two steps forward, one step back.

I really don’t know where to begin. I find blogging so therapeutic and it helps me process my emotions. Interestingly enough with a massively large audience, but that’s okay. When I started this blog, I wanted to give people a peek inside the world of someone who is struggling with infertility. I knew it would be filled with highs and lows, emotion and rawness. I hoped it could be filled with authenticity and others could relate while reading it, whether they were struggling with infertility or not.

The story of infertility is truly the story of finding complete peace and satisfaction in God, trusting Him always, leaning not on ourselves, and of daily surrender.

I never thought that our story would contain a miscarriage. I never thought our story would pull at so many people’s heart and I never thought that this blog would bless me so much, by allowing so many people in to support us, especially when we needed it most.

Thank you for everyone’s unbelievable support. For taking the time to text us and honor our babies (short) lives. To ask how I am, daily. To understand that space is helpful. To send flowers, cards, strawberries. To solicit prayers from your Facebook friends through statuses and for the endless amounts of authentic, raw responses, sharing your own tough stories. While this has been one of the hardest weeks of my life, it has been one of the biggest blessings, as I have seen God rally His troops to bless us so much and to support us in this time. It is beautiful.

So how am I doing? Well, each hour is different. Each day gets a little easier. The tears are a little less, but the ache in my heart is still there. It’s tough.

Thursday

I laid in bed. All day. Literally in the dark. Shades pulled down. Worship music on repeat. Working my way through an entire box of tissue. My dog patiently laying next to me, refusing the cries of her bladder as she knew asking to go out wouldn’t have an answer in her favor. I felt like a shell of who I once was. I didn’t have my contacts in and my glasses were not comfortable to lay with so I sat in the dark, feeling blind (both figuratively and literally) and completely out of control. I was so comforted by all the incoming messages, texts, promises to pray from friends and family. On Thursday I didn’t know if I would ever be able to get out of bed again. Every time I went to the bathroom, I was re-reminded that my babies were literally being ripped out of me.

Finally, at 6:30 pm, Josh gently peeled me from the tear stained sheets and I went downstairs for a bit. My appetite was gone. I was certain I would never be able to eat again. I felt empty, heartbroken, but never alone. The peace of God surrounded my heart so entirely that I never felt abandoned or forsaken.

Friday

I had to get up on Friday because I had to go back to the clinic for blood work. This was by far the most painful visit of my life. It took me 2 hours to get ready (and by get ready I mean shower and dress, forget hair and make-up). I kept going to lay back down. I hated that the sun was shining. I hated that I had to drive 40 minutes for another needle poke to ensure the miscarriage was happening “properly”. I made myself go to the grocery store, where I was angry that no one around me knew the sorrow that I was walking around with. People seemed too chipper. I felt like I was walking around in a strange reality. Of course I chose the one cashier who wanted to have a long and cheerful conversation, to which I grunted a little and tried to act human. I wanted to spew out my sadness but knew that wouldn’t help.

The call came, confirming that while the miscarriage was indeed being handled naturally, that they needed to continue to follow my pregnancy numbers into the negative range and that I would need to come back in a week to have another blood test done, to confirm the pregnancy was completely gone. I am dreading that visit and appointment.

Friday the sadness came in waves. There were times I felt filled with hope again, knowing this was going to pass and I would return to my new “normal” soon. Then there were times I just cried. Times I pitied myself and times I was just still with God.

Saturday

Larger periods of time between the Funk. Continuing to have hope-filled, encouraging messages sent our way. Feeling so grateful for each of you. Went to a movie with Josh. Laughed and it felt strange. Should I be laughing already? Back home. Cried. Thought about where I was 2 weeks ago today. Sitting on the same couch, but with 2 little babies in my stomach, on bed rest and filled with such optimism and hope. How did so much happened in 2 weeks? Where were my babies? The cramping and bleeding still continued. A constant reminder of how much things had changed.

Sunday

Didn’t get out of my pajamas all day, but the first day I didn’t cry. Or at least cry where tears ran down my face. I am realizing now that I have to go back to work in a few days and need to get my act together. Made dinner and felt like I accomplished a huge feat. Declared to Josh that “tomorrow I will get up, shower and get dressed!” Felt motivated to move on. We continue to discuss what our next steps will be and are anxious to talk with our doctor.

Monday

Woke up. No longer feeling the motivation to get out of bed. Contemplated not moving all day again but knew that wouldn’t solve anything. Showered. Got dressed. Did dishes. I am glad my body and mind can take over such routine things. Jumped in the car to run errands and flipped on the radio, praying that I would make it through the day. Immediately my car was filled with the soft spoken words of a Focus on the Family radio program.

It was so hard, struggling with infertility. I prayed so hard that my wife could conceive.”

My heart stopped. They never talk about infertility on the radio. And this could go one of two ways, the “so we gave up on that and now are foster parents” or “God answered our prayers”. I needed so badly to hear prayers were answered. My heart couldn’t take the “changed heart” response.

And so we were prayed over, asking for God’s blessings to have a child. And 3 ½ months later we found out we were pregnant. And then came Ryan and Whitney and Tyler and Anna and Emily … and then we asked to be removed from the prayer list.”

God heard his prayers! He answered and healed their hearts with children. It WAS possible. At this point, I began to cry as I drove. And the host said that so many people listening had lost their hope, were feeling discouraged and beat up. And the guest began to pray this prayer of blessing. (At this point, I turned off the road into an empty parking lot in search of tissue.)

In the name of Jesus Christ, I bless you with the promises of God which are “yes” and “amen”.

May the Holy Spirit make you healthy and strong in body, mind, and spirit. To move in faith and expectancy. May God’s angels be with you to protect and keep you.

Be blessed with supernatural strength to turn your eyes from foolish, worthless, and evil things, and to shut out the demeaning and negative. Instead may you behold the beauty of things that God has planned for you as you obey His Word. May God bless your ears to hear the lovely, the uplifting, and the encouraging. May your mind be strong, disciplined, balanced and faith-filled.

May your feet walk in holiness and your steps be ordered by the Lord. May your hands be tender and helping, blessing those in need. May your heart be humble and receptive to one another and to the things of God, not to the world.

God’s grace be upon your home, that it may be a sanctuary of rest and renewal, a haven of peace where sounds of joy and laughter grace it’s walls, where love and unconditional acceptance of one another is the constant rule.

May God give you the spiritual strength to overcome the evil one and avoid temptation. May God’s grace be upon you to fulfill your dreams and visions. May goodness and mercy follow you all the days of your life.

Amen

Wow. (The guest by the way was Michael W. Smith.) I sat in my car, completely filled with hope and promises that blessings were ahead, and even if not the specific way we were asking for them, that we have all we need in Him.

In painful times, I have learned (and continued to learn), that we have a choice.

We can allow our pain to cause a division between us and God. Or, we can choose to allow that pain to bring us even closer to Him, to allow Him to be intimately nestled into our pain, our confusion, our tears and our struggles. This choice to trust Him regardless of how I “feel” or what we have gone through is one of the easiest choices I have ever made. He has carried us every step of the way. Him carrying us doesn’t shield us from feeling the pains of grief. But it provides us with a way to get through each day, each hour, each minute. A popular Christian author, Beth Moore, writes “God’s word never said we were not to grieve our losses. It says we are not to grieve as those who have no hope. Big difference.” How true is that? Even in these painful times, these tear-filled days, and this physically and emotionally devastating time, we have hope. He never lets us go.

So what’s next for us? We are not sure yet. We know that we want to continue the fight for a family. We plan on meeting with our doctor in the next few weeks to discuss our options. We may choose to go forward with our one frozen embryo, or wait and save to do another fresh cycle (as this one was). We will not forget about our frostie baby, don’t worry. It’s so difficult as future attempts are so financially draining, scary and unrealistic. With literally no insurance coverage, some options may just not be possible for us. That’s a scary reality that I am working through and trusting God to provide. So we continue to pray for guidance and peace as we figure out our next steps.

I return to work on Wednesday. Please keep me in your prayers, that my tears stay away, that I have the energy to fight through a long day, that I don’t feel overwhelmed, and that the return goes smooth.

Bring on 2013!

PS – And yes, I am bitter that Kim Kardashian is pregnant, while still being officially married to another man. That Jessica Simpson is pregnant, again, while her first is only 8 months. And that the woman at Target today asked me if I had any kids and wouldn’t stop yacking about her two kids under 2 that are holding her “hostage” tonight. But maybe my opinions will change in an hour ….

16 thoughts on “two steps forward, one step back.

  1. roadtofertility says:

    I love reading your blog. It is encouraging and uplifting. It reminds me that it’s normal to feel miserable when dealing with infertility. I felt the same way when we experienced a very early miscarriage but it sounds like you have a much better support system. Isn’t it amazing that God allows us to hear the right things at the right time? Your are in my thoughts and prayers! May 2013 bring you your heart’s desires!

    • chels819 says:

      Ah, thank you so much for this meaningful feedback. I just type and am always glad when it touches and encourages others. I am so sorry again, that you have had to experience this kind of pain. We are truly so blessed to have such an amazing support system. I can’t imagine the pain and loneliness without it. I hate that IF is something that very few people talk about when it affects so many and the pain is horrific. You are in my thoughts and prayers as you continue your fight and we are praying for good news from you soon! 2013 — The year of BABIES! :)

      • roadtofertility says:

        Thank you! In fact, I do have good news. We did an FET 12/18 and we received positive results. We are on beta # 3 and so far so good..this is the furthest we’ve gotten so I am feeling quite hopeful. I look forward to seeing good news from you as well and I’m praying and hoping that it will be 2013 for you as well!! God Bless!

      • chels819 says:

        AHHHHHHH!!!! I’m so excited for you! I literally shrieked a little bit! I know the cautious excitement that is felt with “good news” but I am just praising God for this blessing and am praying for a healthy, sticky little bean! Please keep on touch! Praying for doubling betas and health for you both!!! Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Megan says:

    I feel the same way about Kim Kardashian! It honestly put me in the worst mood. I feel like its so common to wake up to facebook or the news, and find out that someone else is pregnant (who to be quite honest, have no business being). I realize that God has a work of working in all of us, but feel a little angry when I hear about others getting pregnant so easily. I can’t tell you enough how GRATEFUL I am that I was able to connect with you over Instagram in the last year- you are such a beautiful person and I know you are going to be an amazing mother. I wish I could take away all of this pain from you, Chelsea- but I can’t. I CAN continue to pray for you and your husband and send so many positive vibes and love your way. This I will do! I will always be here if you need someone to vent to. Love you lady!

    @megbrink from IG :)

    • chels819 says:

      You seriously rock. I love this encouragement and kind words! I can’t wait for BOTH of us to be mothers some day! Thank you for all your prayers … you know we have prayers crossing paths cuz I am praying for you too! SO excited for you to start your IVF journey in just a few short days! AHHH! Can’t wait to celebrate with you and I know that baby is going to be SO blessed! Much love!

  3. Lisa says:

    I’ve been thinking of you constantly, but wanting to give you the time you need to feel better too. Kim Kardashian is a stupid celebrity fame whore. . .she’d get pregnant just for the headline (sorry, that’s being judgemental, but it is how I feel :) ).

    I appreciate the honesty in your blog, but can’t understand the pain that you must be feeling right now. Ihope that you will keep fighting because you are going to be an awesome mama to some very lucky children someday!

    • chels819 says:

      Fame Whore. Best words to spurt out on those “angry days”. I love it. :) Thanks for the constant thoughts and for being an encouragement to me! We keep fighting and waiting … and then we will experience our blessing, like you! :) It’s great to remember there is another side to this IF battle. XO!

  4. Sarah says:

    I’m relatively new to the IF community but no stranger to IF itself. We’re on IUI #4, and may find ourselves faced with IVF, so I have really appreciated reading your candidness through your experience. You can’t find information like that in a doctor’s office.

    I’m so sorry that this pregnancy did not turn out. I can’t imagine what you must be feeling, and I don’t believe anyone deserves to be put through something like this. Keep fighting as best as you can! I’ll be sending good vibes your way.

    And BTW, I was dripping with bitterness when I heard that Kate Middleton was pregnant. And then Jessica Simpson, and now Kim K (among many other celebrities), not to mention the friends and contacts and strangers I encounter. I wish I could turn off the bitterness but I just can’t. But some days are easier and SOMEDAY it will be OUR turn. Right? Right.

    • chels819 says:

      Sarah, thanks so much for the comment and I am so sorry that you have had to experience the heartaches of IF. It sucks!! I am grateful that you found your way to my blog though and can appreciate our experiences (and maybe learn from them.) I am praying that this 4th IUI is a sticky one!! We keep fighting and trusting and hoping …. You are right, some days are easier than others. One those bad days, I just can’t go to Target. :) Have a great day Mama-to-Be!!

  5. Tara says:

    I stumbled across your blog and am now totally caught up! Blogging has helped me to sort my feelings too, I am finding it very cathartic. Prayers and thoughts are with you. I will be waiting on the edge of my seat for more news, good luck!

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