Monday, June 7, 2010

My Little Sparkler's 8 Weeks...

I'm so, so conflicted these days.

What's new, right?

I TOTALLY get why women whose babies die maintain a 'grief' type blog for their little one (or ones) and then when/if subsequent pregnancies should occur, maintain another...Like I said, I wish I had the time (more like energy) to do that because it really makes so much sense.

It feels like such betrayal to be celebrating the milestones of a pregnancy when just a few months ago, I was celebrating the milestones of Matthew.

I know it's not. I KNOW that's irrational. I know that is an attempt to steal my joy.

Regardless--it's a very, very strong and deep feeling. And much as many mean well in telling me not to worry, that is much, much easier said than done.

I've also come across several blogs of women with infertility that I have cringed at when reading...blogs that say that they as infertile women have a hard time hearing about other women with infertility getting pregnant. I understand that, to a degree, because we live in a world where we so easily look at what others have and we don't, and wonder, "Why isn't that me?" Lord knows I have done it...especially as a teacher who through the years has had the privilege of teaching children that I'd have given my eye teeth to parent.

But honestly, I get (and have been, admittedly) being jealous of women who have NO infertility. I get (and have been) being jealous of pregnant women with no losses--complete and total ignorant bliss. I get (and have been) being jealous of women with one or more children and just wanting to BEAT THEM OVER THE HEAD because they take so much of their motherhood / pregnancy for granted...I tried to go to a few "Due Date" clubs today and in EACH ONE (except, sadly, the pregnancy after loss ones, which didn't have many posts) there was some sort of whiny post (or numerous ones, actually) like, "Anyone else hate being pregnant?" or "Why do I have to lose my body to give it to them?" or "Will this ever end?"

Seriously? Yeah...I totally get being jealous of those women, and sadly, even feeling a bit judgemental toward them.

What I DON'T get is having fertility issues and being jealous of other women with fertility issues who finally are able to get pregnant. I don't understand how some people can look at those newly pregnant women and say things like, "They just don't get IF anymore...they're officially out of the IF club."

Trust me. I get infertility. I realize how very, very, VERY blessed we were that both our fresh cycles worked (ironic to say that) and I OFTEN told John that getting pregnant with Matthew on our first cycle was really beating statistical odds (which I apparently am very good at).

Getting pregnant does not erase 10+ years of pouring my heart out to God and begging Him to be a parent. It does not erase the heartache of every baby shower that wasn't mine or every baby gift bought for someone else or every procedure and chart and medicine taken in hopes that it would finally be our turn. It does not erase the heartache of working feverishly to put together a dossier and falling in love with children of another country--preparing for one of those to be your own and then being shut down--which was traumatic for as at worst but heartbreaking for those children left behind.

It does not erase the fear that since my only and precious little boy died, I may never get to parent another child on this earth.

No--those who suffer IF will ALWAYS get it.

And so EVERY. SINGLE. TIME I have learned another woman with IF issues has been given a miracle, I've rejoiced. Before I got pregnant--I rejoiced in the hope that one day it could be me. After Matthew, I rejoiced in hoping it could be me again. Today--I rejoice because I just see so much suffering in this world and I am SO glad to see SOME sense of fairness in the world.

Just as I've said of women who have lost their children, I say for women struggling with IF--in a world that seems SO unfair, I am just glad and thankful that I get to see some examples of life being more like we feel it ought to be.

I don't even know why I got off on this tangent other than because it's just hard to find my place in the world these days.

I tried to adopt a baby. I didn't. I am not an Adoptive Parent.

I tried to get pregnant. I did. I'm no longer in the IF club.

I gave birth to a baby. He died. I don't get to be the Playdate Mom.

I'm pregnant again but terrified that I won't get to bring this baby home. I can't join any Due Date Clubs because I won't complain about hating pregnancy or petty things like whether I am disappointed it's a boy and not a girl.

I'm a mother who wants to be overjoyed about the precious little life I'm carrying.

I'm a mother who misses her little boy so much that I believe people can physically feel a broken heart.

And I feel really, really bad even writing about how hard this is because I know there are so many women who are trying so hard to bring another baby into their lives.

But I'd be lying if I didn't. It's hard.


I have always been known to love shiny and sparkly I am just pleased as punch that my little Sparkler is fitting in with that trend! Today, Miney is 8 weeks! I didn't do this with Matthew, but figure since it's for his or her posterity, here's what's going on:

Week Eight: Starts to practice moving

You are 8 weeks pregnant. (six weeks from conception)

* The embryo is measures about 18 mm (3/4 inch) in length.
* Their arms and legs are growing and location of the elbows and toes are visible..
* The feet and hand buds have appeared.
* Starts to practice moving (not felt by mom till week 20)
* The stomach is being made from part of the gut.
* The face is beginning to take shape.
* Your baby's mouth and nostrils are starting to develop.
* Teeth begin to develop under the gums.
* The eyes can now be seen as small hollows on each side of the head.

The arms and legs continue to develop - These limbs are stretching out more and more. Later on you will be feeling those feet and elbows up close and personal right in your bladder. The embryonic tail has almost disappeared.

The pituitary gland is also forming and the embryo is beginning to grow muscle fibers. The heart has divided into the right and left chambers and is beating about 150 beats a minute which is about twice the rate of an adult.

The baby's facial features are visible, including a mouth and tongue. The eyes have a retina and lens. The major muscle system is developed, and the baby starts to practice moving. The baby has its own blood type and the blood cells are produced by the liver now instead of the yolk sac.

Praying for a strong heartbeat on Wednesday.


  1. I think you it's okay to keep all of your thoughts on one blog. No matter if you are celebrating a new life or grieving the loss of Matthew or enjoying the mundane Matthew will forever be a part of everything you do for the rest of your life! Moms of multiple living children do not feel the need to have seperate blog for each of their living children because they feel the need to honor each of them seperately and I hope you don't feel guilty honoring your children together.

    As far as the other stuff, I get it! I tend to be a lot more "jealous" of people who are pregnant and have babies who haven't been throug a loss or suffered through IF. And I have remind myself that 1) I am not the decider of who is worthy of children and 2) their children have nothing to do with me losing Ella Grace!

    I can celebrate with you and this new baby you have growing inside of you and I can be excited for you! It doesn't have anything to do with Ella Grace or my loss! You don't get a baby instead of me! It's so hard to keep that mentality, but it's the only way to keep my sanity!

    I hope you have a fantastic day and if you ever need someone to celebrate that miracle with you just come on over!

  2. I feel that confliction as well. More and more, I see myself as a Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde when it comes to my current grief situation.

    My son passed away, and I grieve for him daily...missing him and loving him with the same intensity as I did the day he was born and the day he left us.


    I am pregnant with his brother, who will be joining us (God willing) in 2.5 months, and I am so excited! I am overjoyed at the chance to have my joy restored, but I continue to grieve because although this child will be and already is such a blessing....he isn't his brother. None of his siblings will be HIM. Such a hard thing to balance - joy and grief; happiness and heartache.

    I've contemplated keeping another blog, too, but like you...I don't have the energy. Plus, it would be like keeping Ayden separate from our lives, and he will always be a part of our lives.

    I'll be praying for you and little Miney on Wednesday! Such a great, comforting sound..... Thinking of you so often and sending lots of love your way.

  3. You are right, a broken heart does physically hurt.

    I too know the jealousy of those who 1) got pg easily (we did clomid for the twins) or 2) those who've never lost a baby. Somehow it was easier to accept pg news if I knew there was a history if loss, which made me feel awful, but there you go.

    Praying for a great report on Miney!!

  4. Even when you're not working, you're a teacher! I just love it. Let me just say that I would be over-the-moon-thrilled if my children had someone like your for a teacher.
    Now with that being said......It's pains me as well to hear woman complain about being pregnant....what a blessing it is; discomfort, strech marks, painful boobs and all. A little miracle is inside of you and you never know if it will be your last time. I complained when pregnant with J, didn't take many pictures and took the experience for granted. Little did I know I would never get the chance to feel the "butterfly" flutters, the little feet popping out and just the simple closeness only a mother and baby can feel. I would have cherished every ounce of it all. The beauty of hindsight.
    Many blessings my dear and thanks for the brush up on fetal development! I start nursing this August and guess what? We start with maternaty/peds!

  5. Praying for a strong heartbeat Wednesday! No matter what, there will be people who aren't happy that others are pregnant. Even though I struggled with infertility for years, I was always thrilled when someone else was pregnant. Especially if it was someone who had been trying and dealing with IF.

    I did go through a time after my loss when hearing of and seeing pregnant women hurt a little, but knowing you are pregnant with your rainbow brings me such great joy!

    This is your space and you should be able to say and do with it what you want. It is about you and your family. Your precious Matthew and your new hope, Miney. xx

  6. I know I've felt that way before...that once a woman gets pregnant, she loses some of her place in the IF club. I saw too many people get caught up with themselves and no longer really care about those who were still struggling. Now that I'm on the other side, I can see that once in the IF club, always in it. It's part of what shapes us. I just try to be a little more sensitive to those still trying than others were to me.

  7. As the title of your blog clearly states, "Our Family's Story." And that's what it is. There is room enough here for both of your children. Just like there is in your heart. I understand the conflict you're feeling; I have felt it myself with the twins after Jonathan and the adoption loss. I was so turned around in my head and heart that Satan had me convinced until I was 13 weeks along that I didn't even want the twins. I didn't feel like I could tell anyone what I was feeling though. Too scared to be real. To tell the truth. Or what I thought was the truth. Now I realize that wasn't what I felt at all, but what Satan was doing his darnedest to trick me into feeling. And it worked. For a long long time. Too long. And if I had told someone, God could have used them to set me straight.
    Almost two years later, I can see all this with 20 20 vision. Of course I loved my sons with every fiber of my being. Of course I wanted them more than life itself (still do most of the time.) I realize that the double heaping helping of hormones I had coursing through my body only made everything so much worse. Pregnancy muddles up your emotions more than you realize and you can't appreciate it until you're not pregnant. That sneaky devil will attack you any way he can, especially when you are at your most vulnerable. That is what he does.
    Our God is strong enough to fight our battles for us when we don't know what they are.
    I shall pray for this one specifically for you, dear one. Because I have been in it. I know what weapons he uses. What words he whispers in the dark of night. And how completely overpowering the guilt can be. And He brought me out of it. He was and is my Champion. And He will do the same for you.

  8. Loving you and supporting you no matter what. Continuing to pray.

  9. Lori i never suffered with IF, i got pregnant on my second try. MY WHOLE pregnancy was a struggle, from sickness to sciatica and it would have ALL been worth it had she came I get what you mean when you dont know where you belong...I was the one who got pg right away yet i had NOTHING in common with all the other preggers who werent on bed rest, who didnt feel sick, who delivered a 4lb baby at full term and brought them home...its not fair...we are good people and should feel like we "belong" somewhere...but I know where I belong and its HERE and in this community. I will be the FIRST to admit I can ONLY be happy for a blm rainbow baby these days..and im scared right with afraid to say things that sound positive or negative so I just say I pray...I pray that you get to feel that baby in your arms screaming and crying...lately we have been blessed with rainbows in the community and it gives me hope...and still there have been rainbows that just were meant to "fly away" im scared. and you are scared. but know this much...IM WITH YOU ALL THE WAY...24/7 im here for what ever you need...I also do not think you need to seperate the blogs...your feelings for your children will never be different and some people choose to offer seperate ones for newly bereaved moms....but think of it this way, if matthew were in your house would you seperate him from his bro or sis? well then why seperate here? I like to see that you have kept them together...they will be a part of each others life forever and why not start it from the very beginning...when he or she is older they can read this blog and see how you felt and were scared and joyful all in one breath..xoxoxo..strong heartbeats!!! that is all we want to hear!!!

  10. Lori - this is a great post (they always are with you)... it takes a lot of work and emotional energy to celebrate what is happening to us today, and to try to understand why other things happened to us and who we do not physically have with us as a result -- but they will always be with our hearts, souls, and next life.
    I love all the cool things happening with your little Sparkler!! Soon enough she'll be eating icecream cake with that forming little mouth! ("she" just came out spontaneously - i have no idea why -- but am leaving it -- perhaps Matthew's little sibling will be a sister :))...
    Many moonbeams of happiness thoughts coming your way, as you do such an amazing job understanding all the thoughts in your mind and soul for Matthew and Miney... :)

  11. Lori, I understand all of your feelings. I pray that you get that healthy heartbeat on Wednesday. I remember graduation. SGFC is a great place to be. They are very supportive throughout the whole process. I know the IF journey and being "jealous" of people who are pregnant struggles or not. I try to use my struggles and feelings to be compassionate towards my students. I also try to look at pregnancy in a diffeent light because I do not know the whole story. Your story and stories like yours give me hope in this IF struggle. Dealing with an impending IF cycle I take comfort in all the new little beans that come along and pray for my own.

  12. Lori, I am so happy for you because I love you. Nothing else has to cloud those feelings. Hey - the little guy's "tail" is almost gone! That was one of my favorite development milestones just because. :)

    Each of your posts give me something to think about, and I thank you for sharing your heart.

  13. Lori... you are so right... sometimes it's sad, but I guess people just see things differently.... I can't seperate my blogs - I have no extra time but also this pregnancy after loss IS part of the whole grief journey for us moms that choose it. We have chosen that path. I read your "Due Date" part and nodded my head in vigorous agreement, I really really really get so annoyed when all people have to worry about is the spots they have or their backache.... I cannot join in their happy little club of calm, because of the pain and the broken heart that I still carry. Miney is 8 weeks :D keep praying and keep going Lori. You have lots of prayers from this mamma coming your way xxxxx

  14. Lori we're praying for you and both of your little ones. Hoping for strong heart beat on Wednesday !
    Molly, BC

  15. lori i understand exactly what you are talking about and feeling and going through, i will be here throughout your entire pregnancy as will you be for mine. i have not posted much because i feel guilty saying anything about my pregnancy for so many reasons. i have just come to realise though that it is my blog and it was set up for me to heal. although it is and i am part of a community, a wonderful one at that. it is still my blog for my words and people don't have to read it if they are finding it too hard or too painful. sending loads of love and HAPPY 8 WEEKS!!!!! xxx

  16. Yay for 8 weeks!

    And I think it's perfectly fine to blog everything here. This is your life, no matter how conflicted it might seem emotionally at times (at least I know I feel that way about my own space). Matthew isn't a separate part of your life, he is part of the whole. That is ultimately why I chose to keep 1 blog.

    Thinking of you!!!

  17. Lori,

    Praying for little Miney. Shine, baby Shine on Wed.

    As an IF'er...even after birthing and bringing home healthy twins...I can say that the pain of IF never truly goes away. My kids are 19 months old, I know how blessed I am every day. I love them, I celebrate them. But still, in the darkest places of my heart, there lies the pain of 5 years of IF. There lies the pain of knowing that I didn't get to chose when my family started, or when it will be complete. No one really does, ultimately God chooses for us all, but for some of us that reality is just more painfully obvious.

    I too still have friends that I love dearly, but who can get pregnant whenever they want and bring home baby after baby. It's hard. I pray each time that God will give me the grace to be be able to hold and love on their babies...most times he does. But there are some people that are harder than others to accept. No rhyme or reason why, just some are harder.

    I can say that it is for sure easier to feel joy for my IF friends or for other friends who have more difficult roads. Right now I am feeling hope and purpose while walking with two ladies at my church through their journeys. One IF'r who is now pregnant, possibly with twins. One other mommy who has a very complicated mono-mono identical twin pregnancy and has been told she will have to deliver at 30 weeks due to the high risk nature(my babies were also delivered at 30 weeks.) So for now, I am thankful that God is giving me love and joy for these women.

    I have a few other issues that I deal with that are really so superficial that I hate to write them down. After wanting more than anything to become pregnant...and being so greatful...I did have a truly scary and difficult road with the twins. Miracle that I was able to carry them even to 30 weeks. After it taking 5 years to get pregnant I just wanted something to go "normal"...and things just didn't. So I still have the desire to be pregant again, hoping I will be able to enjoy it more and relax...and to just have the whole baby experience again. Having twins is a double blessing...but things are so hectic and stressful that it really was hard to "enjoy" the baby stage. Of course I regret that so much, but not sure how I could have done things differently with two premies.

    After the miscarriage from our last FET I have one little frostie left and if that doesn't work, unless God performs a miracle, my family will be complete.

    I'm not saying that I am not grateful for what I have...I am. I don't mean to sound greedy for wanting more...but I do. Darn the human heart for always wanting more and for not being capeable of being truly satisfied on this earth. I want a whole houseful of kids. I'm not ready to pack away my kids clothes and never see them on a little brother or sister.

    So all that I feel, I can only imagine it is a million times amplified in yours with what you have been through.

    I'm thinking of you. And again praying.

    Shine, baby Shine!

  18. Sweet Lori, my friend, I am sorry your heart hurts so much. I know you must feel like you are breaking, at times. But I am happy that after such sorrow, you are now experiencing the joy of carrying Miney, and hoping for a strong heartbeat tomorrow. Will be thinking of all of you.

    Love, J

  19. PS Have you ever read this website?

    The mom lost her first little girl at the age of over one, after a difficult pregnancy, and then got pregnant with her second daughter, who is now here and healthy. I think you might relate to much of what she writes about.

  20. I really love what Amber said about Satan. I haven't lost a child. My husband's business partner Brian lost his 15 year old son in a football accident in Sept 2008. His only son. It is tragic. And horrible to watch him and his wife endure this pain. So, no, I haven't lost a child. But I'm not ignorant to the possibility. Because it happens all the time, to wonderful Godly people.
    A couple of months after Taylor died, Brian was able to speak with a man named Siran Stacy. Siran lost 4 of his 5 children and his wife in a car crash. In my opinion this man should have been devastated....and he was. But he told Brian something that has stuck with me and inspired Brian. He told him that when people try to ask "why did this happy to Taylor" or any other awful question, he said to remember that that is Satan trying to bring him down. Satan can come through in many different forms.
    I have never had IF problems, and I am so incredibly thankful. And I've always felt guilty about that because I know too many mothers with IF. Even though I haven't gone through it and don't understand it all too well, I am still overjoyed and hopeful for you and any of my other friends with IF.

  21. my husband and I recently had a -short- conversation about what to do after September; What about christmas cards? Can we really just sign Annie and Dave and leave out Noah? Is it fair to include him in our family? (As we already are/have.) Is it fair to NOT include him? And for how long? It just doesn't seem fair either way: ignoring a life that happened to us, or constantly dragging up the pain of the life that happened to us. It's a lose lose situation. It sucks :(

    I pray for you everyday. I know it isn't wrong to love your next baby, but I also understand the betrayal you feel about doing so. You're about 6months ahead of our timeline, and it's good know the thoughts I've had (fearing and wanting and hating and loving to be pregnant again) aren't abnormal, but they are far from easy. You're very strong and everyone here supports you 100%. We'll read 7blogs if you want us to :)

  22. Also praying for a strong heartbeat Wednesday.

  23. Hi Lori, the address you left me came back as a permanent return to sender?

  24. Yeah, not worrying is easier said than done for sure!!

    I don't frequent my due date club like I used to with Kyndra or before Carleigh's diagnosis. It isn't the same and I just feel like I don't really connect with all the women who are so blissfully unaware and complaining about stuff I think is stupid to be complaining about.

    Can I just say how retarded I think it is that people would even think to say that you don't get IF anymore just b/c you're pregnant? Well, it is.

  25. {{{hug}}}

    And so glad you both got to see and hear this heartbeat!!!

  26. After we received Lilly's diagnosis I just could not complain about anything while being pregnant. I enjoyed every pain, every move, and every kick.

    I can not imagine what you are going through but you are definitely entitled to how you feel. It is definitely not wrong, because it is how you feel and therefore validated.

    Worrying is something I know I will do if we decide to get pregnant again. Many hugs your way.

    love and prayers