You are FAITHFUL

The morning I found out I was pregnant was quite surreal. I remember just lying in bed crying and thanking God for this blessing that he was giving us. A chorus of a song kept running through my head “You are faithful, God you are faithful” but for the life of me, that’s all I could remember.   I tried googling just those lyrics but not much was coming up.

A song that did come up (and yes, I posted it as a status on facebook that morning) was Lord, you’ve been Faithful by Majesty Music – another amazing song with these words:

Great is your faithfulness, you’ve shown to me – each day new blessing flow from Calvary.
Though other’s change you are the same. You are my God and faithful will remain.

Lord, You’ve been faithful through all these years; through every joy, through every tear. You’ve kept your promises; you’ve seen us through. Now keep us faithful Lord to You – Now keep us faithful Lord to You.

Though friends may turn away, your love is true. Each time I stray you draw me back to you. You see my heart, you know my name. You are my God and faithful will remain.

Can we find a friend so faithful, who will all our sorrows bear?
In his arms He’ll take and shield thee – thou wilt find a solace there.

Lord, You’ve been faithful through all these years; through every joy, through every tear. You’ve kept your promises; you’ve seen us through. Now keep us faithful Lord to You – Now keep us faithful Lord to YOU….Lord You’ve been faithful!

A fantastic song, but it wasn’t the song that was running through my head that morning.

This past Sunday we sang “the song” or should I say, everyone else sang the song, I could barely get the words out of my throat let alone wipe the tears from my eyes fast enough.  I swear the people who sit around us at church must think all I do is cry through every service!  But the words to this song are so precious to me – and it fully describes the journey of infertility, for me at least.

“Never Once” by Matt Redman

Standing on this mountaintop
Looking just how far we’ve come
Knowing that for every step
You were with us
 
Kneeling on this battle ground
Seeing just how much You’ve done
Knowing every victory
Was Your power in us
 
Scars and struggles on the way
But with joy our hearts can say
Yes, our hearts can say

Never once did we ever walk alone
Never once did You leave us on our own
You are faithful, God, You are faithful

Kneeling on this battle ground
Seeing just how much You’ve done
Knowing every victory
Was Your power in us

Scars and struggles on the way
But with joy our hearts can say
Yes, our hearts can say

Never once did we ever walk alone
Never once did You leave us on our own
You are faithful, God, You are faithful
You are faithful, God, You are faithful

Scars and struggles on the way
But with joy our hearts can say
Never once did we ever walk alone
 
Carried by Your constant grace
Held within Your perfect peace
Never once, no, we never walk alone

Never once did we ever walk alone
Never once did You leave us on our own
You are faithful, God, You are faithful

Every step we are breathing in Your grace
Evermore we’ll be breathing out Your praise
You are faithful, God, You are faithful
You are faithful, God, You are faithful

You are faithful, God, You are faithful
You are faithful, God, You are faithful

This song was just a huge reminder that this has been a journey – it wasn’t an easy one, it’s not one that I would wish upon my worst enemy.  It’s not been easy watching over 70 friends announce their pregnancies in a 6 months span of time (before I stopped counting.) It’s not been easy throwing friends and loved ones baby showers (even though I’m happy for them!) It’s not been easy feeling like your mind and body aren’t the same, because you are so high on fertility drugs that you are literally going crazy.  It’s been HARD.  My heart still breaks because I have friends still walking this journey. I wish that I could ease their pain just a little bit.

But through it all God has been faithful. He’s never left my side, he’s never left me alone.  And for that reason, and that reminder, I am thankful for the journey.  He knew that we weren’t ready for a child when we were in Michigan, or Missouri, or Iowa.  He knew that we needed to be part of a good church where we felt like we belonged, he knew that we needed more people to hold us up in prayer and support us in this journey. He knew the exact timing when things were going to be “right” for us to have a baby.  He knew….and still knows what’s best.  And I think that is the one thing that overwhelms me the most.  His timing is so perfect.

I do want to clarify something that has bothered me recently in facebook posts, in friends words etc…  God would still be faithful and good even if we were NOT pregnant right now, even if God would have said NO to our desire to have children.  God is still faithful and good in the bad times.  God is still faithful and good when things are going down the drain.   God is not only good when he blesses us and things are all sunshine and rainbows – he is good and faithful ALL the time. He always has a reason to do things in HIS perfect timing.

How has God shown his faithfulness to you lately?

Make it a GRATE day!

Love,

Christy

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Our Baby Journey…..part 5.2

Here you can read Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four and Part Five

So I feel like I need to backtrack just a little to tell you about our Foster Care journey as well – because it all fits into our story.

When Brian and I met and later married we talked about adoption and while I have always been open to the idea of adoption, Brian was a closed book, he wanted nothing to do with it. He wanted his own children or none at all. (please don’t take that as a bad thing, adoption isn’t for everyone!)

Fast forward a few years, we are living in Iowa, and some friends of ours become licensed Foster Parents.   We watched them go through the ups and downs that is Foster Care, and then end up with the sweetest two children that you would ever meet. (They actually got to adopt these children this year, but that is their story to tell, not mine)  Brian’s heart was softened by these friends and especially by these sweet kiddos. We really felt God leading us into Foster Care and possibly even adoption through the Foster Care system.  At that time we knew there was a HUGE possibility that we would be moving for Brian’s job again, so we decided to wait until we got moved to get into Foster Care classes.  During the wait I found a Christian Foster Care Agency in the Dallas area that I just fell in love with. The people I talked to on the phone and through e-mail were fantastic and you could tell that they really loved their job, and it was more than a job to them, it was a calling.  So we signed up for classes starting in January 2013. Told them a little about our background (read: Infertility Treatments), and why we really desired to become Foster Parents.

Fast forward: we get moved, holidays are done and over so we start getting a room set up for this new child/ren that will be joining our family hopefully by Spring/Summer. We found a crib, car seat, high-chair, bouncer, play mat and more.   I had washed all the children’s clothing that I had and got them hung up in the closet according to size. We were ready.  During this transition time I turned down 3-4 Nanny positions because we planned for me to stay at home with this little child.

The Foster Care application was very adamant about us being ACTIVE in a local church (which we LOVED!) so we decided to be quick about finding a church to be a part of (it usually took us an average of 9 months to find a church in the past.) We were going to 4 different churches a weekend some times, really praying and seeking God to where He would have us serve.  We ended up at the best church, under the best teaching, in a fantastic Sunday School class, and in a fantastic Small Group – yes it was a whirlwind decision, but we KNEW without a shadow of a doubt that this is where God wanted us.

IT’S TIME TO START CLASSES!  We were so excited.  We decided to meet at the training center in Dallas since it would have been a waste of time for Brian to come home to get me – it ended up being the WORST driving trip that I have had here in Texas to this day.  It rained BUCKETS and BUCKETS and I wasn’t used to the traffic or the Texas drivers yet – I was a mess. Then I got stuck in traffic, my GPS had me ending in an empty field, no building in site. I pulled into the next parking lot that I could and called Brian SOBBING because I was so stressed out. He’s talking me through the directions and then I realize that I’m in a strip club parking lot and a VERY sketchy figure is headed my way!! SCARY! Thankfully I just had to get back on the road and go the opposite way my GPS said to go. I only ended up being 1/2 hour late to the first class (it took me almost 3 hours to get to the training center – it should have taken me 45 minutes!)  So we get into the class and everyone went around the room and introduced themselves. We were shocked at quite a few older people (60 yrs +) were in the class (not talking grandparents here), and the couples who both had full time jobs. The class ends, we turn in all the paperwork that we had completed before the class (some 20+ pages of information) and then we head home – another traumatic drive!

The next day the director calls me and wanted to ask a few questions about our paperwork. 1. My ear surgery. I explained it to him, and that was all good. 2. Infertility.  I told him that we were still pursuing treatments, but would really love to do Foster Care along side of the treatments.  He then told me that as long as we are pursing treatments, and for 1 year after our last treatment we wouldn’t be accepted into their program.  He also told me that this was not a Texas “law” just a “rule” that they followed.  So I got off the phone – bawled, and started looking for another agency.  Every agency I talked to said the same thing, they all followed these rules.  I quickly texted our friend and asked her if Iowa was the same, she assured me they were not.  It just felt like a HUGE door being slammed in our face.

I cried A LOT those next few days – and closed the nursery door – I just couldn’t even look at it.  One more “punishment” for being “infertile”

A few weeks later I asked Brian to take the crib down while I was gone one night, he did so, ever so graciously.  We sold it along with almost everything else we had purchased – I just couldn’t look at it.  We moved the guest bed out of the office and made the nursery into the official guest room.

The door was closed on becoming Foster Parents as long as we were pursuing fertility treatments, and we weren’t ready to give up quite yet.

Fast Forward to where we are now:

I am almost glad to have gone through that experience.  While it hurt like heck, and no I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, and yes Foster Care is still something we may pursue down the line, we learned from it. AND most importantly it got us into a FANTASTIC church, small group and we have friends faster than any move before.  We have a fantastic support system filled with people who love and care about us.

It’s amazing to me sometimes how God has a bigger plan for us that we could ever imagine.  I’m so glad to trust HIM with my future and not myself!

Watch for part 6 coming soon!

Make it a GRATE Day!

Love,

Christy

Our Baby Journey…..Part 5

Here you can read  Part One, Part Two, Part Three, and Part Four.

WARNING: If you are easily grossed out or uneasy hearing about “female” stuff stop reading here and come back another day!

So before we moved to Texas I knew that I needed to find a new doctor. I had been seeing a Reproductive Endocrinologist back in Iowa, and while I liked her – she wasn’t a “Fertility Specialist.” She ran her office more like an OBGYN office than a Specialist office – and that was ok for Iowa. But I knew I needed something different this time. I also knew that being closer to Dallas was a plus because they were going to have more options than I had where we were in Iowa.  So I started searching the web. I put in “Fertility Doctor Frisco Texas” (which is the closest big city to us)  And an office popped up. The first one.  Dallas IVF.  They had a location within a 20 minute drive of our house. They had fantastic result numbers in helping couples get pregnant. At the time I was searching it was pretty late in the day so I decided to use their “contact us” form and send them an email, not really thinking that I would hear back from them anytime soon.

The next morning the DOCTOR, not the nurse the DOCTOR, called me and told me she could see me the NEXT day. I was shocked and a little in awe. I had to explain to her that we weren’t moving for another few weeks, but I would love to get an appointment to see her when we did move.

We moved the last week of November,  got the keys to our house on November 29th, our stuff arrived that weekend and I had an appointment with the Doctor on December 4th.  I remember that day pretty clearly. I was rushing around the house trying to find clothes to wear, and then find shoes to wear – there were boxes EVERYWHERE.  Oh the joys of moving!

We arrived at the Doctors office, Yes, WE. Brian has thankfully been a HUGE supporter to me during this process and tries to go to every appointment with me if at all possible.  We ended up waiting 45 minutes before seeing the doctor.  We were both a little on edge because of the wait – but found out that she was running late because she was with another patient running some tests or something.  So she starts asking the regular questions: how long have you been trying, what methods have you used etc…  She was FLOORED that we had been through SO MANY Clomid cycles with the previous doctor – and that the doctor had allowed it to happen.  She heard that I have PCOS and without even thinking she said “PCOS, no problem, I can get you pregnant. PCOS is an easy fix” The first glimmer of HOPE that we had seen in a VERY LONG TIME.   So she discussed the options we had before us, and put us on a plan.  She wanted to re-run a few tests to see my uterus and my Fallopian tubes for herself, which was fine by me.  So we left the appointment feeling GREAT, knowing that she was the doctor for us and had a plan that when my next cycle started we would start with some testing.

Of course my cycle decided to wait until RIGHT before we left for our Christmas holiday trip to start so we had to wait for the NEXT cycle to do any testing.

End of January 2013:

YAY, my cycle FINALLY started! I know, most infertile couples wouldn’t be jumping up and down with joy for the start of a cycle. It’s usually a very sad and painful way to say “Look, you’ve failed again, you’re not pregnant.” But this time I was excited, knowing that we were getting this ball rolling.  I called up the office and made an appointment for another HSG Dye Test (This is the test that they put a blue dye into the Fallopian tubes to see any blockage or problems.)  My doctor wasn’t available to do the test that day so another doctor in the clinic did the test.  It seemed to me that they had a specialized x-ray machine that is JUST for this test, it wasn’t the regular x-ray table that you see at the hospital.  So the doctor put the dye into my tubes,  and yes this causes a fair amount of pain, almost immediately he says “Wow, your tubes look fantastic!”  I half sat up and said “WHAT?”  Because remember one of the doctors in Iowa wanted to cut the tubes out because they were “bad.”  He assured me by showing me the dye on the x-ray machine, it was flowing freely through  both tubes.  I was SHOCKED to say the least.  I was SO very happy that we hadn’t listed to the previous doctor and went ahead and had my tubes removed.  SO happy that we listened to our gut and sought out additional advise. Finally, some good news in this long process!

Look for part 6 coming soon!

Please take a second and view this video – and then share it.  It will give you an entirely new perspective on people going through infertility – You may have someone you know that is going through this journey alone and heartbroken, 1 in 8 couples struggle with infertility.

Make it a GRATE day!

love,

Christy

PS – Have you followed me on Facebook yet? You haven’t? Why not? 

Our Baby Journey…..Part 4

You can read Part One, Part Two or Part Three if you’d like to….

If you get offended easily or grossed out – please skip this post and stop reading now.

July 2011

We officially did our first round of Clomid (I only had the prescription for 2 months at this point)  Of course I always seem to start my cycles right before or when we travel – this of course was the case. Of course when you travel your entire schedule goes out the window because you have friends that want to see you, you’re tired from exploring all day, you have a wedding etc… it just goes out the window. If you know anything about Clomid you know you’re supposed to take it during certain days of your cycle and then you’re supposed to have sex on other days of your cycle.  So the days we are supposed to have sex are of course our busiest days.  I remember one night I was so tired and just wanted to sleep, but I knew we needed to have sex, and Brian wanted to go down to the bar and see his college buddies. So I told him lets do a “wham, bam, thank you ma’am” and he could leave and I could stay – of course DURING his college buddy comes and knocks on the door….thankfully he left and didn’t keep knocking and we were able to finish……can we saw AWKWARD!! oh my…

Well needless to say that round of Clomid didn’t work.

September 2011

I finally heard about another doctor in our area and called to get an appointment with her – I couldn’t get in until December….alright, I will wait.

December 2011

Finally got in to see Doctor #3 – she was wonderful.  She sat and listened to me, she listened to Brian and wanted to see if she could help us.  She also did another ultrasound and didn’t think that we needed to have my Fallopian tubes removed, and she wanted to do an HSG dye test to see if my tubes were clear.

March 2012

We finally got the HSG test scheduled. Again, because of my crazy cycles it took us a while.  After the test she said she thought she unblocked the left tube, but she couldn’t get the dye to even go through the right tube, and that it was probably blocked. So our chances of getting pregnant were VERY slim, but not impossible.

During this time I found out that I needed to have surgery on my ear so from April 2012 – June 2012 we had to use protection so that we wouldn’t get pregnant.

July 2012 – November 2012

We did a round of clomid each month – none of them working, each one they gave me a higher dose, and the crazier I became. My emotions were on a roller coaster. I was happy one second, depressed and sad the next. Even threatening to throw my cat outside and get rid of her – and if you know me, that’s not something that I would ever do!  And don’t even get me started on the hot flashes!

Then in November we moved to Texas.

Watch for Part 5 coming soon!

Make it a GRATE Day!

Love,

Christy

Our Baby Journey…….Part 3

You can read Part One here, and Part Two here.

**If you are easily offended or grossed out, please stop reading here**

So we moved to Iowa. It took me a few months to feel comfortable driving in the 4 feet of snow, and to find a doctor. I decided to go with a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) that worked at a local OBGYN office.  I went in to see her and thought she was nice enough, she didn’t spend a whole lot of time with me, and the appointment seemed almost rushed.  She prescribed me my first round of Clomid to take with my next cycle.

May 2011

So Brian was able to take me with him on a work-trip to Michigan. It was nice to finally be able to GO with him instead of waiting at home for him.  Well lo and behold I started my cycle while we were there. So I had to have the CNM call the prescription into a pharmacy in Michigan.   By the time I went to pick up the prescription my period had stopped. And the next day it started again, and then stopped again.  I called the CNM and finally was able to talk to HER and not her nurse. She basically said in a very exasperated voice “You are no longer my patient, I don’t know what else to do with you. You can see someone else in our office” I was FLOORED.  After one cycle she’s going to give up on me?  Needless to say, I was shocked.  But stupidly went to see another doctor in her office – this time a fertility specialist.

So we went to see Doctor #2.  He wanted to do all his own tests and ultrasounds – so we went along with it.  During the ultrasound he saw some fluid on the right Fallopian tube, and said the left one looked to be in pretty bad shape.  His suggestion? Go have surgery and cut them both out and try having a family another way.  Needless to say we needed another opinion/option.

Be watching for part 4 coming soon.

Make it a GRATE day!

love,

Christy

Our Baby Journey….Part 2

(This post may have TMI – if you get offended easily – please stop reading now)

Click here to read Part One.

Life went back to normal….but in the back of my mind I couldn’t help but think “What if I really did have a miscarriage?”  So finally in March of 2009 I decided to talk to Brian about it. My heart was heavy and knowing that I would probably have issues getting pregnant I suggested maybe we just start “officially” trying now. He was on board.  Now I have no clue WHY I remember this exact date, but I do. It was March 15, 2009.

We also had the discussion at the same time that we wouldn’t tell anyone that we were trying. We really didn’t want people asking us all the time “you guys pregnant yet?” “When are you going to start trying?” “Don’t you know how that works?”  I’ve never understood why people think they have the right to ask those kind of questions – it’s not like I go up to them and ask them how their sex life is.  During the 3 1/2 years of NOT telling many people I’ve always had to shrug that question off…when inside I really wanted to answer something along the lines of ‘Well, maybe we’re not having sex the right way, do you want to come and show us how it’s done?”  But I don’t, because it’s rude! oh well…. Back to the story….

So we start trying to get pregnant. We both start taking really good vitamins, eating healthier etc…  And then Brian loses his job right before our 1 year anniversary. Thankfully he ended up getting a new job but it was in Missouri (At this time we were still living in Michigan) So that caused a little bit of a problem. But I faithfully traveled from Michigan to Missouri every 2 weeks to see him, and hopefully get pregnant. But it didn’t happen.  9 months later I moved to Missouri with my husband (YAY!)  and we continued to try.  (This was March 2010 – so we’ve “officially” been trying for one year, but it was a little “hit and miss” for a few months)

September 2010 – I found a FANTASTIC Doctor and she FINALLY diagnosed me with PCOS – something that I had thought I had for quite a while, but I couldn’t get a doctor to diagnose me with it.  She started me on metformin, and wanted to see what me being on that for a few months would do.  Her plan was to start me on Clomid in January of 2011.

In December of 2010 I traveled to see a friend who had recently had a miscarriage.  She was explaining in detail what happened when she passed the baby, and it was like she was telling me my story. It was weird. I will never know 100% sure if the doctors were right or wrong, and let me tell you – that drives me NUTS, so all I can do is wonder.  Maybe it was a cyst? Maybe it was a Miscarriage….only God knows for sure.

Then in January of 2011 we moved to Iowa for Brian’s job – so that meant new doctors, and well, to say the least, finding a good one was VERY difficult in Iowa.

*Look for Part 3 coming soon!*

Make it a GRATE Day!

Love,

Christy

Our Baby Journey….Part 1

Last week was National Infertility Awareness Week, and while I have never blogged about our baby journey I felt it was time for me to do so.  So here goes nothing!  (There is some TMI in this post, if you’re offended easily, stop reading now )

I had already known that we might have some problems getting pregnant because it runs in the family….I know I know….I’m the second of 11 children….but I was also a Clomid baby.  My mom had problems getting pregnant with the first 3 of her children, the rest just came “naturally” to her.

So our journey started in January 2009. We had been married just around 7 months and had been talking a little bit about “starting” to try and get pregnant.   We hadn’t stopped using protection at this point, and talked about officially starting around our 1 year anniversary.  So on that Friday afternoon I thought that I was just starting a monthly cycle, put my feminine products on and didn’t think anything of it. Brian and I snuggled up on the couch and watched a movie.  At the end of the movie I stood up to go get ready for bed and I felt a huge “gush”. I ended up bleeding through all of my feminine products and even on the couch. I went and cleaned up, still not thinking anything different. We went to bed, and I ended up having to change out tampons and pads every 15-20 minutes that night.  I could tell I was weak and it was taking all my strength to get in and out of bed and off the toilet.  About 4 am I went in the bathroom to again change everything and ended up passing a gray tissue that was about 4-5 inches long by 2-3 inches wide.  I wish I had enough sense about me at the time to have kept it and have it looked at.  But I didn’t, I ended up flushing it and headed back to bed. FINALLY I was able to sleep for a few hours and the bleeding slowed down.  Brian had to go to work the next morning, but  I could tell he was worried and wanted to take me to the hospital.  I woke up about 7:30 that next morning and made it to the bathroom to change again, and noticed the bleeding had slowed down quite a bit, I was pasty white, I’m talking scary white.  I ended up sitting on the couch for most of the morning and called Brian’s mom to see if she could drive me down to Brian’s work so he could take me to the hospital.  We planned for her to pick me up closer to noon.  The bleeding ended up stopping all together around 11 a.m. but because I was so weak I felt it would still be good to go get checked out.

We got to the hospital and they did a vaginal ultrasound and said that it must have just been a cyst that burst, but they really had no clue. They sent me home and wanted me to check in with my OBGYN for a followup.  No pregnancy test was taken, nothing was done except that ultrasound.

It took me a few days to feel back to “normal”  And I really didn’t think anything more about it.

*Watch for part 2 soon.

Make it a Grate Day!

Love,

Christy