The beginning….

Just me and my thoughts….barely getting through this journey.

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Hi there, just me and my thoughts here… as my husband and I embark on a choatic journey of adoptions, IVF, and and all the ups and downs in between; not to mention just life in general.

When I asked my husband (he’s a witty one, sometimes) what I should title my blog, he mentioned to me, “Unraveling the Yarn.”  I said, “Hm…not sure about that one, but I like the concept.  What else could go with it, and what does even mean lol”  He replied, “Like the expression that a woman’s brain is a big ball of yarn, so you are writing things out as a way to unravel the mess of thoughts in your head.”  – See, that’s why I married him.  He gets me.

So, that’s what I’m doing, I’m unraveling my thoughts, my fears, my anxiety, my happiness and there’s alot more going on up there, but I’ll try to focus on these things.  Because adoption can be a scary thing.  IVF can be an even scarier thing.  You may read that and think to yourself, why the hell would anyone put themselves through both of those processes at one time.  I guess I can start this whole blog off by answering that.

Here it goes, bear with me, it’s definitely been a ride.  Like so many families, we’ve had 2 miscarriages, a pretty common thing in this world.  It can be tough, whether you are expecting it or not.  On top of the miscarriages, we also had 2 ectopic pregnancies.  Those were a little more rough on me, physically.  In 2011, kiddo #1 & #2 were welcomed into this world with completely open hearts.  We were so very ready for them.  Of course, at first, we didn’t KNOW there were 2 of them, but we knew we were trying, we were successful after a short few months (I say few, but it was really 7 months but in the ‘Trying-To-Get-Pregnant’ World, it only classifies as a few).  We were excited, ecstatic really and we told a few people here and there but tried to keep it quiet.  Like any new parents, we were overwhelmingly excited to start this journey and be the awesome, weird parents we knew we were meant to be.  Except, a pain started to occur, my test results weren’t showing up as they should, and we found out we had miscarried, and a few weeks later, we had an ectopic pregnancy.  Unusual but oh so very capable of happening.  That. is. tough.  My doctor had wanted me to take a shot (summing this up and not going into all the medical terms and meds, but it was a shot) to let the ectopic pregnancy pass.  It didn’t work.  2 weeks later, I was being rushed to the hospital because I was in serious pain and I was tired of waiting.  I was exhausted from WAITING to know and for it to be finished.  Maybe that sounds cold, but anyone who has experienced an ectopic pregnancy knows what I’m talking about.  Anyways, rushed into ER, had 3 incisions in my stomach, my tube had ruptured while they were trying to remove the little girl from my tube and my tube was removed.  1-2 months later, I was recovering physically, not quite ready to recover mentally yet, but that’s another post for another day.

Kiddo #3 came in July 2015.  We had tried, alot, I was on clomid for months and again, we were ecstatic.  We told basically everyone because we had a huge family outing that we would be with friends and family constantly and we didn’t want to hide it.  A month after telling everyone, we had miscarriage #2.  We were traveling to Mexico later that month and we decided I didn’t want to pass the empty sac while in Mexico and potentially have problems, so we had it removed.  So if you’re keeping count:  2 miscarriages, 1 ectopic.

Kiddo #4, and probably the most painful (physically), was the last one.  He was a little fighter, I tell you.  It hurts me to this day to say this outloud, because I know the situation medically is not possible or not ideal, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t painful or haunt you just a bit.  October of this year (2016), I got up and went to yoga at 4:30 am like I always do.  Nothing seemed out of the ordinary, I was even running a few minutes behind like I always do.  I sat in my car and instantly was having this annoying pain in my side.  I brushed it off like I was having digestion issues or that my food from the night before wasn’t settling.  Either way, I knew I’d get to yoga, I’d go to work and it’d go away.  I drove for 6 miles debating whether this pain was too painful to get through my yoga or not.  It sounds dumb now, that yoga was that important to me, but that was my way to start my day.  I went back and forth for 6 miles, and finally decided I had the flu or was coming down with the flu and needed to go back to bed and call in sick.  I get home, I yell to my hubs that I think I was getting sick..probably food poisoning or the flu.  I mean it’s October and weather in Arkansas is stupid, so who knows what you can come down with then.  I layed on the couch, on my side, curled up in a ball, because that was the only way that I felt the least amount of pain.  Again, I know it sounds stupid now…but I am a bit of a tough cookie and I have done alot of stupid things over the years, acquired alot of stitches, have scars for days and pain is not a big thing to me.  I mean, it sucked and I even started to cry at one point but I brushed it off that I was tired.

So from 4:30 am to 8:00 am I struggled with pain, little did I know I was struggling with my life (whoa…that’s huge once I see it in writing).  I’m not being dramatic either…I’ll get into the details in a few.  I text my sister and told her I was sick and that I might go into the ER b/c I think I had food poisoning or something was wrong.  I asked her advice and we didn’t really decide on a conclusion.  Finally, I look at my husband and said, “What should I do?”  He looks back at me and says, “What does your gut tell you?  You always say, you regret it when you go against your gut.”  BOOM.  Again, why I married him, he gets me.

I didn’t hesitate to get up, well I did.  I couldn’t get up without his help and pain shooting throughout my body.  I struggled to get on my shoes and a jacket to wear and I definitely didn’t give two hells what I looked like b/c we were headed to the ER stat.  Traffic by the way in NWA is the worst, seriously the worst.  Finally, 30 minutes later, we arrive at ER, waited in the ER waiting room for well over an hour as I slump over a chair in tears, just asking for someone to take me back.  We get taken back, and wait again in the hospital room for over an hour, get a Dr. to see us and finally get prescribed some pain meds.  45 minutes later, no pain meds and I truly think I’m going to die.  While a random guy was in our room (I mean, he wasn’t random, he was restocking towels in the room), I say, “GET ME SOMEONE NOW.  I DON’T CARE WHO..BUT I CAN’T TAKE THIS ANYMORE.”  This was my final plea, seriously I didn’t know what was going on but I was in more pain than I can explain and I knew that I wasn’t going to make it if someone didn’t get something to me.  I literally had debated having him take me home because I knew I had tylenol, aleve, or maybe some old muscle relaxers at home to hopefully alleviate some pain.  THANKFULLY, the restocker guy was like, hey I’ll get your nurse so he can get that for you.  THANK YOU JESUS that he was listening.  Pain meds given and within about 3 minutes I was feeling better, still an incredible amount, but bearable at least.

Somewhere in between my madness of begging to send me a doctor and yelling at my husband to get someone in my hospital room and help me with meds, we were told we were pregnant.  That happened in one sentence, the following sentence I knew what she was going to say before she even started it.  I think I may have even interrupted her and said, “Ectopic?”  She said, “But it’s an ectopic pregnancy…and it has a heartbeat, which is unusual.”  WTF.  Alright, I’m not a big cusser, but please for the love, do not tell a woman that is in pain, that is gripping for her life, that she is pregnant, that it’s an ectopic pregnancy BUT it has a heartbeat.  Again, WTF.  That comment to this day haunts me significantly.  I am a supporter of a woman’s right to choose, but I am not a supporter of abortion.  Please don’t hate me for that comment, I do not hate you for your beliefs.  So what was going to be done next was something I truly feared and that simple comment of “It has a heartbeat,” hurt more than anything to me…. still does, because I knew there were no other options.  That little boy was going to be taken from me and I couldn’t say no or I wasn’t going to make it.

So……. as I’m getting over that comment still…let’s finish this story.  TURNS OUT, my tube ruptured.  It ruptured hours before, probably about the same time I started experiencing that pain about 4:45 am.  For 7 hours I was bleeding internally.  7 damn hours (see I said I wasn’t that much of a cusser, but it does happen and sorry about that…the pain brings it out).  7 hours, I was bleeding into my abdomen and if I would’ve pulled up my shirt I would’ve noticed all the bruising that had taken over my left ribcage.  Over a liter of blood was lost in my abodmen.  You would think I would have maybe figured out that the pain was more serious than some stupid undigested food.  But whatever, we don’t always make the best decisions… or should I say I don’t always make the best decisions, and trying to be a brave person and push through the pain was stupid of me; I know this now.

Anyways, since the tube ruptured, there was no hope in saving it, not even a little portion of it.  So that’s 2, the 2 tubes you are given by our sweet, gracious Lord were taken away so quickly, and the dream of having children naturally was removed from my window of opportunities, surprising your husband with a disgustingly peed on stick was removed from my hands, doing a “gender reveal” which I hate anyways, but doing one was no longer an option, and finally getting to experience an ultrasound with my husband holding my hand, listening to a heartbeat wasn’t going to happen without doing IVF (something I was not, am still not 100% sold on).  So ya…..it was painful.  It still is painful.  I know several people in my life, that don’t get my struggles and that is completely fine because I don’t understand everyone in my life’s struggles.  BUT, this was a tough one for me.  Not only did I have a brush of death…the one thing I know God has put me on this earth to be is a mom, and slowly, and torturously that opportunity was being stripped from my hands, no matter how hard I was holding onto it.

Obviously, I know the wonderful option of IVF & adoption are incredible, INCREDIBLE opportunities that we so luckily have the privilege of.  So please don’t take my description as IVF or adoption are lesser ways to become a mom.  IT ABSOLUTELY IS NOT.  I actually consider both options to be much more difficult emotionally, physically, mentally and socially to get through.  THAT TAKES A STRONG, INCREDIBLE, BRAVE MOM.  I have so much respect for women that go through anything of the sorts and I fully plan to go through both processes as well, hence this blog.  I just want to make sure you’re not perceiving my description and story incorrectly.  That may be an unnecessary explanation, but it is important I say it.

So……….this is the beginning.  Something that may seem like an ending (I was one of those people at one point in time), is simply the beginning to this journey.

Hope you’ll join me and come back.   I promise it will not all be tears and pain….

 

 

Thankful

I have shared several times on this blog, “I am thankful.” There are so many things I am thankful for and there is no better time to share than Thanksgiving.   

1. I am thankful for a mighty Lord to bless us with all the opportunities given to us, especially the latest blessing, Zayden Gray Vinson.

2. Baby sneezes, because they are the most precious thing a newborn can do. Seriously, it makes me oh and aw every little sneeze.

3. I am thankful for fertility drugs and procedures.  As crazy as the drugs make you with mood swings, hot flashes and other random side effects, I am thankful for the outcome they can bring.

4. Our doctor’s/nurses and the wisdom given to them to help get us through the past 6+ years.

5. Our support system.  We have been overwhelmed with family, friends, coworkers, church family, wedding clients, and complete strangers that have gone over and beyond to support us.

6. A fairly “easy” pregnancy and labor.  Despite all odds, some struggles through it and a major backache, we made it through that pregnancy and labor like a breeze.

7. All the babies we lost over the years. ❤️

8. Etsy, because we’ll sometimes you just need that custom dinosaur height chart and you just don’t have time (or creativity) to do it myself.

9. A husband who is not only supportive and helps any chance he can get, but he has also become a master at changing dirty diapers.

10. A profession that can be flexible and the best clients a photographer could ask for.

11. Loving dogs that easily transitioned to having a newborn brother and only overwhelming him with kisses every other day. 

12. Eye contact with our baby boy. Gosh, when he looks at me with his eyes wide, my heart just melts and melts.

13. Meal trains and freezer meals.  If we didn’t have either of these during the first few weeks postpartum, we would be eating cereal for every single meal.

14. Parents that live (probably) a little too close. 😊 But always willing for a friendly stop by and to love on sweet baby Z and it’s just an added plus they will bring food or beer each visit.

15. A home that truly feels like our home.

16. Bouncy balls, because let’s face it..sometimes Zayden wouldn’t have fallen asleep, unless we had that giant thing to bounce him to sleep.

17. Baby baths. I have never seen a baby more relaxed than when Z is sprawled out in a warm bath! 

18. The ability to breastfeed and pump. This was one of my biggest fears, that my body wouldn’t produce what it needed to, but so far I’ve been blessed with the ability to do so.

19. Night lights to guide clutzy me throughout a dark house, with Baby Z.

20. Restless nights, because it means there is a reason to be restless and that reason is the best thing ever.

21. Zayden falling asleep on my chest. I may be one of those weird mom’s that encourages this forever because right now it is my favorite thing to do, cuddle and let him fall asleep on my chest. 

22. Bassinets right by the bed, so I can check on him any time throughout the night I need (or should I say want to).

23. Time for the body to heal.  The body is a crazy, intricate creation and to imagine you have the ability to create a little human is pretty incredible. But this body also needs time to heal and I am thankfuln to have that time  to do this.

24. Blogs, to get out all these thoughts in my head but to also have a space to tell our story and help others on their journey.

25. I am thankful for infertility struggles.  I used to take pregnancy for granted. It seems like everyone can get pregnant pretty easily, right?  Well, I was wrong and now I don’t take such a precious gift for granted.

Baby arrival and all

If you’ve been following my blog or social media, you already know our sweet little one has arrived safe and sound.  It wasn’t necessarily an easy task, but in my typical wild imagination, I envisioned something a bit different.  Thankfully, the good Lord blessed us with a labor I would not hesitate to do again with the end result we received.

We went in to be induced 10/31 at 11 pm.  Of course, Jason and I imagined an ER filled with ghosts and ghouls but we were the only patients there.  We quickly got into our room and we’re welcomed by the best nurse I could have ever asked for.  I was checked and still dilated to 1.5-2 which  is where I had been for over a week.  Clearly, Zayden enjoyed how cozy my tummy was.  After I was checked, I was put on some medication to begin the process around midnight.  Our nurse then told us to rest, because we would need it and left the room.  Already I was surprised by how easy and relaxed everything was.  You can’t check into a hotel this quickly, let alone a hospital.  The hallways we’re quiet and I appeared to be one of the first laboring patients of the day because we got the biggest, best hospital room of them all (no joke).

Of course, Jason takes our nurses advice and passes out within seconds, and I anxiously squirm and flip flop all over my uncomfortable hospital bed as I slowly feel contractions come on.  Going into this labor, I fully knew I’d likely have an epidural but I wanted to see how it goes before I jumped into it right away.  Around 4 am, our nurse came back and checked me again and I had progressed to a 3.  It wasn’t much improvement but we were both happy with this. She then started me on Pitocin and asked if I needed an epidural yet.  As I cringed during contractions, I said I was ok at the moment and wanted to wait a little longer (dumb idea Chasnie…I was not proving anything to myself or anyone else).  My only reasoning behind it is, we had gone through so much to get to this point, I wanted to truly experience it.  And that I did.  Ten minutes after the Pitocin started, my water partially broke.  She came to check me again and it broke the rest of the way and now I was at a 4.  Quickly I was progressing and about an hour later I had Jason call the nurse in and get an epidural asap.  At this point, the anesthesialogist was not there yet but he was on call so it was going to be about 20 minutes before we could begin it (this is where I say I was being dumb…why didn’t I ask for it earlier).  The pain was pretty intense and not what I imagined it would be.  Last September I had bled 1 liter into my abdomen after an ectopic pregnancy had ruptured my fallopian tube. That was the most pain I’ve ever been in my life and these contractions were about twice that feeling.  The only relief was, I would have small breaks to catch my breath before the next one came.

Finally, the epidural arrived.  And that was a whole different experience for me.  It wasn’t the needle that freaked me out or even hurt, but you have to hunch over so the doctor can stick you in-between your vertebraes.  This sounds like it isn’t a big deal, but hunching over while 9 months pregnant and being stuck multiple times, all whole your ridiculous contractions are taking over your body is alot to take on at once.  Side note, one of the sticks hit a nerve and my leg had a reflex and kicked my super awesome nurse. I felt terrible…I think I maybe shed a tear because I felt so bad.  Luckily, third time is a charm and we were able to get the epidural in and started.  

My contraction pain decreased SIGNIFICANTLY, that was a huge blessing.  My wonderful nurse was off shift and we got a new nurse and two student nurses. I mean if I’m going to experience this labor thing, why not be with two student nurses. Ha.  In all seriousness, the two student nurses were fantastic, fanned me when I got hot, held my legs when I couldn’t and coached me through it all.  The new nurse checked me around 8 am and I had progressed to a 7 (pitocin definitely was doing the trick).  An hour later she came back and all she said was, “Ok it’s time.” “Um…time for what?” Jason and I both said at the same time.  Apparently, it was time to have this baby.  See in my head, I had pictured a grueling 30 hour labor.  I had planned for the worst and everything happened to be going rather smoothly. I absolutely couldn’t complain at the moment.  By this time I wasn’t able to feel my legs, like at all but I could still feel contractions. At one point, I upped my epidural to help with the pain and then I really couldn’t feel my legs or anything else for that matter. 

So now was the time.  I wasn’t ready for it. I actually leaned over to Jason and said I wasn’t ready and I needed more time, but he was there and he knew we could get through it.  The rest was a bit of a blur.  The nurses and room was quiet.  I didn’t remember to play music like I had wanted to.  There was tons of pushing going on. The room grew incredibly hot and Jason grabbed a cold rag for my head and one nurse startes fanning me.  After an hour of pushing, we finally we’re past the “hard part” as they put it. I was pretty skeptical, thinking pushing him out has to be harder than this, right?  Thankfully, it was kind of a breeze.  I don’t know if I had it in my head it would be so much worse that I had prepped my mind and body for it or if it really was just easier but within what felt like minutes my doctor came in and out came Baby Zayden. 

The room was still quiet for a few seconds and I found myself  holding by breath, just waiting  what seemed  like an eternity but  then Baby Z engulfed the room with his wailing cries.  A huge sigh of relief came out of my mouth and finally I could relax and embrace him and embrace the first moments of our sweet little family. So many loving tears and emotions overcame me and J as we got to see and hold him. Thank you Lord for a healthy, beautiful, attentive baby boy!

One blessing I didn’t expect was after delivering the placenta, my doctor was amazed by something different with it.  I mean…placenta looks pretty disgusting to me but she kept saying how interesting it was.  Turns out that second embryo we implanted and didn’t take, had a little pocket attached to Zayden’s placenta. In a way, our second little baby was there all along.  I bet he/she was looking after Zayden this entire time and just developed a little pocket of extra goodness to make Zayden even more perfect. What a miracle all of this was and continues to be. I am thankful for every single moment.

Overwhelmed

As I sit in our living room in the wee hours of the night, feeding every 2 hours, a bit sleep deprived, still sore from labor, the house a mess, the dogs lacking attention, and we are just over here “winging it” as we figure out this parenting thing..I feel overwhelmed.  

Not overwhelmed with frustration or exhaustion, or the task at hand, but overwhelmed with joy, love and gratefulness! ❤️ He is so perfect.  His sweet face where he has literally every single one of Jason’s features to his giganto feet just like his mama.  It seems unreal that we could be blessed with something, someone so innocent and perfect.  I never imagined I would be sitting here with the sweetest, most perfect  little boy who is milk-drunk passed out on my chest, dreaming of more milk, and sighing little wheezes of satisification.  

I’m overwhelmed with so much joy and love that the rest of the side effects that come with pregnancy and labor do not even register in my brain.  They do show their ugly faces at moments but the love and joy overcomes!  Just like God’s love for His creation (us).  His love always prevails.  His love always overcome.  How can we not be overwhelmingly grateful for someone so strong and powerful that His love always will overcome?  

Momhood is hard.  It’s dirty and you may feel like  your body and mind has been hit by a freight train, but I’m grateful for my overwhelming amounts of mother’s love and my unfailing, always prevailing Father’s love.

The date has been set.

Well, I should apologize for being MIA lately.  Baby boy is causing swelling in my hands and swelling + working on a camera or computer all day = some ridiculous carpal tunnel symptoms, so blogging has been put on the back burner.  During this quiet time I’ve reflected a lot about what I was going to write about next..new symptoms or new thoughts that race through my mind every day or about the incredible support system I have. We are so fortunate to be surrounded by so many people that check on us daily, some are people that I just know via social media, but the care and time it takes to check on someone means so much to us.  Then today, we had a doctor’s appointment and I left the appointment overcome with emotions and I realized this is what I’d be blogging about.

This pregnancy is real.  Our baby boy is almost here.  The date is set.

I’ve been laboring slowly, which isn’t that surprising.  Some contractions here and there and have only dilated from a 1 to a 2 in the past 2 weeks.  OF COURSE, this child definitely has the Neighbors gene in him and wants to do his own thing on his own time.  Typical, but makes me love him that much more!  After talking to our doctor and determining how healthy Z is, we set a date to be induced.  If he doesn’t feel like joining the world this weekend, we’ll go in Halloween night and I’ll be induced.  As our doctor was telling us what time to arrive and what to do beforehand, my eyes were wide with excitement, gratefulness, and sheer terror.  I glanced over at Jason and I laughed as I saw the same expression in his eyes.  I waited until we left the doctor’s office to let my emotions take over but I was overwhelmed with the feeling that finally it is time.  This IS real.  He is real. You would think carrying a giant bowling ball in your uterus, while waddling around every day would make this all seem real, but not like this.  So in true pregnancy fashion, we wait….wait until his arrival with excitement, a little fear, and so much love and gratefulness.  Finally, our 6+ year infertility journey will all be worth it.

Your mama is ready to meet you little man!

Mom Thoughts

If you don’t know me… I have a wild imagination that never stops and sometimes my thoughts can border the line of realistic and possibly morbidness.  This may be one of those posts and I apologize now, but I need to get these thoughts out and on paper, for the “just in case.”  So let’s get down to it….

To myself: If I can be realistic with you, it’s possible this pregnancy may not end with the happy tears you envision.  I realize this and so should you. As much as I pray every day that this doesn’t happen, it is possible for him to stop kicking at any moment.  So remember how perfect a moment this is for you right now; embrace the kick in the ribs, the 1,000 nighttime bathroom breaks, the uncomfortable-ness when laying, sitting, standing or just moving in general, enjoy these moments fully.  And if the kicking does stop, I need you to remember that there is a bigger plan than what you’ve created in your mind.  THERE IS A BIGGER PLAN. I know it hurts, it sucks, and just royally pisses you off, but just remember there is a bigger plan and that little one is where he’s supposed to be.  Now, just because there is a bigger plan doesn’t mean you can’t be pissed off.  Go for it.  Be angry…you should be.  Yell and scream (if it helps), run your tired heart ragged, cuddle with the pups, veg out and watch crap tv, take a breath, and lean INTO your husband and always pray even though you feel like your prayers are going deaf ears, because they’re not and deep down you know that. So keep praying.  And don’t listen to anyone else….not everyone gets it… when you’re ready, you’ll know.

To my husband: ……I honestly am not sure what to say here.  Besides, I’m sorry.  I’m sorry I never have lived up to the potential I could be.  I’m sorry for all the past let downs.  I’m sorry I’ve let you down again.  I’m sorry I can’t comfort you and help you take care of little one.  I’m sorry you’re experiencing this without me.  The good news is you are so far from being alone.  You have my overbearing (yet wonderful and helpful) family, your wonderful family, so many friends, an incredible church family and small group, and you have the good Lord looking after you every single second.  Be mad at Him if you have to, because I know He can take it but don’t stay mad at Him because He’s there for you and looking after you and baby Z every. single. second.  So no matter how much you want to, don’t turn away from Him.  Also, please teach little Z all the silly & fun things you do, especially pterodactyl calls, but make sure he knows that I was the original pterodactyl-caller and you simply just learned from the master.  Let him have as many dogs as he wants.  🙂  I told you our child will love animals, and he does and you can’t do anything about it, so just give him one more puppy.   Please teach him how to ride a dirt bike and be a BA like his dad.  And whatever you do, make sure he takes on your ridiculous personality, the part that never takes anything too seriously.  And let him be stubborn.  Don’t fight it.  When you think the stubbornness is about to push you over the edge, remember that he gets his stubbornness from me.  Come down off that edge and just embrace it.  Most importantly, you make sure he knows who our maker is.  You wake up on Sundays and go to church and be apart of it. He needs that just as much as you do.  Anddddd in your free time, please please tell him all the stories about how cool his mom is and you can fabricate some if you run out of them.  As for you, don’t change a dang thing about yourself.  You’re so over and beyond anything I could ever imagine, so do not change.  And in case you EVER forget how much I love you, just put Ollie outside for a few minutes then let her back in.  She will shower you with love and excitement, that overwhelming love and excitement is just a fraction of how much I love you.  And finally, you got this, but when you think you don’t, ask for help.  When you’re hungry, there are meals in the freezer.  When you don’t know how to work the baby contraption, google it. When you need extra love, invite all 3 pups on the couch with you.  And when you think you’ve run out of diapers or wipes, there are more stuffed away in the upstairs closet. But you’ve got this.

To my little man:  Buddy, you have no idea how cool of a dad you’re getting to grow up with.  He’s literally cooler than anyone you will ever meet.  Always give hugs and kisses.  Always tell people how much you love them (especially your dad and grandparents).  Always pray, every single day. Always get up and try again.  Always choose to go on the adventure.  Always let your dad take your picture, even when you don’t want him to.  Don’t focus on the win, but always focus on how to get your team to the win.  Always reach out to the kids that don’t seem to fit in and be their friend.  Always choose to love, not hate.  Always lean into Jesus, even when you think He’s not listening…because trust me, He is.  Always ask your dad for a new puppy (but only rescue them).  Get muddy, run as fast as you can, wreck your dirt bike (but don’t get hurt), work hard but play harder, only speed sometimes (but be careful), don’t be afraid of anything, including when to say no. Be silly & weird, please be silly and weird.  Be a lover, not a fighter but it’s ok to fight for important things. Don’t worry about what others think (besides your dad..listen to him). But also, give your dad a run for his money because he deserves it just a little. And lastly, never forget about me…  I can’t explain how much I love you because there literally are not enough words to describe it, but know I love you so much!  I fought long and hard for you and I will always be with you.  Until we get to meet…go and be brave!

To my family and friends: My heart is full knowing each one of you.  Not that any of you have listened to me in the past (lol) but if I could get you to listen to anything, I hope you find and lean into God, especially if you are feeling lost. Thank you for the ones that were good to me.  Thank you for the ones that didn’t ever listen.  Thank you for the ones that always listened.  Thank you for the ones that did stupid things with me.  Thank you for the ones that were there to bail me out of stupid situations.  Thank you for the ones that made me care more than I ever thought I could.  And biggest thank you for the ones that are there for Jason right now.  Thank you.

Maybe this post is over the top or maybe it’s considered morbid to think like this, or maybe it’s just a mom that wants to be the best mom she can be and will do everything she can to make sure her family is ok, even in the worst of situations.  Maybe I’m just a mom.

Trial Run

Trial Run, Part I.

I say Part I, because maybe there will be a Part II or Part III but only time will tell.  Sunday evening we ended up running into the hospital because I was having some unfamiliar symptoms.  No unusual contractions or anything of too much concern, but I wanted to make sure I wasn’t losing any amniotic fluid like I thought.  So we went in, calm and collected (me being more calm than my husband); he for some reason couldn’t even remember how to get to the hospital.  Literally, our hospital is located 7 minutes from our home, but he just couldn’t remember and he almost missed his turn after I told him where to go.  Once we arrive, he asked if he should drop me off at the front door and when I replied no, so he turned the tables and asked if I would drop him off at the front door. lol.  Typical husband things….

We check in and quickly got in.  I was monitored & checked for about 2 hours before being released and given the “Everything is ok.”  Thankfully.  Everything I was experiencing would be the new normal for me the next few weeks.  Maybe going into the hospital was a step more than we needed to do, but when you’ve been what we’ve been through and gotten this far, we weren’t going to take any chances.  We needed to know what was going on and our minds were luckily put to ease.

We decided this was a good trial run for us. We got to experience where to go, what to do, what bags to grab before we walked out the door, and what to partially expect if things progress normally.  Let’s be honest, when time gets here… it’s not like we’ll remember ANY of that, but for the time being we fool ourselves and convince each other we have a handle on this situation.  🙂  I mean, isn’t this how parenthood is?  You think you know what you’re doing but quickly realize you have no earthly idea what’s about to happen…

 

Our “Plans”

The past couple of weeks I’ve been going over our “plan” in my head.  We had planned on having a few children by this age, we had planned to have adopted by now, we have planned…. and the list goes on.  I find myself making plans in my head about this pregnancy.. when I’ll go into labor, how we’ll get to the hospital, if we’ll have to do an emergency c-section or will he come naturally, and I realize my plans always fall through, every single time. I have been planning on a safe and healthy pregnancy and my mind has been filled with a bit of anxiety and worry recently.  As I’m trying to sort through the worry and anxiety, I came to the realization where we are in the year, 10/2017.  This time of the year has been such a bittersweet time filled with a wide variety of emotions, dating back to 09/2011.

This time in 2011, we were going through our first ectopic pregnancy surgery.  When we first found out we were pregnant, we celebrated (quietly) and told a few family/friends but it hit us hard when I started having some unfamiliar pains.  Unfamiliar pains turned into waiting, which turned into the inevitable, losing our 2nd child.  Despite our plans, that pregnancy ended up in a surgery, losing little one and tube #1 being removed.  Ironically, this time in 2016 (October 5th, 2016), we were going through our last loss.  This pregnancy not only ended up with us losing our 4th child, but losing my only other option to get pregnant naturally, tube #2.  As this all hits me, I am filled with bittersweet memories, anxiety and thankfulness.  Memories filling my heart and tears in my eyes as I imagine those lost sweet little ones up in heaven.  Anxiety that anything could go wrong with Zayden at this point.  All the “what ifs” swirl through my head daily, and honestly it’ll be difficult to get past those, but we will, eventually.  And thankfulness.  Thankfulness was a bit harder to come by at first because all the other junk flooding my mind, but we are so so thankful that Zayden is currently healthy and strong, continuing to grow every single day.

All my plans so far have fallen through, and I never understood why, until recently.  He’s pushed these “plans” of mine down because he had a much bigger and better plan.  And luckily, we’ll get to meet this incredible plan of His within a few short weeks.  I will not let the devil seep into my thoughts and push my anxieties and worry.  Because the Lord has this, He has a much better handle of His plan that I do.

Shower Blessings

Yesterday, we were overly blessed and showered with presents, support, and love as we celebrated Zayden’s soon to be arrival into the world.  And I am so thankful and fully reminded how many people love us and little man!  

As many friends know, baby showers are not my thing… I’ve avoided them most of my adult life, usually by being “busy” and just sending a present to support my friends little one.  When in all honesty, I just never could muster up the courage to go to someone’s shower and not lose myself in it.  For years and years, we had tried to conceive and year after year we were invited to baby showers for others.  It sounds absolutely selfish (I know), but have you ever been to a baby shower?  So much love and support is showered over the new mom-to-be, most people bring their kids, and then you have people asking you when you’re having children and anyone that has been in the same boat as us…. You go to the things and your heart just aches.  It aches in excitement for your friend, but also aches in biterness, sadness,  unwanted jealousy and sometimes anger.  Emotions spiraling from everyone else can seem to get pregnant, but you can’t seem to keep a viable pregnancy past 12 weeks.  It hurts.  But you suck it up because you love your friend and you suffer silently as you try and just get through the shower, leaving at the first available opportunity.  Then you leave and you’re overwhelmed with selfishness and guilt, because that shower and that day aren’t about you…it’s a celebration for someone else.  I would come home defeated.  I would be moody, sulk and let all these ugly emotions consume me.  So Jason and I decided, I would be the most supportive friend from afar.  I could send a gift, I could shower them with love and prayer and I didn’t need to put myself (or my husband) through the hours and days of crappiness after the fact. 

Which brings me to yesterday…. We didn’t want to have a baby shower.  We are overly (I can’t express this enough, overly thrilled) that Zayden is healthy and coming into this world soon and we wanted to celebrate.  I just didn’t want to put anyone else through the heart ache and agony that I’ve experienced at past showers. I did my best to not have a shower and refused the offers when they came and we thought throwing a BBQ Celebration would be a good way of celebrating, without the shower.  And of course, the amazing friends we have came and showered us with gifts and love!  And today my heart is full.  I know I’m probably experiencing some pregnancy emotions, but I also know God couldn’t have blessed us anymore than He already has.  He’s showered us with love and support from family and friends and sweet Baby Z.  He showered us, whether we thought we needed a shower or not. I don’t know what we did or why He thinks we deserve all of this but we are so grateful.  I’m so thankful He always knows what we need and He provides.

To all our family and friends that celebrated with us….thank you, you’ve overflowed this cup of mine! 

Sweet face

Some of you follow every blog post and I love how supportive you are for us!  Today I wanted to keep this short and sweet (extra sweet) and share some recent baby photos we received a few weeks ago!  My heart is full and just can’t wait to have this chunky little baby boy in my arms.

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Of course, like his parents he does his best to steer clear of the camera and is also a bit stubborn.  Out of the 50 photos we received, these were the ones we could see his sweet face the most.  Although chunky and adorable, he is mighty!  🙂

Only a handful more weeks to go…

-Chasnie

A Year of Changes

Insane how many things can change in a year…

Around this time last year (10/05/16 to be exact), I was recovering from an emergency surgery where I lost a liter of blood into my abdomen.  A surgery that took another  sweet, little baby from us. I spent 3 weeks laying on this couch recuperating, mourning, and being mad at the world. Jump forward almost a year later, I lay here tonight, on the same couch, exhausted but celebrating us reaching 32 weeks with this sweet, baby boy I am currently carrying.

Thankfully, today we had a 32 week appointment and baby boy has a healthy heartbeat, mama has a healthy blood pressure, and although he was measuring 3 weeks early, his growth spurt has slowed down and only measuring 1 week ahead of schedule now.  God has overly blessed us with news today….just a year after it seemed like everything was falling apart.

Maybe things don’t always go the way we want or plan, but there is a plan much bigger than us. And in this moment, I am thankful for this bigger plan, thankful for the sweet baby boy that is healthy and strong, and thankful to be one step closer to holding Baby Z.  So who cares if I understood how we got here, because we’re here and enjoying every kick, ache, baby hiccup, sweet ultrasound, and every single heartburn-filled evening. ❤️

As always, thank you for the prayers!