Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The past few weeks

On the last day of 2013, I thought I should update my blog as to how things have been over here. The past few weeks had been really terrible over here with lot of sickness and I didn't have the energy or mood to blog.

My husband came down with the flu and I caught it from him. I didn't know I was having the flu and thought it was a cold. For two days, I had chest congestion and a fever which wouldn't budge from 101 F. Thankfully, I decided to call my NaPro OB and she advised me to get to the Urgent Care to test for the Flu. Well, I was surprised when the nasal swab came back positive for Influenza. I had to go the ER and after waiting for two hours, I got hooked up on IV Fluids to break the fever. I was so worried about the little one and was in tears. Thankfully, the nurse did an ultrasound while in the ER and we were able to see our baby for a few seconds. They also put me on Tamiflu for five days. For the next two weeks, I had severe chest congestion and sinus headaches. Not fun at all! I had to go the Urgent Care again for wheezing and they gave me Nebulizer and Albuterol spray. Though I didn't want to take any medications while pregnant, I didn't have much of an option and the doctors kept assuring me that the meds were fine.

I couldn't make it for my 13 weeks OB appt because of the Flu. Instead, I had an appt in the 14th week which meant I had crossed over to the second trimester. We heard the baby's heart beat on doppler. This was the first appt were we did have an ultrasound. I have been kind of missing all the weekly ultrasounds we had during the first trimester.

Then on Christmas eve, I began getting lower abdominal cramps and felt some kind of pelvic pressure. I was so worried that something was wrong with the baby. By Christmas morning, the pain had sort of subsided and I managed to go for Mass. Not exactly the kind of Christmas I had envisioned but nevertheless, I was thankful that the cramps were not that bad and that I could make it to Mass.

Yesterday, we had another OB appt and I am 16 weeks pregnant. Thank you Jesus and Mama Mary for this huge blessing!!! We heard the baby's heart beat of 154 bpm and the dr. checked my cervix since I mentioned the abdominal cramps. Everything looked fine and the cervix was closed. However, I failed the one hour Glucose Test and my hemoglobin was low!!! While most pregnant ladies are monitored for Gestational Diabetes from week 28, my doctor wanted me to get tested because of my Insulin Resistance. I need to monitor my glucose levels four times a day and so I have begun pricking my fingers. Not fun at all! Not that I care about pricking my fingers. All that I want is my baby to be healthy and I would do this any day for my sweet little one. I have another appointment in ten days.

I am so thankful for the love and mercy God has shown this year. I really have no words and am in awe of His immense blessing. I pray for all of you who bear the cross of IF. May the Lord fill your hearts with Peace this New Year!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Progesterone Levels and other Updates

I have been wanting to update my blog for a while but I don't seem to have the right words. Every time I begin to update my blog about this pregnancy, my heart breaks for all those who are still waiting. I pray for all of you every single day. Last month marked 4 years of our TTC journey and I still don't know how I survived those 4 years. It was God's grace which carried us all the time. After 4 years, I cannot believe that I am carrying a baby in my womb. Four years of trying and surrendering to God's will.

I am 12 weeks pregnant this week! Praise be to God! Each day is a miracle. I had another OB appointment last week. It was a different doctor instead of my NaPro doctor but she was really sweet. We heard the baby's heartbeat on doppler. It was 174bpm and then without having to ask, the doctor did an ultrasound and we saw the little one wiggling around moving his/her arms and legs. What a precious sight! I can never tire seeing the video of this little one moving around.

The SCH looked very small on ultrasound and the doctor told it wasn't concerning. I haven't had any bleeding or spotting for the last 3 weeks which is such a huge relief. We are in awe of God's mercy. The last four years, I had never ever dreamed that we would be able to see a baby moving around in my womb.

I have another appointment next Tuesday and I will be 13 weeks which means I will be out of my first trimester. As usual, I have so much anxiety as I prepare for another appointment. I just hope and pray that everything will be fine at the next appointment. Time is going so slowly. I wish the weeks would fly away.

Meanwhile my Progesterone levels have fallen to Low Zone 2. These are the levels from the last weeks:
Week 6 - 55
Week 9 - 20
Week 11 - 19

I have been on the maximum dose of PIO, suppositories and shots right from the beginning. I am learning that I am not in control of anything. All I can do is pray and trust in God. I just wish my broken body would do a better job at producing progesterone. Nevertheless, I am so thankful that I am being monitored by the doctors who believe how critical progesterone is during the entire pregnancy.

Coming to the good and bad about Immune treatments. Prednisone has made me gain weight at a rapid pace. I have gained 10 lbs in 12 weeks and my face looks all puffy. I feel bloated most of the time and so had to buy maternity pants. I have to do a Glucose Tolerance Test at my next OB appt as steroids can raise blood sugar levels. My hair is falling and my skin looks terrible with acne and I know it is the Prednisone which is doing it. I am hoping that I can wean off Prednisone after the first trimester and get my weight gain on track but I will have to leave that decision to Dr. KK.

The good thing about Prednisone is that I don't have any pregnancy symptoms like fatigue or nausea. I read that steroids can make you feel energetic and suppress pregnancy symptoms. No wonder I don't feel like taking naps. However, I have read that the energy levels are going to crash once you stop the steroid. I still remember how fatigued I was when I stopped Prednisone after my last miscarriage. I had to take 3 hour naps in the afternoon and still didn't have energy to do any chores. I couldn't figure out what was wrong and it went on for 2 months.

Please keep is in your prayers. I don't know if I will ever be able to relax and take it easy with this pregnancy. After all the miscarriages, it is so difficult to not worry. However, after each appointment, I feel so much better. And I know that I am not in control but God knows what is best for us.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Thoughts on this Pregnancy

Now that I am nearing 10 weeks, the furthest I have been pregnant, I have so many thoughts floating around in my head. I will never understand how God is and has been working in my life. All the tears, the pain, the suffering over the last 5 years and now this unfathomable gift of new life makes me tremble with joy and fear. 10 weeks is such a huge milestone for me. While most people have their first OB appt between weeks 8 & 12, I have had 6 appts between weeks 5 and 10. I can never comprehend God's ways. He is a loving God and was bringing me closer to Him the last 5 years. I don't know what my life will look like tomorrow but I know He will give me the graces to handle suffering just like the last 5 years. Though I prayed for physical healing from IF and recurrent miscarriages, I know it was spiritual healing I needed the most.

It has been a long & difficult journey but He was guiding me all the time. Leading me to your blogs, teaching me about NaPro, bringing me to the best doctors and teaching me to wait patiently. The first few years were really tough as things were moving so slowly. However, in the last 1.5 years, things progressed at a quicker pace. My trip to Illinois to meet Dr. KK and then my trip to Omaha was all bringing me closer to physical healing. There were days when I felt all these trips were unnecessary and there was nothing left treatment wise to pursue. We began praying that we would be able to adopt some day if it was God's will.

When I became pregnant in June and had adverse side effects to Immune treatments, we were ready to let go of everything. We were ready to stop all treatments. However, I decided to try the Immune Protocol one last time before closing the book on treatments. I will never know if that is what helped me this time but I definitely know it is God who has made this possible. Every pregnancy is a miracle but that I have made it to 10 weeks is such a huge miracle. Thank you Lord!

Some more details on the Conception Cycle:

Daily Meds: Armour 45mg, Metformin 1500mg, Vit D 5000, Baby Aspirin, Fish Oil, Folic Acid 5mg, Prenatal,  Calcium Citrate

Cd 3-7 Clomid 50mg
Cd 7 onwards - Lovenox 40mg shots daily
P+4 onwards - Prednisone 10mg
P+5 onwards - Progesterone 300 mg vaginal capsules
P+10 - Got a faint positive on HPT.
P+11 - Began 200 mg PIO shots twice weekly. Increased Prednisone to 20mg. See some brown spotting for few days.
P+15 - Went for first Beta Hcg after line became slightly dark on HPT.  First Beta 492.
P+18 - Second Beta 2042. Red spotting.
P+ 20 - Third Beta 4450. Spotting continues. Worried about ectopic.
P+ 21 - First ultrasound. Saw gestational sac and yolk salk. Measuring 5w1d. Cervix looked swollen which was probably causing the spotting. Begin bed rest. Also begin 5000 units of HCG twice a week.
P+24 - Bright red bleeding episode. Stop Lovenox and Baby Aspirin after consulting with Dr. KK's office.
P+ 25 - Progesterone in Zone 4.
P+26 - More bleeding with clots. Another ultrasound shows a sub chorionic hemmorhage. Baby is measuring 5w6d and heart rate is 103bpm. Dr. puts me on complete bed rest. Begin 200mg progesterone rectal suppositories twice a day. HCG is 15000.
6w1d - Ultrasound shows SCH is pressing on sac but baby's heart beat has increased to 122 bpm. Begin Azithromycin for 14 days as per PPVI.
6w6d - Red bleeding has changed to spotting. Baby's heart rate has gone up to 138 bpm. Doctor is happy that the SCH has reduced.
7w - Begin IV Clindamycin for 10 days as per PPVI. My parents are here to help me out.
9w1d - We were able to see our baby waving his/her arm during ultrasound. Heart beat was 190 bpm. Progesterone was in Mid Zone 2.
9w2d - First OB appt. Complete physical examination. Baby's heart beat is 188 bpm.

I have been going to my local NaPro doctor for all my appts. It's a one hour drive but she is willing to work with PPVI and Dr. KK. I have another OB appointment on Nov 26th. If everything goes well, we will switch to a new OB after 20 weeks but we are in no hurry. I feel well most of the time. I have no nausea and feel energetic most of the time. Some days I feel worried like my Progesterone fell from Zone 4 to Zone 2 inspite of the shots, suppositories and HCG. However, I am thankful to God that I have been working with the best doctors. I have lot of bloodwork to be done to monitor by immune issues. Need to ship my samples to Dr. KK's lab.

Monday, November 11, 2013

God is so good!

I have no words to describe my gratitude to Almighty God for all his blessings. We had a perfect ultrasound today. Baby is measuring 9w1d. Heart beat was 190 bpm. The little one waved his/her arms. I got all teary eyed. The clot has reduced significantly and my doctor was so happy. I have been scheduled for my first OB appt. Feels a little strange since I have had so many ultrasounds the past 4 weeks. I don't even know what an OB appt is going to be like. Is this really happening? I am pregnant and there is life growing in my womb. It definitely feels like a dream.

Thank you Lord! Thank you my dear Heavenly Mother. We are so so unworthy for this gift. We pray and hope that we get to meet and raise this little one here on earth. I am praying for all my dear blogger friends specially all those who are waiting to meet their spouse or hold a baby in their arms.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Fearing the unknown

Each day is a struggle with some kind of worry or the other. Some days like yesterday when I had more bleeding than spotting, I was overwhelmed with fear. I was telling my husband how I wish I could go for an ultrasound to ease my heart but he reminded me that I needed to trust God. He reminded me that I had to leave it to God rather than living in constant fear. I couldn't go in for an ultrasound ever single day!

Then there are other days when I feel completely normal. Zero symptoms. I will not lie. I have had no nausea, fatigue, sore boobs nothing! I know everyone is different but I just wish I could feel that I am pregnant. Maybe it's because I am on PIO shots and daily suppositories. It maybe the high doses of progesterone which is making me feel normal. Of course being on bedrest could be another reason why I don't feel tired. I have gained a few pounds in the last two weeks. I need to take that as a good sign but then I think it is the steroid which is doing that to my body. I am also eating more than usual, not that I am hungry but my Mom ensures that I eat well. So I eat something every few hours and I think I am going to end up with a huge appetite.

I often touch my belly but I know it 's too early for a bump. All I feel is the fluff over there. How I wish I could feel something more.
The IV comes out on friday. Two more days but I am looking forward to Monday's ultrasound. I just need to hold it together till Monday. I will be around 9 weeks by Monday. I am so anxious. I cannot believe that I am 8 weeks pregnant. Is this a dream?

Ladies, I am so grateful for all your prayers and kind words. I could literally feel all your prayers. Praying and hoping that everything will be fine during the next ultrasound. Oh my Jesus, I love thee. Please help me to trust thee completely. And our little one, we love you so much. We are so thankful to God for giving us the miracle of you my sweet one.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

IV and other updates

Wow! I survived another week on bed rest. Red bleeding changed to spotting and the last one week, I have been passing brown or black clots occasionally. Scary but I am trusting my doctor that it is old blood from the SCH! Who would have thought you would need to wear a pad every day of your pregnancy! I had an ultrasound last Monday. Baby measured 6w6d and heart rate was 138bpm. Thank you Jesus for this sweet miracle. I walk in to each ultrasound with so much anxiety but come out feeling relieved.

On tuesday, I got a peripheral IV line for Clindamycin. My parents have come all the way from India to help me out. I feel so pampered and spoiled. The IV site needs to be changed every 3 days but other than that things are going smoothly. The pump is easy to handle and it's in a bag. I can take the bag with me when I need to use the restroom. We go in for another ultrasound in 10 days after the IV infusion is over. I am learning to trust Jesus that everything will be fine.

On Thursday, our Pastor came over to hear my confession. He anointed me and I was able to receive the Eucharist. What a blessing to be able to receive 3 sacraments on the same day. And then he gave us the special blessing for the baby in the womb according to the new rite. Beautiful prayer! I really love our Catholic faith. I feel so much better spiritually. Father told he would get me a relic of Blessed Jacinta and Blessed Francisco. I have a special devotion to them. I am hoping and praying that the next few days pass uneventfully. I sometimes feel a little worried as I have no pregnancy symptoms but I know 7.5 weeks is kind of early. Please keep praying for us. Thank you Jesus! Thank you Mama Mary and all the saints in heaven for interceding for us.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Time is crawling

Time is definitely crawling over here. It's only been a little over ten days since I blogged about our newest miracle from God. However, lot of things happened during the last ten days and I feel it's been several weeks since we heard the good news.

After our first ultrasound on 5w1d, I was beginning to believe that everything would be ok for once. I wasn't worried about the bleeding since my cervix was swollen which could have triggered it. We went ahead and told our immediate family. They rejoiced with us and have been storming heavens for this little one.

However, last Sunday morning, I had a major bleeding episode. Lots of red just like a period. I was terrified and decided to take bedrest and prayed for the bleeding to subside. I also stopped the Lovenox. The next day I called my doctor's office and they told me to come in on Tuesday for an ultrasound. The bleeding had subsided by Monday but I still felt something was wrong. As I walked into the ultrasound room on Tuesday, I felt a huge gush of blood. As I undressed and waited, I began to bleed heavily with clots. The dr. immediately knew something was wrong. By the grace of God, we were able to see our little one measuring 5w6d and the dr. was able to detect a fetal heart beat of 103 bpm. She saw a sub chorionic hemorrhage and told us that I was at high risk for miscarriage. Our hearts broke into thousand pieces and I felt so weak after all the gory bleeding. She ordered complete bed rest and told us to return in two days and told me to immediately start 200mg progesterone rectal suppositories twice a day in addition to all the PIO and HCG shots I was doing.

I came home and bled continuously just like a heavy period. I got in touch with PPVI and they wanted me do IV and oral antibiotics. Amidst all this, we were so grateful to God that we were able to hear our baby's heart beat. Dr. KK asked me to stop lovenox and baby aspirin. We returned for an ultrasound and the heart beat had gone up to 122 bpm and I was 6w1d. Our dr was so happy. The SCH hasn't increased in size but it is pushing on the sac which is scary. We go in for another ultrasound next week. Meanwhile, PPVI and my local dr have asked home health to start me on IV antibiotics. On monday, I will be getting a PICC line in place. I am trying not to think about it.

God has blessed us so much and our hearts rejoice. We are praying and hoping that our baby continues growing and the SCH shrinks. Please keep us in your prayers.  Thank you Jesus! We have entrusted our child to St. Joseph and our Blessed Mother.  God's will be done.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Trusting in Jesus

Thank you all for your prayers and sweet comments. Your prayers helped me so much yesterday. I am learning to take one day at a time and leave everything in God's hands. Jesus, I trust in thee!

I have never experienced anything like what I did in the last few days. So much anxiety and stress!!! I had some red bleeding last Sunday and I felt so terrible. I cried during the entire Mass and begged God for a miracle. I went in for my second Beta HCG draw on Monday and was amazed to hear from Dr. KK's office that the levels looked good. The bleeding subsided for a while but on Wednesday, I saw fresh blood again. It was there every time I wiped and so I knew something was not right. Thankfully, I was able to get an appt for Thursday afternoon with my local Napro doctor.

Yesterday as we waited for the ultrasound with fear and anxiety, I never dreamed that we would get to see anything as it was very early. By God's grace, we were able to see a gestational sac and yolk sac snuggled in the uterus. It was such a huge relief to know that it was not an ectopic. My cervix looked swollen and I am on Lovenox shots (blood thinner). That was probably the reason for the bleeding. I feel so much better after the ultrasound but I am still seeing blood tinged mucus. Praying and hoping that it goes away. The nurse gave me a shot of 5000 units of HCG yesterday. I have been contuning 200mg PIO shots twice a week. We will going in for another ultrasound next week. Meanwhile, I am afraid to hope. We feel so unworthy for this gift. It is the first time we have got to see a gestational sac on ultrasound. I am so thankful but I am keeping my heart guarded. God's will be done.

We have begun a 30 day Novena to St. Joseph as recommended by our Priest. We were able to see him yesterday after the ultrasound and he gave me a special blessing and prayed for the baby in my womb.

Our Lady of La Leche, St. Gianna, St. Gerard, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Joseph, St. Jude, St. Anne, St. Joachim, St. Anthony, St. Padre Pio, St. Alphonsa, Blessed Mother Teresa, St. John Paul II, Blessed Jacinta, Blessed Francisco, St. Michael, St. Gabriel, St. Raphael, all holy angels and saints - Pray for us!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Our newest miracle - God is so good!

I cannot believe that I am typing this...God is so good!!! I am pregnant again. I am being monitored by Dr. Kwak-Kim and went in for Beta HCGs and for the first time in a long, long time the numbers seem to be rising.

10/11 (Friday) -  493.1 (P+15)
10/14 (Mon) - 2062 (P+18)

Thank you Jesus for this sweet amazing miracle. I don't have words. I just pray and hope that the levels rise. I am going in for an ultrasound to my local Napro doctor's office on Thursday to rule out an ectopic pregnancy. Please storm heavens for this baby. I am ready to accept whatever God sends me but how I wish everything would be fine just for one time.

I had lots of brown spotting last week. Have been taking PIO shots every 3 days. PPVI has also called in for 5000 units of HCG. I am taking Lovenox shots daily on my belly and putting up with Steroids. I am beginning to think that Dr. KK's immune protocol has begun to work. At least my HCG is rising for the first time. I don't know about the future but I have hope for the first time.

Praise Jesus! Thank you Mama Mary!
Thank you St. Gianna, St. Gerard, St. Joseph, St, Anne, St. Joachim, St. Catherine of Siena, Blessed Mother Teresa, Blessed John Paul II and all saints for this miracle. 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

It's not just about Me & Prayers....

There are days when I am reminded that my suffering is not about me. There are days when I think of my heart-wrenching suffering and still find comfort because by the grace of God I have faith and know my suffering can lead me to Heaven.

I don't know if it's too personal but I thought I would share this with you all because I appreciate your prayers. IF runs in my family. It must be in the genes !!! Three of my Mom's sisters have struggled with IF and pregnancy losses. Two of my aunts lost both their fallopian tubes to ectopic pregnancies. Another aunt had recurrent miscarriages and a still birth. All this was many years ago, maybe 15-20. I know all of them did IVF at some point or the other. I was a child and didn't know much about IVF except that it was the gold standard for treatment in India. One aunt went on to conceive a child with the help of IVF. Another aunt adopted a child after many failed IVF attempts. Coming to the third aunt.....

I was speaking to my Mom yesterday. My third aunt (her youngest sister) has been suffering a difficult marriage for the last few years. They have been married for around 18 years. She had six failed rounds of IVF and adoption didn't work for them. All this has been taking a toll on their marriage. Her husband stopped going to Church and has lost faith in God. Last year, her husband started asking her to find a surrogate and to use donor eggs. He has become physically and verbally abusive, and he even wants a legal divorce since my aunt doesn't want to do the surrogate thing. My Mom was in tears when she told me about this immense cross my aunt and her husband are facing. I didn't have words to comfort my mom. I offered to pray for them wholeheartedly. Can you ladies say a few prayers for my aunt and her husband?

And coming to the others news... I was doing the immune protocol this cycle. I took a HPT on P+10 and had a positive but the joy was short-lived. I saw brown mucus for two days and knew it wasn't a good sign. Surely this cannot be happening for the eight time? I went on and took PIO shots. I started spotting after the shots - sometimes brown, sometimes red. I have been cramping and feel like AF will arrive soon. I haven't done any Betas and decided to wait it out to see if the lines get darker. I am still doing the Lovenox shots and Prednisone. Today is P+14 and my heart feels heavy. But on days like these, I am reminded that my suffering needs to be offered up for others. I have lots of pray for - my aunt, bloggers who recently lost their precious babies to miscarriage and stillbirth, and ladies who are still waiting for a miracle.

The news about my aunt has been a silent stab in my chest. My own suffering suddenly seemed nothing compared to my aunt's. How many ladies suffer because their husbands want them to do IVF and other stuff? How many couples have failed marriages because of IF? How many couples divorce and live in adultery because of IF?

And here God has blessed me beyond my understanding with the most compassionate husband. I would never have survived IF if not for my husband's love and faith. I thank God immensely for my husband and his solid faith. My husband may never get to hold a child in his arms but I know he will never compromise his morals for a baby. He will never go against his faith. I see him leading me to Heaven by sharing our cross in the most graceful way. How often have I failed to be a good wife? How often have I taken my husband for granted?

There are days when I feel so blessed. I have been able to meet the best doctors in this country. I have had the option to try out many new treatments. I sometimes fear another ectopic and losing my remaining tube like both my aunts. Then I am reminded that maybe progesterone supplementation will prevent it. What if my aunts had their ectopic pregnancies because of low progesterone? What if they had access to NaPro treatments to help them? Their lives may have been different !!! I don't know and I can never comprehend how God works. His ways are so mysterious. I just pray that God brings immense good from all this evil. I pray that God uses my suffering to convert others. I pray that our marriage will always be strong no matter how difficult our cross may be. Can you say a prayer for all couples struggling with IF?

And this had been my favorite prayer for the last few days:

"O my Jesus, it is for love of Thee, for the conversion of sinners and in reparation for sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer this sacrifice to Thee."

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

What a Day looks like for me...

It was only yesterday I realized how my day revolves around medications.

6 am or whenever I wake up - Armour Thyroid
9:30 am - Prednisone 10 mg
1 pm - Vitamin D 5000 IU, Folic Acid 5mg with Vitamin B6 100mg, Baby Aspirin
4 pm - Prenatal Vitamins
7 pm - PIO Shots 100mg on each side (On some Days Post Peak)
8pm - Metformin 1500mg
9:30 pm - Prednisone 10mg
Before Bedtime - Lovenox Shots, Fish Oil, Calcium Citrate, Progesterone Vaginal Capsules

CD 3 to 7 - Clomid 50mg (Beginning of Cycle)
Mucinex 1200mg CD 10-15

I just ran a count on the number of meds I take on some days like yesterday - 13 pills, 3 shots, 1 suppository !!! I don't know how my body manages to work on all these different kinds of meds. I hope I am not overloading myself with boat load of meds and confusing my body.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Immune Protocol and Other Updates

Wow! I have been away from my blog for so long. The reason being that I don't have much happening treatment wise unlike the previous years.

This cycle we are doing the full Immune Protocol. I began Lovenox Shots on CD 6. My belly is bruised but I am glad that I have kind of overcome my fear of needles. I also took Clomid 50mg from CD 3-7. Today is CD 14 and I have seen some really good CM. I will be starting Prednisone 2 days after ovulation - most likely 2 days after my temp rises or after P+3.

Am I hopeful? No! I am not but I still want to do this protocol for three months before I quit. I had a phone call from a cousin who is expecting her fourth baby. Her third baby turned one last week. I am happy for them but what hurts me the most is how she thinks of it as an unplanned pregnancy. She went on to tell how she plans to get herself fixed after this baby is born. I gently reminded her that it is a sin to get sterilized. I really don't get it how people take their fertility for granted.

I thank God everyday for this cross of IF because that is what made us open to life in the first place. I shudder to think what would have happened if I had normal fertility. Most likely, I would have got myself mutilated after having 2 or 3 kids.

God used IF to change my heart in ways I cannot even comprehend. I desire to have a large family, to stand out as a witness, to tell my family and friends that we value life, to show the world that God plans our family and we don't. However, God knows better. He knows that is not the path of sanctification for me. He desires humility from me. He desires us to be open to life whether we get to raise a child or not. And so the world may never know that we are open to life. We may never be able to witness with a large family. We may never be able to set an example for siblings to follow. All we can do is suffer for Jesus in reparation for our sins and those of others.

If I make it to heaven, all this won't matter. I hope and pray for God's grace to follow his will.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Thank You

Now that August is coming to an end, I would like to thank each one of you for praying for me this month. I have no words to express how much your prayers have helped me this month.

No, we have not conceived as this was a Break Cycle for us but far better things have happened on the spiritual front. We decided to take a break from ovulatory drugs and charting this month as we were going on a vacation. I didn't feel bad about taking a break cycle instead it was liberating. We went away on a Cruise the second week of August and had a wonderful time. After the vacation I ended up with a Bad Sinus infection and took antibiotics. So my cycle was kind of messed up. I had Fertile CM for several days. It must have been the Amoxicillin I took. I have never seen so much CM in my life. I don't know if my body was trying badly to ovulate or if it was the antibiotic, I had continuous mucus for more than 10 days. It's CD 30 and am still waiting for AF to arrive or I think I will have to start Progesterone.

On the spiritual front, I don't know why but the Holy Spirit had been nudging me to make a General Confession. As usual, I had all kinds of anxiety about making a General Confession even though I frequent the Sacrament of Penance bi-weekly or monthly. Thanks to all your prayers, I was able to do it and have felt so much peace ever since. It was such a humbling experience. If you haven't had a general confession in a while, I urge you to do it. It feels so good to come out the confessional with a light heart.

God hasn't promised us happiness in this life but a life of suffering can help us reach heaven. It makes so much sense to me. I only pray that God gives me the graces needed to handle this suffering well.

On a different note, after my most recent miscarriage, I tried focusing on diet and exercise to keep my mind busy. I even tried eating grain-free & paleo for a while but it didn't last. I have serious commitment issues when it comes to diet. I cannot seem to do a diet for more than 2 weeks. I can't even remember the number of times I have started different diets like Whole 30, Paleo and so on only to stop it after a few days. How do you girls do it? I need some help in this area. I need to stay focused but I don't know how. My goal is to lose 15 lbs if it means becoming closer to a healthier me and maybe an increased chance for a healthy pregnancy. I lost 15-20 lbs last year but I have a hit a plateau and the weight doesn't seem to nudge. I have started working out at home so that I can't make excuses for not hitting the gym. I have been hooked onto Leslie Sansone's Walk Away the Pounds program. It makes me sweat so much and feels better than walking on the treadmill for an hour. It's gentle on my knees and I don't have to worry about hurting my back. I know I have to be patient but I wish I could get instant results. If only I could lose the flab around my belly and get the Insulin Resistance under control without drugs, I would be so happy!

Looking forward for the next Adopt-a-Blogger!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Five Years Ago on This Day

We lost our first Child - Bernadette Mary. I had an emergency surgery to remove my ruptured fallopian tube. God showed his mercy on me and spared my life when I was not in a state of grace. Five years later, I have learnt a lot about my faith and I know how important it is to be in a state of grace without any taint of mortal sin on your soul. Monthly and Weekly Confessions don't make me weary any more. Deo Gratias!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Adopt a Blogger - August

Wow! I have been selected as the blogger for this month's "Adopt A Blogger". I feel so blessed. Thank you Lord and thank you for all your prayers!

I had to take a break from Blogs and FB. It was overwhelming me!!! I was spending at least 1 hour daily which means wasting 7 hours a week doing pretty much nothing. Almost a full working day when I could have prayed or attended daily Mass or done something useful! Well very randomly, I logged into FB today and that's when I realized that I was going to be prayed for this entire month. Thank you once again!

If you are new to my blog, you can read more about us and our TTC journey here. DH and I have been married for 5 years. We have had seven pregnancy losses - 1 ectopic and the rest were all early miscarriages. We have been doing both NaPro and Reproductive Immunology treatments. Thanks to all the blogs which helped us find more about NaPro and Dr. KK. In fact, I found my CrMS practitioner through Catholic IF Blogs. God has been guiding us and helped us pursue treatments without going against Church teachings.

Suffering has brought us closer to God in many ways. We were Cradle Catholics but we didn't live our lives as good Catholics for a long time. Over the last five years, our hearts have changed and the graces have flowed abundantly. We no longer fear Suffering. Instead, we know it is the path to Heaven. God has blessed our marriage abundantly. Our desire is to raise children here on earth for God. I so often try to imagine what it would be like to have a large family. However, we pray for peace and joy if that is not what God wills. Here are a few book recommendations for all those going through Suffering :

We will be continuing treatments for a while before we look into adoption or move on. Thank you once again! I already feel so much peace. God Bless you!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Why Must I Suffer?

The past two weeks have not been all that great. The days have gone really slow. I sometimes feel it's been ages since I saw the two lines on the HPT and the roller coaster ride which followed. As soon as I knew about the falling HCG levels, I just wanted the bleeding to begin so that I could get over with the pain. Well, I began bleeding last Monday and since I was on the blood thinners, there were no clots. Just bright red blood for several days. The first few days I didn't get out of the bed except to eat. The cramps and my emotions were enough to keep me on bed. I didn't want to cook or clean or do anything. I would cry myself to sleep and then wake up with a headache. And then I would feel guilty for not doing anything. I was immersed in self-pity and thought I was on the verge of depression. Thanks to my husband who put up with his emotional wife!

God knew better and wanted me to understand Suffering. He didn't want me to wallow in self-pity. And then, very randomly, we heard a sermon on audiosancto.org about Suffering. The priest mentioned a Catholic book "Why Must I Suffer?" (originally published in 1935) and DH bought it for me. I needed it. I needed to know the meaning of suffering. I needed to find answers. While I haven't read the book completely, I highly recommend it to anyone who needs to know more about suffering. I have often asked God "Why me?" or "Why should I Suffer?". The book has spoken to me loudly. It has touched my soul.

The book mentions fifteen reasons for suffering and some points have stood out to me.

To quote, "the sufferings of Purgatory are entirely unmeritorious. This means, that no matter how intensely the soul suffers there, nor how long, though it were for a thousand years, she cannot thereby procure for herself so much as a single new degree of merit by which to increase her glory in  Heaven. With all her pain, such a soul cannot earn for herself as much as you can by patiently bearing an insult, or suffering the prick of a pin, or denying yourself the pleasures of a dance or a movie or an ice cream soda. All that a soul in Purgatory is able to do is cancel by slow degrees the whole debt of her punishment, that part excepted which God in His mercy remits by reason of the prayers and good works offered for her by the faithful on earth........"
"These considerations will convince you of the wonderful advantages of present over future sufferings. Whatever you endure in this life, besides its power to atone for your sins, has great efficacy for making you rich in grace and glory. Moment by moment, day by day, year by year, you are at one and the same time canceling your debt and amassing additional claims to greater happiness in Heaven; and the more numerous and painful your sufferings, the more abundant and varied will be your merits." - Chapter Six

So I continue striving to become what God wants me to be. I have failed plenty of times but I pray that I get better with each new day. At least, I have come out of the Self-Pity mode and I am trying to keep myself busy with distractions like Diet and Exercise. More on that in another post. Thank you for all your prayers which have sustained me through difficult times.

Friday, June 28, 2013

The Call I knew was Coming

Yesterday evening, I got 'the call' from one of the PPVI nurses. I knew it was coming. This is not the first time and so I knew! This is the sixth time and I knew from all the symptoms that it was inevitable. My HCG fell from 82 to 26.

I didn't have much emotion as I spoke with the nurse. I just wanted it to be over. She told me to do cycle reviews every month because my hormones need to be monitored. She told me it was a must! I haven't been doing cycle reviews regularly. Well after 6 early miscarriages, I have begun to accept that I may never cross over. I will never be one of the Former IF girls. I will never....

I just pray for healing, to accept myself, to find my worth. I know my life cannot be defined by the number of babies I have. I need to find meaning to my life. I need to be complete just as I am. I have been feeling worthless and incomplete but I know I need to be healed of these thoughts. I need to find a purpose other than treatment and babies. The last five years have scarred me deeply. I have become a different person. I have lost my confidence. I am afraid to do anything and everything.

This is not who I was. This is not what I wished to become but all the fears and insecurities have changed me so much. I still trust and love God with all my heart but I fear myself. I feel so helpless. I wish I could be my old self - happy and carefree. I don't know if it's possible but I am praying for emotional healing. I need to get a grip back on my life. I need to be a good wife to my husband. I need to be what God wants me to become. I cannot let fear and depression take over my life. Please pray for me that I will be healed from all the emotional scarring.

Thursday, June 27, 2013


Today morning as I stood in front of the mirror looking at my bruised stomach, my heart felt heavy. All these shots didn't make a difference! I hugged DH and cried for a long time. I feel so sorry for my husband. He cannot see me in pain. It breaks his heart to see me suffering physically and emotionally. I can handle my pain but my heart breaks when I see him worried for me.

He reminded me how our suffering was much needed in today's world. As I thought of the thousands of babies that are ripped apart in their mother's womb every single day, I am ready to suffer for Jesus. I am ready to bear all that he sends my way in reparation. So many people don't know God. So many don't love him. So many die in sin. And the least I can do is get on my knees in reparation, to beg pardon for all the outrages, to offer my little suffering for all the offenses against natural law, to pray for conversion of souls.

Five years ago, as we exchanged our vows, I didn't know where God was leading us. He has made us stronger in ways we can never comprehend. He has taught us the value of suffering. He has taught us the value of every single life. He has given us his Blessed Mother and all the Saints to pray for us.

And I am at peace because as much as I love this baby, I know that God loves my child more than I do or more than anyone can. He knows what's best for my baby. Our Blessed Mother knows the pain of losing her only son. St. Gianna suffered two miscarriages. She sure knows the pain of losing children. I have lot to learn from their lives and their suffering. I am not alone in my suffering. Why do I fear? These words of St. Gianna have been in my mind, "I promise You, Jesus, to submit myself to all that You permit to happen to me. Let me only know Your will."

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Bleeding and Trip to the ER

Thank you Ladies for all your comments and prayers. The last few days have been crazy over here. I started spotting brown and red on Monday which slowly turned to light brown/red bleeding.

Yesterday morning, I woke up at 5am with severe chest pain on the left side. My left hand was hurting too. I thought it was the steroid (Prednisone) as it is known to cause heart burn and muscle cramps. We waited till 8 and since the pain wasn't getting any better we had to go to the Urgent Care. By the time we were there, the pain had become unbearable and the receptionist asks me if I am having a heart attack? Come on! How am I to know? I have never had this kind of pain before. I told the nurse that I was on Blood Thinners and Steroid for pregnancy. The doctor at the Urgent Care was too scared seeing the list of my "Fertility" medications. He spoke to my local NaPro doctor but he didn't know what was going on. He referred us to the ER. After waiting for 4 glorious hours at the ER writhing in pan, they did an EKG which appeared normal. They weren't of much help and thought the pain could have been from either of these meds. We came back home in the afternoon. I was too scared and exhausted after the day's events.

A nurse from PPVI called me with my Beta. It was kind of low at 82.2. I told her that I was bleeding and she told me to continue the Progesterone and get more blood work done. I stopped the Lovenox and Prednisone and contacted Dr. KK's office to let them know. I am waiting to hear from them. I feel dizzy and have a constant headache. I don't know if it is from the Prednsione withdrawal.

As I waited in the ER, I felt Jesus telling me to let go, to let go of all these treatments and meds. My husband too told me the same. There is a limit to what one can endure. I don't think we can continue this way. It needs to STOP some day and this looks like a clear sign from God. I went for another Beta HCG today. Will be knowing the results tomorrow. I feel kind of numb but I am thankful that yesterday's pain wasn't life-threatening. I have a feeling it's time to change my priorities. It's time to surrender. It's time to live my life in peace without worrying constantly. Please keep me in your prayers.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Another Announcement because I need Prayers

I had pretty much nothing to update on this blog until yesterday. I wasn't charting this cycle and I had very few days of mucus. I even thought I hadn't ovulated and so we didn't actively try this cycle. I only took 4-5 days of Progesterone from CD 20. Yesterday was CD 29 and I saw a little brown mucus. I decided to take an early HPT and it came back positive or rather faintly positive. And the anxiety began.

I should be feeling thankful because I have been blessed for a seventh time but all I have been feeling is indifference. I managed to call PPVI and they called in for the PIO shots. I sucked it in and contacted Dr. KK's office. I took my first shot of Lovenox and began Prednisone yesterday. I was trying to stay neutral and not get my hopes high.

Then today I took another HPT and the line is still faint instead of getting dark. I feel I cannot handle this any longer. The tears haven't stopped. I don't even know what to pray.

I had reached a stage of Acceptance over the last few months. I was beginning to believe that I wouldn't get pregnant as it had been 18 months since my last miscarriage. I was at peace with everything. As we celebrated our 5th anniversary, I learned to accept our family of 2. I read Trustful Surrender To Divine Providence over and over again till it made complete sense to me. I was ready to surrender my will. I prayed to abandon myself to God and it gave me so much happiness.

But yesterday, all the demons have been unleashed. I don't know why this is happening. Maybe it means that I should stop TTC-ing with my broken body. Maybe that is what God wants from me - to give up trying for a child. I cannot handle years and years of pain and anxiety. I just wish there was some way around - some miracle waiting to happen. Please say a prayer for me. Thank You!

Monday, May 20, 2013

5 years next Sunday

I thought I would drop in a quick post. We will be celebrating our 5th Wedding Anniversary this coming Sunday. I have been trying to not think about it and was having a sense of peace. Today morning, I woke up and realized I am on CD 26 and that means AF will start in a few days. Well, I know this 5th anniversary will be hard and that it will get better over the years but I had never imagined that we would reach this milestone and still not have a child here on earth.

I am really praying and hoping that I can really enjoy next Sunday with DH. I just want to experience complete peace amidst suffering. I want to trust Jesus and cling onto him with all my being. Please say a prayer for us that we will be thankful to God however difficult this cross of IF seems. I love my hubby so much and I just don't want to appear crushed and broken-hearted. I am so thankful for this cross. It has strengthened our marriage in ways I could never have imagined. I only wish that the pain would stop at least for a while. Jesus, I trust in you. I have lot to offer up for all of you these coming days.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Trying to wrap my head around suffering

It's been a while since I updated my blog. I don't seem to find the motivation to write anything.
These are a few of the questions that have crossed my mind lately.
How long do you have to keep trying? How long do you actively TTC with medications? How long before you put an end to this emotional roller coaster?

I just realized that today is the 6th month anniversary of my surgery with PPVI. I met my local NaPro doc last week. She asked if I wanted to try Ovulation Induction again and I agreed. I also requested for LDN. She also reminded me that ovulation might be my problem because with Insulin Resistance, my body behaves similar to PCOS only that my ovaries are not enlarged and don't produce cysts. I am on P+14 and had a BFN this morning. I sort of knew it but sometimes you still hope that this cycle could be it. I once thought that miscarriage was my problem but now I don't know why I have not been able to conceive after my last miscarriage.

I am on an edge right now. I am kind of ready to give up TTC but I also want to squeeze in 1 or 2 cycles of Clomid, Prednisone and Lovenox before I put an end to this waiting game. I have a feeling none of this is going to work.

I am having a hard time wrapping my head around suffering. I completely trust God but I don't understand what God wants me to do with my suffering. Yes, I pray and offer it up for the salvation of souls but I wish this whole thing made more sense on a personal level. I know all good things come from God and so infertility and miscarriage is not the will of God.

And we always pray to accept the will of our Heavenly Father which is ultimately good for our souls. I just wish I clearly knew what God's Will is for me. I cannot stop this suffering but how does God want to mold me from my situation. I pray I have some answers.

I also know that miracles are possible, healing is also possible as 'All things are possible with God'. Yes, I keep praying for healing or a miracle but sometimes I feel so weak. Is it ok to stop praying for healing or for a miracle? Can I just pray to find peace and joy with my life without children? Is that what God wants from me? I don't know. I just wish I knew.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Where I am and Prayers Needed

I need your prayers. I am facing a really bad day. Yes, it is CD14 and we were doing 10 days of Biaxin this cycle. We were to TTC this cycle but it hasn't happened yet. Call it stress at work or lack of sleep but things haven't gone as they should have with DH. Yes, we did try TTCing a few times but it didn't work. The stress is not helping either of us. I have enough things to worry and the thought of this cycle being wasted is causing me anxiety. I never knew that not being able to TTC would be so agonizing.

I am trying to stay calm because my heart hurt when DH apologized over and over again. I don't know what I should do. Ladies, if you have any advice what I could do to help DH to reduce all this stress. I feel so miserable for having to post this. I feel I am being tested again and again. I am just trying to tell myself that maybe God doesn't want us to try this cycle. I am just praying and offering this failed cycle for this blogger and all others who are waiting.

Friday, March 1, 2013


Yesterday was an emotional day for me. As I saw our beloved Pope Benedict XVI saying his farewell, my eyes swelled with tears and my heart felt heavy. It was a familiar feeling. Something similar to losing a loved one. I don’t have enough words to thank our beloved Papa for all that he has done for Christ’s Church.

Five years back, I don't think I would have cried at this news. I most probably would not have cared a bit and would have gone about with my daily business. But the Lord changed my heart over the years as I came back to the Church and her teachings. I was lost for so long but God's mercy never abandoned me. And today I am proud of my Catholic faith and nothing in this world matters to me more than my faith.

Yesterday, as I sat down jotting my pondering thoughts about our IF journey in my journal, I felt abandoned. I felt I was hoping against hope after all the failed cycles and miscarriages. I even felt that my trip to Chicago and Omaha wasn't needed. I clung onto hope the last 2 cycles keeping track of every symptom hoping that I would have life in my womb. But after a few negative HPTs, I didn't have anything to do. My heart was crushed and I didn't want to do a cycle review with PPVI. I felt nothing in the world could help my broken body.

Finally, I gave in and did a cycle review. 6 more months of Biaxin for both of us from CD 1-10. And more blood draws for an Amenorrhea panel, which means I will have to ship blood to Omaha. I am yet to find a lab which will help me. I don't even want to continue treatments.

I have waited so long for a miracle and I don't know if I can continue like this without hope. I just want to STOP everything! But I am weak and afraid. I don't have the courage to say "I am DONE". What if I haven't done everything I could have? What if this last treatment is going to help me? What if the next month will be my answered prayers? What if I am this close to a miracle? What if I am this close to the veil of suffering which will be lifted up before my eyes?
My heart tells me not to give up, to hold on for one last time, to hope and trust. It can't be far, can it be? When it feels so difficult to walk, I must be nearing my destination, right? When my body can no longer go on, I must be close to my miracle, isn't it? I am waiting for that day in my life - the day when I get to hold my baby in my arms and I hope against hope that it won't be too long.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Getting Back on Track

Today is CD 14 and I need to vent. I need to get back on track with my medications and diet. I have gained 5-6 lbs after my 6-week vacation and I am not happy about it. I need to get back on my Low Carb and Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Before I left for vacation, I thought I could stick on to my diet but it didn't work. I ate red-meat most of the days and had tea/coffee. Not to forget how much sugar, gluten and processed junk I ate. All forbidden on the Anti-Inflammatory Diet! Well, I know it's difficult to be on a diet when you are are not cooking but on my part, I should have at least tried. The wedding and festivities didn't help either. How could you say "no" to all the lovely food right in front of you?

What's worse is that I have become lazy. I haven't charted in a long time. I used to chart my temps regularly but I became lazy and it's been a long time since I took my BBT. I also haven't been using Progesterone Suppositories every cycle. In fact, I don't even remember the last time I took Progesterone. I am supposed to be taking 300mgs from P+3 to P+12 every cycle. Instead, I conveniently forget it at bedtime and I am lucky if I have taken it once or twice a cycle. Not good! I am unhappy and I know I need to get back on routine. Progesterone is vital and I need to be extra cautious since I already had an ectopic in the past.

The only meds I took while on vacation were Metformin and Armour Thyroid. I need to get back on track with my Vitamins, Baby Aspirin, Mucinex, Fish Oil and other stuff. Heck, I haven't even done one cycle on Dr KK's treatment protocol of Lovenox & Prednisone. And I don't know why I lost motivation. Maybe because it feels a long time since I fell pregnant the last time.

I need to set up reminders for my meds and setup appointments with my doctors. I need to eat clean and stay on my Anti-Inflammatory Diet. I need to exercise and lose another 10-15 lbs. I need to do everything I can so that my body can sustain a pregnancy. Please pray for me that I don't procrastinate things. Blessed Virgin Mary and all the saints, please help me.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

2013 Updates

I am back after a long vacation. It feels like ages since I have blogged.

2013 began with a bang. By God's grace, my sister got married on the 2nd of Jan. DH's leave got approved and he was able to make it for the wedding. Thanks to my prayer buddy who prayed so much for us. We had so much fun just being with our families and I finally got to meet my adorable nephew. He is no longer a baby but a ten month old toddler. My emotions were all over the place every time I held him. Joy and Pain at the same time!

We were given the green light to TTC just before I left for vacation. I was so hopeful for last cycle since it was the first TTC Cycle after completing Biaxin. However, AF arrived and I just had 2 days of light bleeding. So most likely I didn't ovulate last cycle and hence the light AF. Of course, I had to take a HPT just to confirm and it left me all the more angry.

I am guessing I am having issues with ovulation. Heck, I wish my ovaries would do their job. I badly want to try Clomid. It's been more than a year since I tried Clomid and maybe that's what will help my body. It's so hard to be hopeful. I can feel my clock ticking and I need to get aggressive with treatments. The surgery was my last straw and I don't know what more is left.

Last week, I crossed over to my thirties. It was an emotional day and I was feeling angry with God. Thankfully, we were able to make it for Latin Mass and Confession in the morning. I felt so much better getting out of the confessional.

Our 5th wedding anniversary is approaching in a few months and I feel so overwhelmed. I am having a hard time accepting the fact that we are still a family of two but I am even scared to tell this - I am getting used to my life as two. I have been trying to carve a niche for myself because I know I will need to surrender to God's Will one day or the other.

My Patron Saints for 2013 are St. Gianna and St. Catherine of Sienna. I am begging and pleading them for a miracle in 2013.