#Microblog Mondays: Stuck

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I’ve been back at work for almost 2 months now. It’s been a blur of busy-ness, and illness (mainly baby girl, and mainly from the petri dish that is daycare). I’m feeling a bit run ragged, and I think that J and I are still figuring this balance of me being back at work. Doesn’t help that I’ve also been sick for the past 2 1/2 weeks. But I have this stuck feeling. It’s a similar feeling to before I went on mat leave, before we even got pregnant. At the time, I thought I was feeling that way because we were going through infertility, and then I thought it was just pregnancy hormones, tiredness, ect.

But it seems that it wasn’t, because here I am, still feeling stuck. I didn’t think having a baby would fix my life and complete me (though she is a great addition to our lives) but I thought I would be feeling more satisfied and balanced than I am. I’ve looked at changing jobs but I don’t know what I would do, what I am even qualified for (outside of my field) plus the economy at the moment is not great for job hunting. J and I have talked about moving next year, whether it be just moving houses, or moving cities altogether. I’ve always been moving towards some thing; a goal, an event, something. I don’t know how to just be. Plus I’m tired, and stressed a lot of the time so that probably doesn’t help. I’m mostly just moaning here, because I don’t know what else to do. Life just feels like a rat race lately, and this mama is tired of runnin’.

Oh yeah, and a Happy Halloween!

#Microblog Monday’s: Yes, yes, all the yes!

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My Microblog Monday post isn’t my own post, and the linked post is not micro, but it couldn’t wait until Friday’s blog round up;

My response to “Women Who Wish They’d Never Had Kids” and “Why Parents Hate Parenting”First of all, thank you for replying, responding to the “Women Who Wish They’d Never Had Kids” Marie Claire article. For easy reference, right here: http://www.marieclaire.com/culture/a22189/i-regret-having-kids/ And you might also want to check out the I Regret Having Children Facebook page, here: https://www.facebook.com/IRegretHavingChildren I am also going to reference “Why Parents Hate Parenting,” here: http://nymag.com/news/features/67024/index5.html When I stumbled upon the Marie […]
https://theunexpectedtrip.wordpress.com/2016/10/03/my-response-to-women-who-wish-theyd-never-had-kids-and-why-parents-hate-parenting/

I couldn’t have said any of this better myself.

*Edit, I should say I loved The Unexpected Trip’s commentary, rather than the articles themselves. 

#Microblog Mondays: If You Could Go Back…

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I try to make difficult life decisions by choosing the path of least regret. During IF treatment, what would I regret had I done, or not done? That way I can’t (hopefully) look back and say, “coulda, woulda, shoulda”. Obviously one can only make decisions based on the information they have, and sometimes it’s not all of the information, so what then?

I’ve been contacted by an up and coming fertility website to be a contributing writing, and I’m trying to tap the community to see what sort of information you wish you had during your IF struggles, or if you’re still in it, what are you looking for? What sorts of things did you find that helped you? I’m hoping to put out some original, and helpful content that maybe wasn’t there for you, or me but can be there for those who end up down this path, so my ears are open to suggestion!

#Microblog Monday’s: Life Happens

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This was my last weekend before returning to work (today being a holiday, I don’t return until tomorrow). I had plans of fun, family activities, nice meals, and time spent together. While we did get some togetherness, it was not as relaxing as I had planned. Baby Girl got her one year immunizations this past Wednesday, all was well, we went home and got on with our day. The next morning, I noticed she had a bit of a rash on her upper thighs and lower belly, it was big red splotches and not raised up, but I figured it was just a minor reaction from her shots and it didn’t seem to be bothering her so I wasn’t worried. Thursday was also her first day of daycare. Since we were paying for the whole month of September I was going to take advantage of Thursday and Friday, and since I wasn’t back at work yet, it would be a good couple days to ease her in, and take her from 9am – 3pm as opposed to 7:30am – 5:30pm that will be her norm.

When I took her in, they were just getting the other kids ready to go out for a walk in the stroller so I unpacked all of her stuff, and they whisked her away.  I had planned on staying a bit so she could get used to me leaving so it was a bit like having a band-aid ripped off, and there were tears prickling in my eyes as I left the centre. I knew she would be fine, but it’s a tough milestone. I was, however, looking forward to my baby free day of shopping and getting a pedicure. I mentioned the rash to the daycare staff, but told them it was minor, and wasn’t bothering her.

I headed to a mall very nearby her daycare centre (just happens to be the largest mall in the city, and maybe 5 minutes from daycare) and spent several hours cursing my boyish hips and short torso as I tried to find dress pants that fit. After finding several tops, a dress, one pair of pants and a skirt, I was ready to finish my day with a pedicure. I stepped off the escalator to head to the nail salon and my phone rang; the daycare’s number. The director advised me that the rash had spread and I would need to come pick Baby Girl up, in case it was anything contagious.

I left the mall immediately, and reached the daycare quickly. When I got there I could see she was covered in red welts and spots, but still seemed in good spirits otherwise. I called her pediatrician’s office but they weren’t able to get us in as it was already so late in the day. J and I decided to take her to the children’s hospital that is very near our house (and the same hospital as her ped’s office). After spending a few hours there, we left with her having received a dose a Benadryl and a diagnoses of reaction to the immunization. She had no fever, was still eating and drinking and otherwise fine so we went home, intending for her to go back to daycare the following day.

The next morning the rash was worse, her eyes were red and swollen and it had turned from a rash to bruising in several areas. I called our health hotline (it’s a province-wide health advice line staffed with nurses) and the nurse suggested we should take her back to the doctor due to the progression of the rash. I managed to get an appointment at my ped’s office, with another doctor, as her own ped was not in. When we took her in the doctor asked the same questions everyone had the day before; any new foods, changes in laundry detergent, anything else that could have caused it? It just happened that the pediatric dermatologist was doing rounds in their clinic that afternoon, and she came in as a second opinion. Everyone was very surprised at the severity of her rash, plus her wrists and ankles had now swollen and she was refusing to crawl, seeming to indicate it was causing her pain.

With all of the doctors conferring, they figured it was most likely an allergic reaction to something in the vaccines, as opposed to presentation of a mild case of the diseases that vaccines immunize for, but they also wanted to run blood work and urine for a few other more serious things it could be. In the meantime, they prescribed her pred.nisone (a very heavy-duty steroid) to combat the rash and the swelling, which they thought was also affecting her joints, given that she wouldn’t crawl. So after spending a few more hours in the hospital, and getting her testing done we went home with the steroids and appointment to come back on Thrursday to check on her condition.

The past few days the rash has improved drastically, though yesterday she seemed incredibly itchy, which was odd because prior to that she didn’t seem to be bothered whatsoever. She never had a full blown fever, she got slightly warm a few times but nothing indicating a true fever, and she still ate and drank with gusto. We’ve had some nights of bad sleep, including Saturday night in which she was awake from 12am -4am despite nursing, patting, shushing, holding, eating a snack, cuddling, going for a drive and a walk. I was in tears, and we were at our wit’s end. She would throw a fit any time we put her back in the crib, was happy to play in the living room but was yawning like crazy. J finally tried putting her down one last time (otherwise we were just going to start our day) and she finally passed out. Still woke up at her usual time of 7am, so Sunday was a long day for all of us.

Today is the first normal-ish day we’re having so I am making a nice fall meal of lasagna and apple crisp. We’ll enjoy our family time today, and begin living for the weekends tomorrow. I’m nervous to start work, to figure out our new normal, and meet my new coworkers (at my new office), but things are always in flux, and life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.

**For the record, I am pro vaccine, and believe the reaction she had is less severe than if she were to not be vaccinated and contract a potantially deadly (preventable) disease.

#Microblog Mondays: Giving Back

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For the years spent going through infertility, I withdrew into myself. I constantly felt spent, an empty shell that had nothing to give as all of my energy was sapped trying to hold myself together. Then came pregnancy which was also tiring, physically and emotionally so again my focus was turned inward, to myself and my baby. Once she arrived life was a bit of a haze for the first few months.

Now I’m starting to get myself back, a different version of me, but  the pieces are coming out of the shadows and allowing my gaze to turn outward again. I spent so much time buried under infertility, unable to be there for others, that now I want to be able to give back. It’s a bit of a vague feeling because I wasn’t sure in what way, but the first form of giving came to me via Facebook. 

A friend of mine posted that she had become an ambassador for a local breast milk bank. Truth be told I didn’t even realise it was an option in my locale (and it’s actually not, my city has satellite locations for them). I messaged her for info, and am in the process of becoming a donor. They ask for a minimum commitment of 150oz and that is a pretty big ask for me as my pump output isn’t huge. But I have until baby girl’s first birthday to do it (they only accept donations until your child is one). Despite my initial difficulties with breastfeeding, it’s now second nature and I’m pleased I’ve been able to keep it up*. The milk I donate is given, by prescription, to babies who really need it, sick and/or premature. It costs me nothing but time, and can be a huge benefit to someone else. I want to do that.

I’ve also never been able to give blood, be it due to tattoos, piercings, travel or weight requirements (I’m a petite person and never met the minimum weight). Thanks to pregnancy I’ve gained the few extra pounds I needed to be eligible. I am also now 6 months postpartum and am finally an eligible blood donor. So I’m off to the blood bank next week! Again, only costs me my time (ok and blood). I’m fine with needles (good thing or IVF would have been much more difficult) but I don’t like having blood drawn, or at least seeing it leave my body. So it could be interesting, but I’m just going to try not to watch it flow out, into the bag. I’m not a fainter, it just makes me a bit squeamish, so it should be fine.

So I’m starting relatively small, and with anonymous type things, as opposed to giving or helping a specific person/people. I’m glad to be able to put some positivity out into the world, now that I am not living in the vacuum of my own life. Helping is healing. 

*I am for all forms of feeding your baby, whatever is for you. Breastfeeding is for me, and the health benefits for sick and preemie babies are there so I’m all for sharing my milk with those who need it. 

#Microblog Mondays: A Wish

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I originally heard out about this book over at Beloved Burnt Toast. Someone gifted it to her daughter for her first birthday, but really I think it’s a gift for the parent and more so for the child when they are old enough to understand how truly wanted they were before they arrived.

The story is about two elephants who create a life together, but in the back of their minds there is always that thought of growing their family. One day they decide they are ready, but time passes and their baby still hasn’t come to them. All throughout, they wish the baby was there with them. There is a point in the book where the elephants look quite sad, and it shows them “living life” but says that they make no plans. Then one day there is a rumble, and a storm, but in the end the baby comes to them.

I went to Chapters (the Canadian version of Barnes and Noble) to check it out, so I took the book and sat in a quiet corner of the store and read. By the end I had tears welling up in my eyes*. It is a very simple book, not very wordy but packs a powerful emotional punch. Later that day, J and I were out and about so I told him about the book and we stopped in the store so I could show it to him. We went to the kids section of the store to retrieve the book, and he pulled two chairs next to each other so we could sit together and read it. I was going to just let him read it, but when he opened the book I leaned in and we read silently, together.

When we finished the book, J looked up at me as the tears, again, welled up in my eyes and all he could say is “wow”. A few fat tears slid down my cheeks, as J and I both sniffled and tried to gain composure (as we’re still sitting in the middle of the children’s section of a large bookstore). He gave me a squeeze and a kiss and told me it was a really good book.

The book always shows the baby elephant in a boat in the sea on it’s way to it’s parents but never insinuates how it gets to them (their own pregnancy, surrogate, adoption, ect.) or what it took along the way, it just conveys the grief the parents experienced while waiting. And I know not everyone gets their wish to come true. But the elephant couple does, and so far it’s looking like we will too. This book put into simple words and pictures, the great complexity, the anguish it took to get here and the joy of our wish coming true.

We will be using it as the guest book at our BBQ shower as a way to share with the rest of our friends and family the journey we’ve been on.

*Sidenote: I am not a very emotional person, and even through pregnancy have not been overly emotional (besides bitchy) but this, got me straight to the guts.

#Microblog Mondays: What’s in a Name?

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Most people come up with a name for their baby in-utero, because using “it” or “the baby” all the time just isn’t as fun. There’s the typical, “bean”, “peanut”, ect. I wanted something original and cute (is it weird that I gave so much thought to this..?). In any case, in the first week after we found out I was pregnant, our embryo was the size of a poppy seed, so J was playing on that and he said “Poppet”. Like from Pirates of the Caribbean when the pirate calls Kiera Knightly’s character poppet as a creepy sort of term of endearment.

It sounded kind of cute, so I googled it and it came up as “a middle English word meaning small child or doll” as well as a term of endearment. I figured that fit, and so Poppet it has been. It wasn’t until later that I read the entire definition that also states that it is primarily used for a young woman or girl. Oops, sorry to Poppet if it is a boy. But we are really really hoping for a girl, so perhaps it is a foretelling…