Monday, February 21, 2011

tragedy and heartache

so i've been thinking about this blog for days. i keep thinking about things i need to put out there. thoughts that have been flitting through my head. thoughts about noah's awesomeness. thoughts about my shattered heart, the depth of my sadness, the ache of yet another loss.

the long and short of it is this. february 10th was an awesome day. we celebrated stacy making it to 24 weeks - viability. the realization of a baby possibly fighting an unhill battle, but at least being born to fight the battle.

february 11th the bottom fell out. i woke up to a text from stacy. she had started bleeding. she went to the hospital. there was no heartbeat. a baby girl was born around 2:30am, 1 lb 10 oz.

the ache is my heart took my breathe away. how one person has to experience this pain, this grief again.... how they have to now have three angel babies... i went into work that day, a friday, and cried all day. i think after stacy lost the twins i was able to hold it together, because their passing at 23 weeks 2 days was inevitable. her water had broken, one baby with the heart defect, the other septic. i went to bed the night they were born knowing i would have to deal with their passing the next day. this time, i went to bed happy, greatful for the gift the universe, maybe even god? had given my friend. and the next day, 24 weeks, 1 day, she is taken away.


i talk about MY feelings about this tragedy, and it's not even my tragedy to grieve. i think it affects me so deeply because of mine and stacy's shared IF & IVF journeys - my memory of her coming to me to tell me she was starting IVF while i was just a few months pregnant with noah. she was there for my journey, and i've been there for hers. i can understand where her mind is at to that extent, but i am left to imagine what it feels like to lose not one, not two, but three babies in under a year. and after all the hoops of IVF...


i saw stacy last thursday and when people asked how she was, i struggled to answer. she just is. she's hurting and who can blame her? she's confused and scared. losing three babies doesn't take away the desire to have a baby or to raise a child, but she now is forced to look at other options. options that she may have never even considered.

she comes back to work on wednesday. half days this week, and full time next week. she has to for financial reasons, and too because what is the alternative? sit and home and mope? work equals routine and human contact, which will be hard at first, but it's what she needs to keep moving forward. it will be harder though this time around, since she is coming back to an office with three pregnant people- one due in a few short weeks, another due just two weeks before her own due date, and another a close friend of ours. and that's not to mention several others who are trying, myself included.

which, speaking of - my IVF suppression is underway, though my gut reaction after stacy's cerclage came out and then again after the baby passed was to cancel the cycle. i told ben that's what i wanted to do, but after some conversations and some time, i decided to keep moving, and at least see how it goes and how i feel after vacation. - ah yes, vacation.....

we leave for AZ on wednesday night, and you know how much i've packed? nothing. i've gone so far as pulling out mine and noah's "summer" clothes and buying travel sized noxzema and st ives scrub. let's just say, tomorrow night's gonna be busy....

amidst all the sadness and stress of the past few weeks, i've failing to blog about noah's continued awesomeness!!!

he SINGS!! no more humming or singing a word here and there, but full on singing! he sings ring around the rosy, twinkle twinkle, abc's, happy birthday, most of take me out to the ballgame, patty cake... ah, what am i forgetting? he's taking in longer sentences all the time, and which i still have to translate for a lot of people, we are understanding the vast majority of what he says. he talks about his day, and makes jokes about things that he knows will make us laugh. he's doing a lot more smiling on command, or "cheesing" as i call it because that squinty eyed smile is pretty cheesy. he's LOVING school, and his teachers keep commenting on how great he's talking. he's even eating better recently! he's taken up hot dogs and chicken nuggets on a consistent basis, and the other weekend he ate my mother-in-law's lasagne and asparagus! he needed a little bribary (matchbox cars and chocolate cake), but hey, whatever works!!

stacy's loss has really made me re-evaluate my fortune. i know i'm lucky to have noah, don't get me wrong, but i honestly have a new found appreciation for him and the way he's changed me. i was talking to my co-worker who is due in a little over a month, and she was saying how she is nervous for stacy to come back, and expressed her guilt about being pregnant since she wasn't even trying to conceive. it was hard for me to respond to that besides to tell her that stacy is still happy for her, and had said so the day before. it took me a few moments to realize that what i should have told her, and what i will tell her before her baby comes is that while everyone's situation is different, she will be a better person and a better mom and have a better appreciation for HER child because of stacy's experience. we are all affected by life's twists and turns in our own way, but i think that if anything good can come from this tragedy, it is that so many people close to it have been impacted in a way that none of us will forget. we have to remind ourselves not to take these things for granted, and hopefully, we can share this with others as well.

Monday, February 7, 2011


so last week i had my first session of acupuncture at eastern healing in wheaton. i have read for years about the benefits of acupuncture for fertility, and have seriously been considering doing it for several months. only recently did i get the motivation to actually do it, and i think finding out that an associate attributed her clomid pregnancy to it.

i went last week for the initial consult and treatment. we talked a lot about my history, both medical and fertility. we talked about my routines, diet, lifestyle, etc. it's hard to have those conversations, because i'm a pretty lazy person. there's no exercising here, and while my diet's not TERRIBLE, it's not great either. i realized that i could really benefit from making some dietary changes, but changing my lifestyle, especially when ben is my cook, will be challenging.

anyways, the needles aren't the bad part. actually you can barely feel them. what is hard for me is lying still for 45 minutes. i get muscle cramps, dead leg, itchy ear, crick in my neck.... and it's kinda scary to move with needles stuck all over. i try to relax and let myself go, but i'm not quite there yet. i hope i get there because i want to use the time not only as a treatment for my fertility issues, but also as a mental escape. which is hard, since i'm a thinker with A LOT on my mind lately, but it's a goal.

that said, the starting point is one session a week for a month, then decreasing to every other week, and then bumping it to two times per week the week before and of retrival... at $70 a pop, it's not cheap, but my logic is 70 bucks times maybe 8 sessions - if it does what i hope it will - is a HELLLLLL of a lot cheaper than paying for an IVF cycle(or cycles) out of pocket.

which, on that note, has begun. last thursday i started my three week birth control pill suppression, and off we go. my meds will be delivered on saturday, and assuming all goes well, i hope to be pregant by the end of march. *fingers crossed*

Sunday, February 6, 2011


this week has been a rough ride. it started off good - my in-laws were on their california trip having the time of their lives. i had my child care situation nailed down for the week. things were peachy. and then the snow started...

they closed work early on tuesday, and called off work for wednesday with the impending storm of the century. the snow started around 1pm on tuesday, but i didn't leave til about 2:30. it took me an hour to get home. the minute i walked in, ben walked out and that was the last time i saw him until about 8:30 the next night.

it was text-me-tuesday. i've grown to look forward to tuesdays, with stacy's weekly doctor visits would come an update around 4pm. well on this day, i wasn't sure what time her appt was, and with the snow i didn't know if it would be cancelled or what would happen.

at some point in the early evening i got the text. "i'm back in the hospital" it said. what does that mean? i wondered. i texted back to let me know what's up when she could. after an eternity (probably about four hours), i texted again telling her i was worried and asking her to call me when she could. a few minute later she called and i could tell it wasn't good news.

long story short, she was thinning and dialating behind the cerclage, and it seemed the doctors weren't giving her much time. she could be transferred to loyola and wait it out for god knows how long or take out the cerclage and let nature take it's course. and she had to decide by morning. all the while trapped at the hospital in a literal blizzard.

i tried to be supportive and she and i cried together. she would be 23 weeks on thursday. she lost the twins at 23 weeks, 2 days...

i got off the phone with her and called kim, then texted everyone from the office, past and present. i was all alone, baby sleeping, world ending outside. blizzard in chicago, unrest in egypt, something in japan (a volcano?), something in australia (a typhoon?), and now this. the world was crashing down around me. i was helpless.

in the morning i texted stacy. she texted that she was getting the cerclage out soon. later she texted that she was home. 1cm dialted and doctor thought she could have the baby within 24 hours. more helplessness. more sense of stillness. suddenly nothing mattered more in the world. i held noah. hugged him, kissed him, told him how grateful i was for him. but no tears. i've felt numb since this started. i think i know how i feel, but it's so surreal. how is this happening AGAIN? anger at the universe only begins to describe it.

everyone i know is praying for a miracle. i even asked a god i don't believe in that if there is any justice in the world, this baby will be saved. so much energy, so many thoughts and prayers of SO many people are being sent to stacy and doug and that precious baby that is wanted more than anything...

and all of this in the midst of a blizzard.

that was four days ago. today stacy is 23 weeks, 3 days. one day further than she made it before. one day further than she got with twins, one with a severe heart defect, and one who developed sepsis. she is four days from viability, but so far from full term.

i want off this crazy ride for my own sanity, but moreso because i was stacy to have that precious baby that she has waited so long for.