"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life" Proverbs 13:12

Friday, March 24, 2017

Long due update and nervous number 4

Hi Friends,
Sorry. Slack isn't even a word for what I am

I am writing again because baby things are happening. Early this month we transfered and yesterday we got a BFP. Of course that was after a fairly skinny positive, so as that is the way Thumper started out, I not sure if I am excited yet.

Going in for number 4 was surreal, and I feel pretty guilty. Even though Earl and I always wanted a stack of kids, it feels greedy and weird as a IF experiencer. We have 4 more embryos two which is an emotional roller-coaster. After two cesareans they won't recommend more than two more. So embryo adopting out might be in our future. I love the idea of helping someone in need, but it is very heart-breaking thinking of my babies being brought up by another family.

The kids are wonderful. Connor is curious a d a big talker. Estelle is clever and cheeky. Seb is affectionate and hilarious.

Seb got diagnosed with ASD last year. There are moments that are overwhelmingly hard and days of great joy and triumph. He is on the high functioning end of the spectrum but I am aware there will be many challenges for him to face. I wish I could take them away. And yet I am learning that different isn't bad.

Earl is going well, though he has his down days. He is such a fun Dad and loves starting to do things with the boys he loved as a kid. We are moving to a bigger house which is a relief.

I am on the second draft of a fantasy novel which is pretty fun. Fiction writing and blogging non anonymously has taken over the role this blog used to play. Seems to be true for many blogs on my feed. But I love occasionally checking in.

I have a book idea related to my IF and pregnancy experience that I am quite excited about. One day I'll get there with it.

My heart grieves for those I know still struggling, IRL and on-line. I don't know understand why things are as they are :(

I am so grateful for this space. I re-read my earlier points when making notes for my book. I don't know how I would have survived without this space and the people it brought me.
Love LG

Friday, February 12, 2016

No you can't take that away from me

Infertility is a strange beast.

There is a sense in which I have defeated the beast, afterall I have three beautiful children, many more embryos.  I also know that there are many others who still long for children or know that children are not going to happen and that is really hard and difficult and I pray for you often.

So in writing this paragraph, I don't want to imply that any of these hard things are anything compared to the difficulties of not having a child and not knowing if you ever will.

But even though infertility is past, there are two major things it has robbed from me that still make me sad.  The first thing is that in two groups of friends, I've sort of been left behind because I didn't have kids at the same time as them.  Not that they are not still my friends, and they have been some of the most supportive people through my IF struggle.  But my group of church friends who got married within a year of me, and the couples who Tim and I studies with all had kids in the heart of our struggle, and their kids are the same age and they went through Motherhood together and it's just natural that they grew together as we grew apart.

But it's still a bit painful, even after all these years.

The other thing is my nephew.  As long time readers of this blog will know, I was pretty upset when I found out that my sister-in-law was pregnant.  It got turned on it's head when my nephew was diagnosised (and then miraculously undiagnosed) with Spina Bifida, but finding out I was going to be an Aunt was not a happy thing.  I'm really sad, now that I have my precious kids (who ADORE their older cousin) that a time which should have been happy was so difficult and hard.

But lately I've had some lovely experiences which has helped me with these two griefs.

The first is with my Best friend.

My best friend who didn't get married until half way through my IF journey and who had her first baby a year before the boys.

We spent the morning together, as we do about once a month (she lives a little way away now). Connor was so easy to get dressed that morning because he just wanted to "Go to K's house".  The two of them play so beautifully together, with Sebastian joining in at times of his choosing (he is more introverted).  My best friend also has a little boy who is between the Twins and Estelle in age and he follows the boys around with a big grin on his face.  And K adores Estelle and spends a fair bit of the morning getting out all her favourite toys for "Baby Estelle" to play with.  She is so beautiful and gentle with her and puts her face up close and talks to her.  Estelle stares back in wrapped adoration :)

It is just a joy to see our kids play together, and to have them so close in age.  Something that may not have been if my kids had started arriving five years before hers.

The other exciting thing is...I'm going to be an Aunty again!

Earl's brother and his wife are pregnant.  This is particularly poignant because they actually lost twins in the middle of the year.  It was such a sad time, and it remains a very sad thing, but we are all so overjoyed that they have a beautiful new baby to fill their hearts with joy.

And joy is what I feel.  I am so excited and have been swapping stories and advice with my dear sister-in-law.  I'm really hoping for a little girl (Estelle is very out-numbered in the wider family), but whatever happens I am so excited to meet my little nephew/niece.

So infertility, my old friend, you still have some negative impacts on my life but sharing motherhood with my best friend and the excitement of being an Aunty- well you can't take that away from me.



Monday, October 5, 2015

A Girl and a Singleton

She is here.

My little girl was born as planned on the 26th of June.  Yes I know that was three months ago and I feel bad for not recording anything.  But life with three is full and to be honest I find it hard enough to tear myself away from her cuddles to do jobs I need to do (like housework!) so I haven't had blogging up there as the greatest priority.

Our daughter is named Estelle.  It has been our number one girls name for over six years.  It means Star and is the French version of Esther.  Overall everyone has liked the name.  We decided that we liked Estelle better than Stella, but to me she is my Stella-Bella, my Stell-Bell, my bubba-girl, my girly-chops and about three hundred other nonsense nick-names.

She has dark hair like me and those dark blue eyes that could turn to anything.  Some people say she looks like Connor (she has his big eyes and dimply cheeks), and some say she looks like Sebastian (she has his bone structure and small stature).  I think she looks a bit like me as a baby and a bit like my sister which is rather fun.  She has the sweetest smile and while she smiles at other people (particularly Daddy and Grandma) she saves her most bright smiles for me.

I would have been overjoyed to have another boy and I don't love her more than her brothers.  But there is this weird thing about having a child the same sex as you.  The boys still sometimes seem a little bit of a mystery to me.  But the connection I have with Estelle is strange because I feel like I already know her in a way I couldn't the boys.  I get a little of what her life will be like.  And particularly if she is the only girl (which we can't know for sure but it's a reasonable possibility)- there is a sense in which we are a little team within our family, and we will probably do things together just as "the boys" will.

And having one baby is a nice change!  I had forgotten how much i love newborns, and she is an "easy" baby, doing regular six hour stints at night and being pretty happy when awake.  One of the biggest joys is with more sleep and experience Earl and I are getting on well and enjoying parenting together.

In terms of the birth is was very different than the boys.  She came out and was held up for us to see, and then was dressed and checked by the ped.  But because she was elective rather than emergency they had a camera and a screen set up so I never actually lost sight of her.  And the moment they confirmed she okay i got to hold her. But the ped knew just by touch she was too small to stay with me so i had to say goodbye. and this was strangely harder than with the boys because i had hope i could avoid goodbyes. She had 9 days in special care and it was horrible aways being away from at least one child. She had no complications (she just needed to suck feed and grow) but it was a tough start.

The boys are developing so fast i feel like I could blink and miss it. Connor has been full sentences for a month, Sebastian just this week. Yesterday I told him Daddy wanted to play and he said "I too busy play trains with Belle and Tonnor" (Belle and Connor are his trains names)

It's like someone flicked a switch in their brains and now they are little people with thoughts and imaginations.

Connor is out-going and silly.  He is full of energy and climbs on everything.  He is super imaginative and is always pretending to be animals (Cats and Giraffes are his current favourites).  He loves songs and singing and when in the car will happily sing to himself.  His favourite songs are Twinkle Twinkle, the Thomas song, and 1,2,3,4,5 once I caught a fish alive.

He is quite a thinker.  He often talks about people he knows or repeats what I say in a way that shows he gets it.  He is much more interested in God conversations than his brother.  He adores family members and also talks about them.  He is particularly close to my mother.  He loves Daddy and one of his favourite statements is "Daddy and Connor Go X TOGETHER" (he always says together in a loud voice).  He always wants to go to work with Daddy and even says "Connor help Daddy at work".  He is rather disobedient and cheeky, but loves "helping".  He favourite jobs are watering the garden, putting washing in the machine and "taking out the rubbish" with Daddy.  All of these jobs would be done better without him but we are happy to encourage him!

Sebastian is such a little comedian.  When he does something wrong you say "That was naughty" and he replies "Not naughty, funny!"  It is so hard to keep a straight face.  His smile is so sweet we often have strangers commenting on how cute he his (the mop of blond hair and the lashed up green eyes probably help too).  He is such a Mummies boy and my hand is his security blanket.  He constantly says "Mummy hand-a" and then either gentle pinches each knuckle, or holds my hand to his face and gives it little kisses.  He is pretty good with other people but will always ask for me if I'm gone for long.

He is such an affectionate boy.  His k and c's are pronounced as t and so he always asks for "Tisses and Tuddles"

Both boys love Thomas but Sebastian is obsessed.  He loves the books, the show and the trains and will sit there by himself just babbling out little Thomas stories from his head.  He always asks to watch it, and even though we keep his TV watching to a strict schedule, he is very good at finding Daddy's not very well hiden ipad and turning on Netflix.  That is the other Sebbie characteristic- he is amazing with technology.  Family members often get unexpected calls from Sebastian because he finds my phone and knows how to call them!

Both boys love books.

Life is actually really good at the moment.  I am very happy.  Partly it is just the excitement of a newborn.  Partly it is spring which is my favourite month.  Partly it is that I'm an extra-vert and I've designed my life so there are lots of people in it and that makes me happy.  And partly it's that Earl is going well and that is such a corner stone to my happiness.

Thanks for those who are still reading,

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Tomorrow! 36 weeks

Sorry I haven't updated for a while but I have a good reason to today- baby girl is coming out  tomorrow!

Tomorrow I will be 36 weeks and 5 days.  Part of me can't believe I've made it this far, it is such an incredible answer to prayer.  Two days ago she was still looking healthy and happy.  Last growth scan she was still growing.  But the doctors don't want to risk her going to long- and so I've had an elective C-section date booked for the last three weeks.

There are still lots of unknowns.  We don't know if she will breath on her own, we don't know if she will reach the magical 2kg mark she needs to have any chance of avoiding special care (she was measuring at 1.9 last week).  But she is two weeks further on than the boys were, she doesn't have pre-eclampcia to contend with, and she has made it so much further than we or the doctors dreamed.  So we are thankful.

Even though I've been through it before, a C-section is a scary thing. 

The boys are excited.  Today at my Bible study we were praying for the baby and Connor started yelling "Baby sister!  Baby Tig home!" over and over again when he realised what we were praying about. 

The boys are staying at Mum and Dad's for four nights while I'm in hospital.  I'm actually quite homesick for them.  I spend half my time mourning the lack of time I will get with them now, and the other worrying about how my poor delicate little girl will survive against their crazy energy.

Earl and I had a lovely dinner out at a fancy restaurant tonight.  Tomorrow we have to be at the hospital at 6am.

I don't know if I'll get a chance to update until I'm home. 

Tomorrow I get to meet my daughter.  I can't tell you how grateful I feel.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

31 weeks and two Two year olds

I can't believe it's been 10 weeks since my last post.

How do I sum up the last ten weeks in the time it takes for the boys to watch one more Thomas and Friends episode? ;)

Week 1-Trying to be calm not knowing what having another little baby might be.  Trying not to think worst case.

Week 2 and 3- Hawaii!  A wonderful two weeks where little girl started moving more- letting me know she was at least growing and alive over the trip.  Hawaii was so much fun, the boys were charming, it was great having so much time together, and Earl now constantly plays "somewhere over the rainbow" on the boys ukulele to try to bring himself back to such a wonderful time

Week 4- Scan Number 2.  At 24 weeks she has grown but only 2 weeks worth.  And her amniotic fluid is a little low.  Doctor is cautious, and organises weekly scans.

Week 5- Despite the fact that you are not suppose to do growth scans weekly (because it's too inexact over such a small time), the doctor does another growth scan at Earl's insistence and she is approximately 500gs and no sign of ill health.  Amniotic fluid is better.  Boys are talking more and more, and both now call me "Mummy" instead of "Mama" and I love it.

Week 6-No growth scan this week, but she is healthy and amniotic fluid is back to normal.  She is now 26 weeks.

Week 7-Growth scan and she is on track again (at about the 3rd percentile).  We now will make it to 28 weeks which is a relief.

Week 8-28 weeks  Another good dopler scan.  Suddenly start getting quite stressed about 3 under three.  Now that I know she will be okay, I think other stresses begin to mount.

Week 9-29 weeks- Growing great!  Doctor still doesn't think we'll get past 34 but is talking about Special care rather than NICU and is almost tempted to move to fortnightly scans.  But they don't and Earl and I are kind of relieved.

Boys are starting to play more and more independently of me, which is a relief as we prepare for number three.  But they are also getting more rough with each other and that stresses me out.  They aren't sleeping well and that is another big stress, I'm quite nervous about getting back into no sleep land.

Week 10-30 weeks- Great doplers.  Boys turn two.  They are very excited about their "train cake" and love their new Thomas trains and track.  They are perfectly healthy and developed and I indulgently look through photos of them as little babies.  So grateful to God for them.

Weeks 11-31 weeks.  Growth Scan today- right on track again (on her percentile).  The doctor actually says we could make it to 36 or 37 weeks.  This is remarkable because she is a chance to go home with me if she makes it that far.  I am doing my best not to get my hopes up, as this has been my dream from the start.  But the big thing is that she is healthy and staying one more week.

Boys have a good sleeping week.  Thanks God!

It's been a whirl-wind.  I've had such a mess of emotions.  But I am so grateful for another healthy/small baby.

Funny thing.  Everyone is really excited about me having a girl.  I feel funny about it, because if she was a boy I wouldn't care one bit.  But I am having fun imagining Earl with a little daughter, and I love all the cute clothes friends are giving me.  The boys talk about their sister and it's so precious.  We've just started reading books about babies and they love it.  I know it can never be anything but a shock but they do understand that the baby in my tummy is coming out and are excited about that.

So thankful for this little miracle number three
Love LG

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Again- 21 weeks and another small baby

I haven't updated my blog for the stupidest reason.  Basically I changed my password and forgot what it was and then technology drives me crazy so it was hard to be motivated to sort it out.

But, as often happens with IF blogs, something goes wrong and suddenly you realise how much you need to write.

20 weeks came pretty straight-forwardly.  No bleeding.  Gestational Diabetes reared it's ugly head and (given I'd been through it before) caused me more issues than I expected.  Mainly it was fear.  I found anything that happened that was similar to the boys pregnancy made me really scared.  I think I dealt well with the situation at the time, but I wonder if there was a little PTS related to it, since my fears appeared pretty groundless.  My doctor assured me, there was no reason to think that Pre-eclampsia would come back, no reason to think this baby wouldn't make it to full term.

As my 20 week scan approached I was scared.  Part of the problem was that I wasn't feeling much movement.  I suspected (and it's now confirmed) that I had an anterior placenta which means movement takes longer to be felt.  But the truth was I didn't really think something bad would come from the scan.

We went in, scared but also excited about finding out the gender.  Earl thinks nothing could be better than our boys and so he wanted a boy.  I wanted a girl, but it was more because I knew those around me would like that, I didn't really care that much.

Once we saw a good heart-beat I relaxed a bit.  But then the doctor started measuring. 

It wasn't like last time.  We new exactly what to look for, we were experts after so many scans.  We knew that when a tummy measures at 18 and a half weeks when you are 20 and a half weeks pregnant, that this is not a good thing.

We have another small baby.

Our Ob said it was uncanny.  Basically it is Sebastian all over again, same size at the same stage.  And that is not expected- Low birth weight babies do not generally happen twice to the same people.  It is slightly more common in IVF, but much more common in twins than singletons.  I'm not a smoker.  No one expected it, and despite our fears, neither did Earl and I. 

We can't really know anything until our next scan at 24 weeks.  Hopefully she will grow and also catch up a bit.  It is a hard wait, but we are hopeful.  It's hard not to be with a crazy cute, smart little boy, running around us who also started the same.  Our doctor wouldn't say, but we could tell he was more confident than he was with Sebastian.  And because she is not a twin, we can do whatever we need to do for her, without having to think about the well-being of another baby.

Earl and I and the boys are off to Hawaii this week.  While we would have loved to go away without the stress, I think a holiday and time away is the best thing for us to pass the time.  Then it's back and the barrage of scans begins.  Again.

Boys are awesome.  Connor is talking up a storm, still mainly just single words but he can say so many things and has a great memory (basically if you sing Twinkle Twinkle little star and leave out a word he will be able to fill it in).  Sebastian is a little quieter but he has started saying cute little sentences  (You ask him: Do you want a biscuit? and he says "I do"- cute!).  He also is getting so good with counting- you give him a pile of objects and he can count them up to ten (leaving out 5 and 7).  They adore their family and our church people and are mentioning them.  Sebastian can now say "Daddy" and it is the cutest thing.  Connor is getting really good with Please (Peas) and Thank you (Thanks) and after a sleep he always ask for a "Cud" (cuddle).  It's pretty special.  They always talk about the baby (who we've nick-named Tig).  They point to my tummy and even sometimes offer it food or drink.

Oh, and the baby is a girl.

Would appreciate prayers for our very little one.
love LG

Saturday, January 10, 2015

13 weeks and the news coming out

Every day I click on my blog to look at my reading list and see if friends have posted.  And I despair that so few people write anymore because I miss their blogs.  The irony is that I don't really post either. 

But things are good!

We have had three different scans and each one showed a baby just the right size and one beautiful heartbeat.  The last scan happened to fall 4 years exactly from when we found out that Thumpers heart had stopped beating.  It was nerve racking (as much as I try not to be superstitious I really was scared), it was emotional and as different as could be.  The little baby was kicking and punching and the doctor joked baby was preparing for a life with two older brothers.

I have been calling the baby Tig.  I suggested Tigger but Earl thought it was too cutesy.  I changed it to Tig and Earl still won't use it (this from the man who came up with Big Head!), but I like it.  It has been nice to be able to have a name to chat to the boys about.

Of course they don't get it at all, but if you ask them where Baby Tig is they will point to my tummy and if you ask them to kiss baby Tig they kiss my tummy which is so cute.

We have told family.  Generally everyone has been super surprised.  I don't know if it's because it took us so long the first time, or if it's just that people think that after twins you should wait a while but no one has really expected it.  For that reason I think the initial reactions have been a bit reserved, but overall people are getting excited.

We are making it public in the next couple of days.

We saw the Obstetrician yesterday and they are going to monitor me really carefully because of my pre-eclampsia with the last pregnancy.  She was lovely and reassuring but the truth is I'm pretty nervous.  Not that baby won't be alright, but just that my simple dreams of having a normal labour or even just a baby who stays with me after birth might not happen.  I'm so desperate to avoid the nursery this time.  But I realise once again these things are out of my hands.

My bloggy friend Lara has her twins in Special care and I am praying heaps for her because it is really hard.  Brings back so many memories.

The boys are little hurracaines!  Seriously they are so full of life, into everything and running around whenever we are out and about.  I love it, but it is exhausting.  Often people talk about twins being more independent than Non-twins but my boys are a bit clingy, happy to play but want to be in the room with me.  Connor is such a boy, he is obsessed with cars and trains and trucks.  But he loves music too and spends all day "playing" the piano.  My parents have a ukulele and Connor loves his "Tar" and walks around with it everywhere.  He loves running and hiding and he is so easy to make laugh.

Sebastian is my little people person, he loves people and cuddles and is obsessed with ducks and reading Spot books.  He also loves my parents chickens and loves collecting the eggs (he is so careful!).  He also loves counting everything (especially eggs in the carton) and even though he still doesn't talk as much as Connor he counts everything "Von, two, two, two, four".  He can say all his numbers up to 5 and has even said 1,2, 3 before.  He is a boy of routine, he loves doing the same things in the same way.  He reminds me so much of my Dad, and Earl's Dad says Connor is a little Earl.

They are starting to get a bit more trantrummy.  BUT they are sleeping heaps better.  Our challenges of the next few weeks are to stop having them come into our bed in the morning (it's squishy enough without my belly getting bigger, and to have them going to bed without us holding their hand before the baby comes.

Life with three under three with no doubt be crazy but I am so excited and beyond grateful.

Love LG