pregnancy, TTC

Shock and Awwww!

Hey people!!!! Sorry it’s been a while- In truth I’ve written a lot of passages that aren’t ready to share (they may never be), but I knew it was time to share some of this amazing journey!!!!

Currently I am 14 weeks 2 days pregnant!!! Yaaaas!!!! So many super important and awesome things have happened in recent weeks!!

  1. I made it out of the first trimester! YAS!!!
  2. I completed the genetic testing which all came back negative!
  3. And we found out we are having a little girl!!!!! Squeeeee!!!!

The first big milestone, to have completed my first trimester. HUGE!!! I find that I am able to do more things now that I didn’t allow myself in the first several weeks – like breathe! I swear I held my breath for 3 months and I feel just a little bit lighter and more calm with each day that goes by. I’ve been careful not to worry away this pregnancy – as much as possible, but getting through those early weeks was tough! I’m sure it’s something like that for every mom, especially the ones who’ve known loss — it’s a really scary thing. One I wasn’t expecting. I never factored in all the anxiety and worry I would encounter once I finally got what I’d been wanting all this time!! It is lifting, and I truly am reveling in this beautiful experience and for me it really is that!!! I have been so lucky!!! Baby girl has been so sweet to me! No morning sickness, and I’ve even had some energy back and have started going for jogs again which is something I sort of halted immediately when I became pregnant only partly because I was tired AF — but mostly I just couldn’t bring myself to move or do anything that might “shake the baby loose” or something. It’s nice to feel a little more like me again and not be so scared to just BE for fear this would all end! All in all…. I just feel thankful and wonderful to even BE HERE!!

The 2nd milestone, completing genetic testing was one I had been dreading to an extent. We decided to just do the basic level of testing and as long as it came back clear we would forego the more invasive testing. I had a really hard time even agreeing to that. What if something came up??? What would that mean??? Well, to me…. not much. Some parents would chose to end a pregnancy if something unfavorable is shown on these results, but as long as the condition wasn’t life threatening we are in this no matter what!! Or what if they DID discover the baby wouldn’t survive outside the womb…. ugh! Just breathe and know that the universe has you!!! That’s all I could tell myself while going through it and waiting for results! Happily we got the all clear and it’s just one more step toward this wonderful dream we get to live out!!

And lastly… finally the drum roll of waiting to find out our baby’s gender!!!!!! The week before this was the NT Ultrasound and we got a sneak peek at everything… including what Dawson and I both thought was a little boy part!!! Admittedly, we aren’t professionals and the ultrasound tech wasn’t looking for that or outspoken about her suspicions so we just kind of made our predictions and went along our way!! I thought FOR SURE it was a boy!!!!

Fast forward one week to the big ALL Grandparents on deck 3D gender reveal scan! We found a place that does elective only scans with viewing room for up to 8 and were so excited to be able to share the moment with all our parents that we even booked a limo!!! Cause why not!!!? We’ve waited a decade – why not really blow it out!!! The tech was really amazing, gave a brief tour and within 5 minutes she had us looking right up my daughters skirt and I knew instantly.

“Can anyone tell what it is” she asked….

“It’s definitely a GIRL!” I said in shock and nearly out of breath.

“YES! It’s a GIRL!!” She exclaimed and the room erupted with cheers and tears.

Turns out what we thought we saw was probably the cord tucked between her little legs and there’s really no doubt I have a daughter on the way!!!! A daughter!!!! Up to this point I always thought I would have a son. I’m familiar with that, having helped raise my brother. I felt like boys were less scary, you know not having to deal with the whole period and boys factor…. but I tell you…. as soon as I saw those little neon words “it’s a girl” pop up on the screen I felt all those fears just melt away! Dawson clenched my hand and looked so happy! News to me, he had been HOPING for a girl all along!!!

I think I’m still in a bit of shock, but I am ecstatic to be making myself a tiny best friend to share this life with and I can not wait to meet her come spring!! I’m so lucky, and grateful… and happy. I couldn’t have asked for a better pregnancy so far and I only hope it continues on this path!! One day at a time, and thank you to all who’ve strapped in and come along for this journey thus far! It’s been a wild ride and I just can’t wait to see what the future has in store for me, my love, and my tiny princess! 💖🦄🌈

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

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. [😂😂😂 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! 🙏🏻🌈✨

TTC

You’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

Weight Loss

Falling Down, and Getting Up

We are taught when we are children that falling down is a part of life, and the getting up is what is important. We fall down constantly as children…. but as adults the falling becomes more symbolic than physical.

Through the last few years I’ve emotionally and symbolically fallen down repeatedly. I’ve let life beat me against the ropes hoping it would get tired so I could claim my glorious victory. And then… a few weeks ago I ACTUALLY fell down.

While vacationing at a theme park with friends on a hot summer day I ignored my body’s numerous signals and passed out from dehydration. That’s apparently a thing. The thought had NEVER crossed my mind. If it had, perhaps I would have made better choices. But hey, you’re on vacation, you don’t want to slow anyone down, you need to be the kick ass auntie and friend that always has a joke, a smile and will laugh at anything. Who has time to slow down and deal with boring stuff like drinking water!?!!

Of COURSE that didn’t stop me from making light of it all, and making sure the kids knew I was okay (that is, after the 2nd fainting spell, laying on the ground staring up at strangers, and the hoping I didn’t end up on YouTube panic had subsided — ps I’m still legitimately worried about that last. I was wearing a bright red shirt, and yellow leggings with dogs eating watermelon on them… Ah yes, clearly I was absent the day they discussed being a modest, subtle young lady…. nope HERE I AM WORLD …… *shaking my head* nice.)

(*hanging out in the Med-Bay rehydrating, and contemplating all the decisions I made in the last 48 hours.)

As the days pass, and focus on my hydration has been key I find myself still experiencing anxiety that this could happen to me again. What if I’m alone at home? Dear GOD! What if I’m alone in public??? What if I fall on something and really injure myself? The questions and scenarios whiz past and I become more and more anxious.

When did falling down become such a perilous and foreboding activity!??

Perhaps it’s the failure of this body that makes me so frightened. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time my body failed me- and sadly won’t be the last. However, I did not elect to lose ALL functionality it just happened. The complete and utter loss of control is probably the scariest thing I can think of! But… in the end that’s basically what life is all about.

Im doing my best to make sure this doesn’t happen to me again, and hope beyond hope that this is not part of some underlying issue that has yet to come to the surface.

For now though, to preserve THIS life, the one that’s worth celebrating I can’t let this one incident rule me and pin me down into a hole. I have fought so hard to make it here! Things before this incident had been remarkable!! I have lost a total of 72 pounds since March and I’m totally killin this!!! I have about 100 more to go to reach my optimal weight and seeing myself now and what I can overcome I know this will be no different!

(This photo was taken after the big fall… it actively represents spreading your wings and not being afraid …. oh and also displays just how cavalier I am with my fashion choices.)

(This is my latest weight loss progress! The first photo was taken in March, the 2nd was taken Yesterday July 14th. Oh and clearly I am still “working on” my subtlety… sloth leggings!??? Yes please!!!)

So I fell down… but I got back up and everything was fine…. just like when I was a kid. I’ll dust myself off and it will all work out.

Weight Loss

It’s just a number, but today it’s so much more!

Just when you thought that the most exciting thing to happened today would be the Royal Wedding… which let’s face it was awesome!! It’s going to be hard to beat that, but I’ll try…

Today, like every other day I stepped on the scale. But unlike most of the days before it- at least the days I can remember without straining the number displayed started with a 2 instead of a 3!

Now, this is terrifying to put out there. Far scarier than any of the stuff I write here about infertility as it were! I don’t like sharing my actual weight or how heavy I’ve let myself get- it’s humiliating and always has been. However, I think it’s part of the healing process I suddenly I feel compelled to shout this from the rooftops!!!!

This number doesn’t REALLY mean anything. It doesn’t define me, it’s not who I am, it’s temporary – but today it means some stuff.

It means I’ve lost 51 pounds y’all!!

It means I can do things that are really difficult!

It means I can go on the zip line in Vegas!

It means that I found something FINALLY that works.

It means that hard work can lead you to places you once thought you could not go.

It means that things CAN HAPPEN!

It means sometimes even if you don’t believe it, you can still do it!!!

It means that this could work… perhaps THIS will be the key to unlocking the future I so desperately desire!?

It means I gotta set some more goals to smash!

THIS fees pretty great.

For the next phase…. my personal goal is 40 pounds, I’ve wanted to try the indoor skydiving place near my work and that’s their weight limit. The virtual sky’s the limit man!!

Thanks to all for sharing and supporting this journey!

AngelMom, Weight Loss

Kisses from Heaven

So I’ve been sprinkling in workouts to my routine now that I’m past all the diet transitioning on my current program. One thing I do is try to jog/walk on my lunch break. I figure I only have a few of those lunch time jogs left before it gets so hot here that your face melts off!!!

Today, I set a goal to jog 1 whole lap around the building without slowing to walk. I almost made it all the way yesterday so I wanted to see how far I could push it if I made that my goal. I did it!!! That success felt great! (Difficult but great!)

I was feeling really empowered. Focusing on saying really nice things to myself during my run like:

  1. Look how strong you are!
  2. This is something you could not do when you started!
  3. Look how far you’ve come!
  4. You’re such a badass!
  5. You’re going to be such a great mom someday (and here’s where it gets squirrely)
  6. I bet Karate is proud of you, wherever he is
  7. You’re making every choice you can to make sure you never have to send anymore babies to heaven…..

And then I looked up…. and saw this.

Anyone that knows me well, knows my grandma always had this funny thing where she’d say “X’s in the sky are kisses from your loved ones in heaven”. I always laughed at her, until she passed away and now I always think of her when I see them.

At that moment though… my heart sank and I knew that particular X came from my baby in heaven.

😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭

I cried through the rest of the run. I struggled to put one foot in front of the other and that was the end of any goal crushing I may have had planned for this run. New goal— Complete my 30 minutes and not make eye contact with anyone in the parking lot passing by.

It’s been a minute since I had an emotional outburst, in general, and about my loss. I truly feel like I have been healing and feeling much better about everything. But in that moment, everything I’ve ever felt about it caught up to me and hit me out of nowhere.

It’s important to feel through those feelings– and keep saying those nice things. I’m never going to be “over” what happened. I think about it every day. Maybe someday I won’t… but for today I’m breathing and feeling through the sensation of loss, longing, transitioning, growing, and yes… knowing I’m doing everything I can to create the best future I can have!