Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The End.

I went ahead and had my blood drawn yesterday afternoon.  A few hours isn't going to make a difference.

It was negative.

I will never again carry a miracle within me.  Never know again what sweet little baby kicks feel like when Mommy eats Skittles (which, by the way, Luke loves).  Never be able to scan another face, desperate for any signs of Matthew or what Trey may have looked like.  Never watch Daddy lose all hints of "Manly Marine" and go goo-goo ga-ga over his precious newborn.

No Hannah.  No William. (The names another boy and girl would have had.)

I'm sure many are thinking, "Don't count yourself out...." and have some story of some woman who ended up with a surprise pregnancy when she least expected it.

Yeah, not interested.  When you spend as many years and dollars as we have pursuing just about every modern technology available to bring children into your lives, you don't give 'those' stories credence.

Of course, they happen.

Just not to me.  I'm the story of the lady with babies who die.

************

I'm also the story of the lady who is blessed beyond measure.  A dear friend told me that when she read about how I was saying it would be just my luck to end up with cancer, she was thinking about how lucky I was with Luke.

And she is SO right.  He is the song in my heart and one of the most amazing gifts I've ever been given.  He is proof that God can and does create all things new and I am often just at a loss for words to describe just what he does for my heart and soul.  For his Daddy's too.


I told another friend yesterday...in light of how it ALL has turned out...I still would not change a thing.  I'd do every treatment, go through every heartache and roller coaster ride, cry every tear and plea every plea all over again just for the privilege I've been given to mother the babies I have.  I'd obviously prefer that ALL were with me here on this earth.

Given that they aren't, the joy of knowing and loving them for whatever time I was given is enough to last my lifetime.

And it will.

*************

We have several more opportunities to do more fresh cycles.  We are withdrawing from the program, though.  The last two cycles have been pretty indicative of what is going on with my body as it ages (gasp, I know...39) and my plea to God was to have 'one last shot' at bringing a brother or sister Luke could grow up with into our lives.  Two weeks ago, I was begging Him to allow us to have at least two beautiful embryos to transfer and to accept whatever happened after.

God is good.  I was given exactly what I asked for and more.  Not only did I have two—two BEAUTIFUL, perfect looking embryos (even prettier than Matthew's and Luke's!), I had a third.  God gave that lab a miraculous ability to rescue more embryos and we had a THIRD embryo to transfer.  I didn't mention it, but another embryo actually kept growing a few more days, which was, in itself a miracle and we thought we might be able to freeze it.  Sadly, it arrested right before freeze.  And still, a dear friend told me, "What an opportunity to give God glory."

So right.  Though I would love nothing more than to bring another baby into our lives, I am not willing to put our family (or my body, in light of this lump) through any more trauma...no more interruptions in our lives because of treatments.  No more copious and crazy amounts of money on drugs—money that should and could go to Luke.

We are blessed.  We've always thought raising another child would just be icing on the cake that is Luke.

Not that I would not love more of that icing.  Who wouldn't?  It's so flipping delicious that it makes you CRAVE it.

But I'm grateful for the cake I have...it's sweeter than I ever imagined it could be.

**************

I am so grateful for the most amazing messages and texts and calls and gifts that I've been given.  Facebook has it's faults, for sure, but it also is such a nice way for a girl to feel the love.  I have to share about a gift I received yesterday—I'll ask my friend if she's ok with me sharing her company, but it's one that makes adorable scarves.  I got home from my doctor appointment yesterday and out of the blue, a package was delivered to me.  It had a sweet pink and white scarf in it and the most precious note.  I couldn't even read it because I was crying so much.  The note told me the she'd read my blog for years (we were acquaintances in college) and was touched by my post on the October 3 about how breast cancer and pregnancy loss were close to my heart.  She just felt she needed to make me a scarf, one that had been designed for her cousin, a breast cancer survivor, and that would be able to remind me of my mother when I wore it.  For my heart, and my heart alone, she added two little butterfly charms—one for Matthew and one for Trey—so they could be with me.  I don't even think she knows that my mother was a HUGE butterfly lover (she had a bumper sticker that said, "I brake for butterflies!" and on the day of her funeral, butterflies were EVERY WHERE)....nor does she probably know that when we were looking at gravesites for Matthew, standing under a beautiful poplar tulip tree on a cold, cold December day in Maryland, a sweet little yellow butterfly came by...and we knew that was the spot.  I see those little butterflies all over the place here in NC, and Luke calls them out every time.

My point?  That scarf coming to me in those colors, for that purpose, with those charms, YESTERDAY?????? God-given reminders that He is with us always.

Of that, I have no doubt.

****************

I think that I have a lot of things to process.  I think it will not be easy, as I am a hormonal mess and there are some upcoming dates that are sure to tug at my heart.  Even once the hormones peter out, the acceptance of many things not in my control is one with which I have to deal, as do we all.

So as I do, I appreciate all the love, care and concern.  It is all such a blessing to me.

As are these sweet boys in my life.
















17 comments:

  1. Love you so much Lori! I am so sad that your journey for children is ending...but I am also happy for you that it is ending. There is a peace that comes when you can close a door. You are never far from my heart.

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  2. I will continue to pray for you. I can't even begin to imagine the sorrow that you must feel, but I can only imagine that it has been compounded due to the lump. Please know that you are in a ton of prayers during this time. I hope you can find peace in the decision.

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  3. Your post made me cry, there is so much good and bad all wrapped up in this life. Your family's story has touched my life deeply, and I hold on to Phil. 1:6 for both of us.

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  4. my heart breaks for you. I am so sorry. I can't even imagine what you are going though.

    I just have to say that Luke is the MOST beautiful little boy ever. Every time I see him, I just can't get over the cuteness. I mean it.

    Praying for you as you face the challenges that lay ahead. Hugs to your sweet family.

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  5. Oh Lori,

    I know how bitter-sweet this post is. And my heart is full of love for you.
    You are right...there will be much to process, yet, looking at your husband and son in those photos...my heart soars knowing how very loved you are.

    Still, my heart aches as I realize the sorrow closing this particular chapter of life.

    What an amazing blessing in that scarf yesterday. Tears just filled my eyes.

    Know that you truly are loved by many. You have been, and are, such a true blessing to so many.
    You, and each of your precious children, are loved and cherished.

    Much love and prayers,
    Heather

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  6. You are AMAZING....... so amazing! Beautiful post, beautiful family and a beautiful woman, inside and out......

    Love you.

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  7. Oh Lori. Sending my love, and my prayers, and my support, and anything else that I can your way. And humbled, again, at your incredible faith through trials.

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  8. i've been thinking about you a lot today. i wish i had something better to say than i'm sorry.

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  9. Just such a beautiful post....

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  10. <3. You are such a beautiful woman, wife, and mother.....

    ((((((HUGS))))))

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  11. Dear Lori,
    Like so many others, I was praying for YOUR first choice. The one you deserve, if life was fair. But, I agree that medically it seems totally unreasonable to jeopardize your health in the slightest given your responsibility to Luke. Motherhood takes some of our gambling options away!

    Your desire to be a mother is so strong, and you are such a devoted mother, that I can't help think you are not done with children, however. But, adopting a special need child, which would be a "sure thing" option, is not something I would recommend until Luke is about half grown and you are sure his path to confident, powerful manhood is set. We are in our early 50s and adopted 2 FAS cuties 18 months ago, ages 7 and 8 now. They need experienced parents, and they need to not be able to disrupt the progress of their siblings. So, once you conquer this little lump, and once Luke is solidly raised, the door may open to things like Reece's Rainbow. In the meantime, keep asking God what He wants for your destiny and how He wants to use your gifts. You will find His will, I know.
    God Bless. Sherry

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  12. I have few words tonight. Much love and many prayers.

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  13. I've had your family on my mind constantly the last 48 hours because of what has transpired and what lies ahead. I hope all the messages of love and sympathy really do help in some way, as those of us who give them are painfully aware that they're completely inadequate compared to what we wish we could offer - and what you need.

    Because of the military lifestyle, you know well what it feels like to have doors closing, phases and chapters ending. You know what it feels like to have to say "This is out of my control, and I'll stomp my feet and yell a few times and be grumpy for a day. Then I'm going to make the best of it, look forward to whatever adventures are ahead, and think back on this time and smile at the memories." But this is not the same thing...at all. While this is not the reality you and John would ever have chosen, and there's no forced timeline on fully accepting it, I'm glad your "no regrets" cycle seems to have been just that. I hope that no longer having to plan your life looking ahead to unknown "ifs" and uncertain "maybes" brings some measure of peace and calm that is long overdue for your family.

    As you know, profound grief often (illogically) leads to greater gratitude. What a lucky boy Luke is to be the recipient of such overwhelming love and thankfulness - which are directly related to, and enhanced by, the exact same things you have for his brothers. He is a spectacular "cake" :)

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  14. Lori, you are Love. Even in the darkest of hours, you are still Love.

    and Grace.

    and Faith.

    Those boys - all four of them - have so much to be proud of. Words are never adequate in times like this, but just know that someone in Utah is keeping you in her thoughts and prayers because you have given me so much. You have taught me that even in my own painful journey of infertility and infant loss, there is still love, and grace, and faith.

    and butterflies.

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