1st Year in Review: Trusting God and Answered Prayers

Right around a year ago, I started this blog. And boy what a year it has been. 

I thought I would take a moment to look back on what all has gone on in that amount of time. What prayers have been answered and what we have had to trust God for every day.  

When I started this blog last March, my husband, Brett, and I were just coming through a major transition. Brett had just gotten out of the military the month before and we had moved to Florida and both started new jobs at Disney. We were also in the process of building and buying a house. (Which, if you haven’t ever done that before, it can be a pretty stressful process.) After a miscarriage the October before and with the anticipation of the up coming move, our journey to starting a family was put on hold until we could get settled here in Florida. 

Even though we were not actively “trying” I really needed an outlet to be able to process all that had happened with our infertility journey and be able to answer questions a lot of my friends and family were asking pertaining to the subject. I thought what better way to do that than a blog. So I sat down and put this blog together. To help encourage others who may be going through similar situations and to keep everyone up to date on our story. 

In the mean time, there were plenty of prayers and tears by myself and my husband not really know where to go from here. Multiple failed fertility cycles, 2 miscarriages, and no real hope for anything happening in the future. We were crushed inside. 

Then the miraculous happened…

About a month after I started this blog, I found out I was pregnant! To say I was shocked would be an understatement! After all we went through for the past 4 years, we get pregnant without any form of treatments or tracking. All I can say is God can do anything, and one of the biggest things I had been praying for had finally been answered. I was going to be a mom. 

Now, with that news as excited as we were, I did have a thought. “What am I going to do about this blog I just started a month ago to help encourage people going through infertility?” “The last thing they are going to want read about is that yet another person got pregnant and they didn’t.” 

But something inside me said to keep it going. To encourage others of answered prayers. That is when I also started adding testimonies and stories of others who are walking this road as well. Making this a community. And what a rewarding journey this has been! Reading couples’ stories and being able to share them has brought so much joy to my life. And the response of others has been amazing. I am so thankful I kept this going and I hope you all have been encouraged by it as well. 

This past year since starting the blog we have gotten pregnant, had our beautiful baby girl, moved into our own home, my husband started his Master’s degree program, and we started up as the youth pastors at our church. Phew! Through all of this I can’t help but praise God in the crazy. I am ready to see what this next year will bring. How about you?! 

(Side note: if you have a story you would like to share on this blog, feel free to email me at fertileatheart@gmail.com!) 


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, 


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!