Friday, August 27, 2010

Faith Revisited

My period is over a week late. Four pregnancy tests over the last week have said "Not Pregnant".

What the heck?

My mom, mother-in-law, sister, and sister-in-law have been wonderful sources of support, sympathy, and common sense for me. When I emailed them yesterday telling them that I feel like a freak and that I did not yet have newsworthy news, I didn't realize how much I needed their input.

I am so grateful for them and for the support they give me even though we're far away from each other.

I'm feeling humbled about my do or do not attitude. While I don't believe that we're having "trouble" in any way, I have discovered that this isn't as straightforward as I had assumed.

Who knew?

I will remember that women have been getting pregnant for a long time and I will bolster my faith that it will happen for us, too. And if it doesn't, then we have all sorts of adoption options.

Maybe all of this is pushing me to relax about the whole process, to stop thinking about my cycle, to just be.

To be fair, the last month has been pretty emotionally complicated with the discovery of the cyst in my breast (it's still there) and Donald's renewed job search. I think I've gotten pretty good at rolling with the punches and figuring out how to adjust, especially when I know exactly what matters most to me and to us.

We are moving forward on so many good things:
We are starting a family and that will happen when it is supposed to happen.
We have a dog, and she's actually quite well-behaved despite some bumps along the way.
We have happy cats that have been very forgiving about this canine creature we have brought into their home.
We are learning about what kind of house makes a home for us, even if we don't end up buying one here in our new town.

Donald is growing in his career, figuring out what really matters to him and what he needs to feel successful and content in his professional life. And while my first reaction was to ask him to shut up and stick it out because we were putting down roots, dammit, I have remembered that my initial goal was for him to be happy in his professional life. That has not been achieved and while I think it can be, it may not be here. We may be moving again. This may not be the place for us to put down roots yet.

We just have to keep learning from our experiences and looking forward to make the most out of whatever comes our way next. And we'll keep up our teamwork, facing each new door as an opportunity, together.

Sunday, August 8, 2010


A few nights ago, Donald and I were enjoying a cool evening outside looking at the stars. We realized that, a year ago, we were doing the same thing when we were living at his parents' home when he was unemployed, wondering what our lives would be like a year from then. And now we know.

We are living in our own apartment, in our own space, and in our own community. It is beautiful here and I absolutely love it.

Donald has a good job, one that is challenging and isn't always what he wants, but he's working it out and has committed to sticking with it.

I was able to make some income freelancing and I have now accepted a full-time job with a local university. I'll have a lot of responsibility and it's a new position, which means I'll have some influence over how my job description evolves and I'll have my hands in policy and procedure, which I love.

We adopted a puppy on July 1, a Rottweiler mix named Sasha:

We are moving forward with starting our family, hopefully to know more by the end of this month.

We are meeting regularly with a realtor, looking for our very first home. We are learning so much about each other and what "home" means. It has been such a wonderful way for us to develop our relationship together, although it has its challenges.

I have been enjoying a stay-at-home lifestyle, with lots of flexibility in my schedule and lots of time to get projects done. The full-time position that came along was something of a surprise, especially because I had assumed that I would be working from home, which is partially why we adopted Sasha when we did. I have to think that these things happen for a reason, though.

The income from my new position will be a great help towards purchasing a home sooner rather than later, allowing us to prepare for our growing family. Raising a puppy has started to open our eyes to the amazing world of parenting, giving us many restless nights getting up many times and inspiring many conversations about rules, training, and our desires as we make decisions together. I have discovered that I can get very angry in certain situations, and that I need to get a handle on this before we have children. I need to teach myself better ways of expressing my anger. We are gaining so much that is preparing us for what will come.

At the same time, there are bumps along the way.

I discovered a lump in my breast and I'm in the process of finding out what it is and whether it will have any impact on my health and our other plans. It seems to be a cyst, but there may be something else going on as well, so that's a bit scary. I'll find out more this coming week. I have been advised that the possibility of this being something serious is quite small, but even the tiniest chance has been a reminder to me of my mortality and I have made a very conscious decision to be even more present every day, to appreciate everything I have and to make the most of every opportunity.

I am feeling burned out with the animal shelter with which I volunteer, partially because one of the dogs I was getting to know really well decided to freak out on me, causing scratches and bruises, but also because there are some organizational issues that I'm not sure I have the energy to help fix. I'm the kind of person who is very operationally-minded, and I love to help non-profit organizations become more efficient and productive and to find ways to improve themselves. I just don't think I'm up to the challenge on this one. I have a few other things on my mind these days, I guess.

I'm redirecting my energy these days. I have a puppy to care for now. I'm spending more time with my yoga practice, using it to find balance and calm in my life despite the significant changes we have already made and the changes that we hope will come. I have a week before my new job begins and I hope to spend it preparing for what will probably be my last paid job for a long time because I plan to leave the workforce to raise our children when they arrive.

I think a lot about what my identity will be once that change occurs. My time not working since we moved here to our new community has been very helpful to me in that way. I discovered the joy of running my household. I love taking care of my husband and our pets. I am excited to add children to that mix. I found that I am often lonely when I am home all day, which is why I have directed my energy into exercise classes and volunteering in my community. I know that I need to be connected to be happy, and I will always continue that in some capacity.

I am learning that my career, or what I am paid to do, does not in any way define who I am or what I can contribute to the world around me. I am so much more than that. While my career has given me wonderful experience in various ways and has taught me so much, I know that I can stand on what my life has taught me, not just drawing on paid experience, but on those things I have done in my own time. I have grown more confident and willing to ask questions and to learn from those around me. I am drawn to those who are passionate about what they do. I feel like I am on the verge of finding out more about what I am meant to do in this world, and I am very excited about that. And I am living my life every day.

So many new beginnings. And some endings. Such is the way of the world.