Friday, August 27, 2010


And I thought getting pregnant was supposed to be the hardest part.

Today, the calender tells me I am five weeks pregnant. I've been waiting literally for years to get here, but now that we've been blessed with this crazy roller coaster of a pregnancy, I'm more anxious than ever.

I wake up every morning and grab my chest, just to see if it's sore. Some days it's more sensitive than others, but I'm never happy unless my touch is accompanied by a bruised-like sensation. Then I run to the bathroom, checking for any sort of spotting so I can categorized the color as dark yellow, brown, pink, red, or a mixture of them all, followed by a quick pregnancy test, and the realization that I sort of wish I was a boy.

Because my husband has no fear of colored bodily fluids.

And no uterus to over analyze.

On Wednesday, I woke up to a little pink spotting and some very tiny, almost invisible clots of red. They were so minuscule, I almost thought I'd imagined them, but I still emailed my nurse in a panic, requesting one more beta lab slip just in case. Understanding how I operate-and still feeling horrible about our second beta mix up I'm sure-she obliged and sent me our fourth and final beta request which I printed out and drove down to the lab to immediately fulfill.


My beta's are still more than doubling. I know it's normal for most girls to spot a rainbow of colors during the first few weeks of pregnancy. And I understand that every little twinge I feel in my uterus, every morning I wake up and realize my chest is less sore than it was yesterday, and every time I see a tiny bit of pink in my underwear does not mean this pregnancy is necessarily over.

So why can't I just feel relief? Why am I more anxious today then I was last week when thought I had already experienced a chemical pregnancy? Why are high rising beta numbers not enough to ease my mind? Why do I feel the constant need to remind everyone who knows about this pregnancy that my betas are low and it may not last, as if I'm preparing them-and myself-for bad news?

Because I over analyze, and I know way too much. Because I've seen and heard more sad than happy stories from low beta numbers like mine, more than doubling or not. Because I know that spotting is never good, no matter the shade.

And because google is the devil.

No joke.

I'm incredibly frustrated with myself, because I know the real deal is that I'm experiencing a lack of faith. I'm ashamed to have had God show me so many amazing feet's in the past few months, yet I still question Him-and my situation-even when all signs are pointing to something worth celebrating. I almost feel like He'll end up punishing me for my unbelief in His ability to provide even more miracles instead of just trusting Him to have His way.

I do trust Him, I do know that God is powerful and omnipresent and capable of taking these low numbers and turning them into triplets. I know that He is watching over us and He has a great big plan for our lives. I know He can take this spotting, these low betas, and show the world His glory and power through this pregnancy.

But I also know that He may not choose to do that.

Fittingly, I'm reading through the book of Job right now, and I cringe as a follow the story of a faithful and righteous man who was robbed of his family, his riches, and his health yet still chose to follow the Lord and never once became angry with God or his situation. God allowed satan to utterly destroy Job's life, just to prove that Job would remain faithful; to show us all that it's possible to glorify God even in the worst of situations, leaving us no excuse to shake our fists at God when we get scared or angry.

I'm certainly not as faithful and righteous as Job was, but I can't help but compare myself to the possibility of his situation. No, God hasn't stripped me of my friends, family, earthly possessions or my health, but at times I feel so close to loosing the one thing I've wanted for years, and it terrifies me.

Although I haven't finished reading the chapter yet, I've read it before and I know how the story ends. After Job proves himself, continuing to praise God despite all he's endured, God restores all he had to start with, and then some.

I know that right now, I should spend more of my time praising God than worrying about what could happen with this pregnancy. I know I should be excited and hopeful, instead of leery and fearful. I should think freely about the possibility of holding a child in my arms this coming April, instead of the possibility of seeing nothing on our first ultra sound next Wednesday.

Right now my body is pregnant, but my head and heart still feel infertile, and it's a nasty place to be.

I understand that it's in my nature to worry, and that with low beta numbers that are still more than doubling-but slightly slowing down-coupled with random spotting, most girls in my situation would be feeling the very same things right now.

But I want more.

I want to celebrate and embrace this pregnancy. I want to wake up every morning and thank God for this gift, this enormous blessing, instead of fretting over symptoms and bodily secretions. I want to get crazy excited over a positive pregnancy test, instead of analyzing the darkness of the line or how fast it showed up as compared to the previous days test. I want to find that balance between being cautiously optimistic and ridiculously giddy, because we've waited so very long to get here.

I want to spend more time in prayer, and less time in fear.

Next Wednesday, I'll be five weeks and five days pregnant at our first ultra sound, and I'm anticipating seeing at least an appropriately sized gestational sac, yolk sac and a fetal pole at that time, since they should be visible between five and six weeks. By then, we'll know if this pregnancy is progressing as it should.

Some days are harder than others, and I've been told that it never really gets any easier. As the pregnancy progresses and each new milestone is crossed off, another rises and you hit a whole new level of anticipation. I also suspect this fear only increases once that precious child is birthed and placed in your arms, as your permanent responsibility for the rest of your life.

So I figure if I can't beat it, I may as well embrace it.

Today, I am a mother of a five week old fetus. My chest is sore to the touch, my beta levels are rising perfectly, my home pregnancy tests are turning positive for the first time in my life, and I've got more people praying for this tiny little blessing than I even know what to do with.

Last night, after our family pictures were over and everyone else had left, my husband and I stayed behind to capture a few shots of us holding our positive pregnancy test; which is something I've had my heart set on since two years ago. I already have a donated jogging stroller sitting in my garage, and I even know what brand of cloth diapers I want to use.

Despite my uncontrolled fear, it seems that God is right in the midst of making my dreams come true.

It's way past time for me to bow out gracefully and let Him take it from here, trusting that He has this under control.

Because He certainly doesn't need my help.

Just my gratitude.

"Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow."
-Author Unkown

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pregnancy, Pee Sticks & Paper Airplanes

I realize the chances of it actually happening are pretty slim.

But that doesn't stop me from wishing God would fly down a paper airplane, full of written instructions, clearly interpreted details and endless answers to life's greatest mysteries that would land gracefully in the palm of my hand.

But after spending the last three and a half years in the midst of trials and tribulations in the form of infertility, failed treatments and countless negative pregnancy tests, I've realized that God's timing is always perfect. And sometimes-if we just hold still long enough to look for them-we'll see His paper airplanes flying all around us.

I know this because I just found a few of my own in the form of low-but-rising-betas, a positive pregnancy test, and a precious little heartbeat on a fuzzy black ultrasound screen.

I still have yet to reach that coveted place of spotless trust, full peace and complete understanding, but I have accepted that God knows what He's doing, and that's a start. For some reason He chose us to venture along this journey, and though the heartache, tears, mental and physical exhaustion were immense, they were all worth it in the end.

Because we are finally here, growing our family and looking to God to send us His own version of paper airplanes to guide us along the way. Two IUI's, four IVF's, fifty-million prayers and several pee sticks later, we are finally expecting our miracle, and getting to this point has been anything but boring.

This roller coaster has brought us right to where God intended us to be, and the ride isn't over yet. But we serve a God that is gracious and merciful, and we are praying that He'll complete this work that He's started and allow us to raise this little one up to know what an amazing, miraculous story he or she has had since the day they were conceived.

So in the meantime, while we wait for God to send us down that paper airplane with all of life's questions answered, we'll praise Him for the ones He's already granted us, and watch patiently as this new journey unfolds and brings us even more reasons to glorify Him.

And His paper airplanes.

"Everything that's worth having comes with trials worth withstanding."
Kate Voegele