Sunday, September 26, 2010

Happy Birthday Ben!

Some of you are probably waiting for the rest of Ben's story and wondering how the one year mark went, so here goes.................

On Friday, September 25, 2009 Jason and I got up early and tried to prepare for the day.  We were scheduled to be induced at 7:30a.m.  I was running around the house frantically trying to get things packed in the hospital bag.  Making sure I didn't forget anything.  As we were getting ready to head out the door, I think my nerves got the best of me.  I ran to the bathroom and got sick.  After that little episode, we managed to find an empty ice cream bucket to take with us in the truck, just in case. 

We made it to the hospital alright. Luckily, it is only about a 5 minute drive.  We stopped at registration to get registered.  The registration lady (one of who I work with now) was probably thinking we were the most nervous parents by the look on our faces.  Unfortunately, I don't think she knew what was ahead for us!  So she kindly registered us and sent us on our way to the elevator to the Birthing Center.  On the elevator ride up to the 4th floor, a young gentlemen who worked at the hospital asked us if we were having our baby today.  What were we supposed to say to that?!?! I responded quietly by stating that our little Ben had passed a few days prior.  It's amazing how such a short elevator ride can leave a lasting memory.

We arrived on the 4th floor and buzzed ourselves in.  The nurse kindly walked us to our delivery room and gave me instructions as to what I needed to do.  After getting into the lovely hospital gown, I was then put onto the hospital bed and hooked up to all of the machines.  The doctor came in shortly and began giving me the doses of medicine to start induction.  This was mainly how the day went.  I was visited by the doctor around the clock for more medicine and exams.  The grief counselor also stopped in to give us some information on how to deal with our loss. 

Some of our family also came for support that day.  My mom and dad arrived early in the morning to see us, but left after a little bit to give Jason and I our time that we needed.  Jason's mom also came for support that morning.  For the most part of the day we were alone and were given the time we needed.  Our families both knew we would keep them posted on any changes.  Jason had brought me a few DVDs to watch while I was laying in bed.. the first of which was Ice Age.  It was kind of chilly in the delivery room so Jason also ran out to get me some warm socks and a robe.  Every once in a while I got up and walked around the hallways, only to return to our room (which was marked with a purple postcard meaning we were loss parents).

Family returned later that night.  I still hadn't made much progress as far as labor went.  Jason and I made company with our family and then most of them left for the evening.  I believe we had a nice conversation that day about how Jason seemed to be drinking the entire hospitals' stock of coffee.  How he slept that night, I don't know!  It was later that evening that I started having some contractions.  I had all back labor so I just felt like I had a constant backache all night long.  I tried to get Jason's attention to come rub my back, but he was so peacefully sleeping on the couch I didn't want to disturb him.  So I dealt with the pain and getting woke up every so often by the doctor to be examined.

Around 7:00a.m. on Saturday, the pain started getting worse so I opted to get the epidural.  The anesthesiologist came in and hooked me up.  Jason watched in fascination.  It wasn't near as bad as I thought it would be.  After the epidural, I moved back up onto the bed and we waited some more.  It was a little after 8:00a.m. when I started to feel a little sick.  I asked Jason to grab me the bucket from the cupboard because I wasn't feeling well.  Sure enough, as soon as he got it to me it became very useful.  I used the nurse call button to let them know I wasn't feeling well.  The nurse and the doctor came in to check me and before I knew it, they were telling me it was time.  Jason text family members to let them know as the doctor broke down the bed and prepared me for delivery.  Everything happened so fast...... and then, there was Benjamin, in our arms.

Had we not known he had already passed, you wouldn't have even known.  He looked so peaceful all wrapped up in his blanket with his little cap and gown.  Jason and I took some time together with Ben before we let family come back to meet him.  It was a very bittersweet moment.  We checked his toes and fingers to see who they resembled the most.  He definitely had Jason's feet and my fat fingers. He had Jason's dark hair and my little ears.   Family came in shortly and all took turns holding Ben.   After a while, family left so that I could rest of for the rest of the day.  We chose to have Ben blessed, which took place at 3:00p.m. that Saturday.  Family and friends came to be with us at this time. 

After such an eventful day, the doctor came back in to check up on us.  He gave me the option of going home that day or staying one more night.  I opted to go home.  I just wanted to be home in my own surroundings.  Jason packed up all of our things and later that evening we went home.  From then on out, it was now time to get our lives back to normal (as much as you possibly can). 

Jason had to keep himself busy- so as soon as we got home, he was already doing a million things.  One of which, was running to Taco Bell to get me some supper.  Jason stayed busy for the days to follow.  As for myself, I had no ambition to do anything.  I stayed home, watched TV, and didn't answer my phone.  Everyone grieves differently, and this is what we had to do.

The days after, soon led to the months after.  Today, I look back and realized those months are what has made this last year.  From here on out, it's all new beginnings!  AND our first new beginning began with:


Jason and I decided to take a little time to ourselves for Ben's first birthday.  We headed out of town for the weekend.  We didn't really have any plans in mind, other than to get away.  Once we arrived in Des Moines, we stopped at the mall to do some shopping, but ended up not getting anything.  We then stopped at Arby's to get a little something to eat.  After Arby's, we went and checked into our hotel room:
YES, there is an outlet on the side of the jacuzzi.... I was a little concerned, but it didn't stop me from getting in!

After we checked into our room, Jason and I decided to go to the casino.  It wasn't looking very good at first.  Jason was losing all his money, but that was typical :)  My machine kept teasing me- first, letting me win money, then taking it all back.  Jason had decided to switch machines, but I sat patiently at mine just waiting for some good luck.  AND THEN... bam, I must have done something right.  I cashed out my machine at $280.15- which I was super excited about considering I only put $20 in to begin with... so sure enough, I was done gambling for the day.  I took my ticket and found Jason so I could go cash out.  Jason suggested we 'walk around' for a little bit to kill some time.  UMMM, little did he know that it's not easy to 'walk around' a casino.  I ended up sticking more money into those darn machines and sure enough-- it sucked it up!  It was a good time and we still ended up walking out of there with more than we went in with. 

Next, we decided to stop at the Bass Pro Shop.  Jason found this:

the shirt he wanted to get the last time we were there.  So he bought it.  I, on the other hand, bought a bag of popcorn.  Yes, I bought a bag of popcorn at the Bass Pro Shop (and it was good).

We didn't do a whole lot else that day.  We did a little shopping and then decided to go out for supper.  We decided we were going to eat at Hu Hot Mongolian Grill.  Jason typed in the address on our GPS and we went on our way- or so we thought.  The GPS did NOT take us to HuHot, but to a random strip mall in the middle of nowhere.  SO- we tried again.  Only this time the GPS took us in circles about 4 times (I'm not exaggerating- ask Jason).  For the last try, we entered a location on our GPS that was near HuHot to see if that would get us there. After 45 minutes we arrived at HuHot, only to be greeted by a full restaraunt.  We gave them our name and waited to be seated.  I made my way to the restroom- my bladder had went from the size of a watermelon to the size of a pea in the 45 minute drive to HuHot.  We enjoyed our supper and then headed back to the hotel for a little swimming.  We called it a night and went to bed.

Today, Jason and I got up and enjoyed our nice continental breakfast and then headed out for the day.  Since most of the stores didn't open until 10a.m., we decided to head to the casino for one last chance at our luck... Unfortunately, our luck had run out.  We left the casino and headed for a day of shopping.  First, we went to Babies R Us to pick up a few things we still needed for our little man:

His coming home outfit...

AND THESE........ we didn't NEED these, but Jason wanted them. 
So we picked out a few more things: diapers, wipes, safety kit, etc.. and then checked out.

We then made our way over to Old Navy so I could do some more shopping.  Jason went next door to PetCo so he didn't have to wait for me to try a bajillion things on.  He walked into Old Navy as I was getting ready to head to the checkout.  He looked a little discouraged that I was buying A LOT of items, but after the cashier rang them up- it cost half as much as we thought it was going to... That made me feel a little better.

We drove across the road to the mall--- only to find one of these:
A parking spot just for expecting moms-- these have disappeared in Fort Dodge!!

AND it was so CONVENIENTLY located next to:

As tempting as it was, I did NOT get any cheesecake!

As soon as we got into the mall we headed for Build-A-Bear Workshop. Jason and I had decided that we wanted to make Ben a special bear for his birthday.  So we chose this little one:

Isn't he cute?!?!
And of course, we had to get him a friend--

So we got our little man a MONKEY! (and YES, we paid extra money to have monkey sounds put in him).  Jason and I kissed our little animals' hearts and made a wish before they were sewn up!

We continued to walk around the mall to see if we could find anything else, but had no luck.  We decided to grab some lunch and then head home.  We took the back way home, which we have found takes less time.  I sat in the passenger seat white-knuckled as usual from Jason's driving.  I think he's learned to tune me out, because as I'm yelling "BRAKES" , his foot remains on the gas pedal...... I think our little man was just as scared as I was.  I could feel him constantly trying to grab onto anything possible inside of my belly.  Unfortunately, our uterus' is not equipped with "OH, Shit" handles... but we made it home alive.

So again, it's back to reality.  Back to work tomorrow for both of us, but we had a good time away for the weekend. It was a weekend I'm sure we won't forget and the start of something special for Ben's 1st birthday and the ones to follow.

P.S.-- I'm pretty sure it's not considered a complete birthday without some cake--- so I think I'll be sending Jason out for one of these :

A Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

One Year?

Many people that know us, and know what we've been through, know that September 26, 2009 was a special day to us.  It was the day we saw an angels' face and the first glimpse of Heaven we'd see.  September 26, 2009 was the day our little Benjamin Michael was born, but today, today was a different one year mark.

Today, September 23, 2010, is a one year mark for a day I'll never forget.  A year ago today, I was laying on our couch relaxing after having to work the previous night at our local Sears store.  Tuesdays were always my closing nights as a manager at Sears.  I remember that night clearly.  The boys that were working in the hardware department were helping set up all the new Christmas decorations we had just received.  We were all sitting on the floor getting frustrated while trying to figure out how to put together the little fabric covered penguins that look so cute in your front yard (the ones that look good until the wind blows them to pieces)!  We were also trying to figure out how to set up the Christmas trees to make the store look like the perfect winter wonderland.  I remember sitting on the floor and having a hard time getting back up with my 7 month pregnant belly in the way. After a few hours of "Christmas decorating" it was time to start closing up the store.  So as a manager, I made my rounds, made our closing calls, and started locking doors.  We had our nightly closing meeting and sent everyone home for the night.  The rest of the managers and myself finished closing up the store and headed home ourselves.

After getting home, I didn't go to bed right away.  I was always wide awake after I got off work that late at night.  Jason and I had been working on the nursery the previous weeks and I had received some crib bedding in the mail earlier.  That night, I sat at my computer with a notebook in front of me.  I had asked my grandma if she could sew us some curtains for the nursery, which she had agreed to.  In my notebook, I started drawing up plans of how I wanted the curtains done.... and after about 9 pages of notebook paper I realized nothing was going to be perfect enough for that little nursery.  It was about midnight before I headed up to bed-- even though little Benjamin was still wide awake and wiggling all over.

The next morning, September 23rd,  I slept in.  After tossing and turning in our bed for awhile, I decided to get up and come downstairs.  I turned on the TV, had a bowl of cereal for breakfast and then decided to lay down and rest again.  I laid there for a few more hours just watching the Today show and whatever else happened to be on TV.  I finally decided it was time to get up and get ready for our 1:30p.m. scheduled doctor's appointment. I took my shower and got dressed for my appointment.

Jason called me to let me know he wasn't going to be able to make our doctors' appointment because he had to go out of town for a new job at work.  I was fine with this, because most of our appointments consisted of the usual- getting weighed, urine samples, blood pressure check, and asking the doctor any questions we had-- all of which normally took about 10 minutes.  So I headed in to the doctors office by myself that day. 

I was called back for my appointment shortly after I had arrived at the office.  I was weighed, left my sample, and got my blood pressure checked.  It was about THEN that I realized that little Ben hadn't moved much all morning.  I sent Jason a text letting him know I hadn't felt him move much all morning.  Jason responded with a text that Ben was probably just sleepy.  The doctor came in to the room shortly after and asked how things were going.  I mentioned to him that Ben hadn't moved much all morning.  He immediately had me get up on the exam table so he could check for a heartbeat.  AND THEN...... after minutes of checking every possible spot on my 7 month pregnant belly- he was unable to find the heartbeat.  I asked him if I could call Jason and let him know what was going on, but he suggested I wait until after I had an ultrasound done.   So the doctor went to grab his portable ultrasound machine to see if he could see anything.  After searching all over, the doctor could not find Ben's flickering heartbeat anywhere.  He then warned me that he'd like me to have a better ultrasound done by the ultrasound technician.

SOOOO- we headed next door to the ultrasound room.  I sat in the waiting room while the doctor explained to the tech what was going on.  I sent a message to my sister stating that the baby may have died, but that we were unsure.  I was then called back for my ultrasound..... SURPRISE SURPRISE, she was unable to find a heartbeat as well.  She also stated she didn't see any signs of stress or any obvious reasons as to what might have happened.  After she had confirmed that there was no heartbeat, the doctor walked me back to the exam room we had been in previously.  As we sat down, he reached for some Kleenex's (for himself).  He cried more than me, but I was in so much shock and disbelief it hadn't hit me yet.  Wiping his tears, he further explained that I would have to be induced to deliver my stillborn child.  He gave me the date and time of our induction and explained to me how things would go.  He politely asked if I was going to be okay driving home and ended our appointment for the day-- for the rest of the pregnancy!

I left the office, still in disbelief, and gave Jason a call in the elevator on the way down to my car.  I let him know what was going on and that I was headed home.  He let me know he'd meet me at home.  Once I got to my car, I called Sears to let them know that I wouldn't be to work for a few weeks.  I went home, only to sit on the couch and wait for Jason to get home.  After he got home, it all hit me like a ton of bricks.  NO ONE ever tells you about this while you're pregnant-- Sadly, I'd never even heard of stillbirth before this happened to me. While pregnancy can be a joyous thing, it would've been nice to be informed of a little reality before this happened.

I called my mom and dad when I got home and told Jason he'd better call his family before the word got out.  We spent the rest of the day on the phone informing everyone of what was going on and what the next step would be.  We then started to prepare for what was to come.  We had to go out and find an outfit for little Ben to wear in the hospital and we needed yet to find a keepsake item for his little feet/handprints. So after driving around everywhere looking for the perfect things, we went home.  The days to come were going to be bittersweet and there was no way to prepare.

Today, September 23rd, 2010, was probably 'just' another day for most people-- but it was a lot more than 'just' another day for me.  A year ago today was the day that would change our lives forever.  This last year has been a struggle.  You start to notice all the little things people take for granted.  I had to change jobs, because everything at work reminded me of Ben (and some people didn't understand that). Currently being pregnant has also brought on it's challenges.  The constant day to day worrying if the baby is moving enough or if he's moving too much and getting tangled up in his cord.  The constant reminder from the general public at work that this is your second child (even though some days, it's easier to say it's our first just for the simple fact it's easier to explain to some people and not others that you have a dead child).  This year has also posed many challenges between friends and family-- being able to see who's REALLY there for you when you need it. 

So as most of you will be remembering our angel on September 26th;  TODAY was a big one year mark for myself.  And even though it's been a week from hell, you learn that everyone else's lives will move on even when yours seems to stand still.

P.S. -- I will post the rest of 'Ben's Story' on his birthday.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Phew.. Glad that's over with!

Well, we've been getting a lot done here at the Hanna house.  Friday, we got the carpet installed in our bedroom and managed to get things put back in order!  It's so nice to get out of bed in the morning and feel the nice new carpet under your feet. 

We've been doing some major cleaning lately! I've thrown away so much stuff that Jason is afraid the garbage man won't pick it all up.  I finally came to the realization that if it's been in a closet and I didn't know it existed for the past 2-3 years, it probably wasn't worth keeping.  After getting our bedroom back in order, I started to move the baby stuff back into the nursery to prepare for the next few weeks.  Baby Hanna can technically come anytime now!  Today marks the 30 week 5 day spot in this pregnancy!

I'm to the point where there's a lot of little things left to do.  (Well, other than redoing our kitchen).  I need to go pick up some final things for the hospital bag yet.  I still need to find a coming home outfit for our little man!  Poor little guy will be coming home naked in the middle of winter if I don't find something!!

I wasn't as ambitious today as I have been the last few days.  Jason and I went to church this morning.  We originally planned on going to the 8:00 service, BUT that was a fail!  Sleep sounded so much better at 6:30 this morning.  So we slept in a little bit later and went to the 10:30 service instead.  The service began with all the little Sunday schoolers singing some fun songs.  It's so fun to watch them and I look forward to going to our little man's school/church programs! They also recognized the Sunday school teachers and did a few other recognition activites so church ended up being an hour and a half today.  After church we came home and had some lunch and.... well, I fell back asleep for 2 hours while Jason went to help a friend. 

I woke up from my nap and knew I needed to get going on something or I'd regret that I didn't get anything done all day!  So one of my last projects was to clean out this:

(I'm a little embarrassed to even post this)

It's been needing done for quite some time now.   So I got to work and started pulling everything out to see what was hidden deep down in there.  It was amazing what I found.  One of the first things I found were 3 MICE... YES, I SAID 3 MICE:

HA HA, bet you were a little scared what you might see, huh?

Why we need 3 computer mice, who knows, but we have them! I found these along with enough computer cords to reach across the United States coast to coast.  Needless to say, I made Jason find a new home for them (however, I did keep the mice- you never know when you might need one)!

Most of the other stuff I found wasn't as fun. Random text books, light bulbs, batteries, cleaning supplies, and office supplies.  BUT as I was nearing the end of my closet cleaning I found a treasure:

YES, actual treasure!!  (too bad it was Jason's)

So I guess cleaning out the closet really did pay off!

I noticed that there was ACTUALLY a floor in there (along with many shelves)- who would have guessed?!?!  So although the final product isn't perfect, it's much better than what it was:

Although, the closet project was a small one, it's nice knowing that it's done!  NEXT- on to the kitchen!! The last BIG project.  From then on out, it'll just be maintaining all the cleaning (and convincing Jason to throw away his college textbooks from the 1990s)!! 

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Making Progress.... I think!

So we're finally making progress this week. We're definitely making some progress in the pregnancy world.  We are finally 30 weeks pregnant and only 10 more weeks to go (or less)!  All this progress in the pregnancy world is making me realize we need to get alot of things done before the little one arrives.

I'm a little bummed that our carpet has not arrived yet, but I'm thinking it should be here by the end of the week.  As long as it gets here, it will either be installed Friday or Monday (Friday, preferrably).  This weekend we did manage to get the baseboard trim done in the spare bedroom.  We also evened out all the window edges and just need to go pick out some window trim to install.  I went and bought a new comforter for our spare bedroom from Target because the other one must have gotten ripped when Jason decided to use it to keep the kegs for the wedding cold (men and their beer!).  Secretly, I'm kind of glad it ripped- any excuse to buy new stuff! We finally got the mini blinds hung up in the room as well.  I'm sure our neighbors were tired of looking at our lovely pink and blue blankets that were hanging in the window for the meantime.

Tonight, Jason and I made a trip to Menards because I had a brilliant idea to repaint the bathroom.  Our original plan was to redo the entire bathroom (install a new tub, lay tile, etc.) but I came to a realization that we don't have much time left before the baby comes.  So for now, we'll just put a fresh coat of paint and install some new hardware and save the extensive labor for after the arrival of the baby.  It's amazing what some paint can do! We also had to get a new toilet seat while we were there. Besides the couch, that's Jason's second best place to sit- and well, the cushioning was pretty much gone! So it was time for a new one!

So slowly, but surely we're getting things done around the Hanna house. Although, if you were to walk in our house tonight, you'd think we just got hit with a tornado.  It's pretty ugly looking.  The kitchen counter was cleared off after work, but has managed to get piled up with 'crap' again!!! I'm hoping by the end of next week we'll have some major progress accomplished.  THEN- it's on the kitchen!! The final room!  Then there will just be some minor decorating that will need done!  Hopefully all in time for the little ones arrival.  It'll be nice coming home from the hospital to a nicely redecorated home!! 

Well, it's about bedtime here.  Getting up at 3:30AM for work is not fun, but someone's got to do it......

Friday, September 3, 2010


Getting Baby Hanna #2's nursery ready has brought some unexpected emotions.  As I'm slowly redecorating the nursery, I seem to keep finding more and more of Ben's things.  I've been debating on what I want to do with these memories. As you know, I bought some new crib bedding (which Jason is on his way to go pick up).   Many people may wonder why I insisted on getting new bedding when the bedding we had was never used.  It may be hard for others to understand, but I felt like I was cheating this baby by not buying him new things.  I felt as though this baby was getting all of Ben's "leftovers".  Don't get me wrong, hand-me-downs are a great thing, but when they are linked to your dead child the feeling of sharing is not the same.  To me, a 'new' baby meant 'new' memories.  So here I am creating new memories to link to our new addition.

So, back to Ben's memories- we are redecorating our bedroom and I feel as this is the best place to put Ben's memories. I've been thinking that I want to purchase this:

I'm thinking this storage ottoman should be sufficient to keep Ben's memories in.  The thought of putting Ben's 'things' in a box is not a great thought, but our house is just not big enough to display all of his things.  I've been unable to get rid of anything that was linked to Ben.  I think Jason probably thinks I'm crazy for wanting to keep Ben's bedding even when Ben never layed in the crib. But to me, it WAS Ben's.  Once our bedroom is complete, I will proudly display some of Ben's memories wherever I can. 

I do realize that some of these things DO seem silly to keep, but I'm just not ready to let them go.  Such as all the gift bags I saved from my baby shower.  What I'll do with them, who knows!! Or the vases in which I received flowers.... or the ten newspapers we have that contain Ben's obituary. Throwing them away just doesn't seem right. 

Ben's angelversary is in a few weeks and we still don't have anything planned.  I'm a little stuck on whether we should be celebrating his birthday or grieving his loss?!?! Should it be a happy or a sad day?!? I am pretty sure that I would like to find some sort of special gift to give to the OB office and the Labor and Delivery department where Ben was born.  I also am pretty sure that I would like this day to be something special JUST between Jason and I.  I'm not sure I'll be up to being around a bunch of people. I'm still a bit worried whether we'll receive birthday cards in the mail or sad, sappy 'Thinking of You' cards. 

OK... well, now that I went a little off track with this post- I have the weekend off and really need to find the motivation to clean and organize this house. Our carpet should be arriving on Monday or Tuesday next week so Jason might lay the carpet padding sometime this weekend.  I'm also hoping to get the trim painted and put up in our spare bedroom (considering it has been without trim for over a year now!).  AND possibly start working on getting the upstairs windows trimmed as well.  Just can't wait to get the nursery done.  It's been so nice to be able to sit up there in our glider and just relax and think about how things are about to change here in the Hanna house!

Time to go-- Jason just pulled up and I'm hoping he was able to pick up our packages!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Wedding Photos

Today I received our wedding photos in the mail.  I immediately ripped the package opened and started looking through them.  Jodi did a fantastic job for being her first wedding photo shoot! I just had to share some of these pictures..

Ok.. there's a FEW of them (and I mean a FEW).  Jodi took so many pictures I don't know how we'll ever choose which ones to print off for our photo albums.  It will be fun to look back at these pictures and remember our special day!

Although I was VERY HAPPY to receive these photos in the mail today, I also received another nice package today...............THE BABY BEDDING HAS ARRIVED.  Since there was no one here at the time of delivery, Jason or I will have to run to the post office tomorrow to pick it up!

So all in all, the long miserable day at work turned into a good day once I got home.  I'm looking forward to having the weekend off to rest.  It's been a long week and I'm ready to relax.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Beginning of a Blog

So, I've had a few people tell me that I should start blogging all these wonderful things in my life. So first off, a little bit about our family:

I'm Megan (22 years old).  I currently work at our local hospital as a registration clerk. 
Jason (30 years old) is my husband.  He works at Visions Auto Glass and repair.

We met in 2006 when I first started working for Jason at a local gas station here in town.  Wouldn't you know, the entire time I worked there we never said a word to each other.  Shortly after I had left to move back home after college, Jason always let me know how he wished he could find another reliable employee as myself.  We eventually started talking more on a daily basis that year.  I moved back to Fort Dodge in August of 2006 and moved in with Jason.  Hmm, it was interesting living with a guy for the first time- but we survived.  Jason took good care of me!

As the next couple years went on things seemed to be good.  We had our ups and down, but for the most part things were good.  On July 1st, 2008 Jason proposed to me while we were on a fishing adventure at Kennedy Park.  Well, let's just say that day of fishing was more like 5 minutes of fishing.  Honestly, what girl wants to fish after finding an engagement ring on the end of your fishing line.  NOT ME!  Since the new engagement had been more exciting than our fishing trip- we turned our boat back around and headed home.  Everyone was thrilled to hear our news. Although, my entire family had known about it for 3-4 months already and no one said a peep!!!

Things were going well for us.  Jason had a good job at Visions and I was currently working at our local Sears store full time.  Things were really looking good for us.  Everyone kept asking when we were planning to get married, but we kept putting it off.  Not because we didn't WANT to get married, more because I didn't WANT to plan a wedding!  It seemed like so much work.  We both knew that we would be together forever so.... instead of planning a wedding- we planned to have our first child.  In December 2008 and January 2009 we were pretty sure this is what we wanted. 

Lucky for us, conceiving wasn't hard to accomplish.  By March we were pregnant.  Jason and I were extremely excited!! All of our doctor appointments were going great.  We couldn't wait to get to that 20 week mark to find out what we were expecting.  It was an exciting day.  The ultrasound tech waited til the very end to tell us- IT'S A BOY!  Sure enough, we went home and started searching for names right away.  We couldn't find any that we really liked UNTIL we found the name Benjamin.  We stuck with the name and were excited to call our new baby Little Ben.  We slowly worked on the nursery (painting it 3 times before finding the right color).  Things were starting to pull together and we were getting very excited to meet our little man. Until..................

September 23rd..... was my scheduled day off of work and was also a scheduled day for a doctor's appointment at 1:30p.m.  I had worked late the Tuesday night before, so when I got out of bed I just layed on the couch until it was time to get ready for my appointment.  Jason had called to tell me he was sent out of town for work and wouldn't be able to make the appointment- no big deal, since he had been to all the other appointments with me.  AFTER getting to the doctor's office, I had noticed that our little man hadn't moved much that day.  I let Dr. O'Connor know this and he quickly started to search for a heartbeat.  After what seemed like hours, there was still no sign of a heartbeat.  So, it was off to the ultrasound tech to see what we could find.  Mind you, I am there alone..... when the Ultrasound tech confirms that our little man was no longer with us.   I was in so much shock, I couldn't even cry.  The doctor started to cry as we walked back to the exam room.  He explained I would have to be induced in two days and deliver our stillborn child.  He explained the procedure to me and off I was.  I called Jason while in the elevator heading down to my car.  He headed home right away.  So on September 25th, I was induced a 7:30 a.m. and from then on it was a waiting game.  I hadn't had much improvement all day.  Contractions didn't start until after 10p.m.  The contractions weren't horrible and were mainly in my back.  Jason attempted to get some sleep on the 'not so comfy' couch in the delivery room.  By 7:30 a.m. the next morning I decided I'd go ahead and receive the epidural to help ease the pain.  By 8:43 a.m. on September 26, 2009 our little angel had been born.  Benjamin Michael Hanna was born at 8:43 a.m. on September 26, 2009.  Not a day goes by that we don't think of him.

After all of this had happened, Jason and I decided what our plans would be for the next year.  Our first plan was to get married in fall of 2010.  So we searched the calendar for possible dates and decided on August 21, 2010.  After losing our first child, many people told us to wait to try to conceive again and that we should focus on our wedding for the next year.   We mostly agreed with everyone when they told us this, but deep down we had other plans.  Jason and I KNEW that we wanted another child.  We both felt ready to try again soon after losing Ben. Once we got the okay from our doctor, we began trying again.  We didn't tell anyone we were trying because we were afraid of what responses we may get.  So after a few months of trying and many tears later.... we had finally found out in March 2010 we were expecting again!!  We were so excited!!  We decided we'd still keep with our wedding date and not hold off any longer.  So on August, 21, 2010- we got married at St. Paul Lutheran church in Fort Dodge, IA.  The day went great!! Lots of family and friends were there to share our special day with us.

As for the pregnancy, everything has gone pretty good.  Doctors' appointments have been great.  We found out on June 30th that we were expecting another little BOY! At our 28 week appointment the doctor told us we would start being seen every week starting at 31 weeks to monitor our baby's heartbeat.  This is just a precautionary step due to our loss at 33 weeks last year with Ben.  For this pregnancy we bought a handheld fetal heart doppler so we could monitor our little one's heartbeat anytime things seemed suspicious.  I was a great investment and has saved me many trips to the local Emergency Room to get checked out.

Sunday August 29th, Jason and I started redecorating the nursery.  All it really "needed" was a new shade of paint and some rearranging of the furniture.  We ordered new bedding for the crib and it should be coming any day now.  The dresser is STUFFED with clothes!!  Almost everything else is ready for baby, just some minor things left.  We also started to redecorate our bedroom.  We ordered new carpet and also painted this room.  Our carpet should be in next week and then we can start moving things back into the room. As for now, we're sleeping on our mattress on our living room floor.  We attempted to sleep in our spare bedroom, BUT that didn't work out so well.  It's very hard for a 6' 5" husband and his pregnant wife to fit on a full size bed!! I will post pictures when the rooms are completed.

Well, this story turned out quite a bit longer than I had planned, but I thought you might like a little background on the Hanna Family before we begin this blogging journey.