Our journey through infertility, failed adoptions and now parenthood through the miracle of embryo adoption/donation.

Monday, January 31, 2011

It's a conspiracy, I tell ya!

OK, here's my situation. My Mommy has had me for over 5 months. The first few months were great--I cried, she picked me up and fed me, anytime, around the clock. Then something happened. Over the last few weeks, she has been trying to STTN (sleep thru the night). At first, I thought it was just a phase, but it is only getting worse. I've talked to other babies, and it seems like its pretty common after Mommies have had us for around 5-6 months.

Here's the thing: these Mommies don't really need to sleep. It's just a habit. Many of them have had some 30 years to sleep--they just don't need it anymore. So I am implementing a plan. I call it the Crybaby Shuffle.

It goes like this:

Night 1--cry every 3 hours until you get fed. I know, it's hard. It's

hard to see your Mommy upset over your crying. Just keep reminding yourself, it's for her own good.

Night 2--cry every 2 hours until you get fed.

Night 3--every hour.

Most Mommies will start to respond more quickly after about 3 nights. Some Mommies are more alert, and may resist the change longer. These Mommies may stand in your doorway for hours, shhhh-ing. Don't give in.

I cannot stress this enough: CONSISTENCY IS KEY!! If you let her STTN (sleep through the night), just once, she will expect it every night.

I KNOW IT'S HARD! But she really does not need the sleep; she is just resisting the change.. If you have an especially alert Mommy, you can stop crying for about 10 minutes, just long enough for her to go back to bed and start to fall asleep. Then cry again. It WILL eventually work. My Mommy once stayed awake for 10 hours straight, so I know she can do it.

The other night, I cried every hour. You just have to decide to stick

to it and just go for it. BE CONSISTENT! I cried for any reason I could come up with:

My sleep sack tickled my foot.

I felt a wrinkle under the sheet.

My mobile made a shadow on the wall.

I burped, and it tasted like rice cereal. I hadn't eaten rice cereal

since breakfast, what's up with that?

Once I cried just because I liked how it sounded when it echoed on the monitor in the other room.

Too hot, too cold, just right--doesn't matter! Keep crying!!

I had drooled so much my sheets were damp and I didn’t like it touching me.

I decided I was sick of all the pink in my room so I cried.

It took awhile, but it worked. She fed me at 4am. Tomorrow night, my goal is 3:30am. You need to slowly shorten the interval between

feedings in order to reset your Mommies' internal clocks.

Sometimes my Mommy will call for reinforcements by sending in Daddy. Don’t worry Daddies are not set up for not needing sleep the way Mommies are. They can only handle a few pats and shhing before they declare defeat and send in the Mommy.

Also, I like to give Mommy false hope that listening to the sleep sheep with rain noises puts me to sleep sometimes I pretend to close my eyes and be asleep and then wait until I know Mommy is settling back to sleep to spring a surprise cry attack. If she doesn’t get to me fast enough I follow up with my fake cough and gag noise that always has her running to the crib. At some point I am positive she will start to realize that she really doesn’t really need sleep.

P.S. Don't let those rubber things fool you, no matter how long you

suck on them, no milk will come out. Trust me.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Yes, I am Pro-Life

I am a member of Baby Center and they have a Debate forum on there. Why I frequent it I will never know! The majority of the debates involve abortion is some form. Sadly, the majority of the members are pro-choice. Yes, I said sadly. It saddens me that so many people do not value human life. The debate today was about legal vs. illegal abortions and how making them illegal will not stop them so therefore it is foolish to make them illegal. My thoughts on this? Legality does not equal morality. By this standard of thinking then pedophilia and rape should be made legal as well, since it is going to happen anyway. Shouldn't they then provide education and condoms for rapists so that they do not pass along diseases? Or teah pedophiles how not to hurt a child when molesting them? Sound stupid? I think so too! Just because something is going to happen anyway does not mean that we should make it safer for those making that choice.

Now, I am not naive and realize that abortion is not a black and white issue nor does it come with easy solutions. I also realize that it will never be illegal in our country again. However, I do think that there are ways to reduce the rate of abortions. I also think that they should be allowed when the mother's life is in danger. At that time it is no longer a choice, but a life saving measure. Could I personally abort my own child even in the face of possible death? I doubt it. But then again, I have never been faced with that situation either.

One thing that our country lacks is education. Yes, there are sex education programs and there are abstinence programs, but too often they are not taught together. Young people especially need to be taught to respect themselves enough to wait. And if they are not going to, to be able to practice safe sex. Too often our "education" programs act as though a teenager is unable to abstain. Why is that? We are not animals. We do not need sex to survive and we especially do not need to have sex at 14 years old. Yet TV, radio and peers tell us that virginity is "weird" or "odd". Abstinence are often not much better, just the opposite side of the coin.

I also think that before a woman can have an abortion she should have to undergo 3rd party counseling by an organization that is not pro-life nor pro-choice. Someone that will give them all of their options: abortion, parenting, and adoption. Too often women feel scared and trapped and make a decision based upon those fears. Maybe if they had all of the facts and knew their options they would be less likely to have an abortion.

Since embarking upon embryo adoption I see life very differently. I have always been pro-life, but not until I saw the first cells that created my little Maddie did I fully realize just how precious and miraculous life really is and that it should be valued.

You should see the other guy!

This week started out fine but by Wednesday everything changed. Maddie did not sleep well at all on Tuesday night. She was up every 2 hours and I was exhausted! All day Wednesday she was crabby and had a low grade fever. Nothing to worry about, it was just a bit frustrating. Her nose was running too but it was clear so no biggie there either. Wednesday night was much the same....sleepless. And then came Thursday morning. Maddie woke up with a really yucky nose, green goopy eye, and a fever of 100.6. My baby was sick and not happy about it! I called the doc and made her an appointment for that afternoon. She has an infection in both eyes and an ear infection. She also has a cold and we were to watch in case it got worse since RSV is so prevalent right now. By Friday her eyes were swollen and crusted closed, looking much like Rocky, and she was hoarse. It was a miserable sound!!!

I am happy to report that now she is on the mend though and doing much better. She is now her happy, squealing self again!!

In other news, I have a prayer request for everyone. My niece's mom was in a horrible car accident this past Wednesday and is not doing very well. Frankly, they are surprised that she is even alive right now. She was not wearing her seat belt and she extensive facial damage, missing most of her teeth, spinal fractures, broken ribs, deep lacerations and her hip is out of place. On top of it all they discovered that she is 10 weeks pregnant as well and no one knows how the baby is doing at this time.

If she survives she will require many months of physical therapy and will be in the hospital for quite some time. At this time my niece (8 years old) has not been told. She lives with her father (my brother) and does not see her mom very often so she is not missing her yet. This woman has not been a very good mother to my niece and I pray that not only does she recover but that this will be life changing and she will become the mother that my niece so desires. If you could join me in prayer for this young woman it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Symbols of Hope

It was eleven years ago that we learned that we were infertile. It is such an ugly word, isn't it? I had suspected it to be true before we even saw a doctor, but to have it confirmed shook me to the core. Up until that time I tried to live in denial, but that was ripped away with just a few simple tests. The next year I still held onto denial and hope that the doctor was wrong. After that there was no denying that we had problems. I decided to stay optimistic though and started putting away a few baby items here and there, certain that we would have a baby one day. After about 5 years the clothing we outdated and the thoughts of keeping them saddened me so I gave them away. With them went my hope.

In 2006 we started fertility treatments and with them came renewed hope. I started buying maternity clothing sure that I would be wearing them the next year. When those failed and we were left with IVF as our only option I gave those away too. IVF was never going to happen, so why keep them? Why hope? Then I learned of EA and at the end of 2009 we had our first FET and a BFP. At first I was terrified that I would lose the baby but quickly decided that I was tired of living in constant fear and determined to enjoy every minute of the pregnancy, regardless of how long it lasted. As a symbol of this hope I purchased a few baby items.

Now we are faced with trying for baby number two and all of the uncertainties that come along with fertility treatments. I want to run and hide from the thoughts of starting over. Finding a new clinic, saving the funds, doing the testing, beginning the shots. None of it is fun and none of it guarantees us a baby. I needed something to hold on to, something to symbolize hope. A few months ago I came across a site that was giving away this pregnancy planner for free so I ordered one. I was going to pass it along to someone that was pregnant but have decided to hold onto it myself and hope that I will be using it this fall.

Do you have any items that symbolize hope for you? If so, what?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sometimes I worry

Did you see O.prah yesterday? She announced that she had a long lost half sister. I am not as interested in them reuniting as I am the sister's story itself. In case you didn't catch the show she was the 4th child born and her mother signed over her rights before she left the hospital. This was back in 1963 so adoption was much different back then. This baby was in the hospital for one month then bounced around from foster home to foster home until she was adopted at the age of seven. Even then she did not have a great life. Several things about this story broke my heart. First, that she was not adopted right away. I know that it was the 60's and she was African American, but how could someone not scoop her up and love her, regardless of racial tensions? My hubby and I, while pursuing adoption, decided to adopt within our race (for several reasons that I won't go into today). But even with that there is no way that I could not have taken this baby and loved her to pieces!!!

During the interview she mentioned that she has no idea where her name came from or who even named her. Can you imagine?? That is just sad!! And at one point her birth mother stated that she was a beautiful baby and this made her cry. Why? Because she had never heard that before. Growing up she had no history, no connection to anyone. She had mannerisms and characteristics of family members that she did not even know existed. The whole situation brings tears to my eyes. This brings me to why I worry.

Will Maddie ever feel like she doesn't belong? Will she wonder about the biological family? Will she notice that her laugh is unique and wonder where it came from? Or that her characteristics are not like ours entirely and feel "different"? Maddie was not "adopted" in the traditional sense and I pray that she will feel secure in knowing that she was loved and wanted before she was ever conceived. I hope that is enough for her, but I can't help but worry a bit that she will feel like she doesn't belong.

So close!!!

I have posted several times about a fellow blogger going through some really tough times and I wanted to update a bit. Christy has a baby girl, Cami, that is very ill. She has had several surgeries and is a little fighter. Cami is only 5 months old and is going through more than any child should ever have to go through. During all of this Christy and her family are not only fighting for the life of little Cami but to save their home. They needed $7000 to save their home and they have raised all but $1402. They are so close!!!!

If you have a moment please stop over at their blog and show your support. Every comment lets her know that people are thinking of them and praying for them. And please consider making a donation if you are able to.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The show Teen Mom

I am a member of the message board Babycent.er.com and many of the members talk about the MT.V show Teen Mom. I have never had an interest in watching it, especially since reality shows in general irritate me. They call them "reality" shows alluding to the fact that they are "real" but instead they are just as fake, if not more, than most fictional shows. And really, do I care to see a bunch of fertile teens pooping out babies between popping pills and drinking booze?

Today I was flipping through the channels and noticed that there was an episode on and since there is nothing else on right now I tuned in. I am still processing how I feel about this show. A part of me, the infertile part, hates to see so many young, unprepared, immature teenagers having babies. The unfairness of it hurts. But my feelings do not stop there. I do like that the show does not make it all out to be sunshine and roses. Raising babies is work. Hard work!! It is a 24/7, 365 days a year job. There is never any time off. And it is hard work with two of us raising a baby and here some of these girls are single. Now that is reality. Many "boys" won't stick around for the hard stuff. I am sure that this show is popular amongst the teen and tween crowd and I hope that they learn from it. Yet, even though the show portrays the difficult side of being a teen mom it still glamorizes it. These girls are now celebrities. And for what?? Having a baby years before they should have? That part gets to me.

Lastly, there is this maternal instinct that not only wants to scoop these babies up and take care of them, but to care for the moms too. Most of them are still children themselves. Maybe not in chronological age, but mentally. And they can have babies?? It makes you shake your head, doesn't it??

When will they have a reality show for us infertiles? One that follows us to ultrasounds and appointments. The tears of a negative test. Or one that shows the long freaking needles we stick in our butts. Now there is a reality that I can relate to!

Friday, January 21, 2011

January ICLW.....Hello out there!

Well, hello everyone! Today begins January's ICLW. What is ICLW, you ask? There is a button on the right that will take you to it and explain it better than I ever could.

For those visiting the first time. Welcome! For those that are regulars, well, you all are always welcome! Here are a few things to help you get to know me better. Cause you know that is what you want, more info on me.

*I have been married 12 years. Love being married!!

*We began ttc almost right away. We learned within 8 months that we were defunct.

*Hubby has no swimmers at all. Nope. None. Zilch. Nada.

*I have bunch of endo, a dash of blockage in my tube, a hint of PCOS and a sprinkling of scrambled eggs. Mix altogether and you get one heck of an infertile gal.

*We have had 2 failed adoptions, one of which we had our little girl for 3 months.

*We tried 4 IUIs with donor spermies. The first donor ended up being defunct too. I defertilize men.

*In late 2009 we did our first round of FET with donor embies and in August of 2010 we had our beautiful little Maddie. She really is cute. Promise!

*Right now we are enjoying this phase of our lives, hoping to lose some weight, and wanting to try EA again this year.

Well, that's about it in a nutshell. Stick around and you might learn even more interesting tidbits about me.

***Take a moment to visit and pray for Cami***

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Thank you for the award!!

I just want to say thank you, Megan, for giving me this award!!!

Here are the rules for the acceptance of the award:

1.Thank and link back to the person who awarded you the award.

2.Share 7 things about yourself.

3.Award 15 other bloggers.

4.Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award.

Okay, here are seven things about me that you are all dying to know:

1. Ground beef gives me hiccups. But only when it is eaten cooked and crumbled without sauce, not in a meal or a burger. Weird, I know!

2. I have a phobia of light bulbs. And bulb ornaments. And eggs. I have this crazy compulsion to squeeze them and it scares me to think that they might break.

3. I do things in 3's. I have to eat 3 cookies, 3 bites, give 3 kisses. Yeah, I am kinda OCD.

4. I graduated top of my class in high school. Not because I was smart but because I was the only one. Small Christian school, class of one. Tons of gifts though!

5. I never sneeze just one time. Ever! I always sneeze 3 times or more. And it annoys people that are waiting to say "God Bless You".

6. My dream purse is a Birkin bag. Not because I love the look of it (though I do) but because they are crazy expensive and there is no way that I will ever be able to afford one so I can always dream of it.

7. Reality shows annoy me!

Here are the bloggers that I am giving the award to:














Fat is where it's at!

It is at least where I am at right now! You remember those 30 lbs that I bragged about losing? Well, I guess they weren't lost, just lurking, waiting for a chance to jump back onto my hips and thighs. I have gained 20 of those nasty little pounds back. Bleh!!! I so did not invite them to join me. But join me they did. Part of it is because my thyroid is screwed up again. But only part of it. The rest?? Fattening, yummy-licious foods. I have been cooking a lot more and I think that I am allergic to healthy cooking. I keep migrating to butter laden, heavy cream rich foods. MMMMMM! Pan fried chicken. Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate fudge frosting. Buttery rolls. Yeah, that is why. And I have the hardest time cooking healthy. I really don't know how to cook healthy. Well, at least not healthy and tasty, anyway.

I had plans to lose weight, but with my thyroid sluggish and my lack of sleep I just don't have the energy to even try to lose weight. I know that I would feel better if I did, but sitting on my chunky butt is so much easier. My ob/gyn wanted me to be down 40 more pounds before we try to get pregnant again and now I will have to lose 60 lbs. GULP!!! That is a lot! And that won't even make me sexy skinny, just less fat.

So fat is where I am at. With no motivation. Do they sell motivation at Tar.get??

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Man, I feel so out of the loop!

I had really thought that by 5 months we would have this whole baby thing down and I would have more time to post, but nope! Not happening! After Maddie's ear infection we had to start over from scratch. She is finally allowing me to put her down in her jumperoo or swing for a little bit, but she is not too keen being left with daddy right now. While a part of me is happy that she likes me more (she was such a daddy's girl) I wish that she would go to him and not scream bloody murder. It totally ticks her off if I leave her side. She only does this with him and we have no idea why. And I know that it hurts his feelings especially since he was the favorite for the first 4 months.

Another bad habit that she has developed and not quit broken yet is that when she wakes up for middle of the night feeding (that I cannot break her from doing) she will not, under any circumstances, go back to her bed. She insists upon sleeping in my arms. I woke up this morning so contorted that not only was my arms and leg asleep, but my left side of my face was numb as well. All the way up to my eyebrows! Crazy feeling! We have a guest this week and it is easier to keep her in our room, but this week we will go back to putting her in her room and for her midnight snack I will feed her in her room and return her to her bed right away. And keep doing it until she gets the hint. Or until sleep deprivation overtakes me and I give in and bring her to bed with me.

I used to work full time, be active in my church and help my hubby with his non-profit and I still had more time that I do now. How is that possible?? There never seems to be enough time in the day. Yet I never accomplish anything. All I do is care for one small baby, cook, do laundry and occasionally clean. How is it that one small person can overtake your whole life?? My day now revolves around her naps, feeding and poop schedule. But I love it! I really do!! And I am itching to try again. I want a house full. But maybe that is just the sleep deprivation talking.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Prayers for Cami...surgery tomorrow

Last week I posted about this little one, Camryn, that is very ill. Tomorrow she is having surgery to put a trach in. The only details that I have is that it is at noon tomorrow and that it is the only way to save her life at this point. Christy has not been able to update her blog yet but texted me and gave me permission to post this on my blog. Please, please, please pray for little Cami!!! And for her family. I cannot even begin to imagine what they are going through. Also, please take a moment to stop by her blog and let her know that you are praying for Cami and for their family.

Whoever coined the phrase...

"Slept like a baby" obviously did not have a baby!!! Because I have been sleeping like Maddie and that is not much at all! I am not complaining as I am just so thankful to have a baby to keep me awake, but it does make it difficult to blog much right now. Maddie had an ear infection and during that time we (i.e. she) developed some not so good habits. She now wants to be held constantly, even when she is sleeping. She also does not sleep well. She takes 20 minutes naps and sleeps for about 4-6 hours at night. "They" say that you cannot spoil a baby this young, but "they" are morons!! My baby is most definitely spoiled right now!

I have a ring sling and an ergo and I try to wear her so as to free up my hands and arms, but that is not good enough right now. She wants to just be held. We are working on getting her to sleep without me holding her and playing on her own for short periods of time, but it is slow going. She was so good at it before, but one ear infection ruined it all.

Until I can un-spoil my daughter I may not be around as much. I will try to catch up with all of you soon!

Don't forget to keep baby Cami in your prayers! She really, really needs our prayers this week. And I still am looking for someone to make a button for her blog is anyone can help.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Need a button made

Christy over at One Day at a Time has a seriously ill daughter, Cami, that needs our prayers. Cami is a fighter and is surviving against all odds. On top of it all Cami's parents are struggling to keep their home. Cami's care is expensive and they have gotten behind on their house payment due to this. I have asked Christy if she would mind a button being made for her to post on her blog for others to grab and put on their blogs, getting the word out about their need. The problem is that I have no clue how to make one. If anyone can make one (free of charge) for her it would be greatly appreciated! She has several photos of Cami on her blog that would work perfectly on a button. If you are unable to help but know someone that can, please pass the request along. Thanks!!!

Friday, January 7, 2011

New year, new goals

I don't know why I insist upon setting myself up for failure, but I I do. I make resolutions. Every year. And I fail. Every year. This year is no different. I will be making a few resolutions and maybe, just maybe, I will keep one or two. Maybe. And they all center around one theme: babies/fertility.

First and foremost I want to lose weight. So that I am healthier when we ttc again. I also want to be healthier for Maddie. I don't want to to be the fat mom at the park, too big to get up and push her on the swing. I lost 30 lbs during pregnancy but I think that they have creeped back on. Okay, maybe not creeped. They piled on en masse while I was shoving cookies, fudge and pie into my face during the holidays. My doctor would like for me to be down an additional 40 lbs before I get pregnant again. So now I need to find out how many pounds I put on the past four months and add them to that 40 for a grand total and go from there. Next Monday I will return to the gym. If I can remember where it is.....

My next resolution is to get out of debt and save, save, save. We are bad at saving. Very bad! But this year we will do better. Why? Because of two reasons: to pay for another FET and to buy a house. See, babies again! One of our money saving goals is to quit eating out. This will help us in the weight loss endeavor. Well, it would if I quit making those cookies, fudge and pies!!

And last, but not least, is to get organized. I hate to throw anything away. I always think "I might want that when we buy a house." But will I? Really? I doubt it. But keeping crap is being frugal, right? Or am I just justifying my hoarding tendencies?

So starting next week I am joining a few friends in a weight loss challenge. I will blog about it on my other blog, Chubby Chick Chronicles: Living Life in the Fat Lane. You probably didn't even know I had that blog, did you? Most likely from my lack of posting there. And my lack of motivation in weight loss. But I will start it up again next week. Feel free to join me there!

Don't let this sweet face fool you!


Maddie is now 4 months! Actually, 4 1/2 months old. My how time does fly!!! She is still not the best sleeper, but she is getting better. All in all she is a good natured baby and easy to please. Well, that is until she got an ear infection and then it was Invasion of the Body Snatchers!!!! Holy Cow, this child changed! She became this whiny, clingy, non sleeping creature. She was connected to me 24/7. She is normally a daddy's girl but she screamed if anyone but me held her, including Papa Bear.

She is on the mend and feeling much better (YAY!) but the antibiotic gives her diarrhea (BOO!). How in the world this child can poop clear up to her hair line I will never know. The first day was so bad that she pooped out of her diaper, all down her leg, into her sock and all over hubby. Just nasty!!! And she giggled the entire time. Glad she felt better but man, it was gross!!!

So that catches you up in the life of Maddie. And for your enjoyment here is another photo of her. Enjoy the cuteness!!!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

babies are like puppies

Years ago, after we learned of our infertility, we decided to get a puppy to help fill the void. We got our furbaby, Dudley, in 1999 and he was the cutest little guy. A year or so later we got Sadie and now we have a cat, Winston, as well. I love my furbabies! Though they are getting old and cantankerous now. My years of being a furmommy has helped prepare me to be a baby mommy. You know, they are quite similar! And since I was a furmommy for so long I call Maddie's teethers "chew toys" and have found myself patting her on the head telling her she is a "good girl" and when she bites me "no bite". I won't get worried though till I find myself putting her in the kennel or letting her out to go pee. ;-)

It is funny how similar the two species are. Both chew on everything. Both pee on the carpet. And Maddie even shakes her leg when you scratch near her neck! They all four sleep with us and watch us eat. It is a veritable zoo around here! I just wish that getting a baby was as easy as getting a puppy!!