A Liebster Award?! Me?!

I feel so blessed to be able to have this little corner of the world to write in.  I love that there is a place like WordPress that I can go and just write until my little heart is content.  When I can get some of the words that are jumbling around and clanging into each other in my head out, it gives me a little bit of peace – for a time, until more replace them!  Living in the technologically inclined world that we do, soon after I discovered WordPress, I discovered the app for my phone.  I’ll tell you, it’s been working in OVERTIME lately and that makes me SO happy!! Every time I hear that little chime, it’s equivalent to an audience giving a standing ovation in my head!

liebsteraward

This morning when I woke up, there was a notification from http://pagesofgrace.wordpress.com/ telling me that my blog was “awesome” and that she was nominating it for a “Liebster Award”.  My first thought –  “An Award? For MY writing?!”  **insert surprised face here**  Second thought – WOW.  Thank you SO much to http://pagesofgrace.wordpress.com/ for thinking that my words mean enough to nominate me for this!!  For those that are unfamiliar with what a Liebster Award is – as I was when I first saw this – it’s basically a way to recognize up and coming bloggers and encourage people to visit new/interesting blogs!

There are some rules for the Liebster Award and here they are:

  • Each nominee must link back the person who nominated them.
  • Answer the 10 questions which are given to you by the nominator.
  • Nominate 10 other bloggers for this award who have less than 200 followers.
  • Create 10 questions for your nominees to answer.
  • Let the nominees know that they have been nominated by going to their blog and notifying them.

So, Here goes!

1. Your favorite place – mountainside or seaside?

Tough question!!  Growing up in California, both were so close!  It’s a tight race but I’m going to say Seaside!  There is NOTHING more relaxing than sitting in the sand with the sun on my face and losing myself in the sound of the waves!

2. What is your favorite song and why?

I’d say my favorite song right now is “Blessings” by Laura Story.  It speaks volumes to the struggle my husband and I are facing right now.

3. What do you think “grace” is?

Grace is God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. It’s nothing we can earn, it’s given to us by our Father who loves us unconditionally and aches to have us know Him.

4. What are the five things you are grateful for?

My husband.  My family (immediate and acquired).  My friends.  My faith.  And God, without whom none of the other things would mean nearly as much!

5. Savoury or sweet?

Hmmmm!  Depends!! But I lean MUCH more towards Savoury!!

6. Why did you start blogging?

I’ve ALWAYS enjoyed writing, but I started blogging as my husband and I began really getting knee-deep in pain through our infertility journey.  This journey can be very lonely and while it helps me to clear my head when I write, I also do it in hopes that it will reach out to someone and remind them that they are not alone.

7. What is your favorite quote?

“For I know the plans I have for you” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.  Then you will call on me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart…”  Jeremaiah 29: 11-13

8. Who is your childhood hero? Is it still the same now that you’ve grown up?

Sad to say, I don’t think I really had a “childhood hero”.  I LOVED Mary Lou Retton because I LOVED gymnastics! but I wouldn’t have gone as far as to say she was my “hero”.  Now that I’ve grown up, I’d have to say that First Responders are my heroes!

9. Where do you get your inspiration to write from?

My inspiration to write comes from personal, daily experiences. 

10. Who is your favorite writer?

Max Lucado is an AMAZING writer!!!!

And now, I know the rules say that you must nominate 10 other bloggers, but as I looked through blogs I’m following, these are the 6 that really stood out to me – and didn’t have over 200 followers!

http://thesebeautifulashes.wordpress.com/

http://babystepstobump.wordpress.com/

http://youngyetinfertile.com/

http://ttchope-pcos.com/

http://brookemardell.wordpress.com/

http://hiccupsandtea.wordpress.com/

My 10 questions for these bloggers are:

  1. If you were stranded on a desert island, what 3 things would you HAVE to have?
  2. When you were a child, what was your answer to the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
  3. What is your favorite season?
  4. How did you come up with your blog name?
  5. What led you to begin writing?
  6. Would you rather go see a movie in the theater or at home?
  7. Do you like black jellybeans?
  8. Would you rather be able to be invisible or fly?
  9. If they were to make a movie of your life, who would portray you?
  10. Would you go see that movie?

Again, Thank you Ros for nominating me for this!!!

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What am I gonna do?

faith quotes

Faith is such a tricky word.  Merriam-Webster dictionary defines faith as a “firm belief in something for which there is no proof.”  A Bible verse that I remember learning as a child was Hebrews 11:1 – “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for. The evidence of things not seen.”  That verse has been niggling at the back of my brain for awhile now.  When I looked it up on my handy-dandy Bible app on my phone, I read it in the New International Version and this is what it reads – “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”  Wow.

When I hear stories about people who’ve had these big “ah-ha” moments about their faith, I find myself wondering if I’m doing something wrong.  Should I have had my “ah-ha” moment by now?  Will I ever?  Things have happened in my life that have made me SO angry with God.  I’ve questioned Him, yelled at Him, blamed it on Him, asked Him why.  I’ve never had a neon sign light up in front of my face that says “Here I am. I’m real. I not only know what you’re going through, but I planned it this way. I’m sorry it hurts, but TRUST ME.”  But there HAVE been days what I’ll get a random text from a friend asking how I am.  Or a phone call from someone I haven’t heard from in awhile just to check in.  Or a breeze on a hot day when I feel like there’s no relief in sight.  I know what that is.  Max Lucado says ” Faith is not the belief that God will do what you want.  It is the belief that God will do what is right.”  Man, that’s a hard pill to swallow sometimes!

Last month, we began the actual IUI process.  Simply put, it’s a 2 week process that involves stimulation hormones, ultrasounds, an at-home injection & the actual insemination.  The hormones weren’t as much of a nightmare as I’d heard (thank God for that!), but I did have some headaches, dizziness and hot flashes.  When we went up for the ultrasound that would tell us how my body was responding to the stimulation hormones, it revealed that I had 3 follicles that were mature & ready for the trigger injection that would make me ovulate. Our Dr also gently told us that some results of my blood tests he’d ordered weren’t good.  My AMH levels were pretty low.  (Remember, you can click on those little blue words and there’s secrets behind them!)  He said that he’d been expecting many more follicles, but that was likely contributed to my AMH levels.  Our chances of getting pregnant naturally were pretty much gone.  And if this IUI didn’t work, he would have to get much more aggresive with the treatments.  The next round of IUI would consist of at-home injections instead of oral hormones.  Then if that didn’t work, we would have to consider IVF.

We travelled to Cincinnati the night before our IUI, since we had to be there early the next morning and neither of us really wanted to drive.  In addition to that, there was a NASCAR race that weekend and our trip there took us right past the speedway – and we didn’t want to take ANY chances missing our appointment!   We made it to the lab that morning at 9am & they collected the sample from my husband.  My appointment wasn’t until 10:30am, to give the lab the time to “wash” the sample – separate the bad from the good & concentrate it.  After a wait in the lobby, we were led to the room where all the equipment for the insemination was laying out.  We knew that our Dr wasn’t working that weekend so we weren’t surprised when one of the partners from the institute came in the room.  What we were surprised by was what he said next.  “Mr & Mrs McNabb, unfortunately, we are not going to be able to perform the procedure today.”  I remember hearing the rest of his words, I just don’t recall how.  He told us that he would let our Dr know and that he was sorry.

hurting again

As we left the office and I crumbled against the wall in tears, Jon put his arm around me and led me out of the building.  I don’t really remember much of the walk to the car, or the ride home.  I do remember trying to call my mother in law and having to hand the phone to him so he could explain because I couldn’t talk.  I didn’t really talk to anyone for close to 2 days after we received that news.  I knew that all hope wasn’t gone, but it sure felt like it in that moment.  Our Doctor called us – personally – on Monday night.  After answering he asked, “How are you?” and then he did something I’ve never really experienced with a Doctor…  Aside from the fact that he sounded like he really MEANT it, he waited to hear my answer.  “Upset. Annoyed. Confused. Devastated.”  He went on to say that he was confused also, but that we would get to the bottom of this and he would ensure it.  He then ordered some other analyses and testing to be done.  I feel so blessed that we have the Dr that we do taking care of us.

I’ve always loved music.  It picks me up, soothes my soul, gives me energy.  Kerrie Roberts has a song called “No Matter What” that has spoken to me many times.  It says “Before a heartache can ever touch my life, it has to go through your hands… I know you can find a way to keep me from the pain but if not, I’ll trust you. No matter what.”  When I heard this song the other morning on my way to work, I remember thinking “What am I going to do? ”  Not in the “woe is me” kind of way but in the “Am I going to trust Him – no matter what?” kind of way?  You bet I am!