Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 in a Nutshell...

In a quick response, if you asked me about 2013, my knee-jerk reaction would be to say it sucked. The first things that pops into my brain is my miscarriage, and the fact that another year has passed and I am not pregnant. Fertility, even when I fight it back, is always creeping into my number one position of thoughts. I try to not think about it, stress about it, but it isn't just as easy as turning off a switch for me. That being said, fertility wise, 2013 was a really hard year. I can't keep count of the tears I've shed this year, I spent more time then I would have liked sulking. Yet, when I really think about the last year of my life, I see a lot of sunshine too. I've been blessed with an incredible husband and son who love me when I'm happy, sad, or crazy on fertility meds. I spent the year growing as a person. I learned so much about myself, and my relationship with God became incredibly strong. I got back up when things knocked me down, granted it wasn't a graceful leap up, more like a stumble, but up none-the-less! I've learned to let go of things I can't control...meh more like I am still learnING ;) I've also had some really great moments this year! Mike and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary! My sweet boy started 1st grade! My extended family grew in size! I've let go of relationships that were negative and in turn, we've been granted new friendships that are such a blessing! I am alive, my family is healthy and my God is faithful! I will keep walking this road before me and I will take it in stride. I am thankful for all the things I have, my cup runneth over!
With a little luck, and a lot of faith, I move forward to 2014 with arms wide open. This is going to be a great year, not a year without struggle, not a year without tears, but another year of growing and finding peace in my own skin. :)

Happy New Year,

Jordan <3

Friday, December 13, 2013

December won't be "The Month"...

As you can probably guess from the title of this post, my appointment didn't go well this morning. At all. All I needed was two blank ovaries - no cysts, just nothing... she said my uterus looks great, my right ovary was fine, and then she scanned over to the left. It is always that left ovary. There, like a baseball, was a giant cyst. Huge is the word she used actually. She told me I must have a high tolerance for pain because this thing should be hurting, if not now, soon. Great! So no medicine, no baby, pain, oh and icing on the cake... I have to go on birth control. I fought back the tears until I got into my car and I just let it all out. I sobbed in the car the entire way back to work. I called Mike and I could tell he was disappointed too. He made me feel better, he always does, but I just feel like we flew backwards 10 steps. Can I just catch a break? I'm sure in a day or two I will gather myself and be more optimistic, I will pray about this and ask God for clarity and peace, but for now I just want to cry and sulk, and pour myself a big glass of wine...

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Christmas is Coming...

There is no better time to get pregnant then during the advent season, right?! I absolutely love Christmas, and every year I really look forward to its arrival. This year has been a little tough, though. Honestly, I thought for sure I'd have a baby in my arms this Christmas. In fact - a few days ago would have been my due date, had I not miscarried. :( While it makes me sad, I have to remember that it didn't coincide with God's plan and I have to remain faithful, joyful, and diligent in prayer. I know what I'm asking Santa for this year, a big ole' + sign!

After the doctor determined that I didn't ovulate in November, I was really really ready to start my cycle over and get on to next month. You know a girl has lost it, when she's wishing her period would just hurry up already! Yesterday, Mike and I met with Dr. Jaffe to discuss "the next steps". I know I gush about her a lot, but I have to again. She has a way of always making me feel better about my situation, she is so confident in this happening for us, and it's reassuring to hear from a doctor. We went through our questions, talked about what we want and don’t want, and basically set our plan in place for December. I was to call her on day 1 of my cycle to set up a day 2 ultrasound so we could proceed with the plan. My period has been a few days late, but my body was telling me it was coming anytime now, and today it finally came! It's like getting underwear for Christmas. You need underwear, it isn't your favorite thing to get, but it is a necessity. I got my underwear, my need is fulfilled and it's a new month! So, tomorrow I go in for an internal ultrasound. I am seemingly less excited about that. :/
Hopefully tomorrow they clear me to take the medicine I was on last month again. They will be looking to make sure I am clear of cysts, and ready for some ovulation stimulation ;). If all goes well, I will begin medication on Saturday for 5 days, followed by a day 10-12 ultrasound to check for healthy follicles (aka eggs). This is where some decisions will have to be made. I have the option at that point to a.) move forward naturally OR b.) take an injection (eek) of hsg that Mike would be administering (double eek) that would force the egg to drop down into the tube. Sort of assisting my body in making sure I ovulate. While I like the idea of getting this show on the road, I am terrified of needles and the thought of anyone other than a nurse doing it makes me shaky. I also prefer the natural route as much as possible in all of this. So I am a little torn. I think I may just keep praying about it and decide when I have to!
Last month clearly wasn't the month for pregnancy, but I am hoping this one is. Funny enough, the Chinese gender calendar says last month would have yielded a boy and this month a girl, so I'm going to just roll with that as the reason I didn't ovulate. :) I'd be lying if I said I didn't want a girl, I totally do, but first and foremost I want a healthy baby. I would be thrilled either way!

I'm sure I'll be blogging again before Christmas! I should have an ultrasound right before then and I should also have a decision made on which option we are going to choose. Hopefully, through prayer, I get a clear answer on that! So for the next few weeks I will be taking all my vitamins, following doctor's orders, and praying like mad. Maybe a little Christmas luck will go a longgg way! I appreciate everyone's kind words and prayers - I know yall are routing for us, and I can't wait for the time when we get to celebrate a new life with all of you!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Back From Our Trip...

Welp, we made it through Thanksgiving! We got home from DC early Sunday morning and spent most of the day trying to relax and get ready for the week. DC was so much fun! I loved getting to have some time with my family, meeting new family, and catching up with one of my oldest friends. DC was beautiful. I was actually shocked at how pretty I thought it was.. We'd never been there before, and I didn't really know what to expect, but my hopes weren't too high because politicians are well, frankly, the opposite of DC! It was big, clean, open, and refreshing. It was also FREEZING! We saw almost everything on our list - we hit most of the monuments, The Museum of Natural Histoy and the American History museum, as well as the National Zoo.. I have to round up pictures from my mom and sister, as well as Mike, but here are some quick ones from my phone...
Jake in the WWII Memorial with the Washington Monument in the background.
Family Picture in front of the White House.
Jake & the Giant Panda!
The trip really was wonderful. We had a lot of time to just be together, which is something that gets taken for granted in the normal day-to-day activities. I love my boys, and my family so much.

In fertility news, I wish I could be feeling as full. Wednesday morning, before our flight, I had to run to the doctors for bloodwork. They were really hoping I would test high for progesterone - the hormone your body releases after ovulation - which would mean I did ovulate, and I just missed the testing. After arriving in DC, I got a call that my bloodwork came back negative for progesterone, meaning I did not ovulate. :( I decided to push it in the back of my mind and focus on being on vacation with my family. I don't even think I told anyone, other than Mike, about the call. I just wanted to shelf it for the time being. The nurse asked me to call Monday morning to get an appointment for a follow-up. She said "we can talk about what's next when you're here". So right now I don't really know whats going on. I am really bummed I didn't ovulate. I knew I hadn't though. Without getting to graphic, there are some changes in a woman's body when she's ovulating. Some women may never notice them, but once you have been tracking for as long as I have... you know, and I knew I hadn't. One part of me kind of feels like we are back to the drawing board. Starting over again. The other part thinks maybe my body just needed another month to heal from surgery and maybe this next month will be my month. I'm praying for patience, clarity, strength, and thanking Him for all of the wonderful things He has gifted to me, not because I am deserving, but because He loves me regardless.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Cycle Day 17...

Happy Monday, and of course Happy Thanksgiving week!
My sister-in-law is in the hospital today, being induced with her 2nd baby! We are expecting my 6th nephew to be here sometime later today (God-willing) and I can't wait to get some newborn snuggles.
In other news, the boys and I head for DC this Wednesday! We are meeting my mom and sister there for the Thanksgiving holiday. We are excited for the trip and have never been to DC before so our to-do list is growing! Thanksgiving Day, the high is only 36 degrees. That's insane. We don't have the right clothes for that here in sunny Florida, so we will all be wearing 3 jackets at a time ;)
In baby news, I'm just still waiting. I have been doing the ovulation kits for 7 days now, each time its negative. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't discouraged. I totally am. I start doubting my body, wondering if I will ever just ovulate like a normal woman. I really wanted it to just work this month. Not that I haven't other months, but I was so hopeful that it would just happen because the surgery "fixed" what was wrong. Maybe it still did, but getting that negative sign isn't making me feel better.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, this week, instead of praying that I get a positive test result, I am praying for a thankful heart. Thankful for my wonderful family and friends. Thankful for my doctor, who assures me that this will end the way we want it to. Thankful for a God that loves me in sadness just as much as He loves me in joy. Thankful for my struggle with infertility, that it has brought me closer to God, and has in turn made me a better human. I will continue to test for another 7 days - hopefully in that time I will get a positive test. I put a call in to my nurse this morning to see what the next steps are. I assume they will tell me to continue testing, but they may want me to come in sometime next week to check progesterone. I know some women ovulate regularly but never get a positive test, so we will continue trying for now. It's out of my hands, right?!

ps. I am especially thankful for all the sweet people that read my blog and keep up with what’s going on with us. I love the comments and notes I get. I love hearing that people enjoy reading what I write. I hope I serve as a witness to God and I hope that I encourage people. Selfishly, this blog has helped me more than it can probably help anyone else, so Thank YOU for reading it. I feel the love <3

Monday, November 11, 2013

Here We Go...

Happy Monday Blog Readers!! - more importantly, Happy Veterans Day! So thankful for our military, and the sacrifices both they and their families make for us daily!

This morning I had an 8:00am appointment with Dr. Jaffe. Every time I leave that office I am so thankful. Thankful that I was lead there, thankful that the people there are so passionate about what they do. This morning my appointment was to discuss medicine. If I wanted to take it, what kinds, my options, etc. After taking Dr. Jaffe's advice, I am going to go on a new RX called Letrozole. It works similarly to clomid, in that you take it cycle days 3-7, however way less side effects, and Dr. Jaffe says she has way more success with Letrozole. I am pretty excited about that. Letrozole is often prescribed to women who are going through breast cancer treatments, it helps stimulate your body's natural production of female hormones...
...but let me back up a minute. Without going into a whole lot of detail, my period was 12 days late as of Saturday. Dr. Jaffe warned me that it might be off because of surgery, but we were also on hold to get moving on the next steps until I got through my first cycle. So, believe it or not, I was praying for my period to start. I made the Nov 11th doctor’s appointment at my post op with no way of knowing when my period would start. Timing is critical in all of this, so Sunday morning when my cycle started, it ended up being perfect. That means, today is day 2 - because of this, I get to start the meds this month, tomorrow, on day 3. If my period wasn't late, or was but started on Friday, I would have had to wait a whole 'nother month! My nurse said, "You couldn't have worked that out if you tried!" and she is right, I couldn't, but God knew the plan :)

So here we go! This month will be busy with testing, medicines, vitamins, doctor’s appointments, and HOPEFULLY ending with a big fat + sign! We'll be praying, and as always, we appreciate your prayers!


Thursday, November 7, 2013

The Story of my Second Pregnancy...

I knew when I started this blog that, at some point, it would be time to share my 2nd pregnancy story. Several months ago - before I started going to my fertility specialist - I was on a drug called Clomid. A drug perscribed to me by my OBGYN to help me ovulate. I had been on it for a long time without much result and I wasn't very optomistic that "it" would happen. I started feeling like I was going to start my period, I was tired, emmotional, and I felt achey, almost like I was getting sick. I had taken a sick day from work, and layed in bed for most of the morning. I kept thinking my period would start and I would have to force myself out of the monthly depression. It got to be the afternoon and still no period, so I decided to take a pregnancy test. When you are trying to concieve, pregnancy test are both your best friend and your worst enemy. Unwrapping that test, you are full of so much hope. I would try to supress it, and tell myself "I'm sure it will be negative", but deep down, I wanted that + sign so badly. This particular time, I took the test, sat it on the counter, and climbed back into bed. About 10 minutes later it dawned on me that I hadn't checked it yet, so I slowly walked over, preparring to chunk it in the trash, and climb back into bed. This test was one where 1 line means negative 2 lines mean positive. When I looked I saw one clear line and I started to cry. Sometimes I swear I have starred at those test, trying to convince myself if I stare long enough a second line will appear. Sooo when I noticed a faint second line I thought I was loosing it. I started shaking, tears were streaming. I kept wiping my eyes and trying to focus my eyes on that line. It was there, no doubt. It was faint, but it was there. I called Mike and he knew I was emmotional as soon as I said hello. I told him and we had a few minutes of pure joy. I kept telling him I couldnt believe it, it couldn't be real. We decided I would call my doctor right away. I did, and they told me to test again in the morning - since I was worried that my line was faint. I did test again that next morning and this time there was no mistaking that 2nd line. We were SO happy. I called the doctor and made my appointment. That week was great. I started my baby journal - because I love to write, I decided when I got pregnant I would write a journal to my unborn baby to keep track of it all. I got through the week, the weekend, I told the people that are close to us, and was set to go hear my babies heartbeat. I thought I was about 5-6 weeks pregnant at the time. That next Monday, I picked Jake up from school and we headed to Publix for our weekly grocery trip. Mike was meeting us there. We walked in, and I told Jake to wait with the cart while I ran to the bathroom, I knew Mike was walking in so I told Jake to look out for Dad. I went into the bathroom, sat down and (sorry to be graphic) noticed the blood. There was a lot of it. I knew right then what was happening. I knew I was miscarrying. I panicked, got my stuff together, ran out of the bathroom, and there were my boys. Mike saw my face and new something was wrong. I told him I needed to leave now. We walked out, put Jake in the car, and I broke down. Right there in the publix parking lot. Mike hugged me, kept calm, and told me to call my doctor. I did, and was quickly speaking to the on call doctor. She told me to go home, and relax. She said it wasn't neccessarily a miscarriage, but in my heart I knew it was. I bled the first 5 months with Jake, but this was different. All of a sudden my week and a half of absolute bliss came crashing down. I went to sleep at about 6:30 and woke up the next morning, praying it was a bad dream. It wasn't. The doctors office called and asked me to come in for an appointment, so I did. They did an exam, bloodwork, and confirmed that I was having a miscarriage. I went home and spent a good three days not getting out of bed. It wasn't fair to Mike and Jake,but they loved me through it, and it made me appreciate them even more. I haven't been the best through all of this, but my boys don't stop loving me. I learned a lot through my miscarriage. I continue to learn from it. People would say things to me, or I would read things about women not telling anyone until they are 3 months pregnant. I could never do that. I don't regret telling my family and friends, if I hadn't, my miscarriage would have felt that much more lonely. But it wasn't lonely, my weeks of pregnancy were full, my miscarriage was full, I wasn't alone in any of it, and even when I wanted to sink into my lonely place, the people that loved me wouldn't allow it. So, long story short, if I got pregnant tomorrow, it wouldn't be a secret. I am not fearful of miscarriage. I trust in God's plan, and I know He knows why that wasn't our time. That being said, I won't forget it, my heart ache was real and painful, but that stretching of my heart only made more room for love. My second pregnancy didn't end how I had hoped, but none-the-less it was a second pregnancy, for me it was a direct response from God. It will happen, but only when it's right. Post surgery, I believe that even more. The results of my surgery, the risks my body would have been in had I carried a baby full term, prior to them cleaning up the scar tissue... it's amazing. I will forever be greatful for my 6 weeks of pregnancy.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Want to get Pregnant?...

... come sit next to me! Or that's how it seems anyway. One of the hardest parts of infertility is watching, what feels like, everyone else around you getting pregnant. Not because you don't want them to or because you aren't happy for them, but it still is difficult to swallow. I know I need to keep my focus on the future but I feel like it's been difficult lately to continue being optimistic. I am counting the days again, and that isn't something I enjoy doing. Praying for patience and peace.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Starting Over...

Yesterday was our appointment with Dr. Jaffe. She was running behind from morning surgery, so when we did get to see her she was playing catch-up. She did my exam, and cleared us for trying again. She went through all of the pictures - side note: I won't be cooking chicken for a while - and discussed the surgery outcome with us. I know I touched on it before but here is what she told me yesterday...
Basically, as a result of the emergency surgery I had 4 years ago, my body didn't heal as ideally as it could have. As with all things, when you are cut, or injured, or have had surgery, scar tissue forms. It is your bodies way of reinforcing that wound, in an effort to prevent it from happening again. How amazing is that, by the way. When you really think about all of the things our bodies do to heal themselves and to protect itself. I don't know how anyone could not see the miracle of life. How incredibly, intricately designed we are by the Maker. Amazing! Anyway, when my body began healing from surgery, which was pretty traumatic, it produced a lot of scar tissue. Because my ovary was being operated on, this scar tissue draped my ovaries, as well as surrounding organs - namely my bowel - effectively attaching my bowel to my ovaries and the incision sight. Dr. Jaffe believes that this scar tissue and displacement of my ovaries is what has led to my infertility. She does think I am relatively cystic, but not to the point that it is effecting ovulation. Her hope is, now that most of that scar tissue is gone, I will ovulate naturally. This isn't a guarantee, more of a wait and see how my body responds. Of course I wanted to know that this was it! That I would be ovulating and getting pregnant easily now, and of course it isn't quite that simple. Another case of hurry up and wait. :(
That being said, I am so thankful we went ahead with the surgery. Prayers were answered and we think we've got it! I am hopeful that my body will return to normal and I will begin to ovulate naturally. Obviously I am praying for this daily, hourly almost.
The plan right now is for me to start tracking as soon as I start my next cycle. Tracking my basal body temp, doing daily ovulation test, keeping records of that, and obviously trying a lot when we are approaching ovulation time. I have to keep my eyes focused on the prize. One day it will be our turn and I will shout it from the roof tops!

I am always reading other blogs, and one of my favorites is a blog from Nate Pyle. He writes a lot about Christianity and how it blends with today's world. He is a father of a young child and is married, so in a lot of ways it is easy for me to relate to him. I love his style of writing, and he always has a unique perspective on the Bible. This past week I shared a link to his most recent blog post on my facebook. It is all about grief, and sadness, and the difficult times we enter into as humans. He talks about, as Christians, how we often go about sorrow all wrong. That we try to avoid it all together, when in fact, it is something that bonds us even closer to God. I, of course, felt like it was so perfect for the way I feel about the past 3 years. This struggle has made me so incredibly close to the Father. I reach out to Him in sadness all of the time. He picks me up, dusts me off, and makes me whole again. There is a gratefulness I feel when I reflect on the last 3 years. Prior to that, I was sort of just existing. Wrapped up in the day to day life - never denying God, but never embracing Him either. My focus has changed. I am constantly searching out my path to being a better person, and a follower of God. I make a lot of mistakes, I say things I shouldn't, I struggle with praying for people who aren't nice to me, but the best part is - I am trying to fix those things now. I know it won’t be perfect and it will continue to be something I have to work on daily, but after feeling God's love through all of this, I want to be a better person. I want to be my husband, for Jake, for my friends and family, my coworkers. I want to be an example for those people, and I want God to shine through me. I hope I can be His prism, I hope I have been to some people. So with that, I don't hate what the past 3 years have brought me, I embrace it. I will continue to have hard days, and I will lean heavily on His shoulder when I do.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Time for a Change...

Ever feel like you just need to change something in your life? I do from time to time - and my go to is my hair. It's easy to change up your color or style, and the good news is - it grows back! The people that have known me for a long time, know that I will randomly completely change my hair style. About the same time we decided to start trying for baby #2, I started growing my hair out. Prior to that it was really short in high school and then I let it grow long (during pregnancy with Jake). After Mike and I got married I decided I would cut it short again - I did and I loved it, but as time went on I let it grow again. At that point, we had been trying for a couple months and I decided I would cut my hair again when I got pregnant. Well that didn't happen (obviously) and here we are 3 years later! My hair was long. Longer than it looks in pictures really - I mean it sat past the middle of my back. That’s what 3 years of prenatals and not getting pregnant will do I guess. :) Recently, I got the itch. I have been wanting to change it up a bit - but after having it long, for this long, I was wavering on what to do. Then I thought of 2 things - 1. I feel renewed since my surgery. I feel like this really is what needed to happen and that things are going to change for us. We will get pregnant! 2. This hair is weighing me down! Subconsciously - it was my security blanket - something I was holding on to. As silly as it may sound, sometimes infertility can make you feel less of a woman. So I think somewhere inside, me having long hair made me feel feminine. BUT, this is our time, this is our new start. I am resetting the clock on us trying to have a baby. I am starting over - putting the past 3 years behind me, and moving toward the future. So.....

Bam! 10.5 (give or take) inches GONE! I donated the pony tail to locks of love and never looked back :) The guy that was cutting my hair, just kept telling me how calm I was about losing that much hair. He said that most women that chop that much off are practically breathing into a brown paper bag. I was ready, excited even, no need to be worried. It's just hair. I feel SO light - I joke that my head feels like it moves a lot more now, like I'm a bobble-head.
So here's to a fresh start! I cut off the dead weight, literally, and I am excited for what's ahead. A new, positive outlook. Hopefully my hair isn't the only big change on me in the next few months!!
We go to the doctor tomorrow! I will update the blog with specifics of the appointment and our new plan as soon as I can! Keep us in your prayers :)


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

In the News...

I read/watch a fair amount of news, I probably read more than I watch, which I should probably limit since rarely is there something good going on. A lot of the time reading the news can be downright depressing! I am SO sick of reading the headlines about the government shut-down. Don't get me wrong, I understand it's importance, but the slant and misleading facts brought on by the media outlets is obnoxious. All of that being said, reading the news is something I enjoy (usually). Most of the time I spend on the news sites is reading about new medical research, or good Samaritan stories. One of the big things I read about is... you guessed it! Infertility! Usually there aren't many interesting stories to read, outside of blogs, in regards to infertility, so I was surprised today when I read the headline "Cinnamon May Help Ease Common Cause of Infertility Study Says".
Sidebar: Anyone who knows me, knows my love for holistic medicine. I think I have mentioned before about how much I hate taking prescription medication, and I would love to be able to treat any ailment with an herb rather than a RX pill. That being said, it isn't always easy to find holistic medicine - mostly because no one ever got filthy rich off of selling you raw, organic apple cider vinegar.
So two things attracted me to this article, the first being the cinnamon - the second being my curiosity about what cause they were referring too. I clicked the link and read about a study conducted at Columbia University in New York City - where they took a group of women (16 of them, all actively trying to conceive) and gave 11 of them a cinnamon extract pill and others a placebo. In the group of women taking the cinnamon all of them saw significant improvement in the regularity of their monthly cycle and 2 of those 11 became pregnant without any outside fertility medicine! The women receiving the placebo only averaged 2 periods in a 4 month span. While the testing is still in its early stages, and even though the doctors conducting the study aren't sure what the relation is between the cinnamon and women with PCOS how cool is that? If you don’t know, the drugs you take to counter-act PCOS are pretty awful. The thought of potentially ovulating by way of cinnamon versus RX drugs is pretty cool.
It is amazing what you find when you start looking for holistic treatments to medical problems. About a year ago I started noticing, what I thought was acne on my chin. It began spreading up the side of my mouth, then on to my nose, then finally across my forehead. As a teenager, I never really had acne so I couldn't believe it was happening now. I went to a dermatologist who determined it wasn't acne, it was actually periodontal dermatitis. She started cranking out prescriptions - some of which got eliminated because they told me if I got pregnant while taking them it could cause issues for the baby's development. More specifically, they told me my baby would have grey teeth! GREY TEETH?! Not ok. So, I decided I would give the drugs a go and try the ones that were safe for baby making. They helped, some. Mostly, they spurred me on to find a holistic way to treat the PD. I found this support group for women with PD (yep, it mostly effects women, and doctors believe it is trigger by hormones) who wish to treat it naturally. Several of them had a lot of luck with using organic, un-heated apple cider vinegar, so I decided to put down the prescriptions and pick up the vinegar. After a week I noticed a small difference, after a month the PD was almost unnoticeable. I was so happy! I really believe the trick with holistic treatments are giving them a devoted run. Meaning, yes they may not be as fast as RX drugs, and they require diligence, but if you commit to consistency and patience, they will work! All of this is probably why I found the article so intriguing. What if something like cinnamon can cure infertility caused by PCOS? How awesome would that be for the women who don’t have health insurance, or have issues with reactions to medications? Maybe it won't work for everyone - but if it works for some, it's worth a shot!
After I have my sit down on the 22nd with Dr. Jaffe and we come up with our plan, I may start taking cinnamon. Can't hurt, right?! I love holistic remedies, so if you have some, post them in a comment below. Another one I LOVE that a friend shared with me was the use of peppermint oil. 2 drops of peppermint oil in a luke-warm bath will help clear up any skin rash, irritation, hives, etc. I use this for my psoriasis, and I also use it for Jake when he gets a rash or bug bites. :)

Monday, October 14, 2013

Getting Back into my Normal Life...

Happy Monday! I am almost 1 full week post surgery and today I am back at work full time! I am feeling pretty good and it's nice that each day I feel more and more like my old self. I haven't taken any pain meds in 2 days, which I am happy about because I don't like taking them. ;)
Last week, after my previous post, I wasn't able to do much. Thursday morning I woke up determined to get up and go to work. I did, I showered, got dressed and headed downtown. Walking into work I started to feel a little bad. Mostly just winded and sore, but I made it to my desk and got my morning going. I didn't want to take any of my RX pain medicine while at work so I just took some motrin. After a few hours went by I started to realize I wasn't as well as I thought, my pain and soreness were taking away my focus, and I started to feel overwhelmed. When lunch time rolled around, I decided to just go home. As I was walking to my car in the parking garage, a little old man stopped me to ask if he could help me to my car. Clearly, I wasn't looking so hot. I declined but thanked him and tried to perk myself up a bit. Once I got to my car and sat down I started to cry. I knew I was pushing myself, but I really thought I could have gotten through the day. Surgery is no joke, and when I got home, I took two pills and slept for hours.
Each day got a little easier, and by Friday, I started to feel more like a human again, which was good because Mike and I were in a wedding that weekend! Our really good friends, Brian and Jacki were getting married and we were both really happy to be a part of it. We had such a good time at the wedding and everything was beautiful! Jacki was absolutely stunning and I am so glad I felt good Saturday.
I am really excited to go see Dr. Jaffe next week. She said she will have pictures to show me (gag) of my ovaries! She also said she would go into much deeper detail about the surgery and the outcome when we meet on the 22nd.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

I made it!

It's Wednesday morning which means I am home and surgery is over! Praise God! Yesterday was nuts, so forgive me if this post gets a little drawn out...
Mike and I had to be at the hospital at 7:15am Tuesday morning. So we woke up at 5:45 and I took a shower, put pajama's on and got ready to go. Jake doesn't have to be to school until 8:30 so we took him over to the in-laws, and they later took him to school for us.
We got to the hospital on time and then it turned into hurry up and wait. We sat in the waiting room for about 45 minutes which was fine, then they called me back to get my vitals and have me change and get into a bed. Since I wasn't allowed to eat or drink since midnight, they hooked me up to an IV to keep me hydrated. Once all of that was done, they called Mike back to come sit with me. We were there for probably 2 hours, which wasn't anyone’s fault. Dr. Jaffe was in surgery and it ran over. However, laying in that bed, being still, for that long really let my nerves take over. I got so anxious and shaky, tears started streaming down my face. I have been pretty good about all of this until that moment. Mike just kept reminding me I would be fine and I calmed down eventually. I did so much better as long as people kept talking to me or asking me questions. Nurses would come in and out - I kept being introduced to nurses, and doctors that would be there... It gets to a point where it's almost overwhelming, which was good for me because it didn't allow me to dwell on the surgery.
Mike's mom came down to the hospital and sat with Mike the entire time. I was so thankful that she did. I know it relaxed Mike some and gave him someone to talk to. She also came back with Mike and I so she was another thing to focus on, other than my surgery.
Finally, the anesthesiologist came in and started my medicine, from that point on things get a little hazy. I remember them wheeling my in to the room and then all goes dark. I was wound up so tight and so sleepy that I think the little bit of anesthesia was enough to make me fall asleep. The next thing I knew I was waking up in a room with a nurse calling my name. They told me I was all done and that everything went really well. I wasn't in any pain, but I did notice my left hand was giant. Did you ever, as a child, blow up a latex glove into a balloon? Yeah? That was/is my hand. My fingers are normal but my palm is GIANT. It's sort of comical. They told me it was a reaction to the anesthesia and was no big deal, so I'm not worried about it. It has gone down some, and if it's not noticeably better by tomorrow I will probably call my doctor.
Once I was awake (enough) they wheeled me into a room and brought back Mike and his mom. We sat there for a bit and they brought me water and graham crackers. They said I would be released once I could go to the bathroom, so I tried to get up and go, but I got super dizzy and nauseous so I decided to wait a little longer. The nurse gave me some meds for the nausea and I laid back down.
Dr. Jaffe (my doctor) had numerous surgeries that day so I didn't have a chance to see her post surgery, but Mike and my mother in law did! She pulled them into a consultation room and told them about the surgery. I am sure I will mess some of this up, since they told me about it when I was still a little high from the medicine, but I will know a lot more after my post-op when I get to hear all of it. What I got from Mike and my mother in law was that the surgery was really successful! My ovaries were stuck to my bowels apparently, due to scar tissue! That sounds crazy to me so I just kept asking my husband and MIL, "to my bowels?" lol. They just kept telling me yes, and I just kept asking. Anyway, Mike said the doctor feels really confident that she found and fixed the problem and she really thinks I will be ovulating in no time!!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHH! That is SUCH good news. I am so excited. As crazy as it may seem, I kept praying that she would get in there and really be able to figure out what was going on. Obviously, there was no guarantee of that pre surgery, and I was starting to have doubts. No one wants to go through surgery for nothing, right? Also, quite honestly, after 3 years of this without much result, you start to feel a little cray cray. Like, maybe it's all in my head. Or maybe they will never find the solution. This whole thing has renewed my hope and I am excited!
Thank you so much for your thoughts and prayers! I felt so much love through all of this and I can't wait to see what’s next!

Here's a picture of my hand! Yikes!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Pre-Op Appointments...

Happy Monday!
I don't know how you envisioned your day going but mine has turned out slightly differently than I was expecting. I had my pre-ops today and had to be at my doctor's office at 11:15 to do what I needed to do there. Usually our doctor's office moves really quickly so I was suprised when I realized I had been sitting in the waiting room for 30-40 minutes. Once I got back with the nurse she explained to me that 2 of the 3 of my doctor's nurses were out today and they were running behind. No big deal, just eager to get things over with. They checked vitals, went over procedural stuff, ran through what I can expect, had me sign away my life and sent me over to the hopsital.
Once I got there, I virtually had to repeat everything - except this time I was in a waiting room for three and a half hours. A waiting room filled with people who needed surgery. It was freezing cold and the one tiny tv was on CNN repeating the same 4 news stories over and over and over again. Once they finally called my name I had to sit with a lady who checks you in and (of course) takes your money. I knew I would be paying some money today but I had no idea what amount. I was a little shocked when she tried to collect $800.00 from me. Yeah, you read that right eight hundred dollars. That doesn't include the anthesiologist charge - which I can only imagine what that will be. Thank the Lord my insurance covers 90%, or the surgery would have been more like $8,000 out of pocket, but still - thats a BIG pill for my family to swallow. So I will be lifting that up in prayer.
After my wallet was emptied, I had to go back to the waiting room and wait for one of the nurses to call my name. When it was finally my turn, I had my blood work drawn, answered more questions, signed more forms and was finally told I could go. I hauled it to Wendy's, ate chicken nuggets and headed back to work for a few hours.
I want to take a minute to say how thankful I am to my co-workers. How wonderful they have been to me through this and how much easier it has made this process on me. I pray they stay patient with me this week and I hope they know how happy I will be to get past this and get back to work.
I am sure tonight, the nerves will settle in and I will find it hard to sleep. For now, I feel ok about everything. I don't like being in a hospital, I hate anthestia and the thought of going under, but I am not fearful. Of course, I will ask that you keep me in your prayers. Pray for my doctor, for my nurses, for me, for Mike and Jake. I know I will be praying!


Thursday, October 3, 2013

#tbt - The Blog Addition...

So if you're on Facebook or Instagram then you know what #tbt is - if not, it stands for throw back Thursday - where people post older pictures. Since today is Thursday - I thought I would do a blog appropriate throwback post, so here it is!

I Have a New Nephew...

Monday night I got a text from my mom telling me my older sister, Jessica had successfully delivered baby number 5! Jessica already has 4 boys, and she doesn't know the sex before her babies are born so we were all anxiously awaiting to see what number 5 would be...

Whelp! It's another boy!! Can you believe that? 5 boys! Her grandmother had 5 boys too - you have to be tough to raise 5 boys.

Clearly, Jessica doesn't experience the fertility issues I do ;) She is pretty hard core when it comes to labor. Being that she's been through this 5 times now, I feel like she's done it all. Hospital birth with meds, without meds, emergency C-section, and then 2 natural home births. I can't tell you how much I admire her. That being said, we all sort of thought baby #5 would be a seemingly easy natural birth. I know I know, easy and natural aren't words that most women think of when they think of a natural birth - I'm using these as relative terms :) So when Jessica went into labor last Friday, I think she thought she'd have a baby that weekend...
Nope! She went through 4 days (that number 4 is NOT a typo) of natural labor. 4 DAYS! She was 10cm dilated for a LONG time - when I finally got to talk to her yesterday she told me it was crazy. She felt like it was never going to end, and at one point she was ready to give up and head for the hospital. Obviously, if she would have it would have been an emergency C-section. After encouragement from her husband and the midwives she decided to hold out a little longer.

While she was telling me this story I just kept saying "whoa" "oh my gosh" "wow". As Monday went on, labor finally started progressing, and for the first time she felt the urge to push! After an intense 4 days of labor I couldn't believe she could go on anymore. Long(er) story short, Baby #5 is here! He's a chunk at about 9lbs - which is like 10% of my sisters body weight - and I can't wait to go see him! I want to have a natural child birth when we are fortunate enough to get pregnant again. I feel like after all this effort to get pregnant and all the prayer and waiting, I want to live in every minute of it. That being said, I pray that it doesn't last 4 whole days and nights. Oy Vey!

When I was on the phone with her, he started to cry and tears filled my eyes. Not sad tears, but tears that remind me of how bad I want to hear our baby cry. I know that sounds weird, but I can't wait for the day I hear our baby cry, or laugh, or coo, or make those little grunt noises. I have so many mommy friends with new babies that are doing anything they can to get their baby to stop crying and I get it. I've been there, but I can tell you this next time, I will relish in those moments. I never thought my heart would ache for the sound of a newborn baby cry, but it totally does. With Jake, those moments feel so far away, and while now our moments are just as precious to me, they are very different. Shoot , these days I'm lucky to get a public kiss goodbye or a snuggle on the couch! All I can say to the mommas with young babies are the words to a country song I love - "You're gonna miss this, you're gonna want this back".

I am trying to plan a trip to Savannah VERY soon so I can go love on him for a day or two. I can't wait to smell that sweet new baby smell. Lucky for me in about 2 months, my sweet sister-in-law will be having her 2nd child, a boy, and I can promise you I'll be loving on that baby every chance I get!


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Today is a New Day...AMEN...

Last night I slept great. Which was shocking because all day yesterday all I could think about was how anxious I was and I just knew I wouldn't sleep. This morning I woke up and was determined to focus on my excitement about the future rather than my temporary fear.

While I was in my car I decided to jam to my itunes radio (btw - if you have an iPhone and haven't used this yet you are missing out!) and I typed in Chris Tomlin. Chris is a Christian singer and I love his music. As the station played (it will play random songs that are in the same genre as Chris) A song came on call "Praise You in This Storm" by Casting Crows. The lyrics spoke to me! I knew within the first few seconds I was meant to hear this song...

I was sure by now
God You would have reached down
And wiped our tears away
Stepped in and saved the day
But once again, I say "Amen", and it's still raining

As the thunder rolls
I barely hear Your whisper through the rain
"I'm with you"
And as Your mercy falls
I raise my hands and praise the God who gives
And takes away

And I'll praise You in this storm
And I will lift my hands
For You are who You are
No matter where I am
And every tear I've cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
And though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

How beautiful is that chorus? It's even better when you hear it to music. This walk I am on is my walk - this walk Mike and I are on is our walk. God chose it for us and I will praise him all the way through. I know the path doesn't end in a hopsital post labor. The walk will continue and I know we will never be alone. Unshaken, unwavering, unbreakable.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Blogging Away the Nerves...

So as of about 10 minutes ago I officially have a set surgery date. Next Tuesday, October 8th at 9:15 am. I think if I keep saying it, typing it, etc. it will become less of a big deal to me and my stomach can calm down. I am such a baby about this sort of thing!

Some awesome news... because of my uterine fibroids and my cysts being so prevalent my insurance IS going to cover 90% of the cost. This is a big sigh of relief and I am very thankful for the awesome staff at CRM (my doctor's office).

All I can do now is wait and pray! I will also ask for your prayers, thoughts, well wishes, all of it!

My Monday Thoughts...

1 Corinthians 10:13 - No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with temptation He will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
One of the main emotions I have struggled with throughout all of this is jealousy. Jealousy, to me, is a complex, twisted tango of an emotion. I pray frequently to keep it at bay - however it is a natural feeling. The bible speaks a lot about envy and jealousy - anyone who's learned the 10 commandments knows it well. As Christians, we know we are supposed to strip it out of our hearts. Easier said than done, right? Jealousy can rear its ugly head in almost every part of life, however in the case of fertility, it has taken on a whole new meaning for me.

After our first year of trying, when I just knew something wasn't right, I started to get jealous of women around me that were so "easily" having babies. I felt a lot of guilt about my jealousy, after all, it isn't their fault I can't get pregnant. I didn't like the way it was making me feel and I knew something needed to change. I started looking around for support groups and began reading online. Most of what I read, unfortunately, encouraged women with infertility to stay away from baby stores, baby showers, anything baby. The thought of that made me sad. I don’t want to stay away from babies, when my family or friends are celebrating a birth or pregnancy, I want to celebrate too. I would never wish infertility on anyone, and if another biological baby isn't in our future, then I certainly want to snuggle everyone else’s. :)

As time has gone on, I have continued to struggle with my jealousy. Just recently, I was reading some verses that focus on this topic and I found the verse at the top of this post. It was sort of my "suck it up, buttercup" verse. After reading this, my whole view on jealousy changed. I believe a dose of jealousy is healthy. I say a dose, because if you allow it to take over your heart, it will, and that is never healthy. For me, I choose to look at my jealousy as a motivating factor. Every time I want to throw in the towel, someone I know announces a pregnancy or has a baby. That little twinge spurs me on. It reminds me of why I am not ready to give up. God is leading us in this, and He needs me to know the picture is much larger than my eyes can see.

So while I will always have to keep it in check, I am not running away from jealousy anymore. I will face it head on, embrace it, and shift the focus on to jealousy being a reminder of my passion and desire to be pregnant again. I'm not saying you will catch me watching "16 and Pregnant" anytime soon, but I will use the emotion to my benefit. Because I know my God is faithful and He will not lead me to anything that He doesn't think I can endure. How amazingly encouraging is that? This walk was given to us by God. He choose Mike and I for this because He knows we can handle it. He has faith in us, so how can I ever let me faith in Him waver? I know we will have another child, what I don’t know is the path that will bring that baby to us, but I have faith. <3

Thursday, September 26, 2013

If I'm Being Honest...

Each day since my doctor's appointment and last post I have been getting more and more nervous about the up-coming surgery. Anyone that knows me knows how TERRIBLE I am with anything medical, i.e. I didn't get my ears pierced until AFTER I had Jake :/, and for the past couple of days it's been all I can think about. Last night I even dreamed about it! From the beginning, every doctor I have been to has been a little stumped by me. I have some of the PCOS symptoms without having some of the main ones, my blood work always looks good, I have a slight Vitamin D deficiency, Mike's healthy sperm count is at 25% instead of the ideal 30%. So while there are a string of minor issues, it's been difficult really putting our finger on the problem. Most of the above mentioned problems are things that can be corrected with vitamins (like my vit d and Mike's healthy count), and my doctor believes, this surgery. I don’t know why I am all of a sudden having doubts, maybe it's just nerves. I wish God would just walk into my office and tell me what to do. Granted, I would probably stroke out right here. If the surgery will help get me to a baby then I will do it, no questions asked. I just wish my faith in it was a little stronger...

I talk to Mike about it, and he is supportive of the surgery. He really likes our new doctor and feels like she is taking us in the right direction. We have talked to several different people who have had SUCH success with the laparoscopy (aka ovarian drilling -- eek!) and he reminds me of that each time I get shaky. I need to step my praying up! I need to talk to God about my doubts, ask him for peace, and trust that if this is the right direction for us, He will provide.

Another big fear for me is the cost. Unfortunately, we can't find out what the costs are until the surgery is scheduled.. which is ok in that we could obviously cancel if need be, but is nerve wrecking because I feel like there are SO many variables and a 5 day window. The surgery has to occur on days 5-10 of my cycle and can't be scheduled until CD 1, unless I decide to take birth control to expand that window. I absolutely HATE being on birth control, almost as much as I hate being on metformin.

So long story short right now, I'm a little bit of a hot mess! Maybe once some of the if's become facts I will calm down and feel better about all of this. Maybe this is lesson number 654687435 from God that He is teaching me during my journey with infertility. I need to relax and take a deep a breath - focus on my faith.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fresh from the Doctor...

Happy Monday! Here we go, another week, and this one promises to be a busy one. Jake turned 7 last week! So bittersweet. I love watching him grow, but would give anything to slow down! I feel like my years with him are flying by. He is playing baseball and soccer right now, so our weeknights and weekends are spent at the fields at practice and/or games. This past Saturday, he had his first soccer game of the season. He is playing U11 which means most of the kids he's playing against are 9-11 years old. Some of them seemed like giants! His team is made up of all 6-8 year olds, they are the kids he's been playing 3v3 soccer with. They played so well and won the game 8-1! It's always fun to win ;)

This morning I had an early doctor's appointment, and because of Jake's school start time, Mike couldn't go with me. We went through test results and came up with our action plan. We are going to move forward with the surgery. It seems to be the best option, and hopefully the most effective. It will be outpatient and I will be under general anthesia. That sort of thing always makes me nervous, but this time there are even more nerves behind it. What if it doesn't work? What if they get in there and find something more? I could drive myself crazy thinking about the "what if's", but it's hard to focus elsewhere. The flip side is that since I have been talking/praying/thinking about this whole thing it seems like people are coming out of the wood work with success stories. People who did the same surgery and got pregnant very soon afterwards. At this point, one minute I am excited and the next I am so nervous I can't think straight.

If this "simple" surgery is the means to a baby... great! It would potentially mean that Mike and I could get pregnant naturally, without drugs, which would be awesome. I guess I need to keep praying about this. Asking God to settle my nerves.

I am supposed to call and schedule surgery on day 1 of my next cycle! That's in like 6 days!! I could potentially be having surgery in 2 weeks! Oh jeez. Anyway, I have a request this time... Please, please pray for us. Pray that surgery goes well, pray that we find a way to pay for this - at this point, insurance wont cover it. Pray that the surgery is successful and that we are able to concieve, and pray that all of this be done in His name, under His will. I know that through prayer this will happen for us. I know that if I keep my faith the money will turn up somehow. I just have to continue to give this up to God. Thank you for reading, for following this journey, and for praying for our family.

<3 <3 <3

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Just Keep Swimming...

I feel like I have to remind myself of that all the time. One day at a time, pace yourself Jordan. One thing I have noticed is how easy it is to get burnt out on all of this. What an emotional roller coaster. With every new month, for the past 3 years, has come another disappointment -- or at least that’s how I felt.
A few weeks ago, I had a breakdown. A mental collapse. I don't know what triggered it really, probably hormones, but I just lost it. I was crying to Mike, my usual woe-is-me sadness, and he finally stopped me and said "I want Jordan back". Those 4 words meant SO much.
At first, I was a little hurt. No one wants to hear that something they are struggling with has a hold on them, causing them to loose parts of who they are. Then I realized he wasn't saying it to hurt me or to be a dig. He doesn't and has not ever blamed me for feeling the way I do. He just needed me to know that I was lost in the sea of infertility. Those four words became my life raft. I laid there knowing, he is right, I need to fix this. My focus needs to shift back to the present. To my husband and son, who are here with me now. We aren't promised tomorrow, and I need to focus on the now. So that is my prayer now. I ask God to help me focus on what I have, and to be hopeful and excited for the future, without obsessing over it. It is also my prayer for my friends that are going through something similar. It is so easy to focus on what's going wrong in our lives, to focus on what we don't have. Our life slips in to a rut, and that isn't the life we are intended to live. I have to remind myself daily to focus on the present!
That being said, I am pushing infertility to the back seat. I am making a mental effort to not think about it as much (which is way harder than it sounds). We are not giving up, or stopping treatment, it just isn't going to be my first priority anymore. My duties fit in a specific order and I need to do a better job of holding true to that. Believer, Wife, Mother. In that order. :)
This is my first month off of all medication from my previous doctor. I am taking it as a month of cleansing for my body and my heart. I got a lot of blood work done, Mike did his testing, and later this month we have an appointment to go over the results and choose our plan of action. I do think that the medicine had a BIG impact on the way I was feeling, and I am excited to take a break from that. I am hoping, more and more now, that the laparoscopy is the ideal method of treatment. If it works, that would be the most natural (meaning the least amount of meds) way for us to conceive. So this month I am clearing out the fog, and giving it up to God. Not only am I going to keep swimming, I am going to do it with a renewed spirit and a focus on the now!

To my sweet friends who are on this journey with me,
I think of you girls often. I keep you in my prayers, and I am excited to see where this journey leads you. We are in this together, and I can't wait to hold each of your sweet babies one day!



Monday, August 19, 2013

Hopeful and Optimistic...

First of all - My sweet boy started 1st grade this morning! I am amazed at how fast these years with him have flown by and I am so proud of my baby :) He was excited to go to school this morning and I can't wait to hear about his day. With every post/thought/appointment/period/prescription etc. etc. that I do, in regards to infertility, I am reminded of what an incredible gift my sweet boy is. God gave him to us to love and raise and I am so thankful He did! I know he is going to do a lot of learning and growing this year, and I am excited to watch him grow!

You may notice the title of this post is slightly different than the last. For the past week I have been SO nervous about meeting my new doctor. Nervous about what she would tell me and anxious about potentially hearing, what I thought would be, bad news. This morning, Mike and I headed to the appointment after taking Jake to school. I was so thankful that Mike could be there with me - It would have been hard without him. I got called back by a nurse to do vitals and get our history. She then took us to meet the doctor. Dr. Jaffe is from New York, and her personality shows it. We really liked her. She was a straight forward, no bs, type of woman. She is also the top female, reproductive endocrinologist in the state. She doesn't waste your time and she seems very thorough. After about 30 minutes of talking, she sent me for blood work. Some new tests, some re-tests of things I did with my OBGYN. Basically she told me, with Mike and I's age and health, she believes we will end this with a baby. :) It was nice to hear her confidence, especially since I don't get the impression she would sugar coat anything.

She talked to me about my stress level, which has been pretty high in the past year. I think any women going through this can relate. Everyone tells you to relax and reduce stress, what they dont seem to understand is that we don’t stress out because we like the feeling it brings. It isn't an intentional thing. Stress just is. I think it is crucial, for any woman going through this, to have a strong support system. I have bonded with some amazing women because of our shared infertility, I have a new level of respect and love for my husband because of the way he has supported me through this. Through prayer, and faith, I am at a place where I believe this is all just part of our story. Sure the first chapters have been a slower read than I would have liked, but I think we are on our way to the climax. Dr. Jaffe told me how important it is to reduce stress, and that she believes I am in the right place now. Of course, I cried a little. Anytime talk of my miscarriage comes up I shed a tear or two.

After the doctor left us, Mike turned to me and said "Don't you feel good about all of this?" -- Honestly, at the time, I was SO overwhelmed. There was a lot of talk about options and treatment and the future. I was trying to take it all in and I needed a moment to process everything. We left there, after my blood work, and I headed to work. I do a lot of talking to God when I am in my car, alone. Like out-loud talking. I probably look nuts to people that drive by me, or maybe they just think I am singing...
Anyway, when I was in my car I started talking. I was running through everything I heard, some verbally, some in my head. I like to think of this as a fluid, in-motion prayer. I have realized prayer isn't just about being down on bended knee, asking Him for something. Sometimes, my prayer is venting my frustrations, sometimes it's all about praise, sometimes it's just tears. That is one thing that has made this walk SO much lighter - knowing that He knows my heart, my thoughts, everything. I don't have to say anything. One thing I do LOVE is His sense of humor. I swear sometimes I feel like God is sitting there laughing at me. Most of the time, these moments come to me in signs. I throw questions up to God all of the time, sometimes I get a resounding answer and sometimes not so much (or at least not the neon sign I am hoping for). The last week I have had a lot of worry about this next step so I have been hoping for signs. The first sign came when I was on the phone with the nurse at the new doctor’s office. She told me they wouldn't have any openings until late December or possibly January. Not what I had hoped for. Then, while I was on the phone, someone called and cancelled for this morning's appointment so they were able to squeeze me in. This answered many questions - namely - asking God if this doctor was where I was supposed to be. The second sign came after stress over the financial burden of all of this. I was talking to Mike about how we would pay for all of this. He, being the eversupportive husband, said we would just figure it out. I left work, walked downstairs and there was a $5 bill laying on the ground. I smiled and thought, "Ok, Ok noted. You will provide." The 3rd sign came to me today. I was in the car, driving to work, processing all of the information and feeling a little overwhelmed. As I mentioned before, I was talking to God and just reminding myself that my faith is in Him and in His plan for me. I parked my car and started the walk from my garage to the office. Now keep in mind, I work in a downtown high rise building. Every day I am surrounded by other members of the work force, rarely do you see people that don’t look like they are working. I came around the corner and was literally thinking, "I hope I have a baby, I think I will, I have faith I will" and there was a table of women outside in the courtyard all holding infants. Some crying, some sleeping. I know it may not seem like a big deal, but when you are someone looking for signs, I felt like that was my Jeff Foxworthy moment - like God literally knocked me on the forehead and said "here's your sign". I smiled at the babies and moms and felt overwhelming peace rush over me. It's the first time, in a long time, I really feel like we are getting closer. It is an amazing feeling.

I realize I have a long journey ahead of me. I know this is the beginning of this next chapter, but my faith is renewed and I am excited to move forward. Sorry this post is a bit wordy, I get carried away sometimes. ;)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Confused and Emotional

...2 feelings every woman going through infertility can relate to, right?
When I started this blog I knew I wanted it to be my emotional outlet. SO, after my monthly scan today, I knew I needed to head to my blog. :/ I wish I could tell you it was a great visit... although, anymore, a great visit would be them telling me I am pregnant and apparently, that ain't happening.
I saw the midwife again today, this time Mike was with me, and we both really like her. I like the idea of a midwife anyway, and if I am blessed enough to end up pregnant, I plan on delivering naturally, with no medicine. I figure I have worked 3 years now - I want to saver EVERY minute of labor & delivery -- it may be my last and I don’t like being on pain meds. Plus, it’s part of the process. Working with your husband to get through something painful with the biggest payoff possible sounds amazing to me. Of course, all of this is jumping the gun, because I can't get to labor until I can get pregnant ;) Back to my story...
So I had my monthly scan and they saw 2 large cysts/follicles.. I am so confused. I clearly don't understand this as much as I thought I did. I didn't think follicles and cysts were the same thing, but apparently a follicle can become a cyst. WTF. Rabbits get pregnant monthly. Why is this SO complicated!?!?! Anyway, she told us to try again, I may or may not ovulate... (Clear as mud)
She also told us that this has been going on too long. We have done clomid 8 times now (I think). We got pregnant once, and miscarried. It just isn't what they were hoping for, so she is referring me to a reproductive endocrinologist (fancy term for IVF doctor). I realize it isn't all they do, but it is the majority. I don't know what to think. A part of me is eager to meet with them, the other part is terrified. Honestly, I never wanted it to get to IVF. We can't afford it, my insurance doesn't cover it, and there is no guarantee -- SO even if I can come up with the $12-15k I may walk away with an empty uterus and an empty wallet.
I have to keep praying, keep searching for God to show me the way in all of this. If He wants us to go through IVF, I have faith the money will sort itself out. He knows my heart yearns for this. He knows our frustrations, our sadness, our confusion, and most importantly our plan. I have to keep trusting that He's got our back in this. All of this can just be so depressing at times. I feel like I am not only letting myself down, but my husband and son as well. We all want a baby, and I often forget the effect my struggle has on them. I promise my next post will be more upbeat...

Thursday, August 1, 2013

CD 2


If you are going through infertility you know what the title of this post means.. If not, it means I am on cycle day 2 which is something you typically wouldn't look forward to when trying to conceive.

Last month, when I went in for my follicle check I had a large cysts in my left ovary, and I mean LARGE. It was measuring at 4cm -- inside of my ovary. Now, ovaries are supposed to be about the size of an almond - mine was swollen due to the cysts which caused a lot of soreness. Fortunately, despite the golf ball in my ovary, there was also a follicle. The Midwife I saw that day told me the cyst may or may not affect my ability to get pregnant but that they wanted us to try. If nothing else, sex might help my body get rid of my ticking time bomb. She warned me that if I didn't get pregnant, I could potentially look forward to a painful period. When you have a cyst, like the one I had inside of my ovary, your body tries to pass it. If you get pregnant, the hormones your body naturally releases work to dissolve the cyst, if not... Holy Cramping! Cysts are relatively common, even to women that don’t have a problem conceiving. Some doctors believe this is why some women experience painful periods one month and not so much the next.

So my schedule has been that each month, on cycle day 1 - I call my doctor's office for a RX of Clomid. Since my little friend was on the scan last month they wanted to check me out before writing me a prescription. It wasn't a fun check, but I did get clearance to take my RX, and it appears as though my cyst is gone! Praise God! So now, it’s back to medicine and counting days... better than the alternative though, right? Maybe August will be our month!! All I can do is remind myself that all of this is in God's hands and I have to trust my faith in Him and know that He has a plan, far greater than mine. That being said, I am praying that His will be done and that we have a successful month. A little passive aggressive suggestion to the Lord can't hurt, right?! ;)

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Advice from the Fertile People...

I LOVE ecards. They are one of my most favorite things that has spawned from social media. I found this one while looking online and knew I had to share it here. I was commenting one day on a facebook post of a friend about the stupid things people say to you about having babies - this ecard is a perfect representation of that.

Fertile people think they are really good at getting pregnant (and they are) but it hardly makes them an expert at infertility.. I realize a lot of people just dont know what to say so they say the first things that come to mind. I get it, but we have to find something to laugh at in all of this, right?!

If you are going through any sort of infertility issue then I am sure you have heard some crazy things from people... Here are some of my favorites along with what I want to say back to people:
- "You've gotten pregnant before, it will happen again." yeah, ok. Thanks Doc! - "Don't stress, Don't think about it - just let it happen" You're right! Thats the trick.. - "Are you having sex frequently enough?" Nope, no, no way. We just do it once a month and hope that works out! - "Why aren't you guys having another baby?" We hate babies. Babies = yucky.What are some of the crazy things people have said to you about infertility? What do you want to say back at them?

Here We Go...

Thanks for checking out my blog! Hopefully you have seen the "about me" section - if not, I recommend heading there first. Writing this blog is both a tool for others, as well as therapy for myself. I pledge to be open and honest, to post frequently, and I will try to be funny when I can. If there are topics you would like to see me blog about regarding infertility, feel free to let me know. I want this to be an open forum where we can chat and share experiences.

I wrote about my diagnosis in the about me section but I didn’t talk about my current treatment plan. For every different cause of infertility there are different treatments and test. I only have first-hand knowledge of my own, but I would love to hear about what other women are going through!

Here is my current plan:
- Twice daily, I take metformin - a drug, often prescribed to diabetics, that works with your body to regulate insulin. It's chalky and the side effects (for me) have been loss of appetite, nausea, & stomach aches.
- Cycle days 3-7 I take 100mg of Clomid. Clomid works to help your body release follicles, and in turn enable you to ovulate. The first month or 2 I didn't notice many side effects, despite the crazy warning.... Month 3 came and bam! so did the side effects - with this one its hot flashes, irregular moods, and psycho tendencies. All of which my husband can attest too. The good news is, you know it’s coming, so I warn those around me and try to stay on my best behavior. Think PMS times 5000.
- Prenatal vitamins. I try to take these every day, they are giant and something about them reminds me of the smell of a barn. Side effects: nice hair and nails. No complaints on that note!
- I use to have to go to the doctor twice a month - but since this has been going on so long I am down to once a month now. I go somewhere during CD (cycle days) 12-14. I start with an internal ultra-sound where the tech looks for follicles and/or dreaded cysts! They also keep a close eye on a fibroid I have in my uterus, although they are always assuring me it’s nothing to worry about. After that I head to meet with the doctor - she looks over my results and essentially, tells me to go home and get busy.
- I won’t go into the next step for now. A post about keeping it sexy when you really just want to accomplish a task will be for another day.
- Then, my least favorite part, the waiting game. Every month, after I have ovulated, I wait. and wait. and wait. All for CD 30 a.k.a. dooms day. One of these days its name will be changed, but as of now, its doom's day.
- CD 30 comes and goes each month and after it, has unfortunately been CD 1. Then this whole process resets and we try again. I can't wait for the day I hit CD 31, 45, 62, 85, and so on. I keep my eyes focused on the day I get a PPT (positive pregnancy test)

Aren't these little acronyms fun? I picked them up from various infertility sites, support groups, etc. No one ever really explains what they mean so I've sort of figured it out via reading in context. At first I didn't understand the purpose but once you start your own blog or start writing comments they become appreciated.