Dealing with fertility is hard at the best of times. I could just about cope with IVF but if anything else went wrong in my life my emotions would bubble over and I could find myself having a mini meltdown with lots of tears. The 3 main factors that contribute to the stress of IVF are the financial side, the physical side and then there is the emotional side. Nobody will truly understand just how difficult it is unless you go through it yourself. Lots of couples are extremely private about their IVF journey which I completely respect. I have gotten to know a lot of these women through rollercoaster.ie. These women are warriors who have given me endless support. These women hold down full time jobs while being pumped full of drugs while they put smiles on their faces when there colleagues head off with their farewell balloons on maternity leave. These women are relentless and I will be forever thankful to them. I was always very open about doing fertility treatment but that is my personality type. I relied heavily on 3 of my cousins for support whom I call, ‘my 3 musketeers’. Every person who walks through the doors of a fertility clinic needs support and lets not forget our partners.
All throughout my journey I could never see the baby at the end. It's like having tunnel vision and never quite believing it will end in victory. After every round of IUI or IVF when it didn't work, my way of coping was by doing another round until finally it worked. For the two and a half years of treatment I found it hard to have hope but my support network got me through it. I would love to break down the barriers of the taboo of having fertility treatment and I feel it is important to give those who were in my shoes hope and knowing that they are not alone.
Christmas time is particularly difficult, another year without a baby. Friends and family arrive home from abroad and keeping the sunny side out is tough going. I would overeat and drink wine to get through the party season never fitting into nice party clothes cause my butt and stomach were too swollen to fit into anything nice. Christmas is meant to be magical and a time for miracles. For many this is not the case.
Casey was born on 30th Nov 2015 and my Auntie Frankie gave me a Christmas decoration for my baby's first Christmas. I will never forget the feeling when I opened the little red box. There was light at the end of the tunnel after all.
Waterstone Clinic will host a tree of hope this year for all the women who battled with fertility. If you would like to post a Christmas decoration to the Waterstone Clinic, they will display it on the Christmas tree of hope to represent your miracle baby, irrespective of where you had your fertility treatment. I would love to create a vision of hope for women this Christmas. A tree representing hope and knowing that you are not alone.