Sunday, February 26, 2012

To Do List

My favorite "to do list" item has definitely been our family photo wall.  Look how it's grown!  My grandmother gave me some wonderful, cherished old photos and Jamie's mom brought me some wonderful photos, too!  Next time I will straighten the frames before I snap a photo...whoops.

The additions:  (The one of my Grandpa {Isn't he handsome!?} in his uniform may be going on another wall we plan to create...all photos and documents highlighting our family that has served in the military.)

 The stockpile of frames I bought: (Please forgive me for buying the cheap $3 frames.  We're trying to save our pennies for a baby for Pete's sake!)

How Scrapbooking has Helped me Cope

Once we really got head on into our battle with infertility, I remember a friend asking me to go on a scrapbooking retreat.  I was in a very bad place mentally....feeling very much like life was unfair, that no one understood me and overall felt completely helpless.  I went on the retreat knowing that all of the other women there have multiple children, most of them have three or more kids.  That used to be a tough spot for me to be in because I would always feel so out of place.  I'd listen to their stories of chaos at home and wish it was like that in my house....sometimes I'd want to scream "DO YOU KNOW HOW BLESSED YOU ARE?"  (As a side note, I am sure may people have this experience in life, just in other situations: Do you know how blessed you are that you married your soul mate?  Do you know how blessed you are that your husband helps around the house? Do you know how blessed you are that your family lives close to you?  Do you know how blessed you are that you are healthy?)

I went on the retreat and was surprised at the healing power of scrapbooking.  For two days, I stared at photos of the amazing life we have.  The miracle of being parents, the fun the three of us have together, the joy Griffin brings to our parents.  Photo after photo, page after page of blessings.  Instead of feeling bitter and jealous, I felt thankful for what I had.

The next retreat I went on with the same gals was different, and in a good way.  I was pregnant, and we already heard our baby's nice strong heartbeat.  It was fun to keep the pregnancy secret from everyone but my two good friends that knew almost immediately that our 2nd IVF worked.  One of my good friend was in charge of my nightly shots in my butt!  It was funny then and is funny now, but for a while I looked back on that weekend with sadness since we never got to meet our baby.

A few weekends ago, I went with two other good friends on a scrapbooking retreat in Maiden Rock, WI.  I wasn't nearly as organized as I usually am for scrapping, and knew that I wanted to do some other things while I was there.  I discovered my grandmother's family was from there, so I wanted to do a little exploring.  Most of all, I wanted to catch up with my friends.  I made plans to meet up with another friend prior to the retreat, so I had a lot to look forward to.

It was a great weekend.  Getting together with my friend prior to the retreat was wonderful.  She's a kindred spirit, always fun to be around sort of person.  We had a good talk about babies.  And, our mutual desire for more babies, but it turns our more babies won't come easy for either of us.  But, that won't stop us from trying.  I enjoyed scrapbooking and focusing on the good in our life, the many blessings we have.  Catching up with Tawnia and Molly was great.  Molly and I had a couple of fun excursions to the local establishments for beer.  I got plenty of scrapping done.  And, I achieved a goal that I didn't think was possible after how out of shape I let myself get last year....I ran 5 miles straight.  It was a tough run, but it was a gorgeous morning.  The sun was shining and the countryside was beautiful.  I was going uphill, so took my time.  I'd see a farm site in the distance and would decide to at least get that far, then I'd see a sign, then something else.  Finally I looked at my watch and decided I better get back. I tapped the sign that was my last goal to run to.  When I got back some of the gals asked how far I ran, but I wasn't sure.  I drove the route and right when I got to the sign I tapped, my odometer changed to 2.5!  I ran 5 miles!

On the way back I kept thinking about goals, this run, and infertility.  The run uphill was so slow and difficult, but the run back down hill was so fun--fast, liberating, exhilarating, enjoyable and REWARDING.  I'm hoping to be on the downhill run with our infertility battle soon.

Here are some photos of Maiden Rock:

Focusing on the Good

Jamie had to work on Saturday during the day, then we found out he also was going to have to work at night. I was a little bummed, but thought I'd make the best of it. I decided to plan a little adventure for me and little man, an adventure that wouldn't be as easy when we have a baby in our family.

I got up in the morning and sent a text to a good friend that we'd be in town asking is she and her family could meet up--and they could!

Griffin and I headed to out to do a little shopping for Jamie's 40th birthday. Yes, I said 40th! I told Griffin if he was a good shopper and didn't complain we'd go to a special store and get the toy he's been pining away for, the Cars 2 Bath Blastin' Finn McMissile. He was so excited when we got to Toys R Us.

He couldn't believe there was a store with just toys! He was SOOOO good. We walked up and down the aisles and he pointed out a few things he liked and asked if we could put them on his birthday list....never once did he ask for anything! We found the Finn toy he wanted and he sat on the floor and admired it. So cute. We got up to the check out counter and he emptied out his wallet, $11.02. I paid for the rest. He told the clerk he didn't want a bag and he happily carried Finn out of the store with him. He wanted to go home right away and take a bath, but I told him I had more surprises for him. He held Finn the entire time he was in the car for the rest of the day.

Next up we met Christine and Issac at a fun bounce house place. In no time, Griffin's cheeks were rosy from all of the jumping and running!

We went to Space Aliens for dinner, Jon and Brady were able to meet up with us (they were at Brady and Issac's older brother's basketball tournament during the afternoon). They boys had fun playing games. Griffin lucked out and won 162 tickets on one game--he is still talking about it!

As soon as we got home, Griffin jumped in the tub to play with Finn.

What a great day!

And, Jamie is going to LOVE his birthday gift!

Here we are in the wind simulator....Griffin thought we needed to go in!

A possibility, maybe?

One of my best friends talked to me on Thursday about a situation she heard second hand.  An expecting mother that will be unable to keep her baby and may be looking for an adoptive parent.

She found out about the situation on Tuesday night, which we both thought was kinda interesting because of my premonition.

I followed up with someone about the situation and it's complicated.  Lots and lots of factors are involved, but I would say it could happen.  Not, I-am-getting-my-hopes-up-this-is-it-going-to-happen, but rather the let's-keep-this-door-open-and-see-what-happens kind of situation.  We won't know more until months from now.  So, we'll keep doing what we've been doing best--which is wait patiently and enjoy the life we have.

As always, we could use prayers about our situation--that the right baby joins our family, and that the adoption process is as smooth and positive as possible for everyone involved--especially the birth parents and baby.

Thank you!


I was driving home last Monday thinking random thoughts (I know, what a surprise with me!), and all of a sudden I thought, "We are going to get the call tomorrow."  Weird, I know.  I forgot to mention this "premonition" (or maybe it was just a hope) to Jamie, but remembered it in the morning, so told my friend Wendy.  I figured if it really did happen I wanted some real live proof that I had a "hunch" beforehand.

Tuesday came and went and we didn't get a call.  But, I didn't fret about it.  It was, however, really fun to imagine that the call was going to happen soon.

The wait continues.....

Baby's 1st Diaper, almost done!

Carrie from Mud Butt is nearly done with our unborn baby's first diaper.  (FYI--Not only is our baby unborn, but we still don't know when, where, and from whom he or she will arrive...I didn't want you to get too excited if you saw the diaper post!)

Ours is the brown diaper with the orange BOOM BOOM.  Love it!

Totally On Board

One of the things I love about Jamie is that he's totally on board with our adoption process.  He's actively engaged in reading about adoption, openly talks to people about our situation and helps me (and Griffin) cope with the wait.

But this one really got me....

The other night after work I was about to start dinner and saw Jamie on his hands and knees with a rag.  I asked him what he was doing.  He responded, "I'm cleaning the baseboards and doors, it's on the to do list."

Oh. My. Gosh.

Try not to be too jealous. I know after reading this post you must think I have everything in the world going for me, but remember, we're infertile.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Griffin's Comments

I was saying bedtime prayers with Griffin on Monday night and he asked me, “Mom, when are we going to get our baby?  We’ve been waiting for 100 years!”  It’s amazing how much a 4 year old boy and a 35 year old woman can relate to each other.

I assured him that it would happen in time (and thought to myself that I better blog this so that I can show him how much he wanted a brother or sister when he’s fed up with him or her later in life!). 

Then he asked, “But, what if no one wants us to have their baby.”  I assured him that we have a happy family and that someone would like their baby to be in our family. ,

This followed with, “But what if the baby already likes their family and wants to stay with them, but we really want the baby?”  So I explained that the Mommy and Daddy had to make the decision.  He asked, “But what if they are sad because they don’t get to keep the baby?”

Heart wrenching.  I KNOW they will be sad.

It’s interesting to me that at 4 and a half, the little guy has the same concerns I do.

He went back to the beginning of the conversation and asked when we’d have a baby because he wants a baby soon.  Then he asked me if I could get the play dough guy he made at Nonna and Poppa’s down from his shelf.  He’s a resilient little bugger.    

Friday, February 17, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


It started with this feeling of needing to get things done around the house.  Lots of things.  Things that I haven't thought about.  Really, ever thought about.  We need to clean behind the washer and dryer.  The filing cabinet needs to be organized.  The cabinets need washing.  Then I started a list.  And it was long, really long.  So I typed it up.  Jamie joined in and we started crossing stuff off the list.  Let me add that he joined in with a smile on his face.  The guy is great!  One day he called to ask if I wanted him to pick up G from daycare and start dinner or would I rather have him scrub the laundry room floor and clean behind the appliances.  (I picked the latter.) Love that man!

Then it dawned on me that I am nesting. 

I love that.  I am so glad that although I am missing out on a pregnant belly, ultrasounds of my beautiful baby, feeling kicks, people asking me when I am due, wearing cute maternity clothes (and the list goes on).....I am not missing out on nesting.

I am really hoping I don't have to nest for years.  But, if I do, boy will our home be organized!

Don't you see? I've left the race.

The other day the baby questions started early, like 5:55 a.m. early.  By 6:55 a.m. I was getting baby question #2.  I really don't mind the baby questions.  I'm glad people are interested, or at least pretending to be interested.  It makes the wait seem so much more real, like I truly am an expecting mom. 

After the interrogator from the 6:55 a.m. baby discussion left the room, my good friend looked at me and asked, "How do you do it??"  I told her the truth, it really doesn't bother me anymore.  After all, we've put our feelings right out there on our sleeves, so we have to expect that people will ask.  And, I enjoy educating people about the adoption process, so it's OK. 

The part of the 6:55 a.m. discussion that I didn't appreciate was this: Interrogator, "I guess it's a race between you and X to see who has a baby first."  X is trying to get pregnant, and maybe is.  But really, it's not our business until she wants it to be. 

A race?

See folks, I am out of the race.  I gave that up a long time ago.  Did I WANT my children to be closer in age?  You betcha.  Would I have loved to have a baby at the same time as my good friend Kelly so we'd have two kids the same age?  Yep.  Do I wish I was on baby #3 right now, not holding onto hope that we will at least have one more child.  Of course.  But that didn't happen, I lived in the race and it sucked. Mentally, physically, emotionally sucked.

You know what?  I learned it's not a race.  I don't care how close my kids are in age anymore.  I don't think about what grade Griffin will be in when our next child starts school.  I don't think about so and so "beating me" because they have three kids and we likely never will.  I don't worry about the trivial things that used to consume my thoughts. 

The race kept going and I exited.  I pulled out on the sidelines and decided that I'd run a different course.  A course that has pretty scenery, but tough hills.  It's a lot longer than the other course, but it's made me a better person, a better mom, a better lover of life.  So, I'll continue on this course until I get to the end.  But I won't race to the end, I'll take whatever time I need to get there.

So people, please don't put me back in the race.  That's not a place I want to be anymore because losing hurts.  I'll just continue to do my own thing, and you know what, I'll be happy doing it.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Acting Like an Expecting Mom

I think you all know that after a little husband convincing on my end, we've decided our next baby will be cloth diapered.  A while ago I met with a very nice and talented women, who also happens to be an adoptive mother of two, who makes cloth diapers.  She showed me how they "work" and her "factory" where she sews them in her basement.  It was so helpful.  She recently unveiled a great new diaper and announced that several would be available for sale today.  I LOVED the new limited edition diaper, and it was a Wednesday (my day off), so I figured that must be a sign that I should buy one!  :)  The first of hopefully many diapers!!  I chose brown with a orange BOOM BOOM so it would be boy and girl friendly.  Anyway, I had a big smile on my face when I clicked on "complete order".  I'm cautious enough to realize that our situation may not work out as we are hoping, but in the mean time I truly feel that we should live life as expecting parents.  I think we deserve to celebrate with hope and anticipation what is to come.  It feels good to be expecting again.  (And, no, we don't have a match....YET!)

Custom Order 1 Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Diaper 9amCST

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Checking the Website

Every so often I check the LSS website to see the list of waiting families....I look at the pretty photos of happy people eagerly waiting for a child.  Today I checked it out and was happy to see two families that have been waiting since I started taking a gander at the site (over a year ago) move to the "matched" section.  Of course, I can't wait for the day that we move out of the "waiting" category and into the "Congratulations on your arrival" category, but in the mean time I am going to celebrate these families that have been waiting much longer than us.  How exciting!  It's great to see dreams come true!

Griffin's Comments

As I was getting lunch ready today, Griffin was cutting up some red peppers.  (Sounds more dangerous than it was!)  Out of the blue, he said, "Isn't It sad that my uncle died?"  I responded, "Uncle Jordy?  Yes, it's very sad, but he is happy up in heaven." Then Griffin started asking us all sorts of questions about heaven.  Can Uncle Jordy talk in heaven?  How about walk?  Does he have legs up in heaven?  Jamie told him he had wings.  Could he play with Uncle Jordy in heaven?  Did heaven have swing sets?  Could he fly up on the swing set?  How about toys?  And baby toys, too?  We answered "yes" over and over and told him heaven would be amazing.  After answering yes about the baby toys he smiled and said, "Oh good, because then I can play with my baby in heaven."

I couldn't talk and my eyes welled up with tears.  The little guy still thinks about "his baby".  (The baby that we miscarried in January 2011.)  It will be hard when we explain to him someday--no time soon--that he has 3 other babies to meet in heaven, too.  Hopefully he'll have other babies right here on earth to call his own, too.