10/12/13

The two week wait, one year as a family, and going to the ballet

Technically, it's a 16 day wait since one of the medications I took can give a false positive on a pregnancy test if you take it too early. 16 days to find out if IUI #1 worked and a little baby Burden is on the way. Deep breath.

If you didn't already see my update on facebook, the procedure went great. Oddly enough, this treatment for infertility wasn't nearly as "medical" as the tests for it were- specifically the HSG. Where that test was in a big sterile x-ray room with 2 nurses and a technician and I was in a stiff, scratchy hospital down, lying on a hard table, the IUI took place in a small, clean, cozy room at our fertility clinic with just me, John, and a very kind nurse. Quick, quiet, and almost painless. After the procedure I had to lay with my hips elevated for 15 minutes; the nurse left us alone together and it was exciting to just laugh and dream together as we watched those minutes pass by. When I started this journey someone challenged me to make this journey as beautiful as possible and during those 15 minutes I felt like we took some of the "medical-ness" out and injected a good dose of intimacy, joy, and beauty in its place.

With the procedure behind us, all we have left to do is wait.

I've spend a good deal of my life waiting for something (immigration, adoption, now pregnancy) and probably the most important thing I've learned to tell myself is this:

Don't wish your life away.

Time is precious. Though I want these next 16 days to go by quickly, I don't want to wish them away. I want to live the days I've been given. Fully.

On Thursday I asked you all for your best advice on waiting. Your responses came in three categories:

1. Pick up a hobby
2. Volunteer
3. Enjoy time with friends and family

Mostly coincidentally, I have things in all those categories planned for the next two weeks. I had been looking at them as things to get through until I can take that pregnancy test, but you all helped me change my viewpoint. They are not things to get through. They are ways to live. Ways to make beautiful use of this time. Ways to invest in the hours I've been given instead of wishing them away.

Last night all the anxiety of the two week wait faded into the background as John, Arie and I celebrated one year since our court date in Moscow. One year since the judge said da and made us a family! It was actually the most anxiety producing experience of my life, that court date, but also the most joyful. I remember flying up from the depth of fear to the hight of ecstasy when we finally became Arie's parents and knew that no one could take him away from us!

We celebrated be doing something Russian: going to a ballet.
I won't tell you how many attempts with the self-timer it took to get this picture. ;-)
First we went to dinner and we were able to sit outside which in October in Michigan is always a treat. We tried a new restaurant after some recommendations and it lived up to the hype. John ordered the duck and Arie spent the next 15 minutes asking us where the "ducky" was. #parentingfail. (But it was delicious. And worth it.)

We spent $5 on grilled cheese for Arie and he only ate the chips that came as a side. Probably the most expensive chips he's ever eaten, but they enabled him to sit and enjoy for over an hour which in my opinion is well worth it. His favorite part? Cheersing! To himself of course!
"To Arie!" 

I cannot overstate how much fun we had taking Arie to the ballet performance. It was called "Mother Goose and Friends" and featured a half dozen or so nursery rhymes. As we drove to the theater and searched for a parking spot he asked over and over again, "Awie see a ballet-rina?? A ballet show?? A ballet-rina dancing??"

As we approached the theater he made us smile by gasping, "A HOUSE!!" with glee- one of the biggest "houses" he's ever seen! Apparently we need to teach him the word "building."

Inside the theater, he was enthralled with both the program and the stage curtains. The program featured a picture of the "three blind mice" which delighted his imagination. "I see a mouses?? Three mouses Mama? Three??" And then, "A curtain open? A dark? A open? I see mouse?"

Before the show began, the artistic director came forward to welcome us. A Hungarian native, his Eastern European accent brought back a flood of memories of our time in Moscow. He wished the quiet audience a good night with, "Enjoy the show!" and Arie yelled back, "AMEN!" Ha! He got a few chuckles with that.

When theater finally went dark, the enormous navy velvet curtains parted, and the room became engulfed in music, I watched the stage lights reflect in my little's boy's eyes. His mouth opened wide and he whispered a magical, "Wow!!" My own eyes pricked with tears as I watched him delight in the show. The dancing, the costumes, and music- his body leaned forward with rapt attention, each hand grasping one of ours. To think a year ago his days flowed one into the next, the monotonous routine of his orphanage, with no one's hand to hold, and here we were- a family- delighting in the very best of what this world has to offer.

It is an incredible blessing for all of us.

Arie's favorite part of the performance was "a egg!" Humpty Dumpty, being chased hilariously across the stage by an army of the king's men. The audience roared with laugher at the antics and Arie squealed along in delight. The show included two more performances after the nursery rhymes: one with a female cast and one entirely male ballet. John and I loved these two more mature performances but Arie kept whispering to me, "More egg??"

This morning during breakfast he seemed to suddenly remember the ballet and exclaimed with a mouth full of pancake, "THREE MICE!!"

If we hadn't adopted a little Russian, I don't know if we would have ever considered going to the ballet with a three-year-old. It is so much fun to invest in these cultural experiences. It certainly made day one of the two week wait go by quickly and with great joy.

Now for day two... :-)

xo

11 comments:

  1. SO fun! We have tickets to take our (almost) two year old to the ballet in April. We'll see how that one goes. :-) Thankfully it's a children's production of the "Carnival of the Animals" and we hope he enjoys it! :)

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    1. There was a little boy who couldn't have been more than 2 in the row I front of us! He loved it and lasted about an hour... I was impressed! Have fun at your in the spring!!

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  2. Anonymous10/12/2013

    this little boy is gorgeous!!! how can you resist thes eyes ?? ;)
    nicole

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  3. Wishing you all the best with this IUI! Also, I don't know if you do this sort of thing (and I'm totally not offended if you don't) - but I wanted to let you know I've nominated you for a "Sunshine Award." Thanks for doing what you do! http://eliscorner.wordpress.com/2013/10/12/sunshine-award/

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  4. Jill, you have the patience of a SAINT! I always test out the trigger because there's no way I could wait until 16DPT to test! I hope that you fill fully and joyfully during this 2WW!

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    1. Ha! I thought about doing that, but I think it would make me too anxious! I am trying to put it in the back of my mind as much as possible!

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  5. It is so thrilling to see how Arie has adapted to life as your son, and how far he has come in a year! He is absolutely precious and it warms my heart to see him take in, with awestruck wonder, each new experience. I am praying that your treatments will result in a pregnancy so you can give him a little brother or sister! I know he would be a great older brother! Thank you for continuing to share your story with us! God bless!

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  6. Jill- I was just reading through comments on nogreaterjoy's post and just wanted to let you know that I think you handled all of the pushback very well. Things seemed to escalate unnecessarily but you handled it all with such grace and explained yourself so well. Much better than I would have done. Truth and grace. Well done. Just wanted to jump on here to let you know that I appreciated how you handled it and all you had to say. :) And it looks like you're in the middle of a very exciting and anxiety-producing season- good luck with waiting!

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    1. Thank you so much Sarah for the encouragement!

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  7. Oh such a wonderful post!!! Arie looks SO happy with you guys - you are truly a family! It is so wonderful to see how the expressions on his face have changed over the past year or more - he just looks ecstatic. Love it.

    I hope your 2WW is continuing to go well - we're thinking of you and I'm saying prayers everything works out well! -- Karen R.

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    1. Love those prayers! About halfway through now... so far so good!

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