I have spent 10 years obsessing over having a baby. I went to endocrinologists and completed test after test all to show that everything seemed pretty normal. Well, except for that little thing called endometriosis. However, for a lot of women that doesn’t mean infertility.
Except, it does for me.
Joe and I felt called to foster and adopt four years ago and grew our family by three–best decision we ever made. I am now a full time mom to my beautiful girl, whom I’ve only thought of as my own since day one. I have a son who is more like a best friend–maybe it’s because we’re six years apart? Who knows. It just goes to show how beautiful blended families are.
Seven years ago I had laser surgery to remove some of the endometriosis and cysts. It was a lengthy three hour surgery that left me with four new scars on my stomach–a tiny little road map. Once I was fully healed and given the “all clear,” I was handed a prescription for fertility hormones. I left that appointment elated! This was it, this was going to be our chance. Afterwards, I went to visit my mom in Harrisonville. She was battling lung cancer and wasn’t doing so well. We had the best visit we’d had in a long time. We looked at old photographs and laughed and laughed. She showed me a cradle that she had tucked away upstairs for my future baby.
Three days later my mom started her decline and passed away the next day. I never filled the prescription–in fact, I’m pretty sure I forgot all about it.
Two days after her funeral, I started student teaching. It was just too much all at once and I put family planning on the back burner.
Recently, Joe’s sweet niece had a baby boy. She trusted me to keep him over night when he was just two weeks old. I’ve never experienced such joy from such a small bundle in my life. The little sounds, the jerks, the smell–I was in love. I looked at my husband and knew it was time to try again.
Six months ago, I spoke with my doctor about my options. He just so happened to be a fertility care doctor who assists female patients in achieving pregnancy with the NaProTechnology and the Creighton Model. I was assigned a Fertility Care Specialist who pretty much volunteered her time to help myself and 18 other families either achieve pregnancy or not achieve pregnancy using a completely natural method of family planning. I had never heard of it and was instantly hooked. I learned so much about myself as a woman that no one had ever taught me. It’s truly a beautiful process and if you’re interested you should check it out.
After a few months of charting, my doctor checked my hormone levels and discovered that I don’t make near enough progesterone. I had to go in every other day for several weeks for blood draws. It was excruciating. But I went with the flow, like I always do and kept praying. This was something we hadn’t tried before and IVF has never been in our cards so it seemed doable.
Month one of progesterone was interesting. I learned after a couple doses that I should probably be taking it at night. It made me super drowsy. Basically my body thought I was pregnant due to the surge in hormones so I felt a lot of odd things. I just kept my chin up and carried on with the plan.
Month two of progesterone was a little harder. I had some tummy troubles and was pretty emotional about everything. But something changed during month two. Once I realized I wasn’t pregnant, I started to second guess my choice to try again for a baby. I mean honestly, what was I thinking? We have five beautiful children that are all unique in their own way and bring such joy to our lives. (Despite their ages and hormones at the moment.) 🙂 I prayed for kids. I prayed that the Lord would bless me with children.
So here we are month three and this will be our last time using progesterone. Tonight also happened to be my last visit with my new friend–my Fertility Care specialist. I looked forward to the 45 minute drive to see her every few weeks because I knew she understood every step of my journey. She worked with me and taught me more about human life than I ever thought I needed to know. The beauty. The wonder. She did all of this while having her own toddler and a baby on the way.
I hadn’t told her that this was going to be our last visit. I didn’t really know how. I felt like it was a bad breakup and I was scared to say goodbye. Tucked in her arms, was a tiny bundle, nursing. Her grunts and noises warmed my heart immediately. I let her start the follow-up as usual, asking me all the questions to make sure I was following the process with fidelity. Of course I was, I wanted it to work so badly. Then she said, “Let’s take a look at your chart.” I took a deep breath and spilled my heart out.
Now, let me just tell you, this woman was not only my fertility care specialist, she became my friend. We swapped good books, relationship advice, mom advice, and laughed about the dumb stuff we did in between visits. Sometimes we ran over the time allotted because we just couldn’t stop talking. She shared many times how she continued to pray for God’s will in my situation. All the while sharing intimate information–being so vulnerable. So I knew that after I spilled my heart out and saw the tears in her eyes, that she felt the same way too–peace. Peace in knowing that we gave it our all, but God has different plans for me.
Infertility is a lonely game. Your husband never understands the emotional rollercoaster you’re on. Your friends can’t relate because they have kids of their own. Your family wants what’s best for you, and worry it could be too much. So, you fight through the heartache of it all and try to make meaning out of life.
I am a teacher with 27 students. I am a mother with five kids. I am an aunt with 20 nieces and nephews. I am a great aunt with two nephews. I am a daughter with three sisters. I am a pet owner with two cats, two dogs, and a guinea pig. I am a wife with one strong loving husband. I have numerous friends.
Tonight, I let go and let God. I am wiser now than ever before and accept the gifts already given to me.
“I am leaving you with a gift–peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” –John 14:27