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Saturday, September 27, 2008


You need to see this movie. I heard Kirk Cameron speak about 5 years ago at an evangelism conference and it changed me. He was so inspiring and passionate about his faith. It was impressive.

I went to see FIREPROOF with my inlaws and some of their couple friends today. No Joe. Just me. If you dont know (like I didn't when I entered the theatre), this is the story of a couple whose marriage is falling apart. FAST. Neither are making it work and both are ready to quit. Through a series of events, the hard-headed husband (Kirk Cameron) is persuaded by Dad to take the "Love Dare" for 40 days. Every day there is something new to do to try and salvage his marriage. Through the story, not only does he find God and faith, but he realizes how much he really does love his wife and wants her to stay with him.

Now being a movie lover, I have to say that the dialogue/acting was like something out of A Walk to Remember or some other such cheesy feel good story. But the story is just so wonderful. So relevant. I ended up loving it! I found myself crying at several points in the story because I felt so emotionally connected. It was so great to see a sold out theater watching people talk openly about God and what he can do in your life!

At one point I found myself teary listening to the words of a song. Its at a point where Kirk's character is waiting on God to move, well into his 40 day "dare." The words fit any point where you find yourself in a trial you have to wait out. Any time that you are doing what you can, but waiting on God to swoop in. Here's what I remember from the lyrics. Sorry, I don't know who sings it...

While I'm waiting I will serve You

While I'm waiting I will worship

While I'm waiting I will not faint

I'll be running the race

Even while I wait I'm waiting

I'm waiting on You, Lord

It talks about being peaceful and faithful as you wait on God. Great song.

Anyhow...this movie made me appreciate my wonderful husband and the sweet way he always does things for me. Several moments in the movie, Kirk Cameron is trying things to show he cares that my boy does almost on a daily basis. He always calls to see if I need something on his way home from work. He calls me just to say hi and that he loves me. He buys me flowers for no reason. And he genuinely loves to do things to make me smile. In fact, just tonight our plans kind of went by the wayside and Joe was so excited to take me to my favorite store and buy me a new jacket (my fashion weakness). I told him over and over I didn't need it. We need to save that money. But he insisted. He wanted to "keep me looking pretty (wink)."

I'm so blessed to not be facing this particular trial in my life. I have a husband who loves me so much and so unconditionally. And I try to tell him and show him everyday that I would marry him all over again, and that he is not only my husband, but my very best friend. He was for years before I fell in love with him and I thank God for allowing me to spend my life with him.

So...see this movie.

5 Questions

Did you ever see Craig Kilborn on the Late Late Late Show? Or on what is now the Jon Stewart Show (it used to be hosted by Craig Kilborn?) He has this thing where his interviews only consist of 5 questions. It keeps it short and with strategic questions, you can get some good info and (hopefully for him) a few laughs too.
Mom and I were talking last week about a 5 Questions class that she has done on Wednesday nights with ladies before. It's been rolling in my brain for the past 5 days and I thought it would be good to do here. The idea is that you get a panel of 3 ladies who have all faced a similar struggle (cancer, divorce, alcholoism, etc.) and have them answer the same 5 questions about how it affected them. The hope is that it will inform people better about what it is like to stand in these people's shoes and what they can do to help in those times. It also lets women get to know eachother in a way they may not be able to day to day.
Through my months of infertility I've had a lot of ups and downs (more downs I'm sad to say.) And now through miscarriage I have yet another story to tell. So I'm going to take a crack at this. I hope it's enlightening!
1. In a couple of sentences, tell us why you qualify for this topic. (miscarriage)
I got pregnant after a year and a half and some fertility procedures. I only stayed pregnant 8 days past when I had my first pregnancy test. I miscarried on Sept 7, 2008.
2. What are some things that people said or did that made it easier?
I had several women at church hug and cry with me. Knowing people were sad for me was nice. My friends at work all check on me daily and make sure I really am as okay as I try to let on. We were with Amy and Brian when I physically miscarried and it was good to be with friends then, even tho I didn't feel like I needed people with me. It wasn't a meltdown, devastating moment. I knew it was coming. I got a really sweet card from my Aunt Jackie in Lubbock. And the ladies at Hannah Group have been really great to spend time with us, helping Amy and I think through what has happened to us.
3. What did people do that hurt?
Mostly what hurts is when people do nothing or act like it's part of the process. "I thought it was wierd that it worked the first time. Doesn't IVF usually take a couple of tries usually?" I know that sounds wierd because that has been my general outlook on it too. I have looked at it as a failed IVF cycle and not a death of my first child. I'm putting people between a rock and a hard place. I want people to be worried about me and ask me how we're doing and be as sad as they were happy when the news was good. But I also tell them I'm fine and we're moving on to the next step. Of course they leave me alone about it then! I guess it is starting to catch up to me that I should be having a sonogram this week to hear a heartbeat. I should be finding out if there are twins growing in me. But there is nothing there. The baby that was once growing in me is with God now. I understand that people don't know what to say to me.
4. What do you wish people would have done differently or said differently?
I wish more people would say something. I expected more cards. More calls. More emails. And there just weren't many at all. Lots of people did exactly what I needed...gave me a hug and told us they love us. That's been the best thing anyone has done. It's nice to know that people know, care, and will let me know that. It was hard to go through this while Amy was too. Her grief was so much more than mine and so the floodgate flowed to her from lots of people. Even from me, I directed all emotion to concern for her. I wish I could have recieved more of the outpouring. I'll remember that next time I hear someone else has miscarried. I know I have had friends experience that and done nothing also. But going through it makes me so much more aware of what it really means.
5. How has this strengthened your relationship with God?
Especially in the past week, I have been talking to God a lot about that baby. Was it a he or a she? Are they okay? Is Jesus rocking them to sleep every night? Have they found baby Tindell and started causing a ruckus up there? At Hannah Group last week they were talking to us about our babies being in Heaven and it was a thought I hadn't really had yet. I hadn't thought about my baby being "dead." I was still thinking "the embryo didn't stick." But now, I have really found a lot of comfort in the fact that God has my little one. A friend at group gave Amy and I a song called "Glory Baby." At first I didn't think it really applied to me. After all , this doesn't feel like a loss or a miscarriage. But it is. And now I feel that. This song is speaking to getting to see our lost children someday in Heaven and finally getting to hold them. After listening to that song about 12 times in my car, I listened to praise music. And found myself unable to sing along without crying. (not good when you are driving.) I find myself very connected in praise right now to God. My emotions are completely wrapped up in it. I like feeling close to him again and I love that praise is where I find myself closest. Right now I'm not feeling excited or hopeful, nor worried and scared about the next round of IVF. I think I'm in a state of normalcy for the first time in a while and completely content to be with my husband, resting in God's hand.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Tracks of my Tears

Back in April, my mother in law had a prayer session for me with women from church. My best friend Amy gave me two things that have become a mainstay of everyday life for me. One is the Willow Tree set of prayer partners. It's two brunette girls, holding hands in prayer. Ironically, one has longer hair and one has shorter...just like me and Amy. It sits on my nightstand and I look at it every night and every morning. It reminds me of the friend who prays for my future as I pray for hers.
The other gift she gave me hides away in the depths of my purse most days. But I know it's there. I see it when I dig for my keys. It gets caught in the zipper and shoved into the corners, but it's always there when I need it. It's a hankerchief. I've never had one before, but Amy gave it to me for this reason: it's to catch all the tears I will cry in this process...both happy AND sad. And it has done that well. I've cried over friends finding out they are pregnant while I am not. I've used it through 2 baby dedications. I've used it when I found I was going to have a baby at last! And I used it again when I found out I wouldn't stay pregnant for long. Amy has even held it as she's cried through her hurts these past few weeks. It has been in my hand through all the love and heartache. So when Joe told me I needed to wash it and people tried to throw it away as a dirty tissue this past week, I had a hard time letting go of it. It holds all my tears. It reminds me that God is catching every single tear I cry and holding it in his hand. How can throw away or wash away that reminder?
But then I started thinking about an activity we did with the campers at Kadesh one year. They had these sheets that were all marked up with the pain and fear they had about themselves. They wore them all week. The last morning, we took them out to a field of crosses and their sheets were all gleaming white, nailed to a cross. It was a great visual of God taking away the pain, the fear, the heartaches. It occured to me I could do that with this hankerchief. It could be a release and way to let go of what's happened these past few months. So I gently hand washed my hanky and smiled as I looked at it's new appearance. Those tears I've shed are no longer there.

Monday, September 15, 2008

ode to Tanya

With all of my treatments, I have had so much to tell you about that single aspect of my life and have left out so much of what else goes on! I thought it was about time I paid tribute to a little lady who has been waiting there in the wings for me every moment of the past 9 months.
Tanya and I have been friends for several years now, as our husbands were roommates when we were dating them. In fact, I saw Tanya's engagement ring on the day Jake bought it. I joke with Tanya about being my back-up best friend, but she really has been working hard to fill that roll. From sitting with me in the bathroom while I cried one Sunday back in January to letting me ditch my plans with her multiple time last week, she never complains and always shows up when I need her. Tanya was with me the night before my pregnancy test. Tanya was with me while I was hooked up to IVs when I got dehydrated. Tanya was there when I got the call that I may lose the baby. And Tanya was ready to run away with us later that week, but was even more ready to let me cancel mere minutes before we were to leave.
For those of you who don't know Tanya, there is something more you should know. She has so much on her plate, so much to whine about and so much to be down about, but she always makes time for her friends. She always can put someone else before herself and I admire that so much about her. She is only 23 and has had to parent her parents for way too long. Now she carries a full work schedule on top of a full school schedule containing multiple art courses (which take at least 5 times as much time as other course studies.)
She is an amazing girl, and while she feels she can never catch up or compete to be my BFF, she is so dear to me and always will be. We are in such different places in life that I know we may never be tied at the hip, but I love the effort she puts into me and aspire to do the same for her.
Love you Tanya!!!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

hi ho! hi ho! its off to the doctor we go!

We went for our followup to failed fresh cycle appointment today. Wow. That was a mouthful! Dr. Kevin went through our chart with us and told us repeatedly how great we did. He said I produced great eggs. He said usually not all of them are good quality, but ALL of mine were mature and good. Then Joe didn't have to have surgery (YAY!!!) Usually 60% of eggs are successfully fertilized. ALL of ours were successful. He said that is very unusual. Then to add to the unusualness...they all grew! He said that again, only 60% usually mature. While not all of ours did good enough to freeze, he said we got so many! He said our 2 that we implanted were pretty good quality but we have even better ones frozen. (Why didn't they implant those? Well, they got to grow a few more days, so they got better over those days.) He explained that my pregnancy was biochemical, which I thought meant the baby never fully attached. He said it DID attach and started growing, but then stopped. For reasons we may never know. He said it was nothing I did or took that caused it, probably a problem in the embryo itself. Hmmmm. One of those things I'll have to ask God about later.

So Dr. Kevin is very optimistic about this round. It's cheaper, it's faster, and it's easier on my body. WHOO HOO!!!! So all the paperwork is done. All the money is paid. We are scheduled to start!!! Yay!!!!

Now the predicament I'm in. I LOVE BLOGGING ABOUT THIS!!!! But I don't want to publicly miscarry again. I don't want to go through the possible downs with everyone I know. I want so much to tell you everything, but I know there's a reason people don't tell everyone they are pregnant for several weeks. What do I do? Can I really keep my mouth shut about everything? (of course I can't!) I'm going to attempt to just keep this between our families and close friends, but I know i will cave here and there. All this to say, I want you to pray with us. I want you jump up and down screaming when I have babies in my tummy that are actually growing! so please email me. call me. Check in on me. But don't look for big news here. At least not for a while. I will email those of you who comment often and I know need an update. And I will self blog on WORD and save highlights for when I'm done and telling everyone! Deal?

So look for something other than embryos on my blog the next few weeks/months. What else is ther to talk about???

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

And we wait...

Since last Wedesday I have been back to the doctor twice, on the phone with them 4 times, and scheduled for at least 2 more appointments in the next 7 days! Whew! We decided to start our frozen transfer process as soon as possible. Which is now! I have been on my birth control pills since Sunday and they are taking blood to make sure my hcg levels are dropping back to zero. I am having a consult with the doctor on Thursday to get our timeline and costs nailed down. I am really excited!!! I feel good about this one!!!
This weekend was a little tough for several reasons. Amy found out her hcg level is also very low and so now we wait to find out the fate of her little one. Right now we are waiting on her test results...Due to that new revelation, we spent the weekend in granbury with her and Brian, just trying to help them take their minds off of things. Sunday was hard for a couple of reasons. #1. I bled out what was once my baby. It wasn't tramatic, but just surreal that it was actually the beginning of a little life. It made me sad, but also amazed at God's work. Then we went to church and there was a baby dedication. Awesome. Amy held my hand and cried, but I actually fought through without crying. Whoohoo!
Monday I went to take pregnancy test number 4. It was positive. Still. my hcg number is at 9, so we are waiting to get back to zero. Moving slowly. Another blood test next Monday, and a meeting with the doc on Thursday. Hopefully we will have two more embryos trying to become babies soon! Keep praying for us!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

2 parter

I wrote a blog the other day detailing the glorious news that we were pregnant. I never posted it. I've debated whether I should or not, but it was such an amazing day, I feel like I need to. Before I do that tho, I wanted to tell you all about what has happened since. How we went from pregnant and telling the world to crushed, crying and curled up in bed.
I went in for my 2nd blood test at 7:30. Yes, it was Labor Day, but I wanted to hear what was going on in my body and have an idea of how many little babies there were. At 1pm 9 people came to our house for Labor Day cookout! We laughed and prepared and were all geared up for some burgers, when my phone rang. I took it in my bedroom, eager to hear the news and was told my numbers dropped from 37 to 27. I asked what that meant. The nurse said I may have a biochemical pregnancy. What's that? The embryo is still inside me, but it can't survive because it isn't attached. Do I need to be worried? Come in and do another test on Wednesday. Okay. I ran outside to tell Joe, who was grilling with Jake. I think I said something like, "I may not be pregnant." I ran to the gazebo and called my Mom. She prayed with me. Momma T came out to me. I told her everything. She prayed with me. I came in, we prayed over the food and everyone started eating. I was holding it together. But two bites into my hotdog, my Dad called. I took the phone into the bathroom, sat on the floor, and fell apart. Joe came in and sat with me. I called Amy and broke the news to her. She cried with me (while sitting in Disney World). For the next several hours Joe and I laid on our bed, crying and thinking (maybe too much thinking.) We called and talked to the nurse again. She said it wasn't normal, but my levels were very low to start with. (Would have been nice to know that 2 days earlier...)So Momma T got our house cleaned up and all our guests left after being abandoned by their sad sack hosts. That night we decided we couldn't face work the next day, so we made arrangements for that. We stayed up late eating frosties and fries and watching funny movies.
I slept in and spent the morning on the couch with Joe in my pjs. At noon we went out for pizza and went to the movies. The sweet ladies of Hannah Group (our infertility support group) offered to have a special prayer time for Joe and I. So Tuesday night we went and were prayed for for over an hour by the wonderful women there. It really made us feel better. Loved. A lady I met that night asked me what God had been saying to me in the past 2 days. At the time I didn't know what to say. We told her about how we've learned to trust the plan, even though we don't know what the plan is and how we've been remarkably at peace through out the past few weeks. But then it occurred to me that something did pop into my mind on Monday afternoon. It sounds so strange, but it was the song "Sing and Be Happy." How can I do that right now? But it really spoke to me. Oft we fail to see the rainbow up in Heaven's fair skies. When it seems the fortunes of Earth frown and pass us by...if we hope and trust him each day, we shall have pleasures untold. Sing and you'll be happy TODAY. Press along to the goal. Trust in Him who leadeth the way. He is keeping your soul. Let the world know where you belong. look to Jesus and Pray. Lift your voice and praise him in song. Sing and be happy TODAY. Cool.
We both went back to work, knowing in our hearts the news would be bad. Joe and I texted all day about how we were worried, but feeling okay about things. At 2:30 I called the doctor's office (after my last class) and heard my numbers were at 29, and now classified a biochemical pregnancy. Stop my meds. Come back on Monday to make sure my levels are back at zero. So what now? I can meet my doctor next Thursday (the 11th) and start as soon as I get my next period on a frozen transfer! WAHOO!!! I called Joe, Mom and Dad, and Amy to tell them the news. While we are so sad that we were no longer pregnant, we get to do it again! We have money for it! We have embryos for it! So after no tears, I came home to my Joey and we decided to celebrate the fact that we were pregnant for 4 whole days. Celebrate that we came so close. Celebrate that we have a future with babies in it that is just around the corner! We bought eachother presents at Target, and went for Margaritas and Guacamole Live at On the Border. We laughed and smiled and fell farther in love with eachother and the journey we are travelling together. We sang and were happy TODAY.
So we're good. We're ready to try again. We are blessed in so many ways and we know that God will not let us linger here for long. He is a faithful God and wants us to have a hope and future. And we know that THAT is in the plan!
Blog I wrote on Sunday about Saturday...
Friday night I was so nervous. I cried with Joe. I cried with my Dad on the phone and I fought crying when Tanya came over. What if??? That question was bearing down and I knew all I could do was wait and pray.
As you remember, we were supposed to go to Orlando with our best friends, Amy and Brian this week. They were leaving, as originally planned, Saturday morning. And we were on tap to take them to the airport. You may also remember, that Amy is also struggling with infertility and has walked through every step right along side me. When they arrived at our house Saturday morning, they stood in front of Joe and I with shocking news. "Well....we're pregnant!" Joe and I had absolutely no response. We just stared at them, standing there smiling, beaming with happiness. WHAT!?!?! How did this happen?? We took them to the airport and Amy and I chatted in the backseat. She told me she had taken 2 pregnancy tests and they both had faint second lines. Her doctor told her that she's never seen a false positive, so she must be expecting! Suddenly I felt a wave of excitement. Unbeknonst to anyone, I had also taken 2 tests. One Thursday and one Friday, against Joe's better judgement. They also had faint second lines. I confided in Amy that I had taken one too and she was more certain than ever that I too was pregnant.
We dropped the Tindells off and Joe told me how nervous he was feeling. That the news that our friends were expecting was multiplying the pressure for us now. True. I told him I had taken a test and it was positive, to which he said, "and you still freaked out? why didn't that make you feel better?" I have no idea.
We went and had blood drawn at 8:45 am. Meredith told us she would keep her eye on the lab and call us as fast a possible with the verdict. I asked her how long that would be (hopefully not until the afternoon!!!) She said 35min-an hour. Okay. We left and grabbed breakfast and came home to nervously wait. After about 2 hours, my parents started to call to make sure things were okay and we were getting restless. Finally we put in THE SWORD IN THE STONE and started a game of Battleship. Tommie called and Joe was barely beginning to speak to her when the phone rang. It had been over 3 hours, just after 12:00. I answered and Meredith told me not to kill her, that it had taken so long. But that I could breathe easy because I'm pregnant. "Yay!!!" was my response. I nodded at Joe, still on the phone with his mom, and tears started streaming down his sweet face. Of course that triggered mine and we sat and hugged as I talked more with Meredith and made my next appointment.
As soon as I hung up we hugged and cried and laughed. Seconds later the phone rang. Amy. "What's the news? How come I haven't heard from you? We just landed and I don't have message. Is it yes or no?" "We just got off the phone 30 seconds ago." "Is it a yes?" "Yes. We're pregnant!!" More crying from both ends of the phone. We got off the phone quickly so I could start calling family and Joe and spent the next several hours calling, texting, emailing and blogging the news. Every once in a while we had to take a break to hug and cry again with eachother. Joe had been saving a song to play for me that Babyface wrote for his wife when she was pregnant. He played it and fought through the tears trying to sing it to me as we danced and cried in the living room.
As miserable as I have been in the past 8 months, I find it incredible how in one swoop, I am magically happy again. I have been hugged and hugged and cried with over and over in the past 36 hours and LOVE that my excitement is being shared by so many. Thank you for following my story so far. I am loving sharing it with you all. And have no fear, there is much more to come. One chapter is closing, but a much more exciting one is beginning. Praise God for that!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Houston, we have a problem

We lost the baby today. My levels were apparently too low to begin with and have dropped since Saturday. It was a bio-chemical pregnancy, meaning the embryos was never fully attached to me. We are very, VERY sad, but taking it well for the time being. We were getting prepared for the bad news since Monday. We can start round two pretty immediately and it will be much easier than round one. We have 4 embryos waiting for their chance. I will let you know what the plan is from here after we meet with the doctor next Thursday. I told you the other day that a new adventure was starting now. Not the one I anticipated, but still a new one. Keep praying for us. We are getting on the roller coaster all over again.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Baby's first picture

Thought you might want to see the first pictures we have. Now, most of you mommys won't have this early of a picture since you didn't know you were pregnant when they looked like this! So I have one up on you! The pre-ultrasound pic! These are the 2 embryos they put in me. One of these is our baby! Or maybe both of these are our babies?!?!? We shall see!!!