9. Appreciating the little moments

These past few days I have felt a new sense of positivity and purpose. I took all of my family’s home movies and I am going through them, putting them in order, documenting what’s on them and then I am going to transfer them to DVD for my parents. 

I have loved watching my parents snuggle me and play with me when I was just a baby. I have loved seeing myself, my brother and my sister playing together and giving each other kisses. I have loved seeing my grandmothers who have both passed full of life and joy. I have loved seeing our whole family together celebrating even the smallest things! I have loved seeing the smiles that my parents shot each other when they didn’t know they were on camera. I have loved every little moment of every video. 

I can’t wait to give my parents the DVDs filled with the best moments of our early years.  

These past few days have made me realize exactly the kind of parent I want to be. I want to capture my kids first steps, and their little giggles. I want to remember the little moments and the big celebrations. 

I am so lucky to have had the childhood that I did. My parents loved (and still love) each other like crazy. My siblings were (and still are) my very best friends. And our family was (and still are) closer than most. 

Capture everything. Celebrate the little things. 

Shannon. 

8. I’m okay. I’m not okay.

They cancelled my cycle yesterday. After spending $1200 on medications and 17 days of injections, nothing had happened. My follicles weren’t growing and my estrogen hadn’t gone up. The doctors still seem hopeful that eventually they will find the right blend and dose of meds and I will ovulate and then we will finally get to take the next step that we have been waiting for for what seems like forever.

Even with hopeful doctors, getting the call to say that my cycle has been cancelled still crushed me. I had really thought that with our increased dose something would happen. Of course I got the call as we were getting ready to go to our friends’ bridal shower. I gave myself 15 minutes to cry and feel sorry for myself – in reality I took about 35 minutes and rushed to fix my makeup as we ran out the door – and I told myself that I would spend the next 3 hours celebrating our two wonderful friends who deserve all the love and joy in the world.

I was doing great. I was smiling and hugging everyone. I took a bunch of beautiful pictures of the happy couple. It didn’t matter that on the inside I was holding myself together by a thread – my friends only saw happiness.

We went to the beach by our house to watch the sunset last night. I sat hand in hand with Tiff (our pup squeezed between us) and let the tears slowly stream down my face as I listened to the waves and felt the cool breeze on my skin. The thing with this process is that as much sadness as you feel, you know that every ounce of it will be worth it eventually. Sometimes the pain feels like it might be too much and then I remember that one day there will be a child in my arms and my heart will be so full – and the pain gets duller. Looking forward is the only option but I need to let myself hurt when it hurts.

Off I go – ready to start another cycle – still filled with the same hope, because what do we have if we don’t have hope?

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7. Clearing my head

With all of the thoughts of appointments, injections, follicles, babies and heartbreak – I find it hard to clear my head. There are so many little details that are constantly floating around in my mind but I know that for my own sanity and health, I need to do try to let the thoughts go, even just for an afternoon.

This weekend myself, Tiff, my sister and my mom went for a long hike with the dogs! There is something about being surrounded by nature and breathing in crisp fresh air that allows my mind to reset itself. We slipped in the mud, got a little bit lost, broke a sweat and laughed more than I have in the past few weeks … for the first time in a while my worries seemed far away and I felt positivity radiating through my body.

Obviously the day would have been even more enjoyable with a little baby strapped to my chest, but that will come eventually.

Taking a deep breath.

Shannon.

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6. Update and Opening up

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The injections still haven’t stimulated any follicles but I am feeling positive today. Our doctor increased my dose of FSH again yesterday and said that she is “going to make it happen” for us. She was so confident and it made me realize that she sees this all the time, I am not the first person to respond slowly to medications.

People do not talk about their fertility issues openly, most couples (or individuals) struggle though the process alone – feeling like nobody around them can relate. In the past little while, I have opened up to family and some friends about this process and I was met with overwhelming support and encouragement. I have friends who know other people who are currently in the same situation, I have friends who are looking into the process and had about 100 questions so they would know what to expect and even my mom struggled through a miscarriage before she got pregnant with me.

Opening up isn’t easy because the more people we open up to – the more people we have checking in (which is so kind of them, but on a bad day it just reopens the wounds) – but I am so glad to have opened up to the people in my life that truly care about Tiff and I. I am happy to know that I can hopefully help my friends navigate their way through the process and let them know what they can expect and I am happy to know that my mom and sister are always there to listen and hand out advice.

If you ever need someone to open up to – I am here.

Shannon.

5. Frustrated

I tell myself not to get my hopes up for any appointment, but guess what I do as I am sitting in the waiting room? That’s right – I get those hopes waaaay up.

Even with these injections, I have not had any follicles grow to even 10mm, which has been a giant disappointment. I truly thought that these injections were the answer. Today is only cycle day 13, but from the look on the doctor’s face when she told me that my estrogen wasn’t as high as they would like and that I had no follicles growing,  I feel like I should be a lot further along than I am.

I have read dozens of blog posts about other women with PCOS who take a little longer to grow their follicles and eventually ovulate. I really hope that I am among them, and that tomorrow at my appointment there will be some better news.

Send over some positive ovulation vibes my way please.

Shannon.

4. Update

Just a quick update on where we are at!

Today is cycle day 3 – so we visited the clinic for blood work, an ultrasound and they talked us through the next step which is injections. On the way home we went to our pharmacy and gave them the prescription. They are ordering it in, so we have to wait until this afternoon to pick it up but its going to cost us $365 because my benefits will not cover it. The costs associate with this process are crazy, I hate that this is the only option that we have.

Starting tonight I will take the injection every night, and on Saturday (cycle day 8) we go back to the clinic to test my levels and see how my ovaries are responding.

Here’s to hoping that this cycle works for us. I just want my follicles to grow big so that I at least know that pregnancy is a possibility!

Fingers crossed.

Shannon.

3. Feeling conflicted

I love babies. I love the joy that they bring to their parents and the other people in their lives. I have always been thrilled for family and friends that announce that they are expecting, heading out almost immediately to find a cute outfit or an adorable hooded towel to give them to get their baby item collection started! Nothing ever made me happier than seeing a woman in her third trimester, glowing with a beautiful growing bump. I used to google videos of people surprising their friends and family with their pregnancy news, and I would cry right along with the soon-to-be grandparents – genuinely so happy for these people who get to welcome a child shortly.

I am not this person right now and I am embarrassed to admit it. Every time I see a pregnant woman – jealousy radiates through my body. I still smile and congratulate her, because she deserves to be overjoyed, it just feels forced. A friend of mine posted a video on Facebook a few days back announcing her pregnancy with her first child (which is so unbelievably amazing and beautiful) and I cried…not happy tears, they were tears of self pity and extreme sadness. Tiffany held me while I sobbed “why can’t that be us?” over and over again. And although I can look at it now and see that my tears were selfish and the jealousy I feel is selfish – I can’t shake it.

I want to go back to my old self, feeling genuinely happy for other people who are about to become parents. It will take work, but I am getting there. If I could just get a baby into my belly already!!!!!

Shannon.

 

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2. Dear Tiff,

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You are going to be such an incredible mother. I have never met another person who is so full of love and life, you have every quality that I could ever want the mother of my child to posses. You make me laugh every single day, and I can already see you and our little one at the park across the street giggling away at some silly game that you have concocted. You are stronger than I could ever hope to be, you keep me going on the days when I feel like my heart is shattered and my body isn’t working.

I can’t wait to see you with our baby (or babies) in your arms.

Thanks for loving me back.

Shannon.

1. Introduction

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be a mother.

When I met Tiffany, it was like that moment in a movie when the couple first sees each other and everyone thinks to themselves “those two are going to end up together”. We had an instant connection and our relationship almost began itself. Our love came so easily – falling in love with her has been the most beautiful experience of my life.

We have a wonderful life. We have a dog and two cats who we love to pieces. We have incredible friends and family. We live in an area where we are constantly surrounded by beauty. But we want more.

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