A new chapter

The time has come. This blog has served its purpose and run its course. As one chapter ends, so the next one begins.

I’m pleased to introduce my brand new blog, Feels Like I Am Spinning Plates. 

It’s not about infertility. Though I can’t promise that subject will never be mentioned. It’s part of who I am, no matter what.

It’s about my life in general, especially about my oldest daughter, but I’ll write about other things that strike me, too. If you choose to follow me, I can promise you more insights into the rest of my life, the parts not defined exclusively by infertility struggles. I mean, if you are actually interested or whatever.

To those whose journeys I’ve been following, I will absolutely be continuing to do so. You all have meant so very much to me and I do secretly hope some of you will continue our connection, even though I was never in the blogging biz to please others or gain friends. It just sort of happened that way.

Soon, even my public blogger name will change and I will no longer be “rceg91109.” Don’t be alarmed by that change, either. It’s time to move on from that, as well. Let’s just say the significance of those numbers and letters is not the same as it was when I started this blog nearly two years ago.

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Guest Post: A Breastfeeding Exposé

Can’t resist reblogging this, since mindyminix was so kind to have me as her guest!

Mindy Minix

I asked fellow blogger rceg91109 to share all of her wisdom concerning breastfeeding. She took her time and really thought about her experiences as a breastfeeding mom. I am so grateful to be able to hear about her experience breastfeeding as I prepare for a breastfeeding journey of my own.
Here is what she had to say:
I feel compelled to immediately start with a caveat: what follows is based solely on my own experiences. As you likely know well if you’ve explored this topic on your own at all, every woman’s experience with breastfeeding is unique and different, much like the pregnancy and childbirth that preceded it. But, for what it may be worth, I hope you might find some interesting or new insight related to one of the craziest times of life: having a new baby.
Now, on to the more interesting stuff!
Very briefly, about me: I…

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Facebook Aftermath, or Lack Thereof

For those who saw the article I posted about yesterday, you should know that I did something very brave. Well, consider it to be brave. I posted it to Facebook. For all to see. Complete with a comment about the similarities between the article and our own 8 year journey.

Ok, so I really don’t have that many FB friends. Like maybe 50 or 60. But still.

That was over 14 hours ago. A lifetime in social media terms.

Do you want to know the response I’ve received? One brief comment from a good friend, who just said “hugs” – totally great and appropriate and she’s awesome. And two likes: from my dad and his wife. (who actually did know about our struggles)

Aaaaaaand….that’s it.

Now, I’m not sure what I expected. But I guess I must have expected slightly more of a response than this. Maybe just a “wow, I had no idea” or something.

Perhaps that just makes me petty, though. Did I put the article link of FB for the purpose of garnering sympathy or attention? I don’t know. Maybe I did. Oddly, it was a spur of the moment decision to post it at all. I didn’t give it much thought, I just did it.Very unlike me. Not really sure what my purpose was in doing so, come to think of it.

So, that’s that, I guess.

The friend who first posted the article added me to a closed FB group related to PCOS support in our local area. She actually did it without asking me first, then immediately messaged me with an apology, which I thought was funny. I didn’t mind. So now maybe I can lend some level of support to others in our area dealing with this stuff. And that’s a good thing.

When Your Child Is Begging for a Sibling You Can’t Give

I know I’ve sort of signed off here, but I’ve been thinking a lot about infertility, this blog, my friends here, and motherhood in general lately. Then, this.

A facebook friend of mine, whose daughter is the same age as my oldest (they’ve been in preschool together and actually known each other since they were toddlers, they live in our neighborhood, we’ve had playdates, they took us out on their boat and everything) posted this article on FB. Her accompanying note was about how similar this story was to her own family’s story.

Plus, this story is on mainstream American media. Chalk one up for infertility awareness!

http://abcnews.go.com/Lifestyle/child-begging-sibling-give/story?id=29166928

So, wait. I’ve known this woman for years and had no idea she had infertility issues so similar to my own. In fact, I remember seeing her at day care picking up her daughter, obviously pregnant with a second baby and being so very jealous of her. I assumed she had an easy time getting pregnant whenever she wanted because her two children are close in age.

Um, oops.

I’m going to FB message her and come out of the IF closet. I can’t believe a fellow infertility sister was/is right in my own backyard.

Closure

I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I think I’m actually at the end of this journey.

I had my postpartum appointment. I won’t be back to the gyne for a full year. In the meantime, we have a plan for controlling my horrific, debilitating periods. I am picking up my birth control prescription tomorrow. I’ll start with the mini pill while I’m still breastfeeding, then switch to a regular bcp once the baby is weaned. I’ll take the pills continuously (no placebo pills) and will essentially have no more periods. Apparently, it’s not medically necessary to ever have a period. Who knew? Doc said I can keep taking them until I feel like I “need” to have a period. Umm, I’m like never going to feel that way. He insists at some point my body will feel the need to have a period so then I just take a couple days off the pill, deal with AF, then start the bcp again. Easy peasy. I’m stoked about that, for sure.

Though I did chuckle to myself as he talked about its effectiveness at preventing pregnancy. Yeah, that’s not even my objective. Though I admit when I think about it with my head screwed on straight I’m not wanting another child at this point. When my emotions play into it, well…I still waffle. But realistically it can’t happen. So, I’m going to take the gamble and not use a backup birth control method! I mean, seriously, if that ever did happen, it would be just about the most wonderful surprise in the whole world. But I know it won’t and that’s ok. Or, it will be ok.

Instead, I am doing my damnedest to enjoy every second right now with my baby.

My baby is 10 weeks old tomorrow. Despite being caught in breastfeeding purgatory for the first 3 weeks of her life, we’ve managed to come out on the other side and she’s now, amazingly, well into the 80th percentile for weight. She smiles at me many times a day and “talks” to me with her sweet coos and gurgles.

I actually find myself not thinking about infertility for stretches of time. It’s…indescribable. It’s been such a habit for so many years. I honestly wondered if I would ever, ever get to that point in my life.

And yet, it’s bittersweet. it makes me feel, well, old. I’m officially past my the childbearing chapter of my life. That’s a little hard to swallow. It just really feels like I’m moving on to something so much older and closer to middle age. (yeah, so now that infertility is being put behind me finally, I’m now apparently entering a midlife crisis!)

My older daughter continues to cause us untold levels of grief and stress. I have not ruled out a separate blog about our challenges there at some point. If I do, I will post about it here just in case anyone I’ve met here wants to follow another aspect of my life.

I care so much about so many of you and will continue to follow your journeys to the end. But, I feel that I’m at a point where this blog has served its purpose, run its course. I believe this will likely be my last post here.

I’m reaching closure. After 7 long years, I’ve arrived.

Boys and Girls

Hard to believe that four weeks ago today I was in the hospital with my horrible kidney stone debacle, not knowing that the next day my baby would actually be born. It seems like just yesterday.

Anyway, of course by now I’m utterly in love with my baby girl, who will be a month old on Thursday. But I’ve been reflecting on the reality that we will never have a son. I’m not even sure I wanted a son, mind you. I mean, what do I know about raising boys? Nada, that’s what. And yet, in my heart of hearts, a tiny, teeny part of  me wishes this baby had been a boy. I feel guilty about that. I mean, I have a perfectly healthy, amazing baby I’m holding in my arms each and every day. Something we’ve fought for and agonized over for years, and the fact that some part of me is still not satisfied is unfathomable to me. I should be relishing that we have, finally, what we set out to have more than 8 years ago: a family of four. And yet….

So, how would I be feeling if this baby actually had been a boy? No idea. Probably wishing my little girl had a sister, I guess. Yeah, I’m just that emotionally messed up.

So really, the bigger question here is, why am I never satisfied, and why do I always want more? In part, I think this is a conditioned response of living with infertility for so long. How do you stop wanting something you don’t have or can’t have? I finally conceived a healthy pregnancy that I was able to carry to term, but my MO for so long has been to desperately want to become pregnant again, to desperately want to parent another child. Maybe the fact that we have two girls now and no boys makes it easier for my subconscious to continue this conditioned response: there is still something I don’t have.

So, now what? I (half) jokingly said to the husband a couple days ago, “So should we go for number three?” His response was guttural and needed no words of explanation. I haven’t admitted to him that the emotional side of me actually has a degree of longing for a third.

Scary.

Practically speaking, there is no way we would have a third. There are a myriad of reasons, but here are the highlights:

1. INFERTILITY. Need I say more?

2. I’m old.

3. We can’t afford it. I haven’t figured out how we will afford #2, but we’ll find a way. I’m not sure how we would find a way to afford #3.

4. With the issues with our older daughter (another psych appointment for her awaits us later today), I’m literally scared of being out numbered. That is, three kids to only two adults. Yikes.

5. So, so many other reasons, but you get the idea….

So, why then are my emotions going down the road of wishing for #3 now and again? It scares me a little, but I think I can just chalk it up to habit at this point? Wanting a child is such a habit for me. One that’s hard to break.

Update 2: And now, the rest of the story

Somehow the draft of this post I started the other day has disappeared. Crap. So I am starting this over. Grrrr.

And, my apologies that it has taken soooo long to get this post out there in the first place.

And now I will again warn you that what follows includes pregnancy and baby stuff. If you are not in a place right now to read that sort of thing, I will completely understand if you stop reading now. I have vowed to be forever sensitive to this sort of thing, having spent so many years of my reproductive life struggling to deal with others’ news in these areas.

And now, the stunning conclusion to our story.

When we last left off, I was in the hospital but not because I was in labor. Because I had kidney stones. Crying in the fetal position from the pain and wondering what to do next.

By the third day in the hospital with the kidney stone pain, I was 39w1d. So very close. Various doctors had various opinions about what should be done with me. I became the most infamous case in the maternity ward that week. There was much debate over whether to treat my stones somehow, though the options were limited at 39w pregnant. There was talk of inducing, but considering I’d been awake for most of 3 straight days there was concern about my ability to actually get through labor, between the energy required to push a baby out and dealing with both the pain of labor and kidney stones at the same time. So for a while they/we basically did nothing. We just waited, hoping the stone(s) would pass.

They didn’t.

To make a long story short (hah!), very late on the night of day 3 a decision was finally made to skip treating the kidney stones with a stent (risky for the baby since it involved anesthesia and not necessary enough to be worth the risk) in favor of scheduling an induction for the following morning. I was just relieved to have a plan. There had been talk about sending  me home with a boatload of narcotics to wait it out, knowing that I might go into labor and be right back at the hospital at any time. I was not in favor of that plan, needless to say.

So the following morning, bright and early, they started my pitocin. Then the doctor on call came in to meet with me. she came in to my room, guns a blazin’ and promptly chewed out the nurse in front of the husband and me, saying, “I’m not the one who ordered the kidney stone lady to be induced! We’ve never done this before.” Which is true. But it was rather inappropriate and a bit disconcerting at that point in time. Anyway, once things got rolling the doctor was good, but it was a rocky start.

So then there was the epidural.

First, apparently the way they find the right spot in your spine to insert the needle is by starting from your sides and working inward toward the spine. So the guy immediately grabs both of my sides, the pain from which sends me through the roof since that’s right where the kidneys are! Duh. Apparently he didn’t get the memo about me having kidney stones. I literally screamed and could not stop crying from the pain. Anyway, so then the guy inserts the needle and again, I’m in indescribable pain. So he had to pull it out and start over. Eventually he got it right, more or less, but I don’t care to see him ever again. The labor pains were pretty unbearable, though, so they actually upped it to the point that I was numb from the chest down. That was a little concerning but part of the point was to numb me not only from the labor but also from the kidney stones so I guess that was accomplished.

When it was time to push, I couldn’t feel a thing down there and the husband said the whole thing took less than 20 minutes.

After that, the kidney stone pain was miraculously and mercifully gone.

It’s a mystery. No one knows exactly what happened, but the primary theory is that it passed during the birth process. All I know is the pain is gone and it better never come back.

Now, I know you have been patiently waiting for this part.

We had a beautiful baby girl! 8 pounds, 6 ounces. 20 3/4 inches long. She was born on November 11! To refresh your memory on why that birth date is exciting, please refer back to this post.

I have much more to say as I have reflected on the addition of our second baby girl to our family, what comes next, the end of our seven year infertility journey, and what comes next. There have been a myriad of emotions, which I’m sure will continue.

So I don’t expect to end this blog just yet, because I feel like there are still some things I’m dealing with, though it’s likely to go in a slightly different direction at times. Not to mention the continuing drama surrounding our older daughter. I may yet do a spin off blog related to that. We’ll see where the blogging road leads me next!