Sunday, December 12, 2010

Remembering Your Cousin

Dear Pickles,

Your mommy and daddy received some very sad news recently about your cousin, Brady.  He passed away suddenly on Dec. 10th after five months of receiving treatment for his congenital heart condition.  Your cousin was born on July 19th and had been in the hospital since he was born.  His heart condition, right atrial isomerism, required several surgeries and related treatment.  Even though the treatment he received was hard, he was a little fighter.  I wish you could have met him.  He was such a cute and happy little guy.  Even though he was a baby, he changed a lot of people's lives, bringing our family and community closer together.

Me and Brady 2

Jason and Brady

Your Aunt Barbara was by Brady's side since the day he born, and she held him in her arms the day that he died.  She is the strongest, most amazing mother I know.  I know the pain I am feeling now over the loss of Brady -- and it hurts.  I can only imagine the pain that she is feeling as well.  But Pickles, even though so many people are hurting over his loss, we also feel blessed.  We feel blessed and comforted in the fact that we had the opportunity and the privilege of knowing Brady and having him in our lives.  Although his time with us was short, it was time that we will always cherish.

Well, Alright

Losing Brady has opened my eyes to the challenge and blessing of being a parent.  Brady has made me and your daddy see both the hopes and fears we have for you already.  All we want for you is to be a healthy and happy baby.  We know that you are our own little blessing.  Your daddy and I already love you so much-- and we haven't even met you yet.  I can't promise that I'll be the perfect mother, but if I can give you all the love that Aunt Barbara gave to Brady, I know I'll be on the right track.



Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Our Baby Has a Face!

Dear Pickles,

On November 30th, I went in for my second ultrasound.  It was the second time mommy got to see you.  You grew so much in three weeks, kid!  Instead of a cute little pickle shape, you now have a face, a body, and arms and legs.  You're officially a little person!  When the sonographer brought you up on the television screen in the doctor's office, I could see you jumping around as she tried to find you.  Your heart beat sounded so strong, too.  You were just the most precious thing I had ever seen.  It was a very emotional moment for me (and it didn't help that the sonographer had Sara by Jefferson Starship playing in the background).  What can I say?  Your mom is a sucker for 80s music.

Pickles at 10 1/2 Weeks

Pickles at 10 1/2 weeks
Keep growing little Pickles.  Mommy and daddy can't wait to meet you.



Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Human Science Experiment

Dear Pickles,

Being pregnant with you is like being a human science experiment.  It's so neat to see my body change and react to you growing inside of me, sweet baby. 

I would have to say that my favorite part of this first trimester have been my pregnancy cravings.  You can ask daddy, mommy usually likes to eat healthy and doesn't think a meal is complete without at least one serving of vegetables on my plate.  But when I became pregnant with you, my taste buds changed drastically.  Here are are a few lists containing my new relationship with food as of late:

My dislikes:
  • Chicken
  • Anything that smells like meat
My new favorites:
  • Cottage cheese with pepper
  • Orange juice
  • Strawberry milk
  • Chocolate milk
  • Rice crispy treats
  • Anything Chef Boyardee
Foods I miss but can't have:
  • Sashimi (raw fish)
  • Chai tea (unless it's decaf)
  • Hot dogs
  • Sub sandwiches (no deli meat)

First Trimester

Mommy's doodle
Another thing I discovered in the first trimester is that I can't clean my ears with a Q tip.  One day after taking a shower, I started to stick a Q tip in my ear, like I usually do after showering, when I suddenly began to dry heave.  I dry heaved so hard that my eyes were watering and my nose began to run.  I decided right then and there NOT to attempt to clean my ears again until I reached my second trimester.  Until then, I would use a wash cloth.

One bonus to becoming nice and round with you have been maternity pants.  These pants are made with a built in belly band and don't use a button or a zipper.  As soon as I put them on, I was in heaven.  I am seriously thinking about sporting maternity pants for the rest of my life (even if I'm not pregnant).  Hope you don't think mommy is too crazy for falling in love with her maternity pants.



Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sneak Peek of Pickles

Dear Pickles,

On Nov. 5, 2010, I got to see you for the first time. I had an appointment with the the fertility doctor to confirm your existence. Daddy had to work, so I got to see you all by myself.

There I was in the doctor's office with hospital gown on, looking at the ultrasound monitor. It was all black, then suddenly, there you were. I could see you on the screen. I could hear your heart beat. There you were, a little piece of me and daddy.

Introducing Pickles Patten

Ta-da! It's Baby Pickles!

"Oh, what a cute baby," the doctor said. She performed all her checks to make sure that things were as they should be.

"The heart sounds good. It's beating at 140 beats per minute," she said. "Congratulations! You've officially graduated from the infertility clinic."

Another View of Pickles

I had no idea human babies had yolk sacs.

It happened so quickly. The doctor congratulated me again and handed me your first photos. I took a snap shot of you and sent it to your father on my cell phone. I knew that he couldn't wait to see and hear all about you.

As I was leaving the hospital, I had a smile on my face, but I was surprised that I didn't have any tears of joy.

As I drove away from the hospital, I heard my phone beep. I received a text message from your daddy. He wrote:

That is the most amazing thing I have ever seen. I love you.

I called him, but he did not answer the phone, so I decided to leave a voice message for him instead. As I tried to speak, a rush of emotion came over me. I could barely leave your daddy a message through all my sniffling and carrying on.

Pickles Up Close

Don't be mad, Pickles.  This is all done in love.

The tears would not stop following. I was so wonderfully happy and so in love with your father at that moment. I knew that he was going to love you so much and be the best father that he could be. We can't wait to meet you Baby Pickles and share all this love we have to give to you.



Thursday, November 18, 2010

And So It Begins...

Dear Pickles,

On Oct. 21, 2010, just after midnight, your daddy and I took a pregnancy test.

We had been trying for over a year to have a baby... We even saw a fertility doctor who tested your father and I over the course of a few months and reported that nothing was wrong with either one of us. There was simply no explanation for our inability to get pregnant except timing. As you can imagine, this was both a relief and a frustration. (I had almost gotten to the point of giving up and getting a dog instead.) But something about this time was different. It just seemed to click that this time, the results would be different.

We waited three minutes for the results to appear on the pregnancy test. I made your father go in to the bathroom and check the results.

"What do the lines mean again?" he asked, toying with me.

"One line means you're not pregnant; two lines mean you are pregnant," I said excitedly.

"Hmm, you better check it," he said.

The Sticks...

I walked into the bathroom and saw two pink lines. "Oh my god!!! We're going to be somebody's parents!!!" I yelled.

"Hold on, hold on," your daddy said. "Take the test again in the morning just to be sure."

First thing in the morning, I took the test again. Lo and behold, two more pink lines.

"Face it, Patten. You're my baby's daddy," I joked with your father.

On Oct. 25, 2010, I scheduled a blood test with the hospital. By 3 o'clock that afternoon, I got the following message from the nurse on my cellphone:

"Hello Diana... I wanted to let you know that the pregnancy test was definitely positive. The beta Hcg number was 8,746..." (The nurse had told me that morning that it needed to be at least a 5 to be considered pregnant.)

I was on cloud nine. I burst through the door and told your father, "It's official. I'm pregnant. I just got the news from the nurse."

"Are you kidding me? Are you kidding me?!" your father said excitedly.

We couldn't believe it. You were real. You were our baby. We called our family and closest friends to let them know the news. Little Pickles Patten would be changing our lives forever.


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