Praying for Zoey

Thank you all for taking the time to read Jacob's story.  He touched our lives, and I hope he touched yours, too. 

I am going to continue to peel the layers off of this Creighton onion and be vulnerable once more in sharing our story with infertility.

It was hard to make the decision to 'try again' after losing Jacob.  It's wasn't easy trusting God.  We feared that although an umbilical cord accident was rare, it could happen again.

Fear.  Ugly fear.

Eventually, we put fear aside and moved forward.  When we took that step, we didn't think we would encounter any problems because Jacob happened easily, but a few cycles went by, and when we hadn't conceived yet, we began to ask ourselves...

Why were we having such a problem getting pregnant again?

Month after month the physical reminder every cycle that we weren't pregnant began to hurt more and more.  My husband couldn't grasp the weight of that pain, and understandably -- he's not a woman.  Even talking to other women who were going through a similar trial, their pain was so different than mine, and understandably  -- they weren't me.

After six months, I still had hope that things would eventually happen.  They had to, right?  Surely month 7 would be the month... how about month 8, month 9....?  God? 

By month 12, I was in a really ugly place.  Why wasn't God answering our prayer?  Hadn't we suffered enough? I mean He did allow our first born son to die.  Why wasn't God giving us a break?

I told you it was an ugly place and ungrateful and selfish... ugh.

I had the most difficult time accepting we might need medical help.  I was a Creighton practitioner; I analyzed charts on a weekly basis; I should know how to navigate my fertility, shouldn't I?

We should be pregnant by now.

I battled with the thought of seeing a doctor for another month before making an appointment to get things 'checked out'.

I felt nothing but bitterness scheduling it, too.

Before my appointment I went to the cemetery to visit Jacob and pray to calm my anxious heart and ask for his intercession for our family.  I pulled up, parked, got out, walked to his headstone and sat down.  I took a few deep breaths taking in the warmth of the sun and letting God speak to me for a moment before I began reciting the rosary.

It was in these few moments that God blessed me with the most incredible experience. 

There was another woman at the cemetery that day.  I didn't know she was there until she approached me. 

"Excuse me, is this your baby?" She was pointing to a newly buried baby's temporary marker.

"No, Jacob, this one's mine," I said pointing to his marker.

She proceeded to sit down next to her son who was buried next to Jacob.

Remembering those next 45 minutes still gives me chills.  In those minutes, two strangers, two moms who had lost babies too soon, sat there next to them and shared their sorrow, frustration, joy, hope, love, and prayer...  she lost her son at nine months just nine weeks prior to our meeting.  He too suffered an umbilical cord accident.

My heart felt for her.  Her emotions were still so raw, and I remembered that place all too well even though it had been two years since losing Jacob.   I began to recall all the moments of grace I had in those two years and they just started pouring out of my mouth with an eloquence that was certainly not mine...

Talk about an amazing feeling of being used.... Come Holy Spirit

I shared the times God pushed us to heal deeper and the times when His compassion and love comforted our weary hearts.  I wanted her to know that He was grieving over the loss of her baby, too.  I invited her to cry with God and not at Him.

I felt the Holy Spirit speaking to the sorrow in her heart through me while simultaneously gently slapping me in the face.

Before this meeting, I had a bitter and ugly heart, but during this beautiful exchange of words, God spoke to me, too.  He reminded me of His love and that this cross was not a punishment, but an opportunity to grow closer to Him.  He reassured me that everything would be okay according to His will and not mine; I needed to trust Him.

His will.  Tough to swallow sometimes, huh?  But I had to do just that... surrender it all to Him.

I didn't want our conversation to end, but time came for me to leave so we exchanged contact information, and I left for the appointment.

The drive there was full of tears.  I was in awe at the beautiful encounter I had with the Living God through this stranger.  She was there for me that day, and I was there for her.  It was not a coincidence, and I left the cemetery refreshed and I knew He would carry me through whatever awaited me after the appointment.

I was overwhelmed after meeting with the doctor.  He is a NaproTECHONOLGY trained physician and could interpret my charts and from them know what we needed to do to help figure out the underlying issues of my inability to conceive.

He wrote out a list of eight different things he wanted to rule out before diagnosing.  It started with blood work on specific days of my cycle, and he wanted to test my thyroid, and when those results came back, he would then rule out endometriosis... so on and so forth.  I don't even remember what else was on that list..

Without the grace from the moment in the cemetery prior to receiving this infertility checklist, I would have lost it right there in the doctor's office, but I kept it together long enough to lose it in front of my husband later.  I was so angry that this was going to be hard -- that having another baby would require all this extra work.  I wanted so desperately for it to be easy.  Ugh.

I quickly calmed down; I just needed to get some emotion out.

We spent the next couple cycles doing blood work which concluded that I had an issue with my thyroid.  I didn't have hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism, but instead I had a problem with my reverse T3.. meaning that there was a malfunction somewhere in the thyroid process.  This is, to my knowledge, not something that many mainstream medical professionals have ever heard of before in their studies.  That's partly because it's new research being done at the Pope Paul VI Institute.  Mainstream physicians would not know to check these levels (from what I understand at least), and would stop at that.  I am happy that wasn't the case for me.

Anyway, I began supplementing reverse T3.  I was skeptical.  I wanted it to work, but didn't think it would be such a simple fix. Hey, there was comfort in knowing that we were finally trying something.  

Surprisingly, after taking the supplement for one cycle, God gave us another beautiful gift; we were pregnant. 

Praise God. :)

Infertility can spawn many ugly emotions.  It was a tough journey for my husband and me, but we remained faithful.  If I have any advice for couples experiencing infertility, it is to continue to pray.  God will give you what you need when you need it and will always answer your prayer with a 'yes', a 'no', or simply a 'not right now'.  He'll surprise you and give you grace and strength when you least expect it, and whatever happens, it will be okay.

In a cemetery, really? I love how God thinksStill blows my mind..

My husband and I had a devotion to Our Blessed Mother during our time of infertility.  From the moment we began our journey, we asked Our Lady of the Milk Grotto to pray for us to have a baby.  We were devoted to this prayer and our faith in her intercession and God's love, our beautiful baby girl, Zoey came into existence.  Isn't she amazing?

Zoey Marie -- Finding Truth

Would you share your testimonies with me? I would love to hear them.


  1. This is so beautiful, Jo. Thanks so much for sharing this part of your heart :)

  2. I've been touched by the stories of both Jacob and Zoey. Thank you for sharing your journey.

    Jennifer @ Little Silly Goose

    1. Hi Jen! Thanks for stopping by and thank you for your kind words. :)

  3. Your stories of Jacob and Zoey are incredibly moving, and such a wonderful testament to your faith in God's will, as you said, something that can be difficult to swallow at times. My husband and I practice the Sympto-thermal method of NFP and I am less familiar with the Creighton model. My sister, however, is a Creighton model success story. She struggled with infertility for 11 years before learning about the Creighton model and conceiving her baby girl who is the joy of our family now! God is good. Thank you again for your witness, I look forward to reading more on your blog!

  4. I LOVE this! I think you've told me little parts of this, but reading the whole thing just gives me chills! Thanks for sharing and putting your heart out there =)