Meet Kendahl: Mama of 2 Under 2
There was a time in my life where I wondered if I would ever use my name and "mama" in the same sentence...let alone mama of 2 under 2.
April 13, 2011:
I've been praying a lot for clarity on what we have been going through. Very rarely do I hear an audible voice but this was clear as day. He said "This is not your story". Infertility is not my story. It's a journey we're on right now but it's not what defines me. It's not what my life is about. There is so much more that God has planned for me...this is just a blip. I may figure this all out and have lots of little babies or I may never have a biological child but either way infertility is not my story. That's all I know, and that's what I cling to.
This was a piece of an email that I wrote to a close friend back in early 2011. In the thick of it. I found it last week and it brought me back. It brought back those feelings.
My husband and I started dating at the very end of our senior year in high school and after dating for 5 years, were married on the golf course (just up the street from our current home) in August of 2008. Fast forward 3 and a half years. In October of 2010, after trying to get pregnant for over a year, we went to the doctor for our first round of infertility tests. Those words. At the time they were so defining. They were so scary. After multiple rounds of blood work, I got a phone call with some news that I never expected.
I got a call from the doctor with my blood work results. Guys, from the doctor. Not the secretary, not the nurse, the doctor. That's never good.
"Well, we need to schedule you for an MRI as soon as possible. From the results of your blood work, I think that you may have a brain tumor."
Hold. The. Phone.
Now, I was just as freaked by those words as you may be right now. I stopped listening to everything she said after that. So, after getting off the phone, completely losing it, and a bit of googling, the news my dr. had just called and wrecked me with turned much less scary. It was completely benign and more of a brain "mass". A pituitary prolactinoma to be exact. Long story short, it causes my body to overproduce the prolactin hormone thus causing the infertility. Bam. We had our answer. A little medicine, a couple MRI's, and the doctor said we would be good as new. No more issues.
Yet we did. 4, 5, 6 months later and still no baby. So, they started running tests on Bryan. And, well, it's just our luck that he had issues too. After 2 rounds of testing, the Dr diagnosed Bryan with a varicocele (at least it's not another brain tumor, right? :) I will spare you all the details, but you are welcome to research at your own risk. We moved forward with surgery and the hope that it was the end of the journey for us (knowing the continuing road would be much more grueling).
Just over 2 years, 3 MRIs, a varicocele repair surgery, and lots and lots and lots of bloodwork later, we found out on August 14, 2011 that we were pregnant.
Ellis Hay came into the world, holding his breath and scaring the crud out of his parents on April 13, 2012. He is the silliest, craziest toddler you will ever meet. I promise that he consumes no caffeine, despite what his behavior leads you to believe.
8 (very short) months later, we found out we were pregnant with number 2. Yes, we were very excited...but admittedly a little confused. The doctors told us until I started back on my medicine (which I hadn't done), I was unable to get pregnant. Boy, did we prove them wrong. Olive Ruth made her grand entrance on October 23, 2013. She came in just as stubborn as her older brother via c-section due to being breech the entire pregnancy. We are taking it one day at a time, learning about the mutual joy and chaos that comes with having 2 under 2.
Infertility is a part of my story, but it is not my story.
Guys, here's what is my story: I am a struggling mom saved by grace.
Some struggle with patience, some struggle with the daily mess, some struggle with finances, but we all struggle. Hear that right now. We all struggle. What I want each of you to know is that your struggle doesn't define you. It's not your story. God's grace is bigger than your struggle.
The smile on your son's face when you tell him how much you love his drawing.
The storytelling at the dinner table.
The boo-boos you magically kiss away, day after day.
The "amen" you hear your daughter say at the end of a long day.
The animal noises your make over and over and over.
The heavy breathing of a child sleeping on your chest after a middle of the night feeding.
The late night laughs with your husband.
You are a mom. You are loved. Those things are your story. Embrace them.
I'm so excited to be a part of this community. And I love that it's a community. Not a helpline. Not a resource. Not a class. A community. That means we are doing this together.
So, what's your story? Go ahead, that's what the comments section is for!