Monday, October 26, 2009

Our Last Shot

Thursday, 10-21-09 (Day 36) 8dp5dt

Beta #1: negative. I really hate that word.

It doesn't fit a celebratory 100th post on a blog titled Think (+) Positive.

Even though it was almost a full week ago, the memory of that day is still so vivid and painfully clear. I remember brushing my teeth while my husband stared at the digital, waiting for that beautiful word "pregnant" to show up. I remember the look on his face and hearing his voice tell me that it doesn't matter, it's probably not right as my eyes focused instead on the "not pregnant" flashing on the tiny screen. I remember crying as he held me, whispering over and over again in my ear that we just need to wait for the beta, the test is probably wrong anyway, even though I knew it wasn't.

I remember numbly sitting in the cold, hard chair as our favorite faux hawk phlebotomist tried to joke with me as he fought with my vein. I wanted to yell at him to stop, to stop trying to poke me because I wasn't pregnant anyway, and I could no longer stand the sight of needles, I was just so tired of being poked, prodded, and stuck. I remember hating my body. My ugly, distorted, bruised and hormone filled failure of a body.

I remember texting everyone that knew of our situation, because I didn't have the heart to call them and tell them in person, or the ability to do it without crying. I remember getting the beta results back-zero-and telling my husband, only to watch the tears stream down his cheeks as the reality of our situation finally became truth to him, courtesy of a blood test.

I remember feeling like my life was over.

It just wasn't fair. It's all wrong. All of the signs along the way added up, and this was supposed to be our time. I saw a lady bug yesterday, the symbol of hope, and I knew this was it. My last posting just happened to fall at 99, leaving this post as my 100th, and it just had to be a positive one, literally. There were so many praying for us. People I've never even met in real life were pouring out their hearts to God, praying for our pumpkins, our miracles.

We put in healthy embryos. Two of them. Two beautiful, healthy little expanded blasts that were going to be our little girls. And third, not so healthy one that we just couldn't bear to leave out and try to make it to freeze, because he probably wouldn't survive. He was our little boy. He was supposed to survive in my womb better than in that darn petri dish. I was supposed to be pregnant. I am supposed to be pregnant right now. I'm supposed to be a mother, it's what my body was made for.

Then I woke up the next day, and I was still breathing.

I was very much alive. And I looked over, and saw my beautiful husband lying there next to me. And I thought about all of my friends and family and loved ones who had sent hundreds of text messages, e-mails, voicemails, phone calls, cards, gifts, and flowers, letting me know that they cried as we cried and prayed for comfort and peace for the both of us.

And I couldn't help but feel blessed, despite my empty womb.

My initial feelings of fear were brought on by the realization that this was it for us. After almost three years, two IUI's, one and a half failed IVF attempts, I would never be a mother. I would never have my own biological child, and I felt as if someone had erected a giant wall right in front of my face, and I couldn't move. I was suffocating. I had no where to go. I was being crushed.

And then, something changed. My husband and I decided that we couldn't change our circumstances, but we could change our attitudes. Worse things have happened. It wasn't over, it couldn't be; we refuse to let this be the end for us.

We refuse to give up.

We have absolutely no idea when or how, but we will try again. After a tearful conversation, God gave us peace with the mutual decision that we will allow ourselves-someday-one more 2-cycle try. If after than point we still aren't successful, then we will move on, fully accepting the fact that we tried our best and did all that we could. But until then, until we find a way to do this again, we aren't done.

And now I have something else to look forward too, to hope for, and I'm healing and thinking positive again. I'm feeling grief, but I know in my heart that God hasn't let us down. Just because He didn't give us the answer we wanted from Him, doesn't mean He doesn't love us or hear our prayers. He heard every last one of them, and He answered them just as it should be. We trust that He has something amazing in store for us, and we can't help but feel excited again for the future, and the blessings that we know He has in store for us, whatever they may be.

It's not normal, I know. It's probably strange to everyone reading this that I'm really doing alright, and I have been since less than twenty four hours after receiving the news that our perfect IVF cycle was a failure. But for me, it's impossible to look around at every thing that God's given me and feel hopeless. To feel lost. To feel like it's all over, and I have nothing left.

A dear friend of mine reminded me that in the Bible, it's documented that every single woman that prayed for a child received one. Every single one of them. It may not have been in their time, but it was in God's time, and I really do believe that if God gives you the desire to be a mother, He will indeed fulfill that desire, someway, somehow.

How could I believe all this and not be hopeful? How could I trust that God is in control and not praise Him for all He's given me, and all He'll continue to give to me in the future?

Our first full attempt at an IVF failed. It didn't work. I still have a million questions, I'm still fighting the disappointment and sadness, and sometimes I still reach down to my stomach to feel the life inside of me. When I remember suddenly that those tiny lives no longer exist, I quickly pull my hand away as the grief hits me like a thousand pounds of dead weight.

The sight of pumpkins breaks my heart.

But I know that I'll keep breathing; I have no other choice. I know that God has a plan for us bigger than we could ever dream of on our own. I know that He is holding our little ones in His hands, and I know they are praising Him right now, in a place that's a far better home than my womb and this world ever could have been for them.

And for that, this 100th post is still a positive one.

"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I intended to be."
-Douglas Adams

37 comments:

Jocelyn said...

Tears are streaming down my face as I read this. You attitude is incredible - your ability to face adversity and continue to focus on God is an inspiration. I won't begin to try to understand why God does what He does. Be incredibly blessed, because your life is such a blessing (the small glimpse we get to see through your blog!)

rcfabb said...

What a lovely post, I am sorry your cycle did not work.
:(

Kelli said...

I am reading this as I sit in a cold waiting room awaiting the beta test that I, too, already know is negative. It is painful and my heart is breaking for both of us. But you couldn't be more right about our great God and all he has in store for us. You are an amazing woman and you will be an amazing mother!

A said...

I am here from Making Me Mom- and today's CD1 for me, and what you wrote:

"A dear friend of mine reminded me that in the Bible, it's documented that every single woman that prayed for a child received one. Every single one of them. It may not have been in their time, but it was in God's time, and I really do believe that if God gives you the desire to be a mother, He will indeed fulfill that desire, someway, somehow."

just hit me like a ton of bricks (in a good way). I'll be praying for you :)

Mrs. Hammer said...

Everyday that pasted in which you did not post your beta results I knew was not a good sign. And so every day I prayed for you. God has laid you on my heart so much this past week to lift you up in prayer.

I cried reading your post, knowing exactly what you were going through. I wish so much that this had been your cycle. It's harder knowing that life was inside of you but now it's gone. It's not like an IUI, it's more powerful, the connection to our little ones, and more painful when it doesn't work. But God does have a plan for you both. And someday, somehow I just know you will both be wonderful parents.

I completely understand how you are doing alright with this disappointment having been there myself. I think it's sign of how Big God is in your lives that you can accept the good and the bad and still praise him. We do serve a great and good God.

Jennifer said...

Tab, I sit here with tears in my eyes. Your attitute towards the adverseity that you're facing is incredible. I am so sorry and saddened that this cycle didn't work for you but I will continue to be inspired by your uplifting attitude towards life. Hang in there sweetie. Your DH sounds amazing and he will always be there for you.

Angela said...

I have been praying for you and your husband for a while now. God lays you on my heart at all times of the day and night. My heart is so broken for you, but I am also inspired by your attitude. Prayers for you will continue on my end. Even this day is the day the Lord has made and we can rejoice and be glad in it.

osuraj said...

(((Hugs)))

Jenbabe said...

As I read your post it was as though I had written it myself after our IVF turned miscarriage last winter. It seemed that I healed so much easier than I should have and regained a positive outlook too quickly. But it wasn't that I didn't fully mourn the loss of our 3 embabies but that so many people were praying for us. I still grieve at unexpected times but looking back there is no way I made it through except by the grace of God and all those prayers. I absolutely agree that there is hope in the fact that every woman in the bible got her child eventually. Something else that gives me hope is the story of Moses and how he was out in the countryside until he was in his 40s before he led the people out of Israel. Someone once said that it would have been much easier when he was 20 but God needed him to mature and learn things about surviving in the desert before he was ready to lead. I believe Tab, that God is still preparing you and your DH for whatever he has in store, so hang in there and hold to your faith. And remember He does hear your prayers and holds every one of your tears in His hands.

jessica56 said...

WOW- you are AMAZING! I envy your strength and faith. I will remind myself to read this 100th post when I am not feeling positive. I will continue to think of you and your DH. Take care of yourselves.

Jenny said...

I'm so, so sorry. My heart cries for you.

BNHMAMA said...

You are such a great example of how God can help you through anything! I am proud to know you and Willie, and you are both in my prayers. The pain of not having a child to hold is something only few understand. But God is faithful, and Good! I love you!

The Wilson's said...

Your posts are always so beautiful, I have tears and admiration for you and your husband. Thinking and praying for you always!

Summer @ B is for Brown said...

it is definitely not over for you two. i know it in my heart. i just do.

lparsons15 said...

My heart is broken for you guys...But your attitude is amazing! You are a beautiful person clearly inside AND outside!

Suzanne said...

HUGS!!!! I'm so sorry that this cycle didn't work out for you. I've been praying for you and your DH. I am always amazed how you manage to stay positive in the midst of such adversity. You are my heroine! Thank you so much for sharing this part of your life through your blog, I can't tell you how much your inspirational attitude has helped me especially as I'm dealing with the aftermath of my miscarriage. You are truly a blessing to me and to everyone else who has followed your story. I know that God has great things in store for you! Please take good care of yourself.

BB said...

I am sorry Tab. My heart cries for you! I don't mean to brag or be superficial... but all you girls, whom I cycled with... I feel like there is a sisterhood... and we all were supposed to get pregnant and have healthy babies at the same time! It is not fair. But, I admire your strength and will power. Things will turn around for you and you will be blessed at God's time... just like you said... and you are going to be an amazing mother! {HUGS}

JackieMac said...

You are making me cry - what you wrote was beautiful and the way you can look at the situation is inspriing - I wish you nothing but the best in your future cycles.

Stephanie said...

My heart is aching for you right now. You said it perfectly though in this post. Your time will come!!!
I have thought about you all weekend! (as I know so many people have!)
I will still be praying for you and your future pumpkins!
Think Positive girl!!! ;)

Michele said...

You are such a strong person, and this is such a wonderful post. I know all too well how difficult it is to find any sort of positive spin on a failed IVF cycle, and yet you are choosing to see the glass half-full instead of half-empty (as I did). I am so, so sorry that you were met with such disappointment, but there is still hope. You are in my thoughts.

Anna said...

I'm so sorry Tab! I think you have the right attitude though. Keep holding on and praying into God's promises. He will never let you down because he loves you so much!!!

t.bird said...

i'm so sorry hon. your faith never ceases to amaze me.

i will continue to keep you & your husband in my prayers- if it helps at all, IVF#4 was my miracle. i didn't understand why it took so long and i still totally don't- but God is good.

<3

Michelle said...

As I read your blog, my heart breaks for you and your husband. You truly have the peace that passes all understanding! You are an inspiration!

WantWait&Pray said...

Ahh, your posts always make me tear up but this one made me cry. Full-on cry.
I am so sorry honey. You have the right attitude and GOD WILL PROVIDE!
I am thinking of you, praying for you and I know you will be blessed with a baby(babies) and this journey will sweeten the experience because those little ones have been longed for, prayed for, desired, and wanted for so long.
xoxoxo

Rachel said...

I am so sorry.

Nicole said...

I couldn't believe it when I read the result. I'm so sorry. Still, in the days that were my darkest ever, you remain to be an inspiration and a positive beacon for us all. I hope you find a way to do your next two (hopefully only one!) cycle soon.

Brittney said...

I read your post this morning at work and I too, cried. You are such a beautiful, strong Christian woman whom I admire so much. You and your DH were CONSTANTLY on my mind and heart last week - I've been praying fervently for you both. My heart is just breaking for you. But you have amazing perspective - you are SO right that God does not place the desire for motherhood on one's heart without purpose. Hold tight to His promises, Tabitha - He does have a perfect plan in store for you! I know none of the things I or anyone on here says can make things better. Just know that you are loved and that we are all praying for you and here for you. ((HUGS))

Eggs said...

Tabitha I'm so very sorry - I had such high hopes for this cycle. Your post was beautifully written. It always astounds me how quickly the hope returns - just when you think you are all but done, something brings you back with even more determination than before...to fight for what is yours to be. Don't ever give up hope. You're going to be a mom I have absolutely no doubt.

Melissa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hillary said...

This is the perfect 100th post. You are so real, honest, and open....and you keep looking to God and his goodness and provision. My heart breaks with you for the failed cycle for your little pumpkin patch, but I have so much hope as well. I am praying for you and know the Lord will show you his goodness and faithfulness here in the land of the living.

xxoo
Hillary

Mom Genes said...

Thank you for your transparency in this process. You are being used to glorify God even in the midst of your storm. What a woman you are. Your friend was right. His time is not our time, but it is the perfect time. We're hanging in there with you and lifting you up.

Jenn said...

This is such a beautiful post...I wish I knew how to use words like you just did. I'm so sorry for your bfn :( I've been there and know how much it sucks - the difference is that it's made me sad and bitter, but your attitude is refreshing. After reading this post, it gives me hope and is kinda pulling me out of my funk. Thank you for that. Good luck...you will be an amazing mother!

Hampers said...

Nice thought. POSITIVE Projections is a vision of hope, and assists with learning to recognize the positive and limitless aspects of our self

Hoping for our own Peanut said...

im very sorry for the turnout of your ivf cycle but am glad you and your husband are able to pick up and move on with new hope. you never cease to amaze me with your attitude and faith in god.

Dianne said...

Oh Tabitha, You are so brave and strong. You are right it will be in God's time, which can be SO frustrating and hard since we never know His plan. I know you will be a mother soon; however that may happen.

You are in my thoughts and prayers!

Tim and Heather said...

bless you. My heart is breaking for you and full of amazement for you, and hope all at the same time. You are an amazing woman, and like you said, your prayers will be answered... just not on your timeline. Keep up your positive attitude and enjoy being with such a wonderful husband.

Lots of love,
Heather

julie said...

"I know that He is holding our little ones in His hands"

That line is so profound and so touching. Your post was beautiful and inspiring. I hope that you continue to find the peace, strength and courage to bring you to the next step of your journey. Good Bless.