Category Archives: babies

pops it is

I thank you all for your thoughtful responses to my question in my last post. It helps to see other people’s perspectives, particularly the concerns, and it was all good fodder for discussion for J and I. We are about 95% certain we are going to go with our old donor, Pops.

The first consideration, of course, was the medical matter, and because BG’s oncologist told us this was not a hereditary issue (and because she knows this disease better than almost anyone else in the world), I trust her. We had a lengthy discussion with her about it, and she didn’t know what she would do either, though she never once suggested we use someone else, only that we make the decision that felt right to us knowing that even the mutation that made BG more at risk for JMML was not hereditary. I imagine we’re always going to be a little gun shy about any child’s health, but this sort of lightning really doesn’t strike twice. It would be statistically pretty much impossible, and while there are always other cancers and childhood illnesses, I have a fair amount of certainty we’ll not see JMML in our own family ever again.

It occurred to me as we entertained using another donor that we would be opening ourselves up to a whole new set of odds, unknown genetics, etc. We wouldn’t change donors to have a known donor. We don’t necessarily want that, and in BG’s case, it wouldn’t have helped anyway (any parent can only even be a half match for a child who needs bone marrow, for example, and a half match really isn’t good enough). So that issue is sort of irrelevant to us too.

With the health matters out of the way, the biggest factors are psychological, emotional, sentimental. We always wanted to meet a future sibling of BG’s–long before leukemia ever became a part of our lives. We still want to meet that sibling with similar genetics. He or she will be a new person, a new soul, and an individual all his/her own. The thing that was so great about BG was that he was utterly himself. J and I didn’t get in the way of that. If he was going to be into kitchen appliances, well then we let him. We gave him an old CD player so that he could have control over his own music. We let him pick out clothes that he liked. We valued his opinion and his sense of self, and we encouraged him to be him, even when that happened to be so different from what we expected. We would do that for any child because it’s how we parent. That fear of transferring hopes and dreams we had for BG to another child is something people have encouraged us to consider, but our real hopes and dreams for BG were for him to live a healthy, happy, long life. We would have those dreams for any child. We’re certainly not going to put a blender in our baby’s crib to encourage a love of appliances, but you can bet we’ll cook with another child, and if he or she likes it, great. We’ll read to another child, and if he or she likes the same books, that will be wonderful; if not, we’ll get to explore something new. We’ve definitely thought about all of this, and what it comes down to is that we want to keep being parents, and we want to keep being the same kind of parents because, well, that’s what parents do. And we want to be parents of BG’s full sibling first and maybe someone not at all related to him later.

So with our decision mostly made, it seems we’re heading in the direction of TTC again. I have an early morning alarm set and a basal thermometer at my bedside. I even have a Fertility Friend app on my phone (I feel like I’m trying to get knocked up in a different century!). Sometime in the coming few months, I’ll put away the wine (mostly) taper off the caffeine (mostly) and even move my body a little in hopes of creating a happy environment for some happy little cells to grow. Honestly, most days it’s hard to imagine, and I don’t know how it’s going to be to go through the roller coaster of this process. I hope it’s healing. I hope it’s a short journey. In the meantime, I’m trying to be a bit selfish, hoping to find myself beneath the heaps and heaps of grief that sit on me each day so that I’ve got something to offer a new child, my wife, and, yes, even myself.

 

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Filed under babies, sperm

a little bit crunchy

Thank you all so much for your encouragement and stories related to the fibroids. I’m feeling so much better about this, and I know we’re going to be fine no matter the outcome. Your comments really helped me get to this more positive space.

We have just returned from a whirlwind trip to visit family. We gained lots of belly love and some gifts for Egghead (including a fabulous swing/infant seat combo), and I lost my glasses. Grrr.

We’re now eager to settle into some routine again. After having family visiting for nearly a week and then spending another four days with some of the same family members, we are ready for some normalcy. We have projects galore to immerse ourselves in, most of which relate to preparing for baby.

While visiting my mom, we got a ton of flannel (most of it passed down from my great-grandmother–my grandmother tends to stockpile fabric) to create cloth baby wipes, and we have already cut them up, so all that is left to do is spend countless hours at my temperamental sewing machine to zigzag the edges. It will be so worth it, though, to have these soft reusable wipes. I have found a few good recipes for a gentle cleaning solution to use with them, and I’m excited to make these too.

Our trip also brought us to our very first Babies.R.Us. It was overwhelming and even a bit disappointing. We’re planning to cloth diaper, and we were hoping to at least get some covers to help build up our supplies. Unfortunately, BRU had little more than those old, obnoxious plastic/vinyl pants, and it took asking a clerk and carefully combing the infant care section to find even these. Why these along with their one variety of cloth diapers were not placed in the huge “diapering” section, we do not know. Well, actually, my guess is a partnership with Hug.gies and P.ampers is likely the culprit. Needless to say, we came away with no diapering supplies (we’ll be buying them online).

We did find a few items to satisfy our crunchy, granola girl sides: a natural rubber pacifier, some glass bottles, and some organic, unbleached cotton nursery items (changing pad, covers, mattress cover, etc.). These things we are quite pleased about.

J and I have this funny need to rebel against all the typical plastic baby crap. We know we’ll get plenty of it, and we know we’ll likely use it gratefully, but we also want to honor how babies were raised once upon a time when one didn’t need to take a huge bag of baby trash to the dumpster every day or when one didn’t “need” to buy, buy, buy in order to raise a happy, healthy child. We see too many of our real-life friends falling into this baby crap trap where their lives are overflowing with one poorly-made plastic baby item after another, and we’re hoping to learn from this. So far, this has meant sending some clear messages to some shopaholic family members, but it seems to be working. I’m by no means a fundamentalist about this stuff, but I am not embarrassed to say that I’m insanely nostalgic for a simpler more sustainable time. And how great will it be for our boy to have a little taste of yesteryear in his upbringing?

ETA: Holy crap! My ticker reads six months. How is that possible? Belly shots to come tomorrow.

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Filed under babies, family, nesting

this is when i start talking about my body parts

I don’t know how I could possibly forget how hypersensitive one becomes during the TWW, but it’s happened again. I keep trying to trick myself into ignoring my body. There’s not much to report, primarily just some sore nipples from just a couple of days past ovulation and killer headaches. The headaches are easily explained by my endless hours of grading. And the nipples? Well, J swears she hasn’t recently purchased any nipple clamps lately, but I don’t know if I believe her. In all of the months of our break, I have to say that I didn’t pay attention to one damn sign. I was actually surprised a couple of times when my period showed up! I miss those carefree days already.

Our neighbor’s baby is coming for a visit again tomorrow morning. We get haircuts tomorrow (we both have waited FAR too long.) We will hand out high fructose corn syrup in colorful wrappers to the kiddies tomorrow night. We’ll have a weekend, and then a day of work, and then we’ll have election day and a pregnancy test, and all will be right with the world. (<–That’s me trying to stay positive.)

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Filed under babies, pseudosymptoms, ttc

sweetness

Our neighbor’s baby is sleeping on a quilt on our living room floor. The cats are all standing at a distance staring at her. I am staring at her.

There is a quiet and a warmth to our house with this baby here. I have watched her once before, and it was the same. There is no denying it: our home feels better with a baby in it. It will feel better when our baby is in it, for sure, but this is very sweet for now.

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Filed under babies

fragmented baby thoughts

There was a baby in our house last night. In fact, I was here with a baby by myself for a few hours. I watched my neighbor’s five-month-old. This baby likes me a lot; she loves to stare at me, smile at me, and chew on my hands, so we enjoyed having a few hours to stare and smile and make funny faces at each other, and she enjoyed chewing on my hands. J and I like having a baby in our house. It seems right to have a child here and oddly empty when they leave.

We have started the donor selection process at the cryobank we’ve chosen. J spent an hour or so this morning making a ranked list of donors she likes, which made me happy. I love it when she gets to play an active role in all of this. Now we just have to send in the paperwork and hope we get everything right.

I’m waiting to hear back from our midwife on cost for IUI. I’m still hoping she’ll be reasonable.

It seems like everyone in TTC/lesbian mom blogland (with the exception of a few of us stragglers) is pregnant or has a child now. I have no ill feelings toward all of you who are growing your babies and/or watching them grow now on the outside–believe me, I’m thrilled for every last one of you; it’s just feeling lonely here in the land of the childless.

I cried once when the baby was over last night. I stared at her wishing I knew what it was like to have a baby of my own. I quickly made myself stop crying because I didn’t want to upset her, but her presence made that feeling of absence, that baby ache, all the more poignant. It used to be that I could get a baby fix from other people’s babies. Now holding other people’s babies just makes me feel a little more sad about our own situation.

I am finishing up my second to last period before this break is over. One more visit from the crimson tide, and then we’re on to OPKs and EWCM and, for the first time ever, IUI. I’m being a good girl and taking my vitamins and my fish oil. I’m doing pilates to strengthen my core, losing weight, drinking water, and even limiting my wine consumption (that’s a tough one when it’s harvest time in wine country). I hope all of this means I’ll be rewarded for my good behavior.

J and I are taking a trip to Tahoe at the beginning of my next cycle. She’s optimistic that this will be our last hurrah before I’m pregnant. I don’t know what to think, but I’m excited to go to Tahoe with my lovely wife.

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Filed under babies, Ramblings, ttc