Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Grandma

So at the very end of my Creighton Model course, my Grandma went into the hospital. They weren't sure initially what had happened... all I knew is that my Mom had found her in a comotose state (she lives 5 miles from my parents' house). It ended up being pneumonia. She recuperated so quickly, it's just miraculous what the power of prayer can do. I remember the feeling of utter relief last Thursday, after I got the boot from work, came home and saw "spot" in the bathroom, then checked my messages and it was my Mom... at first I almost dropped to the floor, expecting her to say that something terrible had happened (given all that had happened in the past 1/2 hr), but to hear her say, "Grandma's doing so much better today" just made me feel like nothing else mattered. I don't know what I would have done if I couldn't at least tell her I was pregnant before she left this world. She has been praying so hard for us, to St. Anne and St. Anthony (her patron Saint). My Mom, Dad, sisters, and she are the only ones in my family that know about our infertility. No cousins, Aunts, Uncles.

Anyway. She was released from the hospital on Memorial Day (Monday). I had the day off of work, so I helped my Mom clean her house, go pick her up, get her situated back at home, and work out a system for all of her prescriptions. You would have thought I majored in Prescription Medication in college, with how quickly I managed to devise a plan for all of her meds. But with all the pills I've been popping for the past year, it's no surprise.

When we first got her to the house, my Mom went out to pick up all of the meds while I took her upstairs to get changed, washed up, etc. When we reached the bathroom, she sat down and started getting very emotional and sentimental. She kept saying, "Where would I be without my family?" Then she started to talk about how she wasn't quite ready to leave yet, and God must have given her all of her children (4), grandchildren (10) and greatgrandchild (1) to look after her since He wasn't ready for her yet. She looked at me and said, "And I want to be here for your blessing." It took everything I had not to break down right there. I've come to realize that I have no control over when and if I ever get pregnant... and I just don't know if I'll ever be able to give my grandma what it is she's been praying for :( It breaks my heart.

This whole situation with my grandmother falling ill so quickly, then getting better so quickly, really made me think about prayer. I've always been told that no prayer goes unanswered, and I started to think about how it is my prayers, and the prayers offered up for me, have been answered. Obviously, I do not have the blessing of a child or even a pregnancy yet. But when I think about it, it becomes SO CLEAR to me that this whole infertility journey has been full of answered prayers. Let me explain.
Here's the scenario of how our infertility could have panned out:

We get married. Try to conceive for 1 year, unsuccessful the entire time because, unbeknownst to us, I am not ovulating. No Dr will agree to meet with us until after that year, however. Throughout that year, we get in countless amounts of arguments, all fueled by our insecurities surrounding our fertility.
After 1 year, we have some tests performed. Blood tests, perhaps, at certain days of my "cycle." Maybe, if I had a somewhat skilled Dr, it would be determined that I was not ovulating, so I'd be put on Clomid. Unmonitored, of course, and I'd probably go up to 200mgs in a couple of months. After 6 unsuccessful Clomid cycles, they'd send me to check my tubes with an HSG. (This step would only be offered upon insistence that we would not do IVF, otherwise, that would probably be the next step offered to us. They may even say that IVF was our "only chance" without even checking for other problems first.) The HSG would show clear tubes (as mine did, because they are not able to measure the pressure in the tubes and detect partial blockages with a regular HSG), but the Dr would notice I had a stenotic cervix. He would immediately suggest an IUI, and not knowing too much about the Church's doctrine on IUI, we may actually have tried it (we would be at about 2 years TTC at this point). We would either fail all of the IUIs or achieve a pregnancy and then lose it, because my endometriosis was never diagnosed or treated.

So, given this possible scenario, my current situation is so clearly a manifestation of all of the prayers people have been offering up for me and my husband, and our prayers, as well. I've already mentioned how I was blessed to be introduced to the Creighton Model before we were even married, and how we are blessed to live so close to a NaPro Technology Dr (whom I began seeing only 3 months after starting TTC). But another fact is that I have avoided all of the unnecessary heartache, pain, frustration, and embarrassment involved in TTC with artificial reproductive technologies, and being assisted by Drs who are not motivated by life but by money. I have avoided having recurrent miscarriages and not understanding why my body was failing me. These are God's answers to our prayers. Thank you for letting me see that so clearly now!

My appt. with Dr. J is tomorrow. I suppose we'll come up with a game plan for the next few months. I also need to ask her why it is I lose so much hair in the shower and when I'm combing... does this happen to anyone else? I mean, with the # of vitamins I take, you'd think I'd have the world's strongest hair and nail follicles! It's bad enough I get acne breakouts that rival a 13 yr old boy. But now I'm going to be balding, too?? I'll give you an update after my appt. Wish me luck!

5 comments:

allyouwhohope said...

That is so funny that we both had u/s series at Dr. Jean's in the same month! I think mine started right after the fourth, maybe the 5th or 7th. And I love the u/s technician there, the one who also works at a crisis pregnancy center. She was so sweet.

I'm so glad your grandma's doing better. I know what you mean about people praying for you.. I feel like I am letting everyone down. I know they don't feel this way, but I can't help it.

Anyway, thanks for being so positive. It was nice to have a reminder of how my prayers have been answered!

JellyBelly said...

i'm so glad that your grandma is doing better. she definitely sounds like a fighter!

i'm so glad that we found the creighton model when we did. i was about ready to give up since we knew that IVF and IUI were out of the question for us. it's just so sad that it took almost three years to find a doctor that finally would listen to me! then again, i was meant to go through what i did and my relationship with my hubby is so much stronger for it.

our napro doctor is dr. elizabeth tham and she's based in north toronto. she's been working with dr. hilgers for over 15 years. god bless her, i know that she's definitely going to lead mr. jb and i to our baby!

wanttobeamom said...

I'm so glad your grandma is doing better! It sounds like you have a wonderful family! I'm also glad your story didn't turn out like the first version you described. I also am very thankful that I was introduced to Creighton before I was married! I think it really did save us a lot of time and grief. I also definitely think that I was properly diagnosed quickly (once I switched to my nfp only doc) because of all the charting I did.

I sometimes go through periods where I loose a lot of hair. I heard somewhere that every 7 years we "shed" a great amount of hair. I will say that the 2 times in my life where I lost an inordinate amount of hair were 7 years apart. However, they were also very stressful times. I'm not sure if that was helpful for you, but it is what I thought of when you asked about loosing hair...

allyouwhohope said...

I forgot to mention in my last comment that at my last appointment my doctor asked me a bunch of questions and one was whether I had any hair loss. At the time I just thought that it was perhaps a symptom of PCOS, because that's what we had been discussing and that's what he thought I had. But I'm not sure and he didn't elaborate.

LifeHopes said...

Yes it is a good reminder to try and think of all the things that have gone right for us, instead of the things that don't.

Dealing with infertility is hard enough, and I for one am truly grateful I haven't had to go through IVF.