If Love Could Have Saved You…..You Would have Lived Forever

Today is my son’s third Birthday. I should be making him his favorite meal tonight, planning a big party, giving him Birthday presents, snuggling and doing something special for him on his special day. Instead I am doing my normal routine. See he is not here. He was stillborn. It still kills me a little inside every time I say that. I had planned on writing our story today. But I decided I am not ready for that yet. Shortly after my son was born I decided that I was never going to push myself into doing things I wasn’t ready for; so I am going to talk about our plans for today instead.

Today we are going to the cemetery to do a balloon release.Β  I am excited and nervous. I am excited that I get to do something for him. See when you lose a child you miss out on taking care of them. I don’t get to take care of him when he is sick, read him books, cuddle when he is scared, make him meals, pick out his clothes nothing. I am not going to lie it sucks. So any opportunity I have to do something for him, I take it. I am nervous because I always have really high expectations for this day. I want everything to go perfect. I want the weather to be beautiful, I want the balloon release to be perfect, I want the new flowers for his headstone to be beautiful. Usually I don’t get perfect days. (I don’t think a lot of people do)

If you asked me what I did last week I would have a hard time remembering. I remember September 30, 2011 like it was yesterday. I relive the whole day from the moment I woke up. I remember what I ate for breakfast, the nurse coming into my room, the Doctor telling me that my baby’s heart was no longer beating, the ultrasounds, the walk to the OR to have my baby, EVERYTHING.

Losing a child is a loss like no other. You have plans for your children. When you find out you are pregnant you wonder; what are they going to look like, what are they going to be when they grow up, whose features are they going to have. Then you set up their nursery, buy tons of cute clothes and toys, finish any home projects before the baby comes and wait for their arrival. (If you are anything like me you wait very impatiently) Then you come home from the hospital with no baby. Everything is ready for your new bundle except you didn’t bring a baby home. It is an indescribable pain.

I am going to try to celebrate my son’s Birthday today as much as I can. It stinks that I am crying off and on all day instead of being happy that it’s his Birthday. I am hoping that the balloon release will help. This is the first year that we have done it so I am hoping we have some good luck πŸ™‚ Usually I do get a little help today from the best guardian angel a momma could ask for ❀ As I look out my window and see that the sky is getting a little brighter and the sun may be peeking out, I know he is already working his magic πŸ™‚

Happy Birthday Mason Anthony! I love you so much and can’t wait to be with you again someday ❀

 

I am sorry to have to tell you this, you have Cancer

Today marks two years since I found out I had Cancer. My official diagnosis is Large Cell NeuroEndocrine Carcinoma of the Cervix. At the time of my diagnosis I was 30 weeks pregnant with my daughter. I had went in the day before because I had some spotting and the Doctor I saw decided to do an exam and he had found a polyp.Β  I had never had an abnormal pap in my life, no polyps nothing. So I was very shocked to say the least. I honestly can’t remember bits and pieces of the conversation. I was at work when he called to tell me the news. He didn’t have much information for me only that this type of cancer was very aggressive and I was scheduled to see the OB/GYN Oncologist that next Tuesday. (He had called me late on a Friday afternoon) He also told me that I would be having my daughter in two weeks and she would be spending some time in the NICU. Oh and I can’t forget that he also said I would be having a radical hysterectomy.Β  The Nurse Practitioner that I worked with at the time told me I was breathing really heavy on the phone and by what I was asking she knew something was very wrong. At the time I was working for her and a surgeon in a private office at the front desk. So after I hung up the phone I really didn’t know what to do next. Call my husband, call my parents, call my friends, cry, scream, I just didn’t have a clue. I immediately got mad, I just kept thinking how is this fair, I literally just lost my son almost a year to the date I found out I had cancer. Now I might not live to raise my daughter and I won’t be able to have any more children after this. I just kept thinking this is not fair at all, what did I do to deserve this. So after crying for a little while I went home and told my husband the news. Then I started calling friends and family.

So after a long weekend Tuesday finally arrived. I saw the OB/GYN oncologist and we decided to go ahead and do a CT Scan of my lungs, abdomen and pelvis. We wanted to know if the cancer had spread and with the type I had those are the places it spreads to or starts. Normally I wouldn’t want to do a CT Scan when I was pregnant but we wanted to know if we could wait the two weeks to have our daughter or if the cancer had spread and we had to have her now. The next day I was scheduled to see the OB/GYN Oncologist again, my OB, the Perinatologist (high risk ob), Oncologist, a NICU Doctor and a NP for my pre-op. It was a long day to say the least. But we did get some good news, the results of my CT Scan showed that the cancer had not spread. Actually the scan didn’t pick up anything. So we were happy about that. We learned a lot of things about what would happen in the next two weeks. I learned that you do not have to keep the first Oncologist you see. She was horrible. After learning my CT was good we were is pretty good spirits then we saw her. I asked her what the survival rate was with my type of cancer. She looked at me with a blank stare and said “Some people survive.” That was it; no you had a good CT, you caught it early, NOTHING. Then she proceeds to tell me to go online and read a story about a girl who found out she had my type of cancer when she was six weeks postpartum. After she tells me that she keeps scrolling down the page on her computer and says “Oh never mind don’t read that article.” Ugh she was Horrible!! Did I say that already? Well she deserves two horrible s.Β  I can happily say that was the first and last time I saw her.

We also found out lots of info on our daughter. She would be arriving eight weeks early and she would be going straight to the NICU after she was delivered. She would come by c-section and I would be awake for that. Immediately after I had her I would be put under for my hysterectomy. We were told that she may have breathing problems, which she did have some. She didn’t get the whole, suck, swallow breathe thingΒ  when she was eating. I was given shots so her lungs would be more developed when she was born. I had another ultrasound of her so they could see about what size she would be when she came. She was big for how early she was. Maybe it was all of the junk food πŸ™‚

I am going to do a little fast-forwarding just because this is getting reallly long. I was lucky enough to have great friends and family that threw a baby shower for me at my house. I originally wasn’t going to have one because I had just had one a year before for my son but they insisted. It was a great night and I got tons of great gifts!

October 16, 2012 my daughter’s Birthday!!!! We were up at 4:30 that morning to be at the hospital by 6:00 a.m. (We live a good 40 minutes from the hospital I was having my daughter.) At 8:27 a.m. Avery Lee was born ❀ She was 5 pounds 4 ounces πŸ™‚ I got to hear her cry and see her beautiful little face and then it was lights out for me.

After I woke up they wheeled me and my bed to the NICU and we got to hold Avery’s hands and see her πŸ™‚ After a short visit I was taken to my room where I would spend the next four days. We were able to go and visit Avery over my hospital stay and it was wonderful πŸ™‚ She was doing very well except for her Bradycardia’s. She would stop breathing every once in a while and then when she started taking a bottle she would stop breathing when she was eating. She is a fighter and full of energy and I think that is why she did so well πŸ™‚

So after four days in the hospital I was able to go home for about 3o min to pack some more things because we were given the opportunity to stay at the Hope Lodge. Some of the clinic staff in the OB department set up for my husband and I to stay at the Hope Lodge while our daughter was in the NICU. They are awesome, wonderful people πŸ™‚ They did it without us knowing and came and visited us while I was in the hospital to tell us the good news! So now we wouldn’t have to do so much driving. The Hope Lodge is free to cancer patients while they are receiving treatment. It is a truly wonderful place πŸ™‚

I started chemo two weeks after my daughter was born. I had a new oncologist and she was wonderful πŸ™‚ I had four rounds of chemo and was declared cancer free in February 2013. I will talk more about the wonderful adventures of chemo later πŸ˜‰

I was told many times by my Doctors that my daughter saved my life. Which is true but I honestly believe both of my children saved my life πŸ™‚ I of course will not be telling her she saved my life until she is an adult so she doesn’t try to use it as a negotiating tool πŸ˜‰ Now everyone could say I would go in if I was bleeding but you might not. If I wouldn’t have been pregnant I probably would have thought “Ugh I have my period again?!?!” Then I would have moved on and I probably wouldn’t be here today. So a little advice: go to the Doctor if you have something abnormal happening. DON’T ignore it!! Live life to the fullest everyday!! I know that is easier said than done but it really is just the little things in life. You don’t have to go skydiving everyday to live life πŸ™‚ Listen to your gut. If you have a “feeling” probably go with it. It could save your life πŸ™‚

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Here she is my lifesaver ❀

On a BUDGET

I love staying at home with my daughter but it does come with some financial hardship. Like this morning I had a full-out panic attack when I was balancing the checkbook. It is hard when you have big events coming up like Birthday’s, Christmas etc. Tis’ the season of blowing all of your money πŸ˜‰ I have never claimed to be a math whiz but I have learned some strategies to make those dollars stretch until they break πŸ™‚ The first tip I learned was to use those coupons! Now I am not an extreme coupon-er, I only use coupons for things that we use or need. At Target for example they have this wonderful app called Cartwheel. My advice to you USE IT and use it often. You can combine your Cartwheel with one manufacturer’s coupon and one Target coupon per item. For example I have my allergy med on my Cartwheel and I have a Target coupon for it as well. Sometimes when the Gods look down upon us items that are in Target’s ad are also in Cartwheel. Than the saving gets crazy πŸ˜‰ Another awesome savings to us is the grocery store we go to. The store we use gives what they call “pump perks” So some items that are on sale also give you savings on gas. Your perks are good for one month so you can save them and get a huge savings at the pump! If you are lucky enough to have a grocery store like this in your area you are truly blessed πŸ˜‰ Now another tip is those coupons they call “piggybacks” they print out at the register when you check out. Always pay attention to those I have found some great deals with them. One more tip is to stock up! On things you use, not on 100 razors that will sit in your closet for the next ten years. For example I go through a lot of cream soups.(My husband nicknamed me the casserole queen.) It is so nice when you go into your cupboard and one of those things you use everyday is there and you have lots of it. So by now you are probably picturing me in a dark room clipping coupons, my hair a mess and with stains all over my clothes. But that’s really not me. It does take a little work but it’s not like I have a binder that I pull out at the checkout. Usually I sift through my coupons before I go to the store and I go through the Cartwheel app when Avery is taking a nap. Always look through the clearance racks. I have found some great, name-brand clothes in those racks. If you go to the end of almost any aisle at any store they usually have items on clearance or on sale. Go through them, look at them but don’t get into a pushing or shouting match. I almost had a confrontation in the Lego aisle a couple of years ago with a very mean lady while trying to get the last box of Sponge Bob Lego’s for my step-son. I am happy to report I did get theΒ  Lego’s and he has now outgrown Lego’s so I don’t have to risk my life anymore πŸ™‚

If you are one of the lucky ones that knows months in advance that you might have the chance to stay at home when your baby is born, do yourself a favor and save those pennies! My advice to you is to pay something off. Whether it be a car, school loan, or credit card bill. Whatever you have to pay off to get those monthly payments reduced. It is amazing what you can do to a loan when you pay a little extra every month. It will also help you to get used to living on a budget. Maybe you are one of those people who I believe were made in some kind of factory somewhere that are really good at saving money. I give you props πŸ™‚ I have met some of you and I am jealous.

I have tons of other things I try to do to save money. Some work some not so much. It all depends on what works for your family. Sometimes you will have those little angels from Heaven that give you a bag of clothes that their kids outgrew or other items that they don’t use anymore. Thank them maybe even bake them some cookies.

If you are able to stay at home I wish you luck:) It is wonderful to stay home but it does come with some stress. If you do chose to work or have to work you are awesome! I did it and it is hard.

I am no expert at this or really anything in life but I have learned some hard lessons in the financial department and other life departments so if I can help anyone I am glad to do it πŸ™‚

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Piggyback coupon
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Digging through the clearance rack paid off!!

CrAzY Cat Lady

Yup you guessed it, I have a furry bundle of awesomeness. A cat. Okay, so he can be kind of a jerk sometimes, well most of the time but I still love him. Like this morning when he refused to move off of the top step while I was carrying my daughter and then he bit me in the leg. He is slightly overweight, by like 10 pounds. I have to say though that he has always been there for me through the best of times and the worst of times. He has always stuck by me and never cares how I look, hair or no hair, normal size or plus size. Anyway I decided to do a little Ode to Percy (Percy is my cat) because I was feeling a little guilty that I hadn’t mentioned him in my little bio. When I found out I was pregnant with my son we really were thinking about giving him away. We were so worried that he would hate the baby etc. Well when we came home from the hospital after my son was stillborn Percy was definitely my bff. (After he got over me being gone for two weeks because I was on hospital bed rest.) He sat next to me while I cried it out and slept next to me every night. So when I got pregnant with my daughter we tossed around having to give him away again. We really thought he would be awful with a baby. Boy were we wrong! He has been pretty awesome with Avery. They have had many confrontations and he has been better than I ever expected. For instance, as I am sitting here writing this Avery was twirling in the living room and fell on Percy. He got up and walked away. Now if I would have done that he would have bit and scratched me. Anyway I really feel it is important for your kids to grow up with animals. Any animal will do. I had animals growing up and it was great! I could go into the whole having an animal gives kids responsibility and blah blah blah. Which it does but it also gives kids a friend. When I was little my cat would wait for me every day to get off of the school bus and I always loved that. After a looong day at school and then a bus ride it was always nice to see him sitting there. Now I don’t dress my cat up in sweaters or get his picture professionally taken or anything. Even though some of those pics are cute and he does have a tie for special occasions πŸ˜‰ Anyway, enough of me bragging my cat up. I would love to hear some pet stories! Not sure if anyone else reads this but myself but if there is someone out in the internet world that stumbles upon this, comment and let me know your fav pet story. Oh and before I forget here are some pics of Mr. Percy πŸ™‚2014-04-02 001 002 2014-09-13 001 002

Exercise

So, if you would have told me a year ago that I would be blogging I would have told you that you are crazy. If you would have said I would be exercising and loving it I would have laughed and said shut your little mouth πŸ˜‰ But now both are true. So after having two babies in two years, being on bed rest and chemo I gained some weight. Okay a lot of weight. When I was pregnant I ate whatever I wanted. None of it was good for me. I was the girl stuffing her face in any given drive-thru. I didn’t really discriminate. So about this time last year I decided to try and lose weight. I am incredibly cheap and looking at all of those clothes in my closet that were too small and not wanting to buy all new clothes motivated me. Plus I was sick of feeling sluggish and well, fat. So it began, I started by going to my dad’s house and working out. He has a weight machine and an elliptical. I started slow but I can now say I have lost 10 pounds to date which may not seem like a lot for exercising for a year but I fought for every little pound. Once spring and summer FINALLY came to Wisconsin we started hiking and walking outside. I even run a little. Very little but I do try. I usually work out with my dad and he has been by “personal trainer” He really does motivate me. It’s kinda hard to say no when he calls or just comes over πŸ˜‰ Word of advice if you are unsure that you want to work out don’t have a parent be your workout buddy. They will drag you against your will because you are their child and they can. But that is exactly what I need πŸ™‚ I actually do feel better too. Of course I still have “chemo brain” and feel like I could sleep for 20 hours a day but it is getting better. I have more energy and I am happy to report my clothes do fit a little better. My advice to anyone that wants to start exercising but is too scared or embarrassed, start slow and they do have this wonderful little website called Pinterest that provides you with tons of workouts that you can do in the privacy of your own home. Β  So now that we are in a beautiful new season, fall I have been able to take some pictures on some of my hikes and walks. Here they are hope you enjoy them πŸ™‚Β  2014-09-20 001 001 2014-09-20 001 008 2014-09-23 001 007 2014-09-23 001 008

A little about me

I am a stay at home mom and I live in Wisconsin with my husband, daughter and step-son. I am in my second year of remission after being diagnosed with Large Cell Nero-Endocrine Carcinoma of the cervix in my 30th week of pregnancy with my daughter. I also have a son in Heaven. I was 36 weeks pregnant with him when he was born sleeping. To say we have been through a lot in the past three years would be an understatement. But I am determined to live life to the fullest and to give my family the best life possible. Since I love to talk and enjoy writing I think blogging is a perfect fit for me. Enjoy!