Monday, June 30, 2008

167 Beats

That's how many beats per minute my baby's heart is beating.

That's right, I'm pregnant. There are those two little words again. And another two little words: 167 beats. Or two more: I'm thrilled. I'm blessed. I'm terrified. I'm enthralled. I'm nauseated. I'm exhausted. It's real. Those are all two little words I'm feeling every day.

Most of my dear readers were already aware we were expecting....I didn't want any of our family and friends to find out via a blog. There are a few people I haven't had the chance to if this is the first you're hearing - I'm sorry you're hearing it via my blog and not via my lips.

We found out we were expecting shortly before my birthday. My husband has a way of giving me really amazing presents this year. A baby for Christmas. A baby for my birthday. He's getting good at that whole present thing. ;)

And when I found out, I wanted to shout it from the rooftops - but I also wanted to ignore it. It was scary to me. I was afraid to jinx myself by getting too excited. I still feel that way just a bit. Afraid that if I celebrate too much, somehow fate will step in. It's not right, I know...but it's how I feel many days.

It wasn't helped by the fact that I started bleeding again in my sixth week. The same week I miscarried last time, only this time I knew that bleeding and cramps aren't always "normal" and sometimes they have a very negative outcome. And, I was in Dallas to boot - the same place I was when I miscarried last time - only last time I had the luxury of not knowing what was happening. This time I did. And I was terrified. Far from home, far from my own OB, far from my husband, and feeling so very, very alone.

I got back very late in the evening from my trip - and the very next day my OB had me in to her office. And there it was...the heartbeat. It was awe inspiring. And terrifying. And exciting. And so very real - something that could be a very real loss as well. My doctor put me on modified bed rest, progesterone pills, and told me to lay low for the next six weeks.

So, lay low I have. We were slow to tell people. We had to tell our families at that six week mark - if I suddenly bowed out of trips that had been planned, annual events that I never miss, week night get togethers, things weren't going to make sense to them. I was nervous to tell our family. Not that I didn't want them to know - but that untelling part - that part really sucks and quite frankly, I wasn't sure I wanted to go through that again. It sounds so morbid - as if I'm thinking negatively out of the gate. But honestly, once you have something like this happen to you, it never leaves the back of your mind. You can tell yourself over and over again that everything will be okay - but in the back of your mind, you realize there's the very real possibility that it won't be okay. And that makes you cautious. Makes you want to be very careful of tempting fate.

At eight weeks, my doctor had me back for a second ultrasound - and there was baby, swimming away...looking like a little tad pole. But I could see the flicker on the screen and hear the heartbeat and it was sweet music to my ears.

At that point, we started loosening up with the news. My immediate supervisor and his immediate supervisor at work knew - I had to tell them as I was grounded from flying until I was into my second trimester. And...I knew there would be days I'd need to work from home and I have to thank them again and again. They have been extremely gracious and understanding - allowing me to work from home when I need to - which in turn allows me to adjust my hours so that I'm getting a wee bit more sleep and still get everything done at work and stay on top of my game.

Today was my last ultrasound until our second trimester (around 18 weeks). It was part of the genetic testing that my husband and I have elected to do. Once I reached that "magic" old pregnant lady age, the genetic testing becomes more routine. Of all the things I'm worried about with this pregnancy, it isn't a birth defect. My husband, however, deals better in black and white - and he'd like to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there are no genetic issues. So, to ease his mind, we're going through all of the testing, including, most likely, an amniocentesis.

Today was pretty magical. My husband wasn't able to get the day off at the last minute (this appointment was made late in the day last Friday), so my best friend went with me. Instead of a quick peak with my OB, I had an hour long session with a sonographer. For the first part, baby was asleep and while she got great shots, she wasn't so sure baby was big enough for the testing measurements. So, she had me empty my bladder (these tests are done with a full bladder - and when I say full, I mean FULL) and gave it one last try. I don't know if it was the bathroom break or all of the poking and prodding, but when we tried again, baby had woken up and straightened out and we were able to get the measurements. The sonographer said that things looked good to her, but advised me that she was not qualified to read and report the actual results.

My oh my how things changed when baby woke up. The pictures above are from that time frame - but they don't do it justice - they were much clearer on the screen. Baby was waving his little arms around - doing little flips and turns. It was really quite amazing. I finally felt the peace that I'd been hoping for. This really is going to happen and it really is going to be okay.

You might notice I said "he". I realize I have no real idea - but it's a gut instinct, I think it's a boy. We'll see in about 7 weeks if I'm right.

From here on out, you might see me posting more. My days have been pretty quiet as of late - I go to work, I come home, I take a nap, I wake up, I make dinner - or don't; we've been eating pretty light around here, Me because nothing tastes good and it all makes me rather queasy and my husband because he's been getting home late and doesn't like to go to bed on a super heavy meal - thank goodness for small miracles, I think I'd be throwing up more if I actually had to cook. Then, I go to bed and do it all over again.

And being the typical pregnant lady - the majority of my thoughts revolve around being pregnant...and being that I wasn't ready to blog about it - I just didn't have much to say. But, as I progress out of this first trimester, get that second wind that every talks about, and leave the queasies behind....I'm sure I'll have more to say.

So...there you go, there are my two words for the day - and a few more than that. But honestly, would you expect any less from me? I rarely keep what I'm thinking to Two Little Words.

Friday, June 27, 2008

I'm Floored

A complete stranger is reading my blog and actually COMMENTING on it!




Here here I thought my friends barely read it - much less strangers actually finding and reading my blog.

I don't know whether to feel honored or a little wigged out!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I Agree (or do I?)

I don't know if it's blogger netiquette to do this, so I want to say that I did not write what is below, it is a direct link from a Blog I read fairly often. This was today's post - and it spoke to my heart so clearly - I wanted to spread the word....but then I got to thinking....

How does this affect the Pro Choice movement? It would certainly provide a lot of ground for Right to Life attorneys. It takes us down a slippery slope of defining what is a life, unborn, and what is not. Some of my dear friends and readers would say, "GOOD! We need to go down that road!" But some of my dear friends and readers would not.

Have I changed my opionion on this issue? I've always been such a staunch supporter of the Pro Choice movement. I never wanted to force others to choose based on my own personal beliefs. I don't want to go back to back alley coat hanger abortions. No matter how much education we get out there about options, no matter what is said or done, women who are desperate are going to resort to that should abortion be criminalized again. I don't want to see that happen.

But, make no mistake about it, when I miscarried, I lost my baby. I lost somthing that had a beating heart and was alive, albeit inside me, but that baby was alive. At least, that's what my heart believes. And I can tell you, I never in a million years thought I would know that feeling. But I do, and I can't take it back.

So where do we go with something like this? How do we recognize such loss as being legitimate, which is what I think most people are after? I don't think I have all of the answers - but I do know that I wish I had something - anything - that said, "yes...this baby was yours and it was here, and now it's gone - and you have ever right to grieve."

No flames please, I know this is a controversial topic....I offer it up for your consideration and thought, not for your anger if you don't agree.

You can read the Blog at: ( for the exact blog post).


There's nothing harder than losing a child. But, what about the devastation parents endure when their baby dies in utero? When I came across a post on Jezebel about the politics behind getting grieving parents stillborn birth certificates, I was aghast that just 23 states offer the families more than a death certificate.
A recent report in the New York Post, talked about the current bill that advocates hope will pass in the Big Apple. Outside of City Hall, one New Yorker shared his story. He said:
"The first time I held my son, Daniel, was the single saddest moment of my life," said Staten Islander Jeff Tieger, whose first child was stillborn on Feb. 8, 2007. ". . . Not another minute should go by before [this bill] is passed."
His raw words reminded me of a heart wrenching piece that former San Francisco Chronicle reporter, Suzanne Pullen wrote about the experience of delivering her first child who had passed away. She said:
You don't plan for the doctor to tell you your future has no heartbeat. You don't plan to deliver a baby who will never open his eyes. You don't plan on coming home with an urn of ashes instead of a bag of diapers. Before my son died, I had every hope -- and worry -- of being a good mother.
It's these emotions that make one wonder why national legislation has not been passed.

Friday, June 6, 2008

I'm airborn!

Or rather, I'm not...but I was last week and it's taken me a week just to catch up. I went to the Big D on a business trip for the entire week last week and it was a doozy.

One of the things I like about going to Dallas is having some face time with my team. Sometimes it's so much easier to just stand up and walk into someone's office to deal with an issue than to try and coordinate schedules, phone time, web meetings, etc. to figure something out.

We had really good meetings. I was able to interact with some high level VPs and at one point had one of them (who's always treated me as an "admin"...which in his estimation means I'm good for making copies and getting coffee) started interacting with me like I was a business analyst with actual knowledge to share. That was a banner moment for me.

One of the other things I like about going to Dallas is having hotel staff that recognizes me. That's nice :)

However, the summer travel season is upon us - and that, my dear blog readers, for the business traveler, is pure hell.

We can run, but we can't hide from the vacation travelers.

I've traveled a fair amount in my mere 35 years. I've done it as business traveler, I've done it as a vacation traveler, and I've done it as a true "traveler" - and those three things are not the same. Not one little bit.

The vacation traveler is traveling for fun and usually with their kids. They aren't in a hurry, nor should they be, they're on vacation! A vacation traveler is someone who is bringing the kids and the kitchen sink and will be at enter your summer travel destination of choice here for a few weeks at most. They've got everything they could need, and then some.

The business traveler is in a hurry. They've most likely already been at work for 8 hours by the time they're at the airport, they're expected in meetings 30 minutes after they land, and they're expected to actually get work done on the plane - in coach - where there's oh so much room to work. They do this week in, week out. They've got getting through security down to a science. They know exactly what's expected of them and when.

The traveler is one who is on a journey. They might be going to vacation destinations - but they're doing it as a life experience, not a vacation. They've got a back pack, a travel guide, a passport, and the understanding that things come and go - they'll get there by and by. They're in it for the journey, not the destination.

I was a traveler once. I traveled most of Asia and honestly - it's an experience I'll never be able to repeat. Unless I win the lottery, I'll never be able to travel where my nose takes me that day and come home when it suits me. I'll never be able to fit my life into a backpack. A rolling carry on, maybe, but not a back pack. It's something everyone should do, but not many have the adventurous nature for....

These days, I'm a business traveler. Even when I'm vacationing, I'm a business traveler. I know what to expect at the security gate. I know to wear easy slip on and off shoes. I know not to wear 14 layers because I have to take them all off. I know not to wear 71 gold necklaces, a studded belt, and 4 rings on each finger - chances are, I'll set off the metal detector. I wear simple business casual clothes, have my one small laptop case (that yes, fits under my seat and is easily accessed to pop that laptop out for security) and my one small roll on (that fits appropriately in the overhead bin - I don't have to shove, hit, kick, push to get it in said overhead) and I have all of my liquids in a quart size bag I can easily access for that same security line. I'm able to travel for an entire week with this being what I take. I know to keep my boarding pass handy, as well as my ID, and not to dawdle. I've got a plane to catch.

When those vacation travelers come out in droves, God bless 'em, I go a little insane. I really wish there was a line for vacation travelers and a line for business travelers - and not one that's based on my mileage plan, but one based on performance.

Seriously. I'm not there yet in the mileage plan that would get me into the short line. But I travel enough to know what I'm doing. And standing behind the mom that has her infant, her toddler, and all the carry on to support them, can be a little tiresome. It's not that I don't like that mom - she has adorable children that I usually flirt with when I'm on the plane. I'll be that mom, one day, God willing - though I hope my time as a business traveler will teach me that I can check the stroller and use a sling of some sort. Heck, I can check most things. I need just enough to get me and the child entertained through the flight. And, from watching these parents, they don't actually use a 1/4 of what they bring on the plane. It's usually one or two go two items and they're good.

But for now, I'm the business traveler caught in line behind you, while you try to shepperd your kids through, get upset that you have to take your shoes off, have more carry-ons than you're allowed and don't really care how efficiently you get through the line, because gosh darn it, isn't everyone on Aruba time?

Whew....all of that and I didn't even tell you about the flight itself.

Ahhhh, stories for another day.