Update on November 5th post:
First off, let me apologize for allowing so much time to lapse since my last post. With the holidays and spending time with family, it was so easy to let this just slide by. But I know some of you keep looking forward to me adding new posts and sermons. So I will get back to doing that on a regular basis.
We’ve had a lot of things going on between then and now, and I have really been looking forward to sharing this update with you all.
If you remember we shared some very tough personal experiences with you for a few reasons. One was to be an encouragement to others who shared in our suffering. Another was to help people be an encouragement to their friends dealing with infertility. And the most important reason was to talk about how great God is even in the midst of pain and trials. We are so thankful for God’s faithfulness throughout our lives. Without him our hope would have been dashed so long ago. But with God, we have found peace and even joy in the midst of our worst experiences. And Jesus himself said, “With God all things are possible.”
We have believed that for a long time, and we continue to believe it, and God continues to prove his faithfulness to us over and over. And we want to continue to be an example for you of just how awesome God is.
We are so thankful for so many wonderful friends and family members who have been an encouragement and support to us. Now let us return the favor. If you don’t know God, if you want a life filled with peace regardless of outside circumstances, the only way is through a relationship with Jesus Christ. And I’m not talking about praying some prayer and then going on with life as usual. I’m talking about a total spiritual makeover, where you surrender everything in your past—all your old terrible choices—in exchange for a new life of purity and commitment to the life that Christ commands. When you do that—when you forsake your wickedness and turn to God for forgiveness, he is faithful to forgive. And you can experience the joy of never being alone again.
Paul expressed his thanks for support and encouragement from his friends, and at the same time pointed out that even better was the blessing of living through Christ.
Philippians 4:10-13 How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for me, but you didn’t have the chance to help me. Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
And I hope that this update from Jenna will be just one more encouragement in you grabbing at that chance to live through Christ:
If you haven’t read my first post from November 5th, go HERE first. Then come back for part 2!
I have some more dates to add to my list:
November 5th, 2009 – the day I posted our story online for the world to read
I had strange feelings on this day. On one hand, it felt great to get everything out on paper and actually SEE how God has been working all along. I knew I was being obedient to Him by typing up our personal story to use as a testimony. On the other hand, it felt a little awkward to have such a personal story out there on the INTERNET for who-knows-who to read! However, I got a lot of positive feedback from it, and no one has said anything stupid to me in awhile, so I think it was worth it!
November 17th, 2009 – the day I was told it was impossible to get pregnant
After my last visit to the infertility specialist at the end of October, I had to return for more labs. They drew about eight vials of blood and told me they would let me know the results soon. Almost three weeks later, I hadn’t heard anything so I decided to call. The nurse called me back a few hours later. She asked why I had called. Umm…because I had labs done a long time ago that you promised to call me back about, and it never happened. (That’s what went through my head, but I’m never that mean on the phone). Her response: Oh yeah, the doctor wants to start you on a new medication. My thought: How long have you known this and when were you going to call me and tell me?? She goes on: You have a hormone level that is too high and it is IMPOSSIBLE (she really stressed that word and spit it out like venom) for you to get pregnant like that. I think my head was spinning at this point. How do you get a job working with people, not to mention highly emotional infertile people, when you don’t even know how to treat them with a little care and decency? I have never spoken to a nurse before who was as rude as this one, and to be that rude when delivering such news blew my mind. Also on my mind was the fact that I had never been told it was impossible before. I had always been given hope. And in that moment she told me, I thought: Well, that’s what you think. God can do it; He doesn’t need doctors.
November 27th, 2009 – the day I finally saw two lines
The day after Thanksgiving, I was relaxing at home with Frog and his sister, Joanne, who was in town visiting. It was late in the evening, and Joanne and I were hungry. When I found myself eating pickles followed up by ice cream, we joked about being pregnant. I hadn’t been paying a lot of attention to my cycle or what day it was, since it was the holidays, and I wasn’t expecting anything to happen anyway. But then I thought, maybe I should get a pregnancy test. We were going to Wal-Mart anyway to get some more snacks, so we decided to pick one up. (Apparently the two Thanksgiving dinners we had eaten in the past two days weren’t filling enough!). I told Joanne she would have to carry it around the store, in case we ran into any of my students. I think I saw at least three of them in there that night. Love the small town…really. I took the test as soon as we got home. I had barely set it down on the counter when the second line began to show up, very dark purple. I couldn’t even begin to count the number of tests I’ve seen with one line, but this was my first time ever seeing a positive pregnancy test. I was shaking. I couldn’t believe it. Funny how you pray and pray about something, and when it actually happens, you are somewhat surprised. Why is that??
I brought it out to the kitchen where Frog and Joanne were making some nachos, and held it out to Frog with tears in my eyes. I didn’t say a word, and he just looked at me in shock. He gave me a great big hug as I set the test down in front of Joanne, so she would know what was going on. She broke the silence by screaming. She’s enthusiastic like that. I will never forget those moments. We stood together in the kitchen and prayed and thanked God for this wonderful gift. I felt so blessed.
November 30th, 2009 – the last time I EVER went to the infertility specialist
We had been told before by the infertility specialist that when we become pregnant, he sees you for your first twelve weeks of prenatal care, since they are the most crucial. He then “graduates” you to a regular obstetrician for the remainder of your pregnancy. First thing Monday morning, I called his office and asked to come in for a blood test to confirm what the home test had told me. I was also wondering if I should continue the medicine they had put me on to bring the one hormone level down, and wanting to make sure my other hormone, which was typically too low, was ok. The low hormone meant that I had a greater chance of miscarrying if I did not have any medication to increase it, which I didn’t. I was completely out. I got my blood drawn, went into another room to talk about these questions, and was confronted by the woman who works with insurance in the office. She flat out said we would not be able to be seen by the doctor anymore. Since we got pregnant on our own, insurance would not cover us to see him anymore. I asked what she meant by “on our own.” We have been seeing him for over a year, and you are telling me that nothing he did in the past year had any impact? Apparently not. She said that she would still test the blood she had just drawn and call me in the morning to let me know all the levels and what needed to be done. They wouldn’t bill me for that visit, since I had no way of knowing it wouldn’t be covered by insurance. I thought that was actually pretty nice of them.
We had no sooner left the parking lot, with the building still in sight, when my cell phone rings and it’s the woman we had just been speaking with. She told me I would have to have my labs redrawn elsewhere. Basically, they tossed my blood in the trash and wouldn’t run any tests on it. They KNEW my risk of miscarriage if my hormone level was still too low. They were the ones who TOLD me it was low in the first place. And they wouldn’t help me out at all. Again, I was so frustrated. At that point, I would have paid anything to know that everything was ok, but they didn’t even give me the option. We drove over to my OB’s office and I shakily tried explaining the seriousness of the situation to the woman in reception. The best she could do was have a nurse call me. No one seemed to understand the urgency in why I needed to find out if my hormones were stable. It was such a discouraging day, in what I felt was supposed to be a happy time. My friend Andrea really came through for me, and provided me with more reassurance than she probably knows.
December 8th, 2009 – the day I finally felt like a doctor cared about me
My OB’s office called and gave me the news that I was “definitely pregnant” and all my hormone levels looked good! It seemed like the longest week and a half of my life, but I’m glad it ended with good news! They even said they wanted to do an early ultrasound, which I didn’t expect to be able to have. I LOVE my OB’s office, and can totally see the blessing in disguise of not being at the infertility specialist’s office anymore. While I thought that I wouldn’t be as well taken care of outside of their office, since I’m just a “regular” pregnant woman to everyone else, the opposite is actually true. The doctor and her nurse have been very understanding of our situation and I never leave feeling worse than when I came.
December 10th, 2009 – the day we got to see and hear our baby’s heartbeat
One would think that having an ultrasound at 6 weeks isn’t all that exciting, since there isn’t much to see, but after 2 years of WAITING for the opportunity, it was amazing. Barely 4mm in size, the baby had a strong heartbeat that we could both see and hear. I thanked God, yet again, for blessing us with a child. I don’t ever want to forget where I came from, what it feels like to be infertile, or be ungrateful for what I have.
Today, January 21st, 2010 – our 12 week appointment
We got to hear the baby’s heartbeat with a doppler machine today. That sound can never get old. I want to buy my own doppler and listen to it all the time!
Time is flying by already, and I can’t believe the first trimester is OVER. I am slowly growing bigger and trying to hide it from my students for a little longer. They would tell me I looked pregnant way before I ever actually WAS pregnant, so I’m really surprised no one has said anything recently. Middle schoolers can be so nice.
I have been blessed by people wanting to throw us baby showers, giving us baby gifts already, asking constantly how I’m feeling (although I have people who are mad at me for not being sick at all), and just having people rejoice with us in the good news. It was hard to tell all our friends who are still waiting for their children, but they have been so wonderful about it. I think most of them have taken the news better than I would have if the situation were reversed. It’s made me realize what a terrible person I can be sometimes!
I love reading about how the baby is growing, and what is happening each week. I am amazed at how God forms life inside a woman and how everything works together to create a baby. What a miracle! I’m sure I will be further astounded as I feel the baby move and kick, and definitely when I experience the birth of our child!
Our baby is due August 5th. We are so appreciative of all the prayers that you’ve given us throughout this time. We look forward to sharing more about how God is working along the way. We are forever grateful for the opportunity to become parents and raise a child to know Him. We will definitely have quite the story to tell our child about the journey we went on to meet him or her.
This is how I ended my November 5th post:
“I hope and pray that this month is when God decides to show up and bless us with a child. I can say that it will all be because of Him, because we can’t use any medical interventions to help us. All along I’ve prayed that no matter what happens that God will use our situation to bring glory to His name and to bless and encourage others. I think now would be a perfect time for that! But, even if He doesn’t decide to do that, I will still love Him, still serve Him, and still praise Him. He has been too good to me to do otherwise.”
If anyone takes anything away from all my rambling, I want it to be that God is faithful. He is loving; He is good. I know that now that I have been given the desire of my heart, it sounds easy to say that. However, back in November, when I had NO idea what was about to happen, I still felt the same way. When I stopped making it all about me, and started making it all about God, He definitely showed up and blessed us. I pray that if you are struggling with God or struggling with what YOU want, that you will trust Him enough to say, “Whatever you want, God. I’ll do whatever you want.” And mean it. Trust Him and He will come through for you. He will never let you down.