Shauntell & Nick’s Story: Never Give Up On Your Journey

I often hear people saying “never give up,” especially to those going through infertility.  I was one of those on the receiving end of that phrase for so many years.

But, I am here to tell you that those words ring true for me and my husband in our long journey to have a family.  Had we given up all those years ago, we would not be the family of four we are today.

My husband Nick and I started trying to get pregnant soon after we married. After trying on our own for over a year with no success, I made an appointment with my gynecologist who diagnosed me with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (better known as PCOS).  As luck would have it, I was not ovulating on my own.  We tried to stimulate ovulation but I still did not get pregnant.  At that point, my doctor suggested we see an Infertility Specialist and we scheduled our first appointment with Dr. Storment.  I was ecstatic.  I just knew I would get pregnant right away.  I was so wrong!  Six years and 5 IUI’s later, I still was not pregnant.

I was devastated.  Everyone around me seemed to be pregnant, even the ones that didn’t want children.  Family members kept asking, “when are you going to have a baby”?  “You better hurry up, you’re not getting any younger!”

It was the hardest thing I was ever faced with. All I knew was I wanted to have a baby.

After taking a break for a year, we decided IVF would be our next step.  In January of 2007, we started our very first IVF cycle.  And so the fun began…financial consultations, daily injections, lab work, ultrasounds, etc.  I was a nervous wreck.  I ended up having a very successful retrieval and the next day the lab called to report that several of my eggs had fertilized.  I was over the moon with excitement!  But by that afternoon I was so sick.  My ovaries had hyperstimulated causing me much pain and discomfort.  I was certain the cycle would be cancelled.  Much to my surprise, I felt much better the second day and we were able to move on with the transfer.

Then, the “two week wait” felt like 2 years!   I cried the entire way to Dr. Storment’s office on pregnancy test day because I just knew it hadn’t worked.  I didn’t feel pregnant.  A few hours later, Dr. Storment called me with the good news. I was pregnant!!!

We welcomed our beautiful baby girl, Alli Morgan nine months later and she was absolutely perfect.  Our dream had finally come true.  As Alli got older, she began asking for a sibling.  She would actually pray every night for a baby brother or sister.  It broke my heart knowing how difficult it was to have her and that I probably would never be able to give her the sibling she desired.

A month after Alli’s 6th Birthday, we decided to give IVF another try.  I again was at extremely high risk for hyperstimulation.  But Dr. Storment adjusted my meds and I began pumping the fluids.  I drank so much I thought I was going to explode.  The next set of labs showed much improvement so I got the “all clear” to move on with the cycle.  Several eggs were retrieved and I had no hyperstimulation!  I felt great! We transferred my embryos and two weeks later, I got the call that I was pregnant again!

Despite the normal pregnancy aches and pains, I had a great pregnancy and found out I was expecting a baby boy!  But three weeks before my due date, I started bleeding heavily.  I went to the hospital to be monitored, thinking all would turn out fine.  Two hours later I was being rushed in to surgery for an emergency C-section. My placenta was detaching. My husband was working 3 hours away and I was unable to get in touch with family members on time, so I was braving it all alone. Everything happened so fast, I didn’t have much time to freak out…which was a good thing.  My main concern was my baby’s health.  In just a few minutes, I heard his cry.  Luke Ryan had made his entrance into the world perfectly healthy.

My family is now complete with a son and daughter of our very own.  And as I close the chapter of infertility in my life, I cannot help but be thankful for all that Dr. Storment has done for me and my family.  We are truly blessed and I am so happy that we never gave up.

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