Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Highlights - Weeks 14-15

Some highlights  of the past few weeks --
  • Officially bought maternity pants and one maternity shirt over the weekend. I tried on my favorite "one size too big" regular skinnies and they won't close anymore! The belly band really works for me though, and I'm so glad I have it.
  • Maternity pants REALLY make you look pregnant. Everything hangs out! People are starting to comment on my "bump". It makes me happy to look pregnant for real. :)
  • I still haven't felt the baby move, which makes me a little bit sad. I hope it happens soon! My app said that the baby could start hearing things this week, so maybe I need to play the music louder and he/she will start dancing? :)
  • I can't believe this Sunday I'll be 16 weeks/4 MONTHS pregnant! Just a few more weeks until we find out the sex (August 26)!
  • We've been trying to sell our office desk for a couple of weeks on Craigslist and no one is interested. I've gotten two spam emails/texts but nothing legit, and I've already lowered the price once. We NEED to sell it so I can move the bed and some other things out of the nursery ASAP! Any suggestions?
  • My husband works the night shift so when I go to bed, he usually stays up all night on the days he's off. So last night he was off, and I went to bed with the dogs, and he said goodnight to all of us. He was walking out and I said, "Umm you forgot someone!" Haha. He came back and said goodnight and "I love you" to Baby Strodtman too. Aww.
  • We cleaned out every closet in the house two weekends ago, and threw away a carload of crap. I'm normally a "throw it all away" type of person, but being pregnant has made me 100x worse! I literally could have tossed everything into the trash and never given it a second thought.
  • The thought has crossed my mind to hire a handyman because my husband can't keep up with all of the projects I want done RIGHT NOW. Haha.
  • Because of all these said projects, my lower back really was killing/crippling me. Also I've been having some sciatic pain on my left side. I mentioned it to my doctor and he referred me to a physical therapist. It really is too early to be having these issues! The PT said one leg was longer than the other, my right hip was higher, and my pelvic bone was out of alignment. Gotta love pregnancy hormones for loosening everything up and making it move out of place! So now I'm going to PT 2x a week AND the chiropractor 2x a week. The co-pays are killing me-- but I feel SO MUCH BETTER.
  • Who can believe that tomorrow is already AUGUST 1ST?!??

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Always remember where you came from

Since getting pregnant, I have felt extra sensitive towards everyone I met or currently know who is struggling with infertility. I can remember the many, many times I struggled through pregnancy announcements from friends and family members, and I desperately did not want to be the cause of anyone else's pain when making our announcement. It still felt all too familiar.

I struggled with infertility for 2 1/2 years, and have only been pregnant for 3 months. Sometimes, it still feels surreal and bizarre that this is now my reality.

Some people reading this will not understand. This is the happiest time of my life... why should I still focus on the negative, dark struggles of my past?

Let me tell you something. Infertility is not just something you forget once you get pregnant, and you certainly can never be the same person after experiencing it. I said so many times that it changes you, permanently. It feels hopeless, it makes you angry, and best of all... it gives you a new appreciation for the blessings in your life.

Looking back, I am so grateful for that journey. It made me who I am today. It makes you realize how powerless you are over your life, and therefore that much more grateful when God chooses to bless you with your heart's desires. I was speechless and terrified when I found out I was pregnant (I wrote about "the day I found out" here). I was ecstatic and hopeful. I was dumbfounded and amazed.

I thought about the past 2 1/2 years and how hard we had tried to make our dreams come true. We learned so many lessons, met some amazing people, and our faith was tested to the limit. The overriding theme I take away from those years is that everyone's story is unique. My story is not your story. Just because you got pregnant when you "stopped trying" or ate 5 pineapple cores doesn't mean that it will work for me.

Because of that experience, I am finally confident that my story is my own. I take great comfort in that now. When I first got pregnant I was terrified that something would happen, that I would miscarry. I saw it happen all around me, with at least 3 other women I personally knew. It happens to more people than we probably even know. My husband was especially afraid, and while it lingered in my mind, I couldn't help but think... but this is our story.

This is our story. The past 2 1/2 years have been our story. This pregnancy is our miracle. God is still writing our story. There is no reason to compare it to anyone else. God is faithful. I worked through my doubts and fears throughout our years of infertility and finally put them in His hands. Now that I'm pregnant, I have to do the very same thing. And sometimes those fears for my unborn child feel exactly like the fears I had in the past of never having a child. Loss of control. Uncertainty.

So maybe now some can better understand when I say that those feelings never go away. Those lessons were learned the hard way. They must be implemented daily, just in a different situation. This is why I say I'm grateful for those years. They made me who I am today.

If I had any advice to give my friends struggling with their own journey, whether it's infertility, the loss of a child, or something else, it would be this.

Embrace your story.

It's ok to be happy and sad at the same time.

Find your peace. 

And never, ever, ever give up.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Belly pop and bullet points

I was very happy to reach the 12-week milestone this week! We had another ultrasound with a specialist who measured everything possible and it all checked out perfect. I am always so relieved after every ultrasound, and I think I hold my breath until I hear that miraculous heartbeat. It was 154 again this time, and 90% of the bets from family and friends are on girl. We find out for sure the end of August at our anatomy scan! WOO!

Another reason people think girl is because I seem to be carrying really high --

But I suppose no one really knows yet for sure! :) We have just over a month left wait... and then my checking account will be hurting fo sho.
More bullet points to remember:
  • Definitely POPPED this past week... I think it's time to go shopping!
  • Yesterday was my birthday, and while I worked (at home), it was such a good day. I didn't even mind not having a celebratory drink (though that pomegranate margarita sounded divine) because of the best birthday gift I've ever been given is in my belly.
  • I made a list of "Things to do in the next 6 months" and "Things to buy for baby". It's quite overwhelming, but we'll hopefully take it one weekend at a time.
  • I have been putting Bio Oil on every day... here's to hoping it works.
  • I was kinda annoyed that they don't allow any photos or videos of the ultrasound at the specialist. At my regular doctor, she wouldn't let us film the whole thing but we got some of it. At this office - there are signs EVERYWHERE saying not to. It makes me want to go pay and get an ultrasound they will record for us and just look at the baby, no measuring or monitoring! I could stare at that baby for hours!
  • I have some company coming this weekend, so yesterday I vacuumed and other stuff around the house... and omg, my back HURT so much the rest of the day and kept getting worse. I took two Tylenol and went to bed, but woke up at 12:30 to pee and could barely walk! I heated up a hot/cold thing I have and put that on my back and fell back asleep. It seemed to do the trick, and I feel back to normal today. Whew. Just a foreshadowing of things to come, I'm sure!
  • So I think it's crazy that I'm learning more about pregnant body stuff from my formerly pregnant girlfriends than my doctor. I didn't know what "round ligament pain" was until my friend Tiffani explained it. I'm pretty sure I started to feel that during week 12.
  • What I'm MOST looking forward in the second trimester: my belly getting bigger, feeling the baby move soon, and finding out the sex.