Category Archives: bebes

Let’s Get Serious

I mentioned last week that I had some meets to share regarding our Adoption journey, and I’m here today to spill the beans.

It isn’t really the kind of “beans” that I’d like to be spilling, but beans are beans, people.  And beaners can’t be choosers.

What?!

Nevermind.  Sometimes I get carried away with a common saying and just can’t disengage.

ANYwho…

Studly and I took a huge first step a few weeks ago, and actually started contacting several organizations regarding adoption (organizations being an all-inclusive term to refer to facilitators, law centers, and agencies).  Now, this may not seem like a big deal to you, but for us… it absolutely IS a big deal.  It’s as though we’re finally putting our money where our mouth is.

To be clear, though… we’re not putting money anywhere just yet.  (See?  Another saying and now I’m just confusing people again. *smack! Get it together, Hope!)

We contacted several different organizations we had begun to identify by scouring website after website after website… I think you get the picture.  Basically, thanks to the internets (thank you Al Gore!), there are a lot of resources on adoption.

Honestly, (and this may sound crazy, but its true) we were able to rule out a bunch rather quickly after only briefly visiting their website.  For us, a cheaply created or poorly maintained website indicated come less-than-desirable qualities for an organization to which we’d be paying tens of thousands of dollars to help us grow our family.  So if they can’t even build or maintain what I imagine to be the primary means of getting business in this day and age, then I’m not sure we are interested in digging any further.

Although we plan to do much more research before submitting any applications, we did find about 3 good organizations as our starting point.

After contacting them, we found that 1 was not licensed in our state even though their website initially said that they did (maybe this was more recent?), 1 sent us a good-sized packet of information through e-mail, and 1 shipped us an information kit through the mail.

Out of the 2 that actually sent us information, only 1 asked us our income right off the bat.  This may not be a big deal, but it is a bit annoying.  Quite a few agencies charge fees based on your income, and I find that to be a bunch of crap.  Call me crazy, but that shouldn’t be an initial question.  Should it be part of your home study and overall assessment as to whether or not you can provide for the child? 100%. Absolutely. No question.  Should it be what you use to determine your fee schedule?  Heck no!  Mostly because you don’t know the entire situation just based off of a single number on a piece of paper.  Sorry – already jumping up onto a soap box.  *jumps down… *deep breaths…

Where was I?!

Oh right.  The 1 that asked our income information right off of the bat was more local, and also happened to be the one that sent us some information through e-mail.  I’m fine with the fact that it came through e-mail, but there’s something to be said about snail mail that just seems more personal.  Regardless, the conversation I had with the local organization was pretty short and not very helpful.  She kept making statements to indicate that all of our questions would be answered… and they’d be more than happy to talk with us… etc etc, but I was already asking questions and those weren’t actual answers.  I did try to get down to the reasoning and just asked if they needed to set up some kind of meeting with me and Studly, thinking that maybe this was why she wasn’t being as helpful, and then the truth came out – “all we needed to do” to have this conversation was to submit our application.

Whaaa?!

I’m not going to pay to apply with you before I even have information regarding your organization, what it provides, it’s process and average timeline, etc.  Who would do that?  Well, there must be some people who would do it because it seemed to be their standing policy.   Umm… no thanks.

As I’m sure you can already see from the story so far, it isn’t all that hard to weed out the non-contenders.  And though the list of what’s acceptable would absolutely change from family to family, there’s already going to be something that is identified as a non-negotiable and you’ll find that these things can really help to thin the crowd of options pretty quickly.

So that brings me to the final organization that we contacted – the one that mailed us an information kit.  One of the perks of this organization is that they are nationally licensed, meaning they can work with adoptions in any of the 50 states.  And that translates to more placements each year – averaging around 300.  I’m not sure if you’ve done any research on these numbers, but that’s a really high number of placements for one organization.  We reviewed the information kit that they sent us, which included: a DVD, additional information on their organization, an example of the packet that’s given to potential birth mothers in the selection process, an application, a wall calendar, and a personal letter from the lady that I spoke with on the phone during my initial contact with them.  It was full of helpful stuff.

During my initial phone conversation, and before we got the information packet, they also set us up with an appointment to video-chat with our adoption consultant.  They were so well organized, very informative, and they took me seriously from the first moment we spoke – which was very nice.

One would think that having taken the step to contact an adoption organization to begin would indicate to them that we were serious about getting information.  It’s pretty sad that only 1 of the many phone calls that I made left me with the impression that this was the case and I wasn’t just another blank face on the other end of the millionth phone call they’d had that day.

Anywho…. fast forward to Monday evening when we had our video-chat consultation.

It. Was. Sooo helpful.

We both felt pretty comfortable with her and she was very patient with our ridiculous amount of questions (correction: MY ridiculous amount of questions).  Studly and I both answered some of her questions and after it was over (over an hour later), we both felt as though it really helped to answer our lingering questions and put things into perspective for us.

Surprisingly, we hadn’t had to submit any forms or pay a single penny to just have a full conversation with someone.

And I was starting to think that’d be difficult to find!

Between the information that we gathered from this consultation, and the research we have conducted over the past several months (though to be honest, adoption is something we’ve been familiar with for many years, due to my work in the pregnancy clinic a few years before we moved)… it all adds up to a long list of things to think through and consider.

We’re still digesting it all, really, and have already had at least 2 lengthy conversations about everything just since Monday’s meeting.

I have a lot to share with you, but this post is already getting a little long, so I’ll leave you with this for now.

Lessons learned so far in this stage:

  • Each adoption organization is not created equally.
  • Also, there is so much to think about and consider that a lot of the time… it feels more like a business deal than it does adopting a child.  And that’s tough.  So much of our heart and emotion is in this, but we haven’t even made it to the point, yet, where that really comes into play.
  • You need money.  No question.  BUT there are a ton of resources (grants, low-interest and even interest free loans, tax credits, employer contributions, etc) to help you get all of that money together.
  • There’s still  a lot to do before we can submit an application anywhere.

That last bullet may be the hardest to swallow, but it’s really important.  We’re not doing anyone any favors by “just” submitting the application.

The biggest lesson so far is this:  You need to be honest with yourself about whether or not you’re ready.

But that’s definitely another post for another day.

I look forward to sharing more of this piece of our lives with y’all soon! And in the meantime, any other adoptive families out there with some pointers?  We’ll take all the help we can get, for sure.

~Hope

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Baby Steps

We’ve talked about adoption for years.  It’s just been “the plan” for quite a while, now.  But it’s always been an “in the not-too-distant-future” kind of plan.

Not “today” yet because:

  • we are getting ready to move to another state
  • we have a ton of debt to pay down
  • we have to save up the money for the costs involved
  • we can’t afford for me to stay home full-time
  • and whatever else comes up that week

It’s not at all like we were putting it off.  On the contrary, in fact.  We have been ready for a really long time.  Both of us.  But I think if I’m completely honest, we’ve just been waiting for everything to align perfectly before “pulling the trigger”… and I think we are really realizing that this will probably never happen.

So we had a really good talk earlier this week and…

We are ready.

And this time, I don’t mean ready to just keep being ready.  But we’re ready to start down this path.  Ready to take our Baby Steps… steps toward bringing home our little one.

We are going to take our first step off of the path we are currently on and start really putting the work in to make this happen.

Currently, we are researching domestic adoption agencies (and actively looking for recommendations, if anyone has any!) and seeking out updated information on costs, especially since we’re still new to Texas.  And we’re also hoping to start collecting information on any/all available tax breaks, grants, adoption loans, etc. and to see what we can qualify for with our combined income and whatnot.  And we are counting people at these places, too.  Which is a huge step forward for us.

It’s really exciting.  I’m not sure why, but it feels so much more… real!  Submitting requests for adoption information packets from various organizations is quite an awesome step for us.  It doesn’t just feel like yet another thing sitting in our tomorrow basket, but it feels like we’re really on our way.  We’ll actually be answering questions and filling out applications and… really, truly getting the ball rolling. Eek!

It will definitely take time – the average wait for domestic adoption within the US is around 2 years.  And for those of you unaware, this is why I tend to look at little elephants as a kind of symbol for our little one, as the gestational period for an elephant is about 21 months.

So here we are ready and oh so eager to get this show on the road.  It may not be how we always pictured things playing out, but that’s life, right?  And if we always wait for things to be perfect before we do anything worth while, then we’ll never get there.

Please pray for us.  Please check in with us (I will be MORE than thrilled to answer questions at any time, trust me).  And if nothing else, stick around to see how everything plays out.  I can’t wait to share this journey with you guys!

~Hope

Bonus Information

For those of you reading, consider this your warning – this post 100% falls into the category of TMI (too much information) and you will read and learn things that may be out of your comfort zone.

If you have no interest in hearing about pains and processes of the female body and in a detailed fashion, then do NOT… I repeat DO NOT read one.

And with that warning… here we go:

I know that I’ve been MIA.  Sorry for that!  It’s really been a rough 6 weeks.  Basically, I’ve had a 6-week long period.  But more specifically – I started a period on 21 September.  It started a little light and then about 3 days in got to a more average/medium, typical flow.  Then it lasted like this into week 2.  Then into week 3.  And then I started off week 4 and was already SO done, as I’m sure you could imagine.

But it got worse.  It was not longer an average/medium flow, but ramped up to chaos level torture.  I started clotting really terribly.  Not smaller than golf-ball sized, and sometimes up near tennis-ball sized.  I had clotting contractions because my body couldn’t easily pass them at that size, so I literally felt them coming on, had to make myself breathe through them, and then deal with the “aftermath” when it was over.

Boy oh boy did that make things with work difficult, too.  Not to mention my inability to sleep through the night without getting up at least twice.  And one night I even had to change pants and underwear twice… just in one night!  Because there was no possible way to get from my bed to the bathroom in time once I was awaken in such a state of “already too late”… it was not cool (to put things lightly).

So after that night (which happened week 4, night 4), I had to call out of work.  AND I finally called my old doctor from when we lived on the East Coast.  I hadn’t yet gotten in with a new GYN, so it was really my only option besides maybe going to the ER, which felt like a less than awesome idea.  I left a message with one of the nurses who informed me that my old doctor was actually out of the office, but she said she’d send him a note and have one of the other doctors review things and get back to me.  About 2 hours later, I had a call back and a prescription was put in to my local pharmacy for Megestrel (essentially a high dose progesterone) to help stop the bleeding and clotting.

So I trudged out of the house in my pjs to pick up the meds and went back home.  Thankfully making it without incident.

There was a slightly awkward moment when the pharmacists at our new pharmacy wanted to chat since we were new to the pharmacy.  He was very nice and I appreciated his wanting to make sure we felt like we weren’t just another piece of paper in his stack… But he did ask a very awkward question (though I later found out why).  So he introduced himself, asked where we were from (turns out he, too, was from Maryland), and then said something along the lines of “So this medication is given for quite a few different things.  Why was it prescribed for you?”

Queue my fumbling, awkward stare.  Umm… “Uh… I’m having some… bleeding… issues?”

He quickly picked up on the awkwardness and moved on.  And just a few moments later I was well on my way home to take the first dose.  As I took the meds out of the bag to take the first dose, I realized why he’d asked me about the reason for it being prescribed.  It’s apparently typically prescribed for women struggling with breast cancer and/or uterine cancers. Ahah.  Now it all made sense.

Anywho – I took the meds for 5 days, and the bleeding/clotting immediately slowed down after the first dose, and stopped completely by the second.  Thank the good LORD!  Finally… sweet relief.

So I was able to breathe again.  Sleep through the night again.  Get through meetings at work again without having to excuse myself in the middle and run out to the bathroom.  Life was feeling pretty awesome in the normal day-to-day grind.

I had a work trip planned the next Friday (call it the end of week 5 for reference) and then…. it happened again.

While on my work trip (thankfully back in Maryland where there was at least SOME familiarity), It started up again.  So on what we’ll call Week 6, day 1… it came back.  WITH a vengeance.  The Day before I was already cramping something fierce, but it was manageable.  Just some non-fun cramps.  Nothing major.  So I started out right into an average/medium flow on what I call week 6, Day 1.  Then it got worse each day.  Again.

Clotting contractions and fun results came shortly after the restart.  On day 2 I was heavy and uncomfortable.  Day 3, Clotting and contractions were back, though the clotting size wasn’t all the way where it had been before… thankfully!  But then with each day it to worse and worse.  Well on its way to where I had been just a week and a half before.  And I was already unable to sit through meetings all the way.  And what made that even worse was that these were meetings that I had set up myself and half of them were meetings that I was leading.  So talk about awkward and terrible timing!  It’s never easy to deal with something like this, but being away from home, working a very very busy, packed-full schedule, and living out of a hotel just made things even more stellar (where’s the sarcasm font when you need it?  *sigh).

So on week 6, day 5, I finally called my old doctor to see if they could possibly fit me in.  They left me a message on my cell later that day and said they’d fit me in the next morning at 0800.  Thank goodness I have a doctor who cares and worked with me like a partner.  He had no room, but he MADE room based on the situation.

I went in that next morning.  They did a transvaginal sonogram and we chatted about everything.  While performing the soon, he informed me that quite a bit of clots in the lining, just sitting there waiting to be passed.  “That’ll be fun” he said.  Did I mention I love my doctor?  Because I really really do.  He also brought up the contractions I hadn’t even told him about yet.  Due to their size and how long I’ve already been on my cycle… he confirmed that they really were contractions because of my cervix having to dilate and then close back up in order to allow these clots to pass through.  Fun times.  smh

He finished up the soon after measuring my ovaries and noting the cysts (which I always have, so no biggie, really).  Right ovary was pretty typical with quite a few cysts chilling there.  And my left ovary had at least one “good sized” cyst among the others, which wasn’t a surprise since I had already felt that bad boy anyway.  Just another day in the life of someone with PCOS, I suppose.  So he talked to me about ordering some blood work, and then asked the question that I knew would be coming.

I had only skipped one month of a period – which for me is extreme commonplace and never surprising, but even after having skipped up to 6 months in the past I have NEVER ever had this heavy or long of a period.  Then came the question – “When you skipped that cycle, did you ever take a pregnancy test?”

Yes.  I took two.  Call it force of habit a this point, but I always know that it’s the first question I’ll be asked when I have to call the GYN about any variation to a normal cycle.  Even a variation from a “normal for me” cycle.  So I know to take them when I’ve skipped a period.  Then I typically wait almost a week and take another if it still hasn’t come.  Because, if for no other reason, I will be asked when I mention skipping the period.

The doc took a beat.  Didn’t immediately respond.  So I did.  “So of course something like this was me wondering in the back of my mind if somehow maybe I was pregnant and didn’t know it… and that this is something to do with something like that.”

He looked at me with kind eyes.  “We definitely think about that, too.  Of course we hope that this isn’t the case, but if it is, we’ll want to know.”

I told him that I didn’t dwell on it or let myself obsess over the possibility, but it was definitely a thought floating around in there. I know so many people who think something like this and then go crazy over it.  Month after month even being a day late they obsess over whether or not this could be the month.  And I don’t blame them!  But I’ve worked really hard over the past 7 years not to let myself do that.  Some months it’s harder than others.  But I don’t want being a mother or getting pregnant to become an idol for me.  For us.  Studly and I check in with each other regularly to make sure we aren’t doing that.  Because that’s what can lead down the path of putting things before your relationship.  And that’s a very dangerous, very slippery slope.  But back to the topic at hand…

“Well, you are right to wonder.  But we will see what we can find out.  I’ll order an hcg along with your other blood work and we’ll start to figure some things out, hopefully.  And it’ll give us something to compare to in the next week or so if need be.  So we’ll get your new doctor set up and I’ll give you enough meds to make it until your appointment with him.”

So that’s that.  I went straight from his office to get the blood work done.  Then went to pic up my prescription and started on it right away.  Right now I’m at Week 7, day 1.  The meds haven’t worked as quickly this time, but they have slowed things a tiny bit and hopefully they will fully kick in soon.  I’d like to feel some level of normal again, if that’s possible.  I’m starting to forget what that feels like.

I’m currently sitting here in my hotel room, cramping, clotting, and not wanting to move much.  Only left today to go grab some lunch, and don’t plan to leave again until I have to eat something for dinner.  For some reason this seems to be the only hotel that has no information about room service in their rooms, but… that would’ve made things way to easy on me, right?  And who wants that.  *eyeroll

I’ll keep you guys posted, or at least those of you who want to be kept in the loop.  And thanks for understanding my absence.  Hopefully this’ll be over soon, there will be a *simple* reason of all of this, and it’ll end up not being anything pregnancy related. But if it is?  We’ll deal with it.  We’ll get through it and we’ll process as necessary.

In the interest of full-disclosure, I did have a moment as I was getting dressed after my appointment.  The emotion of possibilities started to hit me and I took a few deep breaths as the tears started to build up and burn my eyes.  I closed my eyes, and started to pray a little.  Because at the end of the day, regardless of what this all is or means, God gives and He takes away… and His is still Holy.  He has a plan and a purpose for me that is to prosper me and not to harm me.  It’s hard to see the first through the trees, but my God is loving.  And though any outcome of this could be painful for now, and maybe even for a long time, it’s still just one page or chapter in the story.  And a story is never about just one page or chapter.

I hope you’re all doing well.  I look forward to catching up on your stories while I’ve been MIA, but please stay patient with  me and I get there.  I’m still trying to be smart and not overdo it when I can help it (since I can’t help it with my work stuff while on this trip).

I love you all.

~Hope

Dear Baby

I dream about you.

I dream about the day that we’ll finally meet you.  I dream about your birth mother and the struggle that she’ll face when she first discovers that she’s pregnant.  How she’ll consider several options and possibly change her mind quite  a few times before she follows through on placing you with an adoptive family.

I’m sure that she’ll wonder if she’s doing the right thing…  wonder if she will regret it… wonder if she’ll be able to follow through.

I imagine her emotional struggle as she gives birth.  How the entire time she’s laboring and then pushing… she’ll be thinking about you and the decision she’s making.  She may even, in that moment, think she should keep you with her and not place you with us.  I can’t truly fathom those thoughts.

Having wanted you for so long, I can’t imagine being not he other side of the process.  But I try.  I just want to be sure that I don’t forget her through our journey to you.  To becoming the family God has destined us to be.  Because without her, we won’t have you.  And for that, I am forever in her debt.

She will make the choice to put you above herself.  She will acknowledge that, for whatever reason, she can’t give you the life that you deserve… and in her love, and in God’s grace, she will choose us to do just that.

I think about you and how it’s possible that even as I write this, you may not have even been conceived yet.  Ad my mind wanders through various scenarios that could even bring that to fruition.

Sweet child, your conception may not be planned and the first moments of your tiny life, in the very moment when you become your very own string of DNA, just then you will become my daughter.  I won’t know you yet, and I won’t know of your existence for quite a while longer, but it will be in that moment that the life that is planned for you will begin.

In the first realization of your existence, your birth mother may feel less than excited, but just wait… just hold on to the hope that you will be loved.  You will be cherished.  You will be covered in kisses and snuggled day after day.  You may not feel it in those moments… in the moments when your birth mother feels doubt, or anger, or hurt, or hopelessness… but you are, sweet one!

As every finger and every eyelash and every flake of skin develops, you are wrapped in love.  You are created in love by a God who has so much in store for you.  And you are prayed for… longed for by parents who can’t wait to meet you.

To hold you.

To kiss your sweet face.

To smell your newborn smell.

And to watch the wonder in your eyes as you grow and experience this world and all that it offers.

Sweet love, you are cherished.  You are perfect.  You are an answer to prayer.

And all before you even came to be.

Always remember this, as it is sewn into the very fiber of your being:  You ARE wanted.

♬  I’ve missed you, but I haven’t met you.

      Oh but I want to… How I do.  ♪♩

I love you so.

~Mama

Lunch Dates and Baby Elephants

Studly and I finally had some much needed time out and about together.  We’ve just had so many little things (and some not-so-little things, too) popping up lately that we haven’t made the time for each other that we really should have.  But that all changed today.

It was nothing big, but it was just what we needed.  Lunch and a few hours wandering through stores, picking things out, and trying things on… nothing more than just some good, quality time together.  And it was glorious.  But that’s not really the point of this post.

While we were at lunch, we talked.  And that was probably the best part.  We shared what’s been on our hearts and minds, lately, and talked about the future.  Among other things, we discussed how things always seem to pop up and that waiting for the “right time,” something illusive and practically nonexistent, would mean never taking that step toward what we want.  Toward a big reason for us moving here.  Toward a dream that we’ve had for quite some time.

So although we aren’t diving in and actually doing anything right away, we’ve decided that we will finally start actively researching domestic adoption in Texas.

This makes it so much more real, ladies… SO REAL!!

We’ve got a lot to do regarding our financial situation, thanks to the things that have popped up recently that we weren’t prepared for, but frankly – we still don’t even know what the process or laws specific to Texas even look like.  We even have to figure out if we’ll use an agency, and which one.  We’ll have to make some difficult, serious, very honest decisions about what, if any, restrictions we will make on anything.  And then we’ve still gotta save up enough money to be able to fund the whole thing.  It’s quite the list.  But today’s decision is really just to take that first step into making it all a reality.  But that first step in not only a doozy… it’s also super meaningful.

We’re taking the first step towards finally becoming parents.  To no longer just being Hope and Studly, but mommy and daddy.  Finally.

They say the average wait time for domestic adoption is somewhere around 2 years… which, oddly enough, is about the same as the typical gestation of a baby elephant.  So that has become our symbol.  A symbol of our future.  Of our family.  Of our someday baby.

It’s kind’ve like a symbol of hope.

And hope can be trying, at times.  Can’t it?  There are days it seems so far away.  Days when it seems pointless.  Like you’re just wasting your energy and emotion on something that may never happen.

But our hope endures.

I’ll be sure to keep you guys posted on things as we work through them.  There’s definitely a lot on that list, so… there won’t be a shortage of things to share.  Just be patient with me as it’ll take some time.  But feel free to check in with me!  Ask questions and I’ll be more than happy to answer them, too… that’s a promise!

These days, I’m just trying to take things one step at a time… and as they say – the journey of thousand miles begins with a single step.

~Hope

Special Delivery

Made it safely to visit with my baby sister and meet my precious baby nephew!

He’s absolutely perfect. I wish I could post the millions of pictures I took for all of you to see. I was being a crazy lady with the camera, but Babysis was glad that I did and that I got her some super cute close-up shots of his adorable little teeny features – feet, eyes, hands, wrinkly knees and armpit. Haha

I don’t have much time to write, but Babysis got to come home from the hospital about 5 days after giving birth. She’d been induced at 36 weeks after suddenly being diagnosed with severe preeclampsia when he went to the ER with severe headaches and intense sickness. She even ended up with a pneumonia diagnosis after delivery and BabyBug got a nice week long round of treatments just in case.

His lungs were still a little weak at that point, but he is already past getting oxygen and finishes his last rounds of antibiotics tomorrow. That means he’s coming home on Sunday. Wooooot!!

We are taking regular trips up to the NNICU until then, and I’ve already gotten to get quite a few snuggles, diaper changes, and feeding time with him.

I’ll keep you guys posted and hopefully get back to some other fun stuff on here soon, but for now – I’m going to go love on my little Baby Bug for a as long as I’m here. It’s going to have to last me a while!

Hugs and Love to all,
~Hope

Brain Dump

Oh hello there, future… When did you get here?!

How has it been so long since I last posted? Ah yes. Life happened.

So a lots been going on, lately, and I haven’t taken the time to post. Sorry, buds! I had my girls weekend a little while back, and then had to drive into the next state over for a baby shower the next weekend. I got one weekend to clean the house and catch-up on laundry before it was time for Easter, which involves a big get-together with my family, and that was immediately followed by having to show the house multiple times (meaning cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning). It’s exhausting, and it’s not even our house! That part comes later…

So here I am… Trying to sort through all of the things that have been going on, lately, to fill you in and I realize that I’m waaayyyyy behind! I’ll do my best, but let’s be honest – it’d be near impossible to fill you in, now, without leaving anything out. I’ll work backwards, because that’s how my brain seemed to want to work today.

So begins the brain dump:

– I’m currently recovering from one of my favorite meals: steak, cheese potatoes, and asparagus. I loooove it, but I don’t think I’ll ever get used to the way that asparagus makes your pee stink for days. Blech!

– I’ve been spending most of my free time over the past week or so writing and trying to finish a song for a friend. She’s recording this Friday, so now I’m in a mega time-crunch, which is not easy for this perfectionist! I’m really loving this, and it’s definitely stretching me. It’s a different style and totally different genre than I’m used to writing, so I’m really hoping it doesn’t turn out lame or cheesy. *fingers crossed

– I still can’t seem to get the coordinator for our move to Texas to contact me. I’ve called, emailed, called again….. Nothing! No big deal, right? It’s just our life. 😐

– I got my newest Stitch Fix, today. I actually need to do an entire review on the forks you guys. I’ve had 3 “Fixes” now and can’t wait to share my thoughts and see if any of you have used it or considered it at all.

– Mothers Day is less than two weeks away. It’s traditionally a less-than-stellar time for many who struggle with infertility and I am no exception. To top it all off my baby sister is pregnant with the first baby of the family, so…. That should make of some interesting moments, for sure. I’ve kind’ve been feeling this fog trying to come down over me, lately, but I’ve been doing my best to keep myself upbeat, stay positive, and stay away from known “triggers”… Just trying to be smart, I guess. I’ve been doing well and still do feel like I’m in a good place, but that doesn’t mean that I won’t ever have a tough day or two. So I’m trying not to beat myself up if I feel it coming, but still want to try to remember that I can’t control the situation and that I’ll become a mom when the timing is absolutely perfect. Not before… Not after… But right on time.

– I started a book a few weeks back and it didn’t pull me in right away. I picked it up again this past weekend and was really into it up until the book took a weird turn. Now I’m trying not to just put it down and move on because it could get better again, right? But still…. I hate it when that happens.

– I’ve been thinking about starting a series of posts about things I plan/hope to teach my children. If nothing else, it’d be awesome to be able to look back on them sometime, right? To gauge my success or compare what I thought to what I’d make a priority when the time actually comes. What do you think?

Anywho, I know that I’ve left things out! but this’ll have to do for now. I’ll update when I remember more and won’t wait so long to post again. There just WAY too much going on to let that happen.

In fact, I think I may start calling this the year of Hope! 😛

~Hope

Good Ole Doctor G

I guess it’s time for a little update on the babymaker.

But before I begin, you should just know that this is one of those “Bonus Information” kind of posts… so consider yourself warned.

So I had to get a few tests run again last week.

I haven’t had a cycle since December, and since it’s April… well… it was long overdue.

Fun fact: If you go too long without having a period, the lining of your uterus can get to a point where it’s potentially precancerous, so it’s important not to ignore the issue. Before doing anything crazy, the doctor will check the thickness of the lining, probably by ultrasound.

In my case, this is definitely not the first time this has happened. And having PCOS makes me more likely to skip cycles, since my eggs tend to hang around the ovaries, attach themselves, and become cysts. (Apparently my ovaries are of the LaZBoy variety… Why else wouldn’t they want to leave, right?!)

Anywho, I called my OBGYN to chat about it and left a message with the nurse. I really just expected a call saying that I needed to go back on Metformin or go through a cycle of progesterone, again, but they actually said that I needed to come in and that Dr. G had made time for me just a few days later.

This is a good time to mention that I love my doctor. Loooooove him. It took many many years and into the double digits of doctors before finding someone that talked with me and not just at me. Someone who trusted my background and knowledge of the subjects at hand, based on my work at a pregnancy clinic and volunteering in the L&D ward at a local hospital. Someone who didn’t scoff, roll an eye when I said that I was still a virgin at 19 (when I finally found him), and go in for an “inspection” at full throttle before realizing I wasn’t lying and toning it down several notches (youch!). Someone who didn’t ask me 19 different ways if I was at all sexually active, to include the “extra-curricular versions” of the term itself.

Side rant: It’s seriously soooo so so important to like your OBGYN. You need to have a doctor that you trust and with whom you can discuss your situation and treatment options. And I’m fortunate enough to have a phenomenal doctor that I recommend to anyone and everyone. I’ve been seeing him for something like 8+ years and wish he’d move with us so that I didn’t have to go through finding a doctor again. (waaaaaahhhhh!!)

Back to the nitty gritty.

I went to my appointment, still thinking that I’d walk out with a prescription for Metformin or progesterone again. But instead, Dr. G and I had a good talk about not just the current situation, but also about Studly and I’s TTC journey. He asked how I was doing… not just how I was doing. I really appreciated that, since it’s not necessarily something that a lot of doctors do. I also told him about our upcoming move and how that could effect things. We talked about what we’d tried in the past, treatment plans for both the lack-of-cycle issue and TTC, and on the way out he made some jokes about the Great State of Texas before telling me he was happy for us and that we’d love it there. All in all in was a good visit. I walked out with orders to get my TSH (thyroid) and HCG (pregnancy) levels checked again, as well as an ultrasound of my ovaries and endometrial lining (both a pelvic and a transvaginal… blech). So basically, my 30 minute appointment turned into an all-day affair.

Lucky for me it was all sunshine and rainbows. Well… There weren’t a ton of rainbows, but it really was a beautiful, sunny day. So the wait between appointments wasn’t so painful, in the end. 😉

Anywho, 2 short days later I got the call with all of my test results, and to my surprise it was actually Dr. G that called to deliver the info, not a nurse like I’d actually expected. (Have I mentioned that I love this doctor?!). Everything came back as expected – TSH was normal, HCG was negative, and my endometrium was thicker than would be ideal, so I was going to do a round of progesterone to kick start a cycle.

Well, I started the progesterone on Friday and now I’m just waiting for the desired effect. Shouldn’t take too long… at least that’s typically how things work with my body (excluding only one time, that is).

At the appointment, we also talked about future plans, such as whether or not I’d take Metformin again. We discussed my experience when we attempted a round of Clomid a few years back (no thank you) and his suggestion to try injectables over Clomid if we wanted another go in the future, since they can be more easily regulated day-to-day than the Clomid can (which means fewer, less-intense side-effects, thankthegoodLord).

So I’ll have to give you the scoop on our past attempt with Clomid, as well as the low down on everything else we’ve attempted while TTC… and even the things we’ve opted not to try, on our journey. But alas, that’s it for now.

What’ve you guys been up to? Feeling healthy these days? Do you like your OBGYN or any of your other doctors? Spill!

~ Hope

A Good Place

I know that I’ve already told you about my desire to be a mother and how it comes with it’s ups and downs.

Honestly? Right now, I’m in a good place.

We have a lot going on, right now – We are getting ready for a big (BIG) move. We are getting ready to finally sell the house that we are currently renting out. We are making some pretty big life changes, and that’s all good.

Maybe I’m just distracted by all that’s going on, but regardless… I’m good.

I know that it’ll happen in Gods perfect timing, and that timing will be WAY better than my own “now now now!” perspective. And I know that very day that passes means that I’ll appreciate the moment when it finally happens that much more.

I also know that the fact that we’re spending our time bettering hearts, our relationship, our health… It just puts us in an altogether better place for when it does finally happen and we do become parents.

There will absolutely be rough times. But right now… This is one of the good ones.

And I am eating it up as much as possible.

I promise to stay real with you. To share the tough times, just as I’m sharing the good ones (but probably with more detail).

In the meantime, I’m praying for those of you who are still waiting on your littles, like we are. I’m praying for those of you who aren’t at a point yet where you want littles. And I’m praying for those of you who don’t ever plan to have littles of your own and are good with just being you. Whichever stage you’re in, you are loved and you are valued.

Life is way too crazy to go it alone, so I’m glad you’ve chosen to share it with me. *Hugs

~Hope

The Babymaker

I’ve shared about my desire to be a mother, but I’m a full-disclosure kind of gal and honestly, I left out quite a lot of information about our journey to make it happen.

Long story short, I have something called PCOS or PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome. It boils down to the fact that rather than releasing eggs during ovulation each month, my eggs stay in or around the ovary and attach themselves, becoming cysts. There are many variations to PCOS, which is why it’s referred to as a syndrome, but the truth of the matter is that the many variations also make it hard to pinpoint to exact treatment necessary to prevent this from happening in each case diagnosed. That’s a very short and condensed version, but it is what it is.

The fact of the matter is that many people with PCOS are still able to conceive without medication or medical intervention. In some cases, even just simple low level meds are all that are needed to result on conception. Then in other cases, whether there are additional medical issues combined with the diagnosis of PCOS or not, some women still have varying levels of difficulty or just cannot conceive on their own.

Enter such options as hormonal injections, IUI (InterUterine Insemination), or IVF (InVitro Fertilization)… and honestly quite a few other options anywhere in between. But I am not an expert on infertility or fertility struggles. In fact, I know more about fertility and reproduction than the not-so-successful side of things, thanks to an over-fascination in the human body growing up combined with my work in a pregnancy clinic a few years back.

Anywho, we’ve tried a couple different medications to try and get my body working the way that it should, but not much has stuck for us. I decided early on that I didn’t want to do anything super invasive and Studly agreed. Not only because I’m a big fan of adoption, but also because I’ve watched people go through various injections and procedures and although it is effective much of the time, it also comes with some pretty crazy side effects and can make you crazy emotional.

Look – I’m a chick, so I’ve got more than enough emotion to tide me over from now until the cows come home. Just ask my husband. But when it all boiled down, it’s just not something that Awe wanted to put ourselves through.

At the end of the day, it’s a 100% personal decision. We don’t think that there’s anything wrong with someone choosing a different path, because they need to figure out what’s best for them and their journey to having a family.

So here we are – trusting in God’s timing and his plan for our lives. Trusting that he’s put this desire in our hearts for a reason… and in time, he’ll make it happen and it’ll be good… and perfect… better than we ever could dream up in our short-sided minds.

~Hope

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