Saturday, October 31, 2015

Feel It All

Erika: 


Growing up I always dealt with worry. Starting at the age of about nine I'd always come up with horrific scenarios and ask, "...but what if..." over and over again. I think my mom used to call me the Whatif Bird. She would try to convince me that the story lines I was coming up with in my head were far-fetched and that I shouldn't spend so much time worrying.

It was some time between appointments, soon after we'd gotten our beta news, when Luis and I were in the parking lot at Trader Joe's and I could hear that little bird again. So Luis, me, and the bird sat in the car and started talking about the whole process.
---Why I decided to bring it up in the parking lot before we even went inside to buy cheese, I have no idea.
My concern was knowing how to feel and at what point is it ok to feel... happy? At what point is it ok to feel excited?...Can we tell our parents? How much do we tell them? ...at what point do we let go of fear and worry? Will it ever be ok?

I think I was feeling uneasy about feeling happy... Weird, right? It's like one second I would find myself getting excited and looking forward to appointments... and then the next second I was feeling nervous and unsure...almost sick... just not wanting to get too ahead of myself. Always holding back the happy....

Luis and I sat in the car for like 30 minutes. He was such a good listener and helped talk me down from that tree...
where I'd sat and built a nest with that little Whatif Bird.

The conclusion we came up with is this...

We have to be able to take time and celebrate all of the little things, all of the tiny successes and steps closer to parenthood, even in these early stages. And at the same time... relax... breathe... and surrender. It's all we can do. I'm glad I was able to tell him this before we went in to buy cheese.

Later that week I was telling one of my friends about this and she said that this is exactly what pretty much all pregnant women actually go through. There is always a sense of worry (no matter how big or small) in between appointments and over-thinking of every little feeling. Other friends of ours said that even into the first year of having a child... you worry and stress with each new stage of life... and constantly hope things are ok.

Now that I think of it, this probably only gets worse into teenage years! Another friend of mine, that I've known forever, now has a teenage son. And just the other day she posted a worry she had about him now that he is all grown up... worried about how prepared he is to make good decisions on his own..... I guess you never stop worrying.

Hearing from actual parents who have dealt with these very similar emotions made me feel better and gave me some peace about it. I guess I've joined the club.



Last weekend Tina and I went to a pre-natal yoga class. For me, it really helped with my emotional state that week. And although I wasn't sure what to expect, and thought I might feel weird about being there and not "physically" being pregnant, the instructor welcomed us both with open arms. It was great to be able to breathe (the teacher made a joke about forgetting that important step) and re-focus... and really visualize Baby Blueberry (comparable fruit size at the time) floating around, all cuddled and warm. It was also nice to hear from other mommies-to-be about what they're dealing with, both physically and emotionally. And I think Tina's and my favorite part was Child's Pose.  "...It's always a good time for Child's Pose."

I need to continue to remind myself to breathe in peace and allow myself to embrace the full range of emotions that comes with this journey... 
I want to be able to feel it all.

In August, right after our first failed transfer, I stumbled upon this book while buying a gift for a birthday or a baby shower.... I cried when I read it in the store. I went back a couple of weeks ago and bought it.


So now... I will tell you a story.



video

(I recorded this in the middle of the night... in the middle of the week... while Luis slept... 
so my voice sounds extra whispery and scratchy... it may put you to sleep. And yeah, there's a cricket that listened in too.)

"Our hearts are forever happy and hopeful for you."
---excerpt from a letter to our baby

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

One Step Closer

Luis:


Just as the first time around waiting was not easy, neither was this time. However, I think we might have done a better job this time of just being patient. There was not much we could do for these 10 days (the 2 week wait after transfer) of finger crossing, baby day dreaming, back and forth conversations with God. We had spent the weekend before with my cousin Ben, Lisa and BAM. I really do love Ben the IV, he reminds me of my childhood growing up with all of energy, giggles and mischievous curiosity. Seeing my cousin interact with him gives me a smile knowing time is the only barrier in building a relationship with our own little one.


Monday was supposed to be a back to normal day, however I could not help but have my eyes check my phone every opportunity between activities with my students. I got a missed call sometime around noon from the clinic. I had to wait an entire two periods to give them a call back. On our first transfer Erika and I had found out together after being spending the whole day with one another. I would have liked to have done the same thing this time around as well, but I called the clinic wanting to be the one who would have to say it was bad news and tell Erika myself instead of the nurse.


When I did call and the first words uttered by the office were, "We have great news..." it took every ounce of me not to blurt out random noises of excitement. She started telling me numbers and adjustments for the meds for Tina. I had to quickly grab a sticky note and jot down the info. The most important of course was the HCG number being 281. Our little Blast had started multiplying. In the moments after getting off the phone I took what seemed like a slow motion movie shot to compose myself back to the present. I had asked the office to inform Erika because I knew she would love to tell Tina the results. I imagined her smile, pulsing heartbeat, watery eyes and felt joy knowing that this small number had ignited a dream we have been waiting for.


I love my wife and she asks me why all of the time. This next part explains one of those reasons. After calling and texting her with no response I knew she had to have known. Even in a time like this, Erika has a heart to think about us. She had gone to the store to pick up little baby shoes and a beanie. She rang the doorbell and left them for me to find. This small gesture goes to show that even though she was crazy happy herself, she thought of me. I think this is what our glue is in our relationship. The unselfishness and thoughtfulness towards one another. We both show it it in different ways, but it's one thing that our child will no doubt see as they watch us continue to grow.






Erika:

Well... I had a whole thing planned... but Luis' entry made me cry... so instead... this....



This is what I put on our doorstep. I rang the doorbell and hid behind a tree.
I heard his grunty giggle... then I hopped out.
I had never really thought about how I would tell Luis that "we were pregnant." The concept always seemed so infinitely far away. Even though he technically heard it from the nurse first... We still got our moment.
(I say, "Dude..." all the time... and I figure this would look adorable on a boy or a girl... Imagine pigtails in that beanie!)
This was the message I sent Tina after finding out our first beta result on a Monday. Hehe...  
This was the text I got from Tina after she got the results for the 2nd beta on a Wednesday. It was a surreal moment.
How I got through the rest of the day... I have no idea.
Since we didn't want to say much to anyone quite yet,
our friend Florencia suggested that Luis and I go walking around outside
and just start high-fiving strangers!
(We didn't. lol.)

This was further confirmation that Tina sent us....
(Luis was so excited he felt like if he were to POAS  it would also be positive.)
While we know things are early... like ridiculously early... this is as pregnant as we've ever been. Ever. 
It's crazy to think about. 
And each step we get closer... is another huge exhale.....
We also understand that everything is in a very fragile state right now
and completely (as always) out of our hands....
We decided to go ahead and share this part of our news now 
so we can get extra prayers and support that baby continue to grow healthy and strong.
Grow baby, grow.



"Not a day goes by that I don't think about you... I imagine you growing and changing... and especially in these first few weeks... SOOOO much is happening! It's such a miracle and God's got you in his hands. Praying for you all the time bitty baby...." 
---excerpt from a letter to our baby