Monday, July 9, 2012

No Advice Wanted

It’s taken me a while to learn that I need to stop asking others for advice when it is a decision that only Matt and I need to make. The decision I am specifically referring to is how to grow our family. It’s no secret that we want kids. I have grown up saying I want four kids, and I have not wavered on that magic number. If anything more would be better. We even bought an 8 foot long table which seats 8 in the hopes of filling it at supper time with kids.
For a while I was asking a lot of people what they thought we should do, get pregnant and try again, adopt, or use a surrogate.  We went to UAB for consults to see what they thought, I spoke several times with my general OBGYN, and I have consulted with my kidney specialist on the subject. I’ve asked family and friends, I’ve asked strangers, I’ve looked for other people with my exact problems for inspiration. I’ve not found the advice I want and I have not found another single woman with my exact combination of medical problems. The fact is I don’t know what we are going to do about growing our family and everyone was created different, so I doubt there is another single person with my same medical problems. 

Here is what I have learned about asking for advice: 

1.       1. Ask advice from someone who is an expert on the decision. In my case that would be doctors. What I really love about my nephrologists is that he is realistic and optimistic about the situation. He does not paint a beautiful picture over a hideous painting, hiding the truth.  His best advice is to try again if Matt and I want to. Hope for the best, but be prepared for the worst, don’t play the numbers game because only God really knows what is going to happen and lastly, don’t try unless our heart can handle being broken one more time. He thinks we will have success next time and we are consulting with other doctors to get a better treatment plan before we try.

2.       2. Ask advice from someone with the same beliefs and values. In my case that would be godly men and women: the pastor at my church, prayer warriors, and in my case I also sent an e-mail to Nancy Leigh Demoss since I love the encouragement she gives in her books and on her daily radio show.

3.       3. Ask for advice from others that have been through similar situation. Like what was your treatment plan, what would you do differently, who was your doctor. This is a great way to learn about other medicines that may be helpful even if they don’t have every medical problems I have. Since each one has to be treated, knowing how to treat the specific syndrome or disease is very helpful. A great place to find people with similar problems is message boards and groups.

4.       4. And LASTLY, Do not make a decision without you and your spouse both discussing it and agreeing on your decision. We also pray about it, and look for knowledge about what we should do in the Bible.

We still are not 100% sure how we will grow our family. We may do all 3 options above. Here is what I do know: we are going through the adoption/ foster care process right now, we are thinking about surrogacy and, we are getting a team of doctors together that are experienced with pregnancy and my specific kidney problems.

If you would like to know how to help us or others please come back. I have a lot to say about advice and I'm 100% sure there will be a second post.

1 comment:

  1. Very good and sound advice, Talonna! I know you've been through so much, but I love your strength.