Friday, July 27, 2012


Did I wish him gone?

The night that I found out I was pregnant was a little bit dream-like. I felt like it was completely unreal, like I was moving through a mist. I was so happy, yet shocked.

That night, as I was falling asleep, I suddenly felt overwhelmed. I felt panicked. It dawned on me that living, moving, growing within was a small body of a small person- a being completely other from myself. He did not have the same thoughts about the world as me. He did not have the same feelings about life as me. The sensation of his toes in the water around him was different than my sensation of having my feet in water. He was my child, and yet he was Other. His experience and perception were completely out of my control. And his ultimate destination, with all the pitfalls, losses, and mistakes in between, were out of my hands.

I felt completely exposed. And I had no way to cover my exposure. My child was and is completely and forevermore in the hands of God. While he was on Earth, I had to accept that the gossamer wisp of his soul, his essence, and the turning of his heart, were not my domain.

I was so, so scared that one day I would look at him and my heart would be broken. That he would decide to doggedly pursue a path not to my liking. That he would cast his fate into the hands of evil men, and turn away from me. Or not even do anything bad, but just close himself off from me- keep me at arms length.

I had a moment where I was scared to death of the worst, and I wished I hadn't even started down this road at all. I wished that I had just been content to live my life with just me, my husband, and my pets.

A dozen days later, I was in more pain than I have ever been in my entire life. I described it before. I felt like my gut was going to explode from the pressure and cramping. I thought that I would feel that way for many more months to come. And I had a moment where I didn't blame others for wanting an abortion. I was horrified with myself at that moment, the hours following, and even now. For a moment's time, I just wanted it to end, and I didn't care what happened to the baby at the center of the storm. This still haunts me. It was another moment that I wished him gone.

The next morning, when I got the call from the doctor, that the baby wasn't going to make it, I felt relief. My third strike. Then, instead of hearing the lesser cry of an animal, I heard the heart of my husband break. And I wept.

I was given a precious, priceless gift- and I was a swine with pearls of great price.

Mommy is sorry, Tristan. I hope you know how much I really wanted you, and will forgive me for my moments of weakness.


Today I got a call from the doctor's office. Again. I'm starting to think they've programmed my number on speed dial.

I had a D&C on Tuesday, and everything went well. They were going to look at what they took out and see if they saw any evidence of a placenta, which would rule out an ectopic pregnancy. They called this morning to tell me that there was no placental material found, and they wanted me to come in for another ultrasound to check for an ectopic pregnancy. Thankfully, they didn't find anything. It's like my baby vanished into thin air. Everything looked nice and normal, though, on the ultrasound, so that was good news.

The D&C wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Everyone was super nice and accommodating. I remember once they gave me the drugs to put me out and they started creeping into my system I became determined to give a heartfelt thanks to everyone taking care of me. The last thing I remember thinking as I fell asleep was regret that there was a nurse that appeared in my line of vision who I didn't thank. Hey, at least I didn't slur out a speech about undying love... at least I hope I didn't.

When I woke up, I recovered pretty quickly, and felt okay. I didn't get super-nauseous or anything, only a little. The meds they shot into my IV took care of it really quick, too. I had a super awesome, very restful nap during the procedure, and I was so thankful for it when I woke up.

Since coming home, I have had plenty of Vicodin, and plenty of naps. I was really only in significant pain that first night.  I had a few cramps that night, and some sharp, stabbing pains in my abdomen. I talked to my doctor that night, and he told me to just take an extra vicodin. Since then, I haven't felt too bad.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Ships in the Night

Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing, 
only a signal shown, and a distant voice in the darkness; 
So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another, only a look and a voice, 
then darkness again and a silence.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I have been thinking a lot about what exactly to say.  There is so much I want to say, but only so many words that might possibly express what's in my heart.

My joy has turned to sorrow, and my good news to bitter tidings. 

We found out on July 7, 2012 that I was pregnant. We were ecstatic, and completely over the moon, and most of all, shocked. I had been pretty certain that I was not pregnant.  We have been doing our best to overcome fertility issues the last two years, and this last cycle gave me no reason to think anything special would happen. 
Then, I started noticing little things. I was so, so tired all the time.  I needed to take a nap each evening. And, I suddenly lost all tolerance for spicy foods.  All I wanted to eat was healthy-ish stuff. I got urges to cook things like cabbage, brussel sprouts, peppers and onions, etc. And I couldn't take the smell or taste of cinnamon. These little things added up, and I finally gave in to my curiosity and took a pregnancy test. It was POSITIVE! And then I took another, and another, and finally accepted the idea that I was really pregnant!

I took the first test on a Saturday, and went in to see the doctor on Monday. They did another urine test, and got another positive result. We did blood work, and got even more confirmation. We announced our pregnancy at church and in our church small groups, and did a whole lot of celebrating.

We went down to visit David's parents to tell them the news. They were so, so excited that David's dad went to the store early the next morning and bought gifts for the baby. The started referring to themselves as Grandpa and Nana. We all went shopping together at a baby boutique in their little town's town square. That morning I had woken up with some light cramping and a little brown spotting, but I read in my pregnancy book that this was most likely normal, so we didn't worry about it. I was having a lot of gas pain and bloating, but I took this as a good sign because they say the sicker you are, the better news it is for the pregnancy.

The following Wednesday, we went for our first sonogram.  My mom came with us. This was her seventh grandchild, and the first time she would get to see an ultrasound of a grandchild in person. She was giddy, and so were we. We went in to the little room, I got ready, and then the doctor finally came in. They took a look inside, and got quiet. He told us that he couldn't see anything yet, so come back in a week and maybe we would be able to see something then. He and the nurse went back and forth about how far along I was, and whether there was any possibility that the baby might not be as old as they thought. I felt a little worried, but I figured that it would all be okay. I was still spotting a little, but that was normal, right? The doctor said that in the meantime we could do some more bloodwork. We went down to the lab, I gave some blood, and we were on our way.

That night the gas pain and pressure was terrible. I felt like my abdomen was going to explode. All I could do was lay in bed to get a little relief. I was way more worried and sorry for myself than I was for the baby. I had moments where I saw it as this little devil inside me, blowing up balloons in my gut then tying it in knots so none of the air could get out. Then kicking it. I was hurting pretty bad.

Early the next morning I received a call from one of the nurses at the doctor's office.  They said that the results were back on the blood test, and they weren't good.  It wasn't a good pregnancy. The baby was not developing, and I was going to miscarry. At first I felt relieved because I was so tired of the pain. Then I felt numb. I told David. He looked shocked and pale. Then he went to take a shower and I heard him sob a couple times. At that point it hit me: I lost my baby. I would never get to hold him, comfort him, feed him, or count his little fingers and toes. I would not be able to remark about how much he looked like his daddy. I would not get to see his wispy blonde hair flutter as I push him on a swing in the park. I would not get to fret over baby gas and midnight feedings. I was carrying him in my body still, but this was all the time I would get with him. God took him from me.

I have been in to see the doctor every business day since then. That first day I cried off and on all day. Each day has gotten a little better since then. Today I went in to see the doctor again, and scheduled a D&C for tomorrow. I thought that I wanted to just let the pregnancy pass naturally, but I was calling to myself a world of pain that I haven't got the ability to handle. The bleeding started last night, and the cramping is terrible. They said that the pain, cramping, and miscarriage process could last up to 6 weeks. I read an account online of a woman who took 6 months to finish expelling everything. I grieve with each cramp, and am dreading seeing any part of the pregnancy come out. So, I gladly accepted an appointment for a D&C when it came up today, and I will be relieved to have it over in one fell swoop. Then I can recover, and maybe eventually we will get another chance.

Each day the pain gets a little less, but I will never forget. I will never forget my precious little one, waiting for me in Heaven. He is with God, and is now like an angel. I know he is praying for me, and enjoying Jesus until I can be there to hold him myself.

His name is Tristan. The name came to me on the way to the hospital on Thursday, as I was contemplating his death. I couldn't share my name suggestion until later that night, because of the eminent threat of hysterics lurking at the edge of my control.  I have a fear of beginning to cry when I am feeling sorrow or pain. I have a hidden terror that it will take me over, and I will never be able to stop. That I will die under the weight of it.

After discussing it with David later that day, we decided that Tristan was a wonderful name. His middle name is Honor. Tristan means "sounds of battle; clash of swords". It fits him because as soon as I heard the news I knew he was in Heaven, fighting for God as a mighty warrior- the first of his daddy's arrows against the powers of darkness (Psalm 127). He is my little champion, and it is an honor to carry him.

Now, I hold the pain in my heart, as well as in my body at this point. It is my evidence, and validation. I have a child. He exists. He has a name, and he had a body. I only got to have a small taste of motherhood, but it was real. He is an intimate stranger, my little one. I never got to know his thoughts and feelings about anything, and yet he knew me from the inside out. 

I said this to a dear friend earlier, and it's too good not to record here:
Sometimes I see a woman trudging along with an obvious bump, holding her precious cargo, her gift and blessing. I wonder if she knows how blessed she is. I feel my loss, and I wonder if she knows how much people like me would love to trade places with her. How much some of us wish we could have felt the aches and pains of our baby stretching, growing, and moving inside of us. How some of us don't get to be miserable the way she is because God takes our babies and gives us a different pain, a pain that will never, never go away. It may diminish and fade, but it will always be there in some part, to some extent. 

My firstborn will not walk with me, because he is already walking with God.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


I haven't forgotten about my blog- there has just been so much going on lately! And there have been a lot of good things happen for us and others, and I'm not free to share just yet... So wish I could!

Everything is going really well. We harvested our second tomato from our very expensive patio-variety tomato plants yesterday. The first tomato that we might have harvested got eaten by a pesky squirrel.  I no longer feel sad when I see a dead one on the side of the road... Okay, maybe I still do a little. But it's kindred shouldn't have eaten my Tomato!

I've still been enjoying my coffee.  I love hazelnut creamer! I've switched to half-caf and started drinking more water in an effort to be healthier.  I've been doing other things to be healthier also.  I saw someone's post on facebook that said conventionally grown strawberries are covered in pesticides so toxic while they're growing, that people aren't allowed in the fields for fear of poisoning. So, I was a little freaked out about that, and now I have committed to only eating organic strawberries.  If you've never looked into it, just google "Dirty Dozen produce". I've also been making an effort to only eat organic meat/ animal products, since I don't want to exacerbate my existing hormonal issues with the hormones found in abundance in conventionally raised livestock. This isn't too hard for me, though, because we have a plentiful supply of beef from David's PawPaw, who gives us some of his free-range pasture-fed beef/ steaks each year.  Every year PawPaw buys five or so calves and then turns them out into a back pasture. Then, about a year later, he slaughters them and distributes meat amongst all his kids and grandkids.  I am very thankful for his generous heart. And the fact that he passed his generous spirit on to his daughter, who taught it to her son, whom I married and enjoy.

Also, I have a little confession... I am addicted to my wishlist.  I can waste soooo much time adding things to it and salivating over what I want to buy from it. There are almost 1200 things on my wishlist right now. Yikes! I would say I am greedy, but most of it is books- and can one ever have too many books? I thought not. Also, I don't have much intention of buying for myself the majority of what's on my list. I do enjoy looking at it all though. I know, I'm baaaaaad....

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Homestudy- CHECK!!

We finally got the homestudy done! This past Monday, our new caseworker came by and stayed for over four hours. Pretty much all of that time was spent in interviews. Of course, my answers took a lot more time than David's. My individual interview took an hour and fifteen minutes, whereas David's only took 35 minutes. It all went pretty smoothly, and she seemed to enjoy her time with us.

Yesterday we had a whole bunch of people over for the 4th. I had a great time, and I was so excited to have so many people from church and my family all together. Of course, it wouldn't be a true party without whipping out the Settlers of Catan. David won. He's the man.

I made so many things from Pinterest.  It has become my new hobby/addiction. For the party we made steaks with a marinade from pinterest, macaroni salad (pinterest), rattlesnake bites (pinterest), sugar cookies (pinterest), lemon icebox pie, fruit kabobs (pinterest), apple cinnamon cake (pinterest), and corn casserole (pinterest). We also grilled hot dogs and made lemonade and tea. Then, guests brought lots of yummy stuff as well. We had quite the spread when it was all said and done!

I have been doing a lot of cooking from recipes found on pinterest throughout the week as well. Tonight for dinner we had fried cabbage with bacon and onions and some more rattlesnake bites.  The cabbage was so good that we kept eating it with our fingers before it was time to sit and eat....Hey, I won't judge you if you don't judge me....

When I told my sister about the fried cabbage recipe, and about how she NEEDED to try it ASAP, she was like fried?? It's not one of those state fair variety breaded-and-dropped-in-a-vat-of-hot-grease type fried. Its the whole sauteed-in-a-bit-of-bacon-grease-in-a-frying-pan-and-we're-from-the-south-y'all-where-we-don't-use-words-like-saute type of fried. And it is delicious.

Here's the recipe:
You're welcome.