Haley Payne remembers how she felt when people would ask that dreaded question, “When are you going to have children?” Before she had an IVF success story to tell, her discomfort was the same every time.
“This question needs to go away, forever,” she says.
For years, Haley struggled silently, watching her Facebook feed fill up with other people’s pregnancy announcements, birth announcements and baby photos. One in every eight women experiences infertility, and as one of them, the problem wasn’t that she wasn’t happy for her friends.
“I was sad for myself,” she remembers. “Sad for my husband. Sad for my parents and extended family, all of whom I felt I was letting down.”
IVF success story has a happy ending
Having experienced a devastating miscarriage, followed by three years of unexplained infertility, she had happily given up caffeine, gluten, immunotherapy, nail polish, lotion and even riding her bike. Then, in 2016, Haley and her husband turned to our Las Vegas fertility experts for help and entered the world of in vitro fertilization (IVF).
“From January to May, my blood was drawn 34 times, about every four days, even on Saturdays and Sundays,” Haley recalls. “I was given one to three injections every night at 6 p.m. for weeks, by my mom, since my husband and I are both afraid of needles. For months, I was taking 17 oral medications per day, all of which had to be taken at various intervals. I received 74 vaginal suppositories. Oh, and I cannot forget the 48 hormone patches that spread across my stomach, two at a time. They left a lovely perimeter of lint upon removal, that only coconut oil would remove.”
But in return, Haley and her husband received the greatest gift. After what Haley’s obgyn called a “textbook pregnancy,” Hazel Charlotte was born at almost 41 weeks, in November 2016.
“It was an unbelievably wonderful experience,” Haley says.
She considers her IVF success story an “easy” case of overcoming infertility, in which IVF worked on the first try, with frozen embryos to use for future pregnancy attempts.
“So many couples have a different outcome,” she says. “My heart aches for those who have tried, exhausting themselves emotionally, physically and financially, but it did not result in a baby.”
Although her dream of motherhood is now a reality, Haley is still sometimes taken aback by other people’s insensitivity toward women struggling with infertility. Since getting pregnant, she’s encountered awkward and uncomfortable comments and questions, such as, “I would never do IVF,” and “Was your pregnancy planned?”
Shining a light
She hopes that by sharing her IVF success story, others who have never experienced infertility can better understand what many women are going through.
“My hope is to bring awareness and some sensitivity to this whole baby-making deal,” she says. “It’s just tough, whether it is IVF, adoption, planned or unplanned. I hope my story sheds a little light on the pain someone you know might be going through.”