Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Just a little wednesday hope for y'alls

Ok, so many of you know I generally only lurk once in a while on the recurrent miscarriage support board on babycenter.  Mostly because the vast majority of the women who were on the board when I first joined eons ago, in 2012(!), have gone on to have healthy babies. I pretty much lost many of my friends there.  The women on there are today are supportive and great, but I. just. can't.  I generally feel like I have nothing to offer them in the way of hopeful words.

Well, today I hopped on a thread, and someone posted this very short video.  It's a doozy, click the link below.  Seriously, WATCH IT.

Are your tears dried yet?

The backstory was given by someone on the board who actually knows her:  Apparently she had just found out as well and was shocked. She went to her doctor to find out why she was retaining fluid because she had swollen feet/ankles. After giving up on a baby for over 5 years, pregnancy was the farthest thing from her mind, and besides, she was now in her very early 40s.  Oh, and the big softie in the video is a correctional officer, when he's opening the oven he is seeing her ultrasound pics.

Monday, September 28, 2015

"Now I'm getting depressed"

I was reading the paper, my husband was sitting on the couch, and of course I went on a rant about the Republican Primaries.  They are a huge trigger.  Maybe four years ago I could view this insanity as entertainment, the glib lies about Planned Parenthood, the determination to discount basic science.... but it's no longer politics, it's personal now.  A sizable portion of the continental US believes that I have committed an act of murder. For context a sizable portion of the continental US also believes that a Muslim shouldn't be president, our polar ice caps aren't melting and our resources would be best spent building walls along the Canadian border.

But all of this rant is really about Celine.  My baby girl, who I loved and lost close to a year ago.  And how isolated I am in missing her.  Because my husband can't - won't - listen to me talk about her.  Because when I do try to talk about her, he says,  "Now I'm getting depressed."  To which I said, "Now you know what I walk around with on a daily basis.  Because not a single day goes by that I am not depressed...that I am not sad.  This is what I live with."

I don't want to give a wrong impression.  He is amazing and loving and wonderful and to use the cliche, he is my rock.   But being the only actively depressed person in a household can get really old.

I could use some good news.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Yoga fail.

So I walk into my Sunday morning yoga class and there's a sub, and she's really nice.  And while everyone is setting up their mats, she is in this conversation with another woman in the class, who is a middle-aged, sharp looking, gray-haired woman with a new agey vibe that I have seen before.  I've noted new-age lady before actually because she is serious business in her yoga practice, rocking the headstands and such, while I am shaking away in warrior lunges.  Anyways, nice yoga sub starts talking about poverty and schools and public health, and how poverty truly is an indicator for health outcomes, and I'm all internally thinking "well, yeah, this is what I do for a living" and then she mentions the absurdity that our country is in a debate over the funding of Planned Parenthood.  And how they provide so much good to women who are most vulnerable, and need cancer screenings and birth control and mammograms.  And how only 3% of their services are even related to abortion.  And then the older new-agey lady says, "Well it's an awful 3%."

Well.  Fuck.  Right there goes my ability to let go and my ability to focus on taking a goddamn yoga class to build strength and relax and do everything related to my physical and emotional health.

I powered through it.  I held onto the shakiest of crow poses for a split second.  I stretched far, I attempted every difficult balance.  But today the practice was a mess.  My mind couldn't be controlled, not through the most intentional of breathing.  Fuck me.

When we came to shavasana, the final resting post, I was spent, but not in the usual way.  I could feel my face crumble, I could feel the tears burning through my closed eyelids.

When it was over, I thanked the sub for her class.  And made a friendly suggestion.  Trying to hold back tears I explained that I first wanted her to know that I personally agreed with every one of her comments about public health issues.  But that once she mentioned Planned Parenthood, and once I had to listen to another person comment negatively about it, that was it, I couldn't hold on to my practice.  She silently took in what I said, then said I was right, and that she now really understood that chit chat before class should be more mindful.

But then I went further, explaining (rambling really) in a whisper, "That 3% you mentioned,  that that other woman commented on, well, I am that 3%.  My baby was going to be very very sick, and to spare her pain I made the choice to terminate a pregnancy in the second trimester.  And it was an awful situation to be in.  And for so many women in my position, Planned Parenthood is the only option for care.  And to hear another woman's judgment about the awful 3% was awful in itself....I guess maybe as a helpful suggestion, maybe it makes sense to try not to discuss divisive political issues right before the start of a yoga class.  Sometimes the political is personal.  Sometimes your students may be triggered."

We talked some more.  The sub was very kind, and felt very bad, which was not my intention at all.  But at least I know that from here on in she will work hard to create a truly safe space prior to class.  Or at least not talk about abortion clinics.

You know, I really don't want to be this special snowflake who needs such a delicate touch.  I don't like being this person who bursts into tears in a yoga class for fuck's sake.  And maybe my whole premise is entirely wrong, and it's a ridiculous expectation to ask that someone not talk "politics" before a yoga class.  But man, what was ordinarily an empowering, nurturing experience was really turned on its head this morning.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

stress bad.

So it's been another month and I am going to bet a million dollars I am not pregnant again.  This is the fifth cycle in a row.  What's changed?  When did I become infertile, or at least, less than super-fertile?  Well, there's always the possibility that my eggs are really acting like 41 year old eggs, for one.

But I am also stressed out.  REALLY stressed out.  Much moreso than usual.  Work has been insane, I haven't been able to get home until well after 8pm for the last three nights.  I have been traveling all over creation for my job, trying to put out our organization's equivalent of fires.  I have started taking melatonin to address the inability to fall asleep once Niblet is tucked in because when I finally crawl into bed I am exhausted, but too wired and jacked up to sleep.

So, me being me, it's time to have an action plan.  Baby or not, I can't live this way:
1. Eat better.  Fried foods bad.  Seriously, this is tough to do when you're on the road as much as I have been, but my diet has completely fallen off the wagon.Throw in fertility foods to fool myself into thinking I am being proactive.  I am adding the wheatgrass shots back in.  I'll snack on almonds.  I'll cut back on the dairy and gluten.  Whatever, it can't hurt.
2. Sleep better. Melatonin good.
3. Yoga.  I could always commit to breaking this out again.
4. Dance good.

I always read these anecdotes of the women who gave up their stressful careers and found themselves pregnant/found the time to accommodate IVF cycles/created new and wonderful spaces for a baby to enter their lives.  Well, look, that's just not possible for me.  I love what I do, I fight for poor workers and someone pays me relatively well for it.  I am also very good at it.  I also, like, need to pay our bills, so it's not gonna happen.

The saddest fucking part of it all is that one of the reasons I took this job was because they offered six months of maternity leave.  Gah.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

All that's lost

This weekend we spent some time with some friends of my husband's that we hadn't seen in over 2 years.

Our friends with the shy toddler suddenly had a shy five year old who became Niblet's bestie in the course of a few hours.

Our two friends, the brothers/musicians (whose band we traveled to see) who appeared at the bar - one with an extra baby in tow, the other now single after a relationship ended with a long-time girlfriend.

Another friend who quit her job, became a free lancer who works from home, and then dropped forty pounds, rendering her virtually unrecognizable at first glance.

"I'm so sorry," I said to my husband with tears in my eyes.
"Sorry for what?"
"Sorry that my body kept losing your babies.  And sorry that because of it you lost so much time with your friends in the past three years."

Hugs and assurances that I was not only irrational, but deeply wrong, ensued.  And I know that none of this is my fault.

But having that rational understanding that life throws you lemons doesn't change the gravity of the loss.  And the keen awareness that somehow, the world has continued to turn while you're living in an endless loop.

Our lives have been upended by recurrent pregnancy loss. All of the beach vacations, yoga classes, dance therapy, talk therapy, aromatherapy, acupuncture and massage in the world doesn't change that.