I have visited this site religiously for over 4 years. Having read people's posts about having had more symptoms during the BFN months and not believing it - I can say for me it was true. No sickness, no dizziness, mild cramps, but IVF procedures and progesterone cream will do that for you. On our successful round of IVF (Fourth Attempt - age 37) I could not have been more surprised. I am now 20 weeks pregnant and only just allowing myself to post here.
I had suffered from Adrenal Burnout about six months after we first started TTC. Having gone from running the successful multinational company I had founded six years before - overnight I suddenly struggled to do simple things like brush my hair without needing to rest. I now doubt our infertility was 100% caused by burnout, but I'm sure it didn't help - as I struggled to get my health back on track and slowly figure out how to run the business without my usual invincibility.
Three years later, still no sign of pregnancy and after ovulation tracking for three months we were advised to move onto IVF. As a result of this - I also made the tough decision to step back from my business - selling my stake - and taking six months out to give IVF the best shot I could. It was tough financially and emotionally, but I feel very blessed that we had that option open to us. I always imagined I would be one of those wonder women, pregnant, jumping on and off planes and still kicking ass in the business world. Once the decision was made I tried really hard not to feel like I had failed - my health, my business, my husband and myself - by not being some kind of fertile warrior. As it turned out, the space that decision secured was sacred and important to me in many ways.
On our first round of IVF, my body seemed to thrive on the challenge of 'egg overdrive' - delivering 30 follicles and 11 eggs. Two of which made it to Day 5, meaning we had one to transfer and one to freeze. As soon as I could I POAS'd and got our very first positive result. The happiness was short lived as two days later I started struggling to breathe, apparently I had overstimulated - meaning I now had fluid on my lungs and my blood was dangerously thick. After starting a course of blood thiners it obviously became all too much for our little one and we lost the pregnancy.
From there it seemed nothing went according to plan for the next two cycles, from hiding ovaries, disappearing hormones, to half my eggs deciding to disintegrate overnight.
Finally - round four - we got our next BFP, two hours before I was due to fly home to London for a month. There is definitely nothing like comparing today and yesterday's pee stick results with your 67 year old Father!
As for symptoms? In the 2ww there were none. At about 5 weeks I was unusually tired and at 7 weeks morning sickness kicked in as a permanent feeling of being seasick.
I'm writing this post because I promised myself I would - even if its taken me until 20 weeks to finally feel ready. Also to give hope to those going through IVF or Adrenal issues. These were the two periods of my life where I felt the most isolated and hopeless - despite being surrounded by incredible support. When you get through the other side, and I promise that you will get there, you will have known more bravery, resilience and commitment than you knew you had - and you will know without a shadow of a doubt how brave you can be. Tired, swollen, frightened, sad, angry, and at times completely desperate - but always brave enough to keep going.
My love and support to all those walking this path x