Monday, 17 June 2013

A Miscarriage isn't My Secret

I hope you all had a lovely Father's Day Weekend. It can be incredibly painful for those that recently lost great men in their lives, the biggest hug I can send goes out to the Bouctsis clan. It can also be incredibly painful for those who never had a father figure of incredible value in their lives. Big hugs go out to those who drew the short stick in the daddy lottery.

I spent my father's day weekend being supported by an incredible husband while we miscarried. And I do mean we, I may have had to deal with the physical burden but the loss was equal. Now before the sobs come in I need to give some context. I work in an incredibly supportive environment, have a comfortable home, a strong relationship with my husband, great friends and family and my Belle. My Belle was a perfect pregnancy. We conceived her really easily, I gained 22lbs, I had a 2.5 hour labour and delivery, the girl breast fed like a fiend, eats anything I make, and slept through the night at 12 weeks. Her toddler sleeping habits are not so awesome, so I got bit back later my friends. The loss of this pregnancy has not left me feeling as though I am shell of a human being. Life is still incredibly full and an adventure awaits almost every day.  I am really ok. I was sad when I heard the lovely phrase "the pregnancy is nonviable." I swear, 'nonviable' has now left my vocabulary. It is a horrible dehumanizing word and I apologize to anyone I have ever said this to before.

I had three weeks to come to terms with the fact that this pregnancy was going be unfulfilled. The first time I didn't get to see a heartbeat on an ultrasound I was patient but when the little bean was missing the following week, I knew this wasn't going to be good. The third scan was just a matter of confirming what was already known. I wasn't going to have a new bundle on January 8, 2014 like I had thought. I will never be able to listen to an Elvis song without thinking I should have had a family member share that birthday. But again, I am ok. I am better than ok. I want to tell the world to be sad but don't keep it a secret. Being open about everything has made this so much easier. The patience and kindness that my workplace showed me while I was leaving for medical appointments, that my back was throbbing and I needed to step away from my desk, when I wasn't my gregarious self no one pushed.  Their support was incredibly helpful. Colleagues shared personal stories of loss and comforted me when I grew anxious of how unknown the process felt. Having to not hide and be completely open has made this hurt less. Will I still wonder this winter about who should be at my dinner table? Probably. Will I feel comfortable talking about how I am feeling? Absolutely.

I didn't miscarry on my own. I went the medicated route. I spent an hour with a lovely nurse at Mount Sinai. She walked me through my options and when I found out I didn't have to have a D and C I was thrilled. I hated the idea of surgery, so a couple of pills to induce the process was perfect. I was also prescribed 20 Tylenol #3. I have to say, I was more terrified at the idea of being in pain than I was of anything else. I had one person tell me they were on morphine during their miscarriage, I had another person tell me they were on pain medication for three months. I know each body is different and my miscarriage was very early, but seriously I didn't need anything. No pain at all, just a lot of pressure. My back isn't in great shape. I fear that will linger and I am in physio to take care of that.

The worst part of the process for me was how long it took to get my body back. I felt like I was in limbo. Three weeks of being pregnant but not really being pregnant is a long time. The first friend that I told that I was in the midst of a miscarriage poured me the largest glass of wine that I have ever seen. I felt completely at odds drinking it. I just wanted to know everything was gone and that my body was all mine again before the contraband was allowed back in. I miscarried on Friday morning, for lunch hubby took me out for sushi. It was the best moment and the worst moment at the same time. I felt cleansed and new and also said goodbye. I got to say goodbye alone with my incredibly supportive guy while my Belle had a wonderful day at daycare. She knew mummy was sore and needed to rest but she also did nothing but smother me in affection when she knew I could pick her up again.

So friends, I really am ok. I am better than ok. I have you all and I can share what you are able to hear and listen if you just need someone else who understands.  This experience is common.  Incredibly common. There is no need for secrets.

All my love,  and thank you for your support.

Jenny Dee


Sunday, 25 March 2012

Guilty Pleasures That Make My Life Work

I know it's been a while since I wrote.  Much like everything right now I think I lack commitment for what I want.  What I want from my career, education, kind of mom I want to be.  I go through the each day, feeling like I am barely getting by, but mostly because I don't know what I want to be when I grow up. I am working on it.  So I just need a plan.  My plan for this blog is still up for grabs.  I will commit to Sunday night entries and shape it from there.  This evening I decided to share some of the way I cut corners.  Things that either, a luxury, something fun or something that saves time.


1. I have a cleaning lady.  I have had her for almost five years.  When I was on maternity leave I kept her coming.  I was terrified that if I let her go, I would never be able to get her back when I returned to work.  She's what gets things done around here.  I spend my weekends visiting family, playing with Belle, doing laundry and feeling no stress about the state of my house.  Instead of wishing for more time, I pay to get it.

My Cheat: 

2. I cook every day.  I like good food and I know that means I have to cook to have it.  I don't enjoy cooking the way I used to because now that I am back at work meals have taken on the 30 minute skillet variety.  Something that saves time for me is prewashed and shredded cabbage.  I add it to stirfrys, thai curry, salads and tacos.  It saves a lot of time and adds extra nutrition to meals.  I am also known to throw in frozen veggies at the last minute to my skillet meals.  Keeps me and my family sane during the mad rush to get dinner on the table.


3.  I love the look on my daughter's face when she sees we're having pancakes for breakfast.  This isn't original I know, but it works really well.  Make a huge batch of blueberry pancakes on the weekend.  With the leftovers, I put them in ziplock bags and in the freezer.  Pop those babies in the toaster Tuesday morning and you are one rocking mummy.

Have a good evening folks.  Let me know you're favourite luxuries, cheats and fun times.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

No Choice: Lunch time workouts

Well it's been almost a month since my last self-indulgent rant so I guess it's about time for another.  My fitness is not the same as it was before I had my Belle.  I love the feeling of pushing my body to a limit that I am not even sure of.  Just when I think I have gone too far it's like I have an out of body experience.  I'll be on my spin bike with my legs in pain, lactic acid on my tongue and seriously no oxygen in my muscles and then the pain just leaves me.  I know I am in pain somewhere and I just don't feel it anymore.  It's like I have surpassed my limits.  It's the headiest feeling I have ever had and I miss it.  I am sure it must be what addicts must miss.  On top of missing the push, I hear that voice.  You know that voice that starts for every little girl by the age of 12.  The one that tells you, if you're not skinny you're not pretty.  That stupid voice that even a 34 year old woman can't shut-up?  Yeah, that one.  The only time that stupid voice goes away is when I work out regularly.  When I work out regularly, I eat whatever I want.  Wear sexy clothes and I instigate a hell of a lot more steamy sex.  You know the stuff you used to think you needed to be a young hot gymnast to accomplish.  Working out = me feeling amazing in all aspects of my life. 

I am working out three times a week now and have been for three weeks now.  I have to do it on my lunch hour.  I do two spin classes and one yoga class.  I feel better.  Not quite the way I used to, but better and better is good enough.  Working out over lunch means I do clock in an extra 30 - 40 minutes at work, because try as I might by the time I get to the gym and shower afterwards there is no way I can get it done all on my lunch hour. No one at my work watches a clock but I just feel guilty if I cut out early.  So I get to work before eight on the days I work out and stay until about 4:30.  I still grab my Belle by about 5:00.  This also means that lasagna is made every Sunday so that I can spread it over to use on one of the nights I am late picking her up.  My daycare provider is good with a later pick-up twice a week.  I just clear it with her each week which days work for her.  I do Yoga at a site really close to my office, so on those days I don't stay late as I can get the workout in during the lunch hour. I don't love Yoga, but hey it gets me moving.

The part that's slipping now is the professional me part.  Lunch was a time when I got in some really valuable time with colleagues. When I got to know what's going on with them both professionally and personally.  It seems no matter what decision I make, something else slips.  I am comfortable that there will never be one perfect fit but it's so slippery being a working mom who wants to make time for themselves.  I am so grateful to my husband and friends who get me.  Otherwise I could never even come close to trying to get this right.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Sleep: WTF

I have been blessed with an amazing sleeper.  She goes down at 8:30pm and gets up at the 6:00am the next morning.  My rock star has been doing this for ages.  I know, so what am I going to complain about right?  WTF happens when you become a mother to your former sleep patterns?  Even though my angel sleeps I still get up at 5am regardless of when I go to sleep.  It ruins me, I can't play with my friends anymore. My husband and I get very little time together because I fall asleep on his chest the minute my girl get puts down.  Oh, and forget having a glass of wine in the evening.  The minute I do that, although I am tired, I can't fall asleep so then it's even worse.  I am zombie.  It's like my body doesn't know what to do with more than 6 hours of sleep and I used to be the kind of girl where 7 hours I could function but 8 hours was ideal and I was feeling at my best at the time.  I want to be a good sleeper again and I am not sure what to do about it.  This really sucks right now.  And no I am not stressed, I don't have a thing to worry about.  The only thing I can think of is I am not working out anymore.  Which also sucks, but I am not coping well with working, daycare and mommy time.  It's the one thing I can't fit back into my life.  I know, if I am up at 5 am why don't I just go for a run?  Because I hate running.  I really find it pointless and I don't want to be in the cold.  The only thing I hate more than running is winter.  I am starting to think I have no choice though.  It's the one thing that I can fit in anywhere, anytime so it's been weighing on me to kick my ass into gear.  WTF, let's give it a shot and see if I can start sleeping better.

If anyone has any advice or words of support I'd love to hear it.  Also, if you want to join me for an early morning run it might get the motivation going.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

My Favourite Photo for the holiday season

Hello Mommies:  Continuing from last week's entry I thought that I would share one of my favourite pictures that illustrates the holiday season.  I hope you enjoy it.  Secondly, I had my work holiday lunch and I told them about the year I spent buying absolutely nothing new and how hard the first 6 months were.  One colleague told me to write about it and I love the idea.  I am going to collect my thoughts and memories and pull a few things together that I will share over the next few weeks.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Mommy Rant time: No More Stuff

I know it's been a little while but I am finally ready to write about something.  I spent yesterday helping out at Project Warmth,  Project Warmth is a grassroots Toronto based organization that collects donations of gently used baby and children clothing for teen moms.  The items are sorted and then re-gifted as lovely packages.  My job this year was to sort clothing for little girls ages 0-6 months.  It is a really fulfilling thing for me to do because I am big proponent of buying used in general.  Let's face it my little Belle grows out of clothes in no time so I never see the point of buying her anything new.  She wears the same stuff to daycare every day; jeans, t-shirt and a sweater.  Keeps her warm and while she is getting the walking thing down the jeans protect her little knees.  She's also pretty tidy for the most part so I don't change her outfits during the day all that often.  Back to yesterday at Project Warmth.

The amount of stuff we got as a donation for the little ones was a little thinner this year than in years past.  I think it feels that way because the same people donate and their kids are getting bigger so there wasn't much stuff for the tiny ones.  I actually only donated some books because I am not sure if I am done having children but I could really kick myself though.  I have a ridiculous amount of stuff for my little girl and most of it has been gifted to her.  Although I appreciate the generosity I can't get over how much I have versus how much I need.  A friend posted a link on facebook that's an oldie but so appropriate for this time of year.  It's the Story of Stuff,  Really we need nothing for Christmas this year and neither does my daughter.  If you feel the need, shop thrift for a treasure.  A vintage piece of jewelry, used books and a home cooked meal would be heavenly.  Give me a lasagna for my freezer so I don't have to cook one night and I'd be a happy lady.  Not only that, a few weeks ago I found a book for Belle at Value Village that was my brother's favourite as a child.  It's long been out of print and I was so excited to find it that I don't think anything new could have given me that kind of thrill.

Don't stress and don't care so much about shopping folks.  It really means so little at the end of it all.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Recipe Time: Multi Grain Blueberry Banana Bread

Well moms, my amazing little eating maching has started getting picky.  If the pasta isn't fresh she won't eat it (no microwaved left-overs for my girl.).  Breakfast can be a bust.  She was loving the Pita Break Apple cinnamon pita's but that's no more.  Bananas, grapes, raspberries are hit and miss and forget anything with milk, it flies across the room.  Yogurt, for who knows how long, is still our friend.  God bless Stonyfield!  What does seem to go over well is this recipe I found on the back of the PC frozen blueberries.  I modified slightly because I don't buy processed cereals.  I am an oatmeal girl through and through.  So this is my modified version, it's not too high in sugar and my Belle and her dad love it.

1 1/2 cups all purpose whole wheat flour
1 cup quick rolled oats
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup wild blueberries, thawed for more flavour
1 cup mashed riped banana, about two
2 eggs
1/4 cup grapeseed oil (I always say I am going to try apple sauce as a substitute but forget to buy it as Belle doesn't eat it)
1/4 cup milk or water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9x5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray (I use a little oil poured onto a tissue and swiped around a non-stick pan personally).

In a large bowl sift together, flour sugar, baking soda.  Stir in oats and blueberries.

In another bowl whisk banana, eggs, and oil.  Using wooden spoon stir banana mixture into flour mixture until just combined.  At this point because the oats absorb all the liquid I add milk or water until I get the desired consistency.  I describe it as a soupy oatmeal.  Try not to overmix.  Spoon into prepared loaf pan.

Bake in the centre rack of the over for 50-55 minutes or until tester comes out clean (toothpick).  Cool in pan for 10 minutes.  Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.