Tuesday, May 17, 2016

About our Wheelchair Pic

Yesterday I posted a photo on Instagram. It wasn't just a picture, it was a moment which captured the essence of the Finley meeting the next chapter of her life.  
I want to thank you all so much for the support and love.  I also want to explain a little about what her getting this wheelchair means. 

Since she was 3 months old she was receiving weekly in-home physical and occupational therapy services through Inland Regional Center.  They offer infant stimulation/massage, speech, physical, and occupational therapy. It's a state funded not-for-profit program that provides these services and programs to more than 30,000 people with developmental disabilities and their families in California until the child reaches the age of three. 

The last year we have been receiving therapy services through a state-funded program and they also provide loaner equipment.  Up until now you've see Fin on different loaners.  This will be the first equipment that is our very own

Fin will be transferring over to the School District as she will be turning 3 in July and will age out of the early intervention therapy program.  Which means she will be in pre-school. I know, I'm already crying about it. My baby in preschool.  

She will use her walker and get pulled out of class for different therapies throughout the day and week while she is in the classroom.  The wheelchair will be for transporting her room to room, bathroom, assemblies, and fieldtrips.  It's for her safety. 

When you see pictures of her in her walker I'm very close by.  She isn't able to get into it herself, so she will need to be monitored closely while at school.  The idea of the wheelchair stung a little, I'm not going to lie. But seeing her so happy in it made my heart burst with joy. 

It's in these moments that I'm grateful to be a special needs mom.  I'm always a proud one, but the gratefulness comes in waves.  We aren't sure how long the wheels will be with us, could be forever or could be three years... We are going to have lots of ups and downs I'm sure, but I'm excited to reach this next chapter. 

I want to thank every single one of you who tell me about the SDR surgery.  We have reached out to Dr. Park's office and are in the application process. We are not sure yet if our insurance is going to cover it yet.  I will definitely be keeping y'all updated. 

Please don't be a stranger and if you have any questions please email me! 

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

When I found my unused pregnancy announcement

My husband and I recently moved. Last week I decided to clear out some space in the garage (per his request), and I found an unfamiliar shoe box. I opened it and received a little piece of the past. So many emotions came over me as I stared at this picture of me “announcing my pregnancy.”

Let me clarify, I was never pregnant. I was merely a freak-planner to a fault. I fell in love with the baby shower theme “Bun in the oven” so I had my girlfriend take fun pictures of me taking a cinnamon bun out of the oven.

woman holding cinnamon bun

I printed one out and made a cute frame for my husband. He was to find it in the oven on a cute little baking tray with a daddy book and the positive pregnancy stick. Adorable, right? I even went as far as ordering little favors for how we would announce it to the family. I did all this because I was going to get pregnant easily and one could never be too prepared, right? Big fat wrong.

While “trying for baby” I got one false positive. Let me tell you, they are emotionally and painfully real.

Going through the fertility testing was excruciating for me. I felt like my womanhood was being questioned. Am I less of a woman if I’m infertile? Then all of the what-if scenarios come into play.

What if there’s something wrong with me? 

What if I never have children? 

What if my husband wants to leave because I can’t bear children for him? 

My results showed I have what’s called “diminished ovarian reserve.” Turns out it’s a known side-effect of Accutane, a super serious acne medication I took in my early 20s. I did a low dose for about four months. I’ll never know if that’s what caused my issues, and I’m finally at a place where I'm content with that. The doctor told me it was “unlikely” we would conceive naturally but that it was “very likely” I would miscarry if we did.

Having friends experience miscarriages in all terms of pregnancy, I thought I definitely don’t think I can handle going through more pain.

Hearing the results was intense. I think I cried for 24 hours straight. Even watching episodes of “Friends” couldn’t distract me.  There was no escaping that empty-ache in my heart. I can’t explain what it felt like. It was awful.

I knew in my heart that I wasn’t going to pursue fertility treatments. I can’t explain that one either, instinctively- it just never seemed like an option in my mind. Thankfully, my husband was on the same page. He comforted me with jokes, “What am I a medieval king? Bear children for me or leave?”

We jointly knew adoption was for us. I never ever questioned our decision to pursue adoption.  Of course as I watched pregnancy announcements and gender reveals go crazy on social media- I knew that I would one day get to announce MY exciting news.  

I rarely take this walk down memory lane... because I feel so completed and my heart is so full. I no longer desire a biological baby and I can't imagine life without my daughter.  The day I learned of my infertility- I never would have believed I would end up here. This place where I’m an [adoptive] mom to a gorgeous girl.  I text with her biological mom frequently. Matter of fact, we are hanging out this weekend and going to our daughters friend's birthday party.  Never did I dream of such a life.

Back to the garage. I held this photo in my hand and stared at a picture of myself. I thought out loud, “Man, that girl had no idea what kind of life she was in store for.” I showed my husband, he hugged me, and I put it back in the box.

If you are currently an empty armed mother, just know your heart will get through the pain.  I promise you one day you will be holding your child and forget what life was like before them.  Every day is one day closer to holding your precious  child. The saying really is true, “Motherhood is a miracle, no matter how it comes to you."