Thursday, May 12, 2016

A Little Encouragement

Happy Thursday, Girls!

Today, I'm doing a bit of a repeat, but I'm sharing some new information too!  So if some looks familiar, keep going.  :)  

On Mother's Day Weekend, I had a fabulous time hanging with my people, but my heart was heavy for all of you who are trying your hardest to get the title of "mom".  I want you to know you are not alone!  

First of all if you are struggling with infertility right now, just know that if we were meeting face to face...I'd give you a big 'ole hug right now.  I completely mean that!  You can even cry on my shoulder!  The truth is I might even join you!

Here's my story....Tab and I had been married about two years when we decided we were ready to start "trying".  After about six months of that, with NOTHING happening I talked to my doctor just to make sure everything looked good.  My blood work came back showing that my hormone levels were a little "off", so she referred me to a reproductive endocrinologist.  (Sidenote:  It is EXTREMELY important for you to love your doctor.  If you are going to someone who isn't patient and caring with you...find a new doctor.  Believe me, I wish I would have done that from the start!!)  

(Ridiculous Sidenote:  This is the ONLY time Tab has had hair during our 9 year of marriage.)

We started with this reproductive endocrinologist at square one.  Lots of testing, lots of sonograms, lots and lots of appointments.  After a couple months, he decided we should try Clomid.  (I'm sure you've heard of it.  Probably the least hard-core fertility drug out there.  But...it produces lots of multiples.  I was certain I was going to get pregnant with at least triplets on this drug.  Didn't happen.)  Again, many sonograms and appointments later, nothing.  We continued the medicine for a couple months.  Then the doctor found a cyst the size of a grapefruit in one ovary.  Not what you want to hear!  Our options were to get on birth control for a couple months to see if it goes away or have a lapro-scopic surgery to remove the cyst.  Let's think about this....you're giving a highly hormonal girl two options one involving BIRTH CONTROL when she's doing everything in the world she can do to get pregnant??  Easy choice for us!  So...I had surgery and then we had to give my body a couple months to rest.  After the rest, I did shots in my stomach to help produce as many follicles as possible in hopes that this would be our miracle drug!  The miracle drug didn't work.

Needless to say, it was a HARD HARD time for us. It seemed like one thing after the other kept preventing the medicine from working...maybe my body produced too many follicles so the doctor didn't think it was safe to proceed that month or maybe my husband was traveling THE DAY something HAD to happen.  Something was always going wrong.  In the middle of all that, it was so hard for me to remember that God was in control.  All along He had the perfect timing set up for when we were going to get pregnant.  It didn't matter how much money we spent on medicine or how many appointments I went to...God was in control.  


After doing the shots for a month, I had to take the next month off just to give my body time to recover.  So...on my next "on" month, I began using the ovulation tests you can buy over-the-counter just to see when I would be ovulating.  We were planning our first IUI and the doctor had me scheduled to come in on Saturday morning, August 2nd, 2008, for the procedure.  On Friday, August 1st, I woke up and took an ovulation test only to find it was actually positive!!  Which meant in the next twelve hours, I would be ovulating.  I immediately called my doctor (remember I should have switched) and explained.  The nurse politely told me it was no big deal and we'd take care of it at the appointment tomorrow.  I was FRANTIC!!!  After two more calls BEGGING to come in and one call by my hubby, we finally were told to, "have sex just in case".  

Saturday, August 2nd, bright and early we headed to our appointment for our very first IUI.  (I should also add that it just happened to be my birthday!)  The doctor did a sonogram to make sure everything looked good and that's when he saw that I'd already ovulated.  Another failed month down in the record books!


Or so we thought...two weeks later I took a pregnancy test just to be sure and I saw the most beautiful words ever, "Pregnant".  We were finally pregnant and all in His time.  Apparently two years of "trying" was His perfect timing.  :)

I learned SO SO much throughout that time in my life.  I learned to lean on God more than ever.  I learned how to pray without ceasing.  I prayed and prayed and prayed for a baby.  I learned that sometimes you go through trials, because then in the end God makes it even more sweeter than you could have ever imagined.

On April 9, 2009, we received the biggest blessing...Miss Ebby Lee made her debut into the world.  She made us parents for the very first time.  And then on April 12, 2010, (you do the math),  our handsome Nixon-Man quickly made us parents of two.  In 2012, we added another little man, Bowen, to our family.  


During this time, I also gained one of the closest friendships I have to this day.  Shay and I met through our friend, Whitney.  She introduced us because she knew were both dealing with infertility.  We leaned on each other, encouraged each other, and prayed for each other.  One day she sent me the verse, "For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all." 2 Corinthians 4:17. It was my motto!!  haha!  I had it on a post-it note on my computer in my classroom.  Our sorrow seemed to seal the deal on our friendship and I'm so thankful!  I love that girl (and her kiddos) and can't imagine our lives without them in it!


I read the book, Hannah's Hope, by Jennifer Saake during that tough time.  That book REALLY helped me!  If you are dealing with infertility or you know someone who is, get them this book ASAP.   When I was working on my blog post about books yesterday, I kept going back to this book.  You know how sometimes a song or a scent can take you back to a certain time in your life?  Well, I feel that way about this book.  Just thinking about it brings back all the hard feelings that come with infertility, but this book brought me hope.  I think if you're struggling with infertility, you should read it.  I pray that it will help you find hope as well.  :)

Just for the record, if I had to do it all over again...I wouldn't change a thing.  God knew what he was doing.  :)  

If you're dealing with infertility, please know I am praying for you. Just remember God is in control and His timing is perfect.

If you've made it this far...thanks for reading!!  ;)  Again...I'm sorry if you read here over two years ago (YES!  It's been that long since I shared!).  But I just felt like someone might need to hear my story and be encouraged today.  And...if you or someone you know is struggling with this, send them a copy of this book.  

Praying for you, girls!!  XOXO

28 comments:

Ramona said...

What a wonderful uplifting story. Thanks so much for sharing! I have no doubt you've inspired and given hope to many. :)

Mix and Match Mama said...

You can just see God's hand in every part of this. What an amazing testimony and how blessed others will be by it today. I'm so glad you shared! It's funny how the biggest blessings in life often come after the darkest days. Love you friend.

Erika Slaughter said...

I hope so. Thank you, Ramona!

Erika Slaughter said...

That's so true and in the middle of the darkest days God is still in control. Thankful for you, friend!

The Stantons said...

I too struggled with infertility....it was so heartbreaking. I was devastated so many times. I miscarried 5 times. BUT....I wish I could have told my younger self that He really was in control and to trust in that 100%. (Hormones and struggles make you question Him!). When my daughter was born, I realized how in control God was the whole time. He sent me my perfect angel that healed all the pain that I was sure I would carry forever. My angel is 10 AND my other perfect Angel is 7!! I never have a day go by that I don't thank God for my patient, supportive husband and my 2 sweet babies!

Erika Slaughter said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story!!

fatima Santos said...

Erika thanks for sharing.I had trouble getting pregnant too and had 3 miscarriages along the way but eventually God blessed me with 2 children

kimm atwood said...

I love this story. Thanks for sharing. I was so fortunate to have been able to get pregnant so easily with all 5 of my children, and though I could never imagine how hard something like this must be to go through I am praying for all the ladies out there wishing to be a mom

Heather S said...

Erika-
Thank You so much for reposting your testament! I remember reading it a few years ago when my husband and myself were almost ready to start trying. Fast forward to now I am 33 and we are still "trying" . This Mother's Day was the hardest as all of my friends have these beautiful babies to love and my husband and I sat at home praying that will be us this time next year. thank you for giving us both hope that it will happen in His time!

brookerichardson said...

So there's a newer song out that I absolutely love and it's about trusting in God in his timing and his will even while we are experiencing heartbreak. It's called Thy Will by Hilary Scott! It's Amazing!!

Katie Bishop said...

Beautiful and encouraging words! I needed to read this today. We are desperately praying for a child. I know God's timing is perfect and I have complete faith in Him, but as a Type A planner, some days that's hard to do. Thank you for encouraging me this morning to continue to trust Him! Wishing I could sit with you and Shay over coffee this morning and talk more about this.

April Parrish said...

Loved reading this. It's all perfect in God's timing! Thanks for sharing!

Laura P. said...

Needed this today! Had a beautiful boy almost 3 years ago and now struggling to have our second. Trying to stay positive during such a sad time is not easy. I appreciate your story!

Jenn said...

Thank you for this. You've given me hope :)

Brittany Jones said...

Thank you for this...it brings me to tears thinking about how many of us struggle with infertility. Your blessings are beautiful and I can't wait until I have the chance to become a mother.

Anita Mraz said...

Thanks! I needed to hear this today 😊

Molly Middleton said...

I love that you shared this. I also think it was God's blessing because you and Shay had Ebby Lee and Kensington at the same time (so they could be friends) along with the boys. It's so perfect that your families align so well! I love seeing yalls friendship. It's so encouraging!! Xoxo

Britni Alexis said...

I loved this post. Although I haven't dealt with infertility, I have many friends who are walking through it right now. I sent this to one of my friends to encourage her. We did experience a miscarriage with our first pregnancy and I know that our daughter wouldn't be here and be who she is if that wouldn't have happened. I don't understand the why's, but I'm with you, God's timing is perfect. <3

Susieutk84 said...

Thank you for this. We've been struggling for 18 months now. The worst part of the struggle are those friends who weren't even trying and get pregnant. Thank you for sharing your story.

Kelli @ A Deeper Joy said...

Thank you :) Sunday was really hard for me even though I have 3 foster children because of this.

Kristina @ Ms.Modify said...

Thanks for getting vulnerable and opening up in this post. I'm newly married, so we haven't tried to get pregnant yet but it's something I think about because I've had a few friends who have had a hard time getting pregnant. xo, Kristina

Queen In Between said...

While I've never ever dealt with infertility as a woman who really, really wanted to be a mom I can only imagine how heart wrenching this is. You are a gem for sharing your story!

Loren Lately said...

xox thank you for sharing this, it brought me to tears. I read this at just the right time in my life. I have two IVF babies and it really is a miracle... we have been trying for over a year for our third and we have been unsuccessful. I am trying to understand the reasons why it isn't working but I just can't right now... I know some day I will see why God created this path for me...

Kati Matthews said...

Love, love, love this! Thanks for sharing sweet friend!

Jackie Belin said...

Such a beautiful story! I never struggled with infertility, but I did struggle with keeping pregnancies. Thank you for sharing your story! :)

Megan said...

Such a hard time but those beautiful babies were worth it!! I wouldn't change anything about our story either. God has the most perfect timing. I can look back on our struggles and specifically see God's hand in every single chapter. Love you!!

Hannah Christensen said...

Hello! Found this blog through Friday Favorites link up! Excited to join your monthly stranded link up from lovelylittlelives.com What a great idea!

Amanda said...

I love this post!!! I'm catching up on yall's blogs for the week and this one has me crying! (The pic of Tab with hair had to be shown to Craig, by the way. So crazy to see him with hair!!). God absolutely had His own timing.

On a another note though... why are y'all up at 3:30am?! Y'all know that's the middle of the night, right? Go to sleep!! 😉😴. Love you, girls!