Thursday, December 8, 2011

I've GOT to post some pictures of my kids....they are killing me with cuteness today!

Okay first and foremost - when did I get 4 kids?  Really....4 kids?  I still don't believe it.  God is so good.  If you would have asked me 5 years ago if I would have ANY kids I would have maybe said...I could only pray that God would bless me with 1.  But now looking back and 4 kids later -  God you ARE good ALL the time.  Even when our plans are not your plans and our ways are not your ways you always provide and you always provide enough strength for me as a mother.  I am in awe you of you, your holiness and your greatness today.  I am in love with you God.

I got some pictures back from our photo shoot with our awesome photographer today www.kelliedayphotography.com if anyone is interested in her and using her.  She is a BEAUTIFUL soul inside and out and I mean that with all of my heart.








Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Well....I'm back....

I needed a little blog break after everything that happened - so suddenly and well...shockingly.  After my post about me reaching "my dark place" I guess my body somehow knew it was time.  Less than 24hrs later I woke up at 5:00am with my water broken and 12 hours after that the twins were here.

Nolan only spent 8 days in the NICU and was never on any form of oxygen or other life saving devices.  He was basically a "feeder and grower" and was also given some IV meds to help any infections that could have been present.  He was strong as an ox and has grown SO much.  He left the hospital around 5lbs and is now 7lbs6oz 3 weeks later.  He is such a strong boy and doing so well at home.  He is a little more alert than his sister and honestly he is a bit more whinny ;) but he's OH SO SWEET.  I'm so in love with my first baby BOY!!!

Nora spent 13 days in the NICU and after a few days of being on oxygen and CPAP they decided it was best for her to be on a ventilator.  So she was on that for about 3 days as they gave her some meds to help her lungs mature.  After her lungs matured and she was able to nipple her feedings she really started to do very well.  Her lowest weight was 4lbs 1oz but when she left the hospital she was back at her birth weight of 4lbs 13oz.  As of a few days ago she was 6lbs 2oz.  She is also doing VERY well at home, eating, sleeping and pooping like a champ.  She is VERY calm so far and we are counting our blessings and praying her personality stays the same ;).

Both babies are just such a huge blessing and we couldn't be more proud of our little fighters.  We are also so thankful for everyone who sent cards, brought us dinner, loved on us and prayed for us while we were dealing with getting our sweet babies home.  We are SO grateful for such beautiful people in our lives.  God has really blessed us.

We also had our newborn photo shoot this past week and although I don't have the pictures back I did get a sneak peak hehe and Ill share that picture! =)


Thank you Lord for our sweet blessings.

Leslie

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I'm not ready to really post just yet....

But I'll give a quick update.  The twins were born after my water broke (in my sleep) on Saturday November 5th at 5:30pm and 5:35pm.  They were both born vaginally - Nolan John was born first weighing 5lbs6oz followed by Nora Emerson who weighted 4lbs13oz.

Nolan is doing well and really just learning how to feed and doing some growing.  I hope he's home in a week or so but no one has said anything about him coming home yet....so we will see.  Nora on the other hand has had a hard time.  She is currently on a ventilator because her lungs just were clearly not ready.  After she gets off the vent she will just need to be able to nipple all her feedings, keep her body temp up and do some more growing.  It will be a little bit harder road for her but we are confident that she will be home in our arms soon.

Thank you for all your love, support and prayers as we deal with this very emotionally and physically draining time.

Leslie

Friday, November 4, 2011

My dark place....

Well I'm here in my dark place.  The place I hoped I wouldn't get to but here I am none-the-less.  It's pretty awful feeling the way I do physically and then I get the comments of "Oh but they need to be in as long as they can" and "you don't want a preemie" and then my favorite "I have a friend who went to 40 weeks with twins".  Well all those are great and fine but until you have carried twins in your belly and felt the pain and weight of the situation I prefer if you just say, I'm praying for you Leslie, you can do it.  That's all I need to hear.  I fully understand that having a preemie is not ideal, I fully understand that a lot of woman make it to 40 weeks (although MOST don't even come close to it). And I fully understand that they need to "cook" for as long as they can.  Thank you for your advice but like I said until you have been pregnant with twins and felt the toll it takes on your body, it's best to just pray for your friends.  It's not easy, it's not fun and it's not cute.  Am I grateful?  OF COURSE I AM.  These are such miracle babies and my husband and I want NOTHING more than for them to be full term healthy babies.  But that doesn't make the pain and depression I'm feeling any better.  I feel SO guilty that I can't be the mom to my two little girls that I want to be.  I feel SO guilty that my husband has to do 99.9% of the things around the house.  I want to be able to tuck my kids in at night, I want to do the laundry, I want to get them ready for school - but I can't and I hate it.

I was texting with my friend in China back and forth for about 30 minutes today and she really helped to pull me out from my funk today.  She recently went through a very hard time and reminded me that no one or nothing can bring you out from the dark place.  ONLY through God and seeking after him can you come to a place of acceptance and healing.  I know my body will be tested to the max the next few weeks.  I know that there isn't a human on this earth that can make my physical pain go away but I do know I have a heavenly father that can show me his love and mercy and healing powers.  I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.

I am grateful for friends who remind me to pray, who pray for me and don't tell me things I already know.  Thank you Lord for showing your mercy on me and giving me a friend just when I needed it to hear your message - all the way from China.

Leslie

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

33 weeks

Well one more week down.  Praise the Lord.  I had my OB appt yesterday and it went awesome, I'm really liking my new OB, he is taking wonderful care of me and is so kind.  I feel very blessed.  At the appointment I had an ultrasound first and the babies are not only looking GREAT but they are HUGE too.  Nora is estimated at 5lbs and Nolan is estimated at 4lbs11oz.  I can't believe I have almost 10 pounds of baby in there.  No WONDER my feet are so huge and my body hurts so bad.  I really hope these babies come in a few weeks on their own, I've had enough thats for sure.  My body is DONE.

There isn't much more to report besides that I go back next week for my first scheduled NST and he will also do a cervix check at that point too.  So I'm excited to see what next week has in store for the babies and I!!! =)

Hope everyone has a great week!

Leslie

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

32 weeks

Hello week 32.  Good to see you.  You have already started off pretty ruff - my feet/legs have blown up two sizes, I can hardly walk - thanks haha.  But as far as the babies go - no new news.  I won't be going to the doctor this week, not sure why he just told me to come back in two weeks.  So I have no news to report but I do go for my next ultrasound on Monday which very well will be my last ultrasound until the babies are born.  That is, as long as their growth is fine.  It is very hard to imagine my body holding up for 5 full weeks and honestly I highly doubt it will but if I can at least get to 34 weeks I feel so much better about the situation.  Each two weeks is a huge milestone in my book.

In other news, one of my best friends had her baby today.  She didn't know what she was having and it turns out it was a GIRL.  They named her Eloise and she was 6lbs 3oz 18inchs long.  Tiny little thing like her momma.  I'm so proud of my friend, she did great in labor and delivery.  Now I'm praying that little Eloise goes easy on her the next few months ;).  I can't believe I'm next.....YAY!!!

Well I thought I would post two pictures....one of the belly and one of my HUGE feet.....don't judge okay?



Yeah I know my feet are huge....and I have no ankles....I think it's pretty darn funny if you ask me.

Still thankful for my two growing and healthy babies.  Thank you Lord.

Leslie

Saturday, October 22, 2011

It's amazing to me....

That I can sleep for 11 hours (yes I got up at least 5 times to pee, but I went right back to sleep) and then go to a 4 year olds birthday party and feel like I've been hit by a bus.  I was hoping to be able to go to church tonight and watch my hubby lead worship for Saturday Night Church but I don't think I do it.  I'm starting to get really frustrated with my body....not only do I feel like my skin and belly are maxed out but I feel like I only have energy for about one activity a day or else I'm paying for it for a week.  I'm having a hard time not focusing my on my pain and I think I've cried more time this past week then I have the whole pregnancy.  I hate that I can't just enjoy my last few weeks and be able to finish up the few last minute things that need to get done before the twins get here, but honestly...I'm tapped out.  I don't care what anyone says - there is NOTHING like being pregnant with two babies (unless you are pregnant with 3+ haha).  I don't think anyone can prepare you for how you will feel.  Yes I want these babies to be safe and be inside of me until 37 weeks but the thought of 5 more weeks truly brings tears to my eyes.

But I have to be strong and know that I can do this and I know how HUGE of a blessing these twins are to my family - but Lord, I need you right now.  Please help me finish strong and give my body the strength it needs to keep these babies growing.  I trust that you have my best interest at heart and that through you I can make it 5 more weeks.

And for your viewing pleasure.....here is the belly in all its glory haha.  Still no stretch marks but ummm I'm sure those will be a nice surprise here in the next few weeks but a girl can hope can't she?


Leslie

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

31 weeks

Well hello week 31.  Yesterday 30w6d was awful but today 31w you have been kind to me =).   I'm SO grateful for my "good days" they make me believe that YES I can do this and YES I can make it to 37 weeks.  I am so blessed.

Today at my MOPS bible study we had discussion group day, where we can pick a topic and what not and just spend time together getting to know each other better.  Well my sweet table threw me a surprise diaper shower.  It was SO sweet and meant SO much to me.  We ate cake (my favorite part), panted letters for Nora and Nolan's nursery and played games.  It was SUCH a treat and I was overwhelmed with the love I felt from my table of awesome Christian woman.

I go to the doctor for my 31 week apt tomorrow and I'm seeing a new doctor.  I'm looking forward to hearing the babies heartbeats and seeing how big my belly is haha.  I can't wait to hold those babies in my arms - 6 more weeks.  WOW only 6 weeks.  God is good! =)

Leslie

Friday, October 14, 2011

30w3d

Well I went to the doctor today and after I told her that I have feeling much less of baby B (Nora) she thought it would be a good idea to go to the hospital.  So off I went.  When I got there they hooked the babies up and all was fine.  Both have great heart rates and were moving like crazy.  So needless to say it was a waisted trip but its always good to be safe than sorry.  I go back to the doctor next Wednesday.  I'll be seeing another OB at that point which is fine but I'm really ready for my regular OB to come back.  I want him back...lol.

I've had a LONG day and tonight I'm paying for it.  Big time.  Which sucks.  I hope the girls decide that 8:00 is a good time to go to sleep bc this momma needs to crawl into bed and rest rest rest.

Looking forward to my next doctors appointment and praying its much less uneventful than it was today.

Please Lord help me get through tonight and give me strength the next few weeks to keep these babies growing healthy and strong!

Leslie

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

30 weeks

Well I'm 30 weeks.  Not much to say about it but I'm here......and holding on haha.  Hopefully these little babies can stay in for at least 4 more weeks but really hoping for 7.  Thank you Lord for this blessing - I love these little babies so much already - we can't wait to meet you both! =)

Leslie

Sunday, October 9, 2011

29w5d

I can do this, I can do this, I can do this.....

If I keep telling myself this enough, maybe I will start to believe it.  My body is falling apart.  One outing a day is about all my body can handle and I'm afraid that number will be 0 very shortly.  God Bless anyone who carries more than two babies - I truly understand now.  I'm SO SO grateful for my super awesome husband who takes care of me and the girls so well and does it would out an ounce of complaining or making me feel guilty that I can't help.  I am truly blessed.

Leslie

Friday, October 7, 2011

29w3d

Well I had my 30 week doctors appointment today (usually I go Monday's but my doctor was out so I had to go today).  Anyways, my new OB is AWESOME.  I couldn't be happier with her.  Her game plan is exactly like Dr. Mammel's which put me VERY much at ease.  I will be getting ultrasounds every 3 weeks, NST's starting at 33 weeks and I will be going to her every week from here on out.  I feel so much better now that I have really met her and had a chance to talk everything over.  God always provides.

At the ultrasound today everything looked great.  Nolan and Nora were both head down still, YAY.  This will give ME the option of how I want to deliver which makes me really happy.  I'm still not dead set on a c-section OR a vaginal birth but I know God will give me the wisdom when the time comes =).  Both of them had great fluid levels, my cervix was long and closed, Nolan was 3.6lbs and Nora was 3.2lbs.  The only issue (which isn't an issue yet) was the size difference.  Right now they are at a 6% difference if they get to a 10% difference then we will start to really watch the babies for IUGR and it may even warrant a trip to USF to meet with a high risk doctor but she honestly wasn't that worried about it yet and we will talk more about it at 33 weeks with my next ultrasound.  I'm so glad that everything looked great.  I can't believe I have over 6lbs of baby in me.  Ella was only 6lbs14oz when she was BORN so I think its safe to say my belly is now officially the same size as it was when Ella was born at 39weeks haha.  This could get really crazy by the end.....Lord please help me carry your children! =)

In more fun news my photographer (www.kelliedayphotography.com) finished editing my maternity shoot that we did 2 weeks ago.  I'm so in love with the pictures, they are so precious to me and I'm so glad we captured this moment in time.  Thank you Kellie, Clint and Brit.  I love you guys!







I only put up a few there were WAY to many to choose from, thank you so much Kellie Day Photography!  =)


Leslie

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

29 weeks

Well I made it another week.  And it isn't pretty.  I had NO idea carrying twins would be this hard on my body.  It's so bad there are days where all I really want to do is cry.  Then of course there are other days that I feel 'decent' and of course I very much appreciate those days.  I'm starting to have constant acid reflux/heartburn which is making the daily task of eating a very big challenge and I won't even go into trying to sleep at night.  I think this is just getting me ready for the HUGE lack of sleep I will be getting once the twins are actually here haha.  Even though my body is about at its limit I'm VERY thankful that so far the babies are looking great.  I go back to the doctor on Friday for another ultrasound to check out their growth and position and I'm really looking forward to seeing those little babies.   This will also be my first appt with my new OB and I hope things go well with her.  I'm sure it will be just fine.  I don't have much of  a choice anyways ;).

Well thats it for now, just trying to hang in there and keep a decent attitude.  I just want to get as far as I can to make sure these babies have a good start in this world.  I'm very thankful for the sweet blessing of TWINS.  It truly is a blessing and I am so very thankful that I get to be their mother! =)

Leslie

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

28w1d

I've hit a wall today.  I truly don't know how my body will make room for these babies for the next 8/9 weeks.  My stomach is so tight it's unreal I truly think I am officially the same size I was when I delivered Ella at 39 weeks.  Lord, please help me.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Doctor Appointment Today - 28 weeks

Well tomorrow I'm 28 weeks pregnant.  This is a VERY good thing.  With each month pregnant the babies hit HUGE milestones - it's a huge sigh of relief to get this far.  Well today was my last visit with my regular OB, he is going to be out until November.  I can't believe he is leaving during this crazy time in my pregnancy but I'm really just praying for his safety and hope he can get back to work asap.  I know I will be in good hands with the other OB's at the practice but I think everyone can agree that your own doctor always makes you feel better.  So - God speed Dr. Mammel you are in my prayers.

Today was my gestational diabetes test.  I really don't think that drink is gross haha I guess I'm a freak of nature.  I will find out if I pass or not in a few days I'm sure.  I didn't really ask when I'll hear....I guess I'm just not worried.   We also talked in great length about the birth and this is the plan for now.  As long as everything goes well and I don't go into labor on my own I will be scheduling a c-section at 37 weeks which puts the birthday at November 29th.  If I DO go into labor on my own and the babies are both head down I will attempt a vaginal birth.  So that's the plan as of now and we will just go with the flow.  It feels good to have a goal date I feel like I can see the light at the end of the tunnel haha.  Hard to believe that the max amount of time I will be pregnant is 9 weeks exactly.  WOW.  I'm so excited and ready to get this show on the road! =))

Here is a picture from today!  The belly is out of control...yes I know this! =)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Thankful

Today I am reminded of just how grateful I am to be carrying two heathy babies.  For some reason today I am reminded of all the hard work, pain, money and time we put into growing our family and here I am almost 28 weeks pregnant with two true miracles...

I understand that my life as I know it is about to change BIG TIME and yes, I am scared.  But I also am so grateful for the blessing of 4 sweet children.  How did I ever get this lucky?  Yeah Yeah Yeah there is no such thing as luck but today I'm using the word anyways.  Thank you Lord for Nolan and Nora.  You have blessed my family FAR beyond normal blessings haha.  Please help us raise YOUR children the way YOU would want them to be raised.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

27 WEEKS

Wow 27 weeks.  With every week I feel better and better that the twins will get here safe and sound.  My short term goal is 30 weeks.  There is something about that number that just seems safe to me - of course I know its not ideal to have babies at 30 weeks haha but for me its a good goal and I'm only 3 weeks away! =)

I'm feeling decent.  The last two days my feet have started to swell at night which has been annoying but nothing too bad, yet.  I know it's coming but I'm just trying to drink lots of water and not use any extra salt (which is hard for me).  I go back to the doctor on Monday and have my gestational diabetes test.  It's funny because everyone thinks the drink is so gross and well I think its pretty darn good....but I love sugar so I guess thats why ha-ha.  I'm not worried about failing the test at all.  I'm sure it will all be fine.

On a different note my OB is leaving for the whole month of October.  He has to take care of himself and that is first and foremost the most important thing but I will miss him while he is gone.  He always makes me feel better and I'm very grateful for all this support the first few months of this pregnancy when I had MANY MANY freak out moments haha.  He's a great doctor and I always feel safe in his hands.  I will be seeing another OB in his practice while he is gone and I've already met her once, I liked her a lot so I'm not too worried.  I just need to make sure these babies stay in and don't try to make a quick exit while he's gone haha.  Hoping and praying that my OB gets back the first of November and I can go back to him for the actual birth of the babies.

Well I think thats all for now....just doing my best to stay positive and praying that everything continues to stay this calm the rest of this pregnancy!

Leslie

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Well here's the belly...

I thought I would post a quick picture of the belly haha.  I don't ever take any real good belly pictures but at least it gets the job done ha-ha.  I'm having maternity pictures on Friday - yay!  I didn't do any with Ella because I felt funny about doing it seeing as how we just adopted Kate and I didn't want her to grow up and feel left out.  I have VERY few belly pictures of Ella.  So with the twins I thought it would be fun to do some family maternity pictures.  I can't wait to see what my awesome photographer Kellie Day does! =)


Okay heres the 26 weeks damage....haha

 

Thankful to be this far along - praying those twins stay in there for a couple more months! =)

Leslie

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

26 weeks

Wow I'm 26 weeks today.  This just doesn't seem real - I can't believe how fast this pregnancy is going.  I'm lucky in that I'm not on bed rest (yet, crosses fingers) so I am keeping myself pretty darn busy during the day, which is nice.

I'm feeling decent.  The babies are getting big (2lbs each now) and they are really kicking me hard, like really really hard haha.  So I am having a hard time getting comfortable because no matter what, someone is kicking me.  I'm having bad acid reflux but handling it okay.  I went to the doctor yesterday and had my every 4 weeks ultrasound.  Like I said earlier they are 2lbs each, both head down, fluid looks great and my cervix is long and closed.  So as far as my pregnancy goes, everything is tip top!  I will see my OB one more time and then he is gone for 4-6 weeks.  So I will be seeing another doctor during that time.  I hope I like her and it all works out and of course I hope nothing crazy happens while he is gone.  I will miss him thats for sure.

Well I think that's all.  I'm doing my best to hang in there.  Thank you for all your prayers for me and my sweet babies.  Hopefully only 10 or so more weeks! =)

Leslie

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

25 weeks

Wow another week done.  I can't believe it - things are starting to pick up speed which both makes me happy and scares me to death ha-ha.  I'm feeling decent just having some pubic bone pain and over all tired but mostly I'm doing pretty good.  I have another ultrasound on Monday which I'm really looking forward to it's always fun to see the babies and to make sure that things look good in there.

I found out today that ANOTHER friend is pregnant and due in March.  I'm beyond thrilled for all my friends who are having babies.  And what makes it even better is that their children will all be around the same age as the twins - so yay for future play dates! ;)

I think that's all for now.  Thank you for your continued prayers and support!

Leslie

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

24 weeks

Well I made it to viability week.  This means that if the babies come from here on out they at least have a chance at survival.  I understand this doesn't mean that everything will be smooth sailing from here but it does feel SO good to be at this point.  Now twins....you must stay in momma's belly at least 10-13 more weeks, we love you and only want whats best for you ;).

Nothing new to report really.  The babies are kicking up a STORM and driving me NUTS haha. They wake me up at all hours of the night.  I'm only getting about 6 to 7 hours of sleep at night....maybe the babies are just getting me ready for the real fun haha.

This week we moved Kate and Ella into the same room so that we could free up Ella's room for Nora's nursery.  We had a guest room already which is now Nolan's room and then by moving Ella we have a room for Nora too.  We decided to split the babies up because we don't want the crying to wake each other up but I suspect that the babies will sleep in the same room for at least a little bit....we will just have to wait and see how it all pans out.  But at least for now they both have their own space which leaves me with less anxiety haha.

My sweet church friends are throwing me a baby "sprinkle" in two weeks.  I'm SO excited.  With K and E I had a small but very nice baby shower.  But, I was only 20 weeks pregnant, not really showing and K was 3 weeks old (and had a bad cold).  It was a VERY crazy day and I have ZERO pictures from the event.  Not even ONE....nope...none.  Can you believe that?  So I'm really happy that I get to have a "re-do" per say.  I am NOT reregistering and or wanting people to bring gifts....I really don't need much (except boy clothes of course) mostly I'm just looking forward to celebrating the sweet babies that we worked SO hard to get and eating some really awesome food.  I have the best friends a girl could ask for! =) I am blessed.

Okay I think that's all for now.  I don't go to the doctor for another 2 weeks when I'm 26 weeks.  I'll get an ultrasound which I'm SUPER excited about.  I can't wait to see the babies again! =)

Thank you for all your sweet prayers over me and the twins....they are felt.

Leslie

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

23 weeks

I.AM.HUGE. lets just say that in the last week I have really popped out.  It's pretty crazy haha.  Most of my close friends who see me on a nearly daily basis have even made comments on my size haha.  I haven't gained any more weight than I have in the last few months but the babies have really gotten big.  I'm scared for what the future is going to look like.  Lets just say I will be BEGGING my doctor to take these babies out when the time comes haha.

I have no real updates on the babies everything is pretty much stable at this point.  My pelvic pain is pretty bad but thats my only true complaint right now.  I also am having a pretty bad acid reflux and when I go to the doctor next week I know I'm going to get an Rx for something stronger than what I can get over the counter.

Thats all for now....one more week until viability...yahoo! =)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

22 weeks.....

And the blows keep coming haha.

Good News first;
As far as the babies go....they are perfect.   I had an ultrasound on Monday and both babies are right at 1lb each, cervix is long and closed - praise the Lord.  Nora is head down at this point and Nolan is head up but they keep switching places who knows what the end result will be haha.  I'm very grateful for healthy babies and looking forward to week 24 when the babies are considered "viable" meaning if they are born at 24 weeks they at least have a chance for survival.  I'm very excited to only be 2 weeks away from this huge milestone! Yay babies, keep growing strong and stay PUT....

Bad News;
I pulled something (muscle, tendon, nerve they are not sure) in my groin area.  It's so bad I am unable to bare any weight on my leg so at this time I'm currently parked on the couch.  It stinks.  I did it yesterday and ended up at the ER because I was in so much pain.  I'm so glad that its nothing "serious" but it means I have to stay off my leg for a few days and keep ice on it.  I'm VERY grateful for my sitters who have been helping me out and for my awesome parents and husband who have picked up SO much slack!  I am blessed.

I think that is all for now....please continue to keep my health and the babies in your prayers! =)

Thank you Lord for your constant hand over my life!!!!

Leslie




Tuesday, August 9, 2011

21 weeks

Well the sweet prayers of all my faithful friends must have worked because this has been a MUCH better week than weeks 19 and 20.  I'm not going to jump up and down just yet considering things with me seem to change hourly.  But its been really nice having a decent week without tons and tons of pain.  I'm praying this good run will last at least a few weeks.  I went to the doctor yesterday (no ultrasound just a normal apt) and I'm measuring 25 weeks.  So this puts me about 4 weeks ahead of what a normal singleton belly would measure.  I'm happy with that, not too big, not too small and the doctor is pleased too.  I've now gained 18/19lbs (depends on what time a day you weigh me haha) and I'm also happy about that too.  Thats all the baby updates I have for now! =)

My sweet husband has been in Africa for the last week and a half and I'm SO excited that he will be home Saturday.  I feel like he has been gone forever.  I'm so excited to hear all of the stories and see the pictures he has taken. I know he will forever be changed.  How could he not?  When you go on things like this and see how the rest of the world lives it really opens up your eyes.  The verse at the top of my blog page comes to mind;

Prov. 24:12....once our eyes are opened we can not pretend we do not know what to do.  God, who weights our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know and holds us responsible to act.

I love everything about that verse. It's convicting and humbling and honestly makes me pretty darn uncomfortable most of the time.  God knows that Brett and I were in the middle of becoming foster parents when we got pregnant with the twins.  Pushing back our foster children plans by at least 3 years.  The thought of that is depressing and sad but I also know that God has big plans for these twins, how could he not?   We know that we will get back to the place we once were after the twins are born and be able to bring another child into our home to love and care for through the foster care system.  We have to trust God's timing and trust his path for our lives.  I could go on forever about this but thinking about the what-if's and what could have been is pointless.  God is in control and once again he reminds me that HE IS GOD and I AM NOT.

Thank you Lord for loving me through this storm.

Leslie

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

20 weeks

Well I could go into detail about the pain I'm in and how my body pretty much hates me at this point haha but I won't.  Lets just say I'm doing my best to stay a float and I'm VERY grateful for all the family and friends who have been helping me out.  I'm now up 17lbs which I'm happy with (goal is 20lbs by 20 weeks).  The reason you want to gain more weight fast is for two reasons 1) if the babies come early its very important to have them as big as you can and 2) its VERY hard to eat at the end of a multiple pregnancy so its important to eat while you can.  My goal is stay under 50lbs and with only 16 or less weeks left I'm pretty sure I'll be able to do it.  I gained 40lbs with Ella so I think 50lbs is a fair number! =)

Okay here is the 20 week picture...don't judge...and yes I know I'm big lol

Friday, July 29, 2011

19w3d

Just checking in.  Nothing much to report from last post a few days ago other than I'm now wearing a maternity support belt which seems to be helping with some of my pain. I'm still having TONS of Braxton Hicks contractions but I'm doing my best to stay calm and do everything the doctors tell me to do.  I go back to the doctor in a week and a half which always makes me feel better.  Please continue to keep me and the twins in your prayers.

Brett leaves at 3:45am tomorrow to go on a mission trip to Africa.  I'm really happy for him.  We had a great day together today.  We took the girls to camp and went to breakfast and ran some errands then we had a sitter come for an hour around lunch time so we could also enjoy lunch together.  Brett has the girls alone tonight as it's my 10 year class reunion.  I'm so nervous to go but I know I will have fun.  Just praying the pain will stay away for long enough for me to enjoy myself for a few hours.  I hope to be home at a decent hour tonight so I can spend a little more time with Brett before he leaves in a few hours.  Please also keep my sweet husband in your prayers the next two weeks and also for traveling mercies as he has a LONG plane trip ahead of him.

Thank you Lord for your continued blessing over our family, we are here to serve you.

Leslie

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

19 weeks

Well I'm 19 weeks today.   And I'm going to be honest with you.  I'm scared.  Yesterday at the doctor for my anatomy scan all was well, babies are 100% perfect and my cervix was long and closed with no funneling.  However, the last few days I've had some very serious pain on my lower left side belly (uterus). It's so bad that last night at about 2:00am I almost woke my husband up to take me to the ER.  I was able to hang in there and fall asleep but it was scary and this morning things are not a ton better.  I went to the chiropractor this morning which did help relieve some pain but right now I have myself parked on the couch trying to hang in there.

I'm doing my best to give this pregnancy to the Lord and trust that he will take care of this children.  I have/am doing everything I can to keep these babies inside me and safe and he has to do the rest.  I rest assure in his promises and am doing my best to work through the chronic pain I am having.  I have no other choice but to trust God at this point.  

My husband has been awesome this whole time and has really picked up the slack around the house.  He's a great man.  However, he leaves for a mission trip to Africa on Saturday for two weeks.  I have two girls lined up to help me out while he is gone.  One in the mornings to take the girls out of the house and let them have some fun and another girl to come over after they wake up from nap to help with dinner/bath and cleaning up the house.  I'm so grateful.  And I'm also super excited for my husband.

Please pray for my husband as he is traveling and doing the Lord's work and also for my health and the health of Nora and Nolan.

I also wanted to include a picture of the babies from the anatomy scan yesterday (Nolan on top Nora on the bottom)




Leslie

Saturday, July 23, 2011

18w4d....honeymoon stage...over....

Okay I lied in my last post.  This is NOT the honeymoon stage...I think I maybe had one good week and got a little cocky haha.  The constant pain in my belly (which I guess is round ligament pains), backaches, pubic bone pain and overall lack of energy just plan sucks.  I'm worried sick ALL.DAY.LONG about the pregnancy that I'm having a hard time doing anything else.

Lord please help me get through the next 18 weeks of this pregnancy and help me bring two tiny, wonderful, perfect lives into this world.....I need you right now....

Leslie

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

18 weeks

Wow...when did that happen?  I'm finally starting to feel better in terms of the pregnancy.  No more sickness and my body feels pretty good.  I would consider myself in the "honeymoon stage" haha.  Just praying this lasts a few more weeks because Lord knows I need a break before things get real ugly hehe.

As far as my vertigo goes....things have been slowly getting better.  Thank you for your prayers and please continue to remember me and the sweet babies as we are all on a medicine that I do not want to be on but am hoping that I will be off in only 3 more weeks.  Pray for protection over the twins and over their momma.

Okay soooo here is the belly picture at 18 weeks! =)


Leslie

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

16 weeks 1 day

I've had a really hard week.  I have a type of vertigo called MdDS and it is very debilitating.  I have had attacks that lasted not just 2 or 3 days but 2 or 3 months.  And by months I mean 24 hours a day 7 days a week.  The anxiety of my situation is quite overwhelming exp because I have a to be a mommy to my two girls.  The ONLY thing that helps me are two drugs that are not safe for the babies.  Which puts me in a very hard place.  Do I take the less serious of the two drugs for a week or two and get the MdDS under control and risk a small chance of something hurting the babies or do I suffer for weeks maybe months on end which will put the babies at risk because of my anxiety?  I have of course turned to God for my answer.  He directs my paths, he keeps me and the babies safe and with his help I will get through this.

If you could please pray for me and my vertigo this week I would be forever grateful.

Leslie

Sunday, July 3, 2011

First Baby BOY purchase....

Look what momma got Nolan on Etsy today....


I figure it only fitting for daddy's job as a worship pastor! =)  I think it's precious and will be great for my little winter babies!  Now I need to find an equally cute one for Nora! 

Speaking of buying stuff for the babies I've finally gotten a good start on the list of things I need for the babies.  Buying for two is NOT easy on the wallet but I've found so much good stuff second hand and I've also gotten some things from my sweet friends who no longer need their baby items!  We will be setting up the nurseries sometime in the middle of August.  I know I need to get the big stuff finished just in case I end up on bed rest and or have the babies early.  My goal is to have pretty much everything done by the beginning/middle of September!  I think I can get it done!  Just taking it a little at a time.  

I think thats all for now.  Hope everyone has a WONDERFUL 4th of July and Happy Birthday to my sweet friend Liz! =)

Leslie

Monday, June 27, 2011

Well we are on team....

BLUE AND PINK!  The twins are boy/girl.  We are so excited we can't stand it!  God is good.

Their names are Nora Emerson (Emerson after Brett's grandfather who just passed away) and Nolan John (John after my father).  We are thrilled and beyond blessed with the news of our sweet babies!

Total kid count 3 girls 1 boy....I think our son will be quite the ladies man! =)

Leslie

Sunday, June 26, 2011

5 years ago this weekend.....

5 years ago this 4th of July weekend my father started showing signs that something was very very wrong. It took only a month to diagnoses him with one of the hardest cancers to beat, Pancreatic Cancer.  It all started with a stomach ache at our 4th of July family beach reunion and quickly turned into jaundice which ultimately lead to a very quick diagnoses of the problem.   He was told that his cancer was in stage 2B (which is good) but that he still only had a 4% chance to survive past 5 years.  Pancreatic Cancer without a doubt is one of the most deadly cancers you could ever get.

After his diagnoses there was a major surgery to remove the tumor, called the Whipple surgery (http://www.cancercenter.com/whipple-surgery.htm) which left him with permanent digestion problems which he still struggles with daily, 5 years later.  After his surgery he had months and months of chemo and radiation which almost killed him a few times.  All in hopes to give himself a few extra years.  No one would have EVER thought that my precious miracle father would still be alive today.  And not only alive but LIVING life.

I remember a time shortly after his chemo/radiation was over that he had his first body scan.  The radiologist here in Lakeland brought him into his office and told him, I'm sorry John but its in your lungs (it was actually only scaring and the radiologist jumped the gun a bit).  My dad came home from that and called my brother and I over and told us the news.  We knew what it meant, we knew he would be dead within a matter of months.  I crawled up into his lap and cried and cried and cried to this day the thought of this moment brings back so much deep pain its hard to re-tell the story.  My life as I knew it was changing and I had no choice but to accept the cards that had been dealt.  Shortly after this "finding" my dad started with a new doctor in M.D. Anderson in Texas.  After his first trip out there and after MANY tests they concluded that what they saw in his lungs was NOT cancer but scar tissue and sure enough, they were correct, it was gone by the next scan.  Another miracle moment for my father.

Through all of this my dad has changed.  He's kinder, gentler, more carrying, more compassionate, and has a sweet passion for people going through the same diagnosis or ANY cancer diagnosis.  His love for God and for life is not something he takes for granite.  He is able to really enjoy his "good days."  I couldn't even put into words all the struggles he still has and will continue to have until the day he dies but you wouldn't hear him complain to you about it.  He's positive attitude and fight for his life is something to be admired.

My dad has always been the rock of our family and will continue to be.  He is a wonderful example of what a father should look like. And God knew his work here wasn't finished just yet.  God is so good and his healing is ONLY explained by the grace of God.  My dad was in the 4% survival group, it still blows my mind.

I want to conclude with a little something I wrote in the depth of my pain when we felt like there was no hope. All we had was God's promises to hold onto and the hope that he would hear our cries.....

It's fascinating how God lays things on your heart at just the right moment to get you prepared for the news you will hear or the trials you will deal with. So when I feel God pulling on my heart I pray, I listen and I rejoice in the clarity of God - even in the mucky waters of my own mind. I just believe and let my soul rest ashore in the promises of God. I feel broken, I feel defeated and yet in all of it I feel calm and carried. When I feel like I have nothing left to give I am reminded that I am walking through this nightmare with the Savior of the world. I am grateful for the arms of God and the beautiful life that will once again be mine. So I look ahead and not behind and I am mindful of the tragedy and yet the beauty that is all around me. I prayerfully consider my road called "life" and I have learned to grieve when I need to and accept things as they come - all the while claiming healing and peace to every area of my life. I know that there is nothing like the Love of God and to really grasp that is my beautiful obsession. In the end I bind the fear that so easily entangles me and I place my cares in the God who holds the universe.

I love you dad, you are the strongest most courageous man I know.  I am blessed to be your daughter.  May all the days of my life be spent thanking God for you and for the way that you showed me that God is good, all the time.  I'm so glad I've had 5 extra years to spend with you.  I'm so glad you have been able to meet each and everyone of your grand children and for all the joy you bring us on a daily basis.  I love you.

Leslie

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The belly at 14.5 weeks...


Here it is....getting bigger haha.  We find out next week what sex they are! =)  YAY!

Leslie

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

14 weeks

Well today I am 14 weeks pregnant.  It's really hard for me to believe to be honest with you.  It seems like I'm not very far along but then again I can't believe I'm already 14 weeks and now officially in the second trimester.  WOW.

So far things have been pretty ruff.  I've had a LOT of back pain, a lot of digestion problems and tons of exhaustion.  I am however so grateful for these sweet babies and I'm so looking forward to seeing them again next week.  And of course finding out what sexes they are!  Will it be 2 girls, 2 boys or one of each? Ahhh I just want to know for SURE and tell our news!!!

Currently I'm watching the show in TLC "19 Kids and Counting" (The Duggars) and it always makes me feel like having 4 kids is SO do-able haha.  They also have great money saving tips, which is also a bonus haha.

Well thats all for now! =)

Leslie

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I know something...but I'm not telling....YET....

Well I went to the OB this morning because I've been having  A LOT of cramping type pain the last two days.  Turns out everything is perfect my cervix is very long (4.8), closed and thick so we basically had to chalk it up to round ligament pains.   I never had them with Ella because I grew so slowly but with the twins my uterus is now measuring 18/19 weeks.  CRAZY!  Its getting SO big SO fast that it's causing a lot of cramping and pulling and will continue on that way for pretty much the whole pregnancy.  But I'm SO glad I went in to get checked out and can rest easy that my body is just growing!

On to the fun part.....I had an ultrasound at my visit (I have an ultrasound at every single visit so its wasn't a surprise or anything).  Anyways the ultrasound tech was so so sweet.  She spent about 30 minutes with me just getting measurements and showing me all sorts of fun things, the hands, feet, legs, etc.  They were precious and so perfect.  She then asks me....do you want me to guess the sexes?  I was alone (my husband didn't come because it was such short notice) but of course I said YESSSSS.  So she spent a good 10 minutes looking at the goods haha.  Lets just say we are about 99% on one of the babies, the other is still up in the air.  We will know for sure in 2 weeks.  It was so darn fun looking and guessing.  I can't wait to find out for sure on June 30th and share with everyone our fun news!

Also, the NT scan blood results came back - PERFECT.  Our little ones have no increased risk for Down Syndrome.  I get some more blood work in a few weeks and that will confirm what we already know!  Two perfect little angle babies in there!

We are so blessed! =)

(Jess if you are reading this message me in the morning and I'll tell you what I know haha).

Leslie

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

12 weeks

Well here is the belly at 12 weeks (I'm measuring 16 weeks)


Here is Twin A at 12 weeks

Here is Twin B at 12 weeks

Today was my 12 week doctors appointment.  I had my NT scan done today.  This measures the fluid on the back of the baby's neck to assess the risk of Down Syndrome.  This is a fairly new test and a lot of woman decline the test but for me I just needed to know what our risks were.  I am happy to report that the measurements came back perfect and now we will wait about a week for the blood test results...but so far everything is PERFECT.  The babies look precious, we are so blessed!  We will find out their sexes at our next appointment on June 30th.  It can't come soon enough! =)



Last but not least here are my sweet girls on there last day of 2 year old pre-school.  We will miss you Ms. Pam and Ms. Katina - you two are wonderful!!!!!  Let the summer break begin!!!!


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Twin Pregnancy = NO JOKE....

I know I should be OVERJOYED to be pregnant and while yes I am this twin pregnancy is NOT easy.  I didn't even look/feel pregnant until I was closer to 25 weeks with Ella but here I am at 12 weeks and I'm huge and uncomfortable.  My belly out of control and so are my tummy troubles.  While I'm not throwing up I'm so nausea at night that I can hardly stand it.  I'm just praying this is a first tri problem and not a twin pregnancy problem.  My organs have already been shifted around SO much and my actual stomach is NOT a happy camper about being pushed around - I'm having a lot of stomach pains.  Honestly, I had NO idea carrying more than one baby would be as hard as it is and I'm not even in the second tri yet (just a few days away, yahoo haha).  Then I think about people who carry 3, 4, 5 babies and I honestly don't know how anyones body could actually handle it.  The good news is that all this pain is SO worth it and when I lay my eyes on my sweet twin babies here in a few months all this pain will be forgotten.  I really want to try and connect with these babies before they come and try to enjoy this pregnancy because it will be in my last.  I'm so grateful that God aloud us the privilege to have another baby(ies) and I need to keep remembering that God will take care of me.  He will get me through.

I have my NT scan (a detailed ultra sound of the twins to check for Downs Syndrome) on Tuesday the 7th.  I'm really excited to see my babies again.  I know that everything will be just fine and it will be nice to have the test over with! I also have a few questions for my doctor, I hope he's ready for me haha.

On an exciting note.  My sweet daughter Ella turns 3 on Sunday the 12th.  I just can't believe it.  She's getting so big (but is oh-so-tiny compared to other 3 year olds haha).  She's such a joy and really is a wonderful little girl.  We decided to not do a birthday party for her but instead we are going to Disney to have a "princess makeover" at the Magic Kingdom.  My sweet nieces Grace and Ila will be joining Ella and Kate.  They are going to have the BEST time.  I'm so excited for them.

That is all for now.....I know I need to post a belly picture soon.  It's pretty shocking haha.  Don't be alarmed...you have been warned.

Leslie

Monday, May 30, 2011

Week 11 and home from Vacation....

Well that was a short week.  Why do vacations take SO long to get here and then FLY by while you are in the moment?  We had a wonderful time in Mexico with our sweet friends, we laughed (and cried haha) shared some awesome conversations,  enjoyed the Mexican sun (and got the tan lines to prove that), and ate any and everything we could get our hands on!   But as always there is NOTHING better than getting home to see your children.

This was our first "real adult vacation" with friends and it was so much better than I could have planned.   It's so very hard to step out of your life, even for just a few days and be separated from the rest of the world.  It's funny because when I am home I can hardly go a few hours without checking my email or Facebook, but when you are so far away that you have no choice but to leave it alone it's amazing how much those things really don't matter.

I've had a lot on my mind lately.  I *think* I'm starting to finally accept that fact that we are going to have 4 children.  But some days I wake up and I think it's all a crazy dream.  I mean how could I have not known that this would happen to us?  We did IVF I should have expected it, right?  WRONG.  When you suffer in fertility you can hardly believe you can get pregnant with ONE baby much less two (or more).  I know that in all of this God has a plan.  But I start to dream and let my mind go places it shouldn't go and I wonder what this many kids will do to our marriage, to our girls, to our finances.  I understand that I'm grieving our "old life" and starting to realize that things will never be the same again.  It won't just be Kate and Ella anymore it will be Kate, Ella and the twins.  Wow twins.  Saying it still takes my breath away.  

I think in my mind I've had this dream of picking up and going somewhere one day....anywhere.  I want to serve God, people, and my true passion - the church.  And I worry that 4 kids means none of these things will happen.  But then I realize that I will only be 28 when the twins are born.  I have A LOT of living to do still.   I'm reminded that there are PLENY of people serving God out there with far more children than 4.  I remember that God is far bigger than 4 children.  And I remember that my children are a beautiful gift from God not a road block.  God will show up in a big way to use our family in a big way.  We just have to be open and willing to listen.

Lord, please continue to give me strength - I fully understand that our future will be anything but "easy."  Show me how to trust you when I don't feel like I can't trust anything anymore.  Help me to put getting into your word at the top of my "to-do" list every single morning.  Teach me how to pray for and with my children so I don't have to "worry" about their futures.  Help me to remember that YOU are their father and your protection is far grater than anything Brett and I could provide for their sweet little lives.  You are God and we are not.

Leslie

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Off to Mexico.....

Well tomorrow at 6:00am we are heading out to the airport on our way to Mexico.  Brett and I are going with two of out favorite friends Brooklyn and Coy (they work with Brett).  We are staying Monday-Friday and will be totally kid free.  I won't even know what to do with myself.  However, I just dropped my sweet girls off at my parents house tonight so we didn't have to do it early and I'm already missing the heck out of them.  I know once we get there we will have a WONDERFUL time but there is something about leaving your kids that makes your heart hurt a little bit.

I love you Kate and Ella.  Be good for pama and papa and we will see you Friday.  You two are my everything.

Leslie

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Monday, May 16, 2011

8w5d - Back to the OB on Wednesday at 9w.....

Well I get one more look at the babies on 5-18-11 until my 12 weeks ultra sound on June 7th.  I'm really excited to see the babies again and to also ease my mind that everything is still going great.  I'm really looking forward to seeing those little gummy bears haha!

On another note.  I have signed on with a nanny agency service here in Florida (West Palm Beach).  We are looking for a live-in nanny to stay with us for 2-3 months after the twins are born.  So far there are 5 candidates in the running with two being my top choices.  I have a few weeks to make a final decision but these ladies book FAST.  They spend their whole lives going from new born to new born and travel all over the US.  It seems like a crazy life to me but oh how grateful I am that there are people out there who do this for a living! =)  We know this is a luxury that is above and beyond the "norm" here in Lakeland, FL haha but we know how hard having two babies is and honestly I will admit, we can't do it alone!

Onto some fun news! We are going to MEXICO next week!  We are PUMPED!  We planned this trip right after we finished IVF because we knew we needed some much needed "adult" time.  We are going with another awesome couple, whom we adore and we know we will have an amazing time with.  If you are interested this is the adults only, all inclusive resort we will be staying at;

HOTEL

Last but not least.  I just wanted to say how much I adore my sweet girls right now.  They have been such a joy the last few months (not that they haven't been sweet their whole lives haha) but just these last few months they really have grown into little woman.  God has truly blessed us with some of the kindest little girls anyone could ask for.

Thank you Lord for your hand on our lives.....for your hand on our children (all 4 of them) and for the future that you have planned for us.  We are blessed.

Leslie

Monday, May 9, 2011

7w5d - First OB appointment tomorrow!


I'm so darn excited about being released from my fertility doctor in Orlando last Thursday (sorry I didn't post sooner, but we went on a weekend trip to Disney for Mother's Day).  I got another great picture of the twins.  Both were measuring exactly the same length and both had heart rates of 150 (boys?).   Here is the latest picture of the sweeties.....


Tomorrow is my first real OB appointment with Dr. Mammel and I'm super excited.  I think I'm finally coming to terms with the fact that I'm having TWINS.  I truly never thought it would happen to me.  I mean of course I always KNEW there was a chance doing IVF, but still the chances are slim.  I have to admit I did have a grieving period after we found out.  It wasn't that I wasn't SUPER excited about the babies but I also know what is coming.  Seeing as how I have had two babies before I know exactly what to expect and to be honest with you, it's scary.  Having twins may "look fun" but trust me, it's almost more work than one person can bare ha-ha.  Not to mention the fact that carrying twins is NOT easy.  My biggest fear (that I'm completely giving to God) is making it to full term.  I know that keeping the babies in as long as I can is SO important and so keeping myself healthy is what I'm most focused on at this point.  God will take of the babies and I, I have to believe and trust in that.

I have a million questions for my OB tomorrow.  I hope he is ready for me ;).   More to come soon....

Leslie

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wait WHAT.....Twins? Really?

I keep telling myself that everything is going to be okay.....and sometimes I believe it, other times I don't haha.  Well of course I know that one day everything will be okay but the thought of TWO babies AGAIN....well, it's a bit scary.  However, I've done it once and honestly now that the girls are 3 they are SO easy and just ADORE each other.  I just have to keep reminding myself that no matter WHAT happens with the twins that each phase will pass and we WILL get through.

I'm just trying to take it all in.....

I'll be okay with 4 kids....right???

;)

Leslie

Monday, April 25, 2011

TWINS!!!!

Well today at about 3:15pm my husband I found out we are having TWINS.  Yep thats right...TWO babies!  I can't believe it.  I'm only 5 weeks and 5 days pregnant so we were SHOCKED that we could see a heartbeat on one and a fetal pole/yoke sac on the other.  They looked perfect.  Doctor was thrilled with how they look.

God has blessed us in this whole IVF process and I wanted to once again give him ALL the glory for these two babies.  We are so thankful for the doctors and nurses who got us to this point but without God we have NOTHING.  To YOU be the glory God.  This pregnancy is 100% in your hands, may you watch over these two sweet babies as they grow healthy and strong over the next 9 months.

I wanted to give everyone a peek at the twins today.  We are so in love!



Leslie

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Ultrasound tomorrow....

I have to admit I'm so ready for tomorrows ultrasound.  I fully understand that I'm VERY early and the ultrasound tomorrow might not show much.  Being only 5 weeks and 5 days tomorrow theres a good chance that all we will see is the sac (or two haha).  I do have a pretty peaceful mind frame about it though and I have a cool story to share that happened to me today;

At church this morning a sweet lady (who I don't know by name, but see her often) came over to me during one the songs and sat down next to me.  She leans over and whispers in my ear "God wanted me to tell you, that everything is going to be okay."  I was so shocked that she said that to me - no one has ever spoken prophetic words over me like that and I have to admit it was pretty crazy.  She didn't know me or my story or what I was going through but she knew that God had given her a message.  Wow.  I know that it is the reason I feel the way I feel right now.  God has gone above and beyond to show me this whole time that he is in control...even when I want to have the control he quickly takes it away from me and proves that He is God.

I will update tomorrow about little bean(s).  Thank you once again for all your prayers and support the last few months.  God is so faithful and has blessed me SO much with such amazing friends.

Leslie

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A surprise beta today......

Well today I got a surprise beta blood draw.  I've been VERY sick the last few days with a bad sore throat, fever, and over all feeling that I've been hit by a truck haha.  I called my regular OB because I'm in the "in between" stage of not being released by my RE (fertility dr) and not being able to really go see my primary care doctor.  Anyways, Dr. Mammel sent me to urgent care to get a throat swab, a few tests and also ordered another beta blood draw.  He wanted one after I told him about my bleeding last week.  I got the call about 4:00 with the results.

Just to recap the levels before:

9 days past a 5 day transfer - 238
11 days past a 5 day transfer - 405

And today -
15 days past a 5 day transfer - 2,625

If you go by the betas doubling every 48hrs (which is standard) then my betas went WAY above and beyond that.  I was expecting about 1,600 so I was very pleasantly surprised by the great number!

This will at least put my mind to ease waiting for my first ultrasound on Monday of next week!  Can't wait!  Thanks everyone for your prayers and support the last few months - I couldn't have done it without my sweet friends being SO supportive and of course all the wonderful prayers by family and friends!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The truth...and a BIG God....

I feel like I have been very open with this whole IVF process, as I feel like there is NOTHING for me to hide and there is no shame in infertility treatments.  However, it's taken me a few days to get the courage up to write this post....

The first week after the transfer was pretty up and down.  My emotions were all over the place, from thinking there is no way it could have worked to there is no way it couldn't have worked.  On day 4 after a 5 day transfer I got a VERY light positive pregnancy test on an E.P.T BUT it was after the time aloud for a positive pregnancy read.  I got negatives the rest of the day.  On 5 days past a 5 day transfer I got a negative in the morning (I truly thought it was over at this point).  But that night, I got a clear positive on a First Response Test.  Then 6 days past a 5 day transfer I took a Clear Blue Easy Digital pregnancy test and got a "Pregnant" in minutes.  I couldn't believe it.  It was a glorious days.

Very First VERY Faint Positive - FMU 4dp5dt.  Its so light its VERY hard to see.....but trust me it's there!

5dp5dt in the pm.  Another VERY light positive, but in the light its clearly there.  

6dp5dt am.  And the digital says it all.....


** And now for the bad news.  After just one day of celebration I began to bleed at 7 days past a 5 day transfer.  I called the doctors office to see what they suggested.  They had me start my progesterone injections again and discontinue the progesterone suppositories I was taking.

(Just wanted to give you a visual of what I'm doing every night.   Trust me when I say it actually doesn't hurt!  And yes I give them to myself!)

I also had my blood draw moved up to Wednesday April 13th which would put me at 9 days past a 5 day transfer.  The bleeding was still going strong on the day of beta blood draw.  I was also having A LOT of cramping.  It was very scary and in my heart I really felt like things were not going to turn out good.  When I got the call with my results to my surprise the beta level was 238.  The "normal" level for a blood day 9 days past a 5 day transfer is 80, so mine was VERY high.  I have to admit, I was pretty numb to the idea that things were going to be okay.  I had my repeat beta on Friday (looking for the numbers to come to close to doubling) and it was 405, which wasn't doubling but still a very strong number none the less.  They were satisfied with this number and have scheduled my first ultrasound to be on April 25th at 3:00pm.

I have currently been almost 48hrs bleeding free.  Which is a good sign, of course.  I'm still a little numb to the whole situation but I really believe that is because I have TRULY put my trust in the Lord the last week.  I had a friend *give it to me straight* at lunch recently and it felt good for them to tell me that the way I was acting was NOT evident that I had given it to the Lord.  As much as I didn't want to hear it, it was the truth.  God already knows the outcome for this sweet baby and for me to worry will NOT bring the baby to life or take the baby away.  And right now I am grateful to God for the chance at another child.

Thank you Lord for protecting my feelings, for giving me strength and for once again - Coming Like The Rain....

Leslie

Monday, April 11, 2011

7 days past a 5 day transfter - Bad Day

Today I am broken.  I do not always understand why we have pain, hurt and trouble come into our lives.  I do not understand why I am infertile and so many are not.  I do not understand why my body doesn't do what is asked of it.  I do not understand why this hurts so badly.....

Three years ago to the week we finalized the adoption of our oldest daughter, Kate.  It was honestly one of the proudest moments in my life.  She was 3 months old, healthy, beautiful, sweet and all ours.  After suffering through many rounds of fertility treatments, all of which ended badly, we were blessed with a gift we could never be thankful enough for.  How do you say thank you to someone for giving you something so precious?  How do you look at someone giving up something so precious, hurting so badly because of it and try to understand?  It is hard to truly wrap your brain around how it feels.

I'm sitting in the play room right now, watching her play with her sister.  And once again I'm taken back to the time and place when we first saw her sweet face.  I am overwhelmed with love with her.  I am overwhelmed with love for her birthparents.  And I'm overwhelmed with love for my God.  Through my pain today I am once again reminded of the sweet joy that comes in the midst of the valleys.

A few weeks after we were matched with Kate (she wasn't due to be born for 4 months, so we waited) we found out we were pregnant (with the help of more fertility treatments) with our miracle baby, Ella.  I was 15 weeks pregnant when we took Kate home that day.  We were so overwhelmed with happiness....God provided even when we thought there was no hope.

I look back and try to remember that even though I feel like today there is little hope for more children, my plan for my life is NOT God's plan for my life.  That my timing is NOT God's timing and my pain is no surprise to God.  His peace, mercy and joy always comes in the morning.  No matter what the outcome with this IVF is, my God will still be praised.  I consider my struggle and unique family to be one of my biggest blessings.  However we welcome future children in our family I know that our experience brings us a special out look and love for them.

Please God, I am begging....help me to remember that You are God and I am Not.

Leslie

Sunday, April 10, 2011

6 days past a 5 day transfer....


I wanted to introduce you to the "twins."  These are the embryo's that they placed back inside of me on the 5th day after fertilization (aka 5 day transfer).  The one on the left was graded a 3BC and the one in the right was a 1BB. The 3BC was "so-so" and the 1BB was "good".  Although they were only labeled "b" they will always be "a" in my heart haha!  ;)



So far things are going good....I'm keeping my mouth shut on here until Friday!  Then I'll update everything....soooo stay tuned until April 15th!

Leslie

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

OMGOSH WE HAVE 3 FROZEN EMBYO-BABIES!!!!

I was NOT expecting to get a call today that all three of embryo's that were still growing yesterday would make it to freeze today....but thats the exact call I got.  I was SHOCKED to say the least.  When I asked her more information on them she had to go ask the embryologist who said they were "very good".  They have VERY strict rules on what they freeze so "good" is good enough for me! =)  Last IVF we didn't even get one frozen embryo....so praise the Lord for this awesome news.

Having frozen embryo's can pose a little bit of a dilemma though.  If I do get pregnant this cycle and it's only one baby then we would for sure do a frozen embryo transfer in a few years which would take care of the problem by giving all 3 babies a chance at life!  If however, I get pregnant and deliver twins we would most likely hold on to embryos for a few years and if we feel like we could not handle another child we would adopt them out.  I know that may sound crazy to some people but to give another couple a chance at having a child is something I would LOVE to do.  There are a lot of options for embryo adoption and we would most likely enjoy an "open" adoption if they did indeed get pregnant with our biological child.  

If however, we do not get pregnant at all this cycle we will be able to do a frozen embryo transfer.  Which means I will not have to go through the whole IVF process - it's a lot more like a "natural" cycle.  But I'm not going there mentally just yet! =)

Thats all for now....no pregnancy symptoms just yet haha...but I'll keep everyone posted!

Leslie

IVF#2 - Day 35 - Embryo Transfer (one day late, sorry)

FINAL SHOT COUNT - 51

Sorry I didn't post yesterday.  I had my Embryo Transfer at about 1:00pm.  It went wonderful - it was a perfect transfer.  They transferred two blastocysts one was good quality and one was so-so quality.  I'm not feeling particularly confident or not with this cycle.  I feel content.  I did absolutely EVERYTHING they asked of me and now it is out of my hands and into God's hands.

I'm just overwhelmed by the amount of prayers and support I've gotten from my friends over these two months.  It's truly humbling to know you and your unborn child/ren are so loved and prayed for.  Thank you to everyone who has called and offer support and words of encouragement and for those of you who have simply prayed.  It means more to me then I can ever express.

For now I will sit back and allow God and his nature to take its course, I will pray for a positive outcome but mostly I will be praying for God's will to be known.  For peace over my body and the situation and for others struggling with Infertility to feel like they are not alone.  God you are good, all the time.....

Leslie

Saturday, April 2, 2011

IVF# 2 - Day 32

Total Shot Count - 49

Well, we are almost to the end.  I can't believe it.  I got a phone call this morning saying that I still have 6 wonderful embryos growing strong and the other 4 are just a little behind.  Things look perfect.  I was told to NOT come in this morning for the egg transfer and they would call me in the morning about coming in tomorrow or Monday.  So again, I wait!  I've learned so much about letting go and letting God in this process - patience is all I can have in this situation.  When I feel like I can't go on, I can't move forward and this burden is too big to carry on my knees I go - It's the only place I am restored.  I'm trusting in a big big God right now and his will for my life.  

Lord help me to see your plan for my life and accept it, no matter what it is.  Please Lord, cover me in your rain.

Leslie

Friday, April 1, 2011

No IVF post today....

*As the thunder rolls
I barely hear Your whisper through the rain, "I'm with you"
And as Your mercy falls I raise my hands
And praise the God who gives and takes away*


Rest In Peace, Cathy Asbridge - you are dearly loved..... 

Thursday, March 31, 2011

IVF #2 - Day 30 - Fertilization Report!

Total Shot Count - 47

Today I was told that I would be getting a call around 9:00am to let me know how many of our 11 eggs fertilized in the "dish" ha-ha.  Well they ended up being way behind in the OR today and they didn't call me until 12:30.  I was on pins and needles waiting to hear.  Turns out 10 out of the 11 eggs fertilized and are now growing!  I'm so happy I can't stand it.  They automatically set you up for a 3 day embryo transfer which would put me back there on Saturday.  However, with so many growing I was told it would most likely be pushed back to a 5 day transfer - which would mean I would go in on Monday morning.  I won't know until Saturday morning what day it will be.  Either way I just pray that we get two good looking embryo's back in their momma, asap!

I'll keep you all posted!  Please keep praying for our "dish babies" haha.  Love to all of you!

Leslie

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

IVF #2 - Day 29 - EGG RETRIEVAL DAY!

Total Shot Count - 46

After my panic post (below) I'm feeling so much better haha.  For whatever reason my ovaries went from SUPER full to me feeling NOTHING in just a 24hr period.  This worried me so badly I think I only slept about 3 hrs last night.  I'm so grateful for two sweet friends who were up VERY early this morning to help talk me off the ledge.  God has blessed me so much with such amazing friends I have no words except "thank you" for all the love the support I have been given.  I couldn't have gotten this far without them.

Today was egg retrieval day.  We got up at 5:30am to make the 1:15min drive to the doctor to be there by 7:30am.  When I got there they took me right back and had me change.  They had my IV in within 20 mins and then they let Brett come back to sit with me until I was taken to the OR.  I was a nervous wreck while I was waiting and the nurses knew it ha-ha.  They did their best to calm me down and were so so sweet.  Once in the OR I was asleep within 30 seconds.  I remember laughing my head off and the doctor joking with me saying, no laughing in here...then boom - I was out.  The next thing I remember was waking up in recovery and being told they got 11 EGGS!  I couldn't believe it.  I was so happy.  My goal was to have between 10 and 15 eggs and sure enough thats exactly what I got.  I couldn't be more thrilled.

Tomorrow morning around 9:00 am I will get the phone call telling me how many eggs where mature and then went on to be fertilized.  Depending my number of embryos and how well they are growing I will have my Egg Transfer either Saturday morning, Sunday morning or Monday morning.  Either way is fine with me but I won't know until the morning of the transfer what day it will be.

I'm just looking forward to this being over and being able to relax.  I'm grateful to have finally gotten to this point and I'm grateful for my sweet friends and husband who have held my hand the whole way.  Thank you Lord for this amazing chance at another baby.  Your will be done...

Leslie

A day of worry....

I admit it....I'm not perfect (duh haha).  Its 3:30am on the day of my egg retrieval and I have a pit in my stomach that something is very very wrong.  Two days ago (day of Trigger Shot) I was so "full" of eggs I could hardly sit down.  I was in pain when I moved and felt nausea almost all.day.long.  Yesterday and this morning my symptoms have slowly gone from painful to literally feeling 100% fine, like I never did IVF and like my eggs are gone.  In a very small percent of woman you can ovulate your eggs too soon, before they are able to harvest them.  You could say I'm over reacting and everything will be fine but in my heart of hearts I know something is very wrong.

I'm crying out to God tonight for many different reasons, for my IVF cycle, for my decisions with moving forward to even do IVF and for the loss of a dear dear friend today to cancer.  I would be foolish to say that I don't question the decision to add more to our family.   I question it a lot.  I don't feel in my heart of hearts that IVF and the like are a "wrong" decisions but I worry that maybe I'm pushing my body and my mind to the limit.  Maybe I'm playing God and forcing his hand at something that he doesn't want for my family.  I'm not saying this to say that what I'm doing is WRONG, please hear me on this. I'm saying this because I'm worried sick that maybe I won't ever feel the joy of another pregnancy and birth again.  Maybe I won't ever cuddle another one of my newborn babies at 1:00am.  Maybe I'm not meant to mother others.

I'm struggling from a place of pure mental torture right now.  I'm struggling from a place deep in my heart that if I allow myself to go there, maybe I won't come back?  The feelings of emptiness in my heart that I felt 4 years ago, before I had any children are flooding my mind tonight.  Am I following after my dream for my life or am I following after God's will for my life?  Does he even want this for me?  If not, then why are the feelings SO strong to have another child?  If I shouldn't have another child then Lord please please please take away my desire.  Take away anything that is not of you and take away anything that is clouding my view of your glory in my life.  If your desire is for us to have another child, then please Lord, let it be.

Tonight, I'm scared, I'm struggling, I'm worried, I'm tired and I'm sad.  But I know that no matter what happens in a few hours...HE IS GOD AND I AM NOT.  And to fully accept that is to fully surrender my pain, my family, my future and my life to the one that always, without a doubt, comes like the rain....

Leslie