Grief, Grace & Gratitude
It's National Infertility Awareness Week! This week is all about removing the stigmas and barriers that stand in the way of building families. 1 in 8 couples in the US will have trouble conceiving or carrying a pregnancy to term. Infertility can affect BOTH males and females. HH is thrilled to share Vicky's story. Vicky is a women of strength as a six-year infertility warrior. She is passionate, reflective and a true yogi! She spends her days navigating this new season of her life as a mother to her baby born via surrogacy. Be sure to visit her BLOG for more of her story.
I can’t rightfully start this blog without going back to the beginning of my story. The cliff-notes version is: I got married in 2013 (at 28 years old), started to try and conceive at 30, battled infertility until 36, quit my job, became a yoga teacher somewhere in the middle, moved on to surrogacy in 2021, had our baby in 2022 (at 37 years old), followed by my mom’s passing (from metastatic breast cancer that spread to her brain) 36 hours after he was born. Yes, I know that was a lot of words.
Alright, so now that we got that out of the way for all my low attention span readers, (hello, it’s me) I will now outline the shortened but extended (does that even make sense?) version of my story, for those who are interested and/or bored. So, if cliff notes were enough for you – all good… see you in my next post!
I’ll try to make this as brief as possible, but I plan to go deeper into how I coped with infertility in case anyone out there is struggling and needs hope. I was diagnosed with ‘unexplained infertility’ – can there be a more frustrating diagnosis?! “You’re perfectly healthy, everything looks great. I don’t know why you’re not getting pregnant (or staying pregnant) so let’s just play around for about six years and see what happens!” 🙄 Anyway, my path was very long and very exhausting. After a year of failed IUI’s – which btw is way worse than IVF (in my opinion) I quit my job and pursued Yoga teacher training. Best. decision. ever. It’s cliche, but it literally changed my life – more on that in another post.
Fast forward to three HSG’s (a scope that looks inside your uterus to check for any abnormalities or polyps), three polypectomies (polyp removal surgery) so-many-rounds of antibiotics, countless blood draws, ultrasounds and medications, four egg retrievals, seven embryo transfers (11 embryos lost in the process between miscarriages and failed rounds) and three miscarriages all in the course of four long years. Words cannot describe the grief you feel when you’re in the trenches of infertility. It almost doesn’t seem fair to write out my story like a simple laundry list because it doesn’t accurately capture the magnitude and impact it has on your well-being. Only fellow IVF’ers can understand. It truly is the worst club with the best members.
After my seventh final and failed attempt at transferring with an immune protocol (a Reproductive Immunologist discovered I had a group of thrombophilias – blood clotting disorders- so we added blood thinner and higher dose steroids to my last transfer protocol) I decided I had enough and wanted to move forward with surrogacy. Second, best. decision. ever. From that point forward I did my fourth and final egg retrieval in which we got two beautiful PGT normal embryos. Two months later I met my surrogate on a Facebook surrogacy matching group and the rest is history. We transferred on May 28th, 2021 and baby boy Alexi came into this world two and a half weeks early on January 27th, 2022. Thank you God! I encountered MANY signs from God/Angels (because I asked for them- another post for later) that I was on the right path and I can honestly say I had zero doubt that he was coming. I truly felt at peace during the entire process. God’s peace perhaps? From start to finish I could sense He was in control and it was all going to workout according to plan. The circumstances that led to Alexi’s early delivery and my mom’s passing confirmed that God heard our prayers and answered them. I find so much comfort in that.
Well, I can hear my cute little terrorist is crying so I need to attend to his incredibly urgent matter – hanger- but feel free to come back and check in on our beautiful chaos! 🙂