Most people know my daughter Teagan is an IVF baby. That’s because we (my husband Glenn and I) made a decision to talk about it. Because when we were on the infertility “journey” no one was talking. We were heartbroken. Frustrated. For the first time in each of our lives there was something unattainable no matter how hard we worked to get it.
We couldn’t achieve one of the most basic human life stages – we couldn’t conceive a child.
Quick flash back. I had never really “really” thought “what if I can’t get pregnant?”. I had (full disclosure) a couple of panicky days in my twenties when my period was late and I thought “what if what if what if” and spent a day or two alternating between freaking out about the possibility of being pregnant and wondering what this wonder child would look like. Of course I was never pregnant, but it never occurred to me there was a problem, just that “it wasn’t meant to be” or “I got lucky”. Little did I know that twenty years later, when I really, REALLY, wanted to get pregnant… I wouldn’t be able to.
One of the most frustrating things was no one could tell me why. I was poked, prodded, examined… inside and out. Cycle days were counted and recounted. Linings were measured. Medications to “super” ovulate were taken. Nothing. I was deemed to have “unexplained infertility”. For a journalist always looking for answers – this was the ultimate in frustration. Everything seemed fine – yet nothing was working.
We had an amazing cheerleader in our fertility doctor. Dr. Beth Taylor (yes, her name is Elizabeth Taylor… to this day I have a prescription bottle with “Dr. Elizabeth Taylor” on it and it still makes me smile) is the reason we have Teagan. She was real and honest – and she was there. Every step of the way. When we finally (and I’ll spare you the details about the more than a year it took) got pregnant, I think she was just as happy and excited as we were. Seriously. I thought about calling our kid “Elizabeth” whether it was a boy or a girl. We had ten embryos – and she put one of them in my uterus… and it stuck!!!
We ignored all the precautions that said “don’t tell anyone until you’re at least 12 weeks”… and shared with immediate family, immediately. Everyone was ecstatic, as were we. Lots of jokes about how I would deal with not drinking chardonnay for nine months, lots of cheers-ing with ginger ale, lots of love and hugs….then at 8 weeks I miscarried. Suddenly, once again, we were alone. Immediate family was there, of course. But it’s that awkward time… no one knows what to say. I felt like crap. Our hearts were broken. We were done. That’s when you know who your friends are.
Elizabeth Taylor was there. She knew what we needed – and we needed to be pregnant. So, instead of dwelling on the loss, she had us focus on the future. We looked at my schedule… I was anchoring the morning news and getting up at 345am five days a week. The needles to prep for IVF have to be at specific times, so I was scooting into the bathroom with vials and needles in a 2 minute commercial break and injecting myself like a secretive junkie. Oh, and stress had to be kept to a minimum. Good luck on that schedule.
So, I left the morning show. I left what was my work baby… in order to give us a better chance at having a real baby. It was the best thing that ever happened. We retraced our steps – injections to get ready for IVF. Transfer day. Fingers crossed. Lots of deep breathing. Regular sleep and lower stress. The hope was there every minute of every day.
Three months later we were pregnant again.
This time we told no one. Only Elizabeth Taylor, Glenn and I knew.
This time we hit 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks.
This time we held our collective breaths. We had many vaginal ultrasounds. It became a joke that Dr. Beth was inside me more than Glenn.
This time we hit 12 weeks. Then 13… then 40.
This time she stuck.
Lynn is a great friend, and former co-worker, of Sarah’s — she’s been a friend and colleague of Claire and Jody’s — for decades. We adore Lynn. We’ve grown up with Lynn. Currently, Lynn hosts the Weekend Morning News on Global BC. Tune in and have your weekend coffee with our great friend.