Emily Jolene Wright

Thursday, August 6, 2009
Craig and I were finally able to decide on a middle name. It was so important to me to find a middle name that had a meaning which would reflect the long journey it took to bring Emily into this world. After many contenders, we finally settled on Jolene. The meaning of Jolene is, "God has added/increased". One website went so far as to define Jolene as meaning: "God has added a child". That is what did it for me. The name was perfect!!! It had the perfect meaning, and it was unique...you don't hear too many people with that name. Craig and I both loved it...and when the time finally came to meet Emily face to face...it fit her perfectly!!!

I'd like you all to meet, Emily Jolene Wright...my beautiful daughter.

Labor and Delivery

Monday, the 27th of July, was the BIG day. It started with a visit to the Chiropractor...she said if I haven't given birth by Monday, she wanted me to come in and she would try some techniques get things moving. She did a couple of pressure points on the inside of my knees and then massaged my round ligaments to try and loosen them up. Right after that appointment, I had my weekly appointment with my doctor. Once again, they asked if I wanted to be checked for dilation. I hesitated, but then decided to go for it. It turns out that I was dilated to 5cm!!! She couldn't believe I wasn't in labor. She then asked if I wanted her to "strip my membranes". She said that if I were close to giving birth, that this process would push me over the edge...however, if my body wasn't ready, nothing would happen. I decided...WHY NOT?!?! As soon as she did her thing, I had a small contraction.

I then asked her...since I'm so far dilated, do you still want me to wait for one hour before going to the hospital should I start getting consistent contractions. She said, NO...as soon as they are somewhat consistent, go to the hospital...as soon as your water breaks, go to the hospital.

I came home and told Craig all about the appointment. He was so excited...he even started to pack the car and arranged for the dog to be taken care of. He was so sure it was going to be that afternoon.
It's about 11 o'clock in the afternoon now, and I was having some contractions, but nothing too painful so I didn't think to monitor them. By noon, we decided to go to McDonalds for lunch. Since I was having more contractions, I decided to bring a paper and pen so we could keep track of the contractions just in case. As we recorded the times, it turned out that they were consistently four minutes apart and lasting for at least one minute long, however they weren't painful at all. When we arrived back home, we decided to call the doctor's office and ask them what they wanted us to do. Unfortunately, they were out to lunch, so we ended up calling the hospital and talking to the Labor & Delivery nurses. They said that we needed to come in so they could monitor the contractions themselves.

I was so nervous because, since the contractions weren't painful, I was afraid that they were going to send us home. Once we arrived, they hooked me up to the computer system...and it verified our own recordings: contractions every four minutes lasting for about a minute long. She also checked my cervix and I was still dilated at 5cm. She said...you are definitely staying.

After about an hour she checked my cervix again...6cm...still the contractions were not painful. She suggested we go walk around the hospital to try and speed things along...and possibly break my water. One more hour had passed, she checked my again and I was still dilated to 6cm. After reporting to the doctor, she told us that the doctor suggested that I go home for a couple of hours...but since the nurse thought we were so nice and she knew we didn't want to go home, she went to bat for us and convinced my doctor to let us stay.

Around 6, my doctor arrived to break my water. THAT WAS SUCH A WEIRD FEELING!!! Once my water broke...my contractions came on with a vengeance. I kept asking myself...is this painful enough for an epidural, or is it going to get a lot worse? Is this painful enough for an epidural, or is it going to get a lot worse? Now, don't get me wrong...I definitely wanted an epidural...I just didn't want to get it too early that it would slow down the labor. FINALLY...I had had enough. "I NEED AN EPIDURAL NOW!!" Unfortunately, no one told me that the nurse would have to start an IV and wait for half of a liter of saline to go in before they could start the epidural. I was P.O.'d!!! How come nobody told me this before?!?! On top of that...the anesthesiologist was in the O.R.

As I tried to work through the contractions...I didn't want anyone to talk to me or touch me. I just covered my eyes with one hand and tried to remember to breathe. They were so close together, about 2 minutes, that it provided me with little to no break in between. FINALLY, the anesthesiologist came the rescue. The man got the job done in about five minutes...and I was in HEAVEN!!!! It was amazing, I didn't believe that it could take the pain away...but it was a miracle worker. For the next couple of hours, I just lay in bed and relaxed with the family until it was time to push.

At 9PM, the nurse came in to check my cervix once again. She said, "You are at 10cm and I can feel her head...you are all ready to start pushing!" I was so excited...so nervous and afraid...but mostly I just couldn't wait to meet Emily. My family stepped out of the room, and 45 minutes later...Emily arrived. It was the most amazing moment of my life. They immediately placed her on my chest and I couldn't believe what had just happened. My daughter, my baby girl, was here...and I was holding her. She was so beautiful. I remember looking at Craig and just seeing him glowing with excitement. He got to cut the cord, and then they took Emily to the nurse to get assessed and cleaned up. Even now, as I think back...it just feels like a dream.
Once Emily was all cleaned up, and I was stitched up and decent, we let the family back in to meet their new granddaughter. There wasn't a dry eye in the room.

Still Waiting...Tick Tock Tick Tock

Sunday, July 26, 2009
I am about to start charging Emily rent with each passing day. I'm beginning to regret the doctor telling me that she didn't think I would make it past this week. Well, the end of "that week" is past. It is now Sunday, a new week has begun, and I still don't have a little baby to hold in my arms. I just keep telling myself, God isn't finished with her yet.

As I wait, the house is clean, the laundry remains to stay finished, and I have been keeping busy with scrapbooking. At the same time, Craig and I were never really "settled" on a middle name for her. We thought we found one, then decided it just wasn't "perfect"...so we started to look again...found another one we liked...that lasted for less than a day...and the search continued. This continued on for about a week. Well, I am proud to say, we have found the "perfect" middle name. I will share with you all "after" she arrives.

An Encouraging Dr. Appointment

Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Well, I had a doctor appointment today.

They asked if I wanted my cervix checked for the first time. At first I was going to say no because I was afraid that she would tell me I haven't dilated yet...then I decided to go for it. I wanted to know what I was dealing with...
The doctor did her thing and announced the following...I am three centimeters dilated and 60% effaced. Her guess is that Emily will be arriving before the week is over. I SO HOPE SHE IS RIGHT!!!

I'm Still Waiting...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Yes...ten days until the due date, but I AM SO READY!!! I have waited long enough...beyond the nine months...try four years. I am so ready to hold Emily for the first time, and yes...I'm ready to not be pregnant anymore. I never thought those words would pass through my lips, but I have officially reached the uncomfortable phase.

Some of my maternity clothes are getting a bit too tight, my back is completely out of alignment (I have to schedule weekly chiropractic appointments), I absolutely can't stand sleeping on my side (and my hips can testify to that)...but nonetheless...I still love feeling her move around inside. I'll admit, some of her kicks to the ribs can be somewhat painful...but any movement from her continues to reassure me that she is OK. Yes...with only ten more days until my due date, I am still terrified that I won't have a baby to bring home from the hospital. This all continues to be too good to be true, which is why I want her NOW and not later.

I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow...I have already asked her how long she will let me go before we start talking about inducing. She said that if I go to 41 weeks that we would talk about it. That's good, I was afraid she would have me go to 42 weeks.

Have I dropped yet? Yes and no...last week my mother swears that I had dropped. She said that I had more room between my boobs and my belly. This week, unfortunately, she changed her mind. Can Emily actually move back up? Who knows.

I started looking up ways to induce labor naturally. I found a few articles that swear by acupuncture. I brought it up to Craig and he isn't ready to start trying to induce labor. NOT FAIR!!! Why does he get to say yes or no? Is he the uncomfortable one? NO Is he the one with all the weight gain? NO Is he the one with the swollen ankles? NO Is he the one who cannot sleep? NO Is he the one who is having a hard time getting around and doing simple tasks throughout the day? NO HE IS NOT!!

Whatever...a few more days won't hurt, I guess. I just want to meet Emily SO BADLY!!!! I want to spend time with her! I want to hold her! I want to play with her! I am just tired of having her be in belly and not in my arms.

Empathy Belly VS Craig

Saturday, June 20, 2009
Our final childbirth class was not as tense as the first. Craig was back from Alaska, so he was able to attend...unfortunately the information that was most beneficial for him was given on the first day. Class started with each couple presenting their homework. We were assigned the topic of natural induction, so we just named a few different options and how they worked. After each couple presented, we were to simulate 2nd stage labor and try a few of the positions that we learned from the previous week. It was difficult, and sometimes frustrating, because Craig wasn't there for any of those positions...so I had to try and direct him and it didn't always work out the way I would have liked..I was grateful for the instructor coming over to help guide him with some of the positions. Overall, Craig did well...considering he wasn't there last week. While working through the positions, the instructor asked for volunteers from the men to wear the "Empathy Belly". Right away, I pointed to Craig and he stood up willingly. Before placing the suit on, the instructor wrapped a small corset type thing around his diaphragm to simulate pressure on the lungs. Inside the belly area is a large sack full of warm water. Underneath the water sack there is a large bean bag to help push on the bladder. The suit, as a whole, weighed about 35 pounds. Craig wore the suit for a couple of hours...and did quite well. During our break, we walked around the hospital and Craig was even comfortable enough to head towards the cafeteria to get a coke. I was so proud of him. The only reason he eventually took it off was because his water broke...actually the bag just sprung a small leak and he was getting pretty wet.

This week the focus was more on the medicated side of delivery...unlike last week, which FREAKED ME OUT!!! We watched a video of a woman using different analgesics and anesthesia, and another video of the administration of an epideral. These women looked much more content throughout the delivery than any of the women in the previous videos from last week. That was a relief!!

Unfortunately, today's class was a bit more dry and felt like an eternity to get through. It was hard to stay awake towards the end...I wanted to take a nap so desperately. At times, Craig rested his eyes for a little too long and did the whole "head bopping". I understood, but at the same time it was a bit disheartening. Well...we got through to the end, and even though I am worried about Craig being my "coach" having only been to one class and having a hard time staying away, at times, during the second class...I KNOW that Craig will pull through and do whatever he needs to do to help me through delivery...that's just the way that Craig is...he rarely disappoints!!

Just under 6 weeks remaining. I am so glad to be out of school so that I can focus my attention on getting the house ready, the nursery ready, and packing my hospital bag. We are so excited to meet Emily!!

1st Child Birth Class

Saturday, June 13, 2009
I just came home from my first childbirth class. YIKES!!

At the beginning of my pregnancy, I wasn't sure that I even wanted to go to a childbirth class. I just figured that whatever they had to teach me would be thrown out the window at the time of delivery. Then, one of our couple friends (who is about two weeks ahead of me) suggested that we take childbirth classes together. That actually sounded like fun...at least we would have friends in the class to make fun of the craziness.

Unfortunately, AFTER we signed up and paid for a class...THEN Craig remembers that he has a scheduling conflict, on the first day, that he can't get out of. I was/am pretty upset about that because the classes are a FULL day (9-5) of information that Craig is going to be missing out on...information that, after going through the first class now, if SO important for him to know: how he can help me to stay calm, how he can give massages to help me through different sorts of pains, how he can suggest different positions and be supportive, and last...but not least, what he can expect from me so that he isn't offended and hurt. Sure...I can tell him all of this stuff, but I don't think it would be received the same way as hearing it from the instructor.

Speaking of the instructor...she was GREAT!! I loved her!!

Thankfully, my mother was willing and able to give up her Saturday to fill in for Craig. She did great!!
The class was really good!! I was surprised with how much I enjoyed it and found the information to be helpful. I am so glad that we didn't pass this opportunity up. The instructor walked us through a number of different positions to help us through labor pains. We even had to do the "ice in the hand" trick to simulate pain and figure out how to get through it. I thought this was going to be a joke...NOPE!! We had to do it three times. The first was for 30 seconds...I was practically in tears because, I want to say, it just reminded me that this entire experience was real and I am going to be giving birth in a few weeks, but having to squeeze a handful of ice in my hands for 30 seconds was PAINFUL...it stung!! Then the instructor showed us a stretching position to do next as we held the ice again...this time it was for one minute. To my surprise, it was a lot easier. Finally, she added the music as we stretched and held the ice...for a minute and a half. Again...easier. It really showed me that I don't want to stay in bed during the contractions...until I get the epideral of course.

We also watched a number of videos...all of which FREAKED ME OUT. I'm not even kidding, my neck is still tense after watching those delivery videos. We watched a video of women working through their contractions. We even watched a video of women giving water births. After these videos...I told Emily that she needs to find some other way to come out because the traditional way is not going to cut it for me. NO WAY JOSE!!

Well...day one of two is done. Craig will be able to attend next week's class. Two words for him...EMPATHY BELLY!!! I can't wait!! I'm bringing a camera...and believe me...they will all be posted!!

Dear Lord...She Has To Come Out

Saturday, June 6, 2009
It hit me last week...Emily has to come out. Yes...yes...I knew that already, but for some reason it was never that big of a deal. I guess I just focused on all of the other stuff: watching my belly grow, feeling her kick and move inside of me, eventually holding my baby girl...I didn't leave any time to think or worry about the delivery part. Well, needless to say...I'm thinking about it now.

I would just love it if there was a way that they could knock me out completely and then wake me up once Emily is out and wrapped in a blanket...and would it be too much to ask if my hair and make-up could stay perfect?!? You know...for the pictures!!

On top of freaking out, I have also entered into the "nesting" phase of pregnancy. YIKES!! I sat down on my computer and created a crazy long TO-DO list. Craig is not understanding this phase at all. To him, our house is fine, her nursery is ready...what more do we need to do? I have a HUGE list that says otherwise!! OK...I understand that my list doesn't HAVE to get done...it has no effect on Emily...it is just full of things that I don't want to have to "feel" like I will never be able to get it done after Emily has arrived. I have already started going through each of the rooms in the house and creating a "Goodwill" pile...more like a mountain. I have a huge list of things I want to get done in the yard, and for some reason, I really want to clean and organize the basement. Nope...Emily will probably never even see the basement for the first few years...but I want to get it done, it is out of control down there.

I tell you, girl friends are just the coolest thing ever. I started mentioning this crazy list to one of my friends, and right away she volunteered to come and help me with the worst thing on my list...the basement!! She then suggested that I round up a few more friends...and so I did...and they AGREED!!! I can't believe it!! I have three girlfriends coming over to help me clean out my basement!! These kinds of friends are few and far between...they are THE BEST!!! THANK YOU!!! I can't wait to start crossing stuff off my list.

Is This Really Real?!?

I have to admit...I still have this feeling that "being pregnant" is not real. Yes...my belly is huge, it looks like a bowl of jelly when she moves around, and some of her kicks inflict a little bit of pain, but for some reason...I don't think it will be really "real" until Emily is in my arms.

For example, the morning of my first baby shower...I started to freak out a little bit because when I finally got out of bed, Emily wasn't doing anything...I couldn't feel her (Normally she gives me a few good kicks as she adjusts from me getting out of bed). I was so fearful that something had happened, maybe I slept on my back for too long...I don't know!! I just remember thinking that it was all too good to be true. Now that the day had finally arrived to celebrate, my first baby shower, I feared that I had lost her.

Needless to say...she started moving and my fears had subsided...but not completely. Unfortunately, it is and has always been in the back of my head that this entire experience is too good to be true...a tease almost. I have two more months to go...and I am so hoping that she comes early. I just want to meet her and hold her in my arms.

The Ball Keeps Rolling...

Thursday, May 7, 2009
I met with Pastor T. who is heading up our new abortion recovery ministry. We met to go over some new details and to plan out some new ideas for "ZOE" (that's what we named the ministry...it means "life")

During the meeting, she shared with me an update related to the letter that I had originally wrote to Pastor Dean last summer regarding our IVF procedure. For those of you who don't know about that letter, check out the post titled: Listen to Parts of our Pastor's Message: When Does Life Begin. At my first meeting with Pastor T. she shared with me some of the results that came about as a result of Pastor Dean's message (mentioned in the post titled: Hindsight is 20/20). It was so great to hear...and it just amazes me as I CONTINUE to see God's hand work in this story.

So...like I started out with, I met again with Pastor T. to talk about our new ministry. During the meeting, she shared with me how "Care Net" was so excited to be partnering up with our church. Care Net shared with her how many churches donate to their cause but are not ready or are unsure of how to bring up the issue of abortion in their church...so they just stay silent to the subject. Well...when Care Net found out about our letter on infertility and how Pastor addressed the topic as a message, along with the response from the congregation, they had asked him to create a format that would be able to train and encourage other Pastors in helping them to be able to address such a tough topic in their own churches.

THAT'S HUGE!!! I just love hearing how our testimony continues to spread...it is just amazing to see God's hands continue to work. I know that He isn't done with this yet and I am so excited to see what He has in store for us around the corner.

Mother's Day Testimony

Friday, April 24, 2009
I received a call yesterday from the media guy at our church. He said that he had heard that I had quite the testimony on becoming a mother and wanted to know if I would be willing to have them record my story on video so that they could share it at each of the four services on MOTHER'S DAY!!! How cool is that?!?? I hope I get a copy to keep for myself!! If I do...I'll try to post it on my blog so you all can see, or...those of you in the area just might have to attend Life Center, in Tacoma, on Mother's Day to see it for yourself.
I am so excited...SO NERVOUS!! I have never done anything like this before, and when I am nervous...I turn beat red!!! I hate it!! I don't even know where to begin with my story, what points to include and what to leave out. I'm sure they don't have an hours worth of video time...I'm really going to have think about this. I am such a nerd, I just know that I am going to have to make a bulleted list of points that I want to make sure to hit. Don't worry, I won't put it on 3X5 cards to use as they are recording, that would be stupid. I will probably make myself cue cards...I'M KIDDING!! Once I figure out what I want to say and what is better left unsaid, I will be fine.

Craig will be in the video too. His job is to sit pretty on my side, with his arm around me...and to hand me tissue should I need it.

I am so excited about our story being shared on Mother's Day. I never thought, in a million years, that I would be excited for Mother's Day. This is just the coolest way to start off all of my Mother's Day celebrations.

I would love to see you there!! Mark your calendars.

New York: Friday

Saturday, April 4, 2009
Craig and I slept in pretty late…it was much needed. I think the stress of Tuesday and trying to squeeze everything in really caught up with us. We knew that our check out time was at noon, so we were in no hurry. When we finally did get up, we packed our bags and checked them in so we could cross two more things off our list before heading home. Craig wanted me to see the entrance to the Natural History Museum and I wanted to walk through the St. Patrick’s Cathedral…which by the way was STUNNING!!! The detail in the building was insane beautiful. The statues…amazing!!! One thing that I found interesting was that there were only a few statues of Jesus, each one of them was of Him broken…from the death of the cross. There were more statues of Mary than of Jesus. Regardless…it was simply breath taking.

Back to the hotel…it was FINALLY time to head off to the airport to come home…HOME SWEET HOME!!! Don’t get me wrong…New York definitely has its amazing qualities, however with the whole hospital incident, it made it really hard for me to enjoy the rest of the trip. I was so stressed out and worried that I was going to over do it again that I couldn’t truly enjoy New York. It was hard being away from home, away from my doctors, away from family, when the incident happened. So, it goes without saying that I couldn’t wait to come home!!!

New York: Thursday

Finally, we were going to get to see the Statue of Liberty. It was breath taking!!! Honestly though, for some reason, I thought it was going to be bigger…but that didn’t take away from its awesomeness. Afterwards we visited the Financial District where we saw Ground Zero. There were a few memorials set up around the area, but most of the view for Ground Zero was blocked as they were doing construction work.

Due to the loss of one day of sight-seeing, we felt that we had to squeeze in a lot in one day…so it off to the subway to head to Rockefeller Center and then straight to the Empire State Building, while still having enough time to go to our Broadway show at 8…which by the way was the BEST!!! Even though the show was sold out, they managed to bring in two chairs for Craig and I and, believe it or not, the seats were great!!! Craig and I loved the show, WICKED, and so did Emily. No joke…during every single song, Emily danced through each one, from beginning to end. As soon as the song was over, so was her dancing. After THE BEST SHOW EVER, we walked back to the hotel, stopping at a diner across the street to share a dessert.

New York: Wednesday

Considering the day before, I agreed to spend half of the day in bed as Craig ventured out to do more sight-seeing in NY. He chose destinations that I didn’t mind missing at all…the Jerry Seinfeld diner, and the Natural History Museum. SNOOZE!!! Craig came to get me by dinner time…we stopped by a pizza place (I know…but the pizza is just so good!!), and we finished the evening by shopping around Madison Square. Once the stores all closed, we began walking back to the hotel, stopping at, what ended up being, another great Irish Pub: McGee’s Pub.

New York: Tuesday

Craig and I woke up early this morning in hopes of beating the crowds for a viewing of the Statue of Liberty. We got all dressed up and ready to head out, We stopped by our Hotel’s café and had two bowls of oatmeal for breakfast. Before heading out on our venture, I decided to use the Hotel restroom. Upon using the restroom, I noticed a little bit of blood on my underwear. I freaked out!!! WHAT THE HECK?!?! I rushed out to find Craig waiting for me in the lobby. I gestured to him that we needed to go to our room immediately. When we got in the elevator, I told him that I was spotting and I didn’t know what to do. We went to our room, I used the restroom again, and the blood was definitely red (new blood) so I knew something had to be wrong.

Craig is always so good in these situations…always strong and extremely sensible. Me, on the other hand, I just freak out as though it is the end of the world. I just started crying on the bed because I couldn’t think of what to do. Yes…I know…you go to the hospital!!! But we were all the way in New York, away from my own OB/GYN and away from all of the hospital staff that I knew from having worked at St. Joes for a number of years. Our fear was that we would get some ER doc who knew extremely little about pregnant cases and that they wouldn’t know how to properly take care of me. With Craig’s quick thinking, I ended up calling my OB/GYN and using their “on call” system. Unfortunately they refused to page my dr. saying that the only thing I could do, considering my circumstances, was to go to the ER. Craig then decided to call my insurance to see if there was any OB/GYN near our hotel that would accept our insurance. They gave us a list of numbers, however, none of them wanted to accept new patients. THANKS A LOT!! So we were left with only one option now, to go to the ER.

We quickly headed back to the lobby and requested the bellman to fetch us a taxi car. We told him to take us to the Lennox Hospital (Craig found the name of the best hospital in area using his iPhone). The taxi driver dropped us off at the ER entrance. As Craig paid the driver, I ran inside to get the paper work started. To our surprise, as soon as they heard that I was 22 weeks pregnant with bleeding; they immediately fetched a wheel chair and took me straight up to labor and delivery. You would think that this would be a good thing, and it really was…but at the same time, IT TOTALLY FREAKED ME OUT!!!! I just lost it as she rushed me through the doors. It was as though the doctors were waiting for me. As soon as we entered L&D, a doctor came right up to me, asking me a bunch of questions. They sent Craig back downstairs to get me registered as a patient while another nurse helped me into a room and gave me the beautiful hospital gown to put on. When I was all dressed and ready, she quickly hooked me up to a machine so as to hear Emily’s heartbeat…and there it was, loud and clear. As we waited for the doctor, another nurse came in and asked me a bunch of the typical questions: Did you fall? Did you have any cramping/pain? Etc.

When the doctor finally arrived, she first did an ultrasound to see Emily and the placenta. Everything looked great. Emily was moving around as though nothing was wrong. That was relieving to see. The doctor then said that she would do a “speculum” exam to see if she could find the cause of the bleeding. Before going forward with the exam, she said that in most cases they can’t find a cause…however, as soon as she started the examination…BINGO. She had found the cause of the bleeding, and apparently it was still bleeding. Without going into too much detail, there was an issue with my cervix. Fortunately, it was not at the opening of the cervix…it was on the side. Because of this, the doctor was not concerned at all. She used some “silver nitrate” to cauterize the bleeding and basically sent me on my way. She said that I didn’t need any bed rest and that I could continue on with our vacation. So…off we went, with every intention to take it slow and easy.

We decided to take advantage of the subway system from here on out, and do as little walking as we could. We headed down towards “China Town”, “Little Italy”, and “Soho”. While there, we ate at the best restaurant in NY, Shopsins. Craig had actually watched a documentary about the restaurant/hole in the wall. The food was SO GOOD!!! Later, we went back to the hotel with enough time to get ready for our Broadway show and dinner. Then…I went to the restroom as it was as though I was in the middle of a heavy period. I yelled out to Craig, “We have to go back to the hospital! I’m bleeding again, and it’s a lot worse now!!!” I couldn’t help but freak out again. This was so much worse than earlier in the day. We rushed back down to the lobby. I’m sobbing while Craig is trying so hard to be strong. The bellman hailed a cab and we told him to take us to the Lennox Hospital. I couldn’t stop crying the whole drive to the hospital. When the cab driver finally came to a stop, it didn’t look like the same hospital. Craig asked him, “Is this the Lennox Hospital?” “Yes, yes it is”, he said. So Craig paid the driver, while jumped out and ran inside. IT WAS NOT THE SAME HOSPITAL. Do we stay? Do we go? My bleeding is worse; did we really have a choice? I went to check in. The man only asked for my name. He then directed me to sit down and wait for them to call my name. I told him that I was 22 weeks pregnant with heavy bleeding; he again told me to sit down and wait to be called. That was all I needed, I told Craig that we had to find the right hospital, besides…all of my patient information was already in the system at the other hospital, and the nurses and doctors already knew my situation. We quickly hopped into another cab, and told him to get us to the Lennox Hospital. Now this guy was no joke…he knew we meant business and he wasted no time at all. I immediately reached for my seat belt and let the man do his thing. I couldn’t even watch him driving, IT WAS INSANE…but he got us to the right hospital lickity slit. We ran inside, and just like old times, up I went to the labor and delivery floor in a wheel chair. Thank you Lord…all of the same staff from earlier was still there. They were so nice, so helpful, and so quick to tend to me. Granted I couldn’t get a room right away, but they did everything in their power to move people on their way to make room for me.

Once I was settled back into my old bed with a fresh new hospital gown, the same doctor came in and got straight to business…with another “speculum” exam. I’m not even kidding, as quickly as the exam started she was out of her seat and rushed to the door to call out for another doctor. Talk about FREAKING OUT!!!! What’s with the rush? And as though that was the worst of it, she left the curtain open, along with the door as she called out for the other doctor. GIVE ME SOME SORT OF DIGNITY HERE!!! There I was, in all my glory, for the world to see. I begged Craig to cover me up. The second doctor came in, and together they assessed the problem and attempted to get it under control…which they did, though not as quickly and as painless as before. Whatever they did down there ended up causing so much cramping for me, it was horrible. Again, however, the doctors were still not concerned about the bleeding, more specifically it was the area of bleeding that supposedly caused no threat. Once they were sure that the bleeding was stopped, they let me rest for awhile before getting dressed and going about my way. Once more, they said that I didn’t need bed rest, that I would be fine.

It was too late to go to our Broadway show, so we agreed to go to our hotel. As I rested, Craig headed out to try and get the Gershwin Theater to allow us to use our show tickets on another day (which they did) and to get dinner to bring back to our room. Regardless of the doctors saying that I was going to be fine, with all of the stress of the day, Craig and I both agreed that it would be in our best interest if I spent, at the very least, half of the day tomorrow in bed.

New York: Monday

Who needs an alarm clock in NY when you have hundreds of taxi cars *honking* at each other early in the morning? I have no idea what time we actually woke up, but when we did we were ready to hit the streets of NY. Day one, we really didn't have a schedule for the day. We just decided to hit the pavement and what we would run into. First things first, we found a Starbucks for a quick "on-the-go" breakfast, and what do you know...Central Park was just across the street. Hand in hand, we walked over to Central Park and took in all of the scenery. I had no idea how large the park actually was. I don’t even know if we made it half way into the park…though we walked around for a couple of hours. While in the park, we ran into an outdoor auditorium where a high school band was playing, we found the “Friends” fountain (the one in their opening credits), we also found a castle, a couple of restaurants, some playgrounds, etc. This park has just about everything. Unfortunately we couldn’t the find the ice skating rink, but my legs were already starting to get tired and we had much of the day in front of us. We found an edge to the park and decided to walk around the neighborhood…it was then that this extreme feeling of having to go “pee” suddenly hit me. CRAP…we were nowhere near a clean restroom. So…it was time to step up the walking. Craig and I picked up the pace…I have no idea how far, or how long, we had to walk before we were able to find a “clean” public restroom. It just so happened to be the very Starbucks that we started our day with.

From Starbucks, we found our favorite pizza place: Amadeus Pizza…so good!!! We continued walking around and found ourselves in the middle of Times Square. WOW!!! It was just amazing, dramatic!! While in Times Square, we walked in and out of each of the different stores. We were stopped by a man selling tickets to a comedy show later that day…so we thought, “Why not? Let’s do it!” We finished up at Times Square and MY FEET WERE KILLING ME!!!

With the time change, our day was quickly slipping away. We still needed to find somewhere to have dinner before we headed out for the Comedy show. As we headed back towards our hotel we came across an Irish Pub…perfect!! We found a small table near the window and ordered our dinner, and then it was off to the Comedy show. Because our feet were killing us and our legs were getting sore, we attempted to use the New York subway system. It was exactly how I imagined it to be…dirty, stinky, dark, yet extremely convenient. The comedy show was OK, a bit crass, but there were a couple comedians that we were pretty great…others a bit awkward, making you question whether you should laugh or not.

After the comedy show, we went straight to the hotel to try and catch up on some more sleep. Our plan for tomorrow was to wake up EARLY (6:30AM…which is 3:30AM Seattle time) so that we could be in front of the crowd to view the Statue of Liberty. Little did we know, Emily had other plans for us.

New York: Sunday

Not much to tell about this day. Our plane was supposed to leave at 3PM, but kept on getting delayed. We finally boarded the plane at 6PM, which gives us an arrival time of 2:30AM (considering the time change in New York). We arrived at our hotel a little after 3 in the morning and went straight to bed!!

It's A Girl

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

We are having a baby GIRL!!

So...Craig and I have decided on a name for our little girl. We tried so hard to stay away from the top 100 list, but ended up choosing #1 on the list. I know...I know...Emily is supposedly "so popular", but, as a teacher, I have yet to have any students go through my classes with the name "Emily". Since we have been married (ten years ago), we have NEVER been able to find a name that we agree on. A few days ago, Craig thought of the name "Emily" and we both loved it!! After finding out that it was #1 on the list, we didn't really care.
Emily means: Industrious, Ambitious

We chose to have Elizabeth as the middle name for a couple of reasons. First, it was really important to me to have a name with a strong meaning. The meaning behind "Elizabeth" is: God has promised. I thought that was perfect, considering our history. Second, it was one of the few names that we thought flowed well with Emily.

Now, I shared our name choice with a couple of colleagues and they informed me that "Emily Elizabeth" is the name of the girl in the story book, "Clifford, the Big Red Dog". How ironic because Craig and I have a "big red dog". I don't know...I don't think it will be a problem at all. Its not like Emily is going to go around saying her first and middle name to everyone.

It is fun calling her by a name now. We no longer call our baby "it", or even "she"...we get to call her "Emily". I just love her name!!!!

Hindsight Is Always 20/20

Sunday, March 8, 2009
So...it is truly amazing to see what has come about from my four years of torture by way of infertility. Recently, Craig and I attended an evening service at church. At some point, Pastor Dean mentioned a new ministry that he wanted to get started and I knew right away that I wanted to be a part of it. The ministry reaches out to women through abortion clinics. I don't know the exact details of the ministry yet (it is all still in the work), but he talked briefly on how he wanted the women to know that no matter what choice they make that God still loves them with all His heart. It won't be a bunch of us standing outside a clinic with picket signs, but rather going inside and meeting the women, handing them gifts with information, etc. Possibly checking up on the women to see how they are doing and meeting up with them for coffee to just talk. I love it!!!

So...I talked to the Pastor who was put in charge of this ministry and she wanted to meet me for coffee to get to know me and see where I would best fit in with this new ministry. When we met, the first thing she asked of me was to share my testimony with her. She knew a little bit about our challenge and success through church meetings, but she didn't know any of the details. As I began to share with her, from beginning to end, the ups and downs...mostly downs, the heartaches, the struggles, etc. I ended up completely surprising myself when I just broke down...in the middle of the coffee shop. I was surprised because I was no longer in the depths of my depression, yet simply talking about it all brought so much back to the top. When I started to talk about our IVF procedure and seeing our five embryos on the TV screen...and then getting the call two weeks later that none of them took...I could barely get the words out to her. In a way, it felt so good to talk about it. I think I have only shared the whole story with one other person (others would hear the story as it was happening), and even then I couldn't get through it without crying.

When I finished my testimony, Pastor Tiffany said that I gave her goose bumps. She asked me if anyone has ever told me what came from the message that Pastor gave based off of my letter (I wrote a post about that message somewhere down below). I told her I had no idea. She shared with that there was such a huge response from women that day. So many woman came forward to receive forgiveness for past abortions because they have never been able to forgive themselves. She also said that there were a number of woman who were pregnant and considering abortion, but have made the choice to give their baby life.
I couldn't believe it!!! I remember the day Pastor Dean gave that message. I remember Craig and I walking away that day, in tears, saying that if our story helped to save the life of just one child...it would make the past four years worth it. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat!!!

I KNOW that infertility sucks!!! I KNOW the doubts and frustrations that it can cause. I KNOW the lies that Satan uses to feed you when you are in the midst of that torture. And I KNOW NOW that God can take the worst part of your life and use it for His glory. I can easily say that the worst part of my life was when I found out that I had lost my five babies...but you know...I look back now and I am so blessed that God could use my babies to save the lives of others. My babies had a clear purpose from God. Without them, I would have never written my letter to my Pastor. Without that letter, my Pastor would have never given his message on life...using that to speak directly to woman who have had abortions or were considering abortion. Without that message, those woman would have continued living a life of condemnation and listening to the lies that Satan kept feeding them. Without that message, those woman considering abortion may have gone forward with it. I am confident that I will see my babies in Heaven someday and until then, I will pass on their story to their new little brothers/sisters.

Don't ever give up!!!

Red Envelope Day

I have never heard about this day, but I'm glad I ran across it!! Apparently March 31st is "Red Envelope Day". On this day, we are asked to send empty red enveloped to the White House with the following written on the back:

"This represents one child who died because of an abortion. It is empty because the life that was taken is now unable to be a part of our world. Responsibility begins with conception."

I hope that the word quickly spreads about this day so that the impact will be grand.

Here is a link to the website:

I Felt The Baby Move Today

Sunday, March 1, 2009
March 1st, 2009...mark this day as the day I finally understand the whole "butterfly" effect in your belly. So many people have told me that when you feel the baby move it is like you have butterfly's in your stomach. I couldn't really imagine that feeling...until today. Ever since my 16th week, I thought that I was feeling the baby, and maybe I was...it just felt like someone was inside my belly pinching me. However, today was a completely different experience. Craig and I got in the car to go to church, and all of a sudden I felt this crazy tickle in my belly...one after the other. It was as though the baby was doing a summer-sault. It was absolutely AMAZING!!! As the day went on, I felt a few more "tickles". I loved it!! I cannot wait until I can feel the baby on the outside of the belly so that Craig enjoy the fun too.

4 Month Appointment

Wednesday, February 18, 2009
To my surprise, this appointment was extremely short!!! I got called back from the waiting room...stopped to do my weigh in and blood pressure and then directed to my room. A new midwife came in shortly after, her name was Kay. She immediately adjusted my seat so that I was laying on my back and we could use the doppler to hear the baby's heartbeat. Unlike last month's appointment, you could instantly hear the baby's heartbeat...loud and clear. The midwife said the heartbeat was in the 150's. Once she finished, she started to write in my chart and was pretty much closing up shop. She handed me a piece of paper that said to make an appointment in another four weeks and she was ready to go. I was a little confused because I had a few questions to ask, however I felt like I would be keeping her from her busy schedule...regardless, I stayed sitting in my chair and told her that I have a few questions to go over. She sat down, but after my second question she started to stand back up and slowly made her way to the door. Rude?...I think so!!! Whatever...I will just be calling the front desk to make sure that I am not scheduled with her in the future...problem solved.

Three more weeks and we will now the sex of our baby!! I can't wait. A lot of people have asked me if I have a "feeling" one way or another and I can honestly say that I don't. I have had one gender specific dream early in the pregnancy...I had a dream that I delivered the baby and the doctor said, "Congratulations, it's a girl." Is that wishful thinking? Who knows. I will obviously be thrilled no matter what we have...I just want to know!!! I CAN'T WAIT TO FIND OUT!!! Craig will probably have to take my credit card away because I know as soon as I find out...I will go baby clothes CRAZY!!!!! Just make sure that you don't get in my way :)

Presentation Sunday

Sunday, January 25, 2009
Last year, my parent's Pastor told them about a church in Bothell that devotes the last Sunday of every January as: Presentation Sunday, in commemoration of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple by Mary and Joseph 40 days after His birth. On this day Cedar Park Church (in Bothell), along with a growing number of other churches in the area and around the world, will be praying for couples who are desiring to have children but have encountered difficulty in doing so. Hundreds of babies are known to have been born in response to previous Presentation Sunday Prayer Services. Some babies arrive miraculously, some with the aid of fertility treatment, and some by adoption, but all are in response to prayer.

My husband and I attended last year for the first time. It was truly a blessing. The church has been doing this service for over 20 years now. After praise and worship, the Pastor shares his own testimony of how he and his wife have had 11 miscarriages throughout their marriage, which is why he has such a heart for couples struggling with infertility.

Last year, after the Pastor's message, he opened up the floor for couple's to share their testimonies. It was amazing!! Some couples shared how they have struggled for YEARS at trying to conceive. Some couples received their blessing through a miracle of pregnancy, others through adoption, and to my amazement...there were a couple stories of "snowflake" babies!!! There were a couple of women who adopted frozen embryos and were able to experience pregnancy. After being renewed with encouragement from hearing story after story of how...everything eventually worked out, couples who were currently struggling with infertility were asked to come forward and receive prayer. Craig and I, along with a TON of other couples came forward and knelt down as others walked around and prayed over us. One truly amazing thing about our experience was that it wasn't just adults that prayed over us...but also "Presentation Children" (Children who came to be after their parents attended a Presentation Service and received prayer). These children, ranging in ages from 12ish-3ish...walked around each of the couples, laying their hands on them and praying for them. It was BEAUTIFUL!!!!

So, needless to say, Craig and I had the pleasure of attending this year and being able to share our own testimony in hopes of providing encouragement for other couples. As those couples went forward for prayer, I was just filled with so such emotion. I just remember how, not so long ago, I felt so lost. I remember saying that I felt as though I had "faith without hope". I don't know why we went through what we had gone through, but I do know that I am a better person because of it...though if you had asked me in the middle of our challenge I would have thought that that was load of bologna. Nonetheless...I went through it...key word: "through".

13 Weeks Today

Thursday, January 22, 2009
I had my "12 week" physical today with my regular OB. I was all excited for the appointment, unfortunately it was a bit of a let down. Keep in mind, I have been at the fertility clinic for three years now...going in for check ups, ultrasounds, etc., at least every week, if not more. Now that I am past my 12 weeks, I've been kicked out and sent to the regular OB. Now...I only have appointments once a month (I get that), but I was at least hoping that I could have an ultrasound. I guess I still need that verification of my pregnancy. I see my belly starting to pooch...but I just so badly want to feel the baby inside of me. Because I can't feel the baby, I am terrified to admit to the world that I am pregnant. I desperately wanted to see my baby on the screen today, but as you can guess....that didn't happen.

Instead, however, I did hear the baby's heart beat. It was a little nerve racking at first because the midwife was not able to find the heart beat. She ended up moving on with the exam and she discovered that my uterus is tilted way back, which is what would make it extremely difficult to find the heartbeat. To get around that, she tried using the doppler again, only this time she pressed pretty hard down on my belly. Then...there it was...the faintest, tiniest, itty bittiest sound of a heart beat.


Monday, January 12, 2009
An update to my blog has been long overdue. Sorry about that.

Things have been going really well!! One thing I failed to mention in my first "pregnancy" post was that during my first ultrasound, the doctor found a cyst in my left ovary. At that time it measured 22mm. It was actually larger than the baby was at that time. The doctor told me that one of two things would happen. Either it would just get reabsorbed back into the body, or it would rupture. Because I was pregnant, there was nothing I could do except wait to see what happens.

I remember during my many procedures in the past, I had developed a cyst. At that time, they gave me options of going on birth control pills or waiting for it to rupture. They said that it could be painful enough to need painkillers. From what I remember, that cyst was just reabsorbed into the body because I was never in serious pain.

Well, at the end of my school day on Friday I started to have a constant dull pain on the lower left side below my abdomen. I didn't think much of it at all because by now (11 weeks)I had already forgotten about the cyst. When the pain didn't go away, I started to get a bit worried...then it finally dawned on me: my cyst probably ruptured.

On Saturday, the pain was still annoying but not horrible. However, Sunday was a pain (pun intended). I could not get comfortable and at times...there were a few tears shed. I ended up calling the doctors office to see if there was anything I could take. When they returned my message, she asked me: "On a scale of 1 to 10, how much pain are you in?" I hate this question, because right now...I am thinking 10 is reserved for my future labor pains, so compared to that this ruptured cyst is nothing!!! I just told her that it was really annoying pain. I can live through it, but if I don't have to bear it than I wanted to know what I could do. My next scheduled appointment was for Thursday, but she bumped it up to today, Monday, so that the doctor could check everything out and make sure it was OK.

That made me a little nervous...just moving up the appointment made me wonder if there was something that I needed to concerned about.

Well, the time finally arrived for my appointment. And as expected...everything was just fine!! The cyst wasn't completely gone, but it was much smaller (16mm), so the doctor determined that I actually have a small leak in the cyst which would explain the constant dull pain. He reassured me that it in NO WAY affects the baby. He then moved on to view our little bambino. The little thing wouldn't stop moving!! It's heartbeat was between 140-150 beats per minute (that's good). The newest development was that I could actually count the teeny weeny fingers because the bones are starting to calcify which makes them a bright white on the screen. It was pretty amazing the see the individual fingers.

So, all is well...VERY WELL!!! As of today, I am 11 weeks 4 days, so Thursday will be my 12 week mark...sending me into my second trimester!!! WOO-HOO!!!
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