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Read Brooklyn's Story Here:
Hi! I'm Brooklyn Child, a wife of four years, dog mom, and web developer. I also suffer from PCOS and infertility.
Our journey begins in March of 2020 when my husband, Ben, and I decided it was time to grow our family. I was graduating college and Covid cancelled our cruise. I got off birth control and we started trying each month. We made it to May with no luck and I had an annual appointment with my OB. It was there that I was diagnosed with PCOS. We started off with two rounds of unmonitored Clomid cycles, but it didn't make me ovulate. It actually did the opposite effect and grew a 7cm cyst on my right ovary. It ended up bursting and bleeding internally into my stomach.
I ended up switching OB's to one who specializes in PCOS and infertility. He is very attentive to my needs; I truly feel like he is in my corner. After taking care of the giant cyst, we switched to Femara. The biggest problem is that my body doesn't ovulate on it's own, so the Femara helps that.
We started with cycle 1 on Femara and it was very short. I took the medication, went in for the ultrasound to check on my follicles, and they weren't big enough for ovulation. The Femara wasn't strong enough to grow my eggs big enough for ovulation. However, it caused more cysts so we took a month off to help those relieve on their own.
In the middle of this break, we bought and moved into our first home. It was a very exciting time for Ben and I! It is the most amazing experience to take a house and turn it into a home with someone you love.
The month came and went and we were ready to try again! This was around Thanksgiving and we were so excited to try the medicine again. My doctor upped the Femara dosage and we started from step 1. I took the medicine, waited until day 14 for the ultrasound and we saw really great sized eggs ready for ovulation! I was really excited. We were prescribed timed intercourse and progesterone and estrogen. I went in a week later and got my blood drawn to confirm ovulation. I got the results a few days later and it was confirmed that I ovulated! This was the furthest we ever got in the process and were ready for our Christmas miracle baby. We ended up testing for pregnancy the week of Christmas and found out on Christmas Eve that the cycle didn't work. I wasn't pregnant and we weren't getting our baby that our hearts yearned for.
We immediately started into the next cycle a few days later and again, took the Femara, saw good eggs on the ultrasound, went in for the ovulation blood draw, and got the results. No ovulation. This completely caught me off guard. I ovulated the last time, so why not now? I've learned that is very common with PCOS. Sometimes you ovulate and sometimes you don't.
We met with my doctor about the next steps and he suggested adding in the trigger shot the next cycle. This will help my body release the egg and 'super ovulate'. We upped the dosage of Femara to the max and saw a wonderful, plump egg ready for ovulation. We triggered and hoped and prayed that our miracle baby was coming. Even with the maxed dosage of Femara, the trigger shot and a few more medications, the cycle didn't end up working. We were absolutely devastated. After the negative pregnancy test, Ben and I sat in our bathroom in a puddle. We had done everything right, my levels looked great and I was told that I ovulated. It's difficult to wrap your head around the fact that we did everything right and if I was 'normal', I would be pregnant right now.
Within the same week of the our negative pregnancy test, we met with a Reproductive Endocrinologist at the University of Utah. He seems to think that I have a different diagnosis other than just PCOS. We are running a few blood tests to confirm and then we will start treatment for the new diagnosis. It's a lot to take in, but I feel like we are going down the right road. We loved our appointment with the RE and are confident with him taking over my case.
That is as far as my journey goes for right now. It has been one of the hardest and I wish I never had to go through it. A lot of people are grateful for their trials and I'm sure that one day, I will be. But it is hard to see the sunshine when in a thunderstorm.
Infertility has changed who I am. When I was first diagnosed, I was a very angry person. I was mad at God. I couldn't understand why this was put in my path. I had done hard. I lost my father when I was 16 and have mourned his death for 6 years now. I KNOW HARD, I've done it and continue to do it. I was just naïve enough to think that after my dad's passing, that was the end of my trials. That after that, life would be hunky dory. I found my best friend and was married at 19. I found my passion in life and graduated with a college degree. I have an amazing job and great relationships with my family. I was done with the hard. Then, infertility comes in like Miley Cyrus on her wrecking ball. And that's exactly what it did. It wrecked everything that I thought God and life was. I was happy and content with my life. Sure, I had my hard days but I was happy. My relationship with God was altered. I felt like he was mocking me and laughing at me. I, too often, found myself on my knees screaming at him asking him to take away my pain and to please give me on of his sweet souls. I felt like no one was listening. Like I was just screaming at my walls.
I can say that my relationship with God has improved since the beginning of our diagnosis. I still have days where I feel like no one is there, but I have seen too many miracles in my life to believe that he isn't there. Infertility messes with your state of mind and how you see things around you. You believe that you aren't good enough, that God doesn't care, that your body has failed you and that you weren't meant to be a mom. I believed all of those things are far too long. And it has taken a lot to get me out of that place.
I wish I could go back to the way things were. I wish I could be 'okay'. Okay, like I used to be before everything that's happened to me. I wish I could be completely free of anxiety and worrying. I wish I could go back to my ignorant bliss when I had no doubt that everything would work out. "Okay" has taken on a new meaning for me. "Okay" doesn't mean I'm good or I'm fine. When people ask and I say 'I'm okay', it means I got out of bed, went outside and tried to live my life. When I say 'I'm okay' it means, I'm surviving because really what other choice do I have. Things aren't the way they used to be. I am not who I used to be. And I may not be 'okay', but I want to be.
I am still angry that infertility was placed in my path. I hope one day when I am sitting with Ben in our home surrounded by our beautiful children that I won't feel the pain of infertility anymore. For now, I trust that my dad is holding my babies tight and telling him everything about Ben and I.
To those that are in the beginning stages or in thick of treatment, please know that every single emotion that you feel, is valid. God sees you. I see you. And I pray that you will find the strength to make it through the other side.
Click to read Whitney Henneman's story HERE