When Mother’s Day is one of the hardest days of the year.

Mother’s Day is a day that we celebrate our mother’s for the hard work that they do. It’s a day that has been put aside just for them. Social media, media, church services, and everywhere you go; there are sweet sayings and notes of happy and grateful moms.

Mother’s Day can be the hardest day for women that have not gotten the chance to be a mom or lost their sweet baby, babies, or child. Mother’s Day is a day of sadness and yearning of a dream not fulfilled or a reminder of happier times.

I spent many years yearning and hoping for the day I would actually celebrate this day. There have been so many tears, cries out to God, and glasses of wine just trying to make it through the day. I will never forget how hard and how dark I have felt on these days.

Mother’s Day is still bittersweet because as I celebrate being a mother to my sweet son, and pregnant with my sweet daughter, I mourn the loss of my twins in Heaven. I wonder what it would be like if they were here, what we would have named them, and think of how much love I would give them.

I love to celebrate my mother on Mother’s Day and I am so grateful I did get the opportunity to become one, but I will never forget the years I wasn’t and the babies I lost.

So here is to all of us. Here is to the women who are fighting the fight to one day become a Mom (whether it be treatment, donor, surrogate, adoption, etc), to the women who decided to take the path without children, to the wonderful woman who lost her sweet child or children. I honor you today. I honor your courage, your determination, your ability to make choices, and your ability to get out of bed.

And for those of us that struggled for so long and finally got our wish, let’s never forget the fight it took to get here. This pain and fight made us who we are and I feel we are stronger because of it. Let’s never forget to honor the others with different stories or ones that lost or did not get their happy ending.

Mother’s Day is for all the women rather you have your child in your arms, belly, in Heaven, or you still yearn and hope for one. I love you ladies! You are doing such a good job and you deserve a day to celebrate. You are strong and I am honored to be among you.

Infertility Awareness Week

Infertility Awareness Week is a week to bring awareness and put a face to infertility. It’s a week that those of us that have or are struggling on this journey get to share our story.

Infertility has many faces. Infertility is every man or woman that has yearned for a family but month after month it never happens. Infertility is the young woman or man that is told by their doctor that having children is not in their future. Infertility is the person who is told that their reason for no children is unexplained. Infertility is the couple who chooses to live their life child free because circumstances never allowed it to happen. Infertility is the couple that adopts a beautiful child into their lives. Infertility is using a donor or a surrogate to help their dreams come true.

Infertility is also avoiding baby showers or yet another pregnancy announcement on Facebook. Infertility is wanting to hurt the next person that tells them to just relax or take a vacation and they will get pregnant. Infertility is resenting every person who can accidentally get pregnant or wanting to hurt a person that could harm a child they were so blessed to have. Infertility is loss. Loss of a child, dream, or control of when, if, or how you can or will conceive.

These are just some of the many faces of infertility. Infertility is a disease. Infertility is an overwhelming diagnosis that dashes all the dreams of how we thought we would have a family.

I have come to respect my journey but I often wonder what it would have been like to have everything happen naturally like it’s supposed to. My doctor told me I had less than a 5 % chance of having children naturally but thanks to God, my doctors, nurses, technology, and science I have truly been blessed.

I may not know why this is my journey but I thank God for my wonderful son and the daughter I will soon hold in my arms. I thank God for a husband that has stood by my side through all the procedures, medicines, shots, and tragedies. I also thank God for all the beautiful and wonderful people I have met because of this journey.

I am 1 in 8 and I will proudly share my story and do what I can to help other woman or men that too have this struggle. It’s a long hard road but no one should have to do it alone.

Co$t of Infertility (money or baby?)

When people told me “you will never have enough money for kids, just go ahead”, I had no idea that one day I would be choosing between having money or having kids.

My husband has a good job and so do I, so we are very blessed. We have the typical expenses: mortgage, car payments, etc. We both paid off our debt (except car) when we were married so we were set. All that was left was having kids. We knew we would never be rich but we would have plenty and would have a great life.

As I have said before, things didn’t quite go like we planned. Infertility is stressful enough but the financial strain is awful. I know there are fortunate people that have insurance that covers things but we were not that lucky. Fertility treatments are elective and not covered under many insurances.

Years of medicine costs, procedures, doctors visits, and missed days of work add up. Each round of treatment has thousands of dollars worth of meds, and costs thousands of dollars. Thankfully there are programs that help, but if you don’t qualify you are out of luck.

I have heard stories of people taking out second mortgages, borrowing money, or taking on lots of credit card debt to pay for all of the expenses. With oil prices dropping and job changes, we had to take on credit card debt to pay for ours.

Before all of this, financial issues was my stressor. I would obsess and stress about bills and money all the time. I really gave a lot of this to God when we decided to do IVF the first time. I knew it was expensive but I also knew it was worth it.

Every penny we have paid and every penny we still owe has been beyond worth it. I am so grateful that we were actually able to have our dream of having children a reality.

It doesn’t change the fact that when you are diagnosed with infertility you really have to choose between money and children. I am thankful we were able to come up with the funds. I can’t imagine a life without my sweet Brendan. Now if he has a college fund in the future is another story. 😂

Infertility Survivor’s Guilt

Through my infertility journey I have met some of the bravest and strongest women I have ever met. We all have different backgrounds and different journeys, but we are all yearning for one thing.. our baby(s).

I am a part of several wonderful groups of woman that support and encourage each other through each painful procedure, loss, or victory. I also have a small group of ladies I actual meet and talk to about all things Fertility.

When one of the ladies finally has success and achieves a healthy pregnancy everyone is over joyed and excited but depending on where they are in their journey, it can bring to surface the pain they suffer because it is still not “their turn”.

After 5 years and numerous trials and losses, I have done it. I have “survived” infertility. I have a beautiful (and very difficult) 2 1/2 year old and God willing (oh Lord I pray) an already very difficult little girl on the way. By the end of August I will be an infertility success story. I will have fought the fight and been able to complete my family.

With that success comes something no one can prepare you for.. the guilt. Many times a week I speak to or read on Facebook about a friend or group member that had a failed procedure or lost the baby she was carrying. It is heart wrenching and devastating. That’s when the guilt creeps in. Why am I a lucky one? How can I feel so happy when people I care about are suffering.

Being a part of someone’s infertility journey brings with it all the pain and emotions they feel. I have spent many a night in tears crying out to God for one of my friends. And now here I am successfully pregnant. I have made it. I am lucky and blessed. And I am also a reason someone I know has had feelings of “why her and not me.”

I am so grateful for my journey and I am so grateful for the women I have met along the way. I am in awe of the privilege to walk with them on this hard journey and have them share their pain and success. I may be in the success category right now but it will never erase the memory of all the years that I was not.

Every time the guilt sinks in, when I see yet another woman struggling, I turn to God and I pray. Infertility is the hardest and worst experience of my life but has also taught me the most and God has blessed me through it. I may be close to having my family but I won’t stop trying to encourage and help others that are still yearning and trying for theirs.

I didn’t ask for this, but God has changed me because of it. Yes I have “survivor’s guilt”, but I know that God will use me to help someone else.

When Grief Doesn’t Have a Name

There are so many types of grief, all so hard and tragic. People everywhere grieving the loss of someone or something. But what do you call grief of the child you don’t have or will never have? Is there a name for the grief a woman feels month after month and year after year for the family she doesn’t have, for the baby she doesn’t hold?

I have been so blessed to meet so many wonderful women through this crazy journey called infertility. So many strong women that have struggled so much to have their dreams become a reality. Some of these women do have happy ending while some of them are still waiting or have pushed that dream away, the pain being too much or possibility not within reach.

People mean well and say “nice” things like:

Just be patient.

Go on vacation.

At least you are healthy.

At least you know you can have kids.

At least you have one.

They mean well but don’t grasp the grief that the person is experiencing.

Grief is defined as: “keen mental suffering or distress over affliction or loss”. Now I am not saying in any way any grief is worst or better. But I do want to legitimize the grief that people going through infertility feel. I have researched and read a lot about infertility and one study even compared the emotional stress and grief of Infertility to people going through cancer.

Infertility is a disease. Infertility is a medical problem that some people don’t have the ability to fix because many insurances don’t cover costs and it’s so expensive or they are not physically able to do what is required. Infertility is still seen by many as taboo or dirty to talk about. “Sex makes babies and we don’t talk about sex.” Well for me and lots of other couples, sex doesn’t make babies, doctors and God do.

I see so many ladies struggling with the grief of failed cycles, failed procedures, and just another month of no success. I hurt and ache so much for them and wish I could fix it!!

Though I have no way I can actually help them, I will do my best with prayer and spreading the word. Infertility is not dirty or something to be ashamed about or whispered about secretly. Infertility is a very real disease that doesn’t always have a happy ending. We may not die from not having children, but many people lose marriages, houses, sanity, money, and hope because of it. The desire for kids is very real and being faced with not getting to make the decision rather you get to have them or how many is devastating.

Just know that the sweet couple you know with no kids may be smiling on the outside but could easily be dying from grief on the inside.

Infertility doesn’t go away even if you are blessed and do have a child or two. Infertility is always there and I plan on doing everything I can to spread the word and encourage and support anyone I can with the struggle.

5 Years And A Beautiful New Chapter!

January 18, 2018 was our 5 year wedding anniversary. It also marked my 5 year trying to get pregnant Anniversary.

My husband I were older when we married (30 and 38). That may not be older to some but in East Texas it is crazy old. When we met neither of us had been married before or had kids. That is also very uncommon where we live.

We knew right away we wanted to start a family. We even talked about baby names on our honeymoon. We hit the ground running trying to start our family. We were excited and ready.

I say all of this to say that I have spent my whole marriage either trying to get pregnant, on medicine to get pregnant, or (thank the Lord) finally pregnant. 5 whole years I have mentally put me on hold to start our family.

Oh and we have had amazing times. I am so thankful for the man I married and the life we have together. There is no one I would rather travel this crazy infertile road with. But there have been some hard times.

When “time together” turns into work because maybe this will be the time.

When your wife is exhausted because all the meds make her feel like dirt.

When all your wife wants to do is lay in bed and cry because another year and no baby.

When your husband is quiet and feels helpless because he can’t fix what’s broken in his wife.

When you are both in the ER and your wife is losing blood and is on morphine so she doesn’t have to feel the contractions for her miscarrying baby anymore.

Yes we have experienced so many things together. The road of infertility is hard and not for the faint of heart. But I am so thankful that we stuck with it and that my husband encouraged me to just do IVF one more time. (Oh how I wanted to give up.)

Our 5 year anniversary marks for me a time of new beginning. Yes I am pregnant and the thought of food is not great right now. Yes we postponed our fancy dinner until I feel like eating or getting out of bed. But this marks for me a time of no longer trying for more but appreciating and settling in with what we have.

We have been so blessed and I am ready to get to put our focus on us and our kids instead of medicine and doctors! I am ready to have the energy to run again and no more injections every day!!

I am ready to (feel like) having a date night with my husband where we will attempt to just be us but end up talking about the kids the whole time.

Oh God I am thankful for my journey but I am so grateful it’s time to breath and just praise you for all my blessing!!

Hope Love Fear

You could define my thoughts right now by these three words; hope, love, and fear. Having consistent emotions normally is hard, but while going through infertility it is impossible.

I have such a love/hate relationship with hope. I know how much that hope hurts and how hard the let down is after hope has been destroyed. I know what it feels like to be on cloud nine and then have it all ripped away. All of these things I know, but hope always wins me over again. I love dreaming about holding my baby in my arms and thinking about what their nursery would be like. I love imagining what kind of person they would be and how much I would love them.

I am so hopeful right now. I have prayed more times than I can count for this child I carry right now. I am so hopeful for the future we will have and that one day soon I will hold her in my arms.

I already love my sweet baby girl. Not only does she have a name but I can almost see in my mind what she looks like. I crave holding her in my arms. Love hurts too, especially if you lose the thing you love. My sweet twins left me too soon but I loved them from the time I left them frozen waiting for me in 2015.

With the wonderful emotions of hope and love comes one that I am all too familiar with, fear. I am not sure if my anxiety and fear is exacerbated by my hope and love or if it would be there anyway, but it is there none the less. I know every woman has fears and anxieties while pregnant so I am not alone, but those fell like they triple after a loss.

Today I am going to my sonogram appointment at my fertility doctor and I am hopeful and scared to death. I know I have seen her sweet heart and I have not felt anything bad happen but I am so scared. This is the appointment last year that my world fell apart. This is when I found out my babies I had prayed for and loved had not made it.

I know I have done everything in my power to be healthy, stay calm, rest, and be the best home possible but the fears are there. I want this so much I get scared it’s too good to be true. Sometimes I worry that I don’t get another baby. I know I am beyond happy and content with my son but my heart years and knows I need my baby girl.

Inconsistent emotions are hard. One minute I will be at peace and the next minute I am a nervous wreck. Going into today and all that it could be, I choose hope. Yes I am fearful but life is too short to live in fear, especially when you know God has a plan. I am hopeful that today I get to see my baby girl again and she is growing healthy and strong. Today I am hopeful I am one day closer to holding her in my arms.

High Price/ No Guarantee

When spending a lot of money it’s nice to hear “money back guarantee”. I always look at return policies or a warranty. You like to be assured that the money you are spending is worth it and you will be “getting” what you pay for.

Infertility life isn’t like that. My doctor once said “It’s like buying a car but you aren’t guaranteed to get the car.” Don’t get me wrong, it is worth every penny and we have spent all we have for this. The not knowing is the hardest part!

My FET (frozen embryo transfer) was December 12, 2017. I “patiently” waited to take an at home pregnancy test until that Saturday (4 days later). Because she was already 6 days old when she was transferred, the results can show up pretty soon. I did get my first positive test that day. The second line was faint but it was there. I loved that it was my husband’s birthday that day too. Sweet memories.

Of course if you are crazy tester like me, you don’t stop at that, you test every day to see the line get darker and finally have your HCG levels show up on a digital. ( I may or may not have taken 10 tests over a 7 day period 😎) Like I said, crazy tester.

Officially you shouldn’t test early and you should wait until your blood test 10 days later. Patience is not one of my strongest qualities!

d work did come back great the first time (my doctor likes levels higher than 80 the first time) and then a looooooong wait later because of the holidays, my second beta came back even better!

oal is to see your HCG levels doubling every 48 hours. This shows that the baby is growing and developing.

All of this may seem fast but it is an extremely long and excruciating wait. Knowing from the second you conceive is a blessing and a curse. First you pray you make it to transfer day, then you pray your embryo survives the thaw, then you pray for implantation. That gets you to the positive test. Then you have all the other worries of if they will stay and grow healthy and normal.

I was blissfully unaware last year after my FET that bad things could happen to me. I thought that after all the hard work my miracle was for sure guaranteed. Brendan happening so "easily" with IVF fooled me.

This time around I am scared to death!

It’s only been 3 days?!

It has only been 3 days since my transfer and I am dying to know something!!!! Anyone that knows me knows that I am not the most patient person. Of course I took a test this morning and of course it’s too early but I just couldn’t help it! There are not words to describe the agony of the wait.

I want every day to speed by so it can be tomorrow morning so I can test. I know I should just take each day at a time and enjoy every moment but right now I am struggling.

I just want it so much to be true! I feel in my heart it will be ok and we will get our girl and I even have a peace about it. But oh am I hoping that’s true and I am not just delusional.

I thought that Brendan getting here was a rough road, this girl has taken every bit of nerve and sanity I have. She is almost all I can think about. Thankfully I have a busy life and no time to sit and dwell.

I will continue to pray and continue to be optimistic and beyond anything hope my next post is beyond exciting news!!! Fingers crossed, baby dust, and please please please God!!!

2WW (Two Week Wait)

If you or anyone you know has done anything with infertility, you have heard about the two week wait. This is the wait time between your procedure (time you would have ovulated) and your pregnancy blood test.

Many many emotions go through your head at this time. At the beginning the feeling of relief that you made it to this point is amazing! You receive a picture of your sweet embryo and I always instantly fall in love.

This is a picture of my sweet day 6 little girl blastocyst. She has already hatched and is ready to snuggle into my uterus (omg I hope).

This was a long road to FET so I was extra excited to make it. The hardest part is how bad you need to pee before, because your bladder has to be full for transfer. I really couldn’t think about anything but that for a while. Then you get to see your sweet little embryo released into your uterus and it is just perfect.

After your 30 minutes of laying down time, you are off to your car. I always lay down in the back seat because I would do anything to help my baby stick.

And just like that all that planning, hoping, and preparation is done. You still have shots to take and medicine to take, but it’s now just a waiting game. I eat my pineapple that people say helps with implantation, I rest for 24 hours, and I do anything I can to relax and pray my baby sticks and grows.

Yesterday was all busy and excitement, today is the beginning of the long wait. You may think 10 days isn’t very long, but when your in it, it lasts an eternity. Some people take home pregnancy tests and the infertility groups are filled with pics of them. Some women do what they are supposed to do and wait. And then there is me who already has her friend looking up estimated timelines so I know more info.

(She was frozen at day 6 and already has hatched, so I am hoping she is attaching right now).

I can’t allow any negative thoughts or worries because I have to take one day at a time. I can’t think about losing another baby because last time changed me forever. I can’t think about her not sticking around because this is my one and only little girl and every part of me needs to meet her and hold her.

So I will wait. I will lay in bed today and pray and think very pregnant thoughts. I will talk to my belly constantly and eat my pineapple. And then tomorrow I will go about my normal life knowing that things will never be the same.

Two week wait…. you are honored to have made it here but wish it would hurry up and yet don’t because you just want your baby!