Wednesday, May 30, 2012


Today I am 22 weeks and 3 days pregnant. It was on this gestational day, last time, that I was told I'd never carry my baby to term. I was told I was dilated and was not given a whole lot of hope or many options.

I will never forget walking back to the elevator of the Dr.'s office, in a blur of tears, calling my mom to tell her that I wouldn't be home for my baby shower. Calling my work to get my cases covered and of course calling B.

I remained hopeful for the next 11 days, but as you know at 23 weeks and 5 days we lost our precious girl.

I have to admit, if all is well at this appointment on Friday I will feel my first victory. The first time I can officially say, things are better this time around. I will feel the next victory when I open my eyes and feel a baby in my belly on the morning of 23 weeks and 6 days. I cannot wait to feel what it's like to be pregnant beyond the point where we lost our Bremy girl.

I readily admit that I watch a lot of the baby shows. From 16 and pregnant, to Pregnant in Heels it's so intriguing to see others deal with pregnancy, birth and parenting. Tonights episode of 16 and pregnant was emotional. The baby's daddy had passed away in a freak accident and then the young mom went into labor very early. I think her son was born at 33 weeks and was only 3lbs and in the NICU for a while. Do you know how amazing 33 weeks sounds to a mom who didn't make it to 24? And then to see this poor little baby struggling and so tiny made me realize how much time it really takes to cook a healthy baby.

I'll be happy with a living baby in my life, even if she comes too soon for everyone's liking, but I pray so hard that I make it to a point where we don't need NICU and don't have to endure a traumatic birth. I just pray we can skip that stress and worry. It's so hard to imagine what it would feel like to leave that teeny baby in the hospital and go home. I don't know if I'd be able to leave her. There are so many scenarios going through my head.

Right now I will take my victories as they come. Hopefully I'll be celebrating on Friday.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A letter to my first

Dear Bremy,

It's hard to find the words to write to you now. There has not been one single day that has passed that I've not thought of you and all that you meant to us. Not one single day. Most of those days have involved a tear, or two, or a lot. Some days more than others. These are thoughts and tears that I mostly keep to myself. Thoughts and tears I mostly have while I'm in the car or while I try to fall asleep. Your sister is a lot different from you as far as her movement and positioning. I'm kind of thankful for that because I can really differentiate you both. As I approach the week that we lost you, it's becoming harder.

It's strange to know what a baby looks like at 23 weeks and 5 days, but I know because of you. It makes it so much more real to know what the baby girl inside of me now is starting to look like, at least developmentally and proportion-wise.

In the last month, the nightly slideshow of the day of your birth has stopped. I don't re-live it every night anymore and I'm very thankful for that because they are the worst memories of my entire life. But now as I type that I grasp for breath because the pain is still there. It's always just-right there.

After we lost you, I wrote that I missed feeling you inside of me and that I did not yet feel that you were watching over us in any way. But I definitely feel you again. Just in little ways. I like to believe you are with my Grandma and Grandpa and that you are being taken care of, that you are happy together.

I'm finally starting to grow thankful for my experience with you. Not completely, but I'm starting to see all of the things that helped us for this time around. The fact that they saw my incompetent cervix relatively early, so that they knew for sure that's what it was. The fact that I was already in the hospital when I went into labor with you. I wonder how much more traumatic it would have been to have that happen out of nowhere at work or at home, or in the car alone? I'm also thankful that the sonographer who measured you at 20 weeks got the measurements wrong. The only reason we were referred to a specialist was because they said your head was too big. The specialist checked, and it wasn't too big at all. But during that check, they saw my open cervix. The worst news, but now, I'm very thankful and know that the measurement was wrong for a reason. And because of that, I was officially diagnosed and then placed in the hospital.

There are a lot of other things in our life that probably would not have happened had you lived. I'm thankful for those things, one big thing in particular (a new house) and of course, your sister. We probably wouldn't have gotten pregnant that soon had you survived. So your quick appearance in our life was not in vain.

 I also know my personality has changed, and I hope that it's for the better. I'm a little more reserved and quiet- but also not as quick to judge. I feel more compassionate and empathetic to people's pain. I'd never, ever been through anything that hurt this much and when I see people feeling similarly about  things in their life, I get it. I get it much more than I ever used to. As much as it hurts, I'm thankful for it.

You continue to teach me and continue to be a part of our story as a family.  I miss you and I love you and I will always wish that you were still with me. I'm thankful for you and grateful for the time I did have with you, my girl.


Monday, May 28, 2012

21 Weeks

How Far Along: 21
Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: Baby is the length of a carrot about 10 1/2 inches head to heel
Weight Gain: 14 freaking pounds. I could not believe the scale. I only get weighed once a month when I see my regular OB. I am pretty upset, but know that I need to do a better job of watching my diet. I haven't been as strict on my gestational diabetes meal plan as I was last time, and it's showing! My sugars have still been really good, so that's how I'm rationalizing the strawberry shortcake and ice cream at night. bad. bad. 
Gender: BABY GIRL!!!!!

Movement: Much more movement this week. I feel her mostly at night as I go to sleep and sometimes early in the morning. I'm finally feeling actual kicks. 
SleepSleeping pretty good, still up at least twice a night for the bathroom. 
What I miss: I'm not going to say I miss exercise, because "miss" would be too strong of a word, but I do feel pretty out of shape. 
Cravings: loving strawberries this week and chocolate pudding. 

Symptoms: pretty tired this week. Took a couple mid day naps which is a rarity for me. 
Best moment of the weekKnowing my cervix is cooperating so far. Huge relief. 
Worst moment of the week: Again, just so much anxiety. 
It's another count down to my Dr. visit on Friday!!

Friday, May 25, 2012

21 Week Appointment

GOOD news to report! I saw the perinate (my favorite male dr who performed my cerclage) this morning and all is well. Cervix is still nice and long, measuring at over 4cm. I was so relieved. Baby is now back to breach position and is looking adorable as ever.

I did mention to the Dr. that I was a little worried I had again developed bacterial vaginosis, as I'd been having similar symptoms. He was slightly flippant about it and wasn't really calming my nerves. He explained that if I keep taking antibiotics, I'll probably develop a yeast infection which is something they don't want. He was happy to hear I'd already scheduled another appointment for next week and said they'd reevaluate then. I asked him point blank if leaving this untreated would cause my cervix to open and he shook his head, no. I'm a little confused and slightly concerned, but I trust that this guy knows what he's doing so I'm trying not to let it bug me.

I see the office again next Friday but could only get in with a Dr. I've never seen before. I wish I could see the same Dr. every time, but this was the trade off to squeezing in weekly appointments.

Thanks for all of your concern and kind words. I'm feeling so much better and ready to enjoy a long weekend :)

Thursday, May 24, 2012


I'm posting  here to hopefully lift a load off of my shoulders and my heart. So many around me are going through difficult or stressful times and I don't want to unload even more on them. I'm just anxious, and maybe even a little depressed this week. Actually, I think terrified is the right word. I just feel paralyzed with fear every day right now. Every twinge, every feeling sends my mind into a tailspin of what-ifs. I have an appointment tomorrow and I'm hoping it will ease my mind, but I'm also so worried about there being something wrong.

Luckily my appointment is first thing in the morning, so I wont be freaking out all day. It wasn't until last night that I had anything that made me think something was wrong. Things just felt different down there. No pressure or anything, just a strange feeling. When I laid down, the baby was kicking me or headbutting me right in the cervix and every time my heart just stopped. I remember this feeling right before I lost Bremy. Was it the baby moving, or was it something else? It was like a thumping feeling. Like knocking every couple minutes. Tears welled up as I just felt so helpless and so frustrated. I just want to know things are going to be ok.

Today I just keep sighing heavily. Even my coworker noticed I just seemed off. It's so hard to put on a happy face when your mind is elsewhere. There are other things going on with my family that are just bummers and some stress for B at work. All have been weighing on my mind.  I feel like I could burst into tears at any given moment and I just hate that feeling.

Luckily, I had a really easy day and work and was home early. I took Maverick on a quiet, slow stroll and soaked in some sunshine hoping to turn my day around.

I just hope things are looking good at my appointment tomorow. I know a good report will ease my mind for a few more days. Thank goodness they are seeing me every week, there's no way I could wait much longer for some reassurance. This is so hard.

Monday, May 21, 2012

20 Weeks

How Far Along: 20 Weeks- the "half way" point!
Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: Baby is the length of a banana 
Weight Gain: 9lbs so far

Gender: BABY GIRL!!!!!

Movement: I went three days without feeling her move and I was beside myself with worry. One morning, I literally prayed for her to move I was so scared. She moved about every two hours for the rest of the day. I finally learned from my u/s that my placenta is positioned in a way where it makes it harder to feel her. That really made me feel better. Of course, since then she's been moving like crazy, but I'm not complaining :)
Sleep: Still using the snoogle, still getting up 1-2 times per night for the potty
What I miss: this week I really wanted a beer or a drink, wanted to lift my godson out of his car seat and wanted to plan a trip that I can't take because I'll be pregnant. But, all worth it!
Cravings: still sandwiches, apple pie (I gave in to this one-yuuummm), grilled veggies, raspberries and frozen yogurt :)
Symptoms: nothing noticeable this week 
Best moment of the week: Baby finally moving more, kicking and flipping. I can finally feel her every day!
Worst moment of the week: Overall the anxiety is starting to get to me a little bit. I'd like to fast forward past 24 weeks, please!
I have another cervix check on Friday. Hoping all is holding steady!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

20 Week Appointment

I was very anxious for this appointment. It'd been two weeks since I'd been seen by anyone, and I was starting to worry. I had no real reason to, I feel fine and have been taking it easy, but as we approach the time where my cervix inexplicably dilated last time, it's so hard not to doubt that things are ok.

Today I had a quick appointment with one of the perinatologists,  Dr. M. She has won me over, even though she's a little clinical. She genuinely seems to care and also seems confident in what she is doing. I told the office, after my 18 week disaster of an appointment,  I never want to see Dr. C again.

Baby was flipped today. Head down, face down. Heartbeat was about 144. She was moving around. I told the Dr. that I wasn't feeling her much and that she would worry me for a couple days. The Dr. told me that because my placenta was positioned a certain way, it might be more difficult to feel her movements. That made so much sense to me. It made me feel better to know there was a logical explanation. And that I needn't worry.

My cervix is holding strong. The length is measuring a little over 4cm and cerclage looks good. I let out a huge sigh when she told me. When they put the u/s on my cervix I might as well be looking at a Chinese algebra problem. I have zero idea what they are looking at. So I just sit there until they measure and then I can read the number. It was a huge relief to hear things still look good.

The Dr. agreed that I could come in every week for quick cervix checks for the next month. That was a huge relief, as I don't think I could go another two weeks.

Last time, my cervix shortened and dilated between my 20 week and 22 week appointment, so the next few weeks are going to be nerve wracking, but I'm confident in these Dr.s and confident that this cerclage is doing it's job!

Monday, May 14, 2012

19 Weeks

How Far Along: 19
Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: size of an heirloom tomato
Weight Gain: 9lbs so far
Gender: BABY GIRL!!!!!
Movement: So inconsistent and it's really worrisome. Just as soon as I get really worried, she wiggles around, but I've gone a couple days without feeling her. No sharp kicks yet, just big flutters. 

SleepFinally gave in and started using my snoogle again. It's definitely helped, but I'm so hot at night, it's not my favorite!
What I miss: Really missing my freedom of movement/exercise. It's been really hot here and I'm getting worn out super easily. I also would like to stop worrying that I'm doing too much on my feet. 
Cravings: turkey club sandwiches. I've had 3 in the past two weeks!
Symptoms: As I mentioned above, I'm getting worn out very easily. Also, my feet and hands are falling asleep easily. I just realized it's happening often and need to make sure it's nothing I should worry about. 
Best moment of the weekFeeling baby move after a couple days of no movement. I was eating dinner and felt her fluttering around. I wasn't in a situation where I could mention it, but I was silently celebrating that baby was still with me! I was really starting to worry. 
Worst moment of the week: I had a small melt down. As I approach the week we lost Bremy, I am getting so anxious. I actually let myself visualize what it would be like to lose this baby and it was absolute hell and I can't believe I let my mind go there. I never want to think about that again, because honestly I don't know how I'd move on if we suffered another loss. I'm done with the negative thoughts and only thinking positive from here on out!
I have an appointment on Thursday and I am so anxious!! Thinking positive. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Baby Stuff

I had a couple registries going right before we lost Bremy last year. In fact, I found out I was on strict bed rest just four days before my first baby shower in Southern California. So, I never had one. Probably a good thing, seeing as every little baby item just sent me to tears after we lost our daughter. Luckily, we only had a few items in my house and my mother in law swiftly removed them before I returned from the hospital.

Just a couple weeks ago, I agreed to collect these items from her home where she'd been storing them for us. Since we are conveinently having another girl, we can make use of all of the gifts and purchases we had made.

My mom, brother and I did a lot of craigslist shopping in the weeks before Bremy's loss. Since we live in three different cities, it was nice to scour CL for exactly what I wanted.

Here's what I have so far:

Maclaren easy traveller

I knew I wanted an easy, lightweight option for the infant stage and this fit the bill. Maclaren boasts better height, and since I'm tall and hubby is taller, this was perfect. I think my brother got it for $30!

Bumbo with tray-my mom found this brand new on CL in Aqua

Cart cover- another brand new CL find. It's a black and white damask for $5

Boppy newborn- another brand new find. I think it was $15

BUT, I know there are a ton of things I still need and I'd LOVE for you to leave your best rec's in the comments for me. I haven't bought a thing without a recommendation from a mom. So let me know what stuff I need!

Monday, May 7, 2012

18 Weeks!

How Far Along: 18
Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: Length of a bell pepper
Total Weight Gain: Hopefully holding steady at 9lbs. My bump is definitely noticeable now. I love it. I mostly wear maternity pants but can still fit into two pairs of work slacks which is nice. All of my normal tops still fit since I tend to like longer things. 
Gender: BABY GIRL!!!!!
Movement: still not consistent. Baby is sitting pretty high. It's hard for me to feel her. But she reminds me she's there almost once a day
Sleep: Have not been sleeping well the past week. So hard to find a comfortable position.
What I miss: I've done my best not to post this here. But, when you have a cerclage you are put on strict "pelvic rest". I'm just going to leave it at that. 
Cravings: no real cravings
Symptoms: My center of gravity is definitely off. I also feel heavier in general. I've seen stars a few times when standing up too quickly and confirmed that it's common for that to happen around this time as your blood pressure tends to dip. 
Best moment of the weekDeciding on a name with B. I had thrown around a few different names. He'd mostly shot them down, but not 100%. There was one full name that I'd never considered that I threw out there. The next afternoon he called me and left me the sweetest voice mail saying he'd thought about it and loved the name. I saved it. His voice was just so precious as he said it. 
Worst moment of the week: I previously posted about my less than enjoyable Dr.'s appointment. 
I'm so ready for the next 5 weeks to roll on by. 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Did we give up on our baby?

I knew these thoughts would eventually plague me. For the most part, they don't. But every once in a while, I let my mind wander, and wonder whether we did the right thing with Bremy.

Bremy was born at 23 weeks and 5 days gestation.

"Viability" for a baby does not begin until 24 weeks. Being viable isn't saying much, but it's the cut off for when a hospital will intervene to save your child. We delivered at a hospital with a top ranked Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. They had saved 23 weekers before. The 5 days I'd been on hospital bed rest were full of "friendly" visitors trying to educate me on what it meant to deliver at such an early stage. I was in full on denial and never imagined my daughter would come so soon.

When we learned that she would indeed be coming on that August morning, I didn't know what to think. I was told by my OB that she didn't think there was much we could do, but because we were at this particular hospital they would be willing to try and save her, if that's what we wanted. But she made it clear that saving our baby was not her advice.

The entire time leading up to this morning, I would have said, yes; we want to save her. But on that morning, I felt 100% sure that we shouldn't. In the several hours between cramping, bleeding and being checked, my mind was made up. It was too soon. This was happening now because this little girl was not meant to be alive.

I do feel like I convinced B to agree with me. I'm not sure what conclusion he would have come to on his own. Like I said, my mind was pretty much made up before he arrived that morning. I was extremely concerned that this "decision" would tear apart our marriage. It surely hasn't. It's never been a point of contention between us. This was a team parental decision and I know that we have felt confident, for the most part that it was the right one.

But, then there are nights like tonight where I wonder. Days like today where I pass a highway billboard sign that shows two tiny feet, the same size as Bremy's with a slogan of "if it's your child; this is where you want your baby to be" and the name of a different hospital. B and I HATE this billboard. To us those are Bremy's little 23 week feet. Why wouldn't they choose the feet of a full term baby?

There's also a commercial for our hospital about a baby born months early, who survived and is thriving thanks to the NICU. I stare at that baby, now a toddler and think: what if that was supposed to be Bremy? What if she could have been a miracle baby? Did I give up on my baby?

Then my mind shifts to a coworker of B's. His wife delivered at 27 weeks, very unexpectedly. The baby survived for 5 weeks. Would that have been worse? Would it have been worse to watch her struggle? To see her alive and THEN dead?

I don't know, and I'll never know. And I don't share these thoughts with anyone because I don't want anyone to say, "yeah, maybe you made the wrong decision." There's nothing I can do now. I just hope we didn't give up on her. I hope this was the way it was supposed to go.

I feel more educated about my condition now and what it means to have an incompetent cervix. I know more about cerclages and when and why they work. I think, knowing everything I know now that I would have risked the cerclage back then. But I don't know if I would have changed my decision with intervening with Bremy had she still been born that day.

Luckily, this is not something that is eating me up everyday. Most days I feel at peace with it all. But on nights like tonight my mind wanders. And wonders.

Friday, May 4, 2012


Once we heard our baby was indeed a girl, one of the first things we said to each other was, "How will we pick a name?" Last time, we'd had Bremy in our back pocket, and once we started saying it, it just felt like it fit. Now, we both almost wish we wouldn't have named her that, because we still love it so much. For a split second, we thought about also naming this baby Bremy. But I just can't. Bremy is Bremy and I don't want to dismiss her or replace her. But, any "normal" names now just don't seem to compare. It was a made up name, with both of our names in it. How can Jane or Mary compare to Bremy?

Part of me wonders if I will have a million nicknames for our baby. I hardly ever call our dog by his actual name. He's Coco, Bubby, Bubba, Mommy (yes), Baby doggy, Baby angel doggy, my little angel, Sugar...there are more but I'll stop there.

I do have a list of about 3 names that B has not exactly said "No" to, but he's not in love with them either. One is a front runner, but I'm testing it out because it's not my usual style. I typically go for names that end in a "Y" or "-ie" sound. Or a name that can be shortened to that sound.

One thing we've decided 100% is that we will not be sharing our baby's name prior to her arrival. While most people came around and ended up liking Bremy, there were a few who weren't shy about suggesting other names even after we'd told them our baby would be Bremy Belle. It was annoying, particularly to B, so we've made that decision clear.

I'm so excited to think about it, and come up with our new baby's name!

****ETA: Oh my goodness. Since writing this post we have a name and I'm absolutely in love with it. It's somewhat unique, but definitely classic and a name everyone knows. I'm a little possessive and really hope that she is the only one we know with this name, but it does look like it's climbing the popularity charts-boo! It's ok, I love it and the nickname that comes with! I don't know how I will keep it a secret!*****

Thursday, May 3, 2012

18 Week Appointment

Today I had a check in with my perniatologist. This time, I didn't realize I was scheduled to see the same Dr. who originally told me about my cervical incompetence. She had caught it at my appointment with Bremy. I really did not like her, and of course I did not like her news for me back then.

My heart sunk when I saw her this time. She checked my cervix and told me everything looked great. Cerclage was in place. Cervix was measuring a little over 4cm. She then went on to measure the baby. She measured the head, looked at the brain, etc etc. She kept saying "great" after each measurement. I asked a lot of questions and I could tell she was getting a little annoyed, but was trying her best not to show it. She finally asked me where I was getting all these questions from. I just told her I'd read a lot about complications of all kinds and also knew what she was looking for as far as anatomy. I wasn't questioning what she was doing, just double checking that the heart was doing such and such and the brain looked like such and such. She confirmed that everything checked out.

These measurements took a long time. I was really enjoying watching my daughter on the screen. She is so peaceful and graceful. When she moves, it's very fluid and kind of slow. Much different than last time.

But I felt like she didn't look right. It's hard to judge because each u/s machine is different, and the Dr's all come in at different angles. I didn't want to keep asking questions, but I did anyway. I asked her if something was wrong with my uterus? It looked like a funny shape and looked like there was not enough room for the baby.

She said she would check for any malformations. She asked twice if anyone had ever told me something was wrong with my uterus. No, I replied. Never. She agreed with me, however that the baby was really scrunched up and was not utilizing the entire uterus and she wasn't sure why.

She then said that she was very glad I'd had my amnio to rule out any issues, because otherwise she'd be very concerned that baby's limbs were measuring too short.

"I never had an amnio" I replied.

She began flipping through my chart.

"I never had that done. Ever!"

She said, "well I thought you did since you know the sex of the baby?"

I said, "No. What do you mean the limbs are too short?"

"Well how tall are you?"


"And your husband?"


"Hmmm. Yeah, those limbs are measuring short."

My mind was racing. I tried to make sense of it. I have short legs but really long arms.

"Are both arms and legs short?"


She then took some facial measurements. I knew what she was looking for and my heart just pounded so hard I could hear it.

She was happy with the facial anatomy.

Just then, the baby stretched out and everything looked more normal to me

"Oh, there we go" she said, "baby finally stretched out and took up the whole uterus. Since you just went to the bathroom, it's called a ???? [can't remember] contraction and it's normal"

"uhhhh, ok?"

"See how everything looks more normal now that she's not scrunched up?"

"YES!" everything looked ok to me now. After a million ultrasounds I feel like I kind of know what to look for.

"Ok, let me remeasure these limbs. Oh, look your baby grew by a week" insert annoying nervous honk like laugh.

"So she's normal? Limbs are normal"

"Oh yeah, everything is prefect"

"Thanks for the ten minute heart attack you freaking idiot!"--------ok so this was an internal thought :)

She took several other measurements and everything else checked out "perfectly". Baby was actually measuring about 2 days ahead, which she said is right on track for a baby coming from two taller parents.

I took a huge breath and got dressed. This woman drives me insane, but I was so glad the final result was a good one. Now I wait two weeks to go back. It's going to be a long two weeks. As I get closer to the week/day that we lost Bremy, I get more anxious. I cannot wait to get past that day and get beyond 24 weeks. I will do my best to NOT see this Dr. again!