Friday, July 6, 2012

I Have Hope in My Heart

Have you ever been to a fertility clinic?  I hope not.  I have and they aren't fun.  Fertility clinics are places where women of all ages, race, size and religion flock to in order to conceive a child.  Infertility is a taboo subject in our American culture for some reason.  I'll never understand that.  I've been very open about our quest to have a child and have never hidden the truth. 

Obviously, we don't have kids, so either people assume we don't want any or I tell them the truth.  It's so much easier to put the truth out there - people have active imaginations and often their guesses are so hurtful.  So, why not be honest?  I had so many surgeries in the last 10 years of my life that I just never was able to try to have kids.  Now, I'm 45 years old and healthy(finally) - and still no kids. Basically, I'm old.   B & I didn't get married until I was 35 - so I started out late in the game and my body (and God) had other plans.

Even though I've had roadblocks, I'm not one of those people who will just sit back and say, oh well, guess we can't have children.  I've fought hard with every iota of my being for us to be able to have a child.  I've changed my diet to the point where I don't recognize my eating habits.  I haven't had caffeine in 3 years and soda is but a distant memory.

I've made any sacrifice asked of me because it's just that important.  I've missed vacations, family events and cried my way through conference calls just to get through the day at work.  But it's all worth it you see.  I really want this.

Over the years, I've had to be my own health care advocate.  I've learned to ask, push and question.  Once I've built up trust with a physician, I absolutely follow their advice, but I still question when things don't quite seem right for me.  ME.  I've learned that science is a guideline and no two humans are alike (except for identical twins :o) of course.)  Many treatments that have worked well for other people don't work for me!  In fact, typical protocols for fertility treatments just don't work.  I have an amazing doctor who listens though and experiments with me and we've gotten great results.  Her nursing team's skill and compassion is un-matched and their support has helped me down this really complicated path we're on.

The one dangling participle, or missing link to this ever important fertility chain is God.  I know that no matter HOW HARD I try and how well I follow my diet and how diligent I am with taking my meds, I still might not get pregnant.  That breaks my heart to type, let alone say out loud.  I've faced that fact and have come to terms with it.  Sort of.  I still have hope in my heart.

I'm typing this now because we're at our last attempt.  We've tried everything there is and even things you've never heard of and so far no kids.  I've prayed so hard that I cry just thinking about it.  I've found saints to pray to that I never knew existed and I've had to have faith that if it's in God's plan for me, it will be so. If not, I'll have to let it go and move on with my life.  I know some of you are asking - why not adopt?  Well we did.  A traditional adoption would be very complicated for me with my health history and we were advised against it.  So we did a very different kind of adoption - and that's what we're waiting on now. 

Time will tell.  God has always provided for me - I'm only here because of His grace - I get this.  I just wish someone could call Him and explain that we'll be great parents - if He only gives us a chance.

Until we know more - prayers would be great.  And please, remember that if someone doesn't have kids, it might not be because they didn't want them.  God just had other plans for them.  But don't treat them like they have a disease - they still love kids and would love to be happy for you and celebrate your pregnancies and joys.  Your heart hurts inside, but if you want kids, you love them and any kids are a joy to be around. 

So tonight, after you pray for all of the couples struggling with infertility, hug your kids and realize how truly blessed you are - even if they drew all over the walls in permanent marker or dumped a 5 lb bag of flour on the floor...they are a gift.

Happy Friday Ya'll!


  1. Jen:
    I, too, have been down that road and have finally made my peace with it. I know that God always answers prayers; sometimes, the answer is just "no". I don't know why I wasn't blessed with kids, but like you said, God has other plans. I wish you all the luck in the world on your journey and hope for your happy ending. Beth

  2. You guys will make great parents! We'll keep cheering for Team McGowan.

  3. Fingers crossed and prayers said! I struggled with secondary infertility, but was very lucky to find the answer and have #2. Those 6 long months (to mee anyway) taught me lessons about wanting and prayers and the deep need for a child. I KNOW you'd be a good mom- I really hpoe it works for you!