Fertility Friday: Elizabeth

I’m so glad to have my friend Elizabeth share her story with you today.  She’s been a source of encouragement for me through our infertility journey, so welcome her here!  You can find her on her awesome recipe blog here, instagram, and Facebook.
———————————————
 I have always wanted to be a wife and a mother. I never wanted
fame, success, a business, or anything of the sort. I wanted a white picket
fence, the June Cleaver 1950s life, and dinner on the table when my husband got
home from work.
In November 2011, I thought I was pregnant.
We weren’t “trying” but we weren’t “not
trying.”
I remember taking the pregnancy test, waiting those 3 minutes
and praying, “Lord, please let this be positive. . . I can’t imagine waiting
another month now that I think/hope I am pregnant. I don’t think I am ‘built’
to wait another month.”
And it was positive!
Overjoyed doesn’t even begin to describe how we felt!
Nate was researching car seats that night and I was planning the
nursery.
We were so so thankful!
We told our families.
We planned.
We rejoiced.
And then just a short time later.  . . we lost the baby.

Nothing . . . NOTHING can explain the grief, the disappointment,
and the hurt of losing a pregnancy. 
There are no words.
Through those dark days, I clung to God.
Good WILL come of this. He IS Sovereign. There IS a divine plan.
HE WILL use this for His glory.
We WILL see our baby in heaven one day.
God is good. 
Even the night that I miscarried, he was good  . . . 
Even though it was the worst night of my life. . . 
even in the darkness. . .
I KNEW that God orchestrated that night perfectly. 
I felt like He said, “I am going to take this from Elizabeth and
Nate. . .but she is not going to go through this alone. She will be surrounded
by love.”
And we were.
But we were heartbroken.
Nate loved me well during that valley. He is so good at that. .
.
I truly believe that one of the reasons we go through trials
is to encourage and support others who might go through the same or similar
trials after us.
God has put so many people in my path to pray for and comfort after they too
have experienced loss.

He is so faithful.

Nate and I encouraged each other with “we weren’t even trying to
get pregnant and we did. . . surely we will get pregnant again soon”

Month after month after month. 
Nothing.
Basal temperature.
Ovulation tests.
Charts. Plans. Hopes.
Doctor appointments.
Tears.
Dismay. Anger. Stress. Disbelief.
We felt it all.

Then months into our journey, God changed my heart.
“Wait
with grace, Elizabeth. While you wait, encourage others. Use this time wisely.
Invest in your marriage. Love, honor, and delight in Nate. Good will come of
this.”
My change of heart was entirely the Lord. 

Nate would agree that his heart was changed too. 
Not saying that our time of waiting wasn’t hard. . .
but it was different.
There were no longer huge swings of highs and lows.

But a steady stream of faith.

Because
our hearts were changed, we could weather the attacks that Satan threw at us. .
. and there were plenty.
I could write a novel on the uncouth things people have said to us,

none intentionally hurtful,

but so many speak without thinking  . .

and, yet, we would literally laugh to ourselves when comments were made,
identify that Satan was trying to crush our faith, and give glory to God that
we could laugh at the comments.

To look back and realize that I have never cried, gotten upset, or even really
angry over thoughtless comments people have made is totally the Lord. . .

Even though we were going through this incredibly tough journey.  . . it
was apparent daily that we were not going through it alone and that Jesus
was by our side.

But months went by and nothing.

Soon after receiving supernatural peace from the Lord, I was hit
with the question, “Elizabeth, am I enough for you?”  
God does not promise us a spouse, children, health or financial
security . . .
He promises that if we believe in Him, He will bless us with
salvation, heaven, eternal life, and that He will meet our every need. . .
So from that point on, there were two corresponding prayers in
my heart.
God can do all things. 
He can make the rivers part and the storms be quiet. 
He can raise the dead. 
I know, that I know, that I know that he can give us a child.
And so I asked expectantly. . .  
Knowing that He was big enough to grant us the desires of our
heart.
Yet, at the same time, I told myself, we are not promised
children and God WILL be enough if He says no. So I also prayed that if He did
say no and did not give us children that He would fill that hole in our hearts.
After coming to the shocking realization that we were probably
not going to get pregnant without medical help, Nate and I began to pray over
whether or not we should travel down the road of fertility treatments or down
the road of adoption.
For us, we did not have a peace about adoption at that time.
Not saying that it wasn’t in our future, 
Not saying that it isn’t in our future.
I have had precious friends stop at this point on their journey
to get pregnant and adopt and I have had friends do IVF 8 times.
But we prayed with open hearts and felt God leading us towards the road of
fertility treatments.

And so we started down that path. . . . 
 
We started with Clomid; where each month, I spent 7-8 days at the Medical Center for
ultrasounds and 
got excited over growing follicles and prayed that one day
I would be able to see a baby on that screen.
But Clomid didn’t work. . .month, after month, after month.

We moved onto Houston IVF with Dr.
McKenzie.
From the second we met Dr. McKenzie, we fell in love with her. She was
compassionate and explained complex scientific procedures in a way that we
could understand. She also experienced infertility herself and used IVF to have
her own children, so she provided a unique and special view into our journey.

Test after test after test.


Before starting Clomid again, a preliminary ultrasound showed that I had a
cyst and I had to skip that cycle.
At the beginning of our journey, knowing that I had to wait another month would
have sent me into a tail spin.

I remembered taking my first pregnancy test and thinking ‘there is no way I can
wait another month.’

But now, everything was so different.

I had faith that God was in control. There was a plan to help us get pregnant.
And, to be honest, it was kind of nice to be forced to take a break from
charts, pills, ultrasounds, and everything else that accompanied infertility.

We didn’t get pregnant on our month ‘off.’So we moved onto IUI.

The cyst, thankfully, went away.

Everything went perfectly.
My body did exactly what it was supposed to do.Again, I thought, ‘this is it.’ We will get pregnant. There is nothing
‘wrong’ with us so, of course, we won’t need to do IVF. We will get pregnant
doing IUI and our journey will be over.

Two weeks later  . . .
Not
pregnant.
Another cycle of IUI with clomid again. . .
Not pregnant.

We met with Dr. McKenzie for a re-evaluation and she recommended
that we move onto IVF.
We had so many questions for her. She was patient, answered all of our
questions, and acted like she had all the time in the world just for us.

After tons of research, prayer, and educating ourselves (including having two
of our doctor friends get out their textbooks and spend 2 hours talking to us),
we decided to proceed with IVF.I remember drifting off to sleep before my retrieval thinking I
cannot believe we had to do this to try to get pregnant.

So many of my friends who experienced infertility say they always ‘knew’ they
would have trouble getting pregnant.

Well, my body is like clockwork. . . so much so that it seems
like a dream that we had trouble at all.
By saying I can’t believe we had to do IVF, I don’t mean that we felt sorry for
ourselves.

We were thankful that we were given the chance to do IVF. If we had been in
this situation a generation earlier, we wouldn’t have been able to have kids,
short of a miracle.

Thankfully, God gave doctors the knowledge and ability to be able to come up
with such an incredibly calculated and perfected way to help couples get
pregnant.

Thankfully, we had the money.

Thankfully, we had a 53% chance of success.

Thankfully, we had a patient doctor and patient ‘doctor’ friends who explained
everything to us in layman’s terms.

We went through the journey of IVF with hearts of gratitude.

With that said, I am not going to downplay IVF.  . .it was hard. . .

physically, emotionally, and everything in between.

The shots, the blood work, the medicine, and keeping up
with everything was hard.
In Nate’s words, it was ‘daunting.’

But, thanks to the LORD, I handled it well.
I
didn’t have any crazy side effects to the medicine. I was able to give myself
the shots. I am organized so keeping up with everything wasn’t too difficult
and I thankfully I had a peace and did not go through the emotional roller
coaster that so many others endure.
And knowing that our journey could be over and we would have a child was worth
all of it.

There was such a supernatural peace. . .
that was over both of us.
 
Some friends and I were memorizing bible verses with Beth Moore
that year. My bible verse during this time was “But he knows the way that I
take, when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” Job 23:10
I wanted to shine during this time.

We were walking through a valley and I wanted Him to be glorified with every
step.

Nate and I kept our eyes on Him and I hope that others saw Jesus through me at
Houston IVF.

I remember getting ready to go into surgery .  . . and not
even being nervous or scared.
I had never had surgery before.

Never been put to sleep.

And yet there was just such a peace.

TOTALLY the Lord.
To God be the GLORY.
Everything went well.Sweet Nate took such good care of me and the recovery was much easier than it
could have been.

And then to wait the two weeks to find out if we were pregnant .
. .

 Waiting. . .
Again a supernatural peace but still so hard to wait.
After going through so many procedures and hoping I was
pregnant, I wouldn’t even let myself get my hopes up.
Don’t worry. Just pray.
Finally, the two weeks were up.
I went to the doctor, had the blood work done and then waited a
couple of hours. 
My nurse called,“Honey, you are pregnant!!!”

Oh the joy
The
overwhelming joy. 
Two weeks later, we went in for our first ultrasound . .  . and heard and saw
the sweetest sound in the world. 
God’s hand was all over our journey. In the darkest times, it
was apparent that he was there. 
Our pregnancy was a miracle. 
 
Our baby, Tess, is a miracle.

God is so good!

 


HE is faithful. 

We are so thankful.


 

 

connect with Elizabeth on her blog hereinstagram, and Facebook.

Hey, I'm Wynne!

Hi, friend! First, I truly am so giddy that you are here. I want you to know I 100% believe in you and all the ways you are growing towards living a more intentional life. I can’t wait to get to know you and your story, and I genuinely hope you are encouraged from our time together here. A little about me, I’m a type 7 on the enneagram, a total extrovert + people lover, entrepreneur, connector, storyteller, people gatherer, and passionate wife, mama + friend. I feel most alive when I’m exploring new places and surrounded by people I love. Give me a day in the outdoors disconnected from wifi, and I am a happy girl. I run on oat milk lattes, Jesus, gratitude journaling and kitchen dance parties with my three kids.
Welcome, come on in!

let'e be friends

  1. The Paisley Peanut says:

    Wow! I think your story is amazing! We are still living our story and trying to go where God is leading us… I have talked about our miscarriage on my blog here: http://thepaisleypeanut.com/life-miscarriages-warning-post-fun/

    It’s always encouraging to read stories that have followed God’s path, and you can actively see God’s blessings! -Laura G

Leave a Reply

Want to join Wynne's Monthly Wrap?

a MONTHLY email of encouragement sent straight to your inbox!