I believe in miracles. If you had asked me two years ago today, May 26, 2015, if I believed in miracles, my answer would have been a firm no. But on May 26, 2016, a tiny miracle appeared in my life and changed me forever.
Until today I have been very private with the struggles that my husband and I faced with infertility. Today I’m ready to share my story, in the hopes it can inspire even just one couple who still hope to bring a baby home. Mine is not the typical story that you hear because our infertility challenges only began after we had two healthy children.
Some people may react with shock, anger or confusion, wondering how a couple with a so-called “million-dollar” family needed to put themselves through what we did just to have a third child. But we knew, after our first miscarriage in 2011, that something was missing in our life. We knew our family was not complete and we were determined to go to the ends of the earth to bring another child into the world.
After another miscarriage in the spring of 2012 we decided, with the guidance and careful advice of our fertility specialist, to try a round of IVF. I didn’t respond well to the drugs, it cost us a lot of money, but we were excited to see a positive pregnancy test two weeks after two embryos were implanted. I miscarried four days later.
I was devastated and felt lost. I also felt that I was let down by the fertility clinic I trusted after a senior technician, during a follow-up ultrasound, looked at me and told me I should just enjoy the two children I had because many women at this clinic weren’t even lucky enough to have one child.
I went home feeling guilty about my despair, that I had my two young children at home to hug and kiss and give me love every day while so many women would give everything they had for just one child. I feel for those women every day, but I was so angry that someone could look at me and make me feel ashamed for wanting another child.
We took a fertility break for a while, went to another specialist who gave us hope and then had two more miscarriages. By early 2015 we didn’t know if we would ever be able to complete our family with a third child. Late that winter my aunt, who faced infertility and the devastating loss of a baby just after he was born, asked me a question that was game changing for me: Imagine yourself in ten years, when you probably can no longer have more children. Are you satisfied with everything you have done to have a third child or do you feel you need to keep trying?
My husband and I immediately knew the answer – we weren’t satisfied, and we decided to give it one more try. If one more round of IVF failed then we knew we tried everything and could move forward comfortably with life.
After much reflection and hours and hours of conversations into the night, my husband and I returned to our original fertility specialist. He admitted that after every test he and his team had done over the past four years they could find nothing wrong with me, but with my history and the fact that I was 38 years old he was honest that our chances of success were low. I admired his frankness and we went ahead. The IVF failed, and by the end of the summer we decided that we had done everything we could and that our family was complete.
Just when you feel it’s over, when you have moved on and accepted defeat and the stress that goes with it, a miracle can happen. When I found out I was pregnant in the fall of 2015 I didn’t believe it was real. I cried, with my sister by my side, when I saw the baby, with her strong heart-beat, at 8 weeks in utero, and every week after.
On May 26, 2016, our tiny miracle was born. We named her Nessa, the Hebrew word for miracle, to remind us every day of the miracle she gave us, that she filled the missing piece and completed our family.
Happy first birthday Nessa, our tiny miracle.