The unexpected happened

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As I write this down, my firstborn is next to me sleeping. Yes, we co sleep (for now). At this point I really don’t care what anyone thinks about that. I’m sure there will be some people who will shake their heads at that. But after all that I have experienced within a span of a week, I am so glad that my son is right next to me. I’ll sometimes just take a few seconds to just see him peacefully sleeping. I’ll give him a few kisses on his head. It brings me so much happiness and comfort to see him peacefully sleeping. Sometimes he’ll babble in his sleep. Or laugh. It’s something to witness it. But I digress.

I want to write this down as a record. I also write this down as part of MY healing process, and to reach any other mom going through.

My husband and I have been family planning since the beginning of the year. We felt it was time to try to have another child again. Our son was going to be two soon and we thought, when we have our next baby, he’ll then be three years old. It would be ideal. About 3-4 months into trying it happened. I was pregnant. It was even more special because I took a pregnancy test on my bday.

Coincidentally my mother in law and I share the same birthdate. We (husband and I) thought it would be the perfect day to announce our pregnancy,  ON OUR BIRTHDATE. That day we had our immediate family and a couple of close friends over at my mother in laws place. I made a speech after the cake came out and announced our good news. We were having another baby. We cried happy tears and gave hugs.

It felt so surreal at first. It started to become more real once I contacted my OB Dr to start the ball rolling, and soon the nausea started to kick in. At the 8th week I saw my OB and got to see an early ultrasound of the baby. My little bean was already moving around at that period. Everything looked good.

I was already making plans with my husband about things we needed. Or ideas about our space and where the baby would sleep. I started to already have my rollercoaster of emotions. My toddler wasn’t completely grasping the idea yet. But I figured as the baby grew, my belly would grow and then he could feel the baby.

My first trimester was nearing to an end. I had my first trimester ultrasound scheduled and then the following day my OB visit scheduled. I noticed something was off last week Monday. I saw blood. If you know me, you know I google everything. I started to google, “spotting first trimester”. It was just mixed information. I had spotted with my first born, and it turned out to be a bacterial infection. Which cleared up with meds.

But by Tuesday afternoon, I was running to the washroom and more blood came out. It was as if I was getting my period. I panicked. I was at work and with tears in my eyes told our office coordinator what was going on. She suggested to take me to the ER. Thankfully and conveniently I work in a hospital. She walked me over to the ER. I just kept bleeding. No cramping. Just blood. My worst fears were coming true. I silently cried to myself. I composed myself when drs or nurses would come into my room.

Blood was drawn. An ultrasound was done. The results came back to confirm what I feared. I was 12 weeks pregnant, but the ultrasound showed the baby at 9 weeks with no heartbeat. They finally discharged me after 5 hours with a diagnosis of threatened miscarriage. I went back to my office and told my bosses about it. They were at a loss for words. I just wanted to crawl into a ball and cry. It just didn’t make sense to me. I had unanswered questions. The next day I already had my first trimester ultrasound scheduled. We made plans to have our son stay the night with his grandmother so my husband and I could go early in the morning to have it done.

A few weeks before I was so excited to see my baby. The day of the exam, I had already knew I was not going to see my baby. I had a slimmer of hope. But when they did the ultrasound it was just confirmed. The baby was no longer alive. For whatever reason, my baby stopped growing.

They took us to another room to confirm that the baby was gone. Shock and denial was starting to set in. When I saw my OB Dr the next day my options were discussed. I decided on a D&C. My Dr was supportive of whatever I decided. I did not want to wait another two weeks for the miscarriage to happen naturally. And I didn’t want to take medication and be at home in pain and bleeding. I had my toddler to think about and take care of.

My Dr scheduled me in for Friday morning, This was all happening so fast. One moment I am pregnant and planning for our 2nd born. Suddenly it was all gone. My baby was gone. It hurt so much then and now as I write this. I immediately realized I needed time off from work. I am blessed with my job, in that I can take up to 12 weeks off for any type of medical or family emergency. I was blessed enough to take 12 weeks of maternity leave for my first born. And instead of taking a maternity leave this time, I submitted a request to take time off for my sanity and healing.

The outpouring of love and just general concern for my husband and I, was needed. My family, friends and co workers were grieving with us. That meant and means so much to us.

I faced another fear that week. It was the first time I was put under general anesthesia. Thankfully my mother in law had my son spend the night with her so I can recover. It just started becoming more and more real. After it was done, it became real. My womb was empty once again. Hope was not lost. But grief was setting in. I have never cried so much in my life. It did not help, that as the anesthesia wore off, my body felt like crap.

It’s been a whole week. Today I had a really good day. My husband and I took our son to daycare. We went home, relaxed and had breakfast. We went out and had ice cream for lunch. I got to see a local celebrity at the ice-cream shop. It was nice. I thought, “wow, maybe the grief is starting to subside.” But out of nowhere the grief and loss showed up. I was at Costco with my mother in law, and excused myself to the washroom. The tears just started to flow.

This is a process. I realized it’s not going to be easy. This sucks on so many levels. But my hope is in my God. And God has given me a family and friends who have been pouring their love, prayers and support on us. That helps. Crying helps. Writing about this process has helped me. I hope writing about this can help other moms going through. I hope to write more about this as time goes by.

Just as I had shared the good news, I want to share this tragic news as a remembrance of our baby. And that I am not going to give up. I look at my husband and my son and I know my life is not over. I will never forget about our 2nd baby. I will try not to think about the what ifs, or a parallel universe where our baby made it. I’m living this life right now. This scripture comes to mind:

Psalm 23

The Lordis my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Forever.

If you’ve been here where I am now, I welcome words of encouragement. If you’re going through your own trials, I pray you don’t give up. Cry until you can’t. Enjoy the moments when the sun does shine through. Hold your love ones close. Keep loving with all your might. And talk to others or find others who’ve been in the valley of the shadow of death.

New beginnings

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My family and I are embarking into a new season and new beginnings. Both my husband and son had their first day of starting something new. My son’s first day of daycare was today, and my husband started his new job.  

Double the blessing for us. While daycare will be a cost expense for us, I’m looking at it as an investment for our son. It’s a top place in Chicago for a daycare and I see my son flourishing there. We can even keep him there up to pre-k.  

It was a milestone of sorts for me personally as a mom. I don’t know if other moms have gone through this or can relate to this (I’m sure you have) but today I envisioned my sons future. Actually it was more like I saw that this was another beginnings of firsts; a new chapter in his life.   

I don’t want to lie and say I wasn’t  a little sad. Especially when he just ran into the room and started playing with the first toy he saw. I called his name to say goodbye and to tell him I loved him. He just stared at me and went on playing lol I left to head out to work. I did cry a little. I couldn’t help it. My mother in law works in the day care center (Thank God. Another blessing) and she sent me a text picture of him napping. All I could do was imagine giving him a kiss as he lay there looking peaceful and somber.  

I could only cry for a minute and then had to compose myself. It was fleeting moment.  But I was in my feelings and really felt the bitter sweet pain of growth. My baby is now a toddler and growing into a little boy.  

I’m excited to see what kind of growth will come from his time there. I hope that my husband and I can also guide him and see where we can help as the teachers will also have notes for us I’m sure. For now I just wanted to record this moment. 

Safe Space

A few weeks ago my husband came across an article that had an awesome perspective on why young children seem to dump their emotions on moms. Relatives or other people even made me question my 20 months old behavior with me at times. The most used phrase was: "He doesn't act that way with me." It sometimes really made me legit feel bad. It made me think or feel like I was being a "bad mom". 

What's happening is that I'm actually creating a safe space for him to be the good, the bad and the ugly. Lemme tell you that it does get ugly sometimes lol. Reading that article really helped turn on a light and let me see what was going on with my LO. He's just being himself. Granted there are times it can get embarassing. There are times that I just have to ride the waves of his emotions. Then there are times where I have to create the right boundaries and discipline him. 

 

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But it was a relief to know that I'm that safe place for him. It helps me better understand him as a little person. It reassures me not to be so hard on myself too! 

 

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It's is so very helpful to be able to share this type of knowledge or wisdom with other moms. We should be somewhat open minded to a different perpespective. Whether you're a new mom or veteran mom, it's helpful to share and to learn. Especially if it encourages healthy development and growth for you and your LO. 

Having a safe space is true for any age. Isn't it? Even with my own mom or those closest to me have seen all my sides. As I am learning to have self control, I hope to teach my son too, but to also remember to be thankful of those safe spaces, and keep it healthy. 

End of summer

Have not written in awhile and that makes me a bit disappointed. I mad a "schedule" about blogs to post. But to be honest I lost a bit of drive and focus. Maybe I put too much thought instead of just going with the flow. 

My baby boy was sick for a couple of weeks with a bad cold. Then I eventually got sick, but with a sinus cold. With my son being sick came with a little loss of appetite. That had worried me. Other things he was doing also, which turned out to be normal for boys.  

Lets just say I'm learning a lot. Meanwhile, I've taking a leap in faith and have found a church to not only visit, but hopefully become my home church.  

Im ready to for summer of 2017 to close and for the new season of Fall to open. We went to our first apple orchard with our boy. That was fun. He had a blast. We loved watching him explore and eat apples. Hopefully not the last for this next season either. 

 

 Apple eating  

Apple eating  

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Living the mom life

Learning to live in the moment, but also know to capture it with my DSLR. With that said, I know it's not always going to be "picture perfect". Literally as you'll see, some blurry photos. But I know it was because my son was dancing. 

Enjoy the moments.  

 

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dance dance dance  

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Once in awhile I get into the photo.  

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Being close to mom.  

Dancing in the morning

This Friday morning I was in the dining room getting ready. That's where my makeup is. I have a compact mirror I use and that's just my usual routine. I hear my son's baby babble from around the corner.  

He just woke up and was in a pretty good mood already. Phew! Next thing you know he turns on the radio we have (also in the dining room). It's actually a blue tooth boom box. But it also has AM/FM radio.  

The station playing was "the oldies" and I can't remember the name or band. But part of the lyrics is "I second that emotion." 

I see my son start bopping around. "Oh he's dancing" I say to myself.  

I drop what I'm doing and start dancing with him. He giggles at my little dance moves. I am loving it. These are the memories I crave to create. These moments mean the world to me. I hope as he gets older we can create even more fun times. I hope to God the good will always outweigh the bad. I hope during the storms of life, we can look back at these days and that it'll keep our hearts warm.  

But yes we danced and danced. Then it was time to go to work.  

 

Boys do cry

Ofcourse they do. I'm a new mom, so keep in mind that this is all new to me. Well most of it. My 16 month old was very cranky the whole weekend. I can't lie and say that I've been completely patient with him. There were times where he wasn't listening at all. I had take a firm tone with him a few times.  I forget that he's a little person and has his own feelings and emotions to process. 

 I take public transportation and his outburst in public have been extra challenging for me. I don't want to yell at him. I limited my time outside with him this weekend.  Usually we'll go out for long periods of time.  Not only was my anxiety off the charts but this whole weekend I was plagued by worry about how I could be failing him. 

Just being transparent right now. I know my husband and I are doing the best we can. We have support with moms and friends. But if you have anxiety, you know how the mind can bend the truth and make minut things feel so overwhelming.  

 

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As you can see...  this is part of the meltdown. It kills me right now that he can't communicate whatever it is that bothers him. It's usually a guessing game. 

The best part is being able to make him smile and laugh. As challenging as it is sometimes, I wouldn't change not being a mom. I would as he gets older encourage him to learn about his emotions. Learn how to express them in a healthy manner. But those are just my ideals atm. For now we just take one day at a time. 

 

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Here is the smile that we all love so much. Seriously, he has the best smile. 

Play Date at Maggie Daley Park

Now that my son is getting older I can take him exploring to different parks around Chicago. Actually, everytime I pass a park I'd want to check it out, I try to file the location into my brain lol. I've heard of Maggie Daley Park before, but didn't really give it a thought. Considering it's downtown, it has potential to be crowded with Chicagoans and Tourists. I try to avoid crowded places in general. 

I thought I'd be adventurous, and make it a playdate. My friend had never been either. That was a plus. MDP is pretty much located on Randolp and Columbus Dr. It's in the "backside" of millennium park. Well across the street actually. 

MDP ENTRANCE

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The entrance to the park 

As you walk in, there is a map. But if you like to be prepared before you come in, they have one on their website. http://maggiedaleypark.com/about/general-info/ 
We took the blue line to get there. It's fairly easy to get there via cta. I would highley reccomend taking CTA if you are comfortable enough. My son is used to both car and train rides. Also depending where in Chicago you are traveling from also. The redline, brownline and blueline can get you to the park.

The MDP has designated areas according to ages. The two main places we went to were: The Harbor: Ages 2-5 and The Watering Hole: Ages 2-5

 

Pear

The Harbor: Ages 2-5

My son is about 15 months old. It was perfect for him and our playdate. 


watering hole 1

The Watering Hole: Ages 2-5

Lots of WATER! 

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More Water

The watering hole had 3 stations of water/sprinklers for little ones. 

If you are ok with your little one getting wet, definately bring a towel and an extra set of clothes. I usually already carry an extra outfit, but we didn't have a towel. We just used a blanket to warm him up after the water session. I would love to come back on weekday. Oh, almost forgot to mention. We went late afternoon on a Saturday. It was PACKED. They had a cool swing area. But it was 4 swings only. That was kind of a bummer. You'd think they would have put more swings, considering how many people come out to the park. 

I would come back on a weekday and make sure I: 1. Had a towel handy, and 2. Dressed my little one in a bathing suit/outfit. I even went into the water with him. The water was a wee cold. As it gets warmer or during any of our heat waves, its the perfect place to cool off. 

When you're done at the park you can walk down (west) to Millennium Park if you want to make a day of it. There are grassy areas that are well good for picnicks or just running around in. They also have tons of areas for older children. The watering hole is a fun alternative if your little one is not a fan of the beach or pool. If you have or haven't been let me know what your thoughts are in the comment section! 

 

From Maidenhood to Motherhood|Introduction

Welcome to my blog "The Mom Chronicles". Currently I am a mom of a 15 month old boy. Online he is known as Little Pear. For sake of privacy I'll use his nickname. For the past few months I've wanted to explore my feelings and fears of going from a pre-baby body to a post-baby body. I realized that I am not alone in some of these feelings. I thought I'd be healthy and therapatic way to navigate this new territory for me and maybe help any new moms out there. 

I'll try to be as raw and transparent as I can. I realize I need an outlet too. I have to put my thoughts and feelings somewhere. I don't want to get too personal. But I think this might be a step into the right direction. 

I also have a general day to day|life style blog that's titled "christina michelle or summer", if maybe you aren't a mom or parent. OR I also have some nice pictures you can check out. Stay tuned and please feel free to get involve and comment. I'd like to try and build a community of moms/parents to chime in every once in awhile.