Tag Archives: peace

Take each day as it comes

Isn’t it the worst when you tell your friend you have good news and they get really excited like its going to be THE good news? The news that everyone is hoping for you to have, the news you have been looking forward to for 20 something years, the news she is hoping you have has already lit up her face with joy for you and she holds her breath in anticipation. Now you get to reassure her that while it’s not THAT news its still good. Josh’s sperm count has grown by 4 million, and those lil buggers are swimming faster than the last two times he tested.  The category that is the most difficult to improve in is morphology, which evaluates if some of them are morphing in to werewolves in the moonlight or are they all regular hardworking un-morphed classic sperm. There was a 140% improvement in this number (curtsy & bow) so we popped some champagne because our guys are average looking and mostly fast swimming.

We had made this plan that if we didn’t get pregnant on our own this month we would make plans to try our first IUI (intra uterine insemination) but this news has made us think again about that plan. Now that we have more champions should we forego the intervention and stick to the DIY method? Ive got a lot of voices in my head trying to guide me. I can hear the voice of fear telling me that I’m getting older everyday and we don’t even know if IUI will work so we should start trying everything we can while we still can. The Christian voice asks “can I really prompt the beginning of life by hiring someone to sort our sperm and place them in an ideal place to meet an egg?”  The hippie side says go natural take more supplements see the acupuncturist regularly it will happen when it’s supposed to happen.  The mother in me says “where are my children”, and “do they know how much I want to meet them, how I hope they are kind and generous and smart and able to be honest and vulnerable with those they love; do they know I pray for their spouses and for the leaders of the world they will live in, for their health and inner peace as they face life’s struggles?”

I had hoped that by writing out all my inner voices I would see a clear answer rise to the top but they all have valid points.

And now its time for a reading break, here’s a song.

My friend recently told me that when she got engaged in her 30’s she was first happy then sad, real sad to be leaving behind her friends who were still single. She described it as survivors guilt, “why me, why not them too”. They were all in this little life boat together encouraging and affirming each other in their singleness and quest for contentment with this stage of life, now she’s in a married boat with her new favorite person and they are happy for her (probably). I was asking myself if I would feel that way when we finally do get pregnant. I don’t have a boat of people who wish they could have babies, I have people who love me and think they understand my struggle and I would be lost without these souls. Infertility is a boat only Josh and I are floating in. Its lonesome, the water is constantly rocking us to and fro and we have to go to work everyday and contribute to society and to our friends and families lives. As my fantastic Stepmom would say we have to act like something, and some days I feel like I can while others I want to step out of my own narrative for a while and watch as a substitute me acts like something.  Should I join a support group so I have a boat to leave when I become a survivor? I would like to say that the man in my boat is exceedingly generous and so available to me. There is no comparison for the selfless way he joins me in this struggle, how he cries when I cry, and passes a hanky sometimes, and lets me roll my eyes at our friends accidental babies even though that is detestable behavior.

I do not feel courageous or brave I feel like I am getting out of bed and showing up for myself and not very well sometimes. It is against my nature to be inauthentic I only know how to wear my heart on my sleeve (people put that thing inside their chests?) plus I think I’m looking for any other tiny dinghies that might be out to sea surviving this kind of storm. I hope that by saying something I create a little light for them, that gives them hope when hope feels foolish.  It’s a familiar absurdity to grow a person inside you, or to take on the task of turning a baby person in to a full size human that acts like something. Raising a teenager is a terrifying feat, and as we all know but constantly forget adorable babies turn into teenagers and hate us for a while. I have contributed to the parenting of many babies and toddlers and even teenagers, I know what nonsense lies before me. I know that it will challenge and stretch me in ways I did not know existed, that parenting will refine my marriage and my career like a fire that burns away impurities. What’s funny to me is that I know all that and the steadfast desire to have my own story remains unswervingly the course I choose.

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I had coffee with a dear friend recently, she became a parent this month. She reminded me who I am, and how I was made, is not something to apologize for. I kindled this fire as a small tiny woman long ago. I have been naming my kids since I heard that was the custom for parents to name their kids. Today as I try to choose between intervention and not intervention this fire feels like a wildfire that is threatening to make me evacuate my home. You know what it actually is, the fire that heats my home and I will not be afraid of it.  I will lean in closer and be warmed by the dream of my babies in my arms. This requires courage, but I think I have a really heroic partner in my boat and between us we can muster the strength necessary.

 

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We’ve got a million miles ahead of us

You bet I’m listening to Justin Beiber <I used to believe we were burnin on the edge of somethin beautiful> I still believe that Justin! <Don’t fall asleep at the wheel, we’ve got a million miles ahead of us> Okay, I won’t! Also watching Tim Burton’s Alice In wonderland. The flowers are so mean to Alice, am I right?  “She’s not even wearing the right dress” they gossip about her as she passes by. Then Absolem says “You are not hardly Alice” everyone is against her! I have loved the story of Alice in Wonderland since I was a small girl, I think it’s all the other worldness. It’s certainly not the rabbit that makes me love the story, rabbits are all together  untrustworthy. At least the Hatter believes in her from the start; she has some friends, some help in her journey.

I have felt so incredibly loved by many of you kind humans. You have gingerly and tenderly asked if you can ask the state of things in my womb. Your nice, all of you so nice; not at all like the gossiping flowers. Yes you can ask, and I promise to tell everyone everywhere when we have succeeded in our dream to have a baby. In the meantime we are plugging along trying to stay paleo and stay active and healthy, taking our vitamins and such. I’m focusing on gratitude and staying positive.

This time last year we were preparing for 3 days in the hospital. I was making cookies for the nurses and visitors, and getting my Christmas all in order, and making plans to lay low and recover for 6 weeks (an eternity). I will spend next week baking and gathering with friends, working on choreography to teach in December, and going to yoga. I love to look at the passing of time, don’t you? We get further from the things that were painful, yet new potentially painful things are on the horizon. It gives hope though to look back and see how you have used time.

“Sometimes I have believed as many as 6 impossible things before breakfast” Alice says this to cheer herself into doing something impossible. Here’s why movies are so great, 90 minutes in she is much more muchier and she’s absolutely Alice. She isn’t confident that she knows who she is or what she was brought here to do, but she’s got a hunch and a few fans. We have some news that the odds for natural conception are stacked against us a little bit, but we aren’t giving up. Thank you all for cheering us on, and believing in our dreams with us. Seriously, when this kid gets here you are all invited to party like its 1999 with us. (I hear that party=naps to pregnant people so be ready for napping fun times) Till then, pop the champagne we have so much to be grateful for. Would you comment telling me why your grateful? (even if its your nice new baby, I promise to be grateful with you instead of being envious) I’m grateful that I’m not about to get operated on. Your turn.

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Such a lame excuse to say I’m tired, everyone is tired more or less

I make these little deals with myself, where accomplishing a strange task gives me some kind of bragging rights…with myself. Do you do that? I went to Costco for eggs and butter last week, I didn’t get a cart because if I can carry it all I won’t go over budget. So I’m in line with 4 dozen eggs, 2 lbs butter, 3 lbs of almonds, and a big jug of maple syrup. The fellow in line behind me offered me the extra space in his cart because I was balancing  all of this in my arms, I proudly declined stating that this was my workout. I walked out of there with my head held high, and my bicep quivering under the load.

I went to horse camp this weekend for a ladies retreat. I prepared myself to be out of my comfort zone since I’m not a “Horse Person” at all. The horse part was so wonderful, what fascinating creatures. My face hurt from all the smiling.  I went on a trail ride, and then had a lesson in the arena, and then another trail ride; I got to comb out the mane of a giant draft horse who I think really liked me.  I did not adequately prepare myself to interact with 50 or so women who are all moms. When I say moms I mean the majority of the women had 4-6 children and a few moms I met had 8 children and were pregnant. If you were not a mom at this retreat you were a teenager or you were me.

I came home with a very full heart. I felt both encouraged and discouraged. I felt that I had been given everything I needed, but also a very aware of the great big child shaped hole in my life. I lay awake in my bunk at night coiffing my inner monologue and speaking truth to myself. Its good for me to wrestle with these things, pressure makes diamonds right? Of course I want to be a sparkly diamond of a person, not a hard lump of coal. Truthfully I feel more aligned with the coal version of myself. I’m not proud of jealously and discontent in my heart, it doesn’t look good on anyone. However I’m going to be honest and acknowledge my less flattering thoughts because I want to heal them and change them. I don’t want to pretend I don’t feel sad.

I had a … procedure today. If you have had an HSG you can hug me next time you see me. If you haven’t I’ll spare you the details lets just say there’s a catheter and x-ray visible dye, as my friend Samantha would say “its not friendly”. It was my second time having the procedure so I was familiar with how it goes down, which did not make it more “friendly”. Anyways:Guts! The results were not what I would call super exciting, but the powers that be say its better than bad news.  My dear sweet groom was there for what should have been an hour, and turned into 3 hours. We were both late to work, and a little shaken up from the whole ordeal.

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Waiting room selfie

When I was waiting for it to be my turn to get married (which wasn’t till I was 32) I whined secretly to myself about all the good wedding ideas being used up. She walked down the aisle to my favorite song, those were totally my colors, I was going to wear basically the same dress, that venue was spot on with my Pinterest. Same sob story now with babies. As it turns out I got the best wedding I could have dreamed, best song-best dress-best colors-best venue-BEST GROOM. I wouldn’t change a thing, right down to the eleven week engagement. So why wouldn’t my baby story be just as deluxe?!?

I don’t promise to swear off fruitless acts of bravery and bragging rights to myself. I was once in the delivery room with a person who insisted on having a natural and silent birth. Why? There is no gold medal, no ten foot check, no news story to cover your amazing feat. You get a baby, same as anyone in the delivery room. I can’t decide if the unnecessary self sacrificing is worth anything, or if its just meaningless martyrdom. Maybe the small things we challenge ourselves to do (that go unnoticed) prepare us for the difficult things our story requires us to rise to. Maybe they wear us out so that we can’t elevate our actions to meet life’s asks of us. What do you think?

I do promise (not to you, but to myself) to be more aware of the nonsensical stories I pretend God is writing for me, and to call them out as such. I’ll re-read the incident log as having been written by someone who thinks I’m worthy. Shading the story I read (of my life) as a page turner with a victorious win at exactly the point it seems like defeat is lurking. I’ll try to say YES a little more, try not to isolate my experiences but share them with my community. Pay attention to the details that matter, will you join me?

If you listen to this…I’ll love you forever.

Stephen Kellogg: Lonely In Columbus (This Blog’s title at 1:18)

(side note, I could listen to this whole album on repeat for years on end)

 

Need to be bold, need to jump in the cold water

There was an incident recently with a plant of mine, that was thrown away in error. I cried. About a plant. Hannah the wandering jew was with me for ten years. She survived being moved from 6 different dwellings, 7 if you count that I moved her to my office because my sweet groom was feeling outnumbered by my many house plants in our newlywed nest. She is now gone, along with the macramae plant hanger my grandma Katharine made. Here’s the silver lining: I had a jar of starts in the windowsill from Hannah that survived the clean sweep. You can not defeat this one wandering jew, she goes on and on.

Its May the 9th. Seven years ago today I made a choice that has made all the difference. I call it my personal independence day. I celebrate it quietly to my self, sometimes with one of the friends that told me everything would be okay on that 2009 day. I woke up strong that day, and chose to leave the boyfriend of seven years who was not good for me at all. I chose to hope that at 27 I could start all over. I got my massage license, and started going by Kate instead of Katharine. (if you still call me that, I love it do not change it. I will always be Katharine) I colored my hair purple, and started growing it long (which were both frowned upon in my last life) I started what I call church rehab, by going to Christian gatherings, slowly rebuilding my faith. I also read the Harry Potter series, because its about time! (there are 7 books in that series if you forgot)

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Here’s Pony & I our new home in 09

 

On the 7th day God rested. Naaman bathed in the Jordan 7 times to cure his leprosy. Joshua marched around Jericho 7 times on the 7th day. Jesus told Peter to forgive a wrongdoer seventy times 7. It is said to be the number of completion. I have officially been away from that boyfriend longer than I was with him. So now it is finished.

My point in writing this? Celebrate your victories friends, however small. God tells his people to commemorate his faithfulness. He knows we are prone to forgetting, he commands us to remember his works in our lives. I chose to hope, and his provision is more- truly way more- than I hoped for. My groom has qualities that I couldn’t have known to ask for, that I didn’t know I deserved. Even his family is wonderful.  I am now qualified to tell people that they don’t have to settle, they can hope for things outside their reach. That our God writes us stories worth living. Sometimes our struggles can be overcome by brave choices.

If you have a victory you want to celebrate, but maybe you are embarrassed that its too small or too dorky; I think you should come over and we will pop a cork and celebrate. (There are always cold bubbles in the Pentz house, one never knows when a celebratory moment will arise) You have everything you need to do the brave thing, so go do it! Happy my independence day guys, you can raise your glass with me wherever you are today.

Are your thoughts results of static cling?

It’s the light.  There’s this specific quality of light, that makes me nostalgic; of what, I’m unsure, but it’s reminiscent of a time in my life when I wasn’t worried about everything.  I get this feeling some times, when the light is right, and I feel at ease.  It’s usually near sunset, the sky is usually clear, and I’m moving slow enough to recognize its presence . Today I’m eating an apple and driving through the glowing rolling hills of southern Oregon. I’ve had this feeling throughout my life and each time I silently refer to it as a California Minute.  It’s almost a deja-vu, and I can’t answer to why California gets credit for it.

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I can’t be sure this is the image that represents the light I’m explaining. It is however the best representation I was later able to gather from the images I took.  All I’m saying is “don’t quote me on this” this light, this landscape this moment. Difficult to capture to say the least.

I’ve just spent the weekend with my family, nuclear and extended. This can be a tense time for anyone. We are all representatives of different age groups and generations, and opposite ways of life, and political views, and different kinds of confidence and insecurity. I often feel like the weirdo in the room, in any room, and especially in my family. I’m just different. I left this gathering with a broader understanding of the word different. We’re all pretty different. If we are clever enough to adjust our perspective we can see all the differences not as obstacles but as stepping stones to appreciation. My groom is new to this family compared to me, and so he has a fresh ever so slightly unbiased vantage point.

There’s a saying that goes “we accept the love we think we deserve”.  In my case I was accepting judgement and criticism that the weird one deserves. (Calm down Kate.) I put my mind to receiving love even if i didn’t think it was being given. This weekend I chose to accept love from my family, they may love me in ways that are unrecognizable to me, but that doesn’t disqualify it.

I usually take my rare California Minutes as a sign that I’m on the right track somehow. Like a divine moment where I hear from my creator “yeah Kate, like that. You’re doing it kid.” A vote of heavenly confidence has been cast in my favor. Alas the details are in the fabric. So the rest of the sunset I just marveled at the colors and shapes of the landscape of my beloved state. Right up till the gas light came on in the middle of the mountain pass. Turns out existentialism is fine, but must be balanced with practicality.Even Priuses need gas. We held our breath, almost literally, as if quiet and focus could make the gas last longer… and it did. Home safe in my little home in the mountain town I love.

 

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