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Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Empty Dresser

My room is more crowded than normal. 

There is a new dresser next to my bed and tubs of baby clothes/cloth diapers stacked along one wall.

Michael keeps nicely asking me to wash all the clothes and put them away.  "You love looking through it all and putting it away."

He is right.  I do love the art of nesting.  I did it with Johnathon the night before my water broke.  Then I did it with Gabriel about 35 weeks and Bella about 36 weeks. 

I am 29 weeks right now and the only thing that goes through my mind is how I don't want to have to empty the full dresser out if something happens and I don't get to keep her.

Morbid?  Probably.      Do I have the right to have the thought?  Yes. 

I haven't ever personally lost one this far in pregnancy, but I know people who have. 

There are many, many perks to being a part of the birth community.  Knowing things such as loss is not one of them.

I am terrified I will wash, carefully fold, and put away all of this baby girl's clothes just to find out something has happened to her. 

I know I shouldn't think like that.  Michael reminds me often that I should be happy and think of only positive things.  I try and try, but I just can't. 

So I will do my best not to get emotional when I buy the baby detergent and unscented diaper soap for her tomorrow.  Even something that small brings out my anxiety. 

Using those detergents and putting her clothes away will have to wait for another day. least I have bought stuff for her.  That is a step.

Monday, September 17, 2012

That Which Reminds Me Of Deployment

Michael has field for the next two-ish weeks.  This is our first field experience and we are not sure what to expect.  Those two things alone bring up some anxiety. 

When Michael left for deployment we were unsure of where he was going, what he would be doing, when we would be able to speak to him again, if he would be safe, and when he would be home.

Now I do know when Michael will be home, I know where abouts he will be and we know he will be safe.  So the anxiety isn't anywhere close to as bad as it was when he left for deployment. 

There are the little things that trigger those emotions that only deployment or a long separation can bring up.

The truck is out front, but he isn't home.
I have put away the last of his laundry until he gets back.
I can't text him and expect a reply.
He won't be home for breakfast, lunch or supper.
I will be sleeping and waking up without him.

The kids have already commented that he would be home for breakfast by now. 

Two weeks isn't that long.  None of us are worried about it and we aren't sitting on the couch in tears like we were when he deployed.  You *can* tell though that the stress from deployment is not far enough away for him to be gone again.  At least in our hearts.

There is also the added thoughts that this will be the longest we have ever been apart when I have been pregnant.  I do have comfort that I have great friends who will help me if something comes up, and that I would be able to reach him if there was a true emergency. 

We do have much joy to expect when he gets back.  It looks like he will actually be here for Bella's birthday for the first time in her life.  Well except for the day she was born.  He did catch her after all.  :)

This is just another learning experience for us.  He will be going to field a lot next year and will be gone longer and a lot further away.  We are already preparing for another deployment.  He will miss a lot of Sarah's first year.

But we will cross that emotionally charged bridge when we come to it.....

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Silent Cry

Sonograms for me are not fun.  Since we found out about Sunny by sono, I have a bad habit of getting myself all worked up before I have one.

Sounds nothing like me right?  ;)

The fact is that I love having them, but I fear something will be wrong.  Especially if they are before I can feel the baby moving daily.

I noticed, starting even with Sunny before we knew she was gone, that I have a tendency to silently cry while watching the screen.  What a miracle it is. Out of the love my husband and I have for each other my body has grown a baby.  Isn't that amazing?

In the early sonos they look like shrimp or an alien.  I still cry.  As soon as I see a heartbeat, and especially if they are moving around, tears start streaming down my face. 

They are tears of joy, relief, and a bit of grief over Sunny.  Even though it has been almost eight years since we were told about our precious first child, I still grieve.  Michael does to in his own way.  Sunny was a child to us.  Not an embryo or what ever she was at that point in medical books.

I remember very clearly having a sono with Bella and watching her move and hearing that all was well with her.  Also hearing she was a girl.  I have a special connection with the woman who did her sonos.  She also did Sunny's sonos.  She remembered.  By that time she had done two other sonos on me for Bella.  Both times being happy right along with me that the baby was still ok even though I was bleeding heavily.

So we went for our sono Monday.  This was the only time we could get in before Michael goes back to New York.  We were worried that because I am only 17 1/2 weeks along that we wouldn't be able to check out all of the anatomy correctly and that we wouldn't be able to see if it is a boy or a girl. 

I did not care for the sonographer.  It isn't her fault that she doesn't know that certain phrases or being negative at all will cause me great worry.  She did though.  Something about her saying the exact thing they said before they told us about Sunny turned my stomach.  Blech.

Anyway....the baby is great.  Not measuring small at all like she felt she had to tell us before she measured.  My placenta is over my cervix right now, so if everyone would please, please pray and send good thoughts that it would move away as my uterus grows I would be happy.  I would like to avoid another c-section with everything I have if at all possible. 

She wasn't for sure but her guess right now is that we are having another GIRL!!!!  I am going back in a month to have another look and check everything out again.  We are thrilled to pieces and will not skip a beat if she becomes a he the next time we look.  :)  Healthy baby makes all else wonderful.

Her name, if she stays a girl, will be Sarah Margaret.  Michael's grandmother's name was Margaret and we love the name Sarah.  Everyone keep praying for use please.  :)

We are on vacation right now, so my posts will be far apart.  I will write when I can.  Love to everyone. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Those Who Serve Our Country, Have Very Little Freedom

I never really thought about what life was like for soldiers (all military really) when they were home.  I knew life would be unspeakably hard while deployed, but little did I know the freedoms they give up while at home too.

These men and women are fighting for our country.  I am not going to get into what I think about the policies or the war.  If you know me well you know how I feel about it all.  Put the war aside for a minute.  These people make the decision to serve this country.  They do what they are told because that is their job.  Some fight hard and lose much.  Michael, thank God, did not have to do that.  He will be forever changed by the things he saw and the ramp ceremonies he participated in.  A Ramp Ceremony is a solemn memorial for a soldier killed in a war zone. The ceremony can take place at an airfield near or in a war zone, where an airplane is usually waiting nearby to take the soldier's remains home.  

We have been not-so-patiently waiting for Michael's vacation plans to be approved.  The army has the right to deny Michael the ability to go home for vacation.  Think about that for a second.

I get why they have this in place.  I know there are people who shouldn't be traveling and those who have screwed up repeatedly shouldn't be given the same perks as those who do their job everyday.  Michael doesn't fall into either of these categories.

He works hard, does what he is told right the first time and is not a flight risk.  As much as I would like to go home and stay there, he will honor his contract until the second it is up.  He is just *that* guy.

There is no reason for him to be denied, but the waiting is getting to me specifically.  He is thrilled about the thought of going home.  Even if it is only for 10 days.  The fact that he is thrilled and making plans, makes me want to make plans and be thrilled right with him.  :)

We all miss home.  We all miss our families and friends.  We miss the fun, food and freedom that Texas represents to us.  We are all excited.

So when you think about the military think about everything that they go through during daily life.  They are technically not allowed to have stubble on their face or get tattoos.  They are limited to where they can go without written permission.  Everything in their lives can change with a moments notice.  Plans can be cancelled, birthdays can and will be missed, and vacation plans hang in the balance while the higher ranks make their decisions.

They are only free to do what the army allows. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Power Of Words

I am in my 5th pregnancy.  I have had 3 live births.  I have had one miscarriage.  These are my stats at the OB's office.

On occasion something during a pregnancy will throw me for a loop.  Generally I know how this works for me.  Doesn't mean I don't panic when something that has happened before happens.  Like when I bled this time.  That is unsettling no matter what pregnancy I am in or how many times I have gone through it.

We hired a midwife at the beginning of Bella's pregnancy.  My choices of who would come out to our house at the time were very limited.  I was ok with our decision until she started, very early on, explaining to me all the reasons that she had to transfer people out of her care.  Then she would tell me how I had those same issues.

One thing specifically still stays with me now.  
The midwife speaking to a midwife in training about me while I was lying on the table "Wow!!  Look at her diastasis recti!!! I have only seen one that bad before!  I had to transfer her care out because there was no way that baby would be positioned to come out ever!!"

Diastasis Recti is also known as abdominal separation.  It happens a lot to women when pregnant.  Mine is probably because I have never had strong stomach muscles and I have been overweight a long, long time.

Now I probably had it with Johnathon and Gabriel, but no one pointed it out to me like she did.  After she said that I became so fearful about it.  I looked up everything I could on it and found that it can cause a baby to not be in the right position and can make pushing the baby out harder.

The way she had said it, the way she had made me feel, added fear to an already fearful pregnancy.  Just a few weeks later, after I tried to talk to her about what she was saying to me and how she was making me feel, she ended our professional relationship when I was half was through my pregnancy.

At the time I was distraught.  It all worked out for the very best in the end.  :)  Michael was everything I needed.

So a few days ago I sat up a little in bed and saw my stomach muscles separate.  The fear washed over me again.  I could hear her words and how she made me feel.  I have spent long hours since then trying to calm the panic in my head and researching, again, how to make it less of an issue.  

Michael keeps telling me everything will be ok and my favorite midwife (in Texas, God bless her soul) tells me all will be fine.  Even so, that midwife's words keep playing in my head.

Think before you speak.  Try not to plant a seed in someone that will haunt them right away or later.  Choose your words carefully.  Everything you say has the opportunity to build someone up or break someone down.  Especially when they are in an emotional place.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Moment I Realized She's My Friend

I didn't really want to have a girl.  Any healthy baby would have made me thrilled to pieces, but I wasn't looking to have a girl.

I have friends that have fought through wanting a specific gender and won.  I love their stories.  I couldn't be happier for them.  For my third baby I really just wanted another boy.

Boys are fun.   They are loud and messy and crazy and love football.  I love watching them learn to play with trucks and balls.  They are my thing.  I grew tired of people assuming that because we had two boys and I was pregnant again that we "had to be trying for a girl".  Right....because that is the *only* reason we would love this baby.  ugh.

At least I thought they were.  

Michael and I really believe that Sunny was a girl.  I think that made it hard to hope for a girl for some reason.  We hoped Johnathon would be a boy.  Michael wanted Gabriel to be a girl.  Michael gave up on wanting anything particular for our third.  I was always really just happy to be getting a baby.  Healthy, happy and whole was all I wanted.

So when we were with Mary, at the sono place, for the third time with our third pregnancy, we didn't have any expectations.  She said it was a girl.  Michael couldn't believe it.  I silently cried like I do at all of my sonos.  Both of us asked her if she was sure.  She just laughed.  She is good at her job.

It took us a while to get used to pink and purple instead of blue and green.  She is a hoot.  We love our Isabella with everything in our bodies.  Life wouldn't be the same with out our little girl.

Yesterday I received some maternity clothes that my mother and sister bought for me.  (Hi Mom and Mary Beth!!!  Thank you!!!)  I was trying them on to show Michael.  One shirt didn't fit my chest, the shorts are perfect and a skirt and shirt might be a little case you wondered.  :)   

Bella walked up and said "oooohhh mama.  What those clothes?"
I said "They are clothes for while I have the baby in my belly."
I had on a shirt that had a gather at the bottom and a skirt.
Bella "Mama what this? *points to gather in the shirt*  Oh mama!!!  You have a tutu like me!!!!!  Mama spin around!!!!"
*I spin around*
Bella "Oh mama you so pretty.  I spin in my tutu now too."  

Every skirt is a tutu to her.  :)  She is my friend.  She is the girlfriend I will have in my house for at least the next 16-ish years. 

I will cherish every moment I have with our little girl.

Even though I swoon at the thought of getting to put dinosaur shoes on another little boy who will be throwing balls and making siren noises, there might be a little part of me that hopes this one is another girl.  

I still don't do pink.  Purple is an awesome color though.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I Want To Throw My Doppler Away

It is an ok doppler, but just not for me.

I decided after a week of trying not to listen to the baby, trying to have faith, that I would break down and listen for my peace of mind.  

No peace of mind here.

We tried forever to find the baby.  After a lot of pain (it hurts my scarred area), crying and not being a very nice pregnant lady we heard what sounded like the thump, thump, thump of the baby.  Didn't get to actually hear the baby's heartbeat.  Just the "base" thumping.  

It was really frustrating.  I should have just forked out the money for a really good one.  It would have been worth the reassurance to know that I didn't have to stress about using the doppler when I truly needed to hear the baby.

Plus then I could use the doppler for when I catch babies.  ;)