Wednesday, March 8, 2017

We're EXPECTING: A BABY!

Hiii friends. Ohh-M-geee I am going to be a mom. A mother. A madre. A parent. A creator and guardian of a tiny little life. Charged with the care & well being of a human. 

Dog mom- I've got that down. From snuggles and dewormers...to homecooked meals and playtime. The cool thing about dogs...once they are out of the puppy stage... you've raised them! For the rest of their lives, you are in charge of their needs. Food. Affection. Health. Exercise. And a warm bed.

They never go out in the world and get their own apartment. Besides puppy school...you don't have to worry about whether they get a good education. Or learn to treat others with respect. Basically, you don't worry about whether you've raised a high functioning, independent, human adult.

The good news is...we are surrounded by friends who are incredible parents and I have the world's greatest resource (Google) at my fingertips to figure out how to do this whole mom thing.

Another MAJOR perk... my baby daddy. It's especially comforting to know the father of my child is a smart, caring responsible, loving man. My best friend. My love. And I respect him so much. I have no doubt we will figure this out together.

Since you guys know our story from the beginning, I want to share how it all happened (you know what I mean).
If you are catching up, you can read about our story and how we met here: A Love Story


Our story starts back in February... Valentine's Day to be exact. Cupid must have been on duty because it felt like love at first sight.

A little background...I actually didn't know if I ever wanted kids. I would say I wanted kids/a family in a very abstract way. One day...far, far away...but it was so hard to picture it.
Growing up, I didn't even care for kids (when I WAS a kid). I preferred to hang out with the adults & listen to them talk while the kids were watching Looney Toons (GAH, I really hated that show LOL).

When I was in high school, I was a terrible babysitter.  It was hard to force myself to play with them and I would lose my patience quickly. Thankfully I only babysat 2-3 times before realizing it was NOT playing to my strengths LOL
I felt like a didn't have that maternal gene. In emotional situations, I tend to be a more stoic ...giving a "there, there" with a pat on the back instead of that nurturing response that I assumed all good mothers were just born with.

Compound this with a previous relationship where I felt like I was dating a CHILD (no offense! Some people enjoy that carefree personality...but it wasn't a good fit for me). Flat out stressed me out. I couldn't imagine a reality where I would bring a child into the world and have to care for him/her on top of stressing about the other adult in the relationship.  It just wasn't the right relationship for either of us to thrive.

But then... Almost instantly... everything changed for me.

VERY quickly after we started dating, I could picture it all. A family with Rich... a son and/or daughter...half of me // half of this amazing man.

I could imagine him taking our family boating, taking our child fishing, teaching them, showing them the magic of the outdoors, helping them with their homework, reading them bedtime stories... I could see it all.

A switch was flipped and not only did I want that family with him...I wanted it N.O.W. lol

For months it had been on my mind... but I would hold myself back from bringing it up. One night in Septemeber, we were laying in bed talking about the future.
Everything from careers...to marriage...to where we wanted to live.
The baby topic came up...with my heart pounding, I dared to ask what kind of timeline he was thinking.
The response: ASAP

Everything felt SO right. It felt like my life had to fall apart in order for God to put the right pieces together.

If you don't know me, I have a love affair with reading. Once I decide to do something, I am an obsessive researcher.
When I had to go Gluten free and heal my gut, I went on an Amazon rampage and have a LIBRARY of Gluten Free/Hashimotos/Gut Health/Paleo books to prove it.

I'm not kidding LOL
Baby making has been much in the same.  I could not get my hands on enough information. IF you are trying TO get pregnant...trying NOT to get pregnant...or simply want to understand your body better.... I cannot recommend this book enough:


 It's a bigger book so it can look a little intimidating... but the pages fly by! I wish I had read this in my twenties. (I just had a "holy cow I'm 32" moment! eek! lol)


Another great book to snag if you want to just learn more about your body and how it functions (in EVERY way, not just reproduction) is 
Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom by Christiane Northrup M.D.




And then...once you are pregnant... I love this book to see the development along the way! From Conception to Birth: A Life Unfolds by Alexander Tsiaras



Once I understood things a little better...things happened pretty quickly.  I started paying more attention to the signs my body was giving me. I started taking a prenatal vitamin and fish oil.

We eat healthy, drink Shakeology, exercise, drink tons and tons of water, so I felt like I was doing everything in my power. Dealing with Hashimoto's/Thyroid issues is never fun, but I stayed on top of my health. For me, my eating is the biggest factor in determining how I feel. I am hyper vigilant about GLUTEN FREE (100% NON NEGIOTABLE)  I'm also soy free and dairy free.

Now it was up to the big man upstairs. I felt like Faith + Education + Action was my winning formula!

When I want to do something...I pull out all of the stops. I was reading & researching...so the next step is TRACKING.

I started taking my temperature daily and logging it in an app (Ovia) with my other ovulation "predictors" (Don't want to get too personal LOL)
After two months, I decided that I wanted to get an ovulation test. I opted for the First Response Digital version but the ClearBlue test is VERY popular. 

When you are trying, it can feel like a LIFETIME. You only have a certain & limited amount of time each month to conceive...and then you have to wait two weeks to either get your period or that positive results. Days feel like they drag on. Months can feel like a lifetime. My heart breaks for any couple who has been trying for awhile- I would never wish that hurt/pain on anyone. I have the deepest sympathy and GREATEST hope that they will be able to grow their family.

Three months of trying took us to December. I can't quite explain the feeling...but I thought, "I'm going to get pregnant this month." It wasn't a command or a wish like "I hope I get pregnant"...it simply felt like it just WAS going to happen. I can't explain it other than just feeling like I knew.

Again...a little peek into 1) my craziness 2) my obsession with finding a deal...
If you go to the store, a regular pregnancy test is going to cost you AT LEAST $10. If you are TTC (trying to conceive), that is outrageous and the expense can quickly can get out of hand.
I've heard ladies in some of the message boards talk about getting accurate tests from the Dollar Store...I cannot attest to that. HOWEVER, I did find awesome tests for about $1.60 ea (cost depends on how many you buy).

You can find them here: Fairhaven Health Pregnancy Test

So...back to December...
I took the ovulation test and on the prime day... we made things happen haha

After 8 days, I basically took a pregnancy test everyday until...I either got my period or a positive results.
They do NOT recommend this btw. They say it can be too emotional, disappointing, too early to get an accurate result...but for me...it was comforting. And I only spend $1.60 per test so I felt like that was an investment in my mental health.

I just had that feeling that this month was the month. One morning, I couldn't sleep...I got up to use the restroom (all of the dogs in tow) and nonchalantly took the test.

When that second pink line appeared...I was shaking, crying, laughing, every emotion. The pups thought I was crazy.
It took EVERYTHING in me not to tell Rich IMMEDIATELY...but I wanted it to be super special! 


Next: Spilling the Beans! How I told Rich!

To catch up on my entire pregnancy, visit the baby tab here: ALL THINGS BABY

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