Monday, September 19, 2011

Hit me baby, one more time...

So a little over a month ago, I asked myself (and whoever else might read it) "how do I stop trying?" And since that time, I went to see my obstetrician who suggested that I not waste any more time trying to conceive on my own, and he referred me to a fertility specialist. I came home, waited long enough for the referral to be processed, and then called to make my appointment on October 10th with the fertility specialist two hours away in Kansas City. I filled out my eleven page new patient health history packet, submitted my medical record release at the hospital so that all of my OB records could be sent to the specialist, and patiently waited while days passed by ever so slowly. In the meantime, I had gone ahead and done my ovulation predictor tests, did the deed with my husband on all the days I was supposed to, and waited for my period to show up, yet again. Only this month, as my monthly visit from Aunt Flo got closer and closer, I noticed something was...different. I wasn't having cramps. I wasn't bloated. I wasn't anything. For months I had been hoping that all my usual PMS symptoms were actually pregnancy symptoms, but that was never the case. And this month, I wasn't even having my usual PMS.

Yesterday morning I woke up and decided that, even though I was about 99% sure I wasn't pregnant, I would go ahead and take a home pregnancy test, which I have a perpetual stock of these days. My period was a no show as of yet, but hey, at my age it's not exactly clockwork anymore. I dipped my stick, counted to twenty, laid it on the windowsill as usual, and went about my morning ritual of brushing teeth and taking my nine million vitamins. After about a minute I glanced over expecting to see the little hourglass still blinking, counting down the three minutes of torture until the words "not pregnant" appeared. But it wasn't blinking. So I bent down and looked closer and stopped cold. There it was. After months of thinking I would never see it again. One...single...word. Pregnant.

I gasped. Then I bounced up and down. Then I texted my mother, who immediately called me and was already crying. I texted the rest of my immediate family, at which point my phone started to blow up. And then I took a picture of my EPT with my phone and posted it on facebook. I'm not one of these superstitious women who thinks you should keep mum about such things until after the first trimester. I'm pretty sure me blabbing to everyone I know that I'm expecting isn't going to affect whether or not this baby decides to stick with me for nine months. What I am sure of is, I'm happy. And this is the kind of happiness that you want to share with all the people you love. So share it I did.

So this morning I went to the hospital to have my blood test drawn, and it's official, I am pregnant. My due date is May 26th, 2012. Ironically, I'm due the same month that my husband is set to deploy to Afghanistan. Luckily he will be able to stay behind until the baby is born, and for ten days after the birth. It may not sound like much, but considering he missed the birth of our son when he was in Iraq, this really is an improvement.

So how do you stop trying? Well, you don't. Not until your dream comes true. And I hope that everyone out there who is reading this never stops believing in their dream, and never stops trying to make it come true.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Never forget...

Ten years ago today I was at work. I was in a...transition phase of my life. I had left my job at the University of Memphis Art Department to pursue my big dream of working in New York City, which had spectacularly blown up in my face. When I returned home to Memphis, I was jobless. My old position at UofM had been filled, and I had no idea what I was going to do with my life. So I had gotten a job shelving books at Barnes and Noble to pay the bills until I got a grip. And that's what I was doing on the morning of September 11, 2001. I was shelving books. The store hadn't opened yet, so it was only staff in the store when the news first came in. One of the assistant managers of the store came running out of the office to tell everyone that a plane had flown into the World Trade Center. Then he changed the store's music channel to the news, and we all listened in horror at the news reports of what was going on in the city that I had only just recently departed.

When I think back to that day, it seems life a lifetime ago. And for me I guess it was. Long gone are those days when I didn't know what I was doing with my life. And long gone are the days when I felt a sense of security that I truly believed to be impenetrable. Four months later I started nursing school. Two years later I was a registered nurse, which is a career I proudly did for four years. And then in 2008, I met this nerdy gamer guy who incidentally was a combat medic in the U.S. Army. And since then my life has truly found it's purpose. On December 7, 2009, on the 68th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, I gave birth to my son. And as is the case with many a military child's birth since 9/11, his father was in Iraq when he was born.

Many American lives changed on September 11, 2001. And on that horrific day in New York City, New Yorkers and Americans everywhere made the promise that they would never forget. And while some people may have slipped back into the comfortable complacency that they are safe in this country, they have only done so thanks to the sacrifices that have been and continue to be made by so many brave patriots of this beautiful country. So on this ten year anniversary of September 11, 2001, hug your babies and your spouses and your family, thank someone who would sacrifice his or her very life for your freedom, and remember what you swore to never forget.