Mother’s Day

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I have to be honest, this upcoming mother’s day has caught me a little off guard. You see, for the past ten years, it has just been her. The light of my world, my confidant. And now with a new baby on the way, I can’t help but worry that the love I have to give will not be enough. I have been asking myself lately if the amount of love we have increases with each child? Unfortunately, I don’t know the answer to this, but my gut keeps telling me yes. Or at least I can only hope it does. Growing up as an only child, this is foreign territory to me.

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I felt it necessary to sit down and take the time to thank my daughter for so many things, but the list could go on forever and I fear that I might forget something. Finding out I was pregnant at nineteen, was not the easiest news in the world to swallow. I was terrified and still a baby myself in so many ways. And then this beautiful being came into the world and opened my eyes up to so many wonderful things. Things that some people are not fortunate enough to get to experience. Things that I can’t even begin to verbally express. Not only have I watched her grow into the beautiful person that she is, but she has watched me grow as well. Together, we have made it through this journey thus far, and I can only imagine what the future holds for the two of us. The truth is, I have  needed her just as much as she has needed me.

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She’s the best of me in so many ways, and yet I feel as if I fail her in so many more. I see so many traits in her that I wish I myself could possess. She is not only beautiful on the outside, but her inside beauty is even more radiant. Don’t ever let the world steal your sunshine, Hannah Marie.FB_IMG_1457277774232I can’t help but be thankful for this magical time that we have gotten together, just the two of us. From the silly times to the sweet moments just before bedtime, where I smother her in kisses and tell her that I love her more than anyone in the world. Which is true. She is my first born. She will always hold a very special place in my heart that no one will ever be able to fill. She has been a teacher to me just as much as I have been to her. She is the one who made me a mother, and for this I am forever grateful.

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And now this not-so-little girl is going to be a big sister. The best big sister there ever was and I am so excited for her. I can only hope that she is as thankful for me as I am for her and that the love I have given to her has been enough and will continue to be enough. I may not always be able to give her the moon and the stars, but I promise to always try my hardest.

“Suddenly, through birthing a daughter, a woman finds herself face to face not only with an infant, a little girl, a woman-to-be, but also with her own unresolved conflicts from the past and her hopes and dreams for the future…. ”  -Elizabeth Debold and Idelisse Malave

What is there not to celebrate?

According to the calendar, I am six weeks and four days pregnant. Which means I am one week closer to confirmation. This waiting period has to be one of the hardest parts about being pregnant, on top of the “morning” sickness and the insatiable need to eat and sleep. But I could not be happier. The fact that there is a little human growing inside of me is just inconceivable.

On top of which, in just a mere three days, I get to say “I do” to the man I love and take his last name. Followed by seven days on the beautiful island of Oahu.

My cup is overflowing. My heart is exploding with love. How did I get here? I don’t know, but I don’t ever want to go back.

All signs point to yes…

5 weeks pregnant. Who would have thought it would be this easy? Not me, that is for sure. If you would have asked me a month ago when we decided to “start trying” if we would see immediate results, the answer would be no.

I must have been in denial at first. That is the only thing I can think of as to why I didn’t notice what was going on with my body. But then again, it has been a complete decade since the last time I was pregnant.

I remember saying to my best friend first thing that Friday morning, “I’m just going to say this so I can put it out there and get it into the Universe, but I haven’t started yet.” That was my attempt at getting my body to “start”. The whole notion of reverse psychology, but little did I know it wasn’t going to work. “I keep feeling like I am going to start but I never do.” And then she said it, “Those were my symptoms each time I have been pregnant.”. Wait, what? Run that past me one more time. Come to find out, I wasn’t just late, but a week late. And the more I think and read about everything I have been experiencing up to this point, it all makes sense now:

  • Cramping – I somehow managed to forget that these are also associated with pregnancy.
  • Sore boobs – Don’t even think about touching them. If I had the option, I would walk around in a sports bra 24 hours a day. That is one of the only things I have found to provide some sort of relief.
  • Increased bathroom trips – I managed to make the comment to a co-worker, before I actually new what was happening, that I wasn’t even the pregnant one at the office (she was), but I sure was going to the bathroom like one. Oops…
  • Night sweats – I won’t lie, these are awful. Waking up in the middle of the night multiple times completely covered in your own sweat only to be freezing two seconds later is not glorious. But according to everything I read, these should hopefully go away once all my hormones regulate. Which leads me to another symptom…
  • Moodiness – Ouch. I feel sorry for my poor fiancee. Raging bitch is putting it lightly. Bless his soul.
  • Temperature – My body temperature has been out of control. From raging hot one second to I don’t think I am ever going to get warm the next (see previous section on night sweats).

The hunger is just now starting to set in. My stomach ferociously growls as if to remind me that there is a growing monster in there demanding my attention. The exhaustion hasn’t quite hit me, but then again I am always tired. Nap Queen should be my nickname, in all honesty.

This phase to me has to be one of the hardest. The pregnancy test says yes, but as far as actual confirmation that things are progressing the way they should be, I still have to wait four weeks until I see the Dr. The only thing I have to reassure me at this point that all is well is the faith that I have in my body and the fact that yes, every time I still go to the bathroom, I check to make sure that I still haven’t started.

So, that’s it. 5 weeks in and all it’s glory. Ecstatic doesn’t even begin to explain the way I feel right now. No matter what is going on in the world around me, in the back of my mind, all I can focus on is the fact that there is a baby inside of me. A human life. A little me and a little him. Our little secret.

All signs point to yes, our little one. And we could not be more excited.

Healing

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After many long-awaited weeks, my OB-GYN appointment was finally yesterday. I must say, this whole process up until yesterday has been a disaster. I have never felt so out of the loop before as to what is going on with or going to happen to my body. And google didn’t help, that is for sure. So, my hope in this is that someone out there reads this and is maybe a tiny bit more prepared than I was.

Needless to say, I was a little nervous going in; especially since I had a very vague idea of what to actually expect. My blood pressure was sky-high and pulse was racing, but all I could do was sit there and continue to practice my breathing. I was scheduled for a Colposcopy with Biopsy if necessary. It turns out that my original pap results showed LSIL with a HPV effect, which is why they decided to go ahead and do a Colposcopy and not just do a repeat pap. My Dr. was wonderful in sitting down and explaining the actual procedures and what he would be looking for, and then away we went into the procedure room.

They set everything up like they would for a normal pap, except the fact that he had a rather large microscope that he was using to look at  my cervix. And then out came the “vinegar” or acetic acid. Honestly, it felt just like a normal pap smear, only it took a little longer and there was a little more swabbing. Easy peasy, I thought to myself. And then I heard him say the words “I am going to go ahead and biopsy this one spot.”. Wait, what? Before I had the time to even really process what was about to happen, he counted to three and it was over with. I didn’t feel a thing.

It wasn’t until the actual procedure was over with that I started feeling the effects. I sat up to ask my Dr. about how this  might affect having future children, and before he could finish his response, I found myself lying back on the table trying not to pass out. “This happens sometimes when we do things to the cervix” he said as he left to get the nurse. After a few minutes of being fanned by my nurse with a magazine (feeling like a goddess) and catching my breath, I was back on my feet and out the door. Or so I thought.

I made it up to the front desk to check out, and while I was standing there waiting on the people in front of me to finish setting up their next appointment, I started feeling light-headed again. I managed to walk over to a chair behind the nurse’s station and asked if I could sit down for just a second. And then it really hit me. I was going to be sick. They managed to get me back into a patient room right before it really hit. Come to find out, all these things can happen when the cervix isn’t happy. Nobody told me. I thought that once I made it through the actual procedure, I would be golden. Not so much. The cramping that came afterwards was enough to put me up on the couch with a heating pad for the rest of the night. And even the day after, I am still not 100%. The cramps are still there and the fatigue is rather present as well. But it could always be worse.

My results should be in within a week. I have no idea what to expect. One minute, I could care less, and the next, the worst possible thoughts come rushing into my brain. But my support system in all of this has been huge and I am forever grateful for that. And there is no use in borrowing troubles from tomorrow.

Goodbye to another decade

While I was standing in the bathroom getting ready for work this morning, I couldn’t help but think that my twenties are quickly coming to an end. And then I began to wonder what exactly did that mean? These past ten  years have harnessed so many wonderful memories, along with so many life changing tough ones.

My first (and only for now) child was born five months after my twentieth birthday. And looking back my heart can’t help but explode at the warmth and happiness that my daughter has given to me. When people ask me to tell them about myself, the first thought that pops into my brain is, “I’m a mother.”. Being Hannah’s mom has been the sole being of my existence for, well, the past ten years. Granted motherhood arrived earlier for me than it does most people, but there isn’t a thing that I would change. I can’t help but look at her and wonder how I created this beautiful, amazing, smart human being. And the way she loves me, my goodness, there is nothing like it in the world. I can only hope that I have half the sweetness that she does and that the cruelty of the world doesn’t take it away from her.

I also experienced my first real love and heartbreak in my twenties. Marriage came and then it went. Saying things were easy for the first few years after my divorce would be a lie. The person I became during that time is not someone I am proud of, but I think it was necessary in a way for me to find myself. Five years later, things still aren’t perfect, but then again nothing in life is. I always thought that once my divorce was actually over, that all of the baggage of our relationship would be as well. But it’s not, it’s still there. And the older our daughter gets, the more challenges that come our way. But the only thing that matters in all of this is that she is our main focus. That no matter what we are doing or going through, her best interest is the one at heart.

Loss is something that is experienced throughout all stages of life. Whether it be through the loss of a friendship, loss of a loved one, or loss of the path that you thought you were supposed to be on. Either way, it hurts and it’s not always easy to deal with. But if we are lucky enough, new friends will come and even old friends will come back. Our loves one’s will be with us always in our hearts. And when one door closes, another opens.

And all of this brings me to where I am now. Soon I will begin a new decade of my life and so many changes are going to come my way, some I am prepared for and some I will be completely blind sighted by. I will by lucky enough to spend the last few days of my twenties in the beautiful state of Hawaii with my brand new husband, soaking up the sunshine and hopefully working on expanding our family (insert baby making music here).

All in all, I have come to learn that life is what you make of it. Everyone has problems, and trust me, someone always has it worse. It’s all about perspective and how one chooses to look at things. There is always a choice, whether it be as simple as choosing to look at this situation as something to learn from and move on. Life is too short and full of beautiful things to focus on the negative.

The good, the bad, and the cancer

This week’s topic…drum roll, please…cancer. Cervical cancer to be more exact. January is cervical cancer awareness month, and up until a week ago, I would have thought nothing of it. Revert to last Friday when I got a phone call from my Dr.’s nurse stating they wanted to send me for a follow-up smear due to my abnormal test results. Uh, what? Come to find out, I have LSIL, or Low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion. Which isn’t the worst it could be, but it isn’t great. I’ve spent a lot of time researching this past week not just on the medical side of the topic, but on the personal side as well. I’ve read several inspirational blogs by women who have been through far worse than what I hopefully will have to endure, but all in all, I must say I end this week on a higher note than I began.

I think women talking openly about the subject has been the most helpful thus far. I have gotten very open and in touch with a few women in my life over this past week in search for the validation that no matter what comes my way, I am going to  be okay. I know no one or nothing can provide any guarantee of that, but knowing some of the things they have experienced provides some sort of solace. I think at this point, it all just sort of has the same scare effect, precancerous vs cancerous. I’ve never been here before, I’ve never had somethihng wrong with my body. Either way, something is wrong with my womanhood. I remember stting in the bathtub a few days ago wondering to myself, “What if I can’t have another baby? Will he still love me?”.  Granted, that was my low point.

But, the conclusion I have come to in all of this, is that no matter what, I’m not alone. There are thousands upon thousands of women going through this exact thing (some even wayyyy worse). AND I have a wonderful family and support team behind me. So that’s really all that matters. There are always going to be slumps and bumps along the way, but it’s our choice in how we handle them. Sitting around moping didn’t get me anywhere. In fact, it got me even more worked up, which is completely unnecessary. Positivity takes work sometimes, but it’s worth it. I truly believe that.

On a side note, I truly want to express the importance of getting your annual smear. Prevention is key when it comes to cervical cancer, and the hope with me, is that they caught my abnormalities early enough before they have time to actually develop into anything else.So do it.Who knows, it could save your life.

Breathe…

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My wedding day is quickly approaching. There was a point in time where I felt completely on top of things. And slowly, that feeling is slipping farther and farther away from me. Can we go back just a few weeks ago to where April didn’t seem so close? It’s not the actual marriage part that is bothering me so much, it’s the show that comes along with it. All the immense planning that goes into something that lasts such a short amount of time. The stress of making sure you have this, and that this is done correctly, and that all of these things have been ordered, and on and on and on. Ugh. My spare bedroom is slowly turning into a room that collects “wedding” things, just sitting there waiting for that special day when they all get to make their beautiful debut. The flower crown the I will probably only wear once.The pink dress that is hanging up in the closet that will only get to come out for a short time to grace the world with it’s beauty. Eventually it will all come together, bit by bit.

And not every day is like this, I try to remind myself as much as possible when I start to feel this way this it doesn’t matter. In the grand scheme of things, the only thing that matters is the fact that I will be marrying the man I love that day. That’s it. So, on days like today when the world around me feels as if it is spinning out of control, here’s my reminder to just breathe.

Found her…

I can’t believe it’s been a year already (well, almost). And what an amazing year it has been. If you would have asked me at the beginning of January last year if this is where I saw myself this year, the answer would clearly be no. But then again, do people really have the ability to detect when they are going to fall in love? Probs not, and if they do, they need to share that shit. Anyways, here I am and here we are. Completely in love and getting married in just three short months.

I guess you could say that I always had this feeling inside that things would work out, (I guess people tend to call that hope) even though I had absolutely no idea when that would be. I refused to settle on the idea that life was always going to be crappy. And maybe that’s what got me through all those dark days. That little voice inside me telling me to just keep going, no matter how hard things might have been.

If you ask him, he will tell you that our Anniversary is the day he found me. And I would have to agree. He found me at a time when I was very vulnerable to the world around me. I knew what I wanted out of life, but I didn’t exactly know if I had the guts to go after it. And thank goodness I did. If i hadn’t had taken that chance on love, on us, I would have missed out on so many amazing things and memories that we have shared together. And the even better thing, is that we have a whole lifetime ahead of us to keep sharing those magical experiences.

So, here’s to finally finding the consuming love I have been searching for my whole life. Here’s to us on the good days, the bad days, and all the in-between days. Here’s to taking a chance and having it be the best decision you ever made. Here’s to a lifetime of love and wonderful memories. Here’s to loving us more than any bad day that may lie ahead of us and all of the wonderful one’s that do for us to soak up. Here’s to forever, my love.

Fighting

I feel like ever since my divorce, well my separation, I have been doing nothing but fighting when it comes to my daughter. Fighting for her time, fighting for her attention, fighting to make sure that she is the most imporant thing to me on this Earth. Maybe it’s the Holidays, but I feel so disconnected from her lately. I miss her. I just hope she knows that.

Changes

I guess you could say a lot has changed in our relationship over the past year. But then again you could probably say that for most relationships. I remember when we first started talking and all he could talk about was my smile and how beautiful he thought it was. He would tell me that as long as I was smiling, that was all that mattered as he called me “his Queen”. Of course he still does these things and they still make my heart skip a beat each time he does, but our relationship consists of so much more these days. Our days are no longer full of sending each other a million snapchat pictures just so we can see the other person’s cute face. Instead, they contain the dreaded questions like “What sounds good for dinner?” or “Can you please do the laundry when you get home?” or include statements like “We overdrew OUR account.” (Oops!)

So, tonight as I was clicking through my phone getting ready to call my love, I couldn’t help but look down at his ear to ear grin and smile to myself. This picture, one of the previous snaps I referred to earlier, made me realize just how far we’ve come. I’m not sure at what point things started changing; some days it feels like it was overnight and some days the changes feel gradual. It seems funny how we tend to forget some of the things that had such major influence in the beginning. But this I am sure of, that every day I wake up, I am thankful for this man who makes my life so wonderful. If someone would have told me that this was where my life was going to end up, I never would have believed them. I have no idea where the future is going to take us or what new things it will bring our way, but I can only hope that we will always be able to look back and remember where we started and realize just how far we’ve come. Together. As an us.