Sunday, February 5, 2012


I have received dozens of emails about IVF from many of you ladies since I started this blog; Did we ever proceed with IVF? How did we make that decision? What does the Bible have to say about IVF? How do I deal with other people wanting to put their opinions about IVF on me? What if we make the wrong decision and waste all of that money? Etc...

About 2 years ago, Joey and I found ourselves, once again, at a point in our lives when we had to have this discussion. We had many failed IUI cycles under our belts, tons of leftover Femera and Clomid in the cabinet (if you know what that is, sorry :-( ) , Ovulation Predictor kits under the sink, and a few more RE bills to pay off but we were ultimately faced with the decision between making Hannah and big sister through adoption or IVF....

Not "Do we get a Honda or a Toyota?", "Should we have Taco Bell or Chick-Fil-A for lunch?", "Boots or heels?", "Boxers or briefs?"

After lots of discussion, hours of prayer, and many discussions with my parents about their IVF vs. Adoption decision they made years ago, Joey made a decision...

The decision would be mine to make.

It was my emotions that would go crazy, my arms that would have more bruises and holes in them from needles, my job to remember to take my medicine, and my body that would be put to sleep. No one ever doubted that Joey would be affected every step of the way, too but he knows me...better than anyone... and he knew that this decision had to be mine to make.

If you know me at all, you know that writing is my outlet so when faced with this life-changing decision, I wrote.

I want to share what I wrote for any of you who I haven't had this discussion with... for anyone who is facing this decision.... for anyone who thinks they might. Our decision isn't the 'right' one for everyone but it was the right one for us.... but the process is the important part; not the end result.

I had no idea when I typed that first word where I was leaning and I didn't have a 'hunch'.... but by the time I typed that last word, I knew......

Philippians 4:6-9  "Present your needs to God in every form of prayer and in petitions full of gratitude. Then God's own peace, which is beyond all understanding, will stand guard over your hearts and minds, in Christ Jesus."

Philippians 4:1, " Continue, my dear ones, to stand firm in the Lord."

Sometimes we focus on all of the obstacles, and we let detours take our eyes off the goal. We become distracted looking at obstacles or problems, but we must keep our eyes focused on the goal that is set before us. He, who is with us at the beginning of the race and will see us through to the end, accompanies us in the middle as well.

Hebrews 2:13 says, "I will put my trust in Him; here am I and the children whom God has given me."

Sometimes we question if we are on the right path. Then, every so often, we catch a glimpse of the bigger picture, and He blesses us with the knowledge that He truly is at work....working overtime.

The untrained ability to put my thoughts into words on paper has never failed me. Until now.

There are times in our lives when we are faced with a fork in the road; will you take a left turn or right? The obvious answer for a believer would be that you will turn where God leads you. A problem arises when you can fully see God’s grace, blessings, and promise no matter which way you turn.

Here I am, blessed beyond belief with a life more fulfilling than any life I could have imagined and I am at a fork. A really big fork.  A fork that will ultimately determine the future of our family. It isn’t tough enough that this decision is enormous in itself but it also brings with it many pointed and sometimes painful opinions of others. Not that others’ matter… or do they? In a situation such as ours, I can see God using other people to guide us toward the path the will bring the most blessing and peace from Him. What if that’s what this journey is about? What if both answers are the right answers and our job is to find the one that will bring the MOST of what God has to offer us.

If we turn left, we will add another precious child to our family through the gift of adoption. Undeniably, unequivocally, irrevocably the most miraculous way to have a child… and I know this through personal experience. It is a fact that the anything-but-simple and selfless act of someone placing their own child into your arms forever evokes unexplainable feelings. You have been hand-picked by God to be the parents of one of His precious children. For whatever reason, that baby cannot have your DNA in order to be your child. Simple (and fine with me since the genes I have to pass on to a child are not favorable). On this road, our job is easy; listen, follow, obey, and sit back and watch as God reveals to you the child He has chosen to place under your responsibility. What an honor! Taking this turn in the road will surely bring with it blessings in abundance from God and will result in our already special family becoming more united through the gift of adoption.

If we turn right, we will attempt to add another precious child to our family through IVF. Notice how I said “attempt”. Though not guaranteed by any medical standards, we as believers know that God is sovereign. If He wants us to conceive, He will allow us to conceive. Aside from all of the moral, medical and rational arguments surrounding IVF such as frozen embryos, medication, and the foreboding statistics, my question is this; If God wants us to conceive, He will allow us to conceive, right? Huh… I guess that’s what I just said, IVF or not.

In my research on Biblical principles versus IVF (well, to be honest, while reading my toddlers Bible to Hannah at night), I keep coming across the stories of Hannah and Elizabeth. Hannah’s womb was ‘closed by God.’ She didn’t have surgery, take medication, and undergo fertility treatment. Her issue was simple; God had different plans for her. Whether or not adoption was what it is now back in Bible-times is beside the point. Hannah had to learn to accept God’s plan for her life… and once she did, He shocked her! She was ‘blessed’ with a child. What do we know about God’s plan?! And Elizabeth! She and Abraham thought they were too old to have children, although age was different back then, too. All of a sudden, Elizabeth is pregnant and not only once… again and again and again.

I have tried over and over to write my pro and con list for adoption versus IVF. At the end of the day, there is a simple truth behind my desire to proceed with IVF… I possess the desire to experience pregnancy. Don’t get me wrong, being pregnant scares me to death! Miscarriage, complications, being sick, labor without an epidural, complications in labor, passing on my terrible genes to our child, and the list continues. My mom reminded me the other day that I cannot allow my life to be dictated by fear. She was obviously insinuating that fear should not over-ride my desire to be pregnant. I still feel that putting my body and our finances at risk are selfish measures to take just to ‘attempt’ to conceive. God truly knows the desires of my heart and He has promised them to me! If I truly desire to experience pregnancy, I have to get to a place in my heart where I trust that He will allow me to do just that. But do we try to force Him by continuing with IVF? Is that 'forcing God'? Is that possible?

I could go on forever. God has called us to lay aside our selfish desires but He also promises to grant us the desires of our heart. I am excited at the thought that God is giving me what could possibly be a once-in-a- lifetime opportunity to take a leap of faith and follow Him. Most people would think that means I am ready to proceed with IVF. Not true. I am ready to proceed with adoption because THAT excites me right now, right where I am in my life and with my family. The desire to experience pregnancy is still strong but stronger still is my desire to follow God’s plan that will bring the MOST blessing and honor to Him. In that, I believe that there is a precious child waiting to be born and chosen for our special family. After that, it is up to God to decide how my personal desire to experience pregnancy will manifest itself in the future. What I love about the dynamic of our family is that each child born into it will bring with him or her a story of God’s mercy, love, grace, and will be known as a miracle to everyone surrounding them… whether they are hand-picked by God or grown inside my belly.

And here we are.... waiting for number 2 :-)


  1. Lovely! You are a beautiful writer. I too go through this struggle between attempting IVF or adopting again. My husband and I did many rounds of IUI and got pregnant twice, loosing the babies each time. Then we attempted IVF and it didn't work. Then I was done. Done with the changes my body was experiencing, done with the emotional highs and lows, done with wasting the money. We turned to adoption and would never want to change that choice. Our son is amazing and so is his birthmother. We look at him and think, this wait was worth it. However, every once in a while I think, I would love to be pregnant. I would love to have a biological child. When my son was 2, I decided to do IUI again. It lasted one month. I couldn't do it. I felt like I was just throwing my money out the door. So, we are waiting for number 2 through adoption. From friends I know who have adopted, this feeling is lifelong. I don't think I will ever be over the debate in my mind. But, the beauty in adoption is something amazing.
    Good luck on your journey.

  2. Thanks for commenting, Stacy! It's always nice to know that we're not alone... especially as women.

    I have learned that there is a distinct difference between wanting a Biological child and wanting to experience pregnancy. To be completely honest, I have no desire to have a biological child, to pass our genes on to another person... it just doesn't mean that much to me since there is absolutely no difference between me (biological child) and my brothers (both adopted).

    The pregnancy thing? Feeling the baby move and kick and knowing and being able to appreciate what labor and delivery are like... I think about those things.

    At the same time, pregnancy and labor and delivery would never be 'normal' for me because of the rods in my back from Scoliosis surgery when I was younger... and an epidural is an impossibility.

    I guess my point is that when everything comes full circle, it's nice to know where your thoughts and feelings come from; they don't end up being our choice... God just makes it obvious. I love that about this journey :-)

    Praying for YOU in your journey to find number 2... we're waiting together :-)


  3. I've always thought of IVF or IUI or anything like that as something that's easier to get through than an unplanned pregnancy. I guess I was wrong :-( This almost sounds worse; wanting something so badly and not being able to do a single thing about it?

    I'm sorry that anyone has to go through this! Thank you for sharing your story; your'e always so real and i know it can't be easy.

    ~ L


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