Monday, February 13, 2012


I said it last week and I could say it every day until forever...the support we have gotten since sending out this blog has been amazing. One thing that has surprised me is the number of people telling me that I'm brave. I've never thought of myself as brave. Not just in this situation, but ever in my life. 

I know a lot of brave people. The wish kids I used to work for that had to face needles, treatment, side effects, surgeries and uncertain futures are brave. My brothers friend that got a heart transplant after months of being in the hospital is brave. The people in the military and their families are brave. My bestie that moved half way across the country not knowing anyone and without a job because she wanted a new challenge is brave.  Kids having to turn into adults too fast because they are put into scary situations are brave. I'm

I guess that means its true what they say about not understanding someone until you walk in their shoes.  Everyone gets up in the morning and does what they have to do to get through the day, to take care of themselves, and to strive for a better future and for the outcomes that they want.  I look at it as living.  This is my life, and this is where it has lead me.  I'm emotional and pretty transparent.  For me, keeping my feelings bottled up isn't an option.  It's just not how I function, and trying to keep that much thought inside would make me crazy. 

If that makes me brave, then that's awesome.  I am honestly flattered.  But, I think it just makes me, me. 

What makes you brave?  What makes you, you?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

shhhhh...Bob has something to say...

A guy’s perspective on IVF

I’ll never forget leaving the OB’s office that cold day, looking into Melissa’s sad eyes and thinking to myself that I will never be a dad. At that moment in time all I heard and could focus on was “1% chance.” Most men are built with the internal drive to be the provider and I was just told I could not provide my wife with a child. I was crushed! I know the OB told us that we both had issues that contributed to a bigger problem but I felt a tremendous sense of guilt. How could I possibly have my wife look at her husband and her second best friend (I know my role) and not be able to give her the one thing that most women dream about. I had no idea what to do. 

My instincts for “fixing” sometimes far outweigh those of compassion. Looking back at it now I should have spent more time comforting Melissa instead of trying to rationalize the situation and finding a way to make it better. That’s one of the funny things about life: rear view mirrors come as standard equipment but no one has a reverse gear. 

My first glimpse of there being light at the end of the tunnel ironically came the day that my world came crashing down on me. Right after our appointment with the OB I went back to work since it was right down the street. I hoped to become distracted by work so I wouldn’t focus on the news I just received. It took me a while to actually go in because I called Melissa on the way back, she was going back to work too; to tell her I loved her and things would be okay. I lost it; I sat in the parking lot and cried for a good amount of time, hoping no one would see me. I finally composed myself and went to work. 

The world works in funny ways… Shortly after getting back to work and trying to focus on something other than “1%” and calling and setting up an appointment with the fertility specialist the OB suggested, I received a phone call from a friend of ours. Melissa and I had made dinner plans with her and her husband later in the week and we had been speculating that the reason they invited us over for dinner and not out to dinner was because they were going to tell us they were expecting and she wasn’t drinking. After debating to answer the phone I did. After a few minutes of chit chat in typical Bob Kimball fashion I blurted out what I was thinking. I said “Hey, not to sound like a jerk, but if you guys are inviting us over for dinner to tell us you are pregnant I don’t know if we can handle it; we just found out we had less than a 1% chance of having kids naturally”. Her immediate response was “OH MY GOD, we are going through the same thing and just started the IVF process”. I think we both had a certain sense of relief because now we had someone to share our mutual feelings with. They chose to keep things more personal than we are, but not only did they see the same specialist they are now proud parents to a beautiful baby. Seeing the possibilities keeps me focused.

After our initial visit to the IVF Specialist my focus once again changed to the other demon in this story: money. Melissa and I are fortunate and live what I would consider a better than average lifestyle, neither of us go without and splurge on things we like. But the reality of the situation was and is we didn’t have $18k just chillin in the bank. We had decided together that we would save and cut back some but we didn’t want to stop living in the mean time. Our first big mistake, more so mine since Melissa is a planner and always likes/needs to see the finish line; that we tried to budget and figure out when. “When” came and went a few times because life happens, and we didn’t save as much as quick. This has caused many arguments and has been the root of many of our problems throughout this journey. Like most things in life when you don’t completely focus on it and let it come to you things have a way of working themselves out. We want to also have a cushion, because at the end of the day if the $18k pays of and we get pregnant then we start over like any “normal” expecting couple, doctor bills, delivery costs, nursery, 1.2 million baby outfits (I am married to a princess, remember). 

The good… How can you say that good has come out of this, especially since we still do not have a baby and we aren’t 100% guaranteed to have one? Easy, we have cried, screamed, laughed, and threatened together through all of this. The key word is together. This process to this point has been one of the hardest things I have personally ever gone through and I can’t for one second imagine going through it with anyone but Melissa. She is by far my better half; and we have come closer because of this. She is the love of my life, my best friend, and the mother of my future children (no matter how that happens).

I Love you, Melissa.

(Ladies and Gents - this is why I married him.  Love you too, Bob!)

Thursday, February 2, 2012


Just wow.  I can't even begin to express the amount of love, support, and understanding I have felt today.  Phone calls, text messages, emails and comments have been coming in at a constant rate, and I am truly at a loss for words. 
I came home from work and Bob and I read every single one together, and we were both in tears.

Like I said before, I am writing this for me.  It wasn't because I wasn't feeling supported or had a lot of emotion bottled up.  It was because everything makes more sense when I write it.  And, it seemed like an easy way to tell people that I wanted to know.  We have been so lucky so far in the support we have recieved, and today alone was amazing. 

As I mentioned before, please share with your friends and family, too.  My goal in doing this to help myself is that someone else will come across it that needed to see it and I will help them, too.  Two strangers helped me, and I really hope that in some way, I can be someone else's stranger.  And maybe I should start saying "people I didn't know" - because they definitely aren't strangers anymore - they have a secret code with me that very few ever will. 

Also - check out the tabs on top - Who, What, When and How - and you can find out more about us and our story.

So thank you.  Thank you for your love.  For listening for the past year.  Or for hearing our story today and reaching out with your support.  Hugs back to all of you!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

going public

Today, it happens.  I send an email out to our family and friends and give them the link to our blog.  They will (hopefully) visit and find out that Bob and I are dealing with infertility, and getting closer and closer to trying IVF. Instead of including a long message in the email, I am writing it here.

Some of you are not going to be surprised by anything you read here.  You've known since the first day we found out. 

Some of you know, but may be surprised by what I say here, becauase I filter my thoughts around you.

And, some of you may just be surprised becuase you had no idea. 

To those that already knew, thank you for what you've done to help and support Bob and me over the past year.  To those that are surprised by my thoughts, welcome to my life.  I made a promise to myself in starting this that this blog is for me first.  Writing has always been a way for me to feel better.  I'm doing this so I can understand myself better.  If reading it helps you understand me better too, then that's awesome.  If anything I have said or will say in the future offends you, then I hope we can move past it.  But I will not apoligize, because this is for me.

To those that are just now finding out, I'm sorry we didn't tell you sooner.  It's not always an easy topic to bring up, and I have found out first hand that when someone asks how you are or when kids are coming, they don't expect an answer as heavy as infertility and IVF.  Sometimes, it's easier to just have normal conversations without it coming up.  It's easier to avoid the subject.  Someone told me that's because I'm not angry enough yet. I think people are afraid to talk about it.  It's not usually breakroom conversation, not a uplifting topic for a holiday family dinner, and a lot of times it makes other people in the room uncomfortable, which then makes me uncomfortable.  Just know this - you didn't not know because we didn't want you to.  Well, now you know.

This doesn't define who we are, but it is a huge part of our journey.  We want you to be a part of it with us.  It's not a secret.  You can talk about it with us.  Or, you can read this and never even tell me that you know.   

Like I said, this is for me.  It's letter after letter to myself.  It's my diary.  It's our story.  But I'll let you read it, if you want to.