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"I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born." Isaiah 66:9

Thursday, September 30, 2010

My stance on adoption at the moment...

I will start this by saying that this isn't going to be a positive post, nor will it be a poor me one either, but I have a little vent to share.

Obviously, the thought of going into another adoption has been one that we've had a hard time with. Once you've been preyed upon by the likes of a horrible human being, taken advantage of, and had your dreams crushed once again, it takes a lot to want to put yourself right back out there. Still, we have discussed it, we weighed the pros and cons of private versus agency and started looking into agencies. Honestly, we didn't go with an agency originally because I never had a 'peaceful' feeling when researching any of them. Each website, each 'happy story' all left me with a feeling of 'yuck'. Not exactly what you're looking for when planning on investing lots of time and money, must less your heart. Still, after having dealt with that sorry excuse for a person we thought was our birth mother, we decided that maybe an agency would be on the safer side. So, again, back to the books, back to research, back to looking. I came across multiple agencies (more than I can count), took recommendations from others, and started perusing...

This is what I found:

1. Many of these places charge outrageous fees with very little description as to where the money goes specifically. I am not saying that it is not a pricey venture and we would pay any price for a child, but when I looked at a sliding scale and saw that our 'base price' (other fees were pretty certain to come) was 20K more than the lowest, honestly, I couldn't stomach it! I don't feel it should cost more for my husband and I to adopt because we make more money. That screams 'business' to me, and while I am certain it is very helpful for those on the lower end of the income scale, the prices (with multiple agencies), literally made me sick to my stomach. A friend of a friend reported her adoption costing 5-6K more dollars because her daughter was not 'of color'. Really?!? How is that ethical?

2. We've completed a home study, we've had a social worker inspect our homes, ask us every personal question in the book, things you couldn't imagine being asked. We answered willingly, honestly, and understood that they must be so responsible when placing a child in a new home. I wouldn't want them to be anything but COMPLETELY PARTICULAR. My problem has arisen in looking at agencies. My husband and I don't attend the same church, we were raised in different Christian faiths. We believe in God, we worship Him, and know that He is in control of all of the things we've suffered these past three years. Here's where my problem lies...
All of the "Christian" agencies refuse to approve us because we aren't attending church on a weekly basis together. Yep, you heard me! And I'm sorry if you feel this is a requirement for adoption, I do NOT agree. I know what great parents hubby and I will be and I don't want some judgemental 'approval' board giving me the yay or nay on whether or not we can adopt. We've already been approved to adopt, we've completed our home study, we've had counseling, we've had full federal background checks.

My conversation with one agency yesterday went this way...

Lady: Hello, this is _____ from _______ adoption agency. Do you have a minute to talk? (Tone was very cold, very harsh, and she sounded annoyed)

Me: Yes, I'm just driving right now. How are you?

Lady: Were you unable to fill out the questionnaire online?

Me: Um, no we printed it, but were told that wasn't necessary simply for the application and that you would call us to discuss the application and approval process and we'd turn that in later.

Lady: Weeeell, obviously that is going to be an important factor in our addressing your church issue.

Me: Um, church issue?

Lady: You and your husband do NOT attend the same church, correct?

(You can see where this conversation started to disintegrate before it started).

After a short explanation, and her informing me ever so kindly (ha!) that they could NOT just make exceptions to their rules for anyone, I interrupted her and explained...

"My husband and I have suffered two miscarriages and a failed adoption where we were completely scammed, robbed of money, and lost another child. In this situation many people would lose faith, they would feel abandoned, they would quit. Our faith has only grown, individually and together. We are certain that God wants us to have children, we KNOW that He will provide and I feel no need to justify to you my faith in order to be "approved" with your agency. We will have children and if it isn't through your agency or any other, that doesn't discourage me, we WILL have children." (Mind you I had explained that I am a youth director, which does, in fact, mean that I work for a church--WITH CHILDREN!).

Anyhow, her response was simply, "Well, obviously we are not going to be a match with your family. Good bye!" Click!!!

I would like to say that this was an isolated event, and while she's the only one who has been that outwardly rude, I've had 3+ agencies tell me that our not attending church together was a deal breaker, that we would indeed need a signed letter from our pastor attesting to our regular attendance! Who knew a Christian couldn't even adopt from a Christian agency. And we wonder why we get such a bad name?!?!

I would like to conclude by saying this, had she actually listened, had she called with a decent attitude, had she been the least bit pleasant I wouldn't have been so angry. I was under the impression that she was going to be "discussing" with us our spiritual walk and our family plans, but that was NOT what she was doing.

So, while I'm still a firm believer in adoption, and know of the good that it brings, and am sure that there are great agencies and people out there, our current adopting is on hold until further notice. It is highly likely that we will adopt in the future, but for now, I'd like to not have anyone judge me on my relationship with God, or my husband's relationship with God. Wow!! Needed to share that for sure!!!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

LSU room










I'm a bit late in doing it, but my dad came while I was at camp this summer and he and my mom painted our office/media room purple and gold!! It is amazing! We are thrilled with it! Sure beats the former plaid wallpaper!

The top left picture is of my alma mater Louisiana Tech playing LSU!! Great gift from Sis and BIL for Christmas one year!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Ask and you shall receive

Tonight I asked for guidance in where to go in God's words to address what's on my heart.

I've been reading through the New Testament, but also reading Psalms and I couldn't remember where I left off in Psalms. God sent me to Psalm 27, verse 1 says this...

The Lord is my light and my salvation— so why should I be afraid?The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble?

Perfect words! God is good, all the time! That chapter ends with this verse...

Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.

Amen!


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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Hallelujah


Well, that was my facebook post yesterday (still is since I don't change it every 5 seconds), and this is why...

We got back our test results from everything with Dr. S at the best clinic ever (hope that doesn't change). It seems weird to say that I'm excited that they found something, but for those of us who have had more than one loss, you know that having a reason is paramount. If you have a reason, you know what to do, you know if you can treat it, you feel that you've been responsible by finding it so as not to have another loss, and you are glad to know it's nothing that you 'did' that caused your losses.

With all of that said, all of hubby's tests came back normal, hooray for the love of my life! He is the best thing that ever happened to me. I, however, wasn't so lucky! If you've lost more than one child, you know that it makes you feel like a little death trap, and you want to stop it if you can. Many women who lose more than one baby don't even want to try again for fear of killing another baby. Sounds dramatic, but really it's how we feel.

Without further ado, I have hyperactive Natural Killer Cells!! Yep, these little cells are in everyone's body, mine are on overdrive, which means they are attacking my embryos, usually before they ever implant, but obviously twice ours got past that (which to me means that Layla and Michael were some serious fighters!!!). This is good news because as Dr. S says "if you have to have something wrong, this is a good one because it's easily treatable!". There are a few choices for treatment and the clinic where I go is fairly cutting edge, so we will be using IV intralipids to treat the NK cells, or suppress them so they don't keep killing my babies!

We are very happy to have an answer/diagnosis! I finally feel hopeful after a very long time of feeling despondent. Since we know what is happening, we actually have a plan. This new clinic is full of helpful people, who are kind to me, call me by name (which is my nickname, but they got it right the first time), and didn't freak out when I had a mini mental last week and cried on the phone to all of them! So, here's praying that a plan ends with a happy, healthy, "bring home baby" (that term is thanks to my friend, Katharine, I like it!).

Special thanks to Andrea, Shandrea, and Nan for encouraging (pushing me when I couldn't do it myself) me to find a new RE!!

And again I say Hallelujah, and share this song with you!

P.S. If anyone is interested in the clinic that I'm going to and my RE, you are welcome to email me and ask, I'll answer any questions I can! (deni.troxclair@gmail.com)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

LSU football



Since I said yesterday that I'd be writing about LSU football today, I shall not go back on my word. My first picture I did choose, for my Tyler friends, as yes, that is your very own Matt Flynn, I'm a huge fan! Being an LSU fan is truly something that 'happens' to you. This weekend I'll be going to see LSU take on Miss State with their annoying cow bells and hopeful optimism (Love you, Nicole!!). Usually a very fun game with similar fans who like to have a good time, talk a lot of trash, and truly love their teams. The following weekend will be LSU vs. West Virginia, and I've got no special thoughts about this game, as it's not annual or special in any way except that I get to go with one of my best friends, Shawn, yep, hubby and friend same name, super confusing (especially for her god-daughter--see last weeks Wordless Wednesday Pic #1).

The next weekend (yes, I'm a very lucky girl going to 3 back to back home games!) is very momentous for me, as it will be the Tigers taking on Tennessee. Why is this momentous? This was when my fan status 'happened' to me. One gorgeous fall evening in 2000, my fabulous roommate, Julie, and her family took me to my first ever game in Death Valley. Not being a huge football fan (I went to a high school with no football, and a college whose football leaves something to be desired, sorry to my Tech faithful fans, I'm not one), I wasn't as jazzed about the game as I was about the trip to Baton Rouge, which never disappointed! So, we're sitting around close to kick off debating if we were actually going to go to the game (that has never happened to any of us since), and decided that we would just go for the first half, what happened next was life altering for me. If you go to about 2:20 in this bottom video, you will see Toefield run in a 74 yard touchdown, that was the first play that I saw of that game, and I was hooked!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_uVCAxEBcg

So, to say that I'm excited to watch the boys take on TN again on October 2, 2010 (which is my Granny's birthday and she would be 88 years old) is an understatement! Not only that, I'll get to share it with a couple of my favorite people, my mom and dad, and also Johnny, Emily, and Shawn (nope hubby can't make it!). GEAUX TIGERS!!! I remain a fan through the good and the bad (i.e. watching us lose to Ole Miss last year=bad!). True Tiger fans stay purple and gold always! Excited about this season, even if it's not our best yet!!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Interruptions


Usually I don't care for Mondays. I'm not a morning person and it means getting up and coming to work, but today is different. I don't know why and I can't say what has changed, but I am in better spirits. The Cowboys losing last night really helped, but I think that it began in church.

Our pastor talked about interruptions, and I definitely feel that my life has been interrupted. My plans have been interrupted, and my heart has been interrupted. He said that interruptions are opportunities to trust God, and when you look at it that way, it really changes the whole feel of these unwanted things. Our entire adoption experience seems to have been an interruption on our lives, something very unwanted, something difficult and awful, leaving us again broken hearted. Still, it was a great opportunity to trust God, and we continue to do so. Firmly believing that our role in that whole experience was to put and end to the terror that horrible Darla was, so that no other family would have to suffer at her psychotic plots, too bad her hideous mother isn't locked up with her! It was an interruption and seems to have derailed our path to parenthood yet again, but sometimes we have to realize that God's plans are bigger than ours.

I will say that I never care for my sleep being interrupted (not sure if I've mentioned before how much I love my sleep), and with that said, my sweet hubby is headed for another sleep study tomorrow night. Praying we can get a solution to his snoring, so the sleeping won't be interrupted any longer!!

On a super happy note, I will be attending three, yes, three home LSU games the next 3 weeks. OH HAPPY DAYS!!! Geaux Tigers!! Too bad I can't grab a Saints game at the same time. Post tomorrow on football season and all the reasons why I love it!!!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Two years

Two years ago today we went to see our first baby's heartbeat. There was no heartbeat. My heart is still broken and my arms are still empty.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Location:Cumberland Rd,Tyler,United States

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Something I must repeat


to myself over and over again. 2 Timothy 1:7 "But the Lord did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind." I do find myself afraid of many things. I think once you've lost a baby, you live in a state of fear. When you've not been pregnant in 16 months, you are again filled with fear. Will I ever be pregnant again? Will I end up with children? I know, I know, yes, I will, of course, some how, some way. At what cost? People who don't suffer losses and infertility don't understand the things that go along with fertility treatment both physically and mentally, and at times spiritually. It is exhausting!!

Today I had my HSG done. My appointment was for 8:30am (please remember that it is almost 2 hours away from my house, so I drove last night), and they didn't even call me back until 9:30. Seriously, while I watched two people bring in their children, one girl looked maybe 20, maybe. The other couldn't be bothered to get up and pick her child up off the floor while he crawled towards the automatic doors. The procedure itself only lasted about 10 mins, maybe. It was painful for a few minutes, but that didn't last long and I haven't felt bad today, just a little bloated. This was done in the outpatient clinic with a Radiologist who was very nice, and told me that everything looked great, no problems that he could see. I got a CD-ROM copy to take to the RE. Yes, that's good news.

Afterwards, I trucked it with my trusty sidekick, Brittany, who accompanied me to Dallas, so I didn't have to travel alone (Thanks Britt!!) to a completely different building to go to my RE's office for a blood draw. No, didn't need to see the RE, just needed blood draw for the Natural Killer cell test, so it could be overnighted to Chicago for testing. I sat there for over 30 mins. There was not another person there, not a single other person. I didn't see or hear another person there when I went back to get my blood drawn. Why the heck did I have to wait for 30 mins? Seriously, they knew I was coming. It was annoying.

With two good test results so far, we wait for the results from the two blood tests. They said the NK test would take 7-10 days. The other test we're waiting on should be in by next Friday, so I'm hoping they are both here by then. I'm scared about what we might learn, but really I'm scared that we won't learn anything at all, we will be out even more money with no new answers, and therefore, no plan to work on from here. Then I have to tell myself that God didn't give me this spirit of fear, that this is from satan and that he is lying to tell me that we might never end up with a baby.

Then I try to cling on and on to the promises that I know are true, that God will not allow me to be tested beyond what I can bear. I know that God is good, that He has good plans for me, plans for me to prosper. I need to give a shout out to a few people who really have been great to me over the past few weeks, months, years, really, but they shouldn't go without mention...

First, my sweet husband, who tolerates my neurosis and loves me anyway. He always lifts me up and encourages me and I am so blessed to have him on this journey with me!

Then I must thank Julie, Britt, Shawn, Emily W, Andrea, Nan, Shandrea, Angie, Bree, Rachel, Gracie, Amanda, Karla, Leah, Caryn, Mom, and Rene'. I know that there are others, I'm sorry if I missed you, but for my sweet friends who support me so much I'm forever grateful!!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

CONGRATS!!!!

To the winners of my 100th post giveaway!!

First up is Allison who has won the gift from Magnolia Creative for giving me an example of a comment that hurt her after loss. Seriously, girl, you win because yours made me laugh and cry at the same time! Your humor seems like mine and you have to find a way to laugh so you don't spend the rest of your life crying!!

Second is TwoDogMama for becoming a follower. Thanks for walking along this journey with me and for being such a great support!

I need each of you to email me so we can work out the details of your win! deni.troxclair@gmail.com

I've been using your comments and putting them into my book, some with names, some not, but all with honesty! Feel free to continue to send me comments that are made, the book isn't done, so I can continue to add to it!! Thank you for sharing with me and for supporting me along the way!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

My Blog


I've written a few blog entries the past two days and haven't been able to post them, as they seem too sad or negative. Here's the thing though, this is my blog and I am SAD! Nothing I say is meant to hurt or upset anyone else and I really am not looking for any sympathy or uplifting "God's in control" responses. The thing is this: I know God is in control. I also know that my pain hurts Him, and that He knows the waves and the seasons of grief. Grief is not something you can control and make bow to your whims, or show up only when it's convenient. Grief sucks the life out of you, while you watch from the sidelines wishing you could stop it.

I'm sad because there is supposed to be a 2 month old baby in my house, crying, pooping, sleeping, and pretty much consuming all of my time. Currently all that I can here is my dogs wrestling and the tap of my own fingers on the keyboard of my computer. I'm sad because a truly evil, heinous person stole six months of my life. She preyed on my pain, manipulated my heart, and left me with nothing but anger. Had we not been pursuing the adoption with her, we would've been looking for another birth mother, researching agencies, seeing an RE before 13 days ago. We've wasted so much time on something so painful. I have an empty completely ready nursery and the only consolation that I have is knowing that bitch is behind bars. At least she's not cuddling the sweet baby, who is now without a mother! My intention is to do everything in my power to make sure that she remains behind bars, so that she never has the opportunity to do this to another family (especially since we are the second family she's done this to). P.S. I hope her mother rots in hell too!

Every day it seems I hear of yet another person who is pregnant or giving birth to a healthy happy baby or two, and it doesn't get easier. It actually gets harder. Most of the time I'm very happy for these people, but again saddened for myself. This dream of parenthood continues to happen for other people over and over again so easily, while I sit empty armed in a silent house. No one did this to me and it's not any one's fault, but it sucks to have people not even want to tell you that they are pregnant because they know it's going to hurt you. It sucks to feel like a bad person all of the time. It sucks to be jealous. It sucks to want to have good excuses to skip baby showers. It sucks to not want to hold or see new babies. It sucks to look at how old all of your friends' children are an imagine where yours would be. It sucks to want to celebrate with other people, but not have the physical or emotional strength to do so. This whole thing of loss and infertility sucks, every which way and backwards it sucks. Sometimes you wish you could stay in that oblivious state where you weren't aware of certain things, like how crappy certain friends are (or the fact that they aren't really friends at all), or how scary pregnancy is (as my BLM friends who are pg again can't function for fear of another loss), or how much you don't even want to be around yourself some days (I can only imagine how others feel about me, lucky for most I live in another state now).

Then the RE's office informs me today that the blood test that I need to have done can't be done on a Friday. Thank you for that announcement after I've already scheduled my HSG for Friday, as I need to be in Dallas on Saturday anyway. So, now I have to reschedule it all, and it's just frustrating. Had I gotten in to see the MD at my scheduled time (not 50 mins later) I might have been able to have blood drawn for this test that day, and not rearrange my entire schedule. And before anyone tells me about how it will all be worth it, please save your breathe, if I hear that one more flipping time, I might lose my mind! Seriously, I'm well aware that I will do whatever it takes to have a baby of my own, but unless you've dealt with the numerous sticks, pokes, prods, reschedules, new schedules, tests, driving, waiting, hurrying, waiting, hurrying, waiting, getting excited, being devastated, trying to hold it together day in and day out, please don't say any of that cliche' crap that you think will be helpful. It's not! Seriously, not helpful at all!

I debated not writing such a downer post, but this is me. These feelings are real, they hurt, and if you don't want to read them, you certainly don't have to. My intention is not to hurt anyone else's feelings, or to make anyone uncomfortable. This blog is to help me heal, to maybe give a little insight to those who are living with a baby lost mom or infertile, and to have something to look back on and see how far we've come.

While being so frustrated and sad today I came across this blog entry and wanted to share it, as it is completely true, and I do continue to praise the One who took my is always constant!

***And yes, I know this will pass and in a day or two I'll feel much better. You can look for a peppier post soon!****

Update: a nice little run in the rain will help too! Wish I could breathe better, but still good for the soul!!!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Is it Therapy or Is it running??


One of the best things about running is the conversation with friends while you're doing it! I harass some friends to go with me, just because I look forward to the conversations that will ensue! If I tried to tell you all of the things that my guh, Skinner, (above center) and I talked about this morning, you'd just plain fall out! It gets hilarious and serious out there on the trail. And when you run, sometimes you get loud, or maybe that was the conversation topic that got us fired up?!!? Either way, it's therapeutic. I believe having friends who will get out of their comfort zones, and ask you the really hard questions is invaluable. I wouldn't trade it for anything. Having a friend that loves you enough to tell you that they want you to talk to someone (i.e. a counselor), and not worry about if you get offended or mad about it, that's true friendship. When you laugh so hard you think you're gonna fall down while running (some of us are less coordinated than others), you know you're having a good time and a good conversation. And when you have already run and chatted for 8 miles, then you still stand around at the meeting place and talk some more, you know you're with friends!

Thank you to my runner friends, who push me farther than I would push myself, who ask the hard questions and truly listen to the answers, and who make me laugh so hard, it's a good thing I don't usually have a drink in my mouth!!

***The above picture is not from today, but those are two of my runner peeps that I love to pieces, Jennifer (aka Skinner) and Daniel. Also lots of love to Scott, Susie, Ford, Eric, and of course my sweet sister, Rene'***

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Working with Youth

There are so many things about working with youth that I love that I could type all day about them. To tell you that each of them truly touch my heart would be a gross understatement. However, today, I'm going to talk about the hard part, as it has really been on my heart this week.

When you work with youth, they grow up, and then they leave, or in my case, I left (one group and started up with another). Last summer when I left FUMC Shreveport, I left a family, one full of children, which is my dream as you all know if you read this often. Those youth, those young men and women of God are my friends, and what happens in their lives is incredibly important to me. I don't see my time in their lives as ending when I walked out of that church and into a new one (though I have yet to change my membership over--I am still in a bit of denial about the move). Each year Seniors leave and go on to their prospective colleges, or other "adult" plans, and I long to know how they are day to day. I can say that thusfar, the ones whom I've been very close to have made me so proud!! I can only imagine how their parents feel, I just got to hang out with them for a while, these parents have raised some amazing children. I'll give you just a few examples of things my sweet youth have done in the past couple of years: one took Swalhilli (I don't even think I can spell that) in hopes of learning more about other cultures, to become a missionary, one went to a college and pledged a sorority by herself and made a whole new set of friends, while making excellent grades (I pledged with my four best friends, I was chicken!!), one went to college and joined a sorority and became the recruitment chairman as a sophomore, one went on a back-packing trip all over Alaska for a month this summer, one is my wild and crazy LSU girl who is enjoying every minute of her time there, and one has joined the Army and is at basic training at this very moment.

These kids are amazing! I continue to hear the media slam this generation, and while yes, they are more spoiled than we were, they also have hearts much bigger than ours were at their ages!

More recently, I've had an entire separate set of Seniors take off for the big world of college. Some to Baylor, one to Texas Tech, one to Mary Hardin Baylor, one went to OU, there's one at TCU, and one went all the way to Georgia Tech. I will say that one of my Shreveport girls did make me proud and head off to LSU this fall--Thanks, see you in two weekends!!

That long list doesn't even include all of my sweet Happening kids--I have a lot of people to love all over the place. It is so bittersweet each year as they move on, and you never realize how much you will miss them until they are gone!

Being in youth ministry is such a blessing, you get back as much, if not more, than you give!

Another thing that I didn't really consider when starting in youth ministry was the camaraderie that I would find with the other leaders. This past weekend I was at a retreat with a group of my girls, but also with 6 other wonderful women!! Getting to share and discuss and have prayer and fellowship with these women, while we are reaching our girls is like this special bonus blessing that you don't even think about until it's over really! I must say that I'm grateful for these women and for the great women that I have at FUMC Shreveport as well.

I'm a very blessed girl! I miss my kids who have moved forward and the ones that I left in Shreveport, but I am very grateful for every moment I have with each of my youth. I am just a really lucky girl!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010