Infertility + Marriage: How to Survive + Thrive

Kevin and I will celebrate our 4th Anniversary in December. I can’t believe all that can happen in just four years. As we gear up for another FET, I wanted to share about our infertility journey has completely changed our marriage and I wouldn’t have it any other way. By the time we had been married a year, we had lost two pregnancies, experienced two D&Cs, visited a fertility clinic, and started IVF. The first year of marriage is normally one of the hardest, but add in any sort of trauma and you could have the makings for disaster. For us, our marriage saw some of its highest highs right after each of our losses. We stopped fighting about trivial things. Our communication grew deeper. He was the only other person in the world who knew what it was like to lose that child. Our child. It wasn’t always easy, but there were a few things that we did that made it easier for us to come together instead of everything tearing us apart. I wanted to share these “tips” with you today. I call them “tips” because I am no marriage expert. This is just our story and our experience. […]

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All About FET, How to Survive & 5 Tips for Success

As a seasoned veteran when it comes to IVF & FETs, I thought I would share some tidbits of info regarding the FET process. If you’re wanting to know what an FET is, what to expect & some tips I have for being successful, keep reading! What is a FET? First things first, a FET (frozen embryo transfer) cycle is different than an IVF cycle. IVF refers to the entire process, including stimulation/egg retrieval and (typically) a fresh transfer. With a fresh transfer, the embryos are transferred back into the uterus as soon as fertilization occurs. There are a lot of clinics that are moving to only doing frozen cycles as they are showing to have greater success. Embryos can be allowed to grow for 3 or 5 days before cryopreservation (freezing) occurs. The reason behind doing this is that you’re transferring over embryos that are strong enough to have made it to day 3 or 5 and survived the freeze/thaw process. All of my transfers have been FET cycles with 5 day blastocysts. We initially did an IVF cycle, then waited for genetic testing before going into our first FET cycle. Timing is everythingThe entire FET process is unpredictable. […]

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How I Completely Changed My Diet (Without Hating My Life) | Lifestyle Changes

After our 4th miscarriage, which was an IVF pregnancy, I decided that I had to try something else. I’ve never been much of a believer in holistic approaches to medicine and health, but I had heard so many success stories from other women going through similar struggles. I decided to give it a shot. All of the lifestyle changes I have made are listed below, along with tips + tools that helped me on my journey! Acupuncture There are many, many studies showing that acupuncture increases the effectiveness of FETs, decreases the risk of miscarriage, and overall makes you feel better during pregnancy. Not only do I have the risk of miscarriage and hemorrhaging to think about, but I also tend to have terrible nausea + vomiting. I started seeing my current acupuncturist in May and immediately loved it. Surprisingly, it’s a very relaxing experience and for 30 – 60 minutes each week, I’m calm. Along with the acupuncture, my clinic recommends a specific diet, supplements & herbs based on your needs. I started taking 5 additional supplements, a few herbal cocktails and drastically changed my diet. Within a few weeks, I could feel a difference. Diet Changes Avoid animal […]

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Disappointments + Delays

Here we are, 7 months later. There has been a lot of life lived in the past 7 months, it’s hard to wrap my head around how much can happen in so little time. In February, I had a hysteroscopy to remove some retained tissue from my miscarriage/D&C last December. I healed from that very quickly and was able to start meds and have my 2nd frozen embryo transfer on March 18th. We transferred two embryos and both successfully implanted. Kevin & I were over the moon about having twins.  Sadly, that pregnancy was full of complications. Soon after finding out I was pregnant, I started spotting, which turned into bleeding, then passing fist sized clots. I was diagnosed with a subchorionic hematoma, which I had also had with Wyatt (though not nearly as much bleeding + clotting) and are very common with IVF pregnancies. Both babies were doing okay and both heartbeats were found. A few days after the scariest bleeding episode I’ve ever had, one of the babies was no longer there and the other’s heartbeat was fading. A few days later, that heartbeat was gone too. I had lost both babies. It was much earlier on than […]

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5 Things To Do When Your Loved One Has a Miscarriage

All grief is messy and everyone experiences it differently. Grieving a miscarriage has its own unique challenges. It’s isolating, dark, and often feels like something you shouldn’t even talk about. It often makes people uncomfortable. If you haven’t experienced a miscarriage yourself, it’s hard to relate and know what words to say. This is in no way bashing anyone who has ever said, done or not done the things listed below. The majority of the time, people’s intentions are good, but it’s hard to see that when you’re in the thick of grief and loss. I wanted to provide tips that would help both those that have experienced pregnancy loss and those around them. Here are just a few “do’s” for when someone you love goes through this traumatic loss: 1. Say something. There are no perfect words to say. Nothing will take away the pain, anger, confusion, etc. Likely nothing you say will even help, but saying something is better than saying nothing. After three miscarriages, I can honestly say that the support I received after each one was different. People are a lot more vocal the first time around, I think because it’s easier to rationalize it as a random […]

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Another Miscarriage | Dealing With Recurrent Loss

Happy New Year! After an extended break, I’m really hoping to be far more dedicated to blogging this year. We’ve had quite a lot happen in the past several months, some wonderful and some not so. Wonderful: Wyatt turned one and started walking. Not so: We found out we were pregnant at the end of October and then had another miscarriage in December. Since Wyatt was born, Kevin & I knew that we wanted to wait until he was a year old and then go through another round of IVF. We met with our fertility doctor (RE, Reproductive Endocrinologist) in October once Wyatt had fully weaned. Everything was setup for us to start the prep for an embryo transfer on my next cycle. I started feeling off shortly after Wyatt’s birthday party and randomly decided to take a pregnancy test. I like to take pregnancy tests randomly much to the dismay of my husband. The test was both very faintly positive (according to me) and obviously negative (according to Kevin). I decided that just to be certain, I’d go in for a blood test. Once I got my negative result, I would ask about being put on Provera to induce a […]

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A Letter

Today is November 21st, which was our due date for our first pregnancy. I wrote a letter to our little angel baby and wanted to share it with everyone. In case you, or someone you know, is going through miscarriage, stillbirth, infant loss, etc. I am posting this in hopes that I could be of help to someone going through this emotional experience. My little angel baby, I didn’t want to write this, but I feel if I don’t publicly acknowledge it, it’s as if I’m not acknowledging you. You existed. You were and are a part of me. Part of us. Your daddy and I planned for you, prayed for you, and loved you. We dreamt of all the things we would do together, the memories we’d create, and the person we would raise you to be. I knew I wanted you to love God, love your family and always love yourself. I didn’t get to find out if you are a boy or girl, but I didn’t care. I just wanted you, whatever you were and whatever obstacles life may bring. And then we lost you. You went to heaven far too soon. I don’t know why and I […]

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Unexpected News

Another post so quickly? Crazy! I just wanted to pop on here and (as briefly as possible) update everyone on the pathology results we received on Monday. They had taken a fetal tissue sample during my D&C and were running tests to determine whether or not I had experienced a complete or partial molar pregnancy. As I mentioned in a previous post, there is a slight risk of cancer with molar pregnancies, because the tissue can grow back even after being completely removed via a D&C. That possibility was terrifying to think about, but surprisingly I didn’t allow myself to go there too often. I never felt as bad as the internet searches claimed I should feel, my levels weren’t that high, and as soon as I had the surgery, all of my pregnancy symptoms vanished. My “baby bump” (more like extreme, extreme bloat) has disappeared. I haven’t been nauseas since the morning before the surgery. Other than the pain and healing needed from being intubated, and just having surgery in general, I have felt great. I was expecting a partial molar pregnancy, which has a less than 1% chance of re-growth/cancer, based on all of this information. I felt positive. […]

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It’s Their Loss, Too

Ever since this last pregnancy loss, I’ve been much more interested in hearing other people’s journey through losing a baby. I’ve joined groups on Facebook, began reading an amazing book focused on healing from miscarriage by leaning into God’s word (Click here for the book! I’ll write a full review soon.), and have spent hours scouring the internet searching for blogs on this topic. I just want to not feel alone. And, as I’ve said countless times, though this type of loss really isn’t advertised to the world, there’s an even bigger piece that seems to be ignored…men lose babies too. I know it’s the woman that physically carries the child. I’ve also read studies that show that women bond with the baby much earlier on. I’ve heard the phrase that says something about a woman becoming a mother as soon as she sees two pink lines (or a plus sign/the words PREGNANT, depending on the test you take) and a man becomes a father when he holds his baby for the first time. But I disagree. Kevin and I started talking about having kids before we were married. We knew we wanted them soon and came to the conclusion pretty […]

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Highlight Reel

I’m surprised that I’m able to coherently write this tonight, but after receiving quite the cocktail of anesthesia and various narcotics, I’m jittery and wide awake. I’d much rather be sleeping, but since I’m not, I’ll take advantage of this opportunity to share my eventful day with the world. My pre-registration appointment for the D&C was on Friday and I was fortunate enough to take care of the admitting paperwork (re: the bill) prior to the surgery. I’m not sure who this is fortunate for, but I’m leaning towards it being the hospital. Several hours after the appointment, my throat started hurting and the body aches spread over me. My immune system does not play nicely when it comes to stressful times. Instead of putting up a fight and helping a girl out, it goes on vacation and leaves me wide open for sickness to come in. I really didn’t want to get sick before my surgery, so I tried as best I could to battle the symptoms (within the medication restrictions, basically that left me with Tylenol), but ended up having to call and inform my doctor of the sudden emergence of symptoms. Luckily, the surgery was not cancelled […]

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