Four Times Two

April 17th marked Grant and Maria’s 4th birthday.  It was a day met with great excitement as we had their party scheduled for the evening and I was off work so we spent the whole day together.

4 year old stats:
Grant – 36 lbs, 2 oz and 40 inches tall (50th percentile), favorite color is orange, favorite stuffed animal is a small dog named Charlie, and favorite toys are worker trucks and Ninja Turtles.

Maria – 33 lbs, 2 oz and 38 1/2 inches tall (25th percentile), favorite color is purple, loves anything that sparkles, favorite stuffed animal is a small dog named Bandit, and favorite toys are her coloring supplies and Barbie dolls.

I looked around at their party and thought it was pretty awesome that they could celebrate with all four grandparents and three great grand parents.  They don’t know how cool that is, yet.

They received big kid bikes from Jeremy and me and got the hang of it as the day went on.  We finished off the day with a ride around the block and both commented that their butt’s hurt…they haven’t developed the appropriate bike seat butt callous yet!

We continue to be thankful for the joy and challenges that these two bring to us daily.

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MIXED EMOTIONS

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I received my medical protocol this week for our upcoming transfer in May! Relieved my test came back negative, Josh and I are happy to be pressing on for a sibling.

Recently, I had some mixed emotions. When I was told to come off the hormones during the needle biopsy ordeal, I expected my cycle would start within 5-10 days. After almost 3 weeks of no menses, I got concerned and called the IVF coordinator.

She said that if I hadn’t started by the 10th of April to take a pregnancy test. If it was negative, to start the birth control. Pregnancy test? I was just a tinge excited at the thought of being spontaneously pregnant on our own. Hey, it could happen!

Then I started getting mixed emotions. Of course, I would love to be miraculously pregnant with a biological child. Isn’t that what everyone who’s been down the road of infertility wants?

Along with the excitement came hesitations. What would happen to my six frozen babies who are the biological blood link to John Luke? I can’t imagine loving John Luke more if he were my own flesh and blood. Would he be jealous that we were genetically related to the child? Would he feel we loved the genetic child more?

So many questions.

I never would have dreamed I would be saying this…I was a little relieved when I took the pregnancy test and it was negative. In reality, we would’ve been over the moon with excitement (and shock)!

But…a part of me would’ve been sad over how this would impact John Luke and the future of our frozen babies.

I no longer wish for a biological child for myself, but want a blood relative for John Luke. Don’t get me wrong, blended families are amazing. They are just as loving and sometimes even more functional as biological families.

We couldn’t love John Luke more if he were our own. We just want more like him!!

We have 6 embryos in waiting, suspended and frozen, until its their time to shine. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for them. I hope its bright.

24 week appointment and an Unexpected Encounter

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Last week, I had my 24 week appointment.  It was the kind you dream of as a pregnant woman, and yet are also a little disappointed by.  It was completely uneventful.  Good, in so many ways.  But then it also makes me kick myself for spending 1.5 hours out of my day driving to and from the appointment, waiting in the lobby, peeing in a cup, etc.

I’m measuring on track, and may even be slightly ahead of the game in the weight gain department (hey, I have some catching up to do after all that nausea/vomiting!).  Baby’s heartbeat was 150sh.

Baby is moving feverishly.  Watching my belly move is like watching a popcorn bag pop in the microwave.

I continue to feel extremely grateful for this opportunity, and yet am so excited to just get to D-day!

Also last week, I had an unexpected encounter.  A friend asked me to meet a friend of hers for coffee to discuss a possible career change.  As we were talking, the conversation turned to families.  She indicated she had adopted a son, who was now 16 months old.  No stranger to conversations like this – and clearly no shame, either — I politely inquired as to why she had adopted.  Infertility, she said.

I immediately felt a little saddened by this response, and yet, know it was also the reason we initially turned to adoption.  It is too bad that for so many of us, adoption is our “Plan B,” when it turns out it was God’s “Plan A” for us all along.

In any event, we continued to talk about infertility and adoption.  I then asked her about embryo adoption.  Her eyes widened.  She’d never heard of such a thing.  So, I told her all about it.  I could see the intrigue brewing in her eyes.

Later, I emailed her information about NEDC, and told her to keep in touch.

It felt so good to, if nothing else, bring the possibility of some additional hope to someone who thought that pregnancy was a lost cause for them.  Sure, she could do embryo adoption and never get pregnant.  And, if that’s the case, then if nothing else, she may herself have an unexpected encounter where she can pass that hope like a torch on to someone else.

Britney

What do You Think?

PARENTING CLASS: WEEK THREE

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Notes from week three of parenting class.

1)Kids coming in to bed with you at night: Gently lead or carry them back to their bed. Stay outside the door until they are quiet. Open the door if asleep, and cover them. May have to repeat until child will stay in their own bed. Parents may have to take shifts.

2)Misbehavior in public: Take charge in loving way. May have to sit child in a safe place for “time out” until fit is over. If child doesn’t calm down, may have to hold child until calm, no matter how many people show disapproval.

3)Use enforceable statements: Use enforceable words. “If you don’t stop picking on your sister, you will go to your room”. Say what you mean and mean what you say. The only thing parents can control is how they react to a situation, cannot always control the child’s behavior. Must always follow through with the enforceable statement initiated.

4)Model behaviors you want kids to learn: Use excitement and joy when wanting kids to learn a behavior or act a certain way. You have to model that behavior. Kids copy things and learn more when not being preached to. Use this for everything from brushing teeth, to buckling seatbelt, to having fun with chores.

5)Potty training: Make it fun. Say things like, “Bye bye pee pee, you’re out of here!” when flushing the toilet. Let them flush the toilet.

6)Start kids helping with chores: Start them with chores as soon as they can walk. Model silly ways to have fun with chores. Example, “Die germs, die.” Get them to help take clothes out of dryer. Teach them to see how fast they can get the clothes out. Make a game out of it.

7)Explain morning routine on Sunday afternoon:   This is helpful at the start of a new school year or with a change in routine. For example, “The car leaves for school at 7:20 in the morning. This is what the clock will look like when it is time to leave.” Give them a 5 minute warning in the morning that it is almost that time.