Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Christmas Doesn't Have to Be...

Christmas doesn't have to be about having a baby.
It doesn't have to be about feeling inadequate.
It doesn't mean you're not complete.
It doesn't mean that you're not whole.

If you're struggling with infertility, this holiday is almost the worst. Someone is going to post a dumb picture of small shoes under the Christmas (if you've done this, it's actually a great idea, very cute...but speaking from a bitter point, dumb is what came out.) Tree indicating that their Christmas present will soon be arriving.

I came across this pin today, a quote from Andy Rooney


The mess on Christmas doesn't even have to be from wrapping or bows, it can be from food! It can be from Holiday DVD cases strewn throughout the living room. It could be blankets everywhere, it could animal hair in all the corners. Make your beautiful mess this Friday with your own definition of family.

There is joy on Christmas.

Awhile ago I started referring to my husband and I as a family. A small, modest family of two, with a few animals...well now only 1, but we're a family none-the-less.

There's my side of the family. Mom, dad, brother, sister, but also their dogs, and significant others. Or my husbands side of the family...that side is always a little harder to celebrate. As hard as it Christmas shopping for other peoples young children, it is nice to see their faces as they realize what we got them.

Also, I'm having a secret competition with myself to become the favorite aunt. So far, I think I'm winning, lololol.

Also, only because I've started coaching them. "Whose your favorite aunt? Say you!"

I did receive a story of hope late last week that I would like to share with you, but I will have to save it for my next post.

Christmas doesn't have to mean pain and it doesn't have to mean being a couple with a child. It can mean whatever you want it to as you celebrate it with friends, family, and even your pets.

With love,
XO,
C

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Taking a risk

The truth is I manage another blog online. But wanted to keep it separate from this blog. If you haven't made the connection that's really okay. And if you have I ask that you just wink my way and don't say a word.

::winky::winky::

The reason why I mention this is because my husband lost a close family member two weekends ago. It was an incredibly rough week for us as we also put my cat down as well.






The reason why I post about this, because the loss of my husbands family member made it all the more difficult by our infertility diagnosis. One of the only children left to not have produced offspring. As the pastor talked about a way to leave a legacy, a way to remember someone we looked up, is to honor that person by passing down that legacy to your children.

While it can be pointed out that we could leave a legacy of this family members big heart through giving back to the community, to the nieces, and nephews we have, some how it still hurts. I couldn't help but think about how it will be easier for other family members who get to go home and watch life happen before their eyes. To watch little ones grow. To move on.

My husband spoke of, after the death, in our own private moment, when he told his loved one about when he told them that we couldn't have kids...at least biological ones...this family member looked to the bright side. "There's always adoption".

Now we are throwing ourselves into projects, being with friends, and spending time with our doggie girl.

She started looking for T the other day. Turns out the doggie girl doesn't like having the house to herself as much as she thought she wanted.

It was a good decision to let go of my aging friend. My friend whom I met when I was 10. Whose veins were failing when I took him in. My friend who I spent countless nights pouring my soul too. My friend whom I fed a salmon fillet the night before the appointment. My friend who always knew when I was crying,

My first best friend.





There will never be another.
XO,
C

Monday, November 23, 2015

Surviving Thanksgiving Part 1

Savings is up over $250 now. In cold hard cash.

Still battling quite a bit of stress. I'm suppose to be taking it one day at a time...I don't like that so much. It's not fun.

Here is a compalation of things I wanted to post about today...

This blog post by Elisha over at Waiting for Baby Bird, entitled "It's Okay to Not Be Okay this Thanksgiving" she has such a way with words.

"So give yourself the gift of grace.  Because you are not a horrible person.  You are a normal human being with normal emotions after experiencing loss and constant disappointment and heartache.   Even the most perfect person has occasional trouble seeing the joy through the pain.  So, sweet friend, don’t beat yourself up or kick yourself down.  Just do the best you can and try to remember through the holiday season that it won’t always be this hard, or this overwhelming, or this stressful.  Because just like the women in the articles wrote, night always turns to dawn.  Seasons always change.  And the valley you are in today might be the one you are looking down on tomorrow.  But until that time comes, just know that it’s okay to not always be okay…"

 
the second thing was that my friend, today, told me that I had a servants heart. Honestly, I think I struggled with knowing what my special talent was from God.As soon as I heard it though, or rather read it in this case, I thought. How sweet! Huh, that makes sense I guess.

I will post more about this, later this week.

And the last one...this handy dandy guide to the Holiday. You know, the one MOST OF US aren't looking forward too..the list is from buzzfeed.17 Essential Charts to Help you Survive the Holidays. These ones were my favorite...




XO,
C

Friday, November 20, 2015

The Long Struggle- Delicious Ambiguity

Lately I feel like I've been inundated with stories of people whose seasons of waiting lasted over a decade. I belong to a PCOS support group on Facebook. A status the other day written by one particular woman who had been trying for 12 years finally delivered a happy, healthy, baby boy. Wow.


Part of me feels like I have that kind of fight in me, but the other part of me, doesn't have the emotional capacity to fight that battle right now. Mostly because we technically aren't trying and because I am currently dealing with the stress that has invaded itself into my household.

While I struggle with not being a martyr, I am finding it difficult to stand my ground as well. I've never wanted to be a bad guy. Or rather I should say, I don't WANT to be the bad guy. Ever.

I read a great post by Caroline over at In Due Time about how her hubby, while the most amazing man on the planet, just doesn't understand this journey. I see what my husband doesn't see about the current stressful situation we're in.  My hubby doesn't understand why I want our house back to just us. We've been through a lot this year. Our first IUI round, Big Fat Negative, and house guests for 3 whole months? Now only to be living with another person? A person that I do not trust? That's tough! I don't see the person my husband saw growing up. I only see the person who puts their family through pain.

I digress...I am trying to resolve to pray about it more then I complain about it.

The second reason is while no one ever really 'stops trying' (until you decide you are not trying), we aren't technically trying because we're not in the middle of a cycle. I do like to think we are waiting on a miracle from God. Believing our miracle would come in the form of donor sperm, we would like to actively pursue that again. We wait on God and we wait on our finances.

A very good friend showed this too me today, a very good video!

Stylish Lisa 'She Waited 10 Years for a Baby'


If I go back to my earlier thought...my season of waiting could almost be over...or rather, I'm just in the middle of it. And that at least is a happy thought.



XO,
C

Thursday, November 19, 2015

I pretty much hate Thanksgiving

You can consider me the Chandler of Thanksgiving.


I hated it as a kid for a multitude of reasons, which I won't get into, however...the two reasons I will explain, is because 1. I thought people should be Thankful ALL YEAR long vs just 1 day.
And 2. It also just never made sense to me because we basically took a country and now feast till our hearts are content.



That's a bit bleak though isn't it? As I grew older though, I began to ACTUALLY be thankful for those around me, the blessings I had. While I do my best everyday to thank God for those blessings in my life, it's nice to celebrate it as well. My favorite thing to do on Thanksgiving is before the madness starts. I like to watch all 10 F.r.i.e.n.d.s Thanksgiving episodes the night before, then in the morning I like to wake up and drink coffee and watch the Macy's Day parade while eating a GIANT hearty breakfast.

It's time for myself. Time that I gift to myself before I have to watch my husband play with his nieces and nephews. It's time I give myself to enjoy. To not wonder what life would be like if... To not think. To just sit and be in my pajamas, in the quietness of the town.

Unfortunately I'm not getting that this year. 1 of two reasons. The first being there's family drama on both sides of the family.


On my side, my parents decided they're tired of hosting 2nd Thanksgiving. "We get stuck with leftovers, and everyone is exhausted by the time they come here." So they want to host a dessert buffet instead. Sounds good, but one of my siblings and I have decided we are going to surprise our dad with Thanksgiving breakfast. We're going to cook breakfast, watch the parade, and drink coffee.
Hell I might even wear my pajamas. It sounds all well and good but will make for a long day between breakfast driving to my in laws for lunch then back to my parents for dessert.
It's somewhat easier at my folks house, as there are no kids on that side of the family...yet. Give it time though, the sister in law has already announced she's 'Pulling out my birthday control the minute your brother gets back stateside.'






And on my in laws side, some of it is self explanitory. 2 of the 4 siblings have kids. 2 a piece. They are wonderful nieces and nephews. We love them dearly. The 3rd of the 4 siblings are currently trying to conceive. How joyous. Then there's us. Playing the infertility game since 2011. Yep.

The 2nd not so obvious reason is the major drama I have avoided talking about. Out of respect for C, I still won't. I know my blog is anonymous. But it still doesn't seem right to air the dirty laundry. I do ask for prayers though. Knowing that in the end, some good will come of this.

1 good thing is that I have been doing a better job of communicating my feelings. Instead of keeping them bottled up. So far my feelings have been acknowledged and not shot down. Which is also a victory. This is making us stronger as a couple.

For now, I am thinking I might suddnely have a flat tire and not be able to make it out to my inlaws on Thanksgiving, but we'll see...one day at a time right?

Until then...Wine.




Also, if you need something MORE to help you get through the next two months, check out this AWESOME list over at Stirrup Queens. I love-love-love her note that I might actually just keep in my pocket.
XO,
C

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Thank you for the prayers

C had the ultrasound on his thyroid on Monday. It did concern us when they asked us to come for a second look, but tried not to worry to much.

The radiologist A-Okayed him though. Thank you for the prayers, made for a much better week for us.

The stress that consumed me last week, is still very up and down. We have no definite answers to our situation, and while I struggle to want to tell my side of the entire story, just know that I complained about it, WAY more than I prayed about it.

Last night, in an angry rage, I prayed out loud in my vehicle as I was driving home from work. It was a colorful prayer ;) full of descriptive language.

I've been reading The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything: A Spirituality for Real Life by James Martin, SJ


It's a very fun read. I'll admit, I'm not catholic and I don't think I have quite the degree of language as James Martin does, but I can understand enough to get through it. The tag line on the back of the book is "St. Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Jesuit Order, was known for his practical spirituality. Now, Father James Martin translates Ignatius's insights for a modern audience, revealing how we can find God in our everyday lives in often surprising ways."

He is a very funny writer who lived life before devoting his life to God. He talks of how he smoked pot, and cursed while he prayed once.

Which led me to my prayer last night. The chapter where Father James talks about dropping the F bomb on Jesus is about being honest. You are encouraged to think of God like a friend, someone you have a relationship with.

"Being honest with God means sharing everything with God, not just the things that you think are appropriate for prayer, and not simply your gratitude and praise. Honesty means sharing things you might consider inappropriate for conversation with God." 

I was honest with God last night. I just simply spoke the anger that was on my heart and finally turned the situation over to him, pleading that I was too livid to deal with it. I was to wrought with frustration that I knew I wouldn't be able to handle it appropriately. 

It helped. It got it off of my chest and heart. Be honest with God in your prayer life. 

Last night during my prayer, after explaining away my distrust for this particular individual, I said "I should be praying for this stuff Lord, and I do. I pray for Paris, I pray for our armed forces. I pray for a colleague who is sick. A friend's dad fighting cancer. I pray for those people as well.
And Jesus, I also pray for the baby thing. Lord,remember the baby thing?"

'Yeah the baby thing.'
He knows whats on my heart. But like a friend, he simply likes to hear me say it sometimes.

Alright, I gotta get outta here. A small snow is suppose to blow through but I want to the grocery shopping done before then.
XO,
C
 

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

One Day at a Time

For reasons I won't explain entirely, I had a panic attack yesterday. I'm pretty prone to anxiety. Whether that's from the PCOS or from environmental factors, I don't know. Either way, I started to just believe every lie that my brain was telling itself. I didn't quite feel the room spin, but it was pretty darn close.

I had to take a step back, tell C I needed some water and just remove myself from the room.

No, we weren't fighting. But I was internalizing a situation that was causing me to just lie to myself and think all the bad thoughts.

 And I kept circling back to 'the only reason this particular thing is happening is because we're the only couple without kids. So it's our responsibility.'

If I had it my way though, we wouldn't be in this season of waiting. We'd have at least 2 kids by now, possibly staring down the idea of a 3rd.

I started to think, 'If I had married differently then...'

Which gets everyone no where, because my husband is my best friend. My best friend.

Not kidding. I can tell him anything and everything under the sun. He accepts me and loves me just as Jesus accepts me and loves me. Unconditionally. Without a doubt. No questions asked.



Since this particular situation presented it self last week, we agreed to just take it one day at a time. I've had to remind myself almost every hour that God is in control. I can not control this. I, for the first time, am able to set aside a chunk of how I feel and how I want it work out, and just let God be in the drivers seat. It's been somewhat of a grueling week. I like to plan. I like to have things mapped out. But telling God, 'one day at time. This is yours. I don't know what the future holds. I don't even know what the night might bring, but I know that you will work this out for my good.' has really helped.


Just like I know that I have to put my season of waiting in Gods hands. Rely fully on him. The last few years of waiting have not been easy. I strive to look forward to the good. Remembering that Joy Comes in the morning.

I will have more updates in the following weeks, as we plan our cruise, talk more about ending the suffering my wonderful Mr. T has been experiencing, as well as spiritually gear up for the approaching Holiday season, I will be back more often I imagine.

Until then I am asking for prayers for C for his upcoming doctors appointment. After everything we've endured this last week, it's hard not to place our minds in the worst place. One day at time for the next week. We can do this.

XO,
C

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

It Is Well

I'm sorry I haven't posted in awhile. There hasn't been much to report. My friend finally did have her baby after 51 hours. Wow! Impressive.

It was hard but I was happy. Another friend also had her babies as well. I had decided when she asked me how I was doing I would say,

"It is well." I keep thinking It is well with in my soul. It's from 2nd Kings Chapter 4. There was a Shunammite woman who would often prepare her house for a Elisha the traveling prophet, anytime he passed by her house. He stopped so often that she even set about putting a room together just for him with a bed and a lamp. When he asked her if there was anything he could do for her she replied with "I have a home among my people." Almost as if to say, she didn't need anything. The story speaks to me on many levels, but if you are not familiar with this story, then the point I would like to highlight is that the woman had no children.

When Elisha asked his servant what could be done for the woman for showing such hospitality yet she would take nothing, the servant responded that she has no son and her husband was very old. While I do not know if she had daughters, the bible doesn't specifically say one way or the other. To my knowledge, but I'm still learning. When Elisha called her back he said "This time next year, you will hold a son in your arms."

She was surprised but yet from her next sentence we know she's really telling him "don't get my hopes up" as she said basically "Please don't tell me this if it's not true."

2 Kings 4:17 tells of her becoming pregnant and giving birth to a son at the time that Elisha had said she would.

Sometime later as the boy is growing he complains to his father that he has a headache. After going back to the house, and lying in his mothers arms the boy dies. She tells her husband to snag one of his servants and set her up to go see the prophet Elisha. He questions her why this time of year, she simply says "that it's fine". It doesn't matter. I can go see him whenever I want. There's no time limit on God or his prophets. 

As she was coming closer to where the prophet Elisha was staying, he saw her carriage approaching and he sent a servant out to greet them. (You know, these people have a lot of servants. I used to think it would be cool once to have servants...but really who has time for servants?) When Elisha's servant approaches the carriage he too begins to question her "Is Everything alright? Is someone sick?"

She replies (KJV) 2nd Kings 4:26 "It Is Well."


This woman knew that Elisha could preform miracles. And as surely as the God who had brought her this child when she was least expecting it, she knew he would bless her again. She didn't complain to the messenger or try to explain but she was going straight to the guy in charge to help her.

Verse 28 when she finally approaches Elisha she says "Did I ask you for a son my Lord? Didn't I tell you not to get my hopes up?"

She told Elisha, that she would not leave his side until he came back with her. Almost as if clinging to God when she needed it most. God, I will not try to use your tools to fix my distress. I will be with you every step of the way until you come back to what I need you for. Knowing, trusting, believing.

I'm not sure where you are in your infertility journey. My heart breaks that you have to walk this journey. In some ways I feel as if I've just begun my journey and in other ways I know that after almost 5 years of waiting, I'm tired.

I'm tired and sad. I still went to go see those babies. I still was very happy for them. I rejoiced when they needed me to rejoice, but then I took that moment in the bathroom on Monday night and cried. There was no one around expect God.

I believe that It Is Well. That my season of waiting is almost over. I can feel it in my soul. But whether it's another year or another two years has yet to be determined. I will do my best to stick by God until he comes back around to my heartbreak. I know that God can fix this. He will fix this. I have to learn to wait with him and not just on him.

The woman, who was never named, to my knowledge. Elisha brought her son back to her. The boy lived.

Isn't our God amazing?

Waiting is hard. Waiting with God we can take comfort in knowing that "It Is Well."

XO,
C

Sunday, October 25, 2015

My 2 Things

Two things I am posting about today:: The first is about this adorable list I found on Buzzfeed. Naturally it caught my attention as we are still working towards going on a cruise. The list is entitled 'Here's How Traveling Can Actually Help You Win At Life'.

It's a cute little list about a couple and their two cats who decided to live in 1 city for exactly 1 year before packing up and moving on to the next adventure. There were just a few cons, but unexpectedly, I saw this...


"Point is, family can mean many things, and different things to different people. Be open to whatever definition of family comes your way."

Just reminded me of my little family two. Just because there are two of us, doesn't mean that we are any less of a family. To celebrate my family of two in this season of waiting, I've decided to get our pictures taken, for Christmas mostly, but we're definitely getting them taken. 

The second thing that I wanted to share, or rather just spill my thoughts on were, I had a conversation with a girl at work who I assumed had accidentally become pregnant before marriage. While, I still don't quite get why people who aren't married decide to try and have kids, they were a couple who had be living together for awhile. So, of course, now that she's married (to the man of her son) I assumed that the second kid came to them just as naturally. 

Well...I did what my pastor has told us not to do. I filled in her blanks. I assumed I knew what her life story was about. What in fact was this girls truth was that she in fact has endometrosis. And this 'second baby' is actually her 6th baby.  

Hearing her story really encouraged me. After walking away from our conversation. I got goosebumps. I once heard them called Holy Ghostbumps. I felt as if that was my message from God saying "Have courage. Have faith. Have confidence."

Today while we racked leaves and spent time with a family of three at an orchard. I just kept praising God for the good things about this perfect fall day. 

 XO,

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Today's a better day

Today is a much better day. A little more in control of my emotions...just a little. Mr T...not quite the oldest cat, but at 18...he's only 8 years shy of the Guinness world record, So a little less than a decade, but pretty close.





He rebounded. He's more steady on his feet today. Still VERY noisy. Eating again, not drinking as much. I've decided for now to stop giving him his arthritis medicine to see if that helps. I think it might have been to much on his small frame of barely 6lbs. He's a handsome old man. And I love him.

My friend, still hasn't had that baby yet! Waiting on word to find out if it's a boy or girl...I just pray that health wise everything is going very well and that no complications creep up. At this point it's been over 24hrs...

Usually before I post I end up reading the blog posts that catch my eye. Today's was "I Was Afraid You Wouldn't Understand Grieving Lost Embryos" from Waiting for Baby Bird. This woman of Christ has such a beautiful way with words. It's hard NOT to read her posts...even if I don't quite have the time to linger behind a computer screen. Her words are captivating and bring hope to a devastating journey.



Today's post was about losing 10 embryos. How she will mostly giving out a practiced answer when asked "So how many kids do you have?"
While I may have not had an embryo inside of me after our IUI, the opportunity was still as real to me as if I might have had one. It sounds corny/weird to say but it's true. I needed to grieve the loss. I'm mostly better. REALLY READY for the next go, but the timing and the financial aspect will again be on the Lord's timing.

Elisha did a guest post over at Recombie, the last line of her story really struck a cord with me. I believe God will give us babies. Whether from my womb or not, but I do believe they are out there. Waiting to come to us, and she couldn't have phrased it better I think.

"I believe God is not finished writing my story. I have hope He is not finished in His pursuit to fulfill the desires placed in my heart. And I cannot help but dream of the day I am rocking a baby in my arms…"

Lastly, there is an amazing buzzfeed list on Infertility Explained by 33 Cat Pictures...how could I not share this??

XO,
C

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Yesterday was rough

Yesterday was a rough day. Although it was our dating anniversary, it wasn't much of a celebration. The day started out fine but a very good friend of mine also went into labor. While I desperately cling to one of the last reminders of our solitude I also wanted to be there for my friend. Although, living a few states away, there wasn't much I could do.
Other than send the biggest thing which is send prayers but also send encouraging text messages...although...I don't know how helpful they were.

The point of the story was, as happy as I am for them...still anxiously awaiting to see if it's pink or blue...I was having a tough time with it yesterday.

There was 1 thing I was certain of yesterday though.

Taking Plunder from the Devil. As Charlotte Gimble said in her sermon about having realizing her 7th round of medicine didn't bring her any closer to having a baby she still went on to preach that night about taking plunder from the devil. I knew I needed to be happy yesterday. That I wasn't going to let sadness and anger and whatever else I might be feeling take over my emotions. I concentrated on one task at time. I made a great healthy lunch. I made a delicious crock pot meal for C & I for dinner to celebrate our official dating anniversary. I wasn't going to give into chocolate or sugar cravings.

What I might not have mentioned was that I have...well I've talked about how much I just LOVE to eat. After being diagnosed with PCOS I was able to take a bit of weight off and got to the healthiest I had ever been in my life. I've back slid quite a bit over the last few months or so. I really want to get back on track. I don't want to the devil to pursade me that food is my comfort when God is and should be my comfort. I did a TON of praying yesterday. I also distracted myself with cooking, and listening to music, and watching some shows that I knew wouldn't remind me of what I so desperately seek from the Lord.

I made a conscious decision to Rejoice with those who were rejoicing yesterday. Be thankful for their little miracle.



And boy did it get even more tough after I got home last night. My beautiful, handsome cat, whom I've had since I was about 9 years old. Has started the stages of passing away. He's not doing well. Not eating much. But drinking a ton of water. Seems incredibly disorientated. 
It was only a matter of time. He is 18 after all. But after finding blood in his vomit last night, I'm not sure how much longer he'll be here with me on this earth. I cried. Boy did I cry. 

But I didn't give into the food. 

Prayed all night, that if the Lord was going to take to please take him fast and with little pain as possible. The only thing I was certain of yesterday, was even though I was sad my God was a big God. I'm taken care of and loved by him.

I had to put a cat down 2 years ago. I'm not looking to repeat that experience again anytime soon. That is one of the WORST feelings in the entire world. Knowing Mr. T I know that he would want to die at home. But with dignity. And with love. 

He seemed better this morning when I woke, but I am unsure how the rest of his day has been. I had to come into work today. Hoping to leave early. 

Yesterday was rough.



Thursday, October 15, 2015

I've been gone to long

There hasn't been much to write about lately. Probably why I haven't posted.

A few things have happened though this last week. C & I won a cruise! A 7 day cruise to the Caribbean! Excited about it but then I learned about having to pay the deposit. If we want to upgrade to a balcony it's a $500 dollars down.

If I had $500 I wouldn't be going on a silly cruise. I'd be trying to buy my infertility medication. It's not that I'm ungrateful for this amazing, once in a lifetime opportunity, but where will we find the money for this? We need this vacation. I haven't had any convictions about not taking it, but definitely about how to pay for it and when we should go.

We were orginally thinking over our anniversary, that way we could avoid any future IUI's we might do. We were hoping to accomplish 1 cycle in May. But if we're paying for a cruise...who knows...

Hard to plan these things I guess.

I read this article over at In Due Time--My War Room...I'm going to need to create one of these for sure.

My prayer life has been lacking quite a bit. I need to get back at it. It's been hard though as I've recently thought about switching churches. That's a whole other story for a different day.

I know misery loves company, so I am going to end this post on a positive note. I have officially passed the $200 dollar marker for our next IUI savings! If you include the money we are going to put back after we sell one of our vehicles (provided we can get it fixed soon) we have over $700!

As for the cruise...well...I have $3 in that jar. LOL!





XO,
C



Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Weather the storm through visualizations

I'm sorry I haven't posted lately. I have been dealing with quite a bit of anger/frustration and quite honestly bitterness with out journey these past two weeks.

Could it be the 700 Facebook announcements of people adding to their already growing families? Or the fact that I've been sticking to a healthier diet and sugar has been missing from my diet? Which isn't bad...just goes to show that it really does have a drug like effect, detoxing?
Either way...it's been a rough week.

It could be that we pushed back our timeline for our next IUI. We're thinking May 2016. Very discouraging having to wait longer, but C spoke life into the situation, saying next year, with things paid off, if the 2nd round doesn't work, then we'll be able to try again right away next year. Shorten the wait time. That helped to hear.

On another note, I so desperately want to be there for my friends who are going through this joyous season of their lives, but it's a delicate balance of joy for them and protection for myself. But I know myself enough, have been on this journey long enough, that I know when to say "hey this week is bad, can we talk about your joy next week?" Always making sure to check in with them. Unfortunately, I'm not sure how cool with it they all are. This journey is hard enough, but having uneasy footing with your friends is just another knife in the heart.

One thing that I have started doing though is just imaging whatever it is that I am feeling, stressing about, frustrated with, feel no control over--I imagine that the issue is the size of my palm. Then I lift it up to God. My struggle that I am battling, I hand it all over to Him. It helps. It helps in the moment. I do struggle with letting it completely go, so sometimes I have to hand it to Him again, but it helps me every time.


 On another note I did start reading "The Longest Ride". It's helped. I'm only a 3rd of the way through the book, but at least I know what to expect form the story. I almost started crying when I finally got to read the part of Ira's story where he told Ruth, that he couldn't have children. But knowing how it ends, I can't wait to unfold the book (it's on my nook, but you get my drift.) to see how the characters face their circumstances. How Ira and Ruth continue to love and choose to love each other, with God's help.


Total Savings: $193.41 (not including the car money--once it gets fixed and sold)
New IUI Timeline: May 2016
XO,
C

Thursday, October 1, 2015

How Jared Padaleckis "Always Keep Fighting Campagin Helped my Infertility Struggle"

It was a whirlwind of a morning. I was with my dog this morning, otherwise known as Ms. B, when I tapped on the breaks and she went FLYING off of the bench seat in the back of my car. Okay, she didn't FLY so much as ROLL, but the sound she made after landing on the floor, had my heart in my throat and tears in my eyes. I immediately took her up to the vet, where after exaiming her said that she was perfectly fine and after an xray, she has some arthritis starting. Which is normal for a dog her age. After a $176 bill and some NSAID doggie medication, we were off. The couches are barred with coffee tables and a baby gate, as to encourage her to stay on the floor.

Luckily she sleeps A LOT so I don't have to worry about whether she'll be bopping up and down around the house a ton.

Ugh...I have a very good friend who told me to name 10 positive things today. To help bring me out of my post fake heart attack funk. While some days this is easier then others, it worked. I only named about 8 in total but still it did lift me just a little bit.

1. My brother (whose currently deployed) got his birthday package today. He'll have to wait to open it but he did get the package on time!
2. My dog is not dead. (This sounds morbib but I promise it's just my personality. That probably didn't sound any better. When I say my dog is not dead what it translate to in normal people lanuage is "I'm glad she is healthy.")
3. The weather is beautiful
4. I have good friends
5. My in-laws are moving out today! I will have my house back to myself this weekend. However...one more night and THEN they'll be gone. Okay, not gone...just at their own place. With their animals. Not at my house. Where I will now be able to walk around in my underwear again, and not have to worry about putting clothes back on as soon as I get out of the shower to run back to my bedroom. (I could probably name 10 positive things about them moving out...but I won't. They're good people. It's just SO HARD to live with others, sometimes.)
6.  I have running water (Sometimes I have to take it down to basics when it comes to counting my blessings, because sometimes I don't remember just how good I have it.)
7. I have a house. That we own.
8. The internet, Where I can watch hysterical videos such as this one. It's probably my favorite.



I don't know if it's the reduction in carbs or watching my sugars which might also have me down but I just can not shake this heavy grey cloud. The list helped. My friend wanted 10 total but I can probably name 2 more by the end of the day.
The day is still young. After all it's only 6pm.

I have been thinking about depression itself though. Jared Padalecki from Supernatural has a campagin called Always Keep Fighting.  He's released a few shirts to help support causes such as "To Write Love on Her Arms"  which is a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people who are struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. An amazing orgnanization.

I have never known depression like I have as an adult. I have always struggled with anxiety, and some depression as a child...but as an adult...I just guess I feel it more intensly? I don't know,

Although, I probably have somewhat of a mild case...I started seeing a therapist last year who diagnosed me as "Adjsutment Disorder with Depressed Mood" is a short-term form of depression that can occur in the aftermath of various traumatic changes in your normal life, including divorce, retirement, loss of a job and the death of a relative or close friend.

Two years ago it was bad. I had mood swings and cried all the time. I was starting to come out of it last year as I was more focused on living life and running and figuring out what next steps C & I were going to take for our fertiltiy journey, but it has just returned with force these last few weeks. I'm doing what I can to take care of myself. Sending time in prayer has helped. Immensly. 
Reading blog posts. And then quotes like these....from Jared Padalecki himself. 


And then opening up about his own struggle on E! News.  I even purchased the shirt from the second launch. 


I love this shirt. It REALLY reminds me to stay in the light and remember what is good. To take care of myself. Taking care of myself helps with my anxiety. Everyday. 

There's this quote...although in this particular pin it's on a few Walking Dead pictures, it was a Supernatural Quote. Either way...both shows are great and the quote applies!


I remind myself of this when I think "It might just be, just us two." That we are a family. I get to take care of the family I do have. I have AMAZING friends, now...but I'll post about this in a different post. I do have a great family. 

Reminders like these always help me Keep Fighting.


Fight on!
XO,
C

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Be Still

Since I watched the sermon on Monday, the last two days I've been thinking about how to look at our infertility journey differently.

Such as, what things will be better for the wait.

As in, hopefully by the time we have children we could possibly be debt free. Which would allow me to not work (as much) and spend more time with the children that I desire to have. I can go to PTA meetings and movie nights, and whatever mundane stuff I dream of doing all without the worry of financial strain.

Possibly have children around the same time my sister starts to have them. We'll actually have kids that will be close in age and hopefully close in heart. 

I'll be able to bless people along the way. I've never felt called to minister to others. Try as I might, I believe in God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit, but I don't know how to explain to people what I believe and why I believe. Oh, I have a testimony of faith alright but how do you explain it with conviction? I feel more called to be someone who encourages. I can help people that are on this same journey that I am. I can be a blessing in other peoples lives.  Somehow.
I would like to start a biblical based support group for people in my area that are also struggling with infertility. I am allowing myself time and space to put this together. By saying no to things that drain me and that I no longer look forward too. I made a tough decision to leave my current bible study group for the pursuit of one that will better understand and support this journey.

I feel like, God wants me to be still and know that He has it all under control. That he will guide my steps towards creating the support group. Whether it happens within the next 6 weeks or 6 months, we shall see. But I need to be still enough to listen to him.





 XO,
C

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Long Way Around--Sermon from In Due Time

I happened upon this post awhile back but I must have saved it. Probably because I wanted to listen to the sermon when I got a chance. Yesterday I got just such a chance. 

Caroline over at In Due Time posted on 'The Long Way Around', it was a sermon by Charlotte Gambill given in 2011. Charlotte starts out by saying how this sermon will raise your head a little higher and lift that burden off your shoulders. Something I very much needed this last week. 


It was one of the best sermons I've listened to on Infertility. I can't thank Caroline enough for sharing it. It not only helped me feel better but definitely helped me change my perspective on my 'long way around' journey. 

Charlotte is funny, charismatic. She preaches in a way that I can absolutely relate too and understand. Take a listen here. It is a 45minute video on how her 'Long Away Around' journey was actually filled with blessings. Her long way around took 5 years. Not 5 minutes. As she says. 

It reminded me to believe in Jesus and his plans for my life. There are times in your life...and sometimes it will seem endless, that people will get what you have been praying for. What you have been waiting for. "Hello Jesus, remember me? The good girl? The girl that always goes to church? Always prays? Hello?" 

Charlotte talks about two such times in John. One where Jesus brings a widows son back to life and when he goes to Mary and Martha, for his friend Lazarus. One was an instant and one was 'A Long Way Around.'


Given the chance, more blessings can and will be reaped out of 'The Long Way Around' but you have to believe God when he tells you "Baby, I'm going to get you where your going. I'm just going to take you the long way around."



Trusting God and telling and reminding myself that I can be a blessing in someone's life today. That there is a purpose to Gods plan. That I will, get double for my trouble. Thank you Lord Jesus for Charlotte. Please, bless her minitstry as well as Caroline's ministry over at In Due time. Bless Caroline and her husband. Thank you Lord for this sermon. Amen. 

This morning even after listening to the sermon I wanted to give a snarky response to someone, but I reminded myself...there is a purpose to God's plan. This mess is a message and this trial will be my testimony. Even though, it's going to take me the long way around. 

Thank you for stopping by everyone, please take a listen to the sermon...45minutes...it's worth the long way around ;)
XO,
C

Monday, September 28, 2015

Insurance Petition

(Head over to Stirrup Queens to learn more about Microblog Monday... as well as check out her post for This Monday the 28th here at Ethical Dinner...I'm pretty sure I broke the 8 sentence rule...again.)

 Have you seen this petition floating around online? Oddly found it linked to a pin, almost didn't think it was true. However, after further investigation I signed it! I wanted to share this petition with you, as I personally have chronicled a little bit of your financial journey to do another IUI. Saving towards $3,500 is not only difficult financially but emotionally as well. Do we buy this even though we have a goal? Do we buy that because we need it even though it's expensive? How long will these financial decision put off our dream of building a family using assisted reproductive measures?

 Currently banked in our 'Piggy Bank' is just under $200, while it was larger, we decided to try and gain financial peace by taking out $500 to help fix one of our vehicles then sell it. Hoping that goes a long way towards paying for our second IUI.



However, I can tell you for sure that I have friends who owe their clinics of upwards of $15,000 and that's without an assisted procedure from their clinic. Their $15,000 debt only included medicine, shots, ultrasounds, and timed intercourse! A petition like this would be amazing for people such as myself. It would go a long ways towards helping us not just financially, again, but emotionally!

Please consider signing.  Mandate All Insurance to Cover Infertility as Basic Healthcare. Acknowledge Infertility as a disease, not a choice. 

XO,
C

Friday, September 25, 2015

Just One Minute

Up/Down/Up/Down.

One thing is for sure I have reached my max. I broke yesterday but I also started my cycle. This week just hurt. Sunday, I went to a family fun attraction with my mom for a work event, of hers. While, I love going to this every year and look forward it, I realized that, had our IUI worked, we would have been annoucing this month or next. Is that dumb to think like that?

I had this vision of how I would do the cute little announcement with a pumpkin...

I just need to let it go. We're still scraping to save, tackling our construction zone, living with family, I just am done. I have reached my max.

Then realizing with how overwhelmed I am. I need to let go of control. I need to let go of what could have been and the if's, and whatever else it is that is holding me back from remembering joy. I needed a day, and while I've taken my moments a few hours at a time, I just really need a day.

An entire day to sit, and not think. Not wonder. To let, go.






So instead of announcing something exciting, I am eating chocolate. Having a glass of wine, and after the family leaves next week, I am hunkering down and netflexing. For a solid 4 hours.


For one minute, PCOS does not have me. For one minute my husband does not have azoospermia. We're just C & C. Happy to even be near each other.

XO,
C


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Book Review-The Girl on the Train

Book club is this Sunday and we are reading The Girl on the Train. I don't necessarily recommend it if you are in a rough place with your infertility journey...I find myself being a little more emotional than usual and I'm not sure if it has to do with the book or the fact that I'm reading the book and also watching a t.v show that is heavy on the infertility journey as well. Well, somewhat heavy.

Either way, if my book club decided on another tragic dark book I'm going to do my brain and heart a favor and sit out.

I do enjoy the book. The Girl on the Train, don't get me wrong. It's a great read. I've been dreading reading it, because I know how much the infertility role plays in the story line, but I started it on Monday and I'm half done. I don't normally read this fast either, but here are my thoughts so far.

I cannot stand the conniving Anna woman. If you sleep with a married man, you deserve all the crazy in your life that you're going to get. (Unless you're married to the married man, sleep away!) You invaded another woman's life and home. Also her husband Tom...ridiculous. It's sort of sweet how he still tries to take care of drunk Rachel, but also Rachel...get it together. You're not married to the man anymore. Get a life that doesn't involve someone who looks to sleeping with other women as solving their marriage problems.

I get that mistakes happen, I'm not going to judge anyone, but what I am saying is that I'm emotionally involved in the book more than I should be lolol!

Some quotes from the book...
*"It didn't happen. No doctor has been able to explain to me why I can't get pregnant. I'm young enough, fit enough, I wasn't drinking heavily when we were trying..... We did one round of IVF, which was all we could afford. It was, as everyone had warned us it would be, unpleasant and unsuccessful. Nobody warned me it would break us. But it did. Or rather, it broke me, and then I broke us."

*"The thing about being barren is that you're not allowed to get away from it. Not when you're in your thirties. My friends were having children, friends of friends were having children, pregnancy and birth and first birthday parties were everywhere. I was asked about it, all the time. My mother, our friends, colleagues at work. When was it going to be my turn?" 

*"We were trying for a baby," I say, and my voice catches. Still, after all this time, every time I talk about it the tears come to my eyes. "Sorry"

There was another quote, that I can't seem to find, about how she's better now. Even though it hurts she's better. She can now go to the park and watch the children play and their mothers that are with them. It reminded me of how there are some things that no longer punch that fist size hole through my heart, or that wave of hot emotion that drags me under. Then there are some days that it does get close.

I'm in it till the end though. I need to know she finds resolution or that she finds that place where she can live with the pain.






I'll let you know how to goes through the end of the book.
XO,
C

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Much Better

Today is a much better day.

In case you need a lift as well. here's some a happy ending.

Charles Kelley from Lady Antebellum expecting first child after years of infertility.



Although this one says two years, but another article I had read said 6...but struggling still sucks. No matter the wait.

XO,
C

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Giving up/Giving In

Today I wanted to share a short post on seem really neat articles I've been reading about celebrities who have been dealing with or do go through some fertility issues, but I might save that for a different day. 

Today, all I'm focused on is my husband. It has not been a good martial day for us. I'm not completely sure why. It all started over a bottle of vitamins, really. I am trying to get us back into the routine of taking vitamins. My husband has a lot of pain through his body due to the very strenuous nature of his job, and he is often fatigued. We've been to multiply doctors. Thinking it might be Chronic Fatigue, Fibromygalia. We did this before and after our fertility treatments. 

Nothing, every doctor we've seen has come up with a whole lot of nothing. Other doctors in the past have come up with depression, but he says he doesn't feel hopeless, he doesn't feel depressed. His body just aches and cramps and hurts. 

I believed if nothing else, get him started eating healthier (because whether he admits it or not, he has kind of a crap diet.) and to have him start taking Turmeric and a B complex vitamin. Normally I set them beside his breakfast plate so he'll remember. This morning I forgot. I attempted to put them in his lunch box, saying 'you need to take these. Just take them with you.'


He said "You need to start remembering to give them to me with breakfast."

I came back with "So I have to be your mom then?"


After he left I chucked the vitamin bottle across the hallway. I felt like a child. Felt guilty for giving into the anger. 

And the day has spiraled down from there, through a mix up at the bank and a few tense text messages. 

The last text I sent was "Can we start this day over?"

What else can I do? What else is a wife to do? Whether he believes he's depressed or not, one thing is for sure, he won't feel better unless he...FEELS better. I need to remember to take this one day at a time. 

He was SO good a protecting me and helping me and being what I needed when this first started. How can I do the same for him? 


This song keeps bouncing through my head



I'm going to stick with my current game plan. Take a walk Sunday morning...hopefully I can get him out of bed early enough. As well as try to have a fire pit night once the yard is done, on Sunday. I'm going to schedule him a massage next week. Start tomorrow off on a better foot. And try to continue to be positive. To speak life into each situation so it doesn't seem so overwhelming. I struggled with the depression, I guess it's finally just hit him. 

Each a positive step in the right direction hopefully. 

XO,
C