Search This Blog

Thursday, June 30, 2011

More Waiting

This time last year:
The pills they had insterted in me the night before did nothing, though I was having some contractions (pretty hefty ones), but they were sporadic at best.  They used some more pills that morning and hooked me up to the pitocin.  This was a boring day.  Full of walking through the contractions to try to get Eli lower, laying in bed hooked up to drugs, many many needle pokes since my veins were not being cooperative, a little sleep, Eli moving around like crazy.  TONS of visitors.  Being hooked up to fetal monitors.  Checks, checks, and more checks with very little progress.  Coming up on the 24 hour mark I was really starting to get frustrated.  I had dilated to maybe 2 cetimeters and had effaced very little, Eli was NOT even close to being in position to birth.  The contractions I was having were definitely strong and painful and long, but not close together at all.  My pitocin continued to be upped until nightfall where they unhooked me to give my body a chance to do it's thing.  That night I was having horrible contractions and they were able to give me some pain meds to help, so at least I got a few hours of sleep.  It had been a very long day.

This day this year:
The anticipation of Eli's first birthday is kind of making me an emotional wreck.  So many ups and downs in the past year, so much to take in, so much has changed in our lives.  And even with the bad times, I can't trade them because they are part of my life with my baby, and they have shaped who he is and who I am, and who Aron is right now.  This is how we got here.  There are so many memories, I'm sure I've forgotten a lot, but the ones I have kept stored, either in my mind or in pictures and videos, make me so happy to have what I have now.  I love my little family.  They have made me happier than I have ever been in my life.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Big Day

This time last year:
A year ago today I went in for my checkup.  I was 41 weeks 3 days pregnant.  They checked me, no sign of change.  The baby wasn't dropping, my cervix wasn't dilating, I wasn't effacing.  The decision was made (seems like deja vu) to induce me THAT NIGHT!  Doesn't this sound farmiliar?  Except this time, it was actually happening.  They called down to L&D and let them know that I would be coming in at 6:00 pm that very evening.  I was so nervous, and excited, and scared.  I remember the feeling very well, the "this is it, this is going to happen, there is no turning back, your life is forever changed".  HOLY SHIT!  I'm going to be a mom, I'm going to have a baby.  I have no idea what to do with a baby...  When I bring him home, do I just, like, set him on the couch or something?  Or should I lay him in the bassinet?  Do I hold him the entire time?  What if he cries and I don't know what's wrong?  OH MY GOSH I'M CLUELESS! 

We went home, called the appropriate parties.  Mom, they're inducing me tonight.  Texted my sisters.  Texted my work homies.  Called my work letting them know that I was (for real this time, no more fake-outs) being induced tonight and would not be coming back to work.  We grabbed the hospital bag (which we promptly packed after going into early labor in May, but that's another story), I took the last pictures of my (huge) tummy (see below) and patiently waited until it was time to head out.  (Tee hee hee, no pun intended.)

We arrived at the hospital promptly at 6:00, checked in (we had done the pre-registration so that made things a lot easier) and I got shown to my lovely suite.  They had me change into my hospital attire (an ugly gown, no undies) and had me put my belly tube top on so they could attach the fetal monitors to me.  I then settled down into the bed while they inserted pills next to my cervix to help it dilate, and we waited.  The nurses always loved coming into our room because Aron and I are very much the jokers/clowns, and always want to make people laugh.  We were watching Wipe Out (which is freaking HILAROUS) and couldn't stop laughing and messing with eachother.  We were the "fun" couple.  And then, the waiting started.

This time this year:
I have been reflecting a lot on the last year, and how I've come to this point, how I've changed, how great I am at being a mom (not to blow smoke).  I really feel like this is what I was meant to become.  Never in my life, when thinking about what I would be when I got older, what I wanted to do with myself, did I ever envision myself being this happy with "just being a mom".  I don't have a career so to speak, I have a job, and it pays my bills.  So being a mother to me, is really all I have that I actually look forward to, every single day.  I'm so in love with my little boy (who I wanted to be a girl so badly, that I actually cried a little at the anatomy check) and he amazes me every single day.  He's just the funniest little thing, and he's got such a great and hilarious personality.  The birth was not great (I'll get to that soon, my pretties), but he makes up for it every single day of his life just by being here and being himself.

But there have been hard times as well.  My husband has been in and out of jobs for almost two years (but he starts one on Friday, yay!), and that has caused a lot of stress.  And it wasn't for lack of trying, either.  It's just the times, they're hard on pretty much everyone right now, and they don't care who they harm.  I struggled with a lot of things after birth.  A lot of pain, physically and emotionally.  Realizing that things were going how I thought they would go.  I was scared, confused, lonely.  I wish I could have enjoyed those first months more.  I have tons of pictures, I loved cuddling with my little boy, but it just seems like a muddled mess.  And then every parent's worst nightmare, the thing I will never forget, a friend's 3 month old dying.  This is not supposed to happen.  If it happened to her perfectly healthy baby, why not mine?  I live in fear still to this day (it's sort of getting better).  But even with all that, it just makes me appreciate and realize all the more that we need to be thankful for what we have.

So as his first birthday draws near, I will shed some tears over passing the first "huge" milestone, and everything that we've lived this past year.  And as ever, I will just love my precious boy.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The "A" Word


This is going to be a very personal post, please be kind to me and don't think the worst.

I hate the term abortion.  I hate the act of it.  But the truth of the matter is I have had one.  It was April of 2005 and I was out east visiting family and friends when I found out.  I was about a week late, so I decided to take a test.  Sure enough, a Big Fat Positive.  It wasn’t fair, we were always using at least one form of birth control, usually two, but somehow it wasn’t enough.  I called my boyfriend immediately to relay the news.  I can still remember hearing the words coming out of my mouth “I’m pregnant”, and the stunned silence on the other end.  Then the talk about what to do.  He wanted abortion, to him that was the only way this was going to play out.  I didn’t say anything.  I wouldn’t be back for another week, I foolishly though, maybe if he has some time to think about it he’ll change his mind.  I also felt ashamed, like I did something wrong, like I let him down somehow, like this was all my fault.  I spent the next week feeling sick and breaking out, scared, kind of excited, scared, thinking somehow this might all work out.

I returned home a week later, and he hadn’t changed his mind.  I made the appointment, went in with my sister, and saw my baby on the ultrasound.  There is was, this little bean that we had made.  I was about 7 weeks along.

I got home, my stomach flip flopping the whole time.  I asked the question.  “What would you do if I wanted to keep the baby?”  Then the look.  The look like I had just stabbed him in the back while ripping his heart out.  “We would be over, wouldn’t we.”  I said with resignation.  “Um, yeah.”  The simple response, as if it were so obvious, as if I was stupid to even ask such a ridiculous question.  My heart dropped.  I wasn’t getting out of this.  This is where I lost control of the situation.  I should have been stronger.  I should have been thinking for my baby, not selfishly for my relationship.

The day is all happened –
I don’t remember any details about the day.  It wasn’t raining, but there was nothing that was especially remarkable, either.  I went to the clinic with my sister (again) and they walked me through the routine.  I was given pills to insert next to my cervix to start the dilation process, and pills to take orally to start contractions.  I went home, and I started the process.  There was no turning back now.  The pain was intense.  With each set of cramps (what I now know were contractions) I wanted to die along with  my baby.  I still remember vividly the exact moment my baby was born.  I hadn’t known it at the time, maybe if I had I could have given her a proper burial, or a nice resting place.  Something other than being flushed out of my life and into the sewer.  I feel immense guilt about this, I hate that I did this.  How could I have made that decision?  How could I decide my baby was better off dead than alive.  What the hell is wrong with me!

trying to understand what had happened.  My baby was gone, my boyfriend was gone, I was left with nothing but guilt and self hatred.  This is my ultimate regret in life.

Years later when my husband and I were trying to conceive, we were having problems.  It just wasn’t happening for us.  Month after month with nothing.  I knew I was being punished for what I had done.  I was given a chance to be a mother, and I threw it away.  I deserved what I got, this was my cross to bear.  And then it happened, two weeks after we were married I got that BFP.  I cried.  I was so happy.  I thanked God for giving me another chance.  I now have an almost one year old boy that I love more than life itself.  Though it is funny, I labored with Eli for 50 hours before having to do a c-section, and I was devastated.  I wanted to have a normal birth.  And I can’t help but think that since God gave me a child, he took away my ability to birth that child like a mother should.  My one and only chance to birth a child was used up when I discarded my baby at 8 weeks.  Two months gestation, with a tiny face, tiny little organs, tiny ‘hands’ and ‘feet’, a little baby tail.

But the guilt is still there.  Every time I look at Eli I think of what I threw away.  All the smiles, the love, the hugs, the giggles, the firsts.  I took that from my baby.  I don’t understand why I didn’t stand up for myself, for my baby.  Why couldn’t I have just said “this is what matters now, this life we made”.  But I can’t help but think, would it have been fair to him?  And then I shake myself out of it.  Who cares?  We were ‘adults’, we made the conscious decision to have sex, we should have been prepared for the possibility.  So because he was selfish and I wasn’t strong my baby died.  It was my fault.  I can’t help but look at myself with disgust over what I have done.

I’ve often thought (now that I know what goes on in a woman’s body when she’s pregnant, the growth of a baby week by week) if I had been given more information on exactly what was happening inside of me I would have had the strength to stand up for us.  I saw my baby, yes, but all I really saw was a round spot on an ultrasound.  I didn’t know about the development, or the heartbeat.  I’m sure it’s a tactic to keep women from seeing it as a baby, and thinking of it as some tangible object.  I think it’s sneaky.  But I didn’t take responsibility, either.

When my friend’s little boy died a few months ago I started to attend church again.  I had been thinking about it for quite some time, and that was the push I needed to take that big step.  I go to church and I cry.  I cry for her lost boy, and I cry for my lost baby.  I just hope that God and my little bean can forgive me for what I’ve done.  I know that I cannot do it all over, but if I could, I would.  In a second.  But I guess my guilt is just another way of making me understand the consequences of my decisions.

So to anyone who may be in a similar situation, or might be in the future:
Please take the time to educate yourself.  Know that there are other options.  There’s more than just you to think about now.  Save yourself the guilt of realizing that you made a mistake, I wish I had.

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Big Fear

I'm going to preface this post by stating that I know how crazy I sound, and, you know, I'm alright with it.

I have this fear.  It's not really a fear in the normal sense, I guess, it's more like the feeling you get when you see a car coming straight at you can you know there is nothing you can do to avoid the accident.  I "know" that the next child I have is going to die.  I don't have any specific idea of how this is going to happen.  It could be miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS, congenital heart defect, a silent virus that we won't know about until it is too late.  I also know that the actual risk of these things is pretty small, but certain events have put things front and center for me and brings to light that however small the risk, you could be that tiny unlucky percent.  I have been feeling very selfish about the fact that I want to have more children, and wanting to try despite this "knowledge" I have.  And like I said, I know I sound crazy, but oh, well.

I have had a very hard time getting past this point in my life.  I can't sleep at night because I live in constant fear that my almost 1 year old will not wake up.  I dread going into his bedroom in the morning because I am sure I am going to find him lifeless and cold, and quite frankly, it brings me to tears.  Not so much on a daily basis anymore, but more frequently that I would like to admit.  Every time he gets a cold, or gets congested, or coughs, I think "this is it, when I lay him down at night it will be the last time I will ever truly see him alive and happy".  Of course this has not happened yet, and even in my constant worry state of "knowing", I am also still in the "this could never happen to me, this happens to other people" land.  This is a very awkward position to be in, as it is obviously two very conflicting states of mind.  I still have a lot to work through in this respect, so moving on.

This day last year:

Almost a week since my last dr's appointment where they told me the cord was around his neck.  I'm sure I was sitting at work around this time just biding my time until my next dr's appointment tomorrow.  There was worry, excitement, everything that comes with being a first time parent and knowing that that moment would be coming withing the next week at *some* point.  Just more waiting....

This time this year:

Eli has definitely turned into his own person.  He's *talking* (in his very own baby babble, and he has THINGS to say, let me tell you.  And you better listen.  Cause this kid don't mess around.)  He does say a couple of words, he says mama, dada, and hi.  I'm sure he's probably saying other things that I just can't really associate with anything else at this point.  He knows you say hi into a phone, and it's so cute to watch him say hi to everything that *could* be a phone (remotes, wii controllers, an actual phone, anything rectangular in shape).  We got everything bought for his birthday party, made a day of it with his two aunties from my side (my older sis Amber, and younger sis Jenn).  And then, a once or so a month outing for hubbster and I yesterday.  Eli went to his sitters for a while, we went for a ride on the bike, saw Bad Teacher, and came home to do yard work before picking up the baby and playing for a while.  Then it was bedtime, ahhhhhhhhhh.  A sigh of satisfaction.  It truly was a great day, and I have a feeling things are looking up.

Eli (on the left) with his playmate Bryce (we got a little dirty on Friday, a bath was warranted):

Friday, June 24, 2011

Yep, second post in a day.

I've been preoccupied with death lately.  I know why this is.  There has been a loss, the worst kind of loss someone can face, and it happened to a good great person.  She did not deserve this, her baby did not deserve this.  And while she is left to deal with trying to live her life without her baby boy, I sit here, looking in, also trying to make sense of it.  It is not my loss, technically speaking, but I mourn over that little baby.  I do it daily.  I have stopped crying everyday, though I still cry at least once a week.  And in all of this I can only wonder how SHE does it, and what right do I have to be this upset. 

Maybe it is only because I am a first time mother and it strikes a chord with me.  I would like to think that I am just a compassionate person, though sometimes I doubt that in myself. 

And yet, here I am, thinking about it day after day, stuck on it.  I'm sure she thinks that for everyone but her time has moved on, leaving her behind in her grief.  I'm sure that sadly, it's probably true.  The world continues to turn.  But me?  I am there, she may not know it but I am.  It would be no help to her if she knew, because really what can I do?  Nothing I say or do will bring him back.  All I have is a baby boy who is still alive, a few month ahead of where her little man should be. 

And guilt.  It is stupid to feel guilty I am sure, but it's there.  Obviously I am thankful that I still have my little guy with me, but I can't help but wonder Why?  Why her and not me?  Why should we be any different?  We don't love our babies differently, we don't love them more or less than the other.  It is not fair.  It is not something I can fix, though I would give up much to be able to bring her little boy back.

All I have to give are my thoughts.  I hope it's enough, because I have nothing more to offer.

Well, this is the beginning.

I have started this blog in hopes of clearing my mind.  It is a muddled mess right now, and I just can't seem to make it through.  I've been debating doing this for quite a long time, not so much because I think everything that comes out of my mouth is just so worth sharing with the world, but more for the fact that my mind is apparently leaving me already at the ripe old age of 27 (or is it 28?  No, pretty sure it's 27).  I would also like to remember everything about my almost 1 year old baby, and while that year at the moment is mostly remembered in Facebook posts I do plan to do a sort of "this time last year" theme until we catch up.  So I guess that's where we'll begin...

This time last year:

I was 40 weeks and 4 days pregnant with no signs that my precious little boy felt like joining the world of the breathers.  His EDD was 06/20/2011, and after my appointment on the 22nd my doc decided they would all do me a favor and induce me THAT NIGHT!  I couldn't believe it! 

I called my closest friends and family and informed them that my little chicken would be joining us very shortly. 

Now, before anyone goes crazy, the reason to induce so soon after my due date was: 1.) I was having a big baby.  They figured anywhere inbetween 9-11 lbs, and for a short person (I top out at 5' 2" on a good day) that equaled long labor. 2.)  My hands and feet and ankles had swelled to the point where I gained 8 lbs in one week, there was a chance of pre-e.  Moving on. 

After I had informed work that I would not be returning the next day, and freaking out all my friends and family in the excitement of a new member of the family, I received a call from my doctor.  They had done an ultrasound to see if there was a reason as to why my little man had not dropped (moved down into the birthing position).  They could not find a blockage, but they did find that the cord was around his neck.  With this new information and after speaking with the lead OB they decided to wait and maybe give chicken a chance to turn and get the cord back where it should be.  My excitement quicky turned to fear.  Yes, we had had a hiccup with his kidneys along the way that had eventually cleared itself up, but he was supposed to be just fine.  So now, more waiting.  More carpal tunnel from the swelling, more 1 1/2 to 2 hour commute one way to work and the same back being as large as a house, and all the while knowing that what was going on inside me was very serious and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it.  I was helpless to save my baby.

This time this year:

I am avoiding working by starting a new blog (he he he).  Tomorrow I pick up my younger sister and we meet my older sister to order Eli's 1st birthday cake and pick out decorations for his party on the 9th.  We just gained a room mate (a good thing as we can use the rent money, and we weren't using that room anyway.)  Our house tends to be a halfway house of sorts for my husbands wayward friends, ha ha.  We enjoy the company.    Husband starts a job on July 1st (finally!), it's been a long almost 7 months.  I will be picking Eli and his little playmate up from daycare today and we're going to have fun times at my house tonight.  All in all, I'm having a good day.