An Inspirational Story

Hello!  I am most likely on a plane on my way to Michigan for a wedding this weekend, so I’ve left you in good hands for the next few days.  First up please welcome Kelly from No Sugar Sweet Life today!  She has an incredibly inspirational story to share with you that brought me a few tears while reading.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

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First of all, I’d like to say HELLO to all you Food N Fitness Diaries’ readers!  I am fairly new to this whole “blogosphere”, but somehow stumbled upon Ashley’s site a few months ago and have been hooked ever since!  A little bit about me before I dive in… My name is Kelly, and I blog over at No Sugar Sweet Life.  Struggling with my weight for my entire adult life, I finally decided life is too short to live perpetually unhappy.  I recently lost 50 pounds after celebrating my daughter’s first birthday, and am currently working on the last 30.  I am a busy full-time mom of a 21 month old toddler, who also has a full-time job as an accountant, who is a wife and helper to an amazing man, and who thought it would be fun to start a blog!

Here’s a quick before and after so you can see where I’ve come from:

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When the opportunity came up to do a guest post for Ashley, I felt it was the perfect time to share my story – one that hasn’t been told – of my struggles to become a mom.  As Ashley said in her recent “Making Some Changes” post, it is one of her biggest dreams in life… to become a mother.

It was a dream of mine too.

My hubby and I got married young; I was only 23.  We learned how “adult life” worked – together.  We didn’t think about kids at the beginning… we knew we always wanted to have some, but weren’t in a hurry.  We had a lot of life to live!  We went about our daily lives, growing in our careers, building a house, getting a dog… you know, normal stuff.  Until we were 27.  Then BAM – all of a sudden – we were ready.  Ready to start a family.  (If only it were that easy!)

Here’s a pic of me and Dear Hubby at that time:

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I think most of all, I was naive. Naive to think that if we waited until we were emotionally, financially, and perfectly “ready” that it would just happen, soon thereafter.  (This isn’t a recommendation to rush into motherhood, just a gentle reminder that our timing isn’t always God’s timing and as much as we “plan” things in our head, they don’t always turn out that way!)

We tried for 3 years to get pregnant. My hubby might say that we could have tried harder (you know he just wanted more good reasons to…you know…). But I tracked my ovulation; I knew when our chances were.  I even sought medical help.  I was on fertility meds (Clomid) for a number of months, to no avail.  After regular ultrasounds, I even had a fairly invasive “test” to see if there were blockages or issues with my uterus.  The good news from that particular test was that I was “perfectly normal” and “shouldn’t” have any issues getting pregnant.  Ha! The bad news was that I was allergic to the Iodine dye used in the test and ended up in the hospital for the next 36 hours puking my guts out.  It was not fun!!  No good explanation as to why I couldn’t get pregnant and non-stop puking and IVs as a “reward.”  UGH!!

We wrapped our head around next steps. It was pretty clear that we were going to need more help.  We talked with our doctor and decided we would wait 6 months to a year to try anything else.  My hubby was morally against in-vitro fertilization (I wasn’t pumped about the idea, but didn’t want to rule it out right away in case it was our ONLY way to have a baby)… so if we were going to have to take that route, it would take some serious convincing.  I went ahead and set aside FSA money (you know, the pre-tax dollars you can set aside at work for medical expenses), for the following year, knowing these “next steps” were going to be expensive.

All the while, I realized my job was too stressful. I was working 50 – 60 hours a week, no joke.  During the summer, I even worked most Saturdays – the very days I wanted to be spending with Dear Hubby and relaxing.  And beyond the stress of having no time b/c I was always working, the work itself was stressful, as I was in a managerial role dealing with a lot of “people drama.” I didn’t realize until later that the stress, the hours, and the drama were having a REAL effect on my body.  It didn’t want to create life in such a stressful environment.

After 3 years, I found a new job and started Sept 1.  It was a bit of a “demotion” title-wise, but I was ready for less stress.  Danny and I would plan to pursue those “next steps” mentioned above the following Spring.

But… surprise, surprise!

Within 2 months of working at my new lower-stress job, I was pregnant!  We couldn’t believe it.  We really thought we couldn’t get pregnant on our own.  But just changing my work environment had THAT much effect on my body.  It ended up being such a blessing getting pregnant with the new company, as my medical benefits were sooooooooo much better.  Also, they were super flexible with me to take an extended maternity leave.  And God even orchestrated it to bring back the lady who had had my position before me (she had just retired before I got hired), so there was ZERO training to do (zero work stress) right before Babycakes was born.  Thinking back on it, I am still amazed at how it all worked out!

I had a maternity photoshoot done at about 38 weeks pregnant because I wanted to document this miracle, that I might never experience a second time.  As I share some of my favorites, I will leave you with a few last thoughts:

1) Listen to your body!

A lot of times it’s trying to tell us something, but we don’t listen.  Or we’re not quiet enough.  If you need to slow down, unplug.  If you need a less stressful job, get one.  If you need to eat more calories, do it.  Listen.

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2) Be courageous.

When your body tells you something, be courageous enough to do something about it.  It might be scary, but it will be worth it.

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3) Don’t lose your playfulness or spunk.

Dealing with body issues can be all-consuming and super emotional.  But don’t lose yourself in the process.  Remember what makes you YOU (outside of any body issues you might be dealing with).

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4) Surround yourself with people that love you.

I can’t say enougha about having a strong support system. When things get hard, you’re going to need to lean on others.  God intended for us to “do life together” and not be isolationists.  Others can be strong when you’re not, and then later you can be that strength for someone else.

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5) Know that you are beautiful and strong.

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Whew, this was an emotional (and long) post!  Thank you for sticking with me through it.  As I mentioned at the beginning, I have a beautiful little girl, who I lovingly refer to as “Babycakes” in the blogosphere.  She has changed me in so many ways and made me really understand what life and true love and deep joy are all about.  She is the reason I became healthy, which you can read more about here.

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Motherhood changed me. I still have about 30 pounds left to go, but I am well on my way towards living the happy healthy life… no sugar added.

Questions:

  • Is your body trying to tell you something?  Are you listening?
  • If you’re a mom, was it easy for you to get pregnant?  Or did you struggle like me?
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Comments

  1. says

    Such a awesome post and it is so true the effect stress can have on our bodies. I am learning it the harder way too, thank you very much for sharing your story. It in inspiring :)

    • says

      I was really shocked by how much stress affected my body (AND that no doctor – even fertility related dr asked me about stress levels and what I might need to cut out of my life)… I decided on that change myself. And I’m so glad I did!

  2. says

    Love you, Kelly!! I will definitely have to talk to you about this when the time comes.
    I actually stopped getting my period due to such a massive amount of stress in my life- some from my job- but more because of my exercise addition. I was forced to slow down (yes, this is me slowing down- I used to be 10x worse!)
    I love your message to listen to your body- it’s SO important, and the majority of us rebel against that. So glad everything worked out for you and you have such a beautiful little family! :)

    • says

      Thanks for the love, Lauren :) Whew, I can’t even IMAGINE you times 10x busier! I’m glad you’ve slowed down a bit, and that you are getting the opportunity to slow down even more in the coming year. Have a great weekend!!!

  3. Emy says

    Awesome post!
    I agree the universe doesn’t always go along with your plans. I got pregnant with my first pretty quick and easy but had a long road with my second so I know what you went through!

    Gorgeous pics, you are glowing ;)

  4. says

    Thank you for sharing. I never stopped being amazing how much stress takes out of me and this is a wonderful story. Enjoy your beautiful family!

  5. says

    This was a wonderful guest post. Thank you do much Kelly for sharing this story! I think so many women know they need to take care of their bodies and listen to what it needs, but it is so nice to be reminded of why this is important! Congratulations on your little girl, she is beautiful!

  6. Krystal says

    Kelly I loved this post. I am not a mom yet, but can’t wait, and we too are in a way trying to be more settled/prepared for a new addition in our lives, but I know it is all in His time. How amazing that He knows better than we do. Love your blog, it’s my new favorite, and Babycakes is just absolutely adorable!

    • says

      Awww, you’re so sweet Krystal! Thank you for your kind words. I’m so glad you’re enjoying the blog (and Babycakes)!! And I love the verse- “Every good and perfect gift is from Above.” His gift. His timing!

  7. Heather says

    Thank you so much for sharing! I find both you and Ashley so inspirational. I am currently going through something similar and it has been so comforting reading other people’s stories, especially when they end in a beautiful miracle.

  8. Dalia says

    Thanks for sharing! I love reading your blog and I find encouragement in your words. You have such a beautiful family.

    • says

      Thanks Corrie Anne! They were taken at a park right in downtown Denver. Actually the same place I just did the “reward photoshoot” ones! I love it because it has so many different “settings” / backdrops all in one place :)

  9. says

    That is a great post Kelly! You’re very right, we do need to listen. I have heard a lot of stories about people not being able to conceive due to stress. Glad everything worked out the way it did! And Babycakes is precious!

  10. says

    LOVELY post…I almost teared up a bit, and I honestly am so far from the point of my life of wanting children that I cannot relate to THAT part. However, the messages you give us at the end are universal and SO important. Thank you. :)

  11. says

    That was a beautiful post. I’ve recently started looking for new work because I could feel the stress of my current job disagreeing with my body. Still a work in progress, but when I start getting really sick pretty frequently and have anxiety, change needs to come!

  12. LG says

    Thanks for your story! Yeah, the baby stuff often doesn’t happen as “naturally” as we would like to think. This coming from someone who is on IUI #6…

      • LG says

        Thanks so much for your kind words! Yes, it totally sucks, but after a lot of emotional processing (not that I’m finished that yet!) we’re also on the road to adoption and we’re quite excited about it. I have a lot of questions for God, but I really believe He knows what He’s doing…

  13. Michelle (Better with berries) says

    This truly is an inspirational story! I’m so glad you were able to switch to a lower stress job and achieve your dream of becoming a mother! It’s amazing how stress can affect our bodies. Thank you for sharing your story!

  14. says

    Thanks so much for sharing your story, Kelly! It’s truly an inspiration, and a reminder that God has a perfect plan designed for each of us. All we need to do is *listen,* and the answers will be there.

    Your daughter is beautiful, just like her mama. <3

  15. says

    This is a beautiful story! Thanks for sharing this and I’m glad you finally listened to your body and got a less stressful job. It really is all His timing though isn’t it? I have to remember that and be more patient!

    Those pregnancy pictures are gorgeous too! :-)

  16. Ada says

    This is my story too… we tried 10 years to have a baby. We lost 2 pregnancies ( 1 at 22 weeks and the other one at 14 weeks). It was hard, but apparently God has other plans for us. This year I just quit my job and in 2 weeks I found out that i am preggers with a beautiful baby girl. Now i am 32 weeks and happy as an Easter bunny. No medication, no diets no nothing, just faith and no stress. All along the pregnancy i have listened to my body, I was eating whatever i wanted ( before i got gd – but still don’t go crazy ). Anyway great story … had goose bumps all time. Need to mention that I was diagnose with PCOS and i did a metabolism change with the help of a great dr. in Michigan ( dr. Akin) just check/ google her. She changed my life ( if you need more details just write me). God bless you and your babycakes. hugs

  17. Paola DeHart says

    Thank you so much! My husband and I have been struggling for a long time to be able to conceive. I too need to loose 30-40 pounds. It’s been a challenge since I have had to change my eating habits and just my normal routines. Sugar was banned from my diet and I feel so grateful to have found your blog. I know that life will work out for us and I’m just so happy to learn from this experience because I know that I will be able to help others and lift them up! Thanks so much for your kindness and for sharing this beautiful post!

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