Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Up and up

Despite my ok-ness, I realize that my bloginess has been sort of melancholy. I don't mean to be in the throes of a pity party, because I'm not. Not really.

This time is SO different. No plans were made, no due date was set. I'm OKAY. Sure, the world is a bit gray right now. Sure, I miss and mourn what MIGHT have been. But it wasn't. It isn't.

So, there were many smiling moments today.
M and I spent some sweet hammock time today.
M and I danced after dinner.
M and I actually ate the same thing for dinner. (Um...I mean, something homemade that she actually ate!)

And there were some frowning moments today, too.
M when I said it was time to go inside.
M when I turned the i-pod off.
M when I said it was time to go upstairs for her bath.
M when I *forced* her to eat dinner.

One moment we were smiling and giggling, the next she's falling on the floor in a fit. Two seconds later, she's over it and on to the next gigglefest. Repeat scene.

Does anybody else out there live with a bi-polar two year old?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


My body began to hurt sometime Friday afternoon. After the D&C. I even asked Dwayne if they had to cath me. He didn't think so.

Saturday: More pain, but not unbearable. I wondered if I just didn't remember the pain from the fall (September).

Sunday: More pain. Controllable with tylenol.

Monday: Considerable amount of pain. Tylenol not working so well, but not letting it get out of control.

I was EAGER for Thursday to arrive so I could tell the doctor that I was hurting. I really thought I'd over done it by going back to work so fast.

Tuesday: His nurse called me today to check on me. As we were talking, I realized I have a UTI. I had classic symptoms, just wasn't putting two and two together.
The pain was unbearable today. Tylenol was no longer doing anything to control the pain. The nurse was so sweet. She was concerned that I hadn't called on Monday to get some medicine. I told her that I just thought it was discomfort from the procedure. She said the procedure could have caused the UTI.
The nurse called in an antibiotic. Relief, at last.

The best part of the entire ordeal is that my medicine only costs $4!!!

I'm pushing fluids as much as I can and pray this UTI passes very, very quickly. I'm so uncomfortable. My heart breaks that M felt this way just a few weeks ago.

Monday, April 28, 2008


Rainy mornings lead to beautiful afternoons around here.

M and I were swinging on the hammock about 10 minutes ago.

M: Oops, careful with Mommy's tummy. My baby sister in dere.
Me: M, remember, Mommy told you that God needed our baby in heaven.
M: Baby sister not in you tummy?
Me: No, there is no baby in my tummy anymore.
M: Why?
Me: Because that little baby wasn't the perfect baby for our family. God will send us the perfect baby when His time is right.
M: No baby in you tummy?
Me: No, no baby in my tummy.
M: I miss that baby.

(Gentle breeze blows some leaves and flowers from the trees)

M: Look, Mommy! My trees falling down!

And the tender moment was gone.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Doing OK


Your compassion is more than I deserve. Thank you SO much for your sweetness right now.

Where are we (am I) emotionally right now?

In a very strange place.

I feel like I should be more emotional about this. But this time is so different. There was never a baby. Instead of mourning the loss of a baby, I mourn the loss of...well, something else. Something that is too hard to explain. In the fall, there was a baby. There was a heartbeat. This time, there was nothing. How do you mourn nothing? I mourn the pregnancy that won't be, the brother or sister for M that didn't form. But I don't mourn a baby.

My eyes are dry today. My heart is less heavy.

Do you want to know the part that almost hurts more than anything else? M still won't be a big sister. I wish you knew her. I mean, REALLY knew her. I wish you could see the way her face lights up when she sees MKL, how she tickles her and takes toys to her. M will be the best big sister one day. My heart breaks for her; that it still isn't meant to be yet.

I'm on my knees before the Lord. I'm clinging to Him in ways I didn't know before. Two is too much for me to bear on my own. But I'm doing alright. It's gonna be alright.

Friday, April 25, 2008

2nd Time

M has a unique nursing style.

As her patient snoozes on the couch, she plays quietly for a scarce minute.

Then she might listen to her patient's tummy (throat) with a necklace.
Hit her patient on the head with lambie and blankie (M's snugglies).
Tickle her patient.
Take her patient's temperature with a pen behind the patient's ear.
Kiss her patient full on the mouth.
Force feed peanut butter M&M's to her patient (probably because she wanted some herself)
Tell her patient "Wake up! Sun up! Wake up!"
Lay on top of her patient.
Put her baby's paci in the patient's mouth.

Don't you agree that she's an excellent nurse?

We made it through this morning. Funny how eight weeks of pregnancy are gone in less than 1 hour.

At my OB's office, there are three doctor's who deliver babies. During a patient's pregnancy, you rotate through so you meet each doctor. When I was pregnant with M, I, of course, did the same. I happen to like my doctor the best--the one who takes care of my yearly exams, etc. I saw my own doctor yesterday, Dr. B. When he asked when we wanted to schedule the procedure, I said this morning. He was out of the office today, so he asked if I minded if one of the other doctors did it. Truly, I didn't care because I couldn't bear the thought of waiting until Monday. Dr. D had time this morning and the operating facility had an open OR, so everything worked out for 8:30 this morning.

I had the greatest care. Both times I've been to this facility, I couldn't ask for better care. Everyone is compassionate. When the nurse rolled me into the OR, Dr. D. was waiting on me. He asked how I was doing and if I'd thought of any questions since seeing Dr. B. the day before. I said no.
He said, "I know this is your second miscarriage in just a few months. When you come in to see one of us next week, we're going to have a plan for your next pregnancy."

WHAT??? Dr. B said basically there was no plan. Dr. D. said we'd make a plan.

A plan, a plan! All I need is a plan! Plan is my magic word!!!

Everyone was so kind in the waiting room. There are a million people in there. I'm always surprised by that. I got a little upset after I was strapped on the table and shed some tears before I drifted off to sleep. The sweet anesthesiologist student wiped my tears away.

When I was done and in recovery, Dr. D. went out to see H. He told H that everything went exceptionally well. H asked about scarring since this is number two. He said that because this was a blighted ovum, he had to do absolutely no scraping, which is what causes scaring. He also told H that next time that I get a positive pregnancy test, I need to come to the office right away to start getting hormone shots. That wouldn't have helped this time, but it might help next time.

Hope in the darkness.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


This post could have been written 7 months ago.

In fact, one just like it WAS written seven months ago.

Here's what happened.

High anxiety.
Laying on the ultrasound table, only clothed on the top, sheet covering the bottom.

"Why are you anxious?" asked the tech.
"I didn't like the results I got last time I was here." I said.
Eyes squeezed shut as tight as possible.
"Last menstrual cycle?"
"Feb. 22."
"Are you sure you have your dates right?"
"Positive. Is there a heartbeat?"
"Have you had any cramping?
"No. Is there a heartbeat?"
"Any bleeding?"
"NO! Is there a heartbeat?"
"No." (echoes in my head) "There is no baby. Your body only developed a sac. Never made a baby."

All the air left my body. Couldn't cry. Couldn't talk.

"When do you want to schedule your d&c?"
Never, I screamed in my head. I want to schedule my delivery! I want a baby!!!!

We scheduled it for 8:30 tomorrow morning.

The doctor said only 1 in 5 pregnancies results in a baby. Statistically, it's not too uncommon to have 2 miscarriages back to back. Because I've carried one healthy baby to term, there is obviously not something wrong with me.

This one is different. Last time there was a heartbeat. This time, only an empty little sac. It's hard to miss something that NEVER was. My body was tricked into thinking it was pregnant. The doctor said sometimes in this circumstance, your HGH levels will be higher than in a pregnancy. That's why I was having so many classic pregnancy symptoms.

I'm searching for the Lord's grace here. I'm fumbling my way through, trying to find the Cross. I'm only finding the emptiness of my pain.

Monday, April 21, 2008

News Flash! News Flash!

I have a secret addiction.

I'm only allowed to indulge when H is gone. And it's Monday.

Basically, it only happens once a month or so.

Want to know what it is?

Dancing with the Stars

However, that's not the news flash. Did anyone of you watch it tonight? I was all snuggled in bed (at 8:15 to be truthful) with my glass of water, lights off, dog near my feet, computer turned off. Then I heard the words CLUB FEET. Did any of you hear those words???

Kristi Yamaguchi was born with club feet. DID YOU HEAR ME??? The Olympic gold medalist was born with NOT ONE, BUT TWO club feet.

For those of you who have been faithful readers for a while, you might remember some time ago, I posted about M's club foot. M was only born with one club foot. Kristi was born with both of her feet clubbed. Dancing with the Stars showed pictures of her in her casts when she was a little baby.

Friends, do you see the implication here? If Kristi Yamaguchi was born with two club feet and later became a gold medal Olympic winner, children with club feet can do ANYTHING. Kristi is famous because of the way she uses her FEET.


Sunday, April 20, 2008

MBS: Birthday Girl

I had over 150 pictures to choose from this week for MBS. Well, not 150 GOOD pictures. Only a few were in the running for MBS. There are two others that I will post later this week with permission from the parents of the children in the pictures.

This is one of the happiest, smiling-est babies I have ever met. Her older brother is one of M's best friends and her mother is one of my dearest friends, so I am priviledged to be around this angel fairly often. We celebrated her first year of life Saturday and what a celebration it was! If Susie can do anything, it is plan a party. (She can do lots of other things, too!)

I have NEVER seen a one-year old who knew how to dig into the cake like MKL did. As soon as her brother helped her blow out her candle, her hand was in the icing and then in her mouth. The adults were quite tickled by this. Her she is checking out her cake before another fistful found her mouth.

For other delicious MBS, check out Tracey's place.

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Yikes! I left you on a rather sad note, didn't I?

That's because I was so stinkin' exhausted at the end of the week that I skipped TWO days checking my e-mail!!!! My inbox was packed this morning.

We've been so busy.

At school:
We finished our state mandated testing Thursday. It almost killed me.
I'm the chair person for our school's Relay for Life team. Bascially that means I plan all the fundraisers, collect all the money, and attend all the RFL meetings. This Thursday is our big Talent Show. I hope I make it.

At home:
My dear friend's daughter turned one yesterday. I helped her finish her scrapbook. Susie did an entire year's worth of events in one week. She was a superpower scrapbooker. And she planned and pulled off a wonderful party.
We attended my other dear friend's baby shower. We became friends when she student taught in another second grade class. Two years ago, they moved FAR away, but still have relatives here. So they have a baby shower. What fun to spend time with them!
My other friend and I went to a great little market held at the local college just down the road from my house. They hosted the first one this weekend and plan to make it a monthly event. They had some great vendors (the pres. of the college wants to promote GREEN living) who had organic plants, free-range chicken eggs, homemade soaps, homegrown (?) honey, etc.

Whew...I'm exhausted just looking over that list.

I felt the first flicker of something Saturday when I was buying a baby gift for the shower. No, no...not the sweet stirrings of the baby. I felt hope. Pure hope. As I held that little newborn outfit in my hand, my heart stirred for the first time. I realized how much worry and stress I'm carrying in my heart about this baby. I don't feel like I've bonded with this pregnancy at all. With M, I was in love from the moment the nurse said I was pregnant. I was completely smitten with the little life in me. (Remind me to tell you how much denial I was in as the pregnancy came to an end!) With Baby Butterbean, same thing. I was so excited to be pregnant again that I couldn't contain my excitement. This time, it's a little different. I haven't told very many people at work. Those that know are sweet and not really saying much. People at church know, but maybe not all of them. I just don't talk about it much or want to talk about it much. I hope when I get through week 12 that I'll be able to let the worry go and just enjoy this fun time of pregnancy!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

To remember or not

I've avoided it all day.

A good thing or not, I don't know.

Do I want to throw up right now? Yes.

Am I strong enough to even type the words? I don't know.

I'm going to give it a try.

Today would have been the day. You know. THE DAY. The day we should have spent the last 8 months preparing for. THAT DAY.

The day we welcomed another baby into our family. (There. That wasn't so bad, but I still want to throw up and I'm sniffling back tears.)

I miss that baby every single day. I might not think about it every day, but I think about it often.

So. I'm glad today is almost over and tomorrow won't be THE DAY. Tomorrow will just be tomorrow. Not something mammoth in my mind that must be conquered. I spent the past several days dreading this day. But I made it. I prayed and prayed that God would give me the strength to withstand it.

And He did. I did.

My prayer now is very simple:

Dear Lord,
Please, please, please let my body be strong enough to carry this new miracle to term. Please form this baby in Your image and let it be wonderfully and fearfully made for nine months in my womb. Please let me come to peace with this pregnancy so that I might find only joy in it and not this strange combination of fear, joy, sorrow, and excitement.
In His name,

Monday, April 14, 2008

MBS: She's back

Not sure why this is MBS. Perhaps it is not. But it was the first day M felt better after our hospital stay. She WANTED something. Something simple: to blow bubbles. So we did. And we giggled. And we spilled the bubble juice. We played in it and giggled some more. Bubble juice was all over her: in her hair, on her shoes, on her shirt. She was slippery and needed a bath ASAP.

She was back with me. I loved every minute of it.

For other MBS, stop by Tracy's.
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Sunday, April 13, 2008

Fight or Flight?

There are two basic human reactions to confrontation. Fight or flight.

Fight: backed into the corner and come out scratching, stand your ground without backing down, scream, my reaction to confrontation with H.

Flight: avoid the confrontation at all costs, pretend it didn't happen, don't let it bother you, suppress, my reaction to confrontation with just about everyone else in my life. This is my preferred way to handle conflict. The best example I have to share for this is the miscarriage. My dear friend, Rachel, lost a baby just one week before I did. How did she handle it? She wrote about it on her blog, she cried with her husband and church family, she memorialized that sweet angel. Now that we are days away from our due dates, she's again talking about it, feeling it, REMEMBERING IT. What am I doing? Purposefully avoiding the calendar. Not thinking about it. Ignoring the fact that we would be welcoming our new baby into our lives in just a few days. Why? It's easier for me. Healthy? NO WAY!

Poor H.

This weekend I attended a conference by a well-known speaker, Tara Barthel. She was magnificent! I learned so much about the law and the grace of God. She taught about peacefully and Biblically resolving conflict, how to confess a sin to your brother or sister, what it means to sin against another person.

Without meaning to, she spoke directly to me over and over again. She and I were the only people in the room. She whispered truths into my heart. She forced me to look at my own idols and how they are preventing me from developing deep and meaningful relationship with God, my family, and my friends.

I'm here to confess my biggest idol. I had to think and pray over this to truly identify my idol. Who do I love more than Christ? Who do I turn to before I go to the Cross? MYSELF! Everything I do is motivated to gain glory for myself. Take a great picture? Wow, I'm so good. Send someone a handmade card? Pat on the back. All the idols I could think of pointed the finger directly back at me. Everything I do, often without the conscious thought, is so that I gain glory. And I'm not sure how to change this. I'm praying about it. I'm becoming more and more aware of it. I don't want to worship myself.

What are your earthly idols?

Friday, April 11, 2008

Phrase Friday

I've got a million posts I could write about M, but the one from my student takes the cake this week.

I teach mostly African-American children. In fact, this year my class is entirely AA, except for one little Caucasion kid. (None of that matters except it makes this story particularly funny.)

One of my little girls is as round as she is tall. She cheers on a competition team and does a fair amount of traveling to attend different meets. She left early Thursday to attend a meet several hours away at a fairly well known beach town. Another student asked this little girl why she was going to the beach.

Girl A: Why are you going to the beach?
Round cheerleader: BIG sigh, "I guess I'll catch some waves."

I have NEVER in my life heard something quite as humorous as that. Considering it sounded SO surfer-girlish and came from this little round brown-skinned girl. And her tone was SO dead-pan. As in, "Oh, poor me...I guess I'll just have to catch some waves."

I've sat down every night this week to post. We're doing fine. Recovering from our trip to the hospital. H and I were so very, very thankful that my parents could come stay with us for a few days so M didn't have to go back to school until Wednesday. She was thrilled to see her friends again when she did get back to school.

This weekend is a major conference for the women of my church. We have a magnificent speaker. Tonight was just amazing. I can't wait to hear more tomorrow.

That's about all here. I'm tired and nauseous and my, ah, well, somethings up top are very sore. All in all, I'm still pregnant, I think.

Sunday, April 6, 2008


I've had some good prayer time lately. I know that I'm being drawn closer and closer to the Lord.

Despite this time of extreme closeness, I'm still filled with so much anxiety. How can those two things exist in me at the same time? I take such comfort in a soverign God. My God who claims that all things work for His glory for those who TRUST IN THE LORD.

I'm anxious about returning to work tomorrow. I'm not quite ready to leave M. I know she's on the mend, but she's not completely herself yet. I have the most wonderful parents who waited until I said "COME NOW!" before coming to us. They knew I needed quiet time with M. They are here now and they will take care of her for a few days so she can build her strength and get some good rest before she goes back to her "school." M will eat ANYTHING for her OB, so I'm glad he's here and can get her back on a good diet.

I'm anxious about the upcoming test for M and what the test actually means. Her little body is so battered right now: bruises on her hands and elbows from being poked and pricked. She was cathed twice in 24 hours. She's terrified of the blood pressure cuff because she doesn't understand.

I'm also anxious about the results of the test. Either way, the results create more questions. If the test indicates there is reflux in her UT, what does that mean and how do we treat it? If there is no reflux in her UT, does that mean we just didn't clear up the first UTI? How can I prevent another one?

On top of all of this, I'm extremely anxious about the tiny miracle growing in my womb. Every day that it remains with me is a miracle. My fervent, constant, begging prayer is that this tiny baby stays inside of me until November and makes a wailing entrance into this world on time. I was so nauseous today, but I'll take nausea if it means I'm still growing a baby. I'll take exhaustion if our family is blessed with another baby.

I wish I could tell you that by burdening you with my anxiety, it was lessened. It was not. My stomach is still in knots about tomorrow. I must learn to trust in the Lord with all my heart and all my soul. This is an hour of learning for me--to turn to the One who controls. Whose words were whispered before the beginning of time.

No need to respond.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Going to the hospital

As my dear friend, Andi, pointed out: she knew something was wrong when I wasn't blogging.

Oh, friends, something was wrong, alright.

Almost four weeks ago, M spiked a high fever. We treated the culprit.

Three weeks ago, M spiked a high fever. Culprit: UTI. Lots of finger pricking, catherizations, several doctor's appointments. We thought we cleared it up.

Until this:

turned into a four day, three night trip to the hospital. Last Monday (3/31), M spiked yet another fever. H took her to work with him Tuesday. She exhibited some very strange symptoms, so, thankfully, H took her immediately to our pediatrician. He tested her for strep, flu, UTI, drew blood, got a shot. I took her back to the doctor Wednesday, her WBC count went up, not down, after the shot of antibiotics. We were having trouble controlling her fever and she wasn't making any wet diapers.

This is what the rest of Wednesday looked like:

Yep, straight from the pediatrician's office to the hospital.

Oh, wait...I forgot to mention the cathing at the hospital and the putting in of the IV. She looks rather peaceful now. There was at least one hour of NO peace for anyone around us. Immediately after being cathed again and having an IV put in, M was rolled through the hospital the radiology dept. to have a renal ultrasound. Kidneys look good. "Debris" in the bladder. It took almost 48 hours to find out what that meant.

This is what Thursday looked like:

Friday was definitely our worst day. I was exhausted. M was tired of being poked. My heart was breaking for her. I think we both cried all Friday afternoon. Particularly when our hospital doctor and our nurse said the words "in-patient test on Monday." I'm not medical professional, but if someone says "in-patient" that meant we would STILL BE THERE MONDAY. Complete meltdown in hallway. God is SO good. Someone didn't understand. M will not be having another test for a few weeks.

This is a pitiful picture from late Friday afternoon. New IV port. Much screaming and crying (M and mommy) to get this one in. Her other port was hurting because it had been in for so long.
We had the best medical care we could ask for. Our night nurses weren't the most considerate, but they did a great job. Our day nurses deserve medals. They were amazing.
I was completely humbled while we were in the hospital. There was a little girl there who was 21 months old. She was a premie (born at 25 weeks!). She's in foster care, but has been removed from her foster home because they weren't providing appropriate medical care for her. She got a serious infection while living at that home and has been in the hospital over a month now. She has sitters that come stay with her. M and I met her in the children's play room where her sitter was showing her the big fish tank. She was being pulled around in a radio wagon. M was so jealous. "Mommy, I wide with her!" M told me. I told M that she couldn't ride with that little girl. "But she my fwiend," M replied. I've been praying for that little girl, who is such a fighter--she's had such terrible circumstances in her short little 21 months. I've been praying for her sweet day sitter who comes every day to stay with her and brings her clothes to wear and bows for her hair. That woman is an angel.
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Near the end

After our most difficult Friday afternoon, M decided she wanted silly faces all over her body. At that point, I would have bought her a ride to the moon if that would dry her tears and make her smile.

So, we drew silly faces her tummy,

on each hand,

and on each foot.

This morning, she found our tiny bathroom and unrolled herself quite a bit of toilet paper. She spent about 20 minutes washing her hands while H and I packed up her balloons, stuffed animals, crayons, puzzles: all love offerings from our dear, sweet friends and family.

We are so blessed with such an awesome church family, co-workers, and H's brother and sister-in-law. M had many visitors to help keep us company. Our every need was provided.
Thanks Joe for bringing lunch to me! Thanks Tracey for buying! I owe you both!
Despite such a difficult time, M and I had some very sweet time together. I was able to spend a lot of time in prayer. I was able to knit and read while M took her afternoon naps. I realized that M will be fine sharing her room in November when her little brother or sister arrives (Yes, we found out last week that we are pregnant!). She slept away even when people came into the room during her naps. She was such a trooper. H and I have been blessed with such a wonderful little girl.
I hope transitioning back to real life is easy for all of us. I let M watch a lot of TV and keep her snugglies all the time at the hospital. Those might be hard habits to break.
But we're home. And home has never felt so good!
edited to add: Kyla asked if M is okay now. Yes, we think so. We stayed an extra 24 hours in the hospital so she could have extra doses of the antibiotic. We do a dye test in a few weeks on her urinary tract to make sure all valves are working and that the urine is only going in the correct direction (no reflux). She will take antibiotics at home for 10 days--a different antibiotic than the one she had two weeks ago.
I'll continue to edit to answer questions!
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