Sarah’s Hope – An infertility retreat opportunity!

Who needs a retreat?

Who wants to go to Texas?

This is what Texas looks like in April!

I wanted to share this opportunity with anyone who’s interested in attending a weekend day retreat for those struggling to conceive or dealing with pregnancy loss.  This is seriously an answer to many prayers, so I hope someone finds this information useful or can send it to someone who would be interested!  Sent to me by a friend in Austin, Texas!

We are excited to announce the date of our first retreat for couples struggling to conceive or with pregnancy loss! You and your spouse are invited to join us on Saturday, April 28, 2012 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Schoenstatt Shrine in west Austin (225 Addie Roy Road, Austin, TX) at the Sarah’s Hope & Abraham’s Promise Retreat!

The retreat will feature discussion on topics related to Catholic fertility issues as well as the opportunity for reconciliation and a Healing Mass with Fr. Charlie Garza from Santa Cruz Parish in Buda. We are delighted and humbled that our Prayer Team will be praying for us throughout the day at Eucharistic Adoration. Let us know if you know of anyone who’s not officially on our Prayer Team who might want to take part in a holy hour for us on April 28th to pray for our intentions!

The day promises to be a beautiful one that will renew us on our journeys to parenthood, so please go ahead and e-mail us at or call (512) 736-7334 to register for the retreat. We’d like to get a headcount so we can plan accordingly. There is a $30 suggested donation to attend, and lunch will be provided.

If either you or your spouse are unable to attend, we’d still love to have either one of you, so please join us if either can make it.

Let us know if you have any questions! It is our sincere hope that you will prayerfully consider attending.

In Christ,
Cari, Erin and Jen

Please contact me or the email/phone numbers above for more information.

Here’s also more information about the monthly support group.


If you do end up going, it would be nice to hear how the weekend went so that we can incorporate some things into our group out here in California.  Thank you!

Progesterone wrap-up

Its an amazing day when you finally see that this…

…has turned into this…

and these…

Today we celebrated our ceremonial last shot!  Yahoo!  Not quite per doctor’s orders, but we’ll only be doing the suppositories 2x a day for the next two weeks.  That means we’re getting close!

Here is a little chart I put together for our own sake about our progesterone levels, but maybe it will help someone else out so I’ll post it here.  We had several draws that were “bad” (due to inaccurately taking the previous dose too close to the draw date) so those data points aren’t shown.  Also, I’ve read that The National Hormone Lab uses a specific method to measure the progesterone and hence why we had to go to the extra hassle to send it out there to be run instead of running it in our local lab.  For thoroughness, not all of my data points were run at the same lab, in case you’re trying to publish a paper on this or something :)  The last half of them were though.  And I cannot for the life of me find our conception chart that has our peak +7 (on HCG) and our first progesterone blood draw data on it.  I think both were in the low 20’s though.

(The zones are based on the data taken from about 850 normal pregnancies.  Blue line is the average of the data with the dotted lines flanking on either side one standard deviation).

From the book Dr. H wrote, there were also no findings of birth defects and/or increased weight gain of the baby (as my midwife was concerned about) with progesterone use.  Not only were there no detrimental side effects to the baby, but there were also some good side effects found for the mother.

Anyway, useful information for someone else that might be wondering if extended use of progesterone in pregnancy is beneficial.  It seems that literally no one else has done research on 2nd trimester progesterone use besides Hilgers (though many have found that first and third trimester use of progesterone can be very effective at preventing miscarriage and preterm labor, respectively).  So, though its hard to think about and hard to explain to your local doctor/ob-gyn, at least I finally rest easy knowing that there is no data saying that its harmful.  And that maybe I’d avoid some post-partum depression while we’re at it.

But anyway, here’s to the last progesterone shot of the pregnancy!  Thank God for the medicine that helped keep this little one safe and sound in there all this time.   It took some convincing (I’m a difficult patient) but it seems our progesterone levels never stayed high enough on our own, so at least we know my levels were higher on the juice which = better for the baby.  And that’s really what its all about.