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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Where To Begin?

If you've been around here for any length of time, you will have noticed that I never do any type of countdown or recap. I don't list my favorite posts, or mark milestones regularly (except for Marky Mark's birthday, I get that one almost every year).

I don't watch the Best of Everything shows that are on this time of year either. I don't really have a reason, I'm just not interested. I could be self-important and say that I only look to the future and don't care what is behind me, but we'd all know I was lying because, well, I spent six years of college looking into the past. (Side story: If Joshua and I could have dinner with five people, dead or alive, four of our people are the same. Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and George Washington. Match made in heaven, I tell you.)

Could it be that I'm just so boring that there isn't really anything to recap?

I'm going to say that is probably the best answer I can come up with. Why would I recap "Oh yes, in January, I got up and went to work. And then in February, I got up late and went to work. Same in March..." and you get it.

This year though has been full of milestones for us. We've got so many firsts going on, and 2013 looks to be a continuation of our lists of new experiences.

A few off of our 2012 list:
Josh graduated college, passed state boards, and got a job in physical therapy. (I'm still so proud of him).
We ripped up carpet, vinyl tile, and put down laminate floor.
We saw a urologist, then a fertility specialist/RE, started medicine for IUI, and decided against IVF.
We assisted puppy birth (hopefully this can also go on our "last" list too).
I accepted that my carefully laid plans for life aren't up to me, and let go.
I learned that fried food is better than baked food. Hands down.
I started a journal to our child, and fell in love with someone I still haven't met.
I watched the entire Friends series.
We sat through two awkward meals in order to meet our baby's birth parents.
I cut off most of my hair.
I failed at several pins, but the strung out on Opana hair was my favorite.
I drank too much wine and wrote a post about the junk in my purse.
I was forced to run outside in the winter, and had a great fall.
I assembled a crib.
We told family and friends that we're going to be parents.
I told my brothers about SuperBaby.
I heard our baby's heart.

I can't even imagine my life one year from today. I don't have a clue what it is going to look like. I know, for certain, that this time our life really is going to change. Our life already has changed.

So maybe now that I'm not the most boring person on the internet, I'll do a recap every year.
Side eye from Rach.
Yeah. Probably not.



Thursday, December 20, 2012

From California to Kansas

Hey guys, I haven't been around much the last few days. Today though I am guest posting at From California to Kansas. Head on over to Mallory's blog and check it out. I think she's pretty awesome.

Here is a bonus. This is my Phoebe at 12 hours old:
 And this is her at four weeks. Isn't it amazing how quickly they grow?

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Pin Win

First, can we celebrate that I FINALLY got a pin to work for me on the first try? Really.

I hate doing this, but the Pin doesn't link to the original source. I am so sorry to whomever made this delicious pin that has changed our breakfast lives for ever, but I have to post it. I have to. You understand.
This is the link to the pin. Not the original source.

Yesterday, Ingrid pinned it, I repinned it, and made it this morning.

I didn't have the Grands biscuits, because they're a million dollars. I get the generic four tube pack of biscuits for like a dollar. I cut them in half instead of fours, but next time I will do quarters so that they're bite sized.

True story: this is the first time I've ever deep fried anything. We don't have a fryer, and I typically just pan fry if I'm going to fry at all. 
They fried about 15 seconds per side. Once I could see the other side was golden I would tip them over, fry the other side for about 15 seconds and transfer them to a bowl of cinnamon sugar mix.

I used three tubes of biscuits for all of these. They grow once you fry them. Also, the oil grows too, so don't use too much. I filled my sauce pan about half way, and I would have been fine with less than that.

You don't know what you're missing if you don't make these. Honestly.




Saturday, December 15, 2012

Dear SuperBaby,

I haven't written as much to you lately as I did when we first learned of you. I can honestly tell you, it is because we've been so busy preparing for you that every night when I go to bed, I'm exhausted! You won't even recognize our house (well of course you won't, you've never been here before. Duh. Silly Mama.) because of everything we've done to make it your home too. 

You have your own bedroom! I worked so hard on it. I tried to be WonderMom and do it all on my own, but just as you will learn too, sometimes we need help from others. To be honest, you have the best room in our home. I know you'll love it. I go in there a lot and just sit in your chair and look around. I imagine you in your crib, or on my lap listening to me read you books. Last night I went in and just read my own book. Today, your Dad and GrandMan are going to pick up your dresser, and then your room will be mostly complete. I have my eye on the mobile I want for above your crib, and you are going to love it. Being in your room makes me feel closer to you, even though you've never been there. Even though we've never met.

Next week will be our last Christmas without you. For the past three Christmases I've always had this picture in my head of announcing to our families that we're having a baby, and this year, it's real. They all already know, so the picture is a little different, but you're already here in our hearts. Next Christmas will be so much different than the 26 we've experienced before this one. Next Christmas you will be nine months old. If I were better about reading my Baby's First Year book I could tell you what you'll be doing then, but I haven't made it past the newborn part of the book. In fact, I don't think I've even made it to the leaving the hospital part. Maybe I'll read it in real time. Like a manual. What do you think?

I realize that last paragraph might make you nervous to have me as a mom. Let me tell you, SuperBaby, you're not the only one. Your Dad is nervous too. He keeps telling me that he has no idea what he is doing. I'm probably not making a better case for us, am I? If it makes you feel any better, we're told that you never really know what you're doing until you experience it. And since you've never had parents before, I think you'll love us just because we love you so much. And because you have an awesome room. And because we're really cool people. And we know really cool people. And our Netflix has a kid section (even though you're not allowed to watch cartoons as much as your Dad does).

I hope you know how much we love you. You're already the center of our world, and we cannot wait to meet you. 
Until then, I love you.
Mama

 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Step 3: Home Study, The Home Visit

We had our final home study meeting, and this one was at our house.

We have a nice house. It was built in the 1950s, and has been well maintained. We aren't super handy or anything, but if something needs done, we take care of it. I go back and forth between loving and hating the house, but for the most part love it. I only hate it when something is wrong with it that costs money. I have even grown to love our tiny galley kitchen.

However, when someone is coming to tour your home and speak with you in it, your home immediately becomes the most disgusting place you've ever seen, and you spend days, even weeks preparing for a ten minute tour. (When I say "you", I mean "me".)

I seriously started deep cleaning eight days before our visit. The nursery being in such disarray was not helping matters. I finished the nursery (for the most part) the day before our visit.

I had divided up the chores between us and started on my own. Unexpectedly (since he hasn't been sick in three years) Josh came down with the flu. Not the puke-and-feel-better flu, the I-can't-do-anything-but-lay-on-the-couch-for-days flu. So add that to my pile of stress.

When the time finally came, our social worker couldn't find our house. If you've ever tried to come to our house before, I think you've probably done the same thing. We have the most passable house in the world. We know we have ordered pizza too much from the same place when the delivery vehicle arrives on the first try. So anyway, I called her and helped be her GPS and navigated her into the driveway.

Source
Josh and I were required to take the PREPARE/ENRICH test to determine if we're compatable as husband and wife and as parents. I would think the past ten years would be a compatability test enough, but whatever. We do what we have to do. We found out that in fact we are a good match and scored in the highest bracket possible. Go us.

We discussed the results of that for an hour and then talked about our final homework page. Josh always complains about filling the paperwork out, so I always tell him to just write whatever he's thinking, even if it is sarcastic. It is how he feels and he should write it.

One of the questions was: "What experience do you have with newborns?".

Josh's answer: "I have held a few".

So she recommended we check out a parenting class. Ha.

She asked me a lot about infertility and how I handled it. It was really a short and easy visit, not at all worthy of the panic I was feeling leading up to it.

We took a walk around the house, said a few more things, and she left.

Before she went though I asked her what happens next. She told us that our part is done. We have put in the time and effort required of us, and now we sit back and wait. She will begin our final report next week and it will be finished mid-January. I asked if mid-January is when we will find out if we're approved. She said that we haven't had any red flags or anything to worry about this far, and that her report in January will just be the official approval, but that we are unofficially approved now.

So I'm still waiting for the weight to be lifted off of my chest. I'm still in panic/survival mode. I know that I can relax, but my body won't let me yet. I'm planning to give it another go tonight on the couch not doing anything. Heck, maybe I'll read like I used to.

Now that the worst part of this is out of the way, we just wait for SuperBaby's arrival. We can't wait.

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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Baby, You Were Meant To Be

For the past three years I have always tried to figure out God's plan. It's foolish. I know.

I would think to myself though, and try to figure out why we have infertility. Why us? What in the world could happen to us that it would all be worth it? How could something amazing come from something we had lived with and cried over for so long? Obviously, I always knew the answer was a baby. A baby would make all of the tests and medications worth it. Infertility would be worth it to have a baby of our own. I always pictured a biological child ending our infertility, and we would have a joyous pregnancy in which I would be sick, but would be grateful for it because I would know the cost it came at.

It is as if God said, Haha my child, you think you have me all figured out. Guess again.

At the doctor the other day, our birth mom and I waited in the lobby for an hour so she could have her sugar test done. (All results of all labs came back perfect.) She was filling out paperwork and talking to me at the same time.

Source
She told me that she shakes her head from time to time at how everything has worked out.

She was supposed to have a tubectomy. She had one scheduled. While we were talking with the nurse, birth mom asked about getting one done. The nurse came back and said that one had been scheduled last year, but birth mom didn't show up for it. Birth mom says she didn't recall getting an appointment time. Two weeks after that procedure was to have happened, SuperBaby was conceived.

After SuperBaby was conceived, and birth mom knew she was pregnant, she considered abortion. It makes me nearly cry to even think about it. She told us that she was reading the pamphlet, and felt like God was asking her what in the world she was thinking. She knew then that she couldn't do it. She knew that there was a reason why she had gotten pregnant again, and she would do what she had to, but she couldn't get an abortion.

At the time she decided she couldn't have an abortion, we decided we couldn't go on with the more expensive fertility treatments. It wasn't so much a decision that we made, but one that was just not realistic for us. As I mourned the loss of the normal life I had envisioned, we considered adoption for the first time. We put our hearts on the line for a baby that wasn't meant to be ours. At the same time, our birth mom was looking for a family to adopt SuperBaby.

When we were sitting in the waiting room, comparing our journeys side by side, it is amazing how everything lines up. Every path she took, and every path we took, led us straight to each other. There is no other explanation for it, than this is God's plan. Two times, SuperBaby has made it past hurdles that should have ended the path to us. This child really is a SuperBaby.

I can only think that God is having a good chuckle at me for trying to predict his will. I would have never in my wildest dreams imagined that he would put us here. I never knew I could feel the way I do. I never thought I could love someone I had never even met. I never thought that life could be completely changed, and everything would work out. I was beginning to think that infertility was who I was. It was becoming my identity. Now, that is changing. My new identity is mom. I'm going to be a mom.

It still blows my mind.

Friday, December 7, 2012

The One with the Laminate Flooring

Every SuperBaby needs a SuperNursery, right? Right.

Side note: I had a dream the other night that I was watching an episode of Friends called ''The One with the Laminate Flooring''. I told you my dreams are boring.

Baby T's room is our old guest room. It had my grandmother's antique bed in it, and Joshua's clothes because he prefers to use his dresser drawers to store his ammunition. True story.

The first obstacle was to clear out the closet and Joshua's clothes. We donated a lot of clothing that we hadn't been wearing, but kept because we had the room for it.

The second step was to tear out the carpeting. It was old and smelled and it was definitely time to go. We decided we wanted to put in a wood laminate flooring and I found some on sale at Menard's the weekend after Thanksgiving.

This is the SuperNursery after we pulled up the carpet, and vinyl tile that was underneath.

This is the laminate I picked out.
On Friday, I was talking about the flooring at work and told my boss that I was going to put it all in that night. He bet me that I couldn't do it, and he was right. I got this far before I got mad and quit. I tried so hard too.

 So Saturday morning I pulled it up and tried again.
 And failed again. Josh's cousin Jason came over Saturday afternoon to help me do it, and he was like magic. Seriously. I swear he was doing the same thing I was, but he was making it work. In my opinion, it turned out beautifully.
 I am going to put the dresser in the closet and make fabric ''doors''. So Pin.
 This chair is from our living room. I put a glider on our registry, but as it is insanely expensive, I am assuming I won't be getting it.This chair works perfectly, so I'll probably take the glider off of the registry.
I love it.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Heartbeat

The first time we met our birth mom she said that I was welcome to come to her appointments with her. Today was the first appointment since then that I've been able to go to. It was only the second time I've ever seen her in person. I was so nervous.

There was some error in communication, and the due date of February 1st, isn't correct. Our baby is due March 4, 2013 (as per the doctor).

You have NO IDEA what this does to get rid of my anxiety. We are going to finish our home study in the next week, and our social worker told us that it will take her a few weeks to write up her final report. I was so worried that the baby would come early and all of our ducks would be misaligned. An extra month is golden. I can't wait for SuperBaby's arrival, but I do want to make sure we have everything done properly first.

I didn't have a clue how prenatal visits went, so when I was told to sit in the chair that gave me this view, I kind of panicked. Turns out, not all visits are like annual exams, and everyone kept their clothes on. Whew.

Our birth mom is 27 weeks pregnant. She is experiencing round ligament pain and headaches. Her blood pressure is good, as is everything else.  The baby is the size of a rutabaga.

I was sitting, listening, taking it all in when the doctor told me I was listening to the heartbeat. I thought he was having trouble finding it or something, but then he told me that noise was the heartbeat. I wasn't all mushy about it until the appointment was over.

At this moment:

I was nearly in tears.

We waited to get all of birth mom's blood tests and her sugar test done today. We sat in the waiting room talking for an hour, and it went really well. After we finished everything, we went to our attorney's office so he could explain everything to the birth mom. She agreed with everything he said and told him that no matter what, she wants the baby to come to us.

Today gave me great peace of mind, and made me even more excited for what is to come.


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Monday, December 3, 2012

Step 3: Home Study, Part 2

Our homework for this meeting was about our marriage. There were questions like: "What do you like most about yourself?", "What are the strengths of your marriage?", "How long was your courtship?", and my favorite: "If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be?".

My answer? "I would not worry so much, and I would get rid of my anxiety. I would trust God more, and stop trying to do everything on my own."

My husband's answer? "Nothing."

He's perfect. Just ask him.



We were laughing about it with our social worker. She said she chuckled when she saw his response.

This meeting was much more relaxed (I mean, I was more relaxed) and we laughed a lot. We talked about our jobs, infertility, living together, and how men are different than women. Josh is incredibly laid back, while I am not. He was saying that he doesn't understand why I can't relax, and I was saying that I don't understand how he can always be so relaxed.

Our social worker made the comment that women always have so much going on in their brains and men focus on one thing at a time. She said that looking at Pinterest (See! I love her.) is like looking at the female brain. There are so many things going on at once, and they're all different, and we're thinking about all of them.

It reminds me of one of my favorite Friends clips. The one right after Ross and Rachel kiss.


This is the difference between men and women. It couldn't be more accurate.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Prayer

I'm convinced that the only way to survive an adoption (or really anything in life) is by prayer.

I haven't always felt this way though.

I have noticed that almost all blogs having to do with adoption have a strong Christian theme to them, and while I'm not as comfortable sharing my faith and beliefs with everyone, it is what has helped me survive.

I was baptized when I was 22 years old, and mostly just because we needed to be members at our church in order to be married there. In order to be a member, you had to have been baptized. We took our membership classes, and since we were the only ones in it, our pastor combined my baptism class with it. I learned about why we are baptized, and the importance of it. I understood it, but to be completely honest, was only going through what I need to get married.

Source

At that point I hadn't faced a whole lot of trials. Life was good. Life is still good. But at the same time, I hadn't needed to lean on God.

Shortly after we were married, I joined a bible study for new Christians that turned into a bible study about how to be a good wife. My faith grew through this, but I still felt incredibly uncomfortable praying. It was awkward and I didn't know what to say. I didn't want God to think I was stupid. I'm so serious.

At the same time, a very dear friend was going through a divorce. We talked a lot about what the bible says about divorce and how she was dealing with it. I would often talk to Josh about it, because just as he is my personal trainer, he is also my personal bible consultant. I asked him what we (as Christians) are supposed to do if we are in a terrible relationship, and have exhausted all of the possible solutions. Are we supposed to stay with this person who makes our life miserable? Does God want us to be miserable? My gut feeling is that no, he doesn't want us to be miserable or unhappy. So that leaves my question unanswered. What are we to do? Josh simply (I highly doubt he even remembers this conversation, but I think of it often) told me that "God forgives us". And he does.

My prayer life started to grow then.

My prayers have changed so much over the past few years. While I did pray for others, I often prayed for myself. I would ask for things to happen, I would ask for God to make things go right, I would beg God to give us a baby.

Early on in our relationship, Josh and I broke up (if you ask him, he'll act like he doesn't know what you're talking about). I remember sitting in my mom's car talking to her about it, and she told me that I should pray about it. She said that even though I wanted him back so badly, that some of the greatest gifts that God gives us, is not answering our prayers. We have no idea of the plans he has for us. We don't have a clue.

It wasn't until this summer that I really got back to my bible, and back to God. I talked to him, cried with him, and thanked him for everything we have. It occurred to me that even though infertility was so hard on me, there are many other harder things that I could be going through. And he brought me peace. Talking to God helped me realize that my life isn't over if I can't get pregnant. I'm alive, and that is miracle enough. For the first time I don't hate the phrase "everything happens for a reason". Ok, I still hate it, but not as much.

So that now I've gotten off topic several times, I'll bring you back to my point. God is good. He is good to us and has blessed us in ways I could have never imagined. I used to think our life wasn't perfect, but now I realize that the imperfectness is God's way of showing us just how great life is.

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Santa? I Know Him!

Josh and I have decided from the beginning of our relationship that we were going to parent a little differently than most parents we know.

We decided that we're not going to have Santa at our house. Or the Elf on the Shelf.

We don't mean to imply that anyone to does have Santa is wrong, and we aren't judging at all.

I had an ethics class one time where the professor asked if telling children about Santa is a lie. Everyone in the class answered but the professor wouldn't give his opinion. He said the first day that he wouldn't give any of his own opinions until the last day of the class and then we could ask him whatever we wanted. I made sure I wrote reminders down to ask him what his opinion was on the last day, and I did.

He told me that it isn't a lie, it's a cultural tradition. Parents have told their children about Santa for hundreds of years.

Thomas Nast's Santa Claus

Studies have been done that prove that children are not harmed by being lied to by their parents for the sake of Christmas. (That link is to Wikipedia, but click on the sources links if you want more solid references.) Children understand that their parents didn't make up the lie, but that everyone goes along with it.

Historical side note: Thomas Nast is the creator of the Santa we know today. If you don't read anything else, read that. It is a post from 2008 that still kind of makes me laugh. I like history though, so you might not think it's so funny.

Being that Josh and I are both history nerds (I'm an official Historian. I get a lot of crap for that at home.) we plan to teach SuperBaby and future children of ours the history of Santa. Including the Spirit of Christmas, Saint Nicholas, and all the other traditions that go along with Christmas. Most importantly to us, the birth of Jesus.

We are also going to make sure our children know the importance of not ruining the season for other children. Just because we don't believe, doesn't mean that we should take that away from other families.  I'm not going to go screaming from rooftops or anything "Keep the Christ in Christmas" because it is up to each of us to do whatever we want for the Christmas season.

I still plan to enjoy Christmas movies (ummm helloooo Home Alone, Elf, and for some reason I feel like all the Harry Potter's are Christmas-like) and music and all of the other things we do to celebrate. We have a tree, and exchange gifts. We just won't have Santa coming down our non-existent chimney on Christmas Eve.

What is your opinion? Really. I'm asking for it.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Step Three: Home Study, Part 1

So we started our home study.

I was all kinds of nervous and anxious about it. I mean, we just had a litter of  pitbull puppies in our house. Surely that will cause us to not be approved. (Before you get all judgey, settle down. They aren't staying).

I filled out two hours worth of forms when we very first found out about SuperBaby and then hadn't heard a word for almost a month. I panicked a little, called a few times, and finally got our appointment set up. I don't think I was being put off, because when I slowed down and thought about it, it would probably take a little while to go through two hours of paperwork.

Source

If you don't know anything about home studies, let me explain. We had to get finger printed, criminal histories, credit reports, physicals from our doctors, and six hours worth of talking to this lady. Two of which are in our house when she does her tour. On top of that: it is expensive. I don't know what other states charge, but I have heard it is more expensive in places like New York and Chicago. I don't know how Indiana ranks with other states, but in my opinion it is expensive.

The last time I called, our social worker told me that she was getting ready to call me to schedule. Sounds like a line right? I guess it wasn't. We set up our appointment and that was that.

When we went in to meet her, I had no idea what we were in for. I was so afraid it was going to be in a cold office with hard metal chairs and lots of fluorescent lighting. For some reason "Social Services"  doesn't bring a warm and friendly image to my mind. It also helps make my "worst case scenario" attitude all that much worse.

I was pleasantly surprised when our social worker turned out to be a younger, casual, and extremely friendly lady. She didn't make it a strict interview, but instead it was a conversation between the three of us. She told us quite a bit about her, and even some about her family, and it wasn't bad.

We had to fill out a homework sheet that was questions about our backgrounds. She went through our answers and talked to us about it. I really was a getting to know you kind of thing.

When we left we scheduled our next appointment and she gave us our homework for next time. That meeting will focus more on our marriage, and any past trauma in our lives.

So far it has been a much more pleasant experience than I was anticipating and it is going much quicker than I expected.

One thing she said though is so true. She mentioned that we are in a very unique situation, because most couples who are starting their home study have no light at the end. We already have SuperBaby that we're anticipating. Most couples at this point are doing their home study just to have their name put into the adoption pool. We are very lucky. And blessed.


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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Puppy Update

The puppies are getting so big! They are nine days old now. I can't believe how quickly they grow.

They still have their eyes closed, but should open them in the next few days. Also, their ears haven't opened up yet, so they are unable ot hear how annoying their crying is. But their lungs are developing quite well because the crying is only getting louder.

Phoebe is the one with the white belly. She likes to eat upside down. They all do from time to time.
 Pheebs kind of sticks out. Usually they're all laying on top of her though, so it was rare to get a pic of her like this.

Only six-ish more weeks until they're strong enough to go to their new homes.

I love them, but I'm really ready to have Amico back in the house with me. He doesn't make messes (much) and he's such a good cuddler.

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Monday, November 26, 2012

Step 2.5: When Attorney and Birth Parents (Don't) Meet

I really debated whether I should write this or not. If I painted a rosy picture of our adoption, I wouldn't be being completely honest with all of you. While I do choose to take an optimistic (as possible) approach to life, some things just can't always be sunny side up.

When I first spoke to our birth mom, my first impression was that she was a good person who knew her limits and was realistic about life. The more I've gotten to know her, the more I've gotten to know. She is a good person, she does know her limits, and she is realistic. However, the differences in our lives are extremely apparent.

Things that are important to me, are not a priority to her. I truly don't want this to turn into a post where I bash our birth mom, so I will just say that talking to her and making plans with her is frustrating.

For example:  I set up a meeting with our attorney, and it was rescheduled. Three times. We agreed on a time, and I was the only one who showed up. Phone calls are sporadic, and random. At best.

The communication disconnect is the most frustrating thing for me.

The other night when Joshua bought me the things to be miserable about book, he also bought me the book ''Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other'' by Scott Simon and one of the first pages said this:
 And that is really all there is to say about it.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Puppies!

I put that exclamation at the end of "Puppies" but I only partially feel it.

If you've been around here a while, you'll remember our dog Betty. We have three dogs. Amico is the red one I always take pictures of, and Mo & Betty are our outside dogs.

Lots of people have negative opinions of outside dogs, and I'll be honest, I did too before we had them. I was of the opinion that your dogs are your family members, but if we're going to be honest, they are animals. When you consider how much more the dogs are able to run around when they're outside instead of being in a crate all day, it really makes sense for them to be out. They have better houses than we do (I watched Josh build them, they're double walled and insulated, and have TWO ROOMS. Truly, better than ours.) That being said, all three of our dogs are pitbulls. If that isn't going to bring a negative opinion to your head, I don't know what is.

People hate pitbulls. Specifically the media and uninformed Americans.

I didn't like them either, until we got them.

Growing up, my family had a dog that what a Boxer/Chow mix, and he was known to be aggressive. He growled at a lot of people, and bit. I thought this was normal dog behavior. Our cousin has a chihuahua that bites. It doesn't hurt, but he still bites. Lots of dogs growl, even a service dog that I know growls. Since I thought that was normal, I assumed that pitbulls were 1000x worse. I mean, you see horrible stories about them all the time. They're mean, they kill babies, they rip arms off, and kill cats. They do kill cats, but I mean, they kind of have it coming. I kid, I kid.

This post is getting way off topic, but I do want to say that if you have never been around a pitbull, you should reserve your judgment until you have. I'm definitely not saying that they're all nice, but I was surprised at how sweet they are. Since we've been together we have had five, and I've never heard any of them growl at a person, even once.

Anyway, Joshua decided he wanted to breed Betty. I am always the one who doesn't want to do anything about expanding our dog farm. I never want another dog. Ever. We live in the middle of the city. One of our neighbors hates us. It isn't an ideal location for a farm. So like most things in our house, Josh got his way. Fun fact: dogs only gestate for two months.

Betty is pretty small, I think she's usually around 35lbs, and she got huge. The poor girl was so uncomfortable. Joshua and I work opposite schedules. I'm on a regular Monday - Friday, but Josh works Friday - Sunday in the evenings. I knew, without a doubt that she was going to have those puppies on a Saturday night. I knew as soon as she got pregnant that there was no way I would be lucky enough to get away with having nothing to do with the puppy birth.

And just as I predicted, she started delivering around 6:00 pm on Saturday.

Josh had been reading about and watching videos about dog birth for weeks. I watched three videos a few days before, just in case it happened. I was given a crash course in being a dog-midwife. Basically: make sure the membrane is off and that they're breathing. Otherwise, let the mama do everything.

I got a message from my mother in law that dinner was ready at their house, and I wrote back that I wasn't going to make it because we were having puppies. My mother in law panicked, and sent the entire family to my house. Lisa, I love you to death, but I was so pissed at you that night. Josh's cousins Carsyn and Jason were there helping me.

After quite a bit of pushing, and a few hours, Betty had three puppies, and then everything seemed to stop. Josh had taken her to the vet for an x-ray earlier in the week, so I knew there were more in there, but she stopped contracting and pushing, so I wasn't sure what to do. Josh got home around midnight and since she wasn't distressed at all decided we could wait to see what happened. I slept for a little bit and when I woke up again decided we should call the animal hospital and see what they thought. They suggested we bring her in because they were coming out too far apart.

We got there and they did an exam and found that the fourth pup had died and was stuck. Once they got that one out, they gave her oxytocin (same as pitocin) and the last two came out quickly.

Everyone is home now and resting.



And we are not having puppies again for a long time.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Treadmill Twins

Before I start, I have to say that I am not speaking for anyone besides myself. Lots of women with infertility feel differently from one another. I am not speaking for them. Just me.

The other day I was running at the gym. When I'm alone I usually run on a treadmill, mainly because Ingrid is the more responsible of the two of us and she keeps track of time, distance, arm bands, and other necessary things and I just kind of run and talk and think. She has parenting experience. So when I'm alone I always forget my arm band, and even if I do have my arm band, I can't seem to keep track of my time or distance because my mind wanders. So anyway, I was on the treadmill.

Our gym is under construction right now (I am SO ANGRY about it) so the machines are all over the place. I got a treadmill that is in a group of three, and I was on the end. Next to me were two pregnant women about my age. One was visibly pregnant and the other was very early on in hers. I only knew she was pregnant because they were talking about it.

Here is where I'm supposed to say "I couldn't help by overhear", but I was totes listening. No shame.

I had this terrible flash of anger when I heard them start talking about their friend who had been trying to get pregnant for two years and couldn't. They were talking very negatively about her and the fact that they didn't know what to say or how to say it, or when. I got so mad that I put my ear buds in and turned the music up loud.

I stewed about it for a while. Sent Ingrid a message telling her about them, in which she told me I needed to call them out. I decided that I wasn't going to say anything. I don't know them, and they probably wouldn't even care about my opinion.

So as I ran, I got more mad. I mean, really.

Finally, I decided I just couldn't not say anything.

I took my ear buds out and started with "I hope you don't think I'm rude, but I overheard you talking about your friend who is having problems getting pregnant.." and went from there.

A huge pet peeve of mine is when someone who is pregnant tells you like it is the worst news in the world. While it does hurt, that is purely my own selfishness. Truly, the thing I'm most grateful for are those people who aren't hesitant to tell me they're pregnant, and those who treat me just like a regular person. I hate the sympathy that comes with someone knowing you can't conceive. I am a big girl and I can handle things. I might cry, but that is life. Life goes on, whether I conceive or not.

So I told the Treadmill Twins to realize that what their friend is going through is extremely hard for her, but it will be better in the long run if they tell her now instead of waiting. They were very understanding, but I'm sure they had a few choice words for me once they were out of my earshot. One girl even told me that her sister in law adopted.

So yeah. I guess the moral of this story is, talk to random people, tell them they're wrong, and then be happy.

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Step Two: Meet the Attorney

I set up an appointment with the same attorney that my parents used for my brothers adoption. He is a very well respected adoption attorney and I knew he was who we were going to use.

We could go about our adoption two ways. The first is to have our home study done by social services and have them process our adoption as well. The second is to have social services do our home study and have an attorney handle the rest of the adoption.
Source

I prefer to do the second option, so that is where we are.

At our first meeting our attorney explained the process to us. At birth, our attorney will open our adoption with our local court. He will come to the hospital when our baby is born and went over the form with us that the birth mom will sign. He will also have a custody order which will allow us to take our baby home from the hospital.

My main and all consuming question was: can they change their minds after signing? He explained that while yes, they can change their minds, they are required (in the State of Indiana) to provide proof to a court that it would be in the child's best interest to be returned to the birth parents. He went on to explain that they only have 30 days from the date they each sign to do so, and that in all the years he has been an adoption attorney he has never seen or heard of it happening. That helped my mind to rest easier.

I made the mistake of saying "the baby that she is giving up" while we were talking (the birth mom always says it). He stopped me mid-sentence and asked me to change it to "the baby she is choosing to place into a loving environment" or something similar to that. It takes the negativity out of my statement. Never thought of that.

We will have two in-home visits with social services after the baby is born just to make sure everything is working out well at home. When the baby is four months old, our attorney will prepare the proper paperwork to finalize our adoption. When our baby is six months old, our adoption will be finalized. Our adoption date should be sometime in August.

I have spent most of my working years employed by attorneys, so while I am not an attorney myself, I understand what he told us. This part does not make me nervous at all. It is the unknown that is social services that scares me. Step three, whenever it comes, will be our home study. Get ready for that.

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Have You Changed the Baby?

So we've all had the "I'm naked in the hallway of my high school" dream right? Perhaps not the exact scenario, as I've never showed up to school naked, but the totally unprepared for everything dream. This is my typical dream. I will be two hours late to work (okay, that actually has happened, but that isn't the point), or I will be grocery shopping and can't find my wallet (very imaginative dreams I tell you). Dumb stuff like that.

Side story, my boss was having a reoccurring dream for two weeks or so of this guy being in his house painting his ceilings. He said that in his dream he would say to himself "oh great, he's here again" and try to ask the painter who was paying him to work. Every day for a week my boss told me that he wished the guy would finish up soon. I have never had a reoccurring dream.

I am very particular about being prepared. I'm not a "wing it" type of person, like my husband is. We got engaged at Christmas and I set our wedding out a year and a half so that I could make sure I had enough time to do everything.

Right now, my entire life is up in the air. We don't for sure have a baby until the birth mom signs the papers, which cannot be until the baby is born. We have an attorney who doesn't really do anything until the baby is born. We are waiting for our home study to start. I can't even get a date on that one and it is killing me. I need dates. I need times. I need sanity.
Source

Back to my point. I had this dream that I was running around for an entire day with the baby. I have this grand idea that because I will not be the one actually going through labor that my life is going to be like it is now. I want you to know, I understand that I'm delusional. So we were running around and after hours and hours I realized that I hadn't changed the baby the entire day. It never even crossed my mind. So I started telling myself that I'm a terrible mom. I finally found somewhere to lay the baby down to change the diaper and when I opened the diaper bag it was completely empty. It still had some plastic in it from the filler they put in bags when they're on the shelf.

I woke up feeling pretty bad.

Right before I went to sleep I watched the end of Friends, season 8 when Rachel has her baby.

Here, have another reason to hate Ross. 

I hate Ross so much.

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Step One: Meet the Parents

Once Joshua and I decided we were going to jump into adoption, the first step was to start communicating with the parents.

We differ greatly from most adoption cases. Many families in our situations will go through their home study and use an agency to place a child with their family. We are a bit backward in that our child found us first.

My mother in law spoke with the birth mom on the phone, and one thing was clear. The birth mom wanted to meet us. She wanted to make sure that we are decent people and will provide a loving home for the baby.

Source
This is completely understandable, and in my opinion, very responsible. However, it made me extremely nervous and afraid of what she would think of us. We agreed to have dinner together, and coincidentally it was the same day that Joshua took his PTA exam. Talk about a stressful day.

We sat down at dinner and started talking. Well. I started talking. I had thought about what I was going to say before we went, and it helped. I told her about my brothers and that because of them we know with certainty that we will love this baby as though it were our biological child.

I had coffee with my beautiful friend Maria recently, and we discussed so much. She was adopted by her dad. When her adoption was final he told her that she was not his stepdaughter. He told her that he believed God had made her his daughter. That God can do anything, and on that day he changed her DNA and made her his biological child. I nearly cried when she told me that. It is so beautiful and shows the depth of his love for her. I also understand it. I never think of my brothers as anything except my brothers, and I will never think of our child as anything except for our child.

The birth mom told us that was the only question she had for us. She wanted to know if I would hold the baby in my arms and tell it that I'm its Mama. She wanted to know if I would be excited for the baby, and if I would look upon the baby's face with love.

We all agreed that we felt better after meeting one another. It helped to smooth out some of the anxiety for all of us.

We met the birth father separately from the birth mom. They are no longer together, but still speak to one another. We decided though that it would probably be best to meet separately.

The meeting with the birth father was different than our meeting with the birth mom. I think he was much more nervous than the birth mom was, and it honestly was a little more uncomfortable. We all made it though, and he agreed that he would sign the papers that fulfill his end of placing the baby with us. He can do this before birth, so we will have this completed soon.

It was important for us to meet them though. We plan to be open with our child about the adoption. I feel like now we have information that can answer some of the questions our child might have in the future.

If we have to be uncomfortable for a few months in order to give our child peace of mind in the future, so be it. I would already do anything for our baby.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

11,002 Things to be Miserable About

I have a super supportive husband. Sometimes he can be pretty funny too.

I have these days (I'm going to pretend that you all do too so I don't feel quite so lame) where everything is life threatening and I'm just going to die from it all.

Six months before our wedding I was reading Women's Health magazine and it was one of those "Ten Signs You're Going To Drop Dead Before You Finish Reading This Article" articles. Let me take you back a bit. I have a mole in my left big toenail. When I say that it gives me a horrible mental image of a wicked witch with nose warts. It is nothing like that I swear. It simply is a brownish tan line that runs from the cuticle to the tip of the nail. I would so show you, but the nail is painted. Maybe some other time. Anyway, I've had it as long as I can remember. Maybe my entire life. I don't know. So Women's Health tells me that I'm going to die an early and horrific death at 22 years old.

I have no problem admitting this: I irrationally panicked. Anyone who would read something like that should be concerned, but I honestly thought that I needed to go to the emergency room to have it checked out before I died.

My mom talked me (temporarily) off the ledge, and I made an appointment with my doctor immediately.

After my doctor assured me that I, in fact, was not dying, and truly had nothing to worry about if I kept an eye on it for any changes, I talked to him about the anxiety. He seemed to feel like it was being caused from the birth control (like I really needed that) I was on at the time. He told me to talk with my OB/GYN about it and sent me on my way.

At my next annual appointment, I talked to my OB/GYN about it. Being the hateful woman that she is, she told me that I wasn't experiencing anxiety levels above normal, and that I should try some assortment of vitamins. So anyway, apparently I'm normal. Whatev.

Thankfully, I haven't had any other moments even close to the Great Mole Tragedy of 2008, but often in times of high stress I get a bit irrational and panicky.

Now back to Joshua. With all of the stress from our adoption, Joshua getting a new job, and our debts, my panic meter is back up there. Being the wonderful and supportive husband he is, he bought me this.

Source
 It is a book full of reasons to be miserable. I won't lie, some of them made me laugh so hard that I didn't feel so bad anymore.

For example:
  • Leaving your cell phone at home
  • People who invent words in order to make song lyrics rhyme
  • Electrical outlets that don't work
  • The cabbage soup diet
  • Anti-acne products that dry out your skin, and still leave you with acne
  • Movies about hookers with hearts of gold
  • YouTube videos of people playing video games
  • Out-of-season fruit
  • Realizing your enemies have redeeming qualities
  • Sixteen year olds with expensive cars
  • Having to swipe your own credit card at the grocery store
  • Diabetic cats
And so many more.

This is how Joshua solved my anxiety for me. Isn't he grand?

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Our Backstory

I haven't told you much about the actual process we're going through yet. We are still in progress but I decided to give you more details as we go along.

A bit of back story first. Joshua and I attempted to adopt this summer. We were at his mom's house and she was telling a story about someone she works with. The lady she works with was asked by the birth mom to adopt her grandson. She was telling my mother in law that she just didn't think she could raise another child, as hers are all grown. My mother in law was telling us this story because she said she would love to say that she would take the baby. Joshua wasn't really listening to the story, but I was soaking in every detail.

As soon as we got to the car I asked him if he would be interested in getting more information about that baby, and if he would want to adopt. He agreed and we decided to pursue the adoption. I contacted our attorney and social services. I had the paperwork sent to us that we needed to get our home study (background check, interviews, home tour, and more) started. After some consideration, the birth mom changed her mind. She has every right to do that.

As hard as I tried to be happy for her, and praise God that she stepped up to take responsibility, it was incredibly hard. I prayed a lot for her and the baby, through a lot of my own tears. I healed though. And I grew closer to God. I started listening to my gut more. I started to pray more. I went back to my infertility treatments and I decided to let go.

I wasn't looking to adopt. I knew it would always be an option for us, because adoption has such a dear place in my heart, but I was still guarded from our first attempt.

One night we were over at Joshua's mom's house again (our dogs live there, so we have to go over every day to feed them. That is why we're always there) and she mentioned that she might know of another adoption opportunity and that she would let us know if it was serious. Josh and I agreed to not speak at all about adoption until after he took his exam to be licensed as a PTA. It was a very stressful few months for him, and I absolutely didn't want to add to it, so I agreed. No baby talk until after the test.

Joshua has a guys night if you will, every Monday and I had just gotten home from the gym when I got a text from his mother. She had spoken to the birth mom on the phone and the whole situation sounded very promising, and serious. This was exactly one week before Josh's test. I decided that I had to keep this to myself. I couldn't tell him about it at all until the stress from his test was over.

I made it 15 hours.

I sent him that text and then spilled the entire story to him.

The story is that our birth mom heard about us from the grandma of our first adoption attempt. Our birth mom confided in the lady my mother in law works with that she was pregnant and had made the decision to place the child in a loving home. The woman my mother in law works with then told her about us, but not to contact us unless she was sure that she wasn't going to change her mind. Our birth mom said she was sure, and here we are.

Had we not put ourselves out there the first time, our birth mom wouldn't even know of us. If we hadn't gone through that, we wouldn't be where we are now, or where we are going. It is solid evidence to me that we have no idea of the plans He has for us. All we get to do is sit back and wait. I'm content to do that now.

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Couch to 10k

I feel weird calling this C210K. That looks like I'm running REALLY far.

Okay, six-ish miles is really far, but not as far as that looks.

I started out doing C25K. I don't mean to sound braggy, because I am not good at running at all. I get that very attractive purple face going on when I run. It's hot. But I quickly realized that C25K wasn't really doing it for me. I modified it a little, as in I ran a little faster than I typically would for the first three weeks and I did two days at once. When Ingrid and I run outside, we're usually out for an hour or so, and I just didn't feel complete with a half hour. I decided that I wanted to push myself a little more and go for a 10k. Because, why not?

I have always been a bit hesitant of running hard or training hard because I am programmed to constantly think of getting pregnant. I held myself back from getting too far into it for the past half year because I thought I was going to get pregnant. Now, I'm not concerned about it anymore. I'm off of the medicines that made me feel and act like a monster, and I am enjoying running again.

Allow me to introduce you to my extensive collection of fitness apps. The only one I use is middle row right. 10k free by Zen Labs. The amazing Charla (@CharlawithaC on Twitter) recommended it to me, and it is perfect for me. What I really love is that it dings when I'm supposed to run and then again when I walk. That way I don't really have to pay attention to the screen. The RunDouble app was really nice, but as soon as I finished week two it wanted me to pay for the rest. Yeah. Right.

That Angry Birds app is why my brothers love me.

Week four is where it started getting hard for me. Days 1-3 are all the same. The directions for what you're supposed to do are in the upper right corner. I did single days of these for all three. After taking such a long break from running, that five minute section killed me.

And then I started week five. I honestly have my doubts of whether I can finish this or not, but I'm going to keep doing it.
Week 5 day 2 steps it up a bit more...
And then week 5 day 3 says screw you.
This app assumes that I jog a 10min mile. This app is wrong.
Hopefully though, if I stay on track, I'll be running a 10k by the time our baby is born.

Oh my gosh.
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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Do You Realize What Happens In Labor?

Um, I didn't. I started reading "Your Baby's First Year", and it is starting to read like a horror story.

I mean, I know how babies are born (Mom set me straight on that when I was five years old. Thanks, Mom.) but seriously. Come on.

The more I read about it, the more I'm convinced that I'm not meant to go through that. I can't read about the various ways they can administer pain medication without feeling light headed. And when I started looking at the chart that shows Apgar scores I almost started panicking. What if our baby doesn't score high? IT IS ALREADY A COMPETITION.

My biggest fear is bonding.
Source

I didn't buy a book on birth from the adoptive mom's standpoint (no idea why I didn't think of that), but this book talks about the importance of bonding. Extra emphasis on bonding through breastfeeding. I am not going to breastfeed. That may sound silly to you, but I have seen/heard more than once where women induce lactation. This also makes me light headed. I'm not judging you, but I just can't do it.

They wrote like two whole pages on bonding immediately after birth when they lay your beautiful pink baby on your chest and you gaze into each others eyes and beautiful music plays and your makeup is perfect and your husband rubs your feet.

This is not going to happen to me.

And here is where I panic.

How in the world is our baby going to love me if I can't be in the hospital bed, exhausted from labor, and in awe of what my body just did? What is our baby going to think when it looks up at me? Will our baby know that I wasn't the one who gave birth? Will the baby know to love me?

I would love to write more, but I'm off to catch the 12:15 stop of the Crazy Train. See ya'll later.

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

This Isn't A Mommy Blog. Yes it is.

It seems like every time a blogger gets pregnant that statement comes out. "This isn't turning into a mommy blog", and it inevitably does. I'm not saying anything bad about it at all. I'm asking, why do we feel the need to say that? To not offend non-mom bloggers?

The fact is, you're going through a huge change in your life. Your blog is going to reflect this. You cannot avoid it.

I'm not going to say that this won't turn into a mommy blog, because it very well might. It will continue from this point on as a mommy-adoption-infertility-fitness-whatever else I feel like saying blog.  I can do that. This is my blog, and if you want to say whatever you want to say, start one. Super easy.

Just because we're becoming parents, does not mean we don't still struggle with infertility. I'll be honest and say that our adoption does dull the pain. Our excitement about our baby helps infertility not hurt so much, but it is our life. This is something we will likely always face, and we're okay with that. If you are affected by infertility, please know that I am not deserting you. I am not crossing the line into being a mom and never looking back. The truth is, I'm not leaving you. Even if I become pregnant in the future, I'm not leaving you.

The internet breeds insecurity though, and I've noticed it a lot in regard to infertility. I agree, it is important to have people you can talk to about the issues you're facing, but there is a line between it being constructive and destructive. 

I don't know if you know who Jenna Marbles is, or if you even care for her. I laugh at some of the things she says, but other things I'm like ehhh.... but this video says a lot of important things in my opinion. I'm giving you the language warning now. She loves the f-bomb.

I see a lot of what she is talking about though.

If you're interested in a book of what Jenna Marbles is saying, without any swearing at all, check out "So Long, Insecurity" by Beth Moore. I realize that God is probably giving me the side eye for suggesting these two things together, but you know. It's important.

And world peace.

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Friday, November 9, 2012

Your Baby's First Year

I have felt quite a bit of anxiety these past few weeks. Everything we have to do and get done before the baby is born is shaping up to be quite an extensive list.

I handle all stress with reading about whatever the issue is, so I ordered this book.

I figured this would be good since we will be needing to know how to take care of a child beginning at birth. As I began reading though there was a bit of information about pregnancy. I got pissed because I didn't need to know all of that. And then I realized that I probably should know that. At the very least, it will give me something to discuss with the birth mom.

I'm still in awe that I even have a baby to prepare for.

Last weekend I went shopping with mom and found this amazing dresser at Cherished Again, it is a local resale shop.
This will also serve as the changing table. Pad on top, and we're set.

Also, if you missed it on Twitter, Instragram, and the rooftops I yelled it from:
Joshua passed his state boards and is now a licensed PTA. I am beyond proud of him.


Lastly, Ingrid and I went to IKEA Sunday and I finally got a frame to fit my US Map. It is now hanging in the gallery and I loooove it.


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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Complete Learning Experience

 For the past three years I have been so focused on getting pregnant and not at all on having a baby. You would think they go hand in hand, but for me, they didn't.

I was also so concerned with ovulating, charting, and doctors appointments, that I really never thought past the two week wait. All of our finances were calculated to accommodate our out of pocket fertility appointments. Now, our situation is completely different.

Now I'm worried about getting a room ready, passing our home study, getting everything done with our attorney, and the constant worry that the birth mom could change her mind (I don't know about other states, but in Indiana the birth mom cannot sign off her rights until after the baby is born). It is all terrifying. Add in communication issues with the birth parents and financial concerns it is a whirlwind of emotion. One minute I'm up, the next I'm down.

Finally the reality of "we're going to be parents" has set in for me. I feel like I finally get what a huge deal this is. I'm so excited to meet our baby, but I'm equally excited for the adoption process to be over and for us to be a family.

In other news: Ingrid found SuperBaby's first clothes last night. I suppose if it is a girl we will have to add a tutu. 
Sorry, not sorry for the phone photo. Deal.

Do any of you know of anyone who has adopted? I'm interested in reading their blogs, or hearing your stories about them. Thanks, yo.

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Monday, October 29, 2012

I Learned Something Today.

My entire life I had this feeling, or opinion if you will, that  parents could not love their adopted children as much as they could love their biological children. I didn't have any real basis for that, it is just what I thought.

I was raised an only child after my younger sister died. My parents discussed adoption from time to time, but never brought home another baby. I actually don't know their reasons for not adopting when I was younger, and it really doesn't matter. I think, that in my young mind I believed it would be too hard for them to love an adopted child after they had lost a biological child. Almost like a replacement.

When I was in my first week of my first year of college, I came home after a night class and my parents had a baby. Like a newborn was laying on a changing table in our spare bedroom. My mom quickly explained that we were becoming a foster family and were taking care of this tiny baby on an emergency placement. Here I had lived my 18 years as an only child and I come home to find a baby. Such a shock, to say the least.

We went through foster care training as a family, and William became integrated into our family. I learned how to take care of a baby and I fell so much in love with him.

Soon after William was born, his birth mom became pregnant again. And when William was six months old, a judge decided that his birth mom had shown enough improvement that she could have him back again. I remember looking at him laying on his changing table and just crying because I was so sad he was leaving us. It was awful. William went back to live with his birth family, and Dillian was born. Their birth parents were still involved in the court system and were being monitored. Eventually the boys were returned to my parents care.

The pain I felt when they didn't live with us is all the proof I needed to know that I was so wrong in thinking that adopted children can't be loved the same.

My brothers were adopted on September 5, which is the birthday of my sister who died.

We all went out to dinner on Friday night and I told the boys about our baby. I explained that Josh and I are adopting and that they are going to be uncles. They were so excited and immediately started giving their recommendations for baby names (Cobra, Bob, Bobby, Luke, Periwinkle, Maleena, Bobber, Sloppy Joe, among others). They told me that I should start thinking about buying a bigger house, because a baby needs its own room. They are so full of advice.

And they are the reason why I already know that our baby will never lack love. We already love our baby so much and we've never even met. So today I was walking to my car after work and I realized that if I never get pregnant, I will be fine. We are being given life, just by a different delivery method. I truly believe that our baby is worth the years of hurt we experienced at the hands of infertility. And I'm so excited to share this experience with my brothers so they can see just how amazing life is.



As a side note: our baby has a new name. I was saying "Baby T", but it has been changed to "SuperBaby". You know. It fits.

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