My name is Ericka Michelle, the daughter of C. NaTasha and Melvin Richburg. The eldest of four children and the first to encounter “life experiences,” I was the first of my siblings to get babysitting opportunities, the first to leave home, and the first to attend college. I also held the erroneous belief that I would be the first to have a child.
If there were a real “baby whisperer,” it would be me. As an infant teacher at a childcare center, I trained babies to roll over, crawl, and roll their lips to make bubbles (raspberries). I loved children and children loved me.
In December 2006, I got married at the age of 20. I had bright hopes of building a family with my husband and little ones filling our home. To my dismay, it was not in the cards for me to have children effortlessly and spend the rest of my picture-perfect life with a doting husband, gazing into the cherubic faces of our happy children.
My path to motherhood, while not what I expected, is a story of love – love of family, friends, co-workers, and members of my IVF Facebook group whose collective stories afforded me the support I needed for this road. This new reality was designed for me to help others to navigate their own special roads. This is the story of how I finally became a mother.
In the beginning, I dreamt that immediately after saying “I do,” we were destined to conceive a child on our honeymoon night. Glowing with the shimmer of the honeymoon blitz, two weeks passed, and I took a pregnancy test. I waited impatiently to read the positive result that I knew would be there. NOPE!
This is not the fairy tale I originally believed it would be. It took 4,718 days, which is the equivalent of 12 years, 11 months, 7 hours, and 20 minutes for my dream of becoming a mother to finally come true! Today, I am cheerfully carrying my first child. I am now prepared to share my story with others.
This emotional ride presented to you through the pages of my story will focus only on those who stayed with me for this ride. Those who fell off along the way are not mentioned here.
Ericka M., MD
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