November 29, 2010

I'm dreamin' of an iPad Xmas...

So Nuffnang are having a competition to win an iPad. Um, awesome! You see, as much as I resisted the iPad when it was launched, I've played with a few in the shops and I'm converted. I want one quite badly. I want to be able to blog on it. I want to look at really big photos on it. I want to be one of the "cool kids", basically. (Though getting an iPhone would be cool too... You listening, Scott?)

To enter this competition, I have to choose my favourite blog post of mine, link to it, and explain why it's my favourite. Simple, right? Uhhh... Not so much. I'm finding it hard to choose a favourite.

Is it the one in which I announced my newest pregnancy? I was so happy to share that news with everyone, although the circumstances in which I felt it needed announcing were pretty crappy.

The one where I told everyone about what I thought Ianto would have looked like as he grew up? I loved sharing my visions of my babies with everyone.

The one where I kicked a troll's arse? Actually, no, not that one at all. As much as I like my response, I absolutely hate that I ever had to read that comment to begin with.

Oh, maybe the post last week when I shared the newest photos of Ianto! Maybe... but there wasn't much real content in it, was there?

How about when I bemoaned the fact that everyone expects the fathers of our "lost" babies to get over it so much quicker than they expect the mothers? I was up on my high horse with that one, and I love when I get to do that!

The letter I wrote to my reproductive system while we were still trying to conceive a little brother or sister for Ianto? I quite enjoy my funny posts, however few and far between they are.

Ohhh, the rainbow babies one! I loved doing my self-imposed research for that one! I loved reading all about rainbows and what they can mean to people. I loved teaching you all what I'd read...

The one in which I got up on my soapbox and told you all to shout those uncomfortable words from the rooftops - Stillbirth! Miscarriage! Baby loss! Dead baby! That post was the one that jumped into my head first when I heard of this challenge. But I wrote it for a different challenge for somewhere else, so no.

The letter I wrote to Ianto. Oh, how it hurt to write that one. The emotion just runs out and grabs me every time I read it again.

No. Out of all the 95 posts I have to look back on, I've decided my favourite is my very first post. The one in which I was freshly born into this stillbirth thing and had to tell everyone in the world about my son. My son. Eight months on and it still feels strange to say it. I have a son. My body has birthed a gorgeous little man. He's the reason I live and breathe, even if he's not here with me. He's the reason this blog even exists, the reason so many people know about us now.

That post, that week, defined who I am now. I am Ianto's mother. I am in the "club" of people who have birthed stillborn children. I will never, ever see my baby again and I know what that's like. I am someone who will always cherish her living children because I know what it's like when they're not here. I'm not saying people who haven't "lost" don't cherish their kids, but it's vastly different when you have that insider knowledge.

You know what? I do still want that iPad, but it's been enough of a gift to be able to read back on my old posts and relearn my own journey. How far I've come in eight months. Thank you to all my readers, new and old, from the bottom of my heart. Now give me your iPads and comments. Why don't you tell me what your favourite post is?

November 27, 2010

Small? I forgot!

Sometimes I forget just how small Ianto was. I'll be looking at photos, and just stare at how tiny our "big little guy" really is in them. I know why. It's because most of the photos we have of him are close up so there's nothing around him to compare to. The one that always surprises me is the one of his first bath. He just looks so different and small in that one compared to the rest. It's the only one we have where he's naked, no clothes or blankets on him. And he just looks so small.

I'm in the process of making a video with Ianto's photos set to music. I tried uploading a version to YouTube, but they blocked the audio. Those pesky copyright laws! *blush* Yeah, I didn't think of that. I'm a twit. Here's one draft of it, anyway:

Any feedback?

Flog Yo Blog... Saturday?

I don't usually participate in Lori's Flog Yo' Blog Friday, but I just felt like it right now. I don't actually have anything to say in this post, but feel free to yell at me for doing it on a Saturday instead of Friday!

Oh, and welcome to anyone who's jumping over here from anywhere else in the bloghop. I hope you enjoy my blog, even though I talk about having a dead kid 'n' stuff. Hey, if it works for The Redneck Mommy, it can work for me. I just hope one day I can inject the kind of humour she does into things. Maybe that'll have to wait until this baby's born.

November 25, 2010

I have a cute baby.

I have the cutest child in the world,already! I mean, of course we knew Cookie would be cute, but my ultrasound on Monday (at 23 weeks) gave us the most gorgeous in-utero picture I've ever seen:

My friend Lily, my doula, said that this is a definite "girl smile."

S/he seemed quite intent on playing with the umbilical cord as well, which was fun to watch. Not so much when the ultrasound lady needed him/her to stay still a moment while she checked the blood flow in and out. She had to get someone else to come and check it as well, because every now and then there was an extra thud, or it would skip one. Nothing to worry about though, thankfully.

The cyst in Cookie's brain has disappeared though! Completely gone. I wasn't worried too much about it, but I'm still very glad to be rid of it. The doctor said it could have just been that one of the veins in the brain grew a little faster than the ones around it, so now it's slowed down to catch up. All good.

November 22, 2010

Haven't been tagged in a while

Kara at "Random Musings" (another DBM) tagged me a little while ago for this, but I've only just found it (as I'm a twit and thought I was following her, but got her confused with someone else...)

I have to answer eight questions, ask another eight, and tag eight other bloggers. Yaaay! Here goes...

1.  What is your absolute all time favorite read?
Coat of arms of Hogwarts, the fictional school...Image via Wikipedia
*blush* I am a Harry Potter tragic, so I'm going to go with that.
2.  Favorite season?
I always have trouble with this one... uuumm... Ah, bum, all of them. Summer I can swim (and it has Xmas and New Year's in there, my two favourite holidays), Autumn has nice weather, Winter has my birthday (my other favourite "holiday"), and Spring has my wedding anniversary.
3.  What struck you the most on your wedding day?
Good: How much fun my wedding and reception were. I loved it!
What's that? "It's not too bad"? He didn't take this one. I did. It's almost the only photo of my flowers.
Bad: How awful our photographer was. I hate my wedding photos :( He was so pushy, and nothing like he was supposed to be.
4.  When you go to the mailbox, you get a letter from a long lost friend. Who are they and how did they become a "long lost" friend?
I'd hope it's Sandy. I suppose she's not that "long lost" because we talked last in June, but we went from "never being apart" to "only speaking once or twice a year at most" within the space of about six months. One of the hardest points of this year was telling her about Ianto.
5. Which class in high school did you think "when am I ever gonna use this in real life?" and now you find out you've actually had to use it?
I always thought that in Maths. And I was mostly right! I just use multiplication a lot more than expected.
6.  Vacation in the mountains or vacation at the beach?
Mountains. I hate the beach most of the time now.
7.  Going out for a night on the town? What are your favorite hotspots?  
Ooh, good question!
Me as I am now - nothing more drastic than Pancake Parlour and the movies (maybe TGI Fridays if we really want to spice it up, haha)
Me a few years ago - the Commercial pub in South Morang, on a Friday night with that live band, a Smirnoff Twist in hand (blood orange or lime flavour, please, heehee)

8.  What was your favorite childhood playground toy? Slides, swings, teeter-totter, sand pit, monkey bars, etc?
Swings, swings, ans more swings! Ohh, especially the ones at Bundoora Park where you sat on one, and had someone push the other one around and around... Loved it!

Because I'm lazy, and it's almost 4am (yeah, I lied in my last post, I had no intention of sleeping) I'm just going to make the people I tag answer these questions and not make up my own...

Now to tag my eight victims... (I'll just put the blog names, because I'm not bright enough to know everyone's name and don't want to stuff up *blush*)
  1. So Now What?
  2. Tropical Mum
  3. Family from the Fringes
  4. Just Me
  5. BM I don't care
  6. Diminishing Lucy
  7. Random Ramblings of a SAHM
  8. Unperfect Life

I'm thinking of adding to the rainbow

Since getting my rainbow tattoo, I've felt something was missing in it. I'm going to be getting similar tattoos for all my other kids - sky/nature themed with hand/footprints, names, and dates of birth - and I want to put something in Ianto's to show that he died. But that's where I get stuck. How do I do that without ruining it? Before I decided on the rainbow, one of my ideas was to get the babyloss awareness ribbon - but I can't work out where it could fit into my existing tattoo now. Last night I thought maybe some words - but what? Angel wings - where would I put them (this was the forerunner before I remembered the footprint is horizontal)?

Of course, this won't be getting added until Cookie's able to go a few hours between breastfeeds so I can take an afternoon off to get it done. I'll be getting his/her commemorative tattoo done, and asking them to add to Ianto's rainbow. But I'd at least like to be prepared. So, anyone have any ideas for me? Here's a photo of it, in case you've forgotten what it looks like:

 And this is what I look like when I'm getting a tattoo, for your entertainment:

For those of you wondering, no, Scott's still been too much of a wuss to get his done. Also, if you've been wondering about when my husband is going to be having a tattoo, you really need to get a life. ;) Actually, what's been stopping him is the lack of money to do it. The price of mine came out of the baby bonus (yeah, we're so bogan we spend our government money on tatts!) but his will have to be saved up for. I think he's still undecided on which design he wants. Maybe he'll even wait til we're finished having kids, and combine all names/birthdays/symbols into one big tattoo, who knows at this point... I'm just impatient.

My original "tatts for kids" plan, before we even conceived Ianto, was to have all their names written on me in Scott's handwriting. I don't really believe in getting partners' names tattooed (until maybe your 20th anniversary or something so you're really, properly committed) so it was a way of getting his little mark on me while keeping his name off me. Sometimes, when we've really had a big fight (doesn't happen often, but it does happen), I occasionally regret getting our surname tattooed as part of Ianto's rainbow. What if Scott and I divorce and I go back to my maiden name? What if I remarry and my other kids have a different surname?

Sometimes I regret it without the argument - It might be only four letters, but it's still taking up space, ink, and money. I'm going to have to get all the kids' full names on me now. Kinda regretting deciding on Cookie having two middle names. S/he was going to have two if s/he was a girl anyway, but only one as a boy. Without going into too much detail, there's a reason a second has been added into our boy name. All will be revealed when s/he's born, I promise!

Wow, this is the longest post I've done in a while, isn't it? That's what happens when I get going - and here's hoping it happens a lot more from now on. I want to keep typing, even now, but I have an ultrasound in the morning and I need sleep. That's if Cookie lets me, of course - I swear a party starts in my belly every night around midnight lately!

PS - Is it just me, or does my blog take a while to load lately? Do you think I need to take a few things off, make the design a little simpler?

November 20, 2010

The photos arrived!

We finally got the last of the photos from the ACOCP! A massive thanks to Gavin Blue, who tracked them down for us and sent them. Ohh, I'm just so deliriously happy today, especially after the awful day I had yesterday (I was sick with hayfever all morning, then got worried about Cookie not kicking much, then to round it off I choked and spat tea all over my laptop.)

So, without further ado, here are my favourites - and be warned, a few are of Ianto's coffin.

Fixing up his little hat.

He could almost be yawning here, couldn't he?

Oh, I wish I'd had more time with those feet...

...those amazing, beautiful, perfect little feet.

My boy's hands.

One of many "last" kisses.

A few of the toys we had near/on his coffin during the funeral. If I remember correctly, Scott's dad convinced him to throw that dog into the grave before it was filled in. I'll never forgive him for that.

Screwing the lid down - notice the shape of the screws? A little rainbow-like, don't you think?

His little nameplate, which I've had some very odd dreams about...

The "blue" flowers. They were supposed to be the colour we had at our wedding, but somewhere along the line there was a miscommunication.

It could almost be a tissue box, couldn't it?

Saying goodbye - this time for good.

PS - Wouldn't you know it, the photos took TWO AND A HALF HOURS to upload (note to self, resize before uploading) and then the computer crashed (thank goodness for auto-saving!) so this is being published the day after it was supposed to be. Ah well, it was worth the wait.

November 05, 2010

I'm sure no-one else's says that.

So, I'm writing my birth plan (preferences) and I start typing the "what to do in an emergency" bit. I finished it off, read it back... and started thinking. Does anyone else include "what to do if the baby dies"? Sigh... One more thing to make me feel so estranged from the normal people of the world. I wouldn't have dreamt of including that last time. The worst thing I thought that might happen during labour was needing a caesarean. The thought of losing Cookie terrifies me daily. Even when there's a simple reason for him/her to not kick, I can't help but panic slightly when I haven't felt anything for a while. Have I killed another baby? I don't tell Scott when I'm scared like that. He panics more than I do, and we just work each other up. I don't want to worry him.

November 02, 2010

A celebrity joins the ranks

It's always tough to hear about new people joining the ranks of "the stillbirth club" but I think it might be a touch harder when it's a celebrity. Mostly because, while we "normal" people can hide away until we feel ready to face the world again, people in the public spotlight don't get that luxury.

Poor Lily Allen's second baby has been stillborn. Her first was an early miscarriage, and like many other people, once she got further along, she would have relaxed, been more comfortable. But alas, she lost her precious little boy. The news reports I've read say "six months" but that's no real indication, is it? Pregnancies are measured in weeks now, not months. In one direction, I'm about five months pregnant. In the other, four. So in England, where Ms Allen lives, her little boy could be passed off as a "late miscarriage" (their official mark for it being stillbirth and not miscarriage is 24 weeks, whereas here it's 20 weeks.)

Even now, the news reports on the side (that my handy little widget is suggesting I link to) can't decide. One says "Lily Allen suffers second miscarriage" while another says "Singer's second baby stillborn"... Although I know I'm just adding to it by commenting on such a tragic event, I feel we should leave the poor lady alone until she feels ready. But the papparazi won't stand for that, especially the English tabloids (the most ravenous for any story, happy sad or otherwise...)

I just feel so sad for her, I knew she'd had a previous miscarriage and I was thrilled to hear she was pregnant again. Especially when I found we were due around a month (or twoish) apart. Just too sad.