One of the reasons I decided to delve into the blog world again was because of the journey Justin and I have been on the past few years that's finally coming to a high point and hopefully end. I share these experiences because when I started realizing what was happening to us, I searched online to find people that were going through something similar. So... The ailment? Drum roll please....
This image isn't mine, but it sums it up pretty well... It's hard to deal with and people don't realize how many people are dealing with it. When I started sharing what I was feeling, people started coming out of the woodwork to share their feelings. It meant a lot to me so I figure maybe somebody out there could use my experience as well. So..
I've wanted kids my whole life, and I'm pretty sure my mom asked me for grand kids on my wedding day. (I was the first sibling to get married so she was ready!) I was ready that day too but not really. I wanted to be a cute married couple for a little while before having kids. I also wanted to finish school! So we started on birth control like any normal couple. The problem was that I was quite the forgetful person. haha. I forgot to take my pill all the time. I guess I secretly wanted to get pregnant anyway! haha. (jk!) I remember only a few months after we were married was the first time I forgot to take it and a couple weeks later I got sick. It was an innocent flu but I was certain I was pregnant. I called my friend and cried because I wanted it to be false and I wanted it to be positive. It was weird to feel such conflicting emotions. Luckily I wasn't. (At least then I felt lucky.)
In the mean time, both Justin and I were in school. I wasn't the best at studying and didn't get great grades. I wasn't sure if I still wanted to be in school at all. In the fall of 2011, I wanted a baby so bad Justin and I decided that I would be done with school and we'd try to get pregnant.
This is us in december of 2011. Aren't we cute!
In retrospect, it wasn't the best choice I'd ever made. At that time we moved in with my parents while we waited to find a house to buy, and started trying to get pregnant. We weren't timing or really planning, just not taking birth control anymore. (I wish we knew then that we didn't need to spend all that money on birth control!)
(ah ha ah ha) (I didn't really spend thousands and come to find out it wasn't my uterus anyway. haha. This e-card still makes me laugh.)
To make a long story short, we tried, and then quit trying and then tried again. Mean while, I wasn't on birth control anymore which was the only thing keeping the symptoms of Endometriosis at bay. For those that don't know, endometriosis is a condition that affects the tissue of the uteral lining. Cases range in severity, and it's different for everyone, but since I was about 16, I had periods from Hell. (pardon my french!) A friend of mine who also had it told me her version felt a lot like labor. I guess I'll give my verdict when I do the same! I would violently throw up anywhere from 4-10 times in a few hours, have cramps that didn't allow me to leave the bathroom floor and then eventually fall asleep. I'd wake up a few hours later feeling pretty dead but much better. It was that way every month for a LONG time until I started taking birth control. It was a miracle pill! It was hard to choose to go off it but at the same time, not hard at all because it meant having a little one.
For the longest time, we were sure we weren't getting pregnant because of my endometriosis. And it was a rude reminder every month. Not only was a vomiting and in horrible pain, but I definitely wasn't pregnant. Yay! Great times. I cried a lot. And it sucked. Eventually we went to see a doc to get it cleared out (you can do a surgery to scrape out your uterus and then ppl usually get pregnant) but we had crappy insurance at the time so we didn't do it. I was working for a chiropractor at the time and he overheard my conversation about my struggle once. He said he could help me and while I didn't believe him, I didn't have anything to loose. So he did some acupuncture and applied kinesiology and believe it or not, my symptoms went away. (remind me later to do a post on how I feel about alternative vs western medicine.) While it was awesome that I didn't have symptoms anymore, I still wasn't getting pregnant...
haha. True story. Good thing my puppy is so cute!
Fast forward to January of 2014... We now have 2 nephews and a niece on the way. Those were hard days for me. But I got through. These issues had been in my prayers for a long time, but i don't know that I really prayed about it until then.. And the answer was overwhelming. People started coming from everywhere asking about me and giving advice that eventually led to a phone call to a fertility clinic.we made an appointment and went in to see Dr. Heiner. He wasn't particularly good with patients but it was obvious he knew what he was talking about. We did some tests and were sent on our way with a follow up scheduled to discuss the results. About a week later, the nurse called me to tell me that Justin had a brain tumor and needed an MRI to confirm. (not a very pleasant phone call!) We went back in to the clinic the next week and learned that my test results came back excellent and Justin basically had a fertility rating of 0. This brain tumor had messed up all his chemistry and his sperm was shaped such that it would never be able to penetrate an egg. This was a tough blow! In the same appointment, the doc told us we'd never have kids with out IVF and that it was gonna cost anywhere from $15,000 to $35,000. We left the appointment with blank stares and a million questions and kinda just stared at each other. We cried a little and broke the news to my family. They were extremely supportive and said they'd do anything to help us have our family. (That might have to be another blog post as well.)
Fast forward another few months and we get to today. We've been through test after test and are now ready to start our first round of IVF. It's been a long road. This post is only a small piece of it but I wanted to have the beginning of the story written down before I got into the next few weeks. I'm about to start sticking needles into myself every day and going through crazy mood swings. I feel bad for my hubby that has to endure my crazy but he's pretty awesome so I think he'll be okay!
Alright.. longest blog post ever. if you're reading this, thank you for enduring and caring enough to read! I hope my trials for the past few years and the ones to come in the next few months will help you whether you're struggling with infertility or not. If there's one thing I've learned, it's that Heavenly Father has a plan for me. It doesn't look anything like what I thought it would, but it's still been wonderful.