Avoiding the barista

After a lunch meeting today I was freezing cold and super close to my coffee love, Starbucks. I hoofed it over to the ‘bucks to get my favorite latte, just a tall which is actually the “small” to help warm me up on my walk back to the office. I was going up the escalator in the 580 Building downtown when it dawned on me – my barista at Starbucks knew I was pregnant. Just then a mini panic set in that I may have to endure the typical questions one would ask someone when they are pregnant. I actually tried to casually sneak past the Starbucks to see if she was there and when I saw the black hair I freaked out that it was her. I took a closer look and noticed that it was a new girl, THANK goodness for the new girl. I was then able to relax, order my tall, 1/2 caff., no foam skinny vanilla latte.

As I was walking back to the office it did dawn on me that I can’t avoid people. I can’t avoid the lady at the bank that was doting on my cute belly a few weeks ago or the one client that doesn’t know my latest 3-week life story and will ask how I’m doing. I just have to come up with my “standard” answer, look people in the face and tell them. Is it weird that I’m already feeling anxious about that persons’ reaction to what I will tell them? Can you imagine being that client that asks how I’m feeling and I tell them I’m fine because I’m not pregnant anymore. WOWZA…..awkward! Or when someone asks if I have children. Well, that is a tough one because I do have one child but she doesn’t live with us, she lives in heaven. That will draw some blank stares. UGH, I’m just dreading the moment but one day soon I’m sure it will be here and I’ll be back on this blog letting you know how it went. Maybe then I’ll fill the Zoloft script and have a glass of wine as a chaser (I’m kidding George and Mom and Kat and everyone else that I’m sure had a slight scare to that little joke).

Until next time….

Welcome Mason Matthew

Yesterday was a LONG day for me but it was a good one. I went back to work (YAY!) which was a huge plus for me to get back the normalcy I was craving. Also, George and I became a first-time Uncle and Aunt to a beautiful baby boy. Mason Matthew Wenstrup made his debut last night at 7:42pm weighing in at 6lbs and 14oz and measuring 19.5in. He is a blessing to our family.

It was such an amazing experience to be at the hospital right before Jami was about to push and to be among the first people to see Mason. I have been to see babies a day or so after they were born and even saw Aayla 3 hours after she was born but there was something about the energy and the excitement of being in the waiting room with family. I got to the hospital when it was only Matt, Jami and Dina (Jami’s mom) in the room. Jami was about 2-3 cm. dialated in the morning when she arrived at the hospital and after her dose of petosin at 2:00pm she quickly progressed to 9-10 cm. by 5:00pm. The nurse called our favorite gyno, Dr. Caligaris, and the rest of us called family letting them know to get to the hospital. Most of us were in the room before Dr. Cali got there and of course when he opened the door to see us all he just chuckled. I think after the month we have had he is done with the Wenstrup/Herron clan.

The waiting game started when we were pushed out of the room so Jami could start pushing but only 10 minutes passed when Matt exited the room. Don’t get excited….he had to go to the bathroom. I thought Toni Baur was going to KILL him. She pretty much followed him to the bathroom and made sure he hurried up to get back to the room with Jami. Of course Matt would pull that kind of stunt! The rest of us took over the Waiting Room and if you know my family you know that we aren’t the quiet type. Mom, Dad, Brian, George, Dina, Randy, Toni, Erin, Kendra and I all waiting together.

About an hour into waiting a man comes into the waiting room wanting to know if there was a phone book to order food from Isadores. I knew the name of the restaurant and looked up the number on my phone and gave it to him, telling him that my old company used to order food there and their pasta was delicious. He kept offering to buy our party food but of course we all declined. Such a nice gesture, right? About a half hour later he walks back into the room and hands me a pizza. Tells me to make myself useful and hold it! Then tells us to enjoy. Wow, isn’t it funny when stuff like that happens? Then he comes back and hands me a little box that has spaghetti with meatballs and garlic bread and says, “you said you liked their pasta.” Again, WOW!

We were all enjoying the food when Mom just walks in and says, “6 pounds and 14 ounces.” Of course the rest of us are like “WHAT?” She is so non-chalant about the whole thing and after someone asks she says, “oh yea, Mason is born.” Haha! Then we all freak out! It was so emotional. The whole experience was emotional…seeing Matt right before we left him with Jami to start pushing made me ball my eyes out. He was going to be a dad and that got me all choked up but then seeing him actually hold Mason and bring Mason to be with Jami got me again. I’m so proud of my brother and how much he is really filling these shoes. And to look around at my mom and dad and now see them truly as “Grandma” and “Grandpa” was amazing, they were so proud! My dad had the video camera and there were tears in his eyes and mom was just cooing over Mason and loving on Jami. George was the proud uncle taking pictures from every angle of the handsome baby and his new family. It was awesome!

Mason and Mommy are both doing great. I was able to see him 3 times last night in the NICU transition area. He was in there because of the trauma from birth (not un-common) to keep an eye on his breathing which was raspy at first and because he really just got beat the hell up during birth. The last time I saw him last night was when Jami was wheeled down to see her baby boy, it was emotional. I knew how bad Jami wanted to hold him, hell I was dying to hold him and I’m just the aunt! She was a super mom the way she was asking the questions and taking in every detail about her son. The doctor was asking Jami questions, they seemed like basic background questions about the health history and the birth and stuff and then the doctor asked if anyone in the family had any chromosome abnormalities. I froze and I could see Jami also do the same. I can’t remember exactly what was said after that but I do remember choking up and thinking for a small second that what I had gone through was hereditary. It was a scary few seconds but it was easy to move on, calm down and love on Mason for a few more minutes before Jami was admitted to her new home for the next couple of days.

I know in my heart of hearts that Mason being born just a month after George and I got our world flipped is a blessing. Mason is going to be one loved and SPOILED (yes Jami, I said spoiled) little boy. The moment I laid eyes on him I fell in love. I’m so excited to be his only aunt and I know George is excited to be an uncle. Thank you Matt and Jami for letting us experience one of your most incredible moments in your lives. I’m so lucky to have such an open and loving family and I was reminded of this YET again last night.

Okay… now you have to check out the cutest little boy!

Just moments after he was born

The smallest things

I am finding that the smallest things have the biggest impact these days. Not sure I made it clear in my last blog post but we did accidentally find out the sex of our baby despite our best wishes not to know. It was the most crushing blow yet and it has left such an impact with me.

Let me take you back a few weeks when we were in the hospital and knowing that we were going to deliver our baby.  George and I made the conscience decision to disconnect from the baby as much as possible as it was what we needed to help survive the darkest hour. It was the only way we knew that would help us move on and after the baby was delivered it was helpful to not know if it was a boy or girl. I never once tried to picture a face or look at “blue” and weep or look at a baby girl and wish.  We had our last doctor appointment (last Monday) and the nurse brought us back to the room to see the doctor but before we saw him she sat down, looked at me and asked, “what did you name her?”

SMACK –  I was knocked back…I was shocked…I was heartbroken. I didn’t want to believe what I just heard and I tried my hardest at that moment to not let the flood of tears take over.  It was a hard fight but I was winning until she left the room. I lost it. George tried so hard to make it seem like she made a mistake and I tried to let myself believe him but somehow I knew in my heart that the nurse was right and on November 18th I gave birth to a little girl.

Our theory was confirmed one day later when my doctor called to reveal the genetic test results. He told us that our baby had Turner Syndrome which he had mentioned could be the case in our earlier conversations. In Turner Syndrome the baby (it only happens in girls) is born with one X chromosome and the other is either damaged, partially there or non-existent. I believe he mentioned in our case the other X chromosome is non-existent. And then couple that with all the other issues our baby girl had and you have what George referred to as our “anti-lottery.”

I feel like you have to know this back story for me to be extremely honest with my feelings from here on out on this blog. I’m going to struggle as I have been struggling this entire week with this little fact. I gave birth to a little girl. I am a mom to a baby girl. George is a dad to a baby girl. I have yet to not choke up when I say or even think that I gave birth to a baby let alone knowing the sex and calling it a baby girl. Yesterday we were at my in-laws getting storage boxes of our crap to bring back home and I opened one of the boxes and noticed something red. I pulled this red fabric out of the box and tears welled in my eyes. It was my favorite little red dress that was bought for my cousin, Athena. I asked my aunt if I could have it once Athena was done with the dress because I wanted when I had a daughter. I love that dress but when I held it up it hurt so bad because I did have a daughter and she will never wear this dress.

Am I mad at the nurse that slipped? No, it was an accident and either way when George looked up Turner Syndrome it was going to give us the same answer as Turner Syndrome only exists in girls. However, when George researched Turner Syndrome he called me immediately to tell me not to look it up as it only confirmed what the nurse had said and he would have taken that information to the grave if he had to. The only reason he didn’t was because I looked up other information about genetics and egg abnormalities and found out the same thing, Turner Syndrome only exists in girls.  I will say that I am upset about knowing the sex especially so soon after delivering the baby. I found out less than two weeks after delivery when I was preparing myself to either never know or to maybe find out 20 years from now. I guess that deserves some explanation as to how but I’ll leave it here – my mom has a “memory box” that has information about the baby that George and I don’t want to open. What is in the box? I don’t know and I don’t know if I want to look at least for a long, long time. I found out the sex and it broke my heart I can’t bear to know anymore right now.

Today I go back to the doctor and I’m hoping to be cleared to return to work. I know that returning to work and getting back into the “groove” will be extremely helpful to me. As I stated in my last post I pray for normalcy and my work-week routine. I want to get up in the morning, get ready for work, pick up my over-priced coffee, drive to work, check my email, chit-chat with the co-workers, contact my clients, meet with new contacts and look forward to another day and another week and another year.

What to say?

I haven’t posted anything since George and I announced the sad news about our baby.  I really wanted to get on here and hammer out a few blog posts because the first one was therapeutic for me.  But each time I started a post I would get stuck on what to say.  What do you say in this situation?  We realize that our friends and family sometimes don’t know what to say to us and we really don’t know what to say either.  There is really nothing that can be said, no words to express the heartbreak.  All I could think of was something like, “Hey World, I’ve had the worst three weeks of my entire life. So what’s up with you?” Doesn’t seem like a great way to start a blog post but here we go……

Hey World, George and I have had the worst three weeks of our entire life. We have literally been sucker punched and I’m reminded each day of the loss. But I’d be lying if I said it was all 100% bad because it isn’t. We have been surrounded by friends and family and I can’t say enough how important that has been to both of us.  Each email/text/Facebook message, each card, each hug, each flower arrangement and each smile has all been vital in our survival recently.  George and I have said it a hundred times but we have been overwhelmed by the love and support.  I’m not sure if we will ever get back to each one of you individually but please know that we appreciate all that you have done for us.

For me it has been a constant roller coaster of emotions and each day is a new day that brings its own set of new moments, good and challenging.  Its hard to believe that on November 18th I delivered a baby.  I have to say it to myself out loud sometimes because it still seems surreal to me.  I-delivered-a-baby.  Nope, today it doesn’t feel real.

Each week also feels like it will get easier then something knocks me down.  Since November 8th my world has been rocked three times.  Each time we would learn something new I would have to get comfortable with that information and once I was “comfortable” something new would happen again.  Each time I thought I was standing on my own two feet I’d get knocked back down with a harder punch than before.

First knock down – Get the news that there was something wrong with our baby.

Stand back up

Second knock down – The loss and delivery our baby.

Stand back up

Third knock down – The information from the genetic testing and finding out the sex of our baby.

Can’t say that I’m standing yet…but I’m working on it.

Isn’t there a rule of 3?  I hope that there is a rule of 3 in my case and now my surprises are over.  I so desperately want to get on with my life and start again with a new pregnancy.  We were told that our case was rare and it was “unlikely” to happen again.  So let’s move one, let’s try again. Not yet, I still need to physically and emotionally heal.  Everyday I pray and beg for normalcy and the ability to move on.  Not “get over” what we experienced but to move on, move forward with my life and not be stuck in the feeling I have now.  I’m sick of crying and I’m sick of the space in my heart and soul that is completely empty.

I haven’t pinned an exact reason as to why George and I were chosen as the “lucky” couple to go through this madness and I don’t know if I ever will.  I do know that because of our experience we will always have a special bond that only the two of us will ever know. Sure, our close family and friends are experiencing pain, suffer and loss with us but there will always be a bond that will bind George and I together.

Baby Herron: Jesy’s Version

We have a huge decision ahead of us that will be a hard one to make. It is just so surreal to wake up one day feeling like you are the luckiest person in the world and then 8 hours later that entire world has been rocked to your very core.  We had no thought ever that there would be something wrong with the baby.
Monday during our routine ultrasound we were so hopeful to find out the sex of the baby and to of course see the baby for the first time since our 6 week ultrasound.  When we first entered the room at Christ Hospital I immediately blurted to the tech that we WANTED to know the sex just to get that out of the way.  I was on the bed stomach proudly out ready to see our baby.  The tech first started with the heart and George and I were prepared with our recorder from Build-A-Bear set to record the heartbeat.  161 beats per minute coming in loud and clear through the speaker.  George recorded the sound and she continued on with the scan.  This is when it started to get scary as the tech was extremely silent and hardly talked to us even if I asked her questions.  She seemed completely uncomfortable and her answers were, “you’ll need to wait to talk to the doctor.”  Nothing will freak you out more than to see your baby on a screen, not knowing what the hell anything is and having some tech be completely un-helpful for what seemed like a half hour.  Literally one half hour she was scanning our baby, not speaking to us and getting more and more uncomfortable which freaked us the fuck out.  When I asked her if the baby was a boy or girl she just looked at me sort of shook her head and I’ll never forget the way she said, “I don’t know.”  How the hell do you not know?  The baby wasn’t moving on the screen just point your damn scanner wand at the crotch and tell us if we are having a boy or girl.  Anything would be better than the silence.  What made matters worse was that she told me to wipe down and that she would need to get my doctor on the phone and then abruptly left the room.  George and I sat there in complete panic, palms sweaty, irritable, anxious, nervous…..replaying what we just saw and heard about our baby over and over again.  What seemed like forever and was probably 10 minutes but in panic hospital mode that is forever, we saw the tech rush into the room check our phone in the room and told us that Dr. Caligaris (my OB in Blue Ash) would be calling our room any second.
Dr. Caligaris did in fact call and I answered the phone with George about 2 feet or so standing directly in front of me looking at me with such panic.  I tried to take it all in, everything he was telling me and I kept saying, “Okay, ugh-huh, Okay” but fear grew in my eyes and George continued to move towards me with tears streaming down his face.  Out of that couple of minute conversation I hung up the phone and remembered this, “the baby has a heard defect – he said it wasn’t good and the baby’s belly was so swollen they couldn’t tell if it was a boy or a girl. We have to come back tomorrow to get a detailed scan and possibly get an amnio”  We both grabbed each other and cried.  What does that mean?  How are we supposed to wait till tomorrow?  I couldn’t have felt more helpless.  As we were walking out of the room, the office was already closed and the receptionist nervously handed us tissues and told us to come back to the office at 1:20 for our appointment tomorrow.  I think I repeated it back to her several times because I wasn’t sure if my body was processing any other information at that point.
Fast forward to the appointment yesterday at 1:20 for our detailed scan.  We had another tech basically doing what we thought was the exact same thing as the tech did yesterday and then a doctor came in to talk with us about the baby.  My mom was with us to help gather all the information, we thought 3 sets of ears were better than two and hopefully she could help process everything as she has been in a similar situation before.  The doctor sat down and started to talk with us about what was going on with our baby.  The first news we were given was that the baby had a chromosomal issue and would potentially have down syndrome.  I immediately thought, okay please stop here.  I can handle this news.  Hell, I was welcoming that news and for a second even chuckled as I have told George that I would love to adopt a downs baby.  The doctor went on to tell us about down syndrome and how the quality of life varies and it is a wide spectrum and how there was even a downs as an actor on TV.  I finished his sentence and referred to the TV character “Corky” then told him that we were well aware of down syndrome and talked about Brian’s girlfriend and our baseball team.  But as I was hoping the doctor was finished he continued with the other issues.  Not sure of all the medical terms but most if not all the fluid from the amniotic sac is now in the body of the baby in its stomach, around its heart and in a “sac” behind its neck.  The news about the sac of fluid around the neck was the second part we were told and was told that if that was the “only” thing wrong, again our chances were not bad but then you add the fact that the fluid is around the heart and in the stomach, kidneys aren’t working properly as well as only having two vessels from the umbilical cord and we have a perfect storm .We were given little to no hope and our 3 choices absolutely suck.
Choices we were given are:
1. Get an amnio to determine the chromosomes of the baby, if the baby were downs then we could potentially be part of a program at Children’s Hospital that would try to work with the baby in utero.  If not downs then we would not even qualify for the program.  The amnio would not only be poking through the amniotic sac but because the baby is collecting all the fluid in its body they would need to get the fluid from the baby. This would mean a number of things, there is less than 1% chance of survival off the bat.  George is going to talk to the doctor today to see if that includes if the baby is downs or if it is another chromosomal number.  We also would need to have the baby drained (maybe weekly not completely sure at this point) as well as have me monitored and regular sonograms to monitor the baby.  There are potential risks for me if this is the path we choose, I can develop toxemia, pre-clampsia and also mirror syndrome which is what is sounds like, my body would technically mirror what the baby’s body was doing/going through.  This is a complicated option and again George is going to be calling our doctor to check a few details as we were in a bit of shock yesterday and want to have all of our facts before we make our final decision.
2. Continue as is.  Meaning to continue to be pregnant and allow the baby to pass naturally through the pregnancy.  This again would mean that I would have regular check ups and most likely at one of these check ups the baby’s heart will no longer be beating.  I will then need to essentially deliver the baby at whatever stage of pregnancy I’m in and that would be in my opinion horrific.  I can’t continue with this pregnancy not knowing day to day if the baby I’m carrying is alive or deceased within the womb.  Maybe I’m not strong enough, maybe I can’t handle the comments about “How is your pregnancy going” or maybe I just can’t continue to connect with a baby that George and I don’t have a chance to know, to nurture or to play with or any of those experience you “normally” get when you have a baby.  Also, this would be a harder delivery for me and will most likely result in a c-section as the fluid would have continued to built up and will most likely enlarge the head and rest of the baby’s body.
3. Terminate the fetus.  That was the most clinical phrase we were given yesterday.  Not sure how to expand on this option other than to say it would be awful.  If this was our decision we would need to have our doctor present our “case” to a board of ethics so that they can approve the termination because of how far along we are in the pregnancy.  I don’t think I need to go into the details as you all know what this means… as I take a deep breath I will say that this completely breaks my heart to have to even consider as an option for our baby.  Not only would George and I be making one of the most defining decisions in our lives but we would also have to deliver the baby.  We would go to the hospital and actually deliver our baby.  Typing this is hard, thinking this is terrible, saying it out loud absolutely breaks my heart.
No matter what route we take once the baby is delivered there will be testing that our doctor will want to perform to determine the genetics of the baby.  This will hopefully give us a forecast of where we can go from here on our next pregnancy.  We were told that this was rare, so rare that my gyno hasn’t seen this for about 10 to 15 years.  He did mention that the Dr. at Christ Hospital (where we had our ultrasound) may see more cases but that is only because he sees more patients as it is a hospital.  Either way, we were told by both doctors at different times that it is unlikely for this to happen to us again in our next pregnancies.  George and I are hopeful with this information but want to find out the genetic results before we move forward with our next pregnancy.
We don’t have to make our decision right this second and will most likely take some time to make sure we are making the right decision for our family.  As Dr. Caligaris told us yesterday, we need to be absolutely sure with our decision because we can’t carry the burden of regret.  And as George said yesterday, we have to make a very adult decision.  As I think back on what my parents endured with Brian, my mom wrestles back the tears and said to me that our decision is far worse as we have no concrete evidence of hope or survival.  Mom went with George and I yesterday and she never expected the news and our options to be so bleak.
My dad asked last night, “What is the positive in all this?”  At this point George and I can’t really think of one.  Yes, we are in our darkest hour and hope that you respect that we just can’t handle phrases right now that are “God has a plan for you.”  We aren’t there and between the two of us we will go through all stages of grief.  We just need your love and support for whatever we decide to do, please think of us as we go through this journey together.  As I told dad last night, if I have to find one positive it is that George and I have had to lean on each other these past 48 hours and will be a stronger couple because of this experience.  We both still want children and will not give up on the dream of raising a family.
Last night George’s mom sent him a text message after we were with her for dinner.  In the message she said that she supports our decision 100% and has been thinking of the Serenity prayer and typed it out for us to read.
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. Amen.
I will be thinking of this prayer often and hope that you do to as you think of George and I and our whole family.

Baby Herron: George’s Version

I have not yet posted on this site, even though as you may have noticed this is the Herron Nest.  To be honest I have been secretly stalking Jesy for many months now.  Recording stuff she says and does to get a real perspective into pregnancy for a guy.  I loved catching all her irrationalities and hormone swings and watching her apologize for sleeping all the time.

It is with unbearable sadness that I chose to break my silence now, but I feel like since this is The Herron Nest that you should get access to both perspectives of this story.  Read this at your own risk.  It is gut wrenching and near impossible to fathom.  It will leave you confused, bewildered, sick, sad and angry.  I know because I am going through all that right now, all at once.  It’s amazing what only 19 ½ weeks will do to a man.  It’s amazing the bond you can form to something you have only seen in a sonogram picture.  Tread lightly here…

Let’s start Monday before leaving work.  That is a crucial time for me you see.  That was the moment I knew what the baby would be.  I got a sign.  I’m not hokey, I don’t buy into signs and crap, but this was too strong for me to ignore.  As I’m getting ready to walk out the door to drive down to the hospital to meet Jesy to get the sonogram to tell what the sex indeed was, I spilled water on my leg.  Dammit, I’m trying to get out of here and get down there to figure out the sex, I’m on pins and needles here, and living with Jesy it has almost been intolerable.  She’s obsessing over it and I’m having to be the voice of reason, but I’m just going crazy on the inside.  So, I go to the break room and grab a paper towel to dry off the water.  It was one of those paper towels with the floral pattern on it.  Well after I got down wiping down the water the dye had rubbed off on my pants.  It was pink.  There were green flowers, yellow flowers, blue flowers, red flowers, but the pink dye was on my pants.  Girl, done.

So all the way down to the hospital I was blaring Abbey Road, feeling pretty damn good.  So good that a Ford Focus (red hatchback, don’t think that I forgot, and now I’m pissed) cut me off twice in the span of 10 seconds and I wasn’t even pissed off.  I just let it go, nothing was ruining this day for me.  Cloud nine.  Ten even.

Dr’s office.  This is the point of no return.  You’ve been warned.  The waiting room was about 10,000 degrees and we got there about 10 minutes early, because you know me, I HATE to be late.  So not only did we have to wait the 10 minutes but tack on an extra 30 for good measure.  But finally we got to go back.  I was originally going to launch into a tirade about the ultrasound tech here, but looking back I am sure she was petrified when she saw something abnormal.  Because at first she was actually quite nice, she was a little quiet, but very nice.  So once we were in the room I started to crack jokes too keep both Jesy and my mind off getting the sex of the baby.  I knew we were both anxious and I knew she would be chomping at the bit.  So in order to let the tech do her job I tried to distract.  The tech didn’t laugh, they never do, so I just thought it was her doing the typical ignore me thing.  But as I looked at her it was clear that something else was wrong.

She was looking at the screen like a 13-year-old boy stares at Pam Anderson.  So focused and slightly bewildered.  Jesy finally had enough and told the tech that we REALLY wanted to know what the sex was.  The tech nervously said that they baby wasn’t cooperating, to which Jesy made the inevitable comment, “ oh the baby is being stubborn, I wonder where it got that from?”  As she rolled her eyes not so casually in my direction.  That is about when the tech abruptly got up and said that she had to go call the doctor and she would be right back.  Wait, what?  Seriously what the fuck just happened?   So now we are sitting in the room staring at each other saying/thinking, what the hell is going on?

So after what seemed like 10 years, it was probably only about 10 minutes, the tech comes back in and tells us that Dr. Caligaris would be calling us back in this room.  So we wait and quite quickly Dr. Caligaris called and Jesy answered.  Neither of us thought to put it on speaker, we were just so anxious to get the news, any news.

Here is where my perspective is going to be pretty different.  I got to react to Jesy’s face.  To her one word answers.  Can anyone imagine my wife speechless?  (Let’s face it we have all dreamed of it!)  To the tears welling up in her eyes.  To her shaking voice.  I knew nothing of what the Dr. said, but I knew it was bad.  I knew it was as bad as we had both feared it was but hadn’t dared to speak it to this point.

Jesy hung up the phone and we just held each other crying, but I had no idea why.  Then she told me.  She might have told me a lot of things, but I only heard two of them.  “Heart defect,” and “Not good.”  Those where two of the sentences of what I’m sure where many more, but how can you not focus on those two things, right?

So there we stood, holding each other, crying, breaking down, destroyed.  Something was very wrong and we had to go home and wait till tomorrow to find out what it was.  And that is what made the first night so unbearable, the not knowing.  Well the knowing something was wrong, but not knowing what or if there was anything that could be done.

Here again is where I will give a different perspective.  Jesy skipped right to the next day.  First it is important to note that the phone calls we made that night to people expecting to hear what the sex of the baby was were brutal.  Everyone was so excited at first, it was heart breaking to hear other people get the same news that we were still just trying to process.  Then to have to hear people try to come up with words to help.  It was overwhelming the amount of support and prayers and thoughts we all got.  I know that I will be thanking people for the rest of my life for all the support that they have given us through this.  Just wait, I’m sure I mention it again.

And especially that first night, we just didn’t want to be alone at all.  We went to John and Carol’s and my mom even trekked down from Middletown to be with us.  Brian was there for comic relief as well.  It was a nice distraction and I can remember not feeling near as bad when we left to go back home to get some sleep.  I remember feeling optimistic, a very abnormal trait for me.  I was thinking that there is still a lot of ways this could go.  Maybe we go in tomorrow and the machine had a glitch, maybe the baby was just in a weird formation, maybe it was something a lot smaller than they originally thought and could be fixed real easy.  There was hope and it was so strange for me to see the glass half full.

And then there was the morning.  That was the first time we were alone.  I had taken off work and her boss told her to stay home.  We tried to distract ourselves by watching movies.  We watched Toy Story 3, great movie, but not a great movie in our frame of mind.  On top of that we were both sitting there knowing what the other was thinking but trying not to talk about it.  We both just wanted to be at the Dr.’s getting this over with.  And that was one of the WORST times.  Just sitting there, by ourselves, waiting.  Not knowing.  It was excruciating.

Now we can speed ahead to the Dr’s Office.  Although at this point it certainly isn’t speeding is it?  Anywho,  back to the Dr’s office, where it is again 10,000 degrees.  Although this time I should point out that on the way to the Dr’s office I saw a guy out jogging with a pair of jogging shorts out of the movie Juno and his junk was definitely flying all over the place.  Not a good start to the day, would you not agree?  So again, back to the blast furnace of a Dr’s office.  There is a young lady in there with us, she is a plus size lady and she was not wearing a belt of any sort.  Her hygiene was questionable at best and I had the wonderful privilege of seeing her ass.  Yup.  She got up to talk to the secretary (administrative assistant) and while doing so her pants decided to try to run away from her ass and it got about half way to freedom before she caught it and yanked it back up to save my cornia anymore burning.

Strike two.  Weiner flopping and now disgusting ass crack that I can only imagine is sweaty due to the super nova like heat in the room.  I wasn’t liking where this day was going.  It’s like getting lost is a bad neighborhood.  Oh and were late again.  Once again we were there at least 10 minutes before hand and didn’t get taken back until at least 30 minutes after when we were scheduled.  It’s like dying a thousand deaths.  We finally get to go back, expecting a more advanced test.  Per Caligaris we were supposed to go through a level 2 test, but it was basically the same thing as before.  We had a different tech, but she was still a tech, she took the same pictures and when it was all said and done got super quiet and left to go get the Dr.

God bless that Dr.  This is going to sound terrible, but I don’t remember his name and I don’t think Jesy does either.  I’m sure he quite frequently lives in anonymity because no one is going to remember that guys name, the guy that had to deliver this message to anyone.  I think it was Dr. Von, or Van something, but I have no idea, maybe if I heard it again?  But I digress, he tried so hard to be compassionate and he had just met us 10 minutes ago.  And he knew that he made us totally uncomfortable.

When he came in he was quick to get to business and look over the tech’s shoulder as she was operating the sonogram.  They were kind of whispering and kind of talking.  It was so awkward and the Dr. even said something about it.  I refused to look up.  I could not see the pictures of my baby’s beating heart anymore.  I couldn’t watch them point to it and whisper.  It was making me sick to my stomach.

The Dr. finally turned on the light, I told him that if I was a cat I just burned through 8 of my lives.  He didn’t really know how to respond to that.  Sorry Doc, just my little defense mechanism going off there.  Alright, time for some answers.  Hit me Doc.

Oh he did.  BEST CASE SENARIO:  Baby has downs syndrome.  Let’s pretend that he could have stopped right there.  If this could have been the WORST case scenario we would have been golden.  We love downs kids, we coach them, Jesy’s brother dates a wonderful girl with downs.  Easy.  Unfortunately, this is our best case and it comes with a lot more surprises.  The baby also has three large cystic hygromas.  One in the apparent “normal spot” at the base of the skull on the neck.  One on it’s stomach which is hampering the development of the kidneys.  And on over it’s heart.

I would say that the good Doctor came out swinging.  That went down about as well as Marvin Frasier did against Mike Tyson.  The Baby’s chance for survival…less than 1%.  SHIT THE BED.  Are you serious, what is that?  It’s like winning the anti-lottery.  For our baby to have all this wrong is so very rare according to both doctors that we talked to, it doesn’t make it hurt any less, but it’s a fun stat to throw around.

So we have been given three options at this point.  None are good.  Jesy will tell you that we have gotten noting positive from this whole disaster of a situation and I disagree.  If we can get through this, if we can make this kind of decision, any other decision we have to make from here out will be easy.  To quote from Due Date, “it’s all up hill from here.”  I know, see the movie.

Choices:

  • Do nothing.  Hope it goes away on it’s own.  In less than 1% (again with that number) of the cases it is possible that the cystic hydromas will just go away and in which case it will more than likely be born a downs syndrome boy or girl, we still can’t tell.  The other side to this is that if they hydromas don’t go away they can become larger and in essence take over the baby and kill it.  Plus Jesy becomes more susceptible to toxemia, preeclampsia and mirror syndrome.
  • Get an amniocentesis to see if the baby is indeed a downs syndrome baby.  If it is, it is possible that we would qualify to be in a trial that would drain the hydromas every other week or every week in order to save the baby.  Here’s the problem there.  To do an amniocentesis there needs to be an amniotic sac with amniotic fluid, but there isn’t, it’s all inside the baby.  So they would have to put a lot of stress and trauma of poking the baby to get the fluid for the next 20 weeks.  And so far it doesn’t look like that will give us any better of chance at the baby surviving.
  • Terminate.  Sounds pretty cold huh?  Pretty clinical right?  Yeah, welcome to another one of my defense mechanisms.  Really trying to keep as much of this as I can impersonal.  Need to try to sever that connection where I can, because when this is all said and done it is going to burn like hell.  And I mean that, it is going to feel like my insides are burning me from the inside out.

You like that?  Pretty funny?  How devastating is that?  And what’s worse for me and I know she will never admit it, but I know Jesy is hurting ten times more than I am.  I’m not trying to say that I’m not hurting, it is near unbearable for me some times, but she had to carry “it” around for 5 months.  It was in her.  I try and I can’t imagine pain worse than mine, but she has it, whatever that is.

We have not made a choice yet.  We are weighing all of our options VERY carefully.  We want to do the right thing, whatever that is.  And thank you to everyone who has called, texted, emailed, facebooked or just spent time with us in the last couple days.  You all mean the world to us.  We have needed every “are you ok?”  and “you can call us for anything anytime” and “we love you and we are praying for you” and even the “Miranda won’t answer her phone.”  We have needed them all more than you know and I hope that you all realize how much all your support has meant to us.  I have tried to reply directly to as many people as I could without my head exploding.

So if we haven’t communicated with you directly, we apologize and we apologize that this may be the way that you are getting briefed on the whole situation, it’s just sometimes it hurts to go through this mess.

Please keep throwing us your thoughts and prayers, we are still going to need them as we both are aware that there is still a tough road ahead.  And to be honest I really don’t mind being selfish right now.  Gimme, gimme, gimme.

Thank you all.  We love you.

Help! I need somebody. Help! Not just anybody.

George and I are calling out for help from friends, family, neighbors or just our virtual audience. We are looking to expand our “quick and easy” section of our recipe box.  Hear is our cry for HELP!

We recently had a conversation about how I am needing help in the kitchen department and once the baby comes I’ll really need the help so I raised the issue to George.  I asked him if he could help with dinner (my absolute WORST nightmare) and to start with just one night a week.  Our weeks are normally crazy anyways but if he could help with one night that would be extremely helpful.  There are even websites that help with making dinner just one night a month, have you ever heard of http://www.onceamonthmom.com/?  I met the genius behind this amazing concept and she told me that she helps make dinner easy for the whole family.  Her concept goes something like this: make all the meals for one month in one day and freeze these meals with labels that she even puts together for you!  That way anyone in the family can get the dinner started. She even gives you the shopping list and tells you about sales going on at your local store for the month before so that you are also doing this on a budget.  So I mentioned this concept to George too.

He told me he would need to give this some thought to all this and he would get back to me.

Speed ahead less than 24 hours later and George says this: “I think it will be best if I start cooking all the dinners.”  My first instinct is to argue a bit and remind him that I was just wanting help one night a week.  Why am I arguing this fabulous-ness? George is telling me that he is the one that gets home about an hour or so before me and it makes sense for him to do the cooking for dinner and I’m trying to talk him out of it….WAKE UP JESY!  He then proceeds to tell me that he isn’t an idiot and can follow instructions for a recipe.  I sort of feel like the idiot because I really can not, I’m terrible at it but I’m confident that he will be the amazing cook for the family.  The two of us talked a bit about the new idea and George even had a plan.

The Plan

George and I would sit down on Sundays (early) and go through recipes that we would eat throughout the week.  We would also coordinate this with our schedule for the week.  No need to cook if neither of us are going to be home, right?  Once we go through the recipes and write down all the ingredients we’ll head to Kroger to pick everything up needed for the week.  He hates the idea of going to the store each day and I tend to agree since that’s what I do right now.  Its easier when you have a plan and that’s what we are going to do.

{Here is our plea for help…..”Red Rover Red Rover, please send your recipes right over” and p.s. George is very picky! }

Crib and Changing Table for Sale

No, I’m not selling a crib and changing table but my good friend, Tiffany, sure is!  So many of my lady friends are prego and I thought it would be a great way to help out one prego friend and one non-prego friend looking to unload a great set.  Or grandma to be!

This white iron crib and changing table include the crib mattress and storage baskets for the changing table.  The set is super sturdy and in great condition.  With the white color it can be used in either your baby boy or baby girl’s room.  When Tiffany first found out that she was prego with her beautiful daughter Bella she was the type of mom that went “all-out” and bought this set from one of those fancy-schmancy expensive stores.  I know none of my readers have gone “all-out” on their soon to be baby or grandbaby.  The orginal price of this set was…..well….let’s just say lots of money (a-hem $1,000) but Tiffany is only asking $350 for it all.

That is $350 for the whole set which includes:

  • Iron Changing Table
  • Iron Crib
  • Crib Mattress
  • Storage baskets for the changing table

See the pictures below and if interested please shoot Tiffany an email at tiffanybradbury@gmail.com

Iron Changing Table and Baskets

Iron Crib and Crib Mattress

Pretend Pregnant Jesy

Almost exactly one year ago I was curious what I would look like if I were pregnant.  It was almost bed time and I was messing around with George and modeled what I would potentially look like as a pregnant Jesy.  How did I do this?  I stuffed a pillow under my shirt for the belly then took two full rolls of toilet paper and used them to supplement my boobs because I thought they would be HUGE (I’m not too far off on that part).  George took a picture of the pretend pregnant Jesy and thought it was so funny that he would write a section in his blog about it (all the way at the bottom of the blog).

I had pretty much forgot about this moment entirely until I walked into work this morning and noticed an email with the subject line saying, “pregnant jesy.”  Hmm… what could this be?  I’ll let you read the email by my designer friend/co-worker, Ryan.

“we all know and love pregnant jesy in this offce, right? no smart ass comments please.  some may have forgotten “pretend-pregnant” jesy. for all the new people, this is your chance to get to know jesy a little bit better. lol

apparently, she wanted to see what she would look like when she became pregnant…not. even. close jesy. we give you a d for effort though. lol”

Oh yes, he attached the pretend pregnant Jesy picture as well.  Ready to see this lovely picture?

I think I deserve more than a D

I quickly fired off an email to George that said, “Look what you started!!!!” and then got back the following response, “Ummm, YOU started this by shoving all that ridiculous crap in your shirt!”

I have zero response – the defense rests their case.  Enjoy the picture!

I’m feeling…..

This is slightly a rant and slightly a blog post of confusion.  I’ve heard not once, not even twice but MULTIPLE times people ask me if I know what I’m having.  As in boy or girl, I know I’m having a baby!  I find this odd because I have no clue what I’m having and have no idea how one would know what they are having either.

I read a blog about a woman who is married and has one toddler and another on the way and she has a “feeling” that her second child is a boy.  You can read her blog post here: http://marriageconfessions.com/2010/10/07/i-dont-wanna-2/

What I want to know is this: How does one have a “feeling” or “just know” especially on their first child?  I get it, its a 50/50 shot at being right but how could you know if you have never experienced this before.  I would LOVE your insight or opinion if you have one.

Personally, I don’t have this overwhelming feeling that baby Herron is a boy or that baby Herron is a girl.  I do know that I’m having a baby!

***As an update***

I was participating in a focus group today (10/27) and one of the other participants told me she had a feeling about what she was having both times when she was pregnant.  I brought up my “feeling” about the feeling and she told me that she would post things to her blog and other moms would tell her, oh that means you are having a boy or oh that means you are having a girl.  For example, she had food aversion to meats when she was pregnant with her daughter and apparently that is pretty common.  Maybe I’m having a girl because I’m completely grossed out by meat.  Not a feeling…just another old wives tale!