Thursday, April 10, 2008

I'm Moving On...

But I'm taking you with me!

This "blogger" thing has been wonderful but I think I'm ready for something a little more functional.

Come visit me at http://piecesofgray.wordpress.com and be sure to tag it because I'll be shutting this one down very soon.

xo.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Hi, my name is Keri...

...and my tour ends here.

If any of you have any idea of what that means, you might be a tinsy more pathetic than I am. And now, of course, you won't admit it because... hell - I wouldn't either if I were you. But we're all friends here, right? You won't judge me like you did when I admitted to watching Tori & D*an - Inn L*ove. Right? Oh God, here it goes.

So a while ago I was moseying around the cable channels and I came across this train wreck. I should preface by saying that I am an OUT fan of reality television. A "fan" in a "thank God that's not me" kind of way. I watch the Bachelor. I can't help it. I love fairy tales. I've watched Survivor once or twice but it's just too mean. I've watched Amazing Race but that doesn't really count because it's...Amazing! Everyone should watch that show!

Anyway, so I'm moseying around and I see this show full of really skanky, half dressed women and I stop. (mostly because of the half dressed part) Hey, I was curious! And then it went like this:

Old Rocker Guy: (in his anti-sexiest voice) Chastity, will you stay in this house and continue to Rock My World?

Chastity: (or some other slutty name) I will Bret, I will! (then he places a back stage pass around her neck- double gag!)

Old Rocker Guy: And Destiny, will you come down here please? (she walks to him with boobs that should be held in a much more supportive bra) Destiny, I think you're hot. So hot. But I'm sorry, the tour ends here. (and she exits as if she were just dumped by Amy Ray)

It's awful. It's delicious! It's embarrassing but again, I know you won't judge me this time. I'm addicted. So addicted, in fact, that we're now down to the last two girls. I don't have a favorite because - well, they're both just gross. But I HAVE to keep watching! How can I not follow through? How can I not see who my Bret chooses to be his everlasting love?

In case you don't know who "Bret" is, he's the main guy from a band called Pois*n. I wouldn't have thought I knew their songs but I do. All three of them! & he's kind of this soft, sensitive guy who with softer skin, could make a pretty girl. And he plays a guitar so that puts him 1/2 way there for me - or maybe 1/8. hmm. I need to rethink this.

Do I hear any other fans out there?
If you come clean I promise to tell you the rest of this story...

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Wonderful Dreams

We're wrapping up a great weekend, once again. I'm looking forward to heading upstairs and sleeping soundly. Our new blinds let my beauty sleep soak in until 9:14 this morning. I think that's about to become a habit.

But my dreams...

4 of the last 5 nights have been full of wonderful dreams. I've dreamed of holding Gracie while she slept, hugging her so tightly with her hair blowing against my cheek and then swimming with her and watching her wave her magic wands through water. The water one has happened almost every night. But just feeling her in my arms and seeing her face so closely has made me remember how wonderful it was. And how badly I miss her.

She turned 6 1/2 on Friday. For some reason, I always remember that. I'm guessing the mother of her did as well. I know she's loved. I know she's cared for. But you know how you just feel like no one can do it like you do? Not that I was always perfect. But I know I love her in a way that no one else does/can. It's just something special that I hope to always hold.

We have this cool digital frame thing that, like me, you all got for Christmas. It goes through about 200 pictures and I watch it like a movie. Many, if not most, are pictures of Gray. I just sit and stare at it and I realized that all the years I watch it, she won't grow. She won't age. God knows I will. I'll be gray and wrinkled and she'll stay this beautiful little girl. I have her Easter picture out - still. It's the last professional photo I had taken of her. Again, it will be there every year. Maybe year around. It'll be Easter and Christmas at our house forever. What do people think? I guess I care or I wouldn't ask. After my brother died, no one took his pictures down. He has stayed 13 for twenty years. Is it the same? Or am I crazy and just trying to hold on - or not forget?

I'm tired. My whole house is already asleep. But before I go, we did the "random insem" today. I hate to make it sound so unimportant but it's just a way of making me feel like we're not wasting time. We can't see our new doctor for our next round of IVF until later this month. Why do nothing, right? & maybe, just maybe...one of those little guys swam his hardest and decided to hang around. We'll see. Either way, thanks for hanging around to find out.

Friday, April 4, 2008

TGIF

We have some great plans over the next couple of days. I think we're even getting our bikes and scoots ready for movement! Maybe a little tennis in the morning to amp us up for some competitive games in the evening! Oh yes J, I'm prepared to kick your butt! :)

So I watch the Opr*h show yesterday. Anyone else? I'm not a big fan of O's. I know, not a very popular thing to say but it's true. I know she does amazing things. She changes lives. She gives stuff away. But does she have to tell us every time she does something good? I mean, we know how great she is but, for me, it just takes it away when she reminds me over and over again. Anyway, back to the pregnant man...

So, I watched the show and all I could think of is "why is this so neat?" I mean, it's not miraculous or anything. He still had everything he needs to conceive a child. There's no miracle. He's been off testosterone for 2 years. That facial hair? It's the same facial hair as two years ago. He no longer has to trim or shave or shape it. Anyway, I felt like it was just a great way to sell magazines and gain viewers. Unless, UNLESS you were an average joe/jane. I am not. I'm not above average but I know a thing or two about this blended community we call LGBT. And as I told one of you yesterday, I still have much to learn... But if you are an average joe/jane, you may have never seen such a great example of why none of this should matter. Here's this guy and his wife, dragging their two grown children to the O show. They bring in their doctor, a few neighbors just for added validation. They talk about their love for each other and what defines them as a family. - And that having another child/sibling is just a bonus to the love/family they have. None of them spoke of anything unique - just that they had the option and they went with it. It was beautiful. & hopefully they caught the eye of some below average people and maybe changed some minds/hearts. God knows that's never a bad thing.

Moving on...

Do you want to know my favorite thing about this weekend? Other than having Yegs home, having game night and doing a random insem... I get to Sleep In!!

My amazing, talented, terribly beautiful partner hung blinds in our bedroom yesterday. Before yesterday we had these flimsy gold draperies that, I swear, inhaled the nightime street lights. Plus, they're gold so the morning sunshine was like, "wha-hoo! I can shine right onto Keri's face at 6am every weekend!" Plus, and again,...they're gold. Yuck. But now, after one year and fifteen days, I have IKEA navy blinds and pretty white curtains to shut out the light and allow me to get my beauty sleep. I AM THANKFUL!


Good weekend rest to all of you! xo.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

What to Think?

So I heard about this story on the news a few days ago and thought it was one of those "myth buster" shows. Then I saw in Pe*ple Magazine and realized it must be true. It is true.... what?

It turns out it's no myth at all and it's certainly not some kind of freak show either. It's a story of a transman who was smart enough to keep the girl parts that allow some of us to create a child. I'm not saying that trans men who choose to opt out of all things female are stupid, I'm sure they're not. But for this guy & his wife - what a bonus!

I have to admit, I couldn't stop looking at the photo of him with that beautiful belly full of baby. Like me, you must be curious. & imagine... being a woman, married to a man and having a conversation that went something like this:

Wife: I'm just so tired of this ttc thing. I've tried and tried and failed and failed. I think we need to start looking into other options.

Hubby: Honey...I'm so sorry. I wish it wasn't so hard. Hey, I just thought of something! Why would we consider further options when we have another perfectly healthy womb right here? (points to self)

Many of you have had this same conversation (well, the YOU that are lesbians) but I bet you never thought that the hetero couple down the street could possibly do the same thing. Yeah, me neither. I think it's amazing.



Thoughts?

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Am I Chronically Medicated?

I woke up with a migraine this morning. I should have stayed in bed a while but I thought I'd be a trooper and annoy my co-workers with my pain for a few hours in stead. I like to think I don't get them very often but it seems like it's happening more than usual.

I got a terrible one in DC. I'm not sure if I included it in my details for all of you but it was bad news. I blamed it on flying because I blame everything bad on flying. But it went something like this: I started the day ready to float around Capitol Hill but not like a bird - more like a girl with a jet pack. We had so many appointments lined up and I was really excited for it. But then it struck - like lightening to my left temple! (did I mention I'm a total drama queen?) I made it through all the meetings but I couldn't speak during the 2nd to the last one and I could see by the time we left the last Senators office. I was OUT. -1,2,3,4,5....KO!

Today was nothing like that. I was miserable for about three hours then broke down and took some meds. My medication makes me feel bad in a whole other way - It hurts to breath through my nose (& who doesn't breath thru their nose?) and it impairs my speech - like I'm drunk. But after being laughed at for a while, I recover nicely...for a drunk. :)

I'm wondering though, have any of you had more serious migraines with fertility meds? Although that even seems crazy because right at this moment, I'm not medicated! It just seems like, since last June (our first transfer), I have had increased headaches. Just wondering.

Anyway, I hope everyone is well. I wanted to leave you with a beautiful picture of Humphrey's in San Diego and remind you all that I'll be there in just 80 days - me, C &
jbeeky - with drinks in hand, of course. Oh, & did I tell you we're on row 2? That's right folks, just inches away from my favorite girl with a guitar/banjo/large stick or whatever she's holding.



ARay, just 80 days 'til we meet again...

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Fan-tastic!!

We're wrapping up a wonderful weekend. I think we'll stay up late just to drag it out a little.


First of all, we played Wii. Or maybe we played with a Wii. Either way, SO fun! I know some of you are months ahead of us. We had no idea what we were missing. We had dinner with friends Friday night and they treated us by kicking our butts in tennis and boxing. Cristy almost made them wish they didn't invite us because she almost punched a hole in their ceiling with her forehand - or something like that... It's HARD! And boxing? C'mon! I'm a lover, not a fighter! :)


I've talked back and forth with my long lost cousin a few times this weekend. It's feeling a bit less scary and it's actually been amazing to see/hear what her life has been like. She's married. She has no children. When I asked she actually said that she couldn't have children - "what would she say" to Mercy? I guess that makes sense. She's in Florida. She's been there off and on since she left. She's been clean for eleven years. She's been clean since the year after she left. That shocked me a little, I think. But I suppose there are bigger things than drugs when you deal with the trauma she's lived with. We talked in length about her regrets and I just tried to remind her that I love her and that I'll be here as long as she'll talk. It feels good.


We slept until 9am today. SO nice. Then we watched a movie in bed. I love Sundays. Unfortunately, I eventually had this (non)wonderful idea. I thought, "we should totally spend our whole Sunday doing all the things around the house/yard that we've put off since moving in!" dumb. As I sit here with a sore neck from resting my dining room light on it for 2 hours, I guess I'm glad it's over. But seriously, not my first idea of a Sunday with my girl. We bought a medallion about a year ago. It's really beautiful and it kind of matches the one that was already in the Parlor.


This is the before:



Anyway, after many strained muscles and much less patience than when we started, it's beautiful!




And after that? We finished our day with some terribly tasty sushi with our best girls! De'lightful! De'licious! De'Lovely!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

One Day at a Time

Life is kicking along. My week has been full of change & movement. We moved to a new office - the Gays are Growing in Utah! We more than doubled our last square footage and the new space feels like we're finally in a place we can call home. It's really lovely. I'm looking forward to hosting our community there.

And big news for me, Cristy surprised me with another planned vacation. She came home Saturday morning and asked me if I'd like to go to San Diego in June. And then she told me that the Ind*go Girls are coming to Humphreys. I realize many of you have not experienced those two things together and that's why I'm promising to take a million pictures to share it with you. But one of my favorite parts? I finally get to meet my favorite fellow blogger, jbeeky. I can't wait to see you, dear. And hug you and share our ARay passion!! We still have a couple of months but that gives us more time to plan for a perfect 5 days!

We've made all the appointments we'll need to get on with IVF#2. It's crazy to think that it's happening again but also crazy that it takes so long. Our appointments don't begin until April 21st. And we'll have a new doctor because our other doctor can't begin another round with us until June. June. And thank God for tax returns after paying on a new mortgage. We're lucky ducks to have the opportunity for another chance.

And the last thing I wanted to share with you is that finally, today, my phone rang. I've been waiting for almost a week and you've all been so great at giving me advice and just letting me express my feelings. My cousin called today. I heard her voice and she sounded wonderful. She cried the whole time but it felt good to just sit with her. She was quiet and I spent some time catching her up on new marriages and new babies.

My life was so different when she left. I was just 25 years old. I mean, my life hadn't even begun. Everything "big" was still years away. I had never been in love. I hadn't had children. I still had my cute green Cabriolet. :) And then I spent time listening to her past, her regrets and her fears. It's all so surreal. We talked about just taking a day at a time. She knows I'm afraid to dive in and I understand her need to stay safe. It's just crazy that it's all here, right in front of me. I came home today and unloaded a bunch of old emotions on Cristy. My counsin's past brings up a lot of old garbage in my life but it's healing and luckily, C is a great listener.

I feel so thankful and blessed. ...Because she took the step and because you have all been so supportive.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

She Speaks

Thanks for all the love around my very long post the other day. I definitely spent the weekend by my computer - refreshing every few hours or so. But I didn't hear from her - until today.

Seeing her name and knowing she wrote it, is seriously haunting. You can't imagine how long I've waited for this conversation. About 7 years ago, I resorted to the fact that she was probably dead. She lived a dangerous life. I know that sounds very fiction but it's true. No boundaries or even a compass. She hitch-hiked across the county for God's sake. The fact that she has lived this entire life for the last dozen years is just so unbelievable to me.

Her email was short but said a thousand things. She said she was scared. She thanked me for telling her Mercy was safe & healthy but also said she knows she doesn't have a right to ask those questions anymore. She doesn't know where to start or how to ask for forgiveness. I don't have any answers for her.

I have so much compassion for her but, at the same time, I question it. I mean, how could you leave your child? What kind of person could literally walk away and simply trust that she would be cared for? From the place I stand, it eats at me. I like to think, no matter what would happen/ed in my life, I could never do what she did. & even if we live through terrible experiences, we can still make choices and live differently, right?

Then again, I step back and I think it's wrong to judge her. How do we know how all of these awful things affected her? The same things may have happened to me or you but we have strong family support & maybe that's what made all the difference. I can't even imagine otherwise.

When I sent her a note thru myspace, I told her that Mercy was doing well. After I sent it and after obsessing for days, I regretted saying anything about her daughter. On one hand, she doesn't deserve to know. On the other hand, anything I say can scare her away and I'm guessing everything around her leaving, seats her right on the edge of escaping again.

And that's a risk for me. I'm scared too. I spent years looking for her - just for the answer of whether or not she was alive. Investing in this "new relationship" with her feels very scary for me. At the same time, I am so grateful that she took a step toward home. And so grateful that, if Mercy wants answers, she just might be able to get them.

Some of you wrote about my loss of two girls. And while there are many similarities, my feelings of loss are nowhere comparable between the two. However, knowing that Mercy might know her mother one day gives me hope for Gray and me. I think of the questions she'll have and the peace that the answers will give her. I obviously didn't abandon Gracie but part of me wonders if she'll have those same feelings. She must. Needless to say, it has opened some thought around both girls.

I wrote her back. I'm taking baby steps , trying to avoid scaring her. My biggest fear is that she can so easily disappear again. I'm not telling my family (other than my mom) that we're speaking. I don't want Mercy to know anything. Yet. She'll be 17 in just a few months. Soon enough, she'll be able to decide for herself.

Hold my hand as I tip toe in.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Yegs rhymes with Eggs!

I hope everyone is enjoying their holiday. We woke up bright & early to watch Yegs hunt for Easter eggs. Still, where did this tradition really come from? Odd.

Here are some pics from the Big Hunt's this weekend.

Yegs was on the run! No way was he gonna miss out on 12 eggs!

And he got 'em!



My two favorite bunnies.

Searching high & low...


He was terribly excited to find his "money" egg.


This morning we're having our best girls & their family over for an Easter/Birthday celebration! Happy Birthday, J. We love you to death & wish you many, many more years of bliss!

And because it's Easter and you know I'm a Jesus freak, I thought I'd share with you a poem. Imagine me - around 12 or 13 - reciting this in front of a crowd of many... And who am I kidding, I still perform it every year. :)

What came first? The Chicken or the Egg?
What is this day all about?
Hiding eggs for kids to route?

Cakes and cookies shaped like lambs
Pink Chappeaus or Pink Madames?

That's not what this day is all about!
Who got buried then got out?
Leaving no one any doubt.
"He has Risen", hear them shout!

That's what this day is all about.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Ghost From My Past

This may be a bit long - just warning you. There's a lot of back story...


My family has always been very tight. We typically saw our cousins every weekend when we were little. But my mom's oldest brother & his kids lived in FL - way far away. We didn't know them. The parents eventually divorced and the mother (my uncle's wife) abandoned her children when the oldest (of four) was only about 10 years old. The whole situation was very tragic. My uncle ended up moving them all back here a few years later and my grandparents tried to help raise the kids.

The oldest was a year younger than me. She was trouble. She immediately started running away. They put her in my school so she could be friends with "my" friends. They were good kids - they would surely change her. (dumb) It didn't work. She flocked to the trouble makers. She was a rebel. She finally ran away at sixteen and we didn't hear from her for two years.

In 1991, she called from Florida. She was pregnant and needed help. When she needed help and called home, it meant that she was calling me because I was really the only person who kept trying to find her every time she left. My parents cared too but other than that, I really think people just forgot about her.

So one day she called. We sent her a ticket to come home. She was 19. I was 20.


When she arrived she informed us that she wasn't going to keep the baby. This would be my grandmother's first great-grandchild and it caused quite a stir in our family. She was eventually guilted enough to keep her and even still, I'm grateful every day. Her reasons, however, were very real. She wasn't ready to be mother. Her example had been terrible. I think everyone hoped that would change when her baby was born but it really didn't. She had big issues to heal. Big.

But she had the baby. A beautiful little girl. She moved around a lot and eventually moved in with me when the baby was around 2yo. Still, she would say that she didn't feel a bond. She felt more like she was her little sister. This little girl was so fantastic. I mean, she would literally talk to anyone. She was so completely brilliant that people would constantly ask her to read and write and sing and dance - she was amazing and she was just a toddler.

One day, when she was just barely 4, my cousin called and asked if I would watch her for the weekend.

And she never came back.

After two days, this amazing little person started to tell me that her mother told her good-bye. "She's not coming back. This is where I live." As the days went by it became obvious that she was really gone. I called in a missing person report but she had been known to run for years. And her parents were long ago disinterested. No one cared.

I kept this little girl for the next year. She was the light of my every day. I was very young and in my first relationship. She added a whole new world to our world. We loved every minute of her. I always believed that her mom would come home so I never really let go in a way that you would if you adopted a child. She would ask if she could call me "mommy" and I would tell her that I loved her more than the stars but that she had a mommy who was going to come home one day. I regret it now. If I had known she would really stay gone, I would've done everything differently.

A year or so later, my aunt filed a petition for custody of her. She was married and hadn't been able to have children. As a young person, I didn't have a clue what to do. I was crushed. I had every intention of keeping her until her mom came back. I was also only 1/2 "out" and was certain if anyone (dcfs) knew, they'd take her from me. I didn't fight. And they came and took her away.

I'll never forget it. I'll never forget her little voice telling me she promised to be good if I'd only let her stay.

Luckily for me, she hasn't gone far. She was raised right here by me and I've watched her grow into an amazing sixteen year old. I still wish I had made different decisions. I wish I wouldn't have been so scared back then. But she's had a happy life and she knows she's loved by me and everyone around her.

I spent years looking for her mother/my cousin after she left. I tracked her to Florida then to Arizona. She changed her name and probably lived on the streets for a long time. She can do that. She can survive through anything. I've always stood up for her and said that she made the right decision by leaving Mercy with me. If she hadn't, we would've lost them both. My family obviously holds angry feelings for her but they didn't know her like I did. (way more to that story - another day)


So here were are...it's been 12 years since she left - almost to the day.

My friend was showing me around myspace today. I'm embarrassed to tell you all how un'hip I am but I had no idea I had a page. I log in sometimes to read another friends blog but that's all I knew. So I pull it up and what do you know? I have friends! She starts showing me around a bit and I see that there's a person that I don't know on there. And I delete her.

We dig around further and there it is! A message from my cousin - from little Mercy's mother. Four of them. She left them between November and January. The last one finally says her name and asks if I'm her cousin and says she's looking for her family. But the worst part? I had deleted her. I can't get her back. I sent her a note but now I have to wait and hope she gets it. Can you stand it?

After all these years she reaches out. I kept my land line until 1 year ago just for her. I've paid online searches for her a dozen times. I've written down stories about her so Mercy could one day read & learn about her mom. And there she was - on my myspace page I didn't know I had.

I gasped. I held my breath & kept re-reading her name. It felt like a ghost was talking to me through a dream. 12 years. Many times I have thought she must be dead. Why wouldn't she ever call? How could she not wonder if her daughter was happy & healthy? At the same time, I have dreaded telling her that it wasn't me that raised her.

I'll sit here and refresh my email a hundred times this weekend.

After all the times I searched for her, she found me.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

I'm a Swinger

Still nothing. Like stale air I just sit here and wonder what is happening with my body. I'm still waiting for cd1 and it looks to be nowhere in sight. Maybe I've begun my own personal summer. :) (I've always wanted to put that in writing.) Maybe my body is trying to tell me that it's tired of me filling it with chemicals so it acts according to the script I write. My head is tired too. As is my heart.

Cristy met me at home early yesterday. She called my boss at 2pm and requested he boot me out the door. It was very sweet, actually. She took me to a movie to hold my hand for two hours. She reminded me how special we are and how this is just a small piece of what our lives will hold. She knows I have issues at failing with this. My last relationship took a huge blow with the fact that I couldn't conceive. Not because of her, but me. I held the blame back then. All I could think of were the promises I had made - that I would carry the rest of our children. But I never could. This time, we share it. We share the process as much as we'll share the result. It feels beautiful and safe and reassuring. And it makes me all too excited to get there.

It's crazy to want something so much and not get it. I'm not a spoiled brat or anything but I don't think the average Jane waits this long for anything. I mean, I've been there before but ttc is a whole new ballgame. Typically you can work toward something. Like, you try for months and months - even years - then you should get closer to the goal. I mean, you're trying that whole time. We must be getting better at it, right? Closer to it actually working?

Maybe it's like softball. I played that damn game for 3 years when I was small. I showed up at every practice, swung at the ball and aimed my mitt to catch pop-ups. But I never got better. I was terrible. The poor coach of the Green Machines, my team, finally just asked me to stop swinging. I had better luck to walk. He was right.

ug, that sounds pathetic. Don't worry, I'm not that down on myself. Sometimes I just wonder when it is that I'll move on to another "way". We talk about all of our options and I feel so fortunate that we have so many. But right now, this is the one I choose.

I'm swinging, damnit.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

I'm Out

I broke down & tested. My body still hasn't told me a single thing. I had a tiny bit of spotting yesterday but nothing since. But the glaring single line told me everything I needed to know.

Just wanted to throw it out there so you weren't wasting wishes over here. I'll be focusing mine on those of you still waiting and pleading for yours again in just a little while.

xo.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Holding My Last Breath

I really am still here. I really am wondering every second of every day if this is finally the cycle that said yes. Every day that goes by gives me tiny bits of hope. At the same time, I've been here before. Not to sound like a Negative Nancy but it's true. I can fool myself like no other. And today, I can feel the signs of af at every turn.

Signs? (wait, I don't believe in signs)
I had very odd cramping on 11dpo. I actually thought I'd start that day.
Sore boobs. But that's normal for me when I'm medicated.
A very large grumpy bone yesterday at ShopKo. But that could be my new no caffeine rule...
See? And here I am, days later and I got nothin'! Sigh.

It's now 15dpo for me. But sometimes I can be tricked until day 17. You'd think I'd break down and take a damn test but something in me likes to keep the possibility as close as I can for as long as I can. Foolish, I know. Cristy threw a test at me every time I came near the bathroom yesterday. I considered it. It was fun teasing her... but considering the possibility of a "negative" made me decline. Am I losing it? Have I just been doing this too long? Tests just aren't my thing! It's like I want everything ruled out first. I'm sure there's no sense in it, really.

This time, this cycle, I had it right. I'm sure of it. Peaked on cd16 at noon. Inseminated at 2pm on cd17. I felt every little egg that dropped from my clomid filled ovaries. I was certain it would catch just one.

Either way, no matter how this one ends (& there will be a certain end Very soon), I'm not quitting. As my dear friend K said, you can't win if you don't play.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

My One Night Stand

I got your attention, right? I'm not talking about that kind of one night stand. Tonight we went to a comic/monologue called My One * Night * Stand With * Cancer, by Tania Katan.

She wrote a book about her experience with breast cancer. Her first bout at age 21. And another at 31. She talks about her life and it's almost like a dance. She's a Jewish, lesbian playwright (probably not in that order) and she's had an incredible life experience. It's amazing. At the end she ripped off her shirt and stood there with bravery draped across her chest - proud that she was still standing before us. I sat there - stunned...knowing I wouldn't be that strong in the same situation.

I'm telling you this because you first must read the book. Although...I feel like a hypocrite for saying that as I haven't yet read it. But I'll have it my sticky hands tomorrow and I'll read it right away. THEN, you must see the show. Just look it up and see what you think. I'm not kidding. It's funny - witty, charming, heart breaking, scary and then funny all over again. I laughed so hard and then I thought, "you know, I really need to have my first mammogram."

My grandma had a double mastectomy. & they didn't get it all. She likes to say the had a triple mastectomy. I remember playing with her silicone filled bra when I was little. My family used to laugh at me when I put it on & ran around the house. I wonder now, what bra was she wearing when I did that?

Anyway, it's something I think about all the time. I think things like, "my mom should be sure to do self breast exams" or "I would die if my mom got cancer". But I never think it could be me. I'm too young. But I'm way older than 21. I'm even older than 31. & I heard that lesbians have a higher chance of breast cancer because so many of us don't have children/breast feed. I'm not sure if that's accurate but it's enough to add another reason to my list of why I really want to have a baby. :)

So do it. Go get the book. And then tell me what you think. I was moved and I kinda think you will be too. And before you do that, go see Turtle & Butterfly and give her some love $$. She's taking the high road later this fall and doing something wonderful for those who came before her and those that are surviving!

btw...11dpo & I'm surviving over here too. :)

Happy Birthday!!

Today, Cristy turns double 4's! Whew! :)

That sounds crazy because but if you knew her, you'd know that her youth shines through by her rebellion. She still lives like she's in her twenties. (minus the beer & marijuana) She's amazing at everything she does. She's one of those "play on the floor" moms and it's one of my favorite things about her. Yegs gave her a new baseball mitt and she acted like it was a new diamond ring. Well, she acted like I would if I got a new diamond ring.

I love her - BIG!

We had dinner last night with family & friends and tonight we'll spend another evening celebrating her!

I hope your day is beautiful, baby. Every little minute of it.

Happy, happy Birthday!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Not much to see here...

I'm 10dpo and feeling fine. No symptoms that I can think of - just trying to get through the last few days of not knowing. I really do okay until the last inning or so. No testing until day 14 - ever. & even then, I usually just wait another day or so. But now is about the time I start second guessing every little twinge or pain.

I dreamed I was pregnant last night. I haven't done that in a long time. Looking at the positive test seemed very real. Somehow after the test, I saw the size of my uterus. I sat there, checking it out and imagine how tiny my little baby was in there. It's was like a large roma tomato. I think I even touched it. It's gross just to write it. In my dream I started telling people I was pregnant and even had maternity clothes in my closet. I half woke and actually questioned what was real.

...

I don't believe in signs. Cristy will say that's a lie. She'll say I only believe in bad signs. I spent a long time thinking everything "good" was a sign. Pete's Dragon, Land Before Time, half moons - just to name a few. But now I think of it all like fiction or stories for fairy tales. Signs are what you find when you're looking too hard. I realize this makes me sounds ultra romantic. Kidding. But I like to think that, while I may be a little jaded, I live in real life and know not to expect the unexpected.

At the same time, I don't want any of you to assume that I don't have a mouth full of hope every single minute of the day. Hope is different than assuming or simply just "feeling it". I hope all. day. long. I am dripping with hope.

So...just a few more days and I'll have my answer. And I'll stop this game for another couple of weeks. And I'll drink. Big. (that's about two drinks max for me!) Then I'll start again because that's just how positively ready we ARE!

***

I thought you might all want to see this story. I'm not sure why. I guess I just thought of your jaws dropping just as mine did and it made me smile.

Woman sits on boyfriend's toilet for 2 years Deputies said a woman in western Kansas sat on her boyfriend's toilet for two years, and they're investigating whether she was mistreated.

And here's another one you must see. I'm sure you all heard the horrific words from the Oklahoma State Rep. Sally Kern. This is a snipet from Ellen's Show today. For being so non-political, she sure has found her voice lately... Love it!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Safe & Sound

We're home. It's been a while since I've been away that long. I'm sure I could've spent another 3 days there but I was missing my bed.

The trip was incredible. We stayed in this very swanky hotel. Ultra modern & very funky. There were pictures of half dressed barbies on the walls and the bed was in a cave. You had to crawl up it to get in.




We spent the first day lobbying our Congressmen & Senators. The best part was just being at our nation's Capitol and seeing all there is to see. We went through the underground tunnels and peeked in Committee hearings. Even though we see it all here locally, it's much different and more exciting in DC.

And if you think you've heard too much Obama/Hillary conversation lately, just go to DC and see it on every window, hear it in every coffee shop and read it in every journal. Politics are beaming 24/7. & I couldn't tell if one of them had any lead on the Hill. I think it's probably 50/50 and we'll be blessed either way.

We went to an H*R*C hosted luncheon and Senator Kennedy spoke. He's 76 years old and to hear him speak, you'd think he was still in his forties. Brilliant. & motivating. H*R*C has a beautiful building. They ran a capitol campaign about five years ago and it's really incredible to look at the skyline of DC and know there is a Big, Gay skyscraper among them.

This is Elizabeth Birch who happens to be my most favorite:



This is their Election Campaign for 2008. I'm sure they'll bother all of you with all the details:



We spent yesterday looking at all the sites. Cristy had never been. It was great seeing her "see" it all. She teared up at the Lincoln Memorial - I knew she would. & we walked the Mall and saw all the different war memorials. We didn't make it to Arlington but we'll probably be back there in October.

This is the amazing Washington Monument. Construction began in 1848 but wasn't completed until 1884. Old news. If we could just get our home to last as long...






And this, of course, is Abe's place. It much more beautiful at night but we didn't have the opportunity to stay down there. It was built in 1922. I think it's haunted.





And a few random from the WWII memorial. My grandfather fought in that war & this was my first time back since they built & introduced it. I'm sure it's much more stunning when the fountains are on...I wasn't so impressed so I'll just show you my grandpa's part and my favorite quote.




Because I'm still in my tww, there wasn't a lot of "wild & crazy" but we had a great time. It was a great way to end the session and it reminded me of how much history Utah doesn't have.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

On to the Big House!

Law and justice are not always the same. When they aren't, destroying the law may be the first step toward changing it.
-Gloria Steinem

We leave tomorrow morning for DC. It's a work trip but I'm certain we'll visit all the tourist sites while we're there. ie. The war memorials, The cemetery, Abe. It's more history than we can possibly relive in 4 days but we'll try.

Cristy has never been. & the last time I was there I was with someone else at the end of our relationship. If there is ever a reason to re-do a trip, that is it! So we'll go and we'll lobby our Federal government for all the is right and just. And then we'll come back here and relax because tomorrow - TOMORROW - is the Last Day of our Legislative Session!! Wha-hoo!!

My terribly sweet co-worker brought me a bag 'o goodies to celebrate the end of our 40 day nightmare. In it included a ribbon that says, "I Made It!", a stress ball, Tylenol, a cold pack, etc. It was such a nice "end to my session" since I actually left today. :) Thanks, L.

And on to my tww...

We did our insem on Monday. Sorry I'm just now getting around to posting about it. We used the last of our donor up there so if it doesn't work, we'll be on to a new (& improved) gentle man with Hispanic heritage, 6' tall, dark brown eyes - know anyone? kidding. So we're in the big wait and I'm doing fine. We had perfect timing and after the round of clomid, I'm certain I felt every egg drop. We'll see if the rest of me cooperated.

I hope you're all having a beautiful week. I'm looking forward to getting outa town again and being farther than just a drive away. I'm not, however, looking forward to the plane ride. I swear I've seen more crashes or almost crashes with planes than I've cared to see the last few days. Anyway, enough of that.

I'll brag a little while I'm gone, I'm sure. If not, know that it's because I'm changing the world.

Again, kidding.
xo.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Winter Feet

I'm back home from my trip and it was everything I wanted it to be. Plenty of degrees, short sleeves and painted toe nails. To prove it, I took a picture of one finished product. Believe me, these toes are night and day compared to the "winter wear" I had on Friday. :) And feel free to comment on how long and finger'ish they are. Believe me, I know.



As I stared at this picture, I remembered another that was similar.
About two years ago, Gracie and I sat at the pool, comparing toes. She always said that her hands look like mine because 'I caught her when she came out'. But I tried to convince her that our toes were the same too. Even she, at five, knew better. No way would she admit to having same/same toes. :) Man, what I wouldn't give to kiss on those toes today.

My trip was based around organizing another community to bring great change to their electoral strategy this fall. We met with a group that has begun to mobilize and it definitely re-energized me as I head to DC this week. It always amazes me when twenty people build on to something large enough to make a difference. Very cool. & hopefully they'll need me again because I would make that trip any time. Just beautiful.

St George is this little town nestled inside red rock. When the sun starts to set, the mountains glow with such a fire. I'm certain it was painted by a blind person before it was created. It's that kind of 'perfect'.





While I was down there, I looked for her. Not because I know she's there but because, I thought for a minute, that I'd feel her if she was. I got in my car and drove around until I got lost. I kept doing a little "check-in" in hopes of simply following my heart. I drove until it was dark and finally found the place I looked for. - a beautiful adobe home, right along a mountain side. And the only thought I had was that it made me happy to know she'll visit there. The landscape is stunning. There's an ice-cream store just down the road. She'd love the pond and the red dirt.

I spent time missing her but also cherishing memories of her. & I found this next picture too. I thought it was appropriate for this post. In her scrapbook it's titled:


"These Feet Will Follow You Anywhere"



And they will baby. Every step.

Friday, February 29, 2008

And I'm Free In You

Got no worries in my mind
I know what to do
That's to treat you right
And love you kind
Thank you ever on my mind
Love is just like breathing
When it's true

We're packed & ready to head out for a quick trip to beautiful Southern Utah. It will be 70 degrees when we get there and I have on my coziest capries in honor of all those degrees!

All 70 of them!

I'll have hours and hours in the car with my best girl. I'll have my hand on her knee and my feet will be tapping out the window to all the music I've planned. I'll paint my toes so the truckers won't be horrified by the "winter" toes I have right now.

& if a certain someone reads this and has fear that I'm coming to look for her, I am. But I won't be a bother. I'm just looking for a little peace in my heart and this trip will certainly make me feel closer to what feels the farthest away.

I don't know where it all begins
And I don't know where it all will end
Better off for - all that we let in.

I wish you all a sunny weekend. & I suppose those of you on the East Coast will have to hit a tanning salon for that kind of thing. But I'll be thinking of you and sharing red rock when I get home.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Hey, Jude! I've been Tagged!

Maybe you've all seen this by now but I just got this from a friend last week. I mimic it all the time & can't get it outa my head. Just watch.

I love this child. And he makes me think of the wild and crazy girl I'll have one day - except she'll be head to toe in tie-die and then add dreadlocks when she's sixteen. I laugh at her already.



Super cute, huh? & you can't stop watching it or passing it around. I know...

So I was tagged by Mrs Bluemont for a fun little game.

Rules:
1. Grab the nearest book of 123 pages or more.

2. Open it to page 123.
3. Find the first 5 sentences and write them down.
4. Then invite 5 friends to do the same.

I was given "The Nanny Diaries" by a friend & have started it about six times. I do like it very much. But she has such a unique, catty way of writing that I make myself start over each time I pick it up. I'll finish it E, I promise. & I've promised myself that I'll finish before I go out and rent the movie. :)

Anyway, page 123...

"Dad, you really should come out - it's not so bad. That writer guy is here, the one from China. And he's not even wearing a tie - you could hang out with him."
He takes off his glasses. "I'd rather spend time with my daughter.

I tag... Baby Mama Drama, Turtle & Butterfly, Our Life, Raz-ma-taz & Jbeeky.

Monday, February 25, 2008

3/4 Sleeves

It's raining. That means that spring is coming. In honor of the "coming" part, I'm wearing a pink shirt without long sleeves! Wha-hoo! I just love the time of year when people start showing skin!


Speaking of showing skin, how 'bout that LWord last night? I mean, there wasn't much skin but still - what a great episode. I'm always about 2 minutes away from 'never watching it again' but last night seemed to redeem it for me. I heart Tasha & Alice so I'm certain it's my favorite episode so far this year. I don't want to give too much away but I will say that it ends with many overdue kisses!

We had a great weekend. I was heavily considering a sick day today to extend it but I figured I'd had enough rest. Or maybe I was worried my medication would kick back in and I'd be a raging lunatic like I was Sunday morning. I don't think C would be able to so easily tell Anyone that she hasn't noticed my meds yet. Nope. I put an end to all that "she hasn't changed at all" conversation.

Before the rage of Sunday, we had a wonderful gathering with so many of YOU! One of the Utah bloggers hosted a lovely little gig to welcome Holly. It was so great to meet her in person and also see so many others that we rarely see. There were truckloads of babies - like a mormon reception center - but these ones were well dressed and & stinckin' cute! (that's the clomid talking) I figure if I needed to rub elbows with some fertile women, I was in the right place. SO, thanks to these girls for hosting. I loved every minute of it. Yeager too!


As for the Oscars...I don't have much to add. My favorite part was having Freeheld win the short documentary. It's beautiful and if you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. I also loved John Stewart and didn't love Cameron Diaz. Why was she there? Anyway, unfortunately I haven't seen very many of the movies. I ended up just voting for the best dress. & even then, there weren't that many that were worth wishing for...


Hopefully you're all having a great Monday. We're about a week away from our insem so wish C luck over the next few days. How long will I feel crazy? I think I'm actually feeling a bit more normal today...or is that my manic mind doing tricks on me. :)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Day Four...

Okay, I'm thinking this Clomid is kicking my ass. This cry baby that has taken me over is just not me! I mean, I'm usually the first to cry at a commercial or episode of Little House but I can typically control myself until the room is clear. Let me think....it hit yesterday around 2pm. I think I've had tears behind my eyeballs and that hard swallow in my throat since then.

I had a work function last night and when I walked in, a co-worker asked me to come sit down by him. You'd think I could've just sat down like a normal person but I thought I'd throw in a little bonus for him and cry my eyes out. Why, you ask? No real reason. Everything just hits a little harder when I'm medicated. This med seems to bring out the worst reaction. My dosage is only 100 so it could actually be worse! Oh God, please bring courage to those that surround me...

So far Cristy has deemed me a Saint(ress). She never admits when I'm "too much". Maybe she'd tell some of you but she'll lie to me until I demanded differently. I guess that makes her the Saint! :)

Getting home last night, I decided to check in here & also visit some of you. I found you all responding to my last post and noticed that, once again, we had an intruder. I won't talk much about it but I will say that any of you who come here to complain or listen to me complain about ttc or any old thing, are welcome. The comments that were left were deleted and not just because they hurt me but because I don't want any of us to have to read words that make the battle feel like it's our fault. I could ask this woman to go away but we all know that will just egg her on. Anyway, thanks to b & googie for putting up your dukes! I love you both to bits!

My dukes are up too. Beware. This girl is medicated.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Am I Still Ticking?

It's Tuesday. I need a vacation. Or a nap.

The last week has filled me with a rush of emotions. The rally was amazing and exhausting. By Valentine's, I was a big puddle of mush. Cristy made me a fabulous crab dinner and I think I was snoring by 8:30. I tried to make it up to her the next night but honestly, I spent the whole weekend T.I.R.E.D.

I appreciate all the love around the anniversary of Gracie's ruling. It still seems strange that that much time has gone by. And I do take pride in the fact that I'm still breathing and fighting and waiting. Getting through that day felt healing.

I realized with all the hustle of last week, I never updated you all on our baby making process. As you may have guessed, it wasn't successful. Truth be told, I was so completely busy that I barely thought of it. Seriously. I didn't test and Cristy actually had to remind me of my dpo. I knew I had missed my window. I never felt confident but I would've been more mad at myself if we didn't at least try.

So. Another try has begun. I started Clomid yesterday and I'm bound & determined to get the timing right. If it doesn't work, we are ready for another round of IVF. It feels good to have a plan - to know what's next.

So far, the meds have been good to me. Many years ago I spent too much time on them with too high a dosage. I was a mess. But my second day has not lead to any deaths or lost friends. That's all I can hope for, right?

Really, I'm praying hard for this time. Really hard. In fact, I could use a few of yours too.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

One Year Ago

One year ago I hadn't slept in two days.
One year ago, the ruling came.
Not the one I had hoped for, but the one that I had feared for 3 1/2 years.

One year ago this very day.

I'll never forget a thousand things from that morning...
The look on my attorney's face when she held the answer that would change my life.
The disbelief in Cristy's voice after having such certainty justice would prevail.
The pounding of my heart when I knew in an instant that the last time was really the last time.

I thought of her, knowing she had no idea what just happened to us. What would she be told? Where did I go? How will she know that I love her if I'm not there to tell her and show her? Why didn't I prepare her? Why did I promise her I would be back?

I remember asking a friend if I was still a mother. How could I be a mother if they took away my only child? I ached just breathing. I cried so hard my ears bled. I cried harder that day than I ever have. I remember just knowing that I couldn't live through it. That, at some point, I would simply stop breathing.

***

Last night, I sat across a table from Cristy. We were holding hands and I realized that today would mark that awful day. And I'm still breathing. Sometimes barely. Last Saturday was the worst day I've had in a while but those days come less often than they used to. I still miss her with every breath but to channel it somewhere where I can still fight for her has been a blessing.

I still think about the time we had together - singing, shopping, hugging, laughing, twirling. The last time I saw her, her hair was cut in a dutch-boy style. She was five year, two months and twenty days old. She loved velvet and barbies and tippies and Mr Tumnus.

I remember everything. Sometimes I'm afraid I'll start forgetting things like her smell and her hands and her pressed kisses. The toenail polish she left so messily on my feet has worn off, as have the fingerprints I tried to save for so long. But I have so many more things that are priceless and endless.

I miss you still baby girl. So very much. But I'm still breathing and hoping and fighting. And every night when I close my eyes, I enter your room and tuck you in. I fill you up with encouraging words and lullabye's. I will always be right here. & I will always be your mommy.

When it rains it pours and opens doors
And floods the floors we thought would always keep us safe and dry
And in the midst of sailing ships we sink our lips into the ones we love
That have to say goodbye

And as I float along this ocean
I can feel you like a notion that won't seem to let me go

Cause when I look to the sky something tells me you're here with me
And you make everything alright
And when I feel like I'm lost something tells me you're here with me
And I can always find my way when you are here

And every word I didn't say that caught up in some busy day
And every dance on the kitchen floor we didn't have before
And every sunset that we'll miss I'll wrap them all up in a kiss
And pick you up in all of this when I sail away

Whether I am up or down or in or out or just plane overhead
Instead it just feels like it is impossible to fly
But with you I can spread my wings
to see me over everything that life may send me
When I am hoping it won't pass me by

And when I feel like there is no one that will ever know me
...there you are to show me.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

Cristy,

Happy Valentine's Day.

I want you and the world to know how lucky I feel every moment that you choose me. & I want to remind you of all the reasons I choose you back.

You are the most loving, caring, sincere person I have ever known. You teach me lessons every day on how to be better and patient and couragous. I feel incredibly blessed to have you not only by my side but on my side.

I think of us - way back - and remember the time you waited for me. For a year, you stood behind me without saying a word. You let me grow and heal and heal some more. You stood quiet while my world ran crazy. You silently held me and most days I didn't even know it. Looking back, I would've fallen without your arms to hold me. I'm certain of that.

I am so incredibly grateful that you believed in us even before I did. I am so grateful that you waited for me to see what you saw. I thank God that we were guided together and I have every confidence that we will be blessed with this kind of love all the days of our lives.

You are my Easy Silence, baby.
I love you my whole life.

Keri






When the calls and conversations
Accidents and accusations
Messages and misperceptions
Paralyze my mind

Busses, cars, and airplanes leaving
Burning fumes of gasoline
And everyone is running
And I come to find a refuge in the

Easy silence that you make for me
It's okay when there's nothing more to say to me
And the peaceful quiet you create for me
And the way you keep the world at bay for me
The way you keep the world at bay

Monkeys on the barricades
Are warning us to back away
They form commissions trying to find
The next one they can crucify
And anger plays on every station
Answers only make more questions
I need something to believe in
Breathe in sanctuary in the

Easy silence that you make for me
It's okay when there's nothing more to say to me
And the peaceful quiet you create for me
And the way you keep the world at bay for me
The way you keep the world at bay

Children lose their youth too soon
Watching war made us immune
And I've got all the world to lose
But I just want to hold on to the
Easy silence that you make for me

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Damn the Snow Gods!

...but they didn't keep us ALL home!

I couldn't wait another second to talk about tonight's rally. I know there are so many Utah bloggers and I'm not sure why that is or how you all happen to know each other but I must take a second to tell you all how proud I am to have found you & your families. Standing before you tonight was almost more than my heart could take. The weather was seriously awful. But you came from Park City, Tooele and the point of the mountain. & because of you, I am re-energized. Our bill sponsor is re-energized. Our family community is ready to fight until we've won!
I couldn't wait to post some pictures of our rally tonight. Plus, our sweet Yeager's speech at the rally. I'm telling you, he stole the show. :)

I'm sorry about how dark it is but you can hear his sweet voice.


video



btw, if any of my readers happen to see their faces or those of their loved ones and want them removed - just say the word. These are without permission from a single one of you.

Cute Yeager who can't stop talking about fighting for his rights!









Look at this sweet boy!