April 11, 2011 – A day in my life I will never forget…

We had already failed 4 IUIs, and had finally moved on to IVF. I (foolishly) thought we would find success the first time around and so had told almost everyone. When I got the call that day I was crushed. I was in disbelief. What’s worse? I was now being flooded with text messages and phone calls from people anxiously anticipating our good news!! It was nearly unbearable. I actually ended up posting a status on FaceBook about drinking a dirty martini to try to head off additional messages.

 

After that, I began shutting down and shutting people out. I went back to doing what I do best…. keeping my feelings/troubles hidden from everyone. It was easier that way. I didn’t have to deal with the feelings of letting others down. By the 4th round of IVF I could probably count on 1 hand the people who actually knew what we were doing. (And only TWO people, my sisters- Angela and Jen, who actually knew the good, bad, and ugly of what I was going through personally.)

 

After the announcement of our pregnancy I decided to become an “open book” on our infertility journey. Since I had literally tracked everything…medicine doses, follicle counts, the number of injections, etc. No question was off limits (and I’ve had some dozies) because I didn’t want anyone else going through it with no one to really talk to about it.

 

When we began talking of transferring our final embryo I thought long and hard about shutting back down for the process, but the foundation was so strong on my mind that I knew bringing everyone along to walk with us could only be a positive experience. The prayers, comments, messages, etc. were overwhelming, and I knew we had made the right decision. I was looking forward to sharing everything…. the preparation of the cycle, the transfer, and of course the news of a pregnancy. I couldn’t WAIT to rejoice with all of you.

 

Unfortunately, that is not to be. The call today confirms the transfer was not successful and I am not pregnant. I’m not going to lie…it stings. I guess even when you have kids the pain of that phone call never goes away. I’m hurt. I’m disappointed. I feel as if I let everyone down, but I know there is nothing else I could have done.

 

After 6 long years, our story now has a beginning – full of pain, disappointment and heartache. A middle filled with the most incredible joy, sleepless nights, and amazing blessings. And now an end. Although still a bit painful to get the call, the sound of Bexleigh talking to herself in the monitor while she fights her nap right now is bringing tears of joy.

Some say they won’t let their personal struggles define them. I feel the exact opposite. This struggle has changed every fiber of my being. It has most certainly defined me. The thing is…. I wouldn’t have it any other way. It has given me patience, perspective, and forced me to look beyond myself to help others.

So, here’s my drink….(I didn’t have enough olive juice for a dirty martini, so champagne will have to do) … not to discourage the phone calls and messages this time, but to say “thank you” to all of you who walked this with us.

While I’m sorry I’m not able to deliver the fairy tale ending to this story, I AM celebrating my most incredibly blessed life and will continue to thank God for the miracles he delivered through CCRM! This IS my Happily Ever After!!

I pray that my work through the Foundation will be able to bring that same Happily Ever After to others!!

Love to you all!!!

Kara

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Pretty surreal to me that as I lay here on bed rest after transferring our final embryo today at CCRM, I am announcing something that has been on my heart for the past 4 years….

 

It was nearing the end of 2010, and we had just failed our 4th IUI Cycle. The Drs were now strongly recommending moving on to IVF, and we agreed. I was certain that if I we moved on to IVF we would have a baby in our arms by the end of 2011.

I remember our 1st IVF training class in March 2011. As I sat in the class, another couple was explaining how this was their one and only try. It was all they could afford because their insurance paid zero. I couldn’t believe that if this cycle failed them, they had no other options. Our insurance didn’t cover any of these “elective” procedures either, so I felt their pain. Foolishly, I believed this first try would work, and we wouldn’t have to worry about it. I remember thinking that day as soon as we made it through this; I was going to make it my mission to help those with no coverage. Little did I know our road to “making it through” was going to be MUCH longer than anticipated.

After 4 IVF procedures, we finally found success with the birth of our twins. Even with the chaos of sleep deprived new parenthood, the dream of the foundation lingered in the back of my mind. I wanted so badly to give back, but when 1 in 7 couples fights infertility, I just felt completely overwhelmed. The task was completely daunting. How could I possibly help everyone? Helping only 1 seemed almost futile.

I’ll never forget how it all changed… While in class at our beloved gym Re:Move our trainer Alex was having “story time” and he told the story of the Starfish. I remember tears forming in my eyes because the message was so personal. Here I was wondering how to help everyone, when any ONE I could do something for would literally be life changing. Everything I knew about life, love, happiness, fulfillment had been compounded by my 2 precious miracles. What if I had been that ONE that someone had helped?

 

I knew then that I had to move forward with the foundation!

 

 

Last month, STARFISH INFERTILITY FOUNDATION was formed.  I can honestly say that aside from my marriage and children, there is nothing I am more proud of.  The thought of being able to bring the happiness I have found through my children to even ONE couple who may not be able to afford it is overwhelming, in the best way possible.

How can YOU help???

Thank you from the bottom of my heart to those who have supported us in our journey over the years.  Our struggles with infertility were some of the hardest years, but they also changed me, and showed me what I was meant to do with my life.

If YOU would like to share your story, PLEASE send to:  info@starfishinfertilityfoundation.org  You don’t have to use your real name, or include photos, but you’re more than welcome to!

 

**A very special Thank you to Kim Kennedy for the amazing Starfish logo design!!

 

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I had my lining recheck yesterday, and was hoping for better news…

Even with the increase in meds, it has only thickened by .5mm.  CCRM’s “optimal” number is 8, and I am currently sitting at 7.5.

I spoke with my nurse last night, and she was trying to get Dr. Schoolcraft to review and give his recommendation.  Ultimately it is our decision, so she told us to “think about it” while waiting to hear from the Dr.  In the world of infertility, there are SO many variables, that this is an almost impossible task.

The good?  My blood work numbers (progesterone and estrogen) look great.  My lining has a nice “triple pattern” that they look for.  The bad?  It’s not as thick as they would like to see it.  Our options?  Move forward and implant, or cancel this cycle and try again.

Here’s the thing… if we cancel, there is NO guarantee that it will be any better.  It is also no guarantee that it will have a nice triple pattern to it, so I may just exchange one problem for another.  As my nurse so nicely reminded me…”you’re almost 40 now”  Ha!  Thanks!  I ALWAYS forget that!  NOT!!

I was truly struggling last night with what to do.  It is overwhelming to think that your decision could truly affect whether or not an embryo has a chance at life.  I prayed for an answer, and woke up this morning praying again.  I just need clarity.  I need to know that I can live with the decision that’s made.  If it doesn’t work, will I be OK with the fact that I didn’t just cancel and try again?  Or be ok with the fact that I DID cancel, getting a BFN (big fat negative in the IF world) and I SHOULD have just pushed through the 1st round?

I just need someone to tell me what to do!

Most people have been telling me (and I have been telling others) that if it doesn’t work, I’ll be OK.  We still have 2 beautiful babies to hug everyday.  To be honest.. I only say that because saying what I really want to say makes me feel like the most unappreciative, selfish person in the world.  By saying to the world “I WANT this child.  I will be DEVASTATED if it doesn’t work” makes me feel like I don’t appreciate the ones I have.  It makes me feel selfish because I know there are THOUSANDS of others who continue to fight the battle of infertility for their first.  The thing is, now that I know what it’s like to HAVE a child, I can’t imagine the chance of another failing! It’s our last shot, and I want it to work.

My nurse called this morning and told me she had reviewed everything with Dr. Schoolcraft, and he wanted to move forward.  I told her I was still struggling, and wanted to talk it over with Brandon one more time.

Then it hit me…. I have ALWAYS trusted CCRM and Dr. Schoolcraft to do/recommend what’s best for me (even when I thought they were crazy for putting me on LESS meds for our IVF cycle than I had ever been on) and I have the 2 most beautiful littles to show for it.  WHY should this be any different?

I finally have the clarity I have so desperately prayed for, and we are moving forward!!!  Transfer is set for Monday!!!  I’m both excited and terrified at the same time, but I know this is the right path for us.  Here we come Denver!!!

 

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So, I was scheduled to have my blood work and ultrasound last Friday, and the plan was to fly to Denver Wednesday, with a transfer on Friday.

Well….that’s not going to happen.  As you know, my E2 level was low the previous week.  The good news is that the meds have fixed it!!  My E2 is now right where it should be.  HOWEVER; my lining is not thick enough.  I knew when I left the Dr’s office Friday it was only at 7 (my last transfer it was already 8.5) so I wasn’t terribly shocked when I got the call from CCRM that we were going to postpone.  Weird because I’ve never had lining issues.  (A fertilized egg needs the lining of the uterus to be a certain thickness to implant and begin growing.)  I have to remember that my last transfer was 2 1/2 years ago, and age is NOT your friend when it comes to fertility.   Anyway…my meds have been upped again, and I have a recheck scheduled for tomorrow morning.  If all looks good, we will plan to transfer next Monday!!

Of course I’m disappointed.  The waiting and testing is always hard, but this is our last shot.  I want everything to be perfect.  If that means we wait a few more days, and I take a few more injections, I’m happy to do it.

That’s all I have for now.  I’ll post again after my test results come in tomorrow!

:)

Thanks for the prayers!!  Keep them coming!  SOOOO ready to go to Denver!!!

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Everyone knows that I hate Winter!  I hate the cold. I hate being cooped up inside. I hate wearing coats. I hate taking 20 minutes to put layers on the littles so we can go outside, etc.  So, it comes as no surprise that the 1st day of Spring has been a date on the calendar I have always longed for!  It may not be 80 degrees, and the boat may still be winterized, but it gives me the HOPE of things to come!

All that being said, it seems EXTREMELY fitting that my FET (frozen embryo transfer) has been scheduled for March 20th, which is also the FIRST DAY OF SPRING!!!  I don’t know why, but it has definitely filled me with some extra HOPE for this transfer!!

We have a few hurdles to cross in order to get there, but that seems to always be the case!  My blood work last Friday didn’t come back the way they wanted it (they want to see my E2 (estrogen) level over 50, and it was only 44) so they added a “little blue pill” to my medicine cocktail!  I go back for another blood draw and ultra sound on Friday, so say a few prayers that the medicine has done the trick!

I have now added a daily Lovenox injection, which sucks. (sorry, but it’s the truth)  It burns for about 30 seconds, and (because it’s a blood thinner) my belly is starting to show it’s trademark IVF bruises.  Hard to complain though.  If it will help me carry another pregnancy, I will happily do it!  Acupuncture has also been added (which I despise…needles…duh) but only for 8 sessions.  How in the world does ANYONE find that relaxing?????

So anyway….that’s where we are, and that’s what we’re doing!  Say a few extra prayers that my blood work and ultra sound come back good on Friday so we can continue!!

Thanks all!!!!

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Here’s your update…

As you know, I had to go in to have a Hysteroscopy performed in preparation for my impending FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer) in Denver! And, as you also know, I’m terrified of needles….especially IVs! Anytime I need an IV, blood draw, etc. I prepare myself with lidocaine cream! Since I was unsure which hand they would use, I covered both! (I don’t mess around when it comes to IVs!!)

As (my) luck would have it, they were unable to find the vein in either hand, so they went for my un-lidocained wrist!!!! Ugh!! To make matters worse, they wouldn’t allow Brandon in with me!

Once the IV was settled, and I regained my color/breathing (I’m not kidding) I was good to go! I literally never fear anesthesia, it’s JUST the IV!

While I was alone, I thought I would pass some time sending Brandon ridiculous selfies (I have no shame)…..

FINALLY Brandon is allowed to come back!! Mid conversation, his phone rings…. It’s the Littles (aka-my children), MDO program saying there has been a water line break, and everyone needs to be picked up. Uhhhh…well…ok then…

Bye bye Brandon!!

(Somehow he managed to pick up the kids, drop them off with Jen (my sister), and get back to the hospital before I got out of surgery! Yes, I married SuperMan!)

Surgery went well. They found a bit of scar tissue and removed it, so I should be all set!!

My box of meds has been delivered! To be honest, I forgot how much “stuff” there is to keep track of! Although, an FET cycle is MUCH easier, and MUCH less complicated than a full IVF cycle!

(Someone messaged and asked the difference between an FET and full cycle – here’s the gist of it: A full IVF cycle is used to actually collect eggs/sperm and then fertilize, hoping to create an embryo. In an FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer) all that work has already been done, and the embryo has already been created and frozen. Mine was created with my IVF cycle in 2012 and this is the only remaining embryo we have.)

Injections began on the 15th. I was a bit worried since it’s been awhile since I’ve had them, but it wasn’t too bad! I’m currently doing Lupron injections daily, and will soon add daily Lovenox injections to prevent any sort of blood clotting issues.

If I’m lucky I will be on the Lovenox injections the next 9 months because that will mean I’m pregnant!

So…there you go! Right now the transfer is set for the end of March, but it can always change. I will start blood work and ultra sounds in a couple weeks which will give us a better timeline.

 

Thanks to all for the continued prayers!!

 

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The time has come to start down the path to a hopeful baby #3.  When we decided to postpone the transfer in September, it was based on the fact that we just weren’t quite ready to go through all of this again.  The emotional roller coaster it puts you through wouldn’t be worth it for anything else than the possibility of being able to hold another baby in our arms.  We just weren’t ready.

The extra few months have been a God send, and exactly what we needed!  Being able to celebrate the holidays, spend time as a family of 4, and just “let go” of everything else was amazing.  The months have flown by, and here we are!  The difference is that I am having no second thoughts about timing.  Yes, if it works I will be pregnant during a ridiculously hot Nashville summer, but I don’t care.  I am ready to go after baby #3 at full force!!  And we are SO excited about the possibility of adding to our family!

Here’s what’s to come:  I had some routine blood work done last week to check my Vitamin D and TSH levels. (waiting on the results) On Wednesday, I need to have a small procedure done as a follow up to my last surgery.  Not a big deal at all except for the IV that I despise!  Not to worry, I will be armed with my lidocaine cream!!  Ha!  If all goes well, I will start on birth control pills (hysterical to me that you take BCPs while trying to GET pregnant) and then my Lupron injections will begin in about 2 weeks.  **I will apologize now for anything I say/do while on Lupron.  It’s a CRAZY drug, and I take NO responsibility for the way I act during the month I’m on it!!!**  Please pray for Brandon during this time as he’s going to need it while putting up with me!  I have been known to knock an entire box of Cheerios out of his hand (and then walk away w/o cleaning it up) simply because he didn’t like what I had planned for dinner!  Funny now, but not so funny when it happened.

Anyway, then comes Lovenox injections (which I will have to continue throughout my pregnancy, as I did with the twins, due to a blood clotting factor that I have) Progesterone injections or patches, lining checks, blood draws, and then FINALLY a transfer!  Wow!  I had almost forgotten how involved this was!! If all goes as planned, we will be looking at a mid March transfer in Denver!!!

Please keep our family in your prayers during our journey!   I will continue to update as we go!

 

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When I reflect on what I’m thankful for, my mind is overwhelmed with all the Blessings I have in my life. My babies and husband are, of course, the top of my list, but family, friends, and a career that I love are there as well. But there is another group that I am thankful for. I call them my “IVF Mafia” or “my girls” as many of you have heard me refer to them. I truly wish I could put into words what they mean to me, but nothing I come up with could ever suffice.

Meet my mafia…..

When we began our journey into creating our family, I researched every single thing I could get my hands on. I mean EVERYTHING. I logged every medication I ever took, follicle counts, E2 levels, etc. If it had to do with infertility, I knew it backwards and forwards.

However, I was still searching. Searching for someone/anyone who understood what I was going through. Not in the “everything happens for a reason” understanding, but a wholehearted understanding of the guilt, sadness, jealousy, loneliness, and frustration that comes along with it.

I reached out to some online forums, and found a bit of solace with other women, but it wasn’t what I needed. These people were strangers behind a screen name. I knew nothing of their lives. Then one day there was a post asking if anyone wanted to join a secret Facebook group in order to truly get to know each other and actually share our LIVES with one another. As soon as I read it, I asked to join. I could never have known then how this small group of women would change my life.

As the group formed, we began sharing….not just stories of our IF struggles, but about our LIVES.  If you would have told me I would create a bond like this over the internet, I would have told you to get a life, and get some “real” friends.

The thing is, they have become so much more than “real” friends. They are my family. These women know more about me than almost anyone. They are my Mafia. (Just an FYI… I wouldn’t mess with any of us unless you want to take on the entire group – I have proof! Ha!) We have celebrated some amazing highs, and supported each other through some terrible lows. They have prayed with me and for me through the years, and I truly don’t know what I would have done without them!

We met in May of this year, and the bond was solidified.  We put together a little video of what pulled us together, and the struggles we had been through.

To my Mafia girls – you are the most incredibly strong women I know. You have persevered through some of the toughest struggles, while continuing to support and rejoice for others.    You have given me such a safe place to just “be” through my IF journey, and through my life in general. I love you girls so much, and am extremely THANKFUL to have you in my life. Your friendships have blessed me far beyond measure, and for that I will always be grateful.  I am so blessed to call you my sisters.

 

 

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For the past couple of months quite a few people have asked if our final embryo transfer was successful.  Most have assumed it was not since I had yet to post an update. For that, I’m sorry!

Our original plan was to transfer our 3rd (and final) embryo in August or September.  As time passed (which seems to happen much more quickly now with toddlers running around) and August was staring us in the face, we “reevaluated” our plan.  As much as we wanted our children to be closer in age (and to be honest I was trying to avoid the ridiculous “I had a baby in my 40s” stigma) we realized that our lives were so completely full that a few extra months would be perfect for us!

As of now, we are looking to Denver in February/March of 2015!  Not to worry, I will be sure to update everyone as the transfer approaches. If you haven’t seen it on the blog, we haven’t done it!

Thank you all for your continued thoughts and prayers for our family!  The twins have been such an amazing blessing to us, and we are enjoying every minute with them!  Yes, it can be completely exhausting and challenging at times, but my life is amazing!

 

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Sitting in the hotel in Denver (waiting on dinner) and it dawned on me that I never updated my last blog from a month ago.  When I was here last, it was for the initial testing for our 3rd (and final) embryo.  I had hoped that everything would go as planned, and they would clear us for transfer, but that wasn’t quite the way it worked out.  Apparently I have some scar tissue and some sort of “mass” that needs to be “cleaned out” in order to give our little ice baby the best chance, so here I am.

Surgery has been scheduled for tomorrow morning at 7:45am, but should be very short and simple.  I’m having a harder time dealing with the fact that I have to get an IV tomorrow than I am with the procedure itself!  You would think with nearly 300 injections and nearly 100 blood draws under my belt I would be rockstar with needles, but not even close!  I still don’t go near a needle without at least an hour under a bandaid with lidocaine cream!  However, I’m not the one who needed apple juice this morning during some routine blood work that Brandon and I had to update.  hahahahaha!!  Truth be told – I almost passed out from a simple finger prick that I wasn’t expecting!  (yes, I would have covered my finger tip with lidocaine cream had I known!!)

They require a 6 week recovery time before allowing for a transfer, which is perfectly fine since we hadn’t planned on doing it until August/September.

Anyway – there’s the update!  Say a little prayer that they get everything, and we get to go home Wednesday!  I already miss my babies terribly!!

 

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Our Journey to You

{Our Story Cont’d}

 

So hopefully you’ve taken a moment to read, or at least glance over, the “Our Story” page, which briefly summarizes how my husband and I were personally affected by Infertility.

{Just in Case you somehow missed it, click below to check it out}

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But there is so much more to this story before we finally got our happy ending. “Our Journey to You” are some of my blogs detailing our expirences, emotions (both the ups AND the downs), and some of the amazing people I met during our struggle with infertility. While I know every couple’s experience is very different and extremely personal, hopefully by sharing ours I can make a difference and maybe help a few people along the way, just like the people I was blessed enough to meet did for me!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart to those who have supported us in our journey over the years.  Our struggles with infertility were some of the hardest years, but they also changed me, and showed me what I was meant to do with my life!

 

Changing lives in 365 days

It amazes me how different life can look in a mere 365 days. Arriving home from our very first “family of four”Read More »

2013 – The Year I Forgot

As I look back on the past year, I realize my life has never changed so dramatically. 2013 will forever be known as…THERead More »

You’re NOT Alone

It took us three years, 4 IVFs, 1 FET, 4 IUIs, and way too many negative pregnancy tests to count until we were finallyRead More »

The Journey to Baby #3

In the beginning of our infertility struggle, I was an open book. I told anyone and everyone what we were goingRead More »

Denver…..Again

When I was here last, it was for the initial testing for our 3rd (and final) embryo. I had hoped that everythingRead More »

Denver Update and Baby #3

For the past couple of months quite a few people have asked if our final embryo transfer was successful. Our originalRead More »

Meet my IVF Mafia…

When we began our journey into creating our family, I researched every single thing I could get my hands on. I knew itRead More »

And so it begins…. The Road to Baby #3

The time has come to start down the path to a hopeful baby #3. The emotional roller coaster it puts you throughRead More »

Denver Update!

Here’s your update…As you know, I had to go in to have a Hysteroscopy performed in preparation for my impending FETRead More »

Denver and the First Day of Spring!!

Everyone knows that I hate Winter! I hate the cold. I hate being cooped up inside. I hate wearing coats. I hate takingRead More »

Life Doesn’t Always Go as Planned

So, I was scheduled to have my blood work and ultrasound last Friday, and the plan was to fly to Denver Wednesday, withRead More »

Moving forward, but in need of Extra Prayers!

I had my lining recheck yesterday, and was hoping for better news… Even with the increase in meds, it has onlyRead More »

A dream finally realized…

Pretty surreal to me that as I lay here on bed rest after transferring our final embryo today at CCRM, I am announcingRead More »

The Answer We’ve All Been Waiting For…

April 11, 2011 – A day in my life I will never forget… We had already failed 4 IUIs, and had finally moved on toRead More »

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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In the beginning of our infertility struggle, I was an open book.  I told anyone and everyone what we were going through.  Why?  I guess because I was naive enough to think that it would be a short struggle, and we would have our perfect little family on the first try.  In the years that followed, I began building walls and shutting people out from what was going on.  It wasn’t that I didn’t want people to know, it was that every time I “failed” it got harder and more debilitating to face the questions when I didn’t really have any answers.  With each passing “sorry it didn’t work” phone call I received, the feelings of embarrassment and disappointment mounted.  I mean, women have babies.  That’s what they DO!  There were VERY few people who knew what we were going through, and even fewer who REALLY knew.

Lucky for us, our blessings finally came in the form of Bexleigh and Braxton!!  I have never felt more grateful or more humbled than the day I first held them.  Most people don’t know, but the first 14 weeks of the pregnancy were rough.  With every doctor appt, there seemed to be an issue.  For weeks we were told not to tell people we were pregnant, and that if we DID choose to talk about it, we should not announce we were having twins.  Ugh!  Obviously, everything turned out perfect!

I had always known that once we announced the pregnancy I would put out a video of what we had gone through to get there.  (Video- Our Journey to You)   What I didn’t know was that it would leave me flooded with calls/texts/emails from people who had been through (or were going through) some sort of infertility struggle of their own.  I realized that I had a wealth of knowledge to share, especially since I had tracked everything.  Every shot, every medication dosage, every level of every blood test.  EVERYTHING.  I became an “open book” again, and nothing has ever been off limits since.

I say all of this for one reason…we still have an “ice baby” waiting for us in Denver, and we’re ready to go get him/her!  I’ve thought long and hard about sharing this with everyone because once it’s “out there” it can’t be taken back.  The thing is, we are so ridiculously blessed with what we have been given that I just don’t feel the pressure like I did before.  If letting people walk the path with us helps someone who’s going through it, or helps others be more supportive of it, then it’s worth it.

So here goes!!!  I have just landed in Denver to update my required testing for transfer.  If everything looks good we plan to transfer our final embryo around the end of August/beginning of September!  Wish us luck!!!

P.S. – if you have questions about infertility PLEASE do NOT hesitate to call/email/FBook me!!!

Kara Edwards

info@starfishinfertilityfoundation.org

615-500-4845

Face Book Link  -OR-  my S.I.F FB Page

 

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This is Bexleigh and Braxton (our 2 little IVF miracles) at 6 days post fertilization. This beautiful picture reminds me everyday all that we went through to get them. It’s National Infertility Awareness Week and I am speaking up to let others who suffer from infertility know that #youarenotalone. Infertility is a disease that affects 1 in 8 couples. I am 1 of the 7.4 million women who have gone through infertility treatment. It took us three years, 4 IVFs, 1 FET, 4 IUIs, and way too many negative pregnancy tests to count until we were finally able to hold our long awaited miracles. Infertility can be isolating. Know that there is support out there!


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/21/what-couples-struggling-with-infertility-want-you-to-know_n_7101678.html

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As I look back on the past year, I realize my life has never changed so dramatically.

2013 will forever be known as…THE YEAR I FORGOT.

 

Over the past 12 months, I have forgotten….

What it’s like to sleep through the night

What it’s like to have on clean clothes for longer than 10 minutes

What it’s like to be spontaneous

What it’s like to wash my hair more than 2x per week

What it’s like to eat a hot meal

What it’s like to watch an entire movie, or have an uninterrupted phone conversation

What it’s like to have the laundry completely done

What it’s like to run a quick errand, or grab lunch with a friend.

What it’s like to have “me” time.

 

Although you may think it sounds like nothing but a year of complaints, you couldn’t be more wrong.  You see, in forgetting all of the above, I also forgot about…

 

The little voice that filled my head before each of our cycles saying “maybe this is our time,” only to be followed by the overwhelming disappointment each time we were told to  “try again.”

The hundreds of phone calls I made crying to my sister because I didn’t know what to do, but I didn’t want to give up. (Thanks Angela!)

I forgot what it was like to revolve our lives around injection schedules, doctor appointments, and procedures.

I forgot about the anxiety of the almost daily heart beat checks (with my home monitor) and the terror I felt when I couldn’t find one, after we were finally pregnant.

 

Most importantly…

I forgot what it was like to walk around with a hole in my heart that I was certain was meant to be filled by children.

 

So yes, I forgot a LOT in 2013, but in doing so have been blessed beyond measure.

Sleep is overrated anyway, right???

 

 

Wishing you all an incredible 2014!!!

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Arriving home from our very first “family of four” vacation, I find myself looking back on the past year of my life.

One year ago today, Brandon and I were in Denver (CCRM) anticipating the transfer of 2 embryos to me from our 4th IVF cycle.  Before the transfer could take place, blood work had to confirm that all of my “levels” were where they should be, and the embryos had to be thawed and reviewed for viability.  After my levels came back perfect, we waited for the embryologist.  Did they thaw successfully?  One or both?  Were they expanding?  And of course, the most important question…were we moving forward with the transfer???

Even as I type this, a year later, and knowing the outcome, I can feel my blood pressure rising, as the anxiety courses through me anew.

Nearly 4 years of struggle, surgeries, hundreds of needles, disappointment after disappointment, all came down to this….

As the embryologist rolled the incubator into the room,  I held my breath….

Much of what he said was a blur, but for one phrase….”they couldn’t look any better.”

“THEY!!”  That meant that had BOTH made it, and were to be transferred!!

 

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At 12:30pm, embryo #6 and #7 (who we would later name Bexleigh and Braxton) were transferred to me.  Six days later we saw our first ever positive pregnancy test.  And at 38 weeks and 1 day, I delivered a healthy 7lb8oz baby girl, and a healthy 6lb4oz baby boy.

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It amazes me how different life can look in a mere 365 days.

We celebrate our tremendous blessings, pray for those who continue to struggle, and look forward to our future – full of hopes and dreams for these miracles that God so graciously entrusted to us.

 

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