Friday, August 31, 2007

Lily's mom

I met Lily's mom for the first time today.

It was good. She didn't know I was coming (thanks c/w!) but when she realized who I was, she gave me a huge hug and was very happy to see me. She was very appreciative of what we're doing and listened intently to everything I had to say about Lily.

The visits are now happening at her sister's place, which, ironically enough is about 7 miles from our house. Lily's Aunt has been fingerprinted and is doing most of the visit supervision, I think. They had already went out and bought all the baby food I told them she liked in my last note. They also asked me about *everything*, even down to what brand of bottles we were using, because they didn't want to "mess up our routine." They complimented the clothes she wears, which was good, because PB and I tend to dress Lily in what we call "hippie baby clothes" so I'm glad they liked them.

Meeting my foster kids' bio parents is always a mixed bag. On the one hand, I want to like them and have a positive relationship with them because there is a high likelihood that's where my kids will end up. On the other hand, it would make my job a lot easier if I didn't like them. Working with bio parents isn't easy, especially when you're foster-to-adopt. So not working with them because they are horrible people would be better for me. But not for them and definitely not for my babies.

Seeing Lily's mom as villain who didn't stop using even when she was pregnant is much simpler than seeing her as Lily's mom who loves her, calls her "pumkin" and misses her when she's gone.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Chaos, now with a side of early menopause?

This started out as infertility blog. Let's return to that, shall we? Warning: if you're not interested in my cycle or in infertility, now might be a nice time to check out one of the other lovely links in my blogroll.

OK. So, I am now on CD 54. I typically have long cycles, so I'm used to 33, 36, even an occasional 38. But 54? Really? And, before you ask, no, I'm not pregnant. I already took 3 of the El Cheapo internet tests I had left over from last time we were really trying and confirmed with an expensive EPT. Because yes, I am that desperate / delusional.

So I'm kind of at a loss. Then, I'm talking to my mom this weekend (you know, when we weren't busy gawking at a crane pulling a tree OUT OF MY HOUSE) and found out that she was done with menopause when she was 45, and started missing cycles when she was closer to 35. And apparently, a similar thing happened to one of her sisters. Nice.

The ironic part of all this is that we were actually thinking about trying again. I've got 5 Clomid pills burning a hole in my medicine cabinet and I've been taking metformin (on and off) for the last month or so in preparation for doing a real cycle next time.

Maybe someone really is trying to tell something.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Well... we're moving... temporarily

This is what my bedroom looks like:

Yay for more fun!

When PB and I returned home tonight we found a huge tree limb had fallen through our roof and into our bedroom.

It appears that we will probably need a whole new roof, at least for the top of our split level. All of the bedrooms have some cracking in the ceilings which means I don't feel comfortable sleeping in any of them.

Luckily my boss is out of town so we'll be moving there for the week. Boo-yah.

Here is the outside view:

It looks like a forest has eaten our house:

Friday, August 24, 2007

Moving Redux

OK. So when I stopped, PB had just dropped a bombshell on me and we didn't really talk about too much.

Two days later, he did it again.

To put this in perspective, my husband has never once brought up infertility, adoption, his feelings over sending Baby Bear home, or pretty much anything else that was serious and all-consuming twice in the same week, except for maybe his own feelings about having some serious medical issues that we thought could be an indicator of brain cancer. So for him to initiate another moving conversation so soon... well, I can only imagine that signifies lots of thinking and lots of concern.

This time, he suggested a less drastic plan (i.e. not right after Lily goes home) that we might only want to sell our house and move somewhere else locally. This was really bittersweet - Jacob *loves* our house. I like our house too, but I pretty much hate our soccer mom neighborhood. I would move back to our old neighborhood, closer to downtown in a heartbeat, although that would mean we'd have to rent (real estate is high in this particular area).

Anyway, this has been an ongoing discussion, so you would think this offer would make me happy, right? Well it should. And for a second it did. But then I remembered how much he really did love living here, and I didn't want to ask him to give that up, just because I'm in this funk. I told him that and he explained that he didn't mean moving right away, but just that we might want to do some things around the house to make it more marketable, in case we do make that decision. I agreed that was probably a good idea anyway. So that was that.

We talked about why it might be good to move... the visions we had when we bought the house, the optimism we used to have about kids. And he was right when he said there are a lot of reminders here and those reminders would be really difficult to deal with in the long run, if we never do actually have / adopt kids. We also talked about his earlier suggestion, of moving further away. I told him I might want to do that, eventually, when it became too hard for me to watch all of my extended family having lots of kids. Not that I'm not happy for them, but just that it's hard to see the reminder of what we don't have - just like it would be hard to work at a daycare center.

PB said he thought I was already there, and that's why he thought moving away might be a good idea for us. Ouch. Somebody hasn't been hiding her feelings as well as she thought, huh?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Moving... or not.

So, in my last post, I mentioned that PB blew my mind by bringing up the idea of moving. A few people who know me in IRL were a little freaked out by my casual mention at the end of the last post, but it was mostly because of my own inability to process the idea.

See, PB really doesn't often initiate the "what should we do" conversations. He also is generally opposed to moving when I have mentioned it previously. Plus, it came at a pretty difficult moment for me. We were at a concert (a pretty good one, actually, despite the crappy review it got in our local paper - Nickel Creek and Fiona Apple) and I was sitting there, looking around and suddenly, out of nowhere a thought struck me.

"I'm not happy."

I don't know if it was the people around me, dancing and looking all carefree in their summer dresses. I don't know if it was the three pregnant ladies in my immediate vicinity. I don't know if it was how uncomfortable I felt in my own skin (which is now significantly larger than it was in my pre-Clomid / stress eating days). I just don't know what it was.

But the idea was alien to me. Despite my whiny tone as of late, I pretty much pride myself on being mostly happy most of the time. And, when I'm not happy I try really hard to *do* something about it and not just suck it up and live with it. I believe that we do create our own happiness most of the time and my life is generally a good one and I'm usually pretty satisfied with it.

So, to be thinking that thought and to hear my non rash-decision making, most laid back person I've ever met EVER, husband, say "I think you should really start considering one of those big jobs you're always joking about and we should move because we need a change of scenery" was a pretty significant earthquake.

I should clarify here: I pretty much love my job, but I do feel underpaid. There is a strong chance that will change in the near future when the business changes hands. But, given my degree I should (and could) be making more money. OTOH, my work environment rocks (I have a view of a ravine and we have an office dog, need I say more?) and my schedule is about as flexible as a regular job with a traditional scheduling plan can be, which, a wise woman once told me, "is worth at least 20K a year."

So anyway, he says that, and I immediately start crying. In public. Not something I do EVER if I can at all avoid it. And I wasn't sobbing, I don't think anyone noticed, but still.... The end result of all this, is that he feels bad for upsetting me, but it's not that he upset me, it's that I realize that it's not moving that will fix this. And I tell him that, and we pretty much dropped the subject. Until he brought it up, with a slightly different twist two days later.

I'll post about that conversation next, if anyone is actually still reading this. Suffice it to say that we're not going anywhere for now.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Lily rolled over...

We were at mom's house and she was *so* close to rolling over... so I just gave her a little nudge to get her all the way over. She looked up like, "Oh, that's how it works."

From then on there was no stopping her, she rolls front to back, over and over and over again.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Where does the time go?

I can't believe it's been almost two weeks since I posted. Gah! Lily had her first major cold last week which I think I caught. Yuck.

Since I last checked in, Lily got to meet some important people in her life. First, her great-grandparents, who live kind of far from us but still in the state visited for the first time two Fridays ago. They left her a large bag of clothes. Most of them were off-season so we won't be able to use them, but I thought it was still very nice of them to send them.

She also got to meet her bio-dad for the first time at this past visit. There was supposed to be a DNA test on Friday, however, apparently no one had any proof of identification for Lily so they couldn't do it. I didn't realize this was a requirement... we didn't have any proof of ID for Baby Bear, but they apparently do not issue birth certificates for Safe Haven babies, so maybe that's the reason? Anyway, I guess they will have to reschedule those appts - I'm not sure why c/w didn't plan for that, but I'll have to get in touch with him later this week to see when they will reschedule and what I can send with her as proof of ID.

PB and I are... OK. He's dropped a few bombshells on me in the last few days, both of which involve us moving and which will require their own posts. **Edited to add - we are not moving anytime soon and we are not moving because we have to - I'm sorry if I freaked out anyone I know IRL*** Both of us are grudgingly accepting that Lily leaving isn't so much an if as a when anymore. Both of us are trying to plan ahead to make that as survivable as possible. Me by immersing myself in anything besides being home, him by playing guitar more and more, in preparation for attending some local music stuff.

Other posts in the works. Just wanted to check in and let you know we're all OK.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Maybe I'm ambivalent... or maybe not.. no I definitely am.

First an update on Lily, of course: She is amazing. It is so cool to literally watch her learn things right before our eyes. She is now reaching for and grasping things. And sometimes she does that really funny "Wow, my hands are my hands and they're so trippy" trance-like stare. She also has decided she's a loud talker, not unlike myself. According to PB she's trying to talk over me. She lost all of her hair, but it's coming back in. She loves cereal and is eating it from a spoon now. She is SO close to rolling over, and she's trying to hold her own bottle.

Did I mention she's amazing?

As for M. (Lily's mom)... she's doing well too. She has tested clean so far, and has (on multiple occasions) provided the same sober date. Both she and the potential father showed up in court yesterday. Lily's c/w is trying to get her into a program that sounds pretty intense - it entails meeting with a judge every week, along with the treatment program. She is still working (with pay stubs to prove it) and they are going to extend visits to be pretty much all day on Fridays, I think. They may be supervised by her sister who has been approved as a caregiver.

This is so bittersweet. I am so happy that M. is stepping up and getting herself well. I can't even tell you how happy that makes me. She has more family support than we initially thought and she really does sound like she's committed.

And that's also why I'm so sad. I know this is nothing new. Maybe I should change the whole damn blog title to "Maybe I'm Ambivalent, or Maybe I'm not." It feels like I am always happy for mom and bio family and incredibly sad for myself. Or hopeful about a new agency and also feeling guilty about how they might take advantage of e-moms. Or happy for my friends who get pregnant and despondent that it's not my turn.

L. and I were talking and she said one of the things she's noticed most about this experience is that it's changed the way I express myself about some issues. See, I have pretty strong opinions on most topics (right or wrong) and I am generally... less than subtle... about voicing them. Now, I think that often comes off as seeing the world in black-and-white. Which I do, sometimes. And when there are shades of gray, I tend to pick the particular shade I can live with and turn it into my black.

Anyway, this entire infertility / foster parenting / adoption experience has made me less certain of myself and my views on some topics, I think. That is, I see (and express) more shades of gray. Which is good and mind expanding and makes me a better person and all that jazz.

But it's hard. Sometimes I just want my black and white.

I want a kid to either stay or go. I want my foster kid's bioparents to be either nice or evil. I want an agency to be either nice or evil. Hell, I want adoption itself to be either good or bad. I want to be happy with my job or not. I want to be actively pursuing different leads on adoption or not. I want to know an emom is going to place or not. Most of all, I want to be a mom or not.

The scary thing is that here lately, the "or not" part of the parenting equation has become more and more attractive. It's a break from all this drama and stress. It's a resolution to this question that's been hanging over our heads forever. It's calm and peace.

But is it happiness? Not sure. I think it would be OK. I think we (PB and I) would be OK. And maybe OK is enough. Or maybe not.