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I'm so glad you have come across my little nook in the cyber world. Here I strive to be real and inspire. I talk about my walk in faith as a Christian, motherhood, the loss of my child, and anything else that crosses my mind. Join me for a minute and relax?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

27 Weeks Pregnant- Update

As of Monday...June 16th I reached another milestone within my pregnancy with baby boy. I'm officially 27 weeks. I had another check up with the ultrasound tech and my high risk doc. The entire visit was entertaining, yet reassuring. The doctor surprised me with the glucose drink for the diabetes testing. I wasn't aware that we were going to do this test, but I got it over with. As of this morning I was able to see that I passed this test, which is a blessing because I failed it when I was pregnant with Dakota. 

Baby boy is growing well. He's measuring in at about 2.5 lbs. and has been extremely active. I'll be seen again in July and then we will start the every two week visits. Those will consist of non-stress tests and ultrasounds to monitor baby boy's activity. 

Well that's this update. I'll be back with another one after my next appointment. 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Things they don't tell you about Pregnancy.....PART ONE

As you all know, I'm six months pregnant with my third child. Everyone knows that each pregnancy is different. Therefore, I have decided to write a post on the things I found out about pregnancy while experiencing three very different journey's. Most of the time these things happen and at other times they may not happen at all. It seems as if people pump up the "joys" of pregnancy, but fail to talk about the uncomfortable, disgusting, and funny things that happen as well. We have periods, discharge, leaky nipples, and cramps, and labor. What a disaster being a woman is at times!

Hopefully today you'll laugh a little, learn a little, or just agree with the things listed below. If you're easily disgusted or grossed out, keep on moving and don't bother to read the list below. If you're immature and can't handle human nature, I suggest you read the sentence before this one. With that being said, here are the things I feel they DON'T tell you about pregnancy!

1. Every pregnancy is different. They fail to say just how different they can be. With my first pregnancy, I felt like I could run a marathon. I was kicking to go from conception to labor. With my second pregnancy, I felt as if I wanted to crawl into bed and hibernate for the entire nine months due to not having the energy.

2. Morning Sickness- First and foremost, it doesn't happen ONLY in the morning. It can hit at anytime during the day and it may even last ALL day. Anything can be a trigger. As an example, just smelling my husbands deodorant sparked my morning sickness in the last two pregnancies. 

3. Your boobs DO get a bit more firm, however, they don't ALWAYS get bigger. Yep, they will swell up like balloons and be sore. Nursing bras and breast pads will be your friend at some point. Boobs leak. Mine didn't leak with my first until after my sunshine was born. But with my angel and rainbow, PLEASE someone turn off the damn tap. Don't get me wrong, I do plan on breast feeding. But when you're changing into that newly washed maternity top and you're boobs decide to leak at that moment for the first time, things can become emotional.  

4. You will get constipated and your vaginal discharge will increase. The grossness of it tends to be one subject many don't talk about. Then, the worries with "Is this normal discharge or my mucus plug?" come into play towards the end. 

5. You will be moody. At one moment you can be in a great mood and the next, you're ready to call your best friend to help you hide the body! The emotional shit storm that you'll be going through is a rough one so hold on tight! 

6. Sex- Now this tends to go one way or another. You could end up not having a drive at all or it could sky rocket over night. I experienced both and I must say.. they both SUCK! When your drive disappears, you try to explain this to dear hubby but he just doesn't understand how you could just NOT want it. But when your drive increases, Hubby better watch out. Well, at least until the baby belly gets in the way and starts to make you feel like a whale. I swear if people could have seen some of the things I have tried to even have sex comfortably, they would have said that I would make a GREAT "Americas Funniest Home Video."  

7. You will have weird and vivid dreams. (If you didn't read about my weird dreams, you can do so here.) Some people who have heard about my dreams say they completely understand why I decided to write.

8. Things tend to swell in areas you didn't realize could swell. The blood within a woman's body increases during pregnancy, as well as the weight gain and fluid retention, this could have you floating down the Mon River. Your feet and hands swell. Your legs and thighs swell. Boobs swell. Yes, even the genitals swell. So, this makes for a few uncomfortable months.

9. When baby moves, it's not ALWAYS something to coo over. At times, that crap hurts! Some of the weirdest feeling I have felt, at times made me think of an alien. The constant laying on the lower back, skidding a limb across the inner side of the belly, and the hiccups tend to distract you at times. Then you have the famous, full body roll. This is where baby decides the full position he's in isn't comfortable anymore and in an instant rolls into the other side of your body.

10. Hemorrhoids are very common. They will flare up and make life crappy for you during pregnancy. Let me tell you.... they suck. They happen even when you have no trouble in the bathroom and the baby can just be head down on the rectum the whole time!

11. At some point, you will dread having to sneeze. The pressure of the baby relaxing on your bladder could cause you to pee when you sneeze. Then, you don't want to add allergies into the mix. That's a mixture for disaster! The allergy medications don't always work, therefore you may find yourself sneezing more than you bargained for. So, my suggestion... liners are a MUST!

12. Unexpected headaches- Those suckers will knock you for a loop at times. Anything can trigger them. Lights too bright. Lights too dim. Loud noises. Smells. The list could continue on but I'm sure you get the hint. 

13. Clothes will not fit the same. It could be a few weeks or a few months, but your changing body will make getting dressed (unless you have a crap load of maternity clothes) a chore. Add in the summer months and shopping for a bikini... yeah... emotional disaster waiting to happen. 

14. Prepare for Braxton Hicks. They are normal, yet painful at times. Everyone is like 'you're glowing' and isn't this the best thing ever? I'm just like, I haven't even brushed my hair and I'm having a Braxton hicks! 

Keep an eye out for Part Two... coming soon! 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Grief Journey..... Delayed by Faith and Saved by Hope

I never expected that I'd be an angel Mom. In all honesty, who does? When our Dakota gained her wings, I had carried her for 40 weeks 5 days. The emotional roller coaster that I went through is hard to explain. I went through periods where I was content with what happened. Then on other days, I hated the fact that I was chosen as an angel Mom. I went through periods of time where I didn't want to get out of bed and times where I felt as if I could run a marathon. 

Through the entire journey, I held tightly to my faith that there is something in store for me. Something to bring back the joy, love, and peace within my life. The miracle of life would do this for me. I've referred to my miracle as my rainbow since my doctor gave me the clear to try for another baby. Rainbow baby is a term not many know. A rainbow baby is a baby born after a loss. This can be either a pregnancy or infant loss.

I had been grieving for our daughter for the total of eight months when I learned my prayer had been answered. I was pregnant with my rainbow. This pregnancy has been an emotional journey for the past six months. I'm on an emotional overload. I'm still grieving for the child I lost while trying to cope with the fact that I'm pregnant. I try not to allow fear to overcome me but I am only human. I'm scared we will face another loss at the end of this pregnancy. There's no safe zone for us. I have heard so many people say that if they could just get past X weeks, then they would know all would be okay. But what happens when you're baby passes at birth? What happens when you give birth to death?

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not in any form saying I regret becoming pregnant with our son. (Who has a name and it'll be announced when the time is right.) He's been such a blessing because I am taking each ache and pain with pride. I love them. Yep, you read that right and no, I'm not crazy. Before our loss I took advantage of the fact that I was pregnant. It never occurred to me by how blessed I really was. I was always so sour. I never felt the need to start a pregnancy book or take weekly photos. As a matter of fact, I have the total of three pregnancy pictures with Dakota. All of which I dislike the way I look because I seem so unhappy. 

Now, our son makes me see things differently. I've tried to keep up with the photos. In the beginning of the pregnancy not much has changed, therefore not many pictures can be taken. But I am now to the point of where I can no longer see my feet, stand too long due to swelling, and I'm ALWAYS hungry. 

I am now 24 weeks pregnant and loving every minute of it. I believe I wouldn't be where I am at when it comes to my grief if it weren't for me being saved by faith and hope. I believe I may have slipped into a dark place and stopped living. So, I wanted to give a small bit of hope to those who are still trying to conceive. Never give up and loose faith. You're hope for a rainbow is there and you will once again feel the joy life has to offer! 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Sibling Grief: Sunshine's View

A good bit of the time when loss hits a family unexpectedly there's a lot of people who are more than willing to help. They help Mom with dinner, cleaning, and constantly asks if she's okay. They bring her flowers, cards, and little gifts to remember her precious little baby who was taken too soon. 

All the while in the midst of this storm, there are two others who are often forgotten. Dad and the siblings. No one stops to consider how they are handling things or if they need someone to lean on. 

I know if it wasn't for my mother, my daughter wouldn't have had someone. I hate admitting it but when Dakota passed away, I couldn't be a mother. I feared every minute that our Sunshine was next. Therefore, our oldest daughter stayed with her grandmother for the most of three weeks while I pulled myself together. 

I've blogged a lot of this journey from my perspective. But one perspective you don't hear much about is from the angel's siblings. Well, today my oldest daughter is here to explain how the past year has been for her. **Keep in mind that she's seven years old. The loss of her sister happened only a month before her 7th birthday!**

My World without My Sister
**A small note from Sunshine**

Me on the left and Dakota in mommy's belly on the right.
I felt sad about my sister when I first found out that she became an angel. When I went to the hospital, my pappy had told me that Mommy was finally having the baby. I didn't expect to find out that Jesus had her in his arms. I was so mad because I wanted her to be here with me. I looked forward to playing with her, dressing her, feeding her, and helping my mommy with her. 

I see others with their sisters or brothers and it makes me sad. I wonder why I'm not able to have mine? I drew pictures for her and I've wrote about her in my journal. It helps sometimes but some times it doesn't. Nothing does. I wish I could have my sissy back. But I know she's with Jesus and we will see her again.

I am amazed to see my sister is in Heaven. I am soooooooo sad we had to make a comer for her and we cried about her. The pictures I see around the house help me to remember what she looks like. When we visit sissy's grave, I get mad and sad. I'm mad because I don't want her to be there. I'm sad because my sissy isn't with me. 

Mommy and Daddy try to make me feel better but it doesn't work sometimes. Nothing does. 

But now I am fine about her. I don't find myself crying as much because I know she's in a better place. I can't wait to be with my sissy again.

-This was Emma who wrote this part. I hope you enjoy it!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Rising up from Grief to Hope: A Tribute to Dakota

Today marks one year since I last saw my beautiful daughter, Dakota. So much has happened within the past year where at times I have no idea how to process it. So, this post is a tribute to my daughter Dakota. Here are the things we did in the past year to keep her memory alive and show our love for her. 

This photo is of the gathering we had directly after her funeral. The wonderful church family we have gave a memorial dinner and we did a balloon release directly after. This was the beginning of the new for us. I never thought something as simple as watching a balloon float into the sky could raise such emotion in me. But it reminds me of how quickly Dakota left and how silent her passing was. 

Our oldest daughter watched each balloon until they were out of sight, while I cried and my husband held me. This moment in time reminded me just how important family really is. That's when I made the promise to our daughter Dakota that I will NEVER let her go. Her memory will always remain alive as long as I am alive. 

Each holiday that passed, we decorated her grave site with different items to show we were thinking of her. The firsts are the worst but we made it through. The heartache was unbearable at times. I couldn't have imagined that when I turned 26, I'd be mourning the death of my child.

We dedicated a small part of our living room to her, which over
time became half of the living room. So many wonderful people wanted to help us remember our precious daughter. I can't express how much this meant to me and still does. Every time I share a thought or a part of my grieve with those who have followed our journey, they always leave words of encouragement. But most of all, it showed me that I'm/we aren't alone.

Another way I remembered Dakota was in a book dedicated to her and her story. I wanted people to know who she was and what had happened to her. So, through the pain and tears I wrote her story. As a tribute to her I made sure it was published on October 15, 2013, which is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. My hopes for her book is that everyone out there reads it and learns. But most of all I pray her story helps others who are going through the same thing and they can find hope like I did. My faith remained strong and I straightened up my life so I can be with her again.

I pushed through my grief and my hope was restored. Dakota taught me a lot over the past year and I am so grateful God chose me to be her mother. The 40 weeks 5 days I had with her will always stay with me. 

So in closing, Dakota is not only my daughter, but my inspiration. She's inspired me to go with the flow, trust in God, and enjoy life. For this is all she did. Not one time did she ever feel anything but love. How amazing that type of life would be!