Tuesday, December 30, 2008

God's Angel

Tuesday I took Emma to the park so we could enjoy the last of this wonderful warm weather we've been blessed with in December. We took our leftover holiday bread to feed the ducks and play on the playground. As I was standing off to the side watching Emma play with three children I ended up striking up conversation with this older lady. See she was the grandma to the three children Emma was playing with. Her name was Linda. Linda the Angel! It's not often that I find myself talked to random strangers in the park. I usually and a bit shy when it comes to meeting new people. That's why I say she was an Angel. I think God sent her my way that day. We went down the usual list of questions and our children/grandchildren, their ages, names, etc. We live in the same neighborhood and swim at the same pool! Yet, this was the first time I've seen this woman. She asked if Emma was my only child. I told her as of now that yes she was my only child. I felt compelled to explain to her that I had trouble getting pregnant with her but God blessed with one amazing little girl and that round 2 has proven to be even harder. She too was the parent to one child, a girl. She explained to me that she also had trouble getting pregnant and that God had blessed her with the most precious little girl. She went on to get pregnant a second time but miscarried. God had answered her prayers asking for another child, He allowed her to get pregnant. She viewed this as an answered prayer! How amazing and wise to look at it that way. Later on she ended up having to have some sort of surgery that left her unable to have any more future biological children. This is the part that got me. Linda said, "I would have never imagined that I would be here right now watching my THREE grandchildren! God blessed me with three that I can get whenever I want for however long I can have them for, to spoil and enjoy and then send them back to their parents. God knew how much I could handle but I am still immensely blessed."

WOW!!! Ok. Yes I know God knows the plans he has for me. Plans possibly for Emma to have a household of children for Phillip and I to enjoy. I just wish we could have some progress or either accept what has been delt and move on. It is very exciting to hear the message this woman had for me. Don't you love it when God uses others to speak to us?

Stepping Stones

Monday when I went in to get my ultrasound and bloodwork done I figured that I would be continuing on with the shots like I had planned. ;) I had only one night left on the original medicine that I had saved since my last cycle in June. So Nurse L ordered me several more boxes and I would go and get them at the specialty pharmacy after I left the Dr.'s office.

When I got there we had to wait a few minutes while they filled my perscription. Sitting on the table by the chair was this magazine that caught my eye. Stepping Stones "Offering Christian Support for Couples Facing Infertility or Pregnancy Loss." I picked the magazine up but didn't browse through it until late last night. Wow.

After I got the phone call earlier this afternoon I didn't have much time to be sad but I was and have been since. I sat down and started reading Stepping Stones and it was just what I needed. Interesting. There was a section of Bible verses that was titled "Hide God's Word in your heart." These totally hit home. Check it out.

I can do everything through Him who gives me strength- Phillipians 4:13 NIV

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go- Joshua 1:9 (Talk about hitting home. I'm discouraged. I know I shouldn't be but I am a little. This verse was nice to hear and be reminded of.)

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways, declares the LORD- Isaiah 55:8

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith- Hebrews 12:2a

Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long- Psalm 25:4-5

Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!- Isaiah 30:18

You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance- Psalm 32:7

As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the LORD surrounds his people both now and forevermore- Psalm 125:2

This is only the first 2 pages of the magazine. Check out the website. I haven't done much research on it yet but it looks like it's chock full of information with a Christian perspective. I like the support it gives and the insight. I can't wait to read more articles in it and tell you all about them. For right now it's bedtime for Emma and we are trying to get her more on a schedule. Goodnight for now! I can't wait to share more with you tomorrow.

Monday, December 29, 2008

November/December 08

The weekend before Thanksgiving I started taking Prometrium to get my period started. The longest it ever taken for me to start after taking the medicine was 11 days. Of course this time it didn't go as predicted as usual. It took 21 days! By then I was getting concerned. I talked to my nurse and they wanted me to come in and get another shot of Progesterone to try and get me to start again. We held off since I also had a sinus infection and waited a week. It all of a sudden dawned on me that maybe this "web like" thing I had on my ovary had grown or turned into something bigger which was causing me not to start. They agreed that it was something they needed to check and so we scheduled an ultrasound for Wednesday December 17th.

Of course the morning of the ultrasound I started to spot but it was very light. Luckily the ultrasound of the ovaries looked great! No more web-like thing on my ovary and they still look like chocolate chip cookies. I wonder if that has anything to do with how many chocolate chip cookies I actually eat? Hmmm...Maybe my New Years Resolution will take care of that. So they said we would see if I actually had a regular period and if I did then I could start the shots. Fortunately for me I still have 3 boxes of medicine sitting in my fridge from back in June. Was this the ideal time to start treatments? Not really. We were leaving for Phillip's family Christmas in Florida in two days and then once we got back we had just a few days and then my parents were coming in to town and then Christmas was this week too. I have a tendancy to get very hormonal, emotional, tired, edgy and grouchy. We talked and prayed about whether or not we should just wait until the first of the year go through another cycle. That was very tempting being that our flexible spending starts over and wouldn't cost us near as much as if I did a treatment in December. (We went through the FSA in lightening speed last year will all of my issues and fertility treatments.) What if this time worked? What if this was it? We couldn't resist so we decided to go for it.

Thursday we received a letter in the mail from Dr. L's office announcing that he was leaving his practice and taking a new position with a very well known medical school a few hours from here. Effective December 31 he would no longer be in Birmingham. That helped seal the deal. This gave us one last shot with Dr. L before I had to find a new Dr. This would be his great send off getting me pregnant! It all was looking up for us!

Saturday December 20th we started the shots. I decided to have Phillip give me the shots instead of me doing them myself. I think I tried to be to in control of things and not including him in the process thinking I could handle it all myself. I wanted him to understand the process and everything that comes with it more than I was allowing him to be a part of. He actually did a very good job giving the shot. He was very nervous but in the end he was good. We started off doing three nights of 112iu's of Follistem and I was scheduled to go back for my ultrasound and bloodwork first thing Tuesday morning.

Tuesday December 23rd I had to pick Emma up out of the bed and put her in the car for our trek downtown for the ultrasound and bloodwork. I felt so bad waking her up because she needed all the rest she could get since she was sick this past weekend and we ran her ragged. We made it downtown just in time and the ultrasound looked fine. Still little follicles growing and the bloodwork came back with my estrogen being 49 which was low but we still had time for it to increase. Dr. L increased the Follistem to 150 for three nights and come back on Friday morning. This would give me an opportunity to meet my new Dr. and go over my file before Dr. L left. The ironic thing about my new Doc, I'll call him Dr. B, is that he was the one who saw me and confirmed my miscarriage back in August. He is slightly familiar with me if that is a positive thing. Bloodwork came back and my estrogen increased to 66. We would continue on with 150iu's of Follistem for 3 nights and come back Monday morning.

Monday December 29th I went back in for my ultrasound and bloodwork. My ovaries looked good to me and I felt like the follicles were increasing nicely. My nurse told me that today was Dr. L's last day and that he would be taking vacation days up until it was time for him to leave town. He told her that he wanted her to call him with my results and that he was going to monitor me from home. I was his "special case." I think he was a bit fond of me. All in a good professional way. Actually I think he was more fond of Emma than me. He always looked forward to me bringing Emma in and getting to visit with her. That afternoon Nurse L called and was saying that she was sad because I was her last Dr. L patient. I immediately got a bad feeling when she said that. What the heck was she talking about? He was going to monitor me from home. Why was she being all sappy? Then she dropped the bomb. He was officially canceling my cycle. My estrogen hadn't increased enough to be able to handle any substantial growth or pregnancy if that was the case. There wasn't any point in continuing the medicine and spending the additional money for more. I was totally shell shocked because I thought things were progressing rather perfectly minus the little estrogen problem. My hopes were high and now they were crushed. I had dreams of being able to "trigger" (take my last shot) on New Years Eve. What better way to bring in the New Year than being pregnant?

I was sad for just a few minutes and then Emma wanted to go outside and play. Isn't she awesome? She knows just the right time to entertain me. lol We went outside and played sidewalk chalk in the beautiful 65 degree weather the end of December. As we were drawing I could only feel but so sad. Phillip and I had talked about and wanted to wait to try again until January so this was just a bonus round cycle. A little positive spin on it was that Nurse L said that Dr. B may let me start another cycle in January and not sit out a month as usual because my estrogen was so low. Let's hope for this.

A Window To My Soul

Ever since the miscarriage I have not talked much about us going forward in our infertile journey. For one I really do not have much to say about it. It is what it is, it is what is was. Neither of which can I control. I try but I can't. Once I opened myself up for the world to see I opened myself up for a lot of questions. Those questions were really hard to answer and frankly I didn't want to have to answer questions for anyone. I wanted to grieve privately and move on when I was ready. Talk when I wanted to talk and not talk when others wanted to. I didn't want consoling I just wanted to be able to talk about it and have someone listen. Not really listen and have someone else do the talking. For that I think I've kept to myself and Phillip about what we were doing or what we were doing.

Going through fertility treatments can become very personal and get really private really fast. I got a bit uncomfortable knowing that everyone knew every step that we were doing. If you get my drift. It's not enough pressure that you put on yourself about trying to get pregnant but when the whole internet world knows that you have to "do it" specific nights that just weirded me out.

All of this to say I keep quiet for myself and for Phillip. I'd love to write as I'm going through it and I may just do that and then post after the cycle is over for you all to read about. I'm not trying to shut everyone out but I just don't want to have to talk about it everyday. Everyday I do talk about it is just one more reminder that I am the one with the problem and you aren't. I am the one who's ovaries won't cooperate and estrogen won't increase. I am the one who miscarried. On the flip side when I do talk about it I am reminded that God blessed me with one amazing little girl. I get to be reminded of what a miracle she is. Every breath she takes every move she makes, I get to see and be a part of. I was chosen to be a Mother. If I am only a Mother of one then I am blessed beyond measure and I will never be ungrateful. I have a huge responsibility to Emma and one that I do not take lightly.

I may call you one day to talk. I may call you to cry. I hope that you will always be there for me as I will always be there for you.

October Update

I know I've been out of pocket for a while now. I say this everytime I go to update this website but I am sorry it's been a while. Really there hasn't been much to report. I went back to the Dr hoping to be able to start a new cycle since the mis-carriage. Eagerly anticipating the visit I went through the whole routine with the internal ultrasound and all. This time there was two nurses in the room and of course the ultrasound couldn't go normal. By now I know what I'm looking at and what the nurse is looking for. What we both saw on the screen was not normal. She excused herself and went to go get a Doctor to come and check out what we were seeing.

It was a web of some sort sitting on my ovary. Puzzled as to why I have this thing there they said they would give me a month off (like this was a long awaited vacation or something I get to go on.) Great! I get to wait another month to try again. I left the office dissappointed but knowing in my heart that God has a plan for me.

We'll see what November brings us.