Medicine, tests, and needles…so many needles. Appointments, ultrasounds, procedures, waiting rooms, tears, losses, complications, sleepless nights, hospitalization, waiting, fear and finally Motherhood. It wasn’t a simple or easy road for my husband and I to conceive. After trying to conceive naturally for 7 years we finally and surprisingly fell pregnant. We had made it to the three month mark! Finally it was happening PARENTHOOD was happening to us! How lucky. I thought we were safe to tell our friends and family, and had finally started to allow the joy, hope and excitement to take up space in our lives. We had made plans for this baby, big plans. Then, one of the saddest, humbling and unfortunately common things happened; we experienced a devastating pregnancy loss at 12 weeks. We found out at our first ultrasound. I heard two words that made my own heart stop in solidarity with this tiny lost voyager. While I struggled to catch my breath and process the words. No heartbeat. We grieved and processed and after time passed, we made new plans, big plans. IVF was our next best option to becoming parents. We were taken on as patients at our local IVF clinic. Thus began the longest medical road, chalk full of obstacles, illness, near death complications and expenses. I found it to be a profoundly personal journey, both very lonely and long. It was filled with fear and patience and so much incredible scientific intervention. With my first pregnancy, I endured the terrifying and life-threatening Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome. You can read about the symptoms and management here: https://www.victoriafertility.com/content/29/downloads/1/OHSSdetailedexplanationDec2010.pdf With my second pregnancy I was diagnosed with a Velamentous cord insertion and Vasa Previa. You can read about those complications here: http://womensandinfantshealth.ca/conditions/vasa-previa/ IVF was scary, medical and the absolute opposite of romantic. It wasn’t how I had imagined starting a family would look like. That being said, for us IVF was intentional and it took courage and determination and so much teamwork. I once had a friend ask if me if I would tell my girls that they were IVF babies, or if I would withhold that information. She wondered if they may feel abnormal or may be perceived by others as “less than.” I sat with that question for a moment before answering. “These girls are the most wanted and loved children and we just needed a bit of help getting them here”. It was that simple. They are my miracles.