15 December 2012

The D Word

The D word has been spoken in our house. It's a word I hate more than most. Around here the D word isn't "Damn" or "Divorce" it's something much scarier. For us, the D word is "Deployment".

Earlier this week Cody received a short notice tasking to deploy and our happy little world was rattled. He leaves in roughly three weeks to go to "far away work". We're all handling it as best as we can. This isn't our first go round. I worry about how Noah will do with it all now that he is older and understands more. I know he will miss his daddy so much. I worry about how I will do as a single parent. I hate this part. What I don't worry about as much is how Cody will do. Sure, he's going to miss us, but he's strong, stronger than me, and always seems to hold it all together so well.

While I know where he is going, for the sake of operational security, I won't say on here. Just know that it is a place that I am not so scared of. We expect to have him home with us by late summer.

This is all happening so fast and I wish time would just slow down. I'm so thankful that we'll have him home for Christmas. But I'm going to miss him so much. But, I guess that's what military life is all about. I know I can handle it. Just pray that he stays safe and returns to us quickly.

13 November 2012

What I wish you knew about infertility

I was reading a post about what women who have experienced miscarriages want to share and wanted to share about infertility. It seems like everyone feels it is always easily corrected or that you are doing something wrong. 
Here are the statistics:
Number of women ages 15-44 with impaired fecundity (impaired ability to have children): 7.3 million
Percent of women ages 15-44 with impaired fecundity: 11.8%
Number of married women ages 15-44 that are infertile (unable to get pregnant for at least 12 consecutive months): 2.1 million
Percent of married women ages 15-44 that are infertile: 7.4%
Number of women ages 15-44 who have ever used infertility services: 7.3 million
Number of couples eventually successful with fertility treatments: Estimated at between 10% and 20%

I want to share my feelings about infertility
with you, because I want you to understand
my struggle. I know that understanding
infertility is difficult; there are times when it
seems even I don’t understand. This struggle
has provoked intense and unfamiliar feelings
in me and I fear that my reactions to these
feelings might be misunderstood. I hope my
ability to cope and your ability to understand
will improve as I share my feelings with you.
I want you to understand.

You may describe me this way: obsessed,
moody, helpless, depressed, envious, too
serious, obnoxious, aggressive, antagonistic,
and cynical. These aren't very admirable
traits; no wonder your understanding of my
infertility is difficult. I prefer to describe me
this way: confused, rushed and impatient,
afraid, isolated and alone, guilty and
ashamed, angry, sad and hopeless, and

My Infertility makes me feel confused. I
always assumed I was fertile. I spent years
avoiding pregnancy and now it seems ironic
that I can’t conceive. Surely if I try harder, try longer, try
better and smarter, I will have another baby.
My infertility makes me feel rushed and
impatient. I learned of my infertility only
after I’d been trying to become pregnant for
some time. My life-plan suddenly is behind
schedule. I waited to become a parent and
now I must wait again.
I wait for medical appointments, wait for
tests, wait for treatments, wait for other
treatments, wait for my period not to
come, wait for my partner not to be out of
town and wait for pregnancy. At best, I
have only twelve opportunities each year.
How old will I be when I finish having my

My infertility makes me feel afraid.
Infertility is full of unknowns, and I’m
frightened because I need some definite
answers. How long will this last? What if
I’m never able to have another? What humiliation 
must I endure? What pain must I suffer? Why do
drugs I take to help me, make me feel
worse? Why can’t my body do the things
that my mind wants it to do? Why do I
hurt so much? I’m afraid of my feelings,
afraid of my undependable body and afraid
of my future.

My infertility makes me feel isolated and
alone. Reminders of babies are
everywhere. I must be the only one
enduring this invisible curse. I stay away
from others, because everything makes me
hurt. No one knows how horrible my pain
is. Even though I’m usually a clear thinker,
I find myself being lured by superstitions
and promises, I think I’m losing
perspective. I feel so alone and I wonder if
I’ll survive this, even though I know I'm not, 
and that I will.

My infertility makes me feel guilty and
ashamed. Frequently I forget that infertility
is a medical problem and should be treated
as one. Infertility destroys my self esteem
and I feel like a failure.

Why am I being punished? What did I do
to deserve this? Am I not worthy of another baby?
Am I not a good sexual partner? Will my
partner want to remain with me? Is this the
end of my family lineage? Will my family
be ashamed of me? It is easy to lose 
self-confidence and feel ashamed.

My infertility makes me feel angry.
Everything makes me angry, and I know
much of my anger is misdirected. I’m angry
at my body because it has betrayed me even
thought I've tried to takecare of it. I’m
angry at my partner because we can’t seem
to feel the same about infertility at the same
time. I want and need an advocate to help
I’m angry at my family because though 
they try, they just don't get it.
I’m angry at my medicalcaregivers, 
because it seems that they control
my future. They humiliate me, inflict pain
on me, pry into my privacy, patronize me,
and sometimes forget who I am. How can I
impress on them how important this is
to me?

 Finally, I’m angry at everyone
else. Everyone has opinions about my
inability to become pregnant. Everyone has
easy solutions. Everyone seems to know
too little and say too much.

My Infertility makes me feel sad and
hopeless. Infertility feels like I've lost a part of
my future, and no one knows of my sadness. I
feel hopeless; infertility robs me of my
energy. I’ve never cried so much nor so
easily. I’m sad that my infertility places my
marriage under so much strain. I’m sad
that my infertility requires me to be so self-centered.
I’m sad that I've ignored any
friendships because this struggle hurts so
much and demands so much energy.
I’m surrounded by babies, pregnant women,
playgrounds, baby showers, birth stories,
and much more. I feel so sad and hopeless.

My infertility makes me feel unsettled. My
life is on hold. Making decisions about my
immediate and my long-term future seems
impossible. I can’t decide about education,
career, purchasing a home, pursuing a
hobby, getting a pet, vacations, 
or house-guests. 

The more I struggle with my infertility, 
the less control I have.
This struggle has no timetable; the
treatments have no guarantees. The only
sure things are that I need to be near my
partner at fertile times and near my doctor
at treatment times. Should I pursue
adoption? Should I continue to take the drugs?
Should I pursue more specialized and costly
medical intervention? It feels unsettling to
have no clear, easy answers or guarantees.

Occasionally I feel my panic subside. I’m
learning some helpful ways to cope; I’m
now convinced I’m not crazy, and I believe
I’ll survive. I’m learning to listen to my
body and be assertive, not aggressive, about
my needs. I'm learning once again to 
not let this journey run my life.
I’m trying to be more than an infertile person.
I'm gaining enthusiasm, joyfulness, and zest for life.

And PS: I wish that I was able to adequately explain that just because I have a child already, doesn't make the desire for more children go away, just like the desire for more children doesn't go away from someone who does not struggle with infertility. Secondary infertility adds in all these feelings, plus the feelings of the child you do have asking for a sibling and worrying about them being socially "normal" as an only child. You also worry that God is keeping you from having more children because you aren't a good mom to the one you have. That's the one that will rip your heart in two and runs through primary infertility and secondary infertility, the thought that you can't get pregnant because God doesn't want you to have a baby. That goes to your very core.

24 August 2012

Peace that passes understanding

Today I was asked something that threw me a bit. A friend asked "So your faith must be pretty broken, huh?  How can you even believe in your God anymore after all that you've been through the last two years?"

I was startled by her question for a second. I told her this:

Is my faith shaken, yes. Is it broken, never. These past 2 years have been rough, really rough. My family has had a lot to deal with packed into a short span of time. But, that doesn't mean I don't believe or trust God anymore. It's just the opposite. My faith now is stronger than it has ever been.

She told me that she was impressed by my courage and that I was a real inspiration to others and asked me to pray with her.

 I'm not trying to be an inspiration, and it certainly doesn't feel like I'm being courageous.

But the whole conversation got me thinking about things.

I don't know how people can go through life's hardships without Christ. People turn away from Him in times of sorrow, but for me, that's when I need him the most and I run to him. I wouldn't be able to handle these things without the strength that He gives me.

And while I'm sad, I know that it is ok to be. My faith tells me that it is ok to grieve and morn. But it also tells me that those feelings will pass. I'm filled with sadness and anger right now, but I'm also filled with a hope and a peace and a love that I know will never leave. The bible talks about a "Peace that passes all understanding" and that's what I have. I will never understand why bad things happen, but I KNOW that God has a plan for me and things will work out. I'm confident that I will see all of the babies I have carried in my womb one day, and they will recognize me and run to me!!

So, while I'm not trying to inspire anyone, I'm glad if I have. Maybe this was God's plan all along. Perhaps he's using me and what I've gone through to show others that He will provide no matter what.  I've never been one to stand up and testify for the Lord much. Maybe this is my testimony. Maybe God is using me in this way for a better purpose. If so, I'm glad. If my life can shine for him so that others can see it in me, then I've done the best that I can.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

13 August 2012

Thankful through the tears

I haven't blogged in so long. Yet, I find myself being pulled back here. My mind and my heart are a jumbled mess right now. The fact that my body has failed me again hurts beyond what I can say. The fact that 3 eggs implanted and that at one point I was actually pregnant with triplets blows my mind! We knew about 2 in the beginning, and that the second was being reabsorbed. It wasn't until things started to go bad that we learned about the 3rd.  

I'm thankful for so many things today, in spite of all that is going on. I'm thankful that they were able to save my ovary. I'm thankful that I have amazing doctors who look out for what is best for me, and are willing to do what it takes in regards to my fertility. But mostly, I'm thankful that we had that ultrasound last Tuesday. It seriously saved my life. Had I not had it, I would have eventually started hurting and bleeding. U/s would have shown a baby with no hb and they would have just let me miscarry. Doc says that they probably wouldn't even have checked my ovaries, and even then, it may have been to late. He told me that he gave it 5-9 days before my ovary ruptured and caused internal bleeding. It blows my mind. So, while I am sad, I'm grateful.

Don;t get me wrong, I'm angry too. And I think that's ok. I'm angry with my body...I feel like it failed me again. I'm angry with myself...I can't help but feel like it is somehow my fault. I'm angry at the world...all this just feels like an injustice to me. Why is it so hard for me? Why, when I do everything right like the doctors say, does everything go so wrong? Why can these crackheads and teenagers who have no business being a mom, why can they get pregnant so easily, and manage to stay pregnant? It's not fair, and I'm pissed off about it.

I'm also thankful for the amazing family of friends we have here. It's no secret that I'm not the biggest fan of San Antonio. However, our friends here have gone above and beyond for us these past few days. People welcomed Noah into their homes so that Cody was able to be with me during the scary appointments and the surgery. Families are bringing us meals, so that we have one less thing to worry about right now. Friends have stopped by to check on me, texted to say they are thinking of us, and people all over the world have been praying for my little family. I can't say thank you enough. We're beyond blessed to call you all our friends. We love you.

To my babies: 
Mommy loves you and will never ever forget you. I know you all are up there with your sibling who we lost before you. Please watch over us. We'll meet you all some day. I love you.


27 February 2012

Back to life

Well, I (finally!) had my neurology appointment today. It went better than I expected.

I'm thankful that I have an amazing neurologist who doesn't push me in the wrong (for me) direction.

The best news of the days was this: No back surgery!!! At least, not for now.

She was very responsive to the fact that we'll be going back to the fertility clinic soon, and was wonderful about offering treatments that I can continue while pregnant.

She is concerned with not only the amount of pain, but also the burning. Mainly because they involve two different parts of the spine. So, another MRI was ordered. She is fairly positive that the disc did in fact slip. She's just worried that my spinal issues may have gotten worse since the last MRI a year ago.

She put me on Tramadol for the pain in my back for now. I can't take this while pregnant, but if I do get pregnant and the pain gets worse, she's willing to put me on straight morphine, like I was while I was pregnant with Noah.

She gave me a lidocane patch for the burning in my thigh. BTW, these patches feel WEIRD! I'll be able to use these while I'm pregnant if I need to, so that's a relief.

After the MRI comes the scary (for me) part. I'll be getting shots in my back. A mixture of cortisone, lidocane, and something else I don't remember. She said that she wants to "stack" these and that I'll be getting them more often than normal once they get the MRI results. The reasoning for this is she is hoping to build up the amount of the steroid in my system so that I don't have as many issues when I do become pregnant.

So, that's the plan for now. We'll know more after the MRI and I get go see pain management.

I'm so thankful that my doctor is willing to work with me on this, and be patient and understanding about us wanting another child. The last neurologist told me I should forget about it, since it would only make things worse. This doc is helping to manage it as best we can until we can have a more permanent solution.

And i'm thankful that Cody is so loving and understanding through all this. I know that on days when it's really bad, and i can't get out of bed, I can't be fun to be around. I'm so thankful that if all of this does have to happen, at least it's while he's home and not deployed! And I'm thankful that Noah is such a good nurse! He's always checking on me and bringing me snacks. :)

For being in so much pain, I'm a pretty lucky gal!

15 February 2012

Interview with Noah, 6 months later

Interview with Noah, age 4

Favorite Food...............................: Noodles
Favorite Book...............................: Power Rangers
Favorote TV Show............................: Power Rangers
Favorite Movie..............................: Power Rangers (I'm detecting a trend)
Favorite Color..............................: Green and Red and Black
Favorite Friend.............................: Katelyn
Favorite Place to go........................: School
Favorite Thing to do........................: Play Beyblades
Favorite Toy................................: Beyblades
Favorite Clothes............................: The ones that I wear
Who is your best friend.....................: Katelyn
Who is Mommy's best friend..................: Abby
Who is Daddy's best friend..................: Poppy
Do you have a girlfriend....................: NOOO!!!
What do you love to do......................: Play Beyblades
What's your favorite snack..................: Popsicles
What's mommy's favorite snack...............: A lollipop
What's Mom's favorite thing to watch on TV..: Commercials
What song do you love to sing...............: Power Rangers
What makes you happy........................: Playing Beyblades
What makes you sad..........................: fighting
Are you scared of anything..................: No, I'm brave!
If so, What & why...........................:
Is mom or Dad scared of anything............: No, because I protect you.
Who do you love.............................: Katelyn
Who loves you...............................: Katelyn

14 February 2012

Holding Out & Holding On

Is it May yet?

I'm ready for it to be. At least, I think I am.

May. The month when it all starts again. The month when I can call up my fertility doctor, and say, we're ready!

Are we really? Am I really? Am I ready to be poked and prodded? To inject myself with powerful drugs that make me, for lack of a better term, a psycho dragon lady? Am I ready to put my body through all of this again? I think so. I hope so. Because I know that I will.

I'm hopeful right now. I'm hopeful that it won't take that many rounds of treatments and procedures to get pregnant (Let's hope for 1!!). I'm hopeful that my body will be able to maintain a healthy pregnancy. I am hopeful for what the future may bring.

I am confident right now too. I am confident that my doctors will choose the right plan of action for me. I am confident that once I become pregnant, my doctors will do everything within their power to make sure I stay that way. But most of all, I am confident that God has a plan for my family. And I know that part of that plan is to see my family grow. I can feel it somehow.

Psalm 27:14 tells us:
Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart. And wait for the Lord.

That's just what I'll do. I'll wait for May, and I'll wait for the Lord. I'll continue to pray that the timing is right, and that I'll be shown a miracle.