Growing up, the one thing I knew I wanted to be was a mom. At age 25, I gave birth to my first child. Looking back, I realize the ease that came with his entrance into this world and how I never doubted my fertility. Being that I had a son, a second child was always a possibility I never second guessed. Fast forward several years later, I meet the love of my life, Josh. Josh and I had an instant connection and we knew our future was with one another. We talked of children pretty soon in our relationship and again, I never doubted that giving him a child was out of the realm of possibilities.
When we became ready to start trying, I discontinued my birth control and off we went. Each month there was a negative pregnancy test and they just kept coming. At age 32, you are surrounded by friends, family, and co-workers who seem to be getting pregnant at the drop of a hat. I wondered why I wasn’t the same and the disappointment, anger, and even depression began to build. After four or five months I also began to notice my cycles changing. Being in the medical field and quite in tune with my body, I knew something wasn’t right. I made an appointment to see my OBGYN and he agreed to do an ultrasound. A few days later, I got the news that they had found 25+ cysts on each of my ovaries. After some blood work, I was informed that I had Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. My OBGYN recommended I see Dr. Brown if I wanted to continue my fertility journey.
Josh and I scheduled a consultation with Dr. Brown at the Jacksonville office soon after. Our first impressions of Dr. Brown were that he was warm, friendly, and experienced. He spoke with optimism and assured us, “we can get you pregnant.” I was still young, healthy and the odds seemed to be in my favor. So after more tests, more blood work and some research, we continued our journey to intrauterine insemination (IUI). When you dream of getting pregnant, it’s not in a doctor’s office, legs in a stirrup and a timer ticking away in the background but hey, a girl’s got to do what a girl’s got to do.
After two unsuccessful tries at IUI, we FINALLY got our big fat plus sign. We were over the moon! I eagerly scheduled my blood work to confirm my hCG levels. The first blood draw looked promising. For my second result, I did off site and was told the office would call me for the results. I waited for what seemed like 1,000 hours for the call when finally, my phone rang while at work. I quickly picked it up and was told my levels had not increased, and there was no chance there was a viable pregnancy. I fought back tears as I finished up my day working then headed home where I could let it all go. My husband was so hurt by my pain, he was ready to throw in the towel and just live our lives as a family of 3.
A few months later, as the pain and disappointment had subsided, we decided to pull out the big guns, and go for IVF. Shot after shot, it seemed like it would never end. But, we kept our eyes on the prize and counted down the days until egg retrieval. I was very fortunate to get 11 eggs with 9 that progressed into embryos. Recovery from retrieval was quite brutal and ultimately I was diagnosed with ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome. I was so disappointed when our fresh embryo transfer was cancelled. During my recovery, I hit an all time low. Two family members announced their pregnancies and in my depression, it seemed like it would never happen for us. Week after week, I got better and our new focus was our frozen transfer.
We transferred two embryos October 25, 2018. I sit at my desk writing this now with our 3 month old daughter in my lap. I couldn’t be more thankful to the entire staff at Brown Fertility. To Dr. Brown, to Emily, Kristina, Tonya, Mena, and countless other nurses and assistants who helped make this possible, thank you. What you do does not go unnoticed and I couldn’t thank you all enough for the miracle that you have brought into our life and countless of other moms out there. Every blood draw, injection, set-back and tear on this journey is 100% worth it. To any moms out there still on your journey: don’t give up. Just when you think you have hit your bottom, give it time, pick yourself up and keep on. One day it will all be worth it.