The Death of My Father, The Birth of The Mother Inside of Me.

It’s been a crazy few months. So crazy in fact that I couldn’t manage to write anything, besides the story of my dad’s death. Which I think, for now, is just a little bit too much information for the internet. I feel totally disconnected from the world around me, which has made it increasingly hard to communicate feelings with any sort of cohesive thought. I’m not even sure how to get back into writing in this blog fairly often, even though I desperately want to.
On May 5th my dad died. Everything from the few weeks leading up to his death until now feels like a blur. I’m not sure what is appropriate to share here, it seems like such a private and emotional thing to even talk about with the internet. Here’s what I’ll share for now. At 7am, quietly, only Louie and I in the room, my dad took his last breath in front of my eyes. His eyes were as wide as I had ever seen them, staring through me, through the ceiling, into the sky, I held his hand and told him how much I loved him, that he was the best dad I ever had and that he was going to be welcomed into Heaven with open arms. That was it.

Some days I cry so hard I can’t breathe. I miss him more than I ever thought possible. I miss holding his hand and listening to him talk. I miss his laugh and his sense of humor. I miss watching TV with him and telling him about my teachers and classes and how IVF works. He was always very interested in my life and cared deeply about what I was doing. I couldn’t have asked for a better father. It’s almost too painful to even think about. I know the grief process is long and hard, but I don’t think I’ll ever be OK. I have to believe he is the one behind all of the good things happening in my life now. I just miss him. I know he chose me to die in front of, because I asked him not to. Thats just the way he was. Always pushing me to my limits and showing me how strong I am. I feel honored that he chose me, that I was there. I will never forget him or that moment. I just miss him, so much.

He bought this at the hospital gift shop before he died. It’s titled “my girls”, it says that within you I find strength, hope and love.

Two weeks later I started injections for IVF. 
Two weeks after that I went in for my egg retrieval. 
Two weeks after that I found out I was pregnant. 
Two weeks after that we found out it was twins.
The IVF process was easier than I thought it would be. I have never been afraid of needles so all of the injections really didn’t scare me. All of the symptoms that I felt from the hormones, headaches, mood swings, fiery anger in my soul, the deep burning desire to stab someone in the eye with a hot knife, bouts of endless crying, screaming at everyone I loved, begging the universe to give me a fucking break and ultimately feeling totally lost and hopeless, all mirrored emotions felt when someone close to you dies. So all of that was happening and then I got a staph infection on the side of my boob and that pretty much sums up how life was going for me at that point.
This needle goes in my butt and it hurts.

Mixing the ovary stimulation drugs!

My left over loot!

This is what thousands of dollars of IVF drugs looks like.
Durring all the ultrasounds (2-3 times a week for 2 weeks) we saw a lot of follicles growing away, at one point we saw 23. This had me feeling like it had all be for something! We knew we were going to PGD (genetic screening of embryos to see if they are compatible with life) which meant that we would be left with 1/3 of those 23 embryos, which meant we’d have some to transfer and some to freeze and I’d never have to go through IVF again.
I was horrified and scared shitless for the egg retrieval, I was afraid I wouldn’t go to sleep and I would kick the doctor in the face and scream and it would hurt. Man was I a fool. It was so easy! I slept like a baby. Once the drugs were in my vein, I remember thinking “My mouth tastes kinda funny” and then I was out like a light. When I came to I was sitting next to Louie thinking “It feels like they went in the wrong hole! My butt hurts man!” to which they replied that it was normal. They told us we only got 11 eggs and I cried. Apologized for crying and seeming ungrateful but feeling like someone had just punched me in the gut. ONLY 11?!? That means if we performed within the average we would only have 3 embryos at the end of all of this, and surely 3 tries wasn’t enough.
After 4 days of hell, 5 vicodin refills, and crawling on my hands and knees to the bathroom, I finally felt better and as it turned out we did perform exactly on average. 3 embryos made it past the genetic screening with all chromosomes intact. Two boys and a girl.
I hesitated to add this picture, but I had to show you. THIS is how bloated and full of fluid I was after the procedure, it was pure HELL.
6 days after they were taken out of me, one month to the day since my dad had passed, on June 5th my babies were put back into their home. My mom and Louie went with me. What I thought would be just another whatever appointment where various instruments and people fiddle around with my uterus turned into one of the most special days of my life. We all watched in the dark as all the tiny drop of fluid containing two blastocysts were place into my uterus. Though it doesn’t sound especially emotional I assure you, it was. I begged them to stay there and went home to three days of strict bed rest. Afraid to cough, sneeze, pee or stand up, I rested and waited.
Our babies. Girl on top, fully hatched and boy on bottom, hatching.
4 days after they were put back I found out I was pregnant. Two blood tests confirmed and then on the 18th I had my first ultrasound where we saw two little hearts beating away. Our boy and girl made it!
We love them so much!
So, there’s the timeline. I wish I would have journaled weekly so that I could have written in more detail about everything. Most days I just feel so full. Like I couldn’t possibly fit one more thing inside of my life. So much happiness and sadness and excitement and fear. It’s hard to write something when you don’t know how you want it to sound. Some days I want to just write about how sad I am, some days how blessed I feel. It’s difficult to find a middle ground that honors both tragedy and beauty in life.
Most days I am so afraid the babies are dead. Infertility has done me no favors in that department. After months and months and years of disappointment, how do you switch off the empty feeling inside?
For me the only way I’ve been able to delete those thoughts when they enter my head is hypnotherapy. I replace those thoughts with good ones, take a few deep cleansing breaths and tell my babies how much I love them and want them to stay right there until they’re ready to be in my arms for the rest of my life. It hasn’t been easy, this process. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my dad and wish he could meet my babies. I know he’s met them already, he probably gave them the rundown of Earth, all the beautiful things. He’s probably already told them they need to play sports and get their degree’s. I like to think they already know how much he loves them.
Looking back on all that has happened in the past three months, I feel totally exhausted. I also feel very lucky. Equal parts happy and sad and ready for the next chapter of my life. That seems to be the theme of my life lately. Walking the tight rope between total bliss and excruciating pain. So far, with the help of my husband, hypnotherapist, friends, family and these two little miracles hanging out inside my uterus, I feel like I found that balance. I can handle anything that comes my way, good or bad.
Loving on our babies. 

  One thought on “The Death of My Father, The Birth of The Mother Inside of Me.

  1. July 13, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    OMG hunny I was balling my eyes out reading this. God obviously works in mysterious ways. He took a wonderful person from you and is now giving you two little miracles. although knowing your DAD the little bit I did I'm sure he had something to do with it as well. He loved you soo……… much that I'm sure he wanted you to have some joy in these hard times, so instead of just having one Miracle he's giving you two. Congrats and I hope you and your family can get through this and have the Best life possible. You deserve it. Have you come up with any names?

  2. July 14, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    I too am crying my eyes out right now! I feel so happy for you and so devastated at the same time. I lost my father unexpectedly at a very early age! I was daddy's little girl and life has never been the same. I remember walking through the cloud of the following weeks. The pain I suffered in silence and my heart bleeds for you BUT, I have learned that my dad is up there in heaven. Loving me like no other and pulling all the strings that need to be pulled to make it down here. I am so happy for you and Louie! I know how badly you wanted babies and you must take a lot of comfort knowing this is going to happen for you now. I can't wait to follow your blog and learn how you feel the first moment your babies are in your arms!

  3. T
    September 26, 2013 at 3:41 am

    Thank you for sharing your story with us ❤

  4. September 20, 2014 at 5:05 pm

    You are such an amazing writer and honest person. Thank you for sharing. It helps me feel like I am not alone in this crazy infertility battle. Thank you so much for that. I was wondering if when you chose to do PGD and put two babies back inside, if your doctor fought you on it. I brought it up to my doctor, and he seems adamant that I steer away from twins. Do you have a recommendation? Also, did you have to do PGD or was it elective?

    • September 20, 2014 at 5:31 pm

      So, my doctor suggested we put two in. He was adamant that the risk of twins was small, which we know is not true now. PGD yields much higher rates of twins with a two embryo transfer. Had we known this I would have only put one in. We chose to do PGD because of his poor morphology and my history of miscarriage. I would suggest following your doctors recommendation, he sounds like he knows what he’s talking about. The risk of a twin pregnancy is incredibly high. I am one of the lucky ones but I wouldn’t make the same choices knowing the statistics I know now.

  5. September 20, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    Thank you so much! I’ve been looking for someone to offer feedback on this exact scenario. So glad I found your blog!

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