Truth Tuesday

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Hello Lovely Readers,

Today's post is one I have been waiting 4 years to publish since it is a subject that is part of my past and my present and future are so much better because of that.

For almost 2 years, I suffered infertility.
That's right, I said it!

Coming from a big family (of 6 kids) for years I always knew that even though I wanted kids one day, I needed to wait until I was not only ready, but also till I had checked off all of the things a "smart person" has listed before they have a baby. So I did, I made it to 18 without getting pregnant, a huge accomplishment compared to several of the 15 year old girls I used to hang out with from my neighborhood, and I even made it through 2 degrees in college. After 5 years of dating the Mr., I checked off getting married and a year later buying the house for my future family, yay!

Well, come summer of 2012 and after feeling like we had settled in our home and we made an impromptu trip to London, here we are, trying to have a baby. I was at the same point what seemed like a lot of my peers were at also because come fall, everyone was getting pregnant. From cousins, to friends to 2 of my own sisters and brother (his wife, duh), there were babies cooking in ovens all over my life (and Facebook). So we tried and tried, and nothing...

We were about a year into it (because we read everywhere, give it 12 months, then you can seek help) and still no baby, so I did IT. I blamed everything on the Mr. Surely it could not be me, I come from the most fertile crop complete with, at the time, 11 nephews and nieces, the issue could not be ME! So after a couple of bumps on the road, I finally landed at McKinney IVF where I was to meet Dr. Anderson of Dallas IVF. I made my appointment on the Monday of my Spring Break week since I was off, and to my surprise I was not on the list the day of the appointment. Not only was I livid, I viewed this as yet another reason God hated me. I know it sounds ridiculous but I truly felt like God was not on my side at the time. So, I decided to schedule my appointment with a different doctor on the staff, Dr. Ku, because he would be available that Wednesday and I was off still, so great. 

I had an event to attend that evening, so I was all glammed up walking into my appointment only to hear the devastating news that I would only be able to get pregnant though IVF. Not only did this make me cry my mascara-ed eyes out, but I felt like the biggest idiot in the world for not trying to seek help earlier. So much time wasted. Well, after much debate on how we would come up with $15, 000 to cover the procedure and medical supplies needed, we were at peace with our path to parenthood. Dr. Ku, who was a college music major (like me) and the best doctor, ever, decided to have some tests done and low and behold, we didn't need to do IVF, but an IUI (Intrauterine Insemination), Praise The LORD!

It turns out that the issue was not as serious as we thought and all I needed was a little help for my lady parts to do their business and we were all set to do a procedure that was much less invasive and far more affordable. It was like God wanted to test us more and more everyday to see if we were really ready to be parents. 

Come April and I start my fertility treatments, Clomid to be more exact. I took some pills here and there and the last few days before the IUI I gave myself shots (it was crazy, I know, but not bad at all) I actually got to know needles very well, and don't get freaked out or queazy at the thought of them anymore... The best part was that the procedure would take place the Monday after Mothers Day, May 12th. My life was slowly coming together in such a beautiful way as I turned 30 on May 2nd, celebrated Mother's Day on the 11th, and had my IUI the next day. 

(Side note, we had gone to church that Mother's Day Sunday and at one point, the pastor asked all of the mother's to get up so the congregation could honor them. I will always remember that even though I wasn't a mom yet, the Mr. took my hand and held it really tightly when everyone clapped, as if he was already honoring me as a mother)

So, May 12th comes around, everything goes according to plan and now WE WAIT........
I had a good feeling about the whole thing, but didn't want to be over confident so we just went about our days and I had my usual school stuff. On May 22nd, I went to see my sisters in Dallas and for some reason I wanted to take a pregnancy test, so I told my sisters and they pretty much made me go buy several, and there it was. 10 days later, I could see 2 lines! I went home to tell the Mr. and he was so happy, as you could imagine. I always tell everyone I had the longest pregnancy ever since I knew about the pregnancy so early in the process. Literally the next day my in laws drove from Tulsa to celebrate, and I don't know why, but I knew already that I was having twins and that it was a boy and a girl. I jokingly told everyone my predictions and they all though I was crazy!

(Side note, during our testing of my "eggs" I could see there was four good sized ones, but according to Dr. Ku, one was perfect (Ford) and another was pretty close to perfect size (Sloane), so I don't know why, but I just knew those were my future babies. It's science, if it was going to work, then it would be those 2 eggs that made it, but I could have had quadruplets!)

I went in to see Dr. Ku and we confirmed I was indeed pregnant. I went about my business till our 4 week, then 6 week check up, still with Dr. Ku. We went in to our 6 week appointment and low and behold there are two little gummy babies in the sonogram. The funniest was the technician who asked "So how many were you aiming for, because there are two babies in there!"
The Mr. and I just looked at each other and I cried in laughter for like 5 minutes. Not joking, the people in the building must have wondered what was going on in our room. 

We were beyond ecstatic and were planning to share the news with everyone at a later time, but we couldn't resist ourselves and told our families right away. It was too good of news not to share. We had a vacation coming up so we decided to take pics on the beach for our announcement and the rest is history. 

For almost 2 years I sat and wondered, what is wrong with me? When is my time to feel the joy of motherhood? Why do I feel so miserable every month? It was a trying time in my life. I knew there were many women who suffer from infertility, but I still felt so alone. I questioned God on so many occasions, wondering why me? I was lost. I think the one good thing that came out of that time period for me was the way the Mr. and I connected in our faith in God. We prayed together, we cried together, we definitely fought with each other, and all for the two most precious things that have even been gifted to me. My little miracle babies. I call them miracles, not only because they were blessings sent from above, but because if my body did not function correctly to conceive, then there was a possibility of my body not being able to carry a baby, let alone 2! Thank God, the worse was over, because I had the most blessed pregnancy, not a single symptom, two healthy 37.5 week babies (full term which is not as common for twins) later. I did get Gestational Diabetes, but I controlled it though diet and didn't need any medications.

I guess I am finally sharing this 4 years later because I feel like it is part of my story, part of me. I am not ashamed that my body is not perfect, and if I can relate or reach someone else who is also going through what I went through, it would be my honor to shed some light to a very difficult subject. The ironic part about my infertility period was that I knew I was not alone, there were several other bloggers and women I knew who were also suffering infertility, so much that they completely closed out all social media to avoid constant reminders that they were not mothers and everyone else is (or so it seems). I never took it that far because like always, I always knew that God had a plan for me, even though I would occasionally relapse and forget. I was going through the same thing, but I didn't want to make my journey to motherhood about that. I felt like it was sacred to me, like if I didn't share it with everyone, it would somehow mean more when I had my prayers answered. Looking back, Do I wish I had shared my struggles at the time? No ... I still think that women who decide to share their story are brave (there are many women who share their stories of infertility and their success stories that I love to see and read about), but I guess I was just worried that people would look at me like I was a victim when really this is a very common thing.

Infertility is an emotional and physical roller-coaster that I do not wish upon any woman, but the good thing is that there are brilliant doctors everywhere that can help with such matters. I would highly recommend Dr. Ku not only because he was a cello player (hehe), but because he really cared about me as a patient, I always felt safe and in good hands. I also recommend (if you are married and suffering through this with your mate) that you find a way to deal with your struggles as a couple with compassion and understanding. There were times I projected my anger and frustration about the whole thing towards my husband and people that had nothing to do with it. I was not not a happy camper at times, but I guess it made me a stronger person in the end. Having 2 babies to care for every single moment of my life has been hard, I will admit, but I would not trade it for the world.

Sorry for the long post, if you are still reading, then thank you. 
If you or someone you know is suffering of infertility, then my heart goes out to you, there's not much I can do other than tell you I was once in your shoes, and I am better now because of it. My babies are not just two persons who spontaneously entered this world, they were the labor of many prayers and tears. Have faith and many hugs to you.

~Mrs. S

The Grammy's!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Hello Everyone!

Thanks for stopping by!

Today I want to discuss my thoughts on the Grammy awards, a show I actually have been looking forward to the past few years. I didn't care for them much for a while, but I think it was because I wasn't really into mainstream music for a long time, not that I am now, I just love the live performances and seeing the direction that popular music is taking these days.

1. The show opened with a "meh" performance by ol' Taylor Swift. I don't know about y'all but I actually would have preferred her to sing a more well known song, Blank Space, maybe Wildest Dreams with a Scott Eastwood cameo or something, I wasn't really that into her song or performance. I also was not into her Versaci outfit, I think the top was too short, I know the look she was going for, which I love the crop top look, but her top needed like an inch or two more, it was like a bra!

2. Can we talk about the intense chemistry between Sam and Carrie on their performance?!
I have seen her duet with other artists, but I have never seen her sing to someone so deeply, it kind of scares me into thinking there might be a divorce in the air and a Hunterwood affair in the making!

3. I LOOVVVVEEEDDD The Eagles tribute of "Taking it Easy" to Glenn Frye, what a neat performance and even though the guys sounded like harmonious angels to my ears, you could see the melancholy in their eyes of losing such a great friend and bandmate...

4. I didn't care much for Adele's performance, mainly because I didn't really like the song, it wasn't powerful enough for me. I didn't care too much for Tori Kelly's or Justin's song either (I like the recorded version of his song better). I was however impressed with Demi Lovato's singing in the tribute to Lionel, she actually sang better than I have ever heard her.

5. I didn't hate Kendrick's performance, but I didn't love it either. I think his message is strong, but the screaming at the end was a little too intense for my 10:00pm mind. Props to him for 11 nominations however.

6. Please tell me I am not the only one who values the historical value of the musical Hamilton. It may come as a surprise to most, but I don't really care for musicals. However, it was definitely something that kept my attention, but mostly I really appreciated that the story shares historical knowledge, and maybe kids these days will learn something!

7. Pitbull's performance at the end was more comical than anything to me. I don't think he is talentless, but he could have performed a song with a little more core than "Taxi" I think it was cheesy, and even though Sofia Vergara made a short appearance to shake her Columbian booty, I still wasn't wowed. 

8. Lady Gaga, Lady Gaga, Lady Gaga. All the Mr. could talk about was how weird she looked and how it freaked him out how man-ish she looked, but honestly I think she did great. I don'y know of any other person who could have done a tribute as good, even though I am not at all into David Bowie (I just don't know his stuff, ok?!) I will always give credit to talent where credit is due, and LG definitely deserves it. 

9. Am I the only one who is just not into Beyonce, I thought she looked depressed, and was talking kind of like she had been crying a minute before she came out... I might get some backlash for thinking this, but I really don't think she is everything. Sorry not sorry. 

10. Overall, I really appreciated the effort of the Grammy's to incorporate all genres of music, more so than in previous years. I think the young pianist who played a jazz piece was a nice ode to music education, and I thoroughly enjoyed the variety of performances, even if I wasn't blown away with all of them. 

Valentine's 2016

Monday, February 15, 2016

Hello Everyone!

Valentine's Day has come and gone and what a joy it is to have 3 loved ones to share such a LOVE-filled day. We decided to celebrate our 10th Love day together in Tulsa this year so that our in-laws could watch the babies. We went to dinner at a downtown restaurant called Juniper, and stayed at a hotel nearby so that we could spend some quality time together (without the twins!) for the first time since September, yikes!

We don't really have any specific traditions for Valentine's but we do always try to have a reasonably nice meal. In the past the Mr. has made me lobster dinners and a few times we have actually gone to eat somewhere, so I always look forward to this holiday.

Sunday, we drove back and gave the kids their V-Day gifts.

I found these adorable books at WalMart and the kids loved them. Even though we have tons of books, we didn't really get into them until recently since I was afraid the kids would just rip them apart or slobber/chew all over them. Surprisingly, they are actually taking them and opening them up like they are reading and really enjoying playing with them, which is awesome!

Aren't these perfect V-Day gifts?!

How did you celebrate Valentine's Day?

Hope you are all having a great start to your week!

~Mrs. S