Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Good Idea # 8672 (give or take)

If you haven't already seen this on Melissa's blog, go check it out. The Help Registry is a great idea. I wish this had been around last time I needed it. We had people offer their help and we couldn't muster up enough brain power to think of anything that someone could help us with. We got phone calls that ended up in hurt feelings when we didn't call them right back.

I'm working on mine right now. It's so much easier to do this when you aren't in the midst of complete chaos.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

6 Weird Things About Me (In no particular order)

Michelle tagged me for this little doozy. I'm at work and love nothing more than to avoid actually doing anything that might be construed as "productive" so here we go...

1. I'm an obsessively crafty person. As in artsy craftsy. At any given time, I've got at least 3 projects going on...knitting, sewing, drawing, you name it. I have to physically restrain myself from watching tv without yarn in my hands. My fridge is currently crammed full of these super fun magnets!

2. I believe in Slurpees. Seriously, these things are magical. I ALWAYS prefer a (Coke or cherry flavored) slurpee above any dessert. And I love dessert. Chocolate cupcakes? Cherry cheesecake? Pumpkin pie? Cookies? Nope. None hold a candle to my frozen domed-lid heaven. My husband has learned that pulling into a 7-11 and getting a Slurpee is the same to me as saying "I'm sorry" or "I love you." I can be red-faced angry, and it gets me every time.

3. When I was little, I used to think that my stuffed animals and dolls had true feelings, and that they came to life when I was away. I'm pretty sure there was a Jim Henson movie about that, but I can't remember the name of it. I still can't go down a store aisle and not pick up a fallen doll or toy. Sometimes, if no one is looking, I'll tell it that I'm sorry it was mistreated.

4. I pick my cat's nose. Wow, that looks worse typed that just in my head. I don't root around or anything, but one of my little beasts just needs a little help..um, clearing things. I also clean the eye-crusties from the rest of my pets. Does that make me the crazy pet lady? Hmm...that might be rhetorical.

5. Like Michelle, I hate tags. (I really thought I was the only one, Michelle, I'm glad the club has two members.) I've gotten better with clothes, but I still have to remove them from towels, pillows, blankets...ok, pretty much everything.

6. My husband and I have decided that I am a "beverage purist." I don't like all the fancy-pants flavors that are added to drinks. I drink my iced tea without sugar, black coffee and plain Coke (no lime, vanilla, or berry flavors. The ONLY exception is the amazing Cherry Coke). I like the original Kool-Aid flavors like cherry, orange and grape. (My husband loves all the crazy flavor and color changing Razzle Dazzle Mountain Berry stuff....ew). As much as I adore the Slurpee (see #2) I only super-love the Coke and cherry flavors. Maybe I'm just a flavor-purist. Who decided that the green SweetTart should suddenly be apple? What was wrong with lime?

And there you have it. Welcome to my nutty little corner of the world. According to the very official rules posted below, I'm supposed to tag six others. I'm sure that some of you have already done this, but here goes nothing:

A at A Somewhat Ordinary Life
Mel at Stirrup Queens
Heather at BigP and Me
Mrs. C at It Could Take 3 Months
Ivy at Our Forever Family
Murray at Remaining Products

“According to the rules, each player of this game starts with the '6 Weird Things about You.' People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says, ‘you are tagged’ in their comments and tell them to read your blog!”

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

More Than I Deserve

Mr. Mandolyn and I went for our "big" sonogram appointment yesterday afternoon. Other than once, I haven't really felt any movement, which has been a concern that I've been trying to push further and further back inside my head. I'm at the end of 20 weeks, based on baby measurements (22 wks if you go by LMP). Fears were quieted about two seconds after the doctor put the goo on my belly (which was warm, by the way- a detail much appreciated). Anterior placenta. Of course. But Baby was squirming all around. Right as the doctor was pointing out the eyes, nose and mouth, we got to see a big (Drama Queen) yawn and then a hand appeared on the screen waving at us. My heart exploded with love and happiness. I swear, a rainbow popped out of my chest and illuminated the room. Birds started chirping, butterflies appeared out of thin air and a wreath of daisies suddenly adorned my head. All signs currently point toward a girl. Mr. Mandolyn's response was, "YES!"

The doctor told me how he and The Best Nurse Ever had a rough morning. A couple that reminded them of us had been in. Conceiving had been especially difficult, they'd come in for the first sonogram and been devestated when a heartbeat was not detected and measurements were behind. He said the Best Nurse Ever commented to him as they left, "Maybe it'll be a Mandolyn case." Ah. My heart breaks into a million pieces for this couple and their baby. I wish I didn't know what they are currently going through, the waiting, the hanging on by a frayed thread of hope...possibly some of the hardest several weeks to emotionally endure. And still. While as not to downgrade their pain in any imaginable way, I found a small part of me smiling. I know that the doctor can now say, "it's a longshot, but I've seen this turn out well before" with confidence. I don't know if that would have had any effect on my emotions when I was in their position, but I smiled at the slight chance that it might.

Right at this moment, I'm not overly worried about anything in particular. I realize that probably won't last for long, but for now at least, I am almost calm. Almost relaxed, and every now and then, 13 weeks ago and all the panic it held seems like another lifetime. I can't help but think that surely I don't deserve this. Surely I'm cheating the universe somehow, right? I must have slipped through the cracks of the Entirely-Too-Much-Goodness Police files. Not that I plan on turning myself in or anything. Nope. I'm taking my daisy tiara and my bursting rainbow and I'm going skipping through green pastures or something. Happy rocks.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

A One-Way Ticket to 2007, Please.

I wrote this in February and I think it works in terms of this last year:


Wearing away. It's different than wasting away. Wasting away is giving up, throwing in the towel, being completely numb and indifferent. Wearing away is stronger, more beautiful. The underlying structure remains firm, even defiant in the face of the inevitable erosion. Although constant weathering may alter the initial layers with each pass, it does little to disrupt the core. Nothing rolls off without consequence. However large or small, distinct or subtle, it leaves its mark.

It's 2007. Seriously. Someday I'll catch up.

I think it's time, though. I was pretty ready to be done with 2006. At a quick glance, it was a pretty lame rollercoaster that had a pretty cool last dip and curve. But then I scanned over all the stuff that I've written on my blogs this past year and realized that maybe the ride wasn't all that lame after all. I don't know that I'll be running to get back in line for the same one just yet, but I might pause and take a look at the picture that was snapped as I exit.

In 2006 I realized that driving seems to calm my soul. Not commute, big city driving, but the kind where I take a little detour, get a teensy bit "lost" on some backroads, and wander around. It's not too hard to do on my way home where I can pass through tiny little towns and wooded areas. I discovered how freeing it can be for my head to think beyond the obvious, right-in-front-of-me things and just breathe. That's where "me" and "the real me" can stop and have a conversation. I need to do that more often. I realized that lost animals will somehow find me and that I really don't mind helping them out, that pregnancy is really the only cure for my migraines, that the bathroom at work will always stink (no matter how you combine them, "flowers", "old lady", "spices" and "ass" will never be pleasant). I learned that I really can keep a fish alive for over a year, that I super-heart big ridiculous sunglasses, that I can't ever actually give up Coke and all other sugary and delicious carbonated beverages, that shrinky dinks still exist at Hobby Lobby, that sometimes the only thing that will make everything better is a 32 oz. Slurpee, and that no matter how dorky it is, Mr. Mandolyn and I will always consider dinner at CiCi's Pizza and a trip to Wal-Mart on Fridays an acceptable night out. I exercised the art of the Open Letter on my blogs: to The Uninvited Zit That Is Currently Residing In The Corner of My Mouth, My REM Sleep Cycle, Certain People Whose Emails Are Currently Residing in My Inbox at Work, The New Girl Working at Taco Bueno, Jell-O Pudding Pops, My New Blogger Account, and My Blog. I've discovered how invaluable blogs are to me- mine and all the others that I love to visit.

Although I knew about my own infertility before 2006, I could have never been prepared for what it had in store for me. I played with cocktails of IF drugs, had countless vials of blood taken, bought my weight in pee sticks, and I'm still not sure how my husband and my pets survived with my emotions. When I saw my first BFP in April, I was so sure that it had all been worth it. And then we had the devastating sonogram. I learned that crying an ocean of tears and dipping into depression scares me. I also learned that strength comes, even when I thought it wasn't possible. I tied a pomegranate string on my wrist and truly believe that I'm a better person because of it. I learned that the gummy bear inside of me now defies all logic. We got several BFN's after another dreaded two week wait. We were ready to look at the next cycle, then after having horrible cramps while out of town, bought a test and a box of tampons. (The tampons are still in my bathroom cabinet.) My heart was nearly broken again at our first sonogram, where no heartbeat was detected, and then again two weeks later as the baby measured 2 week too small. I celebrated my first baby's would-be birthday right as I heard this baby's heartbeat again. The dates make no sense, this baby couldn't have happened as the dates at the doctor's office suggest, but I'm finished trying to make sense of it. I'm learning to accept that no milestone of pregnancy will come with the ease and lighthearted glee that those outside of the Infertility Fire get to experience. I'm still learning.

So I'll go ahead and take that ticket to 2007. I hope that it will bring more good things than my hands can hold, than my head can comprehend and that my heart can handle. I hope that the goodness spills out into the hands, heads and hearts of everyone that needs it in the IF community. I want there to be enough to go around, with options of second helpings and dessert.

2006 definitely left it's mark. I'm a different person because of it, and the more I consider that, the more I realize that I might actually be ok with it.