Embracing the good stuff

There really isn’t a bright side to having a miscarriage.   But since my body is no longer growing a new life and I haven’t been able to try for the past two months, I wanted to make sure to enjoy the things I can’t over-indulge in while trying to conceive, pregnant or breastfeeding.

These are a few of my favs:

  1. Wine.  I love wine.  I’m not a huge drinker, but I really do enjoy a couple of glasses of wine with dinner (or before dinner or after dinner) every now and then.  After getting over the initial shock of miscarrying, I welcomed the wine back into my life wholeheartedly.  Shiraz, Valpolicella, Pinot Grigio, Barolo, Prosecco… I’m not too picky.
  2. Coffee.  In the past, I continued to drink not quite one full cup of coffee a day when TTCing and pregnant.  But lately, I’ve been enjoying more than just one.  There’s nothing like coffee to start out the day and I’ve been enjoying my morning indulgence.
  3. Meds.  I don’t know about you, but acetaminophen does NOTHING for my headaches.  I need ibuprofen.  Advil is definitely the one drug I miss more than anything when I’m pregnant.  Cold and sinus medication is another highly enjoyable pill for me.  I’ve spent the past two months living pain (and congestion) free!

Don’t get me wrong, I would HAPPILY give up all of these things to be pregnant.  And, as I move further into this cycle, the time is coming to start weaning myself off this stuff.  But, since I had to get through these past couple of months, at least I could do it with a glass of wine in my hand and some Advil on standby.

On another note, after her unexpected return on Tuesday, AF disappeared…. only to return once again today.  Seriously lady, are you kidding me?  Get the hell out of here!  It is CD 9 and you have worn out your welcome!

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Distractions

I forgot that trying to conceive means spending a lot of time waiting.  Waiting for AF to leave, waiting to ovulate, waiting to test…

So, since I’m still in the early part of my first post-miscarriage TTC cycle, I’ve been trying my best to keep busy and to distract myself from the constant thinking, iPhone app-checking and other crazy TTC rituals.

This past weekend, I busied myself with a different kind of new life – our vegetable garden.  When our family took possession of the farm last summer, the vegetable garden was already well-sprouted.  All we had to do was pick and enjoy the veggies.

This year, we’re doing it ourselves.  Being the city-folk that we are, we bought a book and watched a bunch of You Tube videos to learn some gardening tricks.  My aunt came to help us, which made a huge difference.  She (along with my late Italian grandmother) always planted a vegetable garden in their backyard, so she has a ton of experience.

garden hands

Planting the lettuce.

My legs are killing me from all the squatting, but I’m proud of all the work we did!  If everything goes well, we’ll have a nice crop of delicious veggies later this summer.  We planted arugula, spring mix lettuce, radicchio, beets, radishes, two types of carrots, green beans, cherry tomatoes, three other types of tomatoes, red peppers, onions, cucumbers, zucchini and butternut squash.

garden

Time to start growing!

Since the garden is massive, D used the rest of the space to plant pumpkins.  He planted four different types, ranging in size from jumbo to mini.

Working on the garden for a couple of days was a great way to keep my mind occupied and focused on something other than the inner workings of my reproductive organs.  However, in an attempt to distract me from my distractions, AF decided to play a stupid game with me.  Today is CD 7 and – after leaving for two full days – she decided to return in all her glory this afternoon.  WTF?  Hopefully she doesn’t plan on sticking around.

How time flies…

It’s been three years since I stood alone in the bathroom with my heart pounding and a goofy grin on my face.  Three years ago I got my first BFP.

It’s hard to believe that Littleman progressed from those two pink lines, to a 9lb 5oz wailing newborn, to a smiley, toothless infant, to a full-blown toddler in just three short years.  I know parents say this all the time, but where does the time go?  It blows my mind that my little baby has turned into a kid.

My baby who wouldn’t take a bottle is now a toddler who picks up his own cereal bowl to slurp out any leftover milk.

And, the things that come out of his mouth continue to amaze me. My recent favourites include: “Dat shirt new, mommy?” or “Dat car orange.  Orange my favourite colour.” or “Thank you for dinner, mommy!”

Of course, the phrases I hear the most these days are “I do it myself!” and “why?”

I love watching Littleman grow and explore and learn.  I’m happy that he’s developing the way he should.  My heart bursts when he kisses me and tells me he loves me.  But I’m not gonna lie – it makes me a bit sad that he’s growing up so fast!   Before I know it, Littleman will be a Bigman and I’m just not feeling ready for that!!

Superstitions

Now that we’re officially “allowed” to start trying to conceive again, I can’t help thinking about what it will do to my mental health.  I like to think of myself as a pretty well-balanced person, but I will admit freely that the TTC journey brings out the crazy in me.

I am not usually a superstitious person.  I will walk under a ladder.  I don’t care if a black cat crosses my path (as long as it crosses it as far away as possible – I’m terrified of cats!)  I’ll open an umbrella indoors.  In fact, I’ve always found all that stuff kind of silly.

But for some reason, with my last pregnancy, I found myself secretly superstitious.

That half-used box of tampons in the bathroom cupboard?  I couldn’t bring myself to remove it just in case it jinxed things.  My basal thermometer that sits front and centre in the top drawer of my bedside table?  I had to leave it exactly where it was just in case.

And when my early ultrasounds had the baby measuring a week behind and my doctor changed my due date so that it was no longer September 13 (Friday the 13th), well, I was pretty OK with that too.

Looking back, I wonder why I felt like that.  Would the outcome of my pregnancy be any different if I’d thrown away those tampons?  Would my baby still be growing if my thermometer got buried deeper in my drawer?  Was Friday the 13th an unlucky due date?  Obviously, I know the answer to all these questions:  no.

Which leads to another question: am I just totally crazy?  No, I don’t think so.  I’m pretty sure I’m just a normal mommy who worries about things that I have no control over.  And the silly superstitions were a way of coping with the stress and worry.

I’m going to try my best to calm and crazy-free this time around, although I know that won’t be easy.  Wish me luck!

Here we go again (a.k.a. CD 1)

So, the moment we’ve been waiting for has arrived.  CD 1 of cycle two after my miscarriage.

As I prepare to jump back into the world of trying to conceive, I know that I need to get over something that’s bugged me for a while: the acronyms.  Ever since we started trying to conceive our first in spring of 2009, I’ve lurked on fertility and motherhood-related blogs, message boards and websites.  When I first started reading, I was overwhelmed by the plethora of weird acronyms (starting with “TTC”, which is the name of the public transit system where I live!)  I don’t know why the acronyms threw me off so much.  I work for a government organization so I should be used to speaking in letters!

When I finally learned what all the acronyms stood for, I decided that I hated them.  “AF” made me shudder.  “DH” was just too cheesy for me.  You get the picture.  I swore I would never use them.  But, since I was only a lurker and never a poster, I didn’t need to.

Now that I’ve chosen to write about my journey, I’ve realized that the acronyms make things easier and are just part of this whole world.  So, here I am, getting over it.

AF has arrived.  It’s CD 1.  I’m now ready to TTC post-mc.  I’ve bought my OPKs and I’m taking my BBT.  Hoping for my BFP.

How’d I do?

Anyway, for a very long time now, I’ve dreaded CD 1.  But today I’m actually kind of happy that it’s here.  Of course, I wish I wasn’t in this situation at all and that I was 23 weeks pregnant like I was supposed to be.  But, since this is where I find myself, I’m ready to move forward.  Let’s get this show on the road!

Happy Long Weekend!

I love long weekends.  Here in Canada, we’re celebrating our first long weekend of the “summer” and it feels so good.  Who invented the five-day work week anyway?  Four days is much more civilized.

The one bright side of our friend’s wedding being called off is that we got to go to the farm.  After work on Friday, we joined the millions of other Torontonians escaping the city for the Victoria Day weekend.  Our drive took an extra hour, but we didn’t care.  The weather was beautiful and we had a whole weekend ahead of us.

When we arrived at the farm, seven more horses were being dropped off for the summer.  The local farmer who uses our land had brought two of his horses to graze a week before.  Now there were nine in total.

This next part may make me sound like a crazy person.

So, last summer we had four of the horses.  Three of the four were pregnant.  At the time, we were trying to conceive.  On Friday night, the same horses returned with their three babies.

horses

The newest arrivals at our farm.

I know I’ve complained about being jealous of other pregnant people.  And about being worried about potential pregnancy announcements.  But I think I’ve crossed the crazy line with being jealous of horses with babies!

I guess it’s not that I’m jealous per se, it’s more that it reminds me of what I would have if we had succeeded in getting pregnant when we wanted to last summer.  Or of what we would almost have if I hadn’t miscarried.

Luckily, it’s been a busy weekend so there’s a lot to distract me from my own craziness!

One of my favourite discoveries when we took possession of the farm last summer was the vegetable garden.  The previous owners had planted it, so when we arrived in August, all we had to do was pick and eat!  This year, we’re going to attempt to plant it ourselves.  D has a friend who is a pumpkin farmer, so D decided he wants to try growing some pumpkins.  We’ll try a handful of other vegetables too.

To prepare, D tilled the garden while Littleman and I helped out. We plan to start planting next weekend.  I can’t wait to see how it goes!  It was so great to pick fresh sun-warmed tomatoes for homemade bruschetta.  Or butternut squash for our Thanksgiving dinner.  Yum!

photo 2

The vegetable garden.

 

photo 3

The helper.

To all you Canadians out there, hope you’re having a wonderful long weekend!

Bad sister?

I have an irrational (and, quite frankly, inappropriate) fear that my sister will tell me she’s pregnant sometime soon.  My sister is three years younger than me and got married last year.  She and her husband have been together for many years are both well into their 30s.  I know they want children, so it wouldn’t be odd or unexpected for them to become pregnant at any time.

I want my sister to have a baby.  She loves children and has always been great with Littleman, as well as her niece and nephew on her husband’s side.  I want her to experience the joy (and challenges!) of being a mother.

But, ever since my miscarriage, I’ve been terrified that she’s going to get pregnant.  As much as I want it for her, I want it for me too.  And I want it for me first.  I know that sounds so awful and selfish, but there it is.  That’s how I feel.

Last weekend, my sister and her husband came home for a visit.  They live about two hours away, so we don’t see them all that often.  It was weird to me that they were coming at all, because we were supposed to be seeing each other at a family wedding the following weekend.  So, of course, my imagination kicked in and I immediately assumed that they must be coming to tell us that they’re expecting a baby.

I felt a bit sick to my stomach when they arrived at my parents’ house.  I waited for them to say something, but of course, they didn’t.  Then I thought that maybe they were waiting for D to arrive.  He was working day shift and was meeting us all for dinner.

When I heard my brother-in-law say he was going to grab a beer and ask if anyone wanted anything, I held my breath.  This was it.  This was when I would know for sure.  My sister likes her beer, so I would be able to tell immediately if something was up.

She accepted a beer without a pause and (after double-checking to make sure she wasn’t fake drinking, like I used to do when I was pregnant) I finally relaxed.

Phew, crisis averted.

I love my sister and I know that I will be happy for her whenever she does become pregnant.  But with my emotions still raw and the future of my own womb unknown, I’m a little bit glad that it isn’t right now.