Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Anxiously Tumultuous

Chris’s year in review:
 
Anxiously tumultuous.  I don’t know exactly if that makes sense to anyone other than me but that is how I would describe this year.  From Candace’s wait on cancer and ultimate hysterectomy to becoming super famous MTV reality stars (not really) to doing an about face on pursuing adoption to plunging into the unknowns of surrogacy and ultimately having that glimmer of the “V” word we rarely get to use, victory; this year has been an upheaval of so many different facets of our lives.  I know this, without Candace and her strength, I would not have been able to get through it all.  Without God and all that he has done for me, I would not have been able to take my first step in 2013.  And, without all of your (our blog readers, fellow bloggers, family, and friends) never failing support, we would not have such a positive outlook on all that 2014 has to offer us.  So, with your patience and permission, I wanted to take a moment and recap some of the main events for us in 2013.  Can you believe this is our 101st blog post!?  Thank you laptop for all of your patience with my clumsy fingers:
Adoption here we come:  We started 2013 with a furiously paced pursuit of adoption.  Reeling from our all too familiar latest failed IVF attempt, we decided to throw in the towel on pursuing that further with the hopes that adoption would provide us at least tangible steps to take towards a family.  We have talked about adopting a child since we started dating so the idea was nothing new and it seemed that adoption would be our only way to have a family.  After going all the way through the process and only needing the third home study to be approved to go on the list of waiting parents, our world flipped upside down as we were approached by someone offering to be our surrogate … more on that later.
Candace’s cancer, who says only 4 letter words are bad: Suffice it to say, Candace and her uterus have been at odds for quite some time.  Well, her uterus thought it had it in the bag this year.  The final blow to make us give up on our family.  You guessed it, CANCER.  Pre-cancer actually.  They found these cells in Candace’s uterus during a WTF hysteroscopy after our 5th failed IVF attempt.  Referral to an OB-GYN oncologist led to tons of progesterone to give us one last shot at a successful IVF transfer and after an excruciating in-office biopsy, we got the green light.  Well, that 6th transfer was no more successful than the 5th and there was still the fear that the pre-cancer could return.  Another in-office biopsy followed by a biopsy under general anesthesia and we discovered that, although no pre-cancerous cells were detected, Candace uterus had basically fused shut from scar tissue.  Time for “U” to go Mrs. Uterus … a topic for a few future blog posts.
“Hey Candace, MTV is on the phone:”  Yep, we are famous.  Or at least we became 0.02% more famous than we were before our True Life show aired.  That makes us exactly 0.03% as famous as most B-roll actors and actresses.  MTV’s True Life series filmed all of the drama, heartache, and struggle that is IF by following us and another couple through an IVF transfer.  The show “I’m Desperate to Have a Baby” was filmed by people that Candace and I now consider to be family and we are incredibly grateful to them for all their hard work to tell our story so well.  It was invasive, awkward, and tiring for sure, but worth every moment if it means that more people become aware of the pain and hardship that those of us in the IF world face.  Hats off again MTV staff, you remain incredible in our eyes!
We had one crazy threesome:  Surrogacy was a curveball neither Candace nor I expected.  That is just for movie stars and rich people right?  There is no way we could afford it.  That is, until our God-send came forward and offered to be our surrogate.  We didn’t know what to do since we were hip-deep into adoption.  Talking to others, praying, and thinking until our thinkers gave out, we decided to dive head first into surrogacy.  Then we waited … stupid insurance … and once the insurance stars aligned, our surro (not Candace) started the pre-transfer meds.  Our two (last/final/never have any more) blastocysts were thawed and both survived!  From the two transferred, by God’s will alone, one implanted leading to … wait for it … a BFP!  What the hell is that!  More on that in the future.  Let’s just say that everything seems to be going as planned.
Sorry for the novel, but like I said, this year has been an anxiously tumultuous one.  From Candace facing down cancer to our surro surro-ing it up and making our wish come true, 2013 was truly a year with the ultimate disparity of emotions.  I do not know how your 2013 was and I don’t know how our or anyone else’s 2014 will be.  What I do now is that the more people you can truly call friends the better, it takes too much effort to stay angry or down, and the greatest journeys always seem to be those that do not go as planned.  I hope that your 2014 is a year filled with unexpected, yet wonderful, roadblocks and detours.  After all, in the world of IF, our roads to having a family are always under construction.
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6 comments:

  1. Chris I always love reading your perspective on all of this. SO often the male gets shut pout of the procreation process. Its all about the woman seemingly, but hearing your honest perspective about Candaces lady bits always reminds me that men are so overlooked in all of it. It is SO hard to stand by and watch a loved one face a hardship, and I am sure that youd trade places in a second if you could with Candace. The love you have for have is palpable in your words. As I said goodbye to 2013 last night (around 9 pm :) I thought of all that the people I care about have been through this last year, joys and defeat, and hoped for an amazing year for all of us! I have a couple angels working for me upstairs too so I feel like we are all in good hands. :)
    PS Is it BAD that when you said the 'seldom heard V word' I immediately thought you were going to say Vagina? oh good...glad Im not weird.
    XO Lynn

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    1. We all seem to race so fast towards the future that when we do get a chance to be retrospective, we realize just how rocky and hard the road was that we were on. Candace and I are so thankful that we have a bit of a respite to look back and appreciate all that we experienced last year. Thank you for your appreciation of the 'dude speak' and I hope it encourages other Y-chromosomers out there to be more outspoken about it.

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  2. Chris and Candace, I just caught a re-run of the True Life episode. I scurried to the computer to see if I could find an update, and I am so overjoyed to read that you two are expecting a baby via surrogacy. I'm in the odd position of having experienced infertility AND of having been a gestational carrier, so my joy for you comes from both sides of the fence. I'm keeping you both, your baby-on-the-way, and your surrogate in my thoughts and prayers. <3

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    1. Wow Kymberli, that is incredible! I know you have a very unique perspective being that you have both struggled with having your family and were able to help others to have their family. If there are any bits of advice that you could give us regarding things we good do to tell and show our surro how much we appreciate what she is doing for us, please share. You are a hero in our eyes!

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  3. Just saw you guys tonight on MTV...so excited to see that your story is going to have a happy ending! Congrats!

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    1. Thanks Cher, we are so happy to be able to share our good news and hopefully inspire others to keep striving for their goals.

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