Thursday, October 20, 2016

Three under three is soon to be!


Jordan and I were at volleyball when I started to not feel well. My stomach was turning and my abdomen was cramping. Thoughts started running through my mind and I was in denial ..there is NO WAY. 

I told Jordan we needed to stop at Target on our way home and we did. De ja vu hit when I went in the aisle to buy that test. It brought back so many emotions .. Hope, fear , excitement, anger, sadness everything ! This was the first time I was in that aisle feeling in shock instead of full fledged fear of disappointment. I couldn't believe I was buying a pregnancy test.. 

We went home to relieve our babysitter but one of us had to drive her home. I told Jordan I was going to run her home quick but he stopped me and made me to take the test quick so he could look at the results while I was gone. 

I quickly ran into the bathroom did my thing ..put it on the counter and ran out to meet our babysitter at the car. 

As I got to our babysitters house I got a text from Jordan that said "negative." 

For some reason I just didn't believe it.. I called Jordan on my way home and I said "are you sure?? Remember with Reverie the line was so light you couldn't see it??" 

His response to me was...

"Kaylah I'm looking at it now and there is only one... Ohhhhh wait.... There's a light pink line now. We're pregnant. "

My stomach sunk... Fear and excitement struck me hard . What if the baby isn't in the right uterus (remember I have 2) what if we lose it.. Blahblah. 

I called the doctor that night and had a blood test right away the next morning. My hcg levels were a whopping 15 (which is extremely low for those of you who are not familiar). 

My doctor said we could have just caught it extremely early and he started me on progesterone supplements. 

We had to wait for 2 days to test again and of course I started spotting before I went in for that test. I tried to remind myself that I spotted with Reverie and she was fine . 

I waited what felt like all day for those test results and the nurse called and told me my numbers more then doubled and were currently over 100. Our numbers were increasing perfectly. 

Fast forward and now we are 17 weeks and expecting to find out gender next week! 

So there it is !! We are expecting baby G number 3 and we couldn't be happier!  Kaetheo and Rev are going to be big siblings!! 

Baby G #3 is expected to arrive March 31st!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Update, Confessions, pictures, and more!

Alright it's time for us to update this blog! Let's be honest..blogging became a lot harder once babies came into the picture!

First off if you have not seen it yet, my mom made a video for us documenting our entire adoption journey to Kaetheo. If you haven't yet seen it go watch it! It is actually part 2 of 2. We will do the infertility part soonish. Searcing for Baby G Adoption Video

Life has been busy. Finding time to ourselves is difficult, but we tend to find it. We have a babysitter come once a week for our volleyball nights which gets us out of the house together and getting active. We love it! 

We have been staying REALLY busy as a family. Parades, parks, splash pads, walks, birthday parties,  graduations etc. 

Kaetheo has been picking up his role as big brother as he learns more and more. He is either protecting Revie or torturing her:). He did get his first set of stitches. He fell off a step and bonked his lip and it required 4 of them! I am pretty sure it was worse on me then him. He was loving the attention ;)

Revie likes to follow her brother around and talk to him. They are starting to interact more now that they are both interested in the same things. She loves to be chased around the house and loves to be held . All. The. Time. 

I get asked probably once-twice if Kaetheo and Rev are twins. At first I told people the story because I love the story, but after the 6th time being asked in Target(in the same day) I resorted to just saying they are Irish twins! It causes less questions when I'm in a hurry;)

In November of last year I noticed that I needed more energy to chase around our kiddos so I decided a lifestyle change was needed. I officially have lost 50LBS! I am pretty proud of myself for losing all the baby weight & more. I work at least 3 times a week and I am loving all the energy I have. <33

My confession:

Some have asked us if we plan to have more kiddos and if you would have asked me about 6 months ago I would have said that I didn't think so.  It is extremely hard to admit but after having Reverie I suffered from some extreme post partum anxiety. I didn't tell many people because I didn't want anyone to think I was ungrateful for my two amazing blessings that came into my life. 

People have asked how we stayed so strong through our infertility and adoption struggle and the answer is we hid it. We even hid it from ourselves. The moment after having Reverie I struggled with pretty intense anxiety which I had never experienced before. My anxiety stemmed from our failed adoptions, miscarriages, failed cycles, etc.. 

We went into the adoption process pretty naive thinking certain situations wouldn't happen to us. After what feels like everything bad DID infact happen to us I was also expecting the worst with our pregnancy. I waited to go into labor early. I waited to be told we lost her. I waited for the bad to happen because I was trying to prepare myself for another tragedy. Everything with Reverie's birth went perfect, so then I assumed something was going to happen afterwards.  In the meantime of worrying about my pregnancy I became very protective of Kaetheo. A little excessive, but I ask you to please not blame me. 

If you are a friend, family member or acquaintance that maybe has witnessed me be a little over protective I ask you to put yourself in my shoes. After going through multiple losses I was and am doing everything I can to never lose another child. Little things like no blankets in the crib until the age of one or double checking a car seat belt might seem tedious, but if I can prevent one less tragedy in my life by those small things I think it is worth it. 

I have been feeling a lot better, a lot more like myself. My mind isn't as anxious anymore and I am so thankful for that. I still struggle with anxiety a little bit, but I think it's way more of a normal amount that comes with being parents to two toddlers:) If anyone you know is going through any sort of PPD or PPA please reach out to them. I wish I would have understood when doctors were asking me after my pregnancy if I felt depressed, that anxiety is also a major post partum problem. To anyone that is suffering now: IT DOES GET BETTER! It took over a year for me:)

End of confession.

Now on to some happy stuff: NOW if you ask me now if we are going to have more children the answer is YES. We are not even close to done. I wanted six kiddos when Jordan and I got married and we compromised at four. I believe however it's not up to us. It is up to fate. We can confidently say we plan to start the adoption process here again in the near future but we just might change it up a bit:)

Kaetheo's birth grandma cut his hair! 

How can you not love this face! 

Kaetheo and cousin Felix. He calls him "Tickets"

Rev and her new dress she got for her birthday!

I just love this one. 

This is our life. I think we are pretty blessed!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

we would do it again

Lately my heart has been broken by some words people have said to me regarding adoption. I have been told more than a handful of times by many people that when it comes to the decision to adopt they decided against it because "I never want to go through what you went through."

It hurts my heart to hear this. I want everyone to know that we would do it all again.. And again.. And again. The heartbreak we went through made us stronger and it didn't end in heartbreak.  It opened our eyes to the world around us. It lead us to our son, Kaetheo. Please remember our journey had a happy ending.. Or a happy beginning I should say.  

Our story is by far one of the worst case scenarios (based on the stories of other families we followed during and following our adoption). It hurts my heart to hear that our story has turned couples away from adoption. It is by far the most rewarding and eye opening experience we have ever encountered and believe me when I say this. WE WOULD and WILL do it again.

My favorite quote:

Happy National Adoption Month

Friday, September 18, 2015

Two under One

Life has been crazy in the Gerads' house. I finally found time to write a post! That's right both babies are napping at the SAME TIME! *MOMMY DANCE*

Where did we leave off? Oh yeah. I was supposed to write about our infertility story. I do still plan on sharing that story in a video in the coming month.

Kaetheo got promoted to being a big brother on April 28th 2015.

 I went in for my normal check up on April 27th with Kaetheo, my mom, and my dad. We were supposed to go out to lunch for my dad's birthday afterwards, but my blood pressure was high and the tests showed protein found in my urine, so they sent me straight over to labor and delivery. It turned out I was already having contractions, I just couldn't feel them.

I was induced at 11am, April 27th and Reverie was born on April 28th at 3:58 am via vaginal birth. I say that because I am so proud of myself. I beat all of the odds. With Uterus Didelphys (UD) you have a much higher risk of a breach baby, and luckily for u,s Reverie was head-down. It actually took me a while to wrap my head around the fact that I was going to go through a normal delivery. I almost begged the doctor to do a C-section just because that was what I had prepared myself for.

Kaetheo is 11months old! 

He started crawling at 7 months and at 10 months he started walking! His smiles and kisses are my favorite thing in the morning. He loves his little sister, he plays peekaboo with her and loves to try to get her to laugh. I can't believe he is going to be a year old in just two weeks. Someone tell him to stop growing so fast! 

Reverie is 4 months old.

She loves to laugh at her older brother and loves to be snuggled. She started sleeping through the night at 6 weeks which was nice for mommy and daddy. 
Oh gosh I wish I could update more but both kiddos are up.

We hope to have our journey to Kaetheo video ready by his birthday. It will include everything we went through for infertility treatments and adoption. (Many things we didn't get a chance to post about during our journey) 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Uterus Didelphys

 I have had this blog post written for a couple weeks now and for some reason I just couldn't find the courage to post it. I am usually very open about my abnormality but for some reason posting it on the Internet has made me feel somewhat vulnerable. Maybe it's because I can't stick up for myself as easily?  Either way I am over it now:) So here is the background of where my infertiltiy journey started...

Ever since I was twelve years old I knew having children would be difficult for me. What I didnt know was how difficult emotionally it would be. Try to think back when you were twelve years old.. would you have known how big of a deal a uterus is? I didn't.. I was having so much pain that I just wanted my doctors to take it out. In fact at twelve years old I was hoping for it to be removed. I wanted my pain to be over forever.

I got my first menstrual cycle and boy was I excited. I was diagnosed with scoliosis and had been wearing a body brace for two years. My spinal doctor told me 12-18 months after my first menstrual cycle I would never have to wear it again. 
Here is pictures of me with my body brace compliments of my mother ;) Cute huh?? 

My excitement quickly turned to agony as my menstrual cycle that month was extremely painful. I had nothing to compare it to though, so I just assumed it was normal. I do remember lying on the couch in unbearable pain, wishing it to be over soon. A couple of days later it was, and the pain subsided.

Throughout the month I had more pain in my lower back. My parents had taken me to my regular doctor, and they performed multiple tests. They couldn't find anything wrong.

The following months as my cycle came my pain got worse. I was missing school, sports and activities with my friends. My parents kept bringing me to my doctor and after multiple visits they started to blame it on me not enjoying school. I even had some extended family members tell me to stop faking it because I am worrying my parents. The doctor eventually recommended physical therapy and my mom and I both left in disbelief that that was their answer. We never did the physical therapy.

The next month came and I was doubled over in pain. I remember crying on the floor not knowing what to do. I specifically remember this day. My mom called up the local gynecologist's office to see if maybe it had something to do with my reproductive system. They told her they were booked and I remember hearing my moms voice cracking as she cried trying to explain that I needed to be seen right away. My mom never cries. The doctors office hung up and they called back saying a doctor would fit me in at 1pm.

This was the appointment that finally gave us some answers. The appointment that proved to everyone I wasn't faking. The gynecologist didn't want to examine me because I was too young, but at this point we were desperate for answers so my mom told them to do it anyway. In this exam the doctor found a large mass in my abdomen, about the size of a grapefruit/softball. After this mass was found I had an ultra sound which confirmed the mass, but didn't show what the mass was exactly so they referred me to have an MRI and laparoscopy.

The MRI showed a normal uterus on the left side of my abdomen and, lo and behold, there was another uterus on the right side. This uterus was obstructed by a septum, which caused all my monthly cycles to pool up which was causing my pain. 

Here is a picture for those of you who have never heard of it :
Following this diagnosis my new gyno had told us that there is a doctor that knows about my condition(uterus didelphys) however it would be impossible to get into see him because he was a specialist (back then it was hard to get into specialists). He told my parents it would be more then six months before I could get in. Obviously six months was not going to cut it, so I had a surgery to remove the septum where they found a second cervix. They removed the septum and opened up the cervix, so at this point I had two functioning uteruses. However the next month I was in pain again. The septum closed up again, and my parents had decided to bring me down to the Mayo Clinic where I had another surgery to remove it. My doctor at the Mayo Clinic explained to us that he had never had a patient come back with the same problem, but two months later I was back. The septum had grown back yet again. So I had yet another surgery to remove it.

A month or so later I was once more in pain. My parents called down to the Mayo Clinic and they said they were going to have to do a hysterectomy and take out both of my uteruses. My life altering appointment was scheduled for the next day. Now here is where I was secretly excited. My twelve year old mind wanted them out, in my eyes it meant no more pain, and no more surgeries.

This next part of the story my mom only told me a couple of years ago:

My mom felt differently. She knew what this meant for my future, no chance at ever having children. She was upset that the Mayo was just going to take away any chance of me ever being able to have children. In complete panic and desperation she called the office of the specialist (Dr. Nagel) that our original gynecologist told us we would never get into see. She spoke to the receptionist and cried to her on the phone. She bawled. She told them what the Mayo Clinic was going to do and the receptionist put my mom on hold. A couple of minutes later a new voice came on the phone; it was Dr. Nagel himself. The doctor that we were told was way too busy for us. He told my mom that he doesn't have any normal business hour appointments open, but he would keep the office open for us if we could come in after business hours.

We went to see him that night and I do remember the receptionist coming out and hugging my mom. I didn't know why, but again, I was twelve and oblivious to everything.

It turned out that my pain was coming from a large cyst on one of my ovaries. It had nothing to do with the septum coming back. I had some pain medication and went on my way. I had very painful menstrual cycles from then on, but nothing like it was. 

Now fast forward 10 years and that is where our next blog post will pick up!