Friday, December 28, 2007

How yuppie am I?

A few weeks ago, as I was poking around looking for a diaper bag, I happened upon an extremely cute one from K@te Sp@de. (Okay fine, I "happened" upon it at katesp@de.com. Whatever.) Anyhow, I've been wondering just how ridiculous it would be to get it. I mean, I'm sure there are much more practical, cheaper bags that are also cute. But I just thought this one was really cute. I mean, look at it:

Well, yesterday my aunt and I were shopping around and I wandered into the K@te Sp@de store and she bought it for me. (I actually felt a little guilty. I wasn't showing it to her asking her to buy it. I was just looking for someone to tell me I wouldn't be utterly ridiculous for getting it myself. But I confess to being really excited about it now that I have it! :-)

Sadly, I'm not really very hip, so this will likely be the only cute thing I'm toting around as I wear my $9 T@rget sweats, but whatever. It's still awfully cute.

Not much else to report from the holiday week. I've been enjoying having some time off and loafing around. We did the obligatory family visits on Christmas Eve and Christmas, which were fine. Nothing to dramatic to report from either, which is always a good thing.

In pregnancy-related news, I did pull the ligament that attaches to the right side of my pub1c bone last Friday when I was shopping for hubby's gift. I wasn't able to walk for a full day. Good times. It's definitely gotten better, but it was a cruel reminder that, not only can I not do the things I used to, but I guess I also can't do the things my 90 year old grandmother can. A small price to pay, to be sure.

Other than that, the stickies seem to be doing well. We had an ob appointment on the 26th and the heartbeats sounded good. It took this doctor a little more time than I'm comfortable with to find sticky A's heartbeat, but when she did it sounded great. And my blood pressure is still looking good, which is always comforting.

The only thing that's been making me a tad nervous is that I've been having what I like to call "uterine awareness" lately. I can't say I'm feeling cramps or anything, but I'm feeling something going on down there. I've been poking around and haven't noticed any uterine tightening, so I'm pretty sure (I think) they're not contractions, but still. I hate to feel anything other than kicks. I'm hoping that they'll just go away, but I have a feeling as I'm getting bigger and bigger by the second that I'm going to feel lots of odd twinges. I wish there was some sort of alert that went off to let you know when you needed to worry, though. Otherwise, I feel like I just worry all the time.

Speaking of getting bigger, at my Wednesday weigh-in I was officially up 30lbs. Wow. The doctor is really happy with my weight gain, and it appears to be right on track based on what my twin books say, but wow. 30lbs. I officially weigh more than hubby. I feel E-N-O-R-M-O-U-S. I'm trying not to even think about it because I know it's good for the stickies, but it's hard to suddenly turn off all of the societal pressure to be thin just like that. I am trying to keep my spirits up, though, and have turned it into a game. I've been having weigh-offs with hubby and my brother. Now that I've bested hubby, I'm telling my brother he should watch his back. He thinks he's safe at 185, but since I'm tipping the scales at 172 right now, I'm liking my chances.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Two quick updates

First, thanks so much for your thoughts on whether you share your blog with people irl and how much, if at all, it causes you to censor yourself. You definitely gave me some additional food for thought. The long and short of it is, I'm not going to share, selfish as it may sound. For lots of reasons, but mainly because I just don’t think I’m ready to have people I know reading and checking in on this. (And, frankly, I’m not sure I’ll ever be.) I actually went back and read all of my posts (which was fascinating, btw—what an interesting account of the past year) and realized that there are so many posts that are just raw and that I’m sure I’d couch very differently when talking to people irl.

I think most of us think of our blogs as a “safe space,” and on some level that would be changed if I knew someone else was reading everything I wrote. Sure, I know that, since the url is technically public and searchable, I’m exposed to some risk, but that’s much different than willingly giving the address away so that people know its me and check in on it regularly.

Second, I think it's been a while since I've updated you on the stickies, but they seem to be doing well. I had another ultrasound today (I’m 23 ½ weeks), and I feel really good about how it went. Despite the fact that both stickies are breech right now (though that can apparently change at any point now), they are otherwise looking good. They weigh 1.5 and 1.6 lbs, respectively, which is apparently the average for a singleton at this point (wahoo!). And it looks like my weight gain is on track—I’ve gained about 23lbs (yikes!) and I’m supposed to gain at least 25 by week 25 or 26 (I can’t remember exactly). And I was truly excited to find out that my cervix was more than 4cm long, which they were thrilled about as well. (They like to see anything over 3cm, so they were pretty happy with more than 4.) I go back for the next u/s in three weeks on January 2nd. (Can you believe that the new year is in three weeks?!) After that, I guess they’re going to want me to start coming in more frequently to make sure everything is still on track through the end. Fingers crossed that it is!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Aliens and a question for you

Have you ever thought about how similar being pregnant is to the movie Aliens? I mean, there is this…thing…growing inside of you. And one day it bursts out onto the scene.

How sci-fi?

I was thinking about this as I sat in a meeting today with the co-CEOs and one (or both) of the stickies was using the inside of my belly button as a punching bag. You could actually see my belly button jumping up and down and I thought that s/he might be trying to bust through. (And I kept chuckling to myself about it—I was quite certain they thought I’d lost my mind.) :-)

Speaking of aliens, I’m convinced the cousin of mine I told you about the other day has been abducted and replaced with some strange alien life force. One that has caused her to lose all sense of reality and common sense.

The latest is that she’s no longer dropping out of school. She has, however, been arrested for shoplifting and possession of pot.

?!?!?

And, when my mom asked my aunt what the hell was going on with her, my aunt replied, “she just got caught, all of her friends shoplift.”

Oh, so that makes it okaaayy.

On second thought, maybe it’s my aunt who’s been abducted and replaced by a pod person.

Oh, and she’s also transferred to an “independent” (read: drop-out prevention) school. Now, on the surface, I’m sure this seems like a good—hell, downright reasonable idea. But I’m not convinced. Here’s why: she was failing out not because she was struggling with the coursework but because she wasn’t going to class. And now she’s transferred to an independent public school that lets everyone work at his/her own pace and graduate on their time. Of course, most students who go there are balancing other things—like teenage parenthood or full-time jobs. My cousin has neither. In fact, she just quit her job, so she has even less responsibility than she did. So, I fail to see how putting fewer boundaries and expectations on her is going to help.

I realize I should just be happy she’s still moving towards getting a high school diploma. But I guess I’m not overly optimistic that this is the path that’s going to get it done. This girl has been screaming for boundaries for years—it’s really upsetting to watch, actually, because my aunt has repeatedly refused to give her any. So, I feel like, on some level, this school rebellion has more to do with seeking out help as she tries to seek her own limits and decide what’s she should and should not be doing. And my aunt just hasn’t stepped up to the plate to actually parent. And, I fear it’s going to continue to make the problem even worse. (Exhibit A: Her recent shoplifting. It’s a felony offense. And she’s already on probation from a ticket she got for underage drinking. It’s not me, right? The writing on the wall couldn’t be any clearer, right?!?)

But, enough psycho-babble for one day, huh?

In my final random thought of the day, I mentioned the other day that my sister-in-law is starting down the lonely road of fertility treatments. She and I talk a lot about it, and there’s something I’m really struggling with right now. Namely, do I introduce her to this blog? I have been thinking more and more lately about how she might appreciate having this kind of support network, and that she might appreciate reading about some of the things that I’ve struggled with.

But, here’s the dilemma: NOBODY in real life has (to my knowledge) ever read my blog. Hubby knows about it, but never reads it (doesn’t even know the url), and nobody else even knows it exists. So, telling her about it would really be putting myself out there in a way I never have before.

So, my question to you is, do people irl know about your blog? And, if so, how do you feel about them reading it? And, how much (if any) do you censor yourself because of it?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Remembering

Today is December 4. Had my first clinically recognized pregnancy gone differently, today we would be our baby’s first birthday.

I remember passing this milestone last year and feeling particularly sad, desperate, and lost. I can still remember how raw the pain felt, and how December 4th brought that pain to the surface in a way it hadn’t been since right after the miscarriage. I can remember talking to hubby in the month or two before the 4th and saying that I just didn’t know what I was going to do if we weren’t pregnant by the time our “due date” passed. I can remember one particularly painful conversation in the days leading up to the 4th. I was expressing the desperation I was feeling, and I think it was just getting to be too much for him. He was beginning to feel the pressure of the last pre-due date cycle and he was telling me that I was basically overreacting and I needed to get over it. Needless to say, we had a big fight about it. (Funny that I brought this up the other day and he has no recollection of it. Ah, to be a man sometimes…)

Of course, last year’s due date came and went with no two pink lines. And exactly one week later, this blog was born.

I guess, in some ways, starting this blog was my way of "getting over it." It was clear from that conversation with hubby not that he didn’t or couldn’t understand, but that we processed all of this so very differently. And I just needed an outlet to work through my thoughts.

It’s probably cliché, but I didn’t and couldn’t possibly have realized at the time what a profound impact having this blog would have on my struggle with infertility. It’s all of you who have helped me feel connected through some of the darkest days and some of the biggest disappointments. And it’s you who have helped me keep my feet grounded and my hopes up when I needed to remember that all was not lost. And it’s really made me realize that one of the most empowering things you can find when you’re struggling with something is someone who can patently and honestly say to you, "I know exactly how you feel."

And the truth is, since I’ve gotten pregnant—-or at least since I’ve settled into this pregnancy a bit—I haven’t known how to talk on this blog anymore or what to do with it. It’s been strange and something I think you know I’ve been struggling with. It’s just that I’ve been trying so hard not to say something that comes across as insensitive—-I feared doing the blogging equivalent of putting a giant inflatable stork on my front yard. You know, the kind of thing that seems like it’s just fun and harmless—-no doubt what my neighbors thought last December 4th—-but something that could end up causing pain to someone else.

(Of course, as is frequently the case when you use avoidance techniques, I fear that my silence or attempts to dance around something for which so many of you are still struggling has ended up being more insensitive in the end.)

So, on this December 4th, I want to take a moment to remember. I want to remember everything that we’ve been through that’s brought us to where we are now because, for better or worse, who I am today is a product of where I’ve been and what I’ve been through. And I want to remember the baby that might have been.

But mostly, I want to remember the reason I started this blog to begin with—-to find an outlet for my thoughts and struggles and to share those with a community of wonderful women (and men) who can truly understand how tenuous even the most "boring" pregnancy can feel to an infertile.

And, I want you to know that I think of you all the time—but especially when I go shopping and the only spot that’s left is the lot is the "parking for expectant mothers" spot and I just refuse to take it. (I still hate those damn things. They’re right up there with inflatable storks in their insensitivity, as far as I’m concerned.)

Thanks, ladies, for making the past year tolerable! And for virtually sticking with me despite all of my quirks. :-)

And, speaking of remembering--don't forget to pop by and wish Becks and Amy good luck. Both have their retrievals tomorrow and could use a wonderful holiday surprise!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Photos of the stripes...

As promised, here are a few shots of the paint job hubby was working on for "that" room. the first few are the "works in progress" photos:













And here are some finished product photos. I feel like the lighting doesn't really do it justice, but it came out really cute. Again, there are three blue walls, and one rose accent wall. (I am apparently in an accent wall phase. I have one in the living room and our bedroom, too. This is our first foray into stripes, though. Go hubby.)

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Transforming "that" room...

I think many of us have "that" room. You know the one...it's not that you leave it completely idle or empty, but you're not necessarily looking to do much with it in the hopes that someday it will be transformed into something else.

Well, I'm both proud and terrified to say that last weekend we began our first steps towards that transformation. In short, we found out that with the holidays it could take up to 10 weeks to get a crib once it was ordered. (Don't ask me why, exactly. It seems utterly ridiculous.) So, we figured it was time to stop letting my paranoia get the best of us and we ordered two of these:

I’m pretty excited; I think they’re pretty darned cute. (Never mind that the room is barely going to big enough to fit us now, let alone two cribs…)

And, I'm trying not to think about how terrified this makes me. After all, whether or not we order cribs or otherwise prepare will have NO effect on how things progress. (That's my mantra...)

And, as if that weren't enough, as we speak, hubby is upstairs painting "that" room. We decided to go with blue and deep rose (a deep rose accent wall with three blue walls). And, hubby's being so adventurous that he's actually painting stripes. I know it sounds like a catastrophe in the making, but I think it's going to look pretty cute. He's gotten a combo of flat and glossy paint in each color and he's alternating between the two. Here's the effect we're hoping it makes on each wall:

I'll post a photo once it's finished.

And we’re getting new carpet for the whole upstairs on Thursday. (Okay, this is only marginally related to "that" room. We just have needed new carpet since we moved in. And since we moved a bunch of furniture to the basement last week, we figured now was as good a time as any to get that done.)

But wait, there's MORE! We also started a registry yesterday. (!!!) You see, it looks like my mom is going to throw a shower over MLK weekend in January and she wants to send out invitations this week. So, in order for her to let people know where we're registered, I had to actually start registering.

I know what you're saying, "that seems downright optimistic. What have you done with our ordinarily cynical sticky we've all come to know?" She's still here...she's just trying to move beyond her cynicism. Of course, there's a small chance I've overdone it this weekend and may freak out later in the week. But for now, we're keeping pretty busy, which is keeping my mind off the terror.

In other news, I had a prenatal massage today. It went pretty well--they had a table and pillow setup that allowed me to lie on both my stomach and my back at different times. I enjoyed lying on my back, but I found it kind of strange to lie on my stomach. I think it may have been that I'm a bit too tall for the table. So, in order to fit my stomach into the hole, my head was basically falling off the table. So, that was a bit weird. Otherwise, though, it was great fun.

And, at the risk of TMI*, I finally got a bikini wax for the first time in a few months. It's been far too long and I can't exactly navigate the area on my own anymore, so I feel a bit better about that.

So, all in all, a fairly eventful weekend chez sticky, doggie, and hubby.

*I'm guessing that we all past the point of TMI long ago on all of our blogs. :-)