Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Painting and cute baby decor!


I recently started giving painting lessons to a friend of a friend named Laura. Laura introduced me to Etsy.com. I had heard of it before (through BFF Elysa), but I had never explored it. I found so many cute baby decor ideas that I can make myself!! I posted a few of the ideas on my tumblr site.

Since I'm giving painting lessons to Laura, I am inspired to do my own painting as well. Other BFF Tanja gave me lots and lots of oil paints!! In return, I have to make her a painting. I finally started the painting the other day. I must say...I wish I were making it for me :-) I hope she likes it! I'm only half-way finished though.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Profile books sent to agency

I finally got one of those Priority boxes with a flat rate for the profile books. Last week when our caseworker called to see how things were going, I told her I would be mailing the profile books soon. Her response was, "Oh, there's no rush." No rush?? Really?? Absolutely there's a rush!! I was completely irritated by her response. How rude!

Christmas break is almost here. I'm looking forward to the break, but I'm also going to miss my students. My one problem child was removed, and now that class is a totally different class. It's quiet pleasant and wonderful to not have all the drama anymore. I love teaching again! Crazy how one student can turn a person into a such a meanie.\

I also have a link now on the Dizzy Winding Road blog to subscribe to my posts via email :-) I would hate for you to miss a single post!! ;-)

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, y'all!!!

xoxo

Monday, November 30, 2009

Profile Books are Here!!

Our profile books came in Saturday morning. They look great, and we cannot wait to send them to our agency to be shown to potential birth parent(s). Also, our email is now set up to receive emails from prospective birth parents. However, our profile page on the agency website is not quite ready yet.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Profile books ordered and Birth Parent Letter

It took me a while to finally decide the book is as close to perfect as I can get it. Luckily my friend Kristi M. looked at it and found a few double spaces b/t words and extra spaces b/t sentences. I'm really happy with it. My MIL helped me tweak our birth parent letter. I actually cried when I went back and read it. My friend Amber did too. It was sweet to see Amber being so touched by our letter. I was going to wait and post the letter in a separate post, but I don't want to keep anyone in suspense!

Thank you Tonnette for all of your help!!! Thank you Kristi M. and Nell-Bell for taking the time to read my book to check for errors one more time for me!



Dear Birth Parent,

We cannot thank you enough for taking the time to get to know us. You are making a very difficult and admirable decision. We have the utmost respect for the courage you have shown. You will be an angel to a very lucky couple.

We are Kristi and Brandt. We have been together for ten years and married for four. We were college sweethearts and have known from the beginning of our relationship that we wanted children. We are committed to parenting and would love the opportunity to share our love and life with a child.

We are choosing to adopt after getting the upsetting news that we would not be able to have children of our own. We know we are meant to be parents, and we feel our hearts have been called to adoption. The decision to adopt was a very easy one because Brandt is an adoptee from Gladney. He would truly be able to relate, to understand, and to offer guidance to a child that not many adoptive parents would be able to do.

We feel we have much to offer your child. We both believe in strong values such as a strong work ethic, honesty, and open mindedness. Good morals and ethics are priorities in our house. Education is also very important to us, and we really look forward to many nights of reading bedtime stories and working on homework and projects. We are eager to provide a loving and stable environment for your child. We would consider it a privilege to help your child's hopes and dreams come true.

Please know that you will always have a special place in our hearts and in your child's should you choose us. Your baby will be raised in the best and most caring way. He or she will always be surrounded by lots of family, love, and support. We are thrilled at the thought of beginning a new journey as parents.

Sincerely,
Kristi and Brandt

Monday, November 16, 2009

Ordering Profile Books

I have my profile book all ready to go. I have it ready to be ordered anyway. However, I just can't hit the submit button. My MIL has checked it. I've checked it. B checked it. My case worker (CW) is viewing it tomorrow. I just don't want the book to have a single mistake. I don't want to buy 7 copies of the book to find out they all have a stupid mistake in them. It's starting to feel VERY real that we ARE adopting. Luckily we still have about 12 months until we actually get our baby!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Pregnant on Paper

We received paper work today that says we are officially approved to adopt!! In the adoption world, that means we are now pregnant on paper. What a relief!! We are really excited to turn our profile book in and to get our profile online!


Baby Bernstein, we are waiting for you! Love, Mom and Dad

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Updating for the sake of updating...

Well, I have no update at the moment. It's only been almost 3 weeks. They told us it would be about a month wait. I try to forget that we are waiting and that it just takes a long time. Yet, I keep replaying our office interview and questioning if I said something the agency is questioning. I know I'm just being paranoid. What else am I supposed to think of right now?? I have a friend who has a friend who's selling her baby furniture. I'm gonna look at it just to see if I like it or not. Brandt thinks it's way too early. Why not start crossing some things off our list?? I'm ready to post some news already!!! Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Monday, October 19, 2009

1st Baby Item



I finally purchased my first baby item for us. I just wanted something to have to remind us of the baby we will be getting. I have it sitting in the windowsill in our bedroom. I see it when I wake up, and I see it when I go to bed. It's just a nice little symbol of the all joy and memories that are to come!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

1 month till approved!

Application - check
FBI fingerprinting - check
25% of app fee paid - check
Home study - check
Office interview - check
100% approved - pending!

The office interview was not that scary. My in-laws had prepared us for the kinds of questions they would ask. The agency also provided a short list of questions to study. They did separate us for part of the interview. That was slightly nerve wracking. We showed Jennifer (our case worker) our profile book. She LOVED!!! it! Yah!! I spent about 7-8 hours total working on it.

The profile book is a book about us as a couple and as individuals. It has pictures of our wedding, home, friends, family, vacations, and activities we enjoy. It also includes a letter to a potential birth parent about why we want to adopt and why we feel we will be great parents. (Basically, we have to sell ourselves to birth parents through this book.)

I'm glad to say all the hard work is behind us. However, the emotional roller coaster is only just beginning. So many ifs...Thank you again for your support through this process. I just don't feel like I can say it enough times!! We love all of you!!!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Homestudy complete, office interview here we come!

Yesterday Kristin from Gladney came to our house to meet with us. We spent most of Sunday cleaning. She told us the meeting would last about an hour. I think it took 40 minutes. She just wanted to know things like where the closest fire department is located, closest police department (we laughed and said - uh, right here), closest schools, and closest hospital. We took her on a 40 second tour of our house. Showed her our fire extinguisher. Then she asked if we had any firearms in the house. We both looked at each other and laughed. Then we had to name of each one. That was about a half a page. Of all of our guns, we only have 1 that comes with a locking mechanism. Hmmmm.... We have to get a safe, which we were already in the market for one. Our neighbors are selling us one for a steal! Yeah! She taught us how to baby proof the house. She also told us the wait will be 12 to 15 months once we are 100% approved which will be in about a month. I'm praying and keeping my fingers crossed that we get our baby by Christmas 2010!

Monday is our office interview were we will get down to the nitty gritty of making hard decisions about what we are willing to accept in a birthmother, who will be our baby's guardian if something should happen to us, how we plan to raise the baby, etc. I'm not too nervous. Our plan is to just be ourselves and be honest.

Thank you so much to all of you that read my blog and are supporting us through this journey!!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Surprise party for MIL!

B and I few to New Orleans Friday morning b/c B's dad was throwing B's mom a surprise b-day party. My MIL (mother-in-law) and I have been talking on the phone almost everyday for the last 2 weeks b/c of all the adoption and family updates. It's been so hard not to accidentally spill the beans. Everyone kept the party a surprise, even Grandpa! MIL came in the restaurant thinking she was walking in on a party for someone else. Her sister had to tell her the party was in her honor. B and I were hiding in the back, so she was extra surprised we stepped out. She couldn't quit crying and was in shock most of the night b/c FIL had NEVER kept a secret from her before. We had a blast and enjoyed hearing stories from each family member about MIL. We have to fly back home this evening. Normally we only get to come to NO, LA at X-mas. It was great to eat some great seafood, visit Grandpa, and see the family on our whirlwind trip.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

More Application Update Info!!

Jennifer is our office interview lady. We meet with her Oct 12 at 9am - early afternoon. What a long interview!!

Kristin is the case worker that will be with us until we get our baby. She's probably coming to our house for the homestudy Oct 7!!! EEEEEEE We have major cleaning to do!!!

Keep your fingers crossed for us.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Best email ever!

Just received this email from our application processor!!

"I wanted to let you know that your home study has been assigned. You will be hearing from one of our caseworkers, Kristin, within the next couple of weeks or so to schedule your home visit. Your caseworker here at Gladney, Jennifer, will also contact you within that same time frame to schedule your office interviews. Just send the few remaining items for your file to my attention.
Thanks so much!" - Vicki

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Office Visit and Homestudy request is in!

I heard from our application processor. She said she is submitting a request on our behalf for our agency office visit and homestudy!! I feel like the ball is really starting to roll now!! What great news for the weekend!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

More application papers sent and big fat check!

I sent every piece of paper I could possible send right now to the agency. Oh yeah, I had to include the first 25% too + 2000 for the homestudy/post-placement visits. Ridiculousness!!! Hopefully the homestudy will take place in October!! We are on our way, slowly but surely!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Application incomplete

I got an email from the agency letting me know all the things we still need to submit - GRRRRR! It wasn't a horrible list, but it was long enough. I'm giving us two more weeks to get it all done. I don't want to put off completing the app any longer!

School is finally getting better for those of you know what's going on. I had a really great day today. Yah!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Application submitted

Brandt put our application in the mail today! Yay! Now, we just sit and wait for them to say, "You ppl seem OK. Give us a lot of money and wait another year." No. I'm just kidding, but there is some truth in it! We are waiting for the agency to let us know when we need to come back for our interview and at that time we will put down 25% + 1500 for the homestudy. Then they will come to our house to interview us to get to know us better, make sure we love each other, and talk about how we plan to raise our kids and stuff. Hopefully our homestudy will happen in October or definitely by November!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

My adoption bloggers get matched!

Maru and Fico from Adoption Journey received a call one day from their social worker saying a baby had been born and to come and get her!!! They waited one year and one month. Luckily for them they got the room ready this summer. It's so cute and sassy! - I'm so excited for you guys!!!

Wendy and Steve from Our Story: Our Journey to Adoption received "the call" that they had been link with a birthmom this past August (I believe). She's due in September. They had 5 weeks notice!! Their baby should be on its way very soon!!

Congrats to you both!


B and I are sending our application Tuesday - as soon as I finish typing my autobiography!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Brief update and a moment to vent

We have not submitted our application yet, but it's mostly done. I hope to have it mailed by the end of the week. That's the goal anyway! After that, we have to go back to the agency for an interview. Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Just have to get out my frustrations really quick...

I'm SOOO sick of everybody giving me their two cents about where their friend's cousin adopted his/her baby and why we should look into it. I don't care!!! I tell people up-front that we are going with the agency my husband was adopted from, and yet they still ask if we have looked into their friend's cousin's agency. Hello??? WE ARE GOING WITH THE AGENCY FROM WHICH MY HUSBAND WAS ADOPTED!! I thought this was a no brainer, but I guess I was wrong.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Reality Check

We finally had our adoption orientation at the Gladney Center for Adoption. It's such a beautiful facility. There were about twenty other couples there with us from many different states. The majority were from Houston and Dallas, but three couples were from New York! There were also couples from Louisiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Colorado. The couple from Louisiana was at our table, and we became very close with them before the day was over. We had quite a bit in common with them with the main thing being she and Brandt are both Gladney adoptees. We thought that was really cool. We have their contact information to stay in touch throughout the adoption process.

Reality check...

I guess I thought the whole process was not going to take that long, since we were preliminary accepted so quickly. Not the case. It seems to take 3-4 months to apply, be approved and complete the homestudy. After that, it's a waiting game and no one can give us an estimated time. It seems the average wait time after approval is at least one year. They did not sugar-coat anything. They were upfront and honest, which we appreciated but frustrated us at the same time. They currently have 99 waiting parents +21 at orientation and had about 119 adoptions last year. They will have more orientations before the year is over. Competition is stiff. We did get to meet 3 birthmoms who gave each us some advice. The best advice was to make your profile book stand out by showing who you really are and don't make your profile book generic to appeal to everyone. If it's generic, it's going to get overlooked. The girls were very sweet, and the one who had already given birth was really funny. The application book is not too long. We have most of it done. We have 30 days to turn it in if we want the $300 fee to apply towards our agency fees. We are trying to stay on the ball. After applying, the next step is the homestudy!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

New Paintings




Now that my summer off is drawing to a close, I figured I'd better get on the ball to create some personal artwork. I began and finished these two paintings today. They are 11x14. I totally copied the idea from somebody else. It was so cute! How could I not be inspired to create my own? I'm actually putting these in my classroom with the hopes to spark some interesting conversations.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Orientation is almost here!

I've been patiently waiting for over a month now to attend our adoption orientation. Just one more week, and it will be here! We've been tossing some baby names around. I'm not ready to say just yet. I don't want to get too far ahead of myself. I've been looking into baby room decor. Since I will want to decorate before we know if we are getting a girl or boy (and a birthmom can change her mind at any point before giving birth and up to 48 hrs after giving birth), I've narrowed the room decor down to jungle/animals or colorful unisex prints. I created a Tumblr blog to house all the baby pics of things I (we) like until we decide. Check it out when you get a chance. I haven't looked at much furniture-can't decide on white or light wood. Any thoughts??

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Final Version of Painting


Thought you guys might be interested in the final version of the painting that my chiropractor has commissioned me to do!!

Our House




I'm trying to plan ahead by taking some pictures of the outside of our house for the scrapbook we will have to turn in to the agency. I waited for a day that the harvested corn husks (from the field behind our house) were not making our yard look completely trashy. If you click on the pics to enlarge, the trash looking stuff is actually shredded corn husks :-) I was also waiting for a day that the clouds were looking really awesome! As a photographer, I could not just take any ordinary pictures on any ordinary day. The sun and the clouds had to be just right! I can't do anything to enhance the house, so I'll just enhance the pic with cool and pretty clouds!

Our house is 3bed/2bath and already too small for the two of us! My husband's job requires us to live in this specific county. We hope to be transferred by next Feb-May to a more metropolitan area (where we will buy a house and have restaurants and grocery stores out the wazoo). If we don't get to transfer in 2010, we will have to stay put and try again for a transfer in 2011 :-(

Featured here is the front of our house, our front yard and fenced-in back yard area. We also have a big side yard area that can sort of been seen in the first pic.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Being Productive


My chiropractor has commissioned me to do a piece for his office. I was eager to accept (two months ago). I put it off all summer thinking it would only take me a couple of days. I'm now seven hours into the project and about half way done. I told him I would have it finished by the end of July. Thank goodness I started this week!!

Wednesday - spent 1 hr drawing the outline
Thursday - spent 3 hrs painting and realized I have not painted in about 4 or 5 years!! It was way harder than I remember!
Friday - have spent 3 1/2 hrs painting thus far...still plan to paint a few more hours

I feel very productive, since I haven't done crap all summer. My hubby gets frustrated b/c I lay on the couch all day. I can't help it I have the best job in the world that allows me to have 2 1/2 months off!!

Let me know what you guys think so far (remember-it's not finished yet)!!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Bone Scan RESULTS & Agency Update

I was told by x-ray tech that the Dr.'s office would call me. Of course that didn't happen. I called and left a message this morning. The nurse just called and said everything is perfectly normal!!! Yah!!! No new meds to take. I'm so relieved. Now, I just need to go to the store and get some Calcium+Vitamin D! Shew!!

Agency Update - They are supposed to be sending an information packet about orientation and some other things. Been patiently waiting since last week for it. If I don't get anything by Saturday, I'm emailing them my questions!

Out of all the info packets I've received from other agencies, it looks like we have to take pictures of the outside of our house. I hate this, because this is a house we are just renting until we decide where we want to live permanently. The house looks really small, and the fenced-in yard area is very small. Don't want to be judged by a birthmom that our house is too small. A silly worry I know, but it's still in the back of my mind.

Have a great weekend everybody!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Bone Scan

I finally went in for a bone scan today. I was supposed to have it done in April but completely forgot about the appointment till three days later. The clinic didn't call to remind me, and it wasn't at a place I usually see a doctor. A bone scan is a high tech x-ray machine that can see the density of one's bones. Because I'm going through early menopause, there's a chance I may have suffered some bone loss. I was able to peek at the image results, and they looked fine to me. What do I know :-) The doc should call me tomorrow to let me know the results. Before I went in for the scan, I had to fill out a sheet of paperwork. Only old ladies are supposed to get bone scans, I had to answer questions about osteoporosis and when did I start menopause. It wasn't too painful to answer, but I had put it past me already. It did burst my bubble a little...

Monday, July 6, 2009

Inspirational Adoption Blogs

My new addiction is adoption blogs. There are tons out there, but these are the three I'm following. Each blog has tons more adoption blogs. Enjoy!

1. Grace Comes by Hearing - Tracey is truly and inspiration. She's a teacher too :-)

2. Waiting...our adoption journey - Jennifer has a really cute story too

3. Adoption Journey - Maru and Fico are in the middle of their journey. I'll get to read about "The Call" when it happens - very exciting!!

4. Production, Not Reproduction - A mother's blog about her two domestic adoptions as well as other good adoption info.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

BLOGROLL ~ Production, Not Reproduction | A blog about open adoption

BLOGROLL ~ Production, Not Reproduction | A blog about open adoption

Open adoption is quite the norm these days. Trying to find as much info as possible. Lots of Open Adoption Bloggers out there - very encouraging!! I've listed several in my Blog List thingy :0)

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Texas Adoption Agencies

For any woman/man/couple who may come across my blog in the future:

Here is a list of other adoption agencies we were considering.

Gladney Center for Adoption (our #1 choice) - Ft. Worth, TX

Adoption Advocates, Inc. - Austin, TX

Adoption Angels, Inc. - San Antonio, TX

Adoption Covenant - Lubbock, TX

Thursday, July 2, 2009

BEST NEWS EVER!!!

I just got the most amazing news from our #1 choice in adoption agencies!! They accepted our preliminary application!!! This means WE ARE IN!!!! There is a very small chance that it could be rejected but only if they find out we lied on the prelim app (which we didn't). I was crying when I got off the phone, and my hope and dream of being a mom was restored. Brandt was like, "What's wrong?" I told him our great news, and we hugged for a long time. It really was one of the happiest moments of my life. I'd say it was equivalent to getting a + on a pregnancy test!! Oh my gosh! I'm so excited and giddy and just relieved.

Thank you so much to all of you who have been praying for us!! It helped!

Next step: Orientation - Friday, August 14th (That seems so far away!!)

I'm sitting on cloud nine right now.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Family Photo Time


Brandt and I had our serious discussion this weekend. After I told him about the painful and thick progesterone shots, he felt adoption was also the best choice for us. I reminded him that from the beginning we said that we didn't want me on hormone shots.

The hard part now is finding a good agency. We are definitely going with the Edna Gladney Center in the DFW area. It's the same place my in-laws adopted Brandt. There's an agency in Houston we are looking into as well as in San Antonio.

Most agencies need you to supply a recent family photo. I realized we didn't have a good picture of just us (where we aren't being silly or wearing sunglasses). I got us all dressed up and put us in the front yard. I'd say the results were not too shabby!

The adoption process is pretty lengthy. Most agencies have you do a preliminary application. If you pass that step, then you get the real application which is probably about 30 pages and requires a lot of references and letters of recommendation. We will also have to have a Home Study completed by a social worker. After all of that, you sit and wait to find out if your application is accepted. If you are accepted, then you are guaranteed a baby. Then you sit and wait some more till they match you with a baby. We are looking at a two-year process here!! :-( I guess it's a good thing we are starting now! Maybe I'll get a baby for my 30th birthday!! Gosh that seems so far away. Don't go anywhere, folks! Sit back and enjoy the ride. It's going to be a dizzy winding road to get our baby!!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Enlightenment

I've been struggling now for two weeks on which decision is the right decision for us. Since Brandt and I are split on which path to take, everyone keeps saying pray about it. I've been praying and praying with no clarity.

I got the opportunity to spend some time with my in-laws on Monday and Tuesday. Brandt and I have always been pretty close with them. I've known them almost as long as I've known Brandt. I got to meet them when Brandt and I were "just friends" and not exclusively dating. We go way back. I had talked with them about Brandt's adoption right after we were married, since Brandt never cared to share about it (and I never asked). I figured if he wanted to talk about it he would. My impression was that he never even thought about his adoption. The boy thinks he's Cajun b/c his parents are from New Orleans :-) His parents think the same thing as me - he just forgets he's adopted. Gilbert and Tonnette are his parents as far as he is concerned. Anywho, back to Monday...we played catch-up on a few things, and I finally brought up the big pink elephant in the room. I told them that I just had no idea what we were going to do about making a decision b/c we are split. My in-laws started telling me more in depth info about the place they adopted Brandt from - Edna Gladney. They had told me a few things several years back, but now they were telling me more important and specific information. Right away I knew that's the route I wanted to go for sure. The Gladney Center for Adoption in Fort Worth, TX is a home for unwed mothers. I had no idea! They take care of the moms, provide schooling/take them to school (not sure which), make sure they are taking care of prenatal things, etc. That really warmed my heart and made the decision so clear. The application process is pretty lengthy, but once you are in - you're in! I have not been able to share my excitement with Brandt, b/c he's still out of town. I tried bringing it up in a phone conversation, but he said he wanted to wait. I'm anxiously awaiting his arrival today!!

I also found a woman's blog called My POF Journey about her IVF w/egg donor experience. The progesterone shots she had to take were painful and thick like peanut butter - gross! She said her butt was all lumpy from them - NO THANKS! The one thing Brandt and I don't want me to have to do is take all the hormone shots. That was the icing on the cake that adoption is the right choice for me. Her IVF ended in success (barely), but it's not a guarantee at all. I have to see what Brandt's reasons are for wanting to do the IVF. Hopefully by next week we will take the first step in which ever route is our final decision. Keep your fingers crossed and pray, pray, pray for us!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

2nd Opinion

So going to the herbalist didn't do much except get me to spot a little and maybe make my body a little healthier, and my OBGYN was a complete jerk. He was completely insensitive every time I talked to him. My sister-in-law had heard about a local fertility specialist who was working miracles. I finally made an appointment, because I just could not go back to my regular OBGYN. Unfortunately, he gave the same sad news I had already heard about not being able to use my own eggs, but he put it in such a way that made me feel better. He was very understanding and explained things we didn't completely understand from the other doc.

New things we learned:
1. IVF w/egg donor has about an 80% success rate (although my research shows that's not the case in ever clinic)
2. Women begin with 7 million eggs inside their mothers' wombs. When we are actually born, we only have 1 million. When we begin our periods, we only have about 300,000 eggs. It is at this point that our bodies begin to put the breaks on the huge dumping of eggs, and we only actually end up releasing 400-500 eggs in our lifetime.
3. Apparently, my body never put the breaks on the dumping of eggs :-( Stupid body!
4. Because my FSH (follicle stimulating hormone-determines how many eggs a woman has) is ridiculously high (245 in January-normal is around 10-12), the new doc says my body is trying really, really hard to try to get any follicles that might still be in my body. Thus, I don't want to be on birth control - so quit asking me that docs!
5. I have a 5% chance of still producing that one last follicle that might still be there, so why on earth would I get back on birth control???? The new doc finally understood why I don't want to be on BC right now. I eventually will though b/c it contains more estrogen that estrogen HRT (hormone replacement therapy) pills.

Now, we are stuck deciding if we want to adopt or if we want to try to find an egg donor and do IVF (in vitro fertilization).

I've been wanting to look into adoption since we got our bad news the first time around in January. Now that the new doctor gave us more info about the IVF thing, Brandt seems to leaning more towards that decision. I would rather pay all the money we're going to pay and have a sure thing (adoption) instead of paying a lot of money for a maybe (IVF w/egg donor).

Decisions, decisions...

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Infertility

This journey began August 2007 when I finally convinced my hubby to start a family. I was 26 and he was 27. We figured it would be no problem, because no other women in my close family have had any fertility issues. Of course, this was not the case for us.

One of the worst things that happened to us was getting a false-positive on a pregnancy blood test. I had already taken 5 at-home tests that said no, but I was experiencing a few symptoms of pregnancy. A friend convinced me to seek a blood test to be sure. We got the news it was positive and began telling everyone!! We were so excited and thrilled. I scheduled my 9-week ultrasound and thought I was all set. I went shopping with my mom and childhood best friend to shop for maternity clothes. The best friend was about 3 months pregnant at this time. We thought we would experience motherhood together.

My 9-week appt finally came around (Oct 07) and by this time I had taken 7 pregnancy tests - all of which were still saying no. By this time, I felt more like I was going through menopause than pregnancy. The doc told me that it was very unlikely that I was pregnant. He was right. We did the ultrasound and were completely crushed. The doctor left the room so we could have a moment alone. I sobbed and sobbed. We were given the option to be on Clomid but that 1% chance of triplets scared the ba-Jesus out of us. We opted to just keep trying on our own.

My cycles were so random and spread apart. I was buying pregnancy tests out the ying-yang and getting no where. I would get really upset for a week or two then finally return to myself. People keep saying, "It will happen when you quit trying." How the hell do you quit thinking about it and quit trying??? Not possible!!

Another year passes with no success and no more periods. I had my last period Aug 08. By Jan 09 my hot flashes and night sweats were so bad that I could bear them no more. Had some blood work done and then wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am I'm diagnosed with Premature Ovarian Failure - and recently found a new doc that calls it Premature Ovarian Inefficiency. They both suck and sound horrible! Basically, I have no more eggs and will never be able to get pregnant using my own eggs. I find all of this out while I'm on my conference period by phone! The doc didn't even have the decency to call me into his office with my husband to share the news. When my 4th period class came in, I had to put on a "happy" face for them. They all knew I had been crying and knew something was wrong. I couldn't exactly share my new-found infertility issue with 14 year-olds and expect them to be able to relate or understand. They were very sweet though. I had a great support team in my husband, family and friends waiting at home.

A very close and dear friend (and her mom) convinced me to see an herbalist. He's worked miracles in women who were told they couldn't get pregnant. I went for 3 months spent a few thousand $ but had no success. More frustration and more sadness. A dizzy and winding road to have a bit of happiness and completeness.