Friday, September 25, 2015

Infertile Mommy Blogger

Look at me posting 2 days in a row!  Oh, and 3 times in ONE WEEK!  I can't even remotely remember the last time that has happened.  Go me!

I just finished reading Jane's post Not Just Another Mommy Blogger, and I couldn't have said it better myself.  No really, I couldn't.  I've tried.  Jane has eloquently addressed how so many in the infertile blogging world stop posting after finally attaining motherhood, out of fear of becoming "just another mommy blogger."

We have such a strong community of support within our blogging community during our infertility journey.  I definitely understand bloggers dropping off once their little one(s) arrive, because it does become more challenging to find time to write.  Many have even said they don't have much to say because their inspiration before babies came from the dark trenches of infertility.  Based on the response from my I'm Drowing post, it would seem that many of us have dark days in parenting as well.  So many of you commented that you had been feeling the same way as I was, drowning in the loneliness that mommyhood can bring. I know there are also days that I struggle not to strangle to keep may cool, when my Littles have a bad day.  We NEED continued support through this parenting gig just as much as we did through our journey to get our take home babies.

So, as Jane pleaded with her readers, please don't stop writing out of fear of being labeled as "just another mommy blogger."  Not only do I look to you all to commiserate in parenting and learn from those that have gone down the toddlerhood road before me, I am also vested in following your everyday life as well.  I love hearing reading about your vacations, your jobs, remodels, or whatever else you choose to write about.  If you stop writing simply because you can't find the time anymore, or simply lose interest, I get that.  But please, I beg of you, if the only thing keeping you from writing is because you "don't know where your blog is going," just write as you always have.  Just keep being my friend.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

21 Months

Yesterday Rylee and Ayden turned 21 months old and they now are only 3 months away from their second birthday!  Doh!  It's already so hard to think back and believe they were such tiny little babies in the NICU.  Whenever I see a newborn now that is about 7 or 8 pounds, I am shocked at how little they seem and to know that Ayden and Rylee were actually quite a bit smaller!  How is it that I already can't remember that?  It seems like forever ago, but yet it was only 21 months ago.

It's also crazy to watch them play outside now, and to think back to when we first moved into this house back in April and how they struggled to stay upright when walking in the grass, or how they would fall over the slightest bit of decline in the driveway.  They change so much in such a short time period!

Here's a few pics from being outside yesterday morning.  We have a gopher that has completely destroyed the yard.

At least the gopher mounds are good for something!

I have no idea what the stats are for either of them.  We don't have a scale at home (with a battery) and they haven't been to the doctor since their 18 month check up, so they haven't been weighed or measured.  I do know that Rylee is in size 4 diapers and Ayden is in size 5. Rylee is wearing 18 month clothing, but beginning to move into 18-24 month outfits.  Ayden is wearing 18 month pants, but seems to have a really long torso so is moving into size 2T shirts.  All of his 18-24 month t-shirts fit, other than they keep creeping up so he's starting to show off his belly!

Both of them are starting to say more and more words.  Rylee's favorite words are no, gobble-gobble, baby, and uh-oh.  She answers "no" to everything!  Ask her if she wants milk and she answers no.  Do you want to go outside?  No.  Do you want to go play?  No.  Silly girl. We know very well that she means a resounding yes to those things!  She does know how to use the word no in the right context too, though.  If her brother takes something from her, she emphatically yells nooooo!

We still have those wild turkeys that roam around town.  Whenever Rylee sees them, she starts saying gobble-gobble.  If she is being a little stinker throwing her food on the floor during meals (which is every meal!  Gahhh!) and I call her a turkey, she replies with gobble-gobble.  Now I call her a turkey just so she'll say it and make me laugh with her cuteness so I don't get so irate about the food throwing, which is really getting old.

As of just a few days ago, Rylee started saying uh-oh.  I dropped a fork on the floor during dinner the other day and said it, and she started saying it over and over.  Now she says it whenever anything gets dropped and it is the cutest thing ever!  

Rylee also says, nigh-nigh (night-night), heyo (hello), hi, and bye.

Ayden is still delayed in his language skills, but he does say baby, nigh-nigh, hi, and bye-bye.  He also says "gah" for both car and dog.  He actually loves to have conversations with people and talks up a storm.  He has a lot to say, if only we knew what it was he was trying to tell us.

Ayden continues to show us new things that we have to baby proof around the house.  He is constantly getting into everything.  His latest thing is to take the bottom door hinge out of our front door.  Now, how the heck are we supposed to baby proof that????  Ayden has also learned how to open the doors to our entertainment center.  As soon as we leave the room, that's where he goes.  He likes to look through the dvd's and better yet, he likes to mess with the cable box.  Sigh....  I know these will be wonderful qualities when he gets older, but in a toddler, they are exhausting!

Being outside is probably Ayden and Rylee's absolute favorite thing to do.  It will be sad to see the cold, rainy Oregon weather that is coming.  We do now have rain boots and rain jackets though, so I am hoping we can still go outside some.  Who doesn't love splashing through mud puddles?

Summer Fun

Rylee discovered the thrill of drenching her brother

Oregon Coast

At Heceta Head on the Oregon Coast

Ayden has really gotten into playing with trucks and cars in the last month or so.  He sometimes sits and inspects the wheels, as if he's trying to figure out how they work.  Both Ayden and Rylee really like the baby doll they have.  We actually have two, but one had to be put up because it has hair, which Ayden still likes to try to eat.  Rylee likes to wrap the baby up in her blanket.  They also enjoy playing with their Mega Bloks.  Their favorite books are Little Blue Truck, Bubbles Bubbles, Five Little Monkeys, and a big animal picture book.

Their favorite shows/movies to watch on Netflix are Mickey Mouse's Three Muskateers, Curious George, Number Land (by Leap Frog), and Kipper.  I try not to let them watch too much tv, but we do watch it first thing in the morning while they enjoy their morning milk sippy.  Other than that, sometimes throughout the day it just becomes necessary!  Shoot me for saying it, but if Ayden wakes up early from nap, turning on the tv is the ONLY way I can keep him from running in to wake up Rylee.  If I try to distract him with something else, he just cries and screams so he ends up waking her up anyway.  Sooooo, we turn on a tv show instead.  It's also become the only way I can get dinner cooked some nights without having them whine and cry at my feet.  Their latest thing is to yank on my shorts/pants while I'm cooking, effectively pulling them down.  In order for me to keep my pants on while attempting to make dinner, I sometimes choose to turn the tv on so that I can keep my sanity.

This kept them occupied instead of the tv one night while I made dinner.
It only worked once though!

While many aspects of toddlerhood are driving me crazy, I wouldn't trade it for the world.  They make us giggle with delight at the new things they learn and they melt our hearts with the warm snuggles and kisses that they freely share.

He found Daddy's letterman jacket from high school.

She had to try it on too!

So much cuteness!

She melts me.

Mr. Personality

She makes the greatest sad/mad faces!  Don't worry though, she quickly got over it when I helped get her boot unstuck from the bucket!

He found an ink pen....

Twin Love!

Helping Mommy with the grocery shopping.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Microblog Monday: Consignment Sale

This week is our local consignment sale.  It's something that I got involved with when we first moved here.  I figured it gives me a great opportunity to get rid of a lot of things that Ayden and Rylee have outgrown, and I make money to buy them new (to us) things.  Not only did I participate as a consigner, but I also volunteered for the sale.  I thought it might be a great way to get involved and potentially meet other moms.  As it turned out, I didn't really meet and connect with anyone this way, but I still really enjoyed the sale and basically got all of Ayden and Rylee's summer wardrobe needs taken care of.

The past two weeks have been incredibly busy going through all of their outgrown clothes, doing inventory, hanging, and tagging everything.  I'm also getting rid of a ton of blankets and toys, in addition to a few other things.

The pre-sale starts Wednesday, and I can't wait!  I'm so excited to go shopping, but I'm also a really big nerd that loves to get the daily updates showing all the items of mine that have sold!  My goal is to make $300 with this sale, which is about double what I made on the last one.

To read other #MicroblogMonday posts, click here.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Microblog Monday: 18 Years

Yesterday marked 18 years that Tony and I have been married.  We have known each other for 23 years, more than half our lives!  We didn't do anything special yesterday other than spending time with each other and our kids.  So, it was the perfect day!

Tony's mom will be making a trip here on Wednesday to watch the kids so we can go out for a few hours.  We'll probably only go to dinner somewhere, but even something simple will be nice because we get the opportunity so rarely.  Next month, we are actually planning our first overnight away together!  His parents are going to come spend the night here with the kiddos, and we are going to head to Portland for our official anniversary celebration.  We are thinking about going to a comedy club, something we've never done before.  What I am MOST excited about is sleeping in the next morning!!!!  Yay!  I've been up since 3:30am today.  Ayden didn't sleep last night from 3:30-5:30, and Miss Rylee chose today to wake up earlier than normal at 5:45.  Yay!  Not really yay.

18 years ago, when we were still babies

If you'd like to learn more about #MicroblogMondays, or read more posts from other people, click here.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Feeling Humbled

I have to say that I am very humbled by the response I received from my last post.  The support you have all given me was amazing and much needed.  Thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottom of my heart.  I honestly had no idea some of you were still actually reading my blog.  It was a great reminder to me of how important it can be to comment when reading other people's blogs, just to let them know you are still there.  I haven't had a chance to go back and reply to everyone, but please know that your kind words meant so much to me and was exactly the pick up I needed to pull myself out of the dark hole I was burying myself in.

Many of you offered suggestions on ways to meet people and overcome my loneliness.  I'm not afraid of trying new things or joining new groups, even though quite often I feel awkward and out of place.  It's funny, because I can be very outgoing in certain situations, but in a lot of social settings I feel flat out shy and find it hard to connect.  That doesn't stop me from trying new things out though.  It just might keep me from going back if it doesn't feel like the right fit.

Here's some things I've already done since moving to our new town:

  • joined the local Mommy Connection Facebook site
  • met another set of twins close to Ayden and Rylee's age that we do play dates with several times/week
  • went to story time at the library until it ended for the summer
  • participated in the big local consignment sale as a consignor and a volunteer worker.
  • attended two different churches in an attempt to find a church home
  • joined a mommy walking group (had to stop because it was right when Ayden and Rylee converted to one nap and it fell right in the middle of nap time)
  • take Ayden and Rylee to the park most days of the week, and we walk almost every where here in town
  • we have met most of our neighbors.  There is a family a few doors down with two kids that we talk to every once in awhile.  There is a slight language barrier because they have a very strong middle eastern accent.  The grandfather doesn't speak English at all, but he is very friendly and I enjoy being around him outside with the kids.
  • we continue to plan play dates with friends back home, and stop by my sister's so Ayden and Rylee can play with their cousins.  This happens maybe once or twice a month, but it takes a toll because it means a minimum of two hours (sometimes three) spent in the car on those days and Ayden and Rylee only get broken up car naps.
And this is what I plan to do in my attempt to meet new people and make new friends:
  • join the local organized playgroup that started this week now that school is back in session.  We attended our first playgroup yesterday and it is something that we hope to continue.
  • Story time at the library starts up again this Friday.
  • we would still like to find a church home, but we have been busy and away from home so many weekends this summer that it has been difficult.  We still have a few weekend trips away coming up, so it won't happen any time soon.  Plus, it's been hard to get motivated to find a new church when we hope to buy a new house and move from here around April and we'll have to start the process all over again.
I'd love to get involved with other groups, or sign Ayden and Rylee up for some classes, but we live in a small town about a half hour out of Eugene where there are so many other options available.  That wouldn't be a big deal, except what that means is that Ayden and Rylee usually fall asleep in the car on the way home and then I'm lucky if they take an actual real nap.  They NEED to take longer than a 15-20 minute car nap.  Let's be honest, I need them to take more than just a short car nap!

I know that as Ayden and Rylee get older and are more involved in things like sports and school, we will meet more people and make new friends.  It will just take time.  It's hard not to miss my old life sometimes.  Honestly, it's not the "life" I miss, but my friends.  I miss having my friends to talk to and do things with on a daily/weekly basis.  I love my new life and I love my babies, but it is hard feeling like my friends have gone on and left me behind. In addition, some days as a SAHM, it simply gets overwhelming dealing with toddler crankiness and tantrums.

Again, thank you for "listening" and supporting.  Thank you for continuing to read my blog and follow our story through the struggles and the triumphs.  I appreciate you more than words can say.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

I'm Drowning

Here's the awful truth: I am really struggling.  I feel like I've been drowning in my loneliness.
As infertiles, we are made to feel like we can't complain about the woes of parenthood.  We are supposed to love every single second of pregnancy, and then every moment of being a mommy.  People get really mad if you voice anything negative, especially in the infertile social media world.  You get accused of forgetting what it's like to be infertile, of forgetting everything that we had to go through to get to this point, and for not appreciating the precious little babies that we have.

I love my babies.  I love Ayden and Rylee with my whole being.  I'm sitting here crying as I write that because I feel like such an awful person that they are not enough, that it's not enough to just be their mommy.  Does that make me a failure?  Does that mean I don't deserve them?  Some people would say yes.

The truth is that I won't ever forget all those years of struggling to start our family.  I won't ever forget all those shots that I had to give myself.  I won't ever forget going through two miscarriages.  I won't forget that my sister gave us the most precious gift of herself in order for Ayden and Rylee to come into this world.

However, that doesn't stop me from feeling the way I do now.  I don't know who I am anymore.  All my girlfriends that I confided in and had heart to hearts with aren't around anymore.  I feel left behind.  They have continued on with their lives while mine has made a drastic turn.  Of course it's a turn in a good direction.  I just never imagined it meaning I would lose who I was.  I no longer have softball in my life.  I'm not working, so I don't get that interaction with adults.  Before we moved, we had several weekly visitors coming over to see the babies.  Now we get visitors maybe once every month and a half.  If I want to see anyone, I am typically driving at least an hour (one way) to do so.

I am very thankful that I have the opportunity to stay home with Ayden and Rylee, but I never knew how hard that would be.  Even at night, I am the one that is responsible for getting up with Ayden and Rylee if it's needed.  I don't get time off.  The only free time I ever get is when I go grocery shopping on the weekends.  Tony always tells me to "have fun," but really, how fun is grocery shopping?  There's been a few times that Tony has told me to take a day for myself to go see a movie or something.  I've appreciated those days, but it makes me feel even more lonely when I have nobody to ask to go see a movie with.  I see other moms post on Facebook about their girls night out and I am envious.  I envy their friendships.

Since Ayden and Rylee have been born, Tony has had two trips to Seattle with friends.  This last Sunday he was with friends doing a fantasy football draft, and he has another football draft this coming weekend.  His group of friends make it a really big all day thing, getting together to golf, bbq, and do their draft.  I am jealous that he has such close friends to do these things with.  It makes me feel like such a loser that I don't.

I know I can always ask my sister if she wants to do something, but she is rarely able to.  She has four kids.  I get that.  She also runs her own daycare.  I'd love to be able to talk to her more, but that's typically not an option either because she's so busy between her family and her daycare kids.

When I wrote my last post about finally making a little bit of time for myself to go for walks twice a week, within 20 minutes of me posting it, I lost two followers.  I'm not going to lie, it hurt my feelings.  I know blog followers come and go, but it was depressing that immediately following my post, two people decided I wasn't worthy enough.  In the midst of everything I've been feeling lately, it sent me into a short tailspin.  I have to say thank you for those of you that wrote such nice, supportive comments, because it really helped me let it go.  I have made so many "friends" since starting this blog.  I can't tell you how much that has meant to me.

I am usually a cup half full type of person.  I really hate dwelling in negative.  Writing all this makes me feel like a complete whiner, and I apologize.  I just really needed an outlet for all this pent up loneliness I've been feeling lately.