Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Life After Babyloss In Gifs, Part 5

So you've decided it's time for BD after babyloss.

You call your husband and let him join in the excitement.

You find something kind of sexy to wear, and psych yourself up.

DH gets home.

Le sexytime. 

But it's not exactly as hot as before.

Everything's going pretty normally until...

And your husband looks at you like 


And suddenly your hot night is all

And you spend the rest of the night on FB with your BLM friends.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Life After Babyloss In Gifs, Part 3

You run out of Oreos

So you decide to run to Target

You think, "Today will be different!"

Then you spot the newborn twins 

And the herd of pregnant women

And suddenly you feel all

But you have to act like

Luckily, you were already there for more Oreos.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Life After Babyloss in Gifs, Part 2

You see a friend for the first time in a long time,

 And they didn't know you had lost your baby.


At first they're like

But after a few minutes, they're like

And they just want to

Then you mention it happens in 25% of all pregnancies, and they're like

So you start to feel like

But then you remember you have your babyloss friends, so you're all like

Life After Babyloss in Gifs

When someone unfriends you for talking about your angel too much.

When someone tells you they're pregnant soon after your loss.

When someone suggests eating Oreos won't fix your pain.

When someone asks about your loss jewelry and doesn't get immediately creeped out.

When someone tries to get you out of bed in the early days.

When someone forgets your angel in the number of children you have.

...and you realize you can't make them correct it.

But you tell your babyloss friends about it, and they're all

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


So yesterday my doctor brought me in for a blood test to check my HCG and Progesterone levels.  (Again, because I have a doctor who cares about us BLMs, and is going to be vigilant!)  My HCG levels are good--apparently good enough to be on par with "normal" pregnancies at 6 weeks.  Of course, this makes me wonder if we're just super-healthy or if we're having twins.  

No, Mike, I don't really think we are.  

But my Progesterone is a little low.  "Normal" is in the low 20s and I'm at 16.  No, I don't have units of measure, mathy friends.  I'm just 5-10 *somethings* low, and I know that's no good.  To remedy this, my doctor has prescribed Progesterone supplements, and because I'm only a little low, I have to administer the hormone myself.  

It's a suppository.  

No, not that kind of suppository.  Don't be gross.  Okay, it's still gross.

But it's all for the babies around this professional-mom's house, so I sucked it up.  Progesterone supplements could be the difference in a healthy baby or another child to mourn.  So, I will now chronicle my adventure.  I guarantee you, this is not for the feint of heart, or really anyone who is not TTC or PG after loss.  Keep your innocence people.  I wish I had mine.

First of all, these hormones are not sold at CVS.  They are compounded.  This is just a fancy way of explaining that they are made locally in the most remote and hard-to-find pharmacy around.  I drove through the parking lot three times before finally calling the pharmacy for help.  I parked in what seemed to be a condo lot and finally found the directional sign.  Dragging a 30-pound child around (who refuses to walk) made this much more interesting.  I open the door  with the tiny, almost-illegible sign and walk into the creepy "vestibule" which was only about 3x3'.  Another door, and a creepy, steep set of stairs.  Oh, great.  Let's haul Liv up a flight or two.  Anyway, I got there and gave my name.  

My joke of "bet you don't get a lot of handicapped patients" was met with silence. 

But here's the next thing no one told me.  Progesterone is pricey.  Like, get a second job pricey.  Nah, not really, but still, anything over $5 seems excessive to me, and this was WAY over $5.  For a one-month prescription, I am now out fifty-five dollars.  But it's for the babies.  Let's stay focused.  

Before I go further, I will now implore you to follow my advice.  In every circumstance, no matter how silly you might feel, if a pharmacy tech asks you if you have questions, ask a question.  Any question.  Don't walk out of the remote, creepy pharmacy without knowing absolutely everything there is to know about what's about to be in your body.  Please.

I did not take this advice.

All I knew going in was that the hormones were supposed to be refrigerated and applied at night.  Here is what I wish I had known:  First, Progesterone suppositories look like little bullets.  Little white bullets that look kind of like hardened lotion.  That is ALL.  What I got was the bullet, still in what I have to guess is a plastic mold.  I stared at that mold for an hour, imploring Google to answer the question I refused to word aloud: "Do I take the plastic off?"  You do take the plastic off.  Not that Dr. Google was any help.  I went with a more guess-and-check style of medicine there, and it paid off. 

So, white bullet in hand, I was still a little cloudy on what came next.  This is where I again kicked myself for not talking to the pharmacist.  Because, and no one had told me, most people get an applicator with their expensive medication.  

I did not.

So there I am with just me and the bullet and a wish and a prayer.  

I inserted it, like a tampon, to a point at which I thought, "that's going to be fine."  Not fine.  The bullet fell right out.  Do it again.  Same result.  Third time?  I ran for the bed and tossed myself on before gravity could do its work.  Um...gravity doesn't have a time-delay.  So I spent the rest of the night lying in bed, afraid to move a muscle for fear of losing the white bullet.  Not moving a muscle.  I couldn't even sleep!  Mike adjusted my pillows, tossed a blanket on me and handed me my cell phone before sawing logs.  And I did not move for hours.  


Around midnight, I realized I had not taken my prenatal vitamins, and fear lost out to a need for folic acid.  It's all for the babies, remember?  I got up and went to the bathroom, expecting a fountain of medicine to start trickling out (because the one warning I had gotten was to pick up some panty-liners).  Nothing.  The one warning I was given and nothing happened.  I think my body is just weird.  

Anyway, I did eventually fall asleep and woke up feeling perfectly normal.  No gross stickiness as I had been told.  Just normal, if a little tired and irritated from dealing with Night #1 of Progesterone therapy.  

Night #1.  With no guarantee of how many nights there are to come.

Ugh.  But it's all for the babies.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Well...here we go again.

So, some time in July we decided to start trying again.  Just not preventing pregnancy, really...not actively trying.  We're not the couple to chart and take temperatures and all those things I am just beginning to understand from my TTC friends.  Regardless, and true to our form, we didn't have to wait long.  We're expecting our third child. 

I cannot wrap my mind around the idea that we have three children now! 

Anyway, after the shock wore off, we got right down to business.  Because we have a plan this time. 

Let's get honest here.  I have a list of regrets a mile long from Carpenter's birth.  Well, not regrets--that's not really fair.  More like a list of "Wow, if only I hadn't been so blissfully innocent I would have planned for this stuff" things.   So I'm going into this with every intention of making the most I can of every moment.  If I only get a few weeks with this child, it's going to be a few quality weeks.  Hence the plan.

Step One was to tell everyone.  Yes, I'm only 4 weeks along.  No, we're not waiting for the first trimester to end.  Why?  Because there's no guarantee we'll get that far.  If this were all the time we got with this baby, I would want everyone to know as soon as possible.  That way, I could openly mourn and talk about our baby without getting the crazy look that says, "You were pregnant?"

Step Two?  Come up with a nickname.  A friend helped us work through that issue which was seemingly unsolvable.  Meet our little M&M, paying homage to the girl and boy names we've selected which both start with M.  Why a name?  Because if this baby were to sneak off to heaven before we found out the gender, I'd want something to put on keepsakes. 

Step Three, and obviously the most important early step we can make:  Talking to our doctor.  I want to know that if I'm freaking out on a random Wednesday, my doctor won't hesitate to bring me in for a heartrate check.  Extra scans?  I'll need those.  So, based on the suggestions of Carpenter's awesome nurse, I switched practices.  (And that has made all the difference...but that's another post.)

I can hear some of you now, freaking out a little, worried that I'm just waiting for this pregnancy to end.  Well, no.  That's not the case.  Yes, I am trying to prepare for that possibility, because I am no longer naive.  I can no longer ignore little twinges and ticks.  

What I'm really doing is making sure that M gets the best chance possible at life.  That no message from M or my body is ignored.  And in the event that M never got to come home, this baby and I are going to form a bond that could hold us until I get to heaven. 

For now, I am definitely 4 weeks pregnant, and we couldn't be more excited.  

We have three kids now!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Free Range After Loss?

For those of my friends who have not heard of the Free Range Movement started by Lenore Skenazy, I implore you to pick up her book, read her blog...anything. 

Remember when we were kids?  Remember what we did all the time?  Well, around my house, there was a policy:  Clean the house or get out.  We got out.  When my cousins would come for a few weeks in the summer, we explored every inch of my hometown, walking everywhere.  Our favorite day ever, we walked down to the movie theatre, watched Air Force One, walked to the other side of town to see our grandfather at work, then walked up to the grocery store for snacks before returning home.  (For full disclosure, we got brownie mix and cookie dough...and we cooked for ourselves.)  Never were we guided around by anyone considered an "adult."  Sometimes we were watching baby siblings.  We were still left alone, and we were at no point unsafe.

Now, no one lets their kids galavant about town unchaperoned.  Now everyone seems to be constantly panicked about what could happen to their children.  Last week, Liv went on vacation with her grandparents and cousins, about 700 miles from home.  Mike's coworker said, "No way I'd let my kids go away without me!  Especially at Liv's age!"  Um...she's not camping in the woods, hunting for wild game.  She's in a condo with three adults and five kids.  Oooooooh...scary.  But that's what life is like now.  People are scared to death of everyone and everything that comes near their children. 

Enter Lenore Skenazy, who is attempting to get us all back onto a calmer track.  In her book, Free Range Kids, Skenazy walks you through all your worst fears, explaining how unfounded they truly are.  Are you aware crime rates are declining?!  That's a statistical fact.  But many people inevitably respond, "When something bad happens to your kids, then you'll understand why we protect our children so well!" And that would be a good challenge, except...

The worst has happened.  I have buried a child.  And there was nothing at all I could do to save him.

Does that sentence just freak you out, helicopter parents?  Yes, I did everything I could to make sure my son was healthy and safe, and BOOM, something bad happened.  So many people have this same horror story.  I read the books, I got enough sleep, I abstained from shellfish...and still.  And so many of those same people (myself included seven months ago) feel the need to now overprotect their living children.  We They live in fear that without taking every single possible precaution, the lives of their surviving children are at stake. 

Yes, I've felt this fear.  I feel fear every day for my little daughter.  And this is exactly why I feel such determination to raise Liv as a Free Range Kid. 

"Huh?" you say.  But really, it makes perfect sense.  Call it aversion therapy, if you will, but I think the best way to combat my fears is to let my daughter live an independent and confident life.  To let my children know all the adventures the world has for them.  How horrible would it be for me to let my fears limit her experiences in life, just because her brother's life was far too short? 

So, Lenore, I'm rededicating myself to your cause.  Reaffirming my faith in the Free Range Movement.  Because I have seen the worst, and there was nothing I could do to stop it.  I can, however, stop the fear from taking another life.