Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Content by myself on Valentine's Day

I just wanted to share how wonderful Valentine's Day can be when your DH (Darling Husband) isn't around. I'm usually the type that's like PAY ATTENTION TO ME!!, and I'm a stickler for forcing a wonderful (albeit a bit contrived) Valentine's Day celebration ... but this year, we're still reeling.

My DH's Valentine's Day card to me said "this has been a hard year for us, without much to celebrate" ... and ... "we need to hold onto each other even tighter" ... and it's so true. In the past it was so hard for me to go through holidays: Christmas, anniversaries, birthdays, etc ... without thinking about what I DON'T have. But with this Valentine's Day my disposition is a little better and a little brighter. As you know, I've really been trying to 'get back to me' before we jump on this baby bandwagon again and the little efforts I've made so far - are already actually helping. I was able to participate in clinging to my husband through this struggle a bit, rather than clawing at my need to be pregnant.

My DH had to be in school on Valentine's evening, so I was home alone. (In months and years past I would have said I was "left" home. But this year ... I "got to be" home alone.) And it was wonderful! I spent the day celebrating the beautiful weather and an overall celebration of love - not just the romantic kind. I really appreciated all the friends and people that are in my everyday life (hey, maybe I was just grateful I wasn't sick anymore!) ... but it did help that DH sent roses to my office - I always enjoy flowers. So that night on my way home I picked up some yummy Thai take out, made a plate of yummy Thai goodness for myself and wrapped up a plate all cute in the fridge for the hubby for later. I enjoyed dinner not by myself but with my good friend Oprah Winfrey and her Valentine's Day special. I had a 1 hour phone date & prayer time with a good girlfriend of mine and we just ooozed about all the great things God is doing our lives, (and I was being honest!) and I finished the evening off with a warm bath coupled with a good book. When DH finally came home (near 9pm!) he was able to heat up his dinner and sit beside the tub eating and we connected by sharing about our days while I finished in my water-logging efforts.

It was luxurious.

I call it the female version of Valentine's Day. The male version of Valentine's Day (and I think you can guess what that might be *wink*, *wink*) waited for another night ...

I was surprised at how wonderful the evening was and how connected I felt to my husband despite the fact that we didn't engage in traditional Valentine's Day activities! It was just wondeful to actually ENJOY a holiday ... it's been so long.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Out sick

I so wanted to wish you all a Happy Valentine's Day, but I've been so sick and busy. "Happy belated Valentine's Day" (just doesn't carry the same weight now, does it?)

Well Berilac and I were "out sick" for almost two weeks with the flu since Feb 5th. I was out of work for 7 days (including the first two days where I took care of him - then promptly ended up catching it!) and he was only out for a few days. And I'm the one who got the flu shot this year ... not him! They gave him anti-biotics on the front end and never gave me any :-( Mine went from being viral to becoming bacterial - yuck! But I'm seriously on the mend now and grateful to be.

Now that I'm back in action here are some future posts I'm sure you'll all be glad to read soon:
  • Content by myself on Valentine's Day
  • Doing home improvement on a house you don't live in
  • Attending a real-life infertility support group (so cool)
  • Starting an infertiltiy support group at my church
  • Walking for boobs and money
  • The HUNT 2008 - FREE Community wide Easter egg hunt
  • Locomoting across the countryside to celebrate my mom's 21st birthday! (ok, she's older than that)
  • Arnold's state park shut-downs don't coincide with my back-packing plans
  • Memorial Day weekend sounds perfect for a little B&B'ing
  • Two deaths at work
  • New fertility treatment news and plans

More to come in the days ahead (I don't want to write about all of it all and once and scare you off - babysteps people! I'm thinking I should just give you the headlines so that you'll "stay tuned" ... like you would with the evening news.)

So ... stay tuned.

Monday, February 4, 2008

How are you doing?

Thank you everyone who is checking in on me to see how I am doing.

Honestly, I'm doing ok - really I'm doing better than I thought I would be.

I would love to talk about my feelings on the whole matter - and share the sadness in my heart, but what has been more overwhelming for me has been the anxiety that goes along with this journey:
  • anxiety from losing the most recent pregnancy
  • anxiety from losing multiple pregnancies
  • fear of never being able to have children
  • anxiety about future pregnancies and experiencing trauma like we experienced with past losses (complications - hemorraging, emergency procedures, extended sickness following miscarriage procedure)
  • fear that my husband will leave me because: 1. I can't bear children (he says this will never happen, but it doesn't mean that it disappears easily from my list of concerns) 2. I might scare him away with my inability to cope with all of this (now that one is a little more risky of being true! not really.)
  • fear that I will never be 'normal' again (how many IRL friends do you have that are in our shoes? I'm guessing none ... makes me feel like the freak that I am)
  • fear that I might have to grieve my hopes and dreams
  • fear of what my life will look like if it doesn't look the way I had imagined it to when I was a little girl
  • fear that God thinks we can handle more

So for now I am working on those issues ... trying to get past the shell of anxiety in order to get to the root, which is the sadness.

As I've mentioned I'm taking steps towards that end. I went to my first infertility support group and can I just say ... women who endure infertility and loss ... are amazing women. Let me take a rabbit trail here and say thank you to all my infertile friends/readers who have endured so much. I don't even know you but I find myself so concerned about your life and I so want to support you and love you from a distance - I have so much compassion and honest to goodness love for you. I LOVE to see women who've been in the infertility trenches getting pregnant and getting past their previous loss milestones - it makes me feel good to know these women and to see the joy that they've longed for, for so long ... be fulfilled. I feel honored to be apart of their lives (Cara, Fortune Cookie, Mandy, Amy, Joy, Bethany, Ango, Megan, Melissa, Yvonne, Jen, Moon, Lara, Jeny, Daniela, Donna, Tina, Laura, Jenee ... really all the ladies on my blog roll ... and so many others) ... group hug? Really, I am just honored and wish I knew you all in person. (but then there'd be an inordinant number of infertiles in the SF Bay Area and really it's only 1 in 6 couples that deal with this ... so you gotta spread us out - make sure others don't have to make up for the fact that you wouldn't be representing in your own home town.)

Ok, so back to me.

I am just trying to get over the hurdle of anxiety. I so truly believe the scripture "Be anxious about nothing..." but yet I don't practice it. I'm remineded of Peter when he walked on water, but only b/c he kept his eyes on Christ. I want to be that woman. And I will be.

I must have some serious early childhood issues around anxiety (thanks mom and dad - yes, you know who you are) and so I'll address those issues and of course the compounded grief and loss and I'll give myself grace to flounder in anxiety a bit while God works on healing my heart in the process.

I've been going to the infertility support group and I've started counseling again. Berilac and I will resume couples counseling - we love counseling (and we recommend all marriages start out there - rather than end up there!) I've been doing my daily yoga (which actually HELPS stress ... who knew? those Eastern medicine folk really do know what they are talking about. I was only starting it b/c I was grasping at straws trying to find physical things I could do to help my anxiety and looky there ... it's working!)

So I've been doing all these things and I will let you know when we've made some more progress, when I'm able to share a little bit more of my heart and get past hiding behind my anxiety. We have some ideas for future cycles and our future hope for baby ... and as the healing continues, my heart will be more open to becoming more vulnerable in recognizing and sharing renewed hope.

Oh and lastly, happy belated Groundhog Day! ;-)