During Canadian Infertility Awareness Week we have asked our patients to send in their stories and experiences. Since infertility is a topic that is not commonly discussed, those facing it often feel alone or misunderstood. We hope that these stories show that you are not alone, that everyone’s journey is unique, and that there is hope and support. Thank you to all of our patients who have shared their stories. If you would like to add yours to this page please email Rachelb@triofertility.com
“Our fertility journey has been long and treacherous. I have decided to share our journey to help myself heal but also maybe help someone understand or not feel so alone.
My husband and I have been trying to conceive for six years, we have been with TRIO for the past five years. We have tried everything under the moon and then some. In 2019 we had taken a short break and managed to conceive naturally but miscarried two months later in February 2020 and unfortunately, we had to postpone our IVF as we had a long healing path ahead of us. In November 2020 we had a successful round of IUI that ended in a miscarriage again three months later and again we had to push off our IVF as we were healing again. In 2021 we went through five rounds of IUI that were all unsuccessful. At this point we decided to stop trying and save our money as we knew our IVF funding was coming in. March of 2022 we started our IVF journey, so far we have had our egg retrieval and we are now currently waiting for our PGT-A results of the two embryos we have.
On this long and very bumpy journey, we have always done our best to keep our fertility issues as something separate and done our best to enjoy our lives and laugh, even in the hardest of days. We know this won’t make or break our lives if we don’t get the news we want.
If I could provide anyone with a piece of advice it would be to always give yourself something to look forward to, and give yourself grace. If you need to rest, eat junk, cry, or shop, whatever it is give yourself grace.”
“We have been trying to conceive for about three years now. I do have a daughter that is 5 years old, it took us about two years to conceive her and I was so close to starting fertility treatments but then thankfully got pregnant. In 2019 we started trying again and to my surprise, I got pregnant immediately. Unfortunately, we lost the baby at 7 weeks. I will never forget the moment when the technician told me there was no heartbeat. I was confused and took for granted that since I have had one child there would be no issues. I had found out I was pregnant Mother’s Day weekend and had my D&C in Father’s day. In Feb 2021 I started my first IUI treatment, and we did four cycles in total but none of them worked. I am now in an IVF cycle with one embryo so am praying that this is the one”
Kendra & Chris & Bryn
“My husband and I started at TRIO after doing 4 IUI’s and at another clinic. I had a blind ovum pregnancy and a natural (at home) miscarriage during the time at this fertility clinic.
We did 2 back to back IUI’s at one of TRIO’s satellite clinics (Niagara Fertility), both were unsuccessful. So we added our names to the government funded IVF list. We ended up doing 3 rounds of IVF with TRIO all using my own eggs all 3 were unsuccessful. We took a much needed break and really thought things out and ourselves “could we really do this again?”.
From there we were referred by TRIO to Shady Grove Fertility in Maryland. We decided to use an international egg donor with my husband’s sperm. The decision was not easy, but it meant we had the “chance” at a family, and that’s what we wanted. We made the drive down to meet the team there in February 2020, exactly 12 days later COVID took over the world.
Everything was stalled, we felt defeated and frustrated. Fast forward to September 2020, our egg donor had her retrieval. We had the frozen embryos shipped to TRIO, and in November 2020 I had the embryo transfer.
10 days later a blood test confirmed I was pregnant. We were in SHOCK, and not feeling never went away. When you struggled with infertility for years, you are always “unsure”.
I gave birth to a healthy baby girl named Bryn in July 2021 at 41 years old. Don’t let your age, your body, or a global pandemic tell you that you can’t have what you really want. We worked hard for this dream, and now it’s our reality and we couldn’t be more blessed.”
“We tried for 6 years trying to conceive; 3 failed IUI’s, 1 natural miscarriage at 9 weeks, 1 fresh embryo transfer that resulted in an ectopic pregnancy (tube removed), 1 successful frozen embryo transfer Nov 2020 that resulted in our beautiful baby girl Adelina (Thank you Trio family❤️) and are currently in the process of egg retrieval number #2 as we have no more embryos from our first round.
Our treatment included 3 IUI’s which all failed. We then moved to IVF ICSI and are currently are doing the same; we are currently in the process of our second egg retrieval. We will be doing a freeze all and then hoping to do a frozen embryo transfer in the early fall. IVF round 2. Baby #2 we’re coming for you!🙏🏻🤞🏻
I would say the biggest challenge is the unknown, having people understand you and keeping hope alive. The outside world from IVF thinks because you’re doing IVF you’ll get pregnant the first time and bring a baby home. I’m an example of how that’s just not the case. It worked for us the second time. We are so fortunate it did but for some it’s takes 3, 4, or even 5+ tries before they see that positive, have a healthy viable pregnancy and bring that baby home.
I believe spreading awareness and advocating about IVF is so important especially today and will educate those that don’t know about it.
I found people had a hard time understanding where I was coming from. That’s when I knew I needed to connect with people that were experiencing the same thing I was. Connection and support is huge during IVF. You need people with you, beside you and standing behind you rooting for you during the process.
Keeping hope alive has been one of my number one priorities; to keep hope with me everyday. Now, when I stray from hope, instead of getting angry with myself, I just recognize it and move back to where I need to be. If there is any advice I can give to anyone going through this is; love over fear. Hope and faith is what helps us all get through this rollercoaster.
If I could share some words of encouragement it would be keep fighting the toughest battle ever fought. Don’t lose hope. I can’t stress this enough! They say the best view comes after the hardest climb and I’ve never heard anything more accurate. Remember your journey is your journey, don’t compare yourself to others. I believe that’s one thing we all do and we need to remember our journey is our own story.
IVF and infertility is so hard but it’s the end result that makes it all worth trying for. You and your story is inspiring someone out there, remember that.
For someone that is doing IVF the second time around; my words of encouragement would be it does get easier: you’re more familiar with it all; how it works, the appointments, more comfortable with the medication and injections and more in tune with your body. I went from being scared and doubtful to excited and hopeful the second time around.”
Vince and Laura
“I was on the birth control Evra patch for 18 years as I was diagnosed with polycystic syndrome. After my husband and I got married in 2018 we tried to conceive. After a year of trying naturally. We were referred to Trio by our family doctor. We have been trying to conceive for four years.
We have done 18 different procedures with the support of TRIO at the downtown Toronto and Thornhill locations. Countless amounts of blood work, injections administered by myself and my husband, multiple early mornings at TRIO, mental, emotional and physical distress and pain. Timed intercourse, 6 IUI’s and 2 rounds of IVF. I’m sure other procedures as well that I can’t even recall.
Our biggest challenge was not seeing a rainbow at the end of our thunderstorm. My husband and I felt so discouraged. At times we felt completely empty. We cried together and laughed together through the pain. We both experienced infertility together. With every negative pregnancy test it never got easier.
Do not feel that you are alone. We are a strong community together!! Rely on support from your family, friends, TRIO Facebook group, other women who have experienced infertility. The good and the not so great !! Rina-TRIO’s Counsellor. Learn to let your guard down and put your faith and trust in the professionals at TRIO. Dr Abrol and Alicia are beyond exceptional!!! One should not have to experience this alone. It is normal to feel sad, alone, discouraged, question “Why?” and even upset!! Turn to your partner for love and support. It’s OK to cry! Cry & laugh together. Be with people that lift you up rather than bring you down. Each day brings a new challenge and a new outlook.
My husband and I are ecstatic and beyond blessed to share that we are expecting our miracle baby July 4, 2022. We do not take for granted anything that we have experienced at TRIO. Through our experience at TRIO we have strengthen our marriage. Grown as individuals, parents and human beings. We have learned to be more empathetic to others as well as ourselves. We are eternally grateful for the love and care that we have received at TRIO. Our infertility struggles dose not define our story but simply adds wisdom and love to our miracle baby.”
“We were with one of TRIO’s satellite sites and then with TRIO for over 5 years. We did a variety of treatments and experienced so many failed cycles and losses. My nurses at my clinic became my family over the years and I swear I spent more time with them than my own family. Finally in 2020 we were scheduled for our IVF egg retrieval which got postponed due to the beginning of COVID.
After finally having our retrieval and then 2 miscarriages we had a successful cycle and now have two beautiful twin girls. The pregnancy wasn’t without complications but we couldn’t be more thankful for TRIO and their patience and compassion during our treatment. We had unexplained infertility and it took us so long but now have our daughters who are healthy and thriving.”
“We’ve been trying to conceive for 1.5 years, I am going through secondary infertility due to trauma caused by the birth of my first daughter. I have Ashermans Syndrome which means my uterus was scarred together and have had 5 surgeries since May 2021 to correct it and restore my uterus and hopefully heal enough to carry another pregnancy.
I’m currently waiting for my 6th surgery after four failed letrozole cycles. The biggest challenge I’ve faced through this journey is feeling not 100% present for my daughter. COVID has also been extremely challenging, surgery pushbacks have greatly lengthened my treatment and has set back my progress. One month in the infertility world feels like a decade. I have recently started therapy and I am trying to focus more on the positive progress I’ve made towards being able to conceive again and less on the negative trauma I’ve experienced.”
“We decided to try for our first around December of 2019. we didn’t get pregnant right away and I was so frustrated, my friend told me about ovulation strips and I gave it a try, and we were successful in getting pregnant however we sadly lost the baby on March 20, 2022 – I’ll always remember this date and it doesn’t help that its shared with the COVID pandemic anniversary.
We then decided to try again and sadly that also ended up in a mc.
With that mc my family doctor sent me for an ultrasound and blood work – on my ultrasound he saw something and said don’t worry about it. He also said “your first one doesn’t count so you need to have two more MC before you see a fertility clinic”. I did not take that well – so I quickly googled and came across conceive health and booked an apt with your natural path Camile (love her). She sent me for all the tests and blood work and I shared with her what my doctor said. Because of this she got me an apt with Dr. Browning which he then sent me for more tests.
After those tests it was clear he needed to see what was going on more clearly so he sent me for an MRI, it was clear I had a septum in my uterus. He then referred me to a local OBGYN however that doctor was not going to see me until March (that was about a 4month wait) and because I am oh so impatient. I called my friend who works at Women’s College Hospital, somehow got her boss to be my doctor and surgeon and ended up having my surgery completed on June 28, 2022 🙂 however after I woke up they mentioned they were only able to remove my vaginal septum, it turns out that it took being under the knife to determine i had Uterus Didelphys complete with two cervixes.
I was told I can still have a baby but I have risks. We were ok with that, we understood them. We started trying again September 2021 – and to this day we have had no luck in getting pregnant. I am now on month 4 of timed intercourse (I can’t do IUI due to my small cervixes). We are hopeful that it will work and our time will come – we went from trying to avoid miscarriages to finding out I’m a unicorn to not being able to get pregnant – its been a ride but I would not be able to do it without the support of your team and Camile :)”
*anyone going through fertility during the pandemic is the strongest people i know, for me this was passing out on a life labs floor, crying as i called the MRI cancelation list daily, hoping for my surgery date to only have it canceled twice, driving to Toronto for covid tests and going into surgery and all my apts alone. We are strong, we are beautiful and we will all make the most wonderful moms as we have learnt to persevere and understand that nothing is in our control.”
“We have been trying to grow and expand our family for over 8 years now. We were fortunate to have our son, Isaiah, three years into our journey. We lucked out with his conception on our fourth IUI following my husbands surgery for varicocele. We have since had 3 more IUI’s, two cancelled cycles, a failed IVF and a cancelled IVF.
The biggest challenge is coping with what feels like a loss and a failure each month that we are unsuccessful. Infertility has been a tough lesson in patience and letting go with trying to balance being proactive and trying to do everything you can to have another chance. It is living in the audacity of hope, month after month.
Some words of Encouragement I would offer is to let people in. Despite the feelings of being so alone, you are surrounded by women who know your struggle.”
Lenita, Single Mom By Choice
“Good things come to those who wait”, so I wait and wait. It’s been four years and hopefully coming soon to an end with a pregnancy. Under the care of Dr. Abrol, we immediately went to IVF. Following two failed cycles, I took some time away. This time allowed for me to work with my doctor and the clinic’s Third Party Coordinator and explore the Guaranteed Live Birth Program. I am thrilled I qualified and feel hopeful. Taking time away also afforded me the time to sort the financial commitment I was about to undertake. It’s okay to take a break and I wish for others to learn that there are other alternatives to realize our dream of parenthood.”
We tried to conceive for a year before starting with TRIO KW in Oct 2019. We did 4 cycles of cycle monitoring with letrozole and ovidrel. These were all unsuccessful. We then tried our first IUI in July 2020 and became pregnant! We had our beautiful baby girl in March 2021. Our biggest challenge was the constant worrying and the unknowns. The testing helped to relieve some of the worry as our results gave us some hope that with the help of some support and medications we still had a shot to conceive. The doctor, nurses and naturopath we worked with were all amazing. We always felt comfortable and remained hopeful throughout the whole experience. My favorite part was working directly with the naturopath that worked directly in the fertility clinic so she could see all of my labs in real time and make suggestions accordingly. For anyone going through infertility my heart goes out to you. I hope that sharing my story gives some hope to those struggling right now.
“My partner and I had been trying to conceive at TRIO for 5 years. We did multiple rounds of IUI with no success then became hopeful when we transitioned to IVF. I became pregnant with our son Jaxon on our 2nd transfer however, he passed away late in my 2nd trimester which resulted in a still birth. This was a huge blow and very devastating. We transferred the rest of our embryos which all stuck but resulted in miscarriages. We found some courage after that to do another round of IVF. Again multiple transfers and more miscarriages we were feeling really defeated. On our 4th transfer I once again became pregnant but this one stayed and made it all the way to full term! We now have our 2nd son Jameson, he will be 1 in June. Dr.Casper was our physician and he was awesome!
Hearing other success stories and words of encouragement during this time were very hard for me. I was angry at them and myself and didn’t want to hear it. What I would like to say is, I can empathize with how hard this journey is. I see you all, along with the courage and resilience this takes. My wish for you all is to have the endings that you dreamed of.”
Britt & Mark
“There are so many of us out there trying, day and night, to conceive a beautiful baby. To grow our family. And the one thing we want so badly, we aren’t able to have so easily. For some of us, getting pregnant or conceiving is HARD. It is emotionally draining, physically draining, and it is hard on my marriage at times.”
Since 2017, my husband and I have been trying to have a baby. However, through 5 years of multiple surgeries and procedures, IUI, IVF, endometriosis, and visiting numerous fertility clinics with different diagnosis, so far fertility has not been successful.
We never thought our journey would be difficult. I mean, do any of us? We spend the majority of our lives trying to avoid pregnancy with various forms of contraception. So when we finally decide that we want to have a child. It should be easy right? Well, not for us.
After months of trying and negative test after test, there was nothing. That once exciting “let’s get pregnant” phase turned into a chore. Between tracking apps, ovulation sticks, and negative tests, we were exhausted. My mind was constantly racing between prenatal vitamins and reading so many “tips” online—avoid alcohol, exercise regularly, track your ovulation, use ovulation sticks, make sure your partner does xyz… ugh, when does it end?
After many ultrasounds, blood work, and internal tests that were honestly painful, overwhelming, and emotional draining, we met with a fertility doctor. We found out that my uterus is oddly shaped and I have two large cysts on my right ovary—and this was just the beginning of the medical issues and exhaustion that followed. Doctors also confirmed that I have severe endometriosis on my right ovary. Even still, I was advised to start IUI, a daily injection that left my stomach covered in bruises. After 2 rounds of IUI and a miscarriage, this was unsuccessful.
Fast forward three years and I had my uterus untwisted, laparoscopic surgery to remove the endometriosis from my ovary, was put on another complete diet change, and continued to attend regular acupuncture visits to increase the number of eggs for a higher chance of surviving embryos. We began a round of IVF where we received three graded high embryos. Sadly, we ended up with two more losses.
My husband and I were devastated, losing hope, and my stomach was covered in bruises from the needles. I didn’t want to go through this again.
We decided to take a break—but of course taking a break still included thinking about next steps and BABY. We also did a lot of thinking into seeking more guidance, maybe a second opinion, looking at other options before moving forward. You can imagine the financial costs we had just gone through.
In the end, we decided to move clinics for a fresh start, a new beginning. That, of course, started with more paperwork, tons of blood work, ultrasounds, and my least favourite test, the sonohystergram.
Just as we were about to meet with our new doctors at our new clinic, I ended up in emergency with an 11cm hemorrhage on my left ovary that left me hospitalized and the possible need for surgery. Everything to do with IVF was put on hold, appointments cancelled. Another set back—just what we needed. I was put on a high dose of meds to help it decrease size, but the pain was unbearable, the side effects from the meds were awful, and I continue to spend many days back in the hospital.
After months waiting, I finally saw an endometriosis specialist at the beginning of 2022, hoping of course to find out news that the hemorrhage was gone. Sadly, I found out that my endometriosis had returned on both ovaries and bowels, my fallopian tubes are filled with fluid, and I have been diagnosed with a partial septum uterus.
Another hurdle to overcome and it’s not going to be easy—that’s for sure.
One of the most challenges things for me is seeing how easily my friends and family had kids. We never, ever thought we would be the only ones left with not a single child. My husband and I are constantly surrounded by kids—and yes, we love them all dearly, but you to start to feel out of place. You start to feel like you’re losing those connections with friends and you can never relate, seeing as life paths are different. I started losing myself.
Over the last couple of months, I have been joining lots of support groups to help with my emotions. I came across one special group, Day1 fertility. This group has been extremely supportive during this tough journey. Once every week, Day1 members have one-hour zoom sessions where we meet to vent, support, and listen to one another, share wins, and just feel not alone in our feelings. Recently, we have started to meet for Saturday brunch after our acupuncture appointments and I am so grateful to have these ladies—my warrior friends—in my life. Not only have I gained friends from this support group, but it has helped me come out of some extremely tough, dark days.
It hurts a lot looking back on our infertility journey and five years later, we still have empty arms. But just because it hasn’t happened yet, doesn’t mean we are giving up.
I will be preparing for surgery and then hopefully soon after an egg retrieval. Our journey isn’t over yet. There are going to be many more hurdles to overcome. I’ll be ok. We will be ok. Just one step at a time.
Most importantly, I know deep in my heart we will get to our end goal, I don’t know when, I don’t know how, but I know we will be holding our miracle baby.
So, if you’re trying to get pregnant and it’s not happening as quickly as you thought—you’re not alone. Feeling heartache, lost, not wanting to face the journey of INFERTILITY. You’re not alone.
The only thing left to do is to stay positive—no matter how hard that is when all you want to do is cry.