Personal

Goodbye House | Personal | Saying Goodbye and Starting Anew

There’s something about leaving a home when you’ve experienced loss within it. This place. This little 400 plus square foot apartment has become such a safe haven. A place where I hold my most intimate moments. A place where I’ve become more introverted than I ever thought possible. A place where I’ve found comfort and rest. A place of mourning and a place for celebration. We said goodbye to our second baby in this home. And we welcomed our third (first living) here as well. We faced the reality of loosing our third for just shy of 4 months, here. Right on the couch which is where I stayed, day and occasional night, praying she would grow just one more day. Just me more often than not, me and this place, and all my thoughts. It’s a time I still don’t think I’ve come to grips with. I don’t know if I ever will. This place. We’ve turned it into a home. Even though it’s just a tiny building and not worth what we’ve paid, Ive loved picking things out for it, putting it together, making it comfortable and quaint. The perfect mix of cottage eclectic and costal. Here we are with our almost 10 month old, ready for more space and I’m struggling to say goodbye. So silly, I know but this place we truly made a home unlike any place, since WA, 10 years ago. Praying there will not be a hat trick of losses in the next place and hopeful for nothing but more happy moments of raising our daughter together, and friends and family visiting. Goodbye sweet home. May you bless the ones who enter you in the future as you have us.

Personal Post | What helped me get pregnant.

My friend got pregnant one month after being off birth control.

This doctors amazing, so many people have gotten pregnant after seeing him.

The moment I started the whole 30 I got pregnant.

Maca root I swear was the reason I got pregnant.

I just look at my husband and I get pregnant.

Ivf worked on the first try.

We started looking into adoption and got pregnant.

You name it, I thought I’d heard it all. Most without asking. It was often hurtful, hopeless and obnoxious but I tried almost every suggestion shortly after it was suggested. My story is a tired one. A weary one, but one that ends with a real life dolly in my arms, my dolly.

It started when I was 23 in Maui. I got off birth control that I was on for 6 years. My periods started to be irregular so I thought I was pregnant every month. Rather my heart dropped further and further down my chest with negative after negative test.

I started to store a few things away in my hope chest for our someday baby. I was always convinced I was going to have a girl because that’s all Chris ever talked about regarding children.

I always had a normal pap and regular periods with birth control so I thought we’d just keep trying for a while before I’d see an OB.

Chris and I had a little vacation that took us to Sequoia, Yosemite and Six Flags. I had the most heavy period and the most painful cramps I’d ever had. I neglected going to the doctor for a while. Then one day at work I was curled up on the bathroom floor holding back screams miscarrying right there. We’d tried for a baby for 2 years at this point. So this hit excruciatingly hard. This was before everyone talked about their miscarriage. This is before people were more forward on Facebook or social media about “such” things. Chris was working full time and I dove into my work like never before. Of course I had to be working as a stylist for pregnant women at a "Pea in a Pod" then. I had to go back to work and put on a smile and be happy for every expecting women that came through that door, but somehow that was easier than “dealing”with my emotions at home. Certain friends drifted off as they didn’t know how to talk to me so they just didn’t. Family called less and or would avoid any conversation that surrounded loosing our baby. It was uncomfortable. It was touchy. It was awkward. So due to shoving every ache deep inside, our marriage hit an all time low before it started healing again. Once Chris and I were in a good place we started to try again. We went to a doctor who didn’t care. You thought he did and then the next time you saw him it was like you’d never met before. Why I let that go on for a couple years I’ll never know. He wanted to push IVF immediately instead of trying to figure out why I wasn’t getting pregnant. He didn’t ask questions so I didn’t know what to bring up or ask for. He gave me rounds of clomid even though he knew my periods weren’t consistent and without knowing if my husband was able to get me pregnant. He gave me ultrasounds and never knew what he saw, the response was different each time. He gave me a surgery to remove fibroids that were in the wall of my uterus that he couldn’t remove. He didn’t follow up with my husband after the surgery. I had asked him about thyroid or PCOS but never knew to demand blood work checking it.

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Then there was the fertility center. The doctor was insensitive, rude and unclear. He left me waiting in the room with a gown on for almost an hour as he said he would be right back. He didn’t come back. On the FIRst visit. The weeks after, we did all the tests that were initially required. Then there was the dye test to see if my tubes were blocked. Right away my body rejected the tools and the doctor stopped and said that had never happened before, that we have to stop, he’ll give me a refund and I’ll have to reschedule. At this point I was officially done. Rightfully so. Done trying for a while. Maybe completely. Done with western medicine. Done with my OB. Done with the fertility center. Just done.

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Up to this point most people hadn’t known about my miscarriage. I kept my personal life and professional life separate. I was also done holding it all in. I finally shared a bit of my struggle and the responses were overwhelming. Mostly it opened up opportunities for people to share with me. Their experiences. Their successes. Their hardships. It also opened up a whole lot of love. People extending their aches for us. People offering to pray and check in. People offering to be there. So we had tabled “trying” and then the most amazing encounters and information arose. I was still very touchy about it all so anyone to share anything with me, I was very hesitant to receive or to continue the conversations, but rather would change the subject. My friend Cindy started talking with me about eating healthy, purifying my diet, how eating certain seeds has been known to help, certain oils, and that I really should see this herbalist at Pharmca in La Jolla. She even offered to go with me. At this time I had probably had my period for about 4 months, non-stop heavy. If I sneezed I’d go through pants. I’d spend as much money on pads, tampons and toilet paper as groceries themselves. I went through towels and sheets nightly. You can only imagine how this impacted any kind of “trying”. I would bleed for 3-4 months and then go 3-4 without a period so there was no way to know when I was ovulating. Western medicine didn’t help so I just learned to deal. Until Cindy. I went with her to Pharmca to talk to this elderly woman that was educated in both western and eastern medicine, being that she was a nurse for a bulk of her life.

First. She listened. She heard my story. She heard my hopelessness. Second. She asked the right questions...do you have cold feet? Do you have fuzzies on your face and belly button? She pulled my eyelid down and determined I was extremely anemic. And then she made suggestions based on my irregular periods and potential fibroids. She treated me for a weak thyroid, iron deficiency and of course my irregular cycle with help for fertility. She gave me evening primrose oil, thyrofem, vit D3, Chaste tree berry, iron, slow flow and a prenatal vitamin. I had also purchased progressence from an EO seller. She also told me never to use a tampon again.

Within one month of taking these and applying the oil I had my first normal 5-6 day period light to heavy to light. Praise the Lord. I was finally regulating which meant I had a shot of getting pregnant, especially since I had been pregnant before.

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A few months after this a client of mine pressed about my fertility journey. I say pressed because I really didn’t want to hear what she had to share and I really didn’t want to share my hardships. For some reason that day I accepted her information. See, she is a nurse and tried to get pregnant but couldn’t....until she saw this acupuncturist. I listened, I got the guys name and then tabled it.

A few months after this I mentally had gotten to the place of I’m ready to see the acupuncturist but I’m seeing him for my health first. If I happen to get pregnant wonderful, but I’m going to do this till the end of the year and then will go back to the fertility clinic. We had also contacted adoption agencies at this time as well, and I was reading up on it late into the evenings, dreaming of mothering a child anyway I’m able.

So I made the first appointment. I felt so good about it. I felt listened to, understood, and positive that he was going to be able to help me. Justin has his doctorate in acupuncture and is an herbalist as well! He had several ideas for different ways I could get healthy to have a normalized cycle and get pregnant naturally.

I started the whole 30 but still had a whole grain piece of toast as it’s good for the reproductive system. I cooked all my food. Everything with the exception of fruit was cooked. I didn’t have any iced drinks. I had only filtered water, organic meats and veggies. I even switched my shampoo and conditioner to more natural products. I drank the tea Justin made up for me that was specific to my issues, twice a day. I took all my supplements including cod liver oil. I woke up early and went to bed early. I sat down to eat and digest my food. I stopped screen time after 8. I switched my chemicals and soap to something more natural. I had massage therapy once a month and I did accupunture twice a week to start and I was going to Church again. This was a LOT but to me it seemed a small price to pay instead of going through all that is included with IVF.

Two months in and I got pregnant. Now this would have been a viable pregnancy if it weren’t for me getting cat scratch fever. I had a black vein going up my arm and shoulder just inches from my heart. I went into the doctor just in time as I would have had an infected heart shortly after and died. So liquid antibiotics were the only way to counter this. Due to my infection my breast’s were inflamed and sore as my lymph nodes were fighting infection, and my temperature was low as my body was working so hard to grow a baby and fight infection so the symptoms were masking the fact that I was pregnant, and I was pretty far along at that. I miscarried weeks after. This is a story for another day. I need you to know this is the most random situation. It literally was so completely unpredictable and had nothing to do with anything I was doing to get pregnant.

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About a month after loosing our second child I went back to acupuncture. I wasn’t really taking the herbs religiously. I had added more sugar to my diet and wasn’t as religious about eating healthy. I did start taking a probiotic. 4 months after my miscarriage I got my first period since. It was on that first cycle I got pregnant with Jade. Naturally. Who would think after 6 years of trying and doing things backwards that I’d get pregnant naturally? I saw this 100% God orchestrated. I continued acupuncture, taking vitamin d3, cod liver oil, probiotic, chaste tree berry and a prenatal until 12 weeks and then just the d3, cod Liver oil and prenatal until I had to go on bed rest, then the acupuncture had to stop. It not only helped me in my journey of becoming a mother but it was my most peaceful “for me” hour in the week. Time for me to truly emote. Time to pray for my loved ones. For my health. For my future baby. It was exactly what I needed. When one hears about it there’s often hesitation, fear of pain, anxiety, etc. Let me clear things up for you. It’s not painful. It’s peaceful. It’s helpful and such an incredible God-send. If anything try it for 6 months. Give it a timeline and if it doesn’t work for you at least you tried. For me I wanted to try just about anything before IVF. So if you want to do the same it won’t hurt and can only help. Just do your research on who you see. Jade is my success story. Forget my rewards and accolades in work although for those I’m grateful. My true pride and joy from patience, hard work and trial is my sweet baby girl. My rainbow. My little bird. I pray you’ll have the same reward that you can boast about one day, if you ache for parenthood, no matter how or when you get that little one. Children are the greatest gift. Please. Ask me any questions any time, but know this is my story. No two situations are alike but rather similar. If you are in SD and want the name of my acupuncturist and of the doctors to avoid I’m happy to share that info with you, just let me know!

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Love and light.

Katherine

{Images by Tracy VanDam Fotographie}