Thursday, February 26, 2009

No Peace

When my kids haven't been sick in awhile, I am very superstitious. I will never say aloud that "My kids haven't been sick in a long time." I also never brag about how long it has been since I have had a speeding ticket. Somehow, I feel that I am tempting fate.

So what do I get for writing a post about having nerves of steel? I get 7 more days of waiting! That's right. The doctor called. The lab accidentally put my bodily fluids in the "10 day test" not the two day, (called FSH), test. So, I am going to have to wait another week. We'll know the results next Thursday.

For having nerves of steel, I can tell you that I could barely answer my phone. When I saw the number, I knew the doctor would tell me my results. Boy was I surprised! I was nice but on the inside I was screaming "How can this lab be trusted if they screwed this up?" But, I bit my tongue and said that I would talk to him next week.

So now we wait some more. Luckily, with this economy and my husband's job, we have a lot of other distractions. More tests to my nerves of steel.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


When I worked, I drove my boss crazy. Not just a little crazy. Really crazy. She couldn't get me riled up. Nothing shook me up. Nothing. She loved when things got hectic and stressful. She wanted to talk about it. She loved to have a strategy. She wanted me to get stressed with her. I was pretty calm. And this drove her crazy.

A few years ago, I wrote to Oprah about my BIL and SIL. We had a producer come to my house and we were on the show. Anyway, when the producer and I talked, she couldn't believe I was so calm. She said "We are talking Oprah. The Oprah Winfrey Show. Most people get a little nervous and are a wreck. You are so calm." Yep. (What she didn't know is that I did lose 5 real pounds that week to being excited and probably more nervous than I showed.)

Today, I am grateful for my nerves of steel. Instead of the 10 day wait for the amnio, I only have wait a whole day thanks to a new faster test. Sometime tomorrow, I should get the call. I have read a lot online and everyone talks about how waiting was the worst part.

Because I know my choice and the test is finished, I am feeling a weird sort of calm. Peace. I try not to go down scary paths of thinking and I am not "thinking positive" as everyone would probably suggest. I just know that what will be will be. And I am OK with that. The answer is already here in my body. I am just waiting to be told. So, I will wait. I will be at peace. And soon, I will know. And as soon as I know, I will let you know if my trip includes Holland or Italy. Peace.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Might Be Going to Holland

The number showed up on the phone as "General Hospital." Hmmm. That's weird. Who would be calling us from the hospital? Turned out to be my OB.

"Indy, I got your test results back. The results indicate that you have a one in five chance of your baby having Down's Syndrome. I need you to schedule an amnio immediately."

Gulp. Breathe. Try to talk. "One in five?" "Yes. One in five."

Time stopped. I could barely breathe. I couldn't get off of the phone fast enough.

I had the standard old lady tests for my pregnancy, the quad screen. Being an optimist, I didn't think again about them. But today, I was stopped in my tracks.

At first, I cried and tried to not pass out. I just kept repeating "One in five" over and over again. Tears fell as I walked around looking for my husband's phone number. Too in shock to remember it. Husband was in a meeting. Tears continued to fall. I tried to remember to breathe and called my sister. Luckily she calmed me down and I could talk without crying.

My husband finally called me back and he could tell right away that something wasn't right. He agreed that we were going to have an amnio to know for sure. I need to know what I am dealing with and I need support. We have to know. I cannot wait another 21 weeks to find out the answer.

Last week I had a little discussion with my favorite aunt. She is very conservative and pro-life. I am very liberal and support abortion rights. We even talked about what I would do if my doctor ever said there was a problem with my blood test. I told her last week that while I support a woman's right to choose, I could never choose that for myself. Today, I know that it is true in my heart. I know it like I never thought I would know it. Abortion will never be an option for me.

So all day, I wasn't sure whether to share or not. When I write about the Snuggie or sex-ed books, I am showered with advice and suggestions. I am not in the mood for either this time. As my title states, I am just saying. I am not up for one on one discussions about it. I don't want to hear about your experience with these tests and false positives. We all have friends that have gone through this. None of the stories will change the feelings I am going through. So please, try to keep them to yourself or call a friend. But, please do not call or leave me suggestions about it. I hope you understand. I do. My hope is that someone will read this some day when they are going through this and it will help them through the process.

Tomorrow at 3:30 is my amnio. The results take about 10 days. I will keep you posted. I have read a lot about Down's. I know that if I have a baby with Down's that I will be blessed with the love of a very special child. I know it will be hard as hell. I know I don't want to do it but I would. I found this little story that I just loved. I read it years ago and it was comforting to read it again today.

by Emily Perl Kingsley.
c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy.
You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."
"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Dogs, Babies & Marriage

"Mom, can Gracie (our dog) get married so she can have babies?"

"How does the egg know when to start growing?"

"How do you know when you are pregnant"

Only a year ago, I got away with all of the questions with a simple "God gave us the baby." That doesn't work anymore. Ryan, age 6 1/2, wants more information. I heard that you should only answer the minimum when children ask about sex. This has saved me countless times. I keep it really simple but honest. A lot of times, I throw the question back at Ryan. "What do you think, Ry?"

A dear friend has lent me some books to help discuss the birds and the bees with Ryan and Kyle. I spent some time looking at them tonight. Two were cute. One had drawings and made me feel a little funny. Can you say ISSUES?

I don't mind having the conversation with Ryan. I know it is going to happen. As I get bigger and bigger, he is thinking more about the baby. He has questions and I better have some answers.

There is one question I am not looking forward to answering. "How does the sperm reach the egg." When that one is asked, I hope that my husband is nearby. My husband doesn't think Ryan will ask. If Ry doesn't, his little brother Kyle surely will. And soon.

When I was in kindergarten, I watched an after school special about how babies were created. My mom watched with me and then explained it to me. I then went to school and told my entire class. A mother of one of the children called my mom to complain. I knew all of the proper names for the body parts and the mother was not pleased with her daughter finding out so young. Parents may have conversations with children but we all know that so much is taught by others at school and on the bus. So, I better be ready so that Ryan is ready. If I learned about the birds and the bees in 1977 when I was in kindergarten, I am sure that Ryan will learn so much more in a few short years. I better be ready, are you?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Knowing When to Pass

I received the dreaded email. It was an email from an organization. I have missed the past two meetings. It is highly suggested that you attend meetings every month. If you miss now and then, it's OK. I have missed December and January's meetings. Yep.

As I have written before, I had a hard time dealing with my regular life after my mom passed away. Add to this that I am pregnant and can barely stay awake, I decided that some things had to be cut out of my life for awhile. When I attend these meetings, additional work is assigned. So, in order to keep myself on the sane side, I decided the best choice for everyone is for me to miss the meeting.

As moms, it is so hard to decide when you've had enough. Isn't it? And then when you make that choice, you have to defend it. You have to say no and then remember not to back down.

My husband asked me tonight if I was going to be volunteering on any boards for the next year. He was surprised by my answer. I know with all my heart that I am done. I am taking a break. For the past five years, I have been a volunteer. I have spent so many hours working for organizations that I love. I was super active for the first three years. As time has passed, I have slowly faded away. I love the organizations but I love me and my sanity. I know I have nothing left to give. With a new baby on the way, a husband heading back to a law firm and a crazy year behind me, I know that I need some time to catch my breath.

I will be back someday. Somewhere. But for the next academic year, I will be in the background at the school. I probably will not attend many meetings for my organizations. I will catch my breath. I will get myself together. Organizations will be stronger for it. My family will be stronger for it. I know I will emerge stronger for it. Now, all I have to do is remember that I have written this post and know that I have made myself this promise. That's the hard part.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Shiver Me Timbers

It is cold in Ohio. February can be brutal. I am freezing.

If I had all the money in the world, I would turn my heat up high. But, since we are trying to keep our gas bills down, we try to keep the heat down. So, to keep warm, I add an extra sweater most nights. I always wear slippers. At night, I put on an extra blanket in addition to our down comforter. And when nothing else works, I drink tea.

Have you seen the ads for the Snuggie, the blanket with sleeves? I checked out their website tonight. I was seriously thinking about buying it. Yes, I am that cold and desperate. If you are having a bad day, check out this link here, it will make you laugh out loud. I was surprised how expensive they are. It costs $19.95 plus $7.95 for shipping and handling. That's a lot for a glorified blanket.

Blame it on the recession. I am going to have to pass on the Snuggie. Just a little too expensive. Their ad states that if you buy one, you receive one free. You have to pay an addition $7.95 for each Snuggie. I don't need an extra one. I can't imagine my husband wearing it. I am not sure I can imagine myself wearing it. So, I will throw on a regular blanket, an extra sweater and make myself some tea. And I will count down the days until spring. In Ohio, it should be here sometime at the end of May.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Oh Baby!

My endocrinologist walked in and swore I was having a girl. "You are. I just know it. I can tell by looking at you. I am going to write it in your file so the next time you come back, I will know that I was right." She has no idea. Neither do I. But it is fun trying to figure it out!

Last week, a friend did the old folk "string test." She did it twice and both times, it said I was having a girl. This week, I did the Chinese Lunar test. It said I was having a boy. Personally, I feel that it might be a girl. But, I have been wrong before so who knows!

I used to say when I was pregnant with my first that "It doesn't matter, just as long as it is healthy." I said it but didn't really believe it with all of my heart. Now, with two healthy boys, I feel like I am pushing my luck having another. So when I say all I want is a healthy baby. I mean it. But, as an experienced mother, I have a few more requests. God if you are listening:

1. I want a sleeper. A good sleeper. Please.

2. I want a baby that is happy. No colic or allergies. Please.

3. I want a child that likes to sit and color, a gentle child. The child will not use the crayons as weapons or throw the crayons.

4. I want a child that is happy to play alone as well as play with others.

5. I want a child that will eat anything you put in front of them.

I know I am asking a lot God. But, it has been a really rough year. I am older and more tired. I am not sure I have the energy to do this again. I am on easy street now with my boys. They are older. I am spoiled. I haven't had the easiest time as a new mom and I am worried about doing it all again. So please, be gentle on me God. And as Mother Teresa said "I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much. " Amen.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Be My Guest

I read somewhere once that you should always stay overnight in your guest room before your guests stay at your house. I am always too busy cleaning and getting ready to even bother. But, this past week, I took a shower in what would be considered our guest shower. From this, I learned that we need a new shower liner, the rings are cute but don't really work very well and our shower pressure is absolutely awful. So sorry Ed and Ken. I didn't realize it was so bad.

I have had some interesting experiences being a guest. A few tips to make your guest more comfortable:

1. Always wash the sheets fresh right before your guest arrives. You never know if your kids have eaten a cracker while playing on your guest bed that week and there is nothing worse than crumbs.

2. Always have extra blankets out and available to your guests. Guests can always add one if they are cold or remove one to find the right temperature. Last year we had a guest and after a little wine, I didn't realize how cold it was in our house. I gave her some thin blankets right before bed. In the morning, I was so sorry and embarrassed. She must have froze the entire night in our cold loft area.

3. Make sure your towels don't smell musty. Wash them fresh and remove them immediately for your guest. As a past guest, I have had this happen to me a few time. Not talking, just saying.

4. Leave out extra shampoo, conditioner, tooth paste and soap. And then, check with your guests to make sure they didn't forget something. I always forget something!

5. Have something special for your guests for breakfast. It can be quick and easy like bagels or donuts but don't just leave out cereal. No thanks!

6. Invite your guests to help themselves around the kitchen and in your home. I show them where everything is and then encourage them to get their own drinks throughout their stay. The first one is on me. After that, I would love for them to help themselves in case I forget to ask.

7. Sit down and talk to your guests. Although I love good food, I came to visit to see you not to watch you cook for my entire visit. I'd rather you order pizza than have you worry so much about the food that we don't catch up and talk. Be with your guests.

8. Is there something special that your guests like? We know that one of our friends likes good, expensive wine. He usually brings better wine than we have, but I at least try to buy something decent for his visit. He also likes peanut M&M's and Diet Coke. We always have M&M's and Diet Coke out when he is over. As a Coca-cola lover, nothing makes me happier than when a host has an ice cold Coke available for me.

One of my favorite memories of being an overnight guest was when my friend Julie turned down the lights, poured wine, lit candles and had a great mix of music arranged on her i-Pod for our visit. She was relaxed, the wine and conversation flowed easily and we all caught up as friends. Entertaining is hard work. But when you plan well and let the conversation happen naturally, memories are created and friendships are strengthened. I will make an effort to spend some a night in our loft before our next guest arrives. I know that I will have more blankets and covers for our next guest. I will be ready next time!

Friday, February 6, 2009

The Look

He yelled at me in front of everyone. He yelled in front of my husband, my husband's co-workers, the CEO and President of my husband's company and a bunch of strangers. Why? Because I gave him "the look." As a mother, I am working on perfecting this skill. I guess I have it down pat because he walked over to my table and chewed me out. I'd write down his words if I could have understood them. He was from another country with a very thick accent. I sat there and didn't listen to a word. I just kept thinking "I really can't believe this waiter is yelling at me."

After he left and I wiped my tears, I sat there in disbelief. We were on a cruise for my husband's work. At dinner, we all sat together at many tables. During the meal, the man sitting next to me ordered but then decided he wanted to sit with a co-worker at a different table. When his food arrived, he grabbed his plate and took it to his new table. Apparently, this is a big no-no for Princess cruise staff. The waiter that yelled at me, let's call him Meanie, screamed and bitched out our super nice waiter. In defense of my super nice waiter, I gave the look at Meanie. I did not say one word. That's when I got tore into by Meanie.

It has been a year since our cruise and I have forgiven Meanie. (The situation was handled on board and Meanie's supervisor handled the situation) Since we are really cutting back and I am pregnant, there is no way I can take a cruise. And what do you know? IT IS ALL I THINK ABOUT. I have been tempted by the fantastic offers that are available due to the downtown in the economy. But like the rest of the country, we aren't comfortable spending so much money when everything is so shaky.

But let's pretend we can book a cruise. Carnival is the cheapest, their food is pretty good and their staff was excellent. Princess, the food was better, the price is a little higher but the staff was OK to fair. So hard to choose! Maybe we go with NCL or Royal Caribbean and try them out. I'd love to take a cruise to Chile. Someday!

Just in case you didn't know there were deals, check out my favorite site for amazing offers. Enter your email address to access the prices. It's all you have to do. And you won't believe the last minute deals available. You can't stay in hotels cheaper than the prices you will find here and with all food included. Amazing! Check out Vacations To And if you want to read about real cruises and get real advice from experienced cruisers, check out Cruise

Have you ever been on a cruise? What company do you prefer? If you've never been, where would you like to cruise? And since this is a recession, we are DREAMING people. Dream away!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

More Than a Time Waster

I wrote a few days ago that I was addicted to Facebook. I love checking it when I get a minute throughout the day. My office is right beside my bathroom. Being pregnant, I visit the bathroom often and stop by my computer either on my way in or out. Tomorrow is Facebook's 5th birthday. Happy Birthday Facebook!

Last night at a meeting, I tried to talk a friend into joining Facebook (FB). She shook her head and said she wasn't sure she wanted to. If you are on FB, you know that you have met up with old friends from high school and college. People that you have worked with in the past or maybe even a school friend from elementary school might have contacted you. I have found it rewarding to reach out and stay in contact with so many long lost friends. And being as lazy as I am, I love that I can reach all of my friends without looking up their email address.

As I sat in meeting trying to think of words to encourage my friend to try FB, I started to think what I have gained from such a silly time waster.

When my mom passed away and I sat in Alliance all alone in my family's living room, reading the comments on Facebook helped me feel connected to all of my friends.

As a stay at home mom, the days can be long and lonely. Reading silly updates or comments picks up my mood.

I had a co-worker from my last job reconnect with me on FB. She wondered if a part-time position became available at her current company, would I be interested. Interested? I nearly fell over with excitement that someone would want to pay me to do ANYTHING, let alone something I went to grad school for! Yes, I am interested. Someday.

I have made plans for a girls night out that I know I never would have made without FB. We never would have gotten to it. We're going out next week. I can't wait.

Yesterday, I wouldn't have received the nicest "Thinking of you" card if one of my friends hadn't read all of the comments about my mom on FB.

People have found my blog from comments made on FB. I love that!

The other day I wrote as my status update "Wondering what to do with my four-year old." I got an immediate invitation to a friends house. Thanks M! And then I received a invitation to start a play date rotation with another friend. Thanks L!

Facebook does not replace real life conversations and contact. But, it does provide connections to people you may not be able to keep in touch in real life. It makes my life easier and more fun. It is a tool that helps you connect. So if you haven't joined Facebook, give it a shot (hint hint Hubby!). And if you are on FB, go and update your status. You have friends waiting.

Monday, February 2, 2009

True Confessions of a 15 Week Pregnant Lady

Red= True confessions
Blue=Inner voice arguing with true confessions

I should be exercising and watching what I eat.
Nah, you'll be as big as a house in the end anyway. It doesn't matter.

Wow. I am getting pretty big.
You got big before and then lost even more weight than when you started. You'll do it again.

I hate that I get so wide. I wish I was a cute pregnant person.
That's how you are. You can't change that.

I hate to even weigh in at the doctor's office. I am afraid she will yell.
She has never yelled in the past. You'll be fine.

I have had three pregnancies before. Why do I care so much this time?
You haven't been this pregnant in a long time. You were too tired to care the last time.

It is so hard to let go of control of my body.
You are creating a baby. It is amazing. Let go.

This is me at about 38 weeks during my last full-term pregnancy in March of 2004

I'm Not Talking About It, I'm Just Saying...