i've been trying to gather the courage that i need to write this post. i have been going back and forth trying to decide if i want to expose myself in the raw. this is of a very personal nature, more personal than i've ever written before and i tend to be a very private person when it comes to imperfections. though this imperfection is of no result of a personal choice, it is a trial that my Heavenly Father has seen fit to give me in my lifetime. if it is so difficult for me to write about, you might ask, "then why write it?"
well, back in april, i was directed to jessica's blog. someone i have never met, and someone i may never meet, though i'd love to! but when i read her post about lemons and lemonade, i felt an immediate connection with her. i could see from the many comments she recieved that she not only connected with many, but helped many, as well, myself being one of those. you see, she has been given the same trial that i have been given and she decided to make lemonade out of her lemons. i gathered much of my courage from her and many others who have had to deal with the trial of infertility, like we have.
unlike jessica, my infertility did not come as a surprise. back before i even knew mitch, i was told by an old, crotchety, byu doctor with a horrible bedside manner that i "just don't ovulate!" when questioned if this would be a problem if and when i wanted to have children he simply dismissed me with a, "don't worry about it!" he had just told me that i was broken and yet he told me not to worry about it!
well, needless to say, it bothered me a great deal that i might not be able to bear children. i had always wanted to be a mother and to feel the miracle of life move within me.
when mitch and i decided that we wanted to be married, i felt it necessary to let him know that i might not be able to have children. that afternoon, he took me up to provo canyon and we read each other's patriarchal blessings. i remember the moment, so plainly in my memory, when i read in his blessing that he would marry a woman that would bear his children! i began to cry and from that moment, i held tight to that promise of bearing his children!!
soon after we were married, we began trying to get pregnant because we didn't know how long it would take, plus we were no spring chickens!
after 2 months, thanks to modern medicines, we found that we were pregnant! we were so very grateful that there were medicines out there to help fix what was broken within me!
when nani was 15 months old, we wanted to try for baby #2. so, we started back on clomid. after 4 long months, we were, again pregnant. seeing that it had taken a little bit longer the second time around we decided to get started sooner with baby #3. the soonest i could start back on clomid was once lala was weaned when she turned one.
the third time around was the most difficult and heartbreaking. it was with the third one that it was necessary for us to be referred to a fertility specialist because the clomid was not working. after much blood work, and exams, and tests, and surgeries, we were cleared to try again. we had been at it for over a year now trying different fertility treatments and we still were not successful. we came to grips with the fact that we might not be able to bear anymore children and we began looking into adoption, when surprisingly we found ourselves pregnant again!
we have truly been blessed through this trial we have been given to endure. we have been blessed with wonderful doctors who have helped us through our journey of infertility. the Lord has been very mindful of our emotional needs and our limits, and He has greatly blessed us with three beautiful daughters! i am grateful that i was promised, through mitch's patriarchal blessing, that i would bear children and that we have been able to do so!
that brings us to where we are right now! currently, we have been trying since last october to conceive. only this time we had to be more aggressive because the clomid didn't work. last month, after reading all the risks associated with it, we started a cycle of coh (controlled ovarian hyperstimulation) in hopes to stimulate my ovaries to produce more than one egg follicle to increase our chances of conceiving.
while the overstimulation worked in helping me produce several eggs, it also resulted in my becoming one of the 33% of women that develop ohss (ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome) after using injectible fertility meds. basically, this means that my ovaries have become swollen and are leaking fluid into my belly and chest, which for my friends who see me in person, will see the evidences of this (overnight, i look like i am 5 months pregnant)! i am tired and uncomfortable and often in pain. i am gaining weight like nobody's business and i look like and waddle like a pregnant woman!
though it is an annoyance, i know this will pass. we knew the risks when we started, but we also felt that it was a risk we were willing to take. fortunately, so far, i only have a mild case and it hasn't gotten as bad as it could! we are praying that we have seen the worst of it and are waiting to see how long it will take to get my girlish figure back!
though our journey has been filled with bump's and pothole's, detour's and delay's, we have arrived at our destination every time. not as soon as we would like, but we do arrive! though this is not how we would have chosen for our journey to be, we are grateful for it! we know the Lord has been with us every step of the way and He will continue to be there for as long as we choose to continue on this journey.
infertility is a frustration, for sure. it is also something that is usually kept very private because of the emotional pain. unfortunately, this means that those who are experiencing it often suffer alone. though i did not rejoice in jessica's struggle with infertility, it was, as it always is, comforting to find someone else who can understand my personal trial of wanting something so badly that comes so easily to many, but is such a consuming, emotional roller coaster for us.
so, if you are one of the "infertile myrtle club", as jessica so lovingly called us, know that you are not alone! we are there too, and we have successfully fixed that which was broken 3 times now and are working on fixing it a fourth time. the journey is not always what you wished it would be, but it is still a beautiful journey!