Celebrate Good Times!

Holiday season is finally over.  From mid-October to mid-Jan I was in non-stop party mode.  Not the raging, at the club all night in my trashy outfit, drinking and dancing the night away kind of partying.  That kind of partying is a distant memory. I am talking about the kind of partying you do when you have a newborn and find yourself at home most of the time or at the home of other friends with little babies.

These parties go something like this.  First you try to get ready. You want to get out of the t-shirt and yoga pants you spent most of your day in (the same ones the baby spent most of the day spitting up on) and dress up a little, do your hair, wear some makeup. I mean you are going out and these days that alone is a treat.  So you give the baby to your significant other.  Somewhere in the middle of doing your hair or your make up the baby starts crying, the husband needs help. You go and take over and in so doing you have eaten up the little time you had to get ready. So now instead of leisurely doing your hair or trying that new eye makeup trick you read about in this month’s Cosmo you have to speed things up. For me, that usually means leaving the natural waves in my locks to air dry rather than blow drying them straight.  I call it my beach goddess look just to make myself feel like it was intentional.  The beach goddess look doesn’t require much make up so I do my five minute face in under five minutes and get dressed.

Once you have managed to pull yourself together, you then have the fun task of running around the house making sure baby is ready, the baby bag is packed and then begin you can begin process of getting baby in the car and finally you are off to the party. By that time, if you are anything like me, you are already hot and sweaty so a quick refresh (and I mean quick) is required. At the party, you meet the other mommas who faced similar circumstances while getting ready.  They have their hair in a ponytail or a bun.  It’s their sleek and sexy out of the face look.  It’s all the rage with new moms.

These parties have music, food and definitely drinks of the alcoholic variety.  But before the mommas can indulge in any adult beverages they need to get the kids situated.  Conversations are interrupted to change diapers, for feedings, and hopefully the final interruption is putting these little ones to sleep.  As the kids have gotten bigger, they are sleeping longer which means more time for mommas to have fun (usually talking about their babies, complaining about husbands or talking about people who don’t have babies).

For me, the best part of these parties is taking pictures of the kids. This was especially hilarious on Halloween.  We hosted a mini-Halloween party for our friends with new babies.  We had a darling little pumpkin, a crawling lady bug and a mini Darth Vader, cape and all.  We placed all three babies on the couch and then three sets of parents made gallant attempts to get their kids to look at the camera preferably while giving one of their fabulous baby smiles.  I have never laughed so hard looking at all of us parents trying so hard to get our kids to smile at the same time.  The kids looked freaked out and no wonder with six adults jumping up and down making various sounds and gestures in the hopes of getting the desired reaction from our babies.

Closely following Halloween was Diwali, the Indian festival of lights, where my baby decided to throw a wrench in my plans by screaming hysterically in front of the temple, so much so we never got out of the car to go inside.  We then headed to a Diwali party where my normally happy baby decided to throw up all over my new Indian outfit. We were so defeated from picture taking on Halloween that we didn’t even try to get a cute Diwali picture.

She did much better when it came to Thanksgiving and Christmas.  These were big celebrations at home with her Nani and loads of family and friends.  Many of these friends and family where meeting our little one for the first time.  By the time these celebrations came along, my little princess turned into quite a ham. I swear this four month old has learned to pose for the camera and now photographs like a champ. The moments are perfectly captured, including an awesome pic with Santa.

We capped the holiday season with a Lohri party at our house. Lohri is a bonfire party that rings in the New Year and is mostly celebrated by people in Northern India. We made it a traditional affair complete with popcorn, peanut brittle, jaggery and traditional Punjabi meal of saag and makki di roti. It was a small event but a fantastic one that I was determined to have. I really wanted to celebrate Lohri for all the new babies in our friends circle, and especially for my little baby.  Of course, my baby was asleep before we lit our bonfire and sang songs but she will have plenty of (sleepy) pictures of herself from the event.

Now that the celebrations have quieted down, I am excited to start planning her first birthday.  Only 7 months to go! Keep the celebrations coming!

A Mom, I am

Do you ever have that moment in your life, when you stop in your tracks, take a deep breath and realize that the life you are leading is exactly as you once imagined it would be?  I had that moment on August 25th when I gave birth to my daughter (all 8 pounds and 11 ounces of her).  My life may not be wrapped up in quite the package I envisioned but the gifts in my life and the way it has all turned out is exactly as I hoped it would be.

A year ago, I embarked on a journey to become a mom.  I had no idea if it was going to work. I had no idea what that journey would be like.  All I knew is that I wanted to be a mother. I wanted to have a family. I was willing to do whatever it would take for that to happen. After numerous ups and downs, I arrived at this moment. The moment where I held my daughter in my arms. The moment I had longed for.

It was not as easy as I thought it would be. It didn’t happen at the time in my life I wished it had. Delivery was far scarier than I ever imagined. I could not have anticipated the twists and turns this journey would have. But now, in this moment, putting aside all the noise that has surrounded the journey, I can just look at the result and realize it is exactly as I had hoped: A beautiful baby, a happy family and loads of reasons to be grateful each and every day.

Pick a Great Doctor

Picking a Doctor to deliver your baby is an important decision.  Not only will he or she (hopefully) be there for the actual delivery.  This is someone who you will be meeting frequently throughout your pregnancy so having a certain level of comfort and confidence with your physician is very important.  In my case, my insurance changed right around the time I found out I was pregnant.  So I had to find a new doctor whether I wanted to or not.  I used recommendations of others who recently delivered or those who were newly pregnant.

The first recommendation I received turned out to be the Doctor I chose.  Why did I pick him, you ask?  First, I loved his calm, all-knowing mannerism.  He was very practical, pleasant and I knew would sooth my nerves no matter how the pregnancy went.  I also loved that he personally delivered his patient’s babies (this I learned was not the case with many other providers where whatever doctor is on call will do that duty). My doctor also had a five-star rating on yelp and within a few minutes of meeting him I knew that was very well deserved.

Fortunately, my pregnancy has gone smoothly but as I approach delivery I am feeling in very good hands with my doctor. Many different scenarios in delivery can occur and I know whatever happens he will give me the right advice and guide the birth of my baby in the right direction.

Gender Reveal Backlash

My Leading Man and I thought our decision to not find out the gender of our baby would just be our mystery to deal with.  Boy, where we WRONG.

EVERYONE and I mean EVERYONE had an opinion to give us on why we should be finding out.  By EVERYONE I mean not only future Grandparents – they were down right angry at us and to this day think we know and are just not telling them – but friends, co-workers, and most baffling of them all, down right strangers.

As most pregnant women know, strangers have no problem coming up to you at a restaurant, in a store, at the mall, at the movies and virtually any other place where your ballooning belly is visible to them and wanting to ask you about your pregnancy.

Question #1 – When are you due? 

Question #2- What are you having?

For me, the positive inquiry ended with question #2.

The look of horror and disbelief when you reveal that you are choosing not to find out if it is a boy or a girl was shocking the first handful of times it happened.  Eventually I got used to it.  The most popular follow on questions people would ask me were:

Well how will you buy it clothes? 

“How will you decorate the nursery?”

“How will you decide on a shower theme?”

“So you want to be unprepared for baby?”

And so on and so forth. Some days I found it beyond irritating to deal with these inquisitions (and trust me they happened almost every time I was in public).  Other days, I found it amusing because I knew what slew of questions were about to come my way.

The baby will have tiny little outfits and they will be adorable (they will just be neutral in color).  The nursery is in progress and in my opinion looks fabulous (yes, there will be a future post on this soon).  We had two baby showers and both went off without a hitch (more on that soon too).  And as for being unprepared, knowing the gender would not help me be a more prepared parent. For me, it would lead to more confusion, stress and obsession about how to raise a Little Miss or a Little Mister.

While there are times when I want to know and I am beyond curious to find out, keeping it a mystery has been a wonderful part of our personal journey.

In That Moment

As I got off the phone with the Nurse, her  peppy “Congratulations” as she told me I am in fact pregnant kept ringing in my ears.

Did this really just happen?

Am I really having a baby?

In that moment, the fear, desperation and hopelessness that encompasses dealing with infertility dissipated and was quickly replaced with joy, excitement and happiness.

I looked at my stomach, put my hand on my belly and said “Okay baby let’s do this.”

First call was to My Leading Man.  He had already texted and called multiple times throughout the day to see if I had gotten any news.  While he always tries play cool, I knew he was just as anxious as I was to get the news we were hoping for. He answers. I tell him that the news is good and he starts giggling.  It is his funny-I-feel-a-little-awkward-and-I-don’t-know-what-to-say-giggle, which basically meant he was elated.

Once we got off the phone, I took a moment to soak it in.  I thanked the Universe by closing my eyes, looking up to the sky and said “I am ready to take on whatever comes my way.”

And with that our Journey to Baby, really began.

The News Is In

I woke up early Monday morning.  I wanted the news and I wanted it now.  Unfortunately, I had to wait until 8:30 AM before the fertility clinic opened to find out if we were or were not pregnant. I called right at 8:30 AM, no response.  8:35 AM, no response, 8:40 AM, no response, 8:45, finally they answer the phone and connect me to the Nurses direct line. A few rings and I get voicemail.  You have got to be kidding me. Clearly no one at the fertility clinic cares about me getting my news as much as I want to hear it!

A few painfully slow hours later, the nurse calls me back.  I miss the call.  I was in a meeting.

An hour later, I call the Nurse back only to get her voicemail again.  This is getting ridiculous. I am ready to hop in my car and head straight into the feritility clinic and demand my results.  Don’t these people know that I have been agonizing over these test results for the last 48 hours!

Luckily, I didn’t have to take matters in my own hands.

The Nurse called back.  She gave me the news I have been longing to hear.

I am pregnant.

A Weekend of Waiting

The weekend passed painfully slow. My Leading Man and I tried to keep ourselves busy by shopping, trying new restaurants, watching movies and what ever else we could think of that was sufficiently distracting.  Unfortunately, no amount of distraction worked.  All we wanted to know is would we or would we not get the news we wanted?  Would we be pregnant?  Would we be on our way to a family or would we be back to square one, back to fertility treatments, back to getting our hopes up only to be let down?

In our own way we were prepped for either scenario.  Of course being pregnant would be amazing and exactly what we hoped for.  Yet we are both very grounded in reality and knew from the experiences of our friends and acquaintances that these treatments do not always work on the first attempt.  We kept hearing stories of couples trying time after time with unsuccessful results.  I didn’t have to look much further than the desperate look of other patient’s faces in the fertility clinic’s waiting room.  They had clearly been down this road before and had experienced all of the emotions we were now experiencing.

My Leading Man kept reassuring me that no matter the result we can handle it. If we are pregnant, that would be a huge blessing and we will move happily into a completely new phase of our lives.  But if we are unsuccessful, we will just keep trying and trying and trying until it works.  With so many options available to couples these days, he just believed that something would have to work at some time.

His reassurances seemed practical and slightly disheartening all at the same time.

One more sleep until I know if it is Mom-to -eb or try-try-again.