have a good one.  She's pretty much openly favored my brother as long as I can remember and it's caused a lot of tension in our relationship.  We're civil and I do what I have to do to make sure that I don't make any waves, but when I see people who enjoy spending time with their mother or who look forward to calling her to share news or get advice, I have NO idea what that is like.  My mother isn't the one who went wedding dress shopping with me, she wasn't giving me advice on the phone when I was pregnant, and she certainly didn't support me when I was struggling to get pregnant.  And I've come to terms with all that over the years, but now that I'm the mama of a little girl, I see things a little differently.

At first when I was pregnant, I gave my mom more leeway then I have in a long time.  I started to realize that as a parent, you do the best that you possibly can in any given situation.  You're going to make mistakes, you're going to look back in hindsight and say, I should have done that differently, but in the end you want the best for your child.  You come to the table with love and that's the most important thing.  So I started trying to give my mom the benefit of the doubt and look back on her parenting decisions from her perspective instead of my own, because that's what I hope Bean will do some day.

Then Bean arrived and I can't describe the love that I feel for her.  I am bringing love to the table, I am making every decision the best that I possibly can at that moment, and I am doing everything in my power to have a relationship with her that is different then the one that I have with my mom.  I have less understanding now then I did before.  I see this little person growing and developing and I can't understand how some of the emotions that it's clear my own mother has towards me are possible.  I just can't wrap my brain around it.  So I'm trying very hard to make sure that things are different for Bean, but to be honest, I'm not sure how.  My mother didn't have a good relationship with her mother and spent her entire life as a parent trying to do the opposite so that she would have a different outcome.  She tried so hard and yet failed so badly.  How do I not fall into that same trap?

I don't have an answer for that.  I don't have answers for any of it and I know that my relationship with Bean is going to change over the years.  I just want to figure out how to do it right.  I want to do as little as possible to mess her up because both hubby and I realize that currently our biggest challenges in our lives (outside of infertility) come from our families and our relationships with them.  The last thing I want to be for Bean is a challenge.  The only plan that I can currently come up with is to go with my gut.  My mother made the mistake of trying to be the opposite of someone else instead of just being herself, and in the end, she turned out just like her mother in many, many ways.  So I think the right thing to do is just be real and do what feels right to me.  All of my life experiences have gotten me to this point and I can't believe that I'm going to walk the same path that my mother did, because I'm so aware of it, so I just have to believe that I'm prepared and that when I come to the table with love, that Bean will feel it.  Because believing anything else at this point, just breaks my heart.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

When the time is right

A month or so ago I finally found a local library that had a story hour for kiddos Beans age.  We've been a couple times and Bean loves it.  I like it too and have started chatting with a few of the moms.  The last time we were there, I really looked around more and realized that two of the ten or so moms are pregnant again.  I admit, I wasn't prepared.  All the kids in the group are around a year old and so seeing moms who are REALLY pregnant there, hadn't crossed my mind.

At first, I did my usual kind of kick in the gut reaction.  We've been thinking a lot about adding to our family, or trying to anyway, and it's a little daunting.  So to see other people who give the impression that getting pregnant is easy, well, it's always a bit of a sucker punch, no matter the situation.  Now I always remind myself that I don't know anything about this persons life or situation, so I really shouldn't compare anything to them, but it's hard not to.  It's hard seeing someone who is pregnant and not thinking about my infertility status.

Then I realized though that as jealous as I am at the idea of getting pregnant, I'm not ready to be pregnant right now.  I could see being ready in the not too distant future, but I love what I have with Bean right now.  She's at this incredible age where she's just changing and growing every hour it feels like.  I already feel like I have a hard time soaking it in.  She's also still breast feeding and while I'm getting close to feeling like I'm ready to ween (especially as she gets more teeth!), I'm not quite there yet, and she really isn't.  She loves nursing and I just can't imagine taking that way from her yet.

It feels like such a fine line though thinking about all this as an infertile.  Do we start trying now with the expectation that it will take awhile and by the time we get pregnant (if we get pregnant), we'll be ready.  Or do we wait until that moment is here and then tackle it.  I had this grand plan when hubby and I got married of having four kids and having them all before I turned 35.  I know, I know, I laugh at that idea now too.  Anyway, since I'm 31, that's unlikely and hubby and I both have let go of the idea of a certain number of kids or a certain age to do it by.  We're just going to take it one day, one baby at a time.  We feel so blessed to have Bean, I almost feel like I'm asking for too much to try for more babies.  But I've always wanted to have a big family and I'm not ready to give up that dream yet.  If it doesn't happen, it doesn't happen, but I'm going to try.

So here we are, standing at the place where we're not quite ready to move forward today but we're not quite ready to wait too much longer either.  I feel like I'm waiting for a sign from somewhere.  Mostly from Bean I think.  I'm waiting for her to let me know that it's okay, that I'll still be able to see every change and notice every difference.  That there still will be silly dance parties and snuggle fests.  That she's ready to share me and that I'm ready to start the process all over again.  I just keep hoping that coming home to her this time around will make the whole thing a little easier.  I keep waiting for her to let me know somehow that I wont' be taking anything away from her miracle, by trying for another.  I don't know if I'll ever get the sign that I'm looking for, but I realized at that story hour, that while I can't help being jealous of the idea of being pregnant, I'm not ready yet to actually be pregnant, and I'm okay with that.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Welcome and Intro for ICLW

Hello to everyone, including everyone coming for ICLW.  In case this is your first time stopping by, let me tell you a little about myself.  I'm a SAH mom to a 13 month old baby girl after trying for three years to start our family.  We went through 6 IUI's, one surgery, one miscarriage, and a chemical pregnancy before we finally got our BFP that stuck.  We've already started thinking about trying again to get our Bean a little brother or sister and I think we'll be back in the RE's office very soon.

I started this blog because I realized after almost a year of being a mama, that I was still dealing with a lot of the baggage that comes from infertility.  I didn't have anyone that I felt like I could really talk to about it all, so I decided to reach out to the community that I had been reading and watching from afar for years.  I cannot tell you how glad I am that I did that!

I have to admit though that I've been a bit of an absentee blogger recently and before that I was a little scattered.  I've been sharing bits and pieces of why that is, but I'm ready to tell you all about it now.  There are two main reasons that I haven't been able to blog as much as I'd like.

As I've mentioned before, my parents are in the process of getting their house cleaned out to move closer to us.  So we've been busy helping with that.  And, as I also mentioned, my Aunt was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.  She's started chemotherapy and while she's doing okay, she's in her 70's and it's wiping her out.  Emotionally she's just starting to really realize what's happening and the fact that her hair just started falling out I think is the real physical manifestation of what she's going through, and it's hitting her hard.  So I've been trying to be there for her as much as I can even though we live a few hours away.  It makes me sad that she's spent her life taking care of other people and now she doesn't have that many people to take care of her.  I want to do as much as I can, but it's definitely hard to find enough time in the day.

The other reason that I've been super busy, that I'm really excited about, is that I started my moms group!  Right after I started blogging I was testing out some moms groups and was having a really hard time feeling like I fit in any of them.  So I started thinking how great it would be to have a moms group for people like me who had started their family either through infertility treatment or adoption.  I thought and thought about it and finally just went for it.  And it's been so great so far!  We've had two play dates for our kiddos and I've had a great time.  We've talked about all the typical mom stuff but we can also talk about infertility and support each other.  I finally feel like I have some people who I can see face to face who understand where I've been and where I'm probably going again very soon, and that feels really good.  It's been a lot of work though that's for sure.  But it's worth it, for me and Bean. She's been having such a great time and I love having her have the chance to play with other kids.

So that's what's going on here!  I'm committing myself to blogging for the next week though and to seeing what's going on with everyone else in the blog world.  Because this little blog is what got me started with this idea.  The support I felt from people all over the world, made me realize what a difference reaching out to this community can make, and it gave me the confidence to go do it in the world immediately around me.  So welcome!  I'm so glad to have everyone visiting and I promise to have lots of new posts for you to read.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

It's a good day

I feel like I blog a lot about things I'm thinking about or worrying about or things that are troubling me.  Lately I haven't been blogging about much of anything because life has been going at a manic pace.  I have about three posts all started, waiting to be flushed out and finished.  They're coming soon, but not today for sure.  That's not my point though, my point is that I want to stop to acknowledge a good day.  Today there were no boo boo's to kiss, there were no phone calls to make, there was just a day to go visit a new friend and just have a wonderful time.  It's so nice when you happen upon someone in the world who you feel like is a bit of a kindred spirit.  As I get older, I realize that it happens less and less and so I cherish it more. Most of my kindred spirits are scattered around the country, so it's nice to find one closer to home.  So I'm going to bed tonight thinking about all the good things that happened, and for a few more hours pushing out all the stressful things.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Life from Scratch

So I don't normally like the idea of plugging things on my blog.  And lets me honest, not enough people actually read my blog for plugging anything on here to accomplish much.  But I've been given the opportunity to do something for someone who has done a lot for the infertility community and I'm so happy to have the chance to pay her back.   Mel, the proprietor over at Stirrup Queens has written a novel and from what I've read, it sounds like a fantastic read.  I can't wait to read it for myself.  And for a short time you can go to Am.azon and buy the book for your Kind.le for less then $3.  I don't have a Kind.le so I'll be reading it on my laptop, which is super easy to do.  So for me it was a no brainer when Mel asked everyone to help her fulfill her dream.  And, can I just say that we pay more then $3 for a magazine these days.  Okay, I'll stop trying to convince you and let the book and Mel speak for themselves while I'm mentally making a list of the gazillions of things that cost more then $2.99 that we all buy in a heartbeat.  Just in case I need to do some more convincing.  Happy reading everyone!

Saturday, June 4, 2011


That's how I feel lately.  I have a lot of thoughts in my head, a lot of things I'd like to talk about, but when I try to get it out, it comes out wrong.  I can't seem to hold an idea long enough to actually make it into anything that makes sense.  I guess it's just a sign of too many things going on at once.  At least that's what I'm telling myself.  It could also be the whole sleep deprivation thing.  The nap transitioning still isn't going well here.  I'm not sure really what's going on up there (in my head that is), I just know that it's frustrating.  So instead of a post that actually has some depth to it, what I have to offer you is a list of things going on in my life right now.

-I'm currently realizing how much I love my dishwasher.  We had a problem with ours and are awaiting a replacement top rack so I'm working with one rack.  I had no idea how much time that sucker saves me.  I will never take it for granted again!

-I have a project in the works.  I'm dying to share it with all of you but I haven't figured out what and how much to share yet.  It's consuming a lot of my time and thoughts though and I would love to tell you all about it.

-My aunt had her first round of chemotherapy this week.  I'm still in disbelief but we're all ready to kick this things butt.  Now we're all just watching and waiting to see how she tolerates it.  Fingers crossed that things continue to go well.

-The weather here has cooled off and it's so nice to be outside without feeling like you're melting.  We're second hand shopping right now to outfit our back yard with some Bean size play things, which is very fun.  And when we were all melting, we tried our little pool for the first time, and Bean LOVED it.  So much fun!

-I finally found a story hour at a local library for kiddos Bean's age.  We went for the first time on Friday and had so much fun.  I'm so glad that we found it and are really looking forward to making it part of our normal routine.

-Hubby has taught Bean how to pant like a dog (don't ask, I think it happened while reading a book about a dog) which she showed off to everyone at the library while we were there.  I'll work on teaching here that running in circles and panting like a dog isn't really proper library etiquette in the future.  This week I was just excited that she didn't sit on my lap without cracking a smile or interacting with anyone the whole time.  And it was pretty cute.  I'll worry if she's still doing it in ten years.

-This week is the start of our CSA for the year and I'm SO excited.  If you don't know what a CSA is, it stands for Community Supported Agriculture and it basically means that we've bought a share in an organic farm in our area.  We get a portion of whatever they grow for the year and we go pick up whatever they have for us once a week.  I can't recommend this enough.  Not only is it a great deal, but it's so much fun and delicious.  And we're supporting local farmers.  I'm so excited to get started up again this year and have Bean be able to really be a part of it.

So that's a little peek into what's going on around here.  Hopefully I'll be able to sort out my thoughts soon and until then, I'll try to put bits and pieces together for you.  What new and exciting things are jumbling up your lives these days?