Thursday, December 30, 2010

Getting a Bit Scared...

It's really beginning to hit me. I want another baby. I'm beginning to feel ready for another baby. And why should this scare me? It's all the "what-ifs" that are beginning to enter my mind. Now that Alexandra is creeping up on a year old, I feel the pressure to have another baby, to give my baby a sibling who is close in age. What a thing to give your child! And the reality is, if I want them fairly close in age, we really need to get going on the baby making soon!

We have gotten some things done: fertility consultation, check! HSG, check! All we need to do is call up our doctor, book a baseline and order meds. In a way, I want to do all of that now. But I know that waiting a few months would be better. Reason 1: it gives me a little bit more time to keep getting myself in shape (not the big reason for waiting though). Reason 2: If we wait until the Spring, that means I will potentially get more maternity leave where we won't have to pay out of pocket for health insurance while I am on leave-and I will get the 6+ month leave that I had with Alex. Reason 3: We want to go to Australia this summer for 4+ weeks. We really want Alex to spend her summers there with Dan's family. We want her to know her Australian family and roots as much as her American roots. Plus, Dan's sister is finally pregnant after 4 years and countless cycles of IVF. We are close and we would very much like to be there for the birth (she's due in early August). So yeah-I don't want to be super pregnant in Australia. Three or four months would be ok, but not like 6 or 7!

So those are some of our reasons. All very legit. I know waiting makes more sense, but my heart is wanting to start now. That fear is there..."what if it takes a long time", "what if we have to go the IVF route this time", "what if it doesn't happen at all"????? But I also don't want fear to dictate our choices. Gah! I'm so torn right now! Especially because, in a way, I want to keep just enjoying Alexandra without the pressure of another little human depending on me-even though I want that other little human VERY much. I see how difficult it is for my friends who have two young children. They are exhausted. But I want that too! Do  want it now? Do I want to wait? What makes more sense? What if I wait a few more months and it takes forever and there is a big age gap and Alex isn't close with her sibling? What if I wait too long and it doesn't happen at all???? Waiting a few months-3 or 4 won't make that much of a difference, will it????

So yes, the fear has begun setting in...and the horrible infertility "what ifs". *sigh*

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Can't resist...more Christmas pictures

Just to add a few to my previous post because I ran out of room :p

 There's no way I could get her to leave that hat on!

 Christmas day morning at our house

 Little People are great for teething babies!

 Christmas day dinner at aunt and uncle's house

 The three of us on our first Christmas together <3


I think every woman who has struggled with fertility has "those things" that they think and dream about happening once they have a child. You know-those things/times/occasions that may or may not be important or significant for anyone else, but you just find yourself imagining how it will be with a little person in tow. I had a few of those things: first time going up to camp with the baby, first time packing all of baby's gear for a road trip, first time pushing my baby in a stroller on a nice day, first conversation with fellow friends/mothers about dirty diapers and night time feedings and yes....the first Christmas with a baby. These are all things that I thought about, planned for, imagined even before Alex was conceived. Of course, it made events like going to camp and Christmas bitter sweet because, while I didn't have a child, I still hoped and wished that I would have one for the next year. Yep, bittersweet alright.

This Christmas was spectacular. I can't really say much more than that. It was tremendous on so many different levels. Of course, you kind of always worry that you built something up too much in your head. But Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were awesome. Not only could we share the day with Alex, but we were able to introduce her to all of the old family's traditions...the things that made Christmas special when I was a kid. I saw Christmas differently this year because of it. It gained some of that magic back, some of that excitement and anticipation. I could go into a long diatribe about the parties and the food and the presents, but really, I would rather let the pictures speak for themselves!

 Continuing the tradition of opening one present on Christmas Eve

 Big Christmas Eve party at noni and grandpa's house

 Lots of people...more downstairs

 Tiring night!

 Christmas morning!

 With all her new toys-Alex still loves mommy's slippers

 Santa came...ridiculousness ;)

 Buried in gifts

 One of Alex's favorite presents....Mega Bloks!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New Name!

Yes! That's right! My blog has a new name! The other one just didn't fit. I chose it in haste one Spring day because I just wanted to get on with the blogging already. This name suits me-for now.

Why this name? Well, it kind of fits who I am at the moment. And really, who am I (medically speaking, we don't need to get all existential)? I was blessed with a baby-so does that make me infertile still? I had a baby after all! Doesn't that, by definition, mean I'm fertile? Oh But wait-I'm pretty much sure that I will need medical assistance to have another one (and thank God for that technology). So therefore, I can't really be fertile, can I?

I am in that in-between zone. What the heck am I? It shouldn't really matter...infertility is just an identification, a label. Whether you are called "infertile" doesn't change whether or not you will have a baby. So why agonize over a name, a label? I honestly don't really know. But I will say that it kind of sums up our situation right now and, therefore, our choices. Maybe it won't matter so much when we're done having kids.

It's weird to think about a day when I won't need to think about having a baby; it's something that we've had to think about and plan for so long. It's strange to think that there will come a day when being "infertile" makes not one bit of difference to my life anymore. After all, through having Alexandra, I have come to fully realize that it does not matter how a child came to be. If s/he get here, safe and sound, who cares if you conceived on the first cycle off of birth control, or after a fully medicated, injectible cycle and a romantic session with an office syringe? It does not matter. The result is gloriously the same.

But we are a ways off of that moment. I'm in that in-between stage...and I thank God that I am!

Monday, December 20, 2010

So sick :(

The stomach bug has hit. Fortunately, I am the victim and not Alex. I'm keeping everything crossed that it bypasses both Alex and Dan. I'd hate for either to be sick any time, but I'd especially hate for them to be sick for Alex's first Christmas. Fortunately, Christmas Eve is still four days away so if they are bound to get it, hopefully it is out of the way by then. Good thing I got my Christmas shopping done!

I haven't had the stomach bug in years...but I quickly remembered how crappy it is: fever, vomiting, diarrhea, name it, I had it. I had to scramble around last night, between episodes of being sick, to call my boss and find someone else to chair the meetings that I was supposed to chair this morning. Yes, this bug did not pick a good time to strike-as if there ever is a good time.

So now I'm heading back to bed, avoiding my husband and baby as much as I can, in order to hopefully save them from this misery. I have my laptop, the TV and some ginger ale...guess I'm all set.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Woo Hoo....

Alex and her cousin, Briana, on Thanksgiving

Christmas shopping is done! Well, except for the gift card that we are going to be getting for our sitter to Texas Roadhouse. But-shopping is 98% done! In previous years, I was never one for online shopping. I wanted to be out in the malls, looking at the merchandise, hunting for the perfect present, being a part of the holiday mass. I really thought of it as participating in the Christmas season. Being one of the traditionalists.

This year, I did most of my shopping through Amazon...and it was glorious! Seriously, there is nothing like shopping from the comfort of your own couch, whilst still in your PJ's, drinking a cup of coffee. I just never realized how wonderful it was-plus-you can pretty much find anything you want online, whereas in the stores, it is sometimes a matter of luck and haggling.

So why did I make this change, you ask? A.L.E.X. My child is like her father-has a very limited tolerance for shopping. I think it has more to do with having to be strapped into a stroller or shopping cart. And my baby is on the move! She wants nothing to do with being confined to one spot. So yes, shopping with an 11 month old has been challenging and more than a little bit stressful. You just never know when she'll blow!

I thought I would miss it, going out, laboring for all those gifts. I really didn't. I think for the next couple of years, I will only need a little taste of the Christmas shopping-at-the-mall thing: a trip to Target, a run to Walmart, etc. At least until Alex is old enough to not scream whenever she's strapped into her stroller. Then I'll just have to worry about her hiding in clothing racks. Now onto wrapping!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Alexandra is getting a cousin!

Alex and daddy at her friend, Alexander's, first birthday!

...A first cousin that is!!!! Her first, first cousin-yay!!!! Fingers crossed, if everything continues to go well-Dan's sister, Veronica, should be having her first baby at the end of July/early August. We are so thrilled!

Veronica and I have both had our share of fertility issues. Those issues are what kind of brought us together and then we found out that we actually have a lot in common besides fertility problems. We have a great time hanging out together and I am just so so so happy for her! She is probably one of the most nurturing people I have ever met and really is MEANT to be a mother. Heck-she's a veterinarian...she's in the healing/nurturing business to begin with!

Anyway, Veronica's story is really kind of a miracle-and hopefully will give some inspiration to those out there struggling with fertility. Essentially, they have a few things going on (pcos, endometriosis, male factor issues). Veronica and her husband have tried to get pregnant for 4 or 5 years, and have even gone through 4 or 5 rounds of IVF. Yes, she's gone through so much and had never seen a BFP.

I'm sure my pregnancy was difficult for her...but Veronica was never anything other than positive and excited for us. She is just that type of person (not to mention a WONDERFUL aunt to Alexandra). Anyway, She and her husband were onto their next round of IVF when I guess Veronica did not respond well to the drugs. Her doctor chose to cancel the cycle, but Veronica asked if she could trigger anyway and still try the "old fashioned way". Her doctor gave her the go-ahead but pretty much shot down any hope of conceiving on their own.

Well...she is pregnant. And it's truly a miracle!!! Veronica is about 7 weeks now and just had her first u/s. They got to see their baby-who has a strong heartbeat and is measuring perfectly. We are keeping our fingers crossed and sending prayers her way. I am just so excited for her...this is what she was meant for.

I'm predicting a boy for her. But we have awhile to go before we can find out. And we are so excited to be planning a trip back to Australia for this summer-hopefully for around the time the baby is due! You know, I'm excited for Alex too...this will be her first "first" cousin and I hope that Alex's summers in Australia will be filled with good memories of getting into trouble with her cousin!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The First "Real" Injury

It had to happen sooner than later. Yep, I'm talking about the first injury...the first "real" injury that would freak this mama out. Let me preface this by saying that I hate blood. I hate seeing it, I hate smelling it. That goes triple + for it being my own child's blood!

This is what happened: Alexandra was in Dan's office pulling herself up on the dogs' crate. This is not unusual-she's been pulling herself up on anything and everything that stays still long enough for her to get a grip (dogs, cat, me, furniture....etc). She happened to fall-which normally is no big deal. Babies fall. However, this time when she fell, her little bottom baby tooth went into her lip and YUP-went straight through it :( :(

Understandably, Alex let out a blood-curdling scream (the kind where you KNOW something is really wrong) and I ran into the office. Dan had her and I saw blood going down her chin. And it was a good amount too! No one wants to see their child bleeding, but it's especially scary when it's the first actual war wound and they haven't had an injury before. Thank God Dan was there...because it seriously scared the heck out of me!

Anyway, we brought her into the kitchen and tried to stop the bleeding. What I didn't know is that lips bleed A LOT. Not to get graphic, but there was blood down the front of her, on me, on Dan, on the burp cloth that we were holding to her lip. I called my best friend, Jill, while Dan was tending to Alex...Jill is an RN. She gave me some tips for stopping the blood. Eventually, it did stop. And while I am absolutely sure that it was painful, after awhile Alexandra was crying more from being pissed off about what happened and tired than anything else. In the end, we got her cleaned up and she fell asleep on my lap with a bottle.

Yep...this is the nerve-wracking side to parenthood, one of the many!

Just to update....Alex is fine this AM. I expected her to wake up with a swollen lip and some bruising, but it looks just like a medium sized cut on her lip-not too bad....phhhewwww!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas...

Alexandra and her books-she LOVES her books!

It won't be long 'till she's walking!

Pictures from our amateur photo shoot...we were on a quest to find Christmas card pictures. What we learned: it's very hard to get a 10 month old to smile when she doesn't want to!

Checking out some pressies

<3 least up here it is! It has been snowing here since Sunday morning and has yet to let up....and we had a snow day today-yay!!!! So I used this extra day off for running some errands. We have three parties to go to this weekend, so I had to get a bunch of stuff for them. Now I don't have to trudge out after work to get it all done! I don't really mind all the snow before and during the Holiday really does add to the excitement and feeling of Christmas. It's having snow after January 1st that I DO mind! I wish we could fast forward to Spring after all the holidays. I would be fine with completely skipping February and March. We can't skip January anymore, since that's Alexandra's birthday month ;)

So...our baby is going to be one next month! I can't believe it, I really can't :0 Since she hit about six months, time has just flown. I need it to slow down a little! As I excited as I am for all that she is able to do and going to be able to do, I need more time to absorb it all. I am, however, super excited for Christmas with her. Two Christmases ago-I was pretty unhappy. I had a miscarriage about four days before Christmas Eve and remember being at the mall after it happened. It seemed as though everywhere I looked, there were families shopping or mothers out buying their kids toys. I felt like I was on the outside looking in. It was a very lonely place to be. I still remember that feeling and, no matter how many kids we have, will always remember it. But that's ok. I had the experience for a reason. Maybe I can help someone else who is currently feeling the same way. Infertility is still a very taboo subject. I've decided to be more open about my own experiences so that others know that they aren't alone. It's amazing how many people can actually relate (that you had no idea about), when you do bring the topic up.

So anyway, I'm super pumped for this Christmas season and so very thankful. Alexandra is going to be one spoiled girl on Christmas day ;) But what the heck-she only has one first Christmas! Well, I'm off to rummage through some cookbooks. My friends and I are putting on a D & D party this Friday. D & D being dips and drinks. We are making key lime pie martinis and everyone is supposed to bring a dip. So basically, I have to figure out what to make for that and for the other parties. Should be a fun weekend! Alex gets to see her friend Alex (he's Alexander though) on Saturday for his first birthday. It will be the first time that they are together when they BOTH can crawl...can't wait!