Welcome to our series: Real Talk. Here, we share first-person stories from our community on various topics we all go through in our motherhood journey. We created this series because no two experiences are the same and everyone's motherhood journey is unique. Real Talk elevates different perspectives and experiences on the journey to motherhood to foster conversation and connection, so we all feel a little less alone.
Today's topic: fertility.
"A few months ago, we got pregnant on our first try, but then had a missed miscarriage. After a D&C procedure, we are now trying to conceive again. The missed miscarriage has been a huge challenge emotionally and wasn’t something I had heard about previously. The concept of having to make a decision while processing that trauma was difficult. Our first positive pregnancy test, first OBGYN appointment together, our first ultrasound are all now tied to loss. I want to tell my story because I found it difficult to find anyone talking about what I was going through. Everyone seems to wait to tell their story until after they have their rainbow baby. We’re still hopeful, but not there yet.
Don’t pay any mind to when you should and shouldn’t be talking about your journey according to societal norms. Early pregnancy and loss can be isolating and it shouldn’t be!
One new piece of advice that I like is to go ahead and buy the little onesie or cute shoes. Don’t wait for that first ultrasound if you don’t want to. In my case, that miscarriage was devastating no matter what and I wish I would have spent those first ten weeks celebrating rather than just waiting."
"Go ahead and buy the little onesie or cute shoes. Don’t wait for that first ultrasound if you don’t want to."
“I had this idea my entire life about how easy it was to get pregnant. Maybe it was an idea that came from our society. But then one day, my husband and I were ready for a family and after numerous tries it became apparent the easy path wasn't going to be an option for us.
Once we started to go down the fertility journey, I began to feel suffocated, alienated and alone. It seemed like no one else was having these issues when in actuality quite a few of my peers were dealing with the same issues, but no one was openly discussing it. Once I came to that realization, my husband and I decided we would not be those people who didn't share our story. We would talk about it because we realized if we could help one other couple feel like they weren't alone, it would be worthwhile.
My best advice for those going through infertility, is try your best to not lose all hope and try to focus on the outcome and end goal instead of getting bogged down with the process. Sometimes we analyze the process so much, but at the end of the day if you want to be a mom and parent, then keep your eye on the prize. I have hope that you will get there.”
"My husband and I decided we would not be those people who didn't share our story. We would talk about it because we realized if we could help one other couple feel like they weren't alone, it would be worthwhile."
“We decided to get pregnant with our first child and boom, we were pregnant. First shot and it was a really straightforward pregnancy. The second one was not the case.
We tried again and on the first shot got pregnant a second time, but my body wasn’t producing the right about of hormones to maintain the pregnancy and we had an early miscarriage. I didn’t ovulate for the first few cycles and we ran tests to ensure my hormone levels were stable enough to try again a few months later. After month four, I had just enough progesterone to try again. We got pregnant again, but it was not a straightforward pregnancy.
As soon as I found out I was pregnant I also found out that I didn’t have enough progesterone again to maintain the pregnancy and I was going to need extra monitoring because my amniotic sac was not fusing properly. My doctor suggested that we supplement with progesterone. After careful consideration and lots of ultrasounds, we agreed and have a healthy baby boy who is now two-years-old and a daughter who is four-years-old.”
"Like many women, I naively thought I would get pregnant easily. After six months of trying, I started to feel anxious and frustrated that we hadn’t conceived yet and I got very down on myself. At the time, I had an incredibly demanding job and, as a result, I was under a tremendous amount of stress, which doesn’t bode well when you’re trying to get pregnant. Realizing this, I decided that I needed to prioritize my health both mentally and physically. A friend recommended acupuncture and that’s just what I did.
Through my acupuncturist, I was exposed to an entirely new world that opened my eyes to the many ways our physical bodies manifest the stressors of our mental state and how that can impact our overall wellness. In addition to acupuncture, I began to meditate, workout more regularly, and I also began a herbal protocol to support my chances of fertility (big thank you to Samantha of Aqu Wellness). Eventually, we did get pregnant but it ended up being a chemical pregnancy and therefore resulted in a loss. While it was a painfully frustrating experience, it did give me a glimpse of hope that we were making progress. Quickly thereafter we started trying again.
"I was exposed to an entirely new world that opened my eyes to the many ways our physical bodies manifest the stressors of our mental state and how that can impact our overall wellness."
After a few more cycles of not conceiving, I spoke with my OB/GYN who let me know that I might not be ovulating when I thought I was. She recommended I do an HCG injection, which would trigger ovulation within 36 to 40 hours. Sure enough, it worked and I am deeply grateful for the sweet baby boy we have today. Fast-forward to a year and a half after the birth of my son: I am pregnant with our second child and the journey to conception was nothing like the first time around—it was a total surprise that came easily and naturally!"
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This article is for informational purposes only. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and we recommend that you always consult with your healthcare provider. To the extent that this article features the advice of physicians or medical practitioners, the views expressed are the views of the cited expert and do not necessarily represent the views of Perelel.