"My journey began at the end of 2016. I remember walking into my initial fertility appointment so excited, thinking I was only going to need a little help to have a baby. Never did I expect that the next 3 years of my life would be one hell of a storm.
I was diagnosed with a blocked tube and a balanced translocation. I had never even heard of a balanced translocation and was told to speak to a genetic counselor. The genetic counselor told me it’s a condition in which part of a chromosome has broken off and reattached in another location. It increases the risk of recurrent miscarriage. Because of this, I went straight to IVF with PGD testing.
I had severe anxiety throughout the whole IVF process. There was so much waiting. Those early morning monitoring appointments were so lonely, even in the crowded waiting room. Each loss was devastating in their own way. I blamed myself. I felt numb. I thought my rainbow would never come. But I had an amazing support system. My husband stayed positive for the both of us. He challenged the doctors and always asked the tough questions. We are a team and it made my marriage stronger. My mom and sister were always there to listen, be my shoulders to cry on, and cheer me on. My nieces brought me so much joy and only made me yearn for a baby that much more. I couldn’t have gotten through this without my family.
After 4 egg retrievals, multiple surgeries, hundreds of shots, 6 frozen embryo transfers, and 2 losses, I finally gave birth to my rainbow in March 2020. The funniest, sweetest, most perfect little girl. To me the wait was worth it.
Infertility changed me. It made me stronger but more anxious. I learned how important it is to be your own advocate. Push for additional testing! No question is stupid! Research! You know your own body better than anybody.
This past May, I suffered my 3rd loss. I have one embryo left and am hopeful with a little help from science and a whole lot of love, I will get the chance of a second rainbow."
I had so much fun talking with and photographing Lauren and her Little Lady in Red. Her daughter was all smiles, even after gently flipping off of the chair! She was not shy of the camera and had me laughing as I tried to catch her big smile! I think she knew just how special this photo shoot was to her Mama and I hope she loves looking back at these photos years from now. Also, let's send Lauren all the sticky baby dust we can muster for whenever she transfers her last em-baby!
Thank you for sharing your story, Lauren.