Well after a whirlwind 5 months, I’ve managed to get finger to keypad and start writing again and boy does it feel good! In many ways I feel like I’m navigating a totally new battlefield; the same but different, with the additional major prize of a baby in my arms (or sling or pram or wherever he will actually sleep!) It’s been crazy, totally not what I expected and the hardest 5 months of my life but obviously rewarding in ways that are unimaginable.
Waiting 4 years for something and then have it arrive overnight and turn your world upside down and inside out is overwhelming. You think you’d have time to prepare but it doesn’t matter how many courses you go on or books you read nothing can prepare you for what a baby brings to your life; the wonder, the responsibility. The sheer enormity that looking after a baby entails cannot be learned, it can only be experienced, much like the prickly road of infertility itself.
As I was walking around the park for the hundredth time this week, I started reflecting on the journey we’ve taken to get here and how many hundreds of people have been involved in getting us to this place of parenthood…
I was overjoyed to receive a call from my consultant about 4 weeks after Noah was born and it was incredible to speak to him, to thank him and cry to him through tears of exhaustion, joy and worry– he had played such a major part in bringing Noah to life and it would be impossible to quantify the impact that so many people have had on us over the past 4 years so I’ve decided to dedicate my first post back in the game to the many professionals at the top of theirs who lend their lives to helping us achieve our dreams; the baby makers.
The baby makers come from all different directions; whether it’s your IVF consultant, your acupuncturist, or your counsellor, they’re the people who help you find the strength to carry on, give you faith and reassurance when you think all is lost and use their expertise to create life and hope.
For me, the list of people who’ve contributed to bringing Noah into the world is immense but I think the IVF clinic and my NHS doctors have had the biggest influence – I remember walking into my first appointment 3 years ago, unsure where it would lead us, or how many times I would have to walk through that door, whether I was mentally strong enough to go through the rigmarole of treatment and whether we would ever hold our baby in our arms.
The very first consultant I saw when I was diagnosed with endometriosis was Alison –a very impressive lady, dictaphone in hand she cut to the point straightaway: “don’t wait too long to have children” she said to a terrified single girl in her late 20’s…the thought of children hadn’t even crossed my mind, I was too busy trying to sort my love life, career and living situation out!
Alison remained a rock of honesty, strength and reassurance for 4 years, often seeing me for free and always providing helpful insight and hope that we would get there if we just kept going.
I remember seeing her on the tube once and she asked how I was getting on: “not there yet” I replied, and she told me I was in the best hands. She was right.
Choosing your IVF clinic is a very daunting exercise, but at some point, if you’re lucky you just speak to someone who instils trust in you and you think, right I’m sticking here. That’s how I felt about my clinic – a small practise in London with excellent results for holistic care. They could not do enough for us there and they knew all their patients by name from the receptionist, to the nurses to the consultant, we really felt respected and nurtured by them. There’s really nothing like a nurse taking you into a room when you’ve received some bad news and putting a hand on your shoulder and a tissue in your hand while she gives you some reassuring words.
So, here it is, a huge thank you to all the healthcare professionals who have helped and who are helping us all along this rocky journey. You don’t know how important your kind words and dedication to your profession are to us.
Who do you want to thank for helping you through your fertility journey so far? What are you most amazed by when meeting your healthcare professionals? Wherever you are on your fertility path, I’d love to hear from you!