Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Sharing My Story: Read at Your Own Risk!

Over the past few months, I've been through a lot.  I have thought about putting it on my blog, but just wasn't ready to do so yet, but I am now!

My life is usually an open book, and I will pretty much answer any question that anyone asks me.  Many family members and even my husband says that I tell people too much, but I think that anything I say could be helping someone out, and I try not to offend anyone by saying too much about certain topics.

But one thing I have been thinking about lately is that when little girls are growing up, most of us want the life of a fairy princess.  We have our whole life planned out...to marry our prince at whatever age we choose (mine was 22), to have a certain amount of kids by a certain age (mine was to have 4 by 30), and to live happily ever after (well that could still happen!)

Well here I am...I married at 24, had my first son at 27 (yes...I still want 4!), and I'm now 29.  My timeline definitely didn't work out the way I had planned.  I know that we can all learn the life lesson at some point in our lives...that the truth is no one's life is a fairy tale come true.  I do think it's important to allow girls to have hopes and dreams, but we should also be told of the reality of some situations.  God's plan is going to overrule our plan, and he will work ALL things together for good, according to HIS purpose.  I just always thought that our plans would be the same! :)

When I realized that I was not going to be married by 22, I was completely fine with it!  I graduated college telling God that I would be perfectly happy being single for the rest of my life and to please guard my heart from any emotions that could lead to an unhealthy relationship.  I guess that's when God realized I was ready to meet my husband... I met him the summer after I graduated, but that's another story!  We did marry two years later in 2006, when I was 24.

In my original timeline, I probably should have started having kids when I turned 24 if I wanted 4 before I was 30!  But I was completely fine waiting.  I wanted to spend time with my husband...just us!  So that's what we did.  We did talk about when we wanted to start our family, and we said we would get pregnant in May of 2008 and have a February baby.  Many things happened that month.  My sister-in-law suffered the devastating loss of her baby Luke when she was 7 months pregnant...on Mother's Day.  We had just started trying, and it hit us hard.  We realized that our timeline might not work out the way we wanted it too.  We decided to continue trying for a baby, but knew that it might take more than one month.  We did not know it would take us 7 months.  When we were going through the "motions," it seemed like 7 months was an eternity to conceive!! But now it seems like no time at all.  I have so many friends and family that have either taken much longer than 7 months, or realized that they might not be able to conceive their own child.  So 7 months was nothing!

When our blessing did arrive, we of course went through our ups and downs, but I knew I still wanted more and I wanted them to be close in age.  My sister's second daughter was born two months after my son and hers are 17 months apart.  That sounded good to me!  Well, right before my son's first birthday, my husband and I discussed having a second, and we decided we would start trying in November of 2010.  This would put our kids almost 2 years apart...if we were luckier than the last time.  Little did I know, during that discussion, we were already pregnant.  I took a test the day my son turned 1, and it was positive.  My estimated due date was May 30, 2011.  We were very surprised but excited that it happened spontaneously and without really trying.  We bought our son a shirt that said, "Shhh...I have a secret" on the front, and "I'm going to be a big brother!" on the back.  We decided we would tell our families around 8 1/2 weeks because we were going to see them all that weekend.  Our families were excited for us.  When I was 9 weeks, 1 day, my husband, Little Man, and I went in for our first ultrasound to figure out the true due date.  Unfortunately, we learned that our sweet baby had stopped growing at 8 weeks and no longer had a heartbeat.  We were heartbroken.  I had already started a second blog for that pregnancy.  I am making it public today, and if you are interested in more details of that pregnancy and that story, you are welcome to read it here.

The doctor's wanted us to wait at least one cycle before trying to conceive again, and by this time, we were both ready to hold a baby in our arms.  So we waited and found out we were pregnant again in early January.  About a week later, I miscarried again.  I couldn't believe that it would happen again...two in a row.  Again, we were told to wait one more cycle and that they would run some tests on me during that time.  We discovered that I "probably" have a luteal phase defect, and that my progesterone was normal, but on the low side of normal.  My doctor told me that we could take an aggressive approach and start Clomid on my next cycle at the end of February.  He said the Clomid would help me ovulate earlier and help boost my progesterone to help sustain the pregnancy.  He also said there is an 8% increase in risk of multiples, and that it could still take a few months for me to get pregnant again.

Well, we were now walking around on pins and needles, but we felt as though we were taking the right steps to adding a beautiful new blessing to our family.

Throughout the whole process, I was surrounded by the love and support of many women who had similar experiences.  I realized that God wasn't causing any of my misfortunes and heartache, that instead he was crying with me and holding me while I cried and didn't understand.  I also realized that I should be thankful in every situation.  My situation seemed like the worst thing to me, but it wasn't and it isn't, and it never will be the worst thing.  We all have our own separate heartaches and trials that we face, but we can help each other through those by talking about what we have been through and offer support to those who need it.

I was mad.  I cried.  I didn't understand.  I hated it.  But God was with me through it all...showing up through the loving hugs, words, faces, and relationships of those he put in my life at the perfect time.

I don't think I will ever look at "the bad things" the same again.  I will choose to look at my blessings instead, and use "the bad things" to grow stronger and help others!

If you are still reading...thanks for listening to my story.  If there is anything I can ever do to help you, my life is an open book, and I will gladly answer any questions or just listen.

Email:  mamasmessages@gmail.com

I love all of my faithful followers, friends, and family!  Thanks for your support and love!



Emily said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story! That was very brave. As I meet more moms, I realize how lucky I was with conceiving and carrying my little bit. But I'm also starting to realize that there is no certainty for the next one. I would love to read your new blog but was 'denied permission.' Know that a lot of people out in this world love you!!!!

Cool Gal said...

I am so sorry for you loss and all you have been going through the past few months (tears in my eyes). Your story is my story. I know it all too well.

I had three miscarriages before my son and two after (documented). They were devastating - especially the first one (I somehow got used to them - sound weird?). With the first one, I never even considered "miscarriage." I was even buying clothes for the baby. Then, on Thanksgiving day, in Moorhead Minnesota (4 hours from home), I lost that baby. I spent the entire afternoon in the ER in Fargo ND. We immediately left for the Twin Cities after the hospital visit. I cried all the way home.

It was a very difficult time in my life. I suffered severe anxiety attacks and found myself on medication to help "calm me" (Xanax - Yikes!). I didn't understand why it was so easy for my friends, but so hard for me (11 years ago, I quit the meds and discovered exercise. I swear it saved my life.).

When I successfully carried my son to term (bed rest stint when I started bleeding at 10 weeks), I learned a lot about what matters most in life - family (you're so right about the "bad things). I was very, very grateful for my "one" miracle baby. I still am to this day.

I believe God has a plan for us all. His plan for me is to be the mother of one child (not three like I had planned). A pretty great plan, if you ask me.

I think it was wonderful of you to post your story. Very courageous, too. There are so many women out there who are going through the exact same thing. I really wish there would have been "blogging" when I was trying to conceive. No one I knew was going through what I was going through. No one understood.

I am sure this is just a "bump in the road" and that you will soon put your arms around another bundle of joy.

Until then, chin up my friend. "Little Man" is such a blessing.

Southern Living: Preppy Style said...

Oh honey, it took a lot of courage to say all this and let it all out. I too have had multiple miscarriages, four in fact before Lallie, so we didn't even think we ever WOULD get pregnant. I was finally diagnosed with Hashimoto's thyroid disease and with great comfort, I was able to conceive and keep a baby. It's difficult and tough and there are lots of us out there that can sympathize and understand what you're going through. I had a song that helped me:

I'm trading my sorrows, I'm trading my pain, I'm laying it down for the joy of the Lord. I am pressed but not crushed, persecuted, not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed, I am blessed beyond the curse for his promise will endure and his joy's gonna be my strenght.
I'll be thinking about you dear!

Sweet Carolina Girl said...

Thanks so much for sharing with us! I am so sorry that you have had such a hard road, i can sympathize with that! I'll be praying for you & i hope that things will work out for you really soon! :)

A Babbling Brunette said...

I am so sorry to hear about your losses and your pain. I think it was very brave of you though to share this story with us. I hope you and your husband find the answer you need to keep growing your family. You will be in my prayers.

Kitchen Belleicious said...

Oh my sweet friend. What a wonderful story to share with us all so courageous to do so. I am headed to check out that other blog in just a bit but I want you to know that I was in the same boat. Both with meeting my husband (not my time but God;s) and with my miscarriage. I had one at 8 weeks too. We were so excited and ours happened really fast to that we were so surprised. It was May and we were going to wait until my family's HUGE 4th of July bash to tell everyone but unfortunately I miscarried before that and Patrick had to call my mom from the doc and tell her to fly to Houston to be with me. It was so hard but the Lord was just preparing me to be a stronger and more dependent person on HIM. 2 months later we got pregnant with Grant and he is perfect in every way. I love that your telling your story beacuse there are so many women out there that need to know it happens more than than you think. They also need to know that getting through it without the Lord is in my opinion almost impossible. He was my strength and my comfort during that time and I grew closer than I had ever been with him during it! Love you girl!

Fashion Meets Food said...

Thank you for sharing your story. You had me crying my eyes out reading it. My mum had me when she was 22 the doctors said that if she wanted a child she had to have it right way because of fibroid tumors that she said. After she had me she tried for another but it wasn't working - three years later she was able to have my brother which was some sort of crazy miracle. So there is always hope and always things that can be done to try and help you. I couldn't even imagine losing a baby twice that must have been beyond heart breaking! I wish you all the best. xo

Leslie said...

Thanks for sharing Anna! You are an inspiration and you never know how God may use these "bad thing" and misfortunes to lead others to Him. Praying for this pregnancy sweet friend!

Sweet Southern Prep said...

So well- written! Love ya!

Llama said...

Oh sweetie. I am so so sorry that you have been through so much. I think you are so brave for writing about all of this, because I couldn't imagine how hard it all is. I have to say thank you. Thank you for showing us that things may not always go according to plan. I never realized just how common miscarriages are until I got older and some of my close friends went through this. My heart goes out to you and anyone who has ever lost. I know that your positive energy will help you bring new life into this world and help you to be the amazing mom you are meant to be.