Sixteen Weeks Post Partum – The 411

16-weeks-post-partum

16 weeks ago, God gifted me the most precious gift, my baby girl.  She is hands down the love of my life and I could not imagine how I lived or loved before her.

She is such a good baby and has the most pleasant disposition !  She is incredible.

She has amped up her conversation when she is spoken to or if you sing or read to her.  She laughs and giggles and smiles so…   Her latest milestone or developmental fete is that she completely rolls over and back.  She enjoys tummy time and she is not as cranky in her carseat anymore.  She travels a lot better !  Thank goodness.

This week, we are headed to NYC, as she has her 4 month well baby checkup and vaccines. I hated watching her get vaccinated last time, but realize it is necessary to keep her healthy. She did not cry long and she slept a lot after she got her vaccines.  I had given her Tylenol and Motrin before we went to help offset a fever.

In other news, our mother retired on Friday and also won her EEO complaint she filed against the new Director who started targeting female employees.  She is so happy to be a full time Grandmother now !  She says she and baby girl will be hitting the road and traveling the globe.

I am still losing weight… just a pound or two every few weeks.  I feel great.  I assume it is because I am nursing. I have to see my doctor this week because the front of my left leg is numb.  My sister thinks I have a pinched nerve.  We shall see…

I am trying to pull myself out of the dumps.  My make up artist / dear friend died on December 2nd and last week, my friend, comedian/ actor Ricky Harris passed away of a sudden heart attack.  I had just communicated with him two days prior.  I am labeling 2016 a serial killer !   I went to church this morning with my mom and the baby and it was announced at the end of service that one of our Ministers, Karen Hampton passed away after a long battle with cancer.  She was in the choir with me when I was there full time. I am so sick of hearing about death, I do not know what to do !

Anyway, Happy New Year to you all !   I am spending the day with my family and my sister and I are cooking a fabulous meal.

Advertisements

Life Really Sucks !!! – The 411

life sucks

So…… on top of all the other stuff that has been going on in my life of late :  Mom- cancer , Godmother- cancer, Me- 5 failed IVF cycles, Friend – son and grandmom dies same day in 2 different places, Friend- father dies, Best Friend – mother dies of cancer, Grandmother – advanced stage alzheimer, Me- packing up my mom’s house to move across country,  Me- filming TWO different shows for TV, Me- writing a book about my struggles with infertility  Me-  dealing with the anniversary of the loss of my baby, Me- working in other film projects….. okay, that is enough to drive any sane person INsane…. Guess what has happened now?

Friday, my spiritual advisor / spiritual mom/ the one who keeps me prayed up and has kept me sane throughout these last two years that I have been working on baby #1… one of the strongest women I know.. healthy as a horse… has a massive STROKE out of the blue.  She can not speak.  She has swelling on her brain and they are awaiting the swelling to go down before they can assess what is going on and the prognosis.  She is no where near out of the woods….

THEN…. my mom’s sister went into congestive heart failure yesterday morning and died in her home.

I am like WHAT NEXT JESUS?  Am I supposed to be the female Job now?  If so can you warn a sister?  I did NOT sign on for all this crap.  How strong do you really think I am?  Obviously pretty strong since you keep throwing stuff my way and I am STILL standing… STILL sane… and STILL faithful.   I am like, can you ease up off me a bit?  REALLY?  Can ya just do that?  I prayed for discernment.  I prayed for strength. I prayed for you to take me to the next level.  I prayed for covering and for blessings.   Um, I am giving you the benefit of the doubt since you can see a lot further than I can, but um, Lord God, I am struggling here !   I remind myself that this is so not about me.  There is a blessing in this and a testimony in this chaotic drama SOMEwhere… I just can not see it.

I will say this, all of this stuff happening is truly testing my faith and letting me know that I can ONLY rely on God.  The devil IS a liar from the fiery pit of hell !  Instead of all of this pulling me from God, it is making run to Him that much harder because I KNOW that I KNOW that I KNOW that God is good ALL the time, in spite of what I go through.  I have a covenant relationship with God and I KNOW that He has promised me that He would never take me to anything that He would not bring me through.  For that, I praise God’s Holy name.   He has ALWAYS brought me through every trial and tribulation in my life and I am ALWAYS the better for it.

How people who have no faith get through life, I have no clue.  But when I tell you God will wipe away EVERY tear and He will give you double for your trouble, He WILL !  He has proven that to me every time I have ever gone through hell on Earth.  When my wedding was called off and all hell broke loose in my life, I NEVER thought I would get over that and be able to move forward, but God brought me through that I was able to see in the end that God saved my life by removing that man from my life.  He saved me from headache, heartache and a eventual divorce.  Marrying a man I did not love JUST so that I could have my wedding, baby etc, would have been the worse mistake I ever made.

I am standing in the gap and praying for the complete healing and restoration of Reverend Nawanna Lewis-Miller.

As for the passing of my Aunt, we have yet to tell my Grandmother.  My mom is worried about how she will handle it.  The coroner is performing an autopsy to rule out foul play and then her body will be sent to a funeral home and she will be cremated, per her wishes.  My Aunt was mentally ill and has been the black sheep of the family her whole life.  She made my Grandparent’s lives HELL for as long as I could remember.  I often found myself questioning God as to why He would allow people like her to live when there is no obvious purpose to her life other than to hell-hack and scam people.  Why do you allow hurt, harm and death to come to good people and people like her walk around seemingly happy?   There is a purpose under the sun, but I never saw what it was… I guess the lesson was not meant for me.

I just pray that when my mom does tell my Grandmother (she will after everything is done so that she will not flip out about wanting to run down to NC to be in the middle of all this) that she does not get very depressed and start wilding out.  I do not have time for that drama.  The smallest thing can set off an alzheimers patient.  It could really throw her into a whirlwind and she will have exacerbated symptoms.  She has forgotten a lot of people and things, and seems much happier and content.  She has not had a blow up in months.  She has not mentioned my Aunt in several months so I wonder if she even remembers her.  She has forgotten her pastor’s name.  When you mention other people to her she does not remember them.  To me, this disease is disturbing.  It is truly frightening that brain cells die and effects the memory to the point that they forget life.  I pity her.

Please join me in lifting Rev. Miller and my family in prayer for healing and peace ~

IVF # 5 Stim Day 15 – The 411

ivf 5 - meds 2

Today is my 15th day of stims !   One more week to go before retrieval !!  Woot Woot !

I got up this morning and did my morning injections of Ganirelix, Lovenox, and Neupogen, popped the Prednisone and ran out to my early am monitoring appointments.   I got my scan done and my follicles are finally starting to grow.  I have a 12mm as the largest.  I have 9 on the right and another 4 on left so far.  I am to stay on my same meds and then go back for scans and more blood work on Monday and again on Wednesday.  I will possibly trigger on Wednesday, depending on how things look and report to Albany on Friday for retrieval and then a transfer on the following Monday or Tuesday.

ivf 5 - follicular stim day 15

I had to order more meds as I was out of Ganirelix since I have been taking it for 15 days now.  I was able to get two boxes from another patient and got five more from another patient who are on the Facebook support group boards I am on. Why pay the pharmacy $250 per box when I can get them from other patients for $50?  #diapermoneyforlater

Now that I am no longer injecting the delestrogen and my estradiol levels are dropping to normal range, I am not as tired as I have been.  Then again, I have been stressed and sleeping more, so that could be why I am not as tired.

My friend, Cristal, who lost her son and grandmom this week and my best friend, Gary, who’s mom has stage four cancer, have both launched funding campaigns that I am promoting, so I have not had much time to work on my book this week with that and all the documentation I had to pull together for the network submission of my show.  I have to tape additional segments this week and get them to the editor to revise the sizzle reel plus tape an interview.

Tomorrow, I am attending a class at Howard University School of Divinity that my dear friend, Pastor Nawanna Lewis-Miller is hosting.   I am really looking forward to attending the class with my mother.  I hate that I will not have the time to do acupuncture tomorrow, but I will try to get an appointment and go on Tuesday in the middle of the morning. Parking is so horrendous in DC during the week….

Tonight, I will be injecting 175 units of Follistim and 37.5 units of the Menopur.  My tummy is starting to look black and blue and depending on which med I am injecting, since the needles are different, I am noticing that I am bleeding a lot.  The Lovenox is the culprit !  I am being very careful not to bump into things or fall since I bruise so easily on Lovenox.

Have a great weekend !!

IVF # 5 – Stim Day 13 – The 411

IVF 5 - Keep Calm Keep Stimming

Today is exactly one year from the day I did my first IVF transfer, which resulted in the conception of my daughter.  It is such a hard time.  I remember how full of hope I was and how sure I was I was going to be successful.  I was.. it just did not last !

I got up this morning, did my morning injections of Ganirelix, Neupogen and Lovenox. I went to the imaging center and had the longest, most uncomfortable transvaginal ultrasound of my life !   The new nurse was taking forever.  I felt like I had been molested by the time she got through twirling that thing in my hoo-hah !   It can not take anyone THAT long to look at a uterus, two ovaries and a lining !

Anywhoo…  My follicles are still small. The largest being 8 cm.  It has to triple in size before I will be ready to trigger.  The nurse called saying that I have 10 small ones on the right, three measurable, and on the left there are 2-3 small ones and two measurable so far.   They have increased the Follistim to 175 units and I am to stay on the same amount of Menopur as well as the other meds.  I go back on Friday to get checked again.

ivf 5 - stim day 13 scan 1                                 ivf 5 - stim day 13 scan 1

Now that my follicles are growing slowly, I am running a slight chance of missing Jared and his grandmother’s funerals.  The homegoing services are going to be on next Thursday morning and will be in the Bronx, which is good because I can take the train in to Manhattan and get a car service to the chapel then hop back on the train from Manhattan to Albany, if it is time for me to head there.

My friend just called me saying that the expenses are getting out of hand quickly and wants me to set up a GoFundMe account to help raise funds.  I am very conflicted about this because I am always VERY irked when people start these funds to pay for expenses they should be responsible for.  Preparing for death and life are things you have to take into account and make sure you have ample insurance for.  I more often than not decline invitations to fund these because I sacrifice about $400 per month in life insurance so that should something happen to me, my family will receive close to 1.85 million dollars. They have been instructed to cremate me and not waste my money on an elaborate funeral and just do a memorial service and release my ashes over beautiful blue water then get on a plane and go to the Caribbean right away.

I have to remind myself that everyone is not me !  Everyone does not live life by the same standards I do and low and behold, SHIT HAPPENS !   No one expects a 15 year old child to get sick at school and then come home, rest a few hours and then die at 10pm in an ambulance.

I am thinking long and hard about this, but I will probably end up setting up the page for my friend, reluctantly, albeit.  At least, unlike everyone else around me, she is not asking ME to fund a transport of her son’s body from Georgia to New York.  Jared LOVED Amtrak, so his mom wants to put his body on the Amtrak from Atlanta to New York to be laid to rest.  Evidently, the cost is a lot more than what was anticipated.  Why does it cost so much to ship a body by train or by plane?  It is not like they are taking up THAT much space, Jeezzz….

Anyway, I am going to pray about this and make a final decision.   I feel so conflicted because I do not like doing campaigns for frivolous stuff.  I do campaigns like this to raise money for the homeless, to raise funds to open an arts program for underprivileged children, and to fund my film projects… not to pay for funeral expenses.  But, hey, never say never because it will be the ONE thing you end up doing !

Here is a video of Jared on stage with Stevie Wonder:    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UNZWBTHvr8E&feature=share

After much thought and prayer, I decided to create the Gofundme page !   http://www.gofundme.com/jaredsangels

IVF # 5 – Stim Day 12 – NUMB !!! – The 411

baby - sad face

Today is my stim day 12.  My day started as it normally does… I did my injection of Ganirelix, neupogen and lovenox.  I got some work done, then left with my mom to go to SAMS Club and Walmart to pick up some items I need to make gift bags for the staff at my fertility clinic for next week.

While at lunch with mom, I notice a post on my Facebook page that fellow actor posted saying RIP.  I ask what the post is about and he informs me that my close friend’s son passed away according to a post on her page.  I go to her FB page and notice a cryptic message so I call a mutual friend of ours in Atlanta and he knew nothing about it and said he would call her mom and find out what the post was about referring to her son and grandmother being gone within 3 hours of each other.

I learned than my friend’s 15 year old son, who would babysit my puppy, Langston when they lived in NYC, took ill at school (he has sickle cell anemia) and my friend picked him up, took him home to rest and he still was not feeling well.  She decided he was in crisis and was taking him the hospital. She called an ambulance and once inside, Jared coded and they could not revive this kid.  Cristal called her parents to let them know what was going on and her parents broke down.  She then learned that her father’s mother had just passed away three hours before.

I am beyond numb !   I finally got Cristal on the phone and she is being brave and is completely heartbroken and in disbelief.  Her son was attending a new, state of the art performing arts high school in Atlanta and has performed on stage with Stevie Wonder.   He was slated to perform this weekend and his grandparents were going to fly in to surprise him.  According to the doctors, Jared’s heart gave out and was not strong enough.  I have no words….. no words…..   His mom just told me again how excited Jared was about the possibility of me having twins and he was eagerly awaiting them to get here.  Below is a picture of him and my puppy, Langston, at at one of my parties at my New York apartment a few years ago when Jared was 12.  They moved to Atlanta a few months later.

Langston with Jared

I am very sad and am so hoping that I will be able to attend services for him.  The services are going to be the beginning of next week in New York and my ivf procedures are going to be around that time.  I will not know until Friday what we are looking at…. hopefully, I will continue to stim thru the weekend and will not have to trigger until next week and then I will be able to go up to NY for the service prior to heading on upstate to Albany.  My heart is completely shattered and I was questioning God why this would happen to such a dynamic young man and not the little bad ass kids running around the world wrecking havoc and a voice spoke to me and said, ” He was ready.”    How can I argue with God?   This little angel was ready to be welcomed into arms of our Christ and the heavens awaited his arrival.   How majestic is that in the scheme of things?   Jared was definitely and old soul who seems to have been here before.  He was the most mannerly, bubbly kid and I have no idea how his mother, a self proclaimed “stage mom” is going to make it without him.  They were each other’s rock…..

RIP Jared Michael Jones ❤