Tonisha Marie Rapp...
Where do I start? She and I found each others' blogs over a year ago. She first commented on my blog in February 2012. Since that day, she and I made a connection. She lives in Oklahoma and I'm in Alabama. We've never met, but I hope that we will someday.
Toni always commented and left positive words on my blog. Within the infertility blogosphere, it's rare to find someone who does try to remain positive at ALL times. I always found encouragement in her. At some point we exchanged phone numbers and began texting each other. It's amazing how you can feel so close to someone and never have met them. That's what infertility does to people. Most of the time you read about the stress and heartache that infertility brings, but this is a story of hope and friendship.
Brandon and I knew that we were on the road to IVF in March 2012. We were getting all of our ducks in a row to apply for "compassionate care" through EMD Serono. I was devastated to learn that we were mostly likely within $1000 of receiving FREE medication for our IVF cycle. Of course, I turned to my blog to write out my words of anger, despair, and frustration. Toni commented on my blog offering to donate her 900 IU of Follistim to us. Do you know how much money that stuff is?!?
Needless to say, Brandon and I would not have been able to pursue IVF as quickly as we did without the help of Toni and one other benefactor (I'll talk about that at a later date). Toni's contribution to our cycle helped us tremendously. That donated medicine helped me grow the eggs that formed the embryos that gave us this miracle pregnancy.
Toni has experienced her own un-fair amount of struggles throughout her journey to conceive another child. She has miscarried twice during my pregnancy with Elliana. And do you know what-- Toni never ceased contact with me through all of her trials. I know how hard it was for her to check in on me in my pregnancy when she was losing hers. She is one of the most self-less women that I've ever met.
This all brings me to the package that I received yesterday. Toni recently began quilting and she has been constructing quilts for other women who have become pregnant after infertility. Elliana's quilt was the first one that she made. Call me selfish, but I am proud to own Toni's first quilt. It will always hold a special place in my heart.
Within the package Toni packed a note to Brandon, myself, and Ellie. I plan on placing the note in Ellie's scrapbook that I've been working on. I thought about sharing the note, but then it wouldn't be as special. I look forward to the day when Ellie flips through her scrapbook, knowing that she truly is a miracle. Without her Aunt Toni, I cannot say for certain that we would be approaching our due date.
Without facing infertility, I would never have found Toni. I believe that God sends us people to help us through trials. I know for certain that He sent me Tonisha Marie Rapp.