Well, my goal was to update my blog at the end of every trimester, but…I don’t even have a valid excuse. I’ve just been TIDE! Lol! I am proud to say that I have journaled regularly throughout my pregnancy, and I am glad that I made that a priority. I already love looking back at the entries. Art even joined in in the beginning and took notes of some of the ridiculous preggo things I’ve said! Anyway, I’m going to write this blog post for a few reasons 1). I like to look back on these posts about special times in my life. 2). I’m also going to write this for those in a season of waiting – no matter what you’re waiting on! 3). Since I’ve mentioned having PCOS a few times on social media, several have messaged me wanting to know more. I know hearing stories like mine helped me during the TTC process. 4). Lastly, I’m writing this for other women that may be expecting. I’m going to try to keep up with blogging helpful things that have/have not worked for us on this journey. Art and I are new to this parenting thing, and you know what they say – there is no book on parenting (though I have read a few), so take it with a grain of salt.
Get some coffee, wine, water, snacks, etc. This is gonna be a loooong one. If all the reading isn’t for you, feel free to just scroll through enjoy a few pictures!
Now, I do realize that our trying to conceive journey is actually quite short in comparison to many, but that doesn’t take away the stress and hardship that we endured. In August of 2017, I learned that I was pregnant. I was shocked because we were not trying. Then a week or two later, I learned that we lost that baby, and that my hormones were all over the place because of PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome). In short, PCOS affects your hormone levels, and it is the number one cause for infertility. My progesterone levels were too low to sustain a pregnancy. I will NEVER forget waking up and knowing that I was losing that baby, and Art jumping out of bed and holding my hand and beginning to pray for us. I was pretty emotional, but I do remember him praying that God would bless us on His time and for our strength. I know Art was nervous and his mind was all over the place too, but he stayed as strong as one could. I appreciated that A LOT.
A few months later, we decided to be intentional with trying. I had my preconception appointment and the nurse practitioner at my OBGYN office (whom I LOVE) warned that it could take me months or YEARS to get pregnant with PCOS. She herself has it, and she’d been trying for FIVE years. She gave me her nutritionist’s (specializes in nutrition that aids fertility) number and suggested I cut back on all of the cardio. I took her advice – changed my diet to Keto, slowed down on cardio and started doing more strength training, and got the number of infertility doctors from co-workers. She also suggested I start tracking my Aunt Flo. I used an app called OVIA and ovulation strips (the expensive Clearblue and First Response ones with the smiley faces). Lastly, I used Ovasitol (from Amazon) in my water to improve my hormone functioning. If you know me, you know I did my own research, and I was committed. Not many knew all of the lengths I was going through – other than Art. All the while, I was being asked REPEATEDLY from family, friends, clients, and even my students when we were going to have a baby and if I even wanted one. I think that made the process far more stressful, and I swear to never ask another woman when she plans to have a baby or another baby. Every month I was on this merry-go-round. I would convince myself that if it didn’t happen, I’d be okay with it just being me and Art forever. We could easily travel and just be the very best God parents or aunt and uncle (in the future)…we don’t NEED kids! Then, I’d start tracking and get hopeful. We’d try. I’d take a test and find out that I wasn’t pregnant. My Aunt Flo would come. I’d sob. & the cycle starts again. It was torture honestly. During this time one of my best friends was pregnant. I’d call to check on her weekly, and she’d give me updates per my request, but she’d also check on me – “I read this book and you should try x,y, and z” or “Idk about you being my baby’s God mom because I have faith that this time next year, you WILL be pregnant”…man. My mom even said she would carry a baby for us, if it was still medically possible. She’d also insist that it would somehow happen one day. It’s important to have people that speak life into you during your season of waiting.
The nurse practitioner that I bonded with told me that she was finalllllly pregnant AND that she just had this feeling I would be too. She had this inclination that it would happen for me over the summer break – when I was more relaxed. I hoped she was right, and I heard a sermon on how we should wait on God to fulfill our desires. We should keep the faith and stop watching the clock and doubting him. I decided to TRY that and also do some traveling and just enjoy life over the summer. Art and I went to the Bahamas instead of any other country since it was safe from ZIKA – juuuust in case I got pregnant. I went to NYC for a week of professional development + fun, and I visited my family in Florida and my in-laws in Cleveland. Art and I had a blast…and we prayed A LOT. We prayed specifically about having a baby. Needless to say, I got pregnant…over the summer. It took us about 4 months.
THREE days after Art called me on his break to hear me crying because I had all of the signs that my Aunt Flo was on the way, I found out in the early morning that I was pregnant. The nurse practitioner responded to my message on a Sunday with so much excitement, she wanted me in the office first thing Monday morning to have my hormone levels checked. She assured me that this time, we’d be ready to supplement my progesterone. To our surprise over the first few weeks, my levels rose on their own. I should have seen God’s hand in this. SO VERY THANKFUL. If anyone ever has any questions, you can always reach out to me about this topic.