As I continue to share our process and journey with others, I continue to learn of many others who struggle with the same thing, or that are going through something else in their life where they can relate to the strength needed in “waiting”. I appreciate the many people who have felt comfortable sharing with me their struggles and love the opportunity to pray for them. Any struggle, should it be Trying To Conceive (TTC – a new acronym you will start to see used here) or something else, is an opportunity for us to show the world where our faith is rooted. In any difficult situation, my prayer for you is that you see it as something greater to be used for His purpose. Actively look for that and I promise you, He will show it to you.  “Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.” (Galatians 6:5, The Message)

Circling back on a previous blog about “What Not to Say to Someone TTC” (see, told you I would use it again) – I had a lot of good questions from readers about “Well then, what DO I say?” I wanted to bring a condensed answer of it to the blog for others to read. I think this is a great question and I appreciate the willingness to try to say something supportive. Here are three things I would suggest:

1) “I am so sorry you are going through this.” I have found the simple acknowledgement that this sucks, to be one of the most encouraging things. Simple validation that TTC it isn’t easy, makes a world of difference.

2) Something along the lines of “I’m here for you whenever you need to talk about it. Let me know if you want me to wait for you to bring it up or if it’s okay for me to check in on you.” A lot of people want to avoid the subject because it is uncomfortable or they think it makes me uncomfortable, but honestly, when someone checks in with me, it allows me time to vent or process what is going on. If I think you are uncomfortable talking about it, I will never bring it up, and then I feel like we are dancing around the major topic in my life. (Granted, please make sure the location and timing is appropriate.)

3. “What can I do for you?” Most of the time I will say “nothing” and mean it. But there are some moments where I have a sincere, specific prayer request to share, or will take you up on your offer to bring over Chipotle and sit with me in front of classy tv, like Vampire Diaries or Revenge. Meds kick my butt. (More on that later). Sometimes, not often, I do need something and it’s great when you ask.

Moving on – this weekend I got to share in the joy of two special women in my life welcoming a new addition to their family. Many women TTC struggle with the news of pregnancies and the hospital visits to welcome and hold new little blessings. There is such a complicated mixture of emotions that transpire within me when I visit the families and meet babies for the first time. The anticipation of which emotions will make their debut make me nervous, nearly the entire 9 months of someone else’s pregnancy. Here is the deal – I  knew one of two Chelsea’s can show up – the self-pitying, jealous, sometimes crying, bitter Chelsea, or the Chelsea that is joyful for their blessing, celebrative, and genuinely happy for them. I have to be honest that it requires intentional prayers daily for the second Chelsea …  and I can sincerely say that through God’s grace and comfort, that better-half version of Chelsea was able to take part in their joys this weekend. While I completely understand that this is not an easy feat and may be one you are still struggling with, here is a tip that I have found that makes it easier for me.

When I think about the pregnant mom and their baby-to-be, I have to think and pray very purposely for this baby, which is THEIR baby, which is the baby that God selected for THEIR family. This was not a mix up and wasn’t meant to be my baby. Separating out each pregnancy by family and praying prayers of thanksgiving over their blessing helps me separate out my self pity. When I clump pregnancies together and think “EVERYONE AROUND ME IS PREGNANT! 7 women will have a new baby this month. WAHHHH.”, I pretty much am inviting Ben and Jerry into my home. (Get it, the ice cream, pity party .. eh eh? No? Oh well.) I find when I take the focus off of me and what I don’t have – and give God thanks for their baby; it helps put into perspective this: Conceiving a child is obviously difficult. It doesn’t always come easily. It is a miracle, truly, when one is created. So who am I to take away any of the credit that God deserves in the fact that he created the blessing and created it for another family? It simply wasn’t meant to be my baby. And with that understanding, I can truly be joyful that this world has 2 more adorable baby girls in it (one of them being my new niece!). It simply was meant to be their baby and for that I rejoice for them!

So far this month has been a tough one for me physically speaking. Typically on the variety of hormone medications I have taken, I get really bad hot flashes, occasional headaches, and dry mouth. But that’s it. My motto is “I can choose my emotions right now, I can chose to get irrational or I can chose to let it go.” And in the past that has worked for me. This month – totally different. I can’t explain it. The round of hormones this month has turned me into a completely irate, exhausted woman with absolutely no patience! Story:

J – (walking in from work whistling a peppy little tune) “Hi honey, how was your day?”

C – “STOP WHISTLING! That is the most annoying pitch ever. OH MY GOSSHHHHH.”

J – (confused slightly, but immediately stopping whistling) “Sorry hun. Hey, guess what?”

C- “I DON’T WANT TO GUESS ANYTHING RIGHT NOW. Just tell me. Come one. Tell me. Tell me. Waiting. Tell me.”

J – (confused at where his wife went). “Um, never mind. Maybe I will go work outside in the yard. Love you.”

And with a wise amount of speed, vanishes from the kitchen. And then I realize how irritated I got over … whistling. I check myself only enough to not break down weeping over the whistling, but seconds later become enraged at an empty toilet paper roll or unfolded towels in the laundry room. It’s insane. I go from 0 to 100 in seconds and then my motto comes into my head “Chelsea – this is the pills talking. Take a breath and calm down.” And then this BULLY VOICE comes into my brain and slaps logical Chelsea in the face and says “YOU KNOW NOTHING! I CANNNN’T.” It’s been a battle! One that I still have not conquered and am still perplexed by, as this hasn’t been a  common side effect for me thus far. My poor family is the ones that need the prayers. As I add a whole new medication to the mix later this week, I pray that God will replace the psycho Chelsea with a sane, logical Chelsea and that my brain would conquer the initial gut reaction to stab something.

“Friends, when life gets really difficult, don’t jump to the conclusion that God isn’t on the job. Instead, be glad that you are in the very thick of what Christ experienced. This is a spiritual refining process, with glory just around the corner.” (1  Peter 4:12-13, The Message)


“Just use Robitussin…”

I wrestle with the state of wanting something so badly that I will buy into almost any idea to boost the chances of getting it. In struggle to have a child, I became completely open to the world of online “chat/support rooms”. Groups of women struggling with the same issues of me, on the same meds, on the same cycle day, chatting and sharing side effects (side note: dangerous. “What, you are feeling like the backs of your hands are on fire and you think you have a twitch every 18 seconds in your right eye? … I think ME TOO!”), doctors comments, follicle sizes, and monthly outcomes. It brought me hope for the first few months, fellow IFWOG to relate to. Then it quickly became depressing as we went through month after month of no one from the impressively large group having a successful month. Our comments got more depressing, full of self-pity, and in the end, I had to completely unsubscribe due to the fear of doing something crazy. (“Trust me, stand on your head after eating the core of a pineapple, and basting yourself with egg whites. WAIT! You were supposed to take the Robitussin BEFORE you ate the pineapple, not after! And you did what!? You bought a DOLLAR STORE pregnancy test? And you didn’t sprinkle the magical baby dust from on your pillow case before cycle day 15.75?”) I couldn’t take it anymore. There is this innate hope that lingers inside each of us that just this onneeeee little thing could be the switch that VOILA! makes everything perfect and working right.

Here is the thing: at the end of the day, it’s not my plan, my decision, my ability to eat a pineapple core or sniff cinnamon at 3:00 pm (ok, I made that one up);  it’s God’s timing. And my worries or ambitions won’t change that. “We humans keep brainstorming options and plans, but God’s purpose prevails.” (Proverbs 19:21, Message)Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what is the use in worrying over bigger things?” (Luke 12:25-26 NLT). And yes granted, there is still action to be on our part. Talking the pills I need to, or going to get an ultrasound on the right day, or eating healthy and eliminating caffeine all together  some caffeine – that is being responsible. But there is a point where it creates more stress. Where the checklist overrides the purpose. And we take our faith away from God and put it in Evening Primrose Oil. (These are all real things people).

If you are friends with me on Facebook, you will notice I have an album of “Thankful Photos” that I upload to each day. The purpose is to make an intentional decision daily to take the focus off of me and what might not be going My Way, and remember how much I have, what I am blessed with, the big and small things. This act some days is painful. I WANT TO YELL! Throw a tantrum! “WHHHAATTT??? I DIDN’T OVULATE?!!? *insert Ross and Monica “giving the finger without actually having to give it” fist hand gesture here*” And then “WHAT!? I HAVE TO THINK OF SOMETHING I AM THANKFUL FOR TODAY? I. Am. Not. Going. To.” And then the silence. And the reminder of all I have. The clothes I am wearing. The dog balancing on my lap (she’s weird). The flowers on my counter. The fact that I have a Bible sitting out in the open. Reality check. Truth, some days I just can process uploading something simple. My brain is too tired to appreciate all I have. I am just thankful I got to wear jeans to work today. But still, it takes the focus off of me. And in a world of counting days and selfish prayers, it’s what I need.

Gratitude. It’s a powerful thing.

Time to be a Risk Taker

Wow, what a blessing it has been already in starting this blog! Here I thought that in doing so, I would encourage others, but had no idea the encouragement and blessing it would be to me.  Thank you sincerely for all of the kind words and encouragement from those reading these words. I can only hope and pray God continues to use us and our story for His glory. (It also makes me wish I paid better attention in English and Creative Writing classes …)

I was talking with a dear friend today about the risk in taking this step of “going public” and the quote she shared with me is still running through my mind. “”The biggest risk you take is not taking one.” I thought about the word risk and how it relates to the Bible. The more I thought, the more clearly I saw that some of the greatest biblical characters were know to be “risk takers”. When fear, uncertainty, danger, or consequences were in from of them, they still pushed forward, often times giving up their comfort, reputation, security, or prestige, and at times their lives. All to do what God called them to do. When I put a blog in perspective to that, it seems silly that fear was holding me back. Is God calling you to take a risk today? I encourage you to pray about that – where is the nudge? Of course it won’t be comfortable, risks rarely are, but I promise you, it will be worth it.

Back on topic – so I promised I would share with you something NOT to say to someone going through infertility struggles. I hope my fellow IFWOG (Infertile Friends Waiting on God – I totally made that up) will agree with me! To my non-IFWOG friends, while these may seem like a “normal” response, I feel it’s my duty to share “our” side of these comments. Of course, I will preface this with the understanding that I know the intentions of these sentences are to be kind, or reassuring, or to downplay the stigma. I appreciate that, I really do. But with that said, here is my list:

1.    “Ohhh, you just need to relax.” or “You’re trying too hard!” or “Don’t think too much about it”

Really? In the words of a fellow blogger “Telling me that I need to relax sounds like you’re blaming me.  Infertility is a kind of illness, a malfunction of one of the body’s systems, so please treat it that way.  You wouldn’t tell a cancer patient that she’ll get well if she will “relax”, would you?” These comments make me think you are judging my approach or life choices and am responsible.

2.       “You should just adopt.” or the infamous “I know someone who tried for a long time and as soon as they adopted, they got pregnant.”

Here is the thing, I truly feel some people are called to adopt and for others, God simply doesn’t put that on their heart. We are the latter. The mere fact that we haven’t adopted or haven’t strongly considered it does not mean that we “really don’t want to have children”. The inference that can be made in that statement is hurtful. And it’s not the job of all the infertile couples in the word to take on all the unwanted kids. Our goal is to have children of our own. To some that may be selfish, and I won’t say that somewhere down the line we wouldn’t consider it. But please don’t try to make it sound like it’s just as simple as adopting. (Side note: Plus, can you imagine that conversation with  our adopted son when he asked Mommy and Daddy why they wanted to adopt him? “Oh yes son, because we were shooting the dice hoping that we conceived because we adopted you.”)  I’m just saying, the heart for adopting needs to be truly from God.

3.       “It’s okay, there must be a reason.”

Granted, I completely understand and trust that God does have a bigger plan and picture for this. And my soul feels incredible peace on that. But sometimes, it does just suck and please affirm that.

4.       “Well, you are sooooo young, you have time.”

What does my age have anything to do with my struggles? Do you think because I am 26, it’s any less painful to try for years to have a kid? Don’t invalidate my frustrations simply to say something. I would rather the sad eyes.

5.       “Oh, I wish I had that problem! I just look at my husband and BOOM! we are pregnant.”

Yeah … thanks for that … that makes me feel wayyyyy better. How would you like it if you were struggling paying your mortgage that month and someone said to you “Oh, I wish we had that problem! We are just rolling in cash and can’t figure out what to spend our money on!” It’s just insensitive and is probably one of the most difficult things for me to hear.

6.       “The cost of all of these doctors’ appointments will be so worth it when you are holding your child.”

 You don’t think I know that?  I understand that in order for us to have a child, we may have to go into some debt and live more conservatively to make this possible. This is a sacrifice we are willing to make, but please don’t make it sound like I am not comprehending how worth the bills this will be. The sacrifice of going through all of this – to my body, to our brains and souls, to our bank account – clearly we are fully aware of the reward at the end because we are doing it. No, insurance doesn’t cover a penny of it. Yes, we are paying a lot to go through this. But I completely understand the worth of a child related to money.

With that being said, I want to close with this. Sarah Young, in her book Jesus Calling (side note: If you have never read this, go to and order it. You won’t regret it), wrote this: “I have designed you to need Me moment by moment. As your awareness of your neediness increases, so does you realization of My abundant sufficiency. I can meet every one of your needs without draining My resources at all…I share your joys and your problems; I help you cope with whatever is before you.” I think this journey for us has made Josh and I realize each day that our plans, our wants, our problems – they are not up to us! God has a larger plan and He promises to be there and meet the needs we have. Now granted, they may not be the needs we think we need met; they are the needs that He knows are true needs. “Wait for the Lord; Be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (Psalm 27:14) Isn’t that what we are called to do? What a blessing it is to wait. To realize our complete need for Him. To turn to Him for comfort. To take heart and know that He is God. Be willing to wait on Him. This, my friends, is what keeps us going and keeps our hearts filled with joy.

Welcome to our world …

My first blog – yikes! First of all, let me just say I have had this site sitting around waiting for a while … months even. The subject of infertility is never an easy one to talk about – and I say that because people frequently become more uncomfortable about it then even I do. The label “infertile” comes out and the sad eyes go on … the “Poor Chelsea. She can’t have a baby. She would be such a good mom.” eyes. The awkward hesitancy that always comes into their voice when they share that they are pregnant, or they know someone that is pregnant, or the wariness to invite me to a baby shower, like I might try to rip the baby from the mom-to-be’s womb or break out in hysterical crying and run out from the room. Some-days I appreciate the caution, the  sensitivity is sweet and thoughtful. Other days I want to not-so-politely remind them that it’s okay to be happy and celebrate the joy of them having a child. (Granted, complain too much about your pregnancy and I will give you the “At least you are pregnant, be thankful for that.” line with a stoic look on my face.) Most of the time, talking about babies for me isn’t painful. I believe its by God’s grace that I can truly rejoice in the pregnancies of others and wait in hope that one day, our child will come. And man, when that day comes, you better believe we will be rejoicing in the joy of having the child that was so clearly chosen for our family.

Throughout this blog, I will share more of our story – but for those new to our journey, I have been diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic ovary syndrome) which prevents me from ovulating. My ovaries are filled with tons of little cysts that result in a funky hormone balance. Josh and I have wanted to start a family for a few years, have gone through fun pills and treatments like Provera, Clomid, Estrace, Progesterone, Metformin, etc, … many ultrasounds, a lot of blood work, enough ovulation predictor kits to fully keep Target in the black for a good year, negative pregnant test after negative pregnancy test, an HSG, a few other assessments and procedures – and at the end of the day, still nothing! We just teamed up with a fabulous new doctor with the Center for Reproductive Medicine and are excited to try 1-2 months of a new “cocktail” before moving onto IVF this summer. While the story above is part of our path to having a child, it does not define me/us. In fact, I feel blessed to be given this opportunity to trust God, pray nightly with my husband for our future child, and, as James 1:2 says, be joyful in this trial, knowing it produces maturity, steadfastness, and faith. (“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.” James 1:2-4 MSG)

The intentions of this blog is to share the highs and lows. To celebrate the incredible supportive people in our life. To shamelessly solicit prayers. To give you an insight into our life. To be transparent. Wow, that’s not an easy thing to do. And to do it publicly on a blog? I don’t know why, but I truly feel that this is the next step God has called me to do. Maybe its relating to you and something you are going through, or someone you know. Or maybe its just to broaden your understanding of what it’s like to be “me”.

Whenever I am down, or having a pity party (which does happen and it typically involves potato chips or cookie dough, and a sad song like “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart” by Al Green), it amazes me at how God quietly (or loudly) whispers that it’s under control. The random verses being read on Christian radio between songs, like  “He gives childless couples a family, gives them joy as the parents of children. Hallelujah! (Psalm 113:9 MSG) or a story shared at church with references to those struggling with infertility. What a great God we serve, that He can show Himself anywhere, and that He DOES.

Thanks for reading, joining with us, praying, and putting up with my scattered thoughts and grammatical errors. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s entry … “What NOT to Say to Someone Struggling with Having a Child.” : )