Surviving infertility is hard-hitting emotionally, especially during the holidays. This year we hung our stockings by the chimney with care in hopes that our baby’s stocking would be there next year. I purposely ordered a few extra stockings so our future little-one’s would match ours. But there’s always that voice in the back of my mind asking ‘what if that day never comes?’
There is so much joy experienced through children during the holidays and Christmas always makes me reflect on my own childhood. It’s exciting to think about creating traditions of our own when we are able to start a family. Unfortunately this is our 4th Christmas struggling to keep the dream alive with infertility.
You’re reading this and are probably thinking, ‘Wow, how does she even have any hope left? 4 years.’ It’s been a journey, not an easy one. I’ve learned so much about myself and I’m thankful to have other strong positive women in my corner… this looks like friends across the country having a heart to heart via phone and friends where I cry in the middle of a restaurant eating avocado toast (I know who cries when there’s avocado toast? But thank you Stef <3).
Kidding aside, surviving infertility has been hard. Really hard. I have dreams of little tiny fingers and toes, baby snuggles, the magical moment of hearing our baby’s heartbeat and dreaming of what it would be like to be pregnant. Unfortunately month after month those dreams are crushed. I wonder if having hope is just being foolish, but hope is all I have and it’s a powerful thing.
I do have a beautiful life that I’m thankful for. I have a loving husband, I work for a great company that prioritizes family and health, and I have two furry knucklehead dogs that make me laugh daily. I’m fortunate and thankful to have the life I’ve been given.
This doesn’t change the fact that I long for a little human to call our own every Christmas and be a mom for the first time. This doesn’t seem extreme. Right? I have friends that are on lap 3 or 4. Come on, I’m just asking for one, Santa.
Having a conversation about infertility can be awkward, putting it out there means I don’t know if who I tell will bring the conversation up when I’m not having a good day or if they’ll share that information with others. There are definitely some friends that can relate better than others, but I know one in eight women have been on this journey or are currently working on surviving infertility right alongside me.
What’s so wonderful about Stork, is it gives couples a sense of empowerment by offering an affordable, drug free option on the fertility journey. There may be sticker shock at first but when you compare it to the cost, and invasiveness of IUI, as well as taking time off from work for appointments, Stork is a great option.
A year and a half ago my husband and I visited a fertility specialist. 4 appointments later we were given the label “unexplained infertility.” i.e. we don’t know what is wrong but you’re not making babies. When reviewing lab work I noted that my TSH was out of range to conceive.
My fertility specialist swept it under the rug, recommending IUI and if I was in fact right we could adjust thyroid medication while pregnant. I didn’t go back to her (call me crazy but pregnancy isn’t the time to experiment with dosing) and had my general practitioner do a full thyroid panel which she had refused to do. I found that I have Hashimoto’s/hypothyroidism. I started medication about 6 months ago and my levels are finally on track and I feel so much better.
I opt for the natural route in most cases, but I live a healthy lifestyle already and getting quick results after such a long fertility battle was what I needed for my sanity. I also discovered that my husband and I have the MTHFR gene, which essentially means that B-9 supplements need to be folate, not its synthetic form which is folic acid (found in a lot of prenatals).
I knew about the MTHFR gene prior to getting help from a fertility specialist but again when I brought this up at my appointment I was told studies were found to be inconclusive. My hope is that by addressing my gluten intolerance, MTHFR gene and Hashimoto’s in combination with Stork will result in a positive pregnancy test!
That being said, avoiding gluten, and trying to cut out dairy, alcohol, caffeine, sugar and other inflammatory foods as much as possible becomes difficult during the holidays when food labels aren’t readily available. On top of hearing “you’re next” when holding a niece or nephew, or “have you guys started thinking about a family of your own?”
As a married woman that just turned thirty I am constantly asked by family, friends and strangers when I plan to start a family… it’s truly shocking how that seems to be an appropriate group conversation piece. On the off chance that I’m not thinking about it myself, I get to be reminded how I’m failing so miserably (Read: Please be kind and don’t question this holiday season).
It’s been a long journey, but honestly; hearing about STORK OTC, an at home infertility option comparable to IUI was a weight lifted off my shoulders! I started to move from despair to hope again. Needless to say I’m really excited to try Stork OTC after working on our health, we are hoping and praying to be able to hang a stocking for our little-one next Christmas.
We each have our own personal battles, but being vulnerable enough to share creates so much strength instead of isolation. I would like to thank all the amazing people in my life that have been there through this journey. Love and support is where it’s at. Thank you friends and family! Thank you Stork for pushing to give us an OTC option and most importantly hope!
If you’re looking for a little extra hope this holiday season, you can find Stork OTC at Target (next to the ovulation kits in the Family Planning section) and most other major retailers, as well as online at www.storkotc.com.
Hi I’m Kelly. I work from home for one of the largest professional services firms in the world. I love traveling to new places, making plant based food and landscaping our yard but I mostly enjoy spending time with my husband and our two dogs.
This is a sponsored conversation from Mums the Word Network and The Stork OTC. All opinions are my own.