Six years ago today I took a home pregnancy test (HPT). Sean was about the same age that Abby is now (13 months old) and my period was a few days late. We had started “trying” to have another child that summer when Sean was about 9 months old. My period had returned in May and after a few months of not really trying and yet not preventing, we realized that we felt ready to be more active in our efforts to conceive. It had taken us 8 months/10 cycles to conceive Sean and thus we were prepared for it to take awhile. So you can imagine my excitement and disbelief when after “only” 4 months/5 cycles of trying this time around when I saw two pink lines on the HPT! The test was positive and I was overjoyed that our second child was due on July 20, 2005!
Since I wouldn’t start my blog/get involved in the blogosphere for another 2 1/2 years, back then my main sources of online support for all things related to fertility, trying to conceive and parenting were two websites Fertility Friend (FF) and Connected Moms (CM). On those websites I belonged to a few “Buddy Groups” and actively participated in discussions about life, parenting and trying to conceive with them. One group was made up of women who I met on FF while TTC#1 during the summer of 2002 and the other was made up of women who I met soon after I found out that we were pregnant with Sean in January 2003 and we were all due with a child (most of us our 1st) in September 2003.
When I originally started working on this post, I was reflecting on the day I found out we were pregnant with #2. I was writing and sorting through my memories of what happened, when I recalled that I actually had copied and saved my posts (in a Word documents) from FF and CM in which I shared ours wonderful news with my friends there. I found the documents on our computer’s hard drive and was transported back to that time as I read my original words describing my thoughts and feelings related to finding out we were expecting again. So I decided rather than paraphrasing myself, it might be more interesting to share what I actually wrote that week in November 2004.
Here is my first post to my FF “Sleepless in September” Buddy Group about our new pregnancy. Back then I really liked the color red and at some point started posting all of my buddy group comments in red. I guess I did this to set myself apart during our discussions. I wasn’t the only person who did this, there were other women in our group and on the website who also chose a color and always seemed to post with it. Anyway, for this reason I am sharing what I wrote in red.
Wednesday, November 10, 2004 12:06 p.m.
Good morning ladies!
SEAN IS GOING TO BE A BIG BROTHER!!!
I am on cycle day (CD) 29 and was trying to hold out until CD30 (my post-partum average length has been 26-27 days), but I decided to go ahead and test this morning, as dear husband (DH) is expecting me to wait until tomorrow and the fact that I hadn’t spotted yet (last cycle I started spotting late the night of CD28), made me think my chances were pretty good… Anyway, I have always wanted to be able to surprise him at least a little w/ the news (since he got to surprise me when he proposed to me). So here was my chance! I tested this morning when Sean and I got back from walking DH to the train!
I AM SO EXCITED!!!!
Sean is napping now, but when I was taking him upstairs for his nap I whispered in his ear “Mommy has a secret to tell you. Sean is going to be a big brother!” And he smiled!
So my EDD is July 20, 2005!!!
Sorry for no personals!!! It is hard for me to focus on anything else right now… I am sure you understand!
HAVE AN AWESOME DAY EVERYONE!!!
Take care, Kathy
PS – I am trying to decided how to surprise DH tonight. I took a picture of the + HPT and Photoshoped in a message from Sean. I printed out an 8 x 10 and put it in a frame and think I will have Sean give it to him or be holding it when he gets home from work tonight?! Let me know if you have any good ideas to add to that?!
Here is my second post to my FF “Sleepless in September” Buddy Group about our pregnancy. that I shared two days later, after I had told Bob our big news and finally had time to sit down and process it, at least a bit.
Friday, November 12, 2004 11:15 a.m.
Hi ladies & babies!!! (more like toddlers now…)
I promise to come back and do personals either after this post if Sean wakes up from his morning nap soon or during Sean’s afternoon nap… I know I have a lot of catching up to do since I shared my big news on Wed.! But I figured you might want to hear about telling DH and such first…
THANKS SO MUCH FOR THE CONGRATS!!!
It is still really sinking in and unlike the first time around although I am SOOOOOOO EXCITED, I don’t think about being PG nearly as much because Sean keeps me so busy I don’t have time!
Telling Bob Wed. night went really well! Sean and I told him when he got home from work that evening around 6pm. Sean was ready for bed in his PJs when Bob came in. We were playing on the floor in Sean’s bedroom and when Bob walked into the room he got down on the floor with us to say hello. Then I said, “Sean has something to show Daddy.” And Bob was like huh? So I turned over the picture frame which I had facing down on the floor by Sean and handed it to Bob. I tried to practice having Sean hold it before Bob got home, but he wasn’t really interested in doing so. When Bob read it his face lit up and he was like “really? That’s awesome!” And gave me a big hug and kiss! I attached a picture of Sean & Bob soon after we told him and the picture we showed him!
Earlier that day when Sean and I were walking him to the train we talked briefly about how my period hadn’t come yet, but how I really didn’t have any PG symptoms (whereas when I was PG w/ Sean I had lots of cramping from about 1 week before AF was due on) and didn’t really think I could be/was PG. He said he believe me (as I did too at the time I was saying it) and really didn’t think much more about it the rest of the day. So, though in the back of his mind he knew it was possible (especially since we were trying), he was genuinely surprised, he said, when he saw the picture Sean and I made him!
So that’s the story! As I said before it is still taking time for us for it to sink in! I had 7 PP cycles before we conceived this time and we were actively TTC for 5 of them (3 1/2 months or so). With Sean we tried for 10 cycles/8 months before we conceived. I really thought it might take us longer, rather than shorter to conceive this time, so that was encouraging! Sean and this baby will be about 21 months apart, but 1 year apart in school.
You may recall I had a c-section with Sean, so now I am starting to think more seriously about whether to try for a VBAC or just have a repeat schedule c-section. I plan to research it and discuss with our OB/GYN. I do have my first appt. scheduled for Monday, December 13, which seems like a long time to wait, but having been through this once before, I am not nearly as anxious.
The only people who know right now are Bob, you guys, some other Fertility Friends that I have a yahoo group with and the rest of our group that post on Connected Moms. We are hoping to wait to tell our family and friends until Christmas time (I will be about 10 weeks then). With Sean we had been trying for so long (at least it felt that way) and were so excited and our families knew we were trying that we told them almost right away after I got my +HPT! This time around for the most part people didn’t know we were trying yet and we would rather give it some time. But we’ll see how long we last… Especially if I end up with bad m/s or something. We’ll see! Anyway, I am optimistic that we can keep it to ourselves! Especially since I can talk about it w/ you all when I feel the urge to share!
Hope you all have a great day! Take care. Love, Kathy
I will be back soon w/ personals…
Here are the pictures:
Picture for Daddy
Sean & Daddy
As you likely know, if this isn’t the first time you have read my blog, this particular pregnancy did not end well. In fact it ended officially on December 1, 2004, exactly three weeks after I got that + HPT. Most of those three weeks were spent in blissful ignorance, as after having experienced a normal and healthy pregnancy with Sean, we certainly took for granted that this time around would be relatively smooth and uneventful. Had things turned out differently, we might have a five year old now who would have started kindergarten this year. I am still aware of my friends’ living children who would have been close in age to our child and though I don’t dwell on it, I certainly have passing thoughts now and then about who our son or daughter might be today if we had not miscarried.
The following year on November 10, 2005, I am sure I was sad about what might have been on that first anniversary of our + HPT for #2. I know that July 20 of that year was bittersweet for me, as it was the date that our baby was due. However, as you may also recall if you know me or have been following my story for awhile, we went on to conceive and lose two more pregnancies in 2005, so the weight of loss and being unable to sustain pregnancies was getting very heavy on my shoulders by November 2005. And to think this was all still before we began fertility treatments, before I started blogging and long before either of our daughters were glints in our eyes.
So why bring this all up and share here and now? I think the parallels between my life then and now have been very apparent to me lately. Since Sean and Abby were both due in September (the 25th & the 19th) and their actual birthdays are only weeks a part (10/2 & 9/17), Abby seems to be hitting a lot of the same milestones that Sean did around the same time. So I find myself reflecting and reminiscing about who I was and what our family looked like back then. I think about how in November 2004 our journey to expand our family was going in many ways just how I planned, imagined, hoped and dreamed it would. So to know now what I didn’t know then is bittersweet.
At this point we are still holding on to our soft decision not to have any more children. So I also have mixed feelings about being on my 2nd post-partum menstrual cycle now, since Abby was born, knowing that our current plans and intentions mean that we will not be taking advantage of any possible fertile opportunities before us. So for all these reasons and some I may not completely understand, this date, today’s date has been looming in my mind.
Six years later, I do feel so very blessed and lucky when I consider how our life has turned out and how our family has grown since that November morning I got a + HPT. However, I will always wonder about what might have been if we hadn’t miscarried and who our first “2nd child,” our first “angel baby,” would be. Today I honor our first angel baby’s short life and memory and I am grateful for the good things in our life that did come out of the experience of our first miscarriage in Autumn 2004. As the leaves continue to change and fall I hope this time of year brings peace and wonder to you and your family. Thank you for reading and remembering with me.