My journey (In brief!)
I’m 39 years old, and live in Cardiff with my husband, James, our twin daughters and our beautiful black Labrador, Stan.
We were diagnosed with unexplained infertility after five years of trying to conceive.
We've lost three angels on our journey. I unfortunately lost both fallopian tubes after two ectopic pregnancies, the first of which was life-threatening, and I’m truly lucky to be alive.
Our chances of conceiving naturally were drastically reduced after our first ectopic pregnancy, so you can imagine the excitement and anxiety that my husband and I felt when we were granted IVF treatment on the NHS.
One thing to note, I’m completely terrified of needles, so we weren’t off to a great start!
I had to mentally prepare myself for the ordeal. And, as wonderful as our consultant was, he gave us very little guidance other than the clinical know-how as his time was limited. I wasn’t comfortable talking about our fertility journey with family and friends because I was ashamed I couldn't conceive naturally. I felt more alone than ever.
We were devastated when our first cycle failed and resulted in my second ectopic pregnancy, and I was diagnosed with MTHFR - a mutated gene which means I cannot absorb folate and am subject to blood clotting.
I started researching online, and after months of tedious trawling through websites, I eventually managed to piece some things together: there were dozens of small lifestyle changes I could make that may help me conceive.
Bingo, let's give these a go.
Some very small things I did, I cut out caffeine entirely from my diet (yes, it’s in chocolate too so that went!), stopped drinking three months before starting treatment, and even had acupuncture to try to reduce stress and help with fertility.
With only two eggs collected, we weren’t hopeful that the transfer would work. But miraculously, our one egg split and we our lucky to have our identical twin girls Bella & Sofia.
But it could have been a very different story.