The Christmas Miracle

The birth of Jesus was told over 680 years before he was actually born. God told the prophet Isaiah that a saviour would be born to a virgin mother. That didn’t happen for hundreds of years after the promise was given.

Did God forget to do what he told Isaiah? No.

Did he change his mind? No.

Did he make a mistake? No

I often wonder weather Isaiah felt despondent about the fulfilment of that promise.

God told him something, he knew it was God talking to him. Yet he did not see it fulfilled in his lifetime.

Isaiah must have felt unhappy, sad, and questioned if he had actually heard from God. I imagined that he even doubted what God said, would happen.

His feelings didn’t stop or delay the promise because when God says a thing, he always bring it to pass regardless of the time. Because he’s working on his timeline not on ours.

Isaiah’s doubt did hinder God. Of course we were not told that he felt this way, this is my imagination. I believe as a human being, he may have felt some form of disappointment at not seeing the promise come to pass.

So let me encourage you as you continue to wait for what you’ve heard God said to you, your doubts, discouragement, tears and even your seemingly faithlessness will not stop God because His promises will always come to pass. He is not a man that he should lie.

Just hold on, for Just like the Christmas story came to pass and a miracle baby was born hundreds of years after he was promised, so will your promise child be born in your lifetime because God is faithful.

Isaiah was the prophet God used by to foretell of his coming son. Be encouraged, that which you have been promised will come to pass.

Your partner in hope

Debi

Christmas and waiting, Advent: Season of Hope,

Celebratory seasons, Advent: Walking in Our shoes, Ad, The Christmas Promise

Extracts from Glamour: Amirah Vann her journey to motherhood

Welcomed her baby girl, congratulations to her family.

I was so inspired by the article she wrote in Glamour I decided to share it here.

Many of us expect to recognize the “perfect time” to have a baby. The reality is that timing may never come. But in this life-altering year, how does one even consider bringing in a new life?

My fiancé Pat and I planned it, using ovulation test strips to know when would be the optimal time. But when it came down to taking the pregnancy test, I was uneasy. I told Pat, “I don’t think you left the stick in the urine long enough.” Then he showed me the result. 

But in that moment of unspeakable joy, I realized there is no perfect time, no foolproof season. In a year marked by fear, I remained grounded in the notion that our foremothers had children, intentionally or not, under far worse conditions than those we face today. It doesn’t matter whether you are 40 or 20—the world doesn’t adjust to your life; the career doesn’t stop for you. You have to decide this is what you want.

Read the rest here. Baby

No matter your situation and your story, there is always a possibility you are next in Line.

Parenthood is many thing but one thing is certain, there is always joy in the mist of pain. Ensure the pain and joy will flow in the end.

Your Partner in Hope

D’Ebi

Fertility Awareness

It was national fertility awareness week recently and I want to highlight some stats about.

In some countries like Canada, more people are living with infertility than diagnose with lung cancer which is the leading cause of death in Canada.

According to Dr Gaberielle Cassir, who appeared on the Global News in Montreal. Up to 15 % of couples are infertile and the numbers are rising.

There are various causes of infertility: which ranges from the rising age of women having babies as more women are putting off having children later, to unexplained infertility.

There is no perfect answer the specific causes are evenly divided

in 35% of cases, the causes of infertility is due to problems with the pelvic or fallopian tube abnormality.

10% of cases relates to unexplained causes which is usually hard to deal with.

35% male factor

15% ovulatory disfunction.

It is important to create awareness on the causes of infertility to make sure that couples seek help quickly and avoid unnecessary delays which might lead to more problems later.

Currently the world is also dealing with covid and there are various theories on its impact on fertility.

Again, it is generally agreed in the medical world that this is fueled by myth being propagated on social medial.

While is it normal to question the impact of a new vaccine on ones fertility, it is also important to look at the data.

If you are worried speak with your doctor and find out all you need to know about the vaccine.

Is it necessary to talk about fertility issues with the young generation?

I think it is : this is because the first time most couples become aware of the issues surrounding fertility is when they start to try to have a baby, I think talking about it earlier in a young person’s life may be the difference between delays in seeking help and waiting for miracles to happen.

The emotions we feel are common emotions and are distressing and these can cause a huge physiological toil.

Society can prepare youth for the chances of infertility and open an avenue to speak about it.

No one wants to spread fear to our young people, but at the same time it is important to create an awareness. Parents can have that conversation with their kids same as talking about changes in the body during puberty years and teen years, although a bit later.

The emotions are intense and can cause a huge toil on one’s health, no one can be prepared enough, but at least the being in the know can make a huge difference on how one handles the challenges pose by infertility.

We need to demystify the fear and taboo around taking about having fertility issue.

There should be no guilt, shame, taboo surrounding the topic of infertility.

There should be a conversation and women should feel they have a safe place to talk. I am glad that women like Chrissy Teigen, Hilaria Baldwin, Amy Schumer are open about their struggles with infertity and I think this has done more to increase the awareness around miscarriage and IVF. Women are beginning to see that they are not alone and there is some conform in knowing that others have felt the way you do.

Be encouraged and seek help earlier.

Wishing you every success on your fertility journey.

Your Partner in Hope

Debbie

Read More »

IVF:Stages to egg implantation

  1. Meeting with Team: this is the initial consultation with the clinic to go throughout process.
  2. The process: The woman will be given medication to suppress her normal menstrual cycle. This is usually given for 2 weeks. My first cycle was a nasal spray but the final cycle was an injection which I learned to inject myself. After which step 3 begins
  3. Boosting the egg supply: This will include stimulation of the ovaries to produce more eggs than usual, to increase the number of eggs for fertility. You will be given a fertility hormone called follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). This is also a daily injection you give yourself or your partner can assist if they want to be involved and feel connected to the process. It’s usually for 10-12 days.
  4. Monitoring. you will be monitored while on the FSH, some clinics will scan every 2 days while others maybe twice weekly during the process. The monitoring may be ultrasound scans to monitor the size of the ovaries, blood test or both. The ovaries are usually measured to see how big the eggs are and a final hormone boost may be given 34-38 hours prior to collection.
  5. Collecting the eggs: Eggs are usually collected on days 10 or 12 depending on the sizes/ how well the ovaries have been stimulated. collecting is usually done under local anesthetic where you will be sedated. A needle is passed through the vagina into each ovary under ultrasound guidance. This procedure may take 15-20 minutes. You may experience cramp or light bleeding afterwards.
  6. Fertilizing the eggs: Once the eggs are collected they are mixed with your partners or the donor sperm in the lab. They are checked after 16-20 hours to see if Fertilization has occurred.
  7. In some cases the eggs may be injected individually with a sperm called ICSI.
  8. Egg Monitoring: The embryos are left to continue to grow for 6 days before being transferred into the womb. The best 2 are usually selected to be transferred.
  9. Embryo Transfer: The embargo’s are transferred into the womb using a thin tube called a catheter passed into the vagina. The procedure is quite simple and doesn’t involve any sedation.
  10. Then began the 2 weeks wait. see next post for how to cope.

Your Partner in Hope

D’Ebi

Related post

https://faithfulwait.com/2016/05/11/a-woman-in-waiting/

https://faithfulwait.com/2016/07/11/surviving-treatment/

https://faithfulwait.com/2016/09/22/exploring-other-options/

https://faithfulwait.com/2016/10/26/choosing-an-ivf-clinic/

https://faithfulwait.com/2018/03/31/it-only-takes-one-egg/

Signs Of Infertility

We have been writing about surrogacy and the reason to embark on a surrogate journey, on this page for a while:

This led me to think about signs of infertility. The more I speak with friends and those who have tried for a while the more  obvious it  becomes  that some couples delay in seeking help. 

So this post focuses on signs of infertility and when to seek help. 

See similar post herehttps://faithfulwait.com/2016/06/08/infertility-when-to-seek-help/

Infertility affects both male and female. In previous post we discussed that a third of infertility issues comes from women, the other third from men or combination of both, other factors related to unknown causes.

Below is a list of signs of infertility for women

  1. Painful sex
  2. Heavy; long or paid periods: could be a sign of endometriosis, this is a condition where tissues found in the womb are present elsewhere in the body.
  3. Irregular menstrual cycle.
  4. Hormone changes: a test by your doctor can detect changes in hormones: hormone change can lead to weight gain, facial hair in female, loss of sex drive, acne.
  5. Underlying medical conditions: such as damage to Fallopian tubes, PCOS, cancer. Rheumatoid Arthritis ( which is a condition I was diagnosed of).
  6. Obesity:

infertility in men:

 Signs of infertility in men can include 

  1. Hormone imbalance: The key hormone for male is Testosterone where problem with the testes can cause infertility. The males testes have two hormones  which make sperm, the luteinizing hormones and the stimulating hormones.  These hormones are produced by pituitary glands so any problems with this gland Amy also led to infertility in men.
  2. Erectile dysfunction: failure to have erection during sex can be as a result of stress or other psychological factors. Please seek medical intervention If this becomes a regular occurrence.
  3. Ejaculation problem: Any change or difficulty in ejeculation, can result in infertility, medical advice should be sought where this becomes a frequent occurrence 
  4. Problems with the testicle:  This may include swollen, painful, or tender testicles. If you noticed any of these or other changes in your testlces please seek help.
  5. Obesity: Obesity can affect both male and female fertility. It is important to keep your weight under check if you are trying for a baby. 

Other causes of infertility include 

  • Age
  • Excessive drinking/consumption of alcohol
  • Sexually transmitted disease
  • Smoking
  • Poor diet

When to seek help.

If you experience any of the above signs,  please consult your doctor if you are under 35 and have been trying for more than a year (6 months if you are over 35 of age).

Changes to make to boost your fertility 

Change of lifestyle may include having healthier meals

Exercise 

Decreases of total reduction of alcohol 

Keeping your weight in check.

Conclusion

It is important to observe your body for any signs of changes and consult your doctor as soo. As possible to avoid delays in getting pregnant

Your partner in Hope

References

D,Ebi

Read More »

Surrogacy: I call it a helping hand.

Gone are the days, when having a baby means you have to be pregnant. While pregnancy is a beautiful experience. Sadly many women have suffered needlessly without success. With surrogacy, hope is restored and couples can now experience the joys of being parents.

I am so glad about the attention surrogacy is getting thanks to some high profile births via surrogates.

Like Candy from the Real Housewives of Atlanta and Kim and Kanye West.

To me, surrogacy means fighting to defeat infertility, doing whatever it takes to hold that precious soul in your hands.

It means not being ashamed to asked another to be the womb that holds your jewels, to trust someone with your heart.

It means exploring what is possible.

To be an expectant mother without the visible sign, but knowing that your heart is pregnant and bursting with love and gratitude.

Surrogacy, it is indeed the helping hand we all need.

In March we I’ll explore more on the topic.

Stay tuned

Trust and Joy in the mist of pain

Mother’s Day and infertility

Celebration of mother is approaching in the UK. On the 31 March we will celebrate and acknowledge mothers

The airwaves, Churches, schools will put up a show to celebrate mothers. It is fitting to do this.

This is a particularly difficult time for anyone who’s trying to conceive.

As you watch others being celebrated a part of you always wonders when you too will be celebrated.

Celebrating mother’s on this day doesn’t take away from what you are experiencing.

If anything this celebration makes me focus even more on my demise. However dark and grim the situation may seem. Let me encourage you to focus on this one truth. This too will pass.

How and when I do not know. Let your trust be fully placed on the master.

Be reminded of this.

Habakkuk 3:17-19 

Though the fig tree do not blossom,

    nor fruit be on the vines,

the produce of the olive fail

    and the fields yield no food,

the flock be cut off from the fold

    and there be no herd in the stalls, 

yet I will rejoice in the Lord,

    I will joy in the God of my salvation. 

God, the Lord, is my strength;

    he makes my feet like hinds’ feet,

    he makes me tread upon my high places.

Re phrased it becomes

Thought my body will not respond to treatments and my monthly flow remains uncertain

Thought my womb refuse to yield and bear children as I get on in age.

My eyes will remain fixed on the Lord who is my strength. He alone will carry me and bring me into His perfect plan for me.

Sometimes we go through seasons of hardship, loss and deep pain. But no matter what we’ve lost, or wanted but never had, we can like Habakkuk rejoice in our relationship with a loving God.

Even when it feels like we have nothing else, He will never fail or abandon us.

He is the One who “provides for those who grieve His is our ultimate reason for joy (Isaiah 61:3).

Don’t endure Mother’s Day, celebrate it by fixing your eyes on him who loves you beyond reason.

Celebrate the unique experience of waiting and the worthiness of what he is fashioning within you.

Celebrate the person your are becoming as a result of the experiences you are face with

Your Partner in Hope

D’Ebi


Related post

https://faithfulwait.com/2017/03/25/celebrating-mothers-day/

https://faithfulwait.com/2018/03/11/how-to-handle-the-pressures-of-mothers-day/

Pregnancy Over 35!

Today we learnt, our very own duchess Megan is pregnant at age 37. The little darling is expected in spring of 2019.

How amazing. She was beaming from ear to ear as she touched down in Australia earlier today.

Why this post you may wonder?

Well, it is a good news story and l love sharing good news, she is 37! And often we are told how difficult it is to conceive over that age.

We are constantly told and with good reason that a woman’s fertility falls off significantly once she reaches her 35th birthday, according to Katherine O’Brien, head of policy research at the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (bpas), women should not  panic about conception after the age of 35.

According to her, there are evidence which suggests that having sex twice a week, 82 per cent of women aged 35-39 will conceive within one year of trying.

While women in their late thirties might have to try harder to conceive, they stand a high chance of falling pregnant relatively swiftly (HUFFPOST).

Of course the biological clock is real but the age with the most decline is in one’s 40s.

That is not to say women below the age bracket cannot be faced with problems.

Women of any age can be faced with infertility.

We started trying when I was 30, and I only fell pregnant after a few IVF attempts at age of 38.

The bottom line here is that a woman who leads a relatively healthy life like Magen does have a higher chance of falling pregnant.

Luck or Cause:

I use to have to deal with comments which suggests we were just unfortunate. “you are so young and can’t get pregnant”? I also thought it was my fate to suffer this disease, friends who have also suffered this disease often joked that they were unlucky.

Knowing what I know now I don’t think my particular situation was down to luck, I had an underlying disease which I believe affected my ability to fall pregnant easily.

For others they may have lived  a relatively healthy life and still for some reason unable to fall pregnant. So it could be luck for some and medical for others? I don’t know.
But generally adopting a healthy lifestyle is of great benefit to a achieving one’s  quest for parenthood.

I know Megan is lives a healthy lifestyle and maybe just maybe luck was also on her side. Regardless it’s nice not to suffer the dreaded disease.

Causes of infertility

women in their mid to late thirties conceive naturally if they are ovulating regularly and have no known cause of sub-fertility and have maintained a healthy lifestyle when there is no male factor problem. Men’s age also has an impact on their fertility.”

According to the NHS websites the known causes of infertility are

Irregular ovulation

Endometriosis

Low spent count,

Low egg quality

Age

Pelvic inflammatory disease

Polycystic ovary

Cervical mucus problem.

It advised women over 35 to consult their GP if they have not conceived after trying regularly for 12 months.


Everyone’s story is different, whether you have been trying for a few months or a few years, keep your hopes alive with the news of Megan’s pregnancy. Who knows Mother Nature may smile on you soon.

Whatever the length of time please seek medical help if you have been trying for 12 months without success.

Your partner in Hope

D’Ebi

Related post

https://faithfulwait.com/2018/02/22/endometriosis-a-cause-of-infertility/

https://faithfulwait.com/2018/03/19/infertility-a-male-and-female-issue/

https://faithfulwait.com/2018/09/15/good-news-statistics/

https://faithfulwait.com/2018/04/08/a-womans-dilemma-is-40-too-old/

Exploring Other Options: ICSI

I have previously written on exploring other options when it comes to seeking fertility treatment. This POST will examine one of those options the ICSI.

According to the HFEA.

the cause of infertility in around half of couples having problems conceiving is sperm-related. ICSI offers hope to these couples most common and successful treatment for male infertility.

ICSE means – (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection )ICSI is a specialised form of In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) it is used for the treatment of severe cases of male-factor infertility.

It is intended for couples with the following problems.

very low sperm count

abnormally shaped sperm (poor morphology) or where the sperm move abnormally (poor motility)

previous IVF TREATMENT.

A situation Where the sperm needs to be collected surgically from the testicles or epididymis (a narrow tube inside the scrotum where sperm are stored and matured); possibly because of vasectomy,

The process involves the injection of a single sperm directly into a mature egg.

Just like IVF the process involves stimulating the ovaries to produce a mature egg. Once the eggs are matured they are retrieved and fertilised with the sperm.

When the egg is fertilised it is left in the lab for a few days.

The embryo is transfer

embryo transfer can be two in some cases the number of embryo transferred depends on the woman’s age, once transferred it is recommended that the woman reduce their movement for the next 24 hours. the remaining good-quality embryos will be frozen and stored to be used in future cycle if necessary.

After the transfer, then begin the wait, before the all-important pregnancy test.

Availability:

according to the NHS website couples undergoing IVF treatment can use ICSI as a method of insemination if required.

The University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust was one of the first in the country to be licensed to offer the treatment.

How is ICSI different from IVF?

The steps are similar at the early stages however with IVF the eggs are placed together with the sperm fertilization occurs when the sperm swims to the egg.

In ICSI there is a bit more interference by the embryologist. Here the sperm is selected and injected directly into the egg.This maximises the chance of fertilisation taking place as it bypasses any potential problems the sperm will have in actually getting to the egg.

the success rate?

generally the success rate for both IVF and ICSI are similar. According to the HFEA fertilisation happens in around 90% of cases.

Fertilisation doesn’t necessarily means a successful pregnancy.

One of the deterring factor for success is a woman’s age and any previous difficulty.in conceiving. After transfer there is a 2 weeks wait at before pregnancy can be confirmed by a blood test.

I hope you found this useful. For more in depth information please visit the Following website

NHS UK

HFEA

And your family Doctor

Your Partner in Hope

D’Ebi

It Only Takes One Egg

I had to share this story with you, because I can identify with it. After several failed IUI they decided to try IVF and now have a baby.

Parents celebrate getting through a three year infertility struggle with a photo of their baby boy surrounded by IVF needles

The process though was not without uncertainty.

The most difficult part of trying for a baby for me was not knowing when. The uncertainties and the endless questions of when and how were often unbearable.

I remembered the 3rd IVF treatment that gave me my little girl. We were excited to learn that 12 eggs were retrieved, but on a follow up call the next day only 5 were viable and fertilised. Out of those, only one developed enough to be transferred back.

I recall our disappointments at this news, we had little hope of any outcome from this egg.

The thought that this egg might not develop was enough to cause me to fret..

My previous treatments were similar to this but each time the eggs fragment before

Fertilisation. So I was not particularly hopeful or expecting anything to come out of this. My only consolation was that this time around at least they got a decent egg that fertilised and implanted

My husband reminded me that we only needed one egg and that kept me going.

I was so stressed during the two weeks Wait I was convinced the procedure had failed.

To say I was elated was an understatement I was shocked and not excited, nervous at was was to come..

it really does take one. It is only normal human emotion for our past experiences to influence our way of thinking..

Being hopeful requires conscious effort on my part. So today if you are in that place where your Hope reservoir is pretty low and almost ran out.. just remember it only takes one egg and as long as you are here and trying who knows you too may welcome your own little miracle..

Your Partner in Hope

D’Ebi