Saturday, August 17, 2013

Right Where I AM 2013: 2 years, 7 months, and 2 weeks & 1 year, 3 months, 3 weeks, and 3 days

I am just a little behind on Angie's Right Where I am Project, but here I am exactly 2 years, 7 months, and 2 weeks out with my son Liam and 1 year, 3 months, 3 weeks, and 3 days out with my daughter Evelynn.

I love my son. I miss my son. He is my little buddy. He will always have a special place in my heart being my first born. It has been a long time since I have sat and thought about what life would be like had he lived. I also rarely get saddened by the sight of a 2 1/2 year old little boy. Since my rainbow died as well I don't know if I would be in this same place or not. My life would obviously be a lot different right now if I had my toddler aged daughter keeping me on my toes. But as of right now I am still stuck in this spot of trying to be happy and hopeful for my second son, who will be born in about 6 weeks with the help of my gestational carrier, and heavy grief with a whole lot of anger for my daughter, with a big ole pile of scared to death that this baby will die as well on top.

I go through periods still, in one right now, where I lay in bed at night and can't sleep because my thoughts are filled with anger for the little girl that should be here. I lay there and can't think of anything else but how mad I am. No one is around to hear me if I want to scream at the top of my lungs, but instead I just lay there and scream in silence. Sometimes I even make fists and punch the bed a few times. I look at my Liam and Evelynn Molly Bears and a few tears form. Rarely do I ever full on bawl my eyes out anymore. Eventually I fall asleep. I can still hardly look at her pictures without some form of anger coming with it. She is so beautiful, perfect, loved, and missed. I love Liam and I already have so much love for my coming son, but I am so still so MAD. I have always wanted a daughter and she DIED and I. am. PISSED!

I had a lot of regret after Liam died about the fetal surgery and what a huge mistake it was. To this day I still regret getting that surgery, I just don't beat myself up about it as much as I once did. What is here is still a whole lot of anger, and maybe its just that my regret turned to anger, is that because of the fetal surgery my daughter died too. I suppose the biggest difference in my grief between my daughter and my son, and of course my being scared to death about my coming son and the future, is that I didn't just lose my daughter, I lost all chance of having any joy in pregnancy and possibly the chance of having anymore biological children, especially carried by myself.

My son, who we have already named Max is on his way, as I said in about 6 weeks, and almost daily I think about getting pregnant again or how we can ever come up with the money to do IVF and get another gestational carrier. I contemplate the costs of me being on hospital bed rest for numerous weeks to a couple months versus the total cost of another carrier pregnancy. I think about the kind of grief, regret, and anger I would have against myself if I lost another baby. What kind of mother would I be to purposely put my life at risk? What if died too? But what if it all worked out, for once. I want more than one living child. I wish these thoughts could rest and I could put my energy into getting everything finished for Max and just being happy for him arriving alive and healthy, but I guess that's the reality of my screwed up baby loss mind of mine. Plus, sometimes its just easier to think about something else. If I think to hard I catch myself in an ugly spiral of all the ways the world could decide to take Max from me as well. You know the show a 1000 ways to die. I feel like know to much about the 1000 ways that babies can die.

I wouldn't say I hate pregnant women or loathe the sight of babies anymore, but I am stuck in this place where I often catch myself just staring at them in jealousy for what I don't have and many never be again.

I still try to do things that help me feel closer to them. It comes in the form of adding butterflies to Max's nursery to represent them, hanging their pictures up, and even seeing a Medium. It's about bringing me comfort. So what I am saying is that I am okay. There is still a lot things in life that bring me joy. I have lived with grief for long enough. It is a part of my life. It has changed me. I accept it for what it is, whether I like it or not. It is here with me always. When the sun is shining, when I am working in my garden, when I am laying in bed at night, when I am out on a hike. It is with me and it is all because I had the chance to know and love these 2 amazing little people. It is here with me because of them. They are my babies and I love them. I don't wish it was gone but I sure with they were both here. If that even makes sense.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Our Carrier is Pregnant- 32 Weeks/8 Months

What a way to start August out. I am so incredibly excited and sooooo nervous. Jessica informed me on August 1rst that we are now going to do the induction on September 30th. You know what that means? That means no matter what my little Max will be here by the end of next month. Hearing that made my day and made a great start to August. I always wondered how the due date ended up the way it did, being Oct. 11th, because our RE gave us what he said the due date should be, and it was different. Well I guess Jessica's Ob was going off of the date that he got from one of the u/s's. Well, he decided I guess that since he knows how anxious we are to meet Max that he would change the due date to the date of when we did our IVF stuff, which makes it October 6th. So that means that since we are going to induce at 39 weeks, Max will be here on September 30th at the latest! Woot woot! For the record though, I am still hoping he makes a break for it at 37 weeks. So very, very, very cautiously head over heels excited!

I had been waiting to buy my plane ticket for some reason or another, but when I heard this news I got on it right away. I will now be back a few days before we hit 36 weeks, versus right before 35 weeks. So much to do before I leave. The goal is to have the entire nursery done, the vehicle cleaned so we can get the car seat in for when we get back to AK with him, the house cleaned up, packed, and the big one of getting our Pre-Birth Order taken care of before I get on the plane. That last one is the big one since we need to ensure that if Jessica goes into Labor early that our names go on Max's birth paperwork, not hers. I spoke to our lawyer about this the other day and he says he is going to get the affidavit ready so we can get this taken care of asap.

A few days ago Jessica had her hospital tour. I will be doing one with her when I get into town as well. She said that we will for sure be getting our own room until Max is discharged from the hospital. I will also be getting setup with a lactation consultant to help me. We will also have to use the on call pediatrician since ours is here in Alaska. Dereck and I need to discuss vaccines, circumcision, etc. It's crazy to be at this point having to think about these sort of things again. All I know is it would be nice to actually have a delivery that goes as planned, since that has never happened with us.

Also if anyone has any suggestions please help me figure out what I need to bring back to MN/ND with me for Max. I have absolutely no idea what a newborn needs, especially once he leaves the hospital and we will be living out of a suitcase for at least a week. I own almost everything a baby needs so I hate to have to buy more stuff if I know I already have it. I know I need all my pumping stuff, cloth diapers and accessories, baby clothes and swaddles-how many should I bring and what sizes? (NB or 0-3 months?), and my k'tan. I think on the plane I'll carry him in the k'tan or do others think it would be easier to bring and use my ergo instead? I am most likely going to borrow a infant car seat from a friend in MN so that ours is already installed in our vehicle for when we get back home. What else do I need for a newborn to make it at least week living out of a suitcase, driving around, and flying?

I have briefly talked to Jessica about getting some maternity type photos done. Derecks sister in law is a photographer and said she would be willing to take some for us. This is something I have never done in any of my pregnancies but have seen some awesome intended parent/gestational carrier photos on other surrogacy blogs and pinterest. Anyone have any good ideas for pics of Jessica and I to take together? Jessica said she also has a coworker/friend that does some photography work that would be willing to take these pictures for us, some of Max's birth if her Ob Dr is okay with her in the delivery room with all of us, and then of course get some good newborn pictures of him and all of us after. Eeeek! It's so crazy that we are thinking about all of this already! It is getting so close. Only 3.5 weeks until I leave, 5 weeks until we reach 37 weeks, and 7 more until induction day! Let the crazy begin.

Jessica is still using the ear buds I sent her for Max so he can learn my voice. I also just mailed Jessica a box of freshly caught Alaskan silver salmon and halibut. I love that they like fish and knowing that my little guys is going to get all those awesome Omega 3's and the DHA from that salmon.

I talked to my blm friend Caroline the other week and she sent me an email back with this verse from this Green Day song, "Wake Me Up When September Ends."

here comes the rain again
falling from the stars
drenched in my pain again
becoming who we are

as my memory rests
but never forgets what I lost
wake me up when September ends

She looked up the meaning of the song and found this:

This is a song of wisdom and acceptance. "Drenched in my pain again, becoming who we are" - the realization of the fact that everything we go through, all the pain and losses, all the hardships we meet along the way are meant to make us stronger and shape our personalities. In the video for this song we see a young couple that gets separated by the circumstances. This shows the director's view of the song: we should treasure our loved ones and never take them for granted, because they can be taken away from us any moment.

Pretty fitting, you think?

Operation Bring Milk Back for Max:

At the end of August I decided I was done trying to go the natural route and needed to look into the Domperidone again. Through the help of Jessica, she found a list of various compounding pharmacies throughout the country that would make it for us. I don't know how I never thought of looking out of state. It was so much cheaper at all of the lower 48 compounding pharmacies, versus the $400 a week here in Anchorage. The place I found that was the cheapest and would ship to Alaska was out of Wisconsin. It was approx. $30 a week-I think that's what it was. I swear we get ripped off here in Alaska. I told my Pediatrician and his wife, who I mentioned has been helping me with this, about these prices and they sent in a Rx right away. They are also paying for this medication for us. So if any of you out there were thinking it was dumb that we were going to pay $400, well now you know we weren't going to be the ones paying for it, just didn't feel that was anyone's business. I did however feel bad having them pay that much so that's why I looked into other options. They are doing this for us for 2 reasons: the first being that they insisted on wanting to help us and know this is all financially a lot and second because they just started their own lactation clinic in their office and have never worked with domperidone before. The nurse has done Reglan before because her and her husband, the Pediatrician, have adopted a couple of babies and she wanted to breastfeed them. So I am more less their guinea pig to find out all the ins and out of how this med works.

I started taking the Domperidone on August 5th. I started taking about 10mg 3 times a day for the first 3 days. Then I went up to 2 of the 10mg pills 3 times a day. I will be on this until I am finished taking it. By the second day I was feeling pretty flushed in the face and warm like I was coming down with something. No other symptoms that I noticed. By the second day I could also already tell a significant increase in my milk production. I still pump about 5-6 times a day and still having a pretty hard time getting up at night but am doing the best I can. I usually pump about 10-15 minutes each time and when I am finished I do a hand massage and try to work out as much milk as possible. Hopefully soon I will be able to get milk out with the pump but like that I am getting a fair amount out with the hand massages. It'd be nice if I could start getting enough to save, but making progress everyday. I love this med!

Also, I have a really good pump but my pediatricians wife gave me a hospital grade pump to use. I really love and appreciate how much they have tried to help me with this. I can't wait to have Max here so he can meet this amazing couple. Oh and if Max is born on September 30th he will even have the same birthday as the Pediatrician. Kind of cool.

That's all for now- off to pump again!

Friday, August 2, 2013

The Medium

Shortly after Evelynn passed I was determined to see a medium because I wanted to know where my babies were, who they were with, and if they were okay. I never ended up seeing one at that time because when I brought it up to a friend she told me not to, at least not for awhile. This friend had said she had seen a medium before and it was the most amazing yet crazy experience ever. She said the medium knew nothing about her and her family but was spot on about everything at this first visit. Hearing this made me want to see one even more, but just let the idea drop for the time being.

In May of this year one of the women in my uterine rupture group posted about talking with this medium named June Patrick and how awesome the appt was. There was also a comment made by another member of the group who had said she had spoken to a different medium but also had an amazing experience. After reading this I decided it was time for me to finally meet with one myself, so I decided to look into this June Patrick. She had a website that talked all about how "it works" for her and about her life. There were reviews from people that had previously worked with her and also a Facebook page with more info as well. I wanted to believe that their really is some truth to all of this, but was still pretty skeptical.

I decided to make an appt, but couldn't get one until the end of June, which then got rescheduled until July 7th. I was able to get the entire conversation recorded through a conference call number that she gave me so that I could listen to it again later. After that was set up she explained to me how the spirits come to her, whether it be through images they show her, words, and so forth. She also said that with every spirit she likes to ask them questions so that they can try and verify themselves to me so I know who they are and that it really is someone that I know. This first appt didn't go very well, so I was even more skeptical. Pretty much all of the spirits she said that were talking to her were vary vague in what they were saying and how they knew me. Majority of the names she listed were of no one in my family either. About the closest thing she said was when she brought up that their was a man with her named Michael and she was wondering if he was a spouse that had passed. Well I did date a Michael for quite a few years, suppose you could say my first real love, and he died about 6 months after Liam did. She said he died in a car accident, which he did, and that he said that he cares about me. So I left this meeting pretty sad that I wasn't able to get any real answers, especially since I was hoping to get through to my babies. June said that she had never had a reading like mine before and didn't know why the spirits weren't coming through very well. She said she wanted to do another reading with me in about 3-4 weeks, mainly so that she would forger our conversation. We set up another appt., although I was really worried that this is something that she always does and in that 3 weeks she was going to try and research me. She knew my name and the only other thing I had told her was at the end of my appt about how I had hoped she would have reached my babies. It worried me because I have this blog with a lot of info on it about me and my babies, although most people probably don't.

On July 27th I had my second reading with her, and it went way better. It started about the same as the last with the recording and her explaining how everything works. Her doing this made me wonder if she really didn't remember me then since I had known all that from last time. First person that came to her was an older women. She was in a rocking chair and was holding 2 babies. She then asked me if I have had 3 miscarriages, because she is getting this "feeling" like I had. I told her that I haven't really had 3 miscarriages but that I have technically lost 3 babies. She said that there was a boy and girl and that she got the sense that the little boy had died at 6 months of age. I told her that he died at 6 months gestation. She then asked if it was do to something with his head because she was seeing an image of like an opening in the back of his head. Well that's sort of right since Spina Bifida is an opening at some point in the spine and it can cause hydrocephalus in the brain. She then went on to say that Liam said he wanted to stay but he had a purpose to serve first, and that was to help with research. Well I guess the whole Spina Bifida research study had just been done. She told me that the little boy said his name was William but preferred to be called Billy. Hmmm, why doesn't he like to be called Liam? She then went on to say that he was playing with some toys and really wants to have his chance at being a little boy and play with his toys with us. She said she felt pretty certain that he was going to come back to us at some point because he really wants to. She said that he had a little star shaped mark on the right side of his face under his eye as well. She then said that he kept saying 2, which made her believe that we might be having a little boy in 2 years and it will be Liam. I told her that we are having a baby boy in 2 months, so she said that must be what he meant and told us to look at his right eye and if he has that same mark it will show us Liam is back. Wouldn't it be crazy if Max has this little mark under his eye? I would freak out! She also mentioned something about cleft palette, but I am hoping she only said that because that can be a sign of Spina Bifida.

June asked that lady holding the babies again to give us some more info about herself so that we know who she was. She was an older women, like a grandmother to them. She kept showing the Medium pics of a what she thought looked like an nursing home but that she was concentrating on the nurses, so she didn't know if she was trying to say she was a nurse or worked with the elderly. She had this sense that this women was on my mothers side, possibly her mother. She said the women said that she died of "congenital heart failure" or something like that, she couldn't really understand her. Well my moms mom died of a massive heart attack. Then the women through out the name Laura or Lori, she wasn't quite sure. My moms mom was Lola and my dads mom was Lucretia-which could be pretty hard to interpret I suppose. She then got an image of what looked like a NICU setting. It was hard for me to make sense of a lot of things since I don't know much about my grandparents, especially the grandmas because they died when I was really young. But then she says the name Gene, and asked about it maybe being a middle name, like Laura Jean. Then it clicked for me that my dads sister is Lori and she is a NICU nurse and my dad and Lori's brother is Gene. They are both living and June did say that the spirits will give names of the living to help show who they are. I am a little confused by this though because if this was my moms mom why did she give me names of my dads brother and sister???

She then moved onto to the little girl. Right away she asked if I knew an Evelynn. I almost cried when I heard her say that. She said she was very shy, was latched on tightly to Liam, and she continuosly sucked her thumb while holding a blanket in that same hand. Evelynn apparently showed her a 5 and June wondered if there was some significance to it, like maybe if Evelynn died when she was 5, or the month of May. Evelynn and Liam were both buried in May. She then said Evelynn said something about April, which of course is the month she was born and died. When she asked Evelynn how she died June said she felt like she got a blow to the stomach and wondered if Evelynn died from a stomach issue. My uterus rupturing was definitely like a couple of good blows to the stomach alright. She tried to ask her some more questions but I guess Evelynn just kept trying to hide behind Liam and didn't want to talk. June did however say that Evelynn had light brown hair with lots of little ringlet curls.

She said that Liam was for sure a talker, but was confused that he kept saying the name Sara over and over. At some point Liam also was talking and joking with a man, but we couldn't figure out who he was. June thinks he might ahve died from some form of cancer, possibly throat she was thinking. Dereck's grandpa died of cancer this past year. He actually was really sick and in the hospital but still came to Liam, his first grandsons, funeral. She did mention something about Germany, but that was a little vague. I am also a little sad that if this is all for real and my Liam is coming back, what about Evelynn? I did mention to her that I wasn't carrying Max though, but about the only thing she responded to related to Max at all was that she saw a long distance between me and him and she wondered if my carrier lived far away-very true.

I'm still just not sure what to make of this. I do write a lot of personal information on my blog. She could get a lot of info about me and my babies off of it if she wanted, but what about the whole part with Lori and Gene then? I have never wrote about them before. I can't imagine she is that good of a guesser. I tried to be vague with my answers to most of her questions because I didn't want to give out too much info for her to try and work with, not to mention I just don't know a lot about my relatives. In the same regards though, I wanted more answers from her besides vague ones, like they miss you or care about you, because that tells me nothing.

What do you all think about Mediums?
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