We loved capturing Miss Charlie Kate’s 9 month portraits at our studio and of course outside on a perfect fall day.  She was such a doll and loved being outside with her cute little boots!  Enjoy the highlights from her most recent photography session!….

 

Charlie Kate

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

Seeing adorable Mr. Easton Dale only 3 months after his newborn session was such a treat!  For this mini session we captured all the little fingers and toes.  His big eyes and those little bubbles on his baby lips are simply heart-melting! Santa is going to be good to this sweet boy this year!  Enjoy the highlights from this baby photo session!…

 

Easton Dale

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

 

Welcome to the world Mr. Emerson Charles!… He was is a bundle of joy, born on September 7th and weighing 8 pounds and 1 ounce.  This little man was such a dream to photograph. He came the our warm and cozy newborn photography studio and slept like a dream. You can tell he is quite content. Enjoy the highlights from this newborn session!…

 

Emerson

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

 

 

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

 

It is such a joy to be able to photograph each phase of the 1st year of a baby’s life.  They become such cute little people so quickly! Below one of Miss Ansley Kate’s newborn photo and she is absolutely adorable at ONE!  Look at that sweet baby face.  Enjoy the highlights from her 1 year photo session!…

 

Indian-baby-photography

 

Andrady-1st-birthday-photography-636x1024

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

 

 

 

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

 

Meet Miss Rhealynn Grace!…

This newborn angel joined the world at 7lbs and 11oz.  She is just as beautiful as her name.  I’m pretty sure there were several tears of joy in the studio (including ours) when her daddy held her in her arms while dressed in his army uniform.  Enjoy the highlights of this precious baby’s photography session…

 

Rhealynn Grace

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

Welcome Miss Emily Bennett!….Newborn Baby Photography 5This precious “pretty in pink” baby is the second of one of our favorite clients.  She is a beaty with that head full of dark hair and has a sweet baby brother that will love and protect her for years to come!  Enjoy the highlights of this newborn photo session!…Edwards Photography Studios

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

 

Meet Miss Reagan Elizabeth!…

 

Edwards-Photography-Studios-9281-1024x819(pp_w600_h479)

 

This sweet newborn beauty was a dream to photograph…she smiled so many times and even though we had to use “Auburn” booties, she was a good sport! Enjoy the highlights from the newborn baby’s adorable session!…

 

Reagan-NB

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

 

Welcome Miss Emily Bennett!…

 

Newborn-Baby-Photography-5

 

This precious “pretty in pink” baby is the second of one of our favorite clients.  She is a beauty with that head full of dark hair and has a sweet baby brother that will love and protect her for years to come!  Enjoy the highlights of this newborn photo session!…

 

Bennett-NB-1-409x1024

 

 

Edwards Photography Studios, Baby Photography, Nashville, TN

info@epsbaby.com

615-500-4845

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

April 11, 2011 – A day in my life I will never forget. We had already failed 4 iuis, and had finally moved on to ivf. I (foolishly) thought we would find success the first time around and so had told almost everyone. When I got the call that day I was crushed. I was in disbelief. What’s worse? I was now being flooded with text messages and phone calls from people anxiously anticipating our good news!! It was nearly unbearable. I actually ended up posting a status on FB about drinking a dirty martini to try to head off additional messages.

 

After that, I began shutting down and shutting people out. I went back to doing what I do best…. keeping my feelings/troubles hidden from everyone. It was easier that way. I didn’t have to deal with the feelings of letting others down. By the 4th round of ivf I could probably count on 1 hand the people who actually knew what we were doing. (And only TWO people, Angela and Jen, who actually knew the good, bad, and ugly of what I was going through personally.)

 

After the announcement of our pregnancy I decided to become an “open book” on our infertility journey. Since I had literally tracked everything…medicine doses, follicle counts, the number of injections, etc. No question was off limits (and I’ve had some dozies) because I didn’t want anyone else going through it with no one to really talk to about it.

 

When we began talking of transferring our final embryo I thought long and hard about shutting back down for the process, but the foundation was so strong on my mind that I knew bringing everyone along to walk with us could only be a positive experience. The prayers, comments, messages, etc. were overwhelming, and I knew we had made the right decision. I was looking forward to sharing everything….the preparation of the cycle, the transfer, and of course the news of a pregnancy. I couldn’t WAIT to rejoice with all of you.

 

Unfortunately, that is not to be. The call today confirms the transfer was not successful and I am not pregnant. I’m not going to lie…it stings. I guess even when you have kids the pain of that phone call never goes away. I’m hurt. I’m disappointed. I feel as if I let everyone down, but I know there is nothing else I could have done.

 

After 6 long years, our story now has a beginning – full of pain, disappointment and heartache. A middle filled with the most incredible joy, sleepless nights, and amazing blessings. And now an end. Although still a bit painful to get the call, the sound of Bexleigh talking to herself in the monitor while she fights her nap right now is bringing tears of joy.

Some say they won’t let their personal struggles define them. I feel the exact opposite. This struggle has changed every fiber of my being. It has most certainly defined me. The thing is…. I wouldn’t have it any other way. It has given me patience, perspective, and forced me to look beyond myself to help others.

 

IMG_6011So, here’s my drink….(I didn’t have enough olive juice for a dirty martini, so champagne will have to do) … not to discourage the phone calls and messages this time, but to say “thank you” to all of you who walked this with us.

While I’m sorry I’m not able to deliver the fairy tale ending to this story, I AM celebrating my most incredibly blessed life and will continue to thank God for the miracles he delivered through CCRM! This IS my Happily Ever After!!

I pray that my work through the Foundation will be able to bring that same Happily Ever After to others!!

Love to you all!!!

Kara

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

Pretty surreal to me that as I lay here on bed rest after transferring our final embryo today at CCRM, I am announcing something that has been on my heart for the past 4 years….

 

It was nearing the end of 2010, and we had just failed our 4th iui cycle. The Drs were now strongly recommending moving on to ivf, and we agreed. I was certain that if I we moved on to ivf we would have a baby in our arms by the end of 2011.

I remember our 1st ivf training class in March 2011. As I sat in the class, another couple was explaining how this was their one and only try. It was all they could afford because their insurance paid zero. I couldn’t believe that if this cycle failed them, they had no other options. Our insurance didn’t cover any of these “elective” procedures either, so I felt their pain. Foolishly, I believed this first try would work, and we wouldn’t have to worry about it. I remember thinking that day as soon as we made it through this; I was going to make it my mission to help those with no coverage. Little did I know our road to “making it through” was going to be MUCH longer than anticipated.

After 4 ivf procedures, we finally found success with the birth of our twins. Even with the caous of sleep deprived new parenthood, the dream of the foundation lingered in the back of my mind. I wanted so badly to give back, but when 1 in 7 couples fights infertility, I just felt completely overwhelmed. The task was completely daunting. How could I possibly help everyone? Helping only 1 seemed almost futile.

I’ll never forget how it all changed… While in class at our beloved gym Re:Move our trainer Alex was having “story time” and he told the story of the Starfish. I remember tears forming in my eyes because the message was so personal. Here I was wondering how to help everyone, when any ONE I could do something for would literally be life changing. Everything I knew about life, love, happiness, fulfillment had been compounded by my 2 precious miracles. What if I had been that ONE that someone had helped?

I knew then that I had to move forward with the foundation.

timeline

Last month, STARFISH INFERTILITY FOUNDATION was formed.  I can honestly say that aside from my marriage and children, there is nothing I am more proud of.  The thought of being able to bring the happiness I have found through my children to even ONE couple who may not be able to afford it is overwhelming, in the best way possible.

How can YOU help???  Please check out our website, follow us on Facebook, DONATE DONATE DONATE (any amount helps) SHARE with everyone, and sign up for Brandon’s Golf Tournament!  (If anyone has prize donations for the golf tournament PLEASE let me know!)

Thank you from the bottom of my heart to those who have supported us in our journey over the years.  Our struggles with infertility were some of the hardest years, but they also changed me, and showed me what I was meant to do with my life.

If YOU would like to share your story, PLEASE send to:  info@starfishinfertilityfoundation.org  You don’t have to use your real name, or include photos, but you’re more than welcome to!

 

**A very special Thank you to Kim Kennedy for the amazing Starfish logo design!!

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

I had my lining recheck yesterday (http://www.epsbaby.com/?p=2648) and was hoping for better news.  Even with the increase in meds, it has only thickened by .5mm.  CCRM’s “optimal” number is 8, and I am currently sitting at 7.5.

Spoke with my nurse last night, and she was trying to get Dr. Schoolcraft to review and give his recommendation.  Ultimately it is our decision, so she told us to “think about it” while waiting to hear from the Dr.  In the world of infertility, there are SO many variables, that this is an almost impossible task.

The good?  My blood work numbers (progesterone and estrogen) look great.  My lining has a nice “triple pattern” that they look for.  The bad?  It’s not as thick as they would like to see it.  Our options?  Move forward and implant, or cancel this cycle and try again.

Here’s the thing….if we cancel, there is NO guarantee that it will be any better.  It is also no guarantee that it will have a nice triple pattern to it, so I may just exchange one problem for another.  As my nurse so nicely reminded me…”you’re almost 40 now”  Ha!  Thanks!  I ALWAYS forget that!  NOT!!

I was truly struggling last night with what to do.  It is overwhelming to think that your decision could truly affect whether or not an embryo has a chance at life.  I prayed for an answer, and woke up this morning praying again.  I just need clarity.  I need to know that I can live with the decision that’s made.  If it doesn’t work, will I be ok with the fact that I didn’t just cancel and try again?  Or be ok with the fact that I DID cancel, getting a BFN (big fat negative in the IF world) and I SHOULD have just pushed through the 1st round?

I just need someone to tell me what to do.

Most people have been telling me (and I have been telling others) that if it doesn’t work, I’ll be ok.  We still have 2 beautiful babies to hug everyday.  To be honest….I only say that because saying what I really want to say makes me feel like the most unappreciative, selfish person in the world.  By saying to the world “I WANT this child.  I will be DEVASTATED if it doesn’t work” makes me feel like I don’t appreciate the ones I have.  It makes me feel selfish because I know there are THOUSANDS of others who continue to fight the battle of infertility for their first.  The thing is, now that I know what it’s like to HAVE a child, I can’t imagine the chance of another failing! It’s our last shot, and I want it to work.

My nurse called this morning and told me she had reviewed everything with Dr. Schoolcraft, and he wanted to move forward.  I told her I was still struggling, and wanted to talk it over with Brandon one more time.  Then it hit me….I have ALWAYS trusted CCRM and Dr. Schoolcraft to do/recommend what’s best for me (even when I thought they were crazy for putting me on LESS meds for our IVF cycle than I had ever been on) and I have the 2 most beautiful littles to show for it.  WHY should this be any different?

I finally have the clarity I have so desperately prayed for, and we are moving forward!!!  Transfer is set for Monday!!!  I’m both excited and terrified at the same time, but I know this is the right path for us.  Here we come Denver!!!

 

Faith

 

 

 

 

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

So, I was scheduled to have my blood work and ultrasound last Friday, and the plan was to fly to Denver Wednesday, with a transfer on Friday.

Well….that’s not going to happen.  As you know, my E2 level was low the previous week.  The good news is that the meds have fixed it!!  My E2 is now right where it should be.  HOWEVER; my lining is not thick enough.  I knew when I left the Dr’s office Friday it was only at 7 (my last transfer it was already 8.5) so I wasn’t terribly shocked when I got the call from CCRM that we were going to postpone.  Weird because I’ve never had lining issues.  (A fertilized egg needs the lining of the uterus to be a certain thickness to implant and begin growing.)  I have to remember that my last transfer was 2 1/2 years ago, and age is NOT your friend when it comes to fertility.   Anyway…my meds have been upped again, and I have a recheck scheduled for tomorrow morning.  If all looks good, we will plan to transfer next Monday!!

Of course I’m disappointed.  The waiting and testing is always hard, but this is our last shot.  I want everything to be perfect.  If that means we wait a few more days, and I take a few more injections, I’m happy to do it.

That’s all I have for now.  I’ll post again after my test results come in tomorrow!

Thanks for the prayers!!  Keep them coming!  SOOOO ready to go to Denver!!! 🙂

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

Everyone knows that I hate Winter!  I hate the cold. I hate being cooped up inside. I hate wearing coats. I hate taking 20 minutes to put layers on the littles so we can go outside, etc.  So, it comes as no surprise that the 1st day of Spring has been a date on the calendar I have always longed for!  It may not be 80 degrees, and the boat may still be winterized, but it gives me the HOPE of things to come!

All that being said, it seems EXTREMELY fitting that my FET (frozen embryo transfer) has been scheduled for March 20th, which is also the FIRST DAY OF SPRING!!!  I don’t know why, but it has definitely filled me with some extra HOPE for this transfer!!

We have a few hurdles to cross in order to get there, but that seems to always be the case!  My blood work last Friday didn’t come back the way they wanted it (they want to see my E2 (estrogen) level over 50, and it was only 44) so they added a “little blue pill” to my medicine cocktail!  I go back for another blood draw and ultra sound on Friday, so say a few prayers that the medicine has done the trick!

I have now added a daily Lovenox injection, which sucks. (sorry, but it’s the truth)  It burns for about 30 seconds, and (because it’s a blood thinner) my belly is starting to show it’s trademark IVF bruises.  Hard to complain though.  If it will help me carry another pregnancy, I will happily do it!  Acupuncture has also been added (which I despise…needles…duh) but only for 8 sessions.  How in the world does ANYONE find that relaxing?????

So anyway….that’s where we are, and that’s what we’re doing!  Say a few extra prayers that my blood work and ultra sound come back good on Friday so we can continue!!

Thanks all!!!!

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

A year ago we welcomed Baby Luke to the world….it’s hard to believe he is already ONE!  He is a beautiful baby boy!

http://www.epsbaby.com/adorable-baby-luke-newborn-photography-middle-tn/

We truly admire this amazing family and would like to ask for your support.  They need your prayers….Little Luke had to have brain surgery this week and they have a long road of recovery ahead.  They can use all the love, prayer and support they can get.

Here is the link with his progress:

http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/lukeeisner

Luke

 

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE

Here’s your update…

As you know, I had to go in to have a hysteroscopy performed in preparation for my impending FET in Denver! And, as you also know, I’m terrified of needles….especially IVs! Anytime I need an IV, blood draw, etc. I prepare myself with lidocaine cream! Since I was unsure which hand they would use, I covered both! (I don’t mess around when it comes to IVs!!)

As (my) luck would have it, they were unable to find the vein in either hand, so they went for my un-lidocained wrist!!!! Ugh!! To make matters worse, they wouldn’t allow Brandon in with me!

 

 

Once the IV was settled, and I regained my color/breathing (I’m not kidding) I was good to go! I literally never fear anesthesia, it’s JUST the IV!

While I was alone, I thought I would pass some time sending Brandon ridiculous selfies (I have no shame)…..

IMG_4419IMG_4421IMG_4420

 

FINALLY Brandon is allowed to come back!! Mid conversation, his phone rings…. It’s the littles MDO program saying there has been a water line break, and everyone needs to be picked up. Uhhhh….well….ok then. Bye bye Brandon!!

IMG_4427

(Somehow he managed to pick up the kids, drop them off with Jen, and get back to the hospital before I got out of surgery! Yes, I married SuperMan!)

Surgery went well. They found a bit of scar tissue and removed it, so I should be all set!!

My box of meds has been delivered! To be honest, I forgot how much “stuff” there is to keep track of! Although, an FET cycle is MUCH easier, and MUCH less complicated than a full IVF cycle!

IMG_5213

(Someone messaged and asked the difference between an FET and full cycle – here’s the gist of it: A full ivf cycle is used to actually collect eggs/sperm and then fertilize, hoping to create an embryo. In an FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer) all that work has already been done, and the embryo has already been created and frozen. Mine was created with my IVF cycle in 2012 and this is the only remaining embryo we have.)

Injections began on the 15th. I was a bit worried since it’s been awhile since I’ve had them, but it wasn’t too bad! I’m currently doing Lupron injections daily, and will soon add daily Lovenox injections to prevent any sort of blood clotting issues.

If I’m lucky I will be on the Lovenox injections the next 9 months because that will mean I’m pregnant!

IMG_5255

So…there you go! Right now the transfer is set for the end of March, but it can always change. I will start blood work and ultra sounds in a couple weeks which will give us a better timeline.

 

Thanks to all for the continued prayers!!

 

 

SHARETWEETPINCONTACTSUBSCRIBE