Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Nightmares before Christmas...

I suppose I should have known this was going to happen. The closer we inch to my second trimester, the more and more nervous I get about having this beautiful baby. Unfortunately, unlike so many first time mothers, I cannot live in prenatal bliss as I have in the past. Every day I do everything in my power to have a stress-free, enjoyable pregnancy. Most days I am ok and spend my time imagining nursery decor and breastfeeding. While other days, like yesterday, I spend my time wondering what I would do should something horrendous happen again.

Sunday night was the first of what I assume will be many pregnancy related nightmares. Although I believed I was being positive for the most part with my pregnancy, nightmares got the best of me. I tossed and turned, imagining that something was wrong and no one would help me. I dreamt that I was waiting to get an ultrasound to verify that what I thought was actually a reality, and yet no one would do it. And when I finally awoke from my bedtime terrors, all I could remember was begging someone to help and screaming, "I can't go through this again." It was horrible...

When I got to work the next day, I couldn't focus on a thing. Everything felt so unimportant as I held my growing belly, wondering if a little heart still beat inside of me. I had a doctor's appointment scheduled for Friday but decided that was too long to wait. Luckily for me, my doctor had told me that she would see me any time I needed - and that day, it was an emergency. A sanity emergency.

I left work and called my husband - there was no way I was going to be alone for this. We waited a half an hour to be seen, the longest we've ever waited. And when the medical assistant attempted to take my blood pressure, the reality of my anxiety set in. The cuff would not read my blood pressure - even after four times. It wasn't going to happen. I was too nervous. The assistant gave up and said we would try again later.

Normally, my doctor does my ultrasounds. However, yesterday, the ultrasound tech came in to see me. She was incredibly peppy and all I could think was, "Can you please not be like that? This may not be a positive appointment."

But I was so wrong. As soon as the wand touched my belly, I saw our beautiful baby arching, kicking, punching, and wiggling. It was the most amazing site I'd ever seen and I couldn't help but cry with happy tears. The ultrasound tech looked at me funny and I explained to her the situation and why I was so relieved and she suddenly became more peppy. She showed me the baby from twenty different views and we watched as Peanut danced across the screen. I felt elated - there were no words to express my excitement.

She asked if we would be doing the first trimester screenings, and I gently informed her that no, we would be accepting this beautiful baby just as he or she was. She smiled and nodded, although she proceeded to check the back of the baby's neck. .08 she said - absolutely nothing to be concerned about. I suppose I was relieved.

My doctor came in next with her beautiful smile - hugging me. She asked me if everything was ok since she noticed I was a late add for the day. I explained the dream and my fears and she smiled, asking me to tell her about the dream. And I did - all the painstaking details. She was kind and nodded, telling me she understood and knew these things were going to happen. And to top it off, she reminded me of how traumatic the loss was for her, and that she remembered how my family reacted. She reminded me that these things were fair and normal feelings and that she was always here for. And with that, she looked at Peanut with the ultrasound wand and reassured me that baby was doing amazing. In two weeks she said she'd be able to give me an estimate for gender. I wanted to kiss her.

We ended the appointment by agreeing to be seen again next week - she agreed that two weeks may be a little long for us to wait. So I scheduled for next Wednesday and I can't wait. Today I feel amazing and I can't help but rub my belly all day. I feel so blessed to have a healthy baby growing inside of me. Life is good...

Monday, November 21, 2011

A New Beginning

As I sit here tonight, finally writing the post I've waited two long months for, I smile with content. Although the road has been rough, I feel awkwardly at ease now that I am here. And although every day brings about new worries and a new reason to panic, I am encouraged and hopeful that all will end the way it is supposed to.

I'm finally pregnant. I have been for two months now. And I feel incredible - emotionally anyway. I thought I was going to skate through my first trimester without any morning sickness; however, by week 10 I have all but expelled everything I've eaten in the past year. Thank goodness there are only a few more weeks in my first trimester because I have already lost 10 pounds! Although you wouldn't be able to tell - my belly looks as if I've been pregnant for four months. I suppose that is what happens when you are on your fourth pregnancy.

Sometimes it feels surreal. Sometimes I forget there's a tiny child growing inside of me. And sometimes I forget about the terrible events of my last pregnancy. Surprisingly, this hasn't been as terrible as I thought it would be in regards to fear. I have my moments (as does my husband, so I found out last night). But I am not finding myself thinking of the previous loss as often as I thought I would.

I didn't even think I was pregnant. I spent the entire weekend before my period was supposed to be here on the couch in utter despair. I was crabby, emotional, and felt as though I would be met by Aunt Flow any day. Until Monday came. My husband left for work and I was convinced that by the end of the day, I would be hysterical. But then I remembered I had one remaining pregnancy test. Just one. That I was saving for when I was sure it was going to have a positive outcome. And I had an idea.

I didn't  have much left, so I did the second alternative - I peed in a cup. Only enough to dip the stick was needed, and I figured I could make it work. The cat stood in front of me in the tiny toilet in my bathroom and watched as I made sure not to waste a drop. I began to have second thoughts as I questioned testing now versus in a few days. What did it matter? If I wasn't pregnant, it wasn't going to matter if I waited a few days. So I went for it.

And I wasn't prepared for the results. As the second line slowly developed, anxiety and excitement came over me and I couldn't hold in the sobs. I sat on the toilet in a room that began to shrink around me and sobbed until nothing was left. And all I remember is my little kitty staring at me as if I just grew a second head.

I instantly began to think of how I was going to tell my husband. He had left already to take the kids to school. I would surprise him at work, come up with some brilliantly creative idea. Instead, I called him and spilled the beans. Unfortunately, I scared him more than anything as my sobs lead him to believe I was in some kind of trouble. Once he understood what I said, the tears on the other end of the phone registered and I knew he was in the same state of disbelief that I was.

I bought two more tests on my way home just to double check. And I got the same answer each time.

So far we have seen the doctor every two weeks. We've had two visits so far and are on track for a healthy baby. I started my daily injections about a month ago and they are getting a tad bit easier every day. Later this week I will post about the shots. However, this wimpy mom needs some sleep. I will close this post with a picture of Baby Peanut #3.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Happy Halloween

Well, we had another successful Halloween this year; minus sick Tinkerbell. A few days before Halloween, Mikayla came down with a runny nose and fever. We were hoping she'd be well enough to enjoy to ghoulish festivities, but she was not.

The Friday before Halloween, however, she was able to bring treats to her classmates and enjoy a pre-Halloween shindig. The night before, Mommy slaved away making goody bags for both her and Aidan's classmates. They included sticky eyeballs, eyeball bubbles, Halloween pencils, pumpkin erasers and candy of course! Aidan's were topped with a monster sticker and Mikayla's had cute trick-or-treaters!

From what I heard, the classmates were appreciated of my late night creativity.

Friday my mom came in from Chicago. We hadn't seen her since June so it was nice to share the holiday with her.

Not from this trip - but Nana and the kids nonetheless.
Every year we get together with our dear friends and enjoy some snacks and trick-or-treating. We had the cast of Peter Pan, the cast of Rio, some skeletons, a bee, and a cute little airplane.

The Cast of Rio! - Otherwise known as the Becketts!

The Knights - expecting baby girl #3 in January

The tricks!

The treats!

Graveyard cupcakes by Lynlee's Petite Cakes

Delicious Cake Pops by Lynlee's Petite Cakes

The first house

The kids had a great time. They were pooped at the end of the night - especially my beautiful Tinkerbell. She had a fever the entire time and just wanted to sit in her stroller after this house. Good thing little brother Peter Pan agreed to take her bucket to the door to get her candy. It was great and we are already planning on next year - Adam's Family Values!

Since the wonderful Halloween weekend we have been enjoying some quiet time. Mikayla is feeling better now; however, her little brother and I have come down with the cold today. We are watching movies and sleeping on the couch together - hoping for a speedy recovery.

I'll close this post with some pictures of Aidan in his owl beenie made special by Nana.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Falling for Autumn

I suppose I should start this post with an apology - I left quite the cliff-hanger with my last post and have been MIA for a minute. I am sorry about that and hope this post makes up for that!

Let me start by briefly discussing my non-diagnosis of a thyroid problem. It was a very uninteresting, unneeded, and to be honest, a waste of a $30 co-pay. I sat in his tiny little office for maybe 5 minutes while he rambled about perfectly normal blood results. Then why am I here doctor?! Couldn't you tell me this over the phone?! I guess not.

He encouraged me to do a nuclear thyroid scan so that he can check to see if there is any type of "action" with the bump in my neck. This test involves taking a pill full of radiation which prevents you from eating off off dinner plates that others could eat from, not being allowed to use the same restroom as others - this can't be healthy for someone trying to conceive. It will have to wait.

In the meantime, we took a break from doctors and calendars and planning to enjoy a little cool weather and some falling leaves. My husbands family lives back East and we made the trek to see everyone - Boston, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Long Island, NY to be exact. The weather was cool and it felt like Fall. It was a perfect escape from city dwelling in busy Las Vegas.

I had to explain to my children that farms were for getting dirty - he didn't really understand that too well.

We enjoyed some time at the Boston Aquarium for cousin Joey's 3rd birthday. We also drove the beautiful coast of the East and enjoyed some time by the water.

We are happy to be home - although we are still working on getting back on West Coast time.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

New Hope

Sometimes I feel silly worrying about future pregnancies and healthy babies and whether or not I will ever have the big family I've always wanted. Sometimes I wonder if everyone looks at me and thinks, "This girl has got some serious issues." If they do, I hope that no one ever tells me, for honestly, I could not handle it.

Today I visited with my lovely OB/GYN. And when I say lovely, there is no satire here. She is honestly one of the kindest doctor's I have ever met, while still holding true to her honest and straight-forward ways. I am so lucky to have had her through this rough journey and look forward to making positive memories with her in the future.

Since the loss of my last baby at 16 weeks and the diagnosis of the thrombophelia, I am now considered a high risk when it comes to pregnancy. Let me tell you how hard that was to wrap my mind around. I went from thinking I was having an all-natural home birth to now being considered high risk. It took the last seven months to come to grips with; but I am there now.

We sat down face to face in the chairs in the tiny exam room. She looked at me with eyes of a friend, not of a doctor, and asked me what had been going on. Without thinking, I instantly broke into tears, telling her my woes about trying to conceive and my incessant fears about a future pregnancy. Her kind eyes almost welled up with me and she took my hand, comforting me by reminding me that these were very real, very understandable fears. We talked about what happened, how it affected me and my family, and how it is going to affect future pregnancies. She asked me if I enjoyed being pregnant with my last two. I didn't know how to answer this question. I absolutely LOVE being pregnant. And without hesitation, she reminded me that we needed to do everything in our power to make this next pregnancy just as enjoyable, for me and for my baby.

She was right. But how I going to do that? How was I going to forget about what happened and have a worry-free pregnancy? I so envied those women around the world that were just finding out they were pregnant - no worries, just pure excitement. What I would give to have that feeling again. She reminded me that she too was going to be worried through the pregnancy, and that she was in my corner to help me through it. She explained that she would stop worrying as soon as I was in the hospital and hooked up to the monitors so that if anything were to go wrong, she could fix it. OMG, she knew exactly what I was feeling! It was as if she were speaking straight from my brain!!! And I felt myself sink into my chair - she understood, and I finally felt relief.

We discussed the possibilities of hypothyroidism and the "bump" the ultrasound tech had found. Since seeing him last Thursday, the doctor's office had called and asked me to make appointment for this week, that the doctor wanted to see me as soon as possible. Great, that's always reassuring. She explained to me that hypothyroidism is the number one cause of preventable mental retardation. WHO KNEW!!! She explained that if my GP found there to be an inadequate amount of thyroid hormone, he would put me on synthetic hormone replacements. She also mentioned that my hormone levels would be checked every 4-6 weeks to make sure my medication levels are correct throughout the pregnancy. Again, she understood.

We discussed doctor's visits throughout the next pregnancy. I let her know that I wasn't comfortable with waiting 4 weeks between visits, and she chuckled, reminding me that as a high risk patient I would be seeing her every other week. This woman was reading my mind! 

The appointment ended with her hugging me tighter than I've been hugged in a while - and it felt goooood. I felt that her and I could conquer the world and a healthy little baby would be born again in the Clyne family. I felt renewed and ready to get back in the saddle - if you know what I mean. And as the cherry on top of the sundae of amazing support, she wrote her cell phone number on the back of her card and reassured me to call or text any time I needed something. She was an angel.

Who knew women develop PTSD from the loss of a baby? Who knew thyroid hormone imbalances could cause a child to have mental retardation? And more importantly, who knew that a doctor so incredibly kind would be the only one to allow me to be afraid without guilt?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

My favorite time of year...

At the pumpkin patch last year
Halloween - a time of tricks and treats, ghouls and goblins, mystery and magic. A time when those who may not be comfortable with who they are have the opportunity to live as someone else for the night. A time when family fun and parties full of friends take up my time - hopefully allowing very little time for wallowing in my sorrows.

Every year my family gets together with some of our dearest friends to enjoy fun and YUM! We eat, play, and trick for treats until our hearts are content. We've made a tradition out of it - and this year will be no different!

Halloween, 2009

Last year my family dressed as the Flintstones - Mikayla was Pebbles, Aidan was Bam-Bam, Danny was Fred, and I was Wilma. (All costumes made by my dear mother and the kids' Nana, Val!). We had a blast. Although it did take about a month of watching the Flintstones to talk my children into dressing up (even though I'd made the decision that we were going to dress as the Flintstones months before).

The Flintstones, 2010

This morning the kids and I spent about an hour at the park. The weather was cool (75 degrees - cool for Vegas anyway) and it felt like fall was on it's way. I watched the leaves rustle in the trees, imagining what it would be like if I could shake my insecurities, doubts, and sadness away like leaves from a tree in the fall. I remember how great it felt to start a new school year every August - time to start over, try again, and do better than I did the year before. I so wish I had that now.

Among other things, I am counting down the days until my period is due again. October 12th - the day we leave to visit all of my in-law's in Boston/NYC. I would love to plan a fun and exciting way to share good news with my husband's family while we are there - but I feel as though planning ahead would be setting myself up for failure.

Instead, I will focus on this year's Halloween extravaganza. I will prepare mummy juice boxes and classroom treat bags and remind myself of the blessings I already have.

All the while, in the back of my mind, I will be plotting...

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Bump In the Road

Well, I survived. And to be honest - it wasn't as horrible as I had prepared for. I arrived about twenty minutes early so that I could sit in the waiting room a minute and be forced to act rationally. Most doctor's offices have tiny, overly crowded, hot, stinky lobbies - accept this one. It's huge and cold with plenty of seats. As I walked in the room, a loud TV in the corner roared with the sounds of laughter. Ellen was on - how could anyone have anxiety with Ellen on the television? I took a seat in an area by myself and thumbed through the new Parents I just received in the mail this morning. One woman on the other side of the room complained about someones Cadillac taking two parking spots. Wonderful.

When my name was called, the anxiety kicked in. GET IT TOGETHER WIMPY MOM!! Now this room was tiny, claustrophobic. The little Russian man who would be conducting the ultrasound instructed me to remove everything from the waist up and put on the paper blouse. He informed me we would be preforming an ultrasound of my heart as well as my thyroid. Routine check-ups, he explained. He instructed me to lay on my left side with my left hand holding up my head. And then came the ultrasound machine. Little, un-alarming, quiet - the machine looked harmless enough. So why did my wimpy mom heart skip a beat?

And this is when things flipped a switch. Mr. Russia asked if I could hold my left breast up so that he could hold the ultrasound wand under my breast. Excuse me? Now, remember that I had nothing on under my paper blouse. When he saw the look of confusion in my eyes, his cheeks flushed and it all became crystal clear - Mr. Russia was more nervous than me. What a relief! From this point on, I decided to focus my attention and energy on making Mr. Russia as comfortable as I could by keeping all my body parts covered.

The heart ultrasound went fine - less than 10 minutes passed and he told me my ticker looked great. He checked it from three angles: from the front of my chest, just slightly to the left of my sternum, then from under my left breast, and then up through my stomach (I know - strange). I was so distracted by trying to keep Mr. Russia's cheeks from burning that the sound of a heart beating through the ultrasound machine only caught my breath once. Thank god for being half naked. 

Example of a thyroid ultrasound - while fully clothed.
Then came time for the thyroid ultrasound. I was asked to tilt my chin towards the ceiling to expose as much of my neck as possible. And as soon as the ultrasound wand touched the right side of my trachea, I knew something was wrong. I felt as though Mr. Russia was choking me with the wand, pushing it so hard into my neck that it was gagging me. I quickly asked Mr. Russia if there was something wrong, and he quietly informed me that there was a "bump" on the right side of my thyroid gland. A... bump? What the hell did that mean? I asked him how big it was and he kindly informed me that my doctor would have to give me that information. I let him know I was uncomfortable and he finished quickly, informing me that the left side of my thyroid was "bump free". He left the room after instructing me to get dressed. 

When the door shut, I stood and dressed quickly. All I could think about was how quick could I get to the check out desk so that I could schedule the first appointment available with my GP. I opened the door with a vengeance and was about to leave without  my paperwork. Mr. Russia gave me a nervous nod of the head for goodbye as I rushed out the door.

The "Bump"

The woman at the check out counter asked me to sign the paperwork and let me know I was good to go and the doctor would call me. Without thinking twice, I barked out what Mr. Russia had told me about the "bump" and asked when I could schedule a time to see my doctor. I guess the wimpy mom took a break for a moment because the look on the woman's face let me know I was being rather abrupt. I smiled gently in apology and let her know that I was trying to conceive and didn't want to waste any time if there was something wrong. Kindness never returned to her face, but she informed me that it would take a week for the results to come back so we scheduled an appointment for exactly seven days from today.

As soon as the door to my Durango was shut, the questions starting running through my mind like a movie reel. Does this mean I am having hormone issues? Could this have been a contributing factor to my miscarriage? Would I need to be on daily medication for the rest of my life? Could it be cancerous? I couldn't drive home fast enough in order to get onto the computer to do some research. I called my husband and let him know what was going on and he gently said we would figure it out (his favorite motto). I suppose he was right - what else was there to do other than to "figure it out"?

Monday morning I have an appointment with my OB/GYN. I had the appointment scheduled already to discuss my conception attempts. I now have a whole new list of questions I have neatly scribbled onto a piece of paper from a Hello Kitty notepad.

For now, I wait. I think I will take my children to see the mermaids this weekend. I could use a little magic.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Testing, Testing... 1 2 3...

Since the loss of the baby, I think I have seen five doctors, had 21 vials of blood drawn, and still have no answers as to why my baby had to die. (I'm sorry if that was harsh, but it is true.) When I first had the miscarriage, I bought books about how to handle the loss of a child, what to expect during the physical healing process, and how to make my way through the emotional and psychological healing. I bought books like "Empty Arms" something or other and "Trying Again". All I wanted was to feel normal - to know that other women had been through what I went through and came out on the other end ALIVE. Probably not the best idea. Instead of learning that I am not the only to suffer such a devastating loss, I learned that LOTS of other women had suffered losses two or three times more gut-wrenching than mine. A crazy 25% of all pregnancies end in miscarriage and that is based on the losses that have been documented. I learned about all the horrible things that could go wrong - not very beneficial when you are trying to lower your anxiety levels about having another baby.

Since discovering that I suffer from Factor V, I have been on edge about blood clots. Thrombosis - the bane of my existence. Although I have never (knock on anything wood please) suffered from a clot, my grandmother has and I am at a much higher risk. So what does a freak like me do after being diagnosed? I overdue it on the research to find out anything and everything I can about thrombophelia and how to protect myself from it's ugly symptoms. I saw two hematologists to learn about the blood disorder and how to prevent complications. I was told to immediately start on a baby Aspirin regimen and use the Lovenox while pregnant. Easy enough, right? (Did you Google the Lovenox shot yet? You answer that question for yourself when you do.)

Not so much. Instead of feeling better about what to expect and what could happen, I read about the symptoms of clots and what happens if you don't seek help. Great plan Tiffany - well done!

About a month ago I began having pain in my left calf. Oh no, wimpy mom is coming out. Instead of thinking, hey, this might just be muscle pain or I need to eat more bananas, I made an appointment to have a leg ultrasound in order to rule out DVT (deep vein thrombosis). Luckily for me, I am free and clear of any abnormal blood interactions in my legs! PHEW! However, the doctor says, your other symptoms lead me to believe there is something else going on. Hypothyroidism.

Oh boy. Really? Did I pass a point on the gameboard of Life where my body falls apart? Because if so, give me the card that sends me three spaces back!! HYPOTHYROIDISM! What the hell is that?! So there I went, BACK on the research mission from hell. But wait - I find there is a link between this ill-fated hormone interruption and miscarriage. Really?

So doc orders more blood work and an ultrasound of my thyroid.

Now, to most, an ultrasound would sound like nothing. Doesn't hurt, doesn't take long, isn't invasive. However, to a mother who had a prenatal ultrasound without a fetal heartbeat, ultrasounds are terrifying. When I had my leg ultrasound last week, I was so worked up about the potentiality of a clot, I didn't think twice about it. Until I left. Then the memories sunk in like shot of tequila swallowed ten minutes earlier. And here I was - having to do it again.

Well, let me say, this wimpy mom may have a panic attack when I think about peeing on a stick, or walking into my OB/GYN's office, or ever using a Doppler again. But I am going to suck it up on Thursday when I sit down for the thyroid ultrasound. I went today for the blood work (fasting SUCKS by the way). That was the easy part.

Before the loss, I never questioned my body's ability to conceive and to carry a healthy baby. I never through there was a need for pre-conception genetic testing or random ultrasounds to check normal bodily functions. However, I get a gut feeling that from this point on, I will be begging for any test that will ensure a healthy and happy baby for the Clyne family. Let the testing begin.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Good Night Moon...

Two eyes that shine so bright
Two lips that kiss goodnight

Mikayla, 5 months old
Two arms that hold me tight
That little girl of mine.

No one will ever know
What her coming has meant
She's surely something
Heaven has sent.

As she climbs upon my knee
She means the world to me
As cute as she can be
That little girl of mine.

My mommy used to sing that song to me when I was little. Now I hear, "Mommy, will you sing me the little girl song?" every night when I lay Mikayla down for bed. After the bath has been taken, the teeth have been brushed, the books have been read, and every living creature in our house has been kissed goodnight, it is time to sing the little girl song. I will never forget how warm and fuzzy I felt when that melody was sung to me; I hope she never tires of my serenade.

There has been so much support tonight, I am in shock. So many people reminding me to grab hold of the wimp and stand tall. Thank you. I created the blog for women like you - the strong women, the women who have been there, the women who are going to be my crutch through this long journey. Thank you all for your support. I pray I find a map soon.

INTRODUCING - a wimpy mom!

Yes, that's me. I am Tiffany, and I am a wimpy mom. I know, I know, how dare I give myself such a negative label. But let's be honest; I'm pretty wimpy. Sure, I have no problem with blood or boogers or vomit - but when it comes to trying to have another baby, I am Queen Wimp herself. "Well, you're already a mom - how can you be so scared of something you've already done?" you may be asking yourself. I suppose a little back story is necessary for complete understanding.

Yes, I am a mom of two beautiful children. And when I say beautiful, I am not just being bias. My daughter, 4 1/2, is the most gorgeous little redhead you will ever lay your eyes on. Her heart is the kindest, most sensitive of any child I've ever met. And brains? Man, I could write an entire novel on those. My son, 2 1/2, is handsome, strong, hilarious and the love of my life. He should bottle his charisma and sell it for fortunes. As parents, my husband and I score high on the granola-meter and raise our children outside of the box most of the time. But again, we could write a novel on that one.

In some ways, I am a very strong mom. I teach my children to respect others by first respecting themselves. I teach them to listen to their own hearts first before the words of others. And most importantly, I teach them to believe in themselves and relish in the sweet victory of personal accomplishments.

The wimpiness really didn't set in until February of this year. In November 2010, my husband and I found out we were expecting our third marvelous child. We couldn't have been happier. Although we had planned this child a little more than we had the others (OK, entirely more than we planned our son) it took a little longer than usual for us to conceive. But we did! The pregnancy was normal and healthy as far as anyone knew. As a certified birth doula, I made the decision to have this baby naturally without any unnecessary medical interventions. However, that dream was shattered in late February at a routine prenatal visit.

When the doctor couldn't find the heartbeat, we were under the impression this was nothing to worry about and it happened sometimes; faulty doppler. When the ultrasound tech said the baby was gone, we were under the impression we were dreaming. And when our daughter asked why Heaven needed the baby more than we did, we realized we had a long, sad road in front of us.
Friday we were told the baby was gone and the following Tuesday I had the surgery finalizing the end of my pregnancy. It was the longest four days of my life. Not to mention my poor daughter, who was trying to understand what was happening to her family, celebrated her fourth birthday on that Saturday. Looking at pictures, I feel as though I wasn't even there. 
We never got an answer as to why we lost our baby. At sixteen weeks, it was called a second-trimester miscarriage; something uncommon, but very possible. Without explanations and without closure, I didn't know how to begin the healing process. Today, seven months later, I still wonder if I will ever really be over it.

Our angel baby did more than just remind us to appreciate life's little miracles; we learned that I suffer from blood disorders that can cause some complications with pregnancy. I suffer from a thrombophelia called Factor V Leiden as well as two forms of MTHFR. I am not going to get into the mechanics of these disorders, but in layman's terms, I am at a higher risk of having a blood clot and even higher risk while I am pregnant. Who knew? Now, I am not the first nor will I be the last to be diagnosed with these mutations; thousands of women suffer from these daily and carry perfectly healthy, term pregnancies. Maybe I can be one of them?

We are now up to the wimpy mom part. I want to try again - desperately. My family is not complete and I am not ready to give up on my dreams of four children. But man, I am really scared. Really, really scared. (Hence, the wimpy part.) In order to have a healthy pregnancy, my doctor suggests that I take a daily injection of a blood-thinner known as Lovenox. This daily shot is purposed to prevent blood clotting associated with the thrombophelia I suffer from. I encourage you to Google Lovenox and take a look at what the shot looks like - you would be a wimpy mom too.

It is September and we are in month 3 of trying to conceive again. Most days I am able to wake up in the morning and remind myself that I am brave and I can do this. I repeat the lines from an Adele song... "... next time I'll be braver, I'll be my own savior...". But will I? I envision myself looking at a positive pregnancy test - try to imagine how I will feel - and I come up empty. Will I cry with excitement? Will my chest hurt with anxiety? Probably a mix of both. Hopefully I will find out soon.

So here I am - writing on this blog - hoping that some other BRAVE, STRONG, TOUGH, ENCOURAGING moms out there will help this wimpy mom through. I am embarking on an unknown travel through a very dark forest, hoping to find magic - can you help me?