Hello Des Moines moms! I’ve been a fan of the Des Moines Moms Blog for a couple years now, so I am really excited to join the team of contributors! Being a mom has given me a lot of things I didn’t expect. Finding my writing voice is definitely one of the added benefits, and I’m excited to share my experience with fellow Des Moines moms.
I grew up in Northwest Iowa (Go E-Hawks!) and moved to the big city (that’s Des Moines, in case you were wondering) to attend Drake University and study magazine journalism. I was uncertain about my decision at the time, but I fell in love with Drake and Des Moines and never looked back. I met my husband, Sam, at Drake during our freshman year. We started dating when we kept finding ourselves in the same classes despite having different majors.
Sam and I got engaged a few months after graduation, spent the next year planning our wedding, and said “I do” right here in Des Moines in August of 2006. Des Moines always felt like home for both of us, so we moved into a tiny Sherman Hill apartment. We spent our first few years of marriage focused on finding full-time jobs, buying new(er) cars, and traveling. In 2009 we bought a home on the north side of Des Moines and spent a few years putting in some “sweat equity.”
In 2011 we decided it was time to start a family, so we started trying in January. Spoiler alert: Nothing. Happened.
At the time we had a brand new nephew and a niece on the way. I was certain our little one would be the next grandchild in line. But it wasn’t meant to be.
After a year of trying (and one very early loss), we started the process of fertility testing, and eventually treatments. Tons of tests, lots of cycles, 6 IUIs, and 2 rounds of IVF later, I was pregnant with our first baby in the summer of 2013. The 2 1/2 years between deciding to start a family and getting pregnant with our oldest were some of the most lonely and trying of our marriage.
The struggle to start a family made us stronger as a couple and more grateful/patient as parents. It’s not a journey I would wish on anyone or care to repeat, but now that we’re on the other side, it’s an important part of our family’s story.
Jack was born in March of 2014. He was not “a sleeper,” as they say. So our first couple years of parenthood are basically lost in a fog of sleep deprivation.
Though I have always wanted four kids, the struggle to have our first convinced me I should be content with two. We started trying for “Baby No. 2” when Jack was a little over a year old. Not much changed the second time around and after months and months with no luck, we decided to move forward with an IVF cycle using our only frozen embryo from our first round of IVF.
The cycle was not a success, and we were contemplating next steps when I got pregnant the “old fashioned way” in early 2016. It was a lovely surprise for all of us. Our little Henry joined us in early December 2016.
Life with two kids so far has been equal parts magical and exhausting. I never imagined myself being a “boy mom,” but I am slowly growing more comfortable with the title. I’m also nearing expert status on all types of construction vehicles and big machines.
By day I am a former newspaper editor and copy editor who recently dove into the world of digital marketing as a project manager. I’m also a CrossFit newbie doing my best to stay in shape to keep up with my boys. I really enjoy swinging around a kettlebell and feel totally awesome when I can knock out a set of burpees.
I can’t wait to get to know you all a little better and to continue sharing my experience in this wonderful community of moms!