Category Archives: Kid Quest

In Memoriam.

The morning of April 1st I finally passed our baby.

I didn’t post about it then because it wasn’t a joke, nor was it funny. Although the irony of the date wasn’t lost on me.

Even more ironic than it being April Fools’ Day was the fact that, when we first found out I was pregnant and calculated the dates, innocently lost in the excitement of it all, April 1st was the day we considered telling our family and friends our news.

Yesterday, I received this special gift in the mail from Stacey (a family friend and reader of my blog). Thank you, Stacey, words cannot express how much this means to us.

It reads, “Little I knew that morning, God was going to call your name, in life we loved you dearly, in death we do the same. It broke our hearts to lose you, you did not go alone, for part of me went with you, the day God called you home. You left us beautiful memories, your love is still our guide, and though we cannot see you, you are always by our side. Our family chain is broken, and nothing seems the same, but as God calls us one by one, the chain will link again.”

We named our baby “Miracle.” It seemed appropriate.

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Peering Through Pain.

Tony is a little amazed that I just seem to keep going, pain or not. He says most people would just stay home… I suppose he’s right. But the thing is, I learned a long time ago that if I let pain control my life, then pain becomes my life. I’d rather have a life and deal with pain, than to isolate myself because of my fear of pain, or fear of showing others my pain.

As with most life altering things, I’m learning that having a miscarriage is one of those things that silently twines itself around the daily happenings of a person’s life. Of my life. It’s weird, because it’s like this quiet grief of which no one ever speaks. No one I meet on the street has any idea that at the moment I’m telling them “I’m fine,” in response to their standard greeting of, “How are you?” I’m actually losing a life I’ve nourished for 2 1/2 months, and a dream for which we’ve prayed for 3 years.

Today would have marked the beginning of my 2nd trimester.

The dreams are hard, and I’ve awakened more than once the past few days because I’ve been crying in my sleep. ~~ I felt like I’d been punched in the gut the other day when I saw a woman holding her newborn close to her cheek. ~~ I wanted to punch someone in the gut when, within the first five minutes of meeting him and his obviously pregnant wife, he made more than three comments about his wife being pregnant.

Irritable. Sad. Sensitive. Tired. Impatient. Cramps. Bleeding.

Yet, despite the pain — emotional and physical — I’ve been able to carry on a semblance of a normal life. I’m able to go to work, learn new things and practice my craft as an assistant. The people I work with are cool and hip. There are fun perks at this company, like free breakfasts every Friday, sponsored by the company.

Tony and I were able to have a great weekend together. Friday night, we went up to the local mountains and, Saturday morning, visited our friends (the cook & waitresses) at our favorite breakfast restaurant up there. Which also means we’ll think of them and our time up there for most of the week, because we have breakfast leftovers.

We drove down Saturday afternoon to attend a Honda-sponsored dinner event for the people who rode on their float in the Rose Parade. A dinner at a ritzy steakhouse, with appetizers, salad, main course (filet mignon for us, please) and dessert. The representative from Honda said they’d stayed away from having riders on their floats in years past, but now might reconsider that policy in the future because all the float riders this year were so wonderful. As a thank you, beyond the experience, memories and dinner, they gave all the float riders photo albums and DVDs. I continue to be so impressed with Honda corporation.

This weekend was also Marigold’s birthday and the Steve/Marigold/Huck/Milo Show invited us to join them at Disneyland. Our schedules meshed up, so we spent the afternoon at the happiest place on earth, riding kiddie rides with the kiddies and getting our picture taken with Mickey Mouse.

The best ride of the day was the Jungle Cruise, because I got this picture of nephew Huck just after we saw the hippopotamuses get “shot at” by our guide. He wasn’t pleased.

Grateful. Blessed. Loved. Grace. Amazed. Miracles.

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Filed under Best Husband, Entertainment can be Cheap, Health/Endo, I did something Special, I feel Sad, I have Family, I Left Home for Awhile, Kid Quest, Money Hump Building, Sometimes I Dream

Love & Loathe — 03/25/10 (late)

Loathe:

* I think I’ll just let the previous post fill this slot this week.

Love:

* The movie The Blind Side. We saw it in the theaters and loved it so much, Tony bought it this week on DVD. Watched it again, and still love it. I’m a bit annoyed about that, because you know when people ask, “What’s your favorite movie?” I may have to change my answer… this is a big deal. I must give this issue proper consideration, can’t just decide that over night.

* $.25 hot dogs on Wednesday nights at Weinerschnitzel.

* Tony bought melon seeds at the store the other day. He has no idea where he’s going to grow them, we really don’t have any sunny spots around our place. But I just love his enthusiasm and desire to try to grow plants.

* I read in my community’s newsletter that they’ll start heating our pools in time for spring break/Easter. One more week!!

* I had a hot fudge sundae tonight. It was dark and we were driving to the mountains, and kept thinking I’d spilled it on my shirt, but I hadn’t. We got to the cabin and I looked in the mirror and started laughing. No chocolate shirt, but a chocolate chin. I looked like I had a chocolate beard.

* How joyful our little bird is every morning when she sees me. It’s such a sweet thing to watch her perk up, chirp and lean way far out to climb on my finger. Especially when I remember back to how when we first got her, we had to chase her all over her cage.

One Last Thing:

So, I made it through the week and still have my job… which is nice. More importantly, things seem to be doing OK as far as my health. I learned that Aleve (naproxen sodium) is my friend, especially when taken on a consistent basis. I feel tender, swollen and very tired, all of which seem like normal and expected things given what my body has been through, and I plan to go have blood work done next week to make sure my hormone levels are where they’re supposed to be.

But… I’m OK.

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Filed under Health/Endo, Kid Quest, Life Encompasses Me, Love/Loathe

Physical Processing.

I went for my second opinion on Friday. The news was really a moot point. I knew what it would be, for I had started bleeding last Wednesday.

Mostly, I just wanted one last picture of our baby.

It amuses me the lengths to which the medical community goes to avoid calling our baby a “baby.” Each visit, I wonder what term the doctor will come up with. This time, it was “results of conception.” Clever, very clever. For isn’t that what each of us is?

So, my body started cramping on Saturday afternoon and took a turn for the intense side of things on Sunday afternoon in its attempt to “pass the results of conception.” (“Passing” sounds so easy, doesn’t it?)

Throughout the process of physical pain and inconvenience, I was simply amazed at the sheer amount of insulation my body had provided to protect this little one. And then, by last night, the intense pain was all gone and left me feeling tender and fragile inside.

I felt well enough to continue with life as usual. In my capacity of “normal.”

Which is why I was unpleasantly surprised when a contraction hit with such force this afternoon, it took me to my knees at work, and then my boss walked by. Oh Lord, I was so embarrassed but unable to do anything except remember to breathe. Now I find myself wondering if I’ll lose my job on top of our baby. (sigh)

I couldn’t go home because I couldn’t sit, and even if I could have sat down, it was horrifying to imagine myself driving in rush hour traffic with that kind of pain. I couldn’t figure out why the pain was so much worse today than yesterday (although not kidney stone passing kind of pain). The only thing I could think is it’s maybe like when you vomit? It’s less painful if you have water or something in your stomach? Maybe that’s why the pain was so much worse today, because there really wasn’t that much left in there to wring out? I’m grasping at illogical logic here. Indulge me, please, I’m hormonal.

Really, though, emotionally, I’m OK. Sad, of course, but it’s as if the physical process is a tangible culmination of the emotional pain I’ve had since mid-February. At this point, I simply want my body to correctly finish what it’s supposed to do, as I do not want surgical intervention. Which is also why I don’t want to ask my doctor about this process, because how many women do they actually “allow” to miscarry naturally? They’re surgeons, every one of them, and all surgeons want to do is poke, prod and do surgery. I just have no idea how long the cramping is supposed to last… or why it waited 24 hours before coming back with such force.

I’m just praying for the grace to get through each day and that my body will do what it needs to do correctly. But, God, this hurts, and I won’t have a baby in my arms to show for it when it’s all done. And that, frankly, just sucks.

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Filed under I feel Sad, Kid Quest, Money Hump Building

Green Dinner & Stuff

On my way home from work on Friday night, I was in stop-and-go traffic behind a guy in a silver Miata with a black top. It was the earlier version of the Miata, the version with the plastic window, which he had unzipped. It made me smile, because I remembered that I used to do that, too, sometimes when I had mine. Yes, before the 2002 Miata I own now, I owned a 1992 Miata. What can I say, I love those little cars.

The thing I noticed about him beyond his car, was that he had a tick. I don’t know if he had Turret’s syndrome or what, but every 30 seconds or so, his body forced him to turn his head to his right, bobble it a couple times, while he mouthed a few words, and then he faced forward again. Over and over it went.

At first I thought it was kind of funny, then as time passed and we all slowly crept forward together, stuck on the freeway in a proximity closer than any of us wanted, I couldn’t help but think how exhausting that must be for him. Time after time I watched his head turn quickly, bobble, his car would mildly swerve in sync, and then he regained control, faced forward and acted as if everything was normal. It was normal for him. His normal.

Isn’t that what we all try to do? Move forward with each of our versions of “normal?” Whatever that may be?

Yesterday was the annual Green Dinner event at Tony’s church. It’s an event that we start talking about when we put our Valentine’s decorations away and bring out our St. Patrick’s Day decorations. It’s an event I always enjoy, where they serve delicious corned beef, potatoes, carrots, cabbage and cake (CAKE!!). This year, while the venue was a bit smaller and there were no Irish dancers, I still immensely enjoyed everything that was offered. Plus, visiting with the Seniors (Tony’s parents), and the Steve/Marigold/Huck/Milo Show made for a perfect evening, as far as I was concerned.

Today I got back in the pool for the first time in a month and a half. I felt like I needed to for my own sanity, but I was scared to do so, because I thought for sure I’d miscarry right then and there. The doctor tells you not to do something and suddenly it becomes Bad. Yet in a “normal” pregnancy, swimming would be Good. The mind is a funny thing sometimes.

The act of swimming felt weird to me after so long of a break. Although they knew what they were supposed to be doing, my arms felt like uncoordinated noodles. I was also ultra-aware of what muscles I was using to accomplish what came so easily to me not that long ago. The most surprising thing to me, though, was that I didn’t get winded at all… my stamina and endurance hadn’t changed much. Which is to say that I didn’t find myself huffing and puffing at all, and I was pleased with that. I guess I was in better shape than I had thought.

It was such a beautiful day here today. Tony refilled the bird feeders in our back yard and the sun was so warm and bright, I went outside and thought, “Wow, I bet it would feel wonderful just to lie down and look up at the sky…” And so I did. Then I fell asleep and ended up taking a 45 minute nap, lying on the warmed concrete in our back yard, with the sun shining warmly on my skin and a slight breeze stirring the leaves of the Eucalyptus tree behind me. I had a nap in the oasis, such as it is, of my own back yard.

Then I had to get up and do chores.

Normal. My normal.

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Filed under I ♥ My Miata, I did something Special, I have Family, Kid Quest, Who I am

I Need You.

I sat down here tonight to type my weekly Love & Loathe post and am finding that I just can’t do it. It feels superficial and forced, too perky for where we are tonight emotionally. Physically, too, now that I ponder it.

Tony is driving out to Las Vegas this evening to meet his dad and brother. His sister has been missing since February 25th, and they are attempting to find her. She has a mental illness and is supposed to be taking medications to help her, but she has missed important doctor appointments and, as a result, is likely off her meds. Tony has put together a simple website to get the word out on Facebook and Twitter.

**03/13/10 Update: After spending Friday in Vegas following leads, on Friday night, Tony’s sister surfaced. We don’t have all the details, maybe never will of what happened, but the important thing is that she’s OK.**

In addition, Tony’s grandfather’s health has been declining since January. There is a lot going on with him, and out of respect for his privacy, I will just share that he has been in and out of the hospital for treatment and testing. We are hoping that he will be OK once they get him stabilized, but will likely need to be in an assisted living facility. This has been especially hard on Tony’s elders as they try to figure out the best way to provide him the needed care, but also ensure that he feels loved, safe, comfortable and reassured.

**03/13/10 Update: On Friday Tony’s grandpa stabilized enough that he could eat solid foods and be placed in a living facility. I hope he’ll be around for many, many more years.**

And finally, Tony and I have been dealing with something incredibly personal as well. You may recall that we’ve been trying to start a family for three years and we were diagnosed with male factor infertility in December of 2007. We were told that the likelihood of me becoming pregnant by “normal methods” were less than 3%, or even less, when my age is factored in.

Miraculously, I am 2 1/2 months pregnant, and have been on pelvic rest for 1 1/2 of those months (no exercise, no sexercise, nothing that moves the pelvis beyond a sedentary life).

However, I was diagnosed last Friday with early pregnancy failure. By ultrasound, they can find the gestational sac and the yolk sac, but no baby. From what I’ve read on Dr. Google, there is a tiny, tiny, tiny chance that, because I have a tilted uterus, the baby may be hidden, but I… well, I don’t know. The doctor didn’t give me any hope at all and said I will miscarry within the next 2-3 weeks.

I spent most of Friday night and Saturday sobbing my heart out, grieving, for this baby we want so very badly, but the doctor says isn’t there. We are working on getting a second opinion, but ultimately, a second opinion won’t change what’s going to happen. Whatever that may be.

In the meantime, I’m trying to hold it together emotionally and physically at a new job, where I will finish my first week tomorrow.

There are times in life when I’ve come to realize that, no matter what I do, there is actually very little I can do to change the outcome of certain situations. When, through it all, I hold onto the fact that I know a God who can work miracles, whether it be peace of mind or putting a baby in my womb. Or giving loved ones wisdom when it comes to searching for a missing loved one or holding a family together when a loved one needs their help.

You guys are my extended family and now, more than ever, we need your love, prayers and emotional support.

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Filed under I feel Sad, I have Family, Kid Quest, Sex, Spirituality, Who I am

Catch Up & July’s Searches

The GYN Appointment — I had my annual GYN appointment this past week. With a different GYN from last year. I liked the GYN I saw last year, but there were a couple things that irritated me. The most insulting part was the nurse who came in to prep the room for the next patient before I was finished dressing after the exam. That just stuck in my craw. Second was, I had to pay for parking. As the year wore on and I tried to get prescriptions for the vitamins I was taking, it was a big hoopla because it took the doctor a week to approve the prescription (for a vitamin!!), then their office wouldn’t fax or call the prescription into the pharmacy, they wanted me to come pick it up… drive 40 minutes round trip AND PAY PARKING? I think not. I was pretty sure I was going to move on. Then it took them a month and a half to fax an authorization to my insurance company so I could be referred to a reproductive endocrinologist. My insurance company (!!) was even badgering them for it.

Then I worked with my RE’s office and I saw how gynecological care should be and I realized there really is no excuse for the shoddy treatment that so many women endure to get such an important annual exam. I asked so many of my female co-workers if they had a GYN they liked and would recommend, most of them just waved their hand and said, “Well, I guess he/she is OK, but I should probably search for a new one…” I think it’s kind of like if you’ve had blurry vision your whole life, you just deal with it. You know that corrective lenses could probably make things better, because you’ve heard about it, but you have no idea what crystal clear vision is like until you experience the difference for yourself.

Anyway, as someone who’s received stirrup-care of one sort or another 21 times (at best count) since June of last year (more times than some couples have sex in a year — giddy up!!), with a full-spectrum of paraphernalia & caregivers — some of the absolute worst and thee absolute best — I can honestly say that I am optimistic about the “new” GYN and his staff. His bedside manner is awesome. The exam part of it was quick (fastest I’ve ever had — a good thing in this instance) and second only to my RE for gentleness. The exam part of it was so fast, that I have no idea how he had time to note the things he told me afterward. In fact, I intentionally didn’t tell him a couple of things and he figured them out. He was good and he knew his shit. I was impressed. He also knew all the caregivers I’ve worked with over the years, and his opinions of them validated mine. I told Grace that it was as if I’d stopped by see an old friend that I’d forgotten I knew, which is really weird considering what I was there for. Oh, and parking was free. We’ll see how it goes over the next year.

The Wedding — On Friday night, we attended the wedding of some long-time friends. Well, one of them is a long-time friend, Tony’s known the guy since junior high (if not longer) and Tony was instrumental in getting his friend and the lady he married together. It was in 2006 that Tony and his buddy flew to Arizona. While at the airport, they met this lovely lady in line at security. They got to talking and his buddy flustered her so much that once she was through the line, she grabbed her shoes and left her purse and laptop on the conveyor belt. Tony urged him to go after her and get her phone number, he argued against it, not thinking she was interested, but at Tony’s insistence, he ultimately followed her, got her information… and the rest is history.

There’s this magnetic connection that I love to see in couples, the best way I can describe it is to say that it’s an unconscious body language thing. When one person in the relationship talks, the other leans in to hear. Or there’s always some sort of contact, whether it’s holding hands or knees resting against each other. Or there’s the eyes, when one is across the room the other is always seeking them. It’s a second-by-second intrinsic magnetic balancing act and the couples don’t even realize it’s taking place. It’s a mutual giving, adding to each other, rather than taking away. Tony’s parents have it with each other, Tony’s brothers have it with their wives, Tony and I have it, several of our friends have it in their relationships — and these two have it.

We’re so happy for them, and excited that they took this step together.

July’s Searches (listed in bold):

“my poor toe” — nooooo, MY poor toe. Funny thing you should mention that, yesterday I went to Walmart and pulled a deodorant off the rack to purchase. The spring loaded distributor shot the next deodorant in line off the shelf and torpedoed it with great force directly onto the toe I injured about a month ago. Man, that hurt so bad I stood there for a minute while my ears felt like they were going to explode and my eyes watered. Interesting about pain, huh, no matter where it is on the body, it always goes straight to the head. Then I ever so gently put the torpedo back on the shelf, along with the one I was going to buy and limped away.

club soda good for oily scalp?, shampoos for imflammed scalp, club soda or water after swimming? after swimming club soda hair treatment, no poo asian hair, is it okay to do an apple cider vinegar rinse after swimming? — OK, look. Here’s the deal, people, chlorine is probably one of the worst things you can do to your hair and scalp, aside from burning or frying it chemically, that is. So, yes, club soda, apple cider vinegar or just plain water is FINE. Shampoo is the second worst thing. I use a baking soda/water concoction. But if you must use shampoo, go with baby shampoo. Expect an adjustment period while your scalp figures out what the hell you just did (stopped irritating it) and expect any inflammation (or imflammation) to clear up within a couple weeks.

i got a hard black mole on my scalp — Are you sure you don’t got a tumor?

life’s oddities — well, thanks for that one, Google.

bad show mariah — her show wasn’t just bad, it was horrible. Save the cost of a concert ticket and just buy her CDs. You’ll actually get to listen to complete songs (instead of medleys) and she’ll likely even do some vocal acrobatics (instead of making your eyes water because her voice is so weak).

metrostyle model with the gap in her teeth — Look, if you’re trying to hire her, let me just tell you, Metrostyle lost sales from me because I got so distracted by her teeth. I’m not saying gapped teeth are bad, I know some very lovely people who have gapped teeth. What I’m saying is that if one chooses modeling as a profession and said model is displaying clothes, it might be a fine idea for the model to keep her gapped teeth concealed behind her lovely, closed lips.

“someday i’ll laugh” — Why wait?

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Filed under Health/Endo, I did something Special, Kid Quest, We're all searching for something