Today I want to introduce you to this sweet couple. This is my sweet friend katie & her husband Ben. We've known each other for more than 15 years & today I want them to share their story with you.
Ben and I met in 2003 on a church trip and were high school sweethearts! I knew when I laid my eyes on him I wanted to marry him. He is such a Christ loving, sweet, kind, compassionate, caring, loving, (and hot!!) man, him playing the guitar was icing on the cake. We dated all thru high school (which was a dream come true!). Then in 2007 we got married! I was 19 and he was 21, it was my DREAM to get married at such a young age. We knew we were the ones for each other. Then in 2008, we began to start “trying”
I knew we would have problems as I have never had a 'regular' period. What's regular anyway? Right? Anywho, we tried by ourselves for about 6 months and I couldn’t take it ANYMORE! (Might I add, I am extremely Type A and want what I want, when I want) We decided to go to the OB. I made the appointment and went to see my sweet Dr. She told me 'Oh Hunny, you are only 20; I can get you pregnant in 6 months.' I JUMPED FOR JOY! So 6 mos (to the day) I went back. I saw my ‘oh so sweet’ Dr again and said 'it's been 6 months'. We were trying Birth Control for those 6 months (which doesn’t that kind of seem like defeating the purpose?). So we did a Vaginal Ultrasound and found out I had the 'string of pearls' (layers of cysts covering ovaries) on both ovaries.... so she sent me for more testing. This is when I found out I had PCOS. (For more info on that, please see http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001408/ ). I did EXTREME research and freaked myself out. I mean CYSTS ON MY OVARIES?!?! OVARIAN DRILLING?!?! CHANCE OF NOT GETTING PREGNANT??! OVARIAN CANCER?!?! GENETIC?!?!AAAGGGGHHHH I literally FREAKED, as I looked at worst case scenario.
My Dr and I decided it was time for my Husband and I to transfer to a Reproduction Endocrinologist. We prayed and prayed asking God for direction. Clinging to 'Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.' (Philippians 4:6-7)
We decided on a RE, and made an appointment to meet with him. Ben wouldn’t be able to wiggle his way out of this appointment! We met with the Dr. and did another VU and did more glucose testing and again determined I had PCOS (of course to an extreme measure). He was so sweet and sat with us while I cried hysterically. All I could think of was never getting pregnant, never being able to give B the family he wants/deserves. Again, he told us 'I can get you pregnant in 6 months.' (Long story short) we tried Birth Control (again), Glucophage, Provera, Clomid, Byetta Pen, etc (all multiple times) with NO SUCCESS. A year later we decided to take a break. I couldn't handle the emotional stress and ALL THE FREAKING PILLS AND SHOTS any longer! I remember one night (one of many) laying in my bathroom floor sick (thanks clomid), crying my eyes out. I couldn’t take this anymore. Was this our future? Pills, shots several times a day, timing intercourse, emotional roller coasters, being sick, being miserable, and being depressed? TRYING to cling to hope? Would there be an end?
This is when I searched for a Support Group. Lo and behold, there are VERY few in Jax. Crazy, I know! Why when there are approximately 6.7 million women (in the U.S.) who are dealing with Infertility are we not booming with Support Group's? So, I visited several, not one did I come away feeling encouraged. And that is SAD. When I picture a Support Group, I picture leaving HAPPY and ENCOURAGED knowing that we will eventually come thru this (pending God's plan). So I decided to take this challenge and run with it (mainly to distract myself), using Facebook as a tool. I put on FB 'I am infertile and need women to talk to'. You would NOT believe the number of people that commented or messaged me saying they went (or are going) thru this too! I was SHOCKED! I was expecting one, maybe two responses. It was truly shocking.
So we decided to meet one night at Panera, that's where it all started. It was amazing. It was a great time of talking, crying, loving, encouraging and most of all praying. It was so amazing to know women who are dealing with the same sadness,hurt,shamefulness,emptiness as me! Who knew?! Anyway, I say all that to say this. If you are going thru Infertility (primary or secondary) don't be the 60% who stay 'hush hush' about this. SAY SOMETHING. It really helps to be apart of a group where you can come and be encouraged and in return encourage others.
Trust me, I know how much INFERTILITY SUCKS! I am praying for every woman/man/couple who is dealing with Infertility. I am praying for God's plan and will for your life.
In 2011 we decided to start praying about Adoption. It wasn’t something that was on the “front burner” for us.. But after many, many prayers (and tears) God revealed a path to us of adoption. We continued praying about even where to start. So I went to Google. I learned that there were more than 650,000 children in foster care, that there are 1.5 million adopted children in the United States, over 2% of all U.S. children, that 1 in 5 pregnancies (in U.S.) end in Abortion, 7,000 abortions every year in Jacksonville. I was traumatized to say the least. I knew God pointed us in this direction for a reason. We then jumped on the phone calling everyone we knew who has adopted to get info. We turned to the Florida Baptist Children’s Home . We started our MAPP training and got licensed with them. We are currently waiting for a Birth Family to “choose” us. In the meantime, we are in the process of getting ‘licensed’ with the State of Florida, as well as reaching out to Attorneys to find the best fit for us. There are about 14,000 children in foster care in Florida, about 500 of those children waiting to be adopted are without identified families. There are so many children waiting to be adopted, unfortunately not everyone has the “means” to adopt. The National average cost of Adoptions in Fl range from $5,000-$30,000+. It’s quite sad how much an Adoption can cost.
We are anxious/excited/nervous about this road God is leading us on. We are so very thankful for HIS peace and comfort and the knowledge that HE has a plan and knows the end result. We RELY on what Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
If you feel the need to want to help Katie & Ben with their adoption please let me know or donate here.