TTC

100 Questions

So….. *trumpet fanfare* the news has recently dropped. I. AM. PREGNANT!!!! After a decade of trying, 8 fertility cycles, one failed/lost pregnancy, losing a fallopian tube, and after tearing down and rebuilding whole pieces of myself … I get to be pregnant.

For my current fertility warrior followers I know this may feel like a betrayal or abandonment and for that I am so very sorry. I know the feeling too well. The isolation and depression of any pregnancy announcement no matter how deserving still feels like a gut punch.

The only thing I can hope for is that as I unfold my story, that anyone who needs to will find hope and comfort that miracles DO HAPPEN, and if they can happen to someone like me your miracle may just be one cycle away!!

Since announcing our news I’ve gotten no less than 100 questions and I’m going to try to answer a few of them here!

1.) How far along are you?

I’m early. I’m a mere 8 weeks 3 days – and I’ve KNOWN for 5 weeks of that!!! Being someone who has been trying to become pregnant for 10 years I’m very aware of what’s going on in my body so I had not even officially missed my period before I got my positive pregnancy test!

Part B of this question, is more an immediate reaction to part A. I answer the question and I immediately feel people cringing at the fact that I’m letting the news out so “early”… my first response is defense – like I get it it’s early but understand me – I can’t jinx this!?! If bad stuff is gonna happen it’s going to happen regardless of whether I tell people or not! Traditionally, or shall I say it’s “customary” to wait until 12 weeks (or after the first trimester) to tell people you are pregnant. The main reason is the miscarriage rates during this time are quite high. It’s astounding to me how many healthy babies are born, each one is truly a miracle considering the enormous risk every pregnancy starts out with!!!!

I have made a choice to share our pregnancy now. Because I’ve suffered loss. I know that pain, and one thing that sucks about it is having to only ever deliver awful news. I’m overjoyed to be pregnant!!! I’ve shared the good, the bad and the ugly of this journey. As supporters I feel like you should be able to enjoy this wonderful news as well – no matter what happens!

Plus, should something go wrong – I’m gonna need support. I’m going to need you to understand how I got here, and I’m not going to want to unpack the story a 100 times. I’ll need people to just be there…. filling in the space or quiet…. that, and I just don’t do well with secrets!??!

2.) What Do We Know? (Aka do we know the sex!???) Good lord!! It’s shocking to me that people think you find out you’re pregnant and instantly know the baby’s sex. No. I don’t know the baby’s sex yet, and it’s gonna be a minute. Usually around 14 weeks you get to find out so just HANG IN THERE!! We will be finding that out and of course I’ll share! What I do know is, I’m pregnant. It’s real. It’s in the right spot, and it has a strong heartbeat!! That’s about all I know for now!!

3.) How do you feel?

Terrified. I feel terrified.

No seriously I wish there was more. I’m living in a world now where I know exactly what I have to lose, what it feels like to lose it and I’m just scared as hell that like it did before it’s all going to come crashing down on me.

I’m doing my very best to keep the scary thoughts at bay- but I sure was not prepared for how scary pregnancy after loss can be. From what I’ve heard … this is just parenthood. Constant, crippling worry— awesome!

Other than extreme terror I feel great. I haven’t had too many unpleasant pregnancy symptoms other than fatigue and boob soreness and for that I’m so grateful and lucky!!

4.) How did this happen??

Well you see when a mommy loves a daddy VERY MUCH…… no no. Not that. Most people KNOW how it happens but wanna know how WE DID THIS!!!??? This happened because we made a choice to change. We did the same thing for years… just tried and then tried some more never really changing the WAY we were going about it. Sure every cycle is different, but we finally made a choice to CHANGE! We took a whole year off trying to get pregnant and lost 300lbs between us! We changed our lives regardless of whether or not pregnancy would happen. After I reached a weight my doctor felt comfortable with we started naturally trying and after the 3rd month…. just THREE months we did it!??? It truly is a miracle.

I fought against this for a long time now wanting to believe my weight was the problem. Feeling fat shamed, and not good enough for a baby, crying myself to sleep many nights wondering if this would EVER happen for me… and here I am. We still have so far to go, there are far many more perils out there I haven’t even learned of yet but I’m here… and here is beautiful.

Like I said up top…. if you’re like I was fighting against a skinny gals fertility world maybe it’s time? Maybe it’s not but either way if I can make this miracle happen I know others can too!!!!

For now, those are the questions and answers I have…. goodnight all keep wishing on stars and making your own dreams come true!!!

And who could live without our baby’s first selfie!??? Just a little peanut…. but also my whole world!!!

Weight Loss

If things are tough…. keep GROWING!

Today’s random rant is sponsored by a crippling diet plateau!! For the record, my last Weigh-In SUCKED!!! As did the one before that! Normally I weigh in every two weeks and the expected number is between minus 2-4lbs per week… I lost a grand total of 1b in 3 weeks and it is just the pits!!!

Here’s the thing… please hold all your “oh, but 1lbs is great!” – “at least you didn’t gain” comments cause they’re rubbish right now. Just don’t! Damnit shit is hard at this stage of the game!! I’m so near the end and truly, it’s my own fault the weight hasn’t been coming off. Truth be told I have stolen “bites” of forbidden food from my finished-with-the-diet-husband thinking a bite couldn’t possibly matter… well I’m here to tell you- IT DOES!!! It does matter, because I’m not just casually trying to lose weight! This program is brutal – brutal to be on for a stretch this long and the longer I allow forbidden food in my face -even at nominal amounts the longer it’s gonna take!!

It’s a vicious cycle, and goes something like this:

Me: Gets frustrated and/or jealous of [husband’s] non diet food contraband, steals a bite.

    Bite throws me out of Ketosis – yes even A BITE!!!!
    Ketosis takes up to 4 days to achieve
    After bite of contraband I play by the rules for several days — we’ll say 4 of them….
    Gets back into Ketosis – yay!
    Steals a bite of forbidden food
    DAMNIT!!!!!!!!!!!

And so it goes…. and yet even with all the frustration– I’m so proud of how far I’ve come!! Which makes it even harder!! I’m told by at least one person every single day how great I look or some other such raving about my changing figure! It feels great – but with each compliment it seems less and less dire for me to continue losing weight!! Ain’t that a bitch!!! ๐Ÿ˜‚

The positive take away from my weigh in, was that I was according to the doc I’m in the largest Ketosis there is… and I intend to keep it that way!!!! I do feel suddenly more motivated to push away from off-program food, just knowing I AM in full Ketosis and I do know how to get and keep it. I just have to be more disciplined.

Today my Facebook reminded me of this old memory, from about 10 years ago. This is my lowest of the low before photo. I don’t ever remember looking this way, and I sure don’t ever want to again. I’ve come so far, and I didn’t come THIS far just to come this far!!!

This journey is one of transformation in every sense of the word. I’m healing, my body and my soul too! Learning how to process feelings in a more constructive way, not translating my feelings into food is a big part of that. I’m learning how to speak, finding my voice and the volume of that voice too! I’m learning to protect my energy, and what it takes to do that. I’ve had to let go of a lot of things to live in the skin I have now– including people that no longer serve a positive purpose. Growth is HARD, exhausting, painful and wonderful…..

And lastly, finding out that YES… I can do this. All of it.

For anyone struggling, for anyone fighting, for anyone hustling to grow into their new future self … I see you. Keep going.

TTC

My Love/Hate Relationship with the Universe

Sometimes I have a very complicated relationship with the universe.

I’m not terribly religious. I grew up Christian, but I have issues balancing the math when I see how some Christians behave. I just scratch my head and I can’t quite get all the way on board. I subscribe to a more universal spirituality always trying to shift my own energy to a positive place, be nice to people and let the universe sort out the judgement part. I believe, that the universe understands what I need and is making a way to provide it to me…. most days.

But days like today, it’s hard. Day 13 of 14 in the very first two week wait as we start trying to get pregnant again…. I’ve felt very certain that everything had finally aligned (not unlike every other time we do this mind you) and there were symptoms and signs pointing toward finally attaining this miracle only to wake today and have all signs pointing the other way.

I don’t know.

There’s a lot to be thankful for.

There’s so much good here, and luckily we have the opportunity to keep at it. It was certainly the most “fun” I’ve had while TTC in a really long time! Felt less like a “job” or a chore than it had during all the months of treatments we’ve done in the past….

But damnit. Again with the hard math. Sometimes I just really wanna FIGHT with the universe and shake it!!! Screaming and crying and asking WHYYYYYY!??? But the it doesn’t work like that. That’s not the energy I want flowing, I don’t want to feel robbed or mislead… or like the universe keeps breaking their promise to me! How does one keep the negative thoughts at bay??? My daily struggle.

For now… I just ask for peace and calm in light of more waiting which I am lousy at. Bring patience and faith because I seem to be running low all of a sudden. Help me let go…..

TTC

My Motherโ€™s Day Wish

Every year, on this day… for the last decade I’ve made the same wish. Please, let this be the last year. The last year I have to hide from the internet, smile when I don’t want to, and act like I’m not being torn apart from the inside out. Please let this be the last year that I have to spend Mother’s Day with an honorary title…. not that I don’t love being a “Dog Mom” or Auntie– it’s just not enough for me. It’s not. So like the ones before it here I am this Mother’s Day, with tears in my eyes making the same wish.

Man. Shit is complicated these days!!! There isn’t a word for how I feel… and I feel like there should be and THAT makes me feel things! I’ve tried several times today to catalog the feels, to write them out and failed. Tried again and failed harder. This draft… might see the light of day, but I’m still debating. All day long I’ve tried to gift wrap this… these feelings. At one point I just thought…nope it’s not gonna happen. Just maybe, don’t acknowledge it at all. Who says I have to?? But that feels disingenuous too…. so here I am. Trying to scotch tape these feelings into something I can explain to the world….

I dunno… lonely. Lonely is a thing I feel. But not like, how you normally think of it. My oldest and best fertility friend is now pregnant. I can not express how wonderful that is, and how freeking excited I am for her– she DESERVES THIS!!!!!! But…. I’m alone now. And it’s hard…

We are going to start trying again… soon! Finally…. it’s exciting. And terrifying. There are a million questions racing through my brain at any given point … none of which I should be asking. Not the least of which goes something like…. “wonder if this is gonna work”… And the only answer I can muster I boosted from Captain America….

I’m doing my best to be positive and to say nice things, but if I’m really honest I’m terrified. Terrified of all the questions I can’t ask, and can’t answer. I’m terrified that I’ve come all this way only to have the door slammed in my face – or worse – opened for an instant and then slammed with the explosion of a failed pregnancy–again! I lived through the horror once I don’t know if I could make it out a second time and OF COURSE I’M SCARED OF THAT!!!! But I have to try!!!! Even with all that fear how could I not TRY!?!!!

*internally screaming … and sobbing real tears* this is what I mean… there’s no word for this. Truly…. I’m Hopefully Terrified Confused Apprehensive…. and just a little bit Numb. I need that word… whatever it is.

So today… as usual, I made my wish. I pictured the life I want so the universe can send it to me. I promised myself and the universe I would believe that what is meant for me will always find a way… and really yearn to trust that my most perfect life is somehow on its way.

To every manner of woman who is or desires motherhood… I see you. I appreciate all the tiny sacrifices that make a Mom no matter how that looks in your world.

Weight Loss

Motivation is a Myth, and other big FAT lies

I started writing this post several months ago. Likely, saw something shiny and never made my way back to until today. I was saving a draft of something ELSE I’ll probably circle back around to much later than intended and saw this pending draft just sitting there. I don’t even remember writing it… I do that a lot. Sometimes I just gotta purge some troublesome thoughts. Sometimes, I have an idea or thought, but it’s not quite there yet and I think that was the case for this one. I cackled out loud at some of this and decided it was high time to come back around to pick up where I left off…

*time machine sounds*

The skin I walk around it today I feel pretty fabulous!! I’m now hauling around precisely 110 less pounds than I was a year ago. I still have a ways to go to meet my two final weight loss goals – release for getting pregnant and hitting ONEderland. *[Future Self is hauling -128lbs and both goals are now 12 & 22lbs within my grasp, respectively!! Yus!!!!]

I can fit into mostly regular sizes now. I feel pretty great most of the time and it’s overall been an awesome change!! I have however learned some pretty mind blowing shit over the course of the last year… and of course I wanna tell you about it all!

1.) It’s not gonna look or feel like you thought it would. I lost 100+lbs, and I’m still obese. I’m still a bigger girl, and there are problem areas I have to work on. Not everything is “fixed”. I still feel tired as hell some days and I still love naps– I don’t NEED them like I did before, but it’s not a perfect science. There was a time where losing even a fraction of what I have seemed impossible, and so magical like it would solve EVERYTHING… it hasn’t. I still got issues, and I’m still gonna have some when this is “over”.

2. Skin is the largest organ of your body. Skin is a big deal when you go through rapid weight loss – it’s not just for TV it can be a real problem. Hanging skin is a real thing. At the end of all this, removal may be a thing…. but it’s for future me to deal with. [Future-FUTURE Me even! I’m still not at the stage where removal is on my plate to deal with yet]

3. Wait was I hideous before???? People notice me now. I’m vocal about my weight loss, in life and on social so I get a lot of comments. Most people are kind enough to express that they liked my looks before, which is nice but hey I’ve seen the before photos — I was a dump truck. [๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ re-reading this comment about myself I laughed out loud! You should too… I mean I’m so damn funny] The comments make me laugh. They make me smile. Make me shrink into awkwardness, but mostly it’s all very humbling, the fact that anyone stops to to notice me is a sheer delight. I’m learning to be less awkward… but it’s a work in progress!!

4. Motivation is a lie! Yah I said it. Someone had to! People tell me all the time “oh you’re so inspiring” “you’ve got such motivation” and every time I wanna scream and be like “YOU FOOOL!!! I would straight up END ANY ONE OF YOU if I was offered payment in the form of a sprinkle donut right now!!!!”…. I am not always motivated and I’m not always strong. There are real moments of weakness, shame, fear and frustration that accompany every step in the right direction!!!

5. Weight loss anxiety is a thing. Personally, I have some level of anxiety. It’s mostly in check, and I’m aware of it which helps, but it’s heightened at times in my weight loss journey. I worry I’m gonna screw up. I worry that I’m not gonna lose enough at my weigh in. I worry that I’m gonna gain it all back…. I worry. A lot. I don’t celebrate as much as I should because I’m worried I’ll get too comfortable and slide back down this slippery slope. It’s scary, and exhausting and at times suffocating.

So, there’s the short list of things I wish I would have known before… not that I could have possibly understood but… No one warns you about that stuff so there you go!!!

Hopping back in here in the future now…. funny right??? It surprises me sometimes, my own inner voice sounds like an outsider at times but, I like her… she gets me.

I’m so stupid close to being done. I feel so grateful that I’ve been able to stick to this and finally know success in weight loss. Hopefully I will also know what success in parenthood can be like too! ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป๐ŸŒˆโœจ

TTC

Youโ€™re Doing It Wrong

Sometimes I learn things so obvious and simple that I don’t know how I’ve managed to survive this long as a human without knowing them!!!! This thing I’ve learned, seems common knowledge-yet I feel like there are many that don’t know it so I’m spreading the word!

Here’s the thing about weight loss and fitness and all the conflicting information that exists in the world!! There are so many ways to exercise all will get you to a different goal, and without realizing it you could jump in a lane headed to a goal that is not aligned with your own!! I’ve spent most of my life trying to figure it out! How to lose weight, how to exercise and the whole time… I’ve been doing it wrong!!

Now, I’m not a personal trainer. I’m not an expert- but I AM someone who has lost over 100lbs in less than a year and quite recently I feel like I’ve cracked the code on the thing and I’m obligated to share my findings for anyone else out there struggling like I have been!!

Up til now the program I am on has been strictly dietary. It’s medically monitored and I’m not permitted to give it out because it’s copy-written and dangerous to be on without being monitored. But I can tell you that my whole life… I have been exercising WRONG [for fat loss]!

You see it, in movies, tv shows, trainers, friends maybe “PUSH HARDER! You can do it! Push push push!!!!!” It’s always about more, more more!! You work out, and tell yourself to push harder, do more than last time, faster, farther than last time! I look back on workouts I’ve posted about in the past, and it seems like I was always so disappointed in them. Saying something like “points for showing up” or some other negative comment about it not being enough. So negative!!! Never satisfied with myself and what I was able to accomplish. Meanwhile, those same “not good enough” workouts would destroy my body! I was constantly sore, injuring myself, and for all the trouble… the weight loss never felt like it matched my efforts.

Here’s the thing that I’ve discovered that no one talks about!! It’s a simple concept but very effective!! Instead of gauging your workout by effort – measure it by heart rate! Target/Fat Burning Heart Rate to be exact!!

Now, in order to find YOUR specific actual max, resting and fat burning heart rate you’d need to visit a cardiologist but there are charts and tools available online to get you in the ballpark. From what I’ve read your own personal target rate can differ 10-20 beats but it seems to me at least if you can pinpoint a target and try for it you’ll see way better bang for your buck when it comes to your workouts!!

Here is a chart I found, your fat burning heart rate is in the 70% of max column.

Interval training still works, but you have to make sure your rest interval brings you all the way back down to at or below your target! Before, I would do 1 min intervals of work/rest and my heart rate wouldn’t have time to recover so my avg heart rate in my Feb work outs was 160-170 when it should have been more like 130!!!

This also makes so much sense when it comes to weight lifting- that particular exercise is not a high pumping heart rate activity! No wonder why it’s so effective!!

It’s so nice that NOW, I find that my fat burn zone is a comfortable jog/walk! I no longer have to completely exhaust myself to feel like I’ve done enough!! I’m not constantly sore, and I am completing more and better workouts, sometimes even more than one workout a day!!! I am still sweaty, I still improve my distance and time but not only do I feel more satisfied with my efforts–they’re actually making a difference on the scale!!!

Who would have guessed – if your workouts aren’t yielding the number you want to see on the scale the natural reaction isn’t to DO LESS… but for fat burning efficiency that’s exactly what I am doing!

Just by making these adjustments and being diligent about diet I’ve more than doubled my scale loss in the last month!!

February: total loss for the month was 5lbs – I worked out every day, and honestly was pretty miserable for most of that!

March: it’s the 10th and I’m already down 9lbs for the month!!! And I feel fantastic!

I dunno…. here’s the thing, I’m not telling you to do what I do, but based on my own experience and research it’s worth a try if you’re up for a challenge of your own!!!

I’m still 20-30lbs from finishing my program so we can start trying for baby, but man I tell you my head, heart and body finally all feel in sync and I’m no longer swimming against the tide!! All of this hard work is so much easier when it’s WORKING!!!!

That’s all I got for ya for now! Had to share what I’ve learned!!! All I can do is hope this information helps someone else that may be struggling because it’s just the worst to think you’re doing all the right things, to only be fighting yourself in the end!!!

Feeling like my very own superhero lately! Down 119lbs!

Then vs Now

AngelMom, TTC, Weight Loss

Fight the good fight!

If someone would have told me, that I would have to go through the most devastating heartbreak in order to end up on the path that leads to my best life… I don’t know that I would agree to that??? Would any of us?? Really?? I mean, especially not if we actually knew the depths of that devastation– who would be on board for that kind of turmoil!?? Certainly not me….

Yet, here I am about two years after that most terrible event thinking to myself … is it possible to be grateful for that?? Never would I ever imagined that ANYTHING good or positive could come from all of that pain!?!? So much has changed, so much unexpected joy and accomplishment has come from that one event that tore my whole world apart…so that I could have the chance to build a better one. And make no mistake, if that loss had never occurred the life I have now could NEVER have been realized.

    I am over 100lbs lighter, husband is 170lbs lighter!!!
    I have a stronger bond with my husband having gone through, loss (emotional and physical)
    We have learned how to eat- so we can teach our kid(s) the things it took us a lifetime to learn!
    We’ve both accepted therapy and gotten emotional support with handling loss and anxiety – we are stronger for this!
    We’ve had to fight for the life we want. I tend to think we will be more appreciative of it when it gets here.

So it’s true what they say, “sometimes things have to fall apart, so better things can fall together.” It’s never easy to accept, and it’s gonna hurt like hell all the way there, but it is a beautiful thing once you realize you’re on the right path.

I long for the life I had to give up. However, I’m learning to use that longing to my benefit. I use it as fuel for the fire that I need to get to the finish line, instead of letting it burn down my spirit and consume me.

I’ve fought too hard, risked and lost too much to give up any ground now!!!!

For those that are fighting for your best life — keep fighting. Keep notes, for every micro victory rejoice and be proud. For that’s the best and hardest advice to follow!