Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Being cared for

I've had a pretty amazing few days this week and have such a strong sense of being looked after.  Dave went away on Friday and I knew I was going to have trouble with my anxiety without him.  But due to some incredible friends and my mother, it has been managed and cared for so well.

Saturday night my Mum stayed over with me.

Sunday and Monday night, one of my dear friends "S" stayed with me.  She did this out of the kindest of her heart to help me through this difficult time.  She is an amazing woman!  And it was great for her as well to get some time away, take a break from her normal routine, and be able to do whatever she wanted in peace and quiet!!  Spending time together was fantastic!

And Tuesday night another dear friend "C" stayed with me.  With this friend, I did a deal.  She needed help with her bookwork and receipts, wanting help sorting out the last two financial years as well as setting up some software for the upcoming financial year and to establish new, organsied habits for her accounting.  So I offered a trade.  She came up with all her paperwork and stayed the night.  I was able to help her get on top of things, choose and set up new accounting software, and she was able to give me the company I need so much right now.  A great deal!  And we had a wonderful time!  As it turns out, she also came swimming with me.  She was going to miss her swim session this week and when I said that I just needed to do my swim first before she came, she jumped at the opportunity.  I waited for her and we swam together.  Perfect!!

And Dave, my wonderful husband, did it again.  On Thursday night, I came home to him cooking up a storm.  He was once again making me a huge big lasagne to last me through several meals without him.  God, I love that man!

On Friday night, another friend is coming over the evening.  She isn't staying the night but it will be so good to spend the evening with her.  She is also my naturopath and gave me this super duper incredible mix to help with my anxiety.  Within half an over of taking it, the chest pains have faded and things are manageable again.

I hope it works tonight.  Tonight I am on my own.  I can already feel my anxiety increasing.  I know I can ask Mum to stay, but I would really like to be able to do it myself.  "C" is also a naturopath and gave me a bit of advice on my mix.  I can take a bit more in one day as long as I take less the next day.  I can even spread this out over a few days and reduce for the rest of the week.  So maybe I will need just a bit more till Friday and then stop when Dave returns on Saturday.

So a blessing of a week that I am so grateful for.  I am still very concerned about my anxiety and I'm still not feeling settled within my "new self".  I still need more time.  And thank goodness, I have it.  I do have a lot of committments over the next two weeks and would prefer to have several days in a row of time at home, but little by little I will find myself.

Love and Light

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

At the pool

I'm still loving the pool and have settled into a routine of going every second day.  My fitness and muscle strength are steadily increasing, my lap count and length of continuous laps also steadily increasing.

Today I felt able to push it a little further.  It was tough going at the start, but by halfway through something different happened.  I found myself completely zoning out.  I think I went into a meditative state, just swimming stroke after stroke.  It was really good. 

I finished doing more laps than ever before and would have been quite happy to continue.  However, I am still finding that I am so tired afterwards that I knew it would be foolish to do even more at this stage.  And yes, a few hours later, I am tired.  I was almost asleep on the couch when the phone rang.  Good thing too.  I have work to do today.

I am so over being tired all the time and I absolute refuse to give up on this journey of increasing my fitness.  I want to be the person who can just go and go all day, a busy buzzy bee, with motivation and stamina!  Fortunately I can afford to be exhausted after a swim now that I am on school holidays.  The bookwork is done from home on my own time and I can still do it when I'm physically tired.  I wonder how long it will take before I can go for a swim and not feel so weary afterwards?

It's been over four weeks now since I started at to the pool and this week I have added walking on the alternate days.  I know that including the walking will tire me out even more, but eventually, surely (!) I will move past it into greater energy.  And I'm also continuing to choose to do more active jobs around the house and not putting them off till later.  I have a ways to go with that particular goal but I'm getting there with much better motivation than I have had for the last few months.

A friend of mine joined me for a swim a couple of weeks ago.  She is also trying to increase her fitness and is joining me for walks as well.  We are going to work up to doing some more strenuous bushwalking again.  I can't wait!!  It's wonderful to have days of exercising on my own as well as days sharing the activity.  I am feeling blessed!

I am grateful to be in the place at the moment.  It's been so long since I have been able to do anything else but deal with fertility and pregnancy.  I am taking advantage of this brief hiatus.  Hopefully it will increase my ability to deal with another pregnancy should that happen.  And also then help me better be able to cope with caring for a little one.

We see our fertility OB again in two weeks to discuss transferring Nemo in my next cycle.  The kinesioligist has said my body is ready as long as I stay centered and relaxed.  So that is my goal.  Increasing fitness and beginning a meditation practice again.  And after today, I can feel that the swimming is also a form of mediation!  Gotta love that!!

Love and Light

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

How my life is changing

I've said right from when it happened, that this has been a life changing experience for me.  At first I could simply feel it in myself.  I felt different.  This sounds silly to say at 44, but I've felt like I've grown up.  There is a wisdom and a life experience in me that wasn't there before.  There is a new knowledge about life and an emotional depth that I feel reflected in my eyes.  And as much as I'm distraught about how this happened and wish I could take it all back and still have my little girl growing within me, I like the change.

Now I am seeing the change in my daily life, in my actions, in the choices that I am making, and in the things that I am doing.  My world is changing.  What I want in it, who I want in it, and what I want to be doing with it.

For several years now, I have wished to be more like my mother in certain aspects.  My Mum is a get go woman.  She doesn't stop.  Always busy, always helping, always active.  And I have wanted to be more like that.  Now, I am starting to be.  I like it.  And Dave likes it!

Now, why does Dave like it?  Because I have started baking!  All of a sudden, I have this need to cook.  Now, just to remind you, I hate cooking.  Loathe it.  Dave cooks most of our dinners.  But every now and then I have gotten the urge to bake a cake or muffins with a packet mix.  Now I am baking from scratch.  Any day that I can.  If I'm not actually doing it, I am planning what I want to do next.  And loving it!  Now thats more like my mother.  And Dave is my taste tester.  And he loves this new me!

I'm also succeeding with my goal to be more active around the house.  Television viewing is diminishing.  And busy-ness is increasing.  And I am so happy for it.  The downside...  Remember all my clutter clearing?  Well I was just starting to feel on top of the house in that regard.  Now, there is a whole new level going on!  And the house feels crazy again.  There is a new level of activity in the kitchen that needs organising - with rearranging cupboards, and organise recipe folders to allow for the new baking me.  And there is just more happening everywhere that needs clarifying and organising and finding the right why of doing things. 

So my clutter cleared organised head has found a new deeper level of existence that needs sorting out.  It's a wonderful metaphor and is so clearly a reflection of the deeper level of me that is emerging.  My therapist describes it as peeling away the layers of the onion and discovering and making sense of the real me.

It's a good thing and I so happy for it. 

But at the moment it is clouded in a high level of anxiety.  Anxiety and being even just a little bit unorganised, don't work together for me.

Dave leaves on a work trip on Friday for over a week.  I am not coping without him at the moment.  The moment he leaves my anxiety level rockets.  My kineisologist saw it in my body in my last session.  That at the moment, my need for nuturing is high.  That I need supportive friends and family around me.  And I'm just not coping without him.

I had resolved the problem.  I was spending a few nights in the country with one of my bridesmaids.  I used to do it regularly before I met Dave.  It was the perfect solution.  However, Kiara the cat, needed surgery yesterday.  She is fine and recovering well but I can't leave her.  Raphael is hissing at her and the two of them need to be managed.  I can't leave them alone and there is noone else to look after them.

So, I'm scared about Friday and next week.  I don't know how I will be.  The anxiety I feel over the cats is simply adding to it.  Even before he has gone, I'm not coping.

I will ask Mum to come over.  She may even spend a couple of nights.  That will help.  And I will focus on the wonderful changes that are going on in my life.  I will continue to chip at the organisation jobs that I have.  I will continue to bake. 

I am grateful that with the way I am feeling I haven't turned to my usual coping behaviours.  I am still leading my new life, albeit somewhat subdued and shut in.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

DNA test results

Good morning everyone.  I hope you are all doing well and flourishing in this crazy world we live in!

Dave and I went for our follow up appointment with the OB on Monday.  It's been 6 weeks since we lost our baby.  It's hard to believe it has been so long.  In some ways, it still feels like last week.  In others, I can feel the healing that has been going on and we are doing so much better.

The DNA tests results showed that we had a little girl.  I'm so glad to know that.  I can't describe how I felt to find out, or how I feel now, but there is something about knowing the sex of our child that is wonderful.  It is heartwarming.

But there was a serious genetic problem.  She had Edwards Syndrome Trisomy 18.  There was only a 1 in 2000 chance of us conceiving a child with this disorder.  There is so much to say about how I feel about that, but first, what is Edwards Syndrome?

It is similiar to Downs Syndrome in that there is an extra chromosone.  Downs Syndrome has an extra chromosome 21, Edwards Syndrome has an extra chromosone 18.  It is much more serious than Downs with most children dying in utero in the second or third trimester.  Some make it to full term, either being still born or living for only a week at the most.  There are exceptions as always, with a rare few children living till they are older, although with severe handicaps.  It is rare for any child to live past the age of 5.

How do I feel about beating the odds again, but this time in such a tragic way?  Distraught.  At first it was such a relief.  We know what happened.  It wasn't our fault.  It wasn't my age or the quality of my eggs or anything that we did.  It was tragic bad luck.  But why, why, why?  Our slim shot at parenthood ended like this.  Why, why, why?  Why were we that one in the 2000?

We also learnt that it is more common as you get older.  The odds for a younger woman are 1 in 6000.  And that is because as we got older, our bodies lose the ability to know when there is a genetic problem.  A 25 year old woman wouldn't have gotten to the second trimester with a Trisomy 18 baby, because her body would have known and rejected the embryo straight away.  She would have just had a late period.

But the fact is, we had prepared for a Downs child.  We had already made the decision not to have an amnio.  If our child was Downs, it didn't matter.  We didn't care.  It was our child to love and care for and treasure.  But I had never heard of Edwards Syndrome.  It was never mentioned by any doctor (unlike the Downs possibility) because the chances of it were so unlikely.

Yet here we are.  Learning this news has set me back a ways in my healing.  I am so upset by it.  I feel so much for our little girl.  I still love her so much.  And I wish she was here with us, with just the right amount of chromosones to help her live a full and rich life.  But she will always live on in my heart and I now need to deal with the knowledge of her diagnosis.

So where to from here?  Today, I am making an appointment with our fertiltiy OB to begin the process of transferring our frozen embryo.  One good thing from this news, is that I have a little bit of hope back.  I hope that we have already done the "1 in however many" chance of genetic problems.  I have hope that now we will now be the 1999 in 2000 chance of having a healthy child. The problem is that we also beat the odds in getting pregnant in the first place.  I don't have a lot of hope that we can do it again.

Our frozen embryo is called "Nemo".  Dave gave it that name when it first went to be frozen.  It has a nickname already.  That's gotta be a good thing.

Love and Light