Being foster parents inspired Jessi and Millie to become parents themselves

 

Jessi and Millie are committed eco-warriors and beach lovers living in Sydney’s northern beaches, and have now embarked on an exciting journey with Rainbow Fertility to grow their family. But like many, their fertility journey has taken some time and had its ups and downs. Here is their story.

 

Deciding to start our own family

Millie and Jessi decided they wanted to start their own family about four years ago when they were temporary foster parents. As interim carers, they fostered a child for two years (who they are still close to today), but they eventually realised they weren’t creating a long-term family for themselves and it was time they did.

So as soon as they were married in February 2019, they felt ready to start their own pregnancy journey. Undergoing some preliminary health tests at their local hospital they discovered Millie had a dermoid tumour that needed urgent removal.

Once this surgery was completed the doctors then discovered Millie had significant endometriosis and so she underwent laparoscopy surgery to have this removed.

By this time they had found their sperm donor (known) and tried some home insemination methods which ended with one miscarriage and six further unsuccessful attempts.

At this point Jessi and Millie both agreed it was time to seek professional advice and met with Dr Devora Lieberman at Rainbow Fertility.

Dr Lieberman then guided them through the assisted fertility process and treatment options.

Millie said they were given information on a range of scenarios and felt empowered with plenty of information so they could manage their own feelings and expectations along the way.

It was then time to decide who would carry the pregnancy. Millie said while they are both maternal, she had always wanted to carry a pregnancy, so they decided she would use her own egg and carry the pregnancy, while Jessi would be the pillar of strength to lean on.

 

In Millie’s own words: Milestones of their journey

First Injections

I was terrified about the injections. I was scared we would do them incorrectly, it would hurt or I would faint! Thankfully, they were actually nowhere near as bad, and for the most part I didn’t even feel them going in. They were easy to operate …perhaps due to the nurse’s explanation and support. To be honest they ended up being the least of my concerns!

 

Day 10 Scan

I think I was really anxious going into this scan. I was so worried there would be hardly any follicles. But coming out of the scan I felt reassured and confident as we had plenty of healthy follicles. Yay!

 

Egg Retrieval

The process was actually really beautiful! I didn’t realise I would be awake for the whole thing, but I really liked it, as I got to see (on the monitor) the eggs being discovered and then collected. Amazing!

It was a quick recovery and completely painless. The care from the staff really helped.

The eggs were then placed together with our donor sperm in the IVF laboratory and five fertilised which was truly incredible. At Day 3 they were all still looking strong and by the day of the transfer the clinic called to advise that four had become Grade 1 embryos. Happy Days!

 

Embryo Transfer

The embryo transfer was kind of really quick and painless. We let everyone know via our Instagram that we had ‘an embryo on board’ and we asked all our followers that “It would mean a lot to us if you could pray to whoever you believe in… God, Parvati, Mother Nature or Taylor Swift that this baby sticks in here and makes a home for the next 9 months”. 

During the two-week wait to see if the embryo had taken and was growing, we tried to carry on our days as normal. But to be honest, it felt like the longest two weeks ever… more like two years! Every day I would make myself so busy to distract myself.

 

Pregnancy Test

Today was the day we would find out. I already thought I was kind of getting symptoms, but that can be mind of matter sometimes.

So I went in the morning to have the pregnancy blood test. The clinic called with the results in the afternoon – we were PREGNANT. It was a fantastic feeling.

To be really honest, I had come home from the blood test and done a home pregnancy test too (I know it can be wrong and I shouldn’t have, but I couldn’t help myself).

 

Next steps

I have been so sick and tired with the pregnancy, I don’t want to be that person who is complaining, especially considering our journey, but I do feel sick every day but that’s okay.

Looking to the future, we are excited but I honestly feel right now that I have to take every day as it comes. I’m realistic that loss can still happen, but quietly confident it will all be okay.

I am most excited about watching Jessi parent – I have preconceptions about how Jessi will parent and I’m sure it will be truly amazing.

 

 

A few tips if you are an IVF newbie!

We would say:

  • Remember that any fertility journey is a marathon not a sprint.
  • It can always take more time to reach your goal, as like for us, you may not have any prior knowledge of your fertility health and have to overcome other hurdles before you can start your treatment.
  • Talk to people as we think it can be an incredibly lonely journey regardless of whom you are or your situation. It is not a topic that is really discussed much and often in the shadows until a sudden “We’re pregnant” announcement.
  • Create a little support network, discussing it with people brought us great comfort and we connected with some couples on Instagram who were going through the same thing.
  • Believe in yourself. The IVF process ended up being much easier that we thought it would be.

Follow us @jessi_and_millie to see what happens next in our amazing fertility journey!

 

 

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