Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Finished up, for now.

I'm looking forward to adding more family photos, both new and old, in the future!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Crystal Ball

There are some days that I just go about living (and enjoying) life and knowing that our blessing will come.  Then, there are days that I'd love a "crystal ball" to take a glimpse into the future to make sure this is all going to end up how we are hoping...with a beautiful, healthy addition to our family. Today is a crystal ball kind of day. 

Please, please, please, please let us have another baby.  And, soon would be super.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

A Different Perspective

A friend had a baby today, and I told Griffin about it.  Here's how the conversation went:

Me: Griffin, guess what?  X had her baby today!
Griffin: How did she get a baby?
Me: She had a baby in her tummy, remember?
Griffin: Why didn't someone give her a baby instead?
Me: Because she wanted to have a baby in her tummy.
Griffin: I feel bad that it probably really hurted her when they cut the baby out.

I guess our little guy has a different perspective about how babies and families come together! 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Missing a Session

The other night I was on a conference call with the group that is helping to plan the Resolve Family Building Conference in the Twin Cities.  There were several people on the call that have helped plan the conference for many years, and two of us that were new this year.  It was a great call, full of terrific ideas for improvement. 
I piped up with a concern of mine, the conference was great last year, but I felt like a piece was missing.  There weren't any session on miscarriages or grief.  In my opinion there is a lot of grief that comes with infertility, whether you suffer from a miscarriage or not.  A comment was made that they had sessions in the past related to miscarriage, but only a few people went.
Sure, but what about those few people?
I know I went to the conference because we were lost....not sure what to do next....we wanted to grow our family so badly, but didn't know which way to turn......so we wanted to gather information on ways to GROW our family.  Even though I was experiencing great grief at the time, maybe I would have skipped the miscarriage session, too, to attend something on adoption or natural methods of improving fertility instead.
But to have nothing offered, that just seems wrong. 
I remember the woman in one of my sessions that had a loss at 24 weeks that very week.  I bet she would have loved to attend a session on grief and loss.
The other new gal agreed with me, so we started a discussion.  How could we offer something related to miscarriages and grief in our already packed day? 
Someone knows a great doctor who has experienced miscarriage firsthand and could be a great speaker or participate in "the doctor is in" sessions where attendees could meet with him one-on-one.
Then, a good idea come to mind (at least I think it's a good idea)!  Last year during lunch we sat in groups and talked about specific topics (IVF, adoption, etc.), why not offer a grief/loss/miscarriage session over lunch that's optional for those that want to attend!?
And, it went over well!
If the session helps just one person, it will be worth it.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Adoptive Parents

We've been very fortunate to meet quite a few adoptive parents that have encouraged us, supported us, and showed us the "light at the end of the tunnel"...the completeness of family that we hope to feel some day.  Most of the families that we've spent a significant amount of time visiting with about adoption have young children.  Many times I can "see" our family in theirs. 
About two weeks ago I had a really, really unique experience.  I was spending time with a friend that chose adoption for her first child.  Ironically, that night I was able to meet the child's parents, the ones that adopted her at a few weeks of age.  It was absolutely heartwarming.  The parents told me the story about the call, their rush to get everything ready, and about what a blessing their children (two adopted and one biological) were to their lives.  They had tears in their eyes as they told the story, even thirty years later.  After just minutes of meeting them, they said they couldn't wait to get the update on our situation...to hear about when we got the call.  I've discovered that adoptive parents seem to have an immediate bond, an incredible understanding.
It was enlightening to see firsthand the "circle" of adoption....to see how happy the birth mother was that her child found the right family, and to see the love in the adoptive parents eyes.  So much love for the child, from both sets of parents. 
We keep getting these amazing gifts of encouragement along the way.  What a blessing!

Forgotten Mittens

The other day I left the Y, headed through the coffee shop drive through (thanks, Anita!) and it dawned on me that Griffin left his mittens in my van.  There are some days that this would frustrate me, after all I needed to get to work and day care isn't exactly on the way.  But, on this day I wasn't frustrated.  I was thankful.  Thankful that I had a little person to bring mittens to.  I called home to make sure he needed them, and Griffin answered.  He told me that they were running late, but that he did want his mittens because the ones at home were too small.  I drove to daycare, dropped them off, and smiled thinking of my little guy playing in the snow with his just the right size mittens on. 

What a blessing to have a little person that I can bring mittens to. 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

To Do List-Progress

We know most of the people in the frames on our photo wall, now that's progress!  We need to fill in a few more frames, get some more photos from Jamie's parents, scrapbook the large frame, extend the frames a bit and it will be perfect!

No calls, but lots of things to blog, I just need to find the time!  Living the profile! (See what we've been up to at The Thompson Family Blog.)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

This is secretly how I imagine it....I guess it won't be secret anymore

These are the thoughts that run through my mind.  Daily.  Usually when I am in the car, but sometimes more.  If you see me daydreaming, this is what it's all about.....

My cell phone rings and we find out that we've been blessed to be adoptive parents of a baby who has been born, and is at the hospital waiting for us.  We drop everything and go.  Hours later we are holding our baby (though not officially our baby yet). 

For some reason the whirlwind adoption story is what I dream about...day after day.....

The details change, sometimes we run to Target to get a car seat, sometimes I call one of my friends to say "WE GOT THE CALL!!!  By the way can you pick us up a car seat?"  Sometimes I imagine calling my mom, Jamie's parents, our siblings, our friends.  Sometimes I imagine taking the time to get the crib set up and sometimes I dump a tub of clothes in the wash.  Sometimes I am at work, sometimes I am at home in sweats, sometimes I'm with a friend.  I always cry, and I do in real life just thinking about it.

I imagine thanking, thanking, thanking our baby's birth mother.  I wonder if she will ever understand the amazing gift she has given us.  The gift of being parents again.

The magical day we get the call.  Christmas for the Thompsons.  Knowing that everything we've been praying for, waiting for, dreaming of, is finally here.

It's wonderful to dream about each day.  And, when the real story unfolds, it's going to be wonderful to share it over and over again with our baby.

Until then I am going to keep on dreaming.

And, yes, I know that reality will likely be far from my dreams, but for now, I am going to keep these dreams alive.  Hope.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

To Do List

Another thing that was on our "while we wait to do list" was organizing photos.  We had a giant tub of photos in our basement full of photo boxes and oodles and oodles of photos.  Jamie claimed that it weighs 120 lbs.  He dragged it to the "man room" last night and we started sorting and pitching photos while we had a family movie night.  We had lots of great giggles.  Goodbye scenery photos that we can easily Google and check out instead, goodbye senior photos of high school friends, good bye most of the photos taken with our then cool 1980s cameras...mine was pink, and goodbye free doubles (and to think I used to think that was GREAT!).

What a mess!

 Good bye!
Here's the end result....two photo boxes!  YES!  I bought a few photo albums, so will be working on getting some them in albums, but the rest will happily room in these boxes until we want to reminisce. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Wishing on a Star

When I picked up Griffin from daycare he yelled, "Mom, look a shooting star!"  I told him that he should make a wish on the shooting star.  He was quiet for a moment, then said, "I wished for a brother or a sister."

If I ever needed confirmation that we were doing the right thing, that was it!

Later, we were having dinner together.  Griffin said, "Mom, what if a kid wrote a letter to Santa and said that all he wanted for Christmas was his mom?"  I told him that I thought that would be very nice.  Then he said, "All I wanted was a Batman cave AND my mom" PAUSE "and a brother or sister."


Remembering the Day

"The anniversary" hung over my head a bit, but it turned out to be as good of a day as it could (of course, a call from our agency could have put it over the top, but I'll settle with good!). 

I received encouraging support from friends, including some great quotes that I'll share later.  (As a side note, I don't EXPECT friends to remember this day, so if you are reading this and didn't say anything, please don't feel even a twinge of guilt!!)

A good friend stopped into my office at about the time we were in the ultrasound room last year. I told her it was hard to think back to what I was doing exactly a year before, but from there is was "up".  The amazing support we were blessed with from others kept us going, and still does.  We haven't given up the hope that our family will grow.  I remember how Jamie and I came together, the cards, thoughtful and loving gifts, calls, texts and prayers.  I know prayers help heal, we are proof. 

Late morning these showed up in my office, with a note that said, "Remembering ALL of our loved ones. Love and God bless, Jamie":
Thank God for my amazing husband that is full of support and surprises.

I picked up our miracle from daycare, had a nice dinner with him, and went to the library for a fun preschool event.  No feelings of sadness (even when I look back and think of all the families there with multiple children), just feelings of being blessed that I GET to pick up a child from daycare and bring him to fun kid events.


The Saturday before we found out that our baby was no longer living, my good friend Mandi (who owns Amanda Rae Photography) came to take belly photos of me.  It was such a special time for us, finally being pregnant and making it past the 12 week mark for the first time in two years.  I wanted photos along the way, and had a very large belly due to OHSS from the IVF medications, so my belly was showing early.  I thought it would be fun to surprise Jamie with photos on his birthday.  After we lost the baby I couldn't bring myself to print the photos.  One day they showed up in the mail thanks to Mandi.  She knew I wanted them, but just couldn't do it myself.  I didn't have to say a word to her, she just knew.

Soon after my D & C, a good friend who had experienced a similar loss herself sent me the book Naming the Child.  It's a helpful book about coping with the loss of a baby through miscarriage, still birth and in the first year (I CANNOT even imagine and don't want to!).  The book suggested that if you know your baby was not going to live to birth, to take photos of your belly, that may be one of the only memories you can physically keep.  What a blessing that Mandi came out before we knew the result of this pregnancy!  I assure you it would have been tough to take photos right after hearing the news.  (My doctor is a family friend and was able to schedule my D & C early the next morning. 

When Mandi came to take the photos, I remember being surprised that my belly seemed to be smaller than in the previous days.  I soon understood why. 

I love this one because it's so sweet and innocent, like he's saying a prayer over our baby.

Monday, January 9, 2012


Tomorrow is the anniversary of us finding out that our fourth baby was no longer alive....after two beautiful, normal ultrasounds and nearly 14 weeks of carrying him.  At dinner tonight I shed a few tears thinking that a year ago I was packing up the pink and blue cookies that some of my friends helped me bake so that I could announce our pregnancy at work.  I was living a lie, but I didn't know it.  I thought my baby was alive and growing in me, but he had passed away, maybe even a week before I knew it.

And, so I will remember this: the amazing support from my co-workers, family and dear friends.  They helped to show me that I am much stronger than I thought I was. 
And, that we have each other.  One foot in front of the other, that's how we got through those first few days.  The day after my D & C we took Griffin to the Children's Museum.  It was tough, but we made the best of a bad situation. 
We're still waiting, but thankfully we still have hope.

In the photo of the care basket from my co-workers is a calendar that's on my desk at home.  On Jan. 10 the blessing reads:

"A longing fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12.  Griffin fulfilled my longing to be a mother, and I am sure there will be a sweet baby that will fulfill my longing to be a mother again.

Complaining a Bit

I like updating our family blog (The Thompson Family Blog) because it's a great online "history" of our life, and I like writing on this blog (hello free therapy), but I don't enjoy updating our adoption website.  It makes me just want to yawn!  I question if anyone is really looking at it, if someone is really interested I'm guessing they will view our paper profile.  I know it's being viewed at least a little because of the # of visits listed on the site.....but is it just other adoptive parents scanning our site to see what we've done, or actual expecting parents checking us out?  I suppose we could do some outreach and PROMOTE the site, but that kinda scares me.  Getting matched through our agency just seems so "safe" to me. 

Thanks for letting me complain.  This is just a typical case of "I want to do what I want to do and this isn't what I want to do."  Some days I just want a "normal" life where I focus on the kids I have rather than trying to have more.  Wait, that's every day! :)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Celebrating with Others

I have a strange little network of people I've never met that are or have struggled with infertility.  One is through Resolve's online support group.  When I was really struggling with what steps to take to grow our family and needed advice, as well as when I was grieving (OK, that occurs daily, but when I really felt like I couldn't get through it) I turned to the online boards and posted comments.  The women understand and are so supportive.

You know I am emotional.  My heart easily swells or breaks for others.  Let's call it compassion.

I don't go on the boards frequently now, but check in from time to time.  Many of the women that I "met" that were struggling with infertility now have babies. 

One story really got me--it was about a family that applied for adoption, and so did their close friends...through the same agency.  The same birth mother met with both of them and selected their friends.  I can't imagine.  They were hurt, but accepted this with grace.  Their friends baby was born, bitter sweet.  Then, just like that, they got a call that they were matched!  I read this and welled up with tears.  I've never met the couple and likely won't ever, but it moved me.  It's so good to see others dreams come true.  And, it makes me realize how quickly things can change....for the better.

On that note, I better go get some work done.  Ya never know when we'll get a call, I gotta get movin'!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Talk about timing!

Wow....look at what I got in the mail today!  You know that fabuloso wedding I got to be in last September?  I got a wonderful gift from the bride and groom today, my good friends Ann and Jordi!  Check it out, a black frame!  So, I headed upstairs and hung it right up on our family photo wall.  We call our friends family around these parts! 

How perfect is that!?

Annie wrote the sweetest write up about me and our relationship on their wedding website, she printed that and included it behind the photo, incredibly thoughtful and so special! 

See, the photo wall is already expanding!  (Yes, I realize how many frames are crooked right now, I'll work on that...someday!)


Monday, January 2, 2012

To Do List

I put together a little to do list to "keep us busy" (as if we are bored!) as we wait.  I thought I'd blog about our progress on our to do list to keep track of what we did while we waited for our baby.  Most of the list focuses on our home and capturing family memories.

To do list item #1: Create a family photo wall.  Here's what I did today:
Obviously, it needs LOTS of help!  Only a few of the photos you see are of our family, so I am setting out to find the perfect photos for the frames.  I'm planning to print them all in black and white, and am hoping that quite a few will be "old" photos.  The top right photo is of Jamie's Grandma Jean, so, so cute!  I'll add more frames in the future (of course, we hope we'll be able to add a photo of the next Baby T to our family photo wall someday!).  It will be fun to see how this expands in the future.

I had all of the frames already (yes, I have quite the decor stock in our basement) and the family sign was a gift we received for Christmas. 

In the frame below the family sign, I plan to do a little scrapping type collage.  I'm starting with a fun last name collage, I found the details on how to make it on a great blog, Full of Great Ideas, you can find it here.

Here's what I made:

Uh-oh, now I am itching to make the collage and dig up old photos.  But, motherhood is calling, so I better go pay attention to that cute curly haired little boy I get to call my son!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The New Year

Here we are, happily landed into 2012.  We had a terrific New Year's Eve at our home with great friends.  I've been able to have some quality time with a few "old" friends lately and it's been wonderful...spending time with them feels like home.

This year I have many things I'd like to do.  Get more organized.  Kick the nail biting habit.  Drop 10 more pounds.  Worry less.  Enjoy more.  Create healthier habits, and keep them.  HAVE ANOTHER BABY.

I saw this the other day and had to save it.  I think I'm there, and it feels good:

When Jamie and I were first married and ran into kinks, we'd comment that we've "growing and learning".  Years later, we still are.   Our past has made us better.  I'm certain we still have lots more growing and learning to do!

A perpetual calendar that I got from the ladies at work after we lost our baby last January has a great blessing for today: "May you look forward to the year ahead with an unwavering confidence in God--He loves you more than you can imagine, wants you to live out the dreams He put in your heart, and cheers you on to fulfill His purpose for you."

So that's how that strong desire to have more children got in there, God put it in my heart!  I hope that this year allows me to fulfill more of my purpose, whatever that is!  (It's a little scary to put that in writing, because I know what I WANT my purpose to be, but He may have other ideas!!)

Happy 2012!