Sian shares her story about ICSI infertility treatment and how she always wanted four children and found that she couldn’t even have one. After two unsuccessful ICSI treatments it was make or break time.
SIAN: ‘Our prayers were answered… in more ways than one!
Due to my emotional state and our rapidly diminishing finances, we decided to have our third and final go. If it didn’t work this time, we were going to sell up, resign from our jobs and travel the world – it sounded like the next best thing to having children!
All about me…
Job: Full time mum and supply teacher
Significant others: Husband Harry, 35, Toby and Joseph, born July 2015
Type of treatment: ICSI, then conceived naturally
Trying for: 5 years
Sian’s Full Story about her ICSI treatment
Our story begins in March 2000, when Harry and I were married. We had planned to start a family soon after as we fancied the idea of having four children. After an unsuccessful year, I underwent a laparoscopy and various blood tests. Although I had irregular periods and a hormonal imbalance, there was no reason why I shouldn’t conceive naturally.
Harry then went for tests and it was these that highlighted the problem. To make things worse, we also learnt that IVF wasn’t an option. At this point it felt as if our whole world had fallen apart. We both love children (I am a primary school teacher) and we desperately wanted some of our own.
Harry took the news better than I did. He remained positive about the future, whereas I moped about feeling bitter and resentful. All my friends were having babies and they all fell pregnant so easily. It wasn’t fair. I cried every time I saw a newborn baby and was jealous of all those mums who stayed at home to bring up their children.
I had to keep making excuses every time we were invited to a christening, as I really couldn’t face these occasions.
No one understood the pain I was feeling inside.
I began to feel more hopeful when I met up with a girl with similar problems to mine. She was very open and talked me through the ICSI treatment she was having. It helped me be more open with my feelings, and with all the information she gave me I soon became quite knowledgeable about the latest advances in infertility treatment.
After my friend gave birth to a beautiful healthy boy, Harry and I talked about having a go at ICSI. We knew we’d have to fund it ourselves, so during a school break, we found a private clinic. We were told about the success rates and problems, but my friend had success first time round, so why shouldn’t we?
Gradually I became a lot more positive about the future and we were delighted to become Godparents to our friend’s ICSI baby. I even managed to stand at the front of the church without bawling my eyes out!
The day I started the nasal sprays in August 2000 was a big day for me. I dreaded the injections, but Harry was a great support. I was glad to get back to school as working really took my mind off things.
Dreading the egg collection
We were both dreading the day of egg collection, particularly as I make a terrible patient and have a very low pain threshold – but I knew I was doing it for good reason.
Harry and I prayed for success and God gave us great inner peace, but although we had three good embryos implanted, I was devastated two weeks later when the test showed a negative result and the bleeding started.
Six months later I’d overcome the physical and emotional trauma of the failure and felt ready to try again. This time, my family and a colleague knew and were all incredibly supportive. Just as before, my body responded like textbook, with three A grade embryos implanted, and three frozen. But again, devastation came two weeks later. I felt like throwing everything in and running away.
Due to my emotional state and our rapidly diminishing finances, we decided to have one final attempt at ICSI. If it didn’t work this time, we were going to sell the house, resign from our jobs and travel the world – it sounded like the next best thing to having children! It was make or break time.
This time, my treatment was even better than before with three embryos inserted and six frozen. The two-week wait was like torture, and when the time came to test, I simply couldn’t face it.
The clinic phoned me to remind me to test, and in the end Harry did it for me. I didn’t believe him when he shouted ‘You’re going to be a mummy!’ From then on I had such a mixture of emotions I was excited and scared that it wouldn’t work.
Our First Scan after ICSI
Our first scan at seven and a half weeks was to confirm the pregnancy and find out how many babies we were expecting. We’d prayed for twins, so you can imagine how delighted we were to see two little heartbeats on the screen.
Once into the second trimester, I started to relax and really enjoy my pregnancy. Then on 18th July 2015, I went in for my elective caesarean and our two beautiful boys, James and Timothy, were born.
I love being a mummy more than any job I’ve ever had and I thank God each day for our precious miracles. They really are a blessing. We had 120 guests at their dedication in January – a bigger celebration than our wedding!
You’d think my story would end here, but not just yet. In November last year I discovered that I was pregnant again – completely naturally. Of course, Harry and I are extremely delighted and are looking forward to our new addition in June. I know it’ll be tough looking after three children under the age of two, but I believe that God doesn’t give us more than we can cope with.
And maybe we will have our four children after all!