Over the past few years I've shared lots of different parts of my heart with my readers but, there's one big part I've always left out. This has been intentional...but, I believe there's a time for everything and I feel it's the right time to share my story about struggling with infertility. I hope by me sharing someone reading is encouraged. (NOTE: I'm always aware that this may be someone's first time to my blog...please know that I am a wedding photographer and you can scroll down and see a billion pictures but, today is one of those days where I'm also a woman sharing her heart with readers who have been reading for months or years. Please bare with me!)
When Matt and I got married in 2000 we had a plan...don't we all when we first start out? We were going to take our first two years to: pay off debt, move into a town-home, travel, get to know each other and our families and then, right around the two year mark, we would start trying for kids. I remember chatting over dinner in Chicago (where we spend our second anniversary) and saying "well, we're at two years are you ready to start trying?" We decided to give it a few more months and during that time I read every book I could get my hands on! (I'm kinda an overachiever in that way!) We knew it "could" take a little while but, we also knew it "could" happen right away. Since I had never had any issues previously I naturally put myself in the "happen right away" category. But, it didn't and every month I was crushed. I cannot describe the feeling of not being able to conceive but, it was a pain that I hadn't experienced before. It's a lonely place...here's some of the feelings I felt: broken, a disappointment to Matt, not womanly, out of control, embarrassed, confused, angry at myself, hurt - wondering where the Lord was...and then sometimes I would feel hopeful, empowered, thankful for Matt and our life, and happy with my freedom.
I know you may not agree with some of the feelings I've listed but, that's why titled this post "My Story." I know that most of those feelings aren't what I "should" have felt because not getting pregnant wasn't my fault but, it was how I felt. And to be honest, it's part of the reason that I don't like to talk about it...there is shame there that I want to forget. But, I know 1 in 5 woman struggle with infertility - that's a lot of women - so I hope this speaks to some of you.
Anyways, after following textbook instructions to increase our chances of getting pregnant and trying on our own for a year we decided to go to a doctor and ask questions. One of my friends was already at a clinic in Edina, MN so I followed suit and made the unwanted appointment. (something about making an appointment and meeting with an infertility doctor makes it so much more real!) I wanted to scream and make my body do want I wanted it to do but, I couldn't. So, I started treatment. At first it was really mild. I think I did 3 months on Clomid and after that we upped the anty and started doing injections of Folistom. Then, I had surgery and they found endomitriosis and a twisted tube. All possible reasons for why I hadn't been able to conceive but, still there's was no way of knowing if changing them is enough...it just increases my changes...no guarantees! Life is a mystery and when it starts is not in our hands. This truth about life is impossible to understand...even more so when you know the Creator because you know you've got a "hot-line" to the One who has the power to change your circumstances and yet nothing is changing.
It was right around this time that one of my closest friend got pregnant. Ohhh...that's a whole other thing!!! It's almost like I could "manage" the disappointment of finding out every month that I wasn't pregnant but: finding out people around you are getting pregnant by accident, having to go to baby shower after baby shower, and having innocent people ask you if you want kids or why you haven't had any yet? THAT'S A WHOLE OTHER LEVEL OF MANAGING DISAPPOINTMENT!Â Honestly, it felt like people were being mean and rubbing it in but, most people had no clue. And even if they knew my situation, until you've struggled yourself, you don't really know what it's like. I knew in my head they weren't mean but people say stupid things sometimes. ya know? In my heart (or irrational emotional state)...it was hard to think straight and reasonable. It was amazing to have Matt and a couple of close friends that I could cry with, pray with and then stand back up...to face a new day!
So many times in this life it would be so much easier to trust if you knew how the story ends. But, that's the whole point of trust...blind faith...believing - whether you get what you want or not. I didn't like that. I fought it at every turn. Did I mention that I'm a little stubborn. I'm the type that has a hard time learning lessons but, once a lesson is learned it stays with me forever. I'd love to say I learned about faith and trusting the Lord through this experience but, my actions right after Adriah was born would say otherwise...but, I'm getting ahead of myself.
After my surgery (July) I went back into treatment and was able to conceive in August - we had been trying for almost two years. I was thankful and relieved. My pregnancy was perfect...My first born girl was born 9 days early - a perfect 8 pounder...Adriah Liberty was my promise baby! I didn't (still don't) understand the Lord's timing but, I know it is perfect. I was delighted and ready to do the whole thing all over again.
Okay. this is a perfect time to break...to hear more about my story tune in tomorrow...p.s. if you know anyone struggling with infertility can you send them the link to this blog post?