Monday, April 22, 2013

Join the Movement

Happy National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW)!

I have been thinking about my 'Join the Movement' post for a couple of weeks. I have had some talks with my husband, Jeremy, to see if he had any profound thoughts on the topic. I had to have been desperate! Ha!

Infertility is such a scary, uncertain, heartbreaking, faith shaking, life destroying, relationship ruining, down right sucky, awful, sad, and horrible disease. People don't truly understand that it is a disease. It isn't a misfortunate accident. It isn't something that just happens.

Infertility is a disease. A disease that affects nearly 8 million people in the United States alone (Resolve). Infertility seems to choose the couples that are truly wanting families. Although, infertility doesn't discriminate. All couples are susceptible to the horrors of facing an infertile life.

Some infertiles can solve their issues with medication and ovulation predictors. Some must go onto injections and inseminations. Others move onto the terrifyingly expensive step of IVF. Some have surgery upon surgery to conceive. Many go on to use surrogates, donor eggs, donor sperm, or adoption. And sadly, some face a life of childlessness.

I feel like I have tried to educate people on infertility. When I created this blog in December 2011, some of my friends and family had no idea what Jeremy and I had been through. I felt encouraged by so many friends that came to me to share their stories. I had no idea how many infertiles I knew in my "real" life. Each of their stories touched me, and hopefully, mine helped them in some way as well.

At first, I was shy about our struggles with infertility. I wasn't sure how people would take my willingness to be an open book. I knew that infertility was a disease that most suffered in silence. I wasn't willing to be silent anymore. Even if I made a few people uncomfortable, I know that being open about infertility helped counsel me and many others. Staying silent works for many couples, but I couldn't move forward with all of the built-up sadness and anger. The best way for me to release my emotions in a safe environment was right here.

This blog created a space for me but I also met so many wonderful other infertiles. This is by far the best part about being open to sharing infertility. The blog friends that I have made over the last year are friends that will potentially be a part of my life for a lifetime. I find myself thinking about them, praying for them, and celebrating beside them. These other infertiles are the strongest and most caring individuals that I have met. I am so fortunate that sharing my story led me to their strong support system.

Even though, it seems as if I am on the "other side" of infertility with Max and Harper on their way. I will always be an infertile. It is a part of me and who I am. I will continue to be an advocate for infertiles everywhere. Whether that is sharing my story and success, or just educating the fertile world on what is acceptable and what is not.

So, yes, I have joined the movement! And I don't plan on quitting the movement until infertility is fully recognized as a disease. I won't stop until insurance companies across the country decide to cover these procedures as they would for "elective" procedures. Everyone needs to know what infertility is and how it affects couples. Only with education on the topic can infertility get the recognition from the people who can make changes.

Join the Movement and spread the word of infertility! I know I plan to continue.

  •  (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)
  • (About NIAW)

  • -Lisa-

    Tuesday, April 16, 2013

    Nursery Projects

    First of all, Jeremy and I are not the crafty type of people. In fact, I think we are the opposite of crafty. However, we wanted the nursery to be eclectic, unique, and meaningful. So, years ago we started collecting antiques and knick knacks for our future nursery. Because of the items we already had, we needed something for above the cribs that would match that style. After searching, it was clear we were going to have to make our decorations.

    The first project we tackled was Maxwell's wall hangings above his crib. I found a great and EASY craft project on Pinterest. We bought embroidery rings at Joann Fabric and also fabric pieces in different shades of yellow and gray. Here were our supplies:

     We put the pieces of fabric in the rings. Pulled tight and then cut access fabric from around ring but left enough to fold over and hot glue.

    The last step is removing the outer embroidery ring so we are left with a perfect circle of fabric. They turned out pretty good. We painted a letter M for Maxwell and hung in the center of the circles. Here is a picture of Max's crib:
    For Harper's wall, we decided on a more girly look. We found "shabby chic" style white frames at Hobby Lobby. They happened to all be 50% off which saved us a lot of moo-lah. I then bought spray paint and Jeremy spray painted the frames and "H" for Harper.
    We still have more antiques to hang and figure out but it is coming along. Here is the closet corner where we hung a large clothespin that I found at an antique store last year and a picture that Jeremy found in the back of an old frame we bought.


    Saturday, April 13, 2013

    24 week update

    Woo-hoo for viability!! I never thought we would get to 24 weeks. We can breathe a sigh of relief.

    I feel like I have been so busy but I look around and nothing is getting done. I start to freak out a bit when I realize that Maxwell & Harper will be here in about 11-13 more weeks. As much as I can't wait to wrap them up and hold them in my arms...Momma and Daddy are not ready!

    We have basically figured out daycare. It wasn't easy and we had lots of great options. We have decided to go with this daycare close to our house. We went and toured many centers but fell in love with the staff and facility. We won't need daycare until October 15. I go back to work October 1 and Jeremy is taking his leave at the beginning of October. Hopefully, one more spot will open up before then. At the moment, one of the twins has a spot while the other is waitlisted. The director said that she is sure a spot will open up before then so not to worry.

    Our nursery is coming along. I am in the middle of many d├ęcor projects at the moment. I am NOT a crafty person so I am definitely out of my element. I will post pictures of the projects in a separate post.

    FMLA and insurance is quite the headache but it seems to be working itself out as well.

    At my doctor checkup Tuesday, I only gained 5 pounds this month. This is a change from the last appointment where I gained a whopping 10 pounds! I am up 33 pounds. I can't believe how large and in charge I am getting. However, my doctor assures me I am right on track and healthy. She said I will slow down on the weight gain because twin mommies usually load up on the pounds early on. In fact, if you gain 24 pounds before the 24 weeks mark...twins have a greater chance of staying in there longer so they are born at a healthier weight.

    One thing that pregnant women may downplay is the movement. I am in complete awe of the punches, kicks, movement, etc. Jeremy is obsessed with watching the belly and feeling it. I think he nearly cried when his hand was kicked hard. I love looking at the belly move. It is a complete miracle and just feel so blessed that we get to experience this. I can't believe that more pregnant women or moms haven't told me about the awesomeness of this stage. I don't even care that I can't sleep because I know that when I feel them punch me, they are thriving.

    Max and Harper will grow up knowing how much they were prayed for. They will know what blessings and miracles they truly are. They will also know that God sent them as His perfect timing for us. I can't help but smile and cry happy tears at the thought of holding my precious angels. It puts our whole infertility struggle into perspective.

    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." -Jeremiah 29:11