Highs & Lows, Ebbs & Flows

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As much as one falls into daily routines, it would be hard to ever consider life as static. It moves forward, and there is little choice than to go along, whether with open arms, or kicking and screaming. Since I went back to work, I was having a hard time finding solid footing. It seemed I was being pulled in too many directions, and I think the stress and busyness of the holidays was not helping me in trying to get centred.

Now that the new year has come and gone, life is on the upswing. Work has been busy which has been surprisingly good, most of the time. I am one of those people who functions best under moderate pressure. If I am not busy, I tend to slack, and procrastinate because if I’m not busy, I’ll have time to get stuff done later! So busy equals productivity. Plus, I am in sales, and a New Year means a fresh slate and new targets, which I am pumped for. Since I came back so late in 2016, I had no hope of reaching any targets (mine are cumulative over the year) so it was more just about getting myself established again, and set up for the New Year to come, so admittedly, I was just coasting until the calendar flipped so I could go hard in 2017. I am pumped and ready to go, feeling good, finally feel like I have a better handle on balancing life and work (don’t get me wrong it’s not perfect and I do feel harried at times, but it’s better).

Just when I am feeling good and on top of things, J is feeling down. He had a rough day at work that really got to him and has been feeling down in the dumps. He is trying to find the motivation to go to the gym, but it’s not happening. He doesn’t sleep well, and that can effect everything (I know, ask me how well I slept during fertility treatments). I think he is feeling stuck with his job (again) and slightly overwhelmed sometimes. It’s like we can never be on the same page at the same time. When he is up, I am down, and vice versa. I suppose this isn’t so bad, if we were too synced, we would be both be down at the same time, and it’s hard enough when one of us is down, never mind both. We take turns picking up the slack for each other.

Last week I noticed a friend of mine seemed to having a rough go as well. She’s a tough cookie with a hectic life and she usually seems to manage with ease. She confided that she’s not sure her current job is what she needs right now, and I think she may be feeling a bit lost not to mention slightly overwhelmed. It’s hard to know what to do for someone in that sort of circumstance. Not just career dilemmas, or being overwhelmed, but ambiguous life difficulties in general. I sent her a card, wrote a nice message, let her know that I, among her other friends, am there for her. Sometimes I think that’s all that can be done. I can’t fix her problems for her, but I can stand beside her.

Obviously perspective can effect ones attitude to life challenges. Whilst going through infertility treatments, it wasn’t so easy to tell myself to just keep plugging along (though really, that is what happened because what else can you do?). I didn’t really allow anyone “in” when we were in the depth of IVF, and I don’t even know what I would have wanted from anyone, had I confided. Just be there, I suppose is all anyone can do. You can’t live someones life for them, or take away their pain. The highs are great, the lows are sometimes inevitable. Even if it’s just a minor low, or a bad day, life can’t be great all the time and that’s ok.

Everybody sails alone,

But we can travel side by side.

-KT Tunstall “Heal Over”

 

#Microblog Mondays: What I Do Know

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Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.

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Well, it’s been a hot minute since I’ve participated in #Microblog Mondays. Lately I’ve had a lot percolating in my brain, and now that the craziness of Christmas and New Year’s are over, hopefully I will have more time to put fingers to keyboard.

The whole question of another baby has been floating around in my brain, pretty much since I had BG. Not that I/we’ve felt in any way ready (emotionally, financially and otherwise) to have another baby yet, but the question of “if” still lingers. But here’s what I do know; I do want to be pregnant again. It was not all sunshine and lollipops, I wasn’t one of those people who loved being pregnant. I didn’t feel glowing and ethereal, I felt large and round. But, it was amazing, what the body can do (when finally coerced to do it, and cooperate…).

There was still a lot of fear when I was pregnant, but I was in awe of my body, never mind its past failings. And I want to experience that again. I have always, in the back of my mind, considered being a surrogate (once I knew I could successfully get pregnant, stay pregnant, and carry a baby to term). So my thought is, if we decide that we are one and done, I would love to be a surrogate for someone. Obviously I know how the process from an IVF standpoint but I do not know the legalities, and whether I would even fall in a criteria that would allow me to be a surrogate. Now that my body has proved it is capable (at least once), I would feel honored to be able to carry for someone else who cannot. Plus, selfishly, it would allow me to experience pregnancy again, without a take home baby. Obviously the experience would be very different from carrying my own child, but special in its own way.

The other side of that coin is, we decide we are going to have another, and we go and do it. Clearly, there are no guarantees in that, we have the embryos but my body still has to get on board. If we decided we were going to have another, I would probably shelve the surrogacy idea. I would love to be able to do it, but if we decide to try for another it wouldn’t be for another couple of years, plus pregnancy time, and time enough to safely get pregnant again (as a surrogate) would push me into or past my mid thirties. Which could potentially still be fine, but then I would be on my third pregnancy, and that I can’t imagine.

It’s all a bit of a dilemma. If we decide to try for another, and I don’t want to be a surrogate after that, I feel like I am being selfish. I know that’s sort of twisted logic. It also almost feels weird to think that I could be a surrogate when it took IVF for me to get pregnant, but as far as we know there were never any problems with my uterus, it was just getting sperm to egg that was the challenge. I also feel a bit selfish that I am dreaming of another pregnancy (whether my own baby, or someone elses’) when for some that isn’t even a possibility. Beyond all of that, I would be grateful, and honored to bring another baby into this world, my own or otherwise. So I guess I’ll have to leave it at that for now, and hope that at least one of those options might come to fruition.

An Unwelcome Christmas Guest

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Happy Holiday season everyone! I usually love Christmas time, but I have to say this year I just felt harried and stressed out most of the time. I think being back at work, trying to juggle Christmas, and parenting while working just had me falling behind with all. Last year I was on mat leave at Christmas, so as much as I was busy with, you know, a new baby (well 4 months by Christmas) I did have some extra time on my hands. Overall, Baby Girl seemed to really enjoy Christmas this year, gleefully ripping wrapping paper, playing with all of her new toys, and all of the extra attention that comes with family time.

The family time in itself was not free of drama. I only had three days off work, and this year we were having Christmas day with J’s family, who spend Christmas in the mountains, about a 4 hour drive for us. There happened to be some heavy snowfall the day before we were set to drive down so the roads were not great, and J white knuckled through it. Thankfully BG was a champ in the car (unlike the last time we made the same drive and she screamed for a good lot of it). She slept, snacked, chatted to herself and watched Daniel Tiger on the iPad. There were some miscommunications about how exactly Christmas day was going down as we were blending family (SIL’s parents and one of SIL’s siblings joined in (SIL is married to my husbands’ brother to make that clearer…)), there was upset and hurt feelings (none of which was discussed but was very apparent). All in all, I just stayed out of it and tried to enjoy myself but I don’t like sharing close quarters with so many people for multiple days, so it wasn’t exactly my idea of a good time.

We alternate years with eachothers families, so it was nice to have BG’s first Christmas with my family last year, but she was much more fun and interactive this year. Plus, there are lots of babies in my family this year, and I would have like to have seen everyone (plus, selfishly, I like the cooking in my family better…). Oh well, next year we will be here, and hopefully I won’t be so stressed out, as I will (hopefully) have a better handle on balancing work and life. Or at least know what to expect, and prepare myself by scaling back.

On our drive to our moutain destination, I discovered that an unwelcome guest was making an appearance for Christmas. We stopped for a break and some snacks, when I went to the bathroom to discover Aunt Flo had made her triumphant return. At first I brushed it off as I have had some random spotting over the past few months but in previous that’s all it has been, a very small amount of spotting, for one day and then gone. So at first I thought that’s what it was but after another visit to the bathroom later that day, I found that was not to be the case. It wasn’t full force, but more like a slow leak. I had no supplies with me, but luckily enough it was light enough I managed with wadded up toilet paper for the few days.

It still hasn’t picked up in flow much, but is consistently there. I have an IUD in, that I got around 8 weeks after BG was born, but I just finished breast feeding a little under two months ago (which was a whole other thing, and sad for me, but BG was ready). So, my hopes that the IUD was going to hold AF off indefinitely have been dashed. If it keeps up with this light flow, that is better than average but I feel like junk. Crampy and so sick to my stomach yesterday. I am hoping since this is the first time I’ve had my period in OVER 2 YEARS (so awesome!) that this one is just extra nasty.

With the return of AF, it immediately kicked my brain into TTC, fertility, future children, and a whole lot of emotions from my past experiences. Through years of trying to conceive, blood was usually bad (unless I was waiting for it to start an IVF cycle). I have such a negative stigma with my period (not that it’s such a nice thing in the first place). But it makes my mind jump to counting cycle days, who do I need to call, when do I need to start doing/taking XYZ. That’s where I was the last time I got my period. Heading into our FET, which nearly ended up cancelled due to cysts, which had to be drained, which were raising my estrogen. It was the 7th circle of hell. So it is hard to disassociate that.

Before now, I was just sort of burying my head in the sand about any future fertility type dealings I may have. Trying (not so successfully) to avoid thinking about whether or not we want to try for another baby. But now I feel like it’s being shoved in my face. Not that I have to make a decision just because AF has returned, but it gets me in that train of thought. We still don’t know what we want to do, but at the same time if we were going to have another we prefer some space between them anyways, so there still isn’t really that much pressure to decide right away. But until we decide, the thought is always there.

So here’s to hoping that she buggers off soon, and her follow up visits are mild. But there is no deny that my body is starting to go back to “normal”, which I suppose is good, but creates questions that I don’t have answers for.

I hope everyones’ Christmas/Hanukkah/Holiday Season was good, and not too much stress or family drama!

#Microblog Mondays: Stuck

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Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.

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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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Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is? Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.

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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.