Life May Never Be The Same

One night when I was about seven months pregnant I was driving home from work listening to some sad country song about cancer and started contemplating mortality.  By the time I got home I was bawling.  I started thinking about what if my grandpa, who means the world to me, doesn’t get to meet my baby?

His health has been declining for years.  He has a tumor on his spine and it has really limited his mobility and quality of life.  I just had the worst feeling that I wouldn’t have all too much longer with him.  Luckily he has gotten to spend some time with Theodore.  Not nearly as much as I’d like since we live two hours away but it was a huge relief that they got to meet and that I have pictures of them together.

Theodore might not remember him when he gets older but I know I will talk about him and to have pictures of them together is something I will cherish forever.  Grandpa’s health has never really got better but it hadn’t really been getting worse either so I hadn’t thought about it much these last few months.

Then this Monday afternoon I got a text from my mom during the middle of the day saying “Call me when you get a chance.”  Seemingly innocent enough but I knew something was wrong.  My mom is a workaholic so the chances of her texting me in the middle of the day just so talk are slim to none.

My grandpa, one of my very favorite people in the world, was taken to the hospital Sunday.  After spending most of the day in the hospital with dangerously low blood pressure they decided exploratory surgery would be necessary if he had any chance of making it.  As it turned out part of his colon had died which made him incredibly sick.  They removed the dead portion and gave him a colostomy.  But because his blood pressure was so low his kidneys stopped functioning, requiring him to have daily dialysis.  He may also have liver and brain damage.

So the three of us went to visit him in the hospital on Tuesday but he was on a ventilator and heavily sedated.  I did get to say hi to him really quickly when they lightened the sedation for a small period of time but I don’t know if he really understood me or even if he knew who was speaking to him.

The chances of him ever coming home now seem very small.  Hopefully he will make it out of the hospital and into an assisted living facility but I don’t see him ever coming home to my grandma.  Thinking about life without my grandpa is a horrible thing but I can’t image being my grandma, possibly facing the loss of her love of 60 years.  At the very least their lives will be drastically different from here on out.  I love them both so much and my world would be so different without them.

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Is this the 90’s?


I saw this meme the other day and thought it was funny because it seemed as though everyone was talking about Pokemon Go and I was super out of the loop. After all I have a (almost) 6 month old baby and a full-time job. I’m busy!  Some days I’m lucky if I have time to shower.

I never got into the cards when I was a kid, I think I thought them too boyish at the time so I really didn’t know anything about what the game entailed but my husband came home Friday with Pokemon Go downloaded which got me curious… Continue reading

A Memorial Day Weekend to Remember

Trust me when I say that my life in general and my relationship with my husband is not always sunshine and roses. But I do believe that we try to put our best foot forward in the name of love.  Some days we fall short of one another’s expectations and other days, like today, we knock it out of the park.

I love my husband every single day even when I’m so frustrated I can barely speak.  But today is a day that my love for my husband is so full it spills out all over.

 

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Adam & Theodore / Memorial Day 2016 / Blakesburg, IA

My sweet husband, who is still healing from a very large blot clot in his leg, drove me and our 4 month old baby, 280 miles from our home in Wisconsin to my parent’s home in Iowa.  I haven’t gotten to spend more than a couple hours with my mom since the week of Theodore’s birth when she stayed at our house to take care of our pets.  We expected to have lots of time bonding with our baby and that she would have lots of time to get to know her new grandson but unfortunately he was not discharged from the NICU until 5 days after she had to go back to work. Continue reading

The Important Things

I’ll admit it.  I totally have anxiety about spending time away from my baby.

Our financial situation necessitated me going back to work after Theodore’s birth.  We tried really hard to figure out a way from me to stay home with Theodore but it always came back to the fact that life would just be a little too tight without a second income.

Luckily we were able to find a great daycare.  The two ladies that run the baby room are sisters and have been working at this same daycare center for 30 years.  They are so sweet and completely capable which has made being away from my baby so many hours every week much easier for me.  I definitely feel like he’s being well taken care of when I’m away from him.

But being away from him for work is enough.  It’s more than enough. Continue reading

Microblog Monday #1

The days leading up to my induction were kind of crazy plus it’s not easy getting through the day when you’re hugely pregnant.  So I relied on my husband to do some things for me like creating a playlist for my iPhone so I had some good music to listen to while I was in labor.  Of course he could have just put any of my half a dozen playlists on but he made one of this own and this is what he chose:

 

  1. Bruce Springsteen – Born in the U.S.A.
  2. Salt-n-Pepa – Push It
  3. Steppenwolf – Born to be Wild
  4. Beatles – Help!
  5. John Mellencamp – Hurts So Good
  6. Ramones – I Wanna Be Sedated
  7. Gloria Gaynor – I Will Survive
  8. Matchbox 20 – Push
  9. Guns N’ Roses – Sweet Child O’Mine
  10. Ice Cube – You Can Do It

 

Unfortunately it was decided that I needed a c-section before I even got to use the playlist.  Too bad too I bet the labor & deliver nurses would have gotten a laugh.

Families Come in All Sizes

A few weeks ago my husband and I were just snuggling into bed when he said the words I can imagine any woman with infertility issues fears.  He looked at our son and said “I love this little guy so much.  I feel like we’re a family now.”  A sweet sentiment, no doubt, but my stomach dropped to my feet.

Maybe it wasn’t his exact words so much as what he implied…that we weren’t a family before we had a child.  He’s made other comments in the past couple of months that made me think if we hadn’t gotten our rainbow baby I wouldn’t have been enough for him.

I always feared that I would never get pregnant and that we would never become parents. I worried that he’d be better off finding a woman that could give him the children he wanted and that he’d wake up one day and realize this.  For a minute his words seemed like a confirmation of what I’d been afraid of the last 2 years.

I sat there quietly for a minute while I gathered my thoughts and all I could think to say was “I’ve always considered us a family.”  Of course within about 3 seconds he agreed with me and backpedaled a bit because he could tell I was hurt.  I understand what he means, that our son has enriched our lives so much and brought us closer as a couple and thus as a family, but there is this part of me that just sees red when someone either implies or directly states you’re not a family without a child.

Families come in all sizes.  I love my son with all my heart and now that he’s here it’s hard for me to imagine going through my life without being a mom but I definitely don’t feel like he made us a family.  The vows we made to each other on December 12, 2012 made us a family.  Without those we just be people with a kid.

The Man Behind It All

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My husband has a lot of virtues- he’s kind, he’s fairly patient, he’s a better friend to pretty much everyone than they are to him, and he’s shaping up to be a pretty good dad.  But man does he get stir crazy!

I like to spend my time off of work relaxing.  I’ll watch some TV, read a book, snuggle my dogs, and most recently just hold and talk to my baby while we hang out on the couch.  Adam is my total opposite.  On the weekend he wants to have plans, we need to go somewhere or do something or he just about goes crazy or drives me crazy telling me repeatedly how bored he is.  So I was a little concerned over how he’d handle his time off after the baby was born.

We both get a fair amount of vacation from our jobs (slightly more than 4 weeks a year) and we only took 2 days off during my entire pregnancy, one due to doctor’s appointments and another around the Thanksgiving holiday.  So we each had close to 4 weeks of vacation to use after the baby was born.  I knew before I was even pregnant that I would take the full 12 weeks of FMLA I was allowed because 1) with Adam’s salary and what we’ve saved for the baby/our family we could afford for me to take 3 months off and 2) we’ve worked so hard for this baby I definitely wanted to drink in all the baby time I could get.  The amount of time Adam was going to take off was up in the air however.

I was really hoping he’d take the 4 weeks off so that he could bond with the baby (and so I wouldn’t have to care for him all by myself 90% of the day).  But I decided rather than push him to make the decision I want (which granted, happens often) it really needed to be his decision since he doesn’t enjoy “down” time as much as I do.  The plan was I was to be induced on a Tuesday so he decided to take 9 days off but my blood pressure started to rise later in pregnancy and there was some concern about me developing preeclampsia so my doctors wanted me to be induced a week earlier (38 weeks) then we originally thought, so he decided to take an extra week off to be with us.

And then life got interesting…I’ll share the full story later but between the baby’s NICU stay, a second surgery for me, and very large blood clot that developed in Adam’s leg during this time he ended up taking off 8 weeks.  He’ll go back to work on Monday and while I’ve had MUCH more time with him than I ever thought we would I’m still a little sad to be finishing out this leave myself.  It’s been so nice having his companionship this last 8 weeks.

I expected with spending this much solid time together we might be at each other’s throats but it has actually been really nice.  We’ve had a couple moments that we could have been more patient with one another than we were but we’re operating on a minimum amount of sleep so that is to be expected I guess.

Overall, this experience has brought us so much closer than we were before, which I always thought was really close compared to most couples I know.  We’ve had to come together and each be strong for the other person when needed during these very trying couple of months.  No doubt we were a family long before little Theodore came along but the past weeks weeks have solidified the concept that we are a TEAM, we’re going through this life TOGETHER, no matter how many obstacles the universe decides to throw at us.

 

 

On the bright side…

Throughout this journey with infertility I’ve found it’s incredibly easy to get trapped in your own little pity party.  Let’s be honest, anyone struggling with infertility has been dealt a crap hand in life.  When I was a little girl I wasn’t sitting around thinking “Ooo someday I’ll meet my Prince Charming and we’ll get married on a beach and then we’ll spend the next several years doing anything and everything we can to have a baby including invasive tests, fertility medications that make me sick (and cranky) and spend thousands of dollars doing it!”

Sometimes I really have to reel it in and remind myself of the good things going on in my life.  I have a supportive husband that I love more than anything, two adorable fur-kids, and a job that I enjoy.  I have a nice home, albeit we are rapidly outgrowing it, and a great family.  I have a lot of things to be thankful for.

Today I was thinking about how our life would be if we would have conceived right away.  While I would love to be cuddling my baby right now instead of writing this, I can look back and say, last year was the toughest year I’ve ever had by far.  But my husband and I are closer because of it.  I feel like our marriage has been tested and has come out stronger because of it.

I feel more secure in our relationship now than I did 6 months or a year ago.  My husband could have taken the easy road and dipped out when we found out I had fertility issues.  Found someone else that could easily give him the family he wanted and always assumed he would have.  Instead he stood my side.  We are a team, a family, and this is something we are going to go through together.

We are also in a much better position financially than we were a year and half ago when we started preparing for a baby.  I worked hard all last year to exceed my goals at work and get a higher raise and my husband was also recently promoted in his job.

Last week we officially paid off our last credit card which I am beyond excited about!  It took us over two years of chipping away at the debt (and a good portion of our tax return both years) but we got it paid off and have a plan for keeping it paid off.  We are also a year closer to having our vehicles paid off, man it will be nice when those suckers are done!

It was also my goal to save enough money for the baby’s first year which I am happy to say we finally managed to do.  We’ll probably have to dip into this money at least a little for fertility treatments if our next couple rounds of Clomid are unsuccessful but I am very proud of what we have been able to accomplish together in the last year.

So for the time-being I am going to try to be happy and thankful for the things that I DO have and try to have faith that in the end things will work out the way they are suppose to.