Infertility is a BEAST.

Erich and I knew we wanted kids.  It's what we talked about before we even touched getting married.  Chalk it up to our love of whiskey and that we both work with children.*

I am a middle school science teacher and just this year left the swim coaching world after 12 years in the business.  Erich is a full-time swim coach for a local YMCA and high school.

Being surrounded by youths all day and evening means that you are also partnering with their parental units all day and evening.  I say "partnering" due to the fact that when you are working with a partner, you usually don't get to choose them.  This goes for the parents that you work with while in a school and coaching a team, and it forces you to recognize the qualities of the parents that you love...and also would rather not mimic once you're a parent.**  This was Erich and my common ground.

Here is our infertility story.  
I will not be offended if you just skip this and want to only read about the ridiculous quadruplet situation -- there's only so much time in the day!

Within a couple months, if not weeks, of getting married*** we started trying to get pregnant.  (Judge away, no offense taken!)

Within the first few months, I had started tracking my cycle, researching early pregnancy symptoms, trying all the old wives tales (no matter how much of a proven myth they were) throughout my cycle to try to catch a break, and started doing regular chiropractic and acupuncture.  I was OBSESSED.  It led me to a wonderful group of women on the WTE community boards.

If you ever wanted to be in a non-judgment zone to post questions about ANYTHING pregnancy-related, this is where the cheese is at.  Most of my early months on the site were spent scouring through the posts to feed my TTC obsession, and learning what all the acronyms meant; i.e. "TTC" means "trying to conceive."  There are roughly 75 of these 2-4 letter bad boys -- click here if you're curious.

Let's be real.  Anyone that suffers from not conceiving immediately becomes obsessed.  Being an extrovert, this made me seek out advice, encouragement, and stories from others.  I told fellow teachers, friends, the internet -- really anyone [beyond students] that was willing to make eye contact. 

For example, when I was asked, "Do you have kids?" when I was on an interview tour with a potential colleague, I spewed my guts about our infertility struggles in [what probably felt like] a 5-minute straight monologue.

Not my proudest moment, but this teacher is now on my teaching team and is one of my favorite people in the world!

Through the following months, I continued to open up to people in the appropriate settings with the appropriate amount of privacy and interest.  A lot of people with similar experiences and fertility struggles came out of the woodwork the more I talked about it, which was exactly what I needed!

After a year of trying on our own, we started seeing an infertility specialist.  We were put on the classic track way of taking Clomid/Femara and continuing to try on our own, then after increasing the dosage of these drugs didn't work, we graduated to an IUI procedure.  It only took us 3 IUI procedures to get pregnant!  In total, it took us 2 years exactly to conceive.

I do not think this is a long time, but I do not want to minimize the experience and emotion that we endured.

Overall, we were level-headed and trusted the science.  However, I will say that each month we experienced devastating sadness when we weren't pregnant.  Each month felt like we had experienced a loss and had wasted our time.  Each time I came out of the bathroom to tell Erich the bad news, we felt more and more lost.  Fertility treatments run on a cycle of major milestones about every 2 weeks.  Tests, appointments, and stress consumed me for much of those 13-days leading up to the next pit stop in the process.  If you are currently going through infertility or have gone through it in the past, you know exactly what I'm talking about.  The experience of infertility can either make or break a marriage.  We were lucky.

[We welcomed our daughter, Elsie, in February 2017 -- but more on her in a different post.]

Elsie enjoying a balmy -16 degree Fahrenheit wind chill -- and please don't judge: Her mittens were in my hand as I took this photo because she refuses to give her fingers the best chance at survival in the tundra.

Fast forward to February 2018, we decided to undergo fertility treatments again.  Elsie spoils us with being a great sleeper, adorable red-head with gorgeous blue eyes, and a hilarious personality.  So, naturally, we think we are super parents that can easily take on another child. 


Don't worry!  We know at least 2 out of the 4 of these babes are going to be the world's most challenging monsters ever to be dragged through a Target diaper aisle.  You don't get that lucky twice.  We aren't idiots!  ...or at least not about this.

Right from the start, our fertility doctor put us on the same exact regimen that got us pregnant with Elsie --> Femara and an IUI procedure.  We continued this same formula with increasing dosage amounts for the next four months, until adding on Follistim injections to the routine. 

It was IUI number 6 that gave us a positive pregnancy test and we were ecstatic!  Both about the pregnancy, but more immediately, that we were done with the constant tests and doctors appointments.****

This is our infertility story in a teeny, tiny nutshell!  Being honest about the process both medically and emotionally is my way of coping with the situation -- which is my main goal of writing this blog.  On top of this, I would love to continue making connections with people in similar situations: infertility struggles, pregnancy truths, and working towards that end game of gaining a child -- no matter the method.

*How I choose to describe my mid-20's.  Not much has changed, except that wine is now in the picture (when I'm not with-child) and I work part-time in an unpaid position as a laundry wench.

**In my current position and with the parents I work with, I would say that I would happily replicate 95-99% of what I witness!  Bottom line: they are amazing people with wonderful family core values.

***Courthouse, Gap brand dress...wait, just imagine a shotgun wedding sans baby on the way.

****Constant tests and doctors appointments: Exactly what you have to endure while being pregnant with multiples, especially quadruplets!  What a sick joke.


  1. CONGRATS on the new babies!! And thank you for sharing your story. It's encouraging to hear people speaking openly about a topic so commonly glossed over or avoided. :)


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