Tag Archives: experiences

Tales from Unexplained Uterus-Land

3 Jan

I’m so bad about posting in here. It’s probably because I’m tired. Really, really tired. See, I’m 9 months postpartum. That wouldn’t really matter much, and I’m going to go full-blown TMI here, but I’ve had my period for FORTY-FIVE DAYS STRAIGHT.

Yes, 45 days. No break. All the bleeding. All the fun. I’m single-handedly responsible for keeping the feminine product industry alive. Also, I broke down and tried those free-bleed Thinx underwear because I was losing my mind with the tampons and the pads and the will-this-ever-end?!?! feelings. The answer? Nope, never gonna end. Aunt Flo is here to stay.

I called my doctor around day 20-something. He did an ultrasound with dildo-cam (my favorite, haven’t had one since I was pregnant and I had so many of those when I was at the fertility center) and had me take a blood test.

Guess what, you guys. Both came back normal. My uterus, while misbehaving currently, is apparently normal. No fibroids, no polyps, not even any cysts, which I am known for producing at expert-level since I have PCOS. My blood work also came back normal. According to my doctor, my bleeding is “unexplained.”

Um, what?

So, he sent me on my merry ho-ho-ho way, all “unexplained” and everything with a prescription for progesterone that he told me to go ahead and start taking to make my period stop.

Christmas came and I was like:

Blackboard with the text: All I Want For Christmas in a conceptu

Santa didn’t deliver. That rat bastard.

Then New Year’s came and I was like:

Hand writing Resolution for 2017 with marker, concept background

2017 didn’t do me a solid and end this madness, either. Thanks for nothing.

 

I took the progesterone. I took all of it (as prescribed, of course). While it decreased the intensity of Aunt Flo, it didn’t make her go back into hiding. That brings us to today, day 45 of this blood-filled journey.

I left my doctor a message today to let him know the progesterone didn’t work, but only after my husband bugged me to call their office (I must be a real peach being on the rag this long). His office called me back later to tell me I have two options —

  1. Try a prescription that’s basically birth control to see if that kicks my lady parts back into gear.
  2. Get in a D&C (outpatient surgery) to try to “reset my uterus.”

They even said I could schedule the D&C now if I wanted. Um, how many times can a person go under the knife? I mean, really? I HAVE HAD SO MANY SURGERIES. Why haven’t we tested my hormones or my thyroid to make sure it’s not one of those? Why am I the one asking this stuff? Why are doctors so quick to recommend surgery before getting to the root of the problem? I DO NOT UNDERSTAND. Do I need to go find myself a good endocrinologist now?

Also, I have feelings about going back on the pill. I’ve been off of it since 2012-ish. I don’t really want to go back on it. I would like to have another kid, but I don’t know if it’s in the cards for me given my infertility woes and lovely PCOS. I don’t know if I’m willing to go through everything I went through before again. It was really stressful and I felt really alone when I was going through it. I’d rather it happen naturally if it’s meant to be, which probably means nothing would happen. I guess I’m okay with that, too. I have a healthy, happy, entertaining little boy already, which is more than I could ever ask for.

Anyway, this is mostly a vent. I’m tired. I’m cranky. I’m in pain. I’m bleeding.

I’d really like for this to stop already.

 

 

The Mom Groove and the New Normal

16 May

So, I’ve been a mom for almost two months now … and this is my last week of maternity leave before I go back to work next Monday. I celebrated my first Mother’s Day as a mother and with my own mom, which was awesome. After the last year of health scares with parents, I am so grateful and thankful to be able to spend time with my mom and my little one. She and my dad are so cute with him.

We also survived our first road trip with a kid. We drove from Michigan to Virginia to see my mother-in-law and sister-in-laws with the baby when he was 5 weeks old. It was sanctioned by our pediatrician, who said we were good to go when he clocked in at almost 14 pounds at his 5 week check-up. I was terrified of the trip, overpacked a TON, but it ended up being really okay. Baby Nick was a champ in the car and only got fussy about 30 minutes from our arrival. We had a lot of firsts on the trip — the first time we took him to a restaurant, the first time we let someone babysit, the first time we used the Pack & Play, the first time we stayed in a hotel with an infant, the first time I pumped in a car, the first major poo blowout (followed by many more) requiring outfit changes, the first time meeting Grammy and all his Aunties, and many more I’m probably forgetting.

I’ve learned it takes a ton of time to get ready and out out the door now. We basically have to plan for at least an hour or two longer than it took us pre-kid. It requires a lot of logistics – Do we have enough diapers in the diaper bag? Are there enough wipes? Did we bring the Gripe Water? Do we have his pacifier? Did we pack a blanket? Did we include at least two outfit changes? Do we have a bottle? Did we bring the pump? Do we have any formula? Do we have burp cloths? Many times, this kid looks more put together than I do because by the time I have all his needs met, there isn’t any time for me to get ready … or I just don’t care what I look like anymore.

So, about breastfeeding. Oh, breastfeeding. I could probably write an entire entry just on this topic. There is a shitload of pressure on new moms to breastfeed the shit out of their children. It’s everywhere. I have consultants calling me several times a week asking how I am doing with it … and you know what? Pardon my language, but I am SICK TO FUCK OF TALKING ABOUT MY BOOBS (which, ironically, I am posting about right now, but you get what I mean).

It all started back in those pregnancy and breastfeeding classes we took. I thought, yeah, I can do this! And I started off on this journey of thinking I was breastfeeding no matter what. It went so far that I had that stupid dream a week or so before I went into labor. In it, I birthed the little guy (naturally, btw, HAHAHAHA), and they put him on me and he immediately latched on and I celebrated being the BREASTFEEDING CHAMPION OF THE WORLD!

So, let’s fast forward to the actual birth….the emergency c-section that I could still FEEL (the joy of being a redhead and having epidurals and a spinal NOT WORK). They pulled the little guy out of me, he got assessed and weighed, and then they handed him to my husband…and then I got to see him … but we didn’t get to hang until we were in recovery. BUT, and I swear to you this is the truth, when they put him on me, he did latch on immediately and start feeding and I did lay there thinking OMG, I am a prophet and my dream was true!

Sadly, that’s about where the sunshine and puppies of initial breastfeeding ended. After that, we had some major latching issues, lots of discussions about whether they thought they should clip his tongue (it’s heart-shaped and they thought he might be tongue-tied), meeting after meeting with lactation consultants in the hospital, and many tears, because holy moly, that kid was hurting my boobs! There was blood, there were blisters, and cracking, and hurting, and discomfort. Breastfeeding is hard. It’s even harder when you feel like you’re not giving your kid everything he needs.

So yeah, because little (big) guy was losing weight, we had to start supplementing my breast milk with formula while we were in the hospital. And it’s something we’ve had to continue to this day because I just can’t produce enough milk for this huge baby and his voracious appetite. In fact, I started to feel like I was going insane once we got home and he’d feed on my boobs for 2-3 hours at a time. I felt like I was a milk slave. I couldn’t do anything or go anywhere – my whole existence was wrapped up in feeding my kid … constantly.

I lasted about 3 weeks like that. Then, rather than be this sad, sorry shell of a zombie person who cried constantly, I decided to start pumping more and not letting him on my boobs. I found I was a much happier person doing this. I do still occasionally let him on my boobs, but now it’s when I want to and when he’s happy, so we’re both cool with it and not frustrated or in pain. And yeah, we still supplement. Basically, I feed him breast milk all day long and at night we give him formula. And we usually do formula if we’re out and about because I’m just not one of those moms who’s comfortable whipping her tatas out in public … though I am an expert at in-car pumping.

As I said earlier, this is my last week of maternity leave. I feel like it flew by so fast. We had this whole childcare situation that really threw me for a loop … basically, the person who was going to watch our kid when I went back to work bailed on us when I was 8 months pregnant (cue crying). My husband and I talked about it and weighed our options and costs and decided we could afford for him to take off work for a year to be a stay at home daddy. I’d be lying if I wasn’t really jealous about it, but I’m the primary breadwinner in our family, so we can’t afford for me to be a stay at home mommy and for him to be the sole provider. I have irrational fears that now he’s going to love my husband more than me and I’m going to miss out on all kinds of important baby milestones and moments. It makes me sad and I know it’s stupid, especially since I work from home when I’m not traveling and can easily be summoned if something cool is going down in kid land.

Oh, I also had my 6-week postpartum check-up last week (at 7 weeks). Why didn’t anyone warn me that the postpartum pap smear hurts?! My God, it was painful! I made it through 28 hours of labor with crazy contractions, an emergency c-section, recovering from said c-section, and then a pap smear hurts?! What the hell? My doctor said it’s because my estrogen levels are low because I breastfeed. It has me a little worried about how sex is going to feel … not that I’m wanting any of that lately. I’m way bummed about pregnancy weight and how much things have shifted around after having a kid. I’m squishy now. I need to get motivated to lose it now that I’m cleared to do more physical activity.

Well, this turned into more of a lengthy missive than I intended and the little guy is ready for another feed. Until next time!

 

 

 

 

Nearing Term

25 Feb

So much has transpired since I last wrote. I’m now at 36.5 weeks. Almost full-term!

Last weekend, we had another baby shower. This time, one with all of our friends at a brewery. It was great. My BFF flew out earlier in the week with my Goddaughter to visit. Oh, and because my BFF is a total rock star, she helped us install our car seat so we don’t have to worry about it. It’s in the car already! She told us the worst part of having a kid is the car seat. She wasn’t lying. It’s complicated. I’m so glad we don’t have to worry about it now.

My husband’s sisters (all three) and one of his aunts (a cool one) all flew out to see us, too. Then while we were at dinner one night, I was surprised by two of my oldest and dearest friends who drove 500 miles to celebrate with us, too. I cried some big, fat tears of joy. The day after the shower, more of my husband’s relatives drove over to see us from across the state. We hosted a brunch for them and everyone else who was in town. We were completely surrounded by a love tornado all weekend long. It was amazing.

Needless to say, there was a lot of activity (and laughs and tears) for a few days. By the time everyone departed to their corners of the world, I was beat. I’m starting to get swollen all the time — troll feet and cankles! I’ve been exhausted, too.

Yesterday, I thought I might be showing signs of early labor, so I was glad I had an OB appointment to discuss what’s going on. I think baby boy is starting to descend, so I’m feeling crazy pressure on my pelvis. Oh, I’ve also developed pregnancy carpal tunnel in my right hand. That’s annoying.

I have what feels like a billion thank-you cards to write. I’m so behind. Hubby and I spent last night putting gifts away in the baby’s room. This kid has so many clothes! It’s insane!

To go off on a total tangent, I really wish I had known about The Spoiled Mama products earlier in my pregnancy. Early on, I used The Honest Company Organic Belly Balm, but I didn’t really care for the smell or the consistency. Then I used Bio-Oil for months and months, which was fine, but really nothing special. A few weeks ago, I stumbled on The Spoiled Mama when I was looking for something to better treat my stretch marks because I was starting to get a whole bunch of them.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE The Spoiled Mama products. I have really sensitive skin and I get itchy and red a lot. Bio-Oil was okay for the itching. The Honest Company didn’t really help that at all, but The Spoiled Mama is awesome. I haven’t had any problems since I started using it. I use three of their products daily and they have helped so much – I’m never itchy anymore and they are really helping with stretch marks.

  1. sugar-scrub-for-stretch-marksIndulge Body Polish Peppermint & Vanilla: This stuff is great! I use it first thing in the morning in the shower. It leaves my skin feeling so soft and moisturized. The peppermint scent gives me a little bit of a wake-up in the morning, too. The only downside is that it makes your shower floor a little slick, so be careful. You might have to clean the shower more frequently than normal.
  2. bump gloss stretch mark oil_cap off -xl4Bump Gloss Stretch Mark Oil: I slather this all over my bump and stretch marks. It absorbs pretty quickly and a little goes a long way. It’s similar to the Bio-Oil I was using, but smells better.
  3. tummy-butter-for-stretch-marks-4ozTummy Butter for Stretch Marks: Okay, this one is my absolute favorite. It smells great – kind of like a mix of citrus and chocolate. It goes on easy and absorbs quickly – and you don’t feel greasy (my problem with Honest Company Belly Balm). I really, really wish I had known about this when I got pregnant. It’s a great product! I can’t say enough good things about it.

I have to touch on infertility for a minute. You know, it’s really hard not to be sensitive about people’s comments even when you are finally pregnant. Some of our relatives made comments this past weekend about how we need to plan for a second kid now — just completely insensitive remarks. They have no idea how many years and science it took to get us to where we are now. My husband’s sisters know how much we struggled, so they shot me some understanding glances when this was happening, but still. People really need to keep their mouths shut when it comes to pressuring couples about babies. It really is none of their business. And frankly, I don’t know if we’ll be able to have another kid. It was so hard getting pregnant with this one! Honestly, I don’t know if I could go through all of that again. Also, I’m getting older! I’ll be 37 later this year. It just might not be in the cards for us to have a second child. I wish people could just be happy for this miracle and not try to put pressure on us to have more kids. We’re thrilled that we get to be parents in a few weeks. This kid might be our only kid and we are okay with that – why can’t everyone else be?

Church Ladies Like to Knit

25 Jan

So, the shower on Saturday happened. My husband kept lecturing me about approaching it like I was going to have fun and telling me not to be negative about it, so that’s what I did. I was pretty sad my mom couldn’t be there and I shed a few tears about it beforehand, but she sent my dad in her absence and that in itself ended up being hilarious. It was probably the first shower he’s ever been to. My brother came, too.

Holy toledo, did this kid get spoiled! I think he has enough clothes to last years now. He also has about 10 baby blankets and I’ve deduced that church ladies love to knit, crochet, cross-stitch, and quilt blankets for babies.

It was a bit overwhelming being the center of attention and having everyone watch us as we opened gift after gift. I’ve frankly never seen so many gifts in my life. That in itself makes me feel weird. My sister-in-law did attempt to make it fun by having everyone there play Baby Bingo to guess what I’d receive, so that made it a little less boring for everyone (I hope).

People said some strange things to me about my mom. Many of the ladies asked if she was coming and either my dad or I would explain that her counts were too low to be around other people. One person asked me if she was coming and when I said she wasn’t, she said, “Oh, I thought maybe she wouldn’t come because she wouldn’t want to take away from your day.”

UM, WHAT? Why in the world would anyone think that? People are so strange.

 

Preparing for Baby

14 Jan

I’ve been really terrible about updating this thing. There is just so much going on, it’s hard to remember to do it! Well, that, and I feel like pregnancy has made me terribly stupid (more on that later). I’m almost 31 weeks now and it’s definitely starting to feel real. We finished painting the nursery, the crib arrives tomorrow, and I have a glider ordered that’s coming in a few weeks. We also started going to birthing classes last week.

On the health front, I’ve been feeling pretty tired and hurty. This pubic symphysis business is no fun. Most days, it feels like my crotch is being ripped apart. My doctor wrote me a prescription for a hip brace. It sort of helps. I’ve been going to acupuncture and the chiropractor for it, too. Nothing seems to give me lasting relief, so I mostly just suck it up and deal. Also, I did fail my 1-hour glucose test and I had to go back and take the 3-hour one that takes 4 hours to complete. The worst part was starving for so many hours. After 15 hours with no food, I was absolutely ravenous by the time I left the lab. Luckily, I ended up passing all 3 tests for that one, so my worries could cease on that front.

Worries on other fronts continue, however. I had another scan of the baby at 28 weeks to check out his heart. They still couldn’t get a super clear visual of all the parts of his heart. I was really hoping the scan would go great and we would hear that we had nothing to worry about. Instead, my doctor said something like, “From what I could see on the scan, I want to say that everything will be okay, but unfortunately, I can’t say that with 100% certainty.” Then he told me all we can do is wait until he is born and if something is in fact wrong, he’ll be whisked away to the top notch neonatal heart doctors. So, it wasn’t wholly terrible, but it also wasn’t exactly what I wanted to hear.

We had a lovely Christmas Eve with my family and a kind of cruddy Christmas. My mom’s platelets went dangerously low and she ended up in the E.R. on Christmas day. She got admitted and spent another week in the hospital, most of it waiting to receive matched donor platelets. They didn’t have any and she had to wait for 5 days, which made us all really nervous because she got really, really sick this time. My dad was camping out and sleeping at the hospital. She’s back in the hospital this week for her third round of chemo.

My mother-in-law was given 6-12 months to live. We’re pretty sad about it. I’m guessing once the baby is born, we’ll be making a trek east so she can see the baby. The thought of traveling with an infant scares me, but we will cross that road when we get to it.

My first baby shower is next weekend. My aunt is throwing it at my parents’ church and it’s been so dramatic hearing about her antics from my sister-in-law. It’s a long story and it’s also stress I don’t need, so I’m telling myself I will just sit there with a smile on my face until it’s over. This aunt in particular really has a way of sucking the joy out of every single situation. I don’t even feel like this is a shower for me or the baby. It’s a shower for HER. It’s also likely my mom won’t be able to go because of how her treatments are timed and my aunt had the audacity to give her a hard time about that. Like she can change it or has any control over it. Cancer waits for no one, lady.

We’re having a more fun ‘friends’ co-ed shower at a brewery in February. I’m super excited about that one. My BFF is traveling here with my Goddaughter to help throw it with my brother,  sister-in-law, and another one of my friends. It will be so wonderful to see her. I’d be happy just visiting with her since I haven’t seen her and my cute little Goddaughter in so long.

So, about feeling dumb during pregnancy … last weekend, my husband flew out of town to visit his mom and sisters. I was home alone with the pets. I was supposed to go pick up my dad at the car dealership and give him a ride home while his car was getting some work done. I took the dog for a walk and when I came back, I was locked out of the house. The door between our garage and inside has one of those awful handles that still turns from the inside when it’s locked….but it’s locked from the outside. I was being ultra-anal with hubby being out of town, so I had locked it from the inside the night before. Normally, we keep it open.

I panicked and paced the sidewalk trying to figure out what to do. I had no keys and no phone … and a little dog with me. I looked around at the neighbors’ houses and nobody’s lights were on since it was pretty early. I’ve only met one set of neighbors and it looked like they were out of town for the weekend. I debated walking over to another set and introducing myself as their pregnant idiot neighbor. Then I looked down and realized I got this handy Apple Watch for Christmas and since my cell phone was on the counter inside the house, if I stood by the door, I could call people from my watch! So, that’s what I did. My dad left the dealership to come save me. We were lucky that it wasn’t terribly cold that day so we didn’t freeze while we waited in the garage. I had given my dad a key to our house a few months ago and luckily he had it on his keychain. So, yeah, I feel like my idiocy lately is a force to be reckoned with. I feel dumb 100% of the time these days.

 

What They Don’t Tell You About Pregnancy

15 Dec

I’ve discovered that there are many things people don’t tell you about pregnancy and you get to experience them all firsthand when you become pregnant with your first child.

  1. You’re going to pee your pants. Sneezing, coughing, laughing — they’re all gonna make you pee your pants. And hey, you might be on a video conference call with your boss when it happens and  you get to sit there in your pee and pretend everything is totally normal. AMAZING. When you finally admit this to others, your mom friends tell you it never gets better and despite doing all the kegels in the world, you’re still going to spend the rest of your life peeing your pants after you have this kid. 46315855
  2. You might feel like someone kneed you in your crotch. Constantly. Your bones and your muscles all stretch and expand to get you ready to deliver your little one. What they don’t tell you is that you might be one of the “lucky” ladies out there to experience SPD (Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction). SPD feels like someone kicked you in the crotch … pretty much every time you move your pubic bones hurt. You can buy lovely bands to help with this. They essentially look like a female jock strap. HOT!59335746
  3. You’re not going to want sexy underwear anymore. It becomes all about function. I’ve found myself supremely irritated with maternity stores and their lack of functional panties. What they sell in said stores are basically the same as normal underwear, just larger, and I’m sorry, you have special needs when you’re growing a basketball in your stomach. All I want are giant granny panties and I’m not afraid to admit it. But finding said granny panties is a pain in the ass! I’ve yet to find a store with anything useful. I resorted to buying them from the Chinese and Japanese on Amazon. They know what’s up. And what’s up are giant panties that fit comfortably over your baby bump, not those “sexy” ones that just roll under your belly. GRANNY PANTIES ARE LIFE. Who cares if your husband laughs at you?BigUnderwear1
  4. Even before the baby gets here, sleep is a thing of the past. Get used to not sleeping … even if the baby isn’t here yet. You’re going to be uncomfortable. Your hips are gonna hurt and you’re going to have to change position in bed every couple hours. You’re also going to be up peeing every couple hours … or you will need to pee the very instant you just got comfortable. The struggle is very real, folks. the_struggle_by_the_ice_canine-d8qbgia
  5. You’re going to become unreasonable and intolerant. Were you previously laid back? Well, get ready for outbursts. Your tolerance level for bullshit is going to be at an all-time low. imgres.jpg

Time is Flying

1 Dec

Man, I’ve really been slacking with this journal. A whole lot of things have transpired since I last wrote. I’m 24 weeks this week with the baby I thought we’d never get to have. I still find myself in disbelief that I’m actually pregnant. Infertility and the barrage of bad news surrounding TTC are just so jarring, it’s something that sticks with you. It’s something you get used to. It changes you. Even now, I find myself not wanting to get too excited for fear something will go wrong. Of course, I might be conditioned to this cautious kind of thinking since so many other things in life have been going wrong. More on that later.

At about 20 weeks, we found out we’re having a little boy. My husband is super stoked to welcome a mini me in March. He’s been decorating the nursery in all Star Wars. The little guy was not very cooperative during the anatomy scan last month, so it took nearly 20 minutes of poking and prodding before he uncrossed his legs and stopped face palming himself long enough that the ultrasound technician could tell us he was a he. My doctor couldn’t get a good view of his heart during that scan, so I have to have another one done later this month when he’s bigger to make sure all is okay with his heart. I’m trying not to freak out about that since I was told not to, but I made the mistake of Googling what could be wrong and it was terrifying. Oops. Google is bad.

My mom is out of the hospital after spending 24 days there. She was in the ICU part of the time. It was horrible. There was a week when I wasn’t allowed to see her because of being pregnant and her fluids and drugs being dangerous to me and the baby. That was so hard. I can’t tell you how many days I just cried my eyes out. I sat in therapy one day and just sobbed. It was a constant struggle not to become a victim of my own bad thoughts. When I could go see her, she looked so bad and was so weak. Her counts were so low. Dangerously low. I really feared it was the end and I was just so, so incredibly scared. Luckily, once they realized she also needed matched donor platelets instead of the ‘mixed bag’ they normally give people, things started improving quickly. After a few days on those, she improved so much that they released her, but with a lot of rules like not going anywhere and limiting her visitors. Her last bone marrow test showed she’s in remission, so that’s great news. She’s home now and getting stronger every day. We were very thankful we could have her and my dad and my brother and sister-in-law over to celebrate Thanksgiving.

So, it seemed like everything was starting to be semi-okay … and then my husband found out that his mother has inoperable stage 4 lung cancer. What?! Yeah, another shitty blow. I think he’s more upset about it than he lets on, but he definitely doesn’t want to talk about it. Men are so weird about emotions. His mom had a stroke about 6 years ago and lives in a nursing home back east, so he’s going to fly out there in early January to spend some time with her and his sisters. I don’t think I’ll be able to go since I’ll be in the 3rd trimester at that point and don’t want to risk any possible pre-term labor that could happen from flying and that makes me sad. Her doctor said she could have weeks or months or even a couple years. There really is no telling.

My birthday was a couple weeks ago. We didn’t get to do much because my hubby was super sick that week. He still managed to sneak out and buy me flowers and a cake. Sneaky. Once he was feeling better, he took me out to pick out a new purse at Kate Spade. What a guy! ❤

I had my glucose tolerance test today. I won’t know the results for a couple days. I hate waiting! I’m so worried I’m going to fail. I’ve had so many friends tell me they failed the 1-hour and had to go back and do the 4-hour one. Yuck!

I’ve been feeling the little guy kick and move around a lot more. He really likes to wake me up around 3 or 4 in the morning with some ninja kicks. A friend of mine sent me this hilarious cartoon about “womb service.” I laughed.

womb_service

People keep asking us if we’re registered anywhere. I feel like such a slacker on that front. I’ll start looking at stuff, but then there’s just SO MUCH STUFF. It very quickly gets overwhelming. I need to consult my friends who are moms and ask what is really necessary and what is a waste of money. I found this kickass stroller that I totally want, but my husband isn’t a fan. He doesn’t love rainbows like I do, I guess. I think it’s the most amazingly colorful and fun stroller I’ve ever seen. Shouldn’t every day in a stroller be a baby walking rainbow party? Who’s with me?cosatto_supa_stroller_pixelate_e

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