Monday, May 27, 2013

One-Way Ticket to Parenthood.

My ticket to Illinois is officially booked.  Tuesday night, we finalized our plans, mostly due to the fact that my mom was having her hip-replacement surgery the following day.  I was getting anxious to make some plans that would get me out there and helping her get back on her feet, so to speak.  My poor mama . . . that woman has had her fair share of physical ailments.  However, her surgeon is optimistic that she'll make a full recovery in 6-8 weeks.  Here's to a summer of me getting to take care of my mom, something I've always wanted to be able to do for her.

June 8, 2013 is when I'll make my departure.  I am so very excited!  I spend a lot of time driving to work and back and I can't help but ponder what it will be like for parenthood to become a reality.  I have gotten choked up and weepy (I can be a mess of feelings sometimes) at the thought of having my very own baby smells, smiles, and skin to nibble on.  Oh it's an exciting thought! Isn't it?! 

I know it's not 100% but I am feeling good and happy and at peace.  I am living by the mantra of, "Come What May", truly!  I have had a good long year to sort this all in my mind and I've come out stronger, smarter, wiser, and with a whole lot more empathy for those in the same boat.  I have learned that this little trial called "Infertility" can do one of two things  1. Throw you into self-pity, deny yourself of progress and personal growth, and put a strain-like wedge in your marriage - all of which I was very close to coming to or 2.  Acknowledge the issue, gain wisdom and strength, learn that you are very much, in fact, resilient; and become happier and more open to communication and love in your marriage.  I'd like to think that after a year, I've chosen the second option.  I am a strong believer that through trials and life lessons, a part of our brain - perhaps a thought process evolves and a new way of our perception on life is gained.  Life's lessons - good or bad - really can be a beautiful thing if we let them.

Thank you Dani-girl for my "Illinois or Bust" care package!  I'm so very lucky to have sweet friends like you.  You better believe none of it will be used until I'm on my way to the great "Land of Lincoln"!

June 8th - I look forward to seeing you.  Let's do this. 

Monday, May 13, 2013

A Very Happy Mother's Day Weekend, Indeed.

It happened, Friday morning.  The very last and final of my fertility tests, my sonohysterogram.  As the sonographer searched through my file for notes regarding further testing, I jumped up and felt like screaming, "It's been a fun ride, but . . PEACE OUT!"  My face says it all . . .

It was necessary that my joy be documented.  My uterus is clear.  As the sonographer put it, "Your uterus shows no signs of interference for implantation."  Hooray for a good baby maker! In all seriousness, though, I've had this fear that if any medical professional was given the opportunity to peek inside my uterus, I'd be a lost cause.  On the contrary, there is NOTHING!  As planned, zero surgery. . . yay! . . we will proceed with IVF next month.  I'm beyond giddy!  It feels like Christmas/the end of the school year/we're going on a fabulous vacation - all bundled up into one package and then multiplied by ten.

Yes, it's another Mother's Day sans enfant, but I received some really excellent news; and I could not be more grateful.  I'm thankful for the tender mercies.  They are real and they are there.  At the very beginning of this roller-coaster-ride-of-a-trial, I was devastated and I was bitter.  Shamefully, I have to say that I've never really had anything not go my way, and so it was a hard pill to swallow.  I totally get it now.  It's hard to explain, but a lot of things needed to change and I think that this trial was what it took for it to all happen.  Trust me, I have a l-o-n-n-g-g-g way to go (don't we all, though?), but I think I'm a better and stronger person than I was a year ago.  I believe Steven could attest to it all.  We've come a long way together, he and I . . . I love that guy and all that he does for us.

Speaking of roller coaster rides, Steven and I were 2 of 4 chaperones to take 45 of his 8th graders to Magic Mountain.  Let me tell you, "It was fabulous!" 22 hours - there and back . . . the kids were super cool and my husband sure seems to have found his path.  It's sure good to see Mr. D in his element.

I am praying that my 'roller coaster pics' don't go viral.  They are, in fact, that bad.  Let's just say, that the teenager behind the counter, knew exactly where our pictures were.  Yikes!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

#Holdenfam Spring Break: Part Deux

If I had to name one place that has remained constant in my life, it would have to be my grandparents' home in Thousand Oaks.  That place goes as far back in my memory bank as I can go.  Cousin-time, swimming, trips to the park, walks to Thrifty for ice cream, crazy outdoor dogs ( it is my personal opinion that dogs should not be left alone outside . . . it will cause mania in canines), holiday dinners . . . you name it.  While I accepted it as the Holdens' main hub/my birthplace, I also took it for granted.  Regretfully so, because let's be honest . . . it's freaking California!  The weather is perfect, it's green(er), the ocean is near, and the recreational possibilities are endless.
Wednesday afternoon, we made the 5-hour drive down . .  sans Steven - due to his grandmother's health.  In some ways, it felt like my childhood again . . . family road trips were a regular occurrence and so it felt familiar to be taking one again.

-Staying up late and chatting the night away with my aunt, Vicky.
-Thousand Oaks Farmer's Market - holy citrus extravaganza!
-The Oaks Mall (Paper Source . . .yes please!)
-Papa's honey-baked ham . . . so good!
-Walking, yes walking! . . . to Trader Joe's

We made it back to Vegas in time for some dinner at Sushi Fever, where we were ever so honored to be in the presence of Carrot Top (yes, super strange), prepare/enjoy Easter lunch the following day, and allow my family plenty of time to make their flight back to Illinois.  

Spring Break 2013, you were really good to us!

Friday, May 3, 2013

#Holdenfam Spring Break: Part 1

I do realize that this is a month overdue . . . but this little break with the Holden fam is worth noting.   Spring Break 2013 --yes when you are in education, you get to have these fun breaks all over again-- was celebrated here in Las Vegas with my mom, dad, and brother, Shane; with a much needed de-thawing of their Midwestern bones.

Part 1 of their stay includes, but is not limited to . . .

-Celebrating my Dad's 55th Birthday - - yay Dad!
-A couple hikes up Lone Mountain (my first time!)
-1 batch of Strawberry Freezer Jam with my Mama
-Golf for the guys
-The movie: OZ . . . loved it!
-1 glorious afternoon touring the Hoover Dam (Our first time . . the Holdens that is . . . Steven's a native so he doesn't count!) 
-Our second attempt at visiting Pawn Stars . . . the line is simply too long.  They actually have a food stand out in the parking lot.  Can you believe that?!

Part 2 pertains to a trip down to southern California, which deserves a post of its own. . .