r4-1Orange Team: The Powells

Our Story, as told by Kristen:

Chris and I met about five and half years ago while working in a restaurant. We quickly became very close friends. I saw something in him that I had been needing in my life for quite sometime. He was always there to listen and to make me laugh. I felt so comfortable with him even when I was being silly. We stayed really close friends for six months until we became official. We dated for three years before he proposed to me on a family beach vacation. It was perfect. We stayed in engaged bliss for a year before tying the knot on October 10, 2014. That was the best day of our lives so far.
Our infertility battle began shortly after we started dating. Together we made the decision to stop using birth control since I had been on it for ten years and heard mixed things about being on it for lengthy amounts of time. So for three years we were protection free without even so much as having a scare. We decided the August before we got married to speak to my doctor to see if there were any action steps we were going to need to take to get pregnant. He seemed slightly concerned that in three years we had not gotten pregnant but said that we should try an every other day regimen and see if that worked. Well imagine our surprise when two days before our wedding we got the best news ever. WE WERE PREGNANT. We were on cloud nine and felt like everything in our life was perfect. Our excitement was short lived as I began to have bleeding early in the pregnancy. We saw the doctor often and they assured us it was normal. The bleeding continued on and off until January the 4th 2015 which is a day that we will never be able to forget. I began having cramps in the morning…nothing crazy just light cramps that came and went during the day. I had some spotting but again I had that during my whole pregnancy so I tried not to stress and went on with my day. Well in the early afternoon the cramping got worse. I called the on-call doctor and she suggested I lay down and go to sleep and come in first thing the next morning (that was our 16 week appointment). The evening went on and the cramping did not let up so my husband and I went to the emergency room to get checked out. We waited for two hours to see a doctor…during those two hours the cramping kept getting worse. They got a fetal monitor after I had been waiting for another hour in the room and checked for a heartbeat. Everything sounded find. The nurse assured me that the baby and I were find but they wanted to do a pelvic exam just to double check. When I went back to have the pelvic exam done I left my husband in the other room since they assured us all was fine. And that’s when our worst fears were confirmed. The E.R doctor told me that we were in fact having a miscarriage at 16 weeks. We delivered our baby boy at just 16 weeks. We later found out that I had a blood clot that was the size of my placenta which caused my placenta to detach and me to go into preterm labor. I have thyroid disease that also was believed to have been part of the problem as my dose was way off. I switched doctors and he did some testing and discovered that I have the MTHFR gene mutation as well.

Our doctor gave us the okay to start trying again in February and so we did. Tons of friends and family reached out to us telling us stories of people they knew or there own stories of miscarriage. What we heard the most was that most people get pregnant after a miscarriage and go on to have a healthy baby within a few months. Well for us that just wasn’t the case.
In May our doctor made the decision to start us on Clomid. We took Clomid for three months. I began charting my cycles and taking ovulation tests. After three months and still no positive our doctor referred us to a fertility specialist. We both assumed that once we started with the fertility doctor our dreams would come true and we would have a rainbow baby in know time at all.

We did our first IUI treatment in September with Letrozole, charting, and ovulation tests. We were excited and hopeful that this would be what we needed. The two week wait was grueling, as are most two week waits but again we were hopeful. Well two weeks passed and still no positive. We did another IUI round in October with no success. We geared up for our third IUI round in November. We were hopeful and sure that the third time was going to be the charm we had been waiting for. On the day we were to go in for our IUI our fertility specialist called to tell us that it wasn’t going to work this month and that we needed to go the IVF route. That phone call rocked our world. Hearing you are going to need IVF is overwhelming for more than just one reason. The cost, stress on your body, meds, the is this going to work thoughts, and just the fact we thought this would never be something we had to do.

Chris and I will be amazing parents to a rainbow baby one day and we can’t wait. Our marriage is stronger because of what we have been through and I know that without a doubt I have my very best friend to go through this journey with.

Asking for help with something so extremely personal was not a decision that we made overnight but we feel this is what we are supposed to be doing. We feel good that we get to be a voice for something that so many couples are experiencing everyday. So that’s our story and the rest is yet to be written. With your help we can have our dream family. We are planning to use the funds from the race to complete an IVF cycle. IVF is our chance to have our own little rainbow baby.