Happy New Year!

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And there you have it! We have entered to 2018, and I think I’m ready! Our 2017 was a whirlwind and seemed to have lots of ups and downs. Hubby and I seemed to stay healthy for the most part but poor little Josie girl had her fair share of ear infections and strep throat which led to her having her tonsils and adenoids out. The weather here in Washington was really gross until about June and then the rain went away and it got super hot! Never seems like theres a happy medium… 2 weeks before Christmas Darrell surprised me with the suggestion we head to California for Christmas and I had never been so excited to go back with family for the Holidays. I knew what it meant; a very long drive, jumping from house to house, a whole lot of packing, and much more, but all of it sounded wonderful! So we went. We soaked up so much sunshine, so much sand, and as much family time that we could have endured and although we’ve only been home only less than a week, I miss California so so much. But, here we are back in Washington and its time to get this year moving.

So far I’ve not been very productive and feeling a bit lost. Josie went back to school yesterday and Darrell went to work and although I was sad our family time was over, I was glad to have time by myself to get things done. So, I spent the day cleaning, doing laundry, cooking, you know all the housewife type things… Today I woke up feeling different. I woke up feeling unproductive, and just down in the dumps. I once again felt defeated by infertility and I hated it. I am so fearful of the future and while I’m confident in the clinic that we now have chosen, I’m not that confident in myself. I also never do well in limbo so while I know transfer won’t be too far away, I HATE waiting. So, for now, we are working on transporting our little embies to the new clinic and getting started on my cycle. There are some days where I want to scream out to the world, “don’t you know the shit I’m going through?!” but I don’t. I stay quiet. I quietly think my thoughts and just work through them.

I don’t know what this year will hold, but I can only hope that one of these little embies will snuggle in tightly and we will be able to welcome a baby into our lives. I’m trying to stay positive and really appreciate all of your love and hope for our family.

Always XOXO,

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Getting back on the train… and stuff

Well, I’m happy to say, we are moving forward with transferring one of our 2 sweet embryos again… While this journey is very long, hard, sad and time consuming, I’m proud to say that it humbles me and helps me know who I am. As Christmas is approaching, I realize that I need to be in the now. We have our Josie girl who deserves not only the very best Christmas, but also she deserves for her parents to be present. I feel like infertility takes over my mind/life and my family that I have now, are the ones I am so thankful for. Yes, I question why its been so hard for us, why things just aren’t working out, but in all reality, this is just part of our life, not all. The bigger part is the little girl whom we adopted 5 and a half years ago, the little girl who I love so very much and I find many days I am not present because of my infertility. My husband is my other part, my other half. I also need to be present there. We are our unit right now, and if and when that changes, we will very happily welcome whatever that means.

The other day Josie says, “Mom, you are always on your phone”. I almost started crying. I felt awful, like the worst mom ever, and realized that things other than her and hubby are consuming me. I felt angry at todays society, that texting, facebook, instagram and all the other stupid things consume so many people. I realized the other day, that this needs to change. I like my social media, don’t get me wrong, but theres a time and a place. In 2018 I really hope to lessen my usage during the day. My instagram that I created for my embryo adoption has been the best thing for me. It helps me feel connected to the infertility world and I hope I have it for a long time, but I hope to be able to keep it to the evenings or when Josie goes to school. The other day, I got a comment on my instagram from somebody I used to be friends with. She doesn’t follow me but clearly goes on and sees what I’m up to. Well she commented on my post in such a negative way that it was kind of a wake up call. I realized that these places where I choose to share my life don’t need to be for everyone. I will keep it public, but I’m not looking for controversy or any negative support, so I will block and delete if I get that.

Some goals for 2018-

Less social media during the day

Learn to meditate

More yoga

Get to California to see family at least twice

More hiking

Blog more

and many many more…

I’ve not had a lot of thoughts to write about lately, but really hope I can check in more often! So this post was a bit of rambling, but just some random thoughts!

Love Always,

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I won’t let infertility win…

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Oh, I have so much to say and don’t know where to start. The beautiful flowers in this picture are from our embryo donors, I can’t express how special it was to receive them but it meant so very much. When starting the process of embryo adoption/donation, we had no idea what it would entail, but we are so lucky that we met our match and we feel so blessed to have it gone the way its gone… They not only donated their embryos to us, they have so much hope for them and know that they have so much potential.

With that said, unfortunately we have lost 2/4 embryos with my FET’s 😦 this has been an emotional ride and at times I have felt like too much to handle. With my first transfer, I thought it would just work, I would get pregnant and stay pregnant. Well, not so much, it failed. The questions remain; what failed? Was it my body? Was it the embryo itself? Was the unfreezing process? Was it the incompetence of my clinic? I don’t know and unfortunately I don’t know if I ever will. After the first failed transfer, it took many many days to get through these questions and processing it all. Nobody understood exactly the amount of pain I was in but I also didn’t need to share that with the world. Within about a week I was ready to move forward. I put the picture of our sweet embryo away and got ready to start the process again.When I got the call that I wasn’t pregnant I set up my wtf appt with the RE. Unfortunately he was out of town, so it would be about 3 weeks before we could go in. Once we went in, I had a list of questions and concerns to go over. Someone very dear to me who had been through the process many times helped me come up with some main points to discuss. This was important because during this infertility journey I have felt like these doctors rag doll and I let them run my show. I feel like they are so smart and know what they’re doing so they should be able to lead me the right way. Well, I went in with my questions and guess what, almost everything I said was shot down or bypassed. This was not what I was expecting but once again, I thought, he’s a doctor and knows best. So, we left with a plan of starting the process again and to go for transfer number 2, protocol the same, nothing different. What a fool I was/am, to listen and not demand a protocol change.

Estrogen and progesterone shots were exciting this time. Every time D and I would head upstairs for my 9pm shots, we were giddy and excited. It was like we both had the feeling that this was gonna be the one. During my 2ww after my 2nd transfer I rested for 3 solid days and then continued to be gentle with myself in that 2 weeks. I felt what I thought were symptoms every single day. I had twinges, sore breasts, cramps, you name it it was there. I was convinced it wasn’t just the progesterone, I thought “I am pregnant”.

Well, I got the dreaded call 10 minutes before I had to go pick up Miss Josie from the bus. Boy was that the wrong time. Why they had to wait 4 hours to call and tell me this horrible news, no freakin’ idea. So I pick up the phone, I hear “Happy Birthday to you, happy birthday to you” in the background and the nurse says, “oh hi Jessica. I’m really sorry to tell you that your pregnancy test was negative”. Not only was I shocked that it wasn’t positive, but I wondered why the f couldn’t she have gone in a quiet room and showed some compassion. Mind you the nurse that called was the same nurse that tried to do my SHG and hurt me so bad while causing so much trauma and fear. So there it was, the very sad news.

So, that day sucked, and the day after that sucked too. It didn’t get easier very fast especially as the next day was hubby’s birthday and we didn’t get to celebrate what I thought was going to be great news. This time hit me harder than the last. I guess I felt like now that I’ve had 2 failed FET’s then it was never going to happen. While I watch my family members fall pregnant, time after time, and it all comes so easy and naturally, it really makes me question any spiritual connection I thought I had. People said, “oh God is on this journey with you” “this is the one, God told me so” “I can feel it”, and after I got the news, I decided that I need to get back to reality and know that there is no magic or higher power that is going to make this happen. My body, the embryos and the doctors are in control at this point and if it works one day, it will be because of those things.

So now, 2 weeks after my negative results, I am moving on. I have switched clinics, with a consultation next week and we have some high hopes for whats next. I am sad still, and more scared than ever, but I can’t let it get me down. I will not let fertility win, not now and not ever. We want a baby in this family, more than ever… Miss Josie asks about the baby seed all the time and we just let her believe its just going to take a long time to grow, we will do everything in our power to complete our family, but right now, its not complete, we aren’t done yet.

Thank you so much for following my journey!

xoxo

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You Never Know…

Things have been a little different around here for the last few weeks and I realize I haven’t written a blog post in quite sometime but this is one I’ve been wanting to write for a while.

When diagnosed with POF, I felt so alone, so sad that I couldn’t conceive children, so unhappy. Through the years I learned to deal with it, read lots of books, and confided mostly in my sister and husband. Well in the last year since being very active on the fertility journey I have never felt so connected to the infertility world. I have met so many people who have had their children through adoption or some sort of ART- assisted reproductive technology, and actually have more virtual friends (Facebook and Instagram) than physical friends. Being on this journey has made me very vulnerable and much more outgoing than I’m used to but its the first time in forever I’ve not felt alone in this journey.

When I connected my blog to facebook I regretted it very quickly after as I realized I have over 200 friends on there who many are people that I haven’t seen or talked to in years. Yes we’ve connected on there, liked photos, maybe commented here or there, but most people didn’t know of my journey with infertility and I didn’t necessarily want them to.

Well, one day, a friend on facebook whom I see often but is more of an acquaintance, told me she had read my blog post and that she really wanted to talk. At first this felt weird but then when she continued on I realized she was also in the infertility world! She had told me that her children were conceived with donor sperm and explained her journey. She KNEW what I was going through. I felt so connected to her and so happy that she had read my blog. You just never know…

So this is why I wrote this blog. This woman was the very reason why I decided I couldn’t hold it back anymore. I wanted to connect with everyone I possibly could, I wanted them to know they aren’t alone and I wanted to feel like I wasn’t either. Now, since then, I have disconnected my Facebook from my blog but I am very much involved with my embryo adoption Instagram and embryo adoption/donation Facebook group and hope that I can get followers and at least my blog connected that way. The infertility world is brutal and it takes so much strength to power through. It takes a whole tribe of us to to get through it and if I didn’t decide to take the jump and be vulnerable, I wouldn’t have met all of these incredible and supportive people, I wouldn’t have met our embryos genetic family and I wouldn’t have continued this journey, I truly believe that.

So with that said, we aren’t alone, you aren’t weird or abnormal, and our babies will get here in some way, just don’t give up. I often wonder if I will become cold, and numb to it all, but I don’t think its possible, its just not who I am…

I’m here for you, and thank you for being part of my journey…

xoxo

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Who is JJ??

Who is JJ??

Oh the question who is JJ? JJ is our Josie Joy. She is the light of our life and the greatest gift to our family. When doing an open adoption, you never know what that entails. But for us it meant that we got to be in love with this tiny person before she was even born. There is the quote, “You grew in my heart, not in my tummy” and it is so very true. So much struggle with infertility and so much hurt, brought us to this person who we would get to be parents to. JJ’s birth mom allowed us into her lives, into her pregnancy. I got to know her, got to see how much love she had and how much she cared about this baby that was going to come into the world. I would take her to her doctor appts. to make sure everything was ok, I would take her to lunch, we created a relationship and for her I think this was important to know who she would be placing her baby with. Getting to see ultrasounds and learning if JJ was girl or a boy were some of the most special days. We were honored to be at the hospital when JJ was born and for me to be in the room was one of the most amazing things I could have ever gone through.

JJ came out perfectly pink and screaming her head off. Right then and there, I knew she was going to change the world, I knew there was something so very special about her. We took her home and life was like a whirlwind. She did all the things babies do; cry, poop, eat… She woke every 2 hours for many many months and loved to be held. We had a bassinet for her next to our bed but she enjoyed our bed so much more. So, for the first 6 months, we had this rolie polie baby in our bed, while mommy slept very little. At 6 months, after not sleeping more than a couple hours at a time, in her crib she went. That was the first time she had ever slept in her crib and the first time she slept 8 hours straight! The girl needed her space and so did mommy! JJ cried a lot as a baby, had reflux, and was often hard to soothe. She was strong willed at the start of her life and to this day is a firecracker in itself.

JJ loves, she’s hilarious, she’s emotional, and so incredibly smart. We as parents often tend to be biased on our own children, and at times I am, but her intelligence is beyond most that I have ever met in a 5 year old. She is witty and “gets” way more than she probably should. I don’t mean she can read chapter books, do division math problems, or has incredible book smarts, but her intellectual abilities are those of a 9 or 10 year old and sometimes I feel like I’m talking with a 12 year old. The things that come out of her mouth are often surprising, because you aren’t sure if she knows what shes talking about but then you realize she does. JJ has a heart of gold but is a very tough girl. She will put up a fight until she wins most of the time. She will watch a movie (Marley and Me) with me and she and I will be bawling together, like another adult.

Our JJ is loved by so many people in this world, and anyone that every meets her is so very lucky.

I could have never imagined such a perfect child for our family. She’s everything we could have imagined and more. SHE WILL MOVE MOUNTAINS AND SHE ALREADY HAS CHANGED THE WORLD!

That’s all for now!

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Pineapples are good for what?!

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So its been brought to my attention, that pineapples are good for implantation… along with so many other things. I’m trying to figure out how people came up with all of the things that are good for the uterus and will help your body to say YES to embryos!

Here are some of the things that I have been doing or will be that are supposed to help with implantation and support your uterus or pregnancy in some way:

  • pineapple core- pineapple core has bromelain which is really good for your immune system and can act as an anti-inflammitory. You should eat a few slices of the core every day for about 5 days after your transfer.
  • pomegranate juice- pomegranate juice apparently will thicken your lining and help blood flow to your uterus so I drink one big glass of it a day.
  • Brazil nuts- Brazil nuts have selenium in them which is supposed to help thicken your uterine lining. They also apparently increase blood flow to the uterus. You should eat 5-6 per day in your 2ww.
  • warm soup or warm anything- This helps to keep your uterus warm
  • red raspberry leaf tea- it is said to strengthen and tone your uterus, I drink 2 cups per day for a couple weeks before transfer.
  • legs on the wall- this provides circulation to your uterus and gets your blood flowing and will will thicken your lining. You can do this as many times as you like but a friend recommends no less than 2 times, morning and night for 10 minutes each. I think its a really comfortable pose so I do it sometimes more than the twice a day.
  • acupuncture- it is recommended that you do acupuncture for several times before an FET. Also, if possible to do it right before your transfer and right after (I’m working on making this happen). Acupuncture is so very relaxing but also supports your reproductive system, lining and helps with your hormones! I love it and fall asleep almost every time 🙂

and probably so many more…

So, I’ve come to love all of these things! I keep seeing pineapple things and now want my house with pineapple decor everywhere, ha! People say, “nobody used to do those things” or “that’s an old wives tale”. Well, yeah, who the heck cares. I also can’t get pregnant the good old fashioned way, so I’ll do anything at this point.

Well, that’s all for now! Thanks for reading and see you next time! Oh and if you have anything to add to my list of things to do, please let me know! Love ya!

xoxo

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Our Embryo Donation/Adoption

And so my dream was coming true to carry a child in my tummy… We were chosen to be the family who would hopefully get to be the parents of these sweet embryos. When most people look at embryo pictures, they see a few blobs but the day that I saw them for the first time, I could only imagine sweet little babies within… Its kind of like ultrasound pictures, when we saw our JJ on the ultrasound and then got the pictures, we could see this beautiful little face and when showing everyone else, they saw nothing. Its like I just wanted to hold them in my hands, warm them up and keep them safe, but I knew that they needed to be kept nice and cold to have a chance…

Our donor family chose us and for that we are forever grateful as I mentioned in another post. I used to think that people were silly for saying things happen for a reason, or whats meant to be will be… Well when our donor family chose us, I got an overwhelming feeling that this was the one, this was the one that was going to help me achieve my dream of carrying a child. Our families seemed so in sync even though we had never met. Our Donor mom and I had never met but we seemed alike in so many ways. We shared things about ourselves over the first few weeks of knowing each other and it felt so right. Our donors wanted an open relationship with the family they would be donating their embryos to and we were also wanting an open relationship. Just as our domestic adoption, we feel that it is so important for children to know where they came from, in any situation. There are children in our donors family that would be siblings to any resulting children with these embryos and we feel like it would be doing the children such a disservice by not allowing them to have a relationship with each other when they choose. We knew that we would be the parents of these precious embryos but that they had genetic connection with another family. This family has turned out to be such a blessing in our lives. Donor mom and I text on a regular basis, send emails when we can, and look forward to meeting in person in the near future. When she and I first started texting we found some really crazy similarities! Donor mom and I have birthdays one day apart, this was so neat because I felt like on an astrological side we would get each other. We both share the condition Premature Ovarian Failure and that is comforting as she would know what I was going through on a different level. One of the craziest things is that our JJ’s birth mom and our donor mom have the same first and middle names. She and I were both shocked when we found this out. I don’t have a relationship with JJ’s birth mom but had wanted one and the fact that our donor mom shares the same name, FIRST AND MIDDLE, was another “meant to be” moment. Donor mom also lives in a town with the same name as a town that I grew up in, the towns aren’t the same but because they have the same name, it was another “meant to be” moment! I know those are such silly little things, but they are some of what make it seem so right… Our donor mom is an amazing woman whom I respect and look up to. She is so very smart, and in R&D, which has been so helpful going through the whole IVF process. We often text about one day sharing our families with each other, having a glass of wine together, and walking down the beach talking together. Before the last transfer, our donor mom sent me a beautiful package with so much wonderful stuff in it. There was a pineapple shaped little dish, a bracelet of hope, chocolate, a little blanket, a picture frame, pineapple gum etc… She is truly a gift and I was so surprised to have gotten this from her. I wear the bracelet she got me every single day. We think our husbands would get along great once they come out of their shells and that our children would also get along so well. So, we can’t wait to see that unfold. We would like to give them a gift of thanks, but I have had such a hard time coming up with what I think is perfect…. Nothing seems good enough, so for now, I try and let them know our thanks and one day soon will give them something to cherish.

So back to the embryos- We had 4 beautifully graded, genetically tested and perfect embryos. Unfortunately, we transferred the one and only girl

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Our little girl embryo 7/26/17

in July and after a grueling  2ww, we learned that I got a BFN (big fat negative)! While this was devistating news, it didn’t take me long to keep going (this will be in another post). The fact that we have these 3 embryos left means that the train isn’t stopping. I still grieve the loss of the one and only girl embryo but also know that there is a reason that sweet embaby didn’t make it. I honestly feel that our JJ is supposed to be our only girl.

So, soon we will transfer a day 6 genetically tested graded AA fully hatched boy embryo.

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Our little boy embryo transfer coming soon..

This time around has been different. I feel scared and excited all in one. I don’t know how I will keep going if this embryo doesn’t make it and it will open a big basket of questions and some changes to our protocol. But for now, I’m trying to stay positive. I know that sometimes there is a learning process and I feel my last transfer was that. I have learned that I need to take care of myself, take care of the body that will be carrying the sweet embryo for the next 9 months. I plan to have several relaxing days after my transfer and do all the things that I didn’t do last time.

I love our embryos, I love our donors and I feel so blessed and so thankful to have the opportunity to get to this point. As I’ve said before, my whole life I wanted to be a mom, and with JJ I got that, and wouldn’t change it for anything. But there was still something I yearned for and that was to be pregnant. I want to feel those feelings, I want to go through all the motions of carrying the little person in my womb, and I will, soon…

Thats it for now! Love ya!

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