Today’s Scan at 8 Weeks 5 Days

I went on an emotional roller coaster ride this whole morning.

Annie went in for an ultrasound today.  My RE Dr. E also ordered a cervical length check just to be sure.  Since I didn’t fly in, we had to rely on Fac.ebook video conferencing for me to be present at the ultrasound.  Right at 10am, Annie called me and I could immediately see one of the babies on an abdominal ultrasound.  He/She looked so much bigger than the last time I saw him/her.  However, the video was cutting in and out because of the poor reception at the office.  Later I found out that the heart rates are both at 176.  The vaginal ultrasound showed that Baby A was measuring at 8 weeks 4 days and Baby B was at 8 weeks 5 days.  I was overjoyed to see them on the screen and to learn about their measurement being on time.  Annie asked about the cervical length, which was measuring at 3.4cm.  That wasn’t the kind of number that I expected since I knew that anything over 4cm is good.  That threw me into panic mode as I couldn’t get an answer from a professional right away.

Annie had to wait for her OB to return from a delivery before she could see him.  In the mean time, I wrote Dr. E about the cervical length and asked if it would be a cause for concern.  She said that she would do a repeat cervical check as she wasn’t sure why her cervix would be 3.4 cm.  She asked to have Annie return in a week and it could just be the person measuring.  This comment made me so nervous so I asked if this would be a concern and it’s usually the same technician that measures these things.  Dr. E responded saying that she wasn’t concerned but if the technician is going to be same, have Annie go see a high-risk OB for the measurement and consider a cerclage if it is still the same.

Can you imagine my mind?  I couldn’t enjoy the good news of the babies anymore because all my mind was thinking about was short cervix and preterm labor and danger to our babies.  It was a very difficult for me to focus on the good news.

Luckily I got to talk to the OB.  First of all, he was very respectful and patient with my questions.  He said that the babies are measuring well with great heartbeats, so that’s great news.  In terms of cervical length, he said that 3.4 is really not a concern.  Plus it is so early in the pregnancy that it is sometimes hard to see where the uterus ends and where the cervix begins.  They usually don’t measure the cervix until much later, and if there is a concern, they don’t do cerclage until 14 weeks.  So he doesn’t think that a scan in a week is necessary since it’s so early on.  We can remeasure the length in two weeks at our next scan and see what happens.  He said that Annie has had three full-term births without any problems.  He is not concerned about it.  In terms of other things, he said that they won’t push a twin pregnancy beyond 38 weeks.  So Annie will get close monitoring once she hits 32 weeks.  As of right now, everything is measuring well and I should not be worried.

I wrote Dr. E back about Dr. OB’s opinion.  She agrees with him about checking in two weeks.  I am happy that she agrees with him.  And she thinks that it’s actually not hard to measure the cervical length at all but she really thinks that the ultrasound technician might have under-measured it.   The thing is, these technicians at an OB office usually don’t measure cervical length at such an early stage.  She might not have known how to properly measure it.

My trusted OB practice professional Jane told me that she wouldn’t worry about it because it is a hard skill in general and the check is not usually done until later.  She said that she wouldn’t even bat an eye if she saw the measurement of 3.4 in a report.

When I was waiting to talk with the OB and for Dr. E’s emails, I put my head down and prayed.  I prayed for my trust in the Lord since there is really nothing I can do but to trust.  I have to trust that if this is God’s will, then I’ll see these babies healthy and alive.  But it just shows you how weak our mind is.  Even one thing that could be wrong could throw the whole joy out of the window.  I need to focus on the great news of the babies.  And it also shows that knowing too much and too early may not be a good thing. So I hope that I could keep my peace and calm for the next two weeks.  Getting pregnant is so hard, and waiting for the birth is also very hard.   There is always something to worry about.  But today we celebrate these two lives that are growing well inside of Annie.

 

MicroblogMondays: Complex Emotions

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Ever since we started this surrogacy journey, I have experienced a whole gamut of emotions.

Of course there are the positive emotions, such as hopefulness, excitement, and gratitude that a person such as my gestational carrier has such compassion for us that she is willing to go through pregnancy for another person.  This is sometimes too profound of a concept for me to fathom and to grasp.

Every single stage of the journey also invokes fear, worry, and anxiety, such as our donor’s egg retrieval, fertilization rate, number of embryos remaining, potential weather issues, thawing of the embryos, the transfer itself, waiting for beta, and waiting for ultrasound.

And then there is this deeper emotion of joy that is much greater than the temporary feeling of happiness.  This joy that comes from witnessing the miracle of life that is growing inside of our gestational carrier and from the hope and the promising future of our children being born into this world and meeting us face-to-face.

What surprised me was the sense of loss that I felt during our epic first ultrasound while experiencing this tremendous joy of seeing the two heartbeats that were flickering on the screen.  I didn’t know that those two complex emotions could exist in the same moment, but they did, because I experienced them.

Seeing those two heartbeats was one of the most exhilarating and monumental moments in my life.  The tears that were shed were definitely tears of joy.  However, seeing Annie’s name on the screen and the ultrasound photos brought me back to the reality of what my body will likely not ever be able to accomplish.  It was supposed to be my name and my date of birth printed on the photos.  If I could have my way, it was also supposed to be my eggs, my uterus, and my pregnancy five years ago.  While being super excited and joyful and amazed, I was at the same time tremendously sad.

But I believe that God’s plan for us is perfect in every way and His ways are higher than our ways (Isaiah 55:8-9).  I believe that this is what needs to happen for us to have our babies.  And I fully embrace that.  But it does not mean that I will not continue to have a sense of loss that I have to grieve.  What I need to do is to continue to process my feelings with the help of my therapist.  And I did exactly that.

My visit to my therapist was highly emotionally charged.  It was just so exciting to be able to finally share good news with her after having to tell her heartbreaking news over and over again in the past two and a half years.  But at the same time, my biggest need was to process my grief and sadness with her.  I even cried when I was telling her that.  I knew that sadness and joy could exist simultaneously but it was reassuring for a professional to confirm it with me.  She told me that it is very common for intended mother to feel a sense of loss while expecting via a surrogate, especially when the surrogate starts to feel the baby or babies.  There is the loss of the sense of control because it is not my own body.  There is nothing wrong with these feelings.  It is just part of my reality.  I told her sometimes I don’t know how to feel.  And she said that it is okay to not know how to feel.  She said that as the pregnancy progresses, I may find myself feeling jealous, annoyed, or frustrated with Annie.  But at the same time, I would continue to feel grateful, joyful, and excited.  The key is to feel all that I need to feel and to tell myself that it is okay to do so.  She has heard enough from intended mothers about these feelings, but she kind of experienced it first hand when one of her best friends was expecting via surrogacy.  The second and third trimesters were kind of difficult for her friend.  And I am sure that it will be similar for me.  I don’t know if this sense of loss and the grief will ever completely go away but maybe it will diminish with the birth of the babies.

In terms of my fear that something bad may happen to the pregnancy, my therapist reminded me that I have lived in the unknown in the past few years.  Treat this the same way.  Embrace the unknown.  Whenever I find myself having these thoughts, ask myself if they are helpful.  If they are not, acknowledge them and then let go.  And if anything bad were to happen, I would be able to deal with it just like how I have been dealing with bad news in the past few years.

One interesting thing is that, ever since the news of us expecting twins, my attitude towards pregnant women has changed for the better.  It has been easier for me to chat with my pregnant coworker.  It has even been easier for me to accept pregnancy announcements.  It is quite eye-opening for myself to see the immediate change in my thoughts and feelings.  I know that the sting of infertility doesn’t totally go away, but it’s surprising for me to be able to feel more positive or at ease with other people’s pregnancy in such a short amount of time.

What I am trying to say is, our pregnancy is not always going to make us feel positive and excited.  There are also fear, worry, jealousy, sadness, and anxiety.  But having these feelings doesn’t mean that we are ungrateful about where we are now.  The reality is, we are human beings and have complicated emotions.  The key to maintain emotional health is to address these feelings rather than brushing them aside so that we are ready to welcome the babies in every way possible when the time comes.

MicroblogMondays: Sinking In

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We find ourselves in this uncharted territory: we are expecting, for the first time, with very strong beta numbers.  We had dreamed of being in this position but never reached it.  Until now.  It is just so surreal.

I remember my dear friend A.’s words: Things don’t change until they change.  She said this to me in December when we ended the fifth year of our quest without a baby or pregnancy and this journey seemed to be never ending.  A few weeks later, everything changed.

I woke up the day after second beta feeling tremendously grateful for this pregnancy, for the life or lives that the Lord is sustaining inside Annie’s womb, and for Annie herself who has been nothing but a blessing to us.

Annie is so good.  She did her first prenatal workout the other day.  I have 100% confidence in her that she will do her best to take care of herself and this pregnancy.

I am allowing myself to dream a little dream, that maybe this is really the time that we get to bring a baby home.  On Friday, my heart was full and my stride was a bit bouncier and lighter.

I had some email exchanges with Dr. E on Friday and Saturday.  I told her that I was still soaking in my joy and disbelief.  I asked her for the record of the beta results, and which scans other than the 6.5 week appointment we should attend.

Dr. E’s response: “I love it!!  ‘Soaking in your joy’.  Life is good!  The next big scan will be at around 20 weeks to look at the anatomy of the babies.  That’s a great one to attend too.”

Babies?!?  I know that our betas were high.  But I ain’t too sure about “babies”.  And what about the NT scan at 12 to 13 weeks?

Her response: “You already did PGS.  You can skip the NT.  You can go if you want.  It’s just like the first scan.  Not much different.  Buuuut there are babies in there :)”

She seems to think that there are twins inside.  I am emotionally not quite there yet.  I am still at that stage where I am wavering between having confidence that we’ll see a heartbeat or two and the fear of a huge disappointment and devastation at the appointment.

The next day, I emailed Dr. E again to ask if 6 weeks 5 days would be a good time for an ultrasound, and if there are any other supplements she might recommend for Annie if she is indeed carrying twins.

Dr. E said that Annie doesn’t need anything right now other than all the support she can get to have a stress-free pregnancy.

She also said, “She is such a relaxed person at baseline.  We are really very lucky.  Stress is  one thing that is consistently linked to preterm birth.  Six weeks and five days is perfect.  No words to describe how excited I am for you.”

I just love Dr. E.

An ultrasound has been scheduled for 2/6 at 6 weeks 5 days.  Plane tickets have been purchased for both Bob and me to attend the appointment.  A week ago we wouldn’t have dreamed of doing all of this.

There are definitely many emotions to sort through.

We are in general super happy and feeling super fortunate to get to this point.  We celebrated with a deep-dish pizza dinner.

As requested, Annie bought a FRER and POAS’d just for my satisfaction of seeing a dark second line.  It felt really surreal to receive a picture of that FRER.  It was not my pee but it is SOOO my pee stick.

I don’t know how to describe the feeling of seeing a BFP that supposedly belongs to us but at the same time it is so far remote from our life here.

The long awaited BFP.  I thought I would be jumping up and down in joy, but instead I felt a little jealous that the life/lives are not growing inside of me.

And then, there is a question of how much to check in with Annie about feelings or symptoms without being overbearing.  I don’t want to ask her every single day how she is feeling, if she is feeling symptoms or tiredness, etc.  Bob asks me everyday how Annie is feeling.  I think he is gauging how pregnant she is on how sick she feels.  He is probably feeling even more far removed from it all because he does not usually contact her directly like I do.  It is even harder for him to navigate this new stage of how to care for our gestational carrier without going overboard.  It is a fine line to walk.

As this news is sinking in this weekend, I suddenly feel a sense of loss.  As much as I look forward to finally closing this chapter of our TTC life and moving on to hopefully becoming parents, I also feel this intense loss of not being able to carry my own child(ren).  I know that it is a process to grieve and mourn this loss, and I shouldn’t expect myself to get over it at this moment.  As I think about what Annie will be going through in the next many months, I feel sad that I am not the one who will have these precious moments with my husband.  Bob will not be the one who comes home and puts his hands on my tummy waiting for his baby to kick.  I will not be the one who would notice my belly growing bigger and bigger.  As much as surrogacy is such a gift and an amazing thing, we still mourn the loss of these moments.

This sense of loss was so strong last night that I lay in bed in the dark with tears soaking my ears wet.  In darkness, Bob held my hand and said, “It may be a good time for you to go talk to S.”  S is my therapist.  I am very thankful for my husband who is perceptive of my needs.  Today, I emailed S and scheduled an appointment for the Wednesday after our ultrasound.  I hope to have good news for her and at the same time have her help me navigate the complicated emotions involved in this process.

But then, sadness only appeared for a little.  At church yesterday, I let myself daydream a little about it finally being my time to leave my baby or babies at the nursery.

This is my reality: constantly moving from being ecstatic to sad to grieving to happiness to hoping for the future.

This news is so fresh and it still feels very surreal.  I just feel so blessed to be writing this post.  I hope that I will be able to keep on delivering good news for the next many months.  And hopefully as the news continues to sink in and the time goes by, I will feel more and more joyful and less of a need to mourn my loss.

The Post I’ve Been Waiting to Write!!!

I am overjoyed to let you all know that we are indeed expecting and the magic beta on 8dp5dt is 204!!!!!!

I just can’t tell you how and why but I had been the most calm out of all the previous beta days.  From yesterday to today, there were a few moments when I was a little bit nervous.  But I checked myself and found that my shoulders were relaxed and my heart wasn’t pounding.  I was just calmly waiting most of the time.

Last night Annie told me that she felt queasy.  I was wondering if it was because of any hCG in her system.  But it could also be because of progesterone so I didn’t say much.

Annie texted me at 9:10am telling me that the blood draw was done.  From past experience, I knew that getting results from Annie’s hometown would take forever.  So I didn’t even anticipate a phone call until 4 something or even 5.  All day long my friends were checking in.  I would have told them if I got the results, yeah?  But it is also so very heartwarming to know that so many of you are rooting for us.

Dr. E called at 5:04pm.  I didn’t even think much and just picked up anticipating good news.  She didn’t wait and immediately yelled out “204!!!”  I was so overcome with emotions that I started screaming and yelling… then tears started streaming down my cheeks.  She was crying and I was crying.  It is so crazy to receive good news after so many years of bad news and heartaches.  She said that this number this early could mean both of the embryos might have taken.  It is a very strong number.  I said I hope it isn’t three.  She said that the embryos would have split by now if it were 3.  And the number would have been much higher.  I feel a bit better about that.  Thursday is beta two.  If the number is good, we will fly to Annie’s town for an ultrasound.  Dr. E said 6 weeks, but I may until  7 weeks or so to make sure we will have a heartbeat or heartbeats.  She said we should fly Annie to California for the appointment because it’s too cold in Annie’s state.  But I think we are due for a visit there.

Dr. E asked if I wanted to call Annie or let her call Annie.  I told her to call so I could call Bob.  Bob sounded a little dazed on the phone when he heard the news because I was crying.  He thought it was something bad.  I know that it’d take him a little bit of time to take everything in, and I know that he doesn’t want to get too far ahead of himself.  But he is very happy that we got great news.  The first thing he said was “Praise the Lord!!!”  Indeed.  Praise the Lord.  🙂

Annie and I connected on the phone.  She said that Dr. E asked her if she felt like she was knocked up.  She said yes, and Dr. E said, because you are knocked up!  Annie told me that all day today she was feeling like crap on top of feeling queasy yesterday.  Maybe the hCG is strong for her to feel symptoms.  Annie said she had been praying for a number over 200 and she got it!

Later on, I messaged her saying “Maybe I’ll have you pee on a stick”.  And after a few silent moments, she sent me a picture of a dollar store cheap pee stick with a light second line!  She said she couldn’t resist so she did it yesterday morning at 7dp5dt.  She didn’t tell me.  And now she was afraid that I was mad at her.  I told her that I wasn’t, but did tell her to go get a FRER tomorrow so she can pee on something that shows a darker line.

All my friends are so sweet.  They are so happy for us.  I just feel so loved.

Bob and I got together for dinner before he headed off to teach bible study.  When I walked across the street to meet him, we locked eyes and both were grinning to each other from ear to ear.  It was such a sweet moment to share with my life partner who has been there through thick and thin.

I pray that our good news will continue to come!  I will soak in the joy tonight.

MicroblogMondays: 7DP5DT, AKA Half Way Done

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Life is good, although I am in the middle of an extra long, longer-than-two-week two week wait.

Ever since Lucy came home, I have been feeling happy, calm, at peace, and ridiculously optimistic.  It’s not that I have any psychic ability to know that I am pregnant.  It’s just that I have decided to live these two weeks with an expectation of being pregnant and staying pregnant.  I am determined to keep this attitude all the way until beta day.  I choose to believe in God’s power to make the impossible possible.  Plus, there is a good chance that I could be pregnant, so why not stick with this attitude for now until we see the results?  I am very thankful that God answers my prayers by keeping me so calm and at peace.

I chat with Lucy daily.  I wake up in the morning praying.  Then I put my hands on my tummy forming a heart shape with my fingers.  I talk to Lucy about where it should be, hatching, finding a site to attach, start to implant, and now just basically to grow and grow and divide, and grow some more.  We are a team of two, traveling together, doing everything together.  Whenever there is a new experience, I share with Lucy about it.  You would hear me mumble sentences like, “This is your first yoga class”, or “Oh this is your first time meeting Auntie Q”.  When we went grocery shopping over the weekend, I was walking to another produce store by myself while Bob went to the car, mumbling this to Lucy, “We come here a lot although it’s 15 minutes away from home because you just park the car and walk to Tra.der Joe’s, produce market, drugstore, the bank… When you are born, we’ll wear you on us or we’ll put you in a stroller, but we will come back here all the time.”  During the Sunday sermon, I wrote in my notebook, “Lucy’s first sermon”.  I am loving this period of time of visualizing this little embryo having a chance at life.  You know how they say that distractions are the best during the two-week wait.  I am doing the exact opposite.  I am constantly and deliberately including Lucy in my daily activities.  I am glad that this approach has been working out for me so far.

This attitude spills over to Bob who is also ultra positive this time.  He has definitely been affected by my attitude.  Bob goes to bed placing his hand on my tummy, saying good night to Lucy.  In the morning, he does the same thing.  When I leave for work, we have group hugs for our little family of three.  He sends me G.chat messages and asks “How’s Lucy?”  This has created a very nice and positive environment for Lucy to grow and grow.  I am assuming that it’s growing and growing.

Physically I am not feeling much.  And I know I am  not supposed to feel much.  I went to see my acupuncturist on Friday.  She commented on my pulse, saying that it was nice and strong.  She mentioned that the kidney energy and the earth energy were both strong.  And those are the energies that are important to fertility.  On Sunday, I felt this tugging sensation on my lower abdomen repeatedly all morning and on and off the rest of the day.  I usually don’t attribute any physical sensation to a pregnancy, but I am taking a different approach this time.  I am assuming that this pulsating and tugging sensation has to do with the hormones from a pregnancy.  Whether or not it’s true, I don’t know.  But I am going to keep a uniform line of thinking here for the rest of the wait.

A few weeks ago, my mother-in-law asked Bob about us having a baby for the first time since we got married.  Honestly, I was surprised that it took her so long to ask.  She told Bob that it’d be too late if we waited because we are getting old.  I wasn’t actually offended by her.  I am glad that she cares and actually wants a grand child.  Yesterday during their Sky.pe session, she once again asked for a baby and said something that really blew my mind.  She said that the stars are aligning for Bob and something good in terms of fertility would happen to us in September or October.  My mother-in-law studies astrology.  You know me, as a Christian, I don’t believe in fortune telling, psychic, or anything that predicts the future.  It makes me extra uncomfortable.  If she is right, then it is just going to be a beautiful coincidence that will change our lives forever.  I sure hope that this coincidence will happen and we have one more good story to tell in our lives.

Sometimes I do get this anxious feeling.  But I’d say it happens about 5% of the time.  Majority of the time I am full of happiness and gratitude.  A friend from bible study studied my face and said that I have a lightness that she hasn’t seen since my journey started.  I am glad it shows, and it means that I am not forcing it.  I know that there is a possibility that this doesn’t work.  I know that I will be able to sort through the heartbreak, disappointment, and devastation.  I am just determined not to live it twice if I don’t have to.

Seven more days to go.  I can’t wait to see a fantastic beta number!

2013

What a year we’ve had.

I can dare say this has been the toughest year of my life, but it’s also the year that I see the most blessings upon me.  Is that even possible?

Looking back at my life, I’ve often felt lucky that things often go quite smoothly for me.  I got good grades at school.  I have a career doing what I love to do.  I met my hubby a little late in my life but we really have a good life together despite his parents’ opposition of our marriage.  My parents are the best parents one could hope for.  I am healthy.  We have a remodeled house that we love.  The biggest obstacle that I had was a very mean supervisor at my internship who gave me the only B grade in my graduate school career for my performance that was worth nine units out of the 12 total units for that semester.  I cried practically everyday going into work being so very miserable.  But I knew that once the three-month internship was over, I could pick up the pieces and regain my confidence.  

So I am so very lucky that things are smooth in my life.  I may not be the prettiest.  I may not be wealthy.  I may not be the most popular.  But I have friends and family who love me.  I have a stable job and a loving husband.  I have Jesus who loves me so.  I can’t really complain about my life.

Until this year.  It. Was. So. Very. Tough.

A year ago we attended a couple of IVF seminars and was trying to make decisions in regards to which clinic we should go with.  My heart was always so heavy as I was grieving the loss of natural conception.  Now that has passed.  My focus then was on trying to get pregnant regardless of the means.  I knew that having the diagnosis of diminished ovarian reserve is tough, but I often hoped that I would be one of those few people who would get lucky with getting pregnant on the first try.

IVF #1 came and passed.  The roller coaster ride was nothing that we had ever imagined.  Our little Clay is still hanging out in the freezer waiting to be thawed.

IVF #2 was such a bust.  Four eggs and nothing made it in the end.  Couldn’t transfer Clay due to a fibroid that could be in the uterine cavity.

IVF #3 yielded one follicle.  The IUI that converted from it added to our tally of BFNs.

IVF #4 is currently on hold, waiting for the cyst to disappear.

After a whole year, no baby in sight.  No BFP ever.  No two pink lines.  No pregnancy symptoms.  Not even a chance to transfer one embryo.

It was the beginning of the year that I became a Bible study leader for the study of Genesis.  That was around the time we had decided to go full force into our IVF cycle.  God always has the best timing.  The study of Genesis had helped me tremendously during that time.  Being a Bible study leader means I have to study each chapter in depth.  Studying about Abraham, Sarah, Rachel, Jacob, Joseph, and all the other characters in Genesis put things in perspective for me.  They all had setbacks.  But God always came through, though not immediately, but always in the end.  They were granted promises and held onto the hope.  That somehow gave me tremendous comfort.  If I didn’t say yes to becoming a leader, I wouldn’t have had the blessings that He bestowed upon me.  Being a study leader also helps me focus on others and praying for others rather than focusing on my own life.  I have also gained a whole group of Bible study leaders who have been praying for our success in bringing home a baby.

When you give up something (your time, energy, etc) for God, God rewards you with more.

Now that we’re studying Matthew, I can truly see Jesus’ healing power.  The woman who bled for twelve years was healed.  The blind man who had not been able to see since birth regained his vision.  The lame picked up his mat and walked.  Their faith in Christ helped them achieve the impossible.  Studying about them and Jesus helps me reflect on my own faith and how my faith can bring about the healing that only Jesus Christ can grant.

That is such a blessing that I will not trade for anything else.

Throughout this year, I experienced quite an emotional roller coaster, not only in regards to the ups and downs of my cycles, but also because of those who got pregnant around me.  I was bitter, jealous, and petty.  I was depressed, disappointed, and crushed.  I had the why-me mentality and was at one point mad at God for allowing this to happen to us.  It was not a good place to be.  I know many of you can relate to these feelings as waiting to be a mother and struggling to get pregnant can sometimes do evil things to your mind and heart.  I could not talk to people who are pregnant.  I could not stand pregnancy announcements.  I hid posts on my newsfeed.  I walked away from pregnant ladies or mothers and father with babies in grocery stores or shopping malls.  This is not unusual or unfamiliar to some of you as you went through or are going through the same.  Honestly I didn’t like who I had become.  I started to pray regularly about six months ago for joy, peace, strength, and kindness/goodness that can only come from God.  And once again, God has shown me His blessings as my heart and mind slowly become at peace with my circumstances and I began to feel happy for certain people in my life and celebrate their successes.  I have accepted that this is the path we have been placed and there is a reason for it.  It has not been easy to come to this place but I hope I don’t lose sight of God’s blessings to place me there.

And then there are my two groups of Face.book secret group friends.  They are truly great friends who stand by me during the darkest times, who are there real time writing me messages while I sit in my RE’s clinic waiting for an ultrasound, who check in with me regularly to see how I am doing, and who are so good at cheering me up when times are dark.  And then there is this blog that I started seven months ago.  Thanks to all of you who comment and support and validate my feelings.  Because of you, I don’t feel that I am in this all alone.

And then there is my husband.  Because of all of the struggles that we experienced together, I see the other side of him.  The side that shows strength and resolve at times of crises and challenges.  I am sorry that we have to go through fertility challenges together.  I wish that we didn’t have to.  But if this is our path, I am honored that God has engineered for Bob to be the one who walks through these valleys with me.  

I am really hoping for good things for 2014.  I commented on Maddie’s blog that I dare dream for her to be pregnant and for me to have my take home baby by next Christmas.  If it’s okay to dream, I want to dream big.  Good that I have her to count on me to have that take home baby.  🙂  I wish you all the best and thank you so much for the care, love, and hugs that you have given me and Bob in the past year.  May 2014 be the year that brings joy, peace, blessings and good news to you and me.