Infertility Warrior: Erin

Today on the blog I want to introduce you to our infertility warrior Erin. Erin is the mom to her beautiful baby girl Scottie, born via Surrogate. I am so honored to have her here today to tell her story.

 Q: Tell us a little about your infertility journey.
          We began trying for kids when we got married in 2012. I was tracking my cycles but nothing was working. In 2013, after a routine pap smear, my OB found I had precancerous cells on my cervis to I had a LEEP to remove them. Later in 2013, I had laparoscopic surgery to remove my left Fallopian tube because it had become infected and died at some point. After recovering, we went through three unsuccessful months on Clomid. With no luck, we saw a fertility doctor. In May 2014, we tried three months of IUIs – again, nothing. So we moved to IVF. From November 2014 to August 2017, my husband and I would go through nine IVF transfers with fifteen embryos, five egg retrievals and six miscarriages. During this time, we also lost my dad, Scott, very unexpectedly to a short cancer diagnosis in March 2015 – it was then that my husband and I knew our future child would be named, Scottie, regardless of gender. Around our fourth loss, one of my best friends saw my struggles and offered to be our gestational carrier/surrogate. We took her up on her offer late 2017. In January 2018, we transferred two embryos in our surrogate, Rachel. She gave birth to our rainbow baby daughter, Scottie, on September 19, 2018 – the same birthday as my dad. It was meant to be and she is truly our rainbow after the storm.

Q: What has been the hardest part?
          Man, so many hard parts between literally having no guarantees that you might never become a mom and watching those around having children, that you so badly want – but I would say the hardest part for me was feeling like I was failing my husband and not being able to give him the child we both wanted so badly.

Q: What has been the best part?
          By far, the best part, was going public with our journey. We have been able to raise awareness for infertility and pregnancy loss, but also the incredible warriors we have met along our journey to three has filled my heart with so much joy.

Q: Where are you now on this journey?
          We are enjoying our life with our daughter Scottie, who is now 19 months old! We have four frozen embryos, two are “normal” and two are “mosaic” – as much as I’d love nothing more than to give Scottie a sibling, I’m just not sure it’s in the cards for us. Surrogacy cost us $40K and that was still with our friend taking no money from us to carry her. We have thought about trying again with my body, but I’m not sure I can go there again – physically, emotionally or mentally. I guess only time will tell!

Q: What is one thing people kept/keep saying or asking during your journey you wish they wouldn’t have?
          We heard countless times “just relax” or “you’re still young yet” – the best thing you can do for those that you know are struggling is to just be there with them. Truly think about what you are saying to them – you may think it’s good advice, but it may end up hurting them more.

Q: Anything you have learned that you would like to pass along?
          Be your own advocate! This is so important. With all my losses, we did have some testing done from our clinic, but I knew there was more going on so we pushed to see a reproductive immunologist. You know your body the best of anyone, so don’t be afraid to speak up!

Q: Anyone or anything that has inspired you along your journey?
          Truly, the incredible women in the TTC community on Instagram. They are strong, fearless women and are warriors.

Q: Any resources or other accounts you would like to share that you found helpful during or after your journey?
          @wearerobyn @resolveorg and @fertiliyiq are all excellent resources for those going through infertility

Q: Where can people find out more about you? (Instagram, Facebook)
          Instagram: @journeytothree_ivf

This story was submitted to The Infertility Chronicles.
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