Sunday, April 29, 2012

Baptisms, deaths and celebrations

I meant to blog yesterday  about St. Gianna, the Consecration of Mary and what both meant to my marriage and vocation on the exact feast day. Also about the start of the Catholic Spanish If support group and my 5th wedding anniversary.   It was not to be.

This weekend has been one of contrasts:   2 baptisms, 2 deaths   and  one anniversary celebration.  All in 2 days.  

Yesterday we went to the baptism of a little baby boy adopted by some friends early in the morning.     We had met them in a personal finance course and over the weeks she opened up to me that she was preparing herself for IVF.  

 She had a very,  very bad case of endo and the doctors here had taken out one of her very damaged fallopian tubes (without  her permission). .  Pain continued as expected when you do not have the intention to cure , but only to put a band aid on a major health issue,.  She even fainted from time to time during her period due to the pain,    She then was put on on medications which stopped her cycles for months putting her in early menopause during that time.     A classic case of the management of stage 4 endo here.

She told me she wanted to become pregnant any way she could.   Over the months we spoke on FB and in person.  Once we invited her DH and her to our house  to speak about Napro where they asked me point blank about using Cre.igthon for IVF.  She wanted me to teach her to increase her success rates.

We had a long night in which told them openly about the reality of IVF, what CrMs could offer them and we also told them we had opened our hearts towards adoption.  Nobody had ever told them it was an option.    

During  the next months we  spoke frequently and I loaned her all my books on adoption.  I also offered to help her chart and even gave them both an intro session.  Despite the fact she never was my client (they always canceled at the last minute)  I consider her one of the succes cases of my FertilityCare center.

They stopped doing IVF and now are the proud parents of a baby boy.  Being invited to the baptism was such a joy and reminded me to always speak about the realities of IVF when people asked and also to speak joyfully and openly  about adoption. You never know which hearts you will touch

Later that day we decided to have lunch at a very nice yet simple restaurant just the 3 of us  to celebrate our 5th anniversary and then began to head home.

I had expected to spend the afternoon at home celebrating as a family, in prayer with my DH doing the consecration in depth, but God had other plans.

We went to visit my father in law for a few minutes on they way home  and while there we received the call that they would hold an intimate funeral  ceremony for the father of one of DH sister in laws and that they hoped we could join in the next hour.  You should have seen my face.

  He had died the day before of a very long illness, she was estranged from him, yet as to be expected was very sad. They had no plans for a funeral, nor for anything else.   Yet at the  very last minute they decided to do something and  she wanted us to be there with her and how could we say no?.

So there we were, dressed for a baptism  (me in  a pink dress!)  heading for the placement of the ashes in a church in an hour.  It was surreal.

The ceremony was very simple, sad in the fact that it looked as if he was not to me missed.  People seemed so distant, as getting over the ceremony as fast as they could.  I cannot explain it,  but its not the way I would I would like to be remembered.    

Later we stayed for Mass and came home exhausted, with a very cranky baby.   DH and I prayed the last day of the Novena to st. Gianna, when I logged to my email to set up the IF Spanish group only to find out about a death of a member of my class at my university.    A completely unexpected death at 40.

 Its always shocking to read about a young persons death, but it was incredibly moving to read all the comments and emails about him.  I was not close  to him, but many of my friends were in deep mourning and it was  such a contrast to the other persons death.

  Hundreds, yes hundreds of people spoke about the joy that he brought to all of them, about a life well lived, a life of service.   It was beautiful to read and made me realize this is exactly how I would like to live my life.    

Today we woke up again very very early  for another baptism. Now for the little daughter of one of our adoption class members.  

This family had been through so much.  The mother had  kidney disease years ago and had to have a transplant.  She had been given only 10% chance to survive the transplant.  yet she did not want to continue to live her life as she was and decided to do it.    Her DH had married knowing full well she might become ill again and that they might never had children.  Well. now they are parents of an amazing little girl.  Knowing the path they had taken to become parents made this baptism so very special.  

We came home completely exhausted, but deeply reflective  to have seen so much in the last days.

Births and deaths all in one,  just like life.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Confession on 5th avenue

The last days have been of spiritual battle.  Hard, hard.

But yesterday I had such an amazing gift from God through confession.  In the most unexpected of places.  A very famous avenue here in Mexico city, similar to 5th Avenue NY.

Right smack on the street the ultimate gift of one of His sacraments which I sorely needed.  

Its very normal  one  you begin again working for something related to Life and also when you are about to consecrate yourself to Mary and a project to Her to face hard spiritual battles.

 We were going to do the  consecration of the Spanish  IF support  on Saturday, my 5th wedding anniversary, St., Louis Montfort  and St Gianna´s feast day.  

I had been told these attacks  would happen  by dr. H, by my bishop, by my spiritual director,  Christopher, etc time and time again.  All had told me this.

The D.  does not like when people work on anything related to creating a culture of Life and what better way to discourage than set doubts in the heart and more so with a coming consecration to Our Lady.  

I cannot blog about the details of everything, but a person  near the  movement here said something deeply hurtful, a outright lie about me, that really hurt. And I had helped this person a lot.   It was a stab on the back from the person I least thought would do it.

 Then on top of this other things happened that also were  creating division,  disagreements, depression  and discouragement.

All starting with D., and coming from the bad guy.  

This on top of problems at home with some childcare logistics (I will have to fire a person that helps me with cleaning at home and this totally can affect Josemaria´s childcare, a  major,  major issue for me), problems at work, etc.   Many restless nights.

I had been talking with B my friend and the one person here that has been working with me side to side  trying to let people know about Napro.

She kept telling me to go to confession ASAP. My agenda  has been horrible the last days and getting to church almost impossible.     My Martha side like always winning.

Yesterday, after a horrible night full of internal fights, I got up very early with the sole purpose of getting myself to Mass and confession.  Also to offer this for Dr. H.

 I get on my car and face the most horrible traffic ever.   Completely unexpected for the hour.

Then I get lost on the way to Mass.  Lost.    When I had driven that route millon of times.

I could  not believe it.

Then I find myself driving on a very famous avenue in Mexico city, very near my office, in a high end  residential area.   I remember there is a church there where I had gone to daily mass for a very long time many years ago.   I arrive and find a parking spot right up front.    

I had completely forgotten about this church, yet I find myself right in front of it.

They have 8  a.m Mass and it was 8:10 a.m when I enter the church.  The priest must have flown through the mass since he was  near the consecration.  I prayed an act of contrition and decided to have Communion. Later I stayed to pray and read the lectures.  

I did not expect  there was going to be 8:30 Mass and right when I was about to get up, the priest in his red vestments arrives.   I look at the confession booth and see nobody and decided to stay for mass again since I had missed the other one.

It was such a gift.   But it did not end there.

The 1st lecture spoke directly directly to my heart.      The devil on the prowl.  Stad up to him, strong in faith.

Bow down, then, before the power of God now, so that he may raise you up in due time;7 unload all your burden on to him, since he is concerned about you.8 Keep sober and alert, because your enemy the devil is on the prowl like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.9 Stand up to him, strong in faith and in the knowledge that it is the same kind of suffering that the community of your brothers throughout the world is undergoing.10 You will have to suffer only for a little while: the God of all grace who called you to eternal glory in Christ willrestore you, he will confirm, strengthen and support you.11 His power lasts for ever and ever. Amen

then the homily.  A homily that spoke exactly of what I was going through, of forgiving those that hurt you, about  attacks and about community    A  very long homily unusually so for weekly mass.

Then I get out of the church and see and elderly man outside.  The people from Mass had not yet left and for some reason I ask him  if he is the priest that just gave mass at 8 a.m  (he looked vaguely familiar, but I was not sure with his normal street clothes) .  He says yes and I ask him when there will be confessions and he says between masses.  I tell him I did not see the priest and he says that he did not approach the confession booth since there was nobody there.  I had no idea I had to do this,.

Then he offers to give me confession right then on the street.

Mind you this street is like 5th avenue NY. 

Tons of cars, very expensive properties, not quite the place where you would think confession would take place.

I start speaking and find myself crying, crying  like the world was about to end.   As cars pass by and people stare.

In sobs I tell him of my fears, of my mistakes, of the attacks  and also that the bishop (who belongs to his community) had told me all of those working for this  would face it and that of course I hated it.

He listens to me as cars pass.   With such a compassion. Truly like Christ.

And tells me this must be very, very good since all sounds like attacks from the Bad Guy.   IVF and all related to this are part of his work and he does not like for people to have options.   To  hear the Truth..

But also that he knows the bishop well and that  if he supports this then it must be something amazing  and of course the bad guy must be very unhappy.  

Then right then on the street this elderly priest hugs me and tells me not to worry.  Such an amazing gift.

Then he tells me some practical advice.

Call immediately a contemplative convent. We need the army. This is the most important.
Then meet with your spiritual advisor.
Then get yourself to church every day.
And read JPII apostolic letter Salvifici Doloris : on the salvific meaning of suffering.

I leave with such peace. On the way to my office I call the convent and a nun that has been my friend for years answers.  I tell her we need help.

She tells me Mass at 9:45 will be offered for this by the same priest that married me.   That has been supporting this project for the last 3 years.
The convent will start praying intensely for this.
She will adopt me spiritually.

I cry again, but these are tears of joy.  Of peace.

God certainly does not leave us alone, even when it looks like it.  He is always by our side. Even in the most unexpected of places.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

UPDATE: Dr. H is recuperating



Dr. H is out of surgery after 3.5 hours and doing well in the recuperating area.   He will not be receiving visitors in order to rest, but please continue  for a great recovery.


A few days ago Dr. H and I were in  contact due to some things regarding the growth Napro here.

He had  also written  to me about his operation and I told him about the Novena and asked if I could ask for prayers and  how much he wanted to share.    He wrote this to me last night,   letting me share  with both the blog world and the catholic if yahoo group this message:

Dear E:

Thank you so much for your email. Yes, you can tell people that I am undergoing a quadruple bypass procedure Wednesday morning beginning at 7:30 a.m. (Central Standard Time). I am actually looking very much forward to this. I have no doubt that the surgery will go very well. I am in the hands of an excellent surgeon. Also, I know that I will feel better after it is all over and have renewed energy.

In the last part of the email he asks for our prayers.  

So here it is.  Exactly as he wished.    Please continue praying for him. 

St. Gianna pray for us
St Raphael pray for us
St. Thomas pray for us
Our Lady of Guadalupe pray for us. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Dr H storm heavens for him

Hi dr H will have a delicate operation tomorrow early morning. Since i am not sure he would want details published I will not post them. Its an operation that will keep him from PPvi and his work for several weeks. The outcome is predicted to be good. All of this is public. He has been a tireless fighter for life and it would be amazing if we all could be united in prayer for him, his family his doctors and PPVi. St Gianna pray for us! St Raphael pray for us! Our lady of Guadalupe pray for us! St. Thomas pray for us!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Napro testing results = Restless heart, plus more intentions

NOTE: We continue with our Novena to St. Gianna, its the 3rd day  and  all can be found here.  Intentions and Novena We have new intentions so if you are praying with us please go and see the updated list.

I thought that doing the full Napro testing would bring me peace, yet since getting most results from the lab  this week my heart has been restless.    More than restless.

Almost all results are normal, some even great and quite unexpected for me being 41.  And this had brought a  myrraid of unexpected feelings

It has been almost 3 years since I had done the full evaluation.  The first one I did it on my own, asking local doctors for help (most thought I was mad) and with the help of a very  old copy of Dr. H book and the Yahoo catholic fertility group.  I had a fire in me that I am even surprised when I think about it.

Nothing was going to stop me in getting answers. Nothing.

This time I have Josemaria and this for sure changes things, but also I learned the hard way that having a diagnosis and treatment does not always signal pregnancy and even harder that pregnancy does not always signal birth.

Then I had no idea what things meant until Dr. H explained them to me.

The findings then:

  • Late luteal phase defect for which I use since the very beginning HCG with great results.
  • Hypothyroid: So I take T3 and  my many symptoms are gone
  • Low cortisol: I am on hydrocort, also symptoms are gone. 
  • And the lap found  endo  which has now been taken out and Dr, H did not expect it to return.   
  • All else normal and for endo I take Omega 3 and now pycnogenol as recommended. 
  • With this protocol, after the operation  and once I started using  Naltrexone  for low beta endorphin levels  I got pregnant in 6 months.   The 1st month with the whole protocol and acupuncture. 
This time I know what most things mean.  Been TTC way to long does this to you.

All last year I was on the very same protocol and even on low dose Clomid and no pregnancies.  I did not do any acupuncture as I did not have the strenght after the miscarriage.

Great P + 7 results almost always and nothing.

This time the testing results  are as follows:

Progesterone p +  7 was 32. 7, very high,  signaling a strong and healthy ovulation and healthy levels for implantation.
U/S: I do not understand all the details  of the report, but the final comments from the doctor doing the interpretation: All signals to a normal ovulatory event.  Uterus looks OK.    No liquid in the cul de sac, normal and open cervix, mucus in the cervix,  etc.
My DH sperm count went way up  with supplements (pycnogenol, pro.xeed and  a mix of vitamins I give him from several books, plus acupuncture ) to 180,0000,0000.   Speed and living sperm way above normal.  Yep,  the number  is almost 4 times what he used to have even after this operation for varicocele and on  Prox.eed.
Morphology has decreased 1%, but with these numbers and since its strict criteria Dr. H told us not to even take it into account.
The HSG report says all is normal.  Tubes open, uterus looks OK
Estradiol curve is beautiful.  Almost exact to the one on Dr. H medical book.
DHEA, TSH, Prolactin,  Testosterone, etc normal.

So far the only things that are off:
  • Vitamin D3 is deficient a part of the panel that I requested, but really was not part of the normal testing.   I know this can affect hormones and its vital for many processes in the body.   Even living in Mexico with tons of sun I must make sure to be out more with no sunblock  and also take supplements.   Still I do not know if this reason enough not to get pregnant. 
  • LH and  FSH p +  7  were a little low.   I am not sure what this means.   Anybody knows?  Yet ovulation seemed normal. 
  • My DH low morphology.  Its 3% in the strict criteria.  Dr. H actually took his report  last time (which included pictures of the sperm signaling the normal and the "abnormal"ones and called several doctors to see it) He said: Look how the clasify abnormal  sperm, there is no way they can say why they cannot fertilize an egg from these pictures, this is why we never should trust these reports.  So I am thinking with such large numbers its not so bad as it sounds.  

Non of the above  (as far I understand) are reasons to be infertile.

I am only missing now the hysteroscopy that was also recommended, but speaking to the doctors that did the U/S and the HSG there are no signals to problems in my uterus so far.   I am still praying about it.
I did recurrent miscarriage testing before and all normal.

So here we are.... nothing signaling that we cannot get pregnant again.

And last appointment with our acupuncturist.  He said:
Do not worry about the testing, all will come out normal and even better .  All your TCM signals are optimal for a pregnancy and I have also fixed your DH sperm.
All is great now.
We have reestablished the flow of energy to your uterus which was closed after your miscarriage and all other pathways are open.  You should see great progesterone and a normal ovulation.  

So these words  and seeing 32.6 progesterone and the normal follicule  in black and white made me  feel hopeful again.   There is  no way you cannot with this info.

 Yet this is both a good and bad thing.

This cycle brings so many memories from so many failed cycles in almost 5  years of TTC and my emotions are raw.   So many hard memories.

 Cycles where everything was "normal" after medicines given to me by local doctors and then by Napro  and yet no pregnancies.

My DH is now hopeful again.   This is perhaps the hardest to manage.

Do we need to guard our hearts?

Can I handle the hope month in and out?

The last days after almost a year and  a half of not even wanting  to think, where I never  really believed in the possibility of another pregnancy, have been an up and down .

Raw, raw.

I find myself studying all symptoms.  

I am very tired and last night I had nausea... I think I ate something that made me feel sick, yet my DH eyes were excited.

My mind wandered to where it normally has not.

And  then some great news.

All my clients that started charting  2 years ago with IF and that have done Napro  to the end,  all are pregnant or have had babies.


The only ones not are another couple and us.

And Friday I received an email  from this couple.    A very,  very difficult case, with many factors against them.  More than 7 years of IF, male and female factors, hers very bad.

Pregnant after Napro treatment.

If they had so much against them and Napro worked when all signaled it would not, why cannot it work in our case if they have found all that was wrong and fixed it? and if there is more to fix this time why could Napro not work?


My heart is hopeful again.

Yet so afraid to face again the dreaded 2 w wait each month and knowing full well  that my time is short being 41.

Hope and fear all in the same heart.

Friday, April 20, 2012

2nd day of the Novena, 50th anniversary and my sons birthday

If you want your intentions to be included please put the intentions in the comments section or send me an email.

The intentions so far:

  • Please interceed for JoAnn and baby Joseph these last days of pregnancy.  For a healthy  pregnancy and delivery for both.  
  • for the launch of the : Catholic If group in  Spanish and that we soon can have Spanish resources for those Spanish speaking Catholics facing IF:    blogs,  The infertility companion for Catholics book, etc 
  • For AF: So her DH and her can conceive a healthy baby.   For healing after their miscarriage. 
  • For JB and her DH to conceive
  • For BBL: that they can conceive and have a healthy pregnancy
  • For S and R:  to have children of their own that are happy,  holy and healthy 
  • For C´s intentions: 
  • 1.  Safety for our family and for God to grow our family in time.
  • 2. For good ear health and visit with ENT for Joseph and any follow-up as needed.
  • 3.  For adequate housing for our growing family.  (whether or not to purchase new home and when/how)
  • for T and P to conceive a second child prior to the passing of T's father, employment for P, and for the soul of T's dying father and peace during his passing
  • For Lianna,  for peace in her heart
  • For D: 
  •  That God expands our family with a healthy child and for an end to abortion
  • for K: for  their 1st  baby either through Napro or adoption. 
  • For:  M: For a culture of life, for the challenges we will be facing in the next few months locally and for a long distance relationship
  • For the Catholic IF yahoo group and all the members intentions
  • For 2 very close family members who are facing infertility
  • For B, so she has all the answers she needs to have amazing health
  • For Dr, H´s major operation on Wednesday that all goes well and he has a fast recovery
  • For B (a Mexican client of mine) who is pregnant after  7 years of marriage and 1  miscarriage last year,  that all goes well with her pregnancy
  • For a new baby for my DH and I
  • For all the practitioners and doctors that are right now in PPVIs studying.  

Here is te Novena.  also below I have included a link with many letters of thanks to her thanking her for her intercession,  they are truly inspiring. 

Novena To Obtain Graces Through Saint Gianna Beretta Molla

God, our Father, You have granted to Your church the gift of Gianna Beretta Molla. In her youth she lovingly sought You and drew other young people to You, involving them, through apostolic witness and Catholic Action, in the care of the sick and aged, to help and comfort them.

We thank You for the gift of this young woman, so deeply committed to You. Through her example grant us the grace to consecrate our lives to Your service, for the joy of our brothers and sisters. 

Glory be …

Jesus, Redeemer of mankind, You called Saint Gianna to exercise the medical profession as a mission for the comfort of bodies and souls. In her suffering fellow men and in the little ones, deprived of all support, she saw You. 

We thank You for having revealed Yourself to this servant as “one who serves” and who soothes the sufferings of men. Treasuring her example may we become generous Christians at the service of our brothers and sisters, especially those with whom You deign to share Your Cross.

Glory be…

God, Sanctifying Spirit, who love the Church as Your Bride, You poured into the heart of Saint Gianna a share of Your Love so that she could radiate it in her family, and thus cooperate with You in the wonderful plan of creation, and give life to new children who could know and love You.

We thank You for this model wife and, through her encouraging witness, we beg You to grant to our families the serene and Christian presence of mothers committed to transform their homes into cenacles of faith and love, rich with generous activity and sanctifying service.

Glory be…

O God, Creator and lover of mankind, You were close to Saint Gianna when, affected by illness, she was in the painful dilemma of choosing between her own life and the life of the child whom she was carrying in herself, a gift long-awaited. Trusting You alone, and aware of Your Commandment to respect human life, Gianna found the courage to do her duty as a mother and to say “yes” to the new life of her baby, generously sacrificing her own. Through the intercession of Mary, Mother of Jesus, and after the example of Gianna, inspire all mothers to welcome with love the sparkle of new life. Grant us the grace we are praying for …………. and the joy to find an inspiration in Saint Gianna who, as a model spouse and mother, after the example of Christ, gave up her life for the life of others. 

Hail Mary…

Thank yous to St Gianna.

Last year I became a  mother on Holy Thursday.   An amazing feast day.  

While I was grieving for the loss of the first baby of my brother and sister in law and was really  mad  for the injustice of miscarriage and IF, an amazing woman here in Mexico City was giving birth to a healthy baby boy,  ouir son.

Last year I posted this while  my son was  being born:   .Sometimes the pain of Holy Week starts early

A death and a birth for my family on the very same day.

We know a few facts about Josemaria´s birthmother, that Josemaria in due time will know.

Adoption is closed here, so after she gave birth Josemaria was transfered to our amazing agency, a Catholic one that for many,  many years has saved countless mothers and babies.    He was lovingly taken care of by several nurses and many women volunteers who hold and feed the babies for many hours a day.  He became the favourite of the nursery.  

We know his BM had a very hard time singing all the paperwork and she canceled several meetings in front of the judge for the final singnature. Here the governement gives BM as much time as needed to  reflect.

  This is why Josemaria came only at 3 months and 3 weeks of birth to our home.  We also know she took amazingly good care of herself and Josemaria.

I cannot even imagine how hard it must have been for her and my eyes fill with tears at the thought of this. I am praying very specially for her today.

April 21st is also the day St. Gianna gave birth to the daughther she gave up her life for and on April 28th is our 5th wedding anniversary and also the 50th anniversary of when she died after a week of agony.

St. Gianna pray for all of us.
Thank you for the gift of our son.

TODAY: International Novena to St Gianna starts


Sorry about this being so last minute.   I wanted to post this yesterday, but I  lost my fligth to return to Mexico (forgot  my passport in the rental car) and ended up flying most of the day and night  to get home with no access to my blog.

In order to start our Spanish blog  and online support group  activities  the authors of "The infertility Companion for Catholics" book    and I  we will be praying a novena to St Gianna starting today and ending on her feast day: April 28th.

Our online Spanish  group will also  launch on that day and be under St Gianna´s care and under Our Lady of Guadalupe protection.  

We can also include your intentions in the Novena and gladly pray for you also 

Please  send me your intentions in the comments section or to my email  and I will post each day the prayer and  do a summary of the intentions.  

All are welcome: for adoption,. for a 1st  baby, for more children, for clarity on next steps,  etc. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

An amazing book and a book tour you do not want to miss

Please share with any Catholic (and non Catholic also) friends, doctors, priests, any person close to the subject of IF that we now have an amazing resource with a Catholic and moral perspective.  
I have been reading  The Infertility Companion for Catholics  for the last 2 days since I received my first Amazon copies  and every single page has resonated with my soul.   
The book is already sold out in Amazon, but please place  your orders there so you can have your copies as soon there are more and  to show the printing company and the world that this is a very much needed resource.

This is the description of the book: 
One in every six United States couples experiences infertility but Catholic couples face additional confusion, worry, and frustration as they explore the medical options available to them. Filling a major void in Catholic resources, The Infertility Companion for Catholics is the first book to address not only the medical, emotional, and spiritual dimensions of infertility, but also the particular needs of Catholic couples who desire to understand and follow Church teaching on the use of assisted reproductive technology.
Authors Angelique Ruhi-López and Carmen Santamaría offer the support and wisdom gained in their own struggles with infertility. They describe the options that Catholic couples can pursue in seeking to conceive, many of which are not ordinarily presented by the medical community. In an encouraging and non-judgmental tone, they address both husbands and wives and help them recognize the emotional impact of infertility on their relationship.
The Infertility Companion for Catholics presents a variety of spiritual resources including prayers, devotions, and the wisdom of the saints and provides suggestions for further reading of reference materials, Catholic documents, and Catholic blogs about infertility.
I was blessed to "meet the authors" a few days ago and I cannot express how impressed I am by their commitment to helping women have the resources needed to find answers and help them  with moral resources in all aspects of this cross     They are now both adoptive and biological mothers  that have themselves struggled with if.

In order to promote the book bloggers  will be hosting  interviews, book reviews and  guest posts related to the topics of infertility, miscarriage, adoption and more. As an extra incentive, they will each be giving away a copy of The Infertility Companion for Catholics so please check them out. Here is a list of their stops

April 18: Matching Moonheads
April 19: This Cross I Embrace
April 20:
April 21: Chasing Joy
April 22: Frustrated Musings of a Seemingly Calm Gal
April 23: Karen Edmisten
April 24: The Thin Veil
April 25: Making God Laugh
April 26:  Patiently Waiting…Kinda
April 27: Little Catholic Bubble
April 28: Infertility Options
April 29: Lavished with Lemons
April 30: Joy Beyond the Cross
May 1: Pray, Hope, Don't Worry
May 2: A Martha Trying to Be Mary
Surprise stop along the way at: Infallible Blogma

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Cardinal Dolan Times 100 most influential

I woke up today to this great news.

Cardinal Dolan named by Time magazine one of the 100 most influential persons in the world:

Cardinal Dolan

I loved this specially:

"urging his own faith to re-evangelize itself before assuming that the rest of the world will open its head and heart to the Catholic message"

While not my Cardinal he is paving the way for other bishops and Cardinals to take the public sphere   and this is amazing. 

I will have a smile all day for sure!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter and Napro testing update

HAPPY EASTER TO ALL!!!!!!!!!! I hope you all had a very blessed Easter.   =)

All week apart from putting my life in order  with family time, silence and prayer  I have also  restarted  my Napro testing.  

Not an easy feat when you have to go to  3  different places  (and counting) to do it in very different parts of the largest city in the world, but one more week and I should be almost done with the basics.  Also it brought back many emotions (some still very raw even after one year), but having Josemaria made all the difference.  

So far the results: 

HSG:   all looks normal.   Both tubes are open which is was a concern of the Napro doctor.  The dye was not flowing from the right one on the first try, but after just a little bit more pressure it did beautifully.   The doctor doing it was the nicest man ever.   The procedure in itself is not one of the nicer ones in IF and made worse by my memories (my first one involved  tons of pain after  which I ended up crying curled into a  ball. with cramps). Well I told him of my previous experience so he did it very,  very slowly  with the utmost care and really focusing on telling me each step he was taking so I could relax.  It really made a world of difference.

BW:  So far I have done most of the  pre peak estradiol series and all looks normal and even quite positive for a 40, almost 41,  woman.   The estradiol is rising from day to day in an almost perfect secuence (200 on P+8, 300 on P + 10,  400 on P+ 12 and 200 on P + 14).   Estradiol surges right before ovulation before diving down . So the blood work is corresponding quite well  to what the U/S is saying.  

U/S series:   I am offering all my anxiety and pain related to them for all of those still waiting.  I still hold traumatic memories from my last U/S´s  (one a where we were told we had lost our son and another where I was mistakenly told I had miscarried again like it was nothing  (just a bunch of cells)  and pressured to do IVF while bleeding profusely)

Also doctors  always have a difficult time with me  since my uterus is in retroversion and for some reason the same doctor that has spent a long time with me always needs to call other doctors to help find my ovaries, not the nicest experience.

 Praying that all would go well I  had the  first 2 from the limited U/S series Friday and today. 

To minimize my horror of this  I decided to switch hospitals to one that did not hold miscarrige memories and also is very famous for great U/S , but its very far away from my house and work so the next days will be a feat.

On Friday I had a actually a very good experience with a woman doctor who  began by telling me that she had just also lost a baby due to a tubal pregnancy. She understood my fears and decided to tell me all the things she was seeing.  I felt so priviledged with all the details she told me.

  She told me my endometrium looked fluffly and beautiful  (I loved those words!!), quite in accordance to the estradiol I was reporting and also to the follicle she was seeing. My cervix was open and filled with CM.
On my right ovary she saw 2 (yes 2!)  dominant  follicles that looked beautiful  and even mentioned that the doctor might want me to sit this cycle out due to possible twins.   I said  no way I would sit it out   and she laughed with me.

Since my uterus is in a very  difficult position to do U/S (the words of all doctors that had seen me) it took a very very long time, but she said she wanted to do it well.   She never found my left ovary since it seemed to be on the back of the uterus, but said that she was not too concerned since we could try again the others days and the dominant follicle was not there.  

Today I went again to do the next on the series and it was a completly different experience.  The doctor was a resident and very young,  I had to wait over an hour for the appointment  due to some emergencies they had despite my early appointment with Josemaria in tow and my very,  very patient DH.

 So finally I was taken in for the U/S and the doctor could not find my ovaries in over 1 hour.  She even told me she thought  I had ovulated,  but could not find the cumulus.  It was as if the 2 folicles disappeared overnight leaving no trace.     One hour of  a transvaginal U/S and nothing!!!    Finally another doctor came in and after 15 minutes found the ovary with a huge and beautiful folicle (in her words)   and another folicle that was still there,  but more difficult to see.  She said she could not be sure if both would be there to ovulate, but at least one yes and in the coming hours/ days for sure if all went as it seemed to be going.

One thing the resident mentioned is she saw liquid in the uterine cavity where there should not be and the other doctor seemed to confirm it.  She could not tell me the reason, but I will need to wait for the report once the head of radiology studies my case.   Since the Napro doctor had asked for very specific things in the report, the report will be made by the head of radiology of one of the very best hospitals in Mexico and Latinamerica so this is an additional blessing.

She mentioned she thought I should have a sonohysterography to check the status of the uterus  (the doctor of the first U/S also mentioned this) .  She said that the sonohysteriograph, the  U/S series and the hysteroscopy all checked different things and that together were the only way to check for ovulation and the status inside my uterus and cervix after all I had been through

I will check with the Napro doctor once I have the report, but she only mentioned the hysterioscopy and I am still thinking about it.   Tomorrow I will need to go again to the hospital  and pray it does not take them 1 hour to find my poor ovary with the transvaginal probe.  

 One week more to go,  give our take,   and we should most of the studies requested by the doctor and my very first full Napro evaluation in 2  years.  I cannot wait, good or bad news,  its best for me to know.

In summary:

  • Tubes open
  • Estrogen looks OK
  • Ovulation seems to be OK. to be confirmed in the next 2 days
  • Uterus: status to be determined
  • More to come.....

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Putting the house in order after my confession

Its clear I need to put the house in order.  By house I mean my life.

I had an amazing confesion last Sunday, I really needed it and it was God sent at the very start of Holy Week.

I feel like I am being pulled in so many directions, all of them important and there is only so much time.

So many expectations, but the worst come from me.   I am an achiever and have seldom failed at the things I really put my mind to so being mediocre at things that are important to me drives me crazy.

This is one of my worst faults and sins.

These are the things that I have been thinking over and over at night in the last weeks:

  • I am a  mother with an 11 month old  baby that needs me.  
  • I am a wife  and I have not focused on my marriage as I should in the last months
  • I am  daughter with elderly parents (and a dad that just   recovered from cancer)
  • I am a daughter in law with an elderly father in law that depends a lot on my DH and I 
  • I am also a woman that needs to work to suplement his DH income in order to have a decent life.  I currently have  a very,  very, very  demanding  full time job until I get the hang of it and hire some help
  • I am  a practitioner with tons of clients that have no other help in Latin America (I have clients in several countries). Several do not speak English well so I am also their translator.    
  • I am a 40 (almost 41 year old ) infertile that needs for her own peace give Napro a last chance and in  order to do so needs to restart testing and treatment.  This  is another full time job as I need to do it long distance since we still have  very limited local resources. .  
  • I am also a Napro advocate in my country.  Not to go  into too much detail,  but  my email keeps overflowing from requests.   
  • And last,  but not least,  this month we restart our adoption journey with all the paper work this entails. .  

All of this has been giving me anxiety and when anxiety hits its a sign I need to step back and review things.   Many nights I have not been able to sleep well due to this.   To me all of this is very very important.    

In my confesion I mentioned to the priest that I felt pulled into so many directions. with very big expectations on all sides (specially regarding my work with Napro and my new job) , that I was having a hard time praying and that I was not being the nicest person to those closest to me.  i felt terrible about not dedicating my time to working with Napro as I had in the past.

He listened with great patience to my confession and asked me first to read Ecclesiastes and meditate on it.  On there being a time for everything.  

Then he said:

There is a very clear hierarchy and if you follow it you will have your priorities straight.  You might have to give up things that seem or are very,  very good, but at this time God is asking something very different from you.
 It does not matter if you work for the world, when you are not focusing on those closest to you.  
First of all is God.  And you need to make Him your priority, as Mary did.  
Second is your marriage,  this is your second priority as its your vocation.
Third comes your son and your family building efforts  (Adoption and your Napro treatment).  
Since your job supports both your marriage vocation and your son and your possible adoption/ Napro treatment   this comes 4th.
 If your job was only for your personal development it would be another story, but since you need it to help support your family. your future adoption and your Napro treatment then its part of your vocation.     Your job is also an occasion for santification even if its for a corporation.  Maybe God precisely wanted you to be there to be salt.  
 Then come your parents.  
All the rest you can leave for later.  
If you focus on this order all will be well.   You will have your priorities as God wants.  

I came out of the confession  feeling like a weight had been lifted from me.

I had been feeling terrible for not giving all my time to building Napro as I had done in the past or by taking longer in answering to my clients or   by telling several I could not accept them at this time or by focusing so much in the last weeks on  my work.   I felt like I was failing everybody.

He said:

If God wants you to work for Napro he will give you the means to do it, until then  you are building a new professional path which is for your own family.
Your professional path is a means towards something, not an end in itself so its very good. 
Do not see it as bad since its not Catholic, or does not help people directly like  Napro.    Give yourself time and see it as something that God is calling you to do right now
As for Napro you have done a lot and its time maybe to step back for a while or find another way of working for it,  but in a very different manner from what you have done before.    

I have been thinking a lot  about this lately. I was comparing my job and Napro and feeling like I was making a bad choice, when in fact I was taking care of what I needed first which is my family.  

At this time I cannot take any more clients and this hurts, since I have been in their position, but its the reality.

As for my work promting Napro somehow a blog in Spanish to support those facing if comes to mind.

Rather than endless meetings and tons of hours  I could work on it a few minutes a day, have several contributors, and  put to use all that I am learning about internet in my new job.

I could work at my own peace, rather than the urgent needs of others.  I will need to pray about it, but I feel this would be a way to still help, but in a much more controlled manner for me until my circumstances change.

My plan is for the coming days is to turn off all TV and computers   and dedicate myself fully to  deep prayer and talks with my DH so i make sure that my life is in order