#OFOTD

Feeling Fresh in the sunshine today!!!

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Top from: http://www.romwe.com/Grey-Knotted-Crop-T-Shirt-p-147840-cat-669.html

Skirt from: http://www.modcloth.com/shop/skirts/chesapeake-sorbet-skirt

Necklace and Bracelet: http://www.target.com/p/fashion-necklace-multi-colored/-/A-51044785

from target, but not exact. This one is similar though.

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Rings from: https://www.etsy.com/transaction/1157056240

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and

http://www.pandora.net/en-us/products/rings/180886cz

(leaf ring… so gorgous!)

Shoes from: Birkenstock.com

Remember Jack Pt 2.

My eyes were practically glued shut from dried tears. I could barely open them. A fleeting thought passed my mind “hmmmm perhaps I would never be able to open my eyes again? OMG what if it were possible for eyes to be glued shut by dried tears.” I started to rub my eyes open and reality set in. That silly fleeting thought disappeared into thin air and I was faced with the sickening feeling of the heavy weight of my deceased child in my belly, and my heavy heavy heart. Above all I was straight pissed off. I was so seething with anger I was seeing red. The feelings that coursed through my veins were wretched. I started to pound my pillow and punch the back of my bed. I just wanted to feel something in that moment other than the seething anger and loss. Finally Eric opened his eyes and looked totally startled by my aggression. He stood up and gently rubbed my back. He looked so lost. Half asleep and half angry too. The morning nurse walked in and started to sooth me and rub my back.

“I am so sorry Anita. No Woman should have to go through this. I am here. Just tell me what you need.” I could feel this Woman’s gentle soul and I could tell that she had done this before. I mean it is a completely awkward situation to be in. You are this stranger taking care of someone who went through something so personal and devastating. It is really hard to know how to act in that situation. She treated the situation like a professional. Like she was a professional baby loss nurse or something. She made me feel safe. As I laid there staring off into space as my anger started to clear the nurse suggested I take a shower, and just do something with myself. The contractions were becoming pretty heavy and growing closer and closer together. I looked at Eric in panic. “I think I am in labor!” This was at 10:00 AM. We walked to the shower and I pathetically washed myself. I sat on the bottom of the shower and I let the water wash over my body. I had no energy, and no will to stand up. Finally I willed myself back into bed and the pain started to really come. I had studied Hypnobabies (the birthing program) so fortunately I was able to really breath through the pain.

Soon my beautiful Family started to roll in like warriors coming to be by my side and fight through this battle with me. First my Mother in Law who looked very serious about making sure we got through this in one piece. Next, My sister in Law. I will never forget that hug she gave me. She walked in, put her arms around me and held me so tight. She looked at me and I knew what she was feeling and thinking. It is only a feeling two Mamas who love their babies more than anything could share in that experience and moment. She understood my pain, and I could tell she felt it with me. Next my amazing Doula and midwife arrived. I had the best support team ever right there, and in that tragic moment I felt loved and I felt safe. I thought through the entire experience “I wish this team was here with me to welcome a healthy ALIVE BABY. This is absolutely bitter sweet. More bitter than sweet.” I had the set up for my dream birth experience. It felt like a waste.

Between contractions I heard a very familiar and beautiful voice outside of my room. It was my Scarlett. My dear best friend had watched Scarlett the night before when we left for the hospital and brought her in. Scarlett looked terrified to see me. I remember watching her beautiful long legs hesitantly make their way into the room. “Mommy do you have ouchies? What’s the matter Mommy? Is my Mommy hurt?” I did not want her to be scared, I did not want her to be worried for Mommy, but I did want her to know what had happened. I wanted her to have a realistic idea and understanding that her brother did in fact die. We grappled and struggled with how we would tell her. Do we tell her her brother is sleeping forever? Do we tell her that he is flying around in the sky with angels? Eric and I are still figuring out our answers to her about life after death and how we want to raise her. We had no idea how to bring this news to our 4 year old. How would she understand?

I will never forget her sweet little face with tears rolling down her cheeks. “My Mommy has ouchies?” She kept asking as she rubbed my arms. I leaned over the bed to kiss her. “Yes sweet heart, Mommy has ouchies in her heart. Mommy is very very sad. Baby Jack is gone.” I didn’t know how else to tell her. I was so lost. I decided that after Jack was delivered we would show him to her and tell her that he was Dead. Would this be to much for a 4 year old? I thought it would bring her closure and to also help her to remember that she did have a brother at one point. I did not want to confuse her with such words as “gone” “asleep” “away.” This is an area I still struggle to explain to her to this day, but she does know that Baby Jack no longer lives.

As my family got settled into the waiting room I started to get settled back into labor. No one knew I was actually in labor!  I channelled my Hypnobabies practice and went way deep into myself. The pain was very mild. I was very quiet, and kept my eyes shut. Finally the nurses suggest that I get in the tub and relax. I stayed there with Eric for 45 minutes. He rubbed my back and trickled water over my belly. I opened my tear filled eyes and said to him “I wish this was different. I wish this was us welcoming our son into the world honey. I wish I could feel him move inside of me, and I wish this moment right here was a moment full of joy.” Eric looked at me with his tear filled eyes and nodded “This just isn’t fair. None of this is right. I am hurting for you and for our baby.” I went back into my breathing and Eric went back to comforting me.

We decided to get out of the bath and get ready for this baby to come out. Finally I stopped the tears and I got lazer focused on getting this job done. I just wanted it all to be over with. The nurses said it could take days. I was not interested in that happening. I wanted this done right then and there, and I could tell my body was ready. I looked up at my nurse and said “I don’t have to go through pain for this labor. I don’t want to. I am terrified, and just so sad. Please give me the epidural.” She quickly gave me Stay dal and told me the epidural was coming. Soon the hospital Chaplin entered the room. By this time the Stay dal had hit me hard and I was completely out of it. Eric reports that I asked her where her jack was from and giggled when she prayed. Not my finest hour or my most shining moment, but who can blame me!? At that very moment I was numbed to sadness and felt pure anger at the world and at God. She was just the messenger and I basically shot her with my giggles and my lack of care attitude. After she left the room got quiet again and I went back to work.

All of sudden I felt my contractions go from 5 to 10. I screamed “oh please where is that epidural!?!” The nurse checked me “Okay Anita there is not cervix left, we don’t have time for an epidural. I had no idea you were this far along.” I had gone from a 4 to a 10 in an hour. It was time!

Imagine the pains of active labor. Imagine the pains of losing your son. Imagine combining those two things together. I will never forget that hour of my life. I will never forget that sorrow. I screamed in pure emotional agony, and I screamed in physical pain. My Doula holding my arms whispering “you can do this Anita, you can do this.” My sister in law rubbing my shoulder encouraging me. My midwife preparing herself for the baby to arrive. Two pushes. Two agonizing forceful pushes. And he was here, and there I was… exhausted and empty. I looked through my legs to see his lifeless body lay there. I could see his blue back. He was the color blue. I could see the cord wrapped around his neck three times. “Anita, do you want to hold him.” I shook my head no out of fear. I laid back and I sobbed as Eric grabbed him…

and then the love poured in. “Okay please give him to me.” As his body was placed on my chest, the knife was pierced into my chest and then it was turned. I thought I knew pain before…

 

This… this was the absolute most painful moment of my life, and I believe if forever will be. 13588914_10209864044939253_1774116018_o

please stay tuned for part 3

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My 30 Day Fitness Progress

OH HECK YESSSSS! THE RESULTS ARE IN ! 30 DAYS BABY!

 

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30 days

 

 

I am very glad I snapped these photos of myself. The scale is not proof of progress! Photos and how your clothes fit YES! I have not dropped major lbs on the scale, but I can see a major change in my photos! This is 1.5 months post birth, and 1 month progress. I have followed The 21 Day Fix Extreme along with a few extra workouts throughout the week (walking the dogs, pilates and abs at night). I have followed the 21 Day Fix portions and replaced 1 meal a day with Shakeology!

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This is the plan I followed when I lost my first batch of baby weight 4 years ago, and it still works for me today!
The journey continues forward as I still have some baby weight to lose this summer. I am looking for people to hold me accountable and to go through this journey with me!!

 

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My next Summer Slim Down Challenge group will start in just 2 weeks! If you are on a mission like I am and would like the plan that I am using and would like to join me in my challenge group please fill out an application below!!

I am only taking 10 ladies so act fast!!!

 

Guilt FREE Mom

I was enjoying myself with my friends and family. Having a grand ole’ time when suddenly GUILT TOOK OVER ! I felt tremendous guilt for having so much light hearted fun. I felt guilt for not thinking about Jack or worrying about my daughter. Once I talked some sense into myself I realized other Mom’s must feel this way on occasion? I cannot be the only one?! I cannot be the only Mommy who gets consumed with the “I SHOULDS “AND “I SHOULD NOTS”. So I was inspired to write this post! Thanks a lot Baby Jack for inspiring me yet again!
Guilt.
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That word has plagued me a lot lately. Before losing Jack the guilt came in a few different forms. Mostly around not being a good enough Mother, not being a good enough Wife or not working hard enough in my business. I think that is a feeling that many of us feel as Women. GUILT. We are taught to think and behave a certain way according to the standards society has set for us. We are taught that we need to feel a certain way, be a certain way, have certain things perfectly organized… shit, have brownies made for school events all the while making sure your hubby gets a proper foot rub in before bed! Oh and … work a full time job! There is just to much out there for us to grab at to be become MORE PERFECT. I have a should and should not list that lives on repeat in my head and it drives me crazy.
These list could go on and on and we can constantly aim to be more and more perfect… but when does it become enough? When is our best good enough? Ive learned through losing my son that the things that were causing me to feel guilt and as if I were not good enough were absolutely petty. No one else in the world felt like I needed to be doing more… I was the only one putting that pressure on myself. I was deciding for myself that I needed to be better in all of the areas, and my good was not good enough. That type of pressure can eat you ALIVE, and steal all of your joy.
I would have thoughts like “you are just not quit thin enough.” “you are just not quit smart enough.” “Who will read your writing, you aren’t quite talented enough.” “You aren’t quite affectionate enough to your family. Gotta get better at that.” “You aren’t quite loving enough towards your husband. Gotta get better at that.” I remember a moment when Scarlett would not cooperate and get up and go to school for me. She threw a massive tantrum, she threw things at me, she refused to listen. I had been up very late, lacked sleep, and lacked patience. We had had a long weekend together and I was exactly feeling peaceful and upbeat. She snapped, and I got right on her level and snapped back. I yelled at my 4 year old. I started to toss things around my house, I started to yell and shout. I started to yell just as loud as she was. Once I came to my senses the guilt ate me alive!! “Anita you should have been BETTER in that moment. You are a terrible Mom!” I used hurtful words to myself and I was hard on myself for the rest of my day. I was a very imperfect Mom in that Moment. There were many days in her 3’s that I reacted to her in that way and I would call myself “Bad Mom.” I look back on those days now and realize… Scarlett does not remember. She had no idea that I lost my cool in those moments. She does remember me hugging her, loving her and doing my very best. So am I a bad Mom? Absolutely NOT. I am a Good no… Great MOM who had a real human moment and lost my cool. She survived, I survived and we are doing okay! We are doing better than OKAY. When it was happening I slapped myself with a giant BAD MOM LABEL and let the guilt take over. But alas… we are okay. The okayiest I have ever been, and she is a rock star of a little girl who knows her Mommy loves her.
I am learning that right where I am, in this moment and the effort I put forward IS GOOD ENOUGH. I am strong enough, present enough, smart enough, happy enough, I am a good enough Mother and I am a good enough Wife. The small stuff… it isn’t worth my mental energy to sweat. I was talking to a good friend today about feeling self conscious walking up to a crowd of people and talking to them. I realized while sharing with her, that I no longer feel afraid to put myself out there. I have quickly stopped caring what other people think, because I stopped caring so much what I think about myself, which in turn makes other people think I am more confident and out going… which is what I wanted all along anyway!
This weekend I felt guilty about having fun. It was the 4th of July holiday and I was spending countless hours reminding myself that I should not be smiling so much and laughing so much. I just lost my son not much more than a month ago and here I am laughing and having the time of my life with my friends and family. Through the weekend a sudden thought came over me.. “Would your Son want you to be miserable on his behalf or would he want you to have fun? Your son is not living on this earth and you are. Bringing honor to his life by laughing and smiling… thats a good thing.” So another moment of guilt … and I squashed it.
So Mom’s of the world, lets make an aggreement and learn from my Son! The people you love and the people who love you are not expecting all of these “shoulds” and “should nots” from you. They are not expecting you to be as perfect as you expect your self to be. Would you talk to your friends and loved ones the way you talk to yourself? No way! You would show the some grace! So lets do that together. Lets show ourselves some more grace.

July 4th : Mission Stay on Track!

Who’s on a mission to maintain progress through this holiday weekend?!?

I have been on one heck of a health and fitness mission since having Baby Jack. Mostly because I am really focused on losing the baby weight so that I can get pregnant again and feel comfortable in my own skin while gaining more baby weight!

So here is my game plan for staying on track today! Who’s with me?!

1. Drink water non stop
2. Coffee and tea early in the day!
3. If you must have a drink go for vodka and a sugar free mixer and limit yourself to 1 or 2 at the end of the night! If you must have 1 glass of wine, not the bottle!
4. Stay active all day!

5. Eat all of the veggies!!
6. Do not starve yourself until you get to your party! Eat your usual meals!
7. Make it public that you are on a mission to stay on track!
8. If people get aggressive about you eating their food, tell them you’re allergic!
9. Get a good workout in first thing in the morning!13532958_10209765992968015_7937414339854600934_n
10. Take a photo of yourself this morning and remind yourself of how good you feel and are looking on your meal plan!
11. Those foods will be there when you hit your fitness goals!
12. Chew Sugar Free gum!
13. Have a taste of the foods you want, just don’t eat full servings of everything!
14. Find a diet accountability partner that will be at the party!
15. Remember you are there for the company not the food!

Remembering Jack Pt. 1

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Tomorrow is Baby Jack’s memorial. We have decided to host a very small BBQ with just our close family. I am not exactly sure why I wanted it this way, but it is what my heart is telling me to do. Go small and simple. Instead of planning a larger event to celebrate the life of my Son I wanted to have a few peaceful days at home with the people who spent the most time around him… I also wanted to have some days of peace to really just remember him and the day I had with him.

 

Oh the day I had with him. The most precious day that I would pay all of the money in my bank account to repeat over and over again. I would give anything to just see him, hold him, hug him, hear him breath.

Every night hands clasped tightly, eyes heavy, his ashes pressed against my heart. Every single night I fall asleep thinking about his face, his lips, his cheeks and in every passing moment I strive to hang on to the memory I have of my son Jack. In 12 days his due date will come and go! I am absolutely not looking forward to that day. Most Mama’s I talk to about infant loss tell me that is the most terrible day. It seems like each day it is becoming harder and harder to remember his eyes, nose and cheeks. I find myself staring at his photos more and more these days as I work to keep him fresh in my mind. It brings me so much pain to think that I could be beginning to forget my Son. One thing that does not leave my memory is the chilling cold touch of his life less lips touching mine. It was like ice… the most beautiful precious ice. I remember just rubbing my lips against his for head and singing to him. I watched my tears splash is porcaline face. I listened to my husband pace the room in tears as I sang “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star with gut wrenching pain in my heart.” I would stare at his lips wishing they were full of pink color rather than that terrible dark dark red.

“Mommy will never forget you. You are my star in the sky. I love you so so much.” I repeated for a solid 30 minutes straight as I knew my time with my baby was coming to an end. I knew in a matter of minutes the nurse would be back to take him away and that would be the very last moment I would have with that beautiful creature. I enjoyed 8 months of his life inside of me and all I got was 1 day with him in my arms. I will never forget those 48 hours as they were both the most painful hours of my life and the most beautiful hours of my life.

 

“I am so sorry, I cannot find a heart beat.” When I heard those words come out of the nurses lips that late night I came un raveled. I came un done. I think I might have felt my heart explode like a fire work into my chest. I felt the most disturbing type of pain run its way from my throat to my heart and down into my stomach. I laid back on the table and I howled. I laid back on the table and I screamed. I help Eric’s hands and I begged him “Please Eric pllleeeeaassee Nooo. Tell me this isn’t happening. My poor poor baby. My poor son!” Eric tells me today that the noises, the weeps, the cries and the moans that came from my body were something completely out of this world. He told me I sounded like an animal in horrific pain. He said that is officially the type of noise that only a Woman losing her child would make and he would never ever forget it. I don’t think I could forget it either.

 

I looked around in panic as I started to come out of the crying spells. I looked at the nurse and I realized I would have to deliver this baby. I realized that I would have to deliver a full term sized baby and give him right back to the earth. There would be no months and day so cuddles, nursing, laughter and life. There would only be sadness after the pain. Lets all just be real here… child birth is painful. It is one of the most intense animalistic pains you will ever feel. I knew from my experience with Scarlett’s birth that I was in for one hell of a ride. Terror came over me. Sheer panic coursed through my veins. “Please just vie me a C- Section! Please just take him out of me. I don’t want to feel that pain for no reason. I don’t want to labor for nothing! This is horrible just fucking terrible!!”. I started to hyperventilate. I could not control my anger, my sadness or my panic. Finally I was given something for the anxiety. “Anita you are going to be induced. It is the best option for you and your future. I am so sorry that you have to go through this pain. We will do whatever possible to make this a painless experience.” I know that the nurses were doing their best to make me feel better. But there was nothing that they could say to take away the fact that I was going to give birth the next morning, to a deceased baby.

 

After it was decided that I would be induced I was wheeled into a different room with a large bed and a small couch for poor Eric. Oh poor poor Eric! He has had to sleep on those little beds to many times now! My Mother in law came through the door and I instantly felt a sense of peace. She hugged us and told us that everything was going to be okay. She has a really great way of making every one around her feel like everything is going to be okay! That’s Karen! She is a lady in charge and always makes sure she gets shit done! She came in the room and we felt like… Okay Karen is here… things are going to be okay. Thats when I was given the pills to be induced and I fell fast asleep. I remember holding my belly and rubbing Jack’s body. I remember tears flowing hard as I caressed the outline of his body under my skin. I remember willing him to come back to life. I remember begging him to wake up.

 

At 3 AM I woke up to contractions but they were mild. I opened my eyes and the pain and panic settled in as soon as my brain came to. I ran into the bathroom and I threw up. I sat on the bathroom floor and I sobbed. I begged him to come back to life. I begged him with every inch of my soul to come back to Mommy. I looked up at the ceiling and I cursed a God that I felt like I had left me. “Are you there dude? Did you just dip out on us? Why us? Why him? Why me? Why now?” I have to admit I said some pretty salty things to God that night… and sadly that night I felt like there was no God! Finally sleep over took my body and I crawled back into bed. As I was climbing back into my bed my new Nurse entered the room and started to take my vitals. She could see my suffering and she stood over me and rubbed my back and whispered something into my ears. I do not remember what she said, but it calmed my soul and put me back to sleep.

 

…. and then it was 9 AM