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Fantastically Florence

Meeting my other half!

This post is long over due for me and I’ve been dying to share about this experience for quite some time now but life got a little harder. In fact I wrote this post over a month ago and it’s been sitting here since! So FINALLY, here we go! I’m finally able and comfortable sharing with you all how and when I met my super cool bio Dad’s side of the family. It’s been an awkward and uncomfortable subject for me for a very long time and I am finally ready to share with you all! Many people will wonder why I share so much through my blog and question me about what I decide to put out in the world. I get it. We aren’t all the same. I can only speak for myself and tell you why I do it. I share things because I am an open book. I like to share our life stories and be as honest as I can be through my blog. I want to help others that have felt my pain but are too uncomfortable to talk about it. I share to relate to others and let others see that everyone’s story is different and beautiful. I share because I wish there was a blog for me to read when I was going through so many of these moments alone. So, today I am sharing all about the experience I’ve had these past two years with meeting my biological father’s side of the family!

Something many people don’t know about me is that I have never met my father. I snuck it into one of my old blog posts last year (if you’d like to read some other fun facts about me read here).  In February 2016 I found him! After over 20 years of wondering about my bio dad, what did he look like? Do I look like him? Do I have grandparents that would love me? Do they all know about me? I mean I could go on and on and on with all of the questions I’ve always had.

The short story is that my mom was a teen mom. She gave birth to me and knew my bio Dad would not be involved. My mother and grandparents all came together to give me the best life they could. I had a great childhood and always knew I was loved.  I never really needed my dad to be in my life, at least that’s what I thought. I didn’t miss having him because I didn’t even know what it would be like to have a father. How can you miss something/someone you never had? The only thing I knew about him was that he was on a bad path in life and my life was better without him, and so it was.

Once social media came up with all of these ways to search and connect with people I began searching his name when I was a teen. I could never find anything. I would search out of curiosity to see if we look alike at all. Then, February 2016 I searched his name on Facebook and there he was. I knew it was him as soon as I saw the picture because he looked just like me! I’ll never forget the nervous feeling I got and the feeling of my stomach in my throat. It was late at night and I took a screenshot and sent it to my mom for confirmation. She finally wrote back what felt like 10 years later that it was him. Even though I already knew it, I just needed some confirmation.

The next day after thinking A LOT about what to do I messaged him on Facebook. It’s a bit of a blur for me, there were so many mixed emotions for me and now it’s been a couple of years. So, it’s hard to remember every detail but I remember he didn’t write back quick enough so I ended up doing a little more Facebook stalking and finding basically my whole damn fam! Haha. You guys, I found some cousins, a brother, sister, aunt, and a really cool and sweet grandma! Haha!

So, I ended up reaching out to all of them and it just went from there. My dads sister ended up messaging me and was super nice. Then my cousin that’s just about 3 months older than me messaged me and she had just as many questions as I did, haha! They have all been amazing and so welcoming to me! Not to bore you all with every little detail after all of the messaging but we ended up meeting in person not long after connecting. I met my cousin and grandma and younger sister for lunch one day at the cheesecake factory and I’ll never forget how freaking nervous I was. Haha. This was probably one of the most nerve wracking things I have ever done in my life going there that day. For so long I have wondered about these people and would imagine what it would be like meeting them and that day finally was here. Once we sat down and started talking it felt easy and natural to me. Kind of like we were family or something? Hah.

After a few more months I met a few more people here and there and we’ve kept in touch. It’s nice to finally be able to put faces to the people that I’ve always wondered about and get to know them. I look forward to getting to know them all a little more every year. It’s a fun and exciting time! They are all nothing like I imagined when I was younger, they are MUCH better! Haha. I can’t say the same for my bio Dad, unfortunately. We still have not met and I’m actually okay with that. My heart is always open for good people so I think I really lucked out with the family part of it. And I can finally openly say that I have a bother and three sisters!

Pictured below from left to right–my cousin (Chrissy), Grandma (MiMi), brother (Trenton)

We had a lot of people there that night and I’m not sure why we didn’t get a picture with everyone but I wish I would have! My aunt and her husband were there, Trenton’s mom and Chrissy’s husband. Sorry guys, we will get a pic next time! Hah!

 

Kitchen Update

Well, hello!

It’s been a while! Life gets busy and I took a little break from the blog but I’m baaaack!

Today I’m going to make it short and simple and share our new kitchen updates, finally!

When we moved in May the kitchen was very outdated so first thing was first we needed new appliances and a little kitchen face lift.

We still have little things here and there in the kitchen to do and finish up and I’d eventually like to get new flooring but you know, apparently money doesn’t grow on trees.

With a lot of long nights and days and the help of my father in law I have a kitchen that I love!

First I’ll show you what it looked like when we started.

 

and the NEW

 

And let me just say real quick, my kitchen doesn’t always look this clean you guys. A little behind the scenes secret, I threw all of the stray school papers and excavators on the couch where you can’t see it. So, there you go. Judge me. Hahaha.

Greg and I painted the cabinets, replaced all of the cabinet hardware, put on new countertops, all new appliances and my father in law and Greg did the subway tile backsplash.

Lots of hard work and time from family and I am forever grateful.  And oh my husband, the one that puts up with my inpatient self and all of the plans that I have for our home. He’s the best. I’m confident he’s the only one that would ever be able to put up with me and my everyday ideas. I picked the right one with this guy, he’s a winner.

Now, on to the next projects. 🙂

 

XO

Amber

 

 

 

 

Sad News

Just wanted to update everyone that today at my follow up ultrasound it was confirmed we will be losing the baby again.

The past few days have been an emotional roller coaster for me because my pregnancy symptoms have quickly went away and I just knew something was off.

After a month of ups and downs and worries and lots and lots of google I’m at peace with the situation.

Not saying it’s easy at all but it is definitely easier for me to have already prepared myself for the worst which is what I did.

I am hopeful for the future and we think we might finally be able to get some answers.

This was my third loss in the last year and it doesn’t get any easier.

I feel hopeful that this loss will lead to some answers as to why this keeps happening to us.

I have an appointment with a hematologist next week to check some blood work.

This pregnancy my DR took lots of labs and the one lab that came back boarder line was the lupus anticoagulant test.

So, she is sending me to get that checked before looking into a reproductive specialist.

I’ve been doing a lot of research since my appointment today and trying to wrap my mind around the whole thing.

But that’s all I have for now until next week when I get to my other appointment.

I just wanted to give you all an update and thank you for the well wishes today!

It wasn’t our time again but I am hopeful that we will have answers soon and everything will work out.

Love you all!

XO

Amber

Pregnancy – Week 6

Hello, hello!

Here is my first official pregnancy update since announcing we were expecting our ((hopeful)) rainbow baby last week!

Since I haven’t been told an exact due date because we think I ovulated late I’m just going to go with saying I’m about 6 weeks 3 days along right now.

Should be 7 weeks 2 days going by my last cycle.

So far I’ve had symptoms but very different than my other three successful pregnancies.

I’m trying to not take that as a bad sign and just know that every single pregnancy is different and keep the hope for the baby and myself!

Symptoms include:

On and off nausea – More often when my stomach is empty.

Smell EVERYTHING – I can smell all the things! Let me just say the fair last night with all the cows and poop had me wanting to rip my nose off. Just imagine the smell x 10. Yuck!

Tired! – Okay, so the first two weeks after getting my positive pregnancy test I was exhausted. I even napped one day which is very rare for me.

Energy – This is a weird one, normally in the first few weeks of pregnancy is when you’re the most tired but since this last week I’ve actually had more energy during the day! It could be from having a new schedule and starting our day earlier and being productive. I’m not sure but I like it! My house likes it too because I’ve been getting so much done!

Boobs – They’re noticeably bigger! I’ll take it.

Insomnia – You suck. I completely forgot all about the early pregnancy insomnia that I had with Rowan! Like I don’t need my sleep or something?!

Cravings – I cannot tell you how many Philly cheesesteaks I’ve had in the last month from Penn Station. Banana peppers and Mayo, please! Another thing I’ve been craving are lots off veggies and soup! Yum. Basically if I’m not craving something I don’t even want to eat.

Dreams – Pregnancy dreams are weird. I’ll just leave that there.

I think thats’s about all right now that I can think of. I did have a lot of random cramping for a couple of weeks but all of that is completley normal. It just made me super nervous because of the sub chronic hemorrhage and the previous losses.

I’ve been trying to take it easy with the hemorrhage but with a busy life and three kids it’s easier said than done.

I haven’t spotted any or bled anymore recently like I’ve been expecting to so I’m really not sure what’s going to happen there or if maybe my body has already absorbed the bleed?

There’ so many unknowns at the moment until my next ultrasound next week which basically feels like a lifetime away. Haha.

That’s all I have for now! Thank you all for the love and support I’ve received!

There’s so many of you that have been on this ride with me this last year and its been so good knowing I have so many supporters and women that have been here.

 I’m so looking forward to sharing this whole journey on my blog and I’m hopeful that this little baby is going to grow!

GROW BABY GROW!

The fortune cookie I got last week that now hangs on the refrigerator with the ultrasound picture.

 

XO

Amber

Watching For Our Rainbow

I’m pregnant!

I’ve been very hesitant this time around, not because I don’t want to share and let people in but because I’m tired from sharing the same news with no different outcomes.

I wanted to protect myself a little more this time around.

And in a way I feel like people may be tired of reading the same stories from me.

But then I remember that my post could help comfort someone going through the same exact thing right now and maybe they wouldn’t feel as alone as I do.

So, what’s going on you ask??

As I’m sure a lot of you know I have been struggling since last year (June 2016) to become pregnant with our fourth and final baby.

I’ve had two miscarriages in the last year and a lot of ups and downs.

Since the last loss in December we have been trying to conceive every month and not been sucessful.

I’ve used ovulations kits, pre seed, and bought more pregnancy tests than I can remember or like to admit.

July came and I gave up, I stopped the ovulation tests and told myself it just wasn’t going to happen right now and I was ready to focus on other things.

 With three kids I stay pretty busy anyway and the stress and disappointment of the negative tests month after month were really affecting my mood.

 I don’t want this experience to take away anything from my kids, I need all the good energy I can have for them.

Naturally after giving up in July I took a pregnancy test August 1st just two days before my expectant period and there it was.

The faintest little line I might have ever saw.

Greg thought I was crazy and thought my mind was seeing things, haha.

Later than night I took another test and it was definitely there but still very faint.

Nothing abnormal when you find out early on that you’re pregnant.

That week I went in for blood work because I am high risk now from the miscarriages.

She took HCG levels, and a lot of other tests and immediately had me start baby aspirin once a day with my prenatal.

After receiving my HCG results the next day they were only 17.

17 is super low for HCG so my DR and I both assumed the worst, I thought I was experiencing a chemical.

The next two weeks I went in about every other day for blood work and tests and got my rhogam shot.

My HCG numbers were doubling like the should be although they were on the lower end of HCG they were doing what they should be!

My hope was coming back for this baby.

I went in for an ultrasound and there was nothing on the screen because my HCG was too low to see anything still but my DR wanted to check for ectopic or any other possible issues.

We did see a small sub-chronic hemorrhage and that was all.

My DR and I discussed that it’s very possible I ovulated late and that I would be about 6 days behind what I would be if I ovulated regular.

A week later we took a break from blood work and just waited for another ultrasound to see if this baby was progressing.

Greg and I went in the appointment prepared for the worst, as awful as it sounds I didn’t want to go in thinking everything was okay because thats what would hurt the most for me.

It was my way of shielding my heart from the heartache and shock that I’ve experienced before.

The ultrasound started and there it was, the sac and yolk sac that wasn’t there a week ago!

Bad news, there was also a lot of fluid around it which was the sub-chronic hemorrhage.

So we’re in the waiting game once again, have I mentioned this has been the longest month ever?

I’m hoping for the best but I know that its very possible the hemorrhage can cause the miscarriage.

In a perfect world I did ovulate late and my pregnancy is right where it should be right now and my body will absorb this hemorrhage on it’s own.

For now I am taking it day by day and impatiently waiting for my next ultrasound in two weeks to check on this little baby of mine.

Send all the good vibes, thoughts and prayers our way!

We’re going to keep watching for our little rainbow.

XO

Amber