Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Acu-what?

Oh, the lengths we will go to.
Or at least...that I will go to.
I'm tired of the way I feel here.
And I want to do something to change it.

Today, I went and had acupuncture done.
And this is a day after I just finished taking my last dose of Clomid.
My body is probably wondering what the hell is going on.
The fertility drugs made me feel awful...
an emotional wreck...
the acupuncture made me feel wonderful.

I'm just praying for a miracle this month.

What made me turn to acupuncture?
I got this book.
And it gave me some more hope,
and even before I read it, I knew that there was nothing wrong with me.
Except that some really tragic things have happened,
and it has reeked havoc on my body and my spirit.

I am not infertile.
Nothing is broken,
except for my heart...
and it must be connected to my uterus.
So I needed to get my Qi (pronounced chee) centered.
And I really feel like it did something today.
I left feeling better than when I came. And the emotional stress I had carried since Monday seemed to finally leave my tensed muscles.
On Monday I went to group and it was hard for a reason that I knew would eventually come.
There was a woman there mourning the death of 2 babies....which were triplets.
And then she told me she had been given one of Will's blankets...
I have been secretly hoping that no one would ever have to get one.
As I tied those memorial messages on each one over a year ago,
it pained me to think of someone else having to go through this hell.
It still does.
And when she told me of the blanket and what it meant to her,
it was as if something had gone full circle.
In my mind, if I could have given those blankets in hopes that 52 babies wouldn't die,
I would have given a million.

But as I laid there today and felt like a freaking pincushion,
something changed.
I have come to the point in grief where I am trying,
really trying,
to overcome this...and heal.
Now, all I can do is be consistent and keep praying.
I want it to work this month so badly.
And also know, that if it doesn't~clomid is not for me.
After going back and reading some old posts from this time last year,
I have come so far.
And for this, I am extremely grateful.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Getting older...

My little brother turns 24 today.
But he will always seem much younger to me...
He will always be that skinny little kid
that tormented me by sneaking into my room to steal gum,
that harassed all my pretty friends:)
that has always made me laugh with his impeccable timing
and unique sense of humor.
For those that know my family...
it is common knowledge that Eric is hilarious.
And I will never run out of his stories...
his life has only enriched mine.

Sure,
he has gotten older with the years.
But there is something reassuring that with time, 
he will be one of the few people that I can always count on to be the same.
He will always be brutally honest,
never fake...
always real...
and his excitement~ authentic.

He has not stopped talking about his birthday since this summer,
in case you didn't know...
its kind of a big deal:)
He thinks that getting 24 dollars in his birthday card makes him rich.
Even better?
It must mean more money if it comes to him in all singles :)
And that is just one simple reason, out of thousands, why I love him so much.

Friday, October 16, 2009

North Cakalaka...





So last weekend I flew down to Charlotte and picked up our new car.
Everything went better than planned.
Except for the rain.
But given that it was 80 degrees, I decided to overlook that little detail.
After picking up the car,
I checked into the sweet hotel that was practically free
thanks to our collection of Starpoints through SPG.
After a little exploring and a nap,
I jumped in my new ride to meet my longtime friend for some shopping.
We spent Friday night doing what we do best:
shopping for insanely good deals and eating.
There was an amazing sunset, which I tried to take a pic of...
but instead its behind my sunglasses. Brilliant.

Upon arriving back to the hotel,
we opened the door to find a chilled bottle of bubbly.
We were totally surprised.
Along with it, a note from Tim...
Wishing us a fun-filled weekend.
Too sweet. My husband rocks.

Instead of hitting up the packed bar downstairs,
we poured some drinks,
changed into the new sweat pants we both both bought,
along with our cute t-shirts from J.Crew (that we scored for $1.99)
and climbed into our little double beds for some girl talk.
Quite nearly a perfect day.

The next morning I hit the road to drive from Charlotte
to Toledo, Ohio...To break up the trip I rewarded myself
with things like Chick-fil-A (SO wish we had one of those here)
and then onto Starbucks in VA for a Pumpkin Spice Latte.
The drive wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.
It still rained of course,
but the fall colors were completely amazing.
I can only imagine what they might have looked like in the sun with a blue sky as the backdrop.
I did have one moment of near insanity while driving a long stretch
of sickness-inducing curved road through the Appalachian Mtns in West Virginia...
Not only was I going nuts driving back and forth between the curves,
then for nearly 2 hours I only had two radio stations...
So without the distraction of music,
I concentrated on going as fast as possible while keeping my chicken sandwich where it belonged.
Many times, I would nearly swerve off the road as I tried to look behind me at the gorgeous view as I slowly climbed the Appalachians.
My pictures don't even come close to doing it justice.
As soon as I crossed into Ohio the temp dropped big time,
and by the time I was home on Sunday,
there was nearly a 50 degree difference.
The best thing about the car?
It has a heated steering wheel and seats...
something I have used every single day~HA!
It was a fun trip.
I loved Charlotte and wished that Tim could have gone too,
it is great to explore new areas together.
The only thing that really threw me?
That southern accent:)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

National Day of Remembrance...


Another year already.
Last October was my first knowledge of this "holiday".
Or should I say, my first true understanding of it.

Again, when I woke up this morning
I was intensely sad...unable to start the mindless yo-yo again.
While Tim got ready, all I could do was lay in bed.
All I could do was cry.
And the real point is, my brain didn't register that today was the National Day of Remembrance,
because to my heart?
Every day still is.

And all day long, I kept thinking...
And how much sweeter it would be if Will were here.
How much different it would be if he were here...

But he's not.
And then when I realized what today was...
I cut myself some slack.
And let myself fully miss him,
because so often it causes so much pain,
that I block out what I loved most...
his beautiful face,
his sweet new baby smell...
the way it felt to hold him after fighting so hard to keep him here.

Then later today,
another fail: definitely not pregnant.

But what else do we do?
I can't lay in bed forever.
We must get up, go to work, find a sense of purpose regardless.
And still there are days like today,
when I look at his picture and truly still can't believe all the hell we went through.
It makes me sick.

And it takes all I have to simply...
get up,
pray for peace...
get dressed to face the day,
and remember to breathe.
A new baby could never and won't ever replace him,
but its a much needed blessing that our family needs.
It just seems so long overdue.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Dreams & reality...

It has been so busy lately.

Now I know that God knew just what he was doing when he put this specific job in my path. Its only 2 days a week, but with planning, meetings, and other sub days I feel like my life has been one of those cartoons where it shows the old style calendar pages flying off the wall and blowing away.

The days have been blowing away...
And so I am getting used to trying to be normal again,
which is actually very hard after so many major changes.
But things are going okay.

But I get constant reminders that other's lives are quickly progressing as well, and then it seems like my life is going way too slow.
Still no baby...Still, we are waiting.

And I would be lying if I wrote that it didn't bother me. I'm sick of waiting, sick of feeling like a bad person when in my heart when I pray and all I can mutter sometimes is..."When will it be our turn?"

Yes, it is the last month before I try a drug to increase our chances. But I don't even want to think about that. There have been consultations and tests, yet nothing to say why its taking so long. So we wait. And we are tired.

And as we wait out these final days, I go from extremes. One day I hardly give it a thought, then the next I am fighting an urge that it won't ever happen for us. Thoughts of adoption to surrogates goes through my head. At times, the battle to stay positive seems like an endless ocean...yet every day I continue to hold onto some mysterious shred of hope..that one day soon, things will change.

And it will happen. Even thought I am sick of waiting.

But in other areas...Some other things are changing.
We are getting a new car.
Normally this wouldn't be a big deal,
but in true Julie fashion~there is a great story behind it all.

Cars hold a special place for Tim and I.
Because life changing events have unfolded around ours...
Tim's car was bought the day after he returned home from Iraq.
I remember sitting in the dealership, worried that he was going to fall over from exhaustion.
He was on Iraq time, and yet we HAD to buy a car that day.
So his Jeep has been a trustworthy vehicle,
loaded with histories and memories of Camp Pendleton,
driving all over L.A.,
dropping him off for his 2nd tour in Iraq...
sitting there in the early morning,
watching him walk away and wondering if it would be the last time I would see him,
and lastly, me driving it across the country on my way back home.
Actually, Will and I sitting there for many days...
allowing me time to think about how great it all was going to be.
How great it was all supposed to be...
that disappointment is finally beginning to dull.

As the miles piled up on that car, so did the memories.
Now, its time for something else.
So when we started "sort of" looking it wasn't a big deal.
But of course, something showed up...
because we weren't planning on it.
Those of you that know me are going to laugh:
We bought a car on EBay.

Yes. Ebay.
My friends in CA know I buy everything from there.
My nurses and doctors watched me buy things (and sell too)
as I was laying in my hospital bed.
I love eBay.

So tomorrow, I will fly down to the dirty south (NC)
and pick up the car.
My girlfriend is meeting me for a girl's night in Charlotte.
I can't wait.
And I say "why not?"
I might as well live it up,
life is too short...so stay tuned for some pics.

What is that?
Oh its 80 degrees and sunny down there?
You mean I have to leave the rain and frigid temps?
Darn it:)
Perhaps I'll just stay down there.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Day "5"

Current wonderful things in my life...

I love the season of fall,
it is the one time of year when I love the cooler weather...
the leaves starting to change,
the clouds,
the comfort of staying in my home on a wretched-weather of a day.

Our home is peaceful,
the deer and animals are out back...
sometimes I feel like looking out my huge back window is some sort of strange nature exhibit, who knows what I'll see.

I have a wonderful husband,
who works harder than anyone else I know.
We keep each other in check and accountable,
making sure we bring our best to the table each day...
best of all,
he still makes me laugh...a lot.
We've been through more than most people endure in a lifetime,
I can't imagine anyone else standing by my side to face it.

Quite possibly, we have the best dog that God ever created...
she is never allowed to die.

There are lots of great things:
family, friends, teaching...
but also things that are not tangible:
faith & hope.
I guess the most notable thing right now,
is that for the first time in awhile...
I am once again happy to be me.
That is a hugely wonderful thing.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Day: I lost count...

The rain is coming down,
with the cool fall wind blowing outside.
I am sitting here in my cozy bathrobe with warm coffee...
home from work because I'm sick....
and also, totally content.

Something should be wrong
with being so busy that you actually fall ill.
That the only time a person gets to chill out
is when they are home with the chills and a fever.

But I have been waiting SO LONG
to be busy,
to have a job,
to have a new sense of purpose...
that I am not having a hard time with being sick,
but I am bummed that I had to cancel teaching.

These last few weeks,
I have felt more like myself
than in all the time since moving here.
I am just annoyed that I have not been able to keep up with
the daily gratitude challenge.
But that doesn't mean I haven't been thinking about it.

Where I left off, the next "assignment" was to write a message of thanks for some of the "negative" things in my life.
In thinking about this, I have mixed emotions...
At one point in my life,
having Tim in the Marines and deployed to Iraq brought up bitterness and longing feelings at what our lives could have been at the time...had he been home, had he not been so busy, had he not been wounded in Fallujah.
But now?
I look back at that time in CA as a great growing period.
A span of time that was probably just as painful for those that loved me,
as it was for both Tim & I.
And yet, enough time has passed that I can look back and see all the good it brought out in us...
suddenly, it is no longer a negative, but a very large positive.

Fast forward 6 years.
Here we are, in our move to Michigan and losing the child we loved more than ourselves.
Obviously, death can be labeled as a current negative thing in my life...and because I associate this loss with the act of moving here, they will always be grouped as one.
And many people are probably to the point of thinking
"It was 15 months ago, get over it already."
But...I know it doesn't work that way.
In due time.
I have learned not to be rushed in this.
Not to ignore it.
Not to let others impact the time my heart needs to grieve.

And today, I am grateful.
Grateful for many things because of the last 16 months. Grateful for many things people take for granted and assume that it is owed to them.
I am walking away from this with many things...
A stronger faith.
A better relationship with my spouse.
A greater appreciation for simple living in every day life.

I have learned to let go.
I am no longer a control freak.
I don't care about the hurtful things others say...
because in the end?
They can judge and then walk away.

Will's shadow and the endless possibilities of his life
will always be part of my existence.
Just as a shadow suddenly appears, so do thoughts of him.

And while I reached the lowest point a year after his death,
I am grateful to know that progress is being made.
Feelings of happiness and contentment find me...
when I watch the sun rise as I drive to work,
as I stand in my beautiful yard and talk with neighbors,
as I am able to spend time with people who helped carry this burden with me...
who never gave up on me...
who allowed me to be sad...
who didn't shy away behind excuses...
who loved me when my sadness was unbearable even to myself...
and who have been my protectors...my cheerleaders....
my friends.
Friends who are here because of the "negative" things.
Friends who I never would have become close with had all my dreams came true.

So, in the end, I have two choices in life.
Become bitter from the negatives...
or become better.
Obviously, you know which one I'm aiming for.