5 things to remember when battling infertility

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Today a friend of mine and I were talking about battling infertility. It is no secret that I struggled with infertility. Thankfully, through many prayers, many doctors and many infertility treatments, I now have four amazing children.

I know that not everyone will agree with this, but I think of fertility treatment and supplements to prepare the body for fertility in the same way that I think of a treatment to any other medical problem. (ex: you would treat a headache or diabetes, right? You would take an iron supplement to increase your iron intake? Why wouldn’t you treat infertility for your and your husband?) My take on it is that God made people intelligent enough to understand our bodies and help us to become the parents that HE had intended us to be!

My husband and I were ready to have a family and seeking medical intervention was a step that we took. It may not be for everyone, but it worked for us and I am grateful every time that I look at our children.

(This one melts my heart – it’s from when our daughter was born) 

PS- in case you are wondering, the problem for us ended up being my bicornuate uterus. It was causing my body to NEVER ovulate and it ended up being the cause of four high-risk, but success pregnancies (with one loss).

BEFORE TREATMENT… TRY THESE THINGS:

 

1- TALK TO YOUR HUSBAND.

Now that research shows the male factor (in conception) is up to 50% in couples experiencing fertility issues, gone are the days when it’s solely the woman’s responsibility to prepare for a healthy conception! Men now have equal roles in the baby-planning process.

2- CHART YOUR TEMPERATURE.

I charted my internal temperature for a full year while trying to conceive our first son. While I couldn’t conceive this way, because I have a bircornuate uterus, it was helpful to understand my fertility cycle.

3- ADOPT A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE.

Healthy lifestyle behaviors such as making better eating choices, visiting the doctor, exercising, not smoking, limit alcohol, etc. can help you both prepare your bodies for conception.
4- TAKE YOUR SUPPLEMENTS.

I started taking prenatal vitamins as soon as I was ready to conceive. This means that I took them for a full year before I was pregnant. I would even suggest asking your husband to take a prenatal male fertility supplement, such as Proxeed® plus, to help give him that additional support from a nutritional perspective. Proxeed plus (you can find it here & use the coupon code sperm to get ten dollars off of your purchase) is a patented prenatal male fertility supplement with documented quantities of L-carnitine and Acetyl-L-carnitine; the Proxeed plus formulation contains about three to four times more carnitine than other men’s health supplements.

5- EAT THE RIGHT FOODS.

You need to prepare your body to carry a child, so eat the right foods! Dairy, meat, fruits, vegetables.. these are all great choices! Your husband needs to do the same (prepare his body with vitamins and foods). Vitamins C and E, zinc and folic acid help improve sperm health. Sometimes it’s not always possible to have a balance of carnitines in the diet from sources like dairy or meat products. Using Proxeed plus gives the balance of L-carnitine and acetyl L-carnitine in a sufficient quantity of 3 grams a day.

A FEW MORE TIPS:

Watch what you eat – Eat only natural foods (no chemicals) if you can avoid them

Eat healthy foods to keep your weight in check

Work out (Not too hard!) Keep your heart rate low. I had to stay below 134. (high risk)

Avoid extra stress

When preparing to conceive it’s important men maintain a healthy lifestyle as well and support reproductive with a prenatal male fertility supplement like Proxeed plus.

Pray and try to relax.

OUR STORY:
I am going to share my road to becoming pregnant, in hopes that you will find that even through trials, the ending can be a wonderful one!

Our first son:
Our first son was conceived after over a year of trying. We tried on our own for about 9 months. I charted, took my temperature, followed everything that I should follow and nothing happened. I finally went to seek professional help and was put on Clomid. I did not have a bad experience on this, as many do, and it worked for me. After a little over a year from when we started trying, I became pregnant with our son.

At six weeks, I went in for an ultrasound and they could not find the baby. The pregnancy tests had been positive. The blood tests all proved it, too. They searched and searched for minutes (seemed like hours!)

When the ultrasound tech. could not find him, she called for the Doctor. For about six minutes, I waited, nervously, while the Doctor made her way down to our room. Finally, the Doctor came in and after a few minutes, they found him.

He was tucked up in the top of one side of my uterus. Yes- ONE side… I have a bicornuate uterus. They discovered this during that same ultrasound. Most women have a normal shaped uterus (almost like a triangle)… mine is shaped like a heart with the middle part being so far down that it was almost separated into two sides (so picture a heart with a line in the middle, almost to the bottom, but not quite.).

What does this mean? It means that the babies do not have much room to grow. Our kids each grew in a “horn”, or top side of the uterus, (which led to premature, tiny babies).

With our first son, I was told (at our first ultrasound) that his chance of survival was 5-15%. I was devastated! I went home and did a LOT of research (which drives my husband crazy!) and found that many women had given birth to healthy babies even with a bicornuate uterus and I was determined that mine would be the same.

Fast forward a few months.

At 7 months, 4 weeks, my Grandma called to check on me, after she had received a call from my Great Aunt. My Great Aunt had had a dream, the previous night, about me going into labor early. She was worried, so she called my Grandma.

I was doing great and was about to head out for dinner with my brother and his wife, to celebrate my first day off of bed rest, when she called. We had made it to almost 8 months! I told her that everything was great and that we were headed out to eat.

Four hours later… I went into premature labor. (I guess that is why she was having dreams about me- this wasn’t the first time that my Grandma and her sisters had felt something like this.)

So, that night, I went into labor. I was worried because of the bicornuate uterus, but everything went well. Our son was born the next night at 36 weeks (they tried to stop labor, but it only delayed labor by one day). He was born weighing 5 pounds.

Fast forward to his first birthday: We found out that we were pregnant with our second son. It was a complete surprise that we were able to become pregnant without intervention! We had planned for him and had been trying, but were excited & shocked to find that it happened without fertility treatment!

His pregnancy proved to be the scariest one. Not only did he have to grow in my bicornuate uterus, but he also had many issues of his own. He had intrauterine growth restriction, low amniotic fluid, single umbilical artery, prematurity, induction due to the IUGR (growth restriction) & low fluid…

He was born early, after being induced because he was no longer growing (lack of room in my small uterus) and weighed four pounds.

He was allergic to every food for about three years. (He had FPIES, we now realize). He vomited about 5-6 times a day and never ate or drank (he would go 4 days at a stretch without a bite of food). His percentiles drastically plummeted, but no one found anything wrong. I just recently (5 years later) found a diagnosis, but it is too late to help now. He stopped vomiting around 2 1/2 years of age…. thankfully!

He had very high muscle tone, known as hypertonicity, as a newborn and the doctors told us that he would probably not walk. They even told us at one point that he had suffered a stroke, but found that to be wrong, after several scans. (Imagine how scary that would be to hear that! Thankfully, it was a mistake.)

He has had 4 years of therapy (physical, occupational, play) and he is a complete miracle! He is amazing, smart, funny & wonderful today! (5 years old!) Most people don’t even know about his scary his ‘start’ to life.

I had uterine surgery before our next pregnancy. It didn’t work. They repeated it a second time… with success. They just expanded my uterus to be more “normal-sized” and it worked.

Our third son was hard to conceive. It took almost a year and more medicine. I would have loved to have tried The Stork OTC for him, because after having success our second time around, I feel like a little “push” in the right direction may have been all that we needed. Well- we kept on the medication regimen and this time it included shots to help me ovulate. We finally conceived him and we were so excited!

I had just one scare (they thought that he may have cystic fibrosis) but it turned out negative and he was born healthy and full term! He was our biggest baby at almost eight pounds!

Our fourth pregnancy – more fertility treatment followed by our miscarriage. 

Our fifth pregnancy & fourth baby:

Again we had to have fertility treatment and we were excited to welcome our bundle of joy earlier this year, just as healthy as ever! She was born at 6 pounds and is a very healthy beautiful baby girl- Allie.


So, there you have it! I have had my fair share of struggles when we were trying to conceive.

IN THE END, OUR FAMILY IS JUST WHAT I PRAYED IT WOULD BE….

Feel free to share your story or ask me anything. I am an open book, because I have been where you are.

Proxeed plus is a complete carnitine-based formula for male fertility that targets multiple sperm functions, including morphology, motility, concentration, count and linear projection. For more information, visit www.proxeedplus.com

This is a product-provided, sponsored conversation that contains affiliate links. I received a box of Proxeed plus for my own personal use. All opinions, text and experiences are my own. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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