Thursday, 27 June 2013

He ain't heavy, he's my brother

It was no surprise to me of course when we got pregnant.  I have always known the statistics on an increase in birth defects, miscarriages and chromosomal abnormalities for an older mom.  I am not super scared about it, because i know the statistics are still in our favour.  Tomorrow we are attending a Late Maternal Age counseling session.

At the moment I am not sure we need it, but at the time that I was first asked if we wanted to go I was certain we did.  See, the night before my very first doctor's appointment my husband and I had a fight.  A big fight.  Biggest of our marriage.  A bad fight.  A fight that shook me to my core and made me question the choices that I had made in marrying this man.  He told me that if something was "wrong" with our baby he would probably leave.

I was so angry with him.  How could he tell me this?  I remember hearing the "worst", "poorer" and "sickness" words in our marriage vows, and he agreed to it all.  He knew in advance, I hadn't sprung that part on him.  But here he was telling me that he couldn't take it if we were to face that. 

I was furious.  "You don't get to issue ultimatums to me.  We have no information.  This is a decision that we make together about whether not to continue or end a pregnancy.  Not something that you say to me as though any choice I make results in your leaving.  You chose to make this child.  You knew the risks." 

Since this time my husband has come around.  He has since told me "no abortions for us". 

Our family knows the impact that a severely disabled child has on a family first hand.  I have two beautiful nephews.  They are both special needs.  One is super bright, high functioning, ADHD, asking me about my lady parts kind of kid, my other nephew is a beautiful, laughing, smiling, wheelchair riding kind of kid.  They are both adored. 

The youngest of my two nephews is highly disabled.  He will be 7 in August and cannot walk or crawl (although he can roll his way around a house pretty fast), he can't feed himself, he uses a diaper, he can't talk much although we recognize when he says a few names.  He is also highly loved.  There isn't a single part of my body that doesn't love that little boy.  He has the best giggle in the world and I love to make him laugh.  I fell in love with him the second I first saw him.  We didn't learn about any developmental delays for months.  Even if we had known it wouldn't have changed anything.

My brother and his wife are AMAZING.  I can't say it enough.  They will fight tooth and nail for that boy.  They ensure that he has everything that he needs.  They make sacrifices and save for a future where they won't be able to care for him themselves.  They make sure he will always have everything he needs.  And they make sure that his older brother is a part of his life.  That he learns to love and accept and defend his little brother.  There were times when it was hard.  When my older nephew despaired of his younger brother ever "not being a baby".  But now he knows.  His little brother is special... and it will be his job to make sure that no one every hurts that special boy.  

My husband on the other hand met my nephew as a highly disabled 5 year old.  While he is quite charmed by the 9 year old, and likes to share tips on video games with him, he doesn't quite know how to relate to the younger boy.  He won't hold him, or hug him or play with him.

I have always been determined not to force this relationship.  But I do want to see it flourish.  I want my husband to love this wonderful boy who has a special gift for teaching us about ourselves. 

All these things go on in my head constantly.  We have out NT test next Friday and I am terrified of the results.  But it isn't just about having a disabled child.  I know I could love that child.  But I don't know that it won't make my marriage crumble.  It is amazing to watch my brother and sister-in-law support each other and make it work.  But that's so hard.  And even though my hubby has realized that he can't issue a dictate like that I don't know how he will cope in practice. 

And I am scared of my own weaknesses.  My inability to be as strong as you have to be to fight every day for that child.  My inability to provide financially for that child as well as my brother can.  My older nephew will always be there to provide for his little brother, but who would look after our child when we are gone if they can't look after themselves?

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

The Reveal: My In Laws

I don't know why I have been so hesitant to write this reveal.  I guess it is probably because for me, in so many ways, it was the most uncomfortable thing I have ever done.  I wasn't/still aren't ready to share my news with my husbands family, but it had to be done for my husbands sake.

I've talked a little about this before but for the sake of this blog i want to recap a little bit why i am so uncomfortable.  I do love my husbands family, they are wonderful and kind and loving people.  But, they are so different from my family.  They do what my Grandfather used to call "loving loudly" meaning they fight and scream at each other.  It doesn't really mean anything, doesn't mean they are pissed off, just that they disagree.  My family is not like this.  My brother pisses me off on a regular basis... I complain about him behind his back to my mother.  That is the nice normal way of doing these things.  :D

I agree there are advantages to the more forthright communication, but it is something I am still adapting to.  My husbands cousin got married in November of 2011.  Within 2 months they were pregnant.  While I was struggling to conceive the first time his wife said to me "You just need to relax.  We did.  This little bundle (she pauses here and strokes her rounding belly) was conceived because we just relaxed and drank a bottle of wine".  This was the moment that I stopped confiding in her.  It was the moment that in my head I screamed "It doesn't help to give that advice after months and months and months of trying.  We were relaxed the first couple of months."  Because I grew up in a family that doesn't tell you things to your face like this I smiled politely and cried on the way home.

The day I found out that I was losing the baby we had dinner with her and another pregnant wife of a cousin-in-law (I swear these people are more like SILs to me)  I had to do all the dishes because they were pregnant.  The week that she gave birth was as I was still going through the miscarriage. (I get the impression from many women that their miscarriages last 1 really bad day.  Mine occurred over 5 weeks.  I don't know what actual day it happened.  I suspect with better medical care (I have since changed doctor's) i would have been given a D'n'C.  But I could detect hcg in my urine for months.)  I visited her in the hospital.  I brought gifts.  I held her freshly baked baby, all cute and snuggly.  I held back my tears until we got back in the hallway.  I cried for 4 days straight. 

Then things went from bad to worse.  Now the pressure was on.  My husband and I had been married for months.  Where was the announcement.  Every week if I declined scotch the jokes would start "Oh!  She's pregnant" and if I didn't decline it "OMG!  You are drinking when you are pregnant?  You are going to make a terrible mother!"  It was funny to them.  It was never funny to me.

Every week I would say to my husband.  "You need to get them to stop".  But, he is like me.  He avoids confrontation.  By the next week he had put it off until the jokes started again.  I began to roll my eyes at them.  Make sarcastic comments like "Yeah, that's really funny", and sometimes flat out say "Not funny".  Did I say stop?  I think I did.  But i can't remember how clearly.  But I also think that pregnancy is one of those things, if they aren't telling, you don't ask.  A couple who doesn't have children either is trying or doesn't want to try.  Either way, it's no one else's business. 

Then came the day when I couldn't take the teasing.  It kept going.  "Not funny".  I said the first time.

"I think you should stop that", I said the second time.

The third time I unleashed a torrent of anger upon them that ensured the topic was never brought up again.  "Stop it.  It isn't funny.  It hurts and it's hard."  I was crying and hysterical and I don't know what all i said to them.  Needless to say the dinner was quiet after that. 

In the week that followed my husband was sent multiple apologies.  I was sent advice and recommendations.  "We went to see a naturopath both times and got pregnant right away," came one unsolicited recommendation.  I wrote back "It is staying pregnant that has been hard so far".  I was angry and upset that these people had been so pushy and unkind to me even though i knew it was because they meant well and that is just what they are like.  It was a few weeks before I returned to family meals. 

Because of this I wasn't prepared to share with them the news of our baby.  The evil side of me wanted to wait until they asked... especially if it was at 8 or 9 months... i figured I had been strong enough that they wouldn't dare.  So, the last few months as I have been declining scotch no one has commented.  When my husband finished (drank) my wine at shabbat it was done fairly discretely... if they noticed no one said. 

Last friday as everyone gathered we gave my MIL a "Memories for my grandchild", attached to it was a piece of paper underneath that said "Due Jan 2014".  The amount of time it took her to figure it out was PAINFUL and i got the sense that no one wanted to be the first to say anything.  When they did I was smothered in love... not the loud kind... the normal, kind, hugs and kisses and Beshaah Tovah wishes (Do NOT SAY MAZEL TOV to a pregnant woman... you say Beshaah Tovah which means "All in good time" or "At a good time" or "In God's time). 

Of course they were happy for us.  I never doubted that they would be.  My Aunt-in-law told us she had been praying for us every night.  The pregnant wife of the cousin (seriously... can i just call her a sister-in-law?)  who had the baby last October... she wouldn't let go... she was so glad that this was happening for us.  My MIL hugged me and told me she was glad that she was going to be a grandmother. 

They all were over the moon with happiness....  but still... i am not quite ready for them to know.  I think it is because I HAD to tell them about the last miscarriage, in the most painful of ways I am reluctant to reveal any information about this one until we know without a doubt that s/he is going to be ok... even if that means not until week 42 of this pregnancy.  I know that isn't reasonable... but it is how I feel.  Please don't ask the pregnant lady to be logical or rational.  

I did think it was strange that not one of them asked me how I felt, how the pregnancy was going or if everything was ok.  It is usually the first thing that everyone asks.  I don't know if this is a difference in my family, or if it is more of the same idea that you don't wish for congratulations because the baby isn't here yet. 

Monday, 24 June 2013

The Reveal: My Father in Law

Revealing my pregnancy to my father-in-law was it's own kind of awkward.  This is a man I have never met, and with whom I can not speak because we don't share a common language.  Still, this is the man who cared for my husband as a small boy and who stayed with him when his mother pulled up stakes and left.

We started out by trying to call my FIL on Sunday morning.  Five different times my husband tried to call Romania and kept being told that the number could not be put through.  He decided, finally in desperation to call his half-brother and make sure the number was working.  My husband spent the next 5 minutes conversing with his brother, I could make out that they were verifying numbers and that my husband did indeed have the right number... I also managed to understand that using Skype wasn't possible... and that my husband hadn't shared the news yet with his brother.  When he finally did, he did so in english (which both brothers speak well) and so i was able to join in the conversation.  It turns out that the step-mother is out of the city and my FIL is apparently unable to operate Skype, or really the computer at all, without her.  The brother told us he would call the father and ask him to call us, and promised not to reveal the reason why.  He told us he was very happy to see us in just 6 weeks now! 

We waited by the phone for a while but FIL didn't call until we had made our way across town to a birthday party for a very cute 1 year old boy.  It is so different now being at these parties with small children everywhere and deciding what sort of parents we are likely to be (my guess is very protective).  When my FIL called my husband went to the foyer and began to speak quickly in Romanian.  I joined him and listened in unable to understand anything.  When he was finally done he looked at me with tears in his eyes.  You could tell he had his father's approval and that it meant a lot.  He said "This is from my father" and kissed me tenderly on the cheek.  "He also says 'easy pregnancy, easy delivery,  and don't stop!' ".  We laughed and then my husband held me and whispered in my ear "He also says that even from this distance he can tell how much joy you have brought into my life.  He says he is very glad that you are his daughter." 

I am looking forward to meeting my father in law, although disappointed I will not be able to communicate with him directly.  I expect to see a lot of my wonderful husband in this man. 

Sunday, 23 June 2013

The Reveal: My family

I have to say that my beloved oldest nephew did not disappoint.  This weekend we finally told our families that we were expecting to have to add another table to the family gatherings, and of course everyone was thrilled.  But my oldest nephew... he gave us the best reaction... and then the worst.

We decided we had to come up with  new way to reveal to my family that we were expecting a baby.  We had told my parents the weekend before, but now my brother, sister, sister-in-law and nephews needed to be let in on the secret.  We decided to give the oldest nephew, who will be turning ten in January the following:

   On a 10th birthday card we wrote the message:  "Ok, you aren't actually 10 yet, but it is such an important birthday that we decided to give you a hint of the gift that is coming"

Then he opened a gift that had a bottle inside with a note tucked in that say "A new cousin".  It took him a minute... but when he processed it the the eyes popped open, the jaw fell to the floor and he started yelling in joy.  My sister was shooting me daggers "You already know what you are getting him for his birthday?"  Then she found out what the note said.  There were tears.  Everyone was happy.  (Obviously).

Then it started to get awkward.  "I can be there when you have the baby?"  my nephew asks.  "For two reasons, I want to meet the baby and I want to see a lady's private parts".


"uh... you can come and visit us in the hospital but no, having a baby is a private moment."

"How long have you guys been doing it".  Comes his next question.

My sister-in-law jumps in "since they got married last year."  My husband starts sniggering in the chair next to me.

"But then how come you are only 11 weeks pregnant,"  comes the next awkward question.

"Because you can't get pregnant the first time," his flustered mother tries to stem the flow of questions.

"Uh... I don't think you should tell him that!  That's the way to become a really young grandmother."

My sister-in-law looks at me stricken, "I don't really know why I said that."

I think this is how bad sex ed and teenage pregnancies get started!

So, my nephew is very, very happy.  He wanted to tell all of his friends and immediately started trying to speak to my belly button.  My sister is thrilled.  She can't wait to become an aunt... again.  I wonder how we will make next weekend as much fun.

Friday, 21 June 2013


Today is the day.  Today is the day that my beautiful perfect little secret becomes slightly more public knowledge.  Today is the day we tell HIS family.

We see his family every Friday night.  His extended family is Jewish and so we get together for the sabbath and have a huge family meal.  My husband's relationship with his family is complex.  He was raised in Romania under a communist regime.  His mother hated the communist system and used her religion as Jewish to get a visa to travel to Israel.  My husband was 3.  She never came back.  The story is complicated.  She swears she thought that her husband would find a way to follow her despite the fact that he would not be eligible for the same visa.  She thought her son would join her.  He didn't.

My husband didn't see her for a decade.  By then he had been raised in part by an awful girlfriend of his father's, an aunt, a grandmother, a step-mother.  When he was 13 and now the elder brother of two young step-brothers his father capitulated and sent him to Israel. Whether it was because the 13 yo damaged young man was difficult to deal with in a house with two young babies I don't know.  Or if his mother had finally worn down his father... it could be.  But finally he was sent to live in Israel with a mother he didn't know.  Within a month of his arrival she had left to immigrate for Canada leaving him in the care of yet another aunt.  Within the year he moved to a 3rd country, started a life in a 3rd language.  Tried to fit in to a new culture.  He had a hard life.

I have mixed feelings about my MIL because of this.  I can't quite understand how as a mother she could ever leave behind her child.  I will say that my MIL has always been very kind to me.  She has accepted me and given me gifts and been considerate and kind.  But, at the same time, she can be a wee bit self involved.  On the day we announced our engagement her response was "I know just what I am going to wear [to our wedding]".  This came before "congratulations" or "I am so happy for you" or even "welcome to the family".  Her first thought was about her. 

My husband's relationship with her is complex.  On one hand he wants to have a comfortable typical mother-son relationship, but at the same time he has resentment and anger that can't just be washed away, especially since she doesn't ask for forgiveness.  He is much closer to his aunt, the one he was left with in Israel.  She is like a surrogate mother to him, and to me.  She is loving and caring and wants only the best for him.  When she learned of our engagement her first thought was about how happy she was we had found each other. 

So, today, we are telling the whole family sooner than i had hoped.  My MIL is going on vacation tomorrow.  I can not, in good conscience, let my husband tell his aunt and cousins when his mother is not there.  By right she shouldn't find out second hand.  And, by the time she comes back I am certain to be showing.  But there is something in me that is very petty and doesn't want to tell his family first, after all of their horrible teasing as i was going through a miscarriage (that they didn't know about).  It is hard for me to tell them when there is still a chance that something could go wrong, that something could happen to our little Shmily.  It is taking such a leap of faith to go to dinner today and tell them our precious little secret.

Tomorrow we tell the rest of my family.  I have no qualms about telling them.  Except my 10 year old nephew who would be devastated to have to learn that not all babies make it.  That would be horrible. Wish me luck... it is a long weekend filled with a lot of trust.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

The jig is up.

I have caved.  All of my clothes, while they might still technically fit, are getting so tight that they are no longer comfortable and are clearly screaming to everyone that my bust is bigger and my belly is bigger. 

People might not technically guess that I am pregnant yet.. they might just think that I have been over indulging in sweets... but I think it is more obvious when I wear my non maternity clothes that i have gained weight then when I try to wear maternity clothes... so today.. this is it... i'm in maternity clothes for the first time.  I took the belt out of the shirt so it won't emphasize the bump so much... It just looks like a loose fitting tunic.  And so far no eyebrows have been raised.  Although most people are out of the office today anyway. 

I am just hoping to get through this week... Once we've told our families I feel less bad about wearing maternity clothes. 

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

2nd Prenatal appt.

Yesterday was my second prenatal appointment.  My family practice is a teaching centre, so, with pregnancy you alternate between a full doctor and a resident for your monthly appointments.  Yesterday was my first appointment with my resident.  I am very touchy when it comes to doctors, they can be so hit or miss... sometimes they are so full of themselves that they put me off right away, they can be rude, or condescending or just give you a general feeling that they are incompetent.  I am always apprehensive when I meet a new doctor. 

I was pleasantly surprised.  My new resident is about 3 feet tall and just happy and bundles of energy.  I am a little concerned the baby might be bigger than her when it comes out but she seems very nice and very competent.  Now the trick is just to hope that Shmily makes an appearance when one of them is available.  I hate the idea of at the last minute getting someone that I don't like.

The appointment was very run of the mill.  They did NOT bring out the doppler and let me listen to my baby's heart, which was a huge disappointment, but they also decided they didn't need to do a pelvic exam which was a huge relief.  I hate those things. 

Generally everything looks good.  I've lost some weight so they were worried that I was vomiting too much but really I haven't thrown up much at all.  I am kind of glad that I have lost some weight because it means i can totally blame the baby for the fact that most of my clothes are getting tight and not because I had Indian food with a ton of naan for dinner on Sunday. 

The doctor also made me aware that on my ultrasound they had found a corpus luteum in my right ovary.  I had seen the notation on my ultrasound but didn't realize it was significant.  Apparently it is unusual (but not worrying) and can rupture at any time causing a lot of pain.  The resident didn't warn me about the pain, I wish she had because if I suddenly have agonizing pain I am going to worry a lot that something is wrong with the baby!  But The Google sorted me out.  Now at least I know what to expect.  Apparently they can rupture during sex and The Google doesn't recommend sex when you have one (uh... I'll think about that).

Next appointment is July 15th.  Next ultrasound is July 5th.  That ultrasound is the NT scan, one that will show us hopefully that everything is ok with the baby.  Fingers crossed.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Double Digits

Last week was a bit of a crap week.  I had posted a blog about it and have taken it down as I think it was sort of an off-topic rant that doesn't really belong.  And there was nothing really going on with the pregnancy last week... just plodding slowly towards the next milestone.

That's today.  25% done.  10 weeks in.  Woo hoo.  Shmily graduates to double digits!!  We also came out to my parents this weekend. 

We didn't expect too... I mean originally we did, but then my family screwed around with my carefully planned reveal by deciding that this weekend had too much going on and we would celebrate father's day next week along with my father's birthday.  I sulked a little because I was getting excited about telling everyone....

Then my mom learned about a furniture sale near us.  College Woodwork furniture is made a college not too far from where we are.  I frequent a garden centre on the same campus and my mom regularly makes a drive to visit us and buy plants there too.  On Friday she took me out for lunch and then went to the greenhouse and was given a pamphlet for this sale.  So Sunday morning we went to look...

We bought a crib.

See, we didn't mean to... but the sale was so good... This gorgeous bed, made from solid wood, regularly nearly $2000 he offered to us for $600... we walked away with a dresser, change table, day bed conversion kit, double bed conversion kit and crib for $1300.  And it is beautiful. 

Well we didn't exactly walk away with it... see none of it would fit into our tiny compact cars... so we had to call my parents and see if they wanted to join us for dinner, oh and maybe could we use their van to pick up some furniture.  I tried to be evasive when they asked what we bought... my dad swears he knew it was a crib.

They came to our house and my husband and I vibrated with excitement wanting to tell them.  Before they had even sat down we thrust a father's day gift into my father's hand.  "And, we liked it so much we got you one too mom!" I smiled brightly, trying to hide my nerves.

My mom looked at me as she saw it was a GRandmother's journal... she cocked her head at me when she read "Please return by Jan, 2014".  I nodded, slightly, and she started to cry.    My dad kept looking at the note, "Is this trying to tell us something".  I don't think he wanted to sound too pushy.

The problem is now, we have to reveal to my siblings (worst of all my sister!) that we already told my parents when we see them next weekend... and we have to figure out HOW to tell them now.  The words "I'm pregnant" still get caught in my throat.

I have another doctor's appt this afternoon, I am hoping i get to hear Shmilys heart, that would make my day. 

Monday, 10 June 2013

The longest week. EVER.

Today... finally... I graduate to being 9 weeks pregnant exactly.  It feels like such a relief to finally be moving forward.  Last week, my 8th week of pregnancy was unnaturally long.  The ultrasound which showed me the most beautiful picture in the world also readjusted my due date.  And I had to repeat pregnancy days 8 weeks 1 day through 8 weeks 4 days.  It felt like Groundhog Day.

It's funny that they are so worried about being precise.  I mean Shmily is going to come when Shmily damn well feels like coming whether his/her due date is on the 10th or 13th of January.  And at the end of the pregnancy those days will be meaningless. Whether s/he is born at 39 weeks or 39 weeks and 3 days is a completely unimportant point.

But here, this early, in the beginning of my pregnancy, slowly and painfully inching towards the relative safety of the second trimester those three extra days felt like an eternity.  They just felt like 3 extra days when something could go horribly wrong and take this precious life away from me. 

Now... Just another 3 weeks and I will breathe a little bit deeper.

My husband confessed to me yesterday that he has been having panic attacks every night when he falls asleep.  They apparently started when he saw the ultrasound.  I think it made everything so much more real to him and he started to think about the consequences of what we did!  He realizes that there is going to be another person in our house, another mouth to feed another body to clothe... and i think the responsibilities are feeling a bit overwhelming.

I'm hoping that if we talk about it then he will start to realize we are capable of getting through everything... and we aren't likely to be named worst parents on the planet and everything will be fine.  My husband can be a bit skittish though.  If anyone has suggestions on calming a husband down they would be appreciated it. 

Friday, 7 June 2013

How Sweet!

I'm all choked up!  I was very kindly named for the Super Sweet blogging award by CAM at Recipes for Lemons. I've seen this award circulating through a number of people in the ALI community but it is so sweet to have been recognized in this way. 

There are some rules I need to follow:

  • Thank the blogger that nominated you:  Dear CAM... Thank you.  This means a lot because I feel like I have only just started this li'l blog.. and it was something I was doing just for me.  To help me deal with everything we were going through.  To have someone read my blog was more than I ever expected.  To have you nominated me for anything that involves cupcakes is the highlight of my day! (Ok... confession... not that hard because I just spent an hour under my desk because our office was on lock down because someone was coming with a weapon... but we're safe now)
  • Answer 5 super sweet questions:
    Cookies or cake?: What is this "or" business??  Do I have to choose?  Fine...cookie.. or cake... one of them.
    Chocolate or vanilla?I am allergic to chocolate... it gives me migraines.  So I reluctantly pick vanilla... but I am really bitter about it.
    Favorite sweet treat?: Key Lime Pie
    When do you crave sweet things the most?: With a cup of tea.
    Sweet nickname?:   Man... that's hard...I'm not really a sweet nickname kind of person.  I guess my dad called me "Sweetie"... but usually when he was apologizing for something so it's not a name I ever liked.
  • Include the super sweet blogging award picture in your post: Ta Da!

  • Nominate 12 other bloggers
    • Sarah J from When is it my turn:  Sarah is currently in a two week wait after trying a new protoccol with her IUI.  I know Sarah has been struggling with how painful this journey has been for her and her husband.  I am hoping that next week she will get her BFP and she will know when her turn is.
    • CAM from Recipes for LemonsCAM nominated me and I want to return the favour.  She is an inspiration in so many ways.  She was pregnant not too long ago and shared a due date with me.  When she went to an ultrasound they discovered the baby had stopped developing.  I was crushed for her.  But she and her husband have taken this in their stride and are moving forward with making their family through adoption.  She is determined to be a mother and she will be. 
    • Catwoman 73 from Two Adults, One ChildCatwoman73 has a beautiful girl but is still coming to terms with the fact that her family won't be getting any bigger.  Although she did just adopt a really cute cat which is helping to give her the family she always wanted.
    • Kharini from My Fertility Blog:   This was the first fertility blog I ever found and she has been through so much.  She's currently working with an Egg Donor and Surrogate to give her the family she's always wanted and deserves and is hoping to do the first transfer before the end of the year.  Her kindness, sweetness and heart bleeds through the page with every log and I am so looking forward to the days that she finally gets to take home her family. 
    • Stupid Stork from Stupid StorkThis is probably the funniest blog I have ever read.  She has such a hilarious attitude towards life.  I look forward to a new post from her because I know she will have me in stitches.  I kind of want to stalk her in real life because I love funny smart women.
    • Knalani from The infertile ChemistThis is probably one of the most informative blogs out I've ever read as Knalani uses her chemistry background to breakdown the drugs that she's taking and how they interact.  She spends the time studying up on everything, learning all the statistics and reminds me of the nerdiest side of myself.
    • Mrs. E from ttcbabye3Mrs. E has conceived her baby 3!! And our due dates are 3 days apart.  I love updates because she often has pictures from her ultrasounds that make me feel like I get a sneak peek into what is going on inside my own uterus. 
    • Yeah, Science! from Yeah, ScienceIs a local blogger too who I found out shares my ultrasound clinic.  She just received news on her ultrasound that the baby has an echogenic bowel which can be a marker of trisomy 21 and CF but may also just be nothing.  She is currently waiting for results and hoping that everything is going to turn out ok. 
    • Lauren from On Fecund ThoughtLauren has recently suffered a miscarriage and is only just getting her body back on track from the experience.  She's struggling a bit I think in dealing with a SIL who is currently pregnant as she deals with her own loss.
    • Amber at Old Lady and No BabyAmber is also currently pregnant after loss and happily just got her second betas back showing a beautiful normal doubling.  I am so happy for her but recognize the same paranoid feelings about not 100% trusting that everything is going to be ok.  I think, like me, she is holding her breath until she gets to the 2nd trimester. 
    • Aramis at It Only Takes One:  This is another hilarious blogger.  She has gone through a lot of tests and is surrounded by overly fertile coworkers these days.  I have only just found her blog but I am glad that I have and I look forward to learning more about her journey.
    • Risa and Chris from Who Shot Down my Stork:  I want to nominate both Risa and her occasional guest blogger Chris for this.  I love when Chris blogs because too few men keep blogs and his insights allow me an insight into the things my husband might be feeling but doesn't tell me about. Risa is a fantastic blogger and she just shared the story of how they got together.  They seem like a perfect match for each other.
Wait... how is that already 12?  There's so many brilliant bloggers out there and they have given me a lot of inspiration and reasons to feel hope.  I love this community and am so glad that i have found them all.  The support that I have felt is amazing and I find myself looking forward to following all of these stories every day. 

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Deep Breath

For everyone else out there this is going to seem silly... or maybe it won't because most of the people who do read this blog have been exactly where i was and understand why the teeniest tiniest steps are the hardest to take.

Today I took one of those teeny-tiny steps, but one that has profound significance for me and accepting and believing that Shmily is really going to be ok.  Today i ordered books on line.. Yay me!  Ok.. see.. teeny tiny step... but there's background.

First, when i was pregnant the first time I ordered this book (except not from Amazon because I read this article and now I can't order from Amazon because I just keep picturing the nightmare of a cut-out cheerfully telling the poor person putting together my order that it is the "best job they've ever had").  I pictured being able to follow along with my baby as it went through all of the milestones... knowing what was going on inside my belly.  I was excited and thrilled and happy. 

The day after i started to miscarry was the day it arrived.  I went to the store to pick up the book (oddly if you order a book to the store you don't pay shipping charges and it is often cheaper than the price of the same book in the store)... stone-faced, determined not to cry, and damning myself for spending the money thinking that the baby was for keeps when it so wasn't meant to be.  I couldn't return the book... I couldn't get the words out.  I brought the book home and took to bed crying.  My husband came home and found the book and hid it for me so i wouldn't have to see it. 

I was determined that I wouldn't ever do that again.  I wasn't going to tempt fate into giving me another miscarriage because i was out buying things for a baby that wasn't meant to be.  And then today that's sort of what I did.

We have a plan.. it's kind of a cheesy plan, but I think my husband and I are pretty cheesy people sometimes.  Our plan is to give my father a grandparents memory book on father's day (or possibly the weekend after on my father's birthday) ... tell him we are going to need it back in January (and hope that he gets the hint... or at least that one member of the family will).  We are going to do the same thing for my MIL to tell her.  But now we've decided that we want a memory book from each of the grandparents so that no matter what Shmily will have a sense of his/her history. 

Well Father's Day is quickly approaching, as is my father's birthday and the books that I want are mostly not available for perusing in the bookstores... or at least not all in one place... so today I took a big step in trusting Shmily and my body again by ordering 8 different books (what?  I can return the ones we don't want) so that we can choose the ones we like best. 

Trusting that we are going to get to use them.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Meeting Shmily

Yesterday was amazing.  There's just no other words for it.  Unfortunately I am terrible with blogger app for my phone and swipe texting in general.. so I lost patience trying to write a proper update yesterday.

I will admit, fully, that I was unfocused and unproductive yesterday.  I fortunately could spend the morning looking for some cartoons to use in a talk which meant that I didn't really have to be too productive at all. 

My husband was coming with me for the appointment and, because I HATE driving in downtown Toronto I would much rather take the bus to my husbands workplace (3 municipalities over) and have him drive us both into the city.  However, the bus runs on its own schedule, not mine.  The only bus that would get us there in time for our appointment meant we were almost an hour early.

Fortunately this paid off, they were running ahead of schedule and they were able to take me more than half an hour early. 

At first the tech said she was going to try an abdominal ultrasound.  I didn't want to waste the time, i just wanted her to go straight for the money shot, the one that would clearly and unambiguously show us our baby.  But... I acquiesced.

I lay dociley on the bed and pulled up my dress.  She covered me in jelly and instantly the words were out of her mouth.  "There's the heartbeat."  there was no waiting, there was no agonizing seconds as she tried to bring our baby into focus.  It was just there with a beautiful flickering heart beat. 

The tears started to stream down my face.  "You can see the heart?  It's really there?"

She showed us on the monitor.  My husband, who had been hovering awkwardly at the foot of the table slumped into the chair at my feet and began to stroke them.  "It's ok" I could hear him mumbling to himself.  "Our baby is okay".

The technician then decided she still needed to do a vaginal ultrasound to get a better picture for dating.  I happily assumed the position for a better look at our baby. 

"That's the head.  Oh and the baby is waving his arms" the tech points out to us.  "See that big empty spot in the head... that's normal' (uh... dear ultrasound technician... please don't point out my baby's brain area as a empty spot and tell me it's normal.. it makes me worry the baby will take after my family!) 

We couldn't have been more thrilled.  I could have stayed for hours, never has a vaginal ultrasound been such a wonderful experience. 

Shmily measured at 8 weeks and 1 day (1.6 cm) which means my due date has been adjusted to January 13, 2014.  This is 3 days later than I thought, puts the ovulation date fully into where I was testing with OPKs.  Total stealth ovulation.  Stealth baby. 

The disappointment was no takeaway pictures to nauseate our friends and family with when we finally tell them.  But I have another ultrasound in about 3 weeks so hopefully then. 

But what a relief to know that s/he is in there and growing happily. 

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Ready for my close up Mr. Demile

They took me in almost a half hour early and saw a heartbeat!  Just waiting for our report.

Monday, 3 June 2013

Somebody shrank my weekend.

How is it possible that the weekend is already over?  that makes no sense.  There is absolutely no way it lasted as long as it was supposed to. 

Every year my parents street hosts a giant garage sale and a street party.  My parents decided to seize the opportunity to try to get rid of some of the clutter from the house they have lived in for 36 years.  Friday night we went over to help bring up things from the basement.  Saturday we were there at 8 am putting up tables, laying out books and snorkel gear and snow shoes.  We sat and shilled for 5 hours.  At the end of the day we had a net take of almost 15 dollars.  Yup... that's it.  Apparently no one wants my parents crap.  But then of course this crap could not go back into the house.  It needed to be given to a charity in the hopes that someone somewhere would find a use for it. 

We drive very small cars... there was no way all of that junk would fit in our cars... we needed to use my parents van to drive everything to the closest Value Village... but my mother had taken my sister to the funeral of a friend's mother... so we couldn't get rid of the stuff Saturday... it meant we had to go back on Sunday, load up the van and find someone who would accept most of it.  No one will take a mattress, so a perfectly good mattress futon which someone who really needs a place to sleep at night could have used went to waste. 

All of the lugging of furniture and books has made my back ache something awful... i'm not sure if it is aggravated because of the pregnancy or not.  Regardless these activities wore me out.  I was in bed by 8 on Saturday night.  Maybe that's why the weekends feel so short... I sleep through most of them.

I couldn't help but think that it is probably the last time I will see my parents before we tell them about our baby.  I can't tell them until after the viability ultrasound.  My parents have so much bad news in their lives these days I can't tell them about Shmily unless we know that S/he is going to be ok.  Fingers crossed that in 31 hours I will have finally met our baby.