Life change · Mom's Corner

I will ALWAYS wonder who you would have been

1 in 4 women suffer a pregnancy loss and I am the 1 in those 4.

Earlier this year I found out I was supposed to be a mom to another baby due on, or around, November 4th.

That baby didn’t make it to today, nor did it make it very far into the pregnancy to begin with. I never would have realized how that would make me feel until it happened to me. I have had two very healthy and successful pregnancies prior to that and it didn’t even think to wait until after the first trimester was over to announce it to family because the thought of losing this baby didn’t even cross my mind.

Until I went into my first appt and my doctor told me we should be able to see SOMETHING on the portable ultrasound monitor even after I mentioned slight bleeding. She then moved my ultrasound appt up to the very next day–to my surprise–to confirm what she didn’t see on the monitor.

So the next day I went downstairs to radiology and she tried seeing the baby from the outside… she then directed me to empty my bladder and she’d be right back. (And if you haven’t experienced this yourself, you’ve probably seen in movies that this isn’t a good sign). I went to the bathroom, peed, and heard a very audible sound hit the water in the toilet. I knew I didn’t have to do my duty… so I knew exactly what just happened.

I washed my hands, stood over the toilet, covered my face and I uncontrollably sobbed for a few minutes as I took in the realization that I won’t be meeting this baby in November. The ultrasound tech knocked on the door and asked if everything was okay and I told her I’d be out in a minute. As weird/gross as it sounds, I didn’t want to flush…

Did that mean I was flushing the baby down the toilet? Was the baby even in that mess? Maybe this is just something out of the norm happening and the baby is really okay! So I reluctantly flushed and walked into the room.

She could tell I was just bawling–there was no hiding it. So she proceeded with the endovaginal ultrasound and confirmed there was no longer a baby to be seen. I told her what just happened in the bathroom only minutes before and she apologized for my loss.

On my drive home and to my third day of work to a new job, I called my husband and I let it all out. I had a mini panic attack at the idea I probably just flushed our baby down the toilet like it was bodily waste. I also felt immense guilt. Was it something I did? Did I eat something I shouldn’t have? Was it the copious amounts of coffee I drank? Was it me stressing over maintaining a perfect figure? What on earth did I do wrong that took my body’s capabilities and turned them against me? I would have loved that baby more than my own life.

I think after having two kids already, my emotions were skyrocketed due to thinking if I had miscarried during either of my previous pregnancies I never would have been able to enjoy my girls like I do. What could this baby have been like? Would the baby have been the boy I was hoping for next? Or another girl we could have used our other girl name we chose for? Would this baby have finally looked like me?

So… Chances are very high that you know someone who has suffered a pregnancy loss that you know nothing about, because they either never made it far enough into the pregnancy to be comfortable to announce it or because almost as quickly as they found out the exciting news it was taken away just as such. It’s something that weighs heavily on many parents’ hearts. I know October was pregnancy and infant loss awareness month… but I wanted to wait and see how I’d feel about writing about this until the date came around when I should have been a mother to three beautiful babies. So here I am.

One day I will meet my baby beyond the pearly gates… until then I will remain eternally grateful for the two amazingly beautiful girls I have been blessed with.

Here’s to all the babies we never got to meet, or got to meet but will not get to watch grow up. Some babies were only made for heaven.

And to all the parents who have suffered the same… My heart goes out to you.

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Life change

Making lemonade: A recipe for life. 4 steps on how to take the NEXT step!

I’m making lemonade.

Because you know why? My good friend Life has thrown some lemons my way… aaand I’m feeling cliché, so there’s that.

No. This isn’t an actual lemonade recipe. Rather a recipe for how to find the good in the bad.

I know I’m not the only one out there who feels this way. Some unexpected hurdles have been placed in my way but since I decided on making lemonade versus throwing them back at Life and asking for chocolate instead, I will be making the best of it. Here goes. Hope this helps someone.

Planning what to do next

Hurdles are inserted in life as a means to make your path from point A to point B a little more difficult. When you approach one, immediately your brain processes how to get past it. There are a few options: over, under, or around. And there isn’t a right or wrong way. Just get past the darn thing and move along! This part was easy for me. I already had all these ideas “made up” in my head that only other people do and I’ll never get to but really wanted to! So you know what?

I’m doing it. With help, that is!

Whatever it is you think you cant do. I assure you, you can. Which leads me to this…

Find what motivates you

Whether it’s a person or people, a movie, a quote! For me, it’s the means to still be able to provide for my family in a way that I am happy about doing. My husband has assured me I can do this with obvious adjustments in our spending habits.

I also picked up the book “Girl, Wash Your Face” by Rachel Hollis. I’ve heard amazing things about it. The tag line flat out says

Stop believing the lies about who you are so you can become who you were meant to be

It’s like it was written just for me!

Be realistic!

I know I basically just said shoot for the stars…

but I didn’t say you’ll land on the moon. Not right away at least. (And if you do! Good for you! But if you’re like me– I have terrible aim, and my depth perception is whack so I’ll probably shoot for the stars, and maybe clip a cloud and then come back down from my high and try again soon.)

In fact, there will be all these things in your head about how awesome your ideas are and how exciting this new adventure will be! And they are! But don’t think you’ll: become a millionaire overnight, go viral in a day, have everyone you love support you. You’ll probably lose money figuring out what works best, or you may not be targeting the right audience to go viral, and then you’ll have people who you swear will support your ideas and then come to find out… they don’t.

“Failing” is okay

Just make sure you keep “failing” until you make it! I know for me personally there will be a lot of trial and error but that is something I am expecting so that I am not surprised when it happens. You may not fail! (lucky!) but just in case you do… it’s totally normal. I fail at many normal everyday things all the time. I’m formally accepting it as a personality trait at this point. *wink*

So look, I’m no professional. But I get it. I understand that there are things you want to do that you think you can’t. It won’t always be easy. Just take the leap! Give a shot. Because you’ll never know if the what if’s will ever be the I can’s.

The hurdles will always be there. Get over, under, or around them. You’re a grown ass woman/man, you can do what you want!

Please note: There is a possibility that this recipe may turn out sour for some people. Even for me. You can always leave it as it is, dump it and start over, dump it and go back to life without lemonade, or add sugar! Whatever you do. Be happy with yourself.

Life change

5 Things I learned by moving and starting over

Ever wonder what it would be like to make the move to another state you know little, to nothing, about? Where you know only a handful of people, those of which are family members who live about an hour away? Or to give up a stable career to start over 180º in another direction? Or you meet someone amazing and have to decide whether or not to move to where you’re from or where he’s from? I know what it’s like and this is my list from my personal experience.

1. It gets lonely.

You know those days when you could go grab coffee with your best friend? Or have a movie/wine night on a whim? Or hell, even a play date where the kids can entertain each other while you two catch up on the latest gossip. I’m on year three here in Minnesota and while I do have friends, it doesn’t help that none of them live nearby, or we all have kids and can’t figure our schedules out. Or twenty other reasons it just doesn’t work out. And I am the queen of extroverts. #teamleo #lifeoftheparty. Another reason it gets lonely is because more people come go, than go come. You can try all day to keep in touch with people, but nine times out of ten it isn’t reciprocated.

2. Finding a [good] job isn’t going to be easy.

In my case I went from full blown active duty Air Force to the Air Force reserve. Completely different worlds. (For those of you who don’t know, that means I work my military job one weekend a month and participate in two full weeks worth of all military-ness a year). Since I have been here I have gone through four different [civilian] jobs before I landed my current one. One where I get paid a decent wage near home. I took a huge pay cut taking this leap of faith moving out here, but what makes up for it is the cost of living is much lower than Colorado. That’s FIVE jobs in THREE years.

3. Small towns > Suburbs & Cities

I came from living in both. The hustle and bustle of the cities, and by golly the traffic, is not my cup of tea. And the suburbs! Where you have the ability to high five your neighbor while you’re both on your porcelain thrones because you’re living on top of the other- no thanks! While that was appealing to me before and I could still live there and be just fine with it, I’m 95% sure that if I had to choose I’d be going with the small town vibes. You get more bang (and land) for your buck out here! I like looking around and not being able to look in my neighbors’ eyes, or recognize them, since I’m near sighted and would need my glasses to do so. I give credit to my husband for wanting to raise our family out here. Don’t be afraid of moving to a small town!

4. Amazon is Amazing

Its not like I’m new to online shopping- but I found the ease and convenience of Amazon (and their lightning speed shipping) to be a dream! Not to mention their lightning deals. Plus living in a super small town limits where I get to shop in person. Its a 25 minute drive to Target – ouch! – and I’m not making that trek for some milk or formula. (Not that I’d be buying either of those on Amazon so moot point, I just love Target). Its my best friend out here, I can meet Amazon up and sip coffee any time of day and tell my shopping secrets to it… except then Amazon goes and tells the UPS guys who delivers my packages in plain sight for my husband to see… so maybe not my best friend.

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I need this doormat

5. It has helped my marriage grow in so many ways.

I’m not alone in the “not having friends” department. The only other people my husband sees outside of work is yours truly and his family. Let’s even throw in Jason our boat salesman since he’s seen him more times than we’d like since purchasing our boat! (Good thing it’s still under 100% warranty). So we are each other’s support. We have become so much closer. (Partly because we initially lived in a town where the population was 1200, and I’m sure 1000 of them are cows so we were all each other saw!). We have both compromised so much to be where we are today. We did long distance for a little over a year when I was still serving on my active duty contract and his was done, and prior to that things weren’t even all that great. When he left Colorado, our relationship was at its all time low. We even broke up for a couple months until we realized we were still texting each other frequently and he made the first move into starting this back up. I was afraid. Afraid to leave the first place I had ever called home (military upbringing), to leave my freaking career, and my friends and family. But let me tell you this- it was the best thing I have ever done. We never (okay sometimes) get sick of each other. I supported him when we had 30 acres and a funny (I mean pig) farm. There’s never been a time when it was just the two of us because if you’ve read any of my previous posts you know he’s an amazing stepdad to my daughter from a previous marriage, and we’ve maybe been on a handful of “dates”, but this is our chaos. Maybe its because we are forced to get along because we’re all each other really ever spends time with, but I am beyond thankful that I took the leap.

I would have added Adapting to change/surroundings to part of my list but for my personal experience this didn’t necessarily apply since I’ve moved everywhere from Arkansas all the way to Japan and I can easily adapt.

If you’re thinking about doing it I recommend giving it a shot. You can always go back home and rejoin in the life you previously lived. You will always have somewhere to go home to. (Unless you’re me and your entire family moves away from the place you call home and sells their house and you can’t even bum a room from them anymore if you want to visit because they’re gone!). If its for the same reasons I did it, go for it if you feel the person is worth it. If they’re not, you can either make a new adventure of it, or you can go back home.

You miss 100% of the chances you don’t take

If you want to know more (after reading this novel- if you even made it this far) feel free to comment or email and I’ll get back to you! Thanks for reading!

cheers!