Sunday, December 19, 2010

Retrospective

Julia's latest post has me feeling quite retrospective. It chronicles her first marriage, the broken road that led to and away from it, and the regret she carries around because of it. I've made a lot of effort not to talk about my life between July 09 and now. The story is shameful, first, and when Mark and I were trying to make it work again, talking about it was out of the question.

I'm going to skip most of the back story, except to say that deep down, I think Mark and I both knew that we were destined to fail as a couple. In the beginning, I was in love with him, but it faded quickly as the fog of the new relationship lifted. By that time, I lived in Houston with him, 1300 miles from everyone and everything I knew. I felt like everyone was just waiting for us to fail, so I, in my late teens and early twenties, HAD to stay and make it work to prove everyone wrong... So I did.

I moved to Houston in May 2002. By 2005, Mark had developed a wicked awful anxiety disorder and my feelings of obligation only grew stronger. He needed me, and I needed to be needed. In October of that year, we moved back to West Virginia because of the anxiety. Things started to seem more normal and I assumed that this dull ache was a normal part of a relationship. We decided to get married. Mark didn't propose, there was no big announcement. It was more like, "I guess we should go ahead and do this. How does June sound to you?" And so we did. We were going through the motions, trying to find our normal. Then infertility happened, then the boys came. Between the already busted marriage and the stress of foster care and Sport's needs, I had nothing left.

I will never say that what I did was right. I am still ashamed and filled with regret over leaving. But we had to part ways. Yes, there was a better way. Yes, I completely blew everyone's mind when I left. Half my family thought I had a drug problem because they saw it as sudden. In my heart, I knew it had been coming for years. By the time I reached my breaking point, I just didn't see a way to move forward without just dropping everything and running. It was horrible.

I left on July 12, 2009 - one day before my 25th birthday. By September 1, I moved in with Z. Did I love Z? Yes. Wildly. And honestly, the sex was mind-blowing. To this day, I think that was a lot of the attraction. The problem was... Z was married. Had been married for longer than I had been alive. The separation was complete, but the divorce was just NOT moving forward. I wanted to get married, have children, build a life with him... And he stayed married. We lived like this, arguing about divorce by day and having insanely unbelievable relations by night. I lived like a gypsy, traveling with him for his job. We were in hotels more than we were in our apartment. By December, I was exhausted with it all.

Mark and I were speaking again by this point, and we started talking about reconciliation. Our divorce was final, we had both seen other people (he had seen many, I had only seen one - it was all I needed). Z moved out of our apartment, and I began seeing Mark. Until Mark decided that he really didn't want this at all.

Dating was too much work. I didn't want to try to find someone who would fill the void when I knew that Z and I worked just fine (as long as I didn't ever want to get married, etc.). So Z stayed with me during the week, or I would travel with him, and most weekends, he went back to his family farm. He never completely moved back in. I was getting tired of all of it really quick. One Monday, he promised that he would contact the lawyer within the week. The weekend came, and there had been no contact made. I confronted him about it by phone, and he agreed that he came up short. The same day we had that talk, Mark called me. There had been a couple months of radio silence to that point, but he called. He asked if I would meet him for breakfast, that he was tired of pretending he didn't miss me and he wanted to make this work. I told Z with no fanfare, and went to Mark's house. And I didn't leave.

We stayed like this until July, when Mark decided once again that dating was more fun than being in a committed relationship. Once again, I moved out. This time, it was his choice - not mine. But then guess what I did....

I tracked down Z. I found him and told him that it just didn't work out here and I needed him. So there we were again. Down the same rabbit hole. (You would think that I would learn from these mistakes, right? Wrong.)

We followed the same patterns as before. One night, as we lay in bed after more... relations, I said, "THIS is what will always bring us back together. This feeling." I knew then that we were nothing more than two people who worked really well together in ONE way, but could never last forever.

In September, I met J at a bar. My aunt and I went for karaoke, and he asked to sit at our table, since the place was packed. We obliged. My aunt went home around midnight, but J and I stayed until they tossed us out. Since I was driving, I didn't drink that night. At 3am, we both went to our own places of residence. We talked for a couple weeks, and I finally agreed to a date. It was September 23. I've barely been apart from him since.

Going from a relationship that felt like obligation, to a relationship that was toxic, to a man who is both good for me and to me... It's strange. There are times that I wonder if J realizes all that I've done. If he knows the real me. I've told him everything, but I still wonder how in the world he still loves me. My self worth has most definitely suffered.

Just before Thanksgiving, I got word that Z had a stroke. They found him at the place where we first discovered our feelings. He had 13 red roses in one hand, and an engagement ring in the other. He had gone to throw them in the lake. Though I haven't spoken with him, I know he is expected to recover - this time. I have a lot of guilt for him. I feel that his life was ducky before I came along... But he always swore he would rather have loved me and lost me than to have never known the kind of love we had. Was it real? My god it felt like it. Was it built to last? I really don't think so.

But now, here I am... Engaged to the guy from the bar, carrying his child, and finally friends with Mark. I have plenty of regrets, sure. But I finally realize just how stupid I was during that time. Imagine if all the bloggers we know would put down all their regrets on the page... Imagine just how kindred we would be then.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Monkey Update

I've been blogging almost entirely about this pregnancy and I feel guilty about that... Monkey is still awesome and brilliant and perfect in every way.

He had a pretty giant speech delay, probably thanks to his birthmom's drug use during pregnancy. Lately, his language has exploded. He is now considered low-average for speech. I just LOVE listening to him talk. I love having conversations with him.

Recently, Mark went on a 10-day cruise with his girlfriend. Our conversation that morning:

"Where Daddy go?"
"Daddy went on his big trip, remember?"
"Yeah! Daddy onna biiiiiig trip. Daddy onna boat. Daddy on da water. Daddy go Bamamas."

This conversation repeated nearly every morning.

While he was with me, a giant rainstorm came and water seeped into the basement. There is a wood burning furnace down there, so I had to go down about 3 times a day to feed the beast. Monkey usually went with me. As the water started to recede, he asked, "Mama? Where da water go?" Instead of giving him some cop-out answer, I told him the truth: "The water evaporated." The next time we went, when there was even less water, he told me, "Mama. Da water evapopated more!" He is brilliant.

He has recently put together two phrases that every 2 year old should have: "I don't like dat," and "I don't want to." They still crack me up.

Sometimes, when we ask him to stop doing something, he looks at us like a 12-year-old and says, "okaaaay."

Lately, the roads have been slick. Mark lives at the top of a very steep driveway... Today, as we were coming down, the car slipped a bit and wiggled around sideways. Monkey flipped out, yelling "No! No fall down in Mama's car!" He doesn't have a word for wrecking a car. The closest he can equate it to is falling down. Love it.

He's finally learned names. "What's my name?" I ask him. "Mama." I point to Mark, "What's his name?" "Daddy." "Good job, Monkey. What's YOUR name." "I Zayber." Totally.

Okay, I'm off to bed. J has been in Phoenix since yesterday. I just got off the phone with him... He's driving back, bringing the car that shall be mine. He decided I simply had to stop driving my beat up Escort and drive a 5600 pound hunk of steel and airbags. I'm not arguing much. But I am ready to have him home already...

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

5w4d

Just one critter in there. Gestational sac measured perfectly to the dates we had already. Thought we saw a flicker of a heartbeat, but could have just been artifacts on the ultrasound. I have another ultrasound scheduled for January 3 to look for a heartbeat. I am finally reassured.
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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ultrasound Tomorrow

So... I went to the OB yesterday. It wa mostly paperwork, but because of the spotting, they did a beta to make sure we were still pregnant... Um. At 5w2d, my beta was just over 21,000. I seem to remember some website where they would put your beta on a line graph to show you where it fell in comparison to other pregnancies. Does anyone know what that was? Betabase just shows you average numbers, but no graph.

Anyway, they scheduled me for an ultrasound for tomorrow morning just to make sure everything is ok after the spotting and see if we have more than one critter. Little stressed over numbers, but very thankful to have a strong number anyway.
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Saturday, December 11, 2010

Crisis Maybe Averted

No more bleeding. Just a tiny touch on the toilet paper after that, but no more. I go to the OB on Monday, and they said they would do an ultrasound. At 5w2d, I doubt we'll be able to see a heartbeat, but I'm hoping...
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Friday, December 10, 2010

Scared

Little bit of cramping. Some spotting on toilet paper this morning. Think happy thoughts for us please. I'm terrified. Going to keep watch on things. If there's any more blood, I'm going to the ER immediately.
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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Another Day

It's amazing. I'm so reassured by the changes in my body. More heartburn? Sweet. Still pregnant. Boobs still hurt? Still pregnant.

Today, I took J's hands and put them on my breasts. "They feel different from the inside. Do they feel different from the outside?" He couldn't stifle the laughter. They are most definitely expanding. He couldn't have known this sooner due to the fact that he was banned from touching them a few days ago...

My belly feels different. Obviously nothing really outward. It feels a little harder, I guess. From the inside, it kind of feels like muscle fatigue. I guess things are moving around to make room for other, more important things.

Speaking of symptoms, I must go to bed now. It's waaaay past my new bedtime of 6pm.
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Monday, December 6, 2010

Interesting.

My skin is splotchy as hell. My lips are so set they're cracking. I'm pretty sure the phoenix is going to rise from my throat soon... and I just couldn't be happier. I'm so glad I understand what a blessing this pregnancy is. Just so damn grateful...
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Symptoms... Schmymptoms...

This is my blog. The only readers will likely be my long-standing community of Infertiles or my family. I'm going to be very blunt. My boobs hurt. They hurt like they've never hurt before. They feel like someone slammed them each in car doors. I would like that part to not happen anymore please.

Aside from that, I kind of feel like I might hurl every morning, but so far, I remain barf-free. I still have killer heartburn at night. My doc said to have a couple of Tums, but if that doesn't put the fire out, they'll give me a prescription for something daily. My hands and feet are kind of puffy at the end of the night. Not enough to be worrisome, just noticeable.

The mind-numbing sleepiness seems to come and go. If I lay down, I go to sleep. If I'm up moving around, I can normally function pretty well.

I'm still WAY moody. It's like nothing makes me happy and every pet peeve I used to have is no multiplied by roughly 742. This is not fun. I have to watch myself closely to ensure that I don't get too awful pissy.

I'm already being treated like a sick person... I was supposed to take Mom to the doctor on Tuesday for a follow-up. Since winter decided to show up and the roads will likely be somewhat nasty, she has recruited my brother instead. I'm no longer allowed to drive her. Bummer. I guess I'll just have to wait for her to call and let me know what happened.

Now, I must go wait for Mark to get home so I can return Monkey to him. He's been out of the country on a cruise with his girlfriend since the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I'm glad to be able to rest a bit more, but very sad that I won't be with Monk all day every day anymore for a while.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Pictures

The new fiance, J, and I this summer. I'm happier than I've been in ages. Moving on and simply being co-parents and friends was the best decision Mark and I could have made. Now, I have someone with whom I agree on most everything. But even when we don't agree, we're good together. We just talk about it and move on. As an added bonus, Xavier is NUTS about him.


While we may not have been actively TTC, we were thrilled when we found out Thursday night that there is a wee one on the way. We were both on FertilAid vitamins, but I wasn't temping or timing anything. Just going with the flow. We are infinitely lucky, and blessed, and happy. I know this. I've been on the other side of that fence and it isn't a happy place.



This one was taken Thursday night, CD 27, 11DPO. I wasn't late yet, just had a feeling. Took the test at night, not terribly concentrated urine, and there it was, clear as a bell. It may not be dark, but it's very much a line.

That one was from the following morning, the day of my missed period. Significantly darker. I went to the doctor to confirm. They did an instant urine test, and a beta. Won't have beta results until Monday (yes, I have the worst family doc in the world, thanks for asking).

Going from LMP, my EDD is August 13 - one month exactly after my birthday, and 11 days after J's birthday. It will certainly be an exciting summer....

Immediately after showing him Thursday night's test, he ran to the truck and brought back a box. "You need this!"

He was totally right! Who DOESN'T need a ring like that? Come on!

One more picture just because I love it so much. Hehe...

Okay, this post is disjointed and not very pretty, but I guess I just felt the need to unload a little bit. I miss my blog. I miss my friends. I have friends IRL, but it's just not the same. I need to share this with the people who stood beside me through everything else.

The pregnancy doesn't feel even a little bit real. I'm thirsty every second of every day, and I'm a little nauseous sometimes. I get heartburn like nobody's business when I lay down. I'm bloated and kind of puffy by the end of the night. My first OB appointment isn't until January, which annoys me, but whatever. I'll live. I just want to keep thinking happy thoughts and make it past week 12.

So there's the braindump for right now. Hopefully I'll post more regularly and it'll make more sense. (Baby brain is a very real problem!) Thanks for following me over.

Catch Up...

I don't know how many of my friends will follow me here. I haven't been active in the blog world for a long time, so I'm sure I've lost several. And, most of my friends were from the ALI spectrum, and I don't even know how many will WANT to follow me at this juncture....

At some point very soon, I need to do a post to catch everyone up on what's going on. The short version is this: Mark and I are no longer together at all. We are co-parenting Monkey as well as we can. Monkey is the only child we have now. Mark and I are both dating other people. I am newly engaged. I just found out, on Thursday, that I'm pregnant. I'm 4 weeks today...

Care to come down the rabbit hole with me?