Endurance Brought on by HOPE

Endurance Brought on by HOPE

I’ve often wondered why I try so hard. I mean, this general wondering can be applied to just about everything in life – work, marriage, child rearing. Anything. But, for me it’s mostly that relentless need to keep the pursuit of a growing family. I believe this is where Proverbs 30:15-16 comes into play.

I’ve failed at many things in my lifetime most of which I simply stand back up, brush myself off, and walk on in another direction. So, what is it that keeps me going in this relentless battle to have my babies?

In this journey, I’ve always felt like if I could just try IVF that’ll be all I need. If I can just do that, if it fails, I will finally have closure and can move on. Last year, we did IVF, had our first frozen embryo transfer, were pregnant with twins, and subsequently miscarried both. If you’ve been following our journey, you know that we’ve been spending these last several months healing. #miscarriageisnojoke Read more

Basking In Projects – NIAW 2017

Basking In Projects – NIAW 2017

Have you ever been in a place in life where you look around and think “I should be more disappointed than I am”? That moment when you are missing a critical component to your life and yet, you have peace, joy, and just… shear contentment, anyways?

That’s where I am. Despite still missing some babies running around, I am basking in the sunlight that I find myself in.

I have so much coming down the pike and I am so excited about all of it. In this time of waiting, I have finally kicked my butt into gear and started getting stuff done. It was time to get cracking on those dreams I’ve had on hold for a decade or more and it just so happens that you guys get to share in the excitement. Read more

Guest Post: Nicole & Bryant’s Story

Guest Post: Nicole & Bryant’s Story

I am so excited to share with you Nicole & Bryant’s infertility story! Nicole is not only a fellow Infertile Myrtle, sister in Christ, and friend, she attends my church! Having a gal pal right there with me on the front lines of infertility makes it so much less lonely, amen?!?!

It was a complete orchestration of God’s hands that we crossed paths at this particular season of life. It has been amazing to see how He has been working in their life and how He has been strengthening and encouraging them, especially in the last few months. Completely AWESOME to witness!

I am so proud of these two for opening up about their pain and am honored to have the privilege of being their platform with which to do so. It absolutely takes guts and bravery to be transparent about something so tender!

Nicole and Bryant, God writes the most beautiful of stories and you will inspire many with yours.


 Nicole & Bryant’s Story

Bryant and I married on September 21, 2013. A beautiful day that ended in torrential down pours… very memorable. I think back to our wedding day and all the hopes and dreams we had. It was a plan really. We mapped out our next steps. We waited a year then start trying to conceive a child, build our little family. So, exactly at the 1 year mark all birth control stopped and the excitement of “when will the positive test come” was in full swing. Month after month we were hoping and praying this would be the one!

Pinterest became an obsession. What cool announcement are we going to post for all of our friends and family? Lexi, our fun-loving rescue pup had to be included of course! Nursery themes, what color to paint the room? What stuff could I buy now at a great deal so we are not spending a ton when we find out and why wait when today it’s on sale! If anyone knows me well, I am a very thrifty shopper. Yard sale season came and, at each stop, children’s books became my obsession. We almost have the entire Dr. Seuss collection plus over 100 other books that we MUST read to our baby.

Months came and went and this awesome dream started to turn into more of question mark. Isolation took over. Every new baby announcement, every baby shower invitation became harder to handle. I would make excuses for why I was “unavailable” to come. Knowing secretly I would just be at home asking God, WHY? Why is it so easy for everyone else to get pregnant and what is wrong with me?

After about a year, I went to my OB doctor and told them my frustrations. After a few initial tests and observations of my cycle, I was diagnosed with PCOS. My cycle was not normal and this could be the reason why we just kept missing our chances! Whew, load off…great now let’s just treat these symptoms and get pregnant! Oh…so I thought! A few months later plus a round of Clomid, I went for the ultrasound and no eggs! The nurse even asked me, are you sure you took the medication? Yes…it turned me into a crazy person! Disappointments were all around.

Bryant, my wonderful husband (might I add), told me one afternoon…”Hey, I made an appointment with my doctor. I just want to check my labs to make sure there isn’t something going wrong with me as well”. First of all what man selflessly offers to go to the doctor? He scheduled the appointment and everything! Results came back and we got even worse news. Sperm levels wouldn’t even register on the test.

We were advised to see a fertility doctor and a urologist. WHAT IS HAPPENING? Is this real? I was afraid and confused. I didn’t know anything about infertility. Selfishly, I turned to God and questioned why a lot. Instead of going to my heavenly Father for comfort, I basically shook my fist and questioned His plans. You see, they didn’t match mine. Infertility was not in the equation. We were already supposed to have a baby, not listening to a doctor tell me about exhausting procedures, more labs, more doctor visits, oh and this whole process not to mention is roughly 30k if you choose the package with the money back guarantee if you don’t deliver a baby. (And it’s not even the full amount of money back!)

My life changed the moment we walked into Ragland Memorial Baptist Church. To hear the word of God preached with passion. To hear the true and pure word, not a preacher giving a “self help” lesson. It brought me back to a place my heart remembered. The cold heart was renewed with the word of God. His love for me was never ending. His promises never fail; His work on the cross was not in vain. Jesus is the Holy Son of God. The one who loved me enough to die for my sins! It was time to ask for forgiveness and cling to His word. To love again, to feel normal emotions, to be happy for others, this is not the end of our story! My marriage got stronger, we prayed together, we leaned on each other, and we joined a small group and made some really great friends.

We finally opened up about our journey with infertility with a few people and our family. Jil Davis was a refreshing light to our soul. We would read her blogs and feel the same struggles but in the end we felt connected. We were not alone.

Every infertility struggle has its differences. For Bryant and I, IVF is our only option. Bryant will need surgery for the doctor to retrieve the sperm. We will have to figure out my crazy cycle to pin point the right time for egg retrieval. Even though we have no plan, our full trust is in the Lord. Writing this is still frightening but if Jil had never talked about her journey, we would have kept silent; feeling alone in this process since infertility is never talked about.

We ask for your prayers as we continue our journey. In the meantime, we are living our life in full preparation that God will one day give us a child of our own. We are holding on to each other and believing even our story could encourage others.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

NIAW 2016: The First Things I Learned @ Infertility

NIAW 2016: The First Things I Learned @ Infertility

Ah, my first lesson as an Infertile Myrtle. These were the first of many principles that God laid on my heart early on in my journey. Back when I was so self-conscious about my childlessness and felt debilitatingly alone. God knew my heart’s cries then as He still knows today. With each passing season, He shows me new and soothing bits of encouragement. I will always be a student in this way. And I’m ok with that.

Below is my second post during NIAW 2015. It was the second in the series of posts that publicly made my barrenness known to the world.

-Original Entry Date: April 23, 2015-

This past summer, while Brooksie and I were on our second trip to Nicaragua, I had the opportunity to share my story with dozens of men & women. The women of Nicaragua and our team were such an encouragement to me during that season. I had only just begun to open up and be transparent about my struggles. To hear our team lifting me up was incredible and even more touching was to have a older, Nicaraguan woman come to me, hug me and tell me a word of encouragement {in Spanish of course haha}. I didn’t catch all of it but I knew she would be praying for me in the days to come following that trip. “Los Ninos” anyone!?!
Today’s post I would like to share some highlights from the talk I gave that day. These are lessons that I learned early on through a passage in the bible – 1 Samuel 1 – the story of Hannah. 
a) God is in control – (vs 5). I know it’s cliche to say but it’s the truth. We are fearfully & wonderfully made. There is not one inch of us that is unknown to Him that created us. Not one emotion, not one tear, not one cell of cancer, not one twinge of pain goes unnoticed. I needed to trust Him. 
b) Expect enemies – (vs 6). Thankfully my husband doesn’t have “some old floozy” {in the words of Madea} provoking me to tears because she’s carrying his child and not me. I mean, Brooks would be in a world of hurt, right!?!?!? And thankfully, I am not surrounded by friends & family mocking me and speaking hurtful words. For me, my enemy has come in the form of thoughts. Too much stinkn’ thinkn’ as my friend Sharky says. It’s been said that our mind is our biggest battlefield. The thoughts that run through my head of fears, disappointment, anger, and bitterness were enough to send me to the loonie. We are to take captive every thought (2 Corinthians 10:5)! For those of you experiencing infertility, expect enemies in all shapes. They may come through thoughts, people, circumstances, anything. But don’t be discouraged. 
c) Don’t expect people to understand – part A: the husband – (vs 8). Y’all I AM BLESSED to have a husband with the caliber that he holds. Brooks is an amazing, incredible man. As perfect as he is to me, there is absolutely NO WAY he could possibly understand what I’m going through. Not only is he not wired with the same emotions & body parts but he is lacking the God-given drive to bear children. I can’t expect him to even begin to know how to handle this detriment. But back to the part where I said he is amazing – my Brooksie fully grasps Proverbs 30:15-16 where it states that a barren womb is nothing that can be satisfied, cured, fixed. Ah that word “fixed”. My man has that natural drive to want to fix his woman & family. He knows he can’t. And I can’t expect him to. My husband is the BOMB! He offers grace for my rants and seasons of depression. Love him! Infertiles, be careful how you relate to your husband during your time of infertility. He is grieving differently than you and wants to “fix” you but he can’t. Be easy on him. 
d) Don’t expect people to understand – part B: friends. As with my husband, I have INCREDIBLE friends! If you know anything about me, I lost many friends in high school and prayed for a very long time for a core group of friends that would love and support me through life’s ups and downs. God provided more than I could have ever imagined. My friends are truly the best. But like the husband, they likely won’t know what to do with you either. As great as my friends are, they haven’t always known how to handle my struggle. Many times, all we infertiles need is a hug, a movie date, or a shoulder to cry on. Your support doesn’t have to be in words. We likely don’t need advice from you but just need you to listen. Be that person we vent to (even if you’ve heard it a million times before from us). For me, laughter is good medicine. Make me laugh and you’ve done my world a huge favor. 
e) Our testimony is in our walk – vs 15 & 18. Over the last year, I have learned the biggest lesson of them all. By being transparent, not only do you help yourself but you help others too. That’s what this week is all about. I was killing myself slowly by keeping my struggle to myself. I had nowhere to vent, no one to cry to which only led to crippling loneliness. When I say crippling loneliness I mean REALLY REALLY REALLY bad loneliness. Many tears were shed because I thought I was alone, completely and utterly alone. By opening up and sharing my story over this last year, I learned that I had an enormous amount of support from other infertiles myrtles and friends/family alike. I learned that instead of being useless and unworthy (thoughts = my enemy) I could actually add value to the life of another.

Infertiles here is some tough love for you – GET UP! Like in John 5:8, when Jesus said to a man “Rise, take up thy bed, and walk”. Girls take up your bed and walk! Get out there and help others in their struggle and help those willing around you to learn about your own.

-End post-

NIAW 2016: Be Courageous! Be Brave!

NIAW 2016: Be Courageous! Be Brave!

One little post. That’s where this ministry all began. Never in a million years would I have thought I would start a blog, get to know women all over the world sharing in the same pain as I, be encouraged by said women and couples in my journey, and openly share our every step of something so private in our lives. It’s been an amazing and productive year and I can’t wait to see how the next unfolds! Read more

NIAW 2016 is Here Again!

NIAW 2016 is Here Again!

It’s National Infertility Awareness Week! It was this time last year that I went completely public with our infertility. We had already allowed our social network to know our deepest pain and struggle but we hadn’t come out of the “infertility closet” per say.

I remember last year like it was yesterday. I was getting stronger in my boldness and started developing a deep, deep desire to help others. My heart was changing from an inward “what the heck is happening to me” focus to “how can I help someone else walking this same path”. Read more