When it comes to number 2

And no… I’m not talking about poop. As a momma it’s easy to assume the conversation will always end on a poo discussion.. But this comes to BABY number 2.

I EBF my boy, Crosby, for the 6 six months of his life and then we added solids. He still nursed, and continues to nurse to this day. However, at 7.5 month PP I got my lovely cycle back. During my whole PP phase we never decided to use any form of birth control (for many reasons I don’t think I need to explain). So we definitely were not “trying” but we weren’t protecting either. We are totally ok with the second baby coming whenever (BAHAHA insert nieve thinking here). Well, as you’ve guessed, there’s no “bun in the oven”. Once my cycle returned we jumped straight into actively trying. I am now on cycle number 6.

I can’t say I’m overly optimistic. I’m absolutely terrified of another loss – even after having a perfectly healthy baby. I’m baffled and discouraged that I feel like I am back at square one. But I also have guilt and shame – because – well.. I have ONE baby. I got what I wanted – how dare I be selfish and wish for more and then be heart broken that it’s not happening on my timeline. But, I am clouded with the thoughts of “what if”…

  • what if I can’t have another
  • what if I need fertility treatments again
  • what if I have another miscarriage… or heaven forbid more than one
  • what if I don’t have any eggs left
  • what if…

The list can go on and on.

6 cycles is nothing.. but as a recovering RPLer and fertility treatment junky it’s making me scratch my head.

So, here we go. My first step is going to be a naturopathic fertility specialist. Since I am still breastfeeding and don’t plan on weaning until AT LEAST 18 months I would like to continue on the natural side of things if possible. Once my son is weaned, if we have still not yet had any glimmer of hope for baby number 2, I imagine we will go directly back to SRM – Spokane.

I’ve always wanted 3 kiddos… That’s what our dream was… But the older I get the more I find myself convincing myself and my hubby that just maybe ONE will be enough… My heart doesn’t believe it yet… My heart doesn’t feel complete yet. There are more babies to housed in this body of mine.. I’m just terrified that I won’t get to bring them all home.

 

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Faith in the Face of Fear

Well I’m tardy on last week’s update. I won’t forget, I promise. But today, I sit here contemplating and preparing for my 24 (technically I’ll be 24+5) week appointment tomorrow. Leading up to this appointment I have remained confident and full of hope and joy. But as I lingered longer about what my week looks like and what needs to be done and the things I need to plan ahead for I have come overwhelmed with fear. It caught me by surprise. For a while I really felt paralyzed. In fact, even as I type this my heart is pounding and I feel like all I can hear is the thump, thump, thump in my ears.

Why am I so scared? I have nothing to fear. I haven’t really walked into an appointment with fear, in quite some time. I thought just maybe I was over that.

My heart gently reminded me: Colton.

This same week, one year ago, I received news that knocked the wind, faith, hope, joy right out of me. Who was I kidding, thinking I could waltz into the same office, with the same faces, with the smells, and the same everything and feel 100% confidence? I thought I could…. Really, truly, this never really came to mind. I’ve been in a state of bliss and confidence. My faith in my body and my faith in just about everything seems…. back to normal.

But today, I don’t feel faith. I feel fear. I feel silly, really. My brain has immediately forgotten all the joyous moments, just this morning… the kicks, the wiggles, the life that I could feel inside my tummy. Crosby must be sleeping this afternoon, so clearly my brain has abandoned all rational and gone to worst-case-scenario. And I’m left alone in my head cleaning up and dodging bullets to save my sanity. I’m sitting here blinking back tears of fear. This isn’t me. I haven’t felt this in a while. This almost feels new, but also so incredibly familiar.

So while I battle the flesh and try to keep marching forward I have a choice to make. It’s not a simple one. The me I know, would prefer to crumble because it’s seemingly “easier”. But no – I have a choice to choose Faith. I choose to have faith that I can walk into this appointment alone (the first one I’ve been to alone since this pregnancy started, and the first time I’ve been alone to any appointment since Colton passed). I choose to have faith that our baby is alive and thriving. I choose to have faith that no matter the outcome of any pregnancy my God is a God who is in control and is always working for my good and His glory.

So, as I gather my questions for my midwife, I’ll also be gathering my tears and my fears and standing up nice and tall. I’ve survived. I am more than capable of facing the fears and finding faith. Is it easy? Not even a little. But it’s worth it.

I’ll let my cereal bowl tell you how I really feel……

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By the way, this really happened. Even ask Connor. I couldn’t have staged this or planned it any better. Maybe it was just reflecting the real sadness…. The last bite.

March of Dimes Update:

Goal – $1000.00

Total Raised – $510 – only 5 more sleeps until I get to celebrate my boy Colton, and walk for the March of Dimes!

So, if you feel compelled, please, please, please donate. This goes to a wonderful cause. I have a HUGE goal. I’d love to meet this goal. It’s a big one. But, the cause is so worth it. Plus, it’s one that I am super passionate about. It’s important to me that all mothers and babies get a healthy start to pregnancy and life. I’m always going to advocate for full term babies!
So, if you feel led, here’s my personal page: http://www.marchforbabies.org/babybrooks
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These yummy treats were part of our Baking for Babies Fundraiser (held at my place of work). Donated by the amazing Tiffany from a Dash of Love. Yes, I ate one (or 3) and it was the best.ever.

Next appointment: Tomorrow.
Exercise: Still walking the pup most days after work, weather permitting. I am still participating in my once a week yoga at work.
Maternity clothes: *Same* Yes and no still. Some shirts are, some shirts aren’t. Most of my skirts and pants are maternity though. That likely won’t change anytime soon 🙂
Sleep:  I recently bought a diffuser for my essential oils, and I have been using it – I’m convinced it’s brought me some MUCH needed sleep lately. I am savoring the deep sleep, that is for sure!
Food cravings:  Well, as I assumed my cravings didn’t last too long. I still prefer spicy, and I still love me some Thai.. But my desire for a Bonzai isn’t as strong. It was fun while it lasted. I’m pretty proud I only gave in to my desire once, well for the burger that is!
Symptoms: I can’t. I just can’t even start…. I will say: Purpose. I’m thankful there is a purpose. (side note: who decided that it was a good idea to put ribs where you’re supposed to grow a baby??? It’s not my favorite idea at the moment). Back pain. However, a gentleman approached me yesterday at church and asked to pray for me. He instinctually knew and deliberately prayed for back pain. I’m believing that it’s gonna be gone, any minute now!
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Crosby’s lungs are developing significantly now as practices breathing by inhaling amniotic fluid, and is making cells that will produce surfactant, a material that will help his lungs expand and operate once he reaches the air. Crosby has also gained about a quarter of a pound last week in bones, muscle, and fat, so he is finally beginning to fill out into a real person. And even though his eyebrows, lashes, and hair are coming in, it still lacks pigment and appears white. skin is beginning to glow a bit pinker, due to the appearance of capillaries. His ears and fingernails are also complete by now. By the end of this week, he is probably about 13 inches long, the size of an eggplant, and he weighs probably more than average (average is 1.5lbs), because lets face it, at 21 weeks he was a fatty already.
Movement: It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world. Little dude prefers the right side of his apartment, very rarely does he venture to the left.
What I miss:  Wine. Yup finally, the desire for wine has reached me. This is TOTALLY way too much info – But I really miss a good solid pee. Like the kind where you leave the restroom pretty darn satisfied. I can’t really think of much else though.
What I’m lovingI’m loving how active this dude is. His little feisty personality kills me. Definitely loving my hair. I’m loving the bump and my belly button causes a great deal of humor, and on some occasions my wardrobe causes some humor too, but most days I would say that’s more of a war-zone. I’m loving how amazing of a job my hubs did painting Little C’s room this weekend – insert googly-heart-eyed emoji! I’m loving being on the other side of viability!
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Don’t worry, the pup isn’t dead, he was just being a good helper! HA!

What I’m looking forward to:   I’m SOO looking forward to decorating Little Mr’s room, which I’m happy to take ‘painting’ off that list and just decorate now! I’m looking forward to Maternity pics and new hair cut and color in May! Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus. I’m also looking forward to….Baby Showers!!!!!!! I feel so spoiled and blessed.
Baby Purchases:  Notta thing bought this last week. We have finished our registries completely- I will say  I’m always humbled and blown away by people’s generosity. I get somewhat embarrassed when people ask where we are registered at because – gosh, they shouldn’t be buying us stuff! But, in a way I also understand the desire to buy tiny things. I can’t resist buying for friends and family too. I’m on the hunt for a swimsuit – our pool is getting opened up soon and this girl is going to basically live in it.
Best moment this week:  Painting. Spending some serious 1-on-1 time with the Hubs. Sleeping, a lot. Laying in bed until 8am on Saturday AM and letting the hubs enjoy the rambunctious activity of Little C in the mornings!
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Hello 24 weeks! I can’t believe you’re here. I can’t believe that I’ve been gifted this amazing opportunity. I hope that as things get more and more uncomfortable that I never once take this experience for granted. That I remind thankful and humbled at Gods amazing grace.
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Yup, representing the March of Dimes!! 🙂

Marching, Doula’s, and a name for Squishy

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I will start with this. Story of my life. I usually end up finding a few in random closets. My cat, Syd, loves these things. So I have many a causality per week.
Next, I’m going to toot my own horn for a minute…. March of Dimes…. Can I just say – WOW!
My original goal was $250 to raise. I met that. So, I set a new goal – $500. I’ve met that. With people’s generous donations my total fundraising stands at $510. So, like I have before.. I set a new goal. This one is lofty. This one is a stretch. But I KNOW that if there are more generous people out there I can meet this goal. Dollar by dollar.
New Goal – $1000.00
So, if you feel compelled, please, please, please donate. This goes to a wonderful cause. I have a HUGE goal. I’d love to meet this goal. It’s a big one. But, the cause is so worth it. Plus, it’s one that I am super passionate about. It’s important to me that all mothers and babies get a healthy start to pregnancy and life. I’m always going to advocate for full term babies!
So, if you feel led, here’s my personal page: http://www.marchforbabies.org/babybrooks
This week is boring, basically because not much has changed, really. So, feel free to skip it. I just feel like I should write down what 23 weeks looks like so that someday I can look back and not ask, what happened to week 23….
Next appointment: End of April (25ish weeks) – However I will add that my first Doula appointment was on Tuesday. I’m stoked. We nailed down a decent birth plan. One for her and one to give to the hospital staff. I probably sound a little nuts, but I am soo excited to be attempting a natural, un-medicated birth. I’m excited to experience what my body is capable of. I’m really excited to feel and watch my body do something that I have always assumed it didn’t know how to do (I’m learning to trust!! GASP). I’m really excited to nurse. I’m mostly excited that I have a really great support system in place to help me achieve all this. Also, she suggested I read a few books, this is my first, so far I love it!
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Ps. If you are in the Spokane area, I highly recommend her. Sarah is quite possibly the sweetest and she LOVES what she does.
Exercise: Still walking the pup most days after work. Still participating in my once a week yoga at work. Someday when we finally replace our DVD player (which is currently broken) I will pop in the yoga DVD I ordered forever ago.
Maternity clothes: Yes and no still. Some shirts are, some shirts aren’t. Most of my skirts and pants are maternity though. That likely won’t change anytime soon 🙂
Sleep:  Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose. But, most days I lose.
Food cravings:  I will say my craving for Thai food has exceeded the desire for a Bonzai Burger. Although both always sound good.
Symptoms: I can’t. I just can’t even start…. I will say: Purpose. I’m thankful there is a purpose. (side note: who decided that it was a good idea to put ribs where you’re supposed to grow a baby??? It’s not my favorite idea at the moment)
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Little C is still transparent, and a bit red because of the developing veins and arteries under skin, but this won’t last long, as Little C is about to pack on the fatty chub that gives skin a more person-like look. Little C’s face is fully formed, and is simply waiting on the fat to fill out. Little C is starting to kick like crazy, usually in response to noises hears from the outside world. Little C is also busy constructing the blood vessels in his lungs that will allow him to breathe the air on his own once he is born. Little C is a bit over a foot tall, the size of a bunch of grapes, and he weighs probably more than average, because lets face it, at 21 weeks he was a fatty already.
Movement:  It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world. Little dude has found my cervix, bladder, and also my ribs as practice for his soccer skills.
What I miss:  I miss a lot, but mostly my memory. I miss being able to control my emotions a little better. Seriously. It’s like a flame that moves to a forest fire in a matter of seconds sometimes, and then before I can even realize what’s happening I’m in a pile of tears that snowball into sobs. It’s the weirdest thing ever. I do not like it.
What I’m loving:  Unrelated: New Furniture. LOVE IT. I feel like I have a grown up living-room! Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels and looks. I’m loving how active this dude is. His little feisty personality kills me. Loving my craving for Thai. I’m loving his name……….
Crosby Dixon Brooks
What I’m looking forward to:   I’m SOO looking forward to painting/decorating Little Mr’s room, which I say every week. But we bought paint last weekend. Now we just need to move a few things around to make room to paint. I’m looking forward to Maternity pics and new hair cut and color in May! Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus. VIABILITY (1 more week)!!!!!!!! Baby Showers!!!!!!! I feel so spoiled and blessed.
Baby Purchases:  Notta thing bought this last week (well, except paint – does that count? Oh, and Momma got some new clothes…. Sorry bubs, momma took the prize this week). I just have been working on a list of things we need still and things to register for. I feel weird about registries, I feel weird about letting people buy us gifts. We paid to get here, we knew the expenses of a babe were coming…. But I will have an open mind and allow blessings to come, if they come. I never expect gifts, though. Ever. I’m always humbled and blown away by people’s generosity.
Best moment this week:  On Easter, we started telling people his name, that was pretty awesome. This is completely unrelated, but it’s my besties birthday! This last weekend her and I had a girls date and got appetizers and pedicures. It was amazing! I have sooo much love for her, she doesn’t even know how much of a blessing she is.
Happy Birthday Sweet friend!!
Hello 23 weeks! I can’t believe you’re here. I can’t believe that I’ve been gifted this amazing opportunity. I hope that as things get more and more uncomfortable that I never once take this experience for granted. That I remind thankful and humbled at Gods amazing grace.
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March of Dimes

This year my boss has asked me and my amazing co-worker to be Captains of our Annual March of Dimes fundraising team. At first I was excited to jump right in and do whatever it took. Then I realized the date of this event and I spiraled down into a little ball.

April 25.

All my dreams and plans and fundraising ideas fled my mind and I was absorbed back into some painful, yet bitter-sweet, memories. If you haven’t been following along for too long, April 25th was the day we finally said our sweet goodbye’s to our boy Colton. It was a traumatic and lonely day for me and my husband. It was sad and gutted me to our core, and a year later I still feel like I have major holes in my heart.

As we’ve healed and accepted our new normal I decided that instead of seeing this task as burden I would use this as a great opportunity to share my story and honor Colton, as well as all our little ones who never made it here. I would take this opportunity to raise money for awareness. Where I work, I am honored that I set up and help provide the space for the March of Dimes board members to use for monthly meetings. Because of this, I actually received so much support and information from some of their board members and employees. They gave me so many resources and even a genetic counselor (who sat on the Board) offered to sit with me and look at my genetic testing as a second opinion. How could I not return the favor and show my love and support for all they’ve done for me!?

So I never do this, but I ask that you consider, pray, talk to your spouse or significant other, and see if you are able to support our cause and donate to our team. If you are unable to give financially, I ask that you join us in celebration of Colton on April 25! In the past we have released balloons on the anniversary date, and I believe this tradition will follow us all the days of our lives. Also, be praying for us on April 25. We have been so encouraged and filled to the top with love and support and I can’t tell you how uplifting it is to know people are praying. It’s always a hard day when anniversaries come around. They are… bitter-sweet. Even more so when you have a babe healthy in your belly. It’s an ever-present reminder of what I miss, but also a blessing to know that it seems as if we finally have our babe that we’ll get to hold.

Thank you in advance for your support!

My Little Cashew is my reason why. He is my reason for Walking!

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If you have any questions or need the link to donate to our team please email me at: mlwalker0909@gmail.com
I’m not gonna lie people, these weekly update things are getting BORING! Mostly everything is the same, so feel free to skip it. I just don’t want to forget for myself. There are some changes though. I am technically 18+6 today, but here is my 19 week update!
Next appointment: End of March (21 weeks) – This will include the full anatomy ultrasound.
Weight Gain/Loss: *same* I officially hate this question….. So, I was WAY wrong. Since pre-pregnancy I am up a total of 9 pounds. I thought this was a lot, but the nurse said that it was well within normal… YIKES, no matter how prepared you think you are to watch the scale move UP, it still stings a little when you see a weight you’ve never weighed before in your life.
Exercise: *same* Yeah, I suck. But we’ve gone on a couple of walks and I still do my once a week yoga. So, I’m not totally lazy.
Maternity clothes: *same* – I can’t say yes, but I can’t say no…. Mostly normal tops (although I’ve noticed they’re starting to roll up on occasion haha). Pants/leggings/skirts all maternity. Especially at the end of the day!
Sleep: *same* Terrible. I need a million pillows, I need a heat pad, I need space. I have a feeling this is going to continue.
Food cravings:  RED ROBIN BONZAI BURGER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously though, I still have not yet indulged in this craving and I want to so bad. Soon enough, I will have one and it will not be a pretty sight. Whomever I am with better not stare too bad, cause I will be in complete shovel mode I’m sure of it!
Symptoms: Headaches are better, my back gets tired more quickly, I’m still tired 99% of the time. My knees bug me if I am on my feet for longer periods of time, my appetite is still good but I’m noticing my portions are getting smaller cause I feel full really quickly. But I also noticed (probably because I am SO short-waisted) that my uterus is already about 2 inches above my belly button. Bending over isn’t my favorite, sleep.. I want more sleep. Also, WIN – My skin is doing better and better each week, I hope it stays that way!
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Baby is now measuring about the size of a zucchini. Now if you live in Washington State and grow your own, I can promise you my babe is not that large yet, but I am assuming the store-bought size 🙂 Kicking, rolling, punching, twisting, hiccupping, and swallowing still. Baby should weigh at about 9 oz and is working on sprouting tiny hairs on his head (I hope he’s a blonde like my hubs!!).
Movement:  I can now say that without a doubt I feel movement. It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world. I can’t wait for it to be consistent!
What I miss:  I miss being able to bend over and tie my shoes without feeling like my lunch/breakfast/dinner will come back up. I miss Blue Moon. Not sure why…. That sounds odd, but maybe cause it’s usually really cold and really refreshing when it’s nice outside. That’s about it!
What I’m loving:  Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels and looks. I’m loving that I *KNOW* I’m feeling more and more movement. I’m loving that now I don’t just look kinda chubby. My belly is getting more and more round. It’s fun to watch and even more fun to hear my husband comment on it. We tend to poke it a lot.
What I’m looking forward to:  *same* Letting my hubs feel movement once I get bigger. Looking forward to painting Little Mr’s room. Looking forward to announcing a name. Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus.
Baby Purchases:  CLOTHES, ok, so we didn’t buy a ton more. But we just needed to buy the cute ones. BUT, this is what I want to purchase next, or register for, or something. Haha, I am IN LOVE with this diaper bag. It has three options for carrying (back-pack, over the shoulder, and across the body).
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Best moment this week: Feeling little dude move more than once a day. Feeling more energy. And completely unrelated to baby – working on our Easter church service worship set. I can’t wait!!
Hello 19 weeks, I’m excited you’re here and thankful that I’ve been blessed to experience everything this far!
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