Infertility is a daily struggle and battle, both emotionally and physically, that takes a toll on so many aspects of one's life. During this week there are a lot of different things going around in the "blog world" to help raise awareness. One of those is called "Project IF" which asks people to talk about all the questions and uncertainties that come with this struggle. The title for this project stems from two different things. First of all, infertility is abbreviated to "IF" quite often online. Second of all, there are so many "What If's" that come with infertility. I wanted to share with you a very moving video that a woman made as part of this project. You can find her blog here. Please take just a few minutes to watch this video and always be praying for those affecting by infertility. Thank you.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Right now, during the week of April 24th - May 1st, it is National Infertility Awareness Week. A great website to use during this week comes from the organization Resolve, which is the National Infertility Association. I encourage you to check it out to see what you can do to get involved, or just go there to simply learn more about what 1 out of every 8 couples are going through.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
This post-surgery "resting stuff" has been pretty nice. However, this post-surgery "resting stuff" for an entire week straight can also get pretty boring, pretty quick. Therefore, I have tried to find small things I can do to keep myself entertained while still sitting on my booty. A few months ago I found a really cute idea for a scrapbook paper wreath on the blog Razzle Dazzle Crafting. I decided to give it a shot myself to make a spring wreath and this was my results...
Cute, right?? And it's sooo simple!! Here's the process:
First you need to cut out lots of approx. 1x6 strips of paper. I simply cut a 12x12 piece of paper into twelve one inch wide sections. I then cut those in half lengthwise to get 24 strips out of one piece of paper. Next, I put Mod Podge on the front and back of all of the strips. This step is a little tedious and definitely isn't necessary, but I personally think it makes everything a lot sturdier so the wreath will last longer and store better.
Once both sides have dried you staple the ends together to make little loops out of the paper.
Then you simply hot glue your strips onto the wreath to cover it!
I wrapped my styrofoam wreath in ribbon for a nicer look whenever there are some spaces showing in between the paper. I generally use 4-6 different designs/types of paper. With getting 24 strips out of each paper, this makes enough strips for two wreaths.
Also, the wreath I used the first time had squared off edges. I later found some wreaths (at the Dollar Store!) that were completely round and I liked that look a lot better. This was such a cheap, simple, and easy craft to make! I will definitely be making more of them. In fact, I have already made one for the Fourth of July and Halloween!
I would say the total cost for each wreath is about $5.
Styrofoam wreath - $1 (Dollar Store)
Ribbon - Approx. $2-$3 (I've had to use about a roll and a half on each wreath)
Paper - Approx. $2 (I bought a huge seasonal pack of paper at Hob Lob when it was half off for $10. I could make at least 5 wreaths out of each season from the pack, so probably about 30 wreaths total could come from the whole package. This is also nice to use because that way the paper already matches and coordinates for you!)
Now I'm off to cut strips of paper for a nice Fall wreath! And do some actual resting, of course! ;)
I'm linking up here:
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
I went in for my laparoscopic surgery at 7:00 this morning and am now at home resting. Everything went great with no complications. When I first had this surgery in December of 2007 I was diagnosed with being at a Stage 2 out of 4 of endometriosis. Today, two and a half years later, I was still at a Stage 2! That was such great news to hear!! Some of the endometriosis had begun to grow outside of my uterus, but the great Dr. Nilson was able to burn all of it off! He said that my tubes were clear and my ovaries were good now. He had to remove some endo off of one ovary, but after that things were looking good in that area. So now it's just rest time for the next week. I am definitely going to be enjoying that!
There's a lot for us to think about in regards to where we want to go from here. One of the doctors I work with adopted his daughter. He has begun to put some "feelers" out for us with his hospital connections to see if he hears of any mom's who are pregnant, but are wanting to put their child up for adoption. Now that I've had this surgery and have been "cleaned up" a bit, we're wanting to try for a little bit on our own again to get pregnant. The plan for now is to wait things out for about three months, until August. If August comes and we're not pregnant or have no adoption leads then we might start looking more seriously into doing some IVF treatments in St. Louis.
So that's our plan for now. Of course, things could completely change come tomorrow because that's simply our human plan, but we know that God is ultimately in control. He may come in and shake things all up, but we are more than okay with that. I may overuse this word on my blog, but I truly, truly am blessed and trust God's plans more than anything I could ever imagine for myself.
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And now, for your viewing pleasure, here are some pictures of my endometriosis from today! If you're squeamish, look away now, but, personally, I think it's pretty cool!
This first picture is of some intestines along with some endometriosis. If you look in the back you can see some white stuff. That is an adhesion from the endo.
Here are two more picture of the endometriosis. In the first one, if you look close, you can see a lump with some white, glossy stuff around that. That is an adhesion along with scar tissue. In the second picture, you can clearly see the endo adhesion where the laser is pointing.
These two pictures are of the removed endometriosis. You can see the "holes" or kind of "dips" from where some of the adhesions once were.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
This weekend was spent celebrating my lovely mother's birthday! We won't say how old she is, but I will say she looks great for her age!! She may not think so, but she is beautiful! She is an amazing mom and I love her so much!
Tonight some of the fam got to get together just to celebrate her. Yesterday, while she was at work, I went over to her house and put some balloons up and left her a basket full of goodies. She was pleasantly surprised by it all! Happy Birthday Weekend to you, Mom! I love you!
Some OSU-themed balloons I tied on the mailbox
And a balloon for the front yard
And, of course, some balloons inside too!
Her basket of goodies...Starbucks frappuccinos, Whoppers eggs, a Heath bar, Coconut M&M's, and some foot scrub!
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Last weekend was a busy one for me, but oh, so much fun! My Friday and Saturday morning were spent with my brother and sister-in-law, Michael and Ashlee. We had a garage sale at their house and it was a lot of fun just getting to hangout for hours! But the best part of all of it was...despite the fact that they had a lot of stuff in the sale, they gave all of the money that was made to me. It's to go into our "Believe" fund that we have for eventually finding our way to becoming parents in one way or another. I couldn't believe the selflessness they had for me. Ashlee thanked me several times for having the garage sale and helping her get rid of her "junk." I was amazed that she was thanking me when she was giving me all of her money! And she's not the first person in our lives to do something like this. One of our best friends, Amelia, gave me half of her JBF money because she claims I "helped" her with getting it all together! We have such great people in our lives!
On Friday night we hung out with our good friends Chris and Amelia. We had our typical "Dinner & a Netflix Movie" night. It had been quite a while before we had gotten together with them, so it was really nice to get to do it again.
Then on Saturday evening Mike and I went to our first Driller's game of the season with my parents. It was great to actually be at a game in the new stadium! Although we didn't get to see a win, we did see their first home run of the season. It was a lot of fun and I'm so glad that baseball season is here!
Like I said, it was a very busy, but fun weekend. I am truly blessed in my life. Blessed beyond measure and more than I could ever imagine. Life is hard, but life is also blessed, and I think it's that way for most people. So I choose to focus on the blessed and make the most out of this life that I have been given.
Mike doing his part at the garage sale...hanging out inside watching "Dora"!
My parents at the Drillers game.
A beautiful evening game of baseball!
Saturday, April 3, 2010
Some days are hard for the hubs and I. Okay, most days...okay, fine, every day. Yes, every day is hard as we long to hold a baby in our arms. But we also know that we are blessed beyond measure and don't want to wish our lives away by any means. It can definitely be fun being "just the two of us" and we want to take advantage of that time we have together. Therefore, we are trying to do as much as we can together during this stage of our life. So for our mini-adventure today we headed out to the new Driller's stadium, ONEOK Field. It was the first day for it to be open to the public. You could just walk around yourself and check things out. We both love baseball and had a lot of fun! We were there for about two hours and really enjoyed ourselves.
Gorgeous stadium with great views of downtown!
Diamonds are a girl's best friend!
A new picnic area that will be great seats for catching homeruns!
Definitely a fun day! We can't wait for baseball season to get underway!
Friday, April 2, 2010
I went into my doctor today to discuss possible surgery and left with a surgery date for April 21st, just two and a half weeks away. He sat back, told me my options, and said that it was my decision. It just seems like the best idea to go in there and "clean things up" some if we're going to be continuing with fertility treatments anytime soon.
Thankfully this is just an outpatient surgery, but it will take me out of work for a week. The toughest part will be deciding where to go from there. There are several different options that all have several different emotions wrapped up into them.
Option #1: Continue with the IUI (intrauterine insemination) fertility treatments. While still expensive, this is the least expensive route for us. It also happens to be the one option that is least likely to give us the results that we are looking for.
Option #2: Move on to IVF (in vitro fertilization) fertility treatments. We would go to St. Louis for this and it is insanely expensive. I can't even begin to wrap my mind around the costs, but it would probably be at least $15,000 for each try. However, that doesn't include any of the ultrasounds, medications, or travel costs. That is simply the price for the procedure itself. But, we can be pretty much guaranteed to get pregnant through this process.
Option #3: Move on to Adoption. This can also be quite expensive, but there is a $10,000 tax credit available which could help with some of the costs. We have always been interested in adoption, long before we even got married and knew anything about our fertility problems. But there is also a lot of fear and unknown with this route.
There are many decisions to be made. We know that God will lead us in the right direction, but we still ultimately have to make the decision ourselves. Some days we feel lead to one option and another day we feel lead to something totally different. It's a lot to take in and process, but we will just have to handle it day by day and see where we are taken.