Thursday, July 29, 2010


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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Cautiously Hopeful

Today was the big day! Pregnancy test!! My appointment was at 10:30...I got there at 9:45....I wasn't anxious at all...ha ha. When the tech was drawing my blood I very kindly asked if I could possibly find out my results right the office. Hey, it was worth a shot, right? But, she said no...I would have to wait on a phone message or phone call sometime between 2 and 4. Of course the four hours in between was complete torture. My friends Emily and Jennifer went with me. Emily is a dear friend from high school and was also my college roommate. Jennifer is actually Emily's friend (and my new friend) and a patient at ART. Jennifer also had an appointment this morning, so we car pooled. Who would have ever thought I would be able to car pool to the infertility doctor?? Anyway, after both our appointments were finished we went to window shop at The Summit (teachers are broke this time of the month) and we also ate at Cocina Superior. It was yummy!

As I was driving down 204 headed home my phone rang...instant panic. Of course when I answered I was going through a bad spot which meant not so good reception. Boy, I put the pedal to the metal. I finally got to a spot where I could hear the nurse so I pulled over. She explained that my beta HCG (the pregnancy hormone) is 11.3. Anything less than 5 is considered a negative test and anything greater than 20 is considered positive. So, I am borderline...I may or may not be pregnant. If I am pregnant it is still very early....I would only be 3 1/2 weeks, so that is why the level is low. But it could go either way. I have to go back Monday for another test. Right when I start to pat myself on the back for being so patient these last two weeks...WHAM....wait 5 more days, please. So, I am being cautiously hopeful for the next five days. And I am going to try my best not to go to CVS to buy a basketful of home pregnancy tests. I am a nervous wreck. This has never happened before.

Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. --Lamentations 3:21-23

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Elizabeth-"God Is My Oath"

I decided to do Elizabeth next since we share the same first name :). Elizabeth was a woman the Bible calls "upright in the sight of God." She is praised for observing all the Lord's commandments and regulations without blame. Does this mean she was sinless and perfect. No. However, she was FAITHFUL and SINCERE. She is also the first to acknowledge Jesus as Lord (more on that to come). Elizabeth's story can be found in Luke 1:5-80.

Elizabeth's husband was Zechariah. He had been chosen to go into the temple of the Lord and burn incense. While he was doing this an angel, Gabriel, appeared and scared the man half to death. Gabriel said, "Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John." Being a human, Zechariah's first notion was doubt....wanting to know how he could be sure of this promise delivered by Gabriel. Because of Zechariah's doubt he was not able to speak until the day his son was born.

When Zechariah returned home Elizabeth became pregnant. They remained in seclusion for several months. They did this out of joy, devotion, and gratitude that the Lord had taken away her childlessness. In Elizabeth's sixth month of pregnancy Gabriel made another visit to a young virgin girl to tell her that before long she would also be with child (does the name Mary ring a bell?). For nothing is impossible with God. Elizabeth and Mary were relatives and upon receiving this message from Gabriel Mary decided to visit Elizabeth. I can just picture Mary on her long journey to Elizabeth's home, scared to death about her future, and desperately seeking wisdom from an older woman in her family.

Mary finally made it to the home of Zechariah and Elizabeth. Zechariah greeted Mary and from another room Elizabeth heard Mary's familiar voice. As soon as she heard this voice the baby leaped in her womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!" Isn't that amazing?? You see, that is why Elizabeth is considered the first to acknowledge Jesus as Lord.

Elizabeth's neighbors and relatives were delighted to hear that she had given birth to a son. It was practice to name a son after his father. But Elizabeth would not have it. She sternly replied, "No! He is to be called John." The group looked to Zechariah for confirmation. Now, remember Zechariah is mute because of his disbelief during Gabriel's visit. Zechariah grabbed a tablet and wrote, "His name is John." Immediately his mouth opened and he could speak again.....praising God. And that, my friends, is how John the Baptist came to the way, the name John means "The Lord is Gracious"

John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!" --John 1:29

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Because I asked the Lord for Him...

Hannah's story is such a comfort to my soul. Let's start out with some background information.

Hannah's story can be found in Samuel 1:1-2:11.

Hannah was married to Elkanah. Elkanah also had another wife, Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but Hannah had none. Polygamy was a custom during this time to ensure the birth of a male heir. It was practiced even by godly men, though it was not the original divine intention. Even though Elkanah had two wives, his one true love was Hannah (But to Hannah he gave a double portion because he loved her, and the Lord had closed her womb. 1 Samuel 1:5). Peninnah was not a nice girl. She provoked and taunted Hannah. I can't imagine the emotions I would feel if someone were teasing me about my infertility. I probably wouldn't act very godly! I am sure Peninnah was acting out of jealousy because she knew she would never be loved by the man she was married to.

Three times a year Elkanah went to Shiloh to appear before the Lord for a feast that celebrated, with joy and feasting, God's blessing on the year's crops. Imagine how hard this had to be for Hannah. What crops can she be thankful for? The journey was only fifteen miles, but I will assume that every year it seemed longer and longer. This went on year after year. And every time Peninnah provoked Hannah until she wept and would not eat. And Elkanah would say, "Hannah, why are you weeping? Why don't you eat? Why are you downhearted? Don't I mean more to you than ten sons?" (1 Samuel 1:8).

On this particular trip Hannah stood up from the table and went to the temple. She went into the temple with bitterness in her soul. She cried out to God and made a vow saying, "O Lord Almighty, if you will only look upon your servant's misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head. " (1 Samuel 1:11). Hannah was so consumed by her prayer that the priest thought she was drunk and scolded her. She explained that she was a woman deeply troubled pouring her soul out to the Lord. Can't you just picture it? Hannah is consumed in prayer physically shaking with groans that words cannot express.

Once Hannah left the temple her face was no longer downcast. Why is this? God did not promise her a child. God provided Hannah with a big dose of peace that passes all understanding. The next morning they worshipped and returned home. in the course of time Hannah conceived and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying "Because I asked the Lord for him." (1 Samuel 1:20)

Now this is great and wonderful, but my first thought when reading is that she has to give him away...she made a vow to God. WOW, Mahala, don't all children belong to God? Hannah nursed Samuel until she weaned him. Once he was weaned she took him to the house of the Lord. Okay...can I just say that I would be one of those strange people in the park nursing a 15 year old!! But she did it...she gave him to the Lord for his whole life. Each year she made him a little robe and took it to him. Then God blessed her again and again...she conceived and gave birth to 3 sons and 2 daughters! And Samuel grew to be a prophet and Israel's last judge. AMAZING!

I leave you with Hannah's Prayer (1 Samuel 2:1-10):

My heart rejoices in the Lord;
in the Lord my horn is lifted high.
My mouth boasts over my enemies,
for I delight in your deliverance.
There is no one holy like the Lord;
there is no one besides you;
there is no Rock like our God.
Do not keep talking so proudly or let your moth speak such arrogance,
for the Lord is a God who knows and by him deeds are weighed.
The bows of the warriors are broken,
but those who stumbled are armed with strength.
Those who were full hire themselves out for food,
but those who were hungry hunger no more.
She who was barren has borne seven children,
but she who has had many sons pines away.
The Lord brings death and makes alive;
He brings down to the grave and raises up.
The Lord sends poverty and wealth; he humbles and he exalts.
He raises the poor from the dust
and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
he seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor.
For the foundations of the earth are the Lord's;
upon them he has set the world.
He will guard the feet of his saints,
but the wicked will be silenced in darkness.
It is not by strength that one prevails;
those who oppose the Lord will be shattered.
He will thunder against them from heaven;
the Lord will judge the ends of the earth.
He will give strength to his king and exalt the horn of his anointed.

Women of the Bible

I am studying different women in the Bible who experienced infertility (although it was called barrenness then). I find it interesting to see how they reacted to this heartache, how faithful they were through it all, and how God blessed them (in many more ways that just blessing them with the ability to conceive). I figured I might as well turn my waiting into something productive. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have. One of my resources is Women of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Women in Scripture by Ann Spangler and Jean E. Syswerda.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Waiting....Table for 2...right this way....

Well, the IUI went well. Norman's counts were good. Dr. Honea found my cervix...that's always helpful. Now we just wait 2 weeks to get results. I go back on July 28th for a blood test to see if I'm pregnant. These 2 weeks always draaaaaag on. I shouldn't rush it since school will be starting soon. In the meantime I will try not to read into every little thing my body does in hopes that it is a pregnancy symptom. Wish me luck with that. Thanks for all the prayers and sweet comments, texts, and Facebook messages. Much love.

Monday, July 12, 2010

I have a confession.....

....I parked in an "expectant mothers" space today...there...I said it. Please forgive me especially if you have ever been a true expectant mother and your parking spot was taken. I'm sure karma will come back to visit one of these days. Norman almost died when I pulled into the spot, but we were running late and I had to be back in Jacksonville to teach by 10:00. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Plus, I "expect" to be a mother someday so that counts for something, right??

The lining of my uterus had thickened...yay! It wasn't as thick as they like it, but it was "thick enough" according to the nurse. On my left ovary I have one egg that is nice and plump...two more are still following close behind. We go back for IUI on Wednesday.

On the way home Norman googled all the foods he needs to be eating for his swimmers to be healthy. Here is the list that he gave me:

pumpkin seeds

We are having salmon and asparagus for dinner tonight. Eggs tomorrow morning. And he can snack on pumpkin seeds and kiwi all day tomorrow :) Sounds yummy.

My prayer for the next two weeks: (from my book, Hannah's Hope)

Lord, help me to know that You are enough. Take my eyes off myself. Take my eyes off the child I desire. Help me to delight myself in You. Mold the desires of my heart to be in line with Your will. I don't want to need to be a mother more than I need to be your humble, obedient child. I don't want wanting to have a baby to be a stumbling block between You and anymore.

Lord, I want to give this desire, this drive, this ache up to You. Help me not to snatch it back as I so often do with the burdens I place in Your hands. Help me to be truly content with Your will and Your timing.

Lord, You know that I still desire a baby-someone to mold, teach, train, shape, guide, and help to grow in You. But until the day You give me that joyous blessing, help me to grow in You. Let me reach out to those around me. Let me witness and minister to the children You place in my path.
Thank you for lifting my burden. Help me to keep You first! Let me seek Your face daily, and let me know that You are enough!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Well, today's appointment brought mixed emotions...I am feeling really ho-hum about the whole ordeal. They are always so quick to stick me for my blood and then I had to wait FOREVER (it seemed) for my u/s. I was happy to know that a nurse was doing my u/s and not a tech who would say more than she was supposed to. She looked at my uterus first and said the lining was very thin. At this point in my cycle it should be a little thicker. She scanned my right ovary first and Norman almost choked when she said there were 13, he DID choke...out loud. But she went on to say that they were all very small and no good. Then she moved over to my left ovary...which has always been more productive than my right. On the left side there was one egg that measured "almost ready" and 2 more following close behind. After the dr. reviewed my u/s and bloodwork she recommended that I continue my Gonal-F injections tonight and tomorrow night. She also called in a prescription for Estradiol to thicken the lining of my uterus. My next appointment is Monday at 7:45. Grow, little eggs...GROW!

Friday, July 9, 2010


Just wanted to let everyone know that I have an appointment at 8am tomorrow (Saturday) morning. They will do another u/s to see if I am close to ready for IUI. Pray for happy ovaries and a few healthy eggs. Not too many...we're not the Gosselin's...don't want to be. HA! Speaking of celebrities, Celine Dion is preggo with TWINS! Seriously, what kind of water do these celebrities drink? I need to get me some....they pop out twins like crazy! :) I'll post an update after the appointment. Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


by Russell Kelfer
Desperately, helplessly, longingly, I cried.
Quietly, patiently, lovingly, He replied.
I pleaded, and I wept for a clue to my fate,
And the Master so gently said, "Child, you must wait."
"Wait? You say wait?" my indignant reply.
"Lord, I need answers, I need to know why.
Is your hand shortened? Or have you not heard?
By faith I have asked, and I'm claiming your Word.
"My future, and all to which I can relate
Hangs in the balance, and you tell me 'wait'?
I'm needing a 'yes,' a go-ahead sign,
Or even a 'no,' to which I can resign.
"And Lord, you have promised that if we believe,
We need but to ask, and we shall receive.
And Lord I've been asking, and this is my cry:
I'm weary of asking: I need a reply!"
Then quietly, softly I learned of my fate
As my Master replied once again, "You must wait."
So I slumped in my chair; defeated and taut
And grumbled to God; "So I'm waiting for what?"
He seemed then to kneel and His eyes met with mine
And he tenderly said, "I could give you a sign.
I could shake the heavens, darken the sun,
Raise the dead, cause the mountains to run.
"All you see I could give, and pleased you would be.
You would have what you want, but you wouldn't know Me.
You'd not know the depth of My love for each saint;
You'd not know the power that I give to the faint.
"You'd not learn to see through clouds of despair;
You'd not learn to trust, just by knowing I'm there.
You'd not know the joy of resting in Me,
When darkness and silence was all you could see.
"You would never experience that fullness of love
As the peace of My Spirit descends like a dove.
You would know that I give, and I save, for a start,
But you'd not know the depth of the beat of My heart.
"The glow of My comfort late in the night;
The faith that I give when you walk without sight;
The depth that's beyond getting just what you ask
From an infinite God who makes what you have last.
"And you never would know, should your pain quickly flee,
What it means that 'My grace is sufficient for thee.'
Yes, your dreams for that loved one o'ernight could come true,
But the loss! if you lost what I'm doing in you.
"So be silent, my child, and in time you will see
That the greatest of gifts is to get to know Me.
And though oft' may My answers seem terribly late,
My most precious answer of still...wait."

Monday, July 5, 2010

Nurse Norman

Just thought you guys might find it amusing that Norman gets to stick me tonight. We have done this before so he is an old pro. I guess he will just dust off his nursing scrubs. ha! On a more serious note, I am always scared that I am not dialing up the right dosage. Pray that I don't over/underdose myself. Not that anything major would happen, but I want to be sure that I am getting the EXACT dosage. Plus the vials are $200. So, I definitely don't want to use any more than I need. This injection that I take tonight and 4 more days is Gonal-F and it is given in my stomach.

On a lighter note, we had a wonderful 4th of July. We went to my parents on Saturday. Mama had ordered a boston butt and a smoked chicken. She also cooked baked beans, mac & cheese, and dressing (a family favorite that we don't just reserve for Thanksgiving). It was always. Norman and I rode the four wheeler and picked lots of blackberries. I also got to visit with my grandmother. On Sunday we headed to Pell City and watched the fireworks on the lake with some friends. Today (Monday) has been a pretty lazy day. I successfully made blackberry jam. I canned it and now I am listening to the lids pop which lets me know I did it right. YAY! I can't believe I did it with no help from my mama!

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
1 Chronicles 16:34

Friday, July 2, 2010

Results from my appointment

My appointment this morning went well with a few little bumps along the way. First, let me start by saying that God provides the perfect people to be there when you need them. For some reason I had the "sense" that I did not need to go alone to the doctor. I asked a few friends very last minute and really didn't expect for anyone to be able to go considering it was the beginning of a holiday weekend (not to mention who wants to spend a Friday riding back and forth to Birmingham to the doctor??). Thankfully, my sweet friend Texann was able to go along with me. We arrived at the doctor's office right on time...we would've been early, but I thought I was smarter than my GPS....ooops. I had bloodwork drawn and then was called back for the ulatrasound. The tech began by looking at my uterus, and suddenly I swear the air left the room. I knew something was not right. I am sure that anyone who has ever had a medical scare by ultrasound can totally relate to this. As she scanned my uterus she pointed out a white-ish spot on my uterus. She asked if I had ever had an SIS. Since I had no idea what that was I told her no. She explained the procedure. Then she went on to ask if I have or have had endometriosis. I told her yes and about my laparoscopy procedure to remove it. She further explained that USUALLY endometriosis grows on the outside of your uterus but occassionally it can actually get into the muscle of your uterus. When this happens it is no longer called endometriosis. It is called "adenomyosis" (pronounce that).
So, immediately I start asking questions...Is it fixable? If so, how? Is this cancer? etc., etc., etc. To which she replies (and I quote), "Well, I am just the tech. I only know enough to be dangerous. You will have to talk to the nurse." YES...she really said this!! Are you kidding me? So, she finishes up the u/s. She looks at my ovaries. Which, by the way, looked beautiful. Twenty follicles on the right and 18 on the left. WOO-HOO!! I got dressed and waited in a conference room for the nurse....and freaked out a few hundred times. The nurse comes in and explains to me that because of the concern with my uterus the dr. will have to review the u/s before we make any decisions. As luck would have it, all the doctors are in surgery so I will have to wait for them to leave a message. In the meantime, she went ahead and called in all my prescriptions and told me to just continue as planned until I hear otherwise. So, I pay the bill and leave. On the way to the car I explained to Texann everything. We went to eat at Smokey Bones Alabama (yummy), did a little shopping at Whole Foods and then headed home. This is why I am confident that God had already planned for Texann to be with me today. She is so calming. If she had not been with me I would have sobbed all the way home in fear. Finally, at 4:00 I got the phone call that the dr. had looked at my u/s and wants us to go ahead as planned. I am taking this as good news. The nurse did say that I should talk to Dr. Honea about it next month if we aren't pregnant. So, that was my day. My meds are ordered and I will begin taking 5mg of letrozole tomorrow and begin injections on Sunday. My next appointment is July Saturday. Hope everyone has a wonderful Independence Day with family and friends. Thank you for your prayers.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Here we go again....

Well, today is Day 1. Norman and I talked last night and decided to go ahead with treatment this month. It is the last month before school starts back and my life turns into craziness. I will be going to ART tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. This appointment will be what they call "baseline". They will do an ultrasound to make sure that there are no cysts on my ovaries. I don't think there will be any bloodwork involved with this appointment. To be honest, I can't really remember it's been so long. It wouldn't matter anyway I have been stuck so many times I have scars (all jokes aside, I really do). They do this each month for my safety before beginning any meds. Just pray specifically for my safety as I travel because anytime 280 is involved there is More importantly, pray that there are no cysts and my ovaries are beautiful.:) I'll post again after the appointment. Geez, I'm nervous.
"How precious it is, Lord, to realize that You are thinking about me constantly! I can't even count how many times a day Your thoughts turn toward me. And when I waken in the morning, You are still thinking of me!"--Psalm 139:17-18