Saturday, January 29, 2011

He Would Make a Good Dad

Did you cry too when you watched the scene in Up when they did a montage of their marriage and they found out the couldn't have kids?

I even blinked back a few tears the other day in Tangled when the queen looks at the king and he is weeping because his daughter is missing. It felt so familiar.

How do you describe the impact of infertility or loss on a marriage? How do you express what you feel when you know your beloved is longing for the same thing you are and you are both helpless?

I may be pregnant and embracing it. (I mean, I even braved up today and entered my due date in the (usually evil) Babycenter website so they could send me stuff I should be thinking about, etc)... But the experiences don't leave you... at least not for a while.

These two powerful posts from Life As Two are SO worth reading.
You can read Funny Face first, as it is what the second post, A Father's Love, is then based on.

I know our journey has not been like theirs, but the feelings are so similar. She couldn't have put it in a better way.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

What else have I been up to...

Thought to just blog about something random for today...

Cos' it is summer over here, last week was a lazy week for the husband and I as we had a week off (again! yay.) We didn't go away but we stayed around- which was good cos' the weather was mostly miserable.

We enjoy doing things around the house and so here are a couple of things I managed to accomplish, which is pretty huge for me.

I'd been collecting these retro mirrors and storing them in the garage...

... so I finally dusted them off and the husband helped me remove the original wood-backings they had on them, and we stuck them on the wall. Believe it or not, I used 3M Command Hook/Picture Hanger things. Yes, those sticky velcro things. I'm a big fan of them.

And so they are now my dining area 'showpiece'. Very proud.

Do you remember this bookshelf I organised with my pretty boxes?

Well I finally got round to painting it cos' it was just made of ol' MDF and getting a little nasty. White of course.

I've probably shared this before haha but if you like home decor stuff too, The Nesting Place is my new favourite blog for little ideas here and there. We don't have a lot to spend around here, so I like to try and use what I have already, can recycle or what I can find cheaply. This blog shares a similar idea, as well as some other tips, which is fab. My friend KP and I ogle over it every now and then.

My friend Ruth recently shared this other link with me cos' we share the same love for lots of white and light. Beautiful! These kindsa blogs get addictive though, so I usually have to peel myself away from them eventually.

Along with home-type projects, I also love food. These past couple weeks I've made this twice- Thai Glass Noodle Salad... it is super spicy (lots of chilli) and always makes me cry like crazy but I love the hot and sour taste so much that I can't help but eat it all up!

This one was my second attempt, with beef and prawn and lots, like LOTS, of coriander!

My cousin all the way in England just mentioned something about having a slice chocolate cake on Facebook... ugh... why does chocolate cake have such a hold on me! Now I think I need to go see if I have the ingredients to make one... hmmm...

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Loosely Accurate General Preg Timeline/Milestone Info

A couple friends/family members have asked me when the main 'milestones' are in terms of pregnancy... like when would we know that everything's ok.

And generally, you can't be sure at anytime really, until the baby is born and you can see him/her, and the docs can check things, but I thought some of this info might be helpful. May be boring.

Those who know me (will laugh and) know that even though I'm a detailed person and have sat through many fertility appointments, when it comes to regurgitating certain info, like medical things, I pretty much zone out, so this is probably filled with incorrect terminology and slightly watered down science.

week 1
From week 1-8, they call baby 'an embryo'.

As a general rule of thumb, you start counting 'weeks of pregnancy' when your last period starts. (I know, I've always found that interesting cos' that is before sperm-meets-egg, but it is actually neat to think the whole process starts with the follicle/egg growing!)

week 2
End of this week is roughly when most ovulate (but it varies).

I don't take for granted that many of us struggle to even make it to week 2. IF-ers pray for good follicles here and may get an extra 'trigger' boost to make ovulation happen.

Yes let's just spell it out, this is when you want to be having sexual intercourse if you are trying to have a baby.

week 4
This is when your period may be due, and about the earliest anyone realises they are pregnant. IF-ers on fertility treatment often do a blood test here to find out after the dreadful two-week-wait.

week 6
IF-ers (and sometimes those who have suffered a miscarriage in the past) often have an ultrasound scan here to try to detect a yolk sac and heartbeat- heartbeat may not be detectable yet here. Some also scan around here for 'dating' if you don't ovulate regularly.

week 8
From about here or 9 weeks on, they call baby 'a foetus'.

RPL (recurrent pregnancy loss) types may have another scan here to check on the baby. They may also be having regular blood tests every week since finding out, to track pregnancy hormone levels are rising like normally should...

I'm not huge on relying on stats, but overall, if a heartbeat is detected here, they say it is a 97% chance that you will carry to term.

week 12
This is the end of the first trimester. Losses that take place in the first trimester are called 'early miscarriages'.
(Again, stats don't mean a lot to me personally, but they can be helpful...) If you make it here with good bloods and good scans, they say the risk if miscarriage it no more than 1%.

For those on the more normal end, this is when you have your first scan. (You may also have the 'nuchal' option to the scan which is when they check on the probablility of your child having Down Syndrome.)

That's why, for many, they announce their pregnancy to the wider public around 12-14 weeks.

week 20
Those under specialists may have been doing scans more often, but overall, you have your 'anatomy' scan around here, when they check on the baby's organs and how they are functioning, etc.

Many also find out the sex of the baby here. Or not. (We are hoping to!)

Losing a baby after the first trimester and before 20-ish weeks is sometimes termed a 'late miscarriage'. (Note:  light bleeding in the second and third trimester is often caused by other things, not necessarily because baby is in trouble. )

If the baby dies after 20 weeks (some sources may vary), this is called a 'preterm birth' or a 'stillbirth'.

week 24-25ish
This is the third trimester.

Some babies born around here survive so they they reach a stage of potential viability. (Some countries will register a baby born here as a birth.)

For many, reaching this is another big milestone.

week 30+
There's another scan around here to check on the placenta, position, etc.

[Probably missing some good info here... blah blah...]

week 37-42
Pregnancies last around 38 weeks. So 37-42 weeks is when people usually expect to have the baby.

Ultimately, making it here would be fab!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Ten Things at 10am

** Caution: pregnacy-talk in this post. IF-ers who want to skip, feel free. Or just look at photos and fastforward to point 10.**

(new year, new clock photo!)

It is already 10:30 am but I thought to do this anyway... I'll write about my pregnancy since I haven't really shared a whole lot about it.

1. We have made it to 15 weeks and 5 days. Yes I'm marvelling that I can say those numbers, they are like a dream to me!

2. We are still nervous, but we are trying to celebrate and experience it to the best of our abilities. I've heard the baby's heartbeat once (at 11 weeks- Ohmygosh. It is crazyawesome. I had no idea. The dear midwife and I started crying.) and we haven't checked on anything since! We have another appointment with the mid-wife next week, so hopefully that'll provide some relief.

3. Part of trying to be 'normal'... we have bought a couple things already. Haha. It was supposed to just be 'research' but we found a couple second-hand baby things on trademe so we got them. Pretty stoked.

4. Even though some books have said to not buy any maternity clothes early on, I've bought some shorts and jeans. I am already uncomfortable in my usual stuff... so I thought why not embrace it all while I can...

(random interesting photo to make wordy post more interesting)

5. I will admit that losing this baby is not far from my mind (though there are zero signs of any complications up til now. Praise God!) but the husband and I are resolving to take it as it comes. Right now things look good so we will go with good!

6. I'm feeling better. My sickness/fatigue/combo wasn't fab for a while, but I didn't have any vomiting which I'm thankful for and the evenings are still a little yucky, but I think the outline of my shape/dent on the work couch and on my own couch at home is slowly going to go- yay.

Other than lying on the couch I also have spent most of the last couple months planning what to eat next, eating, planning what to snack on next to get rid of weird taste, eating, but not eating too much cos' that can make me feel sick, and planning what to eat next that doesn't make me feel sick. Fascinating. My social life has been pretty sad.

7. You know when I did that half-marathon at the end of October? Yeah. I was already pregnant then. Mad huh? Looking back it makes sense that I was so super-thirsty and slower than the usual slow haha.

My GP and I had a laugh (in a sorta 'incredulous' way) when I told her because no recurrent-miscarriage-person should be running half-marathons when they are pregnant, or anything close to that... yet we did and we are okay, oh gosh. Not that I would've done it if I'd known!

8. This is my fifth pregnancy guys. yikes. The only one that's made it past 12 weeks. Saying 'fifth' is unreal.

9. I found out I was pregnant a few days after I came back from that 2-day trip to Dunedin (yes sorry I was unable to share the news for a while) to visit a dear friend in November. I had been dreadfully tired (my poor host! I was not the most energetic visitor haha... ) which I just thought nothing of but then I started to get nauseous and that was the point where I was like, "What the?"...

Dealing with IF for a while, you get so anti about doing pregnancy tests so the husband and I weren't sure whether to or not... but it got to the weekend and there weren't any doctors to call so we did one. And another one. And sat around in shock for a long time.

10. Not to make light of it, but this pregnancy has been so ridiculous (God you are hilarious in a good way) in so many ways... not only did I do that running (see point 7) which is a big NO-NO in old-wives-tips realms as well as especially for pregnancy loss types (which is totally fair enough)...

Believe it or not, I was also SUPER STRESSED in the weeks that we supposedly conceived. HA. (I don't have a cycle so it was based on a dating scan.)

(cute photo of sammy so everyone will like him)

It was Sammy. Sammy had just arrived a little bit before and we were totally uptight because he brought a bundle of dramas which made us think we'd done the wrong thing getting him... and we were thinking, 'Oh what have we done... we're supposed to make our lives more relaxed not worse... we are gonna lose all our friends.' (Like it was serious. He attacked people. BUT Thankfully Sammy has improved a lot!)

So. So much for all those comments to tell people (especially infertility-types) to relax and get pregnant. (I know I know there's good-heartedness and some medical-ness behind them but... ) I'm trying to hold back from saying, "In yo face, preggie-tips!" and I'm personally secretly glad I debunked a couple of those haha.

(i'm smiling, and getting wide, like this crazygingerbread woman.)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Fab Friends

It is the second week of the year already! I hope you had some time to relax before the new year kicked in.

A few weeks ago I spotted this great post by Amy (at Destination Life) she is a friend of Heather, who is a blog friend.

I have come to know a bit about Heather (she has dealt with IF too and is currently agonizingly waiting for their adoption process to progress) but I know nothing about Amy. All I know is that she is a wonderful friend and what she shared meant a lot to me.

I hope and pray you do or will have someone like her in your life. I have been fortunate to have a few whom I'm sure have had simlar feelings to Amy.

I think it is not easy being a friend to someone who has or is going through infertility and/or miscarriage. The stuff we feel and go through can be pretty intense and consuming and I can imagine can be a lot to try and empathise with.

So... this is a big THANK YOU to those of you who have been travelling alongside ones like myself. You are so appreciated!

Anyway. Go read her post.

And if you want you can also go and see how my other blog friend Grace is doing settling into life with her son whom they recently brought home from Korea! Very cute photos and super exciting.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Going Public

Okay so not everyone will approve of this maybe but yesterday I posted our news on Facebook. I thought about it for a long (LONG) time and I decided to do it.

I know I know. Previously, I've moaned about how pregnancy announcements (like ones on Facebook) can be so hard- and they are... whatever the means of communication is. (Interestingly, since being pregnant, I have still found them difficult! Hard one to decipher.) So I tried to make sure I worded it sensibly and I emailed/messaged close friends a while beforehand so hopefully it lessens those who may find it hard or too surprising, as the surprise factor is always an element of it too.

You can't please everyone huh. And I know I'd like to so this is a learning process for me too.

For me writing that 'status' thing was a way for us to 'go public' and also to celebrate this baby. I also wanted to acknowledge that there are many friends and family who are with us on this ride, especially those who have been praying for us... this is answer to their prayers too... so I hope that was obvious.

Oh this is what I said if you are curious (yeah I maximised the 420-ish spaces you are allowed haha):

We have a bun in the oven. Not kidding. As u can imagine, we are thankful beyond words, n God has definitely surprised us with this ridiculously awesome gift. Thankful for many of u who have been praying for n journeying with us. We've also made it to 14 weeks, which is a massive miracle n further (n less complicated) than our previous pregnancies. Celebrate n pray with us that we will be able to carry baby to term!

Overall... I am grateful for the fact that I even get to say, 'We're pregnant.' That has been a phrase that I have become so allergic to these past years. I know some of you guys know what I mean.

Hmmm... I guess the conflicting beast that infertility is continues for a while!

ANYWAY. I'm on break, can you tell? That's why I have time to post haha. Talk more soon.

Monday, January 03, 2011


(New laundry line that my in-laws provided for us!)

Hi there. As I write this I have laundry in the machine that's done but I can't quite get myself to hang it up just yet (despite the nice new laundry hangy thing we have which is fab, plus it is summer...), the husband is mowing the lawn and Sammy is walking in and out of the house bringing cut grass with him. Ha. New year but life goes on huh!

(This was Sammy this morning, enjoying the sunshine out back!)

Happy New Year! I don't know if I quite know how to approach beginning a new year these days. I'm learning to pray for God's plan to unfold, and for Him to help us deal with it if it is not always what we want haha. Sigh. Of course there are also so many things to be thankful for in the past year... and a new year to look ahead also brings much hope, which is refreshing... but the whole 'new year' thing is one of those things that we all do differently I guess. Any traditions?

Anyway. I just wanted to write a quick post. I'm in the midst of updating my calendars. Yes I physically write dates in my new calendar and new diary. Yeah a bit old school but kinda fun. And I'm one of those people that has to be on a roll and has to keep up with it or I lose it and it never gets done! So can't be too long here haha.

The husband's birthday was on New Year's Eve and I just wanted to celebrate him a little. He is a fabulous husband and I can't say enough about him. I've been a terrible wife these last couple months because the morning/all-day sickness and fatigue has been pretty killer, yet he has dealt with it and not complained. (Besides making a cheesecake for his birthday I didn't even do much else! Thankfully my in-laws were here from Canada and my parents came over too... so that was still a treat and we had a little dinner for him. ) 

(Baked cappucino cheesecake! Recipe here.)

The husband is everything I could ask for. I also love that we are such good friends and companions and I am so thankful for that.
(Recent wedding we were at!)

Our new nephew was born on his birthday (yeah!) so that was a super cool birthday present for him. Of course, this baby we are expecting is also a gift- early Christmas gift, birthday gift, everything gift really. I think we are still so overwhelmed and will continue to be for a while. We make it to 14 weeks today which is unbelievable. AAhhhhhhhh!!! (Due date is 4th of July!)

The past couple years have been a bit tumultuous for the husband and so I'm praying for a calmer year and a also a year of healing from all the 'drama' that has left us a little bruised.

Anyway. This was a bit of a random post but just wanted to say hi and hope you have had a good start to the new year. Who knows what's in store?

(This was us saying GOODBYE to 2010. Then I really had to go to bed and the husband went to enjoy some fireworks with friends haha.)

[oh. the husband hung up the laundry for me. ahh. sweet guy! haha.]