Saturday, October 12, 2013

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness and Resources

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month. It's a difficult subject to talk about. I have experienced loss myself, as have a few people close to me. It isn't something anyone can fathom unless they experience it themselves.

I have talked about it here before. Miscarriage is extremely hard to process, and I cannot begin to understand how hard it must be to lose a child. To anyone who may be reading this, please know that you are not alone and that eventually, someday, the pain will lessen. It will always be there in the back of your mind, you will never forget it. But it will come to sting less. You will be able to see a pregnant woman without crying someday, you will be able to stomach pregnancy announcements, and seeing a newborn won't make you want to hide in a closet for a few weeks clutching yourself.

Dear mom, it is soo hard. You have gone through a lot. I know how it hurts. I know how dead you feel inside. The confusion, the anger, the bitterness, the injustice of it all. I wish I could wrap my arms around you and let you cry til your eyes were empty. I wish I could make you hot cocoa and help you move past your pain.

If you are interested in some resources for parenting and infant loss, please look into the following links below. They will offer some great help. These links are also helpful if you have not experienced loss yourself but would like to offer help/support to someone who has. My pinterest page has a loss board with these links and more as I find them.

If you feel you are suffering depression, please do not be afraid to ask for help, be it from friends, family, or professionals. It is okay to need help and support. It's not a sign of weakness.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

One Year Ago Today... And Where We Are Now

One year ago today, I was 42 weeks pregnant, and had a beachball attached to the front of me, with a squishy little baby coated in vernix floating around and waiting to make an appearance.

At midnight of October 1st 2012 I went into labor. My contractions were pretty easy to deal with, and two hours later my water finally broke and I laughed in joy that it was finally happening. Another two hours later we packed up to go to my inlaw's where I would be birthing, and my deep, wide, and comfy birth pool was waiting for me.

After 16 hours of hard labor, at 4:11 in the afternoon, I became a mom when our little Bree was born and I reached down to pull her out of the water.

I was up at midnight today, slept, and now at ten something in the morning I realize that 16 hours is a long time. Honestly, while my contractions felt never ending, that night flew by and didn't seem that long! Bree is happily sleeping in her crib while I catch up on the Ellen show and sip coffee.

Soooo much has happened and changed in this past year. And while it can be slightly annoying how many people tell you variations of "it flies by so fast cherish your time," its annoying because it's painfully true and hits us in the face constantly. We are very aware how fast time goes by. It's been a whole year! Where did it go?!

Seriously. It flew by. I blinked, and I didn't mean to. Those long hard sleepless nights I wanted to be over.... it seems like forever ago. Wanting her to get to 6/7 months so we could play with solids so I wouldn't have to freak about pumping enough if we wanted to go out... came far too quickly. Wanted her to sit up, to play.... it all very quickly came about. Now Bree is standing and walking along things and working on walking with letting go (just a few steps at a time currently).

A big plus for us, and I am so proud to say, we made it to a year of breastfeeding! Yayyyy! And still going strong. Bree will be done with boobie milk when she is ready to be done.

The birthday party was a huge hit and a ton of fun, and very exhausting. Bree seemed to have fun, and was so stinking cute!

She is now well stocked as far as clothes, toys, and books. Yay for provision! We are so thankful for all the friends and family who came to celebrate and support us, as you have all along!

I am so proud. Seriously. The pride and love for Bree makes my heart swell so much I have chest pain from it. Look at her! She grew inside me! Talk about the miracle of life. For ten months God perfected her as she grew in my womb. He helped me birth her into this world, and is helping us raise her.

Gahhh crying over here. So much emotion. I am so proud of Bree and excited to see her grow, to see her personality shine through... but it's so hard. This year passed so quickly. Soon she'll be two... then five... then 12... then 18.... This love is so strong. Being a mom is truly the most amazing thing ever. I hope I can be the best mother I can be for her. To guide and teach and have the perfect level of discipline and grace and understanding.

Bree is already such a great person. I know she is growing into a fantastic girl who will be a kind, thoughtful, and wonderful young woman. She tries to share her paci and her pouches of fruit and her cheerios... we haven't even taught her what sharing is. She gives hugs, frowns and kisses you if she knows she hurt you (1 year olds are surprisingly strong bitters/hitters!) and all of this is her. This isn't taught, it's the kindness of her spirit. I hope I am able to teach her further and grow that kindness in her. It's a weighty responsibility, raising a human who will be a functioning part of society!

In this past year Bree has grown and learned so much, I'm excited to see where this next year takes us!

Happy 1st birthday to my little girl! I love you Bree.