Category Archives: Living Life

MicroBlog Monday: Wanderer

Right now we are in the middle of our move. Last Monday the moving company came and packed our whole apartment and carted it away. Since it takes 10-14 to get our stuff to our new destination we decided that we would fly to my parents home for a week so we wouldn’t have to try to entertain Muppet in an empty apartment. It has been great spending time with them and watching Muppet bond with her family. But there is a sense of displacement about it all. We are living out of suitcases and that is always tricky with an 18 month old.

But then to make matters even more fun, the house we were planning on renting fell through 2 days ago. Luckily J will be working for a large company that can put us in temporary (furnished) housing once we get to Seattle so that we have time to find a place to live, but since we are doing that all our stuff is going into storage. Had I known this would be the case I would have kept a few things with us such as our stroller. But nope, all of it is gone and I won’t see it until we find a permanent place to live. This is definitely not ideal. Not to mention we will continue living out of our suitcases for around another 4 weeks. While I’m grateful for the options we have as far as housing I do hate feeling like I don’t belong anywhere. I will be so grateful to be done with all of this.

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Filed under #microblogmonday, Just my luck, Living Life, On the Road

#Microblog Monday: Sidelined

It is the truth that once you have kids stuff that focus’ on you (or your husband) suddenly becomes nothing more than an afterthought. Well, maybe not an afterthought, but definitely not as important as it was before.

You see, tomorrow is my husband’s birthday. The day after that is our 7th anniversary. Guess what I have done to prepare for these events…not much. I ordered a few presents for his birthday then suddenly realized how mediocre the whole thing was. I don’t want him to feel as though his birth or our anniversary is unimportant to me, because they aren’t, I’ve just been a bit distracted with Muppet’s many idiosyncrasies (another story for another time) lately.

So today I ran around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to prepare for these events. I bought stuff to make some fun cupcakes for his office, I managed to find a few small gifts that he hadn’t requested, and I put together an idea for a simple anniversary gift. I’m exhausted. I used to be all into this kinda stuff now it has become a last-minute ordeal. I really need to work on that.

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Filed under #microblogmonday, It's not always about me, Living Life, marriage

8 months old

My little Muppet is 8 months old as of 2 days ago. It is unbelievable how fast time flies. This month she learned how to sit un-aided, pull herself into a standing position on pretty much everything in sight, and give her own version of kisses which is her wide open mouth pressed against your lips. So. Cute. She mostly army crawls, which she learned at 6 months, but she can crawl on her hands and knees. I think she prefers the army crawl because she is so fast that way where as the other way is still a bit new.

I’m so proud every time she learns a new skill but at the same time it breaks my heart a bit because she is growing up so fast and I want her to remain my baby forever. There is a part of me that is scared that this will be the only time I get to do the baby thing and it is flying by. But when she leans towards me with those big brown eyes for a kiss my heart melts and I know how incredibly lucky I am to have her.

Happy 8 months baby girl, we sure love you.

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Filed under Baby Girl, Family, Growing Up, If you're happy and you know it..., Living Life, Motherhood, Stay At Home Mom

Sleep Sanctuary

I’m  still here, I’m still alive. I know I totally went all dramatic about Muppet’s sleeping habits and then disappeared. But the past month has been a challenge. Lets just say things got much much worse before they got better. All of you had awesome advice and I took all of it in. We tried a lot of different things, putting her down earlier, going back to swaddling, adding solids, ect. But nothing seemed to help. After 2 particularly bad nights when she woke every 20-40 minutes I made a middle of the night decision…I was going to take away her pacifier for sleep times. Because that is why she was waking so frequently, as soon as we put the paci back in her mouth she went right back to sleep. But I had enough, it was not a good night and I knew things had to change. So I just did it. At 1 in the morning I decided the next time she woke she wasn’t getting it back.

At the same time we decided to do something I thought I’d never do, sleep train. Yes those dreaded words that are met with so much controversy. But I’m telling you, when you are in a heavily sleep deprived state, you’ll do anything to help the situation. I read a lot of different books and we ended up deciding on the Ferber Method. The chapter on sleep associations hit us hard, especially when he talked about a child with a need for a pacifier at night. J even substituted the child’s name for Muppet’s because it sounded so much like her.The method is basically graduated cry-it-out where you go in to soothe them at extended times. I won’t lie, the first night was awful. She was crying, I was in the living room crying, it was a bad situation. After 30 minutes I broke down and told J I couldn’t do it. That night I held her close so she knew I still loved her and let her fall asleep in my arms. A few days later my resolve strengthened again. That night it took her 10 minutes of crying to fall asleep, the next night was less than a minute, the third night she went down without a peep.

Now she goes down for naps and bedtime without any trouble. Sometimes she takes 10 minutes or so to fall asleep but she never cries. At this point she was sleeping from 9:00pm (the earlier bedtime did NOT work out. We tried and tried but she made it clear she was not ready to sleep that early so we went back to what worked for us.) till 7:30am with 2-3 wake ups. Two of them I would feed her, and let her self soothe the third time. After a few weeks of this improved schedule I came to a realization, we were waking her up. She was such a heavy sleeper as an infant that it never occurred to me that we would be able to wake her by rolling over in our bed, but we were. So with a heavy heart we moved her from the pack n’ play in our room to her crib in her own room. I shouldn’t have worried at all! It has been an amazing transition! She loves her room and her crib. The first week she woke 2 times during the night to eat and then went right back to sleep, but even better, recently she has gone back to her pre-sleep troubles schedule of waking only once per night! I hope posting this isn’t jinxing it but we are so thrilled that all 3 of us are now getting a lot more sleep. We are all happier for it.

So for now we are in the clear. Our little girl turns 6 (!!!) months old next week and is such a joy. She is rolling and scooting around, desperately wanting to crawl but having trouble figuring out that she needs to use her arms to do so. She loves her daddy so much that it makes my heart burst to watch them together. We couldn’t have gotten luckier, she is such an amazing little girl. And for now at least, well rested.

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Filed under Baby Girl, Crazy? I'm not crazy!, If you're happy and you know it..., Living Life, Motherhood, Sleep training

Where to go from here

I’ve been having a really hard time with this space lately. Over the past 2 years this blog has been a source of comfort and strength for me, it has been here during the hardest moments of my life as a place where I could truly be myself. Once upon a time I posted because I wanted to. But now, I post because I feel I have to.

Honestly I think what is hard for me is seeing this space, which was once a place filled with the bitter reality of what it is like to go through infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss, become a mommy blog.

There is NOTHING wrong with mommy blogs. I have another blog where I do post pretty much all things Muppet. But I feel like by doing that here I am taking away the essence of what this blog has been for me. Yes, it shows that dreams do come true, but it also can mask what it takes to reach those dreams. And one thing that is very important for me is to never forget where I came from. Infertility leaves a scar, and I don’t want to cover mine up.

So what am I saying? That I will never post here? No. Hardly. Because the reality for me is…I’m not done. J and I have talked extensively about the subject and as crazy as it seems…we want to try again. Not now. Right now I am enjoying the time I have with my sweet Muppet, but in my heart I know our family is not complete. Another adoption is still on the table, but honestly I don’t know if we could afford it. Financially or emotionally. I will write post about this another day though.

For now what I am saying is posts might be sparse. Because I need this to be a space dedicated to the cruel reality of building a family and all the pain that goes with it when dealing with infertility. So there will be posts, just not ones dedicated to my girl.

That being said there are a lot of you who have stuck with me through the past few years and that I know care about Muppet. So like I said, I do have another blog. However it is a very open blog with all my personal information in it. So I do want to be cautious with it. So if you want the link you can click on the About Me tab above. There is a contact form to fill out where you can request the link. ***PLEASE don’t be offended if you do not receive a response. I really didn’t even know how to post this here because I won’t be giving it out to everyone. But I also don’t know how else to go about this. This is a very personal blog so if I really don’t know you I hesitate to give it out. But a lot of you I do know. And you are all near and dear to my heart so I’d like to extend an invite to the blog if you’d like to follow along.

In short, I’ve come a long way in 2 years but now times are changing, and I need to do what I feel most comfortable with at this time. So stick around if you’d like, there will be posts and maybe even small updates on Muppet. But I know that for now a little break is needed.

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Filed under adoption, Baby Girl, Infertility, Living Life, Moving On, RPL

28

This past weekend I turned 28 years old. Now before you all start throwing virtual dirty looks my way, I know that is not old. But it doesn’t change the fact that I started this journey when I was 25. If I was a “normal” person I’d probably have a 2-year-old and be thinking about a second child.

We spent my birthday in Michigan visiting J’s family. We hadn’t seen them in almost a year and a half  due to my latest foray in the operating room. It was good to spend time with them and generally just relax. Parts of it did make me sad though because we had planned to visit Michigan this summer with MB in tow. There are still times that shadows of what my life should have been pop up and take me unaware.

But on to happier things. While we were there, we stopped by the local Salvation Army. I have to say, SoCal thrift stores blow. Seriously, they are more expensive and generally don’t have much. But this one, I hit the mother-lode. I had to refrain for buying up all the cute girls clothes as I have no idea what gender our baby will be.

I did get 8 onesies though. All in excellent condition (some don’t even seem to have ever been worn) and all gender neutral. The best part? I got them all for a grand total of $4. Score!

So yes, I have started doing some *light* shopping. At first it was really scary and actually had me in mini-panic attacks. I never allowed myself to look at baby stuff so the idea of buying some sent me into a tailspin. But then I reasoned with myself. The fact is, I don’t get to do the normal pregnancy bonding thing. And I NEED to feel connected to this adoption. So the onesies have entered a small pile of clothing that I have started collecting when I’ve come across some amazing bargains. I don’t think I’ve spent more than $10 but still. I’m a work in progress. Also J got me a glider for my birthday. It is perfect and will be something that I know I will eventually make great use of.  And if for some reason it doesn’t end up in a nursery it is an awesome reading chair. Yup, I went there.

But the good news is this morning I got an e-mail from our social worker with our completed home study. I won’t lie, I teared up (while at work) when at the bottom it said she recommended us for adoption. I mean, I knew that. She told us that. But seeing it in writing was a great feeling.

This weekend I will be filling out all the paperwork for our adoption agency while our social worker’s supervisor approves the final draft of the study. The paperwork for the agency is minimal in comparison to the home study. They’ve told us it only takes a few days to get everything completed, so my goal is to start having our profile shown by the end of the month.

J and I have become obsessive baby spotters. More specifically, black baby spotters. Every time we see an African-American baby we immediately point them out to the other person. J calls them “fuzzies” and tells me how excited he is to have our own fuzzy.

I never thought 3 years later these things would be happening. But they are. My life didn’t turn out the way I expected when I was 25. But I am sure excited to see where it is headed.

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Filed under adoption, BABIES!, Celebration, Family, Healing, Home Study, Living Life, Trans-racial adoption

Do infertility blogs have an expiration date?

This is a subject that has been on my mind a lot lately. For the most part I feel that the ALI community has generations of sorts. When we start out we find blogs that are roughly around the same part of the process that we are, or who are also starting to navigate the waters of blogging. We band together and form attachments to these people. We follow each other’s stories with hopeful hearts and understanding spirits. But along the way something starts to change…people start to resolve.

All those who struggle with infertility eventually resolve. Some will have their miracle babies, some will turn to adoption, some may even choose to live child-free. But we all do it. We find a way to move on with our lives and create a universe where our infertility no longer defines us.

So then what happens to our blogs? In all honesty I know very few blogs that have managed to resolve while still remaining true to its infertility roots. The two main things I see happen are 1) they step away from their blogs and stop writing once they resolve; or 2) they become mommy bloggers.

Let me state for the record: I do not see anything wrong with either of these options. Trust me, I can imagine how hard it would be to write about the woes of infertility while your adorable baby is sleeping soundly next to you. I also know how much joy it would be to write about that child that you worked so hard to bring into your life. Who doesn’t want to both brag about your baby and also describe the more difficult aspects of motherhood? I get that.

I also understand those who decide to walk away from their blogs once they have resolved. For those who decide to live child-free I can imagine it is because the blog would be a constant reminder of what you have had to endure. It is not easy to move on when something that big is still staring you in the face. For those who have children, you may feel as though you are no longer part of the community or that you are being insensitive to others who are still in the trenches.

I know for me personally, as a blogger who is pursuing adoption, I find myself in a difficult position in the infertility community. Because yes, I am still infertile. And yes, I am still trying to bring a baby into my home. But it is a very different path, one that I don’t see many bloggers follow.

My generation of the community has grown up. The women whose blogs I still read have all found a way to their babies. Only 1 has not become pregnant or given birth, although for now she is building a new life for herself and I couldn’t be prouder of her. I still follow every single blog. I read all the birth stories, the pregnancy fears, the sleep training, and breast-feeding dramas. I still care deeply about every single one of these women who have made such a deep impact on my life the past 2 years. I beam with joy at every safe delivery and reach of viability. Because you all deserve this happiness. More than anyone.

But I’m still here. I know I’m closer now than I have ever been, but I’m still not there. This Mother’s Day was probably one of the most difficult days of my life (other than my miscarriages of course). It was worse than MB’s due date believe it or not. Maybe because on MB’s day it was not in my face, however with Mother’s Day it was all anyone talked about. I fought tears all day long thinking how unfair it was that I didn’t get to hold my babies on that day. J was super sweet though, and brought me home some flowers. He said to me “Happy Mother’s Day. Thank you for being so good to our babies.” Which of course made me feel incredibly lucky and incredibly guilty at the same time.

But I digress. My main point is, it seems to me there comes a point for all of us where we have to make big decisions about where our blog is headed. I have felt myself already starting to pull away from this space, though it has been a unconcious decision. I haven’t meant to go so long between posts, but I feel as though there is not much for me to say. Adoption is so different from cycling. There is no constant change or revelations made. It is mostly just waiting.

I hate to jump to conclusions and say that once we have a baby in our home that I will stop blogging, because this space has been such a source of comfort and strength for me over the years, but at the same time I don’t know if I can imagine posting a lot of information about our child. Especially given how adoptions can be a little tricky to navigate in that area.

So for those of you who have resolved – How did you make the decision to either keep blogging or step away?

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Filed under adoption, BABIES!, Healing, Infertility, Living Life, Moving On, questions