Infertility – wish I knew then what I know now.

In the past I have shared the story of my Post Natal Depression.

Infertlity dark cloud coogee beach

Without elaborating on the entire experience, one of the things that I touched upon that led to my breakdown was my long and lonely experience with infertility. This story began 18 years ago, but is still as raw as when it first happened. Infertility is such a painful experience.

Around the age of 29, my husband and I we were ready for a baby. We fell pregnant very quickly, but just as quickly lost that baby at eight weeks, an experience which will stay with me forever.

Infertlity 2

We continued to try to fall pregnant after I had healed from the curette, but three months passed, then six months … hmmm, this was taking a while!

“It’s normal for it take up to a year”, the doctor and all the books said.

I distinctly remember how little comfort these assurances provided. Why did I fall pregnant so quickly initially, yet now it’s taking so long? It became the focus and obsession for me, but I chose to trust the experts and just keep trying and waiting.

Seven months passed, eight months, nine months … 12 months … 

The World Health Organisation’s definition of infertility states that infertility is “a disease of the reproductive system defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.”

Note: if you’re over 35 this changes to 6 months

Doctor after doctor had no explanation, tests came out normal, specialists reported nothing abnormal. Two years passed.

“You may want to consider IVF”. 

With a big black cloud hovering over my head,  I gathered my wits and started exploring my options, leading me to a Natural Fertility Centre in Woollahara. My allocated naturopath gave us a fertility plan, a new diet, a tonne of vitamins, and a new HOPE.

We followed everything they said to a T. No alcohol, organic foods only, no sugar, saliva ovulation testing to determine my most fertile time of the months, a gazillion vitamins a day …

Our naturopath sent us to their preferred specialists who did indeed find abnormalities with both my husband and I which were most certainly affecting our fertility. Why weren’t these picked up before? Frustration but still more hope …

But time kept ticking away and the recurring grief was almost too much to bear. I couldn’t see an end to it. The black cloud over my head was threatening to fall and envelop me. Three years now.

I was frustrated with an ovulation testing device which I found difficult to use, frustrated with the timed and mechanical sessions of lovemaking, not really knowing if we were exactly at the right point in the cycle for ovulation, confused about my moon cycle and the possibility of spontaneous ovulation. So much, confusion, so many tears.

All I wanted was a baby! Everyone else around me seemed to be conceiving with no problems. I was happy for them, but their terrific news just made me feel worse. Why was this happening to me?

Keep on trying I told myself, never give up hope. After operations for the both of us, I fell pregnant after three months. FINALLY I was pregnant again. But my God, the fear of losing this pregnancy engulfed me until nine months later our beautiful miracle boy was finally born. 

infertlity 3

In hindsight, what I would have given to have had the testing options available today to help me from the start. I could have used something like the the babystart Fertility and Sperm Test to provide valuable insights into our fertility condition from a much earlier point, even pre-conception. We could have used this ovulation test to accurately identify the best days to conceive, rather than the other tools and thermometer which I found extremely frustrating and inaccurate.

I can’t imagine all the time we would have saved, and all the suffering we may have been spared. Sometimes, failing to fall pregnant isn’t ‘normal’, and the ‘she’ll be right, mate’, approach isn’t always comforting or productive (pardon the pun). There are times when couples will be alerted to irregularities that require further investigation, and opening up new lines of enquiry is best started earlier than later. It’s always best to know what your options are so that you can begin taking action if necessary.

I often talk about how this experience with infertility awakened my awareness of the healing capacity of nutrition and self-care. Its direct relationship to overall wellbeing has led me to do the work I do today. But do I wish it had been different? Absolutely. 

Hopefully, products such as the babystart ones will take out any guesswork for couples who are experiencing pregnancy difficulties, open up the options available to them from an early stage, and reduce the heartache associated with uncertainty. You can learn more about the babystart range here.

Bren x

 

This is a sponsored post by babystart. Please know that I will only ever share products or services on this website that I believe add value to the lives of this community. 

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