Loss

Over the weekend, we lost the baby.

Everything had been going fine and I was excited that I had reached 12 weeks (on Wednesday) and that we were going to get to see the baby again in a little over a week during our next scheduled ultrasound.  On Thursday I was traveling to DC for a conference, and on the plane noticed something wasn’t quite right.  After arriving in DC I called our midwife from the airport and was directed to go to the hospital just to make sure everything was ok.  Unfortunately, everything was not ok and after some blood work and an ultrasound, I was informed that we had lost the baby.  The flight had nothing to do with losing the baby; it only brought it to our attention.  I was alone, heartbroken, and made the decision that I wanted to come directly back home.  The social worker from the hospital and James (back in Illinois) helped me cancel my DC plans and get the quickest flight back home.

The flight home was awful, but I kept it together as best as I could until I exited the plane and saw a dime (heads up) sitting upright along the wall of the walkway from the plane to the airport.

My mom and I have a thing about dimes.  While some people have “pennies from heaven,” my mom and I have dimes that show up in the most unlikely spots, but at the most needed times.  In the past when I have found a dime, it has helped me to recognize that either I am on the right path (ex: When I found a dime when we were moving into our new house) or that things would be ok even though it seemed impossible at the time (ex: When I didn’t get into the School Psychology program after putting everything I had into getting in, but later it turned out that the other path I took because of this led me to my true passion… and then eventually James!).

Thus for to me to see the dime, I not only felt close to my mom (who I hadn’t been able to tell about the baby yet), but I also felt like just maybe things would somehow work out ok.  Starting to cry again, I picked up the dime, headed towards security, and saw James waiting for me.  I was pretty surprised (and started to cry even more) because I had driven my car to the airport that morning and didn’t expect James to come and get me.  Not that I didn’t want him to come and get me, I desperately did, but I just couldn’t justify asking him to drive to Bloomington to pick me up when we would just have to go back to Bloomington at a later time to pick my car up.  Regardless, James was exactly what I needed right then and it was nice to be together on the way home.

After a long restless night, we went to the doctor’s office the next morning where we talked with one of the midwives and a doctor about the results from DC the day before and what the next steps should be.  The doctor didn’t think I was going to miscarry on my own so he suggested coming in the next day for minor surgery that would remove the baby and help me physically heal faster.  James and I agreed and the plans were made for the next morning.  Regretfully, this didn’t work out as planned because I went ahead and miscarried Friday night/Saturday morning at home.  I was in a lot of pain, but after talking with the nurse on call at my doctor’s office, I decided to stay home until Saturday morning when I was to have surgery.

Saturday morning we got to the hospital early because they were going to perform an ultrasound to see if I still needed surgery.   Unfortunately there was some kind of miscommunication that caused them to “lose me” in the system for almost 2.5 hours.  I was checked in and ready, but the people who needed to know where I was (namely the ultrasound technician and the surgery team) had no idea where I was.  When the ultrasound technician finally found me (after 9AM), she told me she had been looking for me since 7AM (we’d gotten to the hospital around 6:45AM).  The ultrasound showed that even though I had lost the baby, I still needed surgery.  Consequently, my 7:45AM surgery turned into a 10:30AM surgery.  The doctor visited James about 11:05AM to tell him everything had gone well and I was in the recovery room. There were a few other minor mishaps like losing my my surgery paperwork and the pharmacy failing to fill the prescription that caused additional time in the hospital. We finally left the hospital around 12:45pm.  We got something to eat at Cracker Barrel and then went home and crashed.  Thursday-Saturday seemed to have stretched out forever and the mental and physical stress and strain had taken their toll on us.

As of right now we are doing the best we can under the circumstances.  Some times are worse than others, but by being there for each other through the entire nightmarish ordeal, we’re doing ok and hopefully starting the healing process.

Early October Walkabout

Sunday was a busy and productive day.  Since we’re heading out for our Mount Rushmore trip Friday after work, James and I spent some time looking at Roadside America and planning where we’d like to stop along the way.  It seems like this is going to be a pretty busy/crazy trip that will have us seeing a lot of *different* things.  I also started packing for the trip, so I wouldn’t have as much to do Thursday night.

James spent some time outside burning the trees he had pulled out for the new barn and getting stuff ready for the people to come out and prep the site. He came in long enough to eat a meal of noodles and mashed potatoes, take a quick carb induced nap, and then he was back outside working again.  It looked nice outside, so after cleaning up the kitchen and starting some laundry, I put on my jacket and headed outside for a walk around the yard.

It’s amazing how much had changed around the yard since the last time I walked around just a few weeks ago.  Some of the leaves are gradually starting to change, there aren’t hardly any insects (or butterflies) flying around, and there is a definite change in the types of flowering plants.  Fall is definitely on it’s way and it’s amazing to think we’ve almost been at the new house through a full year of seasons!

September Walkabout

I wandered around the yard Saturday taking in the splendor of the outside and trying to save it up for the winter.  It had been a while since I’d walked the entire perimeter of the yard, so I started by where James was busy pulling out more trees (yes, more trees!) by the garden and spent the next hour walking all the way around!

Bright and cheerful flowers along the creek

It’s amazing how full of life the yard is and it was quite fun to see how everything had matured from earlier in the summer when I last walked around the entire yard.  Including the spiders! I was amazed at the number of Garden Spiders (yes, this is their real name, I looked it up!) down by the creek.  And yes, this picture does the spider justice in terms of showing how long it is and a little big of their zigzag web (a classic characteristic).

One of the many huge garden spiders I found along my walk

And, of course, what walk around the yard would be complete without some butterfly pictures!  It was so much fun to try and spot them around the yard!

Last free weekend

This weekend was technically our last free weekend before classes started for the Fall… Yet, with everything we both needed to do, it definitely was not that relaxing!  I was busy cleaning the house, doing laundry, and answering student e-mails to the help desk.  James was busy trying to finish preparing for his courses this semester.  He’s teaching Statistics, Calculus & Analytic Geometry 1 and Calculus & Analytic Geometry 3.

Luckily, even with everything we had to do, we both were able to spend some time outside…

James, as you can see from the pictures below, took his homework outside with him and took a pool break every once in a while.

I was able to actually do some pleasure reading by the pool and also wandered around the yard snapping pictures of the flowers and (of course) more butterflies!

Busy Week

This week has been a busy crazy week of yard work! We asked to host the Jones family gathering at the end of July and had no idea how quickly the the weeds would take over while we were in Florida and then busy with end of the semester things.

The week started with the following text I got Monday afternoon while I was still at work:

Mom: ETA 6:00 your pool.

Me: today or tomorrow?

Mom: today

This was crazy and caught me off guard because even though I knew they were heading home from Florida and were thinking about stopping by our house to visit, I knew they had just left that morning and that it was a long (almost 22 hour) drive to get back to Illinois.  Regardless, James and I were happy to have visit and quickly arranged a steak dinner and put fresh sheets on the guest bed!

Mom and dad arrived shortly after 6pm and as promised, we had a steaks right off the grill waiting for them!  They were completely exhausted, but managed to eat and go out to admire James’ new tractor before heading to bed.  I later found out Dad literally put the “pedal-to-the-medal” and barely stopped for breaks the whole way!

The next morning they were up and ready to leave by 7:30 AM and as I got a big hug from mom, she asked it it was OK if she came back Wednesday evening and then spent the day Thursday weeding around the pool.  Yes, she actually asked if it was OK if she could come weed my yard!! Silly lady!!As if that’s a question that even needed answering!

So Wednesday evening, Mom was back again and ready to work.  She got up bright and early Thursday morning and while I was at work (it was the end of the semester I just couldn’t take the day off), she and James proceeded to devastate the weed population around the pool! She started around the rose bushes and corn lilies and it was quite a shock to James to realize there were actually rocks around the plants! There had been so many weeds growing around the flowers, you couldn’t even see the rocks between them!

I managed to get home a little early and was amazed by how much was accomplished while I was gone.  Yet, there was still more to do, so I put on my work clothes and buckled down pulling and cutting weeds like crazy.  Mom worked along side me for a while before taking a break to go inside and make dinner (yes, not only did she come to pull weeds, but she also brought dinner and made it for us!!!).

After dinner (and much thanks), Mom headed home and James and I collapsed from the hard work.

Friday went pretty much the same way with me working and then coming home to pull, pull, pull weeds.  James had been pretty busy as well, and between the two of us, we were able to finish whipping the yard into shape!

And what did we learn from this experience? Preen and weed killer are necessities that should be used early in the season and liberally!!

Around the yard

Having my parents come this weekend and see the house and yard for the first time in the summer (and James’ parents last weekend), made me realize that I hadn’t really posted a lot of pictures of the pool or yard this summer.  Thus after the storm went through and the sun peaked out this afternoon, I headed out to get pictures all around the yard and even a few in the living room.

The first stop on our tour will be the pool. The pool has been holding pretty steady at @ 85 degrees and has been amazing to come home to!  The landscaping around the pool is really pretty and includes a ton of tiger lilies and fifteen rose bushes!

I love nothing better after work than to cool off and do laps in the pool.  James has also been enjoying the pool, but spends a lot of his time reading and snoozing on his hammock!

From the pool, it’s a quick walk over to the garden. I’ve posted a number of garden pictures before, but I just wanted to show how big everything continues to get and how much the pumpkins are growing!! I can’t imagine how big they’ll be by fall!

The yard and creek is next on our tour.  Notice how high and murky the water is from all the rain we’ve gotten lately!

Yet, all the rain has helped the flowers around the yard! I know I’ve taken a number of flower pictures, but I’m I love the colors and different types of flowers around the yard, some wild and some freshly planted this year!

The rain has also helped keep everything else green around the yard and really makes the house look pretty!  It’s also a big difference compared to last winter!

Last on our tour (and having nothing to do with outside) are some shots of our living room.  I haven’t taken any since we got the couch and while we’ve still got a few more pieces to buy for the couch area, I’m happy to say the living room finally looks like a lived in room!

Well that’s it for the tour of the yard and a little bit of the inside of our house! Everything is a work in progress, but we love it and are looking forward to adding things here and there this summer and in the summers to come!