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about 2 years ago…

30 Oct

Jon and I were shopping around in the Plaza District and we ended up in a store that carries some handmade items.  At the time we were trying really hard to have a baby with no luck at all, and were on the cusp of our infertility journey.  As we were shopping I spotted the sweetest little crocheted purple and white hat, and the second I laid eyes on it I knew I had to have it.  Feeling a bit silly, I splurged on this sweet little gift for the future baby we didn’t even know if we would have.  I went home that day (we were living with my parents at the time) and tucked the brown paper bag away, knowing that if I looked at it everyday it would just make me sad.  A matter of months later we finally moved into our new house, and I found a special place on my closet shelf.  Oftentimes I would glimpse the edge of the bag as I was hanging up clothes or debating over what to wear to work, and I’d feel a tinge of sadness, but also a surge of hope.

After many months of waiting and uncertainty, a long pregnancy complete with bedrest at home, time in the hospital, 17 days in the NICU and a glorious 4 months with my sweet baby girl, I finally got to fish the little hat out of my closet and plop it on her perfect little head.

My heart is full.

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finally a mama

13 May

today was such a sweet day.  every single text message and happy mother’s day wish I received was like a ray of sunlight.  more than anything today I just keep thinking about how thankful i am that i have these two little ones.  that god created them to be mine and jon’s and that we get to be their parents forever. every single movement inside me and every ache and pain is a reminder of what an honor it is to have this new title.  i get teary eyed just thinking about it.

to our babies –

i am so proud and joyful to be your mama already.  even though we have yet to meet, i feel like i already know you.  your daddy and i have waited so long to know you, and we’ve never been more thankful for anything in our lives.   i promise to do everything i can to be the best mama i can be to you.  i will definitely make mistakes and you’ll have to show me some grace (you know this is my first time).  i pray that you’ll see jesus in me and that you’ll learn from me to love others like he loves us.  i hope to show you the world and teach you that god has made every person special regardless of what they look like on the outside or how much money they have.  i hope you never doubt how much i love you and that you always know i’m here for you no matter what.  i can’t wait to meet you, but please stay in there for and get bigger and stronger for at least 8 more weeks!

lots of love, mama

another sweet part of today was getting to wish a happy mother’s day to my mom and mother-in-law.  i feel so blessed to have such amazing moms who love jon and i unconditionally and who have sacrificed so much for us over the years. for the twins i hope i can be as sacrificial and loving as they have been.  then i will definitely count myself a successful mama.  happy mother’s day mom and debbie.  i love you both!

lastly, this day was a reminder of the long wait and the pain of waiting to see how god would choose to give us babies.  it was a reminder of all those still out there wondering and waiting.  i remember vividly how difficult mother’s day can be when all you want is to be called mama, but you have no choice in the matter.  it feels so hurtful and hopeless.  so to any of you reading this who are feeling that pain today, i’m praying for you and i hope you remember that someday god will bless you in the greatest way possible.  it may not be how you imagined, but he has not forgotten you. and it will be worth the wait.

olive is getting…

19 Apr

So this weekend a random man in Home Depot said I looked like I could just “deliver that baby right then and there.”

Um….thanks?  I guess that means I’m getting bigger.  I’m going to choose to take that as a compliment ’cause these babies are growing!

And for an extremely far overdue announcement – little miss Olive is getting a…

BABY SISTER and BABY BROTHER!


A mini Candice and a mini Jon will be joining us in just a few short months, and we couldn’t be more excited!  And just for the record, I guessed it;)

week 24 (left) and week 25 (right)

I always wondered why pregnant girls would stand like I am on the left.  But every week I felt more and more awkward trying to pose.  Before I even knew what I was doing last week, up went the right arm and the left followed.  And there I was.  Now I know.

How can I possible still have 15 weeks left to grow?  Where are these babies going to go?  The questions I ask myself a million times a day.

So many fun things from the last few weeks.  Best of all – Jon felt baby girl move!  Several times I had tried to call him over to feel, but the second he got close, they’d get all shy.  Finally, just a few days ago, our sweet baby girl decided to give her daddy a good, hard kick. yay!

We’ve also made several fun purchases as of recent – a chair big enough for our entire family of 5, sheets, a sweet little doll and our first cloth diaper.

And today I received an invitation to the first one of my showers!

It has definitely been a big couple of weeks as far as baby progress.  I still have to stop and tell myself that this is really happening quite often.  The days of wondering if we would ever have a little McCoy are still far too fresh in my mind.  It’s still really hard for me to digest that God has really given us two babies.

I know we don’t deserve it, and I only wish I could make the same thing happen for all the sweet girls I know who are longing for this very thing.

I do promise one thing, though.  I will never ever take this baby boy or girl for granted.  I’ll never forget what it felt like to want them so badly and not know if God would ever bring them to me.  And for that reason alone, I am thankful for the experience of infertility.

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Aside from the big “countdown to babies,” I’m also pretty focused on counting down to the last day of school.  Only 23 days left.  I can hardly believe it.  Honestly, this has been such a great year of school.  If you’ve read my blog in the past, you know that teaching and I have not always gotten along super well.  But this year has been different.  I have some seriously amazing kids, and I think having an extra year of experience under my belt didn’t hurt.  Either way, I’m really going to miss it.

When I told my principal I was leaving, I said “a baby is the only thing that could take me away from here.”  And I actually meant it.  I’m really thankful to be leaving on a good note.  I’m not sure if I’ll go back someday or not…who knows where life will take us.  But what a relief to not be running away this time.

I will be kind of relieved when this rollercoaster of teaching/not teaching/teaching again decides to level off.  I think having a couple of sweet babies to occupy my time should take care of that!

Week 20: update post

14 Mar

Thanks so much for all the sweet congrats on my last post.  I’ve waited what seems like a lifetime to make that announcement, and I’m so thankful and humbled that God finally allowed it to happen!  You all just made it that much sweeter.

So, here’s a quick breakdown of the last few months:

November 12, 2011 – We had our embryos transferred and felt like we were already pregnant.  I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel scared that it wouldn’t work…but from the moment we left the hospital, we never stopped praying for our babies.  I would lay on the couch and talk to them all the time, envisioning them as strong, healthy babies.  From day one it felt like they were here to stay.

after transfer


November 21, 2011:
We both left work a little early and met at home to wait for the call.  We waited…and waited…and waited.  And finally about 15 minutes after we were supposed to receive the call, we broke down and dialed the clinic.  After identifying myself and holding for eternity, the nurse answered the phone with a “congratulations!”  We’ve never felt so full of joy.  I was considered 4 weeks already:)  We drove straight to Baby Gap and bought onesies.

November 24 – 25, 2011: Shared with the family and gave so many thanks.

December 12, 2011: Week 7. All day nausea set in.  Sick in the morning…sick at night.  I had no appetite at all, and the only things that sounded somewhat edible were things I would usually never consider putting in my body.  Sorry babies.

December 22, 2011Week 8.  Went for our 2nd ultrasound and got the biggest surprise of our lives – not 1 but 2 babies! Praise the Lord.  We spent the following 2 weeks celebrating Christmas and sharing our 2nd piece of amazing news with our families. Oh, and of course every 10 minutes saying to each other “are we really having twins???”

sadly, we didn’t get any pics when we told mom and dad McCoy

Weeks 9- 13: Sick. sick. sick.  But oh, so happy.  I literally did almost nothing besides go to work and come home and lay on the couch for over a month.  Jon gets major daddy/husband points for keeping the house running and going on wild goose chases to find anything I could eat.  Oh, and lots and lots of backrubs.  I’ve heard people say that a woman becomes a mom when she gets pregnant, but a man doesn’t become a dad until the baby (ies:) is born.  Not true for my husband.  In a way, he’s been taking care of these babies for months already!

Week 14: Started to feel a tiny bit better.  We decided to make the big announcement on Facebook and the blog.  Up until this point, I was so so thankful for the little babies inside me, but I had a really hard time letting go of my fear and just trusting God.  For 18 months I had longed to be pregnant, and in my mind I think I had decided that it could never really happen.  Every month had brought so much hurt, and it seemed impossible that it could have finally happened. I know that sounds kind of crazy, but the fear of losing them terrified me.  When we announced our news to the world, I felt like a huge burden was lifted off my shoulders.  It finally felt real, and I finally started really believing that our babies were going to be okay.

Week 15: Took my first picture of the bump!

Week 16: Bump picture number 2.  This was the week I finally started to really feel almost like myself again.  The nausea completely subsided, and I even started to feel a little more energetic!

Week 17:

Week 17 was pretty monumental.  I worked out for the first time in 3 months!   And I felt so good about it. When I started the IVF process, I was told I shouldn’t have physical activity, and since I followed every wives tale from eating pineapple  to trying to laugh a lot after transfer….eating more eggs…you name it, stopping my workouts was a no brainer.  And of course it just continued from there – I felt too scared of hurting the babies in those paranoid first several weeks of being pregnant, and then I was so sick I could barely talk on the phone much less get off the couch.  So finally on Monday of week 17 I pulled out the prenatal bootcamp DVD my mom got me for Christmas and then I went for a long walk on two different days after that.  Sad how accomplished I feel about walking around the neighborhood.  I finally feel like I’m doing something good for myself and for the twins.

Week 18:

baby a:)

This was the week we found out the gender of our little babies!  I was so nervous that they wouldn’t cooperate for the ultrasound and we’d be disappointed…but they were good little babies.  Let’s hope that’s a good indication of the months/years to come:)  The ultrasound tech started off by just letting us see them while she took pictures to send to our doctor.  Then it was baby A’s turn to be examined.  It only took a matter of seconds to find out Baby A’s gender – and we were so excited!!  We also learned that Baby A will be the first one to come into the world if all goes as planned.  Next was Baby B’s turn.  This time it took a little longer to figure it out, but in the end both genders were as clear as day!  The second best part of this ultrasound was finding exactly where each baby is hanging out in there.  Now I have a good idea of where they are, and knowing that plus their genders makes this that much more real.  I’ll tell whether we’ll be an all boy house, all girl, or one of each in an upcoming post:)

As soon as the ultrasound was over, I had this devious feeling of wanting to keep everyone in suspense, but I resisted.  We went home and called parents, brothers and sisters, grandparents, aunts and uncles and our friends to let them know the exciting news.  I loved getting to tell everyone, but by the end of all the excitement, I was exhausted!

Week 19

Week 19 was almost as exciting as the previous week because I felt the babies move for the first time.  I’d been willing them to give me a few good hard kicks for a couple of weeks, but so far I’d felt nothing!  The first few times I felt them left me excited, but also wondering if it really was them.  But after it happened several more times, and I was feeling it on both sides, I realized that yes, it really was our 2 little babies making their presence known!  One thing that made me doubtful at first was that it didn’t feel like a flutter like many people said it would.  It felt more like a really soft little bump from the inside.

Week 20:  and now I’m finally caught up!

Okay, I know I’m going to look back on this and laugh at myself, but I feel like I look huge in this picture!  Not sure if it’s the stripes or if I’ve just doubled in size since last week…but either way I think the baby belly looks large and in charge:)  This week we had another appointment, but no ultrasound.  We did get to hear the heartbeats (which sound like little trains to me by the way) and the doctor checked me and said everything looks perfect!  Yay!  So far I’ve gained 12 pounds.  I wasn’t really sure if that was good or not, but my nurse assured me I’m right on track.  What a relief!  I’ve also been getting in some really solid 3 mile walks this week, which have felt so good.  And we ordered a treadmill, so I see many more walks in my future:)

And now for some randomness from the first trimester (which is obviously a little outdated, but I really wanted to document it somewhere)!

Symptoms (some known and some only I am convinced are because of pregnancy)
nausea (of course), earaches, out of control sense of smell, exhaustion,
lots of bathroom trips, congestion, increased pulse (Jon doesn’t buy this one, but it’s for real),
bad taste in my mouth

Food aversions
pizza, vegetables, mexican food, chips and salsa, diet coke

Food cravings
lime chips, mac and cheese, cheerios, pad thai, orange juice

I realize this post was a complete overload of updates, but the combination of sickness, exhaustion and most recently, pure laziness has inhibited my blogging.  I am kicking myself for not being better about documenting the last few months, and now it’s time for a fresh start.

So, look for upcoming posts on our last big trip just the two of us, nursery updates, the gender reveal!, and how my eating has changed since pad thai and cheerios!

it's up to Him

6 Nov

Tomorrow might be the first day of life for our first sweet baby.

I am so far beyond excited.  And thankful.  And I would be lying if I said I’m not scared to death as well.

We are slated to arrive at the hospital at 6:30 tomorrow morning for retrieval.  The last few weeks have been such a challenging whirlwind.  We’ve given me shots while standing anywhere from the Whole Foods parking lot to a stairwell we snuck into during a Halloween party to the middle of the Colbie Caillat concert.  Life has carried on despite the ultrasounds, blood work, pills and needles…but it’s been different.  The anticipation of this IVF event has changed the tone of everything the last several weeks.  And it’s all come down to the next couple of weeks (no pressure).

I have never prayed harder in my entire life than I have in the last few weeks.  I’ve prayed constantly that God would enable my body to do what it’s supposed to do.  So far, He has.  Everything leading up to now couldn’t have gone better, and I couldn’t feel more confident going into this next phase.  Unfortunately that doesn’t make our percentage any higher, but I am so thankful that He has chosen to bring us this far.

I’ve also prayed that God will give me the courage to trust him first and foremost.  That whether our little babies survive and have the chance to develop or not, I will trust Him with our future. I will trust that He has a plan, and that plan will be carried out no matter what. This is my biggest request to my Heavenly Father.  I believe He is faithful.

So, please pray with us.  I’ve got needle marks all over, cramps in my stomach and emotions ranging across the board.  But I’ve got so much hope inside.  I’ve tried to figure out how to walk the tightrope of being positive, but protecting myself for so many months; this month I stopped trying.  I put my heart out there, and I’ve done every thing I could…

Now it’s all up to Him.

thoughts on adoption

15 Oct

For the longest time, Jon and I have felt God urging our hearts toward adopting a baby.  For whatever reason the Lord has, this urging has always been in the direction of international adoption, specifically.  We are both passionate about travel and other cultures and adopting from another culture seems to fit that.  We of course realize that there are babies right here in our own country who are in need, but that doesn’t make the homeless babies in Thailand (for example) any less homeless.  Even though we didn’t feel quite ready for a baby at that time, our visit to a Thai orphanage in 2008 watered the seed that God had planted in our hearts, nourishing our desire to bring a baby just like this little girl home one day.

Throughout the course of our journey through infertility, our excitement and longing for adoption has intensified ten-fold.  I’ve said so many times that before we would do IVF, we would adopt.  It honestly has never made a big difference to me whether our baby would come to us biologically or through adoption.  I ache to experience both joys – feeling a baby grow inside me and welcoming a baby from another place into our lives.  But the decision is not always that easy.  God has blessed us with amazing insurance, which covers such a large portion of infertility treatments.  For that reason alone we feel compelled to try for a biological baby first.  In addition, the issues I had that were taken care of in my surgery back in May are recurring.  So, as time goes on, they are slowly coming back, renewing their curse on my body and lessening my chances of ever conceiving a baby.  With this in mind, we decided that if we were ever going to do everything we could to get pregnant, now is the time.

I still long every single day to start the adoption process.  When I see a family with an adopted child, my heart aches in the same way it does when I see a pregnant woman or a precious little newborn.  I was looking through some old journal entries, written in the past year and a half, and I found this entry, penned in April of this year right before my surgery.

April 4, 2011
Dear little McCoy,

I know I don’t know you yet, little one…but I already love you so much.  Your daddy and I have been talking about you for the longest time, and we cannot wait until we get the chance to have you as a part of us.


Here in just a little bit I’m taking the first step to find out how you might come to be.  Your mommy doesn’t know if you will come into our family as a tiny newborn that has grown inside me or as a precious baby from another country, but I want you to always know that I pined for you for so long, and I already love you more than there are stars in the sky, regardless of how you come into our life.

I know that God has a plan for you and for your life, and I’m praying for that plan all the time.  I  think about you every day, and deep inside my heart I long to be able to rock you, play with you, teach you about Jesus and show you the world .


Just the other night, we went to a mexican restaurant in town for dinner.  Because it’s the best mexican food in town, there is always a long wait to be seated, so we claimed a bench spot in the already crowded waiting area.  As we sat down, I noticed that the family to our right was busy corralling two little girls, who I’m certain were from somewhere in east asia.  The mom and dad looked to be about our ages, and they were wearing shirts that indicated they were from our college town.   Looking to be about 3 or 4 years old, these little girls were so precious.  Probably appearing a little creepy, I couldn’t take my eyes off them the entire time.  I was mesmerized by how much my heart ached to have little girls just like them as my own.  My eyes began to fill up as I sat there feeling so intensely as if that should be us.  Should is a funny word, I know.

Sometimes I want so badly to just quit everything we’re doing now and start our adoption story.  I’ve spent a lot of time researching steps of the process, agencies, countries, expected hardships, the financial aspect etc., and I’m so ready to begin something that is going to be a sure thing in the end.  This cycle of uncertainty, waiting and heartbreak is just so trying.

That being said, I know that we are very blessed to be given this opportunity and that not everyone is put in a place where they can go to these extreme measures to build their family.  Despite my impatience to begin adoption, I still pray every day and thank God for providing us a way to try and get pregnant.  I don’t take it lightly, and regardless of what happens, I’ll always be so grateful that we had the chance to pull out all the stops and really go for it.

I wanted to take a moment and write down these thoughts, so down the road I’ll remember exactly where our hearts were during this time.  I pray to God that this works and I get the privelege of giving birth to a baby that is half me and half Jon.  And regardless of whether that happens or not, I have faith that our dream of bringing a baby home through adoption will come true as well.  It just depends on when and how.  I can’t wait to see how the Lord decides to build our family.

thursday thoughts

13 Oct

I realized something this afternoon.

I had just gotten home from school and sat down on the couch to try and decompress for a few.  I hopped on one of my favorite blogs only to see that she was doing a giveaway for a maternity dress saying, “you should enter if you’re pregnant or trying.”  Before I could even contemplate it for five seconds, I found myself closing the window, thinking “well that’s not for me.”

Quickly approaching is my greatest chance ever (thus far) of becoming pregnant (49% to be exact).  And yet I realized today that I don’t truly believe it can or will happen.  Cuddled up with a blanket and Olive, comments I’ve made recently and thoughts I’ve had started swimming through my mind.  Why am I not believing this can happen for me?

I’ve been attempting to get up as many mornings as possible and do a yoga workout (I use an awesome app called Pocket Yoga).  This morning – for the first time – I took my time in savasana to really envision the next 4-6 weeks.  I envisioned every bit of the process and the outcome.  Laying on my back, staring up at the dark ceiling, I pictured myself joyfully declaring “it worked!”  and allowed myself to soak up the inexplicable elation that would consume me if I had the privilege of making such an announcement.  In an effort to protect myself from disappointment, I usually don’t allow myself to go there.  But deep inside I feel it’s important to believe that it can happen.  That it will happen.  And I want to believe it.    How can I make let myself believe it?

For the past 17 months I’ve carefully teetered on the line between protecting myself from disappointment and allowing hope to course through me.  But this is it, you know?  Not that this is my absolute last chance ever, but we’re pulling out all the stops.  I guess I’m just so scared to let myself go.  And yet I’m scared not to.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I’ve got a lot on my mind tonight.  Today when I got to work, there was an impromptu staff meeting called.  We all gathered in the library with our principal to learn that one of our students passed away last night.  It was a completely random and unexpected incident, and to say that everyone was in shock would be a major understatement.  It was a sophomore football player, and the fact that my class roster shows nothing but sophomores made it an even more difficult day.  Seeing the kids confused and hurting really hit me hard.  First, it made me want to hug every one of my students today and tell them how much I care about them, and second, it made me feel compelled to try and keep a good perspective about everything that’s going on.  I really am thankful because as painfully difficult as infertility is, it’s the worst thing I’ve had to deal with in my adult life, and I know that is a serious blessing.

Heavy stuff tonight.
On a lighter note –  I just finished an amazing vegan chocolate chip cookie from Oklahoma City’s very own…..Whole Foods, which opened it’s doors for the first time last night!