Happy Mug

Happy Mug

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So I received my mug a few days ago (from the MugSwap – check previous posts) and admittedly I was spoiled. The lovely Cyan from almostpregnant (I still can’t thank you enough) gave me a beautiful box with a mug – of course – with the words ‘think positive’, some snuggly socks, a cute little pineapple necklace, a flapjack, a handwritten card and these amazing IVF notecards. I still haven’t wrote in them yet, as half of me wants to fill them in so I can keep them in a little baby making/IVF memory box, but the other half is too scared to ruin them! Point is, I was seriously spoiled.

I’d had a rough day. I found out I might not get funding for my course next year which means I’ll need to use my student loan to pay my fees which of course now means I’ll need to work more days than I do now and it’s already a struggle and that’s before I’ve even started IVF.

Opening the box made me smile. And take a minute. I’ve been through so much already, I can get through this. Sure it might be a struggle and it might be hard, but this is one of those struggles where I actually have an end date. A date where the struggling and the juggling will be over.  We’re normally not the group of people who deal in certainties, but this is certain. It’ll be hard for a year, but then I’ll be qualified and working a job I love.

I have Cyan to thank for this moment of clarity. She reminded me why I started this mug swap in the first place – to show people we’re not alone in our struggles whatever they are. To show each other we’re here for support, advice or even just a listening ear. Whatever we need. And while my down day was college related and not – for once – baby related; it still gave me the same feelings of self doubt, panic and anxiety. The mug reminded me to think positive, the IVF cards reminded me I am strong and the necklace – well that reminded me to fuck it, and pour myself a pina colada!

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Quote-a-day 3

Quote-a-day 3

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really don’t have an excuse this time. But here it is, my third and final quote (honestly, these challenges just weren’t made for me).

I was torn with this one. I really wanted to do an Atticus or Scout Finch quote –  To Kill a Mockingbird is my favourite book so I thought it would be a nice tribute, but then I seen this Charles Dickens quote and felt it meant more.

“Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears” 

I cry a lot. Not as much anymore as I used to, but still – it’s not exactly rare. I cry just before my period, I cry when I’m on my period, I cry when I see animal charity adverts, I cry when I watch films. Speaking of that; I watched ‘Gifted’ the other night (Chris Evans stars in it, and I urge you to watch it if you haven’t yet) and was in floods of tears. The neck of my t-shirt was soaking wet and covered in mascara.

I also cried a lot when I was going through my losses and cried again during my struggle to conceive. I cried thinking I was a failure. I cried when I thought about not being able to be a mum. But I’ve never been ashamed of my tears. I cried because I needed it. It was how I coped. Some people think tears are a sign of weakness but I disagree. I’m not a weak person because I cry.  If anything, it makes me stronger. I don’t hide my emotions – I’m not ashamed to admit that sometimes I hurt, and I’m not always okay. I believe showing your emotions takes an incredible amount of strength.

Don’t ever be ashamed of something that helps you cope… Of something that’s part of you.

Quote-a-day (number 2)

Quote-a-day (number 2)

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There’s me talking about how the 3 day challenge is so much easier to stick to and how excited I was to do it, and suddenly I’m 4 days in and only have 1 quote!

My excuses – work, college, weekend, wine(s), a really good film, a christening and a birthday. I think you should let me off.

But here it is. Better late than never. Quote number 2:

“A day without laughter is a day wasted”

This was of course from the late, great Charlie Chaplin. I kind of wish I’d left this until the last day to finish on one of the greats, but I just had to put it in. I guess it sets me a challenge for tomorrow right?

Anyway, this quote. It’s a good one isn’t it? We need to laugh. We need to smile. And we need to remember that no matter what we’re going through, there’s always a reason to be happy. My husband makes me laugh. A lot. My friends silly texts make me giggle. Sticking on a stand up comedy or an episode of Friends does it for me too. Catching my dog trying desperately to catch her tail. Watching Kian pretend he’s a stuntman at the park. In all honesty it took me a while to see it, but everywhere I look there’s reasons to laugh and smile and just be happy.

What are some things that make you laugh?

Update

Update

Thank you so much to everyone that’s taking part in the Mug Swap – I’ve sent out all the emails today and am just waiting on a few replies – so hopefully everyone will have a new mug/new follower/new friend on the way soon! Please do share the pictures somewhere so we can all have a look once you get your mug!

On another note – I left you all hanging on tender hooks so I apologise, but my period came a few days ago – I was around 4 days late. Again, I felt okay. Slightly annoyed that it took 34 days to bloody get here, but I wasn’t too upset. I never cried or felt like a failure, which for a long time was a bit of a recurring thought of mine.

All in all, I’m still feeling pretty good. I’m coming to the end of my college term and I only have something like 14 days left of placement. I’m feeling mixed emotions about that – I’ll be glad to have my summer break, and to finally move on to the final part of the course in August but I’ve grown close to a lot of the children and I’m really going to miss seeing them. And the staff too – they’ve been great and really supportive throughout the past 8 months. But I guess that’s part and parcel of this course – It’s only placement – I can’t stay there forever.

Hubby’s moving on to a new job too – better pay and much closer to home (as in, walking distance) so we’ll save a bunch on travel costs plus he gets his own special added bonus of a lie in – I told him he’ll need to savour that because if we get our wish he can kiss goodbye to them for the foreseeable future!

We’ve just booked to go to Rhodes in July (I’m sure that’s almost suicide for a ginger!), and part of me is thinking “Ahhh forget about the bikini body – I could be pregnant!!”, while the other part is trying to limit my chocolate intake to – hmmm I don’t know – 4 bars a week.

Does anyone else have Summer plans?

 

I’m officially 2 days late. I’m hoping by saying (writing) it out loud – it will somehow jinx me and bring on a heavy flow.

I’m not saying I want my period to come – I just hate the waiting. And the constant checking of the toilet paper. Man, I miss the days of just wiping and flushing. Isn’t it funny the things you take for granted. Wiping and flushing has got to be in the top 5.

“Why don’t you just take a test Nicola?” says the voice in my head, and I’m sure some of you are thinking it too. Truth be told, I have no answer for that. Fear maybe. Risk of disappointment.

Maybe it’s because I don’t have any and it’s Sunday so I’m putting off getting dressed for as long as possible.

I don’t want to jump the gun. It is only 2 days. 99% of the time, I’m a 30 day cycle, but there’s always that 1% that likes to wind me up.

Ach maybe I’ll get dressed and buy a test.

Maybe I’ll wait.

Mug Swap

Mug Swap

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I’ve wanted to do a mug swap for ever, but I kept missing the deadlines, or they were U.S only so, I’ve decided to host my own! Well, I hope to – if enough people are interested!

For those who don’t know, it’s pretty simple. Each person receives a bit of info about a persons likes & dislikes etc and you find the perfect mug for them and send it out! Some people add a little handwritten note, another small item or a little teabag/coffee sachet etc if you like, but finer details would be decided later!

I thought it would be a fun idea for my miscarriage/I.V.F family to take part in something, so I’m just wondering if this sounds like something any of you guys would be interested in? Please comment, and include anyone else you think would be up for this too! (they don’t need to have a blog – just an email address is perfect!)

Oh, and no personal info would be sent to anyone else – only the person that was sending the mug to you. It won’t be published here or anywhere else! This would be open to everyone but you could opt out of international postage if you preferred!

If you’re interested, either comment or send me an email and hopefully we can get at least 10 people involved! Nikkihayes86@gmail.com

Starting treatment

Starting treatment

8th May 2018. My final appointment before I begin treatment. Can I scream a little? Do a dance? Or should I just smile to myself? I quite fancy the screaming if I’m honest. 

My next appointment will last around an hour and we’ll do a detailed medical history and then they’ll make sure I’m emotionally stable and secure enough to have a child (my previous rants don’t count right?). Once that’s been confirmed I need to phone them on the first day of my period then BOOM. Treatment! (Unless they’re fully booked in which case I’ll go 4 weeks later).  

I can’t believe we’re finally here. It’s finally happening. I have to say that it’s been incredibly quick (I.V.F wise – the whole TTC thing has felt like a lifetime at times). I had my first appointment in October and treatment will begin around June so that’s about 8months. Considering this is a free NHS provided treatment I’m pretty impressed! 

 

**side note – I took part in another Miscarriage Association about coping (or not) with pregnancy after loss. It’s a great campaign so check it out if you’d like support/info 

https://www.miscarriageassociation.org.uk/story/nicolas-pregnancy-loss-story/ 

https://www.miscarriageassociation.org.uk/your-feelings/pregnancyaftermiscarriage/ 

New Year. New Opportunities

New Year. New Opportunities

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I can’t believe it’s that time again. Feels like only yesterday I was wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. It makes me sound so old but, where does the time go? 

This year was our first Christmas Eve with Kian so we got to wake up and watch him open his presents on Christmas morning. We went all out with Christmas Eve boxes, letters from Santa, Elf on the Shelf, Elf doors, stockings and a mountain of presents but, I figured this could be the last Christmas with just the 3 of us! (Maybe overly wishful thinking but hey, it’s better being positive right?!) 

After Christmas, we took Kian to Poland for a few days, just to get away from the chaos and the craziness and all the family stuff. It’s nice for a while, but then you just want to relax! 

New Years Eve came and Nikki and I went to our local pub for a cheesy, alcohol fuelled, cheese & pickle on a stick filled karaoke night! It was great, and I promise we only drank a LITTLE too much alcohol. I have to be alcohol free during IVF, so I figured why not go out with a bang? (she says as she’s drinking a glass of wine.) 

My next I.VF. appointment is February 7th – I’m not sure what this one will entail though. Nikki still has to make his “donation”, but I hope we’ll be starting around May or June time. Only time will tell. But I feel good. 

Time to stop

Time to stop

I know in my head that I can’t keep trying forever. Physically its impossible, and emotionally -well I don’t know how much longer I can go. 

Should I give myself an end date? Should I keep going until I physically can’t? Should I stop when I’m emotionally worn out, or by that point will there be too much damage already done?  

I’m at the start of a new cycle. Menstrual wise of course. Life wise it’s the same. I’m already exhausted and its barely even started.  

My present

My present

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This time two years ago I was putting last minute touches to my wedding plans. I wasn’t pregnant and didn’t know the pain of recurrent miscarriage. I had no idea that I was about to spend the next two years trying for a baby only to lose it every time. I had no idea I would have a frequent flyer card at my local hospital, no idea that I would spend hours researching acupuncture and tips on how to get pregnant (and stay that way). In fact, “full term pregnancy” wasn’t even in my vocabulary – it was just pregnancy. A simple straightforward word. It stood alone. The only thing that followed ‘pregnancy’ was ‘baby’. 

I sometimes imagine myself in 5, 10 years – in a detached house with 2 or 3 kids (including Kian), we’re financially secure and of course ecstatically happy and then I realise I have to stop myself. I have no idea what the future holds for me – that’s more obvious to me now than it’s ever been.  

I need to stop imagining and fantasizing. I need to live my life. I need to forget about my past, I need to stop picturing my future and I really need to try enjoy  just living in my present. 

“Try” – optimal word.