Friday, April 30, 2010

A few things

  • Lexi spent the night at her grandma and grandpa's house last Sunday. The DH and I went to the Chicago White S0x game. It was rainy and cold, so Lexi couldn't go. We got a nice night of sleep. But I missed my girl.
  • Wednesday night Lexi pooped in the potty. It was a one off thing, and I don't expect it to happen again anytime soon...she was in the tub when she made "the face". I picked her up and put her on the potty (because ya know I didn't want to have to clean up THAT in the tub) and she successfully went. Woo Hoo!
  • Yesterday she had her first Baby Bees class at the park district. Grandma takes her. She was the youngest and only girl. They have an indoor "jungle gym" for kids aged 1 and 2 and they sing songs etc. Grandma said she tried to hug all the boys.
  • I missed "the face" in the tub last night. So I was cleaning THAT out of the tub and cleaning all her toys with bleach. Yuck.
  • I still have not gotten Lexi's birthday pictures from my sister. I told her I am holding her birthday gift hostage until I get said pictures!

Sorry, that's all I got today. It's been a very busy week at work, and I don't like to get on the computer at home if I can help it. I have a few posts brewing, so stay tuned.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

What IF

April 24 - May 1st is National Infertility Awareness Week. Many people don't know that such a week even exists...I know I didn't...until I was thrown into the world of infertility.

When Dh and I made the decision in 2004 that we would start building our family (even before he was my DH) we didn't know anything about RE's, FSH, IVF, injections, retrievals, transfers etc. Infertility wasn't a word in our vocabulary. We had fun trying to conceive that first year. I was 28, still young, so we didn't think we had anything to worry about. When we weren't pregnant after that first year we started to get a little more serious and a little less fun. I read books about TTC, and joined Fertility Friends. I started temping and checking my cervical mucus...but still we didn't worry. When we still weren't pregnant after another year DH went to the an SA. Easiest test first. Low sperm counts. OK...that's why it's taking us longer...less swimmers. When 2007 rolled around and we still weren't able to conceive, the fun went completely out the window and we got really serious. I went to an RE.

Diagnosis: PCOS and high FSH. Treatment: IVF.

We went into that first IVF optimistic and hopeful. Upset that our family building couldn't be done in the bedroom...but overly positive. Result: 22 eggs retrieved, 0 fertilized, nothing to transfer. I was devastated. I felt that I a wife, as a woman. It took me the better part of a year to pull myself out of the despair I fell into. Seeing pregnant bellies around me deepened the wounds my failed cycle had created. I couldn't go to baby showers...not because I wasn't happy for the mom to be, but because I needed to preserve what little emotional wall I had left.

In July 2008, I was ready. I was ready to cycle again. I went into it hopeful, yet pessimistic. I had no fantasies about getting pregnant. Emotionally, I was very detached from the whole thing. Injections? Yea, just something I had to do. Monitoring? Yea, just something I had to do. It helped that I had jury duty the same week I started kept my mind busy so I didn't have to think about what was going on inside my ovaries. Result: 22 eggs retrieved, 4 fertilized, 1 surviving embryo on day 3. We transferred that lone embryo...and I tried to stay positive. On beta day, I was a nervous wreck, I hadn't POAS because if my test was going to be negative I didn't want to see the stark white. I'd rather have a nurse tell me my levels were 0.

However, when the call came, it wasn't zero. And my beautiful girl was born 36 weeks 2 days later on April 10, 2009.

I tell everyone I can that she is an IVF baby. I'm not shy about going through IVF. I'm not shy about the toll it can take. I'm willing to talk. And people ask questions. I love when people ask questions. Because it means they are interested in learning.

Yesterday on the train, I was speaking to a woman whose baby was born 15 days after Lexi. She was asking about IVF and what it entailed. What the process was. As I was telling her about the injections, the monitoring, the emotional toll...a woman 2 rows up turned around and asked if she could come sit with us...turns out, she is just starting the IVF process and was scared as hell.

I was honest. Infertility sucks. You lose your privacy, you lose intimacy. Baby making is no longer a spontaneous act. Sex is timed. It's robotic. Injections are painful, they leave bruises and welts on your body. It is expensive, even with insurance coverage (my state mandates IF coverage). Your ovaries swell to the size of grapefruits. OHSS looms. It's isolating. But in the end, infertility is the best thing that's happened to me. It's made me more patient. More compassionate. More empathetic. It's brought me wonderful online friends. It's opened my eyes to so many things. And it brought me this:

And as we start to embark on our next infertility journey (the road to #2)...we're hopeful. We're optimistic. We're having fun trying again...even though we know that fun won't bring us a baby.

Don't be silent about infertility.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I did it

I sent Lexi's photo to a talent agency today. And now I'm nervous. Because I don't handle rejection well. Even when I'm not receiving the rejection firsthand. This would be like second hand rejection. They wouldn't be rejecting me...but my daughter. And in my eyes, she's perfection. So to have someone reject her...well, I'd feel rejected as well. Crazy isn't it? I mean, I just dropped the envelope in the mail. The agency clearly says, "Please allow 4 -6 weeks for a response". If they don't like her, she won't care. She's one.

Let me be clear in that I have NO fantasies about her "making it big" and becoming the next big child star. Ha! Far from it. I'd just like to open an ad and be able to point to a picture and say, that's MY little girl. Even if the ad is for a local mom & pop store. I think it would make for an amazing memory. Plus, anything that helps build her college fund is always welcome!

So now I sit and wait. 4 -6 weeks. That's not so bad.

Monday, April 19, 2010

On the go

Sorry I haven't posted about Lexi's birthday yet. I have a post ready, but I'm waiting to get the pictures from my sister. I should have them tonight.

Lexi had her 12 month well visit on the 13th.

She's 20lbs 1.5 oz (just below 50%), 31 and 3/4 inches (95%). Tall and lean. I'm jealous. LOL. The pedi wasn't concerned about her barely 1lb weight gain since 9 months...he said she's much more active so she's burning what she's eating. If she loses weight, he'd be concerned. We talked about Lexi's poop issues (constipated) and he said NO MORE FORMULA! Apparently, the formula can be the source of the constipation. Too many nutrients in the formula along with all the solid food she's eating. So whole milk for her. I have to admit, I didn't completely stop giving her formula yet. She still prefers it over the milk, so we give it to her at bedtime and when she's really upset. So we're down to maybe 2 bottles of formula a day.

Next issue is just that. Lexi is still using bottles. We've tried every sippy cup in the stores...she won't drink from them. They end up on the floor. I haven't been able to teach her how to suck from a straw (how the hell do you do that anyway?) so those "cups" are out. She will drink from the cup directly IF we hold it for her. And will drink water from the water bottle. The pedi again says not to worry...some kids go directly to cups. We're still trying.

She's walking. Right before her birthday, she took 2 steps independently from me to my mom. Then she wouldn't do it again. Then, last week, she just decided she would let go of the ottoman and walk over to her toys. By herself. She looks like frankenstein when she walks (arms out, legs still a little stiff) but it's amazing. I can't believe she's walking!

Personality wise...she's becoming more independent. She wants what she wants and she wants it NOW. She knows how to use her voice and screams/crys when she's angry.

No real words yet. She ma ma ma ma moms all the time, but I'm still not sure she connects what she's saying to me. Though she understands. We ask her where her balloon is and she looks at it up on the ceiling. She trys to say balloon but it comes out as "ba zzzzzz". She also has a Curious George stuffed animal. We tell her to go get George and give hugs and kisses, and she'll stop what she's doing and go over to where George is and give him a big open mouthed kiss and hug. That's her new thing. She loves giving kisses. Even to the dogs...right on their snouts! Very cute.

I picked up a potty seat for her yesterday. Now before I get flamed here, I don't plan on trying to potty train her yet. We bought it and it sits in the family room right now. I want her to be used to sitting on it so that when the time comes, she's not afraid of it. Though I probably could try to start her now, as it's VERY obvious when she's pooping and we can sometimes tell when she's going to go pee (body language), I'm just not ready for it. My baby is hitting all kinds of milestones and I'm not ready to add one just yet.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Another "first"

Although this first I wish never happened. First, I'll say that everyone is injuries.

We were involved in a 3 car collision last night. 2 of the cars were ours. However, we were found to NOT be at fault. Basically, I was driving with Lexi, there was a Toyota behind me, and my husband was behind that car. I slowed down to stop for a red light. The Toyota didn't. The worst part was I saw it coming. I knew she was going to hit me. And there was nothing I could do about it but hope it wouldn't be too bad. I saw the other driver's face when she looked up from whatever it was she was doing and realized she was going to hit me. It all only lasted a few seconds, but it seemed like forever. She hit me doing about 25 or 30. Enough to totally smash the front end of her car. My husband was then unable to stop in time to avoid hitting her...which caused her car to lurch forward and hit me again. We felt both impacts.

Lexi was screaming in the back seat...more terrified than hurt - I would find out after the paramedics checked her over. The other driver was found to be at fault for "both" accidents. No tickets were issued, because technically my DH was following her too close. The cop didn't ticket him or the other driver...but listed her as the at fault driver on the report.

So now the fun begins...getting both cars fixed...and a new car seat. Since Lexi's has been involved in a collision, we were advised by the cop to get a new one, and to make her insurance pay for it.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Happy First Birthday Peanut!

Dearest Lexi,

Happy 1st Birthday! I don't even know how to begin to write you this letter, as it's one I never thought I'd get to write. Sure, all the other monthly letters were no problem...updates on what you've been doing and milestones you're reaching...but there's something about a first birthday. Something special.

I know it sounds silly, but I've been thinking of this day for SO long. Not only does it mark your place in history, but it also closes a small chapter in our lives. You are no longer a "baby" and have moved into "toddlerhood". And that makes me both extremly sad and happy. Sad because gone are the days of snuggling on the couch and you letting me hold you to my heart's desire. Happy because you are growing into a beautiful, outgoing, well mannered little girl. And that makes my heart swell with pride.

You're so close to walking independently, and took your first 2 steps alone on Wednesday. Mommy was there to see them. One of the things I've been so afraid of, peanut, is missing out on all your "firsts" since I'm working. And I have missed quite a few...but these first steps, confirmed with grandma that you didn't do it before, I was there. I saw them with my own eyes. I saw the smile on your face as you took those steps...unsteady as they were. And tears came to my eyes. Just as they are now, as I type this.

As we close this first chapter of your life, I'm excited to begin the next one. You are my everything. I love you more than I could ever say.

Happy 1st Birthday Alexis Marie.

Love always,


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Sleep Regression! HELP!!

Lexi has slept through the night for the most part since Christmas. However, over the last week or so, it seems she's regressed to waking every 2 or 3 hours. She wakes crying, and gradually that crying turns to shrieking. Until DH or I get up to go to her. Last night, she went down at 7pm...was up at 10:30, 11:45, 1 - 2am and 4:30am. It's brutal. We gave her a bottle at 11:45 and 4:30, but at 1am we brought her in our bed, where she happily played with the remote control and watched the replay of the late local news.

Anyone with babies older than Lexi...please weigh in. What is causing this? Is it a developmental thing?

Monday, April 5, 2010

Happy Easter

Your second Easter...all before your first birthday. We're still amazed at how you've grown. Our little lady. My little peanut...little no more.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Talent Scouts

Over the last few months I've been bombarded with people telling me that Lexi should be in pictures...that I need to get her an agent. So after much thought, I decided I just might. My problem? We don't know how to start...who to contact...where to go. We aren't looking to make big bucks...just have something that is fun to do and will give us some amazing memories for later on in life. I don't want her to become crazy involved in anything as I want her to have as "normal" a childhood as possible. Anyone have any ideas? I'm wary about just doing an internet search for "child modeling" or "talent agents" because of all the possible scams out there.