Infertility: Jess’s Story

If you haven’t read my back story, you can find it {here}. My husband and I struggled for over ten years to conceive.  I’m writing to you today to fill in some of the gaps from the previous article and share some of my struggles and triumphs during those 10+ years of infertility. We went through every emotion you could think of and then some. Where Do We Go From Here? :  The Early Years I had a miscarriage in 2001 and was told that I could get pregnant again when we were ready.  Well, the first pregnancy was a bit of a shock so we decided to wait a little while before we would try.  When it wasn’t coming so easily, we just kept trying.  I can’t tell you how many pregnancy tests I took during these years.  Every time my menses was a little irregular or I felt the slightest bit odd, I’d take a test, just in case.  Disappointment would follow, but it would last only for a bit before I was hopeful again.  I developed a bleeding issue at one point during this time.  It would come and go, and because of my lack of knowledge, I shrugged it off and went about my life like nothing was happening.  I look back on that and want to tell my 22-year-old self to get myself to a doctor or naturopath and have it checked out pronto!  I was a naïve 22 and just hoped it would work itself out.  It kept resurfacing.  So I had it checked out after struggling with it for over a YEAR!  Something had to be done.  My system was a wreck.  Tests were done and the results showed that I was insulin resistant.  I was put on medication and sent home.  I was hopeful that this would normalize my system and put us on the path to conception. Plugging Along :  The In Between Years These times were a little less exciting, but born out of necessity to increase our chances at conception.  During these years, we explored medical explanations for why we weren’t getting pregnant.  I saw different doctors who confirmed I was insulin resistant and possibly had a cyst or two on one of my ovaries.  I was told to up my current med and given an additional one.  Together they wrecked my body (weakness and nausea) and kept me in bed a lot of days.  I battled depression silently.*  I am, by nature, a very outgoing and positive person and the burden of “being a burden” was so great for me that I didn’t share my depression with anyone until I was on the other side of it.  I look back on those days and thank my Lord that He spared me from more pain and suffering and that He got me through those dark days fairly unscathed.  It was only by His grace and provision that I am able to share this with you now.  During these years we also tried fertility drugs (Clomid) and natural creams (progesterone) and supplements. The Clomid just made me tired and physically ill. The Clomid just made me tired and physically ill. We only did one round of that and stopped.  There were a couple other things I took during those times, but I can’t remember the names.  We never felt like in vitro was something we wanted to do.  We understand the mental and physical aspects of it, since we have dear friends that conceived their two beautiful daughters that way.  At the tail end of these years, we decided to keep praying and wait on the Lord. *If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, please seek out a friend, family member, or professional.  You can even reach out to The Snap Mom.  Please don’t go through it alone; there is help available to you.  You are loved! Heart Change :  The Latter Years These years brought healing and restoration.  At this point I was off all previous medications.  During these years my husband and I spent lots of time waiting on the Lord.  We didn’t talk about conception much (to others or to each other).  We would share our dream about becoming parents, but it wasn’t at the forefront of our daily conversation.  However, we often encountered reminders that we weren’t yet parents.  When we encountered those reminders, we would communicate our fears and struggles to each other and pray.  We always allowed ourselves to be sad.  But in these years, the sadness lasted only a moment and was usually followed by praying together.  Some late nights were spent just crying and praying. We never stopped praying for God to bless us with a child. [pullquote_right]We never stopped praying for God to bless us with a child. We explored adoption and foster parenting (we had done so during the in between years as well), but we never seemed to be on the same page about it.  Have you ever been there?  Where you’re pro something and your mate is anti and then the next month you’re anti something and they’re pro?  Never really on the same page.  We have learned in our marriage that we don’t go forward with big things unless we are in agreement on it.  Because it doesn’t get much bigger than bringing a child into your home, we never went forward with it.  We have amazing friends and family who have begun and  added to their families through adoption and we’ve seen how beautiful it can truly be.  It is never off the table for us.  We continue to seek the Lord on this subject and pray that He opens doors for us to get involved in whatever capacity He chooses.  Some of our friends have actually started an adoption assistance foundation called Pure Gift of God.  If you’ve ever been interested in opening your home to a child in need of a forever home, please visit their website here.  But I digress…during these years also came much healing.  My husband and I drew closer to each other and to the Lord thru these years.  We each had our own struggles and hurts to overcome.  God healed our hearts during this time.  He brought us to a place where we were content in the life He had given us.  We never stopped believing that we could get pregnant (with God all things are possible – nothing is out of His ability) but we stopped being devastated by it.  Life could go on and it could be beautiful.  I came to a place where I would tell God “I will love you anyway.”  That was a game changer for me. Overcoming :  A New Day Dawns 1456096_10152044046959394_1482298831_n I have always been a thick girl.  I struggled with my weight most of my life.  In early 2011 I was the heaviest I’d ever been and wanted a change.  I had tried to lose weight dozens of times in my life and it never really “stuck.”  I would usually gain it back and then some.  I know a lot of you reading this can relate to that.  In a January 2011 journal entry that I’ve only gone back to reread once, I recall crying out to God to heal my body and confess to him that I had a food addiction.  I wanted to be free of it and wanted my body to be whole again.  I wanted to feel better, be better, and thrive.  I had already given up diet soda, but in March of 2011 I embarked on a journey to get healthy.  God allowed me to get healthy and lose some much needed weight through proper whole eating and exercise.  My diet was very similar to the Paleo diet but with some added dairy.  Basically, I eliminated refined sugars, grains, starches and processed foods.  I also took a hormone supplement to help balance my hormone levels. During this time I would get on the scales and tell myself “I am a daughter of the King, this number does not define me!” True story. During this time I would get on the scales and tell myself “I am a daughter of the King, this number does not define me!” True story. Haha!  One thing I have to mention is that I prayed for healing of my mind and body during this time.  I didn’t want a temporary fix.  I wanted this change to happen from the inside out.  I try to have a daily time set aside to pray and sing and it was during one of these times that I felt that God had healed me.  It wasn’t some artificial-pseudo-psycho feeling, it was a true knowledge that God had healed my body and emotions.  I told my husband and his reaction wasn’t exactly what I was looking for (I wanted him to jump up and down at least once or twice.  I mean, give a girl a high five!)  but he believed that it had happened and rejoiced with me.  I kept plugging away at this lifestyle change that was happening.  It’s crazy, but the weight just fell off and soon I was running sprints with my husband around the neighborhood.  It was the best feeling!  I was able to run (short distances, but who’s counting?) and not grow weary.  That scripture in Isaiah came to my mind.

“but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” -Isaiah  40:31

I seemed to be living exactly what Isaiah was saying.  As I continued to feel better, I saw more results and lost 76 pounds!! 1474658_10152044111269394_765176535_n Around this same time, I took a pregnancy test and the extent of my healing was realized…..I was pregnant!!  It was a SHOCK to my husband and I.  We were beyond happy…. I remember all I could do was sit on the toilet and cry. (Great visual, I know.) God had answered a 10-year-long prayer and we were officially on the road to becoming parents.  Was this real life?  Yes.  It was.  A journey of faith was about to begin.

 

 

 

To read Jess’s Journey Through Infertility click {HERE}

More more inspirational weight loss stories click {HERE}

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