Tuesday, September 27, 2011


In my last post, I mentioned how we had been unable to recover any remains of our miscarried baby, which we had been hoping to bury. Well, I guess I just spoke too soon. Today, our poor little lifeless babe arrived...

We wrapped him/her (I'm still hesitant to give the baby a name, or "assign" it a gender. Although it's still something we might do in the future) in a small embroidered handkerchief, wrapped it with a cloth Rosary and a blessed medal, and placed this in a small ceramic container. We buried the baby in my dad's backyard, since we know he'll at least be living in that house for a while (we're still just renting ours).

We also brought over our weeping angel statue (which I loved the first time I spotted it in a catalog, and asked for as a Christmas gift years ago) to use as a grave marker. Tom, me, Sly, and my Dad were all there. We each threw a handful of dirt onto the "casket", the way people do.

It's a nice little spot. I'm glad we were actually able to bury our baby. It helped provide some closure. And it will be good to have that physical reminder of the child we never met - not only for us, but for our other children as well.

Monday, September 26, 2011

And One More

In my post where I talked about finding out we had lost our baby, I mentioned that we were waiting to see whether the miscarriage would complete itself naturally, or whether I'd have to go in for a D&C. Well, on Saturday, my prayers were answered, and my body started finishing things on its own.

That was what I wanted, and I don't think I would change my decision to wait - even if such a thing were possible. But I have to say, it was much more horrible than I ever anticipated.

I have a habit of telling "too much information." I am pretty open about stuff, and don't usually mind talking about things which are pretty personal. But I've come to realize that not everyone wants to hear all the gory details of everything. So I will try to moderate what I'm about to share. But if you are really squeamish, or if you are a male...you may want to skip over the part bound in asterisks.

I had started to notice a tiny bit of blood on Friday, so I hoped it meant the "beginning of the end" was near. Saturday morning, I woke up at 5:30 am in a great amount of pain. I had intense cramps that wouldn't allow me to get back to sleep, or to find any comfortable position at all. I tossed and turned, and moaned for a little while. Tom, the world's heaviest sleeper, actually kinda woke up and asked what was wrong. After explaining, and turning down his offer to help (because what could he really do? I wanted him to get as much sleep as he could), I jumped out of bed and headed for the tub.

I thought the warm water would help me to relax, but the pains were getting worse. At this point, I recognized them for actual contractions. They were coming in waves, every few minutes. I abandoned the tub idea, and tried getting back in the bed. But it were getting more and more painful.

Tom couldn't possibly sleep anymore with me whimpering and turning all around beside him. I had him call the midwives to ask if this was normal. He did, and it was. They told us it could last for hours. My cervix needed to open to allow things out. Ugh. I was dying already.

The contractions continued for two hours, getting more and more excruciating the whole time. By the end, they were so close together that I only had a few seconds' rest between. They were full-out contractions, as painful as with actual full-term labor. Having contractions is the second most mind-numbingly painful thing I have ever experienced in my life. Number one is actually pushing out the baby.

But what made this experience different from my labor with Sly was 1. I didn't have a doula helping me through, 2. Tom wasn't able to assist much (he slept through the beginning, and then had to take care of Sly at the end), and 3. I knew there wouldn't be that sweet reward of a healthy newborn baby at the end, making it all worth it.

I remembered my promise to offer up the pregnancy for couples experiencing infertility. I did try to keep that in mind as I suffered through the contractions. But I don't think I did a very good job.

Finally, at 7:30, I passed a fair amount of water and blood. And just like that, the contractions came to an end. I continued having intense cramps (think: worst possible menstrual cramps you can imagine...unable to sit or stand or do anything comfortably) for another hour or so, and bleeding. But the worst was done.

Tom and I had hoped we could recover some of the baby's remains, for burial. Unfortunately, we never found anything we could discern as such.


The midwives just want me to get a blood test next week, to measure my HCG levels and some other stuff, which will let them know whether things are going back to normal.

It's been an ordeal, and I'm glad that it seems to be almost over.

I have a shoebox where I keep all of Sly's little "mementos" - his first year calendar, his hospital bracelets, baptism candle, etc. I'm starting a folder to save similar items for this baby. It won't have too much: a little note I wrote so I don't forget all the "dates" (conception, death, due date), cards people have given us (congratulating us on the pregnancy, consoling us for the loss), and some print-outs of e-mails people sent.

The midwife originally said to wait until I'd had a full cycle before "trying again" for a baby. But I pushed her on it a little to find out the reasoning. As far as I could tell, that's really just something they tell you, but it's not necessary. And she admitted that if I were to get pregnant right away, it would be fine.

So...we don't plan to do anything to prevent it. We'll see what God has in store for us next.

Friday, September 23, 2011

St. Gerard

St. Gerard Majella is the patron of expectant mothers. When I was pregnant with Sly, we bought a statue of him. We weren't very good about displaying it prominently, or remembering to pray to him. So we had decided that when I should become pregnant again, we'd be better about it.

The day we knew I was pregnant, we pulled out the statue, and placed it on our home altar. We had been asking St. Gerard to intercede for the health of me and the baby in our prayers each night.

Now this might sound bad, but it seems to me something very "Old World Catholic." The day we found out about the miscarriage, Tom became angry with St. Gerard.

We were sitting on the couch that night, feeling sad, trying to come up with the right way to pray for all the things on our minds.
Tom was looking towards our little altar and said dejectedly, "St. Gerard let us down, man."
My eyes immediately went to rest on his statue on the altar, but I saw that it was gone. I noticed that the items had been rearranged. "Oh," I said, "you moved him already. Where'd you put him?".
"In the basement." Tom said with gruff finality.
"....oh..." I stammered. I was afraid to comment further on Tom's attitude.
"He deserved it." was the reply.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Aftermath of Miscarriage

Yesterday, as I lay on the chair for the ultrasound, I noticed that the technician kept the screen turned away from me. Tom was sitting next to me, holding my hand, and I could see him craning his neck to look at the screen. I don't think the fear fully hit me until the moment when the technician put the wand to my belly, and started trying to find something. I just stared at her face the whole time. I was watching her so intently - trying to discern the tiniest flicker of recognition in her eyes. Something that would give me hope that my baby was alive. But there was nothing at all in her expression. And I knew.

"I'm so so sorry," she finally said, "but there's no heartbeat." I sucked in my breath, inaudibly, to hold back the tears that were threatening to well up. I would not cry in front of strangers. I didn't want to have to walk out of the building with everyone looking at me, knowing.

After another minute of capturing some images, she handed me a towel to wipe off the gel. She went to call the midwife, who she said we'd get to talk to after, and left the two of us alone. Tom was gently rubbing my arm, and he said something to me - I can't even remember what. I turned my face away and refused to answer. I knew I might break at any second, and I didn't want to be a blubbering mess on the phone with the midwife.

Tom pulled me into a hug. I was glad for it, but I wouldn't have initiated it. Not yet. I felt too raw. Tears were in my eyes then, but I wouldn't let them fall. The technician came back to let us know the midwife was ready for me on the phone.

The midwife told me how sorry she was, and started to share with me what the technician had told her about the ultrasound. Based on the size of my baby, it had died at nine weeks. At that point, I was fifteen weeks pregnant. My baby's been dead for six weeks and I didn't even know it.

There are no signs of my body starting to naturally expel the baby, she said. Our options are either to keep waiting, or to get a D&C (I had to look it up online. Not very pretty).

This morning, I looked back at a calendar to get an idea of roughly when it happened. It was probably in the very week that I found out I was pregnant. How I wish I could've known this sooner.

When I had gone to my first appointment with the midwife, where she assured me that all was well and there was no reason to get an ultrasound yet...the baby was already dead. I should've listened to my gut. I had wanted an ultrasound, and she convinced me out of it.

Shortly after that, when we were happily announcing the news to family and friends, the baby was already dead.

If we had only known.

It's not that I wouldn't have told anyone what had happened. I don't really believe that keeping miscarriage a secret is helpful. But I think some things would be easier for us now. We wouldn't have had all that time to anticipate our new child. To plan things out, to imagine how it would be. That's possibly what hurts the most right now. The disappointment and disillusionment of trying to understand that none of those things are going to happen anymore. I don't need the winter maternity clothes like I thought. We won't be a happy family of four in a new home this Spring. I won't be using our new double jogging stroller to take the kids on runs next Summer.

And it wasn't just Tom and me who had already imagined a future with this baby. I think all four grandparents cried when we told them the news. Even my dad, who if you remember didn't act completely thrilled when we announced the pregnancy. He said, "you know...I didn't realize how much I was looking forward to this baby, until you told me the news."


Friends have been really supportive. It's interesting how many people have "come out of the woodwork" to share their own experiences with miscarriage, and offer me any help I might need. I appreciate all the e-mails and phone calls. I might print them out to save.

I think right now, I'm handling things much better than I would have expected. When a close friend experienced a miscarriage last month, I really empathized with her situation, and couldn't get it out of my mind for days. I think in some ways that was a blessing for me. I had already gone through some of the grief, in a way, before I knew it had happened to us as well.

There's still the fact, though, that this isn't all over yet. It's a weird feeling to know that the baby is still inside of me, but not alive anymore. We met with the midwives again to discuss our options. We've decided for now to wait a little longer, and see if it will happen naturally. There's always an appeal to me in using the least intervention necessary. And the D&C carries a risk, albeit a very small one, of impairing your future ability to have children. We made another appointment with them for two weeks for now, when we can reconsider what we want to do.

But I've just realized...if things haven't happened by then, it will have been two months since the baby died. I really don't know if I could handle that.

I feel like there may be some physical and emotional pain still in store.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Worst Possible News

I know not all of you have even had the chance to read my last post. If you haven't yet, maybe you should do that now. Anyways, the ultrasound gave us the very result we most dreaded. We lost the baby. Please continue to pray for us. I will write more when I can.

Urgent Prayers Requested!

I had an appointment with the midwives a bit ago.  Confirming a fear I was suddenly struck with last night, they were unable to find the baby's heartbeat with the Doppler.  My midwife tried valiantly for several minutes, and then called in another one to give it a go.  Both of them just had little frowns on their faces, as they moved the wand around, searching.  I was very quiet the whole time.  Just breathing, trying not to let myself even think about anything.

They scheduled me to go in for an ultrasound later today to see...well, to see if the baby is still alive, to put it simply.  They called it "making sure."

I really wish now that Tom had been there.  We got into a little argument about that earlier in the week.  I hadn't reminded him that the appointment was coming up, and so he hadn't thought to ask off of work soon enough.  I didn't think it was really a big deal.  With Sly, Tom had to miss a lot of the appointments because he had less days off.  I guess I didn't realize that he not only could get off more this time around, but that he had an interest in actually attending every appointment.  He was irritated that he wasn't going to get to come, and I said, "oh, you aren't missing too much.  We just get to hear the heartbeat."

When I first heard Sly's heartbeat on the Doppler, I remember thinking, "that's cool, I guess.  That's my baby's heart."  But it wasn't a tear-inducing moment for me, or anything.  And then they listened to it again at every appointment we went to, so I guess it sort of just became old hat...still a nice little reassurance each time, but nothing too exciting in itself.

But today, lying on the table, all I could do was beg God, "please let them find the heartbeat!"I would have rejoiced to hear it.

Luckily, Tom is able to take off the afternoon to come with me to the ultrasound today.  And my mom is willing to keep watching Sly for me, as long as I need her to.  After I told her what was going on, she immediately went to the internet to find out what the chances are here.  She called back to let me know that there were a lot of women online who didn't have a heartbeat at the doctor's office, but everything was fine.  And some of them were further along than me.

I'm not even sure how I feel right now.  I think part of me is definitely terrified.  But the rest of me is trying to push that emotion under the surface, so I don't spend the next few hours totally worried.  I feel almost paralyzed.  My brain is thinking this all through in a detached and non-committed sort of way...letting myself be aware that there is reason to have hope...letting myself consider what life might be like if the baby didn't make it.  Because it would change my entire life...not just the next few weeks, as I grieved over it.  I do want this baby very badly.  But none of the emotions are making their way to my heart, where I can fully feel them.  I guess I'm preventing them from doing that.  I'll let the feelings come afterward, when I know.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Forced Weaning

As soon as I began attempting breastfeeding, I realized that it's pointless to make many "plans" or "goals" about how it's going to happen.  Nursing a baby seems like it should be the simplest and and most natural thing in the world.  But it can often be challenging, painful, and frustrating.  That's why they have so many lactation consultants these days whose job is to help women and babies to figure out this complicated thing of nursing.  That's also one reason why a lot of women give up on the whole thing after a few tries.

Realizing that it was more dependent on Sly than it was on me, I still hoped to reach that magical "twelve months" of nursing with him.  You read things from time to time claiming that baby is best prepared health-wise if he receives breastmilk that first year, so I really wanted to try.  And we did make it to one year, though just barely. 

For the past month and a half, my milk supply has definitely been decreasing.  Largely, it was because Sly was simply nursing less.  He eats solids for all his meals and snacks.  Breastmilk had become more of a rare treat, one he only got in the early morning when he first woke up, and possibly one other time during the day.  Also, I'm pretty sure the pregnancy is a contributing factor.  I know of women who can continue to breastfeed all through a pregnancy, and even afterwards, nursing two children at the same time!  But I know of many more women whose bodies just didn't seem to be able to keep up with all the energy demands.

About a week ago, the milk ran out completely.  And let me tell you, mornings have been terrible for Sly.  He's used to being brought into our bed as soon as he stirs in the morning, where he can snuggle up with me and have a little pre-breakfast while he slowly wakes up all the way.  Such a pleasant way for all of us to start the day. 

For the past week, though, it's been a different picture.  Sly wakes up, and we bring him into our room where we listen to him screaming for twenty solid minutes, completely inconsolable.  The only thing he wants to do is lie on me, with his face buried in my chest.  It's not like he's "rooting" for the milk, though.  It's more like he has this vague memory that when he put his head in that place, there was something nice that used to happen...but he can't remember what it is.  He just lies there whimpering.  I try to sit him up or change his position, and he screams, and goes right back to where he was.  Yesterday, after a while of this, I decided I needed to get up to take a shower.  I left Sly crying in the bed with Tom.  As soon as I got up, Sly threw his body next to the spot where I sleep in the bed...the place he used to lie to nurse.  It was so sad!

I think it will pass soon.  This morning, actually, he was a lot better.  I probably just need to rearrange my morning routine, so that breakfast - downstairs, in the high chair - comes as one of the first things we do.

:-( Poor baby.  Not quite ready to grow up.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Married Dates

Since I first got married, I have had countless people insist to me that one of the most important things for your marriage - especially after children start coming - is to have regular date nights with your husband.  Mostly, it was "veteran" married women telling me this, and I tend to listen up when people like that have some advice to give about married life.  They've experienced the ups and downs and everything in between!  Then a few weeks ago, I was having a conversation with my mom about some of the circumstances leading to her divorce from my dad.  One of the things she insisted I do was ensure date nights with Tom, saying that the lack of those with my dad was one contributing factor in the breakdown of their relationship.  Well, then!

Anyways, the past two weeks or so have been rather rocky between Tom and myself.  I don't know exactly...I think there's a lot of stress about the impending move, and the realization that we are poor beyond poor and might not be able to afford it, and what the heck where we thinking having another baby now?!  (not that we at all regret it, God!  Very grateful still!).  It's just been tense between us.  We are at each other's throats about the stupidest little things.  So the other night, I just said, "alright.  I'm instituting regular date nights!  I think this is something we need." and went on to explain all the things people have told me about the value of setting aside that time.  Tom was very skeptical at first, but as the days have passed, he's really been warming up to it.  We've been brainstorming various inexpensive options - either out of the house or staying in.  There are a lot of things to do, if you're flexible and creative with it.  The only real requirement is "no Sly allowed!"

Tonight will be our first of these date nights.  We decided to stay home, and wait until Sly goes to bed.  We're going to make malt milkshakes and play a boardgame.  haha!  How teenager-y!  And I said there's a "no jeans or t-shirts rule." 

Tom usually hates boardgames, but when he called over lunch today, he sounded like he's really looking forward to it.  In fact, things have been very pleasant between us recently, and I would not be surprised if it's a direct result of this date resolution.  I'll try to report back on my continuing feelings about "married couple dates."

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


I feel like I need to just preface this with a "sorry if I offend anyone" comment.  What I'm about to say is mostly addressed to women, and I know well how personally woman take things.  But here's something that's been on my mind of late.

I've noticed a new habit among young Catholics, particularly women, of referring to Our Lady as "Mama Mary."  Something about this just bothers me.  First off, I just think it sounds so informal.  So familiar.  Certainly, if we have the relationship with the Blessed Mother that we should have, we will be familiar with her.  But there's still a huge amount of reverence and respect owed to her.  She has a thousand and one other titles - scripture-based, revelation-based, character-based - which are beautiful and fitting.  Other titles which convey her Motherhood.  "Mama" seems...juvenile.

Something about that word just seems forced and unnatural.  I mean, what adult woman honestly refers to her mother as "mama"?  Pretty much no one, unless they are intentionally trying to be cutesy.

During personal conversation with Mary, it would be completely appropriate to address her as "Mother".  But I suppose that if for certain people, actually calling her "Mama" during prayer is natural and unaffected, then I don't have a problem with it.  But only when used as a personal address.  Not as a title she is referenced by in conversation.

But referring to her in such as informal and un-reverent (I won't use the stronger term "irreverent") way publicly seems like a disservice somehow.  That said, referring to Our Mother simply as "Mary" IS appropriate, and has been lauded by various saints (St. Alphonsus Liguori in particular).  And that, too, seems somewhat "informal" - so maybe that's not the main problem I have with it.

Words means things.  Calling someone by different names can express a different sense of their person.  I think when people call her Mama Mary, they are trying to emphasize something.  The child-like reliance they have on her?  The familial closeness we should feel towards her?  Those are good sentiments to remind oneself of.  It still bothers me, though!

Does anyone have any insight into why this might bother me?  Any arguments to make as to why it shouldn't bother me?  I'd love to hear your thoughts :-)

Friday, September 9, 2011

7 Quick Takes Friday (Vol. 8)

1.  Check out this AWESOME idea for a maternity Halloween costume!

If I was ever "big pregnant" in October, I would definitely consider it!

2. Sly has had a weird rash in his "diaper area" for a few weeks now.  I've had the doctors look at it several times, and they can't figure out what it is. At first, they were thinking herpes (!!), and were asking me embarrassing questions such as, "has he been sexually abused?" and "who watches him during the day?".  It was kinda uncomfortable.  Thank goodness the tests for that came back negative.  The latest theory is that it's some sort of bacterial infection.  He's on another medicine, and the doctor instructed me to boil ALL our cloth diapers.  Oh man.  Good thing I have that enormous stock pot!

3. I know Christmas is still months away, but I'm already starting to think about a particular Advent tradition that I would love to start in our family.  I want to get a lifesize Infant Christ statue in a manger.  The empty manger could be set out all during Advent, and then Jesus would be there Christmas morning!  I've also heard of families having their kids put one piece of straw into the manger each time they do some charitable act, or make some penance, creating a nice soft bed for Jesus before He arrives.  When Sly's a little older, we might consider that.  This is the particular statue I have my heart set on.

Isn't it beautiful?!  It comes in many sizes: 5", 8", 12", and 20".  I would LOVE to get the 20" one because then it would be truly life-life.  It costs $150, though.  I have been slowly slowly saving up a little stash of money from past Christmas and birthday gifts I've received (Tom is so jealous about this!).  I think this might be a worthwhile use of that money.  It doesn't say anywhere that the child can actually be removed from the manger...but I'm assuming it can (?).  And if not, I'll find a way to get it out!

4.  Another item on my "wishlist" recently is a Dust Buster.  Man, it seems like Sly just leaves crumbs and little messes everywhere he goes these days!  It would be very nice not to have to drag the heavy vacuum up from the basement all the time.

5. At my family's cottage, we've always had an enormous oak tree in the front yard.

Last year, much to everyone's sorrow, it had to be cut down.  It was rotting from the inside out.  The tree was probably a few hundred years old.  In anticipation of the sad day, I had spent our week up there gathering a bunch of acorns from the yard.  I hoped - as several other relatives did - to grow some "babies" of our beloved tree.  Once Spring came this year, I planted a number of them in pots.  Only one ended up sprouting.  But it was better than nothing, and I proudly shared my triumph with the entire extended family via Facebook.
My little seedling
With the exception of one aunt, no one else had had any luck in getting their acorns to germinate.  As the summer went on, my aunt and I kept each other updated on the progress of our single trees.  Somehow, mine was growing spectacularly!  By the end of July, hers was less than a foot tall, while mine had grown to about five feet!  The entire family was impressed.  I was told by everyone that I needed to get that tree planted in front of the Cottage this year, instead of waiting until next summer as originally planned.

But then my dad was over our place for Sly's birthday party.  I saw him in the backyard, looking at my tree with a doubting sort of expression.  I asked him what was up, and he informed me that this was not, as he'd apparently been suspecting for a while, actually an oak tree!  It was a huge, stupid WEED!  WHAT?! I've been nurturing this dumb thing all summer!  Transferring it to bigger and bigger pots, watering it every day, staking it up!  I can't believe it.  I still haven't gotten up the courage to notify the whole family about my mistake.  They will NEVER let me hear the end of it!

6. It constantly amazes me how much babies can pick up without being explicitly "taught."  Sly gives kisses on request.  On the mouth.  I hardly ever kissed him on the mouth before.  He could only have learned it by seeing Tom and I kiss that way!  Also, pointing at things.  Just one day, he started doing it, and it was clear that it was intentional.  He'd learned just by watching us.

But dancing?  I really think that one's all instinctive.  Even at a very young age, when he would hear certain little tunes, he'd start rocking back and forth.  So cute!

7. Last weekend, after eating dinner at my dad's house, he informed me that "it was time."  Time to clear out all my stuff from my former bedroom.  Even though I haven't actually lived with my dad for years, I've still been using my room there as a convenient storage space for all the nostalgia and trinkets that I either didn't have room for at my current abode, or that I was just too lazy to sort through all these years.  I have TONS of stuff there.  He agreed that I could wait until we've moved before I have to take anything.  I know there will be things I'm fine with giving away, but there are still so many items I intend to keep.  A lot of toys I'm saving for future daughters, drawers packed with old drawings and notes, decorative knick-knacks, books....Ugh.

See Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Stressful Times!

Our lease runs up on January 1st.  An awful time of year to move, because who wants to be packing up at Christmas, right?  We finally talked to the landlord, and he said he's fine letting us out early, we just have to give him the new end date in writing, this month.  Making this decision has been kinda agonizing for me.

When "fate" was telling us that we had to be out by a certain date, it was easy enough to just accept that that was the way things were.  But now, having the power to choose the date the lease ends, I find myself getting so stressed about it.  If we choose a day that ends up not working out well with the new home that we find, it will be my fault.  Tom thinks we should just move it a month earlier, to December 1st.  "But what if we don't find a place to move by then?" I keep saying.  He doesn't understand what the difference is in one month. 

I know it's the usual thing to start/end a lease on the first of the month...but the practicalities of actually moving necessitate that you do so on a weekend.  December 1st is a Thursday.  This has me all worried too.  "What if we're kicked out in the middle of the week?  We can't move on a Thursday! What will we DO?" You'd think I've never moved before!  Somehow, I know, it always works out.  Landlords are flexible.  They let you move into the new place a week early...or stay at the old place a week late.  But I still keep fearing that something will go wrong. 

It also doesn't help that every place available for rent up on Craigslist is looking for immediate occupancy.  The usual time to start/end leases is the summertime.  For places that are renting "out of season", it seems as if most landlords don't post to Craigslist until a month before their houses are available!  This means I can't even start looking for a place until November?  That's ridiculous! I do NOT like working against a deadline like this.  I can't comfortably "sign away my rights" to the house I'm living in now, not knowing for sure that another good place will turn up in time.

It's frustrating too because we know we're going to need to spend a little more in rent on this next place.  Not only are we looking for a bit more space, but we're hoping to move further into the city which tends to be a little higher cost.  Right now, there's no room in our budget to put another penny towards rent.  Tom does have a raise coming to him on October 1st.  To my continual irritation with his company, no one has been able to tell him how much this will be.  It could be anything - 25 more cents per hour, or thousands more a year.  We're basically banking everything on the hope that his salary increases enough that we can put a couple hundred more towards rent.  But we have no indication that this will happen either!

So....I'm being asked to just leave a lot to chance now.  Or maybe I'm being asked to just trust a lot to God now? 

Stressful times!

Friday, September 2, 2011


Ugh.  So far, I had successfully escaped actually throwing up during this pregnancy.  But today....not so lucky. I have a migraine and feel pretty dizzy.  For years, I would get migraines from time to time, but I don't really get them anymore - except when I'm pregnant.  I think my body is just so exhausted and busy with , you know - growing a baby - that I'm just less able to fight them off.  Migraines have always made me feel nauseous, and combined with the "morning" sickness of the pregnancy, it's bad news.  I haven't been able to keep anything down all day.  I'm getting hungry!  haha

Earlier today, I was so dizzy and tired, that I actually had to call my mom to come pick up Sly and watch him for the rest of the day.  He just kept crying because I wasn't able to hold him or entertain him.  I'm very lucky to have Mom living so close (and to work weird nursing hours, that allow her to be home a lot on weekdays).  It's going to make moving closer into the city - as Tom desperately wants to do - a tough trade-off to make.

Well, I think it's time for another nap.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


As most of you have probably either heard from me in person, or read on Facebook...we are expecting another baby!  I didn't exactly intend to post it to Facebook so soon.  I planned to tell a few more friends in person first.  But the people who already knew were starting to leak it on my wall, and soon I was receiving all sorts of congratulations anyways.  So I just decided to go for it.

We're certainly happy and very grateful.  We've been hoping for another baby for some time now.  As soon as the memory of how awful pregnancy was (haha - I am NOT one of those women who loves being pregnant!) started to wear off, and the true joy of parenthood started to sink in...we felt ready to give it another go!

The baby is due March 18th - at least that's the due date based on the dates of my cycle.  I haven't had an ultrasound yet to make it a little more accurate.  Last pregnancy, I started out with an OB/GYN, and was sent for an ultrasound after the first month.  The midwives, who I switched to at five months, will be using this time, and hopefully using again for any future babies, are more frugal with ultrasounds.  Our midwife at the first prenatal checkup told me that if it was really important to me, she'd write a script for one, but that she didn't think it was necessary.  So far, I haven't taken her up on the offer, afraid that it might cost us a lot of money, if insurance doesn't cover the whole thing.  It is reassuring, though, to see that little blob on the screen, and know it's your baby.

Telling most people the news was easy, because we knew we could expect joyful reactions.  But I was a little nervous to tell my father.  I really haven't been able to put my finger on why, but I have gotten the sense that, despite the fact that he came from a family of eight, and had four kids of his own....he is not excited about me potentially having a large family.  He worries about it.  I'm sure it's partially the financial aspect.  But there's something more to it - does he think we're getting in over our heads?  I wish he could just be happy for us, and that's it.  When I told him we were expecting a baby, he actually asked me, "is this good news?" before he would react to it.  Of course it's good news!  That was hard to hear.  So I'm already dreading the future, when (God willing), we announce future pregnancies to him :-(

With another baby on the way, Tom and I are feeling even more pressure to move to a different home.  Hopefully one with a little more space.  Tom is due for a raise at work soon, and we've been praying that it is enough to let us afford this.  If people could keep this intention in their prayers, we'd really appreciate it.

A few months ago, I was reading a bunch of articles and blogs about Catholic couples facing infertility.  It is truly a difficult cross to bear, and I can't even imagine the pain such couples must feel.  I determined at the time that should I get pregnant again, I would offer up the sufferings of my own pregnancy for these families.  This means I am going to try hard not to complain too much this time around!  If I get too whiny on this blog, feel free to remind me!