Being Open

Being Open

I was listening to a podcast the other day about Pregnancy and Postpartum and something really stuck out to me. Daniela Kende, who is a holistic health coach and natural birthing expert, was talking about how she was completely open about her pregnancy early on. She said “I’m being open because if for some reason I lost the baby, I need support from people around me”. That really stuck with my wife and I. We’ve been so quiet about the possibilities since we lost Samuel because we didn’t want to hurt anymore than necessary. It makes sense; no one knows so it can’t hurt right? Until someone asks that dreaded question of “When are you two gonna have kids?”. I really hate that question, to be honest. It’s one thing to have a conversation about children and the possibility to have them and what the plans are but to just come out and say “when is it happening?” or “Isn’t it time you guys had kids?”. It’s just rude to ask like that. There are other ways you can bring up the topic without ignorance.

So our plan was to stay quiet until we hit 12 weeks, like most parents after a loss. After that podcast, it just left me thinking. I know a lot of people have come to know about our loss and have felt sympathy towards the situation. Forever grateful for you all who have stuck by our side and did all the wonderful gift drop offs and pre-made dinners and flowers, etc. The love was unreal. Let us pay it back by telling you all about the journey we are on! We have made the decision to be incredibly open about our journey from here on out!

Round 3…

Let me back up. It’s January 17, 2019 and we started the process for our little number 2 on January 15th. I went to Parints and had a vaginal ultrasound on day 3 of my cycle (it’s never my favorite day…), just to see if my body is having a good cycle to try again. To my surprise, my ovaries had 35 visible follicles on each side!!! That’s like quadruple the amount from last time! I’ve completed 1 of 2 blood work appointments this week and started taking my clomid and let me tell you…I HATE clomid! Its like hormonal torture and it feels like the 2nd longest week ever!!! I’m laying in bed and my ankles are on fire! Yes, I worked today BUT it’s not my entire foot…it’s the ankles. In reflexology, the ankles are connected to your sexual organs. When you’re about to start your cycle, about to give birth or like me, taking fertility medicine, your ankles swell up more! (Look at them next time Aunt Flo comes to visit! You’ll see what I mean!). January 24th, we had the IUI done. Jen, our IUI nurse, tells me to start taking progesterone 3 days later. I start taking those and I feel…nothing. Hormones are crazy as usual, it’s just something I’ve come to understand and deal with. But that feeling of “Omg I’m definitely pregnant” isn’t there. And there’s a reason; I wasn’t pregnant. Started my cycle and my heart broke a bit. But nevertheless, I pushed forward. We went in the following month and my left ovary wasn’t producing big enough follicles. And since I do not have a right tube, it’s a gamble because then we would have to hope that the left tube could swing over to the right ovary and collect the eggs. Too risky when you’re paying over $1,100 every time. So we had to push it back to March. My heart was so heavy. I just want to be a mom to a living child. Is that too much to ask??

Round 3 started March 13th with clomid…and of course I’m trying to remain perfectly calm, cool and collected. This round was a little difficult for me. I felt very stressed out and very spacey. I actually forgot like 3 days and have no memory of them. I have yet to find out if it’s related to clomid being administered so much.

March 23rd, we went in for an ultrasound and that pesky left side is FINALLY getting large enough follicles! We were told that Monday March 25th was our IUI day! Danielle gave me the trigger shot that night. It’s cold, thick and burns every time I get it done. The one thing this whole process has opened my eyes to is that fertility treatments are anything but fun! We go in that Monday morning and this IUI procedure was very similar to the first round when we got pregnant with Samuel. It wasn’t easy and it was actually painful and uncomfortable. Did I go home afterwards? No…we went and bought a new car instead! We figured well we’ve been relaxed every time…let’s try something different. Let’s just go about our day like nothing big has happened!

2 Week Wait.

April 8th is our test date. I’m a little nervous but that’s to be expected. Lots of “what if’s” floating around the brain. Trying to limit the amount of stress is a lot harder than necessary right now, which is why I tend to become a hermit and recluse inside the safety of my own home and lock the doors. We are down to 1 week left until we know for sure if I’m pregnant. I’m not going to say if I feel like it or not because I can never tell. It’s either a baby implanting or a fart! Won’t be 100% sure until that test pops a “Positive”. And if it doesn’t, I’m not gonna lie or sugar coat it, I’m gonna be really friggin upset. It’s a very tiring job, physically, hormonally and emotionally. I know the moms out there who have been down this road understand what I mean. My favorite quote to describe this feeling comes from Bilbo Baggins in Lord Of The Rings. He’s explaining how he feels since he received the Ring and he said “I feel thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread”. I feel like my brain is stretched so thin.

Just keep us in your thoughts, vibes, prayers and crystal circles while we continue this journey. I will be posting another blog next week to inform you guys of what that test says! Fingers crossed for a “Positive”! Thanks for letting me be open!

🖤

Our Story

Our Story

Hey there, friends!

So I had a request to cover a topic by a lovely friend and client of mine. She wanted to know the story about how Danielle and I got together! It’s a very brief synopsis of how we met and when we got together. This is my favorite story and this will fill you guys in on who we are and where we started.

This is our happily, ever after!

I met Danielle back in August 2012. My memory is phenomenal by the way…hers not so much. She will reintroduce herself to you at 2 other parties because she doesn’t remember meeting! Nothing personal! We both worked for this call center in Arnold and I was ending my computer training and going to phone training when this super cute woman walks in with her spiky hair, polo and khakis. “Uh….heeelllllooooo!” Seriously, so cute. Brown hair and hazel eyes? She has my attention! At this point in my personal life, I wasn’t an out lesbian. I was still trying to understand my sexuality more…and I guess that meant date men until I’m 24! Being only 21 at that time, I hadn’t quite figured myself out. She introduces herself “Hello my name is Danielle Layman. But you can call me Dee! I’m going to be your transition team leader for the next 30 days!” Ok she’s cute, she’s fun, friendly…and now my boss.

Great. And then she gets a little more personal. “I’ve been with the company for 4 years and I’m engaged to the most beautiful girl in the world!” Welp. I quit.

Well it’s a good thing she’s not available because I cannot with my manager. That’s a hard pass. I ended up dating a guy that also worked with us…and he reported to Danielle…I was 21 and she was engaged. It didn’t matter…at the time.

Fast forward 3 years, the guy and I split and I got together with my first girlfriend. That shocked a lot of people. I grew up going to church and unfortunately some of my “friends” didn’t approve. I lost a lot of their friendships and to this day miss them! So the first relationship with a woman was extremely toxic. She was an addict and I was an idiot in love. It didn’t work out and right after we break up, I get a Facebook message from Danielle. “Hey I need a haircut! Can you help me? You do really good work!” I mean I’m down! I worked in the city at the time and that was too far for her. So we agreed, I would swing by on my way home and do a haircut at her house.

And now I’m panicking. I’ve had a crush on this woman for years and now I’m just going to waltz in her house and cut her hair? Am I HIGH?? The whole drive from St. Louis to Imperial was the longest 25 minutes of my life. Knuckles, gripping the stirring wheel, are so pale. I have sweat trickling down my back. “Can I back out?” I think to myself…

I’m at her house, cutting hair…”hey girl where’s the wifey at?” “Oh yeah about that…she left”

Say what now? What does that mean?? Where is she? Apparently she didn’t wanna be with Danielle anymore so she left. Uh…oh boy. Now I’m nervous because I’m in Danielle Layman’s house, cutting her hair and her wife has left? School girl crush nevvvvvvver went away. And that’s dangerous. WHAT???? So we made plans to have a beer and just talk about how “wretched women can be”. 2 days later, we met up for that beer. She told me about her break up, I talked about mine. The energy between us that evening was so thick. We were so drawn to each other and it felt so natural.

Birthday Dinners and First Kisses

My 25th birthday was 2 weeks later and she wanted to take me out for dinner. I haven’t been on a proper date in months and was pretty excited she wanted to take ME out on a for real date!

We went to my favorite Thai restaurant and got this little table near the kitchen and the wine rack. It was a little busy and super loud until she looked up at me. There’s that silence again. She was hesitant but she reached her hands across the table and touched mine. Butterflies. The dinner went to quickly and it was time to go home. Before I left, she asked to see me again later that next week for karaoke. I don’t sing but I wanted to be with her. So I said yes.

The next week I meet her sister at karaoke and she said “Holy f*ck is this the girl you told me about a few years ago?!”

I. Can. NOT! She told me she’s always thought I was beautiful but she was loyal to her wife. I mean, I’ll give her that. She’s honest but wouldn’t do anything to harm her relationship. Admirable really. But in my head I’m thinking “WHAT?! What what WHAT?!” I am so shocked but I managed to hide my excitement behind the beer bottle.

Imagine this little hole in the wall bar, some bad karaoke playing in the background and LOTS of confederate flags everywhere behind the smoke. I am watching this beautiful woman sing, dance and have a great time and I’m starting to wonder…”What the hell am I doing here?”. I don’t know what to do or think right now. I really, really like her but what do I have to offer her? I still live at home with my step-father!

Not cute! During my crazy brain train crash, I get a text message and it’s from Danielle. “Hey I went to the bathroom. Where are you?” I know what she’s thinking. So…am I staying or going?

I get up…and walk toward the bathroom door. I knock on the door and she opens it and pulls me in. Door shuts and next thing I know she’s right in front of my face. Holy. Sh*t. She leans in and kisses me and literally the entire world stopped spinning. Silence. Just her and I. The amount of butterflies in my stomach were so intense, I forgot to breathe. I got lost in her eyes (have I mentioned how they look like sunflowers in a summer storm? Breath taking!) and just smiled. I have found my peace and it’s Danielle.

Halloween

We went through some crazy times during this dating game. She was still messed up over her ex, as expected. And my ex wouldn’t leave me alone and attempted to start fights whenever she could. I was so mentally wrecked and emotional distraught over everything that my ex put me through, I surely thought Danielle wouldn’t want me. “I’m too broken” I told myself. “I’m the introverted, awkward homeschooled kid…” Why would Danielle even give me a moment in her world? But she really amazed me. She stuck around. She told me about how her heart was hurt and broken over her ex wife. She was always honest and kept things slow.

On October 29, she told me she didn’t want to hang out. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned. Because she was hanging out with MY friends and didn’t want me to be there! Rude…so I went home and I was pretty salty. I wanted to see her and wanted to know what she was doing!!

Next day, she told me to come over after work. She had a surprise for me before a Halloween Party we were attending. I got to her house later that night, due to doing a Trunk or Treat at a private school for our company. I opened the front door…

The entrance way is dark except for these carved pumpkins with candles in them! There was this song playing by Leela James SOMEWHERE in the dark, and there’s a note. The note was her own personal feelings about me and for me being poured out and asking me to be her girlfriend! At the bottom of the note, she had “Check Yes or No” for my answer. I checked “yes” and walked upstairs and handed her the note. Not even looking at my answer, she threw the note aside and kissed me. Cue the fireworks!

Layman’s Terms

There’s the beginning of our lives. Little did we know that 2 years later (just shy 2 days!) that we would get married and start this crazy journey called our lives! I will be doing a wedding blog soon and help you brides who are trying to do a wedding on a budget! I hope you enjoyed this weeks blog!

Sperm Shopping 🛒

Sperm Shopping 🛒

Sperm Shopping

Yes…you read that correctly. Sperm shopping. Did you know there are websites out there where you can look at a PDF of a man biological makeup without ever seeing a picture of him? Build a baby basically! Let me back up; when you are seeing an infertility specialist, you have to pick out sperm UNLESS you have a husband and then they can just use his. In our case, we have to pick someone because…well…obviously! So I’m at work and get a text message that says “We should go sperm shopping tonight!” Will we pick the gentleman who looks like Will Smith/Derrick Rose or the one who looks like Rick Fox?! Both have plenty of characteristics that we both love! Athletics are the most important for Danielle and for myself…if they are smart, that’s all that matters to me! Our children will have plenty of my attributes added and I’m just saying…our household will never be a boring place…and our children will be divas.

I’m gonna go through and explain the process of IUI and how it benefits infertility and same sex couples.

Consultation and Conception

So we use a company called Parints. They are based in St. Louis and are the most amazing women we have ever met! We love them like family! So typically you go in and have a consultation about your health history, why you wanna have a family, etc. Then they tell you the prices and how the process works. Typically you have to have blood work done, wait until the first day of your period and order that sperm you’ve been shopping for! Then you get ultrasounds and more blood work. I hate getting blood drawn and after the amount I needed, I felt like I was seeing a vampire! Once your ovulation date is determined, you get a shot to help with conception, 48 hours before your insemination date. Lots of waiting and anxiety during this time. On THE day, you go in. No turning back once you walk into the room. Kind of a weird feeling for first timers. I know I felt very excited and also extremely scared! This moment is going to change my life! The room is super comfortable. Kinda like a cozy, little bedroom but there’s an ultrasound machine right next to the bed.

Now the next part kinda sucks. It’s very uncomfortable. Think about going to your OBGYN and they use that tool that helps open up your vagina to examine you. Well she uses that and takes this very long syringe up through your cervix towards your ovaries! It was like a small scratching sensation on the inside. It wasn’t my favorite part at all. She then pushes all of the semen through the syringe and boom your done. Time to wait upside down for 20 minutes.

Normally, when you’re having heterosexual sex, semen has to travel through your cervix and try to get to your ovaries before they start to die off. That’s a long journey. IUI cuts about 80% of that journey off by going straight to the ovary! Speedy delivery if you will. The whole process takes 3 minutes. It’s super quick and then, like I said before, you have to wait 20 mins upside down. Gravity isn’t always our friend so it’s best to work with it in a way!

TWW

The TWW is “Two Week Wait”. You have to wait a full 14 days from the insemination date to see if your pregnant. It was the longest wait in my LIFE!!!! Did we wait the full 2 weeks? No…and that’s when we found out why you have to wait. It’ll say “negative” regardless of if you are or not. You have to wait for your HCG levels (human chorionic gonadotrophin levels…pregnancy hormones) to peak above a 6. And normally they won’t show up until week 2. Try to ease your mind during that time. Find a show on Netflix that has your 100% attention, learn to mediate, go for a walk (walking and exercise is good for you during this time), keep as calm and collected as possible. I know when I’m about to start again (I will not be informing when…that’s a secret 🤫) I will be binge watching Downton Abbey on Amazon Prime for the hundredth time, read more books and meditating….my usual hygge practice.

The Unthinkable

Now, the only thing that you do need to keep an eye out for is bleeding. If your period comes before you’re able to test…It hurts and it’s not what you wanted, mama. But you need to lean on your support system during this time so you can heal! I have a wonderful client and now friend who went through 3 different attempts to get pregnant! She shared her story with me for you guys!

The first time I was scheduled for insemination I was nervous because I really didn’t expect it to work but I was still hopeful that it would 🙂 When I found out that it didn’t, it wasn’t terrible but it was still a little crushing. After the second time didn’t work, I started questioning if it was ever going to. I know that some women try for years and I was wondering if that was going to be my journey. The company started talking to me about testing options if the third time didn’t work. There would be certain tests that they would want to do just to make sure that we weren’t doing these procedures for no reason if I wasn’t able to get pregnant. This made me quite nervous but still super hopeful going into the third round. When I found out that the third round took I was just amazed and felt so blessed. Then this brought on a whole new set of nerves.

Melissa is currently pregnant with TWINS!!!!! Her little princesses are such a blessing to her and they have no idea the amount of love they will receive from her!!!

Bleeding is typically a normal thing for pregnancy. It means that your little has attached to you! Which is a great feeling…but it’s also nerve wrecking because it could mean anything else…miscarriage, ectopic, etc. The last story I’m going to share with you is a tragic and beautiful story of hope. My friend Brittany has had her share of troubles. This is her story:

The story of our loss-

After trying to convince for just over 3 years, my husband and I were thrilled to find out we were pregnant on September 22, 2017. The excitement and joy were overwhelming. We were lucky enough to know at 12 weeks that we would be having a boy. Everything seemed to be going great. We were all set to go to our 20 week anatomy scan on December 21, 2017. My husband and I waited patiently for the ultrasound technician to tell us how our little peanut was doing.

When she stepped out of the room ‘to speak with the doctor’ my heart filled with worry.

When the doctor and technician returned, the doctor told us that no heartbeat could be found. We had lost our son.

We were told to take our time, go home to pack a bag, and return to labor and delivery.

We returned that evening to deliver our sleeping angel. I was induced from 7pm December 21st- December 23rd at 3pm.

Our son was born on December 23rd, 2017 at 5:27 pm. My husband’s birthday is 5/27. For a moment my heart smiled. We spent the next 15 hours with our baby. It was the most difficult thing either of us have ever experienced in life.

6 months later, I became pregnant again.

I am now 10 weeks away from meeting our daughter. I am filled with joy, excitement, fear, and every other emotion know to mankind.

I share this story hoping that other angel moms and dads continue to have hope.

If you keep your spirits high, like the sun in the sky on a rainy day, there is a rainbow after every storm.

Pass the tissues please. Mamas, do not give up hope!!! Keep as calm as possible, pray, meditate, do whatever you have to do! If you are having trouble getting pregnant, you are not alone. If you’ve lost 1, 2, 5 or 7 babies, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Keep calm also and surround yourself with a support system! Join Facebook groups, follow instagram pages, look into support group meetings in your local city! Yes, we are living in a world where pregnancy is held up on this pedestal where nothing bad happens…but that’s not the case. We have sisters out there and we are not alone!

So sorry it’s taken so long to post this one!!! Please make sure you sign up for emails so you get the blogs directly to your inbox! Also, follow me on Instagram! Love you mamas! 💋

2019

2019

Happy New Years, friends!

We finally made it through 2018! Talk about a ridiculous year! I feel like this year has taught us all so many things; good and bad. I’m gonna keep this a brief as possible so you can continue with your activities! I want to know what 2018 has taught you, what you survived, and how you’re going to make 2019 an even better year! So comment below or write me an email and tell me about your year! I’ll list a few things 2018 has taught me and then I’ll list what I hope to achieve in 2019!

What did this year teach me?

Well for starters, it was eye opening on many aspects. I had my first year as a married woman and that alone taught me patience and kindness. I had those things before, but marriage is hard especially after going through trauma. I was introduced to falling in love with my child. Even though he was taken from me, he has taught me things I never knew about myself. I have learned to take care of myself, physically, mentally and spiritually. I have begun to learn to let things I cannot control go. I have also learned to look for the joy in life during sadness and anger.

2019

I hope this year I learn and grow more. Even if that growing means I find out a way to keep my aloe plants from constantly dying! (I’ve seriously killed 3 aloe plants and cannot figure out why!) I have a few things I want to establish this year and I would like to share them with you:

Starting a family!

Yes, we will be trying again this new year! With lots of good vibes, prayers, vibrations and whatever else you can give to someone, we will try this process again. Now I will not be disclosing WHEN but I will be posting a blog at some point about the actual process of IUI! It’s actually pretty cool how they do it!

Certified Yoga Instructor

I would love to find time, before or after baby, to get my YTT 200. Yoga has helped me through a lot this year and I want to be able to help others through yoga. Plus, as a hair stylist, it helps me physically throughout the long days!

Read more books.

Less Facebook, more real books! I’m tired of constantly scrolling through the same new feeds, and politics and some of the most annoying ads on the planet. This year, I hope to get lost in the pages of books. I use to read a lot as a child and it gave me the ability to escape but also helped my imagination. (Harry Potter will forever be my go to when I’m sad and need to escape for a bit. The Wizarding World is just incredible!)

That’s it. Simple list. But all attainable. I hope you all have a phenomenal night and great new year! Please be safe out there if you are going to parties. It’s going to be rainy and cold all day here in St. Louis, MO. Be sure to sign up for emails so when I post a new blog, it goes directly to your inbox and SHARE with your friends!!! I’ll be doing some updating on this website until the middle of January so I will not be back writing until then. But in the mean time, read, write to me if you need help with anything and share with your friends going through hard times.

Happy New Year!

XOXO

Holidays and Hard Days

Holidays and Hard Days

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays…

Hello my friends! I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas and that your heart is full, warm and and happy! I’m struggling this holiday BIG TIME! With the due date quickly approaching, all I can think about is “Well I could’ve had my water break now…or even last week…”. It’s this torturous cycle of sadness, anger, anxiety and then optimism. What in the actual hell? Can I just have 2 emotions; happy or sad? Everything else is really unnecessary

I have recently discovered that my body is acting SUPER weird. I get random belly aches and sharp pains, hip pains and joint pains. I lost my right fallopian tube in surgery and I get super intense pains just on that side. I read somewhere that your body can still react as if you’re having a baby. Kinda like a phantom pain? Super weird considering I’ve never given birth to a child before and I have no idea what it feel likes…so why is my body acting this way? A week from the due date? Clearly my body is confused and that makes my emotions go even crazier. So many unanswered questions flying around in my head. And I manage to keep a smile on my face in public…so many of us are so confused and just exhausted from trying to function in society. And the honest truth is…holidays are the worst. I’m learning to be gentle with myself during this time frame. One thing that has surprisingly helped was a prayer I said to our son. I wrote it out one day and kept it on my phone just so I could read it when I needed to. I want to share with you a little piece of my feelings so I’m posting my prayer right down there ⬇️. I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and if you know someone going through a loss of any kind, check in on them. Today might not be a joyous for them.

Much love 🖤

Dear Samuel,

Merry Christmas my little angel!

December 31, 2018 you were to be born into this world. You would’ve been born into love, a family, a home. But unfortunately, we only had you for a few weeks. You had a heartbeat, I could feel you, I fell in love with you instantly. You gave me a whole new reason to live and a drive to be a better person. The hurt and pain I felt when I woke up and you were gone, I couldn’t stop thinking I hurt you. I abandoned you. I couldn’t protect you. I tried to give you life, and I failed you.

Your mother and I love you more than you will ever know. Even while we are grieving, we feel your presence with us. We see you in the clouds, we feel you in the wind, we hear you in a song. We long for you to be with us especially during this time. So close to the day you were suppose to be born.

We know you are in heaven with Jesus, some of our friends, your 4 legged brother and both of your great grandpas and great grandma. We hope you love them as much as they love you. Keep watch over us little one. We will see you one day!

Love always,

Your mommies xoxo

Holiday Parties

Holiday Parties

Hey friends!

I hope you are all having a stress free week! I know you’re probably doing some Christmas shopping but I hope you found a way to de-stress!

I’m not a big party animal at all. I prefer to sit at home, chill out under a big fleece blanket and just watch tv or read a book. My wife loves parties! She loves to play and sing and have a good time! I truly love that about her! I tease and call her the fun one out of us, because I’m such a homebody. I have zero shame with my grandma lifestyle. There is always 1 party that I do love throwing and that’s Friendsgiving! Having some friends over, eating some good food (non traditional thanksgiving food!) and just enjoying each other’s company? My favorite night! And if you’re lucky, I may divulge into a bottle (or 2!) of wine! Doesn’t happen often, so don’t get too excited! Something about being surrounded by loved ones makes you feel safe, warm. And sometimes when you’re dealing with loss, you feel cold and alone.

2018 was suppose to be the year we were going to be having Friendsgiving while I was 8 months pregnant. I’m very saddened and a little troubled by having that holiday go by and I was not 8 months pregnant…Now we are 2 weeks from Christmas and 3 weeks from our due date. My anxiety is way high! I cannot stop cleaning, I cannot stop re-organizing, I cannot sit still! I wish I could say “I meditated, I did 30 minutes of yoga, I practiced hygge! I am happy and nothing bothers me!” But that’s a complete lie. Yes, those things bring me joy, and teaches me how to deal with my problems in a more peaceful setting. But it doesn’t take away the pain and the anguish. Nothing can really take that away. And i haven’t come to terms with the forever part of this pain.

Maybe once we pass December 31st and we start the new year, I’ll be in a better spot. Maybe not. I’ve never actually passed a due date before of an angel baby. Will I be fine? Will I be a mess? Will I be mean? It’s moments like these I wish God would just say “hey, chill. You’re gonna go through that day just fine!”

Calming the storm

While I was scrolling through Pinterest this week, I came across a quote and it really spoke to me; “Stop trying to calm the storm. Calm yourself, the storm will pass”. Losing Samuel is my storm and is out of my control. Not losing myself is something I can control. And I never thought about it that way. It’s kinda like when there is a tornado warning outside and the wind and rain is going insane but you know how to protect your family and yourself by going into the basement or the cellar or wherever your safe place is.

Now, I’m just gonna be real, that sh*t is hard to remember! I can’t scroll through Facebook or Instagram and not get super sad or mad by seeing a happy pregnancy post. It’s nothing personal. It’s more of a jealousy thing and I’m learning that it’s ok to have that emotion. It’s not ok to act on that emotion and create chaos. I am guilty of being in the middle of chaos and I am guilty of creating chaos to a certain degree, as a distraction. It’s just not healthy. All that does, is create more hurt and more pain than necessary.

Mamas, I just want you all to know that the storm is big and the storm is scary and sometimes it feels like it’s too much. Do not let that storm take you. Find yourself and heal yourself. Take a break. Do something that makes you smile. Surround yourself with your support system and just let go. My wife’s work is throwing a Christmas party this weekend and I’m getting all dressed up to go and just have fun. Drinking a little wine (not too much just in case I get sad…) and meet new people. It might make me exhausted, being extroverted, it might overwhelm me. But, I can look back and say, I did it. I got out in this storm and I survived. You can survive too mama. This Christmas season is just a storm. Calm yourself so you can brave your storm. 🖤

Healing Through The Holidays

Healing Through The Holidays

Happy Holidays?

Hello friends! Thank you so much for the amount of love, support and kind words on my first blog! I really appreciate it!

This week has been a super strange week. Not only was it 60° on December 1st, but I realized that we are closing in on our would be due date. According to how far along we were and the Baby Center app, our due date was December 31, 2018. I am so overwhelmed with emotions. I’m excited because my wife and I picked out an absolutely beautiful Christmas tree, we decorated the tree and my OCD was literally THRILLED with the ornament placement and we had Christmas music blaring from our radio. And yet, while enjoying a perfect Christmas moment, I feel a heavy weight of sadness. Going through the motions is hard when you have this 2 ton weight attached to your ankle by ball and chain. My brain keeps flashing through what feels like memories; baby shower, those cute family photo shoots, even just the thought of waddling everywhere I walk! All of these things that I planned, a mere flicker. No more than a fantastic and painful day dream. Normally, the holidays are suppose to be full of joy and laughs and happy memories, but this year feels so empty and unhappy. I’m not having a pity party for myself, nor am I asking for pity or sympathy. We ALL have lost someone or experienced some form of infertility or pregnancy loss. The holidays just plain SUCK after a trauma happens. How can we make the holidays suck a little less, you might be asking? I don’t have all of the answers but I know what I can do for myself and I would like to share them with you!

Hygge

Hygge (pronounced hue-guh not hoo-gah) is a Danish word used when acknowledging a feeling or moment, whether alone or with friends, at home or out, ordinary or extraordinary as cozy, charming or special. I have recently been introduced to this cozy world via Pinterest. (Psst…Pinterest is my severe passion. How do you practice hygge in today’s busy world?

1) Setting aside time for alone time. Turn the phone off, read a book, binge watch Netflix, or go to the art museum! Having alone time is so important to reset yourself. I think my favorite alone time memory is when I went to Forest Park in St. Louis and walked Art Hill with earbuds in. I believe it was the John Mayer Radio on Pandora! Anyway, I just walked around and listened to music. Took some photos on my iPhone (So original, I KNOW!) and then walked around the art museum. I lost track of time and just got lost in such a stress-free day! I felt so happy after that day!

2) I love to burn white sage and incense! Incense just calms my mind and puts me in a place of comfort and peace. My personal favorite scent is Devine Temple which you can purchase from Earthbound.

3) Harry Potter is probably one of my favorite ways to escape. It’s a completely alternate world and when I feel like I’m overwhelmed in this world, I can escape to the wizarding world.

4) Meditation/Yoga. Both are relatively new to me. Yoga seems to help release a lot of tension that I hold on to and help me learn to just let go in general. Meditation helps me breathe through the tough stuff and not have a panic attack. Learning to breathe when you’re emotionally unstable is hard but if you practice daily, you’ll be just fine!

5) Music . I listen to every type of music out there (except country…I can’t do too much of it!) This is a playlist I made for the moments I want to feel close to Samuel or just want to have a melt down to feel something . Please feel free to listen!

3 Things To Remember

I leave you guys today with 3 things to remember if you are going through a rough holiday season, especially those mamas and daddy’s out there missing their babies!

1) It’s not just about the loss of a baby, it’s the loss of a possibility of what could have been.

2) Be gentle with yourself. You’re doing the best you can!

3) There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.

Understand that it’s ok to not be ok. But please don’t bottle it up! It’s better to talk about it and get it out than let it explode. I am here as a listening ear if you need it! Please reach out and just talk!

I hope you guys enjoyed reading and I hope this helps whoever is hurting!

Mommy’s Guardian Angel

Mommy’s Guardian Angel

Hello there, friends!

Hello! I’m gonna start off by introducing myself! My name is Hannah Layman. I currently reside in Imperial, MO with my wife, Danielle, and our puppy, Luna. My wife and I have been together for a total of 3 years and we recently got married on October 28, 2017. See photo below. Que the “awwws” I know I know…we are CUTE!!!! And that whole day was AMAZING! Don’t worry, I’ll have a whole blog about my wedding day for those of you who are getting married!

She is one amazing woman and I am so blessed to be able to call her my best friend, my wife and the mother of our children.

Ok, so the reason I wanted to start this blog is to help women like me get through life. Personal struggles, painful stories and some romantic bliss…I’ll be covering it all. So if you want me to write an essay about any topic, please email me! I’ll leave all of my social media contact at the bottom of the blog!

Let’s rock and roll!

So I’m gonna start off with an extremely raw, personal story. I want you, the reader, to feel included and if you’ve ever been through something like this, I want to help you! So be prepared, this is a lengthy one and it’s a sad one. Here we go;

Back in April 2018, my wife and I went to PARINTS for a scheduled procedure called IUI. Now IUI is where they take sperm and insert it in through the cervix and towards the ovary in hopes of getting pregnant. Well fast forward, the pregnancy test is POSITIVE!!! Happy dance!!! We were over the moon, already planning what the holidays would be like, how our lives were gonna change…EVERYTHING!!! Excited and nervous and happy…all of the emotions! And yes we told practically everyone…got a little too excited! One thing about Danielle and I is we get way excited and we talk a lot…and we talk LOUD!!!! You have been warned in advance now! So we went through the process, call the doctor, set up the appointment, yada yada blah blah blah. Ok great ultrasound is set for 8 weeks. Perfect. I can get use to being pregnant and try to find my niche. Well at the appointment life turned upside down. We had an ectopic pregnancy. Our baby attached to my right Fallopian tube instead of the uterus. The chances of the baby and I surviving this is 0%. We had to have our child removed. Of course we are devastated! No one wants that. So the next day I had to go to Mercy Hospital for a shot that will “dissolve” the pregnancy. Well after waiting for 2 hours watching all of these happy pregnant families walking around, it was my turn. Walked part a room where you could hear the heart beats of all of those little unborn children. My heart cracked. They did a second ultrasound on me just to be sure. Turns out, I need surgery and not a shot. The baby was too big to be dissolved. So after my immediate melt down and panic attack, I’m wheeled away to start the pre-op stuff. Get into surgery about 2 hours later and woke up…not pregnant. The weirdest feeling. I have felt numb and empty before but not like this at all. This was different and cold. My wife, bless her heart, told me that my right Fallopian tube burst and I was bleeding out before they cut me open and I almost died. So I ended up losing my Fallopian tube and my baby. Talk about a crazy Friday! I didn’t know how to process or handle anything and I think I just spaced out for a full week.

Now…the aftermath hasn’t been easy at all. Going through post-partum depression without a child is hard. You have nothing to hold or look at that makes it worth it. Therapy, support groups, antidepressants, yoga, distractions at work…nothing helps. My wife, god LOVE HER, has been my biggest support through all of this. We both agreed that we needed to give this baby a name and we agreed with Samuel. In the Bible, Hannah has a son named Samuel and she gave him back to God as a promise. I just feel some kind of connection with that story. It’s appropriate.

What can you do?

Honestly? Just be there. I have a great support system of friends and family around me during the rough times. You don’t have to say a word. Words don’t always bring comfort for the person you’re consoling. Sometimes just coffee in silence is enough. The mama that goes through this, needs healing and of course the healing process is a long and slow one. It’s not something you can get over in a day or a week or a month or a year. It sticks with you. So if you are wanting to help, just be there for her. Ask her what she needs, make her a playlist to listen to. I’ll add my go to playlist at the bottom of the blog. Remember, it’s important to be there for your friend going through something like this but it needs to be on her terms. And don’t ever tell her to get over it or move on. That’s insensitive. She’s still a mama and that was her child. She loves that child with her whole heart!

Well that’s it on my very first blog! A little raw, a little sad and a little personal but I feel like there are other mamas who need to hear this and know you’re not alone! We are a tribe of women and we all have love for you and your angel baby!

Please email me if you have any questions or if you personally need help or someone to talk to, I am here!

Hairbyhannahlayman@gmail.com

Please follow me on social media!!!

instagram.com/themoshingmama

https://open.spotify.com/user/hannah.elizabeth1841/playlist/6nS1tUYsHoeQjMB7TCgaIo?si=obLIx6ohSA6lkb2GUPXGiQ