The Journey to a Little One to Call Our Own

One gal's experiences dealing with IF, pregnancy, the birth of our first son, parenthood, and doing it all over again with our second son... here is our journey.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Today I Think of You

Today is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day - October 15.  

Although I've been absolutely blessed with my beautiful son and our new baby boy growing in my belly, I would be completely remiss if I didn't honor my first little baby today - the one we lost too soon.

Things happen for a reason.  Whether you believe that reason is based on belief, faith, or just plain luck (or lack there of), I happen to personally believe that God has a plan.  

When we lost our first little baby, I swore I would never, ever understand why.  I couldn't comprehend why the loss happened.  Looking back, I still can't quite answer why... I never will be able to.  However, I know that my life is full because of my little Maxwell.  He was part of God's plan for us.  And we've been given the gift of a second child, one we wanted so badly to complete our family.  If we wouldn't have lost our first baby, maybe we would have never got Max or his new little brother... and that thought scares me to death.

Today I remember my first pregnancy we achieved after years of trying to conceive - I remember the feelings I felt when I saw those positive HPTs, the excitement Mr. D and I felt when we first hugged each other, knowing that our dream of becoming parents was finally coming true.  Those wonderful memories were taken from us far too soon with a miscarriage and the upcoming, horrible struggle of trying, trying, and trying again.

Today I think of you, my little baby.

To all those who also lost babies too soon, I am thinking of you this evening and honoring your little angels.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Best of Both Worlds

Career.  It's a word that has literally defined me for years.  And when I see myself type that, it seems depressing... makes me pause and think, "Seriously??  Your career has defined you?  Sad."  Of course, career is not the only word that defines me, but it ranks among the top few.

But I love it.  Of course, there is more to me than work... I have a wonderful family, an amazing husband, great friends, faith-based beliefs, etc., etc., etc.  But I love work.  I love my company, I love my co-workers (many, many of which are my friends), and I love (for the most part) corporate culture.  I love the pressure, I love the stress (sometimes), and I love when people look to me for answers or insight.

When Mr. D and I started down our long journey to conceive, I knew my focus on work would change, which was totally fine with me.  Of course, our journey took a LOT longer than expected, so by the time our little man joined us, I had been busting my booty and progressing my career for over a decade.  When I went back to work after maternity leave, I didn't feel as torn as I thought I would, based on what I had heard from other mothers.  I kept hearing horror stories about how hard it would be to go back to work, and the whole time I would be at work, all I would be thinking about is my kid.

Is it hard to keep the same pace at work as before?  Oh, hell yeah.  It's really hard.  But somehow, my type-A personality tells my skeptical side, "Come on... you know how to rock it at work... make it happen."  And so I do.  But, damn, am I tired.  Somehow I am managing to keep the same pace at work, and be a full-time mother.  I DO think about my child when I am at work... a lot.  I wish I was with him, but not all the time.  He needs interaction with his friends at daycare.  He has learned so much from other kids and from his daycare provider... I would never want to deprive him of that experience.

So - I've been weighing my options.  I would never want to give up my work and career.  I obviously love my child (soon to be children) more than anything and want to spend more time with them.

So - I struck a deal with myself... and with my company.  I created a job-share proposal, which basically allows me to work three days per week at 60% pay, with my job only demanding 60% of the usual 100% I deliver today.  The pay cut will be a big deal - Mr. D and I both do just fine, but to cut such a significant chunk will have an impact.  But I've been saving and preparing for this... and the cut will be just fine.  It will allow me two weekdays home with my kids, which I think is the perfect amount of time.  They will still get the benefit of going to daycare three days of the week while I am at work, and the other two days will be dedicated to them... hopefully filled with play dates, activities, and things for us to do together.  It will also give me time to do the run-of-the-mill things... laundry, Target shopping, house cleaning... all of the things that are now being crammed in to our already-packed weekends.

My proposal was approved, and I have a couple additional factors to figure out before it all begins.  Not sure if that will be before 2012 is over, or if we will wait until after my maternity leave... I am the one who is determining timing for the most part.  Either way, I am flexible and happy that I am being afforded this opportunity.

I am considering this to be the best of both worlds for me: allowing me to drive my career in a different way now that I am also a mother, and allowing me time to be with my children more than what I can do now.

I think this is going to be an amazing transition.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

To 'C' or Not to 'C'... That is the Question


Definitely not the way I expected Max's birth to end, but after nearly 30 hours of labor and only dilating to a 5, it was a done deal.

I never started Max's labor thinking that it would end in a C-section, but, after being in labor for that long with my cervix starting to swell and actually do the opposite of dilating, there wasn't much of a choice.

And, truly... it was not bad at all.  The C-section itself, the recovery afterwards... it all was not how the books paint the picture.  I was warned about picking my newborn up too quickly, climbing stairs, exercising... you name it.  But the first day home from the hospital, I climbed our 16-stair staircase up to the nursery, back downstairs, and repeated a few times... not painful at all.  I was back to running a few miles within a couple weeks after the surgery... again, not a big deal.

So, my Doctor has asked me the question about my preferences for this birth.  Do I prefer to attempt delivery, or should we schedule a C-section?

No hesitation here: sign me up for another C-section.

We made this decision very early on in my pregnancy for a few reasons.  First, the chances that I could actually progress and deliver this time are lower than the average mother.  A lot of VBACs result in an eventual emergency surgery (especially those that occur within a few years of the first time the mother had a C-section), and I'd prefer not to be rushed into emergency surgery because the baby is having trouble, my uterus ruptures, or anything else.

Second, my baby will stay inside of me - stress-free - as long as possible before I am cut open and he is brought into this world.  So many benefits to that.

And, third... this one may be selfish... Mr. D and I think it sounds INCREDIBLY peaceful to wake up early, have plans for who is going to watch Max, have everything situated, drive to the hospital, have a quick surgery, and by mid-morning, be snuggling with our new little baby.  Maybe it's because I am a crazy planner, but I think it sounds amazing to have everything planned out and know what and when to expect everything to go down...

... which is why I went ahead and scheduled Baby #2's big arrival date.  I will pause here and say the most eerie thing about having a repeat C-section is scheduling your child's birthday... kind of weird.

Our C-section is scheduled for Wednesday, January 30 at 7:30 a.m.  I need to be at the hospital by 5:45 for surgery prep, and baby will be born by 9:00.  I will be out of recovery by 10:00, and Mr. D and I plan to be sipping on coffees and enjoying our new bundle by mid-morning.

Of course, our little man may choose to come early (although I doubt it... Max was 4 days late, and was not even ready to come yet) - at which time, we'd need to decide if we want to try a VBAC or do an emergency C-section. I am not sure what I would do at that point... not even sure I need a plan for that situation.  If it happens, we'll see what my body is doing at the time, and decide from there.

I know so many people have different opinions on this, but thought I would share my plan.  As long as our little man enters the world safely, that's all I can pray for.