Friday, October 26, 2012

Alls well that ends well!

V's surgery went well. It was hard to pass him off to the nurse, the wait was a little nerve wrecking  (but manageable), and I had him back in my arms a half hour later. He was really distraught at first, it was kind of heartbreaking how upset the poor guy was! But some mommy cuddles, food, and Tylenol soon soothed him to sleep in my arms. I cuddled him until they did their checks and we were cleared to leave.

They were able to pass the probe through the tear duct with no issues. They were also able to pass the colored saline solution out his duct and through his nose, confirming that the duct is now open. Hopefully it will stay that way, and we won't have to keep worrying about these constant eye infections! He has to have eye antibiotic 3x a day for a week though, and nasal spray 3x a day for 2 days... that will be fun... but after that, we should be in the clear! He goes back for a post-op check-up in about two weeks.

After we got home we all had a long nap, and I'm happy to report we all feel a little more human again. Two hours of sleep does not a functional person make! V got a bit upset as his Tylenol wore off, but I've given him another dose and he should be good now. So today there will be lots of cuddles and dosing of meds, but the doctor said that by tomorrow he should be back to his normal self. I sure hope so anyway!

Thanks for the well wishes everyone. We really appreciated them!

10 months... almost-

We're in for a long night. V's surgery is tomorrow morning, and the poor guy can't have anything after midnight. THE HORROR! It's one thing for an older child or an adult, because we realize we won't be eating after a certain time... but this is V, and all he knows is that mommy usually gives him a bottle between 1-2am. Yeah. We're kind of horrible night owls over here (*hangs head*) In my defense, V and I get up at 8-9am when A leaves for work. We cuddle, he eats, we say good bye to daddy, and then we go back to sleep. Until noon. Heh. I am not a morning person. At all.

So, this is how it comes to bite me in the rear.

(*SIGH*) Poor kid. I stuffed him as full as I could before the clock struck twelve, but I know it wasn't enough. He is NOT going to sleep anytime soon. It's going to be long night. We have to be at the hospital in 6 hours.

I might as well do his 10 month update while we're killing time. He's playing quietly... for now. So, 10 months. WOW. In two months it'll be Christmas, and his birthday, and I should probably get my act together on preparing for all that. Whew.

He is getting very quick at crawling. His monthly photo shoot has turned into a wrangling nightmare. Even with two people, trying to corral that kid is incredibly difficult. I take maybe 100 photos, and only 10 turn out decent. It's still worth it though! I love this kid so much, and I love documenting every milestone.

The one I posted isn't the best by far, but I thought it was adorable anyway. If you can't tell, he's a little raccoon for Halloween this year. We are not going trick-or-treating because he doesn't eat candy or understand the concept, but I did dress him up for a holiday zoo event. I wanted to mark the date somehow!

He pulls himself up on objects very well now. A little too well. He still hasn't discovered balance though, so we're okay. No standing alone or walking yet, haha. I'm sure it's going to happen before we know it though. This kid is determined! He cruises all around stuff all the time now too.

I should probably try to get him to sleep. I don't see it happening, but I might as well dive into the fight now rather than later. I really hope that his surgery goes well. I'm anxious about it, but I'm also not anxious about it. It's a really simple procedure, honestly. BUT since they're knocking him out, and he'll be away from me for a bit, it makes me anxious. He hasn't been away from me (with someone other than A, I mean) since we left the hospital, umm 10 months ago. I'm sure it'll be fine.

I foresee tomorrow being a really rough day though, overall.

Wish us luck.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

A stitch in time-

The end of October is a little loaded for me. On one hand, I love Halloween and I have a lot of wonderful nieces and nephews with birthday all thrown together from the 17th until the 28th. Three of them actually; my sister's second son was born that week, my brother's daughter, and my cousin's oldest daughter (we consider her kids to be our nieces too).

I was due that week, once upon a time. It was my second pregnancy. Conceived with Clomid. On my birthday. The one that my body refused to give up, despite the fact that the baby was already gone. That's the one that my old RE treated so callously, telling me that while a pregnancy had occurred he couldn't confirm there was a baby. The one I induced with Cytotec and had to visit several pharmacies before I could find someone to fill it, because the first two thought I was using it for an abortion and treated me as such (I'm looking at you RiteAide. I still haven't forgotten your dopey bitch of an employee.) So, yes, the one that I induced after waiting weeks for my body to do it on it's own. The one where I indured 6 hours of contractions, screaming on my bathroom floor. The one that left me hallow, throbbing, and empty. The one where I saw a gestational sac pass intact but empty.

As far as my old RE was concerned there was no baby. His words, which set the beginning of our failing doctor-patient relationship.

And maybe there wasn't, at least not technically. But there was the start of one, the possibility of one, the hope, the dream that this time, maybe, just maybe, we'd get lucky.

So here's this date, October 22, that rolls around every year surrounded in birthday cards and presents, parties packed with kids. It used to be very heavy. Sometimes it felt like I was suffocating in what could have beens. It never stopped me from attending family gatherings or the children that already existed, but I always took a moment to remember everything that wasn't. I guess this year isn't any exception.

This year, I sat with my mother and talked about V's upcoming birthday, surrounded by screaming kids and beautiful chaos. Yet still, within me, even then was the knowledge of how things should have been otherwise. It's not something that goes away. I'm very bitter about how everything went down, that we didn't know what we do now, that there was nothing we could do with the knowledge we had at the time. I'm bitter about how long it took, how much pain I went through, how much grief the pharmacies put me through. I'm bitter about stuff that happened with my job when I was walking around in a detached daze because I felt so intensely defeated. I'm bitter about the lies my old RE told me, the medicine he gave me instead of the D&E, the pamphlet of bull shit he gave me telling me there was no testing or treatment for first trimester miscarriages. I'm bitter, still, about having to be ushered into the world of recurrent miscarriages, as if infertility wasn't enough somehow.

I'm bitter about losing my baby.

I'm also in love with the life I have been given. I love my son. I love being a stay-at-home mother. If I'd had the other children, I don't know how things would be. I can't reason with their deaths as some people do. I can't say, "Well, if they were here, he wouldn't be," because I don't know that. And even if it was true, it wouldn't make me any less bitter about what happened, or any less sad for what we lost.

My only outlet for my grief anymore is my blog. I hope you don't think I'm depressed or not grateful for what I have, because I'm more grateful because of it (if that's even possible), and while I do still have my depressive funks I am very happy with my life. Sometimes I just need to spit it out though; I need to write through my grief, acknowledge it, and let it go. I find that while my bitterness is less hostile now, it's tame but persistent. My grief is tepid, but still prevalent. It is very much alive. Most of the time it just sleeps with a whimper, but every now and then it howls to remind me what made me who I am today.

I am not the same person that was pregnant all those years ago. Parts of me have been ripped away, stolen, replaced. I feel like a bit of a rag doll, truth be told. Like I spend my days carefully placing stitches and putting myself back together. I'm more or less whole now, but I've still got some healing to do. Writing about what I've been through, letting myself relive it and be angry, or be sad, all of it is just another stitch in the healing process.

So here I am, balling it up, and letting it go again this year.

It's a process.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

October weigh in!

This morning I weighed in at 187.4 lbs; that means since March I've lost 39.6 lbs! Not bad. I lost two inches off my waist this month, one inch off my hips, and 5.6 lbs. I've lost about 16 inches total from my waist since January 2011, and 62.6 lbs.

I've been walking on my non-jogging days, just 30 minutes at 2mph. I've found that the time passes really quickly if I have my headphones in and I've got my Kindle set to an interesting book. On my jogging days I just have my headphones on, I try to find something rhythmic, and I let my mind wander. Sometimes I visualize myself losing the weight, fitting into my goal top, or I let it wander like a kid in a candy store: I plan holiday stuff, birthday parties, reorganization of my house, how I want to refinish something... it's my me time; I take advantage of it! After my run I do yoga to cool down and stretch my muscles, it really helps to stop them from cramping up on me. It feels amazing.

I've been trying to play with my recipes and to try new things. Like for lunch today I made Manicotti, except instead of noodle shells I wrapped it in zucchini. It was lower in calories and carbs than it would have been, and I thought it tasted pretty good. I need to tweak it more, but I think I did alright considering I winged almost all of it.

Since March 17, 2012:
Weight lost: 39.6
Inches off hips: 9
Inches off waist: 9.5
Now I just need to keep going!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

Tonight I'll be lighting a candle at 7pm in honor of the children I've lost, my niece who was still born, and in honor of the children lost by my friends and strangers alike. There are no words to capture the pain and loneliness that comes with losing a child. Tonight, I want you to know that you're not alone. That your children will be remembered.

It's been three years since my last miscarriage, and four and a half since my first... I do have a child now, playing on the floor at my feet. He doesn't erase all that was, or those that were lost. He gives me new hope and strength, but there were three children that came before him and I won't ever forget their presence.

When I went through my miscarriages, I didn't just lose my children. I lost so much more. I lost hope, joy, naivety, friends, family, an entire future of possibilities. When I found out I was pregnant the first time, I smiled. The last time, I cried and cursed, despite going through fertility treatments and knowing that was the goal. The thought of going through another loss was unbearable. Neither my husband or myself could bring ourselves to believe in anything anymore.

I looked out the window today. It's overcast, chilly; the season is turning. The rose bush I planted in honor of my second loss holds it's last bloom of the season. One single, beautiful white rose, trying to hold it's own against the inevitable cold.

I can never get them back. I'll never know who they were destined to be. All I can do is remember them and hold them in my heart. Until the day I die.

Friday, October 12, 2012

"Remember to make time for you"

Many family members have uttered these sentiments to us. They hear that we don't go anywhere without V and their instant platitude is that we should make time for us. I know they mean well, but it only reminds me that they really don't understand us at all. Just because I don't leave the house without my son, doesn't mean that I don't make time for me.

I understand that some people need date nights without their children. I imagine someday we might be one of them. For now, we like staying in and having a quiet night at home. If we go out, we enjoy going to family friendly places, like the bookstore, the mall, restaurants, or the drive-in movies. I do go out on my own every now and then with my friend, but I'm perfectly happy to go everywhere with V.

I think that a lot of them just don't understand since they've never been in the type of situation we have. I'm not just talking about with infertility and the miscarriages, because that's obvious, but I mean in relation to the longevity of a relationship sans-children. My mother and mother-in-law are the ones who most often bring this up, telling me that I need to take time for me, or A and I need to take time for us... and see, both of these women got into relationships and before the first year was out they were pregnant. My mother had her first at 16. My mother-in-law had her first at 18. When I had V, I was already almost 27. A and I had already been together for over 8 years. We had eight years to enjoy each others company. Eight years to go to concerts, movies, have a date night whenever we wanted, to stay out late, to be spontaneous, to do whatever we wanted whenever we wanted. And four of those years the only thing we wanted was to have a baby. We spent half our relationship trying desperately to bring life into this world.

So, you'll have to forgive me if I don't jump on the idea of going out for an evening without my son. I already rode that ride, and quite frankly I wanted off of it a long time ago. My early twenties were hard: we went through infertility and miscarriages while I earned my bachelor's degree, while working part/full-time and doing an internship! I also made time to enjoy my life though, I went out and I did my thing. I have no regrets. I've moved on to the next stage in my life.

For me, I'd rather enjoy my "me time" in the form of a hot bath, a jog on the treadmill with my headphones, playing a video game, or some downtime with a good book. I've always been a bit of a recluse anyway. I chose to be a stay at home mom for a lot of reasons though, and being able to wake up with my son and tackle the day together was one of them.

I understand that a lot of people do want, and even need, date nights though. Just like I totally understand that some women either chose to be, or have to be, working moms. What works for one person doesn't work for every person. My best friend is a single mother, she is very career oriented- it's both a choice, and not a choice. She has to work, but she also takes great pride in her work, she has plans to go places with her career. That works for her. I never did have any career ambition- I just wanted to be a stay at home mother. Neither of us ever questions the others life ambitions; she completely understands me not wanting to go anywhere without the baby. I've only left him to walk a 5K, go to the movies, and maybe a lunch... and I'm okay with that.


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Exhaustion at it's finest-

V got the sniffles and seems to have passed them to me. My brain hurts. I think it's more of a head cold, but I don't know. I'm slightly congested, I've had major headaches, and I'm achy. Fatigued.

That's it.

Vincent is cranky, runny nose, coughing a bit... this is the first time he's been sick. Poor kid.

He keeps randomly waking up at 6am... some days he does, some days he doesn't. After only 3 hours of sleep, I really struggle with getting out of bed. Especially when he refuses to go back to sleep, won't eat, doesn't want cuddles, and won't stop screaming (I let him cry for a bit, but when I realized it wasn't going to work and he was coughing, I gave up). He just wanted to play and watch his penguin show. For hours.

I. am. so. exhausted. The other day he settled for watching from me, and then fell asleep on me... of course, as soon as I laid him down all hell broke loose. (*sigh*) Last night, I think we went back to bed and I caught up on most of my sleep, but it's all a blur and I certainly don't feel rested. I wish my husband would help out more when he comes home, especially when he knows I got up with the baby and took him downstairs so that he could sleep since he had to work... but I know he's busy.

I finished my active pills this weekend and got the joys of bad cramps on top of everything. I'm really hoping that next month goes better with them. I have a little more hope for this brand, because I stopped bleeding for a couple days before I started the inactive pills. The other brands I tried didn't even do that much. So, I'm hoping.

I still have to jog tonight. Ugh.

We met with an eye doctor about V's blocked tear duct and they recommended we get the procedure done to fix it. Normally a baby will grow out of the blocked duct, but if they haven't by now the likelihood of it happening is pretty slim. They will put him under general anesthesia, which makes me a little nervous, but the procedure should be very simple and quick. They'll just go in with a prob and clear the passageway, from my understanding. The doctor said the procedure itself just takes a couple minutes.

I've had a lot of serious surgeries in my life, so I know this is actually pretty tame... still, it makes me nervous. I'll be relieved if this works, because he does keep getting eye infections and it does keep getting irritated, but still... there's that worry eating at me. Maybe it's just the helplessness of the situation. I'm not worried, but at the same time this is my baby and the worry is gnawing at me in subtle ways. We go back for the pre-op appointment on the 19th to sign consent papers, then the procedure should be scheduled for the 26th. I'll keep everyone posted on that.