Sunday, February 13, 2011

Hope Continued

I’ve stayed away; have you noticed?

I had hoped that my next post on here would be an exciting announcement that I was pregnant again. I had also hoped this would take place before February 13, 2011 (today) - the due date of the pregnancy I miscarried.

The story of how I feel about everything that is happening really started six years ago. But, this post is only going to be about the last year.
I’m sure you can imagine how, after five years of infertility and numerous failed infertility treatments, I was losing all hope that I would ever get pregnant. This was last spring.

My hope was failing.

We weren’t sure what direction we wanted to head as a couple. We didn’t know if we wanted to do any more treatments. Our best plan of action was to do all the testing one could think of, and have a consultation with a doctor to get an educated opinion. And maybe after this point we might have a clue as to what we wanted to do.

Despite this action plan, my hope was failing.

I sat in the bathroom one morning last spring praying to God. I had reached a point where I didn’t want to struggle with trying to have children any more. I wanted to give up. It was too hard. I didn’t have any hope. And besides I was perfectly happy adopting and I would be more than willing to adopt all my children. So I told God I was letting go of all my hope for it to happen. And I did.

We kept our action plan. I figured I could at least weigh the options the doctor presented us. But I didn’t want to pursue any serious treatments.

So, I went to my first of many doctor appointments that day—they wanted to monitor my cycle over an entire month to be sure everything was working properly.
I walked up to the front desk to let them know I had arrived, handed them every ID known to man, and glanced up at the wall – behind the front desk and over about 5 feet. There staring back at me was this huge sign that said “HOPE.”

The first thought through my head was back to the prayer with God that morning and how I had given up all hope.

But I dropped it from my mind; after all I had an entire month of monitoring before we would even speak to the doctor. And then I could decide what I wanted to do next. In the meantime, I was tired. There was no reason for me to have hope at that point –I already had 66 months of failed attempts to bash any hope and any dream.
I went to every appointment dutifully. Everything was perfect. Our appointment with the doctor was scheduled.

And many of you know what happened at this point. The day before our doctor consultation, we found out we were pregnant. 100% naturally; no meds; no treatments.

My favorite reaction came from a blog friend, Kelly, an individual I have never met in person, but have been priviledged to meet her and befriend her online. She posted that day that the God of the impossible had totally showed off in our lives.

And He did. And He also introduced hope back into my life. I don’t believe this happened by accident or by mistake. Today, I cling to the hope that God allowed such a miracle in my life to happen, so that I would continue to have hope that it would happen again. So I continue to pray and I continue to hope...and that is where I am today.

“Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.”” Romans 4:18

Monday, July 26, 2010

I'm fine

I've been getting numerous phone calls and emails asking how I am doing. So this post is to let you all know that...I am fine and you can stop worrying. I am perfectly at peace with everything that is happening and I have absolutely no doubt that God knows best. The past 5.5 years of infertility have certainly taught me that I do not have control over life.

I did have a miscarriage. And the details are below. If you don't want the details, please stop reading. They are gross.

The miscarriage started on Thursday night and lasted until Friday morning. The doctor had warned me to expect a period twice as bad as normal. It was no such thing. It was more closely related to labor and delivery. I had contractions starting Thursday night while I was cleaning the house. We had company arriving around midnight, so I kept cleaning and just ignored it. The contractions were very strong and actually were around 1-2 minutes apart and lasted for about 30 seconds or more. I didn't time any of this so I am guesstimating. But I passed several very large clumps of blood and other things. I was bleeding a lot. I tried sitting on the toilet but it was just too uncomfortable so I kept cleaning. I'm pretty sure I passed the gestational sac around midnight.

After our company arrived and I went to bed is when the real pain set in. I think it may have been because I was laying down and not doing anything else, except trying to sleep. Which was impossible because the contractions were unbearable. I got up and went to the bathroom and writhed around in there for awhile. Determined I needed some stronger medication. I just wanted to sleep. But my body wasn't finished.

At around 4am I think I passed the placenta. It was much larger than I expected considering how early the pregnancy was. As soon as this was over I felt instant relief. And I don't know how long it would have lasted, but I decided it was enough. I took a muscle relaxer and headed to bed.

And that was my miscarriage in a nutshell. I did learn a few things from this. Mainly I learned that whenever I do go into labor, I need a lot of work to do to keep me busy. I think cleaning was just what I needed to keep my mind off of it.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

10 week update

It's still light outside, and I'm typing this quickly so I can head off to bed. I've been waking up no later than 5:15 for weeks now, and sometimes as early as 3:30 -- which is why its now bedtime for me.

Monday marked 10 weeks pregnant. I was planning on posting that nothing has changed. But today the bad news came. So if you don't want bad news then you should immediately stop reading this. Go ahead, close down the screen, go look at something fun and interesting. Maybe head towards the kitchen and grab some chocolate. That makes us all feel better.

So the story goes like this. I went to the bathroom this morning and found bright red blood. So I called the doctor and was scheduled for an ultrasound. The baby has not developed past 6 weeks and 1 day, and there was no heartbeat today. If you remember, when I went in at 7 weeks pregnant for my first ultrasound, the baby was measured at 6 weeks 1 day then as well. I'm waiting for a natural miscarriage...or a miracle would be even better.

And yes, I'm fine. I am very much at peace with everything that is happening. It is an absolute miracle I was pregnant. Whether I could get pregnant was a huge question looming over us and now we know the answer. So this was a wonderful gift.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The funny things children say and do

Laughter is common in a household with children. You just can't help yourself.

Today, it wasn't so funny when Petra came to wake us from our nap to say that Jasper had climbed into the tub and turned the water on. We were dead asleep. I climbed out of bed and found him walking around with wet clothes. And went and turned off the water he had left running. Thankful she's smart enough to wake us up when necessary. He had crawled out of his crib, out of his room, down the steps and was in the bathtub downstairs. I guess I'm going to have to stop sleeping.

A few hours later I was laughing when Petra came down with the thermometer in her ear. We have an ear thermometer so this made sense. She told us she was "measuring her ear" and it was 16 lbs and eight dollars. Too funny.

I thought about sharing another story too, about a month old.
We asked her last month what her favorite food was? Noodles, she replied.
And what is your favorite drink? Water with noodles, she simply commented.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Common Pregnancy Symptoms (and Uncommon ones too!)

I’m officially in my third month of pregnancy. And I thought I would post some on common pregnancy symptom and how I was measuring up; as well as comment on my uncommon pregnancy symptoms. I spoke with my mom and two older sisters about their pregnancy symptoms and they didn’t have many symptoms to speak of … so it seems easy pregnancies may run in the family.

Morning Sickness – None to speak of. I am occasionally nauseas for 5-10 minutes ever so slightly and have some food aversions and cravings during that time, and then it goes away.

Fatigue – It was horrible weeks 4-6. Not so bad now. About every other day I want to nap, but can usually work through it. This is going away and according to the experts it should fade in month 3. I’d love a 2-3 hour nap right now. Which is saying something considering I went to bed at 9pm last night.

Frequent Urination – Yes, up until about week 8 I had to get up sometimes 3 times a night. This symptom usually fades away beginning in month 3 and mine started to dissipate about 2 weeks ago. Now I just get up usually once at night.

Breast Fullness/Tenderness – Some, but not much. Week 8 I had more breast heaviness than any other week. But generally I can’t really tell any difference now. It’s hard to tell too much because I did 210 pushups today and 100 pushups yesterday.

Bluish Veins – Yes, I have a whole new network of veins to transport all this extra blood around.

Moodiness – Double Yes. I am extra moody almost every minute of the day. This is the one symptom I hate so far about being pregnant.

Headaches – Yes. This one I really struggle with while exercising. Before I knew I was pregnant I was suddenly hit with severe headaches during workouts. And still have problems during strenuous exercise. Maybe it’s my body’s way of saying SLOW DOWN.

Bloating and/or Waistline expansion – Yes. I can’t quite figure out why my stomach is so round on some days. It appears to be growing.

Constipation – Yes, some. But I love prunes and they help.

Cramps/Pains/Twinges – Yes, I have all of the above. But they are usually brief and not painful.

Now for my more uncommon symptoms:

Limp Hair – My hair is falling out still. I’m not real happy about this. It’s limp and comes out excessively if I run my hands through it. I think the hair on my legs may have slowed down in growth…I’m going to have to watch it more closely to see if this is indeed happening.

Arms falling asleep – My arms are constantly falling asleep when I’m asleep. It doesn’t matter what position, back or side. It happens about every other night at the moment and during naps. I mentioned it to the doctor and he said he’s heard that it happens to some people.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Children Stories

I thought this seemed the appropriate time to post a few things about the children.

Petra is beyond silly these days. But she does strive hard to make us "proud." I started using this word with her and she loves it. She often tells me that she is proud of me...its a good reminder about how great it is to hear.

This week we have made a big step forward in potty training. She has been potty trained during awake hours since Sept. 2009. I decided at the end of June it was time to move foward. I didn't know how easy this would be for her because she woke up with a soaked diaper every morning. So, at the end of June I asked her to stop going #1 in her diaper at night and nap time. She said OK and stopped that night. I moved her out of diapers at night and nap time last week when we got back home from vacation. And she is doing fantastic. I would say she is 100% potty trained! I probably could have done this sooner but I kept waiting for her diaper to be dry in the morning. I guess I should have asked her sooner.

And she is learning to have a sense of humor. This week she told Thomas that she went to the museum and held a cheetah in her hand. And then she saw a bear hopping down a trail like a rabbit. Who knows where this came from, I guess her imagination is kicking in full gear.

Jasper is busy moving---

He is crawling out of his crib and we are making plans to move him out and into a bigger bed. Thankfully his crib is low to the ground and he can safely crawl out of it so it hasn't been a large rush. One morning last week I left for the gym at 6:45 am. I usually lock the door when I leave at 5:45 but since it was later, and I knew Thomas would be up any minute I didn't worry about it. I came home and asked Thomas how his morning went. He told me he woke up to Petra crawling in bed with him at 6:55 am to tell him that Jasper was outside playing. Sure enough, he was in the driveway on his tricycle. Scary; so now I lock the door all the time.

Play is his number one activity these days. And he is playing so well by himself...occupying himself with cars, trucks, tractors and building blocks. It has actually been very exciting to see the children become more independent.

And he decided last night at gymnastics that walking on the balance beam forward was not difficult enough for him. So he turned himself around and started walking backwards on the beam. We turned him back foward, and he turned himself back around backwards. So I guess this is his new personal goal.

Monday, July 12, 2010

9 week update

I know there are many of you praying for us, and we really appreciate it. It is a wonderful thing to be able to pray for friend and I feel very loved.

I am 9 weeks pregnant today. On Saturday I didn't feel pregnant at all. On Sunday I felt nauseous most of the day. Today, I was nauseus again ... so I'm hoping its a great sign. Or it could just be the prenatal viatamin. But they haven't bothered me before. Or it could be all the junk I ate this weekend. Thomas and I splurged at Five Guys this weekend and then again at church on Sunday night.

I forgot to weigh myself this morning, last time I checked I was up 1.5 lbs. I'm sure after the hamburger and the pizza I had this weekend I'm up some more. And today my belly is full and round - probably again because of the food.

My mind this weekend was only on one thing - my pregnancy. I moped around the house quite a bit and Thomas kept asking if there was anything he could do. So, in effort to keep my mind off the pregnancy and to prevent myself from worrying I thought about not posting about the pregnancy for a while.

Then today I decided I'd rather just stay positive, and that means moving forward. Although I think I'll be limiting how much pregnancy reading I'll be doing.

I'm in constant prayer that all goes well and the baby is healthy and strong.