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Today, a Wednesday, seemed like the perfect day to officially share the news of our pregnancy on the blog!

Wednesdays are a big deal in our house right now. Each Wednesday marks the start of a new week in our baby’s life, all of our OB appointments have been on Wednesdays, and today happens to be not only the half way point in my pregnancy, but also our 5 year anniversary of our engagement! So really, how could we let today pass without finally blogging about our journey so far?

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We announced the news when I was 12 weeks pregnant, and I think Michael did the best job telling our story. For those that have struggled with or are currently struggling with infertility, I wanted to make sure his words made it to the blog. We’ve walked in your shoes and we know how low the lows can be – so if our experience can be the least bit encouraging to others, we want to share it!

I’ll leave the rest to Michael (for those that have read this before on Facebook – feel free to scroll down to read baby updates!) –

“Bri and I are HAVING A BABY!!! Today was our 12th week ultrasound and seeing and hearing our baby had us both crying. God is incredible.

I know for some this next part might be TMI, so you can stop reading here if you’d like. However, I’m sharing our entire story as I hope it can be an encouragement to anyone else going through a similar situation. Sometimes there’s a happy ending.

For the past 3+ years, we’ve been trying to have a baby. Even before we got married, Bri and I knew we wanted to start a family right away. After the first year of nothing happening, we decided to visit the doctor to see if there was something wrong. We found out that infertility issues are far more common than you would think (1 in 8 couples). Luckily, what we were going through was treatable and didn’t mean we couldn’t have a baby – PCOS just makes it a lot harder.

Bri was taking a lot of medicine that seemed like it was helping – but still no positive results. After several months, we were referred to a specialist. Bri was put on a different medicine that we were told helped others get pregnant who were also going through PCOS. Again, time was passing and we still didn’t get a positive result. The doctor recommended IUI (intrauterine insemination). We were told that a young, healthy couple has around a 20% chance of getting pregnant through natural means any given month and that IUI only increases that chance by about 6% – so still pretty low odds that this would work, especially since we’re dealing with PCOS.

In order for us to get ready for the IUI, Bri had to continue taking the medicine as before (to produce follicles) and also had to inject her stomach with hormones (telling her body to release the follicles – “ovulation”). I can’t tell you how hard it was to have to helplessly watch Bri go through this pain without being able to stop it for her. A million times over, I would have taken her place if I could have. She is the strongest person I know – she never once complained while going through it. Finally the day came for the IUI and the procedure went according to plan. We had 1 large and 2 small follicles (Most women usually have 3 or more large follicles after medication). We both left the doctor’s office feeling happy and excited despite everything we had been through physically, emotionally, and financially (this entire process cost a lot of money).

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The two week wait (the time before you can take a pregnancy test without getting skewed results) feels like an eternity. We “googled” every little thing that happened to Bri’s body to see if it was a sign of pregnancy or not – the whole time being super hopeful that it was finally going to work and we could start our family. Then the day came when Bri got her period. This day sucked. It really sucked. We spent the better part of it crying together over having gone through all of this to only have a “big fat no”. Over several weeks, with support and help from our family and friends, we were able to move on. We stopped thinking about it all and just kept going on with our lives.

After about 6 months, we started talking about going back to the doctor. It wasn’t long before we were in and starting the IUI process all over – medicine and shots again… The day came for the procedure and it went as it did before. However, Bri only had 1 large and 1 small follicle – so we didn’t have high hopes for this round. We were in the mindset that it wasn’t going to work and that we would have to go the more expensive and extreme route of IVF after getting a period. I don’t mean for that to sound negative, but going through what we did, it was hard to be happy about it all.

So the two week wait began and we didn’t talk much about it as we were trying to keep our minds focused on anything and everything else. Secretly, I was back to googling everything that Bri mentioned in passing about her body. I started to get my hopes up when some of the symptoms she mentioned were those associated with pregnancy. One night, I was laying awake and praying – praying for peace, comfort, patience, and that God would give us a miracle. The next day at church, our pastor said “today, we’re going to talk about something else. We’re going to talk about miracles”. That very moment I felt such peace about our situation and almost started crying – I knew then that we were pregnant. The two week wait was over and still no period.

It was Sunday night and Bri said she would take a test on Tuesday. However, Monday morning came and I felt her get out of bed and go to the bathroom. I knew she was going to take a test, even though she told me she was going to wait until Tuesday. I sat up in bed and prayed. A couple minutes passed and Bri came around the corner holding a pregnancy test and shaking a little. She said “we’re pregnant” and I jumped out of bed to hug her.
As I said before, today is the start of the 12th week and we got to hear our baby’s heart beat and see him or her kicking and moving around. God it great and has a perfect plan for our lives – We are so thankful for our little miracle. I hope this is an encouragement to anyone else going through the same issues. It happened for us, it can happen for you.”

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I am now 20 weeks and mostly past the nausea of the first semester, although the fatigue still follows me most days. Headaches, heartburn, and excruciating muscle cramps in my back are more common, but I would do it a million times over or take the worst pregnancy symptoms imaginable to meet our precious baby!

At 16 weeks, we found out baby is a BOY! At 17 weeks, we had a gender reveal party for our family and friends (photos of the party coming soon). So far we’ve bought a TON of the cutest little boy outfits!

I started feeling little flutters around 18 weeks. The past few days, I can DEFINITELY feel the kicks and movements! Michael hasn’t been able to feel anything yet, but I have a feeling it won’t be long! At our ultrasound today (the 5th so far), the technician told us she was having a hard time getting the measurements she needed because little man was moving SO much – in fact, she described him as being “in a mosh pit at a rock concert!”

Apparently, so much movement isn’t necessarily a typical thing, but it might be indicative of his personality! She has two boys of her own that moved just as much, and now they’re both energetic and competitive…which means our baby could getting his mama’s competitive spirit!!! Not quite sure how I feel about that yet, haha! Has anyone else had little rockers while pregnant? Does their personality now reflect that at all?

Our next appointment is at 24 weeks, no ultrasound but just a check up. We’ll have 2 more ultrasounds – 1 at 28 weeks and 1 at 38 or 39 weeks. Baby is due January 4th! Can’t wait to meet this little one – what a dream come true!

Oh and for those wondering – little man isn’t affecting any of our current clients! What a blessing for us – I have such a planner’s heart and the Lord took care of that for us! I’ll be taking maternity leave December 5th through the end of March. During that time I’ll be answering e-mails as quickly as possible, but we aren’t planning to shoot until March. We are also fully booked for weddings until fall of 2017!

For anyone that is struggling with infertility right now – we know how you feel, and we’ve walked in your shoes. If we can pray for you or encourage you in any way, please let us know!

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