Sunday, December 28, 2008

New Look

Hello blog world! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and is ready to move into 2009!

I created a new blog look so it could support my 101 list, which I will keep on the left column. Its also going to take me a few days to get all the blogs that I read back onto my page because, yes, I deleted the widget that had them in my layout. Lovely.

On the TTC front, I might have O'd on Christmas. I need another high temp. We'll see tomorrow but I really hope I am now in the 2 WW.

I hope everyone is having a great day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to wish all of my friends a wonderful Christmas!

I got kind of emotional today thinking about how this year turned out for me. I really hoped to be pregnant by the end of this year but even though that didnt happen, I have alot to be thankful for:

1. My mom- diagnosed with uterine cancer but her surgery was 100% successful.
2. Dan- He and I have had the best year of our marriage thus far. We celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary and really found our "groove" when it came to communicating and respecting one another and our relationship
3. My job- I have one, simple as that. I have seen so many people lose their jobs and for me to have one (and one that I like on top of that) makes me so happy
4. My friends- I have made many new friends this year and have continued friendship with people that have always meant alot to me. I have also re-connected with a friend, actually my best friend for many years, and its hard for me to put in words the joy and peace that I feel to have her back in my life.

So, I might not be pregnant but looking back, this year has been awesome. God has blessed me and has blessed many people around me. I am happy its Christmas time because it helps me remember that God loves us so much that he sent his only son to us. Thats the best gift of all!

Merry Christmas, my friends. May God Bless you and yours during this holiday season!

Monday, December 22, 2008

My 101 in 1001 days

When I heard about the 101 things in 1001 days, I knew I had to participate in it. For me, its a way to get my life back. Its a way to quit living with the "what ifs" and "how comes" that are a part of my infertility journey. Instead, Im choosing to focus on what I want to do. Some things are small, some things are larger but I believe that all of them will help me be a better me.

I am posting the list now, although I will be starting it on January 1, 2009. I realize its kind of "New Years Resolution Cliche-ish" but I dont care. If anyone else makes their own list, I cant wait to check it out. I plan to expand my blog to include the completion of the items on my list. So look forward to that :)

Without further adieu, here is my list:



Me
- Take the time to cut and color my hair every 3 months
- Keep a journal
- Make a list of 20 things I like about myself
- Buy a good bra
- Learn European and African geography
- Try 5 new restaurants
- Learn to say “Im sorry” without making excuses
- Quit swearing
- Improve my handwriting
- Keep my car cleaner
- Go see a movie alone
- Get a massage
- Try sushi
- Get a make-up consultation and buy what they suggest
- Write a letter to myself that I can read in 10 years
- Learn how to use chopsticks


Others
- Complete a random act of kindness
- Send a care package to a soldier
- Work at a food bank
- Donate 10 items to charity
- Increase our donation to church
- Have a garage sale and donate all money to charity
- Over tip when I receive extra ordinary service
- Send actual birthday cards to 3 friends per year
- Give 3 “just because” gifts per year
- Write a letter to a store manager after receiving good service
- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity
- Stop at a child’s lemonade stand

Hobbies
- Buy a new camera
- Take a photography class
- Read War and Peace
- Read The Grapes of Wrath
- Read The Bible
- Rent and watch 5 classic movies
- Climb a mountain
- Take a sign language course
- Create a food blog with photos
- Go to a make-your-own-pottery place
- Make homemade greeting cards
- Go white water rafting
- Try a new recipe once a week
- Visit 5 states that I haven’t been to
- See Chris Tomlin in concert
- Bake bread from scratch
- Make spaghetti sauce from scratch
- Buy a sewing machine and learn how to use it

Health
- Run 250 miles a year (about one mile, 5 times a week)
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator when in a building with 5 or less flights
- Buy good running shoes
- Try accupuncture
- Take a yoga class
- Keep a food journal for one month
- Lose 10 lbs
- Quit drinking pop
- Use moisturizer with sunscreen every day
- Eat a fruit or vegetable every day
- Try 3 new fruits or vegetables
- Get a few freckles/moles checked out


With Dan
- Go to a drive-in movie
- Fly a kite together
- Go to NYC together
- Eat dessert Serendipity 3
- Go on a picnic
- Go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Lay on a blanket under the stars
- Build a snow man together
- Go apple picking
- Organize a love scavenger hunt with post-its
- Spend one night a week with no TV
- Watch the sunset or sunrise on a beach (or both!)
- Make a list of why I love Dan and give it to him
- Visit a planetarium
- Complete “The Love Dare”
- Stay at a Bed and Breakfast
- Pray each night together

Family
- Take my grandparents to dinner
- Write letters to my parents
- Learn to make my mom’s brownies
- Learn to make my grandma’s stuffed cabbage
- Find out about my family history and document it
- Go on a trip with my sister
- Go to a HS football game with my grandpa
- Visit my grandma and uncle’s graves
- Send my mom flowers
- Send actual cards at random times to extended family
- Have my sister and brother-in-laws over for game night

House
- Finish bathroom remodel and post before/after pics
- Finish Great Room/Family room remodel and post before/after pics
- Get basement waterproofed and carpeted

Work
- Find a mentor
- Join the Cleveland Claims Association

Environment
- Buy re-usable bags
- Start a compost pile
- Turn water off when brushing teeth
- Make all natural cleaning supplies
- Plant a tree and take care of it
- Plant a full garden and use items from it 3 times a week
- Set up laundry line inside and outside instead of using dryer


The List
- Donate $5 for each goal I do not complete
- When I finish all of the items, make a new list

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Mission Ovulation 2008

Day 26: Ovulation? Still MIA.

Trying my hardest not to scream (or cry, sometimes I want to cry) because I am just frustrated with waiting to ovulate. And although I made jokes about why I am frustrated, the biggest reason is that I am afraid that my body will revert back to its non-ovulating self. Although I have had almost a year of ovulation, why now? *sigh*

Here is a question- I have heard that its common to have an anovulatory cycle once in awhile, but has this happened to any of you girls? And how did it happen? Did you just not ovulate, get a "period" and then move onto a new cycle? Or did you have to go through the Provera/Prometrium route to get things moving.

On a non TTC note, I hope everyone is enjoying the last few days before Christmas! Only 4 more days!

"Life is a succession of lessons, which must be lived to be understood."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Come ON already!

Disclaimer- I know that many people ovulate late into their cycle (if they ovulate at all) so I do not want to disrespect any of my "Late-Ovulation-Pals" I love you girls and hope your ovaries get their stuff in gear soon, too!


Onto my post....

I am so dang irritated this cycle. I have had like 5 + OPK's this month and I am now on CD 23, yet I have not ovulated. Why does this irritate me so much? Well here's my list:

1. I have had to start temping again because I need some way to confirm O. And I dont want to temp. I hate my thermometer, its the devil.

2. It makes me very scared to think about not ovulating. I went through that already and did the Clomid thing. I just dont want to go through it again.

3. I love Dan with all my heart. But the sex-marathon has got to end. I need a rest and Im pretty sure he does, too.

4. I bought the pineapple so I could eat the core. I cut it up on CD 16 thinking Id ovulate any day now. Well now the core is in a tupperware in my fridge and I saw mold growing on it. I gagged when I looked at it and now I cant go into the fridge until Dan comes home and throws it out.

5. Im sick of peeing on the OPK. A couple days? No problem. I have been peeing on them since CD 14. Thats 10 days of trying to find a McDonald's bathroom when I am on the road and then shoving a peed on stick in my pocket so that I can then set it on my dashboard and stare at it.


So anyways, if you could keep my ovaries in your prayers tonight I would appreciate it :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Its my own fault, but still...

I am SO sick of comments that people make about my troubles with TTC. And I am quite aware that its my own fault for being open about my journey with those who ask, but part of me wishes I could take that back my openess and crawl into a hole. One deep, deep down where I dont have to hear stuff like this:

"Just relax, when you quit thinking about it, it will happen"
REALLY? Because although I am gaining acceptance on my journey, I dont think I am able to quit thinking about the fact that I might not ever carry a biological child. So yeah, thanks

"Enjoy your time without kids. My kid barfed/peed/crapped etc on me last night and it was horrible. The time without kids is the best!"
Um, I realize that kids are alot of work. Im sure is not delightful to have some take a dump on your arm. But still, it does not make me feel one ounce better. It actually makes my heart ache more so thats awesome

"I hope you arent thinking about taking fertility drugs? You arent, are you? Because you'll end up with a whole van of kids. Just adopt. Adoption is so much easier"
Where to begin that does not involve kicking someone in the face? I cannot stand to listen to people's uninformed position on fertility treatement. And adoption? Not that easy. I would know, we are looking into it. So again, thanks.


I love this article. I am sure I have posted it before, but heck, I am posting it again. Its a great guide on how to treat someone who is dealing with probably one of the hardest things of their life:

http://www.resolve.org/site/PageServer?pagename=lrn_ffaf_ie

I should also point out, however, that for every obnoxious comment I receive, I also receive some wonderful support that I will forever cherish. And again, I understand that by putting myself out there and sharing my journey with some people I am close to and even some people that I am not close to, I am opening myself up to a variety of opinions on TTC. But it doesnt make it any less annoying.

On the TTC front, my body is officially on an Ovulation Strike. CD 21 and no O yet. I am hoping it will happen soon so I can take a break from, ya know, the thing you have to do to get pregnant. Girl needs a rest! :)

Hope everyone is enjoying their week! 9 days until Christmas!

Monday, December 15, 2008

"A Baby Changes Everything"

This song by Faith Hill is amazing. They played it at church yesterday during a Christmas skit and it really made me think.

When the angel came to Mary and told her that she was to be the mother of Jesus, she was overwhelmed. And although she did become the mother of Jesus Christ, her path was anything but easy. She was oftentimes ridiculed for being an unwed mother and suffered persecution for this. She was with Jesus throughout his entire life and eventually watched him suffer and die on the cross. Yet she never questioned God's plan. God saw early on that she was obedient, patient and faithful and he rewarded her with the greatest gift of all- to be a mother.

I had a friend tell me that she is afraid that I am relying on my faith alone to get me through my TTC journey. Its not that at all. Its just that I am making my faith the center of my journey, where it should have been the whole time. We will still pursue IF treatment and I know how far we will go with those treatments to have a baby. But I also know there are no guarantees. And I have to be realistic- I might not ever have a biological baby. It just might not happen for me. But thats where my faith comes in. My faith is what reminds me that no matter what happens, God has a plan for me. My faith is what I am relying on to heal my heart though this process. For me, its what I need to get through this.

On the TTC front- eh, my body is confusing me. After my last + OPK, I took my temp a few times and it was low, low, low so I know I didnt ovulate. Over the past couple days, I got some "near positives" and more O pains so its quite possible I O'd yesterday. I will take my temp in a few more days to confirm.

Have a good week! Oh, here is the video of the Faith Hill song:


Thursday, December 11, 2008

Or maybe I didnt

After being all excited about my early O this cycle, it would appear that I have not O'd. I took my temp this AM and its still low. I also still have O pains and got another + OPK today so that the end of that story. It was nice to think about a shorter cycle but I am ok with waiting until CD 18-20 to O. I am just fortunate that I do so I am not going to be picky.

Other than that, not much going on here. Im excited that Christmas is 2 weeks away. We have alot to keep us busy in the next couple weeks between holiday parties and family events. I love this time of the year!

Finally, in honor of a new year and my attempt at a new perspective on my life, I am working on making my 101 things to do in 1001 day list. Have you ever heard of this? I will post the website below but its kinda cool. I am fine-tuning my list and plan to post it on here before the new year. I have to say- I am already really excited about completing items on my list, its helped me be excited again about things.

http://www.triplux.com/dayzero/


Have a great day!

Dreams are like stars…you may never touch them but if you follow them they will lead you to your destiny.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Great Website

Hello and happy Tuesday! Better than Monday, right?

I wanted to share a couple great website that someone shared with me. The website is for an organization called Stepping Stones, which is a division of Bethany Christian Services. You can check both websites out here:

1. Bethany Christian Services:
http://www.bethany.org/

2. Stepping Stones:
http://www.bethany.org/A55798/bethanyWWW.nsf
/0/ABABCF75B84C6F0E85256D630065D9B4


I have found that the sites are both informative and comforting. In addition, you can subscribe to the Stepping Stones newsletter. I received my copy in the mail yesterday and they will continue to email me a copy from here on out.

So anyways, I just wanted to share the info, in case it could be helpful to anyone else.

Oh and I was all worried about being out of town in February during my fertile time (yes, I counted the days, Im so pathetic) but it appears that I worried for nothing. Although today is only CD 13 for me, I have horrible O cramps and a positive OPK. So it appears I will be ovulating a good 3-5 days earlier than "normal" Yipee! :)

I hope everyone is enjoying their day!


"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. Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

Monday, December 8, 2008

My weekend

We had a nice weekend, pretty low key. I have all of my Christmas shopping done except I need to get some stocking stuffers. I also started wrapping, Im about half done. As much as I despise the crowds during Christmas season, I think I detest wrapping gifts even more. I always cut the paper too short, I use too much tape, I cant get them to look nice. Oh well, its the thought that counts, right? (atleast I hope, haha)





Also, here is a picture of our tree and the small village I put underneath it. I have alot of village houses but only use a few each year.



In TTC news, well, I dont really have any. I am on CD 13 and just waiting until I get some signs of O. I will probably start with the OPK in a couple days, since I have not been O'ing until later. So we'll see how this cycle goes!

Hope everyone has a good week!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Fertility, Work and Diets

I have been really getting myself in gear on the TTC front. From the spiritual side, I have been reciting new prayers and changing my focus. I can honestly say, I feel a difference. Its hard to explain but the feeling is something with less burden and more hope, so thats good. I am also looking into finding a new RE. For my own personal reasons, I just didnt like the first one we went to. I now have a new list and I have begun calling around, checking insurance and looking into availability. Our plan is to be with a new RE by the end of March.

And why the end of March and not NOW?! Well, I am expecting the next few months to be pretty busy. Christmas, Dan's 30th birthday and then mine. And then I will be traveling for work. I am fortunate to participate in a training program where I will get to travel with 2 other people in the company and train the rest of the property adjusters. Its a great experience and I am honored to have been included. But that means I will be going to Atlanta, Cincy, Columbus, Indy and Akron during the middle of February until the middle of March. As a result, I want to get through all of that before I bring the new RE into the mix.

I also have a question for my fellow bloggers. How much, if any, do you guys think diet effects fertility? When we first started TTC, I read tons of articles on it and was all about eating healthy, no pop, watching my sugar, blah blah. That quickly fell to the way-side and I have resorted to my "normal" eating habits which are, well, less than favorable (at best.) I dont eat alot but when I do, I eat mostly junk. Sure, I have some fruit once in awhile but I normally wash it down with a nice Pepsi. Blah. I dont know, Im just wondering what kind of info you guys have come up with on the connection of diet and fertility. Is this something I need to consider? I dont know. Enlighten me :)


"I can sing in the troubled times
Sing when I win
I can sing when I lose my step
And fall down again
I can sing 'cause You pick me up
Sing 'cause You're there
I can sing 'cause You hear me, Lord
When I call to You in prayer"

Monday, December 1, 2008

Good day

Today was a nice day. Dan and I are both off of work for a couple days so we were able to get some shopping done, clean and do some cooking. It was productive yet relaxing. Also, I got over half of my shopping done, woohoo! Now I just need to start Christmas cards and begin wrapping gifts.


I was so overwhelmed by all of the open and heartfelt responses that people left on my blog yesterday. I am constantly amazed at people's perspective and their willingness to offer it so whole-heartedly to someone who needs it. So thank you, I appreciate it.

In an attempt to act on my deisre to give my TTC journey to God, I searched last night for a prayer that I could begin saying. Of course, in true Shannon-style, I came up with a song instead. So here it is:



I like the entire song but I love this verse:

Take my will and make it Thine,
It shall be no longer mine;
Take my heart, it is Thine own,
It shall be Thy royal throne.



Hope everyone is having a great week!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Figuring it all out

I wanted to update after my "Sad Shannon" post the other day. I actually recovered fairly quickly from my pity party but its taken me a few more days to try to figure things out. I've really been thinking and praying about why I cant get my heart and head on the same page. I have been considering why I KNOW that God has a plan but then I continue to question the plan with my tears and my "poor me" attitude. I think, however, that I am starting to understand.

Things in my life have always come easily. I tried out for a team, I made it. I applied for a job, I got it. I wanted something, I bought it. Was I spoiled? Thats debatable. Because I have always been very greatful for my life. But my life hasnt been hard. I was always in control and I always got what I wanted.

For the first time in my life, I have faced an obstacle that I cant fix on my own. Trust me, I've tried. I've tried to control it by using any kind of TTC trick there is. I've charted, I've taken supplements, I've tried fertility teas, I've tried pre-seed. I've prayed every fertility prayer I could find. And none of it has worked. So at the end of each cycle, I feel like a failure. Because I cant do it.

But then it gets worse. Instead of trying fertility procedures, I have put up a wall around myself and have ceased any help. And I really think I have done this because I am so afraid of failing. I am so afraid that we will try fertility procedures and they wont work. And then where will I be?

In all honesty, I have not done everything I can be doing to make my TTC ok with me. I have run from the help. Most importantly, I have not turned it over to God. I say that I have, but I have only turned over part. The most important part, which is the part that bring me to my knees in tears, is the part that I still hold onto. I want to give this to God. I want him to know I cant do this without him. I want him to hold my soul in his hand and bring comfort. And I am starting to understand that this wont happen unless I release control of this. So I have changed my prayers. Instead of praying to be pregnant, I am praying to see God's will for Dan and me. I am praying for comfort and peace. And I am praying for the strength and courage to let go and allow God to have control.

To my friends, thank you. I appreciate your support, your encouragement and your friendship.


"You block your dreams when you allow your fear to grow bigger than your faith"

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Same old, same old

I will premise this post with the following: Im just sad today. I know I sound mopey and depressed and miserable and in all honesty, I am. But this to shall pass. Just realize I need to get some of this stuff out and in the end, I will be ok. I appreciate all the support from my friends. It means so much to me.

I took my temp this AM. (As a side note, I am quite aware that for someone who is not charting, I still take my temp alot. What can I say? Im obsessive) Anyways, it dropped. Like low enough to indicate only one thing. AF. And like clockwork, she just arrived. Actually, she arrived at the grocery store, which meant I had to hurry up and finish shopping so that I wouldnt throw something. Nice.

So why is today so rough? I dont know. Lets face it, I've been through this spectacle 17 other times. This is nothing new to me. Sometimes I take it better than others. Today, however, has been the worst. Maybe its the fact that this is the start of our year and a half of TTC? Maybe its because I am running out of time to get pregnant before 30? Maybe its because I feel so helpless and broken that I just cant stand to think about this anymore. Who knows. Whatever it is, I literally curled up in a ball and laid on the floor for 2 hours this AM. I could barely move. Blech.

I know that everything happens for a reason. I believe that God has a plan for me. I know these things in my head, I get it. I feel it. I trust it. But I dont always feel it in my heart. Its my heart that hurts when I watch another month end without a pregnancy. Its my heart that aches when I know that I cant yet have what I want so badly. I pray that my heart can catch up with my head and that I dont feel so much pain each month. I want to be patient and I do have faith, I just wish it didnt hurt so bad.

Thank you to all my friends who support me. Thank you for your calls, emails, kind words, blog comments. I have always said that I will never be able to thank you enough for supporting me. Thank you for not giving up on me. I promise, some day I will have baby news to share :)

Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. {Rom 5:3-5 NIV}

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Cleveland Browns and a TTC update

Dear The Cleveland Browns,

Hi, its me. I have watched you for almost 30 years now. When I was a kid, my sister and I would line up all of our pound puppies so that we could watch you play. As we got older, we made up cheers and yelled for you. Bernie Kosar- you were my idol. As I got even older, I drank many-a-beers watching you play on Sunday. For as long as I can remember, you have been my Sunday-staple. Even when mean ol' Art Model stole you away, I still relished the day that you would come back.

Now that you've been back for awhile, I have to get this off my chest. Can you just stop sucking so bad? Every Sunday I get up in anticipation of the game and each night I go to bed with the dread and despair that results from watching interception after interception and dropped pass after dropped pass. I just dont know how much more my heart can take.

Dawg Pound Love Forever,

SLG :)




Sorry, I really had to get that out. On the TTC front, I am around 13 DPO. No signs of that mean, miserable AF...yet. We'll see. Hope everyone is enjoying the begining of a short work week!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Reality TV and Just Me

I will admit it, I am a reality TV junkie. Big Brother, Project Runway, Real Wives of Orange County, Laguna Beach. You name it? I love it. Except...lately. I have noticed that here are some real trashy reality shows on. Im not saying that the ones I listed above don't have some "trash factor" to them but last night, I flipped through MTV and VH1 and came across the following:

1. Real Chance at Love
2. My New BFF (or some crap) with Paris Hilton.

Talk about hot mess. The first show is a spin off (surprise, surprise) of like 3 shows and although the original shows were a disaster, this one is just plain gross. Trust me. Its all booze and boobs combined into one half an hour train wreck. The second show is a bunch of girls vying to be best friends with Paris Hilton. Uhhh, why? Aside from money and popularity, that girl has the charisma of a box of rocks. After watching a mere 5 minutes of the show, I decided I am too old for this junk anymore. Have I come to the point where I prefer Foxnews over I Love New York? It would appear so.

You'll never guess who is in the 2 WW? Me. I kid, of course. But Im around 10 DPO today. We'll see how the next 4 days go.

Im gearing up for a weekend of football- Go Buckeyes and Brownies! Hope everyone has a good one!

"It is in the darkest sky that you can see the stars the clearest"

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Winter and Phantom Symptoms

Apparently winter is showing up full force in NE Ohio. I have some likes and dislikes about it:

Dislike- Idiot drivers, skidding on ice, snow flattening my hair, dirty snow, freezing my butt off, scraping my windshield and gloves. I despise gloves. I cant hold my cell phone, I cant get my keys out of my bag, I cant do ANYTHING while wearing gloves. I hate, hate, hate them.

Likes- Ugg boots and blasting Christmas music. Ugg boots are a wonderful thing. They keep my feet warm and they are so comfy. Also, I blast Christmas music in my car from, well now until Christmas, especially when it starts snowing early.

Its currently snowing pretty heavy although we only have a couple inches. Im sure a few more will add up before tomorrow.

I have also decided what I hate worst about TTC. It has to be the phantom symptoms. Why must they mess with my head? This cycle (and mind you I cant be more than like 8 DPO) I have sharp pains in my boobs and cramps. I'd like to think Im not making this stuff up but ya know what? I dont know anymore. Maybe I do make it up. Honestly, I wouldnt put it past me :)

Hope everyone is enjoying their week!


"When peace like a river attendeth my way
When sorrow like sea billows roll
Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say
It is well, it is well with my soul"

Friday, November 14, 2008

Yeah, thats Faith

I saw this graphic today and I wanted to share it:



Believing in God when he is silent and does not seem to answer prayers is one of the hardest things I have been through. There have been many times when I have literally been down on my knees, crying in prayer and asking God to bless me with a pregnancy. And when it doesn't happen, I have wanted to yell out "Why NOT me?!" But through those tears and frustration, I have learned that God's plan for Dan and I is greater than I could imagine. As hard as it is sometimes, I will continue to be patient and understand that THERE IS A REASON.


I hope everyone has a great weekend!


Know God. Love God. Trust God.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Relaxin'

I have been trying to take it easy this month on the TTC front and give Dan and myself a break from the CONSTANT TTC chatter. Overall, its going good. I forgot what cycle day I was on several times and I have slept better without having to worry about getting up to take my temperature. But all of this RELAXING also made me O late. Like 5 days later than my average and 2 days later than my latest Clomid ovulation day. So I dont know what the heck that means but maybe my body is freaked out without the stress. Who knows.

Oh and how do I know I ovulated? Well I got a + OPK (no, I could not give those up. They are therapeutic and I love them) Aside from the + OPK, I also took my temp. 2 times. I know, I know but I needed some kind of confirmation. That means that as of today, I am 2 DPO. Which means that at Thanksgiving, I will either be secretly celebrating a BFP or drinking too much wine. Lets hope Im not drinking!

Thank you for all of your kind words or support and encouragement yesterday. Your words lifted me up when I felt sad and I appreciate them.

I hope everyone is having a good week!

Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.
Psalm 31:24

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A memory

Tomorrow marks the one year anniversary of my uncle Rob's passing. Its still hard for me to believe he is gone. He was my only uncle, my dad's only brother. He passed away at age 50, on his wedding anniversary, of a heart attack. My family was so distraught and although a year has passed, the pain is still there.

Here is a picture of my dad, Grandpa and Uncle Rob (left) This was taken in September at my sister's rehearsal dinner, 2 months before he passed.
Tomorrow will be a hard day, especially for my aunt and my dad and grandpa. I pray that they find some comfort and continued strength.

"Yea though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me." Psalm 23:4

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Brighter Days

Its time for the newest installment of "Shannon's song of the week"



This song is from the movie "Fireproof" (which I STILL haven't seen, ugh!) But someone told me about the song today and I love it. Here is the first verse:

"Time keeps moving on
Through the sunshine and the storm
And my dreams are set in stone
And someday I’ll be who I want to be
For now I’ll wait
For the sun to shine again
And for now I’ll wait
For the rain to pass away"

I have realized that as much as I want to forget about it and relax, my journey to become a mother is a huge part of who I am. And thats ok, as long as I still find happiness in life. And I am, so thats good :)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Time to grow up?

I will be 30 in less than 3 months, so is it time to grow up? You be the judge. Here is what I did today.

A couple days ago, I ordered the Twilight boxed set from Amazon (Indication numeral uno that I might need to grow up, IMO) Anyways, I get an email yesterday that my order should be delivered today. I proceed to talk about Edward, Bella, Forks and the arrival of my books all last night.

Our mail comes around noon. So around 11:30, I begin to watch for the mailman. Promptly at noon (lucky for him he wasnt late) he pulls up in front of our house. The moment I see him reach for the box which can only contain my beloved books, I bolt. Yes, I push my dear husband out of the way and run down the driveway. I then grab the box out of his hand, run back up the driveway and leave the mailman standing there, with the rest of our mail. Dan has to come down to get it and then he and the mailman proceed to watch me yell "Twilight is here, Woohoo!"

So do I need to grow up? Or do I simply need a life? Its a tough call. In the meantime, Im going to be re-reading the greatest young adult series since, well, The Babysitter's Club. *sigh*

Hope everyone is having a good day!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

More Good News

I love getting good news!

First, My friend Christina has her baby at 1:01 this AM. Her name is Cailin May and I am sure she is just as beautiful as her mom and sister, Alli. What a blessing!

Second, a friend from The Nest (who shall remain nameless because I dont know who she has told yet) emailed me yesterday to say she got her BFP. They were in their 12th cycle of TTC and had just found out they wouldnt have any IF benefits on their new insurance plan. Talk about an answer to their prayers.

Congrats to both girls and their families!

On my end, Im sure I will be ovulating soon based on past cycles. I gotta say, I love not knowing for sure. It just isnt on my mind and although we are still trying to get pregnant, of course, it just doesnt consume my every minute. I hope everyone is having a good week!


"All great achievements require time."
- Maya Angelou

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Election Part 2 and Forgiveness

Well Election 2008 is over, finally. No more political phone calls or flyers in my mailbox, im excited!

I am dissapointed that McCain/Palin did not win but I will fully put my support behind Obama. As a citizen of this great country, I have to trust that he will really bring forth the CHANGE that he has promised. I can only HOPE that our nation will be a better nation then it is today. So we'll see how the next 4 years go!

In other news, Dan and I are taking this class at church based on the book "Love and Respect" (which I will summarize in another month, at the end of the class- its so good!) Anyways, the couple who teaches the class sent out an email link today to an article on forgiveness and I just wanted to share it. Here is the article:

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/forgiveness/MH00131

I thought this article was great so I wanted to pass it on!

Finally, Id like to share a quick story of how God answers our prayers. I have a great friend who has been trying to get pregnant for awhile. Her and her husband have been praying about this and have been trying to figure out what to do. The other day, she got a call that a young girl was pregnant and wanted to give the baby up for adoption. My friend went and met with the mother and the mother has picked her and her husband to be her baby's parents. Talk about how great is our God! My friend is going to be a wonderful mom and I cant wait to see it happen!

Have a great day :)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Goodreads and The Election

I have been meaning to give this shout out for awhile. If you like to read AND are anal like me and want to keep track of the books you have read (and need to read), then check out Goodreads.com. Its so cool!

I love this site, even though I have only been using it for a couple months. Im still working on getting all the books I have read on it but mostly use it to keep track of the books I want to read. To me, there is nothing better than reading AND being organized about it. Im in love. Oh, and if you're interested, here is my personal Goodreads page. You should be able to see what I have read and want to read.

http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/1411876

About the election, Im not going to get all political and ramble about my views and why people should vote one way or the other. But I am going to say, PLEASE VOTE. No matter who you vote for, its such a privilege to be able to do be able to, so get out and do it! Although I wont go on about my views, I will say this: Go McCain! Thats all :)

Surgery Update

Well I am writing this update from the hospital waiting room. My mom just got out of surgery for the hysterectomy. The doctor came out to talk to us and everything went great. The cancer has not spread (that she could see) and it looks like the surgery was a success. I wept with joy when the doctor told us everything looked good, its just such a relief.

Thanks you all for your continual prayers. I appreciate them always!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

See ya later, Fertility Friend!

I've decided Im just plain old sick of Fertility Friend. And charting in general. My charts always look like they should be in the "BFP Hall of Fame." Seriously. Each cycle, they are triphasic, I have implantation dips, I have a decent LP. I always think "this has GOT to be it, who has a chart that looks like this and DOESNT get a BFP?" (I clearly have a mind lapse at that point because the correct answer would be ME!)

So anyways, I am parting ways with FF and charting. Sure, I might come crawling back to it in a couple months but I started thinking about it, and why NOT take a break?! I know I ovulate, I know my LP is fine and we always have good timing. Im just tired of taking my temp every day, running to plug it into the computer and then staring (sometimes for hours) at my chart and the chart gallery to compare. Its a sickness and right now, Its just not worth it for me.

I hope everyone is having a great Saturday!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

10 messages

That is how many messages I came home to today. My first thought is "Did someone die" or "is someone badly injured and my family is trying to get a hold of me" because why the heck would I have 10 messages.

And then I started listening. EVERY SINGLE ONE was some pre-recorded mumbo-jumbo from a candidate or a political party. ALL 10. This is driving me nuts, its too much! I cannot wait until the election is over, simply so I dont have to field the phone calls or flick through the channels until I find one that is not playing a political ad. I consider myself fairly "political" but enough is enough.

Monday, October 27, 2008

I am excited about something

I realized today that for the first time in awhile, I am really excited about something? What is it, you ask? The Twilight movie!!!!!!!!!



Thats right, ladies. I am an almost 30 year old woman who cannot WAIT to watch a movie about teen vampires. *sigh* Although most of the people who read my blog share the obsession, so that makes me feel better

But the excitement got me thinking about just how good it feels to look forward to things. I want to look forward to more than just being a mom. I want to not let it take over my life anymore. So maybe being excited about Twilight is my first step. And ya know what? I'll take it!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Its the weekend, still sick and our plan.

Well its not quite the weekend yet, my day officially ends at 4:30. Come on 25 minutes! But since I work from home, Im already in my comfy clothes and have done some cleaning so I feel like the weekend has started.

My mom scheduled her surgery for November 3rd. The good thing is that I am off of work on the 5th-7th so I can spend some time with her while my dad goes back to work. I just cant wait for the surgery to be over so that she can focus on recovering and feeling better.

And check this out. Tomorrow is the 10th day of my meds, which is supposed to be the last, but I kid you not. I STILL dont feel good. I have a bit of a cough, which I could live with but the bad part is that I still cant hear fully out of my ears. Are you kidding me? So I guess I need to go back to the doctor. Lovely.

I have also had some people asking me lately about my lap surgery and our TTC plan. We kinda had a bump in the road with that at our last RE appt. Basically, the RE told us that after we do the lap, they give me 3 months to get pregnant and if Im not, they move into IUI. The problem? We arent ready for IUI. I cant help it but I still feel like I have a shot to get pregnant without IUI, IVF or any meds and its not that Im against it at all, I just am not ready to go down that path. So we have suspended our RE visits and cancelled the lap. We are going to keep trying 6-8 cycles, which will take us to April-June. If Im not pregnant by then, we will decide whether we will do the lap or move into adoption. At that point, it will be at 2 years of trying and, in my opinion, it will be time to make a decision on what we do.

Honestly? Part of me doubts our decision. I wonder if we should be more proactive. But when I really think about it and when Dan and I pray about it together, the answer we always come to is that we want to keep trying. All I can ask for though is prayers. Because I need them right now. I feel myself falling apart a bit and it takes all that I am at times to keep things together.

Alright, enough with that. I hope everyone has a rockin' weekend. Peace!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

My Poems

"Why AF is a Whore" by Shannon Lea

AF is a whore because she ruins my day when she comes.
She makes me mad
She makes me crampy
She dashes my hope
She puts a pimple on my cheek.
I hate her


"Why AF is Not a Whore" By Shannon Lea

When she comes, I can drink a big fat glass of wine
And it is yummy


(I am quite aware that these poems are ridiculous and they do not rhyme. And yes, I have already sucked down a glass of wine in the matter of 15 minutes so I might be buzzed)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

NIAW


Today marks the beginning of National Infertility Awareness Week. I just want to take this time to honor all of the people who walk this journey every day with me. You all get it. You know how hard it is. You know how much it hurts. You know how much it can completely turn your life upside down. I hope that even though its hard, you have comfort in not walking the journey alone.

My friend asked me the other day how I was feeling about still trying to get pregnant. Not many people ask me that because I think they are scared of me. They are scared to upset me. They dont know how to deal with me. And thats hard because it makes me feel even more alienated from my girlfriends, most of which have children. I told her that I feel like my life is not my own anymore. Its divided into two sections; Waiting to Ovulate and Waiting to Take a Test. I have put so much on hold while we have been trying. Heck, I didnt even buy clothes for well over a year. And Dan and I didnt take a cruise for our anniversay because I thought surely I would be pregnant. I feel like infertility tells me how to feel. If I ovulate on time, Im happy. If my blood levels come back good, Im thrilled. If my temps drop one day, I am crushed. When my period shows up, sometimes its hard to breathe through the tears. It owns me.

I dont want it to own me anymore. I want to be free. I want my Sisters in Infertility to be free, too. You all are in my thoughts today. I love you all.

Also, take the time to click on this pledge and show your support to Infertility and RESOLVE.

https://secure2.convio.net/res/site/Advocacy?pagename=homepage&id=207

Thanks!

Friday, October 17, 2008

My Mama Update

Just a quick update- I wanted to thank you all for your well wishes, kind words and prayers. I just spoke to my mom and she told me that:

1. The cancer is in early stage 1, no indication it has spread
2. She is a candidate for the non-invasive hysterectomy, she will have it within the next month
3. It does not look like she will need radiation.

I am so happy for her. Again, thank you all for the support, it means alot to me!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My own fault

Well I finally got to the doctor today, after not feeling good for, um, yeah, a month. Anyways, I have (drum roll, please) a sinus infection, a double ear infection and bronchitis. Which kinda explains why I feel like I am going to die.

So I am home, still doing some work, but mostly taking it easy. I cant wait for my meds to start kicking in so that I can hear again. I am sick of feeling like I am under water and I am pretty sure that Dan is sick of me saying "huh" or "whats that"

I hope everyone is having a great day!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Hi 2 ww! Its me, Shannon.

And here I am once again, the 2 WW. Im filled with the usual "should-I-eat-pineapple core" and "could-that-cramp-be-implantation" hope but its all good. 12 days until testing. I hope this is it.

I have officially entered week 3 of having a cold. It is dreadul. And I know I should go to the doctor but work is so darn busy that I havent had chance. Maybe this week. Or maybe it could just go away on its own already, come on!

We celebrated my Dad's birthday yesterday, it was fun. My mom made dinner and we went to their house. Speaking of my mom- she feels great and has her consult this week to see if she is a candidate for the non-evasive hysterectomy. I will know more by the end of the week.

I havent posted a song in awhile so here it is:



How great is our God,
sing with me
How great is our God,
and all will see
How great, How great
Is our God

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Need Prayers

My mom called yesterday to let me know that the doctor diagnosed her with Uterine Cancer. The background is that she had an abnormal pap and some bleeding so the doctor did a D&C last week. After the D&C, he told her and my dad that everything looked great. Well the results of the biopsy came back yesterday and cancer cells were found in various places of her lining. Its unclear if the cancer has spread to the ovaries or lymph nodes but they will remove everything in a hysterectomy that she is in the process of scheduling.

I have done the research and have heard many stories today so deep down, I feel like she will be all right. It appears to be in early stages and there is a good success rate of removing the cancer with the hysterectomy but I am scared. And Im worried. And I dont want my mom to have to go through this.

I know alot of you have heard this story and I appreciate the prayers. And for anyone else, if you could say a prayer for my mom tonight, Id be so greatful. She is a beautiful, kind and courageous person. And she is my entire world. Thanks :)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Advice? (I mean shut up ,please)

I know that people mean well when they offer advice on TTC and I am well aware that its my own fault for letting people know we are trying but I have decided to compile a list of some of the advice I have received over the past 16 months of trying:

1. Get drunk
2. Dont drink
3. Go on a cruise
4. Relax
5. Go to Niagara Falls, Vegas, inset other stupid location here
6. Eat ice cream (whole milk something or other)
7. Dont eat ice cream (or any sweets)
8. Watch for your creamy discharge and have sex then
9. Relax
10. Adopt a baby (cause thats so easy to do)
11. Have sex more
12. Have sex less
13. Relax
14. Try yoga
15. Work out more
16. Work out less
17. Just have fun with it
18. Pray more (really? Im pretty sure God is sick of me by now)
19. Dont think about it
20. RELAX


Have any more to add to the list? I know I have a lot more but these are the ones I hear ALL THE TIME. HELP! :)

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The purchase of pants

There are many things in my life that have been affected by our TTC journey. One has been my wardrobe. When we started TTC in June 07, I quit buying new clothes. Why? Well, I thought I would get pregnant right away, of course. So instead of buying regular clothes, I was going to wait until it was time to buy maternity clothes. Oh sweet-naive-early-days-of-TTC-Shannon, if only you knew.

Fast forward to 16+ months later. I got up this morning and went to pick out an outfit and it occured to me. I have bought NOTHING new in all this time. I take that back. I bought a dress. The one I bought for a bachelorette party so that my friend would quit calling me old (Apparently Ann Taylor is not appropriate clubbing material) This realization angered me. I was so angry with myself that I had put my life on hold for all this time. And what does an angry girl do? She shops!

I warned Dan ahead of time because I knew it could get pricey. He was very supportive so today, between appointments, I hit the mall. When it was all said and done, I bought 3 pairs of pants and 3 sweaters along with 2 tops. It felt so good to pick out items I liked and buy them and not worry if my pregnant (or not pregnant cause who knows anymore) butt will fit into size 8 Limited Cassidy Pants in a month or two.

I wish I would have done this earlier because I FEEL GREAT. And I look great, too :)

I hope everyone is having a wonderful week!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Vivid Dream

I dont remember my dreams often. I have always tried but its very rare for me to wake up and recall what I was dreaming about.

Except for the past two nights. I have dreamt of my Grandma Lea. She passed away 2/1/07 and was the first grandparent I lost. It broke my heart and her death created a huge hole in my small and very close family. We have moved on but things are different and we all feel like something is missing.

The dreams I had were so vivid. In the one, we were sitting in chairs looking into her backyard and her hand was on my hand. We talked about the economy, the election and my grandpa. (p.s. she loved to talk about politics, loved it) She kept telling me it would all be ok and the whole time she had her hand on my hand. The second dream was in her kitchen and she told me she was going to die but this time she wanted to say good bye. And we sat there and hugged one another and cried. I woke up and was crying.

I dont know why I would have these dreams now. I havent had any since she has passed. But when I got up this AM, I opened up my photo album to see a picture of her, Dan and I from my wedding. And I think maybe she came to me in my dream to give me some comfort and tell me that it is going to be ok. All of it. That makes me feel better.

Here is my grandma and grandpa in Hilton Head a couple years before she passed:

















And this is my grandparents on their honeymoon:

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Just checking in...

I have been busy since my last entry but now I am enjoying my day off so I thought I would update.

Work has slowed down. I dont think I have to go on "storm duty" to another region so thats good. The worst case scenario is a trip to Columbus or Cincinnati, but those are both not too far from Cleveland.

My period came and went. I will begin temping again tomorrow. I was alot more angry at the end of last cycle. Most times, I have been sad but there was something about this cycle that really made me mad. I guess its a combination of anger, despair, frustration and just being exhausted. Because I am just physically and mentally exhausted. But I have been praying a lot about it and am continuing to pull strength. And of course I have hope for this cycle. I hope this is it for Dan and I. I guess we'll see in 25 days!

In other new, Dan and I are taking this awesome class at church. Its based on the book "Love and Respect" by Dr. Emmerson Eggerichs. Today was the 4th class (we go once a week, before the church service) and I have to tell you, its making a difference in our marriage. When I have more time, I will do an entry on the entire book but for now, Im recommending it to anyone who wants to improve their marriage.

I hope everyone has a wonderful week!


"I believe that I shall see the bounty of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord with courage; be stouthearted, and wait for the Lord." Psalms 27:13-14

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Whats better than this?

Whats better than working your 12th, 12 hour day in a row while on your period than this:

I freaking locked my keys in the car. At a gas station. At the pump. At 6 AM. There is really nothing more to the story that that. In short, I am a moron and had to wait for the police (like they have nothing better to do) come and unlock my car. For the love of pete. Luckily, I was able to make up any lost time and wasnt even really late to any of my appointments so that was good.

I also want to thank everyone for all of their kind words in my other blog entry. I feel like I say this every month but I simply cannot thank everyone enough for their kindness and support. I feel your love and its that love that encourages me to go on. So thank you for the bottom of my heart!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Dammit all to hell

I freaking kid you not, this is my life. I walk into CVS to buy a HPT. Im standing in a line thats like 10 people long because apparently they only have one person in the whole damn store working (I promise, I will get to my point soon) and I get some intense period-like cramps. And they continue. And then I feel what I think is my period. I swear, in the matter of the time it takes me to drive to the store, find the HPT and stand in line, I have started spotting/light flow. Which means tomorrow AM, my temp will drop and I will wake up to a full fledge flow. And I will look at a stupid HPT that I cant even use. Because my period will be here.

Cycle 16 (which I think is what Im on now, I have lost all count) sounds like a stupid cycle number and I already despise it. I know I will eventually find my faith, strength and all that happy crap again soon, but right now I am so pissed. I am so damn fed up. I hate TTC. I hate watching people around me struggle with TTC. I hate hearing stories about people that try for years and havent been blessed with a baby. This process can kiss my ass. Im sick of it.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Wedding fun

Dan and I went to a wedding last night. My sister was in the wedding, it was her best friend that got married and I know her, too. Here are some pics. Even though I was super tired, we managed to have a great time!

Dan and I




















My sister Kristin and I





















My BIL Paul, Kristin, me, Dan
















On the TTC front, I dont know whats going on. I am 12 DPO today. My temps dipped yesterday and I had some cramping so I thought it was over but they are back up today. I did have 2 glasses of wine last night so that might have caused them to go back up. So we will see how the next few days go, I plan to test on Wednesday at 15 DPO.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Vent of the day (its been a long week, lol)


Dear contractors or male insureds,

I know it must be different for you to have a woman insurance adjuster who oftentimes knows more about construction than you do, but could you please treat me with a bit of respect when I am out at your home. Dont describe a roof vent as "a little box that would look like a present under a christmas tree" You can use big words with me, its my job to know what they are. I am a 30 year old woman with an MBA and write more estimates than any of the other adjusters in my entire company. Not really an idiot.

Also, my name is Shannon. Its not sweetie, hun, baby, doll or missy. You wouldnt call a male adjuster those names so dont use them with me.

Finally, dont stare at my ass or boobs. When I bend over to measure and turn around to find your face glued to my butt, it freaks me out. And Im wearing a polo, for gods sake, not a "boob shirt" so please quit staring at the small bit of my neck that is exposed. If I have to button it up to my neck, I will, so help me.

Thanks,

A disgruntled insurance adjuster

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Work: The Good and The Bad

Life as an insurance adjuster is just not that glamorous. Since the remnants of Ike moved through over the weekend, it caused substantial damage to the states my company writes business in, including OH. We got over 200 claims yesterday just in my territory alone. Kinda crazy.

The Bad is: I will be working looooong hours (12-14 per day) for the next week or two weeks. It gets pretty tiring after awhile

The Good is: We get paid extra for working the hours. Not that money gives me back my time, sleep and sanity but its a decent trade off.

So I will be MIA for awhile but I will try to check in when Im not on a roof, looking at blown off siding or writing an estimate.

On TTC front, I am 7 DPO and still temping. Geez, Im a a creature of habit. I have tried not to temp but I just cant do it. I will test on Wednesday of next week and since I will be so busy with work, I think it will come quickly!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Another Song?

Yep, I heard one today that grabbed my attention (shocking, right? lol) The song is "Laughed until We Cried" by Jason Aldean. The last verse had me bawling but I also love this part:

It's like the best days under the sun
Every emotion rolled into one
A little of this, A little of that
Kinda happy, Kinda sad


I feel like that alot. I feel like I have so much to live for and to be happy about. But there is still part of me thats sad. Sometimes that part is big and sometimes its small but its always there.

Here is the video:

Jason Aldean - Laughed Until We Cried - One Source Talent

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The end of an obsession




I finished Breaking Dawn today. I tried to make it last as long as I could and considering I started it on Friday, I think I did pretty good. I wont comment on it as I dont want to spoil it for those still reading it but I have to admit, Im sad. Not about how the book ended but just because its over. *sigh*

Dont they say when one obssession ends, a new one begins? (or something like that, lol) Well I think its pretty clear that my new obsession will be this 2 WW. My OPKs (which are my new BFF) and my temps have both indicated ovulation yesterday so now its onto the waiting. And the analyzing. And the obsessing. I dont care how many times I've been through this, I still obsess. But Im also hopeful.

So its onto the 2 WW. And since Im being hopeful, I will end with this:

THIS WILL BE MY CYCLE



Monday, September 8, 2008

+ OPK

I have previously sworn off OPKs because of my horrible track record with them (2 positives in 8 cycles) but my dear friend, Erika (Goeckie) sent me her leftovers so I have been using them again. And today, it happened. A POSITIVE. You would have thought it was a positive HPT, thats how excited I am. I have it sitting on a pile of post-its on the desk in my home office. I keep checking it (yes, its still positive) and have already called Dan to inform him on what we will be doing tonight. And probably tomorrow AM. So although its late for me to O, Im ready for it It will be Me, my sex'd out husband, and our tube of Preseed. Oh the joys of TTC!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The good things

Im an optimistic person by nature. I've always wanted to see the good in every situation and every person. I dont have it in me to be bitter although I have tried. In the end, I just cant do it.

Its been hard at times to be optimistic about TTC, but Im continuing to work on that. Im not saying that being optimistic will get me pregnant but I do know that, for me, optimism coupled with faith is the only way Im going to continue to get through this.

So here are some of the good things that have come out of TTC:

1. Dan and I have grown incredibly close. I always thought we had a good marriage before TTC but when I look back on this past year, I see such an amazing growth in our marriage.

2. I have met amazing new people via The Nest. Some of the girls on there have saved me, supported me and cared for me when I thought I couldn't go on. The friendships we have formed are strong and I am so thankful for them.

3. I have been given opportunities to teach people what I know about TTC. I am now a resource for alot of my friends, co-workers, etc when it comes to TTC. I spent alot of time learning about the process when we first started and over the past 15 months, learning more and more has become therepeutic for me. The good thing is that I am able to share that knowledge with those who want it and, in turn, help them.

4. Dan and I have had all this time to continue saving money so that I can be a SAHM when and if I want to. We are very committed to this and our savings is truly reflecting this.

5. My devotion to God has evolved into a loyal and patient faith. I trust that He will provide for us and that He will take care of us. I trust that He has a plan for us. I believe that His plan includes me being a mom. And I am willinge to continue being faithful and paitent. Because I know it will be worth it.



Monday, September 1, 2008

Weekend

I had a fun weekend. First, my friend Jessica got married and I was honored to be a bridesmaid. She was a beautiful bride and her wedding was fabulous! We had so much fun but now I am sad, as she is moving to Atlanta with her husband Michael. I keep hoping they will end up back in OH and I think they will. Someday. Here are a few pics:

Me and Jess before the ceremony



















Alicia, Holly, me and Sara at the head table















We also celebrated Dan's Aunt Bette and Uncle John's 45th Wedding Anniversary yesterday. It was so awesome to be able to rejoice in a marriage that has lasted so long. Especially since things havent been so easy for them lately. In short, Aunt Bette had a massive stroke while on a mission trip in Thailand at the begining of the year. She wasnt expected to live but she did. And although she still is unable to speak, she has full ability to walk, use her left hand and she comprehends everything going on around her. So although she hasnt full recovered, God has really blessed her with family, friends and the support that she needs to live this adjusted lifestyle.

Im off work this entire week and am looking forward to that. Also, I should be ovulating this week, which is always exciting. And then its onto a new 2 WW, woohoo!

Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high
There's a land that I heard of
Once in a lullaby

Somewhere over the rainbow
Skies are blue
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true

Some day I'll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where troubles melt like lemondrops
Away above the chimney tops
That's where you'll find me

Thursday, August 28, 2008

There is a reason

I have come to realize that I am easily moved by music. I oftentimes find songs that I identify with and songs that inspire me. In church last Sunday, I was brought to full tears by this song. Some of the tears came from my struggle to get pregnant but many of the tears come from other questions in my life that I dont have answers to. As I listened to the lyrics and prayed with all I am to God, I again found comfort. And I felt his love, it felt good. Here are the lyrics and the actual video. The song is "There is a reason" This is the Caedmons Call version.

late at night I wonder why
sometimes I wonder why
sometimes I’m so tired
I don’t even try
seems everything around me fails
but I hold on to the promise
that there is a reason

late at night, the darkness makes it hard to see
the history of the saints who’ve gone in front of me
through famine, plague and disbelief
His hand was still upon them
cause there is a reason
there is a reason

He makes all things good
He makes all things good
there’s a time to live and a time to die
a time for wonder and to wonder why
cause there is a reason
there is a reason

i believe in a God who sent His only son
to walk upon this world and give His life for us
with blood and tears on a long, dark night
we know that He believed
that there is a reason
there is a reason

for the lonely nights
and broken hearts
the widow's mite
in the rich man's hand
and the continent
whose blood becomes a traitor

for the child afraid to close their eyes
the prayers that seem unanswered
there is a reason
there is a reason



Friday, August 22, 2008

A sign of getting older

I have a bachelorette party this week. When I was discussing what to wear with my friend she said "Just wear something cute, ya know, like club clothes" And that is when it hit me. Im old. Because not only am I unclear on what club clothes are, I am quite certain I do not have any. I am hoping a cute black dress with some funky jewelry will suffice. And no, I will not be telling anyone the dress is from Ann Taylor, because Im sure thats not "club-y" So this is what its like to get older?! Too funny!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Lets try it again

My period came, such a delight to wake up to this AM. I think its amazing how something as simple as a temp drop signifies the arrival of my period but atleast I got the warning. Saved me from crying today, I got to do that yesterday :)

I used to think of "good" things that I got to do because my period was here and I wasnt pregnant. Like a coping mechanism. I have a bachelorette party this weekend that I can now get wasted at. But for some reason, this doesnt make me feel better one bit. Id rather be pregnant.

I keep trying to remember I am not walking this journey alone. I guess I just wish I didnt always feel so alone. Thanks for the support, you all mean alot to me.

Footprints
One night I had a dream--
I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord
and across the sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene I noticed two sets of footprints,
one belonged to me and the other to the Lord.

When the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that many times along the path of my life,
there was only one set of footprints.
I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest
and saddest times in my life.
This really bothered me and I questioned the Lord about it.

"Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you,
you would walk with me all the way,
but I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life
there is only one set of footprints."I don't understand why in times when I needed you most,you should leave me."

The Lord replied, "My precious, precious child,
I love you and I would never, never leave you
during your times of trial and suffering.
"When you saw only one set of footprints,
it was then that I carried you
."

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

20 (or 21) things about me

Redrose tagged my blog and challenged me to list 20 Random things about me. (I picked 21, because thats just how I am) I thought it would be easy but it took me over a day to come up with my list. Here it is. And you should try it, too. Comment on my blog if you make your own list, Id love to read:

1. I have visited 40 out of 50 states
2. My sister is my best girlfriend. My mom takes a close second.
3. I am obsessed with cleaning supplies. I just counted and I have 6 different kids of Pledge. Help me.
4. I use tons of coupons. I typically save about $20 a week on groceries, at a minimum. Which is good considering I rarely spend over $50.
5. My first car was a 1991 Honda Accord. The radio didn’t work good and I used to kick it (while driving) to get some sound out of it. Kinda dangerous.
6. I won a “Just say No” contest when I was 6. The prize was a $500 savings bond. I cashed it in and used it to buy my first books in college
7. I met my MOH online when we were in HS. We talked for 2 years before our parents let us fly to meet one another
8. I hate rollercoasters or any kind of rides. I have horrible motion sickness. Needless to say, I haven’t been to an amusement park in a long time.
9. I will never own a dog or cat. I like other people’s animals but its not for me.
10. I never buy expensive greeting cards. I spend hours looking through the ones at Dollar Tree or Factory Card outlet until I find the nicest but cheapest ones.
11. My first job was at Boston Market. I refused to be a server, I wanted to be a meat cutter so they let me. I also sometimes wore the chicken costume and waved to cars
12. My best memory as a child is Christmas time. My grandparents always had someone dress up as Santa and bring us gifts. I swear I can remember every Christmas
13. I could easily drink a 12 pack in one night while in college. Now, Im lucky if I can get down a beer or two
14. I love Christian music. Its inspiring and uplifting, whats better than that?
15. I always wanted to be a meteorologist when I was a kid. I used to watch the weather channel for hours
16. I have an extreme fear of ants. Im ok with spiders, bees, etc. But ants scare the crap out of me.
17. I have met 3 out of 4 grandparents and 4 of my great grandparents. Plus my one grandma has had a “boyfriend” for 25 years, who I consider my grandpa. So I had 4 grandparents up until last January. My sister and I never had a babysitter, we always had one set of grandparents watch us. It’s the greatest blessing in my life to have known them all.
18. I have never had a cavity. Which is amazing, since I used to be addicted to pop. Like drinking a two liter a day addicted. Yikes.
19. I used to think I didn’t care, but Im kinda sad about turning 30 in 6 months. I don’t know if it’s the lack of being pregnant or what, but Im bummed
20. I am always early. I don’t think I have ever been late to anything in my life. I get this from my dad. When I was younger, he and I would be waiting in the car for nearly 15 minutes before my sister and mom would saunter out. Drove us nuts!
21. I have realized that you can still be nice while being honest and truthful. Also, you don’t have to make everyone happy. As long as you’re happy, that’s all that matters. Taking care of yourself is number 1. Because in the end, there is no guarantee that anyone will take care of you but you. And if people attack you for it, screw ‘em!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I feel so good

The weirdest thing happened to me today. I woke up with this odd sense of peace. I say odd because for a long time, I have been waking up with feelings of stress from TTC, work, various other drama. Its been awhile since I have just felt relaxed. But today, I feel like a new woman. I feel like someone who is not overcome with stress. I feel like someone who is not riddled with guilt for things that are beyond my control. And I feel happy. Its almost like God has touched my soul and he has cleared it. I cant explain it, but its amazing.

Blessed Be Your Name
In the land that is plentiful
Where Your streams of abundance flow
Blessed be Your name
Blessed Be Your name When I'm found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed Be Your name
Every blessing You pour out I'll turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

When the sun's shining down on me
When the world's 'all as it should be
'Blessed be Your name
Blessed be Your name
On the road marked with suffering Though there's pain in the offering
Blessed be Your name

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Chillin in the 2 WW

So my temps shot up this AM which confirms it. Im in the 2 WW. Again. I kinda like it here. The pressure of ovulation is off. The sex marathon can cease. Now I just gotta sit back and hope my body can do its thing. Come on lucky cycle 14!

And check this out. My mom is so cute. The other day, she told me she wanted to buy me something. Here is how she explained it:

Mom: "Shannon, I hope Im not crossing the line but I want to buy you something. It sounds so cool. Its like this machine, and you just pee on a stick and put it into the machine and, you're not going to believe this, but it tells you when to have sex. Like the exact day. Now its expensive, like $200, but you're worth it and whatever I can do to help you, Im up for it."

So clearly my mom heard about the CBEFM and wants to get it for me to help us. The thing is, its not really a good option because:

1. We have good timing
2. I get b/w to confirm ovulation
3. We will be moving on to u/s to check follies

She sounded kinda defeated when I told her I knew all about it and proceeded to explain to her why it wouldnt work. But I love that she cares enough to share this info with me...and that she was willing to spend the money to help us out! Too cute.

Ok, well Im gonna go back to chillin' in the 2 WW. Hope everyone is having a good day!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

So I DID end up loving it!

Finished Twilight last night, loved it. Im obsessed, I cant wait to see what happens next. I read the preview of New Moon, which was at the end of the book and that only made my obsession worse.

I have a rule with books- unless its one of my ultimate favorites, I dont buy it. The reason is that I read alot and I read fast and its just not economical for me to buy books. I might make an exception for New Moon though, I dont know if I can wait around a month for it to be my turn to borrow it from the library.

Im also pumped, I havent ovulated yet. This is good news because Im out of town so its been messing with my timing. I am headed home tonight so we can get to work on our timing. I do have good signs of O though, so now Im hoping its not too far away.

And one more thing. I had a BFP dream last night. It was so vivid, which is unusual for me, I dont remember mine much. And it continued for awhile, like I was doing regular activities but knew I was pregnant. Kinda sucked to wake up from that!

Ok, one more meeting to go and then Im on my way home, WOOT!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Marriage

I was talking to my grandpa today and our conversation turned to marriage. My grandma just passed away last year so its not an easy thing for him to talk about, they were married 50+ years. In our conversation, he told me the following:

Marriage isnt easy, its alot of work. But if you're lucky, one day you'll be 70 years old and your kids will be grown and married with kids of their own and you'll be driving down the street and look over at your wife. And you'll realize you haven't spoken for an hour but you didnt have to. Because she always knows what you have to say and the comfort between you is enough because your silence speaks volumes. That is love.

Well crap. If Im lucky to have half as much love as my grandparents had for one another, I think I will be pretty happy.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Twighlight and feeling better

Im pumped, I just got an email from the library that "Twilight" is in. I will be picking it up at 9 on the dot, im excited!

And I feel better about the news yesterday. I dont know why I let other people's news affect me. I dont want to live someone else's life so why should I let what happens to them bother me? Its my cousin's life, he has to deal with it. Its not a reflection on whats going on in my life.

Life isnt fair. But I think its the unfairness that makes us who we are. If everything was always perfect, there wouldnt be the chance to build your character or strengthen your faith. And I guess I need to work on that.

"Our real blessing often appear to us in the shape of pains, losses, and disappoinments, but let us have patience, and we soon shall see them in their proper figure." -Joseph Addison

Friday, August 1, 2008

Evil

Crap, I know I am an evil bitch for my post earlier but I cant get over it. Why not me and Dan? We are ready for a baby. We want a baby. We pray for a baby every night. Sometimes more than once.


I hate this. I am sorry that I am so angry. Please God, help me get over it. PLEASE?

WTF

My grandpa just called. My cousin, who has been dating his girlfriend for 6 months, has gotten her pregnant. With twins. They are due around my birthday in February.

For the first time in my TTC journey, a pregnancy announcement has made me physically ill. I just got sick. And now I need some strength. Please pray that I can properly process this information and turn my anger and jealousy into some positive emotion. Because right now, Im anything but positive.

WTF? WTF? WTF? Are you kidding me?

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Scared

So about 2 months ago, I got this freckle thing on my lip. Its on my lower lip and seriously looks like a freckle. Its not raised, it doesnt hurt, I just cover it up with lip gloss and move on.

Well I was talking to a neighbor the other day and she was like "whats on your lip, I've never seen that before" I told her it just kinda showed up and I think its a freckle. She proceeded to tell me that she thinks (because she is not a nurse, doctor, etc so what the hell does she know) that its skin cancer and I should get it checked.

Of course, I Google "skin cancer on the lip" and see tons of pictures that look nothing like my lip but now I am worried I have skin cancer. Shit on a stick. I made an appt for a dermatologist but they cant see me for 2 weeks. 2 weeks of worrying about skin cancer on my stupid lip. Good lord.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Mini Vaca

We are back from DC and freakin' loved it. So fun. The good parts:

1. We got to see everything we wanted except Archives and Georgetown. Just not enough time in our 4 day trip
2. DC is beautiful and filled with amazing history. I cry every time at the Lincoln Memorial. Not alot of tears, just one or two slip out as I look down towards the Washington Monument and look back at Lincoln. Its like our special moment, lol
3. It was awesome to be able to celebrate our anniversary and just get away. We were walking past the Washington Monument at 3 on Saturday, which was our exact 5 year anniversary. Kind of a cool memory.

And the not so good parts:

1. It was hot. Im not talking kinda hot. I mean that we were both sunburned even while using sun screen and I got a dreadful heat rash. By the end of the day, my hair would be in a sweaty ponytail and I didnt care. It was that hot
2. We walked like maniacs. We had all-day metro passes but ended up walking to alot of places. Although I am in fairly good shape, I could barely walk by the third day. Today is not much better, it wasnt easy to get out of bed. Yikes.
3. We had the WORST hotel neighbors for 2 nights. Up to 3 AM, yelling and causing a commotion. Not much sleep was to be had which stunk.

Here are some of my favorite pics:

Dan and I on the steps of the Lincoln














Me in front of the Library of Congress
















Dan and I in front of the National Cathedral















Outside the Federal Reserve (Dan made us see that, the FDIC and the IRS- dork, lol)