Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Out like a lamb

Today is the last day of March - WOW. I cannot believe how fast time flies now that I am post-college and in the working world. Get ready for a new look tomorrow! I'm really excited for it. There is faaaar less pink (along the lines of NONE), which is awesome cause I am a bit sick of pink for now!

Keep praying for Stellan. They have begun to stop his heart for longer periods in the hopes that it will return to normal sinus rhythm. It has worked so far (although it's not quite in NSR), but this is a semi-drastic measure that they can't keep up for too long.

Updated to include a picture of the April look:

Monday, March 30, 2009

4w, 0d: Happy two week birthday, little one!

Dear Baby,

You are two weeks old already! Wow! Keep growing big and strong for mommy.

I know that you are a blessing straight from God because according the wisdom of men you shouldn't exist. I told God two weeks ago that if I conceived this month, it would only be through His power - and here you are. What a great God we serve!

I love you. I'm already talking to you all the time, even though I know you don't really have the ability to hear me yet. I can't wait until you are that old!

Love,
Mommy


Since my temperature was down yesterday morning (to 98.17 from 98.40 the prior days), I was up from 5 am on worrying about the possible implications. Of course, I haven't spotted at all, so I don't think the pregnancy is ending (at least not yet), but it was still worrisome in any case. I was very anxious last night thinking about what my temperature would be this morning. While I was in the shower, I felt like God told me not to temp any more, but just to trust Him. Really, temping can't do anything for me now but to give me more reason to worry or distrust God, so I am listening and did not temp this morning! God, only you can sustain this baby, just as you were the one to breathe the breath of life into him or her. May you continue to take care of our little one, as only you can!

Weekend Update Monday

I really had a great weekend - thanks to Jamie for taking me outlet shopping on Saturday morning, Jennifer for inviting us over for dinner (yummy Indian food!) and games on Saturday night, and my sweet, sweet husband for cleaning my house and going grocery shopping Saturday morning while I was gone. What a darling he is!

I haven't been sleeping super well lately (waking up frequently, and then not being able to go back to sleep), so I'm praying that will end soon because I'm TIRED. I was having this same problem last spring and ended up on a sleeping pill that I eventually had to get off of (when I got pregnant with Max). I slept better on it, but I was always tired for the first half of the day, so I think I'm not going to go down that path again unless I get really desperate!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

3w, 6d: BFP!


I'm not sure that you can see it from this picture, but there's my first BFP of this pregnancy! I'll take another one on Wednesday just to get a darker confirmation.

I haven't had any spotting at all so far, which is such a blessing from God. I had so much spotting during my last pregnancy that I think even a drop is going to make me a nervous wreck this time around. Of course, spotting can be normal for some women, but they will have a much more difficult time convincing me of that this time!

My due date is December 7, which happens to be right before the first anniversary of when we found out Max had died. I'm praying that ends up being a blessing, and not an addition to reasons I have to mourn then. Please, God, may I keep this baby!

Maxie, you are my first sweet baby and I miss you so much, sweetie. I wish that I still had you, but I am so happy to have a little brother or sister for you, since you can't live with me here.

Little Baby, I love you so much already! I cannot wait to hold you, and I really hope that that happens in this lifetime. Grow big and strong for mommy.

Jeremiah 31:7-14

This is what the LORD says:
"Sing with joy for Jacob;
shout for the foremost of the nations.
Make your praises heard, and say,
'O LORD, save your people,
the remnant of Israel.'

See, I will bring them from the land of the north
and gather them from the ends of the earth.
Among them will be the blind and the lame,
expectant mothers and women in labor;
a great throng will return.

They will come with weeping;
they will pray as I bring them back.
I will lead them beside streams of water
on a level path where they will not stumble,
because I am Israel's father,
and Ephraim is my firstborn son.

"Hear the word of the LORD, O nations;
proclaim it in distant coastlands:
'He who scattered Israel will gather them
and will watch over his flock like a shepherd.'

For the LORD will ransom Jacob
and redeem them from the hand of those stronger than they.

They will come and shout for joy on the heights of Zion;
they will rejoice in the bounty of the LORD—
the grain, the new wine and the oil,
the young of the flocks and herds.
They will be like a well-watered garden,
and they will sorrow no more.

Then maidens will dance and be glad,
young men and old as well.
I will turn their mourning into gladness;
I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.

I will satisfy the priests with abundance,
and my people will be filled with my bounty,"
declares the LORD.


Saturday, March 28, 2009

3w, 5d: Very maybe baby

High temperatures all around! I am now past my normal luteal phase length and still have a high temp. I'm going to test tomorrow, and we'll see how that turns out! :) I love you, Baby.


Friday, March 27, 2009

Peace like a river

Wow, busy morning at work today, but I'm done now and the office is really empty and quiet. It's amazing how peaceful work can be when no one is around. :)

I'm in a great mood today and I'm hoping that it sticks around all weekend. I've been fairly irritable with my husband this past week and I don't want him to keep having to put up with my snappy ways!

Stellan is doing amazing for being in SVT this long. They are looking to try to put in a central IV line through his neck to send his medications right to his heart, since his limbs aren't getting very good circulation right now. But because he doesn't have an IV in currently, they are going to have to keep him under by injecting him in the foot throughout the procedure. Pray for this surgery to go well, so that he can get his medications more quickly and without interruption. And pray that they will find a combo of meds that will get his heart out of SVT!

3w, 4d: Are you there, baby? It's me, your mommy.

Dear Baby,

I might be wrong. You may not really exist. But, I think you do. And because my last pregnancy, with your brother, Max, only lasted 12 weeks, I want to make sure I enjoy every second of you - whether you live for days, weeks, months or years.

I have spent the last few months mourning, but now I am crying for sheer joy. This will be a bittersweet period of my life, knowing that I lost one baby to have another, but I know it will all be worth the pain in the end. You will be worth the pain.

I can't wait to meet you! I hope that it will be on earth, and not in heaven, but I'm so happy to know that I will meet you someday. No matter what.

I love you, Baby. Welcome to our family!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

All clear!

Beautiful is not a word I would expect to be applied to my ovaries, but it was today. My left ovary is completely clear of cysts and I ovulated from my right ovary this month, where we could see the huuuuge, clear corpus luteum. My uterus looked fine, too, although I did think it look tilted when we looked at it from the top. That is not usually a problem, though; most people's are tilted, I read somewhere.

Surprise, surprise, we didn't see anything in the uterus, although I wonder if you could really see a ball of cells on an ultrasound anyway. I didn't ask them to look for anything, I thought that would be a bit crazy. I know I said there was no hope this month, but, hey, how can I not hope when the title of my blog is "hope and a future"? My temps have been up the last few days (as they should be post-ovulation) and I'm praying they stay up the next two, at least. Even if I'm not pregnant now, I'd like the ability to be pregnant sometime.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Stellan update

UPDATE: Stellan just had an episode of prolonged V-tach, which is extremely dangerous. He came out of it and is now having some heart block. His IV popped out and they're currently trying to figure out if they should put in a central line (small surgery) or try for a new line.

Keep praying for Stellan. He is still in SVT, and they are having to back off of the beta blockers now as they are not working. They are trying Flecainide right now, the drug he was on in the womb, and a steroid for his lungs.
Late Night Tidbits
outwardly calm

You can get a copy of the Praying for Stellan button from the "Late Night Tidbits" post above.

3w, 2d: I will celebrate!

I will celebrate and sing unto the Lord,
I will sing to Him a new song.
I will celebrate and sing unto the Lord,
I will sing to Him a new song.

I will praise Him for He has triumphed victoriously.
I will praise Him for He has triumphed victoriously.

Temp dip at 7DPO and a temp rise today at 9 DPO - this cycle is looking mysteriously like my last pregnancy cycle. And I am rejoicing! EDD: December 7, 2009.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Recommendation: Marley and Me

You should all read Marley and Me by John Grogan. This book made me laugh out loud (literally to the point of falling halfway off the couch) and it made me cry my first tears that weren't about my Max in a very, very long time. Warning: You may have a very strong urge to go out and buy a dog after finishing the book.

For all of my readers who have had miscarriages, there is a brief miscarriage scene near the beginning of the book (not to spoil anything, but just so you are warned). I knew it was coming and I was actually okay through it, but that also may choke you up a bit.

Absolutely fantastic writing, great story, beautiful reminder of the preciousness of life.

T minus three months

Yesterday marked three months until my due date. I can't believe that I got pregnant six months ago! Can you imagine how huge I would be right now? Three more months, Maxie, until your zeroeth birthday!

Emotionally, I feel like I am doing much better. I'm more irrational at certain times in my cycle, but at least I know when they are coming, and I have less of a day-to-day battle.

I also feel prepared now for another baby. I wanted to get pregnant so quickly after Max, and I think that that was so I could have almost viewed that baby as Max, just staying in slightly longer than he would have. I think I'm at a point emotionally now that I'm okay (well, as okay as a mommy can be) with my baby waiting for me in heaven and that any future baby will get to have/be a separate experience from Max.

I still miss you so much, Max, and I really wish that you could be kicking in my tummy right now, keeping me from sleeping and growing big and strong, but I know you are so happy where you are and I'm glad. Help God pick out your baby brother or sister and give them a kiss for me!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Pray for Stellan! (No Not Me! Monday today.)

Pray for Stellan today. He is the baby of MckMama (Jennifer) who had a racing heart in her womb and he survived miraculously without a trace of a problem. They brought him to the hospital last night for some breathing treatments and the nebulizer threw his heart back into Supra Ventricular Tachycardia (a very racing heart). They are struggling to slow his heart (it is around 300 beats per minute right now, which is extremely dangerous) and are currently trying to use medicine to stop his heart in hopes that it will start back again in a normal rhythm. You can find more details on MckMama's post here:
Stellan is in the hospital with SVT

UPDATE:
Using Adenosine to stop Stellan's heart (in hope that it will restart itself normally) is not working. They have him on beta blockers right now and are hopeful those will help, but are going to have to put him on a ventilator soon if things do not calm down.
9:40 am update

UPDATE #2:
Stellan has been in and out of a normal sinus rhythm since yesterday afternoon and the doctors are having a rough time getting an IV in. Right now we are praying for the IV (they need a spot that will not occlude too quickly) and for Stellan's heart to be in a normal rhythm for 12 hours.
"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all." II Corinthians 4:17

UPDATE #3:
I would just like to say that Jennifer is doing much better than I would be, considering the circumstances. Praise God for His presence that is calming her and allowing her to get through this without going insane. The latest updates are on Twitter. You can follow MckMama here. But her amazing post this morning is:
To Him be the Glory

Friday, March 20, 2009

Pi-lat-es

Hubby's coming home today - hooray! Sophie has been a very good kitty while her daddy was gone and let mommy sleep as much as mommy wanted to - hooray!

I started Pilates last night and my back is killing me this morning. I think it's a combo cramp/backache, but I know it'll go away with time. My poor back is just not very strong right now! I'm really going to try to stick to doing Pilates at least every other day, since I really need to strengthen my core muscles and it'll be good for me during pregnancy, too.

Fertility friend is messing with my mind and telling me that I actually O-ed on Tuesday, not Monday. Hmmm... Well, in any case, now I have hope again. We'll see next Saturday/Sunday if AF shows up or not. I'm either pregnant or I'm not and me worrying about it right now doesn't change matters.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Rant over

Sorry for that, but I was just too mad to function and needed to get some anger out in words. I'm over it now, though. There's always next month! And I'm happy that my cycle is looking back to normal hormone levels. My next goal/prayer is to have a luteal phase with high temps for at least 10 days, hopefully lasting at least 11 days. My last few cycles have been non-pregnancy sustaining lengths, so I need my progesterone levels to stay higher longer!

Doctor's appointment today to check my hopefully dead cyst. That's at 11 am EST, and I'll update afterwards.

My husband's leaving me today! He's going to Baltimore to finish some processing for his job and will be back on Friday. I'm going to miss him something fierce!

UPDATE:
Jamie reminded me that I didn't update yet! The appointment lasted all of 10 minutes (it was just a brief internal exam), and I was told that my uterus tilts slightly to the left and my left ovary is somewhat larger than the right. They don't do ultrasounds at my Ob/Gyn so I have an appointment set up for next Thursday at 9 am.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

TMI

Look at this beautiful picture:


The line that says "BD" shows when we have "done the dance" (DTD) - yeah, that's right, only on Friday. That temp jump today shows that I ovulated yesterday.

Oh, yes, I got my prayers that I would ovulate early (CD13, just as asked for). Too bad I didn't equate the never-seen-before-in-my-body Egg White Cervical Mucus on Sunday and Monday to me being... hmm, I don't know... fertile?!? How hard is it to realize that when you have EWCM you need to have sex?

Oh, yes, we were going to try this morning, but I couldn't do it! I was so unfocused and confused and disheartened and estrogen-less that there was no chance of me being able to do anything.

Maybe DTD on Friday night could give us a chance... Oh, no, wait, only 16 year olds get pregnant from sex three days before ovulation.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Not Me! Monday


Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

I have not been thinking recently, hey, this grief thing is getting easier, and then bursting into tears anytime I hear another story of a mom who's lost her baby. I do not pray for my fellow mothers with empty arms and I certainly do not hope that you all are receiving comfort from God as you walk through another day without your baby.

Saturday was not the three month anniversary of Max's exodus from my body. Thus, I obviously didn't realize later that the day had passed by without my even noticing it. Yesterday was not my 21 month anniversary, and, of course, I am not still counting our marital bliss in months. Not me!

I did not imagine a scenario this morning where I went to an 8 week appointment at which my baby had no heartbeat and I took this all in stride, comforting the doctor in her empathy for me. (Leaving aside the "Not me's!" for a second, I'm not pregnant again, I just have a very active imagination!)

I am not looking forward to being pregnant again and I do not have faith that God will bless me with another child someday.

Friday, March 13, 2009

A Good Substitute

Editor's note:
Sometimes I try to edit myself on what I write on this blog, thinking that you all couldn't possibly be interested or want to hear the same thing for the 50th time in a row. But I'm realizing more and more that this is not your blog, it's mine, and really, I need to say what I need to say. Whether you guys read it or not is a moot point.

Not that I don't love you all... Because I do. And I appreciate you so much for coming here and grieving with me and being my friends. It is very nice to have an audience for my feelings. It's just that it's more necessary for me to get out my feelings, rather than make myself more interesting or less annoying or happier or whatever.

(I'm not convinced that this Editor's note has anything to do with the below post. I was going to post about something else, and then got caught up in some different thoughts. But in general, I think it still applies, so I'm going to leave it.)

Real post:
I'm considering becoming a substitute teacher for a few months in the fall (or until I have a baby... who really knows how long it's going to take to get pregnant). I've had this kind of floating thought that after my kids are in school (as in, middle school or high school when I'm done home schooling) that I'm going to become a high school chemistry/science teacher. But I'm realizing that I have no idea whether I actually even want to be a teacher. I've taught Sunday school before, but my kids were 1st graders and now three year olds. I know I enjoy teaching three year olds (although maybe not on a daily basis :-P), but I don't really know my feelings about teaching high schoolers. What if I go back to school some day, pay lots of money to get my Masters (in Teaching/Education) and then hate it? So, I've come up with the idea of trying out substitute teaching. Did you know that you only need a high school diploma to do that? (They pay more if you have a certain number of college credits, or even more if you have a degree, but that's beside the point.) In any case, I'm going to think about it more, but I'll probably apply this summer and hopefully have some work to do in the fall. My major concern is lack of sleep. I don't do well without sleep, and I'm not good at going to bed at a decent time when my husband's around to talk to. (It's too much like having your best friend over for a slumber party every single day!)

On a different note: there's also been some Drama (yes, with a capital D) going on in the Christian blogging world over the past few days. Seems some Christians have gotten themselves in trouble for judging other Christians for not "shining their light" or whatever. I don't do well with judgment (read: I'm a cry baby), so I'm just glad I haven't had any of that over here. Because I'm not sure that I'm "shining my light" so well.

I'm not one of those Christians that likes to think that Jesus has made her world perfect and that I need to tell everyone how perfect my world is. Because He doesn't make everything perfect, sadly. If He did, our babies would still be here. I've been mad at God for taking my baby. He didn't need Max, why didn't He just leave him with me? But this world is messed up (corrupted by sin, just like us) and bad things happen because of that. He didn't make it this way; we made it this way. And He had to give up His son to fix what we did. I'm eternally in his debt, and every child he does give me is a gift, not something that is owed to me.

Okay, that's all I have to say. Not that it wasn't a lot.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Recommendations

Recommended post: http://babynaillieux.blogspot.com/2009/03/mommyness.html

Recommended song:
Shadowlands by Rebecca St. James

You promised me
That You'd never leave
Or let me go
You promised me
That You'd love me through
The highs and lows

You promised me
You won't give me more
Than I can bear
You promised me
That when I cry out
That You'd be there

The shadowlands are what I know
So I'm hanging on to Your every word
The shadowlands surround me now
But You walk with me through the cloud
Into the sun
Into the sun

You promised me
If I sow in tears
I'll reap in joy
You promised me
That You will breathe life
Into my soul

I know it's true
All that You say
I believe in You
And I am standing on
The promises You've made

You promised me and I believe

Recommended Psalm (126):

When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion,
we were like men who dreamed.

Our mouths were filled with laughter,
our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
"The LORD has done great things for them."

The LORD has done great things for us,
and we are filled with joy.

Restore our fortunes, O LORD,
like streams in the Negev.

Those who sow in tears
will reap with songs of joy.

He who goes out weeping,
carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
carrying sheaves with him.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Bleh.

My husband's going out of town next Wednesday-Friday, and not only am I going to miss him fervently, but those are prime baby making days right there! I need serious prayer to O (ovulate) early this month - my O dates are really widely varying, so I've O-ed as early as CD13 (Monday the 16th this month) and as late as CD17 (Friday). Maybe God's trying to teach me patience.

Guess who went back to her old Babycenter group today? Stupid, stupid, stupid.

I have a bad temper. I don't think I knew that about myself until I got married. God gives us marriage to make us holy, not happy, right?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Not much here.

I don't really have anything to say today. Happy 25 weeks, Max.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Not Me! Monday


Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

I did not skip talking to my in-laws last week because I was spending hours putting together my cousin's Flat Stanley Goes to Boston book. I would never spend that much time on someone else's school project, thus making myself the most coveted cousin this side of the Mississippi. And I did not just figure out how to spell Mississippi by singing, "Em-Eye-Ess-Ess-Eye-Ess-Ess-Eye-Pee-Pee-Eye."

I did not start writing my 100th post several weeks ago, somewhere around the 70th post. I am not that on top of things (or maybe a better word is OCD)!

I did not reserve several books on fertility and fertility after miscarriage from the library. When I went to pick them up, I did not all of a sudden realize that, hmm, this woman is going to know that I just had a miscarriage, and then want to run away as fast as possible. Surely I would have thought about that long before getting to the counter. I did not thank God that she didn't speak almost any English, and did not pray that she had no idea what the word "miscarriage" meant.

I did not stay up far too late on Saturday night, since I recognized the time change, thus I did not exhaust myself before encountering the very grumpy three year olds in Sunday School who also did not stay up far too late on Saturday night. I did not take a nap for three hours yesterday evening, and I certainly was not then stuck awake past 2 am. Nope, not me!

I did not run away in fear from a pregnant woman yesterday. I did not excuse myself from the situation by saying that I needed a drink of water. And when I returned to find my friends still talking to said pregnant woman, I did not sit in the corner of the room, as far away as possible, and was not shaking while trying to be invisible. My biggest fear is not to meet a pregnant woman who is due on June 23, carrying a boy she is going to name Max.

And I would just like to say that this is definitely not true: 60%How Addicted to Blogging Are You?

100th post!

To celebrate 100 posts, I'm using the classic 100 facts about me. Here they are (in no particular order):

1. My name means "joy of her father." I have always been a daddy's girl!
2. I got married on June 15, 2007, the happiest day of my life (so far).
3. My husband, Jonathan, and I went to the same college, and met each other the first day he arrived on campus.
4. Jonathan is a year younger than me in school (and almost a year younger in age, too).
5. I have three siblings, and I am the oldest.
6. When I was 2, I would correct my dad as to where my toys belonged.
7. I am quite the control freak.
8. I hate breaking rules. I just don't do it!
9. I am an ISFJ, the Protector, although the F is pretty weak, so I am also a bit of an ISTJ.
10. I did not vote for Obama.
11. I want Bobby Jindal to be our next president. Inaugural Bhangra!
12. I watched Bollywood movies before they were cool.
13. I have lots of Indian friends and sometimes I wish I were Indian!
14. I love, love, love theater.
15. I have been both a techie and an actor. And sometimes both in one show!
16. Adelaide from Guys and Dolls has been my favorite part so far, although Kathy in Singin' in the Rain is a close second.
17. I was also a speechie in high school.
18. I was deathly afraid of my speech coach.
19. I still am deathly afraid of my speech coach.
20. I never was very good at Speech, but I won some prizes for categories like Extemporaneous because no one ever does Extemp (there were approximately 5 people in entire tournaments).
21. I used to make up facts that I would quote as if they were from articles (for Extemp). I guess that's one rule I've broken. :-P
22. I used to be able to give an entire speech with a Halls in my mouth (and no one ever knew). Because my throat was so raw during tournaments, I had to keep it coated to be able to speak!
23. I took Spanish for 7 years and can't speak a sentence of it. Yo quiero bistek. (And that I remember from a song.)
24. I took German for 1 year and still remember a good bit. Ich habe nur ein bisschen vergessen.
25. I always liked Italian, but then I had a boss who was Italian and I quickly grew to hate the language.
--This is harder than I thought. Onward to 50.--
26. I got my college degree in Chemistry... but I don't really want to use it. Except maybe to teach.
27. I want to homeschool my children, at least through elementary school.
28. I want four children, just like my family had.
29. I've never been to Disney World....
30. ...or Florida for that matter!
31. I was born in Louisiana, further south than and before my husband was. I use this to tell him that I'm more of a Southerner than he is.
32. When I was 12, I had moved 16 times in 12 years.
33. The final move was to West Virginia, where my mom is from, and where I now say I'm from, even though I've lived in Massachusetts almost as long as I lived in West Virginia.
34. In middle school, I spelled my name as "Abi."
35. Thus, when we were reading the book Night by Elie Wiesel, I earned the nickname "Rabbi Abi" (pronounced Rab-eye Ab-eye).
36. My cousin Amy eventually evolved that nickname into "The All-Knowing Rabbi."
37. I used to speak to Amy and some other friends solely in "optalk," which is the secret language from the PBS show "Zoom."
38. And then we discovered that my mom knew "ubbi-dubbi," a variant of optalk, from watching Zoom when she was younger. We stopped using optalk for telling secrets around my mom!
39. I had a paper route for several years. But my mom, the sweetest mom ever, would deliver the Saturday morning papers for me, so that I didn't have to wake up at 6 am on my day to sleep in.
40. Once, while delivering papers, I almost got blown away by tornado-strength winds. (Seriously - I was "running" towards my front door, but Amy said that I looked basically frozen in space, running, but not moving.)
41. I have been to Kazakhstan, but not Switzerland or Spain.
42. I lived in Germany for two months in 2004. I only learned German once I got back home!
43. I can sleep on planes, but only if I'm cold and I have something to cover my head with.
44. I used to be able to read full books in the car, but since starting birth control pills I have had the weakest stomach ever. I can't read or watch tv in a car or airplane, which really limits my options for keeping myself amused.
45. I've used the barf bag in airplanes on several occasions. Poor Jonny. :)
46. My family has always owned at least one Toyota at a time, including two Corollas, a Sienna, a Tercel and an Echo. I drove the Echo.
47. I remember when gas was $0.97/gallon! Those were my high school days and it was glorious. Also, I was filling up an Echo, so we're talking $10 a tank!
48. My family has moved twice (within the same area) since I came to college, and switched churches. It's weird to not have my "home" any more!
49. My top three favorite artists are: Rebecca St. James, Joy Williams, Bethany Dillon. I own all of their albums! And for Rebecca, that's quite a feat!
50. I once sent a letter to Rebecca St. James and actually got a letter back from her staff that said she was going to personally read my letter! I have no clue what I wrote about.
--Alright, I'm totally considering quitting at 50. Let's see if I can make it to 75, at least.--
51. I've been using the internet for quite some time. Some of my old favorite sites are: AncientSites, Horseland, Neopets, and Geocities (Where I hosted my very own website for a long, long time. Man, I wish I still had the code for that thing! From what I remember, it was wicked awesome.)
52. I don't actually use the word "wicked" in real life, unless I'm mocking someone.
53. I do, however, use the word "sketchy" frequently.
54. I am extremely picky when people make obvious grammar mistakes. (For example, replacing "their" with "they're" or "there.") I think this stems from the fact that although my writing in middle/high school was never interesting, it was always grammatically correct, so that I could ensure my A. (I mean, you can't give me a B because my style isn't that grand. Bwahahaha.)
55. Relatedly, I am very good at comma rules. My husband tells me I use commas far too frequently, but really, I only use them when you're supposed to. Duh.
56. I always try to use the second comma in a list of three (for example, "me, mine, and ours") because if you leave it out it is called the Harvard comma, and I hate Harvard. (I hope none of you went there.)
57. My AP English teacher in twelfth grade told me that it was acceptable to use prepositions at the end of a sentence. She was a moron, but I used that as a good excuse to start doing so.
58. I am extremely picky about the kind of pen that I write with. There are some pens that are worth writing with, but most aren't. I like gel pens (especially the Bic VelocityGels) and I like certain kinds of ballpoint pens.
59. I far overuse smiley faces (:-P or :D) when chatting on IM (and on e-mails, too, probably). Sometimes I realize that I am using them on my blog and I try to make myself stop. Sorry, peeps.
60. I ride a shuttle to and from work every day. It picks up at my front door and drops me off about a block away from work. Epic laziness.
61. I kill plants like nobody's business. I think I mostly overwater them. But if I don't water them frequently, then I forget to water them and they also die. So, basically, I kill plants.
62. I love, love, love, love, love hot dogs. I ate one every night in college (I definitely missed some nights, but in general.) and I could still eat them every night now, if I didn't want to be fat and in super bad health. So I eat them about once a week instead. Healthy, right?
63. I just realized that I love to start sentences with a dependent clause. Because it makes me happy. I really hope that doesn't bother anyone.
64. I drink many, many cups of water each day. Thankfully for the environment, I use a stainless steel water bottle and almost never buy bottled water.
65. When I came to MIT I wanted to major in Physics and Math. And then I started classes.
66. I only applied to two colleges, MIT and WVU (go West Virginny!). I knew that I wanted to go to MIT if I got the financial aid, and if I didn't, I was fine with WVU.
67. I wanted to go to MIT because that's where I thought all astronauts went. And, yes, I wanted to be an astronaut at some point in my past life.
68. I love crossword puzzles.
69. I love crossing out days on a calendar. (I'm currently getting my inspiration from things sitting out on my desk.)
70. I sit on my feet a lot. I think it's because I'm short and it brings me to a more normal height. Also, my feet dangle off of most chairs, which makes my hips sore.
71. I'm only 5' 0". My husband is 6' 5". That makes a 17" difference between us!
72. I hate cooking. My poor husband eats things out of boxes most nights.
73. I make my husband watch Gilmore Girls with me every night during dinner. Actually, I started out having to make him, and now he watches willingly. We're almost done with Season 6 (out of 7)... I'm not sure what we're going to do once we finish!
74. My weekly TV lineup is House, Heroes, Jon & Kate Plus Eight, 24, and the Colbert Report. I watch most of those on Hulu if I miss them! (God bless Hulu.)
75. I have a chronically bad back, which has been mostly fixed by Dansko Professional shoes. I call them my "back" shoes, and since I do so much walking in Boston, I wear them with everything, all the time. I cannot wait to move and get to wear shoes that actually go with my outfit!
--Are you really still reading this? Now I have to finish, I'm almost done!--
76. I love reading Dilbert in the biweekly campus paper. He's such a dork, just like me. (In all honesty, I probably read this because of Jonathan, but it is so funny!)
77. I used to play the violin, clarinet, piano, and reed flute. At the same time. (Just kidding about that last part.)
78. I have 486 friends on facebook (add me via my facebook badge on the left column!), but considering that I haven't actually spoken to probably 400 of those people in the past year, I'm not really that popular.
79. I love genealogy! I have a subscription to Ancestry.com. Sadly, my family's only been in the country for a few generations, so I'm pretty maxed out on what I can know about them.
80. I recently discovered the joy of night showers. I think I'll switch back to morning when I can sleep in, but for now, when I have to get up early (7 am is the very definition of early to me), then I am perfectly happy to take night showers.
81. I also recently discovered the loveliness of long, hot baths. Sooo relaxing - I take one most nights!
82. I love to read and I burn through books like nobody's business. Jonathan says that I couldn't possibly remember what I'm reading at the speed that I read, but I do! He tests me on it sometimes.
83. I love photography. Someday I want to take pictures of a) people's children or b) weddings. Of course, I'm going to get plenty of practice taking pictures of my children first!
84. I get out at 4 pm on Fridays - woohoo!
85. I had three out of four wisdom teeth and none were impacted. I had one pulled because it kept growing (since it didn't have a matching tooth below it). Both of my parents have all four of their wisdom teeth still.
86. I'm good at baking - I think it's that German sweet tooth in me.
87. I am 5/8 German, 1/4 Swedish and 1/8 Irish. My husband is about 3/4 German and 1/4 British. So our kids will definitely be mutts!
88. I do all of the family finances, mostly because I would be nervous about whether Jonathan had paid something or not. Lots of trust there, people.
89. My birthday is Valentine's Day and I was born on my dad's 22nd birthday.
90. I hate talking on the phone; I will avoid it at all costs. Good thing I was born in the age of e-mail!
91. My favorite author is John Piper, followed by a close second of Jane Austen. But I'm more in love with Jane than John.
92. My skin is allergic to the perfumes in hand lotions. I have to make sure I don't get any smelly kinds, or they will crack and bleed!
93. I walk really fast. As in, I walk at the same pace as my 6' 5" husband does.
94. I don't actually believe I have any friends who are reading at this point in time, but the fact that I'm still writing shows how stubborn I am.
95. I am a Sunday School teacher of 3 year olds. Last year I did first grade, and I highly prefer the 3 year olds. (But don't tell the first graders that!)
96. I love Vineyard Christian Fellowships! Sadly, my husband doesn't. We go to a Congregational church currently, although he was raised Southern Baptist.
97. My favorite book of the Bible is Philippians. When I was in high school, I tried to memorize the whole book. I think I got through 2.5 chapters, but I'm not sure how much I could recite now.
98. I hate to exercise. I used to love running, but then I got bad shin splints and hurt my back and it wasn't fun any more. Now I do the elliptical when I feel really bad about myself.
99. When I was in first grade, I could do a perfect backbend. Now I can't even touch my toes!
100. I had contacts in high school and followed every rule in the book, but they made my eyes bleed! It was very sad.

By the way, there is no way I am doing one of these for my 200th post.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Another lost baby

Please, everyone, pray for a blogging friend of mine, Mimi, who just lost her baby, Mason, at 4 1/2 months pregnant. She needs to feel God holding her right now.

Why is there so much heartbreak in this world? Thank the Lord that this is not our home. Not our final destination.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Counted Righteous in Christ

MckMama's post today reminded me of something I wanted to talk about on here.

A few nights ago I was reading Counted Righteous in Christ by John Piper. On a side note, John Piper is my absolute favorite author ever, even a bit over Jane Austen (whom I am in love with). Anyway, this book is about Christ's imputation of righteousness to us. That's a big thought, so let me break it down:

The word "justification" is a fancy term for the fact that when we are saved, 1. our sins are transferred to Christ, who has already paid the penalty for them by dying on the cross, and 2. Christ's righteousness is "imputed" (or transferred) to us, which means that when God sees a saved person, he doesn't see our sins, as he did before we were saved, but he sees Christ's perfect life. This is the doctrine of justification that Christians have believed since Paul's Letter to the Romans. Piper explained this to his 6 year old daughter with a story about two men who were being tried in court: one man was declared innocent by the judge and set free (and thus treated well by society, as he was innocent), but another man, who had committed the crime, was told by the judge that even though he was guilty, he would go free and that not only was he forgiven for the crime, but no one could ever treat him as if he had committed it. (This is an important distinction because many criminals are treated poorly by society, even though they have perhaps "paid for" their crime by doing what the court has punished them with.)

All that to say that John Piper made an amazing connection for marriage: if we are to treat our spouses like we should (i.e. as God treats us), then we have to consider them fully justified. That means that even when they have done something wrong or haven't done something that we needed them to do, we should see them as having done it right, as Christ would have done. It's hard to get mad at someone so perfect!

When I get upset with Jonathan, he'll often tell me, "You can't get mad at me! I'm perfect! I've never done anything wrong." What a truth that is (even though he doesn't realize it when he's saying it)! With Christ's righteousness imputed to him, he is perfect.

This is also important for me to remember about myself, since I can tend towards seeing myself in a very negative light. I have the righteousness of Christ and no one can condemn me!

How to relieve cramping!

Okay, dude. This deserves a post in and of itself. Someone random in the hallway just showed me how to stop cramps (of the menstrual type) by putting some pressure on these spots on your hips. You find the spot by putting pressure on different locations until you find this spot that hurts (it's on the inside of my hip bone, it feels like the same hurt that you get if you push on your temple) and then hold it for two minutes and voila! No more cramps. I'm not even kidding - it totally took them away. I'll let you know how long it lasts.

UPDATE: It's wearing off now... I'd say about 5 hours of relief? Nice!

OOOOWWWWWW

Okay, the name of today's game is "How Long Can Abbie Live Without Advil Because It's Ripping Apart Her Stomach But Her Cramps Are So Bad That She's Going To Pass Out Without It."

Appointment on March 18 at 11 to check out that cyst o' mine. Hopefully the sucker is gone.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

No hope, but still a future (and a future hope).

Yesterday, a friend, in the comments, mentioned a possible scenario in which this month could turn out with a pregnancy. And then my mind was off running, full of hope again. What is it about hope that we so desperately cling to it as long as we possibly can? Even I, who have gained the nickname "Pessa" (short for pessimist) from my husband because of my great pessimism, cling to the possible good things that could happen. But, alas, my temp was down again this morning and I am merely waiting for the fun times to begin.

A short story that will hopefully make you laugh and illustrate my pessimism:

My alarm clock had lost its settings when the power went off, and I reset the first alarm, but didn't want to set the second one. This is a seriously annoying clock to set.
Jonathan: "Why don't you set the second alarm?"
Me: "Because it takes forever to set. I don't want to have to set it to only use it once! The power will probably go off before I need it, and I'll have to set it all over again!"
Jonathan: "Why don't you just set it? You need it now and you will probably use it again before the power goes off."
Me: "See, you're looking at the bright side, but there probably is no bright side."

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Bitter-sweet

by George Herbert

Ah my deare angrie Lord,
Since thou dost love, yet strike;
Cast down, yet help afford;
Sure I will do the like.

I will complain, yet praise;
I will bewail, approve:
And all my sowre-sweet dayes
I will lament, and love.

24 weeks today, and I've now (by every count) been without my Max as long as I had him with me. That is overwhelmingly sad to me.

Hope doesn't mean you get what you want.

Last night I had the most wonderful dream. It was so vivid, as real to me as if I was actually experiencing it. Someone, I don't remember how I knew this person, gave their baby to me for a day. He was so sweet, I smelled his little head, stroked his cheek, tickled his toes, kissed him all over. I fed him a bottle and just cuddled him. And then he was gone and I was awake, and I felt like someone had taken my Max away all over again. It was awful. But, I still had the hope of a new pregnancy.

Until I temped. 97.92, which at 10 DPO is not a good sign. Oh, that and the cramps and backache that I then realized were what woke me up so early.

If my period comes today (which I could be wrong, but I have a feeling that it might), that means a 9 day luteal phase. Which is not anywhere near enough to sustain a pregnancy.

I think my body is flipping me off right now.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Schtuff.

Okay, pink it is! I'm in agreement with all of you - the pink is much better than the purple. Phew, problem solved.

It's the blizzard of the century outside, and I'm at work. I think that if a nuclear bomb were dropped on Boston, MIT would still say that their policy on Excused Lateness was in effect. Oh, excuse my lateness, it's just hard to crawl in when your legs have fallen off. (Sorry, I'm just sore that they DON'T HAVE SNOW DAYS in the FROZEN TUNDRA. I hate the Northeast.)

But the weekend was nice! We didn't have Sunday School yesterday so Jonathan and I were bad Christians and stayed home to listen to the church service via the Radio. Jonathan's a bit worried that we're going to have to teach Sunday School for the rest of our lives to make sure that we end up going to church ever. But that's what evening services are for!

I don't really feel like doing a Not Me! Monday today. Oh, well.

Wishing and hoping and thinking and praying
Planning and dreaming...

Oh, Max. I love you, sweet baby boy.