He did what?

Since Father’s Day is coming up and his birthday just passed, I wanted to introduce you to the seventh wonder of my world; my husband Ray.

We were together 10 years before we actually got married. Those 10 years were not always easy for us.  We had our struggles.  I knew from the beginning that he was no longer able to have children.  He already had 5 children and he and his (then) wife decided to move forward with a vasectomy when his last son was born about 9 years before we met.  Our relationship had its ups and downs, but ultimately, we decided to make it work.  I accepted that being with him meant I’d never had children.  It was a struggle for him as much as it was for me.  He’d go through phases of guilt because he knew how much I longed to have children of my own.  I loved this man and although being with him meant I’d never have children, I didn’t want to live my life without him.  We tried to make the best of it.

A couple years after getting married, we met with a urologist to see what it would take to have his vasectomy reversed. Long story short, since it was over 15 years since his procedure, the doctor didn’t think the reversal would’ve been successful.  When we left the doctor’s office, all I could do was cry.  I thought there was no hope.  Months later, I decided to meet with a fertility doctor to see if there were any options for us, and there was.  The doctors explained In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and how it works.

My part was hormone injections to produce more follicles (which produced more eggs). There were some obstacles along the way, but after seven months of doctor’s appointments, surgery, and multiple injections, my body was finally ready and we scheduled the egg retrieval surgery.  The same day my eggs were retrieved, the doctors had to retrieve his sperm.  Traditionally with IVF, the male would just go in a room and “produce” his specimen in a cup, but Ray couldn’t do that because of the vasectomy.  A urologist had to retrieve the sperm in a different manner…with a needle.

As you can imagine, Ray was not looking forward to this procedure. We didn’t even know if it would be successful.  There was a slight possibility the doctor wouldn’t have been able to get any sperm at all.  I, for seven months went through a lot to get to this point, and things were still up in the air.  I was at home on bed rest after my procedure while Ray went to the hospital to get his done.  All I could do was wait.  He was probably gone for only a couple of hours but it seemed like an eternity.  Did it work?  Did I go through all of this for nothing?

Finally, he called me. He was waiting for some pain killers.  What I’m about to say may make you cringe (especially if you’re a man!).  He told me that the doctor couldn’t retrieve any sperm with the needle (my heart sank) so he tried a different method…one that involved a scalpel!  Yes, I said a scalpel! (I’m trying to keep this PG so you’ll have to use your imagination).  The doctor told Ray to hold his hands up, and said “whatever you do, don’t touch me”.  He sliced it open and squeezed.  All of this with no anesthesia.  The worse part according to Ray was when the doctor had to squeezed it.  This happened a few times before they said “they got it”.

They prescribed Ray some pain killers and sent him on his way. All I remember is lying on the couch when he came home.  When I saw him I was more in love with him than ever.  He was so nervous about the needle, and ended up going through much worse.  I don’t know that he would’ve done it had he known what was about to happen.  

As he was changing out of his pants, I noticed his underwear was on backwards.  I asked him why, and his response was “I just wanted to get the F@!K out of there!”  I couldn’t stop laughing!  I was in pain myself, and all I could do was laugh and tell him how much I loved him.  Nearly 4 years and 6 kids later, I would say it was well worth it! When we talk about it, Ray still cringes.  

He’s still going above and beyond for me and our family.  I returned to work full time in the end of March, and guess who takes care of babies?  Ray retired from Roofing to be a stay at home Dad.  Makaio (the oldest) continued to go to daycare after the babies was born, but Ray stays home and takes care of the 5 babies while I’m at work.  He does it all on his own, and is awesome!  We don’t have much outside help with the babies.  He admits that it gets hard at times, but loves spending time with them.

Our lives have changed so much over the years, but I would’ve never imagined this is where we’d be today. While I’m still dealing with my own demons about returning to work (guilt, time management, guilt & guilt), Ray holds down the fort at home.  The kids are happy and healthy, he’s proud of himself, and I’m in awe.  I can’t believe how blessed I am to have all that I have.  I hope he knows how much I love appreciate him.  He does so much for us and never complains.  Well, he complains a lot, but not ever about taking care of the babies.  We’re still figuring things out as we go along.  It’s just us but I wouldn’t want to do it with anyone else.  #ilovemyhubby

Click here to watch a short video of Ray

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