Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Month 8...18 days late

I have no idea how it is December 20th and I still haven't posted the babies' 8 month update!  That is just horrible on my end and I need to not let it happen again!!

Remington Ann

  • You are crawling EVERYWHERE!!  You are so adorable with your little body moving around, getting everywhere you want and into anything you desire!
  • You are our eater.  You absolutely love food!  
  • You are still so independent.
  • You have this cute way of wrinkling your little nose up when you smile really big and it is just adorable.
  • You are still at 5 ounces.
  • You are still in size 2 diapers.
  • You are in 6-9 month clothing.

Kanon Rockford
  • You are trying to crawl, but you just aren't there and when your sister crawls away from you, it upsets you so much.
  • You have such a sweet personality, you are so loving.
  • You like food, but aren't overly into it.
  • Your giggle is amazing!
  • You are also still at 5 1/2 ounces.
  • You are in size 3 diapers.
  • You are pretty much strictly in size 9 month clothes.

We just love you so much and can't believe you are 8 months old.  You are such a blessing to us.  We absolutely can't believe you have now been on the outside as long as you were inside.  It just blows our minds how big you are getting and we wish every day for time to slow down.  

Friday, December 9, 2016

I smiled today

Something happened today.  I went to lunch, and as I walked through the door, there was a baby carrier there, and a little boy, and as I entered the room, the little boy made a noise and I turned and looked at the little boy, and I smiled. 

I smiled.  At a baby.  A baby that isn’t mine.  For the first time in years. 

It was such a different feeling that I literally stopped and thought to myself, I just smiled and took that moment to think about how different I feel inside.  My heart, although it still aches, feels somewhat mended.  I feel like there are bandages holding it together and maybe, slowly, pieces of it are trying to grow back together. 

It literally caught me off guard that for the first time in years, my reaction to seeing a baby was to smile.  A real smile.  I didn’t cringe.  I didn’t hold back tears.  I didn’t look the other way.  I didn’t feel anger.  I didn’t feel fear over an uncertain future.  I smiled.

And then, I felt sad.  Sad for all the happiness that infertility robbed me of.  Sad for the years that I spent feeling so angry, losing myself to infertility. 

Then, my heart became so heavy for those dear friends of mine still struggling with infertility.  Still fighting.  Still cringing.  Still crying.  Still aching with empty arms.  Still half-heartedly putting up their Christmas tree going through yet another Christmas without a baby to share the magic with.  And I prayed for them. 

Infertility can destroy a person, and it nearly destroyed me.  It would have, if we didn’t have Kanon and Remington.  Oh how I hate it.  

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Giving Tuesday - Loss Resources

A post I've been meaning to post for literally two years now is a post with resources for parents and family members who have experienced child loss.  There are several amazing organizations that provide various things to help family members remember their babies.  Given that today is Giving Tuesday, I thought it was as good of a time as ever to post about this. 

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

The organization that has had the biggest impact on Dusty and I, that has probably provided us the most comfort after losing Chandler and Paisley, is Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep (NILMDTS).  For those of you not familiar with NILMDTS, this organization provides photographers who will come to the hospital and take photographs of your precious baby(ies) and will edit, crop, and provide those photos to you at no cost.  This organization is always looking for more photographers to join them and help provide this service.  I wish that I was able to help.  If I had any photography skills, I would hands down volunteer to help.  Here is the website for NILMDTS.


Molly Bears

Another amazing organization is Molly Bears.  This organization allows parents (only parents) to order teddy bears that are the exact weight of the baby that passed away.  They will do all sizes of infants (even unknown).  There is a wait list of several months, and they only open the order form once a month on the last day of the month, and additionally, the order form is limited (usually to the first 150-200 who order).  There is a cost of $20 per bear, but it is very much worth it to have that bear to hold close.  Once your bear(s) gets close to production, they will email you and allow you to have some more input into decorations for your bear.  We absolutely love ours and they turned out perfects.


March of Dimes

Although not a loss resource, this is an organization that Dusty and I have poured ourselves into.  The March of Dimes funds research for prevention of premature birth and other diseases which lead to infant mortality.  For this reason, I have included it in this post.  Dusty and I recently had the honor of being the Mission Family for the location Signature Chefs Auction, and I will be sharing more about that soon.


Ellie's Way

This organization provides care packages and memorial necklaces to loss families.  The necklaces are locket style and are so beautiful.


Local(ish) Resources

Holy Sews

After NILMDTS, I would credit Holy Sews as being the most meaningful organization to Dusty and I as it relates to the loss of Chandler and Paisley.  Holy Sews provides outfits which consist of a layette, blanket, hat and teddy bear that fit micropreemies.  This need was found when the founder had a baby too early herself, and found that all clothes the hospital had to provide were too big and hung off of her precious baby.  Chandler and Paisley were dressed in precious little outfits and had little teddy bears and hats that were just their size.  These hats and teddy bears are something that Dusty and I cling to even now.  For our precious babies to have little bears that fit them perfect was just so precious to us.  We keep their bears with their ashes.  

Holy Sews was founded in Little Rock, AR and delivers their packages to hospitals all across the state.  Holy Sews has also expanded and has a New York chapter as well as a Dallas area chapter.  


Mamie's Poppy Plates

Another Little Rock based organization is Mamie's Poppy Plates.  This organization serves hospitals across AR, with some hospitals served in IL, IA, IN, MO, TN and TX.  They provide beautiful plates that have your babies hand and footprints, date of birth, weight, length and name.  We truly treasure our plates and are so thankful we have them.  


Other for-profits or shops that provide mementos or other items for parents and families of loss are the following:

  • A Bed for My Heart - This is the site for the book "You are the Mother of All Mothers" which is an amazing short essay style book with beautiful art that I found so much comfort in.  There are other things that can be purchased on this site, such as cards for fathers as well.
  • Rachelle-isms - This is an etsy shop that makes beautiful and very affordable memorial items, from necklaces to bracelets.  The shop owner is amazing to work with and will customize whatever you would like.  I love my drop necklace from her.
  • TheMidnightOrange - Another etsy shop that makes custom little sculptures that symbolize loss for your family.
  • ShopShineLife - This shop makes all sorts of jewelry, including rememberence jewelry, and I love the quality of their work!  We've had several pieces made and they are amazing!  
There are several more loss resources that can be found just by a simple google search, but these are the ones that had the biggest impact on us and I wanted to share.  

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Internal Conflict

I am happy.  I really truly am.  Kanon and Remington light up my world and bring me a joy that I can't even describe.  When they smile at me, my heart melts.  I would move mountains for them.  I would lay down my life for them.  They truly are the most amazing blessings and I thank God for them, all the time.

But I'm still sad.  There is a sad, hurt, angry, bitter part of me that knows that there should be 4 babies here.  The two boys and two girls that Dusty and I always wanted, and have...just not how we intended.  

My sweet Chandler and Paisley are always at the front of my thoughts.  There is almost a constant knot in my stomach from my missing them.  I still long to know what they would look like now, who they would act like, and all of those details that we don't know.

I am so conflicted.  It is such a bizarre feeling, to have this happiness, while still being sad.  I will never really know what it is like to not have pain in my life, to not be hurting at any time.  Mine and Dust's hearts were truly broken beyond repair.  I picture my heart and I see this part of it that is dark and cracked and broken, while the rest of my heart is red and beating, this other part just sits, unmoving, unhealed...until Heaven, really. 

I let my mind wander to that glorious reunion day and for the first time, I pictured Chandler and Paisley as being little kids around the age of 4 and running up to me and hugging me and me never letting them go and I didn't get sad at the thought of them being that age.  Up until now, if I thought about it, I would be sad to think of them being anything but babies when I get to Heaven, babies that in my mind, I get to raise in Heaven.  I don't know why, but this time, that didn't sadden me.  I guess because I am living the experience of raising their siblings.

I know all of this is a mystery, and probably mostly a fantasy, as I really don't think that is what it will be like in Heaven.  Who knows, though.  I do believe I will know them in Heaven.  I think the bible gives us a glimpse of that truth in 2 Samuel with the death of David's infant child. I place hope there.  

I really don't know what brought this post to light for me today.  I was feeling like I needed to post since it has been so long, and thought and thought about what to post, and have a couple of other things I want to post about, but felt like I should write this.  I think part of it was, I began considering a Thanksgiving post, but to be honest, I still have resentment in my heart and although I know I have plenty to be thankful for, there is still this flame of anger that burns inside me knowing that I still have two children that were taken from Dusty and me way too soon.  I don't know if that flame will ever go out while I am here on this earth.  

Friday, November 4, 2016


How are we so much closer to a year than when the babies were born?  I know time flies...but how it used to feel is nothing compared to now.  Now, I truly feel like I blink and have missed days.  

Our sweet babies!  Our world revolves around you and we wouldn't have it any other way.

Remington -

  • You are getting so big, sweet princess.  You love to hold your bottle and do so good with it.  
  • You absolutely love avocado!
  • You said your first word.  Not Momma, nor Daddy, but "Num", as in, yum.  It is the most adorable thing ever and your voice is the absolute sweetest.
  • You have really started smiling a TON and it is amazing!  Your entire face lights up and your wrinkle your little nose in the most precious way!  
  • Your bottom teeth have come in, but aren't showing too much yet.
  • You are SO close to crawling!
  • You are still taking 5 ounces
  • You are in size 2 diapers
  • You are in size 6 month clothes

Kanon - 

  • My little boy!  You are truly the sweetest little boy imaginable.  Your eyes are so full of love.
  • You are a fan of food, but not as much as I thought you would be.  The one you really didn't care for was butternut squash.  You didn't hate it, you just weren't a fan.
  • Grammie has taught you a new trick where you roll off of your boppy when it's on the couch and roll right off into Grammie's arms.  You are so proud of yourself when you do it, it is adorable.
  • You can get anywhere you want on the floor.  You try to crawl, but haven't quite got the "up on your arms" thing down yet, and scoot along on your forehead at times, or, mostly, roll wherever you want to go!
  • You are starting to get your top two teeth.  They are so close to breaking through.
  • You have gotten into the terrible habit of not falling asleep unless you are in the living room with me and your Daddy.  I don't know what to do there!
  • You still take 5.5 ounces.
  • You are in size 2 diapers, but we really could stand to move you to 3 I think.
  • You are wearing 6-9 month clothing.

Sweet little babies.  You helped us survive your siblings birthday.  We honestly have no idea the deep dark hole we would be in without you.  We love you so very much.  You are our whole world.  

Monday, October 24, 2016

2 Years...

It's been two years since we last held Chandler and Paisley.  Two years since I felt like nothing bad could ever happen to me.  Two years since our dreams completely shattered.  Two years since our lives felt like they were on the way to being whole.  

Chandler and Paisley...how we love and miss you.  Please, please sweet babies, know that Kanon and Remington will never, and could never be, your replacements.  Either way, we know we would have had them, and they would have been your siblings, and it would have been so much fun.  Please know that.

I had my very first dream about Chandler and Paisley.  I don't remember it, but I know I dreamt of them.  Friday morning, the day after their birthday, I was browsing through their pictures on my phone, and something in one of the pictures stirred in my brain the dream I had.  Oh how I wish I could remember it.  I can't believe I haven't dreamed of them before.  I have vivid dreams, crazy, unbelievable dreams, and it's always bothered me, in a way, that I haven't dreamed of them, but at the same time, I think it was my brain's way of protecting my heart, because I can't live through horrible dreams about them and their short time here.  

On Thursday, for Chandler and Paisley's birthday, we visited their headstone with my mom and a dear friend of ours.  We took cupcakes and balloons and had a little birthday party for them.  We replaced the flowers in their vases and admired their stone.  We took the day off work so we could spend it together, remembering them, and being together, and I'm so thankful we did.  

I'm so thankful for the friends that we have that remembered their days and reached out to us.  It truly means so much to us.  A friend sent this to me today, and it is so true, and I feel it more than ever.  

Monday, October 17, 2016

I'm still infertile.

I still wear that label.  I have four children.  I have been pregnant for a total of (almost) 57 weeks.  Someday soon, two sweet little faces named Kanon and Remington will call me Mom.  One day, I will hold two little babies in Heaven who I will be reunited with, and I call them son and daughter.

But…I am still infertile.

I still see a pregnant belly and cringe.  There are some days when it still hurts to walk down the baby aisle.  I pass by the infant and newborn items and know those days are over for me.  I won’t ever need those again.  It passed in a blink of an eye.

Some days, that little newborn cry that I hear out and about still brings tears to my eyes.  I catch my breath and begin to prepare myself for that longing and pain that always accompanied that sweet noise, even though I have now experienced hearing those precious cries of my own children.

I miss the innocent days when life was about “having a baby someday”, and not having the infertile label.  I miss the days when I thought as soon as I wanted a baby, all we had to do was say, now is the time, and it would happen.  I long for the innocence I had, the naivety that I lived in prior to infertility stole so much from me. 

My eyes have aged, my heart is tired.  Most of this is due to the loss of my sweet Chandler and Paisley, but part of this is from the constant fight I battled for years trying to achieve mine and my husband’s dream to become parents.   

There are days when I still have to remind myself that I actually am a mom, a mom of 4 at that!  Days when the dark days of infertility still cast an ominous shadow over my current life.  Like a storm brewing on the horizon.  Days when I still have to fight the clouds to find the sunshine. 

And then the guilt sets in.  How can I feel this way when I have two beautiful children here that I get to go home to every single day when so many friends are still struggling to have their first, or still trying to get pregnant after experiencing infant loss or miscarriage?  Why can’t I shake this label, and all the stigma that comes with it?  Why can’t I let this go, live in the now, and forget the pain that comes with it? 

How can I give Kanon and Remi everything they deserve when I find myself longing for more children?  They are here, they are mine, how could I want more?  

How much more am I going to let infertility steal from me?

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Happy Half Birthday

Our sweet babies are already half a year old!!!!  How are we already closer to a year old than when they were born?  

It blows my mind to see them getting big and growing up like they are.  They bring us so much joy.  Their personalities are hilarious.  Kanon is so laid back and Remi is such a fireball.  Much like Mom & Dad.  

Remington - 

  • You are so full of fire.  You crack us up!  You can rev up in a matter of seconds and will cry so hard your whole body becomes red with anger and you get stiff as a board when you throw a temp tantrum.  It is quite funny, but something we must get under control!
  • You love sleeping on your tummy and you are just adorable.
  • Your hand-eye coordination continues to amaze us.  You are so advanced there, in my opinion!
  • You have moved to mostly 6 month clothing now, but can still fit in some 3 month things.  You are a little thing, but you are really gaining!
  • You take 5 ounces still.
  • You are just moving from size 1 diapers to size 2.  
Kanon - 

  • You have TWO bottom teeth!!  You're such a big boy.  You love to run your tongue over your teeth and tuck your lips in over them and just feel them!
  • You are the sweetest little bear ever.  You just love to love people.  You smile and flirt and you melt my heart.
  • You're sleeping hasn't been so good lately, I'll blame your teeth!
  • You are in all 6 month and bigger clothes now.
  • You are still taking 5.5 ounces most feedings.
  • You wear size 2 diapers.

The two of you are starting to really notice each other more and interact more.  It is absolutely adorable.  I pray you will always be there for each other and will always have each other's back.  I pray you'll always love Jesus and will always be the sweethearts that you are.  Momma & Daddy love you so much, babies.  You are our entire world. 

Thursday, September 15, 2016

September 15th, 2015

September 15, 2015 will be one of those days that is forever etched in my memory.  For whatever reason, my fertility clinic decided that we needed to have our first ultrasound there instead of at my ob office, so Dusty and I made the 3 hour trip to get there in time for our 10:00 appointment.  We waited in the waiting room for a bit, until finally being called back.  I was so anxious.  I was so scared there would be no heartbeat.  I had taken pregnancy tests at 4 days past our transfer, 5 days, and then 6, before Dusty hid the pregnancy tests and made me stop torturing myself (God bless that man).  So, I hadn't analyzed lines to see if they were getting darker.  I hadn't taken a digital to see what it said.  None of that.  I had just trusted the beta was right, and my hormone levels were still increasing as they should, but sitting there, waiting for that appointment, all of the fear and doubt creeps in.

Once we were called back, I got undressed for the ultrasound.  I remember being frustrated because I wouldn't be able to see the screen.  After all, I am pretty used to reading those things and knew what I was looking for.  Dr. M came in and began the ultrasound with a medical student (maybe two), and a nurse.  I remember hearing him measuring something and thinking, I hope that is good.  Then, he played such an amazing sound, the sound of the heartbeat.  I breathed a sigh of relief and said a little prayer of thanks.  Then, Dust said, Thank God...I assume only 1?  And the doctor replied, Well...no. 

And in that moment, my heart broke all over again.  All I could think was, no, no, no, I can't do this again, I can't let my body kill two more babies.  What am I going to do?  And I cried.  And cried.  And didn't stop crying for a very long time.  

Many people would probably say, but, you should have had faith.  How do you tell somebody that when they have been through what Dusty and I have been through?  When we know the reality is, faith isn't a guarantee that life will be peachy?  God does not promise us good here on Earth.  Our good is when we get to Heaven.  

But thank God for these precious miracles that we got to bring home in car seats this time.  

Monday, September 12, 2016

5 Months!

Argh!  10 days late on this post.  I have to get it together!  Along with the thank you notes I haven't finished yet.  *sigh*

My goodness.  These precious babies are already 5 months old!  How in the world has so much time flown by?  

Dusty and I absolutely love every minute with them.  They are the sweetest babies.  They just smile and laugh and it melts our hearts.  I think our absolutely favorite time is on Saturday morning, after they have their first bottle, putting them back in bed with us and snoozing for another hour or so.  Those baby snuggles are just...they are just the best.  To those who are still battling infertility, please, stay strong, keep fighting, the end result is more than worth it...so much more than words can even describe.

I can't even believe that 5 months have gone by since we met Kanon & Remington.  There are times when it still seems like just yesterday that I was spending hours after hours laying on the couch doing my bedrest, trying my best to keep these sweet babies inside of me.  Now they are growing and thriving and just are the most perfect little babies.

Remington - 

  • You continue to be beyond strong!  You love to bounce in your jumperoo and your strength amazes everyone.
  • You roll over like crazy now!  We put you down and within seconds, you flip over onto your tummy.
  • You love to sleep on your tummy.  It scares us some, but we're so glad we have the Snuzas and they continue to work when you and your brother are on your tummies.  
  • Your hand-eye coordination is just incredible.  You are so good at picking things up and putting your paci in your mouth.  
  • You have moved into size 1 diapers about 3 weeks ago.
  • You are still in 3 month clothes, which is good, because we have SO many in that size!
  • You take 5 ounces most feedings.
  • You weighed 13 pounds on the 6th when I took you and your brother in for your first cold.  I'm so sorry I passed that to you. 
  • I forgot to post this, but at your 4 month appointment, which was 8/15, you weighed 12 pounds, were 23.5 inches long, and were in the 5th percentile for length and weight, and 25th for head. 

Kanon - 
  • You are such a sweet baby boy!  You just have a heart of gold.
  • You still love to yell and it is hilarious!
  • You are also rolling over, although you don't like it quite as much as your sister.  You are getting much better about it, though.  
  • You find your daddy to be quite hilarious and just crack up at him!  You love when he says, in his special, Daddy/Kanon voice, "I'm going to get you big boy".  You just watch and wait with such anticipation.  It is adorable!
  • You are still in size 1 diapers.
  • You are into 3-6 month clothing now.
  • You take 5.5 ounces most feedings.
  • You weight 15 pounds on the 6th when I took you and your sister in for your first cold, I'm so sorry I passed that onto you. 
  • I forgot to post this, but at your 4 month appointment, which was 8/15, you weighed 13 pounds 14 ounces, were 24.5 inches long, and were in the 10th percentile for length and weight, and 50th for head. 

Thursday, August 25, 2016

What is this world coming to?

***warning***this post is going to discuss current violence in the world.  If you don't want to be saddened, disturbed, or angered, please don't read further.
In the past 24 hours, I have seen three absolutely horrific stories.  Three things that have made me absolutely sick.  Three things that have caused me to stop and pray, and fight tears, and honestly, to beg the Lord to please come back.

The first, a mother was pulled over for drunk driving, and the trooper noticed her child in the backseat, covered in vomit and sitting in a dirty diaper.  Thank God that trouper took the baby, and bathed the baby, and the baby is now in the care of child protective services.  

The second, a stupid, awful, mean grown man asked his girlfriend's 2 year old son to put up his fists and then proceeded to punch him in the chest so hard, the poor, sweet child flew into a wall, his liver ruptured, and he died from internal injuries.  What kind of sick, cruel, awful man does this?  

And...as if that wasn't bad enough, the last story was enough to put me over the edge.  The last story I read today made me stop in my tracks and beg Jesus to come back because this world is awful.  I read a story of a methhead and her boyfriend, who pumped her 10 year old daughter full of meth, then the mother let the boyfriend and friend sexually abuse and violently injure and ultimately murder her daughter.  And shows no remorse for it.  My God.  My God.  My stomach hurts thinking about this again.  

What is this world coming to?  These horrific stories are happening more and more frequently, and each one rocks me to my core.  What is wrong with people?  What will it take for people to change?  Will we ever get back what we once had?  Did we ever not have this type of violence, but now, with the ease of communication of news, we know about it more easily?  I don't have the answer. 

This scares me to death about the world we are exposing our kids to.  It makes me question how terrible it was for us to even bring our children into this terrible world.  It makes me want Jesus to come, so we can be a family in Heaven where these things won't happen.  It terrifies me and makes me so incredibly sad.  

Sunday, August 21, 2016

One Year Ago

One year ago today, Dusty and I got up, and made the drive to Little Rock, knowing we were transferring the last two embryos that we had.  We were filled with hope, but scared at the same time.  

Kanon & Remi's first picture

I shared on my Facebook account today, that one year ago today was the first time I had really handed something over to God.  As you, my readers, know, Kanon & Remi were frozen together, and we had to transfer both.  There was no other option to us.  If we attempted to refreeze one, we were told it likely wouldn't survive thaw again.  That was equal to a death sentence to us, so that wasn't an option.  And we absolutely could not discard one, so again, not an option.  

We prayed for God's will to be done, and for the first time, meant it, 100%.  I remember just being baffled and thinking, I have no idea what to pray for.  How can I be so selfish and pray for both to stick when that very well could end the same way Chandler and Paisley's pregnancy ended, but on the other hand, how do I pray for only one to make it, when that is essentially praying one doesn't make it, and that felt wrong as well.  I remember just praying, God...you know.  Please let your plan unfold here.  
My gear

Boredom had set it...thus a picture of my foot

Dusty, all geared up

Me...not sure why the smart alec look on my face

Here we are, before being taken back to the OR

And I am so thankful for His plan.  I am so thankful we were given Kanon and Remi to be siblings to Chandler and Paisley.  They have been such a blessing.  

Friday, August 19, 2016

My biggest failure

My body failed Chandler & Paisley.  That will always be my biggest failure.  It will always be a guilt I will never be able to let go.  Tomorrow, it will have been 20 months since that awful, terrible day, and the pain and guilt I felt that day is just the same.  Maybe it hurts more today then it did then because the shock and numbness is gone, and I'm left with nothing but the reality of the situation.  

It will never matter how many people tell me it wasn't my fault.  It was.  My body could not do what it should have been capable of doing, and as a result, my babies are in Heaven.  My sweet Chandler and Paisley.  They should be here, running around, gorgeous and handsome, sweet as can be, and instead, I can only dream of the day I get to Heaven and get to wrap my arms around them for the first time since October 22, 2014.  

I can't look at Kanon and Remington without thinking of Chandler and Paisley, nor would I want to.   I can't help but wonder what kind of babies Chandler & Paisley would have been.  I can't help but look at Kanon and Remi and wonder what Chandler & Paisley would have looked like at their age.  I can't help but have a heart full of love for all four of my babies at the same time that I hate my body and am filled with guilt over what should have been.

It is incredible to me how I can live in what feels like two separate worlds at the same time.  While I have overwhelming happiness and joy because of Kanon and Remi and healing they have provided, at the same time, my heart is still in pieces over what should have been.  I still long for and miss Chandler and Paisley more than I can even describe.  The pain is still raw and is constantly there.

I miss my babies.  

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Infertility is such a b*tch!

You know what still makes me feel like a punch in my gut?  Infertility.

Let me tell you how infertility still impacts me.  I see a pregnant belly, and I still feel that twinge of jealousy rise up.  I still think how amazing it must be to just, oh, you know, have sex and get pregnant {WHAT???  That happens???}.  I still think how nice it must be to be able to say, we want children now, and poof, it soon happens.  

However; now having Kanon and Remi, it doesn't drag me down and send me into the deep, dark depression that it used to.  I don't avoid pregnant friends like the plague any more.  I don't go home and cry every time there is a new pregnancy announcement.  My 23 year-old nephew and his 20 year-old ex girlfriend are having a baby.  Thank God I have Kanon and Remi now because I know, without a doubt, that if that had happened before having Kanon and Remi, and especially after having Chandler and Paisley, I'm not sure I would have been able to be pulled from the deep dark hole it would have sent me to.  I know that, because I had that thought many times while waiting to get pregnant, knowing it could be any time I'd find out something like that had happened.

But, this isn't the only way it still impacts me.  Not even close.  When you have immersed yourself in the infertile world, you find friends that understand what you've been going through, and you understand what they have walked through and are walking through, and you have an empathy for their pains and struggles more than anyone else can.  You feel the heartbreak along with them.  Their month after month of negative pregnancy tests take you right back to those hundreds of times, in your own bathroom, starring at that stupid test, squinting, begging, pleading, blinking back tears, wishing for that second line to appear...and never seeing it.  

About two weeks ago, I had three friends all in that dreaded two week wait.  Three close friends.  Friends I "know in real life", not just online, because really, if I count all of the amazing women I've met online that can be found by that TTC or Infertility hastag, then there are many more women that I could count in this number.  Three friends, all waiting, all praying, all hoping, to not be let down once again.  And all three ended in heartbreak, yet again.  

One friend transferred her last two of 6 frozen embryos in hopes of provided a sibling for her first child.  Of 6 frozen embryos, the most she got was a very short-lived pregnancy that ended in an early miscarriage.  How?  SIX!  How do six embryos not result in at least one child?  I will never understand, and my heart breaks for her.  She has hung up her dreams of giving her child a sibling, and is trying her best to be ok with that.

Another friend took a huge step in the infertile world, and began the IVF process.  Wrote the big fat check.  Injected herself over and over with the hopes of realizing the dream of becoming a mother.  And just about everything that could went wrong in her cycle, from miscommunication by her nurse when ordering meds (not at all her fault), lost labwork orders, lost ultrasound results, delays, everything.  All of those things could have been overcome and forgiven, had it not been for the final thing that went wrong.  One follicle decided to jump out ahead of the rest, while all the others lagged behind.  Cycle cancelled for IVF.  Her and her husband did decided to try IUI, and I was so hopeful.  It felt like God orchestrated a conversation which led to the IUI, and I hoped and prayed that meant it would lead to pregnancy and she wouldn't have to try again.  In a cruel joke, she originally thought it didn't work, only to figure out it did, but just a little bit.  She had a chemical pregnancy and is fighting to see the silver lining and hold onto hope.

Lastly, my third friend, who has had 2 late first trimester miscarriages, finally got the courage and the strength to try again.  To put her worry aside, and try.  To hand it to God and hope that she would get pregnant and it not end in tears, but, it wasn't her month either.  

All of these things break my heart.  I feel the weight of the burden and I've prayed to God asking that their burden be placed on me, to lighten their load, even just a little.  Please say a prayer for these three friends.  

Infertility is such a b*tch.  

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

One-third of the way to a year...what???

How in the world are my babies one third of their way to their first birthday???  No...isn't happening.  Time seriously needs to STOP.  4 months.  FOUR!  F.O.U.R.  Impossible.  It blows my mind how time flies by.  I dreamed last night that Kanon decided to start walking, and I feel like it will be that time before I know it.

Kanon and Remi just continue to amaze me.  They are social, and loving and so sweet.  We see the both of them progress in various areas, and just love watching them make these steps in their development, although I would much prefer it felt like time was going slower.  I try my very best to live in the moment, as I know I will look back on this time and miss it dearly in just a short while.  That isn't easy to do, but I try to tell myself that each and every day.  

Remington - 

  • You are SO strong!  We can't believe the strength you have!  You love to kick and roll and just amaze us.  We can no longer leave you on your boppy lounger because you've arched your back and kicked yourself over the top of it and that is scary!
  • You LOVE your daddy.  You are a daddy's girl for sure and it melts this momma's heart.  When your daddy walks into the room, you smile and when he leaves the room, your eyes follow him as long as you can see him.  
  • You love the St. Louis Cardinals.  You crack us up.  When a game is on, you are fascinated with it and will sit on your daddy's lap and just watch and watch!
  • You have recently found your tongue and love to stick it out.  It cracks us up.
  • You are still in newborn diapers, but have moved up to 0-3 size outfits.
  • You are taking between 4.5 to 5 ounces per feeding. 

Kanon -
  • I think your Grammie is your favorite person in the world and it is just adorable how your eyes light up and you get the biggest grin on your face when she comes to visit or even when we facetime with her.
  • You have recently learned you can yell, and you love to sit on the couch and very loudly talk for anyone to hear.
  • You love your sister!  You see her and you smile.  I can hardly stand how precious it is.  I hope that love for her never goes away.
  • You have really started reaching out and holding things and reaching for things when on your playmat and it is so cute!
  • You are in size 1 diapers and are in 0-3 month clothing, although the sleepers are starting to get a little snug in length!
  • You are taking between 5 and 6 ounces per feeding.

You both do so well getting ready to go to Aunt Bec's each morning.  We have a routine down and thank goodness for your daddy, or else I don't think I'd ever make it to work on time.  Most mornings, as soon as you see her, your faces light up, and that makes mommy's heart so happy because I know she loves you all so much and it shows that you love her too!  That has made going back to work so much easier.

You also love spending time with Grammie.  She keeps you once a week and you all just love it.  Grammie really couldn't be crazier about you two.  I know she wishes she lived closer so she could see you more, but I absolutely love that she keeps you at least once a week.  

We don't have another doctor's visit until the 15th, so once we go to it, I will do a post with lengths and weights.  I'm so anxious to see how you all are doing.

Again, as I say each and every month, you are mine and your daddy's whole world.  We love you more than we can even express.  Our hearts break thinking about how Chandler and Paisley should be here too, but you precious babies, you saved us.  

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Forever Chandler and Paisley

Sometimes, I just feel compelled to write what is on my heart, at that very moment.  Right now, as nearly all the time, that is Chandler and Paisley. 

The saying that time heals all wounds is wrong, and stupid.  The thought that having Kanon and Remi would heal us is also wrong and stupid.  The thought that healing is even a possibility is wrong and stupid.  Period. 

I really don’t think anyone can understand the depths of pain that comes with losing a child unless you have walked that road.  There isn’t the comfort that can come with losing an older person, the thought of, well, they lived a good life, may they rest in peace.  No, that absolutely isn’t there.   Or, as with a terminal cancer patient, or a person suffering some other illness, when that person passes, there is a sense of comfort knowing they are no longer suffering.  There isn’t that, at all. 

What there is, is an eternal longing for your child or in our case, children.  Forever, we will wish Chandler and Paisley were here.  Forever, we will wonder what they would look like.  Forever, we will wonder what their personalities would be like.  Forever, we will wonder what their first words would have been.  Forever, we will wonder when they would have taken their first steps.  Forever, we will wonder who they would have grown up to be.  Forever. 

It doesn’t go away.  That longing, that heartbreak, that pain.  I can sit here today, and think about these things, and the hurt is as real today as it was October 23, 2014.  The pain in my stomach of feeling like I died when they did is still here. 

Dusty and I look at our babies and at times, the tears will just flow down our cheeks.  Tears over the love we have for them, but also tears for their brother and sister that we didn’t get to know.  Tears longing for those 2 other babies that should be running around our house right now, helping with Kanon and Remi.  Tears for everything that might have, and should have, been.

Forever we will be broken and forever, we will long for the two children that only spent mere minutes in our arms, but forever in Heaven.

Monday, July 18, 2016

3 Months!!

Geez!  It sure would be nice to get this posted before the babies are 4 months old, which is two weeks from tomorrow.  What the heck?!?!  Where does time go?  It makes me sad!

So, here it is, their 3 month post!

Kanon –
·         You are getting so big! 
·         You are taking 5 ounces now in your bottle
·         You are sleeping amazingly at night!  We started letting you sleep instead of waking you when Sissy wakes up, and you now sleep through the night.  You go to bed anywhere from 8:00 – 8:30 and you wake up anywhere from 5:30 – 6:00. 
·         You are still in newborn diapers, but I have a feeling that won’t be the case much longer as they are getting snug!  You can only wear the Huggies now as the Pampers fit smaller, so we’re saving those for Remi.
·         We’ve moved you from newborn clothes to 0-3 months.  My baby is growing up!
·         You LOVE talking!  Especially to Grammie!  You think she is the greatest and you will just grin and chat up a storm with her.  You say “I love you” in your baby-cooing language and it is ADORABLE!  We finally captured it on video and Grammie and I were thrilled to finally get it!
·         Today, on your two month birthday, you saw your first fireworks and went to SWC for the annual 3rd of July Celebration (which was on the 2nd this year since the 3rd is a Sunday).  You weren’t overly impressed by the fireworks and watched for a little bit before you feel asleep.  Oh, and you looked darling in your blue headphones to protect your sweet little ears!
·         At SWC, several people commented about how you look like your Papa Wolfe.  He would have loved you and your sister so much, and I know he is keeping Chandler & Paisley entertained in Heaven. 
·         You love your little monkeys on your swing, and will tell them you love them!  It’s so cute!
·         You have the most adorable smile.  It just melts this momma’s heart and I never want to fail you.
·         Ducky is still your favorite wub.  You will raise Ducky up and move him around, and then try so hard to put the paci back in your mouth. 

·         You pretty much hate tummy time.
You haven’t had a doctor’s visit since May 31, so our best guess on your weight is somewhere close to 11 pounds.  
·         Perhaps your favorite time is bath time!  You just love it!!

Remi –
·         Baby girl, your personality is coming to life and we love it!
·         You don’t really like to wake up in the mornings and most times, when we let you wake up on your own, it is about a 15 minute process involving lots of stretching and falling back to sleep before you finally decide you are up.
·         You take 4.5 ounces in your bottle now and do so good with feedings!  You have also started nursing a lot better when we try it, and it makes momma so happy!
·         Although Lucy was your favorite wub for a while, Paulie seems to have moved into first. 
·         You have started talking too, and you have the sweetest little voice.  You coo “I love you” and “I’m good” (or at least that is what we think it sounds like).
·         You are still in newborn diapers and newborn clothes.
·         You loved sitting on Daddy’s lap and watching the fireworks.  You just stared at them and loved every minute of them! 
·         You are so strong!  You hold your head up so well!  It amazes us. 
·         You even like to stand up on me and Daddy.  We’ll hold you up and you straighten your legs and just love standing!
·         You rolled over from your tummy to your back just a few days ago!  So proud of you!
·         You sleep through the night most nights, but occasionally still wake up anywhere from 2:30 – 4:00.
·         When you are finished eating, you do not hesitate to let us know!  You have started this “gag thing” where you make a noise like you are gagging.  It sounds like a really loud “Yack”, and it is hilarious.  You aren’t gagging, because you’ve done it when we are just starting to put the bottle in your mouth, so we know it is just your way of letting us know you are finished!  It cracks us up!

·         We guess that you weigh a little over 9 pounds.
·         Just like your brother, you LOVE bath time.  You cry instantly when we take you out!

Kanon & Remi – You truly are the light of our lives.  Although we miss Chandler & Paisley so much, you have brought us a happiness that we never knew if we would have.  You make us smile and laugh, and in those moments when we are sad that your brother and sister aren’t here, we can look at you and feel love.  I still don’t think Dusty and I understand the depths of darkness that we were in that you saved us from.  We love you, sweet babies.

P.S.  I promise to get your 4 month post done on time!