Infertility in the Med City

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For over 5 years, all I dreamed about was the announcement we could make to friends and family that we’d be expecting. I wanted, more than anything, to have a cute photo of my dog announcing our excitement. But as infertility changed our story, and we came to the realization that IVF would be our plan, the excitement in that announcement faded. Little did we know we were about to embark on one of the wildest rides of our lives and I would gain badges of honor in the process.

The MedCity provided us an option of staying close to home for all the blood draws, appointments, pharmacy lines, and THE WAITING that came along with my new lifestyle. I followed a specific daily routine set by my healthcare providers, which proved they knew my body better than I did.

Infertility changed me, and I think it’s safe to say, it changed me for the better.

Self-care. For one of the first times in my life, I was forced to put myself first. I focused on training my mind and body that anything could be possible. I spent more time at the gym, preparing healthy meals, and focusing on my faith.

Trust. I realized I couldn’t handle this endeavor on my own, or even with my husband. I was forced to stop worrying about every detail and trust that God knew my path; He was ahead of me on this journey and I had to trust that I could handle what was in my path. I stopped asking for what I wanted.

Empathy/Awareness. I became aware that I didn’t know everyone’s story. Empathy toward other’s highs, lows, twists, and turns. I refocused my attention on those who seemed eager to chat about my story but were reluctant to share theirs. I worked on becoming a voice of encouragement for those who were fully consumed with the isolating world of infertility. The interactions with other women made me stronger, and for that, I’m forever grateful.

A Stronger Marriage. My husband and I were the only two people on the planet that were sharing the same emotions. We became an unstoppable team. When I was weak, he was strong and vice versa. The ultimate duo that focused on one another and came out stronger on the other side.

Forever Changing. The feeling that I’d never be a mother faded when we were finally pregnant. I knew pregnancy wouldn’t last forever and I’m learning that each stage in parenthood goes quickly. The challenges are definitely at every corner, but time passes in the blink of an eye.

As a result of my experiences, I am frequently hit with moments of overwhelming gratitude. Moments that I still cannot believe I’ve been blessed to call mine. Moments that I know I will cherish forever, yes even those sleepless nights. I prayed for years, trusting, waiting, working on myself, and finding the perfect medical team to beat the odds.

If you find yourself in my shoes, I pray these words provide you encouragement, comfort, and hope. I pray you always remember how much you worked on yourself, your marriage, and no matter the outcome, you are stronger than before.

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Elise grew up in NW Iowa and met her husband, Jeff, while attending Luther College. Since 2005, the two have been lucky enough to try out a few different communities in SE MN before settling in Kasson. Elise is blessed to be the mama of Luke (2016). She treasures any amount of time spent with friends and family; whether it be in person, on the phone, texting or any social media avenue. In her spare time, you can find Elise planning time with her family, enjoying her full-time career in laboratory medicine, developing leadership skills, networking across her interests, and reminiscing by staring at old photos for more time than she should admit!