Kim’s Story: Secondary Infertility 

Time for another testimony through infertility. This time, secondary infertility. Kim and I met in collage and have stayed in touch through the years. I hope that her story will encourage anyone out there who may have a similar story to not give up and keep trusting that God will hear your prayers in the perfect timing. 


Written by Kim:

My husband and I have been married 7 years, 7, Wow REALLY? Sometimes I can’t believe it’s only been 7 years. We’ve been through a myriad of struggles, and health concerns in just 7 short years. In those 7 years my husband lost his brother, had a stroke, we lost a child due to miscarriage and learned that we will likely not be able to have any more children, well naturally that is. We have one daughter that was born in 2012 she is, spunky, fiery and so smart, I am in awe that she is as smart as she is, at such a young age. When we got married I always knew we would adopt, but I didn’t know that it would become one of our only options at such a young age and that I would be facing secondary infertility, the inability to have children after one child, at all.

So lets start at the beginning, We got married in 2010, YAY! It was a wonderful wedding followed by a fabulous year of us. I found out I was pregnant on our 1st anniversary trip around Pennsylvania to visit family and to show off my home state, which is the BEST. We were thrilled, well beyond thrilled, I couldn’t wait to welcome our little girl into the world. She was born a health but tiny 4 pounds 7 oz she was a spitfire from the start. I was so excited to have her, and since I was able to stay home with her J and I decided to keep our kiddos close together and we started trying not to prevent pregnancy when she was 6 months old. I figured it would happen within the first 6 months or so, like it did the first time, well it didn’t but we found ourselves in the hospital that Jan 1st J had a stroke New Years Eve and he was in the ICU for about a week relearning to walk, and talk. We were so lucky, his stroke was minor but it was caused by high blood pressure, which apparently he had for quite some time, but never was treated. So we were now treating his blood pressure and his heart anomalies and we were good back to baby #2. On Jan 1st of the next year we found ourselves in the hospital again, I was miscarrying and we were crushed. 

Fast Forward to now we have been trying for almost 5 years for baby #2, we decided to enter a clinical trial to help us get some of our fertility testing done so we wouldn’t have to pay out of pocket so much. Man, fertility treatments and testing are outrageously expensive, what the heck people!! Anyway we found out that some of the medications are affecting J’s count, and it has become almost non-existent, in that there are very few if any alive and most of those don’t move. So alright lets talk to our GP he can change up the medications and no worries we’ll be cracking. The GP where he is nice and very understanding, he had some pretty bad news for us. The medication causing the problems not one we can discontinue, likely ever with J’s family medical history and the stroke. 

So lets talk about the serious blow this was. I mean I don’t know any other words to describe it than I lost hope, all of it, I cried, I blamed God, I even felt like a total failure. I kept thinking wow maybe I am not a good enough mom and that’s why we can’t have another baby, maybe I am being punished for something, maybe God has just forgotten me, and to be honest these thought still creep up A LOT! It is so hard to have faith when we’ve been waiting, for an adoption for 3 years or anther pregnancy for 5. It’s also hard to confide in others, because most people don’t really know what to say, or they say really hurtful/unhelpful things, especially since we already have one child. I hear most often, mostly from women who are suffering from traditional infertility, you have one just be happy with her, don’t you know we can’t have any. I know I am blessed with E she is seriously the best thing I have ever done but it doesn’t erase the desire to see her grow up with siblings. We’ve always wanted at least 4 kiddos, and I am still hopeful we will adopt several, or have a few more. I find on my hardest days to tell God exactly how I am feeling, when J lost his brother he said the most helpful was to tell God he was mad, upset, and angry about what happened. That has been the most helpful thing to me as well. Also saying NO, to things I am not ready for, sometimes it’s a baby shower, or holding someone’s baby or even tv shows. Also telling people when they say something hurtful or unhelpful, my mom whom I love to death, has told me ‘maybe it’s just not your time.’ where is maybe right that is so unhelpful and it can be hard to have to tell our loved ones, please don’t say that, it will be better for everyone’s sanity if you do.   

 

This whole thing has been a hard one to come to grips with, but I think I am finally ready to say I am suffering from secondary infertility but I will not allow that to steal my joy. My joy in motherhood, my joy in my marriage, my joy in my Savior, or my joy in my everyday life. God truly does know our storm, and knows how to calm our fears, doubts, and hurts. He knows and is always with us.

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The Love of My Life

There are times when I think back at all the major decisions I have made through the years and think to myself, “I wonder what would have happened or what my life would have been like if I had done this or that instead?” “Would I be married to the same guy?” “Would I be living where I am living?” “What aspects of my life might be different had I not taken the roads I took in life?” 

The biggest blessing of the all choices through the years is that they lead me to meeting and marrying my husband. And this post is to some brag a little bit about how great of a man he is to me and those around him. I couldn’t me more lucky of a girl if I had planned this life myself. 

Yesterday my husband a lunch meeting with one his professors at his university he is attending to get his master’s degree. This meeting was only supposed to be about 30min long but after him being gone for about 2.5 hrs I decided to call him to make sure he wasn’t in a car wreck or something like that. (Over-dramatic, I know. But better to be safe than sorry.) 

When he answered, he informed me that he was on his way home but was stopping at Wendy’s first. Slightly confused, since the meeting with his professor was a lunch meeting, he said that he had stopped and talked to a guy on his way home that needed a meal so he wanted to make sure the guy got some food and was able to pray with him. When I got off the phone, I couldn’t help but smile. How could I be so blessed to have such a sensitive guy as my husband. 


A little later, all of a sudden the door bell rang. I was confused because I wasn’t expecting anyone that day. I went and opened the door and there my husband was standing with a dozen roses, a card, and a bottle of sparkling grape juice. I was speechless. He said, “Since we are celebrating Valentine’s Day a day early, I wanted to do it right.” And he also had single rose for our daughter. She is just shy of two months old and her daddy is already showing her how a lady should be treated. Watching my husband be a daddy makes fall in love with him more and more everyday. 


We ended our evening with a dinner date while my parents watched our daughter. And it was a great night. 

God has truly answered my prayers through the years beyond what I even imaged with my amazing husband and precious little girl. The journey to get here, to this place has not been anything that I would have planned or asked for but I would not be in the place without this journey. My husband has shown me recently what it really means to love the all of God’s people, no matter where they are at in life. I have always done that but watching him has really opened my eyes to how much more I can do better in that area. And yet he still loves his little family and shows us in his own ways and we are just as loved and cared for as the hungry man he meets on the street. 

I love him so much and feel so blessed and honored to be his wife! 

To My “One in a Millie Anne”

Dearest Millie, 

You are so precious to me. Your father and I have prayed for you and your little life long before you were even conceived. Praying for you to come. Praying for the person you would become. Praying that you would one day be a world changer. 

Now that you are here in my arms it takes my breath away to see the goodness of God’s love in your little face. 

As you grow and learn about the world around you, just remember to always be yourself and that your daddy and I will always love you. We will always be here for you. Chase your dreams. Don’t hold back. You will do incredible things with those dreams! 

I pray everyday that God will show himself to you in His own special way that will guide you to His plan for your life. This life is never easy, but keep your eyes focused on the Lord and He will always be with you through everything. 

You are my world. You are the one who made me “mommy.” My “One in a Millie Anne.” 

I love you dearly, 

Mommy 

A Labor of Love


48 Hours…

That is how long my labor and delivery lasted…48 hours.

I ended up having to be induced because of multiple reasons. This was not a good start for my “ideal” labor and delivery I had dreamed of having. I was 10 days past my due date with no end in sight. I had no dilation or effacement and so for that and a few other reasons we had to resort to the induction process. 

But that was ok. As long as our baby was coming out healthy I wanted to do what was best.

Dec 20, 2016. 5:00pm

At this time we showed up to the hospital to start the process and get the medications going that were needed to induce the labor. The first medicine was a cervix softening medication that was to be given for 12 hours and was to jump start the dilation before the Pitocin was started. After 12 hours of continuous mild contractions, and a very restless nights sleep, the doctor came in and checked me. 

Dec 21, 2016. 7:00am
No dilation, no effacement.

They were expecting medication to dilate me to at least 3cm by that point with no such results. So, the Pitocin was going to have to do all the work. Thus, the Pitocin was started and we were off for the hardest part…so I thought. 

Dec 21, 2016. 7:30pm

After hours of grueling contractions that were literally off the chart on the monitors, I was checked again and was only dilated to 3cm by this point. The 3cm that I was supposed to be dilated at the end of the first 12 hours there. The pain levels were so intense that I could hardly breath and the contractions were back to back. My goal and yet another dream of doing it without pain medications was going the window with every contraction that came on. Being that I was only at 3cm by this point, I knew that contractions were only going to get worse. So in the end I did end up with an epidural that was probably my life saver. 

One thing that I didn’t even think about with having an epidural, is the fact that since you are numb, there is no way to move, so the nursing staff had to come in and rotate me side to side every hour or so. Talk about no sleep that night. But at least there was no pain involved so I was thankful for that. 

Dec 22, 2016. Morning time. (I don’t remember the exact time)

The medical staff came in and did the morning check. I was finally dilated to about 8cm I think. It was a relief to see progress. At that time as well, they broke my water. More progress. Yay. 

Dec 22, 2016. 12:00pm

At this time I was checked and fully ready. 10cm dilated, 100% effaced.

The time had come to start pushing! That was a somewhat scary moment for me in many ways. I suddenly had thoughts going through my head that I never imagined would be there during that moment. Thoughts like, “Is this really happening?” “Am I even ready for all of this to happen?” “Am I really ready to be a mom?”  

In that moment I knew my life was about to change forever and there was no going back. I am no longer that girl that had dreamed of being a mom her whole life with no end in sight. I am no longer that wife that had been trying for what seemed like eternity to a baby with no success of treatments. I am now about to be a mom. A title that had seemed so far out of reach that I wasn’t sure it would ever be in my life. But we still had one hurdle to get over. The actual pushing part.

The next 5 hours was the hardest and most exhausting thing that I have ever done. They were even saying that after all the hours I had gone through with labor that I might end having to have a c-section if the baby wouldn’t come out faster. But every time they checked her, she had moved just enough more down the birth canal that would let me keep pushing a little bit longer. Making the total pushing time about 5 hours.

In the end though, her shoulder was stuck behind my hip bone. So, yet another item I was not wanting to happen, happened. They had to use the suction cup on her head to get her out. I ended up with a fourth degree tear and countless stitches. 

Dec 22,2016. 5:13pm

Millie Anne Gilbertson was born. Weighing in at 8 pounds and 20 3/4 inches long. 

Due to the nature of my tear and the repair work that needed to be done, I was not that first one to get to hold her. But my husband was. And what a sight it was. It made me fall in love with him all over again. He is such a proud dad. 

As traumatic of an even as this experience was, and having absolutely none of it go as I wanted it to or had planned, I would do it all over again for her. For my little rainbow baby. She is a dream that has come true and an answer to a prayer that has been prayed since I was about 14 years old. There are a few details here and there that I have left out for the sake of not boring you all to death. Just know that even through the most difficult times, God will get you through. 

He got me through the time of infertility. He got me through this pregnancy. And, He got me through a very tough labor and delivery. He is always there. All of this experience has stretched me, grown me, and brought to a place where I am stronger than I have ever been. Don’t give up! He is there!