Why do you want to share your story?
I want other patients to know that they are not alone. I also want to give patients hope along this tough journey.
What was your diagnosis?
I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) after blood work and an ultrasound. It can be hard to not blame yourself when diagnosed as being the partner with the diagnosis getting in the way of creating your family.
What treatment did you undergo?
I started at Fertility Centers of Illinois with my husband by doing the Fertility Awareness Checkup. We had already been trying unsuccessfully on our own and then in coordination with my PCP. It was an inexpensive option that did not require going through insurance with the hurdles of pre-existing conditions. After one visit, we had information to plan the next steps.
We then did medicated IUI cycles. After two cycles, we were successful in conceiving twins! Unfortunately, this was not the end of the road that we had hoped as they passed away due to prematurity with my cervical insufficiency (CI). This second diagnosis was even harder after all we had been through, but with a transabdominal cerclage (TAC), more IUIs, and a surprise—we were able to carry our rainbow baby to term!
What helped you get through treatment?
I was lucky to have support from family and friends. I also learned more about infertility support through Fertility Centers of Illinois’ free patient education events and then started services at Pulling Down the Moon. I was able to have nutrition and supplement support to manage my PCOS for my health, as well as, infertility. I also loved the “Yoga for Fertility” as this was an outlet to de-stress my mind and body. Unexpectedly, it created a support group of women going through the same process.
Can you tell us about your little miracle?
Our little guy is now a toddler! Gavin is cute, funny, and the light of our lives! We are so thankful to everyone that helped us along the way on this journey to our family.
Why did you trust FCI?
Initially, we were referred by our insurance to Fertility Centers of Illinois as a trusted provider. We continued with FCI due to documented success rates and patient care. Our nurse, J, was with us throughout our journey and celebrated with me when we finally got the positive test results with our rainbow baby!
Which physician treated you and what were your experiences with them?
We worked with Dr. Kaplan. He took the time to answer our questions and listen to our concerns. He developed a treatment plan that worked for us and supported care that integrated holistic health options.
What words of hope do you have for others?
Take time for self-care, spend time with your partner outside of trying to conceive, and talk to others. When you share your story, you would be surprised how many others open up about their own journey!
Michelle is a counselor, wife, and mother who has always been motivated to help people. Michelle went from being a patient to a part-time employee at Pulling Down the Moon and now works full-time as the Office Manager where she gets to continue to help women struggling with infertility and loss. Stop anytime for a cup of tea, learn more about other success stories, and read her mom blog feature from the perspective of a former fertility patient at: pullingdownthemoon.com/blog.aspx.