Sunday, 24 April 2011

looking back and trying to look forward

I've found this weekend difficult on a number of levels and to be honest it's made me grumpy, irritable, upset and not very nice to be around.

On 22nd April last year I found out I was pregnant (my 2nd pregnancy after the 1st ended in miscarriage in 2009).  I was so full of hope and happiness as I genuinely didn't think that this one would also end in miscarriage.  A year has passed and I have now had three miscarriages (one at the end of May last year and one at the beginning of Feb this year and the previous one in October 2009).

My hormones have been going against me this weekend as I know I have bad PMT but unfortunately this has just made me dwell on the past and I've found myself in floods of tears pretty much constantly! 

Yesterday (23rd April) was my 6th wedding anniversary.  I love being married and I'm happy to have had six years of marriage.  But sadly this year it was a reminder of six years and still no successful pregnancy.

Today is Easter Sunday.  I love celebrating Easter... a time to remember and thank God for the resurrection of Jesus and new life in Him.  Today, however, most of what I thought about was how unfair it is that everyone I know seems to have children who they can do Easter Egg hunts with!

This weekend has been one where I have spent most of my time feeling sorry for myself!  I'm not proud of it but it's the truth.  I've spent my time worrying about when we try again for a baby and thinking about the daily injections I'll have to have despite my needle phobia.  As I sit here now I can feel myself welling up ready to cry again.

I've also found it hard as a family friend passed away suddenly a few days ago.  There was no ill health and no warning.  A reminder of the frailty of life.  I so want my family to be around always!  To be around when I hopefully start a family... there's no reason why they won't be but unfortunately times like this show us that our time is not our own and we can't take things or people for granted.

This weekend has been one of my most difficult in a long while and I can't seem to shake off my sadness, loss and upset.  So I have pondered... is it ok to sometimes have a weep and a cry and to feel sorry for myself?  I think God shares my tears and my hurts and anguish.  Today that doesn't make me feel any better but I know God's unfailing love is true.

I now just need to find a way back to living in the present and hoping in my future.  I'm sure when my period comes in a day or two and my hormones settle down my mood will improve but until then I think a big box of tissues is required :-)

Please pray for me as I pray for you!  Thanks for reading :-)

Sunday, 17 April 2011

If you've got nothing good to say don't say anything at all :-)

I've had a couple of conversations over the past few days that have left me thinking and reflecting.

The first was on Friday at work.  I was having a conversation with a colleague about how I'd like to try for a baby again in the summer.  I explained that I'd now been trying for nearly 3 years (over this time I have had 3 miscarriages) and that I don't want to leave it any longer as time passes quickly.  My colleague responded to tell me that she wished she'd taken the opportunity to have a third child and that it was now too late for her.  She continued that she'd had a conversation with her sister in law last week.  Her sister in law also has two children and is 31 so my colleague explained that she had told her sister in law that time was running out if she wanted a third child and she should try again now so she didn't miss the boat.

To be honest, to me who is 31 and hasn't got any children yet, this was very unhelpful.  I think not least because actually in reality 31 isn't all that old but also comparing my situation to someone who already has two children just isn't a comparison to be made.  I may have once dreamed for a large family but now I realise that one baby would be a massive blessing.

The second conversation was last night.  We'd gone out for a meal with some friends who have been trying for a baby for about a year and a half.  (They are the only couple who we know personally who like us are trying for a baby and struggling).

I got chatting with Sarah who out of the blue said "I wish I had your situation, your situation is so much easier than mine.  At least you've had 3 miscarriages so know you can get pregnant".

I haven't found my life recently to be one that many people would wish to live.  At times I've been grief stricken at the loss of three babies and I have felt deep despair.  I hold on to a future of hope and live my life looking for the positives but I wouldn't say the past three years have been easy.

I also wouldn't say that my friend's situation has been easy either... she has suffered in different ways having to have lots of intrusive medical checks and interventions.

These two conversations made me reflect on my own thoughts and words.  I've been really challenged to be careful about what I say to people and to try not to offer empty wisdom that doesn't offer any real support.  I've been reminded that pain is pain!  It's not good to look longingly at someone else's pain or difficult circumstances and think that somehow what they are going through is a walk in the park.

I've also been challenged to think about the advice I give... if it isn't helpful or being used to encourage or build someone up I should consider whether it's worth sharing it at all.

As a child I remember a teacher's favourite phrase was 'if you've got nothing good to say don't say anything at all'!  I think this teacher was right.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Health tips and getting in the best shape to try to conceive

So I thought I'd write this blog to ask for some tips from you.

We're planning on starting trying for a baby again at the end of June.  This is dependant on getting clear results from various blood tests and chromosome tests (otherwise we'll be waiting to see the Gynecologist in August) but I'm thinking positive and thinking it will be June!

For those of you who haven't read my previous blogs, I've had three miscarriages and it's been identified that I have a pro thrombin gene mutation  (which is possibly the reason for my miscarriages), so next time I try I need to have a daily blood thinning injection.

Anyway, I would like to get myself in the best possible shape for when I next try to conceive... reduce stress, eat healthier and do more exercise are the obvious things but I wondered if people out there have any hints or tips on things I could do to give me and my husband the best chance of conceiving and having a healthy baby.

Specifically I would like to ideally come off my steroid preventative inhalers for my asthma (I wondered if any of you had any thoughts on natural remedies), lose a bit of weight by eating healthily and doing exercise.  My plan for exercise is taking part in the race for life so that I get out beforehand doing a bit of training and I also like various activities like swimming, aerobics and hula classes so plan to do these more regularly!

I'm speaking to my doctor about reducing asthma medication etc but equally I'd like to look at natural options.  All thoughts very welcome!

Enjoy your week x

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Stuck between a rock & a hard place?!

Well as work goes, this week has rated up there with the worst!  We are now well and truly in the redundancy process and as I've mentioned I've been having to rate staff on matrices whilst also being at risk of redundancy myself.

I am definitely of the conclusion that I'd like to go but that doesn't take away that there are four managers and two of us have to go and two can stay!  Unfortunately, peoples' circumstances are different and two of the Managers are particularly keen to stay.  So keen that there behaviour has become somewhat unpleasant.

We have had meetings about our matrices and during these meetings myself and the one male manager have been interrogated, questioned and belittled at every opportunity.  It's clear and obvious that particularly one of the other Managers wants to use this technique to show how well she has been working over the past year.

As I'm happy to leave the company I'm taking this on the chin but I didn't realise until this week how much pressure the male manager was being put under.  On Wednesday this week he told me he'd stayed up all night working on the matrices and simply hadn't gone to bed as he was so worried that his integrity was being challenged.

On Thursday we had another internal moderation meeting and the questioning and harassing started again... why hadn't we done x, y or z?  had we checked x's performance etc etc?  The male manager was clearly upset but I didn't realise how much until suddenly we turned round and his eyes had rolled back in to his head, he'd turned a shade of grey and passed out!  He then had about five minutes of an absent period and passed out again!  Very worrying as we didn't know whether it was him fainting or something worse.  An ambulance was called and he was taken off to have tests done!

Thankfully he has been given the all clear and said that it was probably down to lack of sleep, lack of food and pressure of work!  My prayers are with him as to have work affect you so badly is horrendous and it's unacceptable to be under so much pressure.

It has got me thinking when you're stuck between a rock and a hard place (like the other two managers are who desperately want to keep their jobs) what is your response?  What is your behaviour and tactics?  I have prayed over the weekend that my true colours in these situations will be ones that trust God, that have peace and that ultimately don't seek to cause distress or worry in others.  In simple terms that I would do as I would want to be done by! 

It's easy to be nice when life is comfortable but I want to be a person who behaves well and kindly and lovingly even when I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Monday, 4 April 2011

The rollercoaster of emotions in trying to conceive

I don't know about you but one of the things I've found whilst trying to have a baby is that over a short period of time you can experience extremes of emotions... I feel like this weekend has proved that!

I started out Friday morning feeling thankful, hopeful and aware that things could be worse!  I then went to visit a friend who'd just had a baby and to be honest found it ok... it's not always ok with such visits.  But I enjoyed cuddling the baby and had that hope that maybe next time we try it will work and I will have a baby!

On Saturday I then started getting a bit glum.  It started off with a letter through the post to say that my appointment with the gynaecologist will be on 1st August!  (I miscarried at the beginning of Feb and was told that my appointment should follow quickly and be no more than a 10 to 12 week wait)!

I then started getting myself down with the prospect of Mother's day!  I love showing my Mum (and my Dad) how much they mean to me.  But the prospect of yet another Mother's Day without a baby really upset me!  Technology at times does great things but I could have done without it over the weekend.  Reading all the happy, joyful messages that people I knew had written on facebook about how wonderful it was being a Mum, what a fabulous day they were having with their beautiful children who'd bought them gifts etc etc.

Mother's Day came, I focused on cooking my parents a meal which we all enjoyed but the day was tinged with sadness and jealousy!  I'd like to say that I was fine that I didn't spend time feeling sorry for myself... but that's not true I did!

But today, well today's another day!  I woke up feeling a bit more positive (perhaps a little bit glad that yesterday was over).  I decided to ring the Doctor's to see if I could get the results of my blood tests from February over the phone as I was meant to be getting them at my gynae appointment.  We want to start trying again in June and the appointment, as I've said, isn't until April.  So I've spoken to the secretary, she seemed a bit uncomfortable on the phone about giving me my results and has booked me in this afternoon to see a Doctor... I'm now a bit suspicious - either it's her excellent customer service or they've something to tell me that I won't like!  Praying it's the first option!  Also a little bit embarrassed as the last time I saw the Doctor I'm seeing this afternoon was the day after my miscarriage started and I had quite a bad panic attack in her room!

Oh well, I'll just have to see how my appointment goes... but as I've said my emotions are like they are on a rollercoaster ride at times with all the ups and downs and twists and turns!