Apr 21, 2013

Join the Movement

Today kicks off the start of National Infertility Awareness Week through the support and advocacy of Resolve. Join the movement and spread the word. Don't suffer in silence and don't settle. Not all pathways to parenthood are achievable, but there IS a pathway out there for you to be happy. Find your happy, for some that means making their baby, for others it means finding their baby, and for still others, it means choosing to close those doors forever. But, please find your happy.

In years past I referenced NIAW with blog posts and fb statuses about the longing to become a parent. This year, I'm on the other side. Some would say, that I've been cured of my infertility.

But have I been cured?

The cure for infertility is a baby, right? Little Slick is my baby, for sure and has definitely been the one to find the missing pieces of my heart. I don’t question that.

But am I cured?

The answer is no, I’m not cured. I’m still infertile. It still hurts me that I’ll never be pregnant. It hurts me more than anything in the world that I missed out on those things with Little Slick. It stings when I get an unexpected pregnancy announcement - especially since those unexpected ones always seem to proclaim, “We weren’t even trying!” or “This one better be a girl, I already have 3 boys!”

It hurts when friends and family seem to forget and talk with me about how much they miss their pregnant bellies and the newborn stage with their babies. It hurts me when people absentmindedly ask me things like, “When will you have another?” or “I bet he’s ready to be a big brother!”

Those things won’t come easy or at all for someone like me.

I don’t bear birth battle scars and stories. In the mothering world I am inferior in that aspect (some of you will be kind here and adamantly proclaim that’s false, but you are incorrect). I don’t remember that “newborn smell” or know what it’s like for him to look lovingly into my eyes while nursing, to which I sometimes want to yell, “Thanks so much for reminding me!” Someone else experienced those things with my baby. Someone who is a world away and I’ll never know.

I can't sanctimoniously post pictures like this on my Facebook wall.

No, I don’t want to feel your baby kick. I didn't get to feel mine. I don't have those cool videos of him throwing a dance party in my belly and seeing the waves of the belly from the outside. 

No, I don’t want to hear your pregnancy complaints. I'm sure it's terrible, and I really understand that parts of pregnancy aren't enjoyable - but please choose a different person to complain to. Please choose someone else who will understand, not someone who would give almost anything to have experienced that.

What I want is for me to be able to give all that, all those experiences to Little Slick but I can’t. I can’t give him those things. They’re forever lost and never recoverable.

So, I’m not cured but I’m managing. I’m enjoying my life and my little one. I love him more than I love myself but I’m still sad that I’ve lost these things for him - just trust me here, in my twisted mind these things are somehow my fault. I’m less of a woman because I don’t have certain experiences but I’m just as much a mother. Biology is least of which makes a woman a mother. My body failed my husband and our embryos but my heart has picked up where those left off by allowing me to not be too jaded and still love my child entirely. I’ll never be cured of my infertility; it’s chronic and never ending. I will however, triumph in parenthood.

For information about NIAW visit:

For general information about infertility visit:

Apr 17, 2013

He's got it goin' on, y'all.

Little Slick is amazing, in so many ways. We had our official post-placement visit done a few weeks ago and it went so well. 

We were sent a list of questions to look over and reflect upon before our social worker's arrival and it was really good for us. We were forced to look back on our journey in detail. 

When we arrived at the orphanage to pick Little Slick up, he spoke zero English. Heck, he barely spoke Russian. 

Part of our post placement paper work asked us to count his English words...we stopped counting at 152. 

That's right, 152 English words. He also strings them together to form simple sentences. I remember the first unprompted sentence he said (to Ryan), "You stay here, I go get mama" and he came and got me. He is even using descriptor words, "Ooooo big truck!" or "Mama! Lello cement truck, mama!" or "Red stop sign, STOP!" He gets it. 

He can count to 10 with no assistance, even though every now and then one number will fall victim to 2 year old forgetfulness. He not only can count, he understands the concept of numbers. He knows the difference between 1, 2, or 3 buses on the road. He tells me when he sees 2 motorcycles opposed to just one. He gets it. 

He knows colors and shapes. He can identify AND say: circle, triangle, oval, rectangle, crescent, pentagon, hexagon, and octagon (I'll admit - he does sometimes mix the last three up!). And not only that, he can draw circles and triangles. He gets it. 

He can do a forward roll. He can jump, he can balance on each foot, he can throw a football overhand. He can catch - barehanded and he's even done it once with Mr. Slick's old baseball mitt. He can ride his tricycle all day long. He rode over 2 miles on it this weekend, all at once. Athleticism, he has it. 

He loves us. He loves Gunner. He has bonded with us. He knows WE'RE his people. This is his biggest accomplishment. He gets it. 

Our shy boy is now only shy with strangers. He is eager to talk our ears off, eager for hugs, eager to know what everything is, and why. The single thing he's clinging to in Russian is, "Sto eta" or "What's this?" He always wants to know. He wants to get it. 

We have been 100% diaper free for over a month now. ::does the running man:: He gets it!

He not only runs to us for comfort, but he's comforting as well. When I accidentally fell, he ran to me, helped me up and said, "Awwww, mama. Sokay? Mama band-aid? Boom kiss?" Compassion, he has it. 

My little man, he's got it goin' on. 

Apr 5, 2013

Chinese finger trap

The littlest Slick is sleeping in our room still (don't worry I can hear your disapproving gasps from here). 

I know it's what's best for him right now and to be completely honest, it's easier on us. 

His bed is on the floor right next to me. If and when he wakes up before me, he just sits up and sees me. If he coughs in the night, I hear it. Last night, I was not so stealthy sneaking in when it was time for mama to go to bed. 

I woke him up. This is basically what you spend 50% of your time AVOIDING as a parent: waking the child. And I did it. Rookie mistake. 

Anyway, I climbed into my bed, leaned over to rub his cheek and sing him back to sleep. As I was about to pull away he grabbed hold of my finger and said "Mama hold hand" 


As he started to drift off into his little toddler dream land, I tried to gently take my finger back and that notion was swiftly denied. The 2 year old death grip got me. 

I relaxed my hand back and waited a few more minutes. Gently tried to pull away...he squeezed suddenly as I was almost free. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. 

I then resorted to trying the "quick like a bandaid" method. I'm guessing he could feel my muscles gearing up in anticipation of the pull and his finger trap kept me locked in. 

My arm was starting to go numb, my shoulder was sore, and my face was covered by my hair that I just couldn't completely clear due to the position I was in and not having use of one of my arms. 

I then got the giggles. Bad. I mean, the can't control your laughter, whole body shakes, a few snorts may have even slipped, kind of giggles. 

And I woke him up again. Mother of the year right here, folks. 

In the confusion of my giggle fit and snorting he released me from his trap. My arm was grateful but part of me was kind of sad. I know my days are numbered with this kind of stuff. He won't want to hold mama's hand while he sleeps forever. And he'll someday move into his room and I'm just not ready yet. 

So for now, I'm enjoying my uncomfortable snuggles with my boy.