Our Fertility Journey

I am currently looking down at the most precious gift of life nestled in my arms. We have a healthy, beautiful boy named Asher, which means: “Promised a life blessed with abundance”; refer to Gen. 30:13. We thank God for you, Asher, every day!

Getting there wasn’t easy by any means; here is our story: 

Rory and I had a long courtship. We met in our early 20’s at the prime of our lives, where we were establishing ourselves within our respective careers. Our studies took priority and we focused on a few milestones to accomplish before we could discuss plans, including marriage and starting a family. However, at the back of my mind was a belief that something wasn’t right with my reproductive system. 

I put this down to my mom and sisters experiencing similar problems, which we all managed with pain medication. I suffered from excruciating menstrual and ovulation cramps from the time I can remember. The pain would mean a day off from work/school; having gone through this for as many years, it became the “norm.”

By our 30”s, Rory and I started having a conversation about starting a family one day. I decided to take this conversation more seriously and took steps to find out more about my reproductive health status. 

A friend who managed to conceive twins without fallopian tubes (yes, you heard correctly!) told me about Dr. Olarogun and walked me through her fertility journey. It was sad to know I was the only person she felt comfortable confiding in at the time, as infertility was and still is a taboo. 

I decided to seek advice from a fertility specialist as we had been engaging in unprotected sex for years; and have never had a positive pregnancy test. 

Something wasn’t right.

At our initial Fertility Assessment consultation, Dr. Olarogun informed me that I presented the symptoms of Endometriosis. The inflammation caused by Endometriosis affects 50% of women worldwide and is one of the leading culprits of infertility. 

As we had already agreed, marriage was on the cards; I needed to understand the severity and the impact Endometriosis would have on us starting a family. 

I had a procedure called a laparoscopy in 2017 and was diagnosed with stage 5 Endometriosis, which is severe. During the surgery, Dr. Olarogun worked incredibly hard to give us the most optimal chance of conceiving naturally. However, after the surgery, we were advised by Dr. Olarogun that IVF was more likely going to our own choice at this point.

Concurrently, we ran a few more tests focusing on my AMH levels. Mine AMH levels were lower than expected for my age. Rory also had a semen analysis. The results confirmed that his sperm count was extremely low, with poor mobility and mortility. Knowing that we both had infertility issues, IVF was now our only hope to start a family together.

We chose to focus on our wedding plans, and we finally married on the 1st of May 2018. Although we knew our chances were slim at this point, we tried to conceive naturally, but this was without success. It was tough to accept yet, we had faith in HART Fertility Clinic, and everything changed when we met Sr. Cyndi Nel in 2019.

We were so impressed by the care and support offered at our first meeting with her. Given that we had almost zero knowledge about the IVF process, you can imagine the number of questions we had. 

Each staff member we dealt with at the clinic was kind, patient, and gave us tailored and individual patient care. This relationship continued through all correspondence including email. We knew from the start that we were in good hands!

My journey to get “ready” for the IVF journey started in January 2019. 

I was not entirely happy with my weight and wanted to shed some before our cycle. We also had a pending trip to Brazil! 

I started acupuncture every month and extended this treatment up until our initial cycle, continuing the therapy during our cycle to assist with inflammation.

Our Cycle:

Although the process was overwhelming at first, the care and support offered at HART, with their comprehensive step by step guides, we were able to get through this with ease. Everything was clear and concise, with no room for confusion. 

The facilities at HART are world-class! The clinic’s energy and ambience added a feeling of warmth and world-class experience, which put us both right at ease from the start. 

At our egg retrieval, we had ten eggs removed, five of our eggs were mature enough for fertilisation. We were also fortunate to have enough viable sperm for fertilisation. 

Of the five fertilised eggs, two were viable by day two. We had our transfer on day three, and only one of the two of our embryos were usable. At this point, we prayed that one embryo would give us our miracle baby! With no more eggs or embryos left for us to freeze, this was our only hope.

We transferred on the 11th of July and received our positive result two weeks later! The wait was a challenging time, but I chose to spend my time praying and decided to leave this in God’s hands. Science had brought us this far, but ultimately it would be God’s will. 

We knew our chance of success was slim. Still, there were obvious factors that helped us remain positive, including the fantastic support and expertise of the medical team at HART. 

The emotional and mental stress during IVF can be exhausting. But, we trusted in the process and focused only on the positive instead of focusing on the negative. We do believe a positive attitude goes a long way! 

For us, the vital formula alongside the science and fantastic team at HART was our faith in God and asking the Holy Spirit to intervene supernaturally! 

Looking back on our journey, it is truly miraculous that we have such advanced technology and artificial reproductive interventions to help couples struggling to conceive. 

Our advice to anyone looking at IVF as an option is:

  1. Remain positive through the process
  2. Choose a medical team that you can trust
  3. And finally keep hope alive, no matter what obstacles come your way

We were so fortunate to have success during our first round of IVF. Today our little one is thriving. I had an uncomplicated pregnancy and have HART to thank for the help in this journey of becoming proud parents to our little Angel!!

 

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