Brandy (Revisited)

Brandy with baby

Today I’m doing something different. Almost exactly a year ago, I spoke with Brandy Eckhardt of Lumen Photography. Back then, she had been going through IVF and had two embryo miscarriages. She had one embryo left. This is her story, continued.

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“In my early pregnancy I kept saying, ‘We just got to make it to the finish line. We just got to make it to the finish line. This baby is our finish line,’ and so the name Finn just kind of stuck from saying ‘finish’ a lot.

I still look at him and think about everything we went through, but it was all worth it. It was a lot of work, physically, mentally and financially. Every aspect of our lives was so much work. We still talk about it everyday, about the relief it is to be done with infertility and IVF and be able to move forward with our lives and not stuck in this awful chapter that was never ending. We never were hopeless, but there were days when we weren’t sure if we could go on. Although Finn was the last embryo we had, I do have 14 eggs frozen that I could use in the future, but it got to the point where we weren’t sure if we could continue, emotionally and financially.

Now we can plan vacations. Where other people were planning fun stuff, we were planning babies. We were trying to pay for fertility treatments, so we haven’t been on a vacation in a long time.”

“What do you want to tell others going through IVF and similar infertility issues?”

“Never give up on something you can’t go a day without thinking about. Never quit on a bad day. Never stop treatment on a bad day. You’re stronger than you realize that you are.

And it’s okay to be done, too. I think that there’s this taboo that says ‘you’re not strong enough if you stop,’ but you’re allowed to stop, you’re allowed to be done. There’s no shame in drawing the line. I think that’s a healthy thing. For us, we probably would have been done if we hadn’t finally conceived through our final transfer. But never quit when you’re depressed, or anxious, overwhelmed. Think it through.

I can say that after four frozen embryo transfers and a total of five transfers, going through IVF twice, it was totally worth it. The almost $50,000, all of it, it’s worth it. He’s definitely worth it and Jonah was too. We feel so complete and we couldn’t imagine our lives without these little guys. They were worth it all.”

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