Kelly's success story
Hearing success stories can be helpful if you're going through infertility. The story below is shared as a way to help provide a positive example of a fertility journey. The woman in this story was not a client of My Fertility Coach.
Kelly, age 39
Please share a bit about your fertility journey and where you are now:
Most women day dream about being a mother. Movies, books, and TV shows made it seem so easy and natural. I didn't even know what IVF meant. I daydreamed that I'd have my 2 or 3 kids by age 28, a perfect drug free and natural birth, immediate skin-to-skin with my babies as they entered the world, and breastfeeding would be a breeze. None of it was exactly as planned, but I would not trade it for the world.
I was 7 years older then I thought I’d be having kids, I had 12 rounds of fertility treatments, I had 3 NICU babies all via c-section, no skin-to-skin experiences, but I was able to pump and/or breastfeed all 3 of my kids (right before my patience almost ran dry). My journey to have children wasn’t as long as others. Maybe it was luck, but I can say for sure that I was aggressive, aging, and had little patience.
Once I married my amazing husband, I realized I needed a period to get pregnant. And that was just not happening. After 6 months of no period, I contacted my OB and was diagnosed with PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome). That was beginning of the journey to a fertility specialist. After 2 rounds of clomid, and 3 rounds of IUI, we got pregnant with cycle #6 that utilized injectable medications to stimulate all the necessary hormones.
My husband and I knew we had it in us to try for a sibling for our beautiful daughter. So we thought maybe I’d get a period and get pregnant naturally, but that didn’t happen. We went right back to our fantastic specialist and tried to replicate the exact protocol that worked to have our daughter. No such luck. It was a very frustrating point for me, because I didn't understand why it worked the first time, but not this time. Everything was the same in my mind. After 4 tries with injectables and IUI, we prepared for IVF. Fully expecting it not work the first round, we were completely surprised to learn we had 2 thriving embryos growing in my short torso. After 35 weeks of the worst physical pain of my life, I had 3 beautiful kids ages 2-and-under. Life was about to get fun!
Even though our journey to have children is over, my thoughts, gratefulness, and empathy will never end. I have a 6 year old daughter and 4 year old boy-girl twins. I feel beyond blessed to have been born into a time of unbelievable modern medicine, brilliant fertility specialists, and was lucky to have the best health insurance in the country at the time.
What tips would you share with someone just starting their fertility experience? Anything you wish you'd known before you started?
- Taking yourself off social media is a good idea if you find yourself getting angry with people you love. All I wanted was a child and my jealousy was not good. I felt anger when others complained about their babies.
- Look into an acupuncturist that has done his/her research into fertility treatments.
- Don’t expect many people to understand what you are going through except those who have done it.
- Tell your friends and family to not say things like: “Just relax and it will happen. Stop stressing.” This is a medical issue and not your fault. They may not understand this, so inform them.
What lessons did you learn during your struggle that has helped you in your life since?
Appreciate what you have. The struggle to have children was hard on my marriage and my friendships. My husband did his best to understand how I was feeling, but I think it’s different for the woman. I resented some of my friends who complained about their pregnancies or kids or who got pregnant seemingly just by looking at their husband. I wanted so badly to be in their shoes and I had to make sure I didn’t let my fertility challenges interfere with how I felt about them.
What was the low point along your journey and how did you get through it?
I cheated and took a pregnancy test 2 days before I was supposed to get a blood test at the doctor. It was a positive test but the double lines were faint, not bright. I figured it was because my levels were still low (being very newly pregnant). Later that day, I felt a drop in my abdomen. I felt like something fell inside of me. I went to the bathroom and saw a big black clot in the toilet. I believe it was my chemical pregnancy lost. The next day the blood test came back negative. I was crushed.
Were there moments of joy, hope, or peace along the way that stand out - in addition to knowing your baby was near?
After having my first child, I knew there was hope. I knew I could do it one more time.
The day I took my premature twins from from the NICU, I felt peace. The struggle to get pregnant was all worth it. Joy was all around me.
Anything else you'd like to share?
Find a support system. Utilizing a coach is a great way to get through this EXTREMELY challenging time in your life. Unfortunately the doctors do not have any support systems lined up for you. You need to seek them out.