Thursday, September 25, 2014

Heartbreak and Answered Prayer

 This is hands down the hardest thing I have ever written about. It's so close to my heart that I almost backed out about sharing it several times. Most of my family and friends do not even know about this - those that I did share this with listened as I was a blubbering mess. Some will read this and cry right along with me and others will not get it at all...that's ok. I may be a little all over the place with this as I still can not even think about it without a lump in my throat and blurry vision.

 Some of my most precious and favorite memories growing up in involve both sets of my grandparents. I am thankful that for the majority of my life they both lived close. I grew up spending holidays with them, weekend cousin sleepovers at their houses, and they were apart of tons of defining moments in my life. Up until June 4th of this year, I was so beyond blessed to have all four of them still with me and living independently.

 My Pawpaw was my hero. Hands down, he was my rock. From as far back as I can remember he made me feel like a princess. He was always just a phone call away - didnt matter the time or the place - if I needed him he was there. He could fix anything from a broken pair of glasses to a messed up car engine, from a overly independent grand daughter, who at times, needed to be reminded shes not invincible to a insecure heart that needed encouraging. He was a big piece of my heart.

 When I was five we moved to Pennsylvania. I was overly heartsick for my Mawmaw and Pawpaw. It was so bad that Mawmaw would come stay for a month at a time. I remember then when I would say my nightly prayers - praying that God would let us move back before they died (they were in their 50's then - when your five everyone is old ha). We moved back about two years later and I refused to ever live more than a hour away from them ever again.

 After my first miscarriage I started praying that God would allow my child to know them. I wanted my child so badly to know them, to experience life with them, to feel their hugs, to learn from them. By the time I was 30 I knew the chances of me having a child was becoming increasingly slim...I knew that even if I did get pregnant that the chances of my baby being old enough to really remember them were even slimmer. It became a daily prayer that I would just get to see them meet my baby. Its a image I needed for myself. I wanted to witness the first time they laid eyes on him/her, the moment they held him/her. I know some of you may be thinking that my prayers were ridiculous and selfish. I cant disagree with you, they were selfish - it was for my own heart..but i'm sure everyone has someone in their life who just means more to you than you can express...

 I never talked to Pawpaw about my miscarriage. He knew about it, and he knew my desire to be a mom, but it wasnt something we ever spoke about.

 February 8, 2014 my life was turned upside down. Pawpaw went into the hospital with bronchitis...from there it was one thing after another. My world stopped. Nothing else mattered for the next four months, almost every free moment was spent at his side. I barely slept. I was an emotional wreck...there were several occasions were we were told there was nothing more they could do - his body had gone into septic, but then he would rally and pull through. It was an emotional roller coaster. One day we would be over the moon because he had taken a big step forward...only to be followed by two steps back. It was one of my biggest fears (losing my grandparents) being played out in front of me.

 Despite him being in a coma for about a month, we did get the final three months with him. He was awake and fully 100% mentally strong. This man was inspecting airplanes and throwing his grand kids his annual super bowl party just weeks before getting so sick. That was part of what made this so hard - it was so unexpected. Those final months we all spent as much time with him as possible. I cherished the nights that I had him until late at night all to myself. We would laugh and reminisce. I was able to tell him many times just how special he was to me and how much I loved him and he was able to tell me the same. That alone is a gift that I know many do not get when they loose someone, that is something I still thank God for.

 The day before Pawpaw went on hospice, I was alone in his room. We had just had a talk about my recent marriage and about how my Mawmaw was holding up. He was tired. He faded for a bit and was very quiet for about 30 minutes. We sat in silence. All of a sudden pawpaw looked at the opposite corner of the room and he really perked up. He had the biggest smile on his face and he started making silly noises like he does when he plays with his great grand kids. I sat there watching his face thinking how precious he was - he kept smiling and saying "hey there pumpkin" for what seemed like several minutes. He finally turned his head towards me and looked me straight in the eye and said "I see your baby". It took my breath away - he continued to hold my stare. I said "Pawpaw, I don't have a baby, do you see Maylee? (one of his great grands). He looked at me like I was a crazy and said "NO, Maylee is Chelsea's baby. I see YOUR baby!" He then turned his gaze back to the corner and continued smiling and talking. I couldn't speak. Finally, he turned to me and said "Why aren't you taking care of her?" All I could mutter was "I...I can't" He then looked back at her and said after a few seconds said "Ohhhh" He then just held my stare like he knew. I finally said, "Pawpaw will you take care of her for me until I can?"  he then gave me the most precious smile and said "You bet, you bet..."

 We didnt talk much more that night. It was a moment that I think we both understood. I wish now I would of asked more questions and what she looked like. I always knew in my heart my baby was a girl...and he referred to her as a girl.

 When I left that night I sat in the parking lot for about an hour sobbing. I couldnt take in all that had just happened. My mind was racing and so was my heart. I was overwhelmed with emotions. I then felt God whisper to my heart "I answered your prayer" It clicked. I had prayed for years that I would get to watch my pawpaw lay eyes on my child for the first time...God DID hear my endless prayers...he let me experience that special moment that night in the hospital room. No, it wasn't the answer I was originally hoping for or expecting, but God gave ME that incredible moment that I will always keep close to my heart. Pawpaw was called home just a couple of days later and there is no doubt in my mind that his great grand daughter was there waiting for him.

  For years I had felt like God had over looked me, that my prayers weren't being heard. That night he reminded me just how much he loves me, that he would take a rather silly/selfish prayer of mine and answer it in the final hours. For God to gift me that moment gave me so much healing. He does know the desires of our heart- no matter how big or small....



Monday, September 15, 2014


This post may offend a few....I'm sure it will also make some laugh because they can relate. Not trying to ruffle any feathers, but i'm just gonna go ahead and say it.

What not to say/do to a friend that is desperately trying to have a baby.

1. If you have children do not tell your friend things like "Your life will be just as great or fulfilled just as much without a child".   So are you telling me that if you lost the child you have right now that your life would be just as fulfilled? I 100% believe that there is a special bond/love/connection made between a mother and child and you do not fully understand it until you hold your baby in your arms, but I also think it is safe to say that unless you have fully experienced the heartache and struggle of trying to conceive, miscarriages, and realizations that you may never become a mom then you can not tell someone that life will be just as fulfilling. I have had people tell me this...people who have kids, people who are pregnant for the second or third time around, etc... I graciously smile but inside i'm telling myself that you're an idiot.

2. I touched on this before, but try to stay away from the words " will understand someday when you're a mom"  ....I don't think this needs much explanation....this just makes you look like an inconsiderate b word.

3. Just because you now have a kid doesn't mean everything must be "kid friendly". In my personal inner circle we have some with kids and some without. We do things that are both "adult only" at times and other times they are "kid-friendly". There is a mutual understanding with the kid couples that they may not be able to go. We understand they have kids and babysitters are expensive or sometimes they would just rather do stuff with their kids involved. Totally fine. We still invite them in hopes they join us from time to time (and they do), but there is an understanding when they don't. One the other end though, I don't want to hear about how I never throw anything that is "kid friendly". Sorry that I don't want kids at my birthday or your child destroying my house every weekend while we cook out and watch the game. We do have things together that is kid friendly, but they are not going to be every time....why don't YOU throw something kid friendly (because honestly the people who complain about this are never the ones who step up and plan anything). My point is this: just because you now have a child and your world has taken a new chapter doesn't mean all of your child-less friends life has to as well. On the other hand - to all the childless couples, remember to be understanding and include those with kids. We have learned in our group that our friendships don't have to change at all, just our expectations and understanding does - on both ends. :)

4. Don't complain to us that "oh my gosh you are so lucky that you don't have kids, life is so hard with kids". I know some days being a parent is hard. I know there are days you wish for a much deserved break, but I can promise you would agree that the good days FAR outweigh the bad. Be thankful - you have been given a very special gift.

5. If you are not super close to me I don't want to hear about all the methods I should try to get pregnant. Obviously, you don't know what all I have tried or why there are some things I cant try right now whether its for health reasons, financial reasons, etc... For someone who doesn't have good or no insurance at all trying to conceive is VERY expensive. And don't tell me "the sure fire way" is to stack pillows under you.

6. Lastly, I am a Christian. I believe in God and I do believe that Gods plan is far better than my own BUT I don't want to be reminded of that every time I have a negative pregnancy test. Don't send me scriptures about Gods plan and timing, instead send me scriptures of comfort, sorrow, and hope. I don't want you to look me in the eye and do the half smile and say "it will happen in Gods perfect timing - I promise" I can promise you that you have no idea what you are talking about - you can not promise me that it will happen. We don't want to hear that its ok or common to have a miscarriage. We need a hug, support, and listening ear...if you can not provide that then that's fine -we still love you, but would rather you keep your mouth shut for a bit.

Again, not trying irritate anyone and im definitely not pointing any fingers, but just keepin it real, folks!



Friday, September 12, 2014


 I had every intention of really sticking with this... I have had a really rough year, shortly after the holidays my world was turned upside down (more on that later). Through it all though, this blog has been in the back of my mind...

Since these are the hardest things to write, and I really don't ever know how to start - let me just jump right in...

  By my mid 20's I was heartsick for a child. I would cry almost daily at the thought of having my own baby, I also cried daily at the thought of the possibility of never having one. I had this unexplainable longing to be a mommy. I wanted so badly to give my child(ren) an amazing, wonderful life. I would daydream of holiday traditions, surprising them at school lunches, my own photo shoot of my OWN baby, birthdays, vacations, and just experiencing life through their eyes (through all the good times and hard times). For years I battled with this almost daily, it was to the point that it was beginning to consume me. Let me just clarify right here that I NEVER felt bitterness/jealousy towards any other parents - thank goodness, because jealousy is an awful battle to fight. What I did feel was anger towards myself. What is wrong with me??? Why is God allowing this? Why am I not good enough?? WHY can I not do one of the main things God created women for?!? I was mad at myself, I let myself believe that the reason God must not be giving me a baby because I wouldn't be a good mom. I felt defeated. I felt disgusted. I felt loneliness.
I cried out to God...begging him to give me another chance at being pregnant. I kept so much of my sadness inside. I would act like I was ok with not having kids, I pretended to be ok with Gods will.

  I kept praying....some days it was ugly prayers...prayers that if any of you could hear right now I would turn 10 shades of red. I was not at my best in that part of my life.

 Then one day, a little over a year ago, during an ugly cry fest and pity party I heard God speak to me...I felt like it was the FIRST time EVER I had heard HIM speak to me in this particular area of my life. All He said was "Infertility does not define you". That was a turning point for me. I was letting my self worth be defined by my infertility. I was letting my longing, my heartache, my disgust with myself control me..and I didn't even fully realize it. It was a realization that I needed to remind myself of every day..and still do some days. Hearing Him tell me that was a relief off my shoulders. I still had so many questions and fears and confusion, but I felt He finally acknowledged me and the pain I was feeling. I finally let my guard down and let God start defining me with all the other amazing blessings and gifts in my life.

It would be about a year later before I would feel like I heard from God again, before I felt him acknowledge me and my heartache. Something very significant happened to me just a couple of months ago...I will share that story soon.



Tuesday, September 9, 2014


  My sister is 7 years younger than me, by the time she was married I was already divorced. I absolutely LOVE my sister and her husband, but when I knew they were trying for a baby my heart literally ached. Not because I was jealous or that I wasn't over the moon excited for their new journey, but because I am the older sister. I should be the one to go first. I should be the one she calls with baby questions and we should be planning play dates with our kids. I longed for that. My mind was not in a good place at that time. I had to have a very real talk with my sister and I flat out told her " i'm so excited that y'all are trying and I pray that you have NO problems, but I just want to be honest with you - when that time comes I would prefer you not tell me in person." The reason I didn't want to be told in person was because I didn't know what my reaction would be. My emotions were so out of control during those years that I some days a Huggies commercial would send me into hysterics. I did not want to give them a bad reaction, I did not want to give them the reaction that I received from some the first time I got pregnant. I wanted to be over the moon and nothing but excited for this MIRACLE and I honestly just didn't know if I would immediately be able to give them that. Thankfully, I am beyond blessed with the most amazing sister who was more than understanding. Every time I would hear of another pregnant friend it was like a stab in my heart. I was so happy for them, but so sad for me. I felt like I was forgotten by God every time. Sure enough, a couple of months later my sister and brother-in-law called me and gave me the wonderful news. I cheered with them over the phone and was truly happy. I hung up the phone and looked at Alexx and just burst into tears...I cried for hours. It was such an emotional moment. I was crying tears of happiness, of pain, of anger towards God and myself, of feeling guilty for even crying - oh I was a mess. It took me a few days to sort through it all, but I came around and even threw her an amazing baby shower. Nine months later she gave me my niece and it was love at first sight. ;)

  I also had a close friend that was a new mom who called me all the time voicing the frustration of the learning process all first times moms go through....she would call wanting input or advice at times, but when I would give any her response was "i know you don't understand - you will understand when you're a mom" I just want to say right now...moms don't tell a woman struggling with infertility that EVER. First off, just because i'm not a mom doesn't make me an idiot. I do know what diaper rash and colic is and can offer solutions or products to try. Also, it just makes you look like a jerk. I do not want anyone to ever feel like they need to walk on egg shells around me or be ultra careful about what they say to me - I have pretty thick skin, but I do want to encourage you to show a little compassion and think sometimes before you speak when talking to those longing to be a mom. Trust me, we don't want to singled out or made to feel like we belong in a glass house, but we do notice small gestures from other moms and they are so appreciated.

  One more story before I call it a night, one evening I was at Ben and Jerrys with my best friend and several other friends. My bestie knew my struggle and pain. She knows me well enough to know I was putting on somewhat of a front over the years. It was not something we talked tons and tons about, but she knew. She was a newly wed at the time and one of our friends asked her when her and her new hubby would start trying for a baby. I could tell she was uncomfortable - not because she wasn't ready to be a mom herself, but because she is amazing and was being sensitive to me. I HATED the uncomfortable look on her face. As the conversation went on, before I knew it, all four of us were crying at the table over our ice cream...she looked at me with tears in her eyes and said "I don't want to get pregnant before you. I want it for you so bad. When the time comes for us to start trying if I don't have any problems getting pregnant I will feel guilty." I will never forget that moment. It gave me a lump in my throat - oh what a precious friend I have - she knows me and my hurt more than I ever knew, she is so selfless, but at the same time it made me take a good look in the mirror. Is my sadness, that I thought I was so good at hiding, that obvious to those around me?? Am I only kidding myself? I would NEVER EVER want anyone, especially those closest to me to ever feel guilty or uncomfortable around me. I assured her a million times over that she better NEVER feel like that and I pray she would never know this struggle. After that, it was the final straw, I knew I had to get ahold of myself - it was already controlling my life and now starting to control the ones I loved most.