Tag Archives | Milestones


If you know me, then you know I do my research.  So, there were no surprises about the pre-op, procedure itself, or the recovery, except one.  After they showed me to my little pre-op room and changed the nurse gave me some paperwork to fill out that came as quite a shock.  One form asked me what I would like the hospital to do with the remains–funeral home, testing, or to discard.  That alone made my lip quiver and my hands get shaky.  The next paper was a form that the state makes you fill out that looks just like a birth certificate, but instead is a still birth/infant loss certificate.  It brought back so many happy, joyful memories of filling out a similar form last year when MM was just a day old.  That’s what made me almost lose it–that right there made me come face-to-face to the truth I’ve been trying to deny–there will be no baby in September.  It is gone.  But somehow I held it together and so far today, haven’t cried.  Honestly, I’m afraid if I start then I won’t be able to stop.

Everything with the procedure went normally and I was home recuperating at my parents’ house within two hours afterwards. I’ve slept a lot today as the anesthesia wore off and I’m not terribly sore.  Just very crampy.  It appears the physical healing is going to come much quicker than the emotionally healing will.

On a happier note: MM has become obsessed with Barney.  Last night I got her a Barney doll since I wasn’t going to get to see her much today and every time she sees it she hugs him, pats him on the back, and gives him a big open-mouth kiss.  All you have to do is say, ‘Barney’s coming on!’, and she sits in her little rocking chair waiting.  As soon as she sees him she starts “dancing” and moving her arms around.  Of all the cartoons/kid shows out there, I NEVER would have thought that Barney would be her favorite.  


Hope Floats

I am pregnant.

I am seven weeks today.

We found out on New Year’s Eve.  We celebrated the new year planning and dreaming for our new family of four.

But because of the person I am, I worried.  I realized I worried because I felt funny.  I started taking my blood sugar and I realized my Gestational Diabetes was back.  I went to the doctor at five weeks.  My blood sugar numbers were crazy like I was pregnant with twins, I was told.  We did an ultrasound and saw a black dot, which is perfectly normal for five weeks.  We found two corpus luteum cysts–like you would have with twins, I was told.  Maybe the other twin was hiding.  We’d look for it again next week.

Twins?  Could it be?  How wonderful!  What a blessing!  Our little family would be complete.  How perfect would it be to have a boy and girl?

I went back at six weeks to see if we could find both babies and to see the heartbeats.  What we saw was a black dot.  The same as the week before, but bigger.  Nothing inside but blackness.


‘Perhaps your dates are wrong,’ I’m asked.

But I know they’re not.  When you have fertility “issues”you know your days.  We’ve been trying for seven months.  Seven long months.  And three cycles of Clomid.  And taking my temperature and charting and using ovulation predictor kits.  Baby-making in an infertile couple is time, monitored, and the most unspontaneous thing ever.  I know because it took thirteen months to have MM.  My dates are perfect–there is no way I could be measuring behind.  She tells me I’m measuring five weeks, one day.  There is only a gestational sac.  No yolk sac.  No fetal pole.  No heartbeat.  There should be a heartbeat at six weeks, but there’s not.


‘Oh. Oh.  Oh,’ I think back in the waiting room.  I know what’s going on, but refuse to let myself think it.

Oh. Oh. Oh.

I sit on the examination table waiting for my doctor who is, thankfully, also my friend.

She comes in.  We chat.  She makes sure I’m certain on my dates.  She doesn’t say the words–the words I’m hiding in my heart.  The ones I’m daring myself not to say.

Blighted ovum.

She says we’ll do some blood tests today and in forty-eight hours.  The same HcG tests we did with MM whose numbers doubled so perfectly.  She said she would call me personally on Monday and let me know herself.  She then uses the word–miscarriage–and everything kind of goes still.  She says we can try again–that she’ll help us to get pregnant again.  But everything might be okay too.  We’ll find out on Monday.

I sit there numb.


I don’t say much on the way home.  Then I cry.  The animal-like cries of someone who’s heart feels like it may quit beating.  I’m angry.  I’m sad.  I’m confused.  I ask C. what did I do to deserve this.  He tells me I’m crazy to think that, but it’s hard not to.  I have just one partial ovary left.  I’ve had cancer.  Cysts.  Surgeries upon surgeries.  A year to get pregnant with MM.  And then such a horribly complicated pregnancy that it almost killed me.  More cysts.  Fertility drugs.  Now this.

Why?  What did I do to cause this?  Why can’t it be easy for me to be a mother?  I go through the rest of the week in a daze.  There are moments when I accept the fact that I am pregnant, but that there’s no baby.  Other times I have faith that there is a baby hiding in there or perhaps the black hole we saw will just start growing like it should.



If I didn’t have my sweet MM during all this I don’t know what I would have done–I can assure you I wouldn’t have handled it so peacefully.  All I had to do was look at her face and it confirmed what I already knew–that even if I only have this one precious child then she is more than enough.  But it doesn’t stop the yearning for another or the feeling that our family isn’t complete.

Thankfully, no one said the horrible, ‘Well, you can have another one.’  This week God was looking out for me there because I probably would have hit them.  Those are words no one going through this should ever hear.  We’re not talking about a cake that didn’t turn out, shoes that don’t fit, a bad day–we’re talking about a child.

I went back for my second blood draw on Thursday.  I peek at my chart and saw my number from two days ago was 1428.  Low, yes, but still within the normal range.  At 1428 you would only see a gestational sac (you don’t see a heartbeat until 20,000).  I start to feel hope.  I try not to, I really, really do.  I’m trying to stay numb for the news on Monday, but I can’t help feeling hope.  I pray over and over, ‘Please God, let that number double like it’s supposed to’. 

Over the next four days I think about that number–1428–every single minute.  I haven’t had many symptoms so far, but when I wake up in the middle of the night nauseous, I smile.  Maybe it will all be okay.  Then my mind says, ‘Don’t get your hopes up, Natalie.  Maybe not’.

But my mind can’t keep my heart from hoping.

Then Monday comes.  I wake up knowing that I will remember this day for the rest of my life.  It could be a day of happy tears and disbelief.  Or…

Monday crept by.  I had my phone in my pocket, but it didn’t ring.  Finally, at 1:15 she calls.  I know instantly it’s not good.  My numbers went down from 1428 to 1200.  We discuss my options.  I decide to have a D&C on Wednesday since I have no signs of miscarrying on my own.

So, there it is: I’m pregnant, but with no baby.  And I won’t be in 48 hours.

I’m really trying to feel numb about it all, but it’s hard.  My emotions–the overwhelming sadness, pain, hurt, and fear that it might happen again–well, it’s hard to supress those.

Please say a prayer for me this week.  I’m really going to need it.


Bye-Bye Bottle, Hello Sippy Cup!

On Monday we took MM for her 12-month check-up.  She weighed a whopping 22 pounds, 3.5 ounces which puts her in the 50th percentile, haha.  But length?  Yep, still a giant.  31.75″ which is the 98th percentile for girls her age.  The doctor called her “long and lean” which I find *hilarious* since neither of those words have ever been used to describe moi!

The doc told us to lose the bottle, but told we could–joyfully!–keep the paci ’til 18 months.

So, Monday was the last day for the bottle.  She was crying around nap time and we thought she wanted the bottle, turns out she just wanted a snack, so there was officially no problem taking away the bottle.  Hallelujah!  That was much easier than I thought it would be.

Ahhhh…a lot of stressing over nothing.


My baby and her first pig tails.


Pictures Will Have To Do

I wanted to post pictures and things from Mary Margaret’s first birthday party yesterday, but I am under the weather today.  Well, more than under the weather…more like ‘Will I live?’ kind of under the weather.  So, pictures will just have to suffice.  Click here to see them.


My baby was so precious yesterday.  Studying all her presents in great detail, showing off her “walking” skills, going to anyone who wanted to hold her, and watching people instead of eating her cake.  It was perfect and although she won’t remember, I hope my pictures capture it enough so she can look through them one day and know what her party was like.


My M&M

Where do I even start?

To say that I became a different person–a new person–a year ago today is an understatement.  The moment you came into this world my life and its purpose changed forever.  I strive daily to be the best person I can be–to show you an example of a Godly woman should be (and to say it’s a struggle puts it lightly).  I strive to give you the best life possible.

You, my darling daughter, are perfect in every way to me.  When you were still in my tummy you let me in on your personality.  You very rarely kicked–you were such a mellow, happy little thing.  The only time I would feel you at all was when you had the hiccups (which I get a lot too!).  And then once you were born you instantly started sleeping six hours or longer at a time and were such a happy baby to be around when you were awake.  I remember our first appointment with the pediatrician when you were six days old.  The doctor commented on how aware you were and how you constantly were watching what was going on around you.

And that is you to a T.  Just today I looked over at you and you were just watching me…studying me.  When our eyes met you smiled that big, beautiful, squishy-eyed smile I love and then tried to feed me a Goldfish cracker.  You love to figure out how things work.  You played with the kitchen cabinets and drawers for an hour one day trying to figure out what they were all about and now your favorite thing to do is open and close them.  You love organizing.  The night before last you put all your bath toys–all one hundred of them–in their baskets.  I had to show your Mimi and Pops so they would believe me.

And my, you are always on a move.  Since I’m an only child and have never been around little kids, I didn’t really realize it.  But everyone I talk to–your grandparents, the lady in the nursery at church, other moms who meet you–all agree that you are always into something.  Always exploring.  Always trying to figure something out.

I don’t want to wish my life away, but I can’t wait to see what you become one day.  And I want you to know that whatever you choose to do with your life, I will support 100%.  My only wish for you is that you’ll be happy.  Follow your dreams and know that I (and your daddy) are always here for you.  Always.

You are my life and my heartbeat.


Four More Days…

Only four more days and MM’s babyhood will be over.  I cannot believe she will officially be a toddler.  Woah. 

I’m taking Friday off to spend with MM on her birthday doing whatever she wants.  Sleeping in late.  Sliding down her slide over and over.  Playing with her kitchen and “eating” the plastic roast beef.  Going to the local indoor pool.  It’s going to be a really fun day.

Then on Saturday is her party.  I couldn’t narrow it down to one theme (shocker, I know) so she has *three* themes: pink, parfaits, and pinwheels.  Here is her invitation.


I got her a hot pink dress with detachable pinwheels.  We’re having a make-your-own ice cream and parfait bar (since she loves-loves-loves yogurt).  Party favors are pinwheels and oranges (her most favorite food).  Everything from the cake (which I’m making), to the party hats, to the decorations, to the party goers will be decked out in shades of pink.

We’re keeping the invitees to just close family.  I want this to be as laid-back as possible and “easy” for her.  But don’t worry, I’m already planning her Cowgirl-Petting Zoo second birthday party for next year at the farm which I’m sure will be crazy!


One Year Closer to 30

I turned 29 today.  Just one more year and I’ll be 30.

This age feels so strange to me.  One moment I think I could actually go back to living in the sorority house and going out on Thursday nights with my friends.  The next moment I think about the future and MM growing up and us eventually having grandchildren.  I’m both a kid and an adult.

This birthday was the same as many–spent on the farm with my family.  C. took me to a steakhouse in our little downtown (we walked there) on Friday night.  Yesterday my grandmother took me to eat Chinese.  C. got me a Rosanne Cash CD I’d be wanting and a card.  I was excited with that.  Then I read the back of the card and saw he had gotten us two fourth row tickets to see the Temptations in January.  I was THRILLED!  I love the Temptations.  My parents got me the schoolhouse light for our porch that I told y’all about a couple of weeks ago and I can’t wait to have it installed.  My grandmother gave me some “fun money”.  I got a cookie cake with so much icing I about cried with happiness.

All in all, a really good birthday and I feel so happy that on this 29th birthday I am surrounded by love.  I am so thankful that 29 years ago today my birth mother decided to give me to my parents.  I am truly blessed to have the family I do.


MM’s First Tree


When I was little my grandfather would go out and find me a scraggly little pine every Christmas.  I would decorate it with lights and strands of popcorn and put it in my bedroom in front of the window.  Every night I would fall asleep watching that little tree.  It was so magical.

And even though MM won’t remember this holiday season, I wanted to start the tradition with her also.  So, Sunday night at dusk she, C., and I headed out to the field at my parents’ tree farm and found her the perfect little tree.  It was so small my parents hadn’t even priced yet, but it was just perfect for her.

Tonight she and I decorated (okay, okay, she chewed on her teething rings and watched) it with blue and silver ornaments to match her room.  I put the lights on a timer so that, like me, she could fall asleep watching them sparkle.


And for the rest of our tree hunting experience, click here.

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I am thankful that my mother is alive after this:


Had she been in her SUV which is 2.5′ taller than the Miata she would have had a huge limb go straight through her windshield.  I shutter just thinking about it.


Prayers Needed

My mom was in a car accident this morning.  She was driving back from the bank and a truck came into her lane.  She swerved to miss it and ran off the road and hit a tree head-on.  She was incoherent and repeating herself–a sign of a concussion.  She was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Atlanta because our local hospital didn’t have room for head trauma cases.

Turns out her left knee is broken so they did surgery this afternoon.  The knee cap was 40% shattered and so to keep it they had to tie some of her ligaments around the remaining knee cap.  She’s in a lot of pain and won’t be able to move it for three weeks.  She’ll probably be in the hospital until Wednesday.

Please say a prayer for her.  This is a very busy time of year for my family because of our Christmas tree farm and she’s very upset about how we’ll make do without her and over who will take care of MM over the next few weeks.  I’m just so glad she came out of this with “just” a broken knee and concussion…I honestly can’t think about what else could have happened to her.  I can’t imagine my world without my mom in it.


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