Are we parents yet?

The Clements’ IVF Journey

Going into week 19!! July 1, 2009

Filed under: Weekly — Aria @ 10:24 am

Vernix caseosa, a greasy white substance made of lanugo, oil and dead skin cells (yum) now coats baby’s skin, shielding it from the amniotic fluid. (Picture yourself after a nine-month bath, and the need for protection makes sense.) You might actually get to see the vernix at birth, especially if baby is premature.


Moving! June 28, 2009

Filed under: Happiness!,Off topic — Aria @ 2:23 pm

The papers are signed for us to move! We’re moving from a one-bedroom shoebox with one bathroom and a shared garage to a place with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a private garage, much more space. Both have certain amenities, such as in-unit washers and dryers, and dishwashers. So those can’t be compared. We’ll be giving up a fireplace, and it’ll be odd to me to not have one, but we can put a chiminea on the private patio and enjoy roasted marshmallows in winter that way.

And the difference in rent…both of these screen caps were taken a few minutes ago. Both are “luxury” units (if the place we’re in now can really qualify in more than just name…). This is just the cost of living difference between Silicon Valley and other areas. People in and around Santa Barbara think it’s so expensive living there? Nu-uh. Look:

Current unit:

New unit:

This means we’ll get to have a nursery and I’ll get to have a dedicated sewing room again! Right now all my sewing stuff is crammed into the “dining area” in the current unit. It was a trial training the dogs NOT to go there, and then a ton of vacuuming to keep fur away from everything. Now I’ll have a sewing room again! And we can get our nursery stuff set up. That makes me just so happy.

We’ll also be nearer to family, and NO MORE 100-DEGREE HEAT!!

Of course this will mean it’s tricky getting to my high school reunion. Well, I’m no good for moving anything anyway, so maybe I’ll go down on the 5th, sign the new lease on the 6th (only I have to sign), and while Cody & Co. get everything packed into the huge truck (how on earth was a 17-foot truck too small to move everything from our place prior to here to here?!) and driven down and unloaded, I can fly up to Portland. My best friend from high school has said I could stay with her, and there’s no way I want to miss getting to see her and actually go to the reunion unless I have to. Thanks to Facebook, I’ve been back in contact with old classmates, and it’s been wonderful seeing the people who were mean, teasing jerks who’ve turned into nice people, and even issues unsolicited apologies. High school may not have been happy times all around, but the positive changed in those less-than-nice classmates has been warming.

So I dodge the work for the weekend by going to Oregon? I think so. 🙂


Michael Jackson :( June 25, 2009

Filed under: Off topic — Aria @ 4:41 pm

I am beyond angry. For YEARS I’ve defended him. It’s so easy to get a child molestation charge to stick simply because people are so disgusted by it and want to blame someone. TWICE he was found NOT GUILTY. Yet the majority of people still declared him to be a molester. Know what? I was molested by a kid as a teenager, a male babysitter, and I still deal with issues from it. He was convicted/ So I understand wanting to blame someone! But there wasn’t enough, twice there wasn’t enough, to get convictions against Michael. This means something!!

And now that he’s dead, all of a sudden people are on his side and talking about how wonderful he was. WHERE THE HELL WAS THIS SUPPORT WHEN HE WAS ALIVE AND NEEDED THE SUPPORT?! This is what angers me. The lack of support he needed when alive, and it’s only coming out now that it won’t do him any good.

He and my mother has a very similar childhood, frighteningly similar. I’ve ha a soft spot in my heart for him for pretty much my entire life. He never got to have a childhood, and really, he never hurt anyone. He was the one who was hurt so much, but he didn’t pass that on. He stopped the cycle and tried to make life fun for kids the way his own childhood wasn’t. My mother did some similar things, trying to compensate for the childhood she didn’t get to have by trying to make sure my brother and I had the best childhoods possible with all the things she didn’t get to have. But this doesn’t mean Michael ever did anything to kids. He only tried to do good for people.

If I see any more pictures of Michael as a child, I’m going to cry. As it is, it’s hard not to my cry my eyes out. He really was a good guy. This is the first time ever that a celebrity’s passing has brought tears to my eyes.


17 weeks pregnant, and finally a noticeable bump?! June 24, 2009

Filed under: Pictures - Tummy — Aria @ 10:55 pm

BUMP! I think. 134 pounds this morning. Also I do have a belly-belly from dinner where I gorged on a huge cheese steak hoagie and finished half of Cody’s, as well as a large order of cheese fries, a large order or regular fries, an order of mozzarella cheese sticks, and then two bowls of cereal when we got home. But that, I hope, isn’t what accounts for my lower belly.

For having spent a year and a half literally starving myself almost to death and then feeling anxiety over having to gain weight from my low of 115, who’d have thought I’d be relieved to see a part of my getting bigger?! But I am. It’s like proof that there’s a baby in there. Ultrasound pictures are just pictures. This, somehow, feels like tangible proof.


This is now week…18!

Filed under: Weekly — Aria @ 8:39 am

Your fetus has become amazingly mobile (at least compared to you), passing the hours yawning, hiccuping, rolling, twisting, kicking, punching, sucking and swallowing. And, baby’s finally big enough that you’ll be able to feel those movements soon.


Kitten June 21, 2009

Filed under: Off topic — Aria @ 4:52 pm

I’m having a very hard time with this. It’s hard not to blame yourself when you’re the one holding a baby animal and she dies in your hands, even knowing there’s nothing that can really be done at this age. I’ve worked at a vet hospital. In addition to being excruciatingly costly, the outcome at 11 days is very poor to the point that usually it’s just said nothing can be done. I had hoped she would be another Luthien. When Emma had her pups, Luthien got very sick at three weeks and spent a week with breathing trouble and the vet wrote her off as nothing can be done, but, though she truly has some mild retardation, she made it and we kept her. She’s not the brightest crayon in the box, but she’s sure one of the sweetest. It was a week spent like that hour and 15 minutes today, an entire week of touch and go, but she made it, so I think having that comparison makes Grace harder to lose.

Here she is, still alive:

Star almost always purrs up a storm when laying with her babies. I have Gracie on the bed with me, and she meowed, so Star jumped up and took her away. It’s kind of hard to tell here, but she had her eyes closed really tight. She wasn’t purring and just hugged her baby, bathed her, hugged her more. It was so sad.

She’s still coming out to the living room looking for her. I’ve removed the baby from the litter just in case it’s contagious. When I woke up this morning, she was fine. They all were. So it was so shocking to walk in just an hour and a half or so later to see her struggling to breathe and her breaths very raspy.

I sent Cody a text that she was sick. He sent one back asking if we had another Luthien, and I had him call me. He’s not taking it too well either. When he gets home, I’ll wrap her in silk and then we’ll bury her. It may sound silly, but I can’t stomach just throwing an animal in the ground, and so always try to make a nice little burial box or wrapping. I’ve had many, many animals, and I’ve lost many, many animals, and I just can’t bury them in a way I don’t feel is dignified, even if straight into the ground is the natural way.

And it’s a bit harder because, when Yoda died, he wandered off to die alone, so we didn’t get to bury him (we actually had planned cremation). I’ve had him for so long that I still expect to see him walking around, and it’s been not even four whole weeks.

So I keep crying today.


Sadness – kitten died

Filed under: Off topic — Aria @ 1:08 pm

1:45pm: One of the little girl kittens died. I saw at about 12:30 she wasn’t doing so well, was cold, stuffed up, and wouldn’t eat, so I warmed her up and tried to unstuff her, but she didn’t make it. She died while I was holding her. Tomorrow is four weeks since Yoda went too. She was 11 days old, and he was almost 24 years old.

Also, before anyone asks, getting to an emergency vet on a Sunday is impossible when the one bus near you doesn’t run on Sundays and your fiance has the debit card with him.