How To Be Here

Just finished reading Rob Bell‘s book, How To Be Here. In 3 days. One reason for the quick read is that it was an easy read! Thank you, Rob Bell. But more than that it was ridiculously engaging. No matter who you are, how your life is going, if you really enjoy your occupation or not, if you feel super satisfied with your life or otherwise, you have GOT to read this book. It’s that good. I’ll read it again and again.

A couple main takeaways for me:

  1. Take a Sabbath. But like ACTUALLY take one. Get off your phone. Don’t have a to-do list. Make it a day that’s really a Sabbath and not just one that you’re not working at your “job”. Don’t check emails. Check OUT. I’ve had my phone on DND all day and it has been wonderful to actually be checked out. No social media. Minimal texting (I texted my husband because he’s my husband and he was grocery shopping). No email checking work OR personal. Guys. Seriously. So great. We go a million miles a minute all the time and so often that gives us little time to process things that have happened throughout the week. Slow down and rest. #selflove
  2. Try new things. That thing you’ve wanted to do for years. That thing that always comes up in your thoughts. That thing that tugs at your heart. That thing you stand for. That thing you think “if only I could do ___”. That thing where you’re like “what if…”. It might work out and it might not. We take a risk when we try something new.. and we also take a risk WHEN WE DON’T! The risk when we don’t try? You might miss out on that thing. You might settle.
  3. Be present. Check out the below excerpt right out of the book. How often do you go out to eat and see this all around you? A couple, both phones on the table. A group, each trying to document every detail of the afternoon via social media. Be present with the people you’re choosing to spend time with. If you don’t want to be present, don’t be there.

“You sit down to eat with a friend and she puts her phone on the table between the two of you with the screen facing up. Without saying anything verbally, she has just communicated to you that even though she is here, with you at the lunch, about to order food, if that phone rings and that screen lights up, she will be with you, but not be with you. Here but not here. In that moment as she glances down at the screen she will be making a decision about whether to answer or not.

This extraordinary technology that makes it possible for us to connect with someone on the other side of the world also disconnects us from the person on the other side of the table.

To live with rhythm requires that you be intentional about what you’re doing and when you’re doing it.

If you’re with a person, then be with him, be with her.

… If you’re having lunch and talking, then be there. Put your cell phone away.”

This book is a gem. Enjoy.

All the Appointments

Ovarian and thyroid hormones are good to go. Ultrasounds all came back normal/nothing to be concerned about but it’s been recommended that I visit Iowa Radiology for one more in which the specialist can take a sample of what might be a cyst as a precaution/for testing. A week ago our thoughts on this were: 1. we’ve spent $700 in the last month on appointments/medical bills 2. let’s hold off until I’m added to Chad’s insurance post his open enrollment period this fall. After praying about it and moving some numbers around in our budget, I’m going to go ahead and have this done now instead of waiting. The appointment is in 2 weeks.

I’ve finished my first round of Clomid and have had a follow up appointment to check my progesterone levels (more lab work). Results came back normal and consistent with ovulation.. which means the medication I’m taking to regulate my period worked this cycle.

Chad and I would love it if you would join us in prayer through this process. We are extremely thankful for the support we’ve received so far.

Thyroids & Ovaries

Met with my new OB/GYN, Dr. Erin Lehman, last week. She’s great. We walked through our plans moving forward, talked about a handful of different scenarios, and I left feeling extremely hopeful. Blood samples to do some thyroid (hypothyroidism) and ovary testing (PCOS) were taken at that appointment and then I went back this morning for an ultrasound. I’m anxious to hear back from Erin and/or her nurse with results.

If you’re curious about PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) click here or if you’re curious about how hypothyroidism impacts pregnancy click here.

I have extremely irregular periods. (If any of this is TMI, you don’t need to continue reading. I’m going to share my journey openly here because it’s really important for people in similar spots to know they’re not alone.)

By extremely irregular I mean I stopped taking birth control on Christmas Eve 2016 and have only had 4 cycles since then. Quick math indicates I should be on my 6th post-birth control cycle by now. In that 6 month window, the shortest cycle was 35 days and the longest 66. Clearly this isn’t “normal”. So once my next cycle starts I’ll begin taking Clomid, a medication used to induce ovulation.

I’d love to hear about your experiences (no matter if you’re trying to conceive or not!) with irregular periods, taking medication to induce ovulation, or anything else you want to share related to fertility. We aren’t alone, friends!


I’m Alyssa. I’ve started a blog at least 10 times over the last 10 years. I always decide after a few weeks that I don’t like the focus of the blog, the content, the domain/host, the randomness, the consistency, or the time commitment of posting. I always feel like I’m not living up to some kind of (warped) standard of what a blog should be.

Each time I end up writing for others, instead of for myself. This time I’ve decided to write for me. This blog is for thoughts, photos, goals, poetry/lyrics, good days, bad days, and everything between. This blog is to captivate my mind and deepen my creativity. This blog is for self-encouragement, self-love, and self-accountability.

If you’re reading this you’re either connecting from day one or you’ve wandered back into the archives. Either way, I’m glad you’re here and I hope my words speak to you in any number of ways. Welcome to my heart.