I plan to change the conversation of infertility by sharing my journey of great love and loss as an infertility and pregnancy/infant loss survivor. I will continue to inspire women to never give up hope on their journey to motherhood. This is in honor of myself, my babies and every other woman who has faced infertility and loss.
The truth about family building is that it does not come easily for everyone. You can be the biggest self-advocate, follow the right steps, come prepared with questions for doctors and still, this journey is a marathon. I have always considered myself to be someone who had to be ten steps ahead. Prior to starting our family, I had already begun seeing doctors and tried getting answers regarding my infertility. I thought I was prepared but did not realize what a battle it would be.
I put my trust into several doctors who did not provide me with accurate information. I wound up making uninformed decisions at the beginning of my journey, decisions that cost me time and a lot of heartache. I finally found a doctor who was willing to listen to me, to do the necessary testing needed to “prove” that I indeed had a debilitating, infertility condition. Finding a doctor who valued me as a PERSON and not just a number was also a journey.
I was one of the “lucky ones” who did achieve a pregnancy on my second transfer. However, no one tells you about everything that comes before ever having an embryo transfer: finding a doctor that you trust, weeding out those not invested in your care, endless testing, surgeries, egg retrievals, countless needles, medications, emotional turmoil, waiting (and more waiting), more medications and monitoring and then, the big day finally comes. Afterwards are two long weeks of waiting for a miracle.
In my case, round two worked. My family received the news that we would be welcoming twins – the greatest joy that you could ever imagine after going through such a journey. There was just one problem, no one could have ever prepared me for pregnancy and infant loss after in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
No one told me the gut-wrenching pain of FINALLY carrying those miracle babies only to meet a son born sleeping, a daughter breathing and ultimately lose them both. No one told me that I would find myself all the way back at square one broken-hearted.
Infertility comes with so much time, so many unknowns, so many heartbreaks and hopefully, in the end, a MIRACLE. I will continue this journey because I am determined to bring home my rainbow baby. I cannot wait to share with them how WANTED they are. Be kind to yourself through this journey, find a support network and know that you are WORTHY. Like myself, there may be great loss before joy, but WE are WORTHY of the rainbow at the end of the greatest storm.
Erin E. of New Jersey