Hard to believe the month of May is here. How could I forget that everything takes forever in the world of IVF and RPL. Our FET was in December, and we were pregnant until February. I got my first period after the loss in late March, and now 28 days later, here we are, back on the usual schedule with Aunt Flow.
This is the first back to back 28 day menstrual cycle I have had since my October to November cycle in 2014. So, technically, this is the 1st month we could have seen a positive pee test and I could have been pregnant again. Thats if I wasnt on the pill, we were blessed to be able to conceive on our own, & I wasnt scheduled to get a uterine mass removed in a few short days. Sigh.
Anyways, I dont know if I should be happy for the regularity of my cycle or not. Its a love hate relationship for sure. I always worry that after another miscarriage my cycles will be screwed up permanently, or that I might stop getting them altogether. I feel bad for the women who arent regular because I know thats a whole issue in itself. So part of me is thankful to have her back.
But then on the other hand, I hate Aunt Flow and everything about her. I think I might have a ligit fear of blood thanks to RPL. I cant stomach the sight of it when I go to the bathroom now, pregnant or not. I also despise the idea of how I am supposed to be pregnant, and she is just another constant physical reminder that I am not. Its not that I am in denial about my current state of physical being, because Im not. A period is simply a mental battle each month that infertiles and RPL victims can relate to.
Pretty ironic this state of hating my period. When I was young, before this infertility journey began, I used to pray Aunt Flow would come every month. Im sure many of you did the same. Its hard not to look at the decisions we made back then as some form of retribution now. I know God keeps no record of wrongs, but I also know you reap what you sow. Im working on trying to stop thinking that our present situation is the way it is because of how we lived in the past. Not easy.
I love reading. I find it to be a release. I have enjoyed reading since I was little. When school got out in the summers, my mom & I spent quite a bit of our time at the library each week. I would get several fictional books at a time. As a kid with no major responsibilities, I would sit down & read the book from start to finish in 1 day (if it was a really good one). As an adult, the same still applies if I have the time to pull it off.
No one really dislikes reading. People who say they dislike reading just aren’t reading the right things. Unfortunately for them they never found their calling in the wonderful world of print. I would guess this occurred when they were pretty young, and they gave up the search.
On top of reading fiction, I try to read a little non-fiction as well. Usually in the form of magazines or newspapers. Non-fiction keeps me on top of what is happening in the world around us when I don’t want to watch the morbid news.
Over the past few years, we have started to get into some inspirational reading. Specifically, daily devotionals. I find devotionals to be great because they are short, but sweet, uplifting messages, that can help start your days off right. The devotionals have been a huge help for the hubs & I as we struggle to survive infertility and RPL day to day.
I also like following a schedule and a devotional does just that. Once I start a devotional, I feel pretty committed to it because of those dates at the top of each page. Here is a great one that a fellow infertile recommended to me awhile back:
There are several versions of Jesus Calling. If you like to take notes about your feelings when you read, you would want to buy the larger version of this one, as the small one I have (above) does not have space to write.
The devotional includes a message and lists the chapter and verse of the bible where you can look to find the scripture that applies to the message. Since the bible verses aren’t actually written out, you have to get out your bible and look them up! This devotional is not just for women, it is for men, too.
This is the devotional I got the hubs:
He really likes it. It is set up a little differently than Jesus Calling. This one has specific topics on each page, whereas Jesus Calling does not. For example this men’s has topics like, “work,” or “family,” with the message and the bible verse actually written out. In other words, he does not have to look up the actual verses in his bible, they are right there for him. If your husband is like mine, he might not be much of an avid reader so this works out well for him to do on his own.
I would love to hear from any bloggers out there who have devotionals in mind that they have loved! I am not much into the e-devotionals, I really prefer an old school book where I can manually flip the pages.
Thank you Our Greatest Desire for nominating us for the Real Neat Blog Award!!
This past week has been humbling, as my writing has been noticed in special ways by people experiencing similar struggles to ours.
I love what goes along with this award because it is a break away from all the intensity and seriousness that we sometimes associate with our infertility! This post will be just for fun & getting to know us in a different way, that is a non-IVF or RPL kinda way…
Rules for “The Real Neat Blog Award”:
- Put the Award Logo in your post.
- Answer the 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
- Thank the person/people who nominated you and link to their blogs.
- Nominate any number of bloggers you like and link to their blogs.
- Ask them 7 questions.
- Let them know you’ve nominated them with a comment.
I would like to nominate the following bloggers (your questions are at the bottom):
Now for the questions I had to answer:
1. If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?
Definitely a bird. Not because I love birds; only because I love their ability to fly. Humans consider flying a “super power” for a reason. I think it would be amazing to easily travel the world whenever I like, without depending on some form of transportation other than myself.
2. If you could only visit one National Park, which one would you choose and why?
This question brought to my attention how I desperately need to tighten up my knowledge of National Parks. The only one I can even come up with is Yellowstone! And I can’t even tell you if I’d in all honesty want to go here. I am pretty sure this is where Yogi and Boo-boo reside isn’t it?? They seem like pretty fun guys! On the other hand, I think Yellowstone might also be the place that people talk about one day exploding or something insane?? Who knows. Next question!!
3. If you could have dinner with one person, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Okay, so I would go with Abraham Lincoln! Kinda weird, right? I know. But the guy is intriguing, even for a non-history buff. I would choose Honest Abe because not only was he the 16th President, but because he put others before himself throughout his life. If he hadn’t been our President & McKinley would have gotten in, we would most likely be living in two different countries in the present day USA. Lincoln fought to keep the Union together, he fought for those underprivileged, and I think it says a lot about his character. Plus, he looks like a cool guy with the top hat and beard.
4. What is your favorite movie for each decade of your life?
1980’s-No surprise the 80’s delivered as it did….It would be ridiculous to even have to pick from these 3 movies-The Land Before Time (1986), The Little Mermaid (1989), & Fievel: An American Tale (1986), so I’m not!
1990’s-Another great decade. Can’t choose between Home Alone (1990) and Titanic (1997)
2000’s-The Notebook (2004) takes it
2010’s-Too soon to say…
5. If you could only listen to one band/Singer for the rest of your life, who would it be?
Throwback Mariah Carey. Easy one.
6. If you could only eat one food for the rest of you life, what would it be?
This is a tough one for me! People who know me know I am a total foodie. Whenever I have to fill in something to describe myself, or a skill I have, I wonder if it’s OK to put down “food connoisseur,” or if people will just burst out in complete laughter? I really enjoy a wide variety of foods (not picky in the least sense), but if I had to choose just 1 it would have to be spaghetti, simply due to my Italian heritage.
7. How did you meet your Significant Other?
(Taken from Our Story part 1) I will never forget the day we formally met. It was October of my senior year. As I went to lunch, I sat at my usual table with my usual friends. We attended a fairly small high school and most people knew each other. All of a sudden, my friend pointed out this unfamiliar guy, stating he was “pretty hot.” I took a look, and was surprised I never noticed him before! Who was this Casanova? LOL. Next thing I knew, I was being introduced to him by his friend, that little did I know, in 7 years would be a future groomsmen in our wedding. He asked me out that night to Subway (gotta love high school budgets) and though it sounds so cliche, soon after that we were in love and the rest was history
Okay, now here are your questions:
1. What are your top 3 favorite books and why?
2. What is your best childhood memory?
3. What do you feel most proud of?
4. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?
5. If you could only keep 3 of your possessions, what would they be and why?
6. What are you most afraid of?
7. If you won the lotto, what would you do with the money?
Looking forward to getting to know you ladies better!
Recently, I went for a drive later in the day one afternoon just before dusk. I decided to pull over when I saw a large lake with a pretty fountain at the center. I had never been here, and I always like to find new “spots.” There were little gazebos such as the one above placed sporadically around the lake perimeter. There were various animals present, ranging from turtles and bunnies, to sand-hill cranes and blue herons.
I walked a little ways and stopped at the first gazebo I saw. I sat inside on the wooden bench, quietly watching the families as they enjoyed the great Florida outdoors during springtime. Not too hot, not too cold. Palm trees swaying in the breeze with the sky lit up pink and orange, signs of a true southern sunset. Some of the families were walking, while others rode their bikes or jogged. A few of the families had their dogs with them.
There wasn’t an enormous amount of people circling the lake, which was fantastic (I wasn’t in the mood to say hello to a new face every 5 seconds). Most public lakes are overly busy. This one was a little off the beaten path, and thankfully, I ended up only having to say hello two times. I hate to sound so unfriendly, but my goal in going for the drive in the first place was to have some alone time.
I watched one family, made up of what appeared to be a husband and wife with their daughter. My guess is that the girl was probably around 7 years old. The parents were jogging together as the little girl rode her bike ahead of them. I couldn’t help but wonder about the dynamics of their family as I observed them. I watched the little girl get off her bike and race her dad as the mom stood back smiling. I wondered what it would feel like to watch that with my family.
One other family stuck out to me. This one consisted of what appeared to be a husband & wife with their 2 children, and 2 dogs. They really weren’t doing anything special, just walking and talking. The kids were young, a girl and a boy, both probably under the age of 5. The parents seemed pretty young too. The dogs were cute, 2 little white poodles. Again, my mind drifted. I thought about us & our twins that were lost. What it would have been like if they made it. We always loved the idea of having 2 babies with our 2 pups.
And then, I don’t really know what came over me. I started to cry, tears slowly pouring down my face. As I was sitting on that bench in that gazebo, I saw every baby that we lost sitting in there with me. I was sitting in the center, and there were just enough spots on each side of me for each of them. I saw them smiling and laughing, talking to each other, and swinging their legs as they sat like all kids do. Both girls and boys. They were not babies anymore, they were around 4 and 5 years old. Everyone of them was so happy! Some even had juice boxes and were chewing on their straws. I gazed back and forth, from my left to my right, and my right to my left. All of my babies were with me. It felt so very real. What’s more, Nacho even showed up for a minute, too. It was incredibly hard for me to get up and walk out of that gazebo, but I eventually did.
I chatted with one of my dearest friends shortly after all of this happened. I shared with her how I don’t know if I can ever truly get past all of the loss we have endured. She reassured me that what had just happened was God letting me know how all of our babies are here with us everyday. She’s right, it’s true. While I don’t know if it’s humanly possible to ever get over it, I know I have to keep on and try to be strong.
With another due date quickly approaching us on May 3rd, I know it won’t be easy. Actually, far from it. But I also know our babies are all around us. Even though it hurts like hell, I will forever cherish that moment my babies and I just spent together, and I look forward to the day we all get to do it again.
As National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) came to a close, the link below seemed quite appropriate.
Sometimes it can be hard knowing what to say, or not to say, to someone who struggles with infertility. In my opinion, overall, this list gives some good tips. However, it is important to remember that every person and/or couple is different. Getting to know each couples individual journey can be a huge help in understanding the do’s and dont’s.
No two journey’s are ever the same!