lezbemoms

Raising a Blended Family

Derailed, Retracking

As I’m writing you, the mood here is a pretty mixed bag. Excitement, nerves, disappointment, sadness. Nothing is ever simple. Not here in Casa Lezbemoms.

Shorty’s cycle has been trucking right along. Perfect pre-ovulation temps, perfect as-predicted positive OPK today, our Known Donor was ready and willing to go… except we’re not, anymore.

Yesterday, the day before the freaking positive OPK, after an entire cycle of temping and tracking and impatience and ready-to-go, Shorty got an email. And in that email was an invitation to the final stages of selection to a dream job Shorty had applied for.  The job would be amazing for our family.  It’s federal, so we would both have benefits (thank you, downfall of DOMA!) and so would all the kids. Shorty used to be military, so she could use her years of service towards retirement. It would allow us a lot more flexibility to move the hell out of a state we both hate.  Oh yeah, and it’s more money than she currently makes. It would be GREAT.

However, hard on the heels of elation at the opportunity came disappointment and frustration.  Having a chance at this job also means that knocking her up is probably not the best idea right now.   For basic starters, she would not be eligible for FMLA and maternity leave until she had been there for a year.  They might be willing to work with us, they might not. Probably not. There is also a strenuous physical test she must pass in order to even finish hiring on for the job- she wouldn’t be able to take that test while pregnant. And then there’s the matter of her settling into a new job and accruing sick leave and personal time, going away for two months of training (freaking georgia. for TWO MONTHS. 😦 ) , and the rotating schedule she would have to endure for the first year until she settles into her permanent schedule. Being pregnant is not conducive to any of this!

Still, the job is a great opportunity and there are great reasons (see above) she applied in the first place.  It’s just the timing that sucks. Finding this out the day before you expect to get your positive OPK and having to make the decision to pull the plug even after you’ve already made arrangements with the donor and you have your bags packed for the trip is unbelievably frustrating. Sort of like when your baby wakes up and starts screaming while you and your wife are in flagrante delicto and juuuust about to finish the deed… only not, because one of you has to roll yourself out of bed to go tend your screaming newborn. Pardon the comparison.

Unquestionably, plans for the job move forward. She has one more interview tomorrow night (fingers crossed).  The question now is, where do babymaking plans go from here?

She doesn’t have the job yet. She could not even get it. Or, as we’re obviously hoping, she could. But we’re not going to find any of that out until too late for this cycle. Maybe not even on time for the next one.

If it were just the matter of waiting a cycle or two, we’d be fine. We’d wait. But if she gets this, it will be much longer than that (see: training period away from home, probationary period with no call-ins allowed, etc). We don’t know if we’re willing to wait that long. It ultimately depends on how long that wait is but we don’t know how long it is until we’ve waited it. It’s crazymaking.

The other obvious choice is to just use me again.  After swearing up and down that I was never doing that crap again, thank you very much, my biological clock is betraying me and I find myself wanting to be pregnant again. So I wouldn’t mind taking one for the team, per se, and my cycle is even participating: I could get pregnant as early as next week. But we’re not sure that’s what we want to do. Shorty also really wants to be pregnant again and had been looking forward a lot to trying this cycle. So, me getting pregnant, while it would get us the baby we both want, would feel kind of weird- almost wrong. I don’t want to take this opportunity from my wife.

The agreement we’ve come to for right now, which knowing this household could change any second, is that we’ll wait to see. We’re hoping to know the results of this interview and whether or not she’ll be offered the job by the time I ovulate. If she gets it, then we could go ahead and have me get pregnant. If not, then we could wait for her to ovulate again and continue as planned.  If we don’t find out by the time I ovulate, we’ll probably just wait. I would hate to inseminate me, and then two days later find out that we could have gone with her after all.*

That’s the working plan. We’ll keep you updated… things here tend to move fast and change even faster.

Let us know if you have any other ideas. We’re open!

*Not that I think this will happen. My wife is a rockstar and she’s GOT this!

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The Weirdest Thing Happened Today

Being a mama is amazing. Being a breastfeeding mama has certain perks. One of them is that generally, one gets a prolonged amount of time without a period after the birth of their baby.

For me, it was a very, very long time, that unfortunately ended today. Aunt Flo arrived! As I haven’t had a period since Dec. 18, 2011 (you try filling in a million “last menstrual period” questionairres during pregnancy and then see if that’s a date you ever forget!), it was distinctly odd to wake up this morning to those old, familiar cramps. The last time this happened, I ended up pregnant!

Not that I didn’t see it coming. Pax has been nursing less and less and my body has been producing less.  Plus, we were gone to Jamaica for a whole week. Granted, I pumped that whole time, but there was still a little drop in supply that I wondered if it would trigger this.

Lo and behold…. welcome back to womanhood.

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General Update

So we are sitting here at Shorty’s CD7, anxiously wishing time would go faster so we could inseminate and get the TWW started. Ya’ll… we’ve got baby fever. Bad.

I never even knew it was possible to have baby fever when you already have a, you know, actual baby already in the house- but it is! Besides, our baby is on the verge of being notsomuch a baby and we miss the days of head-bobbling, gummy grins and sleepy newborn stares.

Beyond that, we are anxious for Pax to have a close-in-age sibling, and both of us are nervous about how long TTC this new baby will actually take. We were so, so lucky when Pax came to us after only two tries- can lightning strike twice? Could we be that lucky? It remains to be seen but every month that passes means Pax gets older and he and his sib get farther apart in age. Right now, we’re fine- we’re still within the window of time that would put them about 2 years apart or so. Perfect. We just have to get the job done in that time frame, which leaves us a couple months to work with and a steadily-increasing sense of anxiety.

I guess we’ll see.

Shorty is temping and going to start using OPKs in a few days.  We’ve been having some wonky cycles where she gets her positive OPK on CD14 or 15 but doesn’t get her period until CD31 or so. Really long luteal phase? The other monkey wrench in the bag is that she’s typically been getting a negative OPK in the afternoon, and then by that evening it’s positive, but by the next morning it’s negative again. We’re assuming this means she has a short surge, which I always thought meant she would ovulate very soon after the positive test as well. If that were true, it would mean (given the standard 2 week luteal phase) her cycles should be only 28-29 days, instead of 31ish. So where are we picking up these extra few days? It’s crazymaking.

Regardless, the plan is to try to cover both bases by doing an insemination the night of our positive OPK, and another one the next night. Since we’re using fresh swimmers, the hope is they will last longer than thawed ones and cover a wider window of time. I guess we’ll see how that works out. Shorty’s temperature should at least confirm when she ovulates this cycle, and give us an idea of if we got our timing right or not.

So bring on the positive OPK, I’m impatient to get this show on the road!

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Ten Months Old!

August 10, 2013

Dear Sunshine Boy,

I know these letters have been too few and far between, but I just HAD to write one to you right now- you are ten months old and changing so fast! Right now you are somewhere in the neighborhood of 19-20 lbs (60th percentile last dr. visit), and 29.5 inches long (80-something percentile last dr. visit), and wearing twelve month clothing. You are still mostly bald on the top with longer hair on the sides and back, leading us to call you our “little old man” or sometimes “the professor.” You sit in your big-boy carseat now and have been for about a month and a half, though you still look so little in it! I feel like you are walking the very fine line between baby and crawdler/toddler- with some things you do reminding me that you’re only ten months old, and others reminding us that you are on the verge of ONE YEAR OLD, and getting closer every day!

You babble like a baby. Your favorite sound to make is “mama,” which you will either say clearly and directly pointed at one of us as our name (the other day, your sister was holding you and trying to play with you, and you were fussing and not enjoying it; I snuck up behind you and plucked you out of her arms and with a cry of joy you turned around and recognized me: “mama!”), or, alternatively, you will babble away with it: mamamamamadabamamama. You also like to yell it, emphasis on the second syllable: ma MA!!! Maaaaaaaaaaaaaa MA! MAMA! Again, this can be either directed at us (when you’re in the play room by yourself and would like to be rescued, thank you very much) or just for amusement (when you’re bored in your carseat as we’re driving down the road). Either way is fine with us, and frankly both are adorable.

You are starting to try to move like a toddler. You just mastered true crawling within the past month (no more of that army-style crawling for you!) and you are pulling up and cruising on EVERYTHING. You enjoy pulling up on your piano-style bouncer that we never used as a bouncer- it’s fun because you step on the keys with your feet, which then make noise, which delights you to no end. You have also made several attempts at individual standing- the longest was five seconds before you plopped back down. And you will take steps if we hold your hands and will use your walker to get across the playroom if we place you on it. So, you’re getting there!

You’re finally eating more like a toddler too. When, at nine months old, you were still exclusively breastfed and refusing all forms of solids- puree, soft chewable, puff, or otherwise- we decided it was time to check in and see if you needed some help learning to eat. We saw a speech pathologist at the children’s hospital who informed us that your delays were because you had had such bad reflux as an infant. You had essentially taught yourself NOT to eat as a protective measure. We had no idea! The SP taught us how to feed you, got you started on breastmilk-yogurt smoothies that we gradually thinned out (to help you learn to drink from a straw), and had us feed you “puffy” foods that would simply melt in your mouth, even if you did not chew and swallow them (to lessen choking hazards; organic cheetohs and freeze dried fruit were good for this). You caught on very quickly and one month later, you’re eating avocado and eggs and cheese and lots of other things, in addition to eating baby food purees. We’re so happy to have a baby who eats!!!

It was also rather timely of you to learn to eat, since this past month of your life Moms abandoned you for a week while we went on vacation solo. You were left with your Grandma Shelley, who reports that you did very well while we were gone, drank a ton of Mommy’s freezer stash of breast milk, and even started sleeping through the night (apparently if the Boob isn’t around, it isn’t worth waking up for, though you quickly reversed your sleep progress and continued your nighttime wakings as soon as Moms got home). We felt bad- so bad!- leaving you, but honestly I think it worked out for the best and helped you to come out of your shell a little bit. We sure as heck missed you like crazy though!

Mommy pumped her milk (every three hours except at night) the whole time she was gone in order to make sure you could continue breastfeeding when we returned, and although her supply dipped a little bit, your demand when we got back was more than enough to get things up to snuff again! So yes, you are still breastfeeding- only now, you’re doing it like a toddler. You do NOT sit still or even lay still anymore while eating. Your favorite thing now is to latch on, and then get up on your hands and knees with my boob still in your mouth and look around at all the sights to see. I’ve tried to get you to just eat sitting up but apparently Boob Gymnastics are more fun. You have also “helped yourself” quite a few times now (not counting the times when we cosleep at night, since you always help yourself then). One time, you pulled up using my shirt and the couch as handholds, and you accidentally pulled my shirt down when you did that. I wasn’t wearing a bra so you decided that right then and there was a good time to help yourself- standing and everything! You will also crawl across the bed and latch on all by yourself now if I am not wearing a shirt at bedtime. In short, you are DEFINTILEY acting like a toddler and I miss our close, cuddly feedings. You are a man on the move and even for eating, you cannot slow down.

Your favorite activities right now are varied- you still love reading, and love it when Mommy sings the Baby Beluga book to you. You also love being sung “You Are My Sunshine-“ it’s become yours and Mommy’s song and we affectionately call you Sunshine Boy now because of it (and because you’re always so happy!). You also love your bouncer still (your rainforest one, not your piano one), like being in the stroller more and more for walks, and like manipulating things with your ever-improving pincer grasp. Mommy got you a bead maze that you are quite fond of and you are also teething (8 teeth, going on ten!) so you like anything you can chew on as well. Bathtimes are a favorite- you love splashing in the water and chewing on all your bath toys. You’re a very busy little guy!

Moms love you so much and we cannot believe you’re already this big. Mommy would like to freeze you in time and not have you get any bigger until she’s ready, but since she knows that’s impossible, she looks forward to seeing you grow and learn more through the coming months.

With All Our Love,

Mommy and Mama

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Happy First Birthday, Baby Girl!

Addie is one year old today. Although we are not with her, we are certainly thinking about her. All the memories… the sweet, sweet nights of bottle feedings and swaddles, the newborn days, learning to roll, sit, laugh, smile, crawl. About a million memories to fill up her first year on this earth.

Addie girl, we love you. We will always love you and we miss you very very much.

 

Just born, with Thing One at the hospital

Just born, with Thing One at the hospital

new, new, new

new, new, new

With Shorty for the first time

With Shorty for the first time

with Amazon for the first time

with Amazon for the first time

three weeks old

three weeks old

three weeks old

three weeks old

her first night with us

her first night with us

she didn't even fill up a whole sleep sack!

she didn’t even fill up a whole sleep sack!

sweet sweet nights

sweet sweet nights

Thing One learning how to be a big sister

Thing One learning how to be a big sister

sweet dreams, three weeks old

sweet dreams, three weeks old

first time in an Ergo

first time in an Ergo

baff times! One month old!

baff times! One month old!

I still love this picture

I still love this picture

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