So, I started a fundraiser for my sister and her husband, to raise money for them to have an IVF procedure. And while, I feel like I can passionately tell you their story all day long, and beg you to be a part of their solution, I know to see the journey from her eyes will speak miles farther than I ever could. If you have ever struggled with infertility, you know the hurt poured out in these following words. And if you have beautiful children of your own (no matter how bad you think they are) drop to your knees and tearfully praise the one who blessed you with them...you have no idea how those little annoyances you deal with everyday, scraping green beans off the wall, digging play-dough out of the carpet or having a scratched up coffee table from where they've played one too many games of "vroom vroom" with their matchbox cars....yeah, you have no idea how those little annoyances can be something another actually longs for...
Here's to scratch marks on coffee tables:
(written by Sharry Bingham)
"Here is our story of infertility. Josh and I were married in November 2006. We both knew that we wanted to have children soon. We decided to wait about a year so we could get settled in our marriage. So, in March 2008, we began trying to conceive our first child. The first nine months past by with no pregnancy, so after a few tests were run on Josh and I, the doctor put me on Clomid to help achieve pregnancy. After taking Clomid for the 6 months allowed, we still had no success. They doctor then said he needed to do laproscopic surgery to see if there were any problems with my reproductive system since he could not figure out what was wrong through other tests.
He performed that in July 2009. As I woke up from surgery, the doctor explained to me that I had Stage IV (severe) endometriosis. He told me that he was not able to get rid of it all because the risk was too high to do that laproscopically. In order for us to have a chance of getting pregnant, the doctor would have to do a more invasive surgery to remove the endometriosis. To do this, I would have to take medicine for 6 months that would put me through temporary menopause and then do the surgery. This surgery would not only push pregnancy back at least another 6 months, but would put me out of work for 2-4 weeks! After much prayer, we agreed to do it. I had the surgery in December 2009. The recovery was terrible, but it was successful in cleaning up the majority of the endometriosis. The doctor reminded us that endometriosis grows back over time and our chances of pregnancy decrease the longer it takes. So, after a couple months of recovery, we went to work trying again. I was on Clomid again for another 4 months before deciding that it was past time to make an appointment with a fertility specialist!
We met our fertility doctor in September 2010 and after an ultrasound, found that I had several cysts on my ovaries, probably from all the Clomid I had taken and that I would yet again have to WAIT another month to let them go away before doing any aggressive treatment. Finally, in October, we were able to start fertility shots and complete an IUI cycle. Everything looked good with the procedure, but we did not get pregnant. In November, I had more cysts from the previous IUI cycle and needed to take another month break. We also skipped December because we could not work the fertility schedule around all of the holiday travel and plans. So, as you can imagine, we went back in January well rested and ready to try IUI again. When they did my ultrasound in January, they found more cysts. This concerned the nurse since I had been off meds for two months. She also noticed that one of my cysts in particular looked a little different. She sent my results to the doc to review and we made an appt. to talk with him. He told us that he thought my endometriosis had come back and produced endometriomas (cysts) on my ovaries that were hindering us from getting pregnant. They only way to see how bad it was and fix it was to do surgery for a third time.
Honestly, Josh and I were devastated and had our faith tested. We didn’t understand why this was happening to us. We did a lot of praying and spending time with God. It was during this time that our relationship with God grew the most. He taught us that He is in control and as long as we are trusting and placing our faith in Him, He is going to bless us more than we can imagine. We both had a peace about the surgery, so we moved forward. I had the surgery in March 2011 and it could not have gone any better. It was less invasive than we thought it was going to be, the recovery was good, and the doctor was happy with what he was able to do. Of course, now it was time to get pregnant and quickly before the endometriosis came back. In April 2011, we began another IUI cycle. Everything was going beautifully and I had SEVERAL (almost too many) follicles developing. The doctor even seriously talked to us about the risk of having multiples. We were really excited about the progress we were making and everything seemed to be on track. I went in for my pregnancy test and it was negative. I know God wants to give us the desires of our hearts and wants to bless us. I also know His will and timing are perfect and this just meant that it was not time, but that fact didn’t take away the disappointment we felt at that moment.
As you can imagine, this story gives us plenty to complain about and reason to be angry, BUT we have learned to be thankful for this battle we are going through. We see God using this difficult time in our lives every day to make us stronger and allow us to help and encourage others in a similar situation. Bringing God glory through this is our main focus. This brings us to where we are today, May 2011. We are going to start the IVF process and pray for success. This is an expensive process and we have had so many friends willing to give to support us. Although the money given is EXTREMELY helpful in us reaching our ultimate goal of becoming parents, Josh and I would like most of all to ask for your prayers. Prayer is such a powerful tool. I believe God hears all prayers and wants to grant the request of His people. We know God will bless us with a child one day through some means so please pray that we stay focused on trusting and being faithful to God, that we seek and follow His will, and that this procedure will be successful."
If God has put a tear in your heart over this story, HELP. Please click the "donate" button on the right hand side of this page and help. I am offering custom fabric flower pins in exchange for a $10 donation but certainly the cause is much greater...please help us put feet to our prayers, giving up one starbuck's coffee this week could add $5 to their miracle.
"Don't confuse empathy with compassion. It's not compassion until you cross the street." Christine Caine