What I want you to know about infertility is that there are many ways to become a parent. No one way is better than another. My personal infertility story opened my eyes to the many ways that a child can come into your life. After several years of unsuccessful IVF attempts and the second trimester loss of our boy/girl twins, I came to the realization that I was tired. I could no longer continue pursuing a child via IVF. It was time for us to pivot to international adoption. It was one of the hardest decisions that I’ve had to make in my life. The excitement of moving on to a new path was intertwined with my notions of failure and a damaged sense of self-worth from the many years of unsuccessful IVF attempts. I want people to know how hard it is to make these decisions and the internal battles that are deeply embedded in the process.

So while you may see the hopeful exterior facade, read the courageous social media posts, or hear the words, “I am okay” from your friend or family member challenged by infertility, please understand that underneath it all there is a world of complexity in every decision that they have to make during their journey. These decisions often come with pain, loneliness, and the loss of expectations.

My personal moments of pause and reflection to make the tough decisions during our path to parenthood led us on a passionate journey involving adoption, IVF and gestational surrogacy. Every day when I look at my children I am reminded that there are many ways to become a parent.

So to my fellow fertility warrior who is in the midst of writing his/her own story, I want you to know that I see you, I hear you, and I stand with you in love and support.

Josephine A.