''Infertility at it's Finest...''
In order for my story to be told the way I want it to be told, we have to go back to a time in my life where having a baby was the last thing on my mind!
I had gotten my period at age 12. From the very beginning, I had terrible periods: Non-stop bleeding, sometimes with only days in between each period. I had a lot of pain from the start, but I had just thought everyone had the same type of pain. When I finally told my mom about my non-stop bleeding and pain she thought it would be best to take me to see a gynecologist. You see, my mom suffered from Endometriosis. At the age of 13 I had NO idea what that even meant, but I would soon find out.
So there I am, 13 years old, at the gyno’s office. I had just had an internal ultrasound, which even as an adult makes you feel uncomfortable. So imagine a 13 year old girl! They had come to find out that I also had endometriosis. At the time, I had no idea that diagnosis would define me for a short time in my adult life. I started on birth control the summer going into my 9th grade year. By my senior year in high school I had been on 5 different birth controls and had gone through a small procedure to burn off my scar tissue that had been causing me a lot of pain. That procedure helped for a bit, until it didn’t.
By age 22 I had met the man who is now my husband. To be honest, we spent the first 4 years of our relationship trying to not get pregnant! On December 12, 2012 Jon got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! I had always been told to “ have kids young” , “ with your severity of endometriosis it may take some time” , “when you meet the right man talk about your chances of needing fertility help”.
So needing some type of help to get pregnant was always in the back of my mind. In June of 2013 I went in for my yearly appointment with my gyno where I had said “I’m getting married and we want to start a family right away!” I went off birth control that day to let my system clear out. We got married on December 14, 2013 and we started trying for a baby! The first month came and went and we knew it would be almost impossible to get pregnant on the first try. But, with each passing month of negative pregnancy tests we started to lose faith. Within the first year of us trying my best friend and my sister-in-law both had gotten pregnant. Obviously I was happy for them both and I would love these sweet babies, but at the time when they both told me all I could do was feel betrayed. If you have never been through infertility I know what you are thinking, “WOW, she is selfish!” Trust me I know because I thought the same thing. But these feelings wouldn’t go away! “Why do they get to have a baby and I don’t? They both already have had a baby before so why is it their turn again?!” After a while, I was finally was able to burry my feelings. I obviously love these babies and one is now my goddaughter and they other is my Little BESTIE!
By October of 2014 we had been off birth control for over a year and not using protection. Jon and I both decided that going back to the doctor to figure out our next step was the best choice. It was that appointment that we got our referral for the Institute of Reproductive Health! We were so excited! We went in the next week and began our testing. I obviously knew I had endometriosis, but I was also diagnosed with PCOS. In addition, my husband was diagnosed with low motility so we had a lot of things working against us. We came up with a game plan and we decided to try timed intercourse.
We ordered all of our medications and injections; all we had to do was wait for my period to come. We waited and waited and waited... but it didn’t come! How could this be?! After over a year of trying I got a positive pregnancy test! With no help we had gotten pregnant! We were so excited and our families were equally excited. On Christmas we had told our families and were were on Cloud 9! On New Years Eve of 2014 we were going in for our 10 week appointment. We were going to hear the heartbeat at this appointment, so we couldn’t wait! We went into our room; myself, Jon and my AMAZING doctor were all so excited... until we heard no heartbeat...
My doctor told us, ‘not to worry, sometimes this happens.’ So we went in for an ultrasound where we discovered that our sweet baby never made it past 6 weeks. We were crushed, to say the least. On January 8th I had my D&C and we were told that we could start trying as soon as we felt comfortable. So in February we went back to our fertility doctor and started with our original plan. February came and so did my period and in March the same; we felt so defeated. So in April we decided to kick it up a notch and do IUI. Wouldn’t you know, we got pregnant! We had learned that I had low progesterone so I was on supplements to help me sustain pregnancy. After 12 weeks we were released back to my normal OB and I had the perfect pregnancy! I was induced on January 14th , 2016 after learning that my pelvis had separated early. Which, fun fact, really hurts but also made for a very easy and fast delivery! At 4:19pm on January 14th we finally became parents to the most amazingly beautiful little girl, Caroline Rose, weighing in at a whopping 6 lb 4 oz! She was perfect. We came home two days later and, as most people put it, the REAL fun began! She was everything we had ever hoped she would be. My world, my everything! By this time I was 25 and I had started to have pain again from my endometriosis… so back on birth control I went.
When Caroline was 9 months old we decided to start talking about having another baby. So when Caroline turned 1, back to the fertility clinic we went! Since IUI worked for us the first time we went right back to our normal pills for 3 days and then our trigger shots. The first month was a flop as was the second. Finally, with the third try in March we were pregnant again! Now, this pregnancy was totally different than Caroline’s. I threw up every day for 23 weeks!!! EVERY. DAY. But I was so happy to be pregnant again that I didn’t mind. We found out in August of 2017 that we would be welcoming a beautiful baby BOY; Oliver Michael, named after my dad who passed when I was 18 years old. At 26 weeks I started to notice a lot of pelvic pain. By 30 weeks, just to stand up brought tears to my eyes. Sleeping was horrible and walking had become difficult. So at 38 weeks we decided to induce again! I went into the hospital at 7am on December 22nd and he was here by 11:01am. My beautiful, sweet Oliver weighing in at 8lbs 7oz. We came home on Christmas Eve and our family was complete.
Here I am now, age 27. 5 years of an incredible journey that at times I thought I wouldn’t make it through , but I did! In the past 5 years, I have grown in more ways than I can even begin to tell you! My marriage is something that, because of our journey to grow our family, is stronger than I ever thought possible. We have learned how to rely on each other in times of need rather than point the finger in blame. Our amazing babies bring us so much joy and we tend to take things in a little more with them. For a long time we had thought having a baby just wasn’t meant for us. So we tend to let our house get dirty a little more than others so we can soak up this amazing gift that we were given. I am a stay-at-home Mom because, if I’m being honest, I want to be able to watch the two things I truly had thought I would never have grow. I don’t want to miss anything! Being a Mom is HARD! Being a Dad is HARD! I truly believe that God gave my husband and I this gift of infertility, yes I said gift, because it made us the people we are today! We needed to learn patience, kindness and learn how to depend on each other. We needed to learn how to not worry about what the world thinks and only worry about what WE need! If you are going through infertility right now, it sucks! You are not selfish for not wanting to attend that baby shower or that first birthday party! You are not selfish for being a little hurt when someone close tells you they are pregnant! I always say, “have your moment, cry your tears! Just don’t unpack your bags and live there.”
I am happy to say that now we have a crazy almost 3 year old and a sweet little 10 month old.
What does the future hold for Jon and I? Who knows?! But I’m so happy I got to go on this life journey with him. I am happy that I was given the gift of infertility. It may define a time in my life, but it does not define me.
Who are we?
Cincinnati Birth and Parenting, LLC was founded by Molly Murray, a birth and postpartum doula and childbirth educator. Through this growing company, Molly connects parents with information, resources, and support while also staying committed to building up fellow professionals and connecting them with the people who need their services most.