Saturday, April 28, 2012

Twitterversary

This week makes three years that I have been on twitter.

I always roll my eyes when I hear people talk about twitter and say it's where people just post pictures of what they eat and tell boring details of their lives.

I always say if you don't "get" twitter, you are not following the right people.

I love the tweets that show up in my timeline. I get a mix of politics, television, comedy, infertility, and adoption. Everyone has their own mix.

This is really silly, but I first joined twitter when I saw an interview with Matthew Perry on Ellen. I always thought he was really funny and I thought following him on twitter would be fun, so I joined and followed him. (He's not as funny as I had hoped, but I still follow him.)

I went on to find other comedians and funny people to follow that I have enjoyed.

But, it's the average everyday people tweeting about their lives that I love the most.

Now that I am a mother, being able to follow other mothers with children the same age as Jayden has been priceless. Who needs baby books when you can talk to real mothers everyday that are living the same thing? And the mothers with older children are always there to give advice when you tweet a question. It keeps me sane as a stay at home mom. The adult interaction is much needed.

But, before I was ever a mother, I found a community of people that changed my life forever.

The infertility community on twitter is amazing. And it's become huge over the last three years.

When you are an infertile surrounded by fertile people, you always feel like you have to hide so much of your struggle. You can't talk about the "TMI" of infertility. The treatments, the symptoms, the exams, the feelings.

Within the infertile twitter community, no thought is too dark or scary. No symptom or question is "TMI" (too much information) for the rest of us. Anyone can tweet their feelings and it's understood. It's accepted. And you receive comfort.

I get emotional just thinking about everyone's journeys. Our community has seen so much loss. So much pain. So many failed cycles. But we've also seen so many miracle babies born. So many families made. I've cried for my friends in the community through both the bad and the good.

I have made friends for life in this community. People I can go to with any problem. People that are always there for me no matter what. I completely credit them with getting me through my cancer diagnosis. I honestly don't know if I could have gotten through it without them. And when we adopted Jayden, the excitement came pouring in. I get chills just thinking about it.

I am so proud to call myself a part of this community of strong, amazing women.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

And Then Things Got Worse

As you know, we've been in a tough financial position since I lost four of the kids I was watching. We've been going week by week just trying to get by and pay our bills. No extra spending. The only reason we've even made it this far is because we got a portion of our tax return. (We're still waiting for the adoption tax credit portion that we need to pay back our adoption loan.)

It's been tough. And nothing makes a marriage more rocky than the stress that comes from real financial problems. We've been fighting more and everything feels just so much harder.

Then over the weekend we got pulled over for having an expired inspection. I lost it. I was mad at Adam for not getting the inspection done. He kept putting it off saying we didn't have the money for it, but I warned him if we got a ticket that would be even more money we don't have. So, when we got the ticket, I had a breakdown. Tickets are so expensive and it's like just giving money away.

We made sure to get the car in for an inspection as soon as possible.

The night before the car was looked at Adam was joking around and asked what I would do if it needed expensive repairs. We had a good laugh over how that would really be the last straw. But, I didn't even think twice about it because that is our good car. My car is the one I won't even let Jayden go in because it needs so much work. Adam's car would only need maybe one or two minor things.

Then I got an e-mail from Adam at work the next day that said the repairs required to pass inspection will be about $1,000. I wrote back that's it's not funny. No response. I started to get nervous and wonder if he could be serious. I called to yell at him for making me worry with his joke...but it was no joke.

I called the mechanic myself to go over everything. I full on cried on the phone. (So embarrassing!) I told them not to do anything because we would not be able to pay them at the end of it. He said he would run some more diagnostics and then give me a firm amount we will owe so we could decide what to do.

He was really nice about the whole thing but basically there was no way it woud be less than $900. He offered to keep the car for a while, but that really doesn't help since we will be in the same financial position next week...and the week after. And that is the only car we drive Jayden anywhere in and it has his car seat.

After a lot of talking and going over our finances, we made a plan. It's not a great one. It's puts us much deeper in the hole we were already in, but we have a plan.

I am just so tired of this all. I hate living like this. Someone that already has a problem with anxiety does not do well when there are real money problems to deal with on a daily basis. I worry so much.

As I type this I can hear Adam driving down the street in my car. (He's coming home early so we can pick his car up before the mechanic closes.) Yes, I can actually hear him coming from the other end of the street. That's how awful the car is. Sometimes you just have to laugh at it all, right?

The one positive in this car situation is that Adam and I handled it as a team. No fighting. Just working together to decide what to do. I hope this is a good turning point. We've been a team through infertility, cancer, and adoption. We need to get back to that.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Easter As A Mom


As I've written before, Easter was always the hardest holiday for me to handle childless. For many years I made Adam search for plastic eggs when he woke up Easter morning. The above picture is Adam being a good sport about coloring eggs with me. I always felt like Easter was for children and it was really hard to celebrate without a child.

Of course, all those painful Easters mean than the good ones now are even more special.

We took Jayden to the mall to meet the Easter Bunny and it was even more fun than I expected. And he did so well! My parents went with us and I think everyone had a great time.





Jayden got an Easter card from Aunt Christy and Uncle Eric, which he had a good time playing with.





On Easter morning, my parents came over to see Jayden get his Easter basket and do an egg hunt. I think I may have had even more fun than Jayden did.  














video


I wasn't sure how Jayden would do with an Easter egg hunt, but he loved it. He totally understood that he was supposed to be searching for eggs and putting them in a basket. Then he got to open them and find all his treats like cheddar and graham bunnies.





Later in the day we went to dinner at my parents' house and Jayden wore his Easter suit.



The suit was cute while it lasted :)



 
This Easter was what I always dreamed of all those years I waited to be a mother. I'm so thankful I get to be Jayden's mom.


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Please Stop Staring

Dear Restaurant Patrons,

I know I am fat. I know I have old, frumpy clothes. That's part of the deal with staying home with Jayden. Clothes for me are not a priority and there is no room for them in the budget.

I know my husband is 6' 6". I know you have all sorts of questions for him. Including, but not limited to: "My friend and I have a bet and I have to ask- How tall are you?" "Do you play football?" {Insert various other sports questions.} "Do you need a special extra long bed?"

I know my son doesn't look like us and you are trying to figure that out.

I know I brought a toddler in to a restaurant and you don't want us sitting near you.

But, PLEASE STOP STARING AT US! Believe it or not, when you are sitting at your table, you are not behind tinted windows or a one way mirror. We can see you. And when you stare for an extended amount of time with no smile, it comes across as disgust. Especially if you get the attention of someone else at your table and use your eyes to point at us. (YES, WE CAN SEE YOU.)

I may be busy getting my son settled in his high chair or entertaining him so he isn't too loud for you, but I promise my husband is noticing you staring. And I will have to hear about it during dinner. Then again on the way home. Then again as we are falling asleep that night. And we will have to discuss it and list all the reasons you could have been staring at us like that.

How about you just try to remember we are human beings trying to have a nice night out and not actually putting on a show for you to watch.

I rarely get to leave the house so please let me enjoy my night out with my Groupon.

Sincerely,

Lisa

Note to most grocery store, zoo, and museum people: Thank you for smiling and telling me how cute Jayden is. I don't know what is wrong with those restaurant people.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Cloth Diapering Update

I started this post many months ago and then never finished it. I decided to finally do it in case anyone was wondering how it's going.

Our diapers:
Just out of the wash.

Stuffed and folded.

One of the changes between starting this post and actually finishing it now is that I no longer stuff the diapers ahead of time. We keep them all on a shelf near the changing table. One pile of covers, another pile of inserts. We stuff as we go each time. We've gotten pretty fast at doing it and finding the time to stuff them all when they come up from the wash got really annoying. (Another change is that we have gotten a few fun patterns since this picture was taken!)

Cloth wipes.

We use a wipe warmer for our cloth wipes. I make our wipe solution- using knickernappies baby bum drops- then dunk the wipes in it so they are all wet. Then just add them to the wipe warmer and they are ready to use whenever you need them. It's really easy.

Our wipes are a combination of babykicks, thirsties, and cotton babies. I like them all for different reasons and recommend having a variety, but if I had to choose just one for a toddler bottom, I would choose the thirsties. They are thick and really soft.

We also have some of the Prince LionHeart Warmies bamboo wipes, but I do not recommend them. They started to fall apart after just one wash. We still use them sometimes, but I would never buy more.


I added this picture when I started this post many months ago. Awww....he looks so little!!

We use bumgenius all in one, one size, 4.0 diapers. We used some Fuzzibunz for the first few months, but as he got older we started having problems with leaks. We've found BumGenius to be much more reliable.
For nighttime, we use BumGenius with a regular insert plus a Thirsties hemp insert and we have not had problems with leaks.

We use the diaper sprayer to clean the diapers before putting them in the diaper pail. We haven't had problems with stains.

The only time we have had a problem with smell is when I tried a new detergent once. After a while the diapers had an awful smell, even right out of the dryer. We stripped them using a small amount of blue Dawn dish detergent. We went back to using Rockin Green detergent and haven't had any problems since. We also use Thirsties pre-wash during the cold cycle. We dry the inserts in the dryer and hang the outer parts to dry.

For a diaper cream, we've been using coconut oil! I love that it is cloth diaper safe and it seems to be working very well!

One of the best things about cloth diapering (that I didn't anticipate when I started) is that they help keep his pants up! He grows out of pants in length and the waist is always huge. Cloth diapers are the only things keeping his pants up!

Of course the money we've saved is also a huge positive. When Jayden was sick with a stomach virus recently, we had to buy disposables. I can't believe how expensive they are. I don't know how anybody can afford them!

Overall, cloth diapering has been great...and much easier than we thought. I highly recommend it to anyone, even if you think it would be too much for you. We were nervous going into it, but I am so glad we did it.