Sarah and Dane were ready to have kids; they’d known each other for 11 years, been married five and all their friends were getting pregnant. Everything seemed to be on track—until it wasn’t.
After undergoing treatment with Dr. Jeffrey Nelson, Sarah learned she had hyperprolactinemia, a condition where high levels of the hormone prolactin interfere with regular ovulation, and an unicornuate uterus, a rare condition where only half the uterus develops. Dane also had a low sperm count.
“We were saddened by the idea that we might not go through the ‘normal’ way of having a child, but we also realized everyone has a different path,” Sarah recalls. “Over time, we were able to cope, accept and be excited about our own journey.”
With the combination of factors working against them, Sarah and Dane immediately opted for IVF, which had been successful for other friends.
Their journey wasn’t easy, however. When their first cycle was unsuccessful, Dr. Nelson changed Sarah’s medications which resulted in nine viable embryos. Just one embryo was transferred into Sarah’s smaller uterus, and while she became pregnant, she and Dane were devastated when she miscarried at eight weeks.
Still, she says “Dr. Nelson and his staff were so helpful and comforting during that time. We felt like we were not going through the process alone.”
And despite their own circumstances, Sarah and Dane were always happy for others who didn’t have to struggle with infertility. “Some of our friends who were getting pregnant read articles about how to tell us the news, so we wouldn’t be left out and could share in their joy. I was actually grateful for that.
Through the losses, failed cycles and others’ joy, Sarah and Dane managed to regroup after each challenge, talking to each other and taking breaks from treatment. Eventually, they went back to Dr. Nelson, who performed a frozen embryo transfer that resulted in pregnancy and their beautiful daughter Saydi.
“Yes, we were frustrated and sad at times,” Sarah recalls. “But we’re grateful that IVF gave us the opportunity to have our family.”