… join the movement and let your voice be heard

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This has been an amazing week of support and banning together for many women in our communities who struggle with infertility across the country.

And, I am glad to be apart!

I believe and will forever stand on the fact that infertility has made me who I am. I am not ashamed of my diagnosis. I’m grateful for the opportunity to publicly share my experiences and what I’ve learned through this chapter in my life with other women who walking the same path as I am. It’s given me a confidence in who I am and how I was created, as well as the realization that there is power in my voice. In my words. And, how I choose to use my words and voice to encourage and support others.

My husband and I were told that there could be issues with our fertility as newlyweds as we were talking to our doctor and planning to expand our family the next year. We didn’t think much of it for another 8 months or so. When we felt it was time to move forward with baby planning, we followed the advice of a friend and began working with an endocrinologist in the spring of the next year. My doctor’s concerns were confirmed and I was crushed.

At that point, I began blogging. I wanted to document our journey through infertility for myself. I took a deep breath, launched my blog, and posted my “coming out” on Facebook. For the next months, I poured my heart out on the pages of this blog … telling each step of our fertility treatments, how I felt in each stage, and where my heart was. There were some pretty dark and detailed moments written on those pages and at times I thought that I was stuck in one place. I thought that we would always dance in the same circle. Same motions. Same song.

The more I wrote, the more support poured in. Women I knew and didn’t know, alike, would email and comment telling me of their difficulties and struggles. Women I went to high school and college with who struggled with infertility and the possibility of never being able to conceive children due to other medical situations they endured. The stories I’ve heard are heart wrenching. I realized that there are so many women who are struggling with such pain privately and alone. I realized how taboo it was. How socially unacceptable it is. I understood why no one talks about infertility. Why no one discusses how it affects you over lunch. I understand the pain of wincing and coiling at comments, the awkwardness of dodging questions, and heaviness of bearing your roughest days alone.

Now that my husband and I have chosen to adopt, we’ve taken on another socially “strange” journey! There aren’t many people we know who have chosen to adopt children in order to expand their families, so we have an amazing opportunity to expand the thoughts and preconceptions many have about adoption, those who adopt, and the adopted. It’s exciting and I’m enjoying the process, the amazing families I’m meeting, and hearing all these stories.

{{ I adore the communities we’re apart of and bask in the strength of these families and women. }}

I’ve learned that discussing adoption (and, infertility) can be quite difficult but I take on the task of informing with a protective, yet patient and understanding tone because I understand the real ignorance (by definition) that leads to bias and offensive questions. I know that many people aren’t exposed to adoption and aren’t open to it, therefore they have questions, comments, and notions that are misguided and very random at times. lol. I don’t believe anyone means harm …. the majority  of people just don’t know. They don’t know what’s appropriate or inappropriate, they don’t understand the mental and emotional anguish that you endure through this process. They don’t know how hurtful their questions and comments can be.

…. All because they are unaware.

Remaining silent is not an option for me. I know that the more I speak out, kindly educate those who unintentionally offend, and just live my life without allowing my diagnosis to define me, the easier it will be for other women to confidently stand alongside me. Battling with me. Struggling, laughing, crying, celebrating, and rejoicing with me as we travel this road together.

I realize that not everyone is driven to write and bear their life and soul in such a public way. I also know that there isn’t just one way to go about educating our families, coworkers, and communties about infertility, treatments, and adoption. For that, I am grateful. I am glad to be apart of such a large community of women who believe that it’s worthwhile to discuss our issues, support each other, and educate the public on issues that will at some point affect someone they know.

I am even more grateful for the friends, family, and the friends that became family who show their unwavering love and support throughout such difficult times. It makes the successes and celebratory moments that much sweeter.

Ah! So I encourage you to join the movement. Educate yourself so that you can be a benefit to others. Use your voice to advocate, support, and encourage those around you.

We need you.

… here’s to dancing in thedownpour and loving every minute of it! There is good in everything… if we are open enough to receive it.

//click these links to learn more about infertility and National Infertility Awareness Week!!! //
***** http://www.resolve.org/infertility101  *****
***** http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html *****

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… so much more

…. such truth.

Life is beautiful. It’s definitely a struggle. Although seeming to be a contradiction, I believe the two can exist simultaneously if through the struggle you grow, mature, and become a better version of yourself.

The only way I believe a struggle can worth it is if you live for a greater purpose …. believing you’re struggling for something greater than yourself… that the results of it all will reach far beyond yourself – everything you learned, experienced, and grew from will affect so many other people. Because although we all struggle in different areas at different points in our lives, we all go through the samethings. I believed God planned in that way so that we could benefit from and help each other through this life.

One of my greatest fears is that I’m won’t mature enough… that I won’t grow enough… that I won’t have enough to offer those around me and who come behind me in terms of quantity and quality.

I would hate for all of this struggle to be for nothing …. That all that I go through, feel, and experience will be in vain.

I’m glad I have the knowledge to combat that FEELING… The feeling that comes and goes… the one that makes me question God’s plan and forget to hope for a future.

I thrive in knowing that I’m more than what causes me to struggle. I fight to remember that I’m more than this… I have to constantly remind that this struggle doesn’t define me but rather puts me in a position to experience a lot that I normally wouldn’t. And, with experience comes a patience and knowledge I may otherwise have never known.

I’ve come to appreciate the struggle when I’m not emotionally crippled because of it.
I’ve come to appreicate the struggle when I see how far I’ve grown from the beginning until now.

This beautiful, tough life full of struggle, passion, grace, contradiction, and confusion pulls me closer to the One who settles my fears, calms my ever whirring mind, and gives me a peace about about a life I’m living for Him.

Trusting Him to continue to beautify what I don’t always think is pretty…
Trusting Him to continue to beautify what I see has so much potiential.

Learning to trust Him on the days I don’t feel Him near and when I’m feeling as if I’m wandering through life without much purpose….. Learning to trust what I know depiste how I feel.

He has my life planned out… Outcomes written… And, the path of this journey laid out with it’s destination already set.

Regardless the experiences of this path, I know it ultimately leads to Him. I know that I don’t walk this road alone. And, that everything will somehow all be for His glory.

I know that this struggle is worthwhile no matter what.

….. here’s to the beauty of trust, patience, and hope.

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… my cross

My cross.
is painful and heavy. burdensome and cruel. unfair.
causes so many tears and heartache. anger. frustration. sadness.

To have to deal with issues that cause so much pain and heartache. they’re unbearable on some days and not so bad on others. Regardless, it is my cross. the beauty behind carrying this cross and all the issues associated with it, is the growth that comes from bearing it. trusting that God will never leave me during my journey. Trusting that as I bear it, I will grow stronger in both emotional strength and faith. Trusting that I will become less prideful, more humble. Less judgemental, more gracious. Slower to anger, more patient. More willing to blindly trust. Believing that with every step I am becoming more and more like Christ and who He would have me to be.

If I continue to carry it. If I sacrifice for Him. If I keep trusting and believing.

In the end, I’m hopeful that my cross will be more of a blessing than a curse. More of a tool used to grow me than one to harm me.  A path leading me to You. A path that brought me to circumstances that allow me to learn Your heart, learn the very essence of You, and ultimately, to become just like You. The image You created me to be.

I know there is nothing to fear – You are with me. No matter what may come. I have to trust Your plan… Trust the bigger picture that at the end of it all, on the final day – every tribe and nation will bow down to You. How I play a part in and how You use me to that end, is all apart of Your plan. I have to trust it. I have know and believe that. That Your ultimate plan is greater than my wants. I have to be willing to sacrifice for it.

Sidebar: I love this song. It’s by Rascal Flatts. They aren’t a Christian band, this is not a gospel/contemporary Christian song. It’s a country song, by a country band. And, I love it. It’s about a guy who found the love of his life and how everything he’s been through led him to her. Very sweet. Very off topic, in  a sense. It reminds me that no matter what is going on, no matter what we go through in life – God has a plan and His hand in everything. That plan leads us to Him.

This cross I bear on this broken road is worth that ultimate end.

… to broken roads, sacrificing, and faith.

 

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