Saturday, November 30, 2013

Christmas Giveaway

Tis the season for giving! 
What a great time to do a giveway; it is Christmas time and almost my ONE YEAR BLOGGING ANNIVERSARY!!

Were You Right?


The rules were to:

Tell us 3 things about you and make 1 of them a lie. Try to think about what other bloggers already know about you, what they might not know, and what might shock them. The trick is to make it difficult to tell which of the three is the lie....

Here are three things about me.

1. I saved a boy from drowning during a swimming lesson class and later received an award for it.

2. I never graduated from high school.

3. I got a tattoo on my 18th birthday that I absolutely hate and I've never told my parents.

I did "save" a boy from drowning during swimming lessons. He let go of the sides and couldn't keep himself above water by kicking and using his arms, so he slipped under and down I went. I pulled him back up and to the side. I was awarded a certificate after that for my "heroic" efforts.

Technically, I never really did graduate high school; I never walked with my graduating class. During the summer of my 11th grade I got my G.E.D. I hated high school and was not about to back my senior year. School for me was full of drama, competition, mean girls and nasty boys. I don't regret my G.E.D.

I do not have any tattoo;. at all. If I did, I would not be able to keep it a secret from anyone, let alone my parents!  

So, were you right?

Friday, November 29, 2013

Dear Timothy

Dear Timothy,

Happy birthday to my sweet brother; I'm sorry we've never been able to meet. Today would have been your 34th birthday. You were born two years before me yet you never took a breath.

You were mom and dad's first child together and mom carried you for nine months without a single complication. You know mom, she is professional mother, she had carried, and birthed a total of 7 children. She was a pro! Three days before she delivered you she went in for a check up and told the nurse that she hadn't felt you move in a couple days but that she figured you had just ran out of room since you were over-due. The nurse told her not to worry; that sometimes when the baby is ready to come they stop moving as much when they drop into the canal. However,  after the ultrasound mom knew something was wrong, she could tell by the nurses face. Your heart was no longer beating. You had died in mom's womb just days before.
The next day mom gave birth to you, naturally, in the hospital and you never made a sound. Even though the doctor told mom that when you came out you may not look "normal"; you may be blue, it didn't matter.  When the doctor asked if she wanted to see you, the answer was yes! She and dad held your body close as you lay silent in their arms, nothing short of perfect wearing one single scratch on your face that  Mom thinks was from the nurse helping you out.

You were buried later that day. Dad picked out your headstone as mom got ready to leave the hospital. You were honored with service and family prepared a luncheon for mom and dad afterwards. It was a sad day for sure. There were a lot of people who were looking forward to meeting you. You would have had six siblings at the time of your birth and a whole lot of aunts, uncles and cousins.

As a child, I remember visiting your grave several times. We used to go drop off flowers before we moved to Oregon and then when we would come back to California we always tried to make it by to say hello. Even as adult and even though I have never met you, it has always been important that I remember your story. You, Timmy, have a beautiful story. You are my brother.
Trish and I used to talk about what we thought you would be like. Would you look like dad; wear Wranglers and boots all the time like him? Would you be a protective big brother or one that thought his little sisters were annoying? Even though, Timmy, you were not physically our brother you have always been in our hearts, your memory has always been alive. You are a member of this family no matter the number of breaths you took; or didn't take.

I also know that if you were here, Trish may not be; I may not be. After you were born Mom and Dad tried again. They got pregnant with me and at my delivery I was pronounced  a "miracle". Apparently my umbilical cord was tied in a knot. After having two traumas in a row, Mom was over it. But, Dad wanted one more, his dream was to have and raise two children with Mom. I am glad they did. She is a great sister, you would be really proud of her; she is everything I hoped you would have been and more.

Timothy, you would be proud of your family. You would be really proud of your mom and your dad. After losing you mom could have lost it, but, she didn't. Mom says her faith is what helped her though; and dad. She said she remember days after you left she was staring out the window crying, missing you, and she saw her grandmother standing there, with you in her arms. Mom said that she knew at that moment that you were okay and that you were with someone who loved you; mom knew you were safe.

As I battle my way into motherhood, fighting my way through this thing called infertility, your story and mom's faith is something that grounds me. How can mom carry you for 9 months without a single complication and then just lose you? How would I ever be able to do that? I am not sure that I can. Mom is one of a kind; I swear.
I know you are up there watching over me. Dad has told me before that you may be my guardian angel- who knows. All I know it that out of all the people in this world I have known and lost, it's your presence I feel the most.

Timmy, I miss you. I wish I knew you, I wish I could see you; knew what you looked like.  I wish mom never had to say good-bye to you. I hope you know I love you. She loves you. He loves you.

Happy birthday, big brother.

Your Little Sister

Thursday, November 28, 2013

My Thanksgiving Poem

I am thankful for...
All of my amazing friends and
M y wonderful family.
T hankful for small things like
H ot baths and
pple cider. Thankful for big things like my
N ieces and nephews. I am thankful that
K inship can be found in strangers. Thankful for
F ertility treatments and the for the ability to seek the
U nknown with grace and determination. Today, I am thankful for the
L ove that I feel in my heart and for the love that surrounds my life.

Monday, November 25, 2013

My infertility has a song

She'll lie and steal, and cheat, and beg you from her knees
Make you think she means it this time
She'll tear a hole in you, the one you can't repair
But I still love her, I don't really care

When we were young, oh, oh, we did enough
When it got cold, ooh, ooh, we bundled up
I can't be told, ah, ah, it can't be done

It's better to feel pain, than nothing at all
The opposite of love's indifference
So pay attention now, I'm standing on your porch screaming out
And I won't leave until you come downstairs

So keep your head up, keep your love
Keep your head up, my love
Keep your head up, keep your love

And I don't blame you dear for running like you did all these years
I would do the same, you'd best believe
And the highway signs say we're close but I don't read those things anymore
I never trusted my own eyes

When we were young oh, oh, we did enough
When it got cold, ooh, ooh we bundled up
I can't be told, ah, ah, it can't be done

"She" is my infertility.

Infertility has lied to me and stolen from me. She made me think that there was a cure that I had a chance, that all I needed was a doctor's help. 

She stole the intimacy from my marriage when it comes to the "traditional" form of baby making. 

She has made me beg for a child and for my body to work. She has made me think that with each new cycle there is new hope; that this cycle might be the cycle. She taunts me with her hope. She is something I can't give up on. 

She had made us think that if we spent our money on fertility treatments we would get pregnant. She made us think that all we needed to do was spend the cash, take the shots, and the doctors would get us pregnant. She lied. 

She made me think that my body could work if we treated it and tricked it with medications. She tricked me; she cheated me.

She stole my optimism. She made me doubt myself, my body, my doctors and my ability to be a mother.

She has shown me that is is better to feel pain than nothing at all. I've believe this because of the stories I've read. Infertility is mean, cruel and heartless. She doesn't care who you are- she shows little mercy. But, the people who feel and deal with her wrath are better people because of her; even if they don't see it now.

She makes me think of Holly, Erika, Liz and Risa. She makes me think of those who have been so close, yet so far away from achieving their dream. She has shown me that even in the darkest hours, in the deepest of pains, it is better to have a memory than nothing at all.

I can stand up to her, no matter how dark the road gets and no matter how far I want to run; I just have to remind myself that it is better to feel pain than nothing at all and if you keep fighting, you might beat her. But. You. Must. Keep. Fighting.

She hasn't won yet. She's torn a hole in me; one I can't repair and that is okay- because just like her, I am stubborn and I can't be told it can't be done!

Tag: What is your "(in)fertility song"?

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Belated Beautiful Day

First off, let me say that I suck. I didn't get my partners mug out in time for her to post on Beautiful Day; I am sorry. I have no good excuse; other than life, work and a crappy post office that I desperately try to avoid.

My mug buddy sadly had a death in the family and understandably was preoccupied so she was also delayed in sending out my mug as well. Today though, I received her package and I wanted to be sure to post a picture of the cute mug and the sweet handmade baby dust she sent! 

Thank you, Jessica! I hope you enjoy your mug as well. You should get in in just a few days!

Ornament Exchange PARTNERS

Wow! I was not expecting such a great response to this exchange; I am super excited so many of you were interested in participating!

Now that I have paired everyone up so you should contact your partner and exchange addresses so you can  get shopping!

Be sure to try and get the ornaments mailed by December 12th so that everyone has time to enjoy the ornaments before the holidays are over! I can't wait to see lots of picture posts in the near future! 

If you need the directions again you can follow this link.

Thanks again and have fun!



Stephanie and Lisa

Sarah O. and Kristin

Carli and Jacqueline

Cathy and Nicolette

Lauren H. and Teresa R.

Courtney P. and Katie J.

Ashley G. and Ashley W. 

Teresa and Aubrey

Heather and jAllen

Kasey and Megan

Gypsy Mama and Lisa Mace

Ariel Ocean and Infertile625

Christina and JenS

Family of Three and Lisa G

Deleen and Awaiting Autumn

Bear and Becky 

JB and Jessah

Kylie and Aislinn


Katie and Rach

Rebecca and Rain before Rainbow

Not Pregnant and Pissed and Risa 

Jennifer and Isabelle

Tiffany and Megs

Aramis and Dustie 

Jessica and Amanda Griswold

** If you have any trouble contacting your partners please let me know and I will try to match you up with someone else or I will send you an ornament myself! **

Saturday, November 23, 2013

One Lovely Blog Award

I've been nominated for the One Lovely Bog Award by my friend Jenni at Unconceivably Blessed. Jenni has been such an inspiration to me and has been a wonderful supporter of mine. I am honored to have been nominated by her! Thanks, Jenni!

Here are the rules:

1) Thank the one that nominated you.
2) Put up the picture for the One Lovely Blog Award.
3) Tell everyone seven things about yourself.
4) Nominate seven other people and tell them that you have nominated them.

Seven things about myself...Here goes:

  1. I hate being in the car with others when I am driving but I hate being a passenger, too.
  2. I smile when I am really angry. It scared Mike at first. He never knew if I was "fine" or pissed. Now he knows.
  3. I hate being in crowds of people I don't know. It is my most "insecure" time! I am always afraid of being left alone.
  4. I am indecisive to a fault. I can never make up my mind and when I do- half the time wish I'd chose the other route.
  5. Sitting still is not one of my strong suits. I can't remember the last time we went out to see a movie. I just can't commit to being still, focused and comfortable for that long. I actually don't really watch a lot of movies at homes, either. They are too long. I prefer ad 30-40 min television show (with commercials).
  6. I've been to rehab 3 times and in the end it was my own will that got myself sober and healthy and away from him.
  7. My favorite ice cream is Tillamook Chocolate Peanut Butter. Best. Ever. 

My seven nominations go to:
  1. Frozen OJ
  2. It's Jennifer Juniper
  3. Not Pregnant and Pissed
  4. Sensitive Ginger
  5. Stupid Broken Eggs
  6. The Button's Mama
  7. The Icing on our cake

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Tag: Two Truths and a Lie

I stumbled on Jenny's blog they other day and I was immediately tagged and now you are too!

If you are reading this, you have to do it.... those are the rules; Jenny says so.

Tell us 3 things about you and make 1 of them a lie. Try to think about what other bloggers already know about you, what they might not know, and what might shock them. The trick is to make it difficult to tell which of the three is the lie....

Here are three things about me.

1. I saved a boy from drowning during a swimming lesson class and later received an award for it.

2. I never graduated from high school.

3. I got a tattoo on my 18th birthday that I absolutely hate and I've never told my parents.


Comment below with which one you think is a lie.

Make a new post on your blog and do the same.

After you get a bunch of guesses (or whenever you feel like), make a new post with the right/wrong answers and explain them if you want.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Guest Post: NaProTechnology

“More than years of trying? And still no baby?” This is how conversations usually go when someone asks why we don’t have children.  If you’re like me then you smile politely, explain your situation, all the while wishing that the indignant, crass individual who has dared to ask such a bold question would just spontaneously combust before the conversation reaches its end. 

My name is Catherine and I have endometriosis and ovarian dysfunction.  Unlike most women on the TTC roller coaster, I’m actually better off because of my infertility.  No, I’m not a Pollyanna who is choosing to see this through the lens of a rose colored glass.  I’m serious.  I am healthier because of my infertility. 

A year into our TTC journey, my husband, Frank, and I went to see my OBGYN to see what our options were.  After much discussion, we decided to pursue IUI.  We were told that it would bypass our diagnosis of “unexplained infertility.”  The first cycle was so exciting, until the Clomid took effect.  Then well, I looked like myself, but internally, I was possessed by a screaming banshee with no filter between the brain and the mouth! Instead of telling my husband to pick up his socks as I normally would, I screamed  “God damn it you son of a bitch!  Why do I always have to clean up after you?!?”  The Clomid joy was quickly replaced by the joy of the HCG shot.  I have never felt so terrible in all of my life!  The first time wasn’t bad, I just felt lousy, got covered in acne, and lost all of my get up and go.  Then my period came, and we started all over again, more Clomid and more mood swings.  The second HCG shot had me in bed for almost two days, my energy was drained.  I was thrilled! I was certain I was pregnant. And I was dead wrong.  Round three meant more Clomid, follicles that didn’t mature, a second dose of clomid, and by the time I should have gotten the third HCG shot, the effects of number two still hadn’t subsided.  I looked at the HCG vial on the counter and decided that there was no way making myself ill could make my body a nurturing place for a baby to grow. 

Shortly after making the decision, I shared it with my friend Jordan, who had been supportive through our infertility struggles.  After listening to me spill my guts and confess that I couldn’t bring myself to go through the third round of IUI (which meant IVF was off limits for us since it meant more intense medications than I was taking with IUI), Jordan mentioned that she and her husband had been trying as well, but they weren’t using Artificial Reproductive Technology (ART), they were using NaProTechnology (NaPro).  She explained that a woman’s body sends messages regarding fertility through bio-markers and that NaPro doctors teach their patients to chart these bio-markers, and then use the charts to identify problems that are keeping you from conceiving. 

After talking this over with my husband, Frank, we decided we had nothing to lose.  We contacted our local NaPro doctor’s office and he agreed to accept me as a patient.  While we waited for the appointment to arrive, I met with a charting consultant and started to chart my bio-markers

At my first meeting with my NaPro doctor, he read my chart and told me he was 90% sure I had endometriosis, an autoimmune disease, and that it was the cause of our infertility.  I was floored!  I had asked my ART doctor if my long cycles, heavy bleeding, and prolonged bleeding might have something to do with our infertility and I had been told NO!  He actually told me it was “normal” for me.  Yet here was my NaPro doctor telling me it was the cause of our infertility and that he could fix it!!!  He patiently explained all of the options to me and gave me a choice of surgeons.  He answered all of my questions and spent over an hour with me!  This was all covered by my health insurance, my only out of pocket expense was my $15 copay! 

Three months later, we drove four hours to the NaPro surgeon my NaPro doctor recommended.  I had a laparoscopy and the doctor found stage 2 endometriosis which was wrapped around my ovaries, tubes, and colon.  We stayed in a hotel for a few days, then I got checked out by the surgeon and we were on our way home.  Typical recovery time from a laparoscopy is 6 weeks, however because I went to a NaPro surgeon, my recovery took only two weeks!  I experienced less pain on the day after surgery than I experienced two days before surgery!  

It’s nine months after surgery now, and my immune system has calmed down and my body is no longer attacking itself.  We’re in what my NaPro doctor calls “prime time for conception”.  I have ovarian dysfunction which we’re treating with vitamins and letrozole.  My hormonal levels are within the optimum range.  We’ll continue trying for the next twelve months.   The most amazing thing is that my body is functioning normally!  No more heavy periods, no more intense pain, no more mood swings etc.  My hormone levels are in the “effective range”.  My peak minus one estradiol levels are between 300 and 400, and my peak plus seven estradiol levels are between 180 and 140, and my progesterone is between 15 and 28.  All of these numbers indicate the conception is indeed possible!  We now have normal odds of conceiving, and that’s pretty amazing!

A bit about the author of this post:

Catherine Sterling lives with her husband Frank and their four furbabies.  She is a full time teacher and part time blogger, who looks forward to one day sharing the news that she has conceived and carried a baby to term thanks to the help of NaProTechnology.  She is blessed to have the support of her amazing friend Jordan, her NaProTechnology mentor and sister from another mother.  Read more of her writing at

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Oh Baby, Baby Needs Prayer!

Holly's white blood cell count has gotten too high and is indicating an infection. The doctor's had to take some of Jude's water... if things don't improve she may be forced to deliver.

She needs a miracle and is seeking prayer for peace, healing and acceptance.

Please send some her way.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Ornament Exchange

Tis the season! 
Join me , won't you?

If you think this sounds like a fun exchange and one that you would like to be apart of please leave a comment with your email address and or blog name! I will need to be able to contact ALL participants and you must be willing to provide a valid mailing address.


The rules:
 1. Wait to be given an assigned partner
2. Shop for ornament (limit $15.00)
3. Ship the ornament to your assigned partner no later than 12/12/13
4. Post a photo of the received ornament on your blog, Twitter, and or Instagram account  by 12/24/13
5. Send thank you cards to your partner


Be sure to spread the word!
I can't wait to see who wants to participate!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Devastation hits Something Beautiful

Prayers are needed.

Erika, from Something Beautiful, found out that the birth mother changed her mind and will be keeping the baby just days after the birth. Please stop by Erika's blog and give her some love, and please, keep her and her family in your prayers.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Stork Award

I've designed a new blog award that I wanted to contribute to this amazing community. The award represents the roots of its creation; my blog, and has a creative design, meaning and a beautiful purpose; if I don't say so myself. 

After hours of pondering, I started thinking about all the blogs out there and the couples behind the writings. I thought about how each one of those couples had their own stories to share. I thought about the blogs that I've read; the ones that really moved me with their honesty and openness. I thought about how I wanted to give those bloggers something from myself. Something to say "thank you".

Sharing our personal stories; being open and honest, may not always seem like a good idea to some people, but, to others; to people like myself, it is healing. Sometimes the answers are in the stories we share. 

Now, let me tell you about the award...

The title comes not only from the name of my blog, as I wanted it to forever be linked to its creator but, I wanted it to somehow be specific to the infertile world.  I figured that since some of us are still waiting for "The Stork" to bring us our baby- the next best thing would be an award from "The Stork" for blogging about what we have to face while waiting for our delivery, right!?

Then, I found a quote that was fitting, written by Maya Angelou, that  I knew  had to be incorporated into the award. Not one of us has the answer but we all have a song. Each of our stories are important and each of our stories have something in them that can help someone along the way- so keep singing!

 The hummingbird has been known by legends to float free of time, carrying our hopes for love, joy and celebration. The hummingbird generally symbolizes playfulness as well as adaptability, additional symbolic meanings are: lightness of being, enjoyment of life, playfulness and joy, swiftness, and resiliency.

Many of the blogs I read remind me of the hummingbird. The strength and resilience that so many of you have is  fascinating and inspiring.

I am a better person because of the stories you share with me; with the world. Your experiences have taught me valuable lessons on how to handle loss, grief, struggle, and so much more. For that I applaud you. 
I thank you.

Your stories are all songs that fill my life with beautiful melody.

So, without further ado, I would like to present to you
 The Stork Award

Please, spread this award across the blogging community to those bloggers who bring song to your life.


How it works:
1. Include the Stork Award icon in your post
2. Link to the person(s) who nominated you
3. Answer the 10 questions about yourself
4. Nominate as many bloggers as you want to receive the award 
5. Ask your nominees 10 new questions 
6. Link your nominees and let them know they've been nominated
7. Post the Stork Award icon on your blog side bar if you are so inclined 

The first nominees for this beautiful award are:
My questions for you!
  1. Do you like to plan things out in detail or be spontaneous?
  2. What embarrasses you?
  3. What are some of your favorite websites?
  4. How would you explain your basic life philosophy?
  5. Would you rather be hated or forgotten?
  6. What do you like least about yourself?
  7. Do you have a favorite number? Any particular reason why you like that number?
  8. If you could try out any job for a day, what would you like to try?
  9. If you could go back in history, who would you like to meet?
  10. How are you, really?