I’m a goal setter. As a totally Type A personality and journalist by trade, setting objectives and meeting deadlines are kind of my thing. So when I had decided I was officially ready to become a mom, I was officially ready for it to happen on my terms.
My husband, Nick, and I got married in July 2013, with plans to enjoy marriage, travel, buy a house, get a dog (Josie) and ease into life together with kids coming on our agenda. That all went according to plan: we were thriving in our lives together and independently, and after an incredible trip to France, we were ready and excited to start down the challenging but amazing path of parenthood together.
However, when it came to starting a family, our terms were not met as easily as we had hoped. After trying to conceive naturally for 15 months – attempting everything from maca root capsules and bicycle kicks to ovulation strips and remaining flat for 10 minutes after sex – we decided to step it up and give science a go.
We went a holistic route before diving into any doctor-led treatments, from hundreds of dollars spent on supplements to Mayan fertility rituals (not kidding) and all the acupuncture (which is wonderful, regardless). EVERYONE had recommendations and advice, all of which was appreciated but didn’t actually help. We finally decided to give IUI a go and after four attempts that did not work, we gave ourselves a couple months to breathe. Picking back up in early 2018, we tried IUI one more time and after that didn’t take, we decided to jump on board with a fertility specialist and get real.
We did the usually testing and found that I was working with a lower ovarian reserve – as in my supply of quality eggs were about 50% less than it should have been for my age. Considering our odds were reduced by half, we felt that science was our best chance at getting pregnant and having a healthy baby.
In June 2018, I started on my medical protocol, taking estrogen and progesterone as well as a follicle stimulating hormone and a human menopausal gonadotropin – all of which I still don’t quite understand what they did for the process, just that I took way too many of them via a shot to my gut or upper butt.
After a few weeks of that treatment, we went in to see what kind of follicle growth we had to work with and we were lucky to have six follicles, followed by six eggs that each fertilized, resulting in four mature embryos in the end. Unfortunately, my progesterone was showing a bit high so we had to go through another FET cycle before doing the transplant – which meant another eight weeks of waiting.
Finally, our time came, my body was ready and we did the transfer in the end of August and after 10 LONG DAYS, we found out we were pregnant. Finally, our time came and we were having a baby.
38 weeks after that, Arlo Nathan James came into this world – in an unplanned c-section, because getting a baby in there was so easy, let’s make the getting out simple as well! – and our lives are forever changed. He’s healthy, happy and loves his mama, and we have science to thank for that.