Sharing my journey with infertility brought community and healing
When I was younger, I always dreamed of being married, having kids, and having a career by the age of 25. I had never met her husband Jimmy either. Turning twenty five.
We got married in October 2018 and have been dating for almost 10 years. After Jimmy and I met, we really wanted to enjoy our relationship, so no conversation about building a house or getting married lasted two years with her. For me, I was determined to start a family before she turned 30. I’m not sure if that’s exactly what I want to do right now. ”
So after three years of our relationship, there was an interesting and very challenging point. We decided to take some space. We said we broke up and he said no but we were still in touch so we were still very close. He proposed to me soon after we got back together.
After we got married, we started talking in depth again about starting a family. For many people, the pandemic has not been a great time, but for me, working in the wellness, fitness, and health industry, it has been one of the most profitable. I decided to settle down in New York, but then I got a job in New York and moved here. We sold our house and deliberately tried to have a child in the middle of a move. All the way through our relationship to our marriage, we used protection. Because it was really important to be very intentional about when we started our family.
About 4-5 months into the trial, I started to frown on the process. For a long time you tried not to get pregnant, but the moment I decided I wanted to get pregnant, I knew it would be easy. Being part of different communities that have no discussion about the process of infertility can really leave you in the dark as to how difficult this can be for you. It was really green. I thought this was strange. We are really trying to do this thing and try to have kids and it doesn’t work. So, six months later, we went to see our first fertility specialist.
They told us the business’s first order would be a test. Standard tests, AMH, FSH, HSG and blood tests were performed. Jimmy provided a sperm sample and they tested it. We finally gave the thumbs up and they said we should both continue the process of trying to conceive on our own. I went through the process of making money. I tried different positions. I used a sex book that a friend gave me. We tried everything and had fun. We were on a trip and we got pregnant naturally for the first time on the way.
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We started planning how we were going to tell our loved ones and we were really excited. So when we lost our baby two months later, we were really, really devastated and devastated.
It was one of the most difficult things I have ever faced in my life. Most of them felt lonely, and I had never heard of anyone close to me who had experienced something like that. I felt a lot of shame around it. what’s wrong with your body? Why couldn’t I maintain my pregnancy? What went wrong? what did i do wrong? From that point on, I was never the same.
It was also difficult to have sex with my husband again. We felt a little distant from each other. Would we both like to do it again? Do we mentally and emotionally want to go through that process again? Are we sure this is what we really want? A year of ordeal lasted her nine months, but we had to ask ourselves some serious questions.
We navigated through it by relying on therapy and community and were eventually able to return to a level of intimacy with each other. I wanted to conceive naturally. I got frustrated a little early this time. It’s been three months since I started the process and I thought I might need a little help. That was when we went to another fertility clinic, the first time we heard about fertility support options, the first time we heard what a proper diagnosis for infertility was.
It was through this process that we learned about IUI, having only known about IVF. When a doctor suggested a minimally invasive and inexpensive process, we thought it might be a good option for us and started in May 2022.
We were on the IUI journey when we made the decision not to suffer in silence. I really wanted to pursue my own healing so strongly. Being a black woman with my voice has been very impactful. Because there was so much shame with infertility that it connected with so many other incredible Black women who at one point or another chose to suffer in silence. My healing journey has allowed me to emerge fully and authentically as myself, without having to worry about always smiling, always performing, always having joy for others. is not. My real life experience made me even more connected to the community. In fact, it was the most rewarding part of the trip.
After trying artificial insemination, we started discussing IVF in December. I did the withdrawal that month and it was really hard on my body. It was also a disappointing procedure as I got 13 eggs, but after 7 of them matured and were introduced into my husband’s sperm, only 5 of them showed signs of normal fertilization. We watched their numbers slowly decline. Then four of them stopped growing in the lab, so we ended up with one embryo left to wait for the genetic test results to come back. I didn’t. We got the test results and they said it had 46 perfectly normal chromosomes and they rated it as 4AB. I was excited because I thought I was getting the transfer day news.
But my primary care doctor, whom I trust, is very happy to have a woman of color as her primary care physician. She advised me to do her second retrieval before the transfer in order to bank at least two more of her embryos. But for my body and her husband’s mental space, we both decided the moment was too heavy and too much.We chose to take a break and really married. concentrated on Focus on each other, travel, and enjoy life. That’s where we landed after that process.
Friends and family have helped me stay joyful throughout this journey. I am just around a lot of people who bring me joy. Throughout this process it was also important to have support from people who had been through similar experiences. I became very close to the leader of the fertility group and developed close relationships with various other members.
Journaling and therapy are also important resources in this process. I love to read a lot and I love doing a lot of research, so educating myself through this process is so great. I think my biggest outlet was my new passion project, which is my podcast. Co-hosts with fellow lululemon ambassador and dear friend Alicia Ferguson. duality doseIt actually came out of my own personal experience on my fertility journey, and it’s been a wonderful gift I’ve received along the way.
As an optimist, I decided to lean into what has brought me joy on this journey. I truly believe that God is using me for a greater purpose, a greater purpose. I’m happy to be here, still have a life, and be able to enjoy it.
Family is really, really important to Jimmy and me. We approached all of this based on this idea of how we want to ideally build a family, but we also talked about other ways we could build this idea of a family together. We are now in a space where we really love each other. We are harvesting all the joy we have at home with so much hope in our hearts that our dreams of eventually becoming a larger family will come true.
Follow Deja on Instagram and check out her podcast, A Dose of Duality.