Thursday, May 19, 2011

Our Sweet Miracle

***1 SAMUEL 1:27***

" I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I ask of Him" - 1 Samuel 1:27

To say that I am grateful would be an understatement, to say that I am excited would not do it justice, but to say that I have a tiny miracle growing inside of me would be 100% fact! Watch out world there will be a new Smith in town-ETA January 2012! :)  I understand it is completely taboo to make an announcement like this so early in my pregnancy. I am, as of today, an estimated 6 weeks and 4 days and I believe that just as this baby was a miracle from God, that His hand of protection will be surrounding my womb-and I rest in that peace.
Many of you are fully aware that my heart bleeds for the gift of life and also the gift of adoption. I have surrounded myself for the last 5 years with those who "blink their eyes" and are pregnant. Never would I have known creating life would be so hard. I was diagnosed around a year ago with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and so for a year now I have known that for Tripp and I to conceive it would take time, work, patience, and a miracle!  PCOS means that I dont ovulate regularly (or at all for my case) and rarely have periods. (sorry if thats TMI for you folks) Yes, those things have their benefits-no PMS for this girl. But, they also have their downfalls-making a baby is gonna be tough. Before being diagnosed I was highly encouraged by a dear friend that I should visit her doctor (she knew of my "no period" history, she knew I was a newly wed, and she knew I wanted kids eventually). I could never thank her enough for referring me to the greatest doctor ever! For my first appointment at Lakeside OBGYN I was introduced to Dr. Jason Bailey. I reviewed with him my history and my desire as a newly-wed to make sure all was well with me before me and the Mr. started trying for a family. Dr. Bailey was patient, he was thorough, and he had the assumption I might have PCOS. So once a round of bloodwork and test and ultrasounds were completed it was confirmed-these ovaries are as stubborn as the owner of the body they exist and I have PCOS. So, now that we know all that, whats next??  I'll be honest, I may have had a pity party or two but I knew there would be a purpose reveiled in all of this and I counted every single blessing that came from knowing what I knew at that moment before Tripp and I spent years trying on our own to figure it out. The one thing I would not allow myself to do was give up on God.

Philippians 4:6-7 "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with THANKSGIVING, present your request to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."

Tripp and I knew at the time we find out that I had PCOS that we werent ready to start a family yet. We were enjoying the season of life that we were in and taking full advantage of being newly weds and traveling and doing all of the things we wanted to do just the two of us. I feel those moments are so special in developing a strong marriage and getting to know more about each other. We knew that when it was meant that we start "trying" to have a baby that God would lead us there. And so we waited. By my doctors instructions he suggested I get on birth control to regulate and create consistent cycles for atleast 3 months before we take the next step. (who would have thought birth control would be helpful for getting pregnant!) That next step including months of hormone medication (Clomid), bloodwork, ultrasounds, and praying. And still no baby. At this point I really had to pray through my frustration and disappointment. And many times I would wrestle with God in asking, "how could I continue to work with so many women who take their pregnancies for granted, some dont even want to be pregnant, and how can I be strong enough to talk to them about why they shouldnt have an abortion" "How come I have worked so passionately to support the gift of life, that I myself am not even able to create one" "God, have you put in me such a strong passion for adoption that maybe I am not supposed to have bioligical children too"??? All of these things went through my mind, but prayer has kept me accountable for knowing God was in control-and I again rested in that peace. When Dr. Bailey informed me that the Clomid wasnt working he suggested I try a different hormone medication called Letrozol (Femara). So for another month I would take my medication, accept the 3 ultrasounds to monitor my progress and wait and cross my fingers that my bloodwork would come back showing that I did infact ovulate that month. That month was April, and that month I ovulated, and that month my period didnt come! As I waited "patiently" for my next appt with Dr. Bailey I had a small hope that I could be pregnant-and I was determined not to take another at home pregnancy test and bare another negative result. So I waited and when my appointment came Tripp and I made another trip to the doctor's office (at this point I have my own parking space and everyone knows me by first name). 

Mark 11:24 "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours."

Never have I experienced a more sweeter moment than being next to Tripp when the doctor came in and showed us the POSITIVE pregnancy test. I think we were both in shock and were so grateful. I was able to get an ultrasound that day and see that there inside me was growing a miracle from God. I have never felt more honored that God has chosen to bless me with this sweet baby. Everyday I am reminded to thank Him and pray over this sweet baby. I also pray everyday, over every couple experiencing the pain of desiring nothing more than to be parents. I do not take for granted that our journey has been a short one and that many many other couples wait years for God to move. I pray that through this season of my life I gain an even greater appreciation for the birthmothers I have had the pleasure to work with and I pray that I can be an impact for the clients that come to the pregnancy center looking for answers to their unplanned pregnancy.

Psalm 20:4-5 "May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. We will shout for joy when you are victorious and will lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord grant all your requests."

Thank you for allowing me to share this exciting time with you and I apologize for all the details in my journey. If it provides encouragement to one, I believe it to be worth sharing. I know we still have a long road ahead and I welcome your prayers for this baby. Our God is so good, and is so faithful, and I rest knowing He is with us every step of the way. :)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Adoption Diaries

I have always joked about wanting to write a book about my experience as a pregnancy counselor. I can honestly say that my life has been changed by my witness to so many blessing through adoption and there are some stories that are just too off the wall not to be shared. Although, this has always been a joke, I have started to really consider that writing a book about birthparents, about adoption, about grief and heartache, and also about families desperate to be parents would be something that could encourage and benefit others. Now I am in no way an expert and only having 3.5 years experience with adoption does not qualify me for much-I do, however, feel that I have a gift and I have been changed because of the impact their stories have had on my life. I have been a secret keeper for many, I have watched couples come together through their choices, and I have witnessed a strength that can only come from God. These stories and lessons learned are precious to me and are too precious not to share.
I dont know the first thing about writing a book or having it published for that matter. So this may all come as just a dream. But, I have my stories and I have insight and will research and connect in hopes to make this dream a reality. So for those that are more familiar and aware of the process I would greatly appreciate your guidance (even the honest "you are crazy, it will never happen" )..and until then I will use this blog as a source to drafting and safe-keeping my stories :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

so many thoughts

It has been quite sometime since I have blogged. And I really have no good reason why. It feels like most days I have an on-going blog in my head. Tons of thoughts, feelings, funny things I want to share but never get around to doing it (lazy). I often wrestle with sharing what I want to because I tell myself I can save it for another time (procrastination at its finest) or that what I might want to share may come across offensive (referring to previous posts) or that I am allowing my hormones to do most of the talking (typical). So, I say all of this to say that hopefully I can motivate myself to share more often and maybe there might just be something worth sharing in my near future. Until then, I leave you with a list of things that I am passionate about and would probably be involved in alot of my bloggin thoughts:

* adoption
* My Tripp
* travels
* love
* babies
* biblical encouragement

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

~Unveiling Confidence~

Many who are followers of mine on Facebook probably have noticed in my status' and on the news feed that I am involved in a new hobby that is truly out of character for me. I would like to take this space in my blog to give a better understanding what this new hobby has brought to my life and the lives of others-And to also allow it to encourage other women who are interested in creating a new confidence and self-empowerment within themselves to be the most enticing wife/future wife for their man.
I was introduced to Dancing Queen on my very own bachelorette party. I wanted to do something different that wasn't the typical bar/scavenger hunt/wild and crazy party. So, I figured that I would be with most of my closest girl friends and we were all going to do something we had never done before. WE were going to do a strip tease/pole dancing class!! I mean, I was getting married in a couple of weeks! At first, I wasn't sure what to think of it all, but I knew I was going to share a lot of laughs and memories with my girls. I had such an amazing time and soon after joined every class offered by Dancing Queen.

 Dancing Queen was started by an incredible woman of God whose heart was to empower women to be confident with themselves and to feel secure in their own bodies. Her private studio is a beautiful, comfortable, and safe setting where every woman coming in will feel at ease. Dancing Queen was started with the desire that each student will grow in strength and confidence to feel like a Queen. (Esther 2:17) I have been honored to be able to be apart of the Dancing Queen staff. I was trained under the owner and have been certified in Level 1 and 2 pole.  I am currently teaching Pole Fitness classes as well as a Level 1 class that will begin next Thursday (1/20/2011). It is an 8 week class and I will teach you all of the Level 1 spins along with many other core building moves and routines. It is not only a great workout, but alot of fun! Dancing Queen offers many different classes such as : yoga, belly dance, bachelorette/girls night out/birthday parties. And we are always open to suggestions :)

What I have learned by teaching and training for Dancing Queen is how to be comfortable and confident in the body God has given me. To learn and adjust to seeing myself as a beautiful and wonderfully made woman. I have broken down walls that I have built and insecurities that were created by an abusive relationship. I have worked with many women who are facing and have faced many struggles in their lives and marriages and have come to Dancing Queen to make a new start and to strengthen their marriage by first building their confidence to recognize who God designed them to be. Often when people hear the words "pole dancing" "strip tease" and "intimate dance" they have a negative view and are immediately turned away. I can say that I was once like that, until I experienced the integrity and became a part of the mission Dancing Queen strives to carry. It also doesn't hurt that my confidence has grown and become a healthy influence to my marriage.

I encourage all that are interested and curious to atleast check it out. Coming from someone who has never stepped into a strip club and has grown up very innocently, I encourage you to break walls and gain a greater self-empowerment within yourself to be the best wife and future wife you can be. You can find more information on and for the most update schedules and classes offered you can add us on facebook: Boutique D'Amour.  I would love the opportunity to teach those interested and share more about what I have gained from this new found "hobby" of mine.

 Queen Esther (a normal, plain, modest, submissive woman) was able to save thousands and to influence the king by her confidence, boldness, and beauty. She felt strong in her faith and stood apart from many others. My hope is that as a woman of God you feel bold, confident, and full of empowerment to be all God has designed and created you to be.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

im a deer huntress (so my man says)

The weekend of Thanksgiving my sweet Tripp made plans for us to go deer hunting in Taylor County. I consider it a gift that Tripp not only asks me to go with him, but truly wants me to go with him. All last year I felt rather selfish when I used the excuse over and over again that it was way too cold and way too early to hunt! So he took care of that: prior to this weekend 's trip he took himself to Bass Pro and bought me my very own warm coveralls and camo. So, I really couldnt let him down and not go.
We packed up and headed to Taylor County...and had a blast! Friday night we jumped into a stand and waited, and waited, and waited. Nothing. Saturday morning we woke up realllllly early and headed to another stand on the property. And all of a sudden Tripp punched my arm and there he was (an 8-pointer about 175 yards away mind you) I grabbed the gun, aimed, closed my eyes and pulled that trigger. I just knew I had hit him but as I pulled the trigger he was heading for the woods and we didnt see him drop so we werent sure. After not seeing anything the rest of the morning we called the troops (Brian, Stuart, Bad Brad) and went tracking my deer. Sure enough there was blood and muscle. I did hit him!! But where was he!?! So we tracked blood (piles of it) for 3 hours and never found it. :( So I didnt get my picture with him and I didnt get to keep his antlers (that I was honestly looking forward to putting up somewhere in my house). haha. But the experience was what it was all about. And again I state that I am so thankful Tripp genuinely wants me to go hunting with him and I plan to go again-next time Im bringing home the antlers! Here are a couple of pictures of our weekend hunting adventure: