October Photo a Day Challenge: Day 1- Peace

Last week on Twitter, MRKH Mummy To Be suggested a photo challenge. I knew then that I would need a distraction for October, so I thought it would be great! Besides, I do love taking pictures. So, I’m going to participate in the October Photo-A-Day Challenge that she created.

Today was PEACE. I tried to think ahead of time what I’d take a picture of for peace. I am such a planner.  Well, when woke up in the morning Cheesecake didn’t want to get out of bed. I thought of the photo challenge and said to myself, “Now that is peace!” He never sleeps! I thought English Bulldogs were supposed to be lazy?!?! He’s not, eventually I’m sure he will be, but he’s still a puppy. (I promise there will not be 31 pictures of Cheesecake). 

So here’s Cheesecake’s sleepy face and my definition of peace:

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I also took the next picture when I was running today. It was beautiful and peaceful and I just had to share:

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Two pictures? I know, I’m an overachiever on the first day. :) Can’t wait to see all those participating and all the pictures of peace today.

Check out her page to see the details, but below are the prompts she created if you’d like to participate.

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Happy October!

Next RE appointment: Oct 3rd

I received a letter about 2 weeks ago that I never mentioned. It was from the company working with my RE, the ones doing the chromosomal testing of my last miscarriage. The letter stated that they are working with my insurance company to get them to pay. I knew that my RE had the results from last time. Right after I received the letter last time they called a day later to tell me the results where inconclusive.

I decided that I was going to wait it out despite the fact that T wanted me to call.  I wasn’t going to call them because I’m not ready to focus on all of that. Sometimes it’s better just not knowing. It hurts that I’m no longer pregnant and for me it was just easier to dive into my weight loss challenge group and live in the moment instead of looking back or looking too far forward.

Well, unexpectedly at about 5:40pm I got a call from my RE’s nurse.  I was completely caught off guard, ran to the kitchen for a pen and paper and she said Dr. M would like to meet with me as soon as possible to discuss the testing and next steps. She said, “Dr. M did receive the results and what I can tell you is there was an abnormality.”

I was unprepared for this phone call so I didn’t even question anything (even though I had a 1,000 questions I had wanted to ask). She gave me a list of dates they had available, the soonest being this Friday.

My husband took off work on Friday to attend a car event that he registered for last year. He’s bringing a car to sell, has a list of parts he has to find there for upcoming projects, and his father and his brother take off work and spend the day together. The first appointment they had available was this Friday, Oct. 3rd. I hesitated to even tell him Friday was available for an appointment because I didn’t think it was even an option.

When T came in from the garage, he found me in tears. I guess I’m just not ready for all of this yet. I know it’s been over a month, but it’s just too much. I told T about the phone call and gave him a list of dates the clinic had available. Without hesitation, he said “Let’s do Friday. Can you call them back now?”

I told him I didn’t want to do Friday because we had plans, but he said that the appointment was more important and he’d like to go Friday.  I told him it could wait and he said, “Look, if we don’t go now we are constantly living in limbo. We don’t know why we had the 4th loss, we don’t know where this is all headed, and I’d like to know what Dr. M has to say about everything.”

I laughed and said, “Yeah well, the last 2+ years have been limbo.” He smiled and hugged me.

So.. Friday it is..

Holding onto Hope..

I’ve learned in the last year blogging about RPL that somedays it’s impossible to have hope. I’ve learned that we will have those days where the pain seems to dig so deep that hope just seems impossible. Dreams sometimes just don’t seem within reach, whether it be directly after a loss or you’ve been knocked down by a new discovery or a cancelled cycle.

Hope.. I’ve learned that when you don’t have hope, you need to allow others to have hope for you until you find your own hope again. Through this blog I’ve held on to hope for so many of you and I can’t tell you how much hope you all have given me through comments on my blog, special emails, DMs on Twitter, cards in the mail, or unexpected packages at my door. In the days following the 4th loss, I counted on you guys for hope and most days I still do.

I’m beginning to find my hope again and a new sense of determination. I’m getting my fight back. Giving up is not in the cards for me. I know I cannot control much in this journey, but I can control how I respond to it. Somehow it’s easier with you guys.

Thursday I received a package in the mail from My Hope Jar and I was blown away by her kindness. I won’t get into details, but moments after I found out my brother was in jail again, and I was feeling defeated with life, I opened the package. I didn’t see a card right away and this is what I opened.

It was a picture created by My Hope Jar.  Isn’t it absolutely beautiful?

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Immediately, I saw 4 roses.. you know how I look for things in 4’s now? I saw the rainbow, and the word, ‘believe’. It is the most beautiful painting I have ever received and has the most meaning by far. I cried when I opened it and felt a sense of peace wash over me. She’s never ‘met’ me and yet she cares so much.  With tears in my eyes, I frantically searched for the card to see what she said about the painting.  Then I read that it is for my nursery that she believes I will have someday.

That’s hope.

She has held onto hope for me in a time when I feel defeated. Thank you My Hope Jar. I can’t even begin to tell you how much I appreciate the painting and the hope you’ve offered. Every time I look at this painting, I just know I will feel hope.

And just when I thought the gift couldn’t get anymore wonderful, I also found a candle (that I will light on October 15th), set of angel wings with a worry stone, and a Hope ornament for my Christmas tree. She even remembered that I collet ornaments.  Each gift was thoughtful and had an explanation of why it was included. When I think about her thoughtfulness I am aware of how much good there still is in the world. I know that RPL totally sucks, but it has brought some pretty amazing people into my life.

What a stupid thing to argue about..

Loss changes you. After every miscarriage I have developed a bit of anxiety. I’m afraid to leave my husband out of my sight. I know now that bad things do in fact happen to me, and I worry about him constantly. Sometimes, I’m scared to let anyone know I care about him so much, because I’m afraid he’ll be taken away from me too. I’m not even going to tell you half of the crap I worry about because you might think I’m crazy, but I can’t help it. I know that this is the course of grieving after a miscarriage for me, and it will eventually go away or be more manageable. After every miscarriage before this, I had severe anxiety for a few months following each loss.

But because of this, I really know how incredibly lucky I am to have him. I don’t want to take a minute for granted.

We got in a little argument last night, nothing major (he ALWAYS refuses to fight) but I was just being grouchy (AF, my brother in jail, I’m eating only healthy things). We would have went out to eat and I wouldn’t have thought twice about calories, carbs, or grams of fat. Now, where was I supposed to go? I didn’t want a salad and EVERYWHERE has bread I love. So I was just a grouch.

Then at one point, T looked at me and said, “Why are you being so grouchy?” I had two choices.. flip out because I was so moody and I hate that question or actually answer his question. I looked at him and thought, he’s annoying me with that question and I’m so mad, but I have him. He is here and he’s mine. Does it really freaking matter where I eat?!?!

So instead of flipping out and throwing a bit of a fit, I just said, “I’m sorry.. I don’t know (with my best sad face). It’s not your fault” and I collapsed in his arms.  I then allowed him to choose and before we left he looked up the place and all the calories, so we knew what to order when we got there.

Although I’m trying not to live in a place of fear, that he’ll be taken away from me too, I realize how valuable my time is with him and that was a stupid thing to fight about. I know how lucky I am to have him.

 

A Spilled Milkshake

Two weeks ago my husband and I spent the day in urgent care. As many of you know he works on cars and apparently he was sanding a car and piece of metal ended up under his thumb nail. It was a huge piece of metal that took up his entire nail bed and was embedded the whole way down to his cuticle. When I got home, I found him swearing in front of the bathroom sink, trying to dig it out with tweezers. He asked me to do it and I refused. It was a HUGE piece of metal. We drove to urgent care and and he was swearing the entire time.

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This story isn’t really about how my husband got metal under his nail because he’s fine. They took care of him.

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But when we were checking in and the girl at the desk (she was really young) almost spilled her milkshake when she moved the mouse on the computer screen. She gasped, ” That would have ruined my entire month if that had spilled!!!!”

I thought about that for a second and really, I’ve been thinking about it ever since. RPL has changed me in a way where it takes a lot of crap for me to actually have a bad day.

  • When I’m stuck in traffic.. I think, I’ll get there eventually.
  • This morning, I dropped my water bottle across the gym floor (spilling an entire 24 oz of water) and I just got towels and cleaned it up. There was no grumbling and I even joked with an elderly man that I was cleaning the floors and the custodian had the day off.
  • I ate moldy Boston Cream pie last weekend and I gagged a bit, threw out the cake, and joked with my MIL that she wasn’t allowed to bring anything to parties anymore. It was so gross! :)

I don’t get mad like I used to. It takes a lot to make me think I’m having a bad day. By a lot, I mean.. it has to be something pretty serious. I wish sometimes that I could go back to those ‘If I spilled my milkshake it would ruin my month’ days, but sometimes, I’m glad I can’t. I’m glad those things do not set me off anymore.

But today.. today was a bad day. Today I wished that a milkshake was the only thing I had to worry about.  It has gotten better with the help of My Hope Jar (which I’ll write about in another post), but it was a bad day.

First, I’m currently having my first AF since my miscarriage where I had ‘a super thick uterus lining’ at my last US. So… yeah.. that sucks. I’m glad my body is doing what it’s supposed to do, but it still sucks and probably why I’m crazy emotional. Not only is it awful, but it’s also a reminder that I’m no longer pregnant.. sigh..

But what really set me into tears was when my mom called, she was crying. She was hysterical. My brother went to jail again today.  If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, you know all about what it was like for me to grow up with a drug addicted mother, and although she’s been clean for years,  it’s my brother’s drug addition that we are worried about now. Sometimes it’s feels like I’m reliving my childhood. He went to jail months ago for drug related charges and a double DUI, but got out in the beginning of August. Now.. he is back in jail.

The other posts I written about him are here:
A Sister’s Love 
A Sister’s Love Revisited 
Dinner with my Brother
Rock Bottom?
Yep. I hate this day and I miss my brother already

He has been on drug binges since he’s gotten out of prison and I told my mother not to involve me anymore, as I was going through miscarriage limbo at the time.  I couldn’t deal with her phone calls about how she was worried he was dead and OD’d because he wasn’t returning her phone calls. I cannot control my brother, his choices, and I’ve done and continue to do everything in my power to help him, but I REFUSE to enable him.

My mother doesn’t understand this.. you see, she’s never had to deal with a drug addict. She’s only ever been one. So now she has no idea how to help my brother and instead she enables him. He always has a soft place to land.  I don’t believe prison is the answer. There seemed to be no help whatsoever for him when he was in prison and he fell back into the same life style..and where is he tonight? Prison.

So what’s the answer? The only thing that worked for my mom. Rock bottom. People stopped bailing her out and she had lost everything. Her children, her house, her sisters, and then her husband. She was living in a hotel without anyone, weighing a sickly 85lbs completely addicted to drugs. To this day, I don’t know how she survived. That was her rock bottom, that took decades to get to. She started using cocaine shortly after I was born and didn’t stop until I was around 20..

So where is my brother’s rock bottom? I have no idea. He’s lost everything, his jobs, his family (except my mom who enables him and me who talks to him), he’s lost his son, his house… I don’t know how much further he has to fall. But to watch someone you love destroy their life like this is a miserable feeling… I know my hands are tied.  No matter how much I try to separate myself from the situation, I just can’t. I love him too much.

I just wish somedays the only thing I had to worry about was a spilled milkshake. Today is one of those days.

 

One Lovely Blog Award

The One Lovely Blog Award is given to bloggers by fellow bloggers. It’s designed to promote up-and-coming blogs, and to highlight those blogs that are thought to be “lovely” by the person nominating them. I was nominated by quite a few of you.. so I guess it’s time to do this :)

The ladies that nominated me have incredible strength and have shown me so much support and kindness. I honestly do not know what I’d do without this blogging community. With each notification or blog post I read and I saw my blog nominated, I can’t tell you how much it made me smile. If you have not checked out the blogs below, you should. They are some of my favorites!

If I missed anyone who nominated, please let me know.

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Rules for winning this award are very simple, here they are:

1. Thank the person who has nominated you. Provide a link to his/her blog.
2. List the rules.
3. Include 7 facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 15 other bloggers and let them know that they have been nominated.
5. Display the award logo and follow the blogger who nominated you.

 

Seven facts about myself:

1. Fall is my favorite season by far, although I love winter too (and yes..snow). I love Fall for a variety of reasons. I love orange, pumpkins, pumpkin rolls and pumpkin pies. I love sitting by a bon fire and roasting marshmallows. I love the leaves changing on the trees. I love wearing sweatshirts and jeans. I love camping this time of year too, although cold at night, the days are perfect. I also love Fall because my English Bulldog can finally be outside with me. He can finally breathe! :)

2. I love water.. Being by the ocean, swimming in a pool, dancing in the rain or taking a LONG shower. I guess that’s why I also love going on cruises so much. T jokes that I just may have been a fish in a past life. Ironically he also hates the water. :)
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3. I’m sort of a tomboy.. I’ve always been.  I hardly ever wear make up, I prefer sneakers over heels and I only wear skirts/dresses a few times a year. I usually wear my hair in a ponytail and I prefer riding four-wheelers to shopping any day.
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4. Although I’m a tomboy, I love manicures/pedicures and  religiously get my hair cut every 6 weeks. (I’m not sure why since I wear it up all the time).

5. My favorite place to be in the world is our camp. We have a camper on a permanent site about 3 hours away from home. It’s an older camper, but we completely gutted the inside and updated everything. I swear I could live there in the middle of the woods…there is only 3 other cabins where we are.  We have everything we need except reception for our cell phones and wi-fi. Honestly, that’s part of what makes me like going there with T. It’s like nothing else in the world exists.

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6. I have a lipgloss and sneaker obsession. I swear you can never have enough lipgloss or too many sneakers.

7.  T and I don’t ever have one particular song.. it changes though the years. We have been together for 17 years now.  Right now it’s “This Life Would Kill Me if I Didn’t Have You” by Thompson Square. Although I think it could be any couples song that’s going through RPL.

Annnddd… my nominations are…

I’m going to try to pick bloggers that I didn’t see they were nominated or accepted the nomination yet. Some of these blogs are blogs that I just started following, some are new and some are not, but click on the links and learn a little about these wonderful bloggers.

PCOS and Mommy in Me 

http://victoriaagredo.wordpress.com

F*uck Infertility 

Hakuna Matata 

Dreaming of Diapers

Mama et Maman

Waiting for the Bump

Nursery Vacancy: Positions Available Immediately 

What They Never Tell You

In the Baby Closet 

Always Having Hope

Try, Try Again

Life.Love.Jesus 

Tales of a 30 Year Old Nothing 

MRKH Mummy To Be

The Difference a Week Can Make

It isn’t about control really, I know I don’t have any in this RPL journey…or blame, or frustration, or desperation. It is about strength. I know I am strong because I’m still standing after everything I’ve been through. But I want to feel strong. I want my body to feel strong.

Does this have anything to do with TTC? Yes, I think that is undeniable, but I’m tired. I’m tired of feeling trampled into the ground day after day, loss after loss. I’m tired of feeling vulnerable and most importantly, I’m tried of feeling like the worst version of myself. I want to feel strong and I want to be proud of my body.

So, I am taking care of me..something I promised myself I’d do this time. Here is what I’ve been up to:

Monday-  I started a weight loss challenge at my gym, where I am working with a trainer and I am on a team (there are 4 of us) competing against other teams (3 other teams).

  • I weighed in at my highest weight ever which was so incredibly depressing, but I’m hoping that’s as high as the number will ever be.
  • I started logging on My Fitness Pal (if you want to exchange usernames, email me at acalmpersistence@gmail.com)
  • In my first hour with my team and trainer we did not workout. We weighed in, took measurements, calculated body fat, and discussed our goals and what is keeping us from losing weight. I was honest about RPL with my trainer.
  • After meeting with the trainer I stayed and did ‘Ease into 5K’ app outside and started on W2D2.

It was early, but the scenery was beautiful and it was about 60F, perfect day for a run/jog.

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Later that night, my husband and I went for a walk. (I’m not counting these calories on MFP)

Tuesday:

  • I went for a walk in the morning (Again, I’m not counting these calories on MFP)
  • Then at 4:00 I met a friend at her school to do T25 in her classroom. I burned 366 calories in less than a half an hour.

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Wednesday:

  • Tried a new workout at Sky Zone, which is an indoor trampoline park. It was a ‘Lunch Express’ workout, so it was 30 minutes and the cost was $9. My sister and I were the only two in class, so there was no slacking.  I ended up burning 500 calories in a half an hour.

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  • Later that night, I went to the gym and did the elliptical and burned another 200 calories.

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Thursday:

  • Worked out with my trainer from 6-7am- we started with cardio, then worked on arms, did lunges and squats. We ended running the mile, which I ran in 10 mintes, 19 seconds.
  • Thursday night, my husband and I watched “The Biggest Loser” and did the workouts Twitter provided during the commercials. At one point my husband was doing squats while holding our English Bulldog (who weighs 60lbs). Which meant I was doing squats laughing. Working on abs I guess?
  • Side note:  One of the contestants on The Biggest Loser is suffering from RPL after having her first child. I’m sort of attached to her so I can’t stop watching TBL.

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Friday:

  • I got up early and went to the gym to get it out of the way. I decided I wouldn’t stop until I burned 600 calories. I burned 500 in the gym doing ‘Ease into 5K’ on the treadmill, a skiing machine and abs. Then for the last 100 calories I went outside for a power walk.

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Saturday:

  • I did terrible with my eating at breakfast. My husband and I go out Saturdays with his dad. I thought I was okay. I got eggs, whole wheat toast, coffee (cream and sugar), and home fries. It added up to 615 calories!!!
  • I was in shock, but the damage was already done so I set a goal to burn off breakfast!!
  • I did T25 Cardio and the stretching DVD and burned 462 calories in an hour and then I cleaned for another hour and did lunges or skipped every time I had to go past the living room. :) I ended up burning just about 100 calories in a short time.

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  • I also scrubbed my kitchen floor with a magic eraser and a steam cleaner and burned 830 calories in 3 hours! I was so proud of myself and I have one clean floor!! :)

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Sunday:

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  • It was T’s Birthday so we went out to breakfast (I had oatmeal this time) and we had a party with his side of the family Sunday night. I made mostly healthy choices except the Friendly’s Oreo ice cream cake. I cheated, but it was worth it.
  • Today was my rest day, so I didn’t work out.

 

 Monday’s weigh-in: Starting week 2 of the challenge

According to My Fitness Pal, I lost 1.8, but my trainer’s record said I lost 2.8. Apparently I weighed a pound more than I thought (which is super depressing). So, I’m going with 2.8! T lost 5.4lbs and I’m super proud of him!! 

Random thoughts:  I absolutely LOVE my heartrate monitor! If you don’t have one I would highly recommend getting one. I find I work so much harder because I’m wearing it. I also made this Pinterest inspired way of tracking my progress (it’s a little crooked because T was talking to me, but it still works)

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