Pregnancy Not Your Thing? You’re Not Alone

 I’m 34 weeks pregnant with Baby #1, and it’s taken me an hour to get the first sentence of this story typed. I blame the restless legs, heartburn, aggressive kicking, baby brain, aching lower back, tiny feet stuck under my ribs and grumbling stomach all caused by this 5 pound tiny human squished in my uterus. While I’m not ungrateful and I don’t love my unborn child any less than other women, I’m going to be honest and admit that I don’t love being pregnant. Gasp!  Over the years I’ve heard many of my friends gush about their pregnancy and about how magnificent each step was and how beautiful they felt. They loved it! Perhaps you have a few friends like that? The ones who talk about how thick and shiny their hair is, the glow of their skin, how each kick they feel is the most ea...

The Tao of Gratitude

A meditation on gratitude during yoga class prompts thoughts on how rich and abundant my life is. I find I'm grateful even for the icky parts.

Embracing the Chaos of IVF Part 6: One Journey Ends, Another Begins

It’s now time for us to end our infertility journey and move on to this new one that will add another member to the Stone family. This new journey includes getting rid of the boxes of girl clothes and figuring out where to put all of that important stuff I’ve stashed in the baby room’s closet, formerly known as our guest bedroom. Like most journeys, we’ve had a few bumps in the road and luckily, our bumps have been minor so far. We recently found out we’re having a boy. Finally, more testosterone to balance out all of the female hormones in our house! A sense of relief has come over Barry knowing he’ll have another dude to share the “boy smell” burden with in the family now. We have a male dog, but he doesn’t really count since he’s neutered. Of course, Maya originally preferred to have a ...

Embracing the Chaos of IVF Part 5: Our W.T.F. Moment and Amazing News!

A few weeks after the failed IVF attempt, it was time to prepare for round two. After we got Nancy home from rehab, we agreed we needed a family vacation before we tried again. We hadn’t been to Florida in a few years so we decided it was time to head south and visit family and friends. The vacation also included a full day at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, a day at Sea World and a trip to the beach. We were able to put our infertility struggles behind us and relish in the present moment, which is what we needed to do for ourselves and Maya. It’s a good thing we did or we would have missed out on some great memories, like watching Maya give Peter Pan directions to her house. After a week of fun, it was time to head home to Denver. We would be home in time for Memorial Day and I was looking forwar...

Embracing the Chaos of IVF Part 4: Finding Positive Ways to Cope

Our first IVF attempt failed and it was now time to prepare for our second attempt. Before that happened, I had to mentally prepare myself to try again. As a self-proclaimed control freak and non-practicing Catholic, I knew it would not be easy for me to just have faith that things would work out as they should. I needed to be strong enough to handle what was to come – baby or no baby – and I couldn’t do it alone and couldn’t expect my family to manage my stress either. After the miscarriage last spring, I searched for ways to manage the stress in positive ways as I knew infertility treatments would be an emotional rollercoaster for my family and me. I searched for alternative methods instead the typical ones like psychotherapy, prescription medications and lots of alcohol. I felt I would ...

Embracing the Chaos of IVF Part 3: Learning to have a little faith

When I got home from the PRSA Western District Conference that Monday night, my husband Barry was awake in the den and the door to my mother-in-law’s apartment downstairs was still open. Usually, her door is shut by this time of night, but since Barry was still awake I didn’t think anything of it. I went upstairs and got ready for bed. Within seconds, my smile vanished as I heard Barry yell my name. I ran downstairs to find out what was wrong, but couldn’t find Barry. I heard my name again and quickly realized it was coming from Nancy’s place. As I turned the corner of her stairs, I saw Barry standing over Nancy who was immobile on the floor. She explained that she tripped over her magazine rack and fell on her hip. Watching her lay there in pain while we waited for the ambulance was one o...

Embracing the Chaos of IVF: The Game Plan

After surgery to remove the ectopic pregnancy in early January, we laid out our game plan for our first attempt at IVF. I like calling it a game plan as much as Dr. Swanson does because it makes the process feel more like a game of flag football rather than just a legs-in-stirrups marathon, like a competition of sorts (me, competitive? Never!) It also makes me feel like we have a team of cheerleaders nearby to keep our spirits high. I imagine our Conceptions team dressed up in uniforms with shirts that say “Go Team Stone” on the front in blue waving pom-poms and yelling, “V-I-C-T-O-R-Y! Hold that V!” You can picture that too, right? The plan was to first check my resting follicle count and AMH levels (aka ovarian reserve of quality, healthy baby-making follicles) after two menstrual cycles...

A Denver mom’s journey with infertility and IVF

I’m a Southerner-turned-mountain-lover living in South Denver and recently, I’ve been dealing with infertility . It’s more common than I ever thought and I now understand why it’s so hard on women and families. I’ve decided to share my story with the Mile High Mamas in hopes it will help others who are going through the same thing, and we can share a laugh or two along the way. Here’s my story. Barry and I got married in Atlanta in 2004, and we decided to hold off on having children for a year because

Assess, Ask and Act: How You Can Support Someone Through Loss and Transition

Assess, Ask, and Act: The three steps to successfully and sincerely helping a friend through loss and transition.

If someone you know struggles with fertility

Melissa Ford, author of "Navigating the Land of IF: Understanding Infertility and Exploring Your Options," answers questions about IVF, IUI, adoption, surrogacy, donor egg, donor sperm, and child-free living.