It is all about the choices you have and the decisions you make that shape up your life, your personality and your being. Infertility journey is extremely challenging mainly because of hard decisions that one has to take at every juncture. The guilt of taking a wrong decision. The indecisiveness of decision making process and the confusion around it, is burdensome. You need lots of faith to cope up with the journey of infertility. The problem begins when your faith is questioned and seen as a mere lackadaisical attitude. It becomes difficult to make people around you understand that you believe in Faith. Read Danny’s choice to fight infertility with faith and see if you too can have faith on Faith.
“The most precious jewels you’ll ever have around your neck are the arms of your children.”- Unknown.
August 2007: I will never forget the first time I met her. The monsoon season was in its full swing. It was probably just like any other pennu kannal chadengu one had seen. But for me it was the first and the last because the minute I met her, something inside me said that she was the one. We chose to get married.
So the dates went on to be fixed and back then the only mode of communication unlike today was the old classy Nokia phone which would do just calls and text messages. But through it we fell in love with each other over the course of the next three months. If I recollect correctly I would say that we met just three times before marriage: that first time, our engagement and then the wedding day. It was what one would call the old fashioned arranged marriage to its best!
Someone once said that a person’s life is the sum of all the decisions that he or she has made and while I think that’s true, I also think that a marriage is the sum of all the decisions that the couple has made together.
We were a newly wedded couple that was madly in love. When it came to making any decisions, we always took it together. Many had asked us when it came to children, if we were planning but the truth was that we never did plan. We were ready for children right in the first year of marriage if it happened then. But it didn’t.
The first two years went by and we really didn’t pay much attention to it and just continued on with our lives, enjoying every moment and doing things together. But there was a desire in both of us to see our own child someday.
Signs Of Infertility Begins
It was somewhere early in the year 2010 that we both began to realize that something could be wrong. Discouragement had started to seep in but we continued to wait. In the month of May, one of our friends came up and told us to believe that we would have children and that as an act of faith we should buy a baby dress. Maybe it was the discouragement or a cry to get out of that thinking phase; we chose to buy a dress as an act of faith.
We hung it in our cupboard and there it stayed for the next three years. There was something special about this dress however. It had a button at the centre of the dress that if one were to press the button, it would make a ringing sound. I cannot recollect the number of times that when either of us were discouraged, we would go to the cupboard and press that button to remind us that one day we would see a child of our own.
There was by this time a lot of pressure from our close family and relatives about having children. They all wanted us to go see the doctor. Every time we would go for a family function, we would get all of sorts of questions and advises! Some were not kind either. We also had comments that we were under a curse or something.
All of our close family wanted to see us have a child. My wife’s mom had been diagnosed with breast cancer at the same time and so she was also desperate to see us having children. We didn’t want to go to the doctor because we didn’t want people saying later that we conceived because of this doctor or because of some medicine. But over a period of time, we chose to go to the doctor finally.
The Vicious Cycle Of Infertility Diagnosis and Doctors
The doctor asked us to get checked up and the results came back where my wife supposedly had a cyst in her ovary (PCOD). That was a shock by itself but I had another shock coming in for me. I got my sperm tested and both my sperm count and sperm motility was way below average. The normal value of the sperm count for any man to be able to have children was around 20 million and I had only 1.6 million!
I was really depressed on getting the report and when we met the doctor, I’ll never forget what he said. He said that if it was just the problem with her it was alright because medical science has solutions to almost all the problems that the ladies can have. But medical science has not really found anything significant that can increase the count or the motility of man. He went on to put me on medicine; more of like a trial and error thing: if it worked it worked!
For the next 6 to 8 months, I think we would’ve probably tried different medicines and needless to say, there was a slight increase in my sperm count and motility but again nothing significant and of course there were still no results!
Our close family and relatives were not happy with the doctor that we were consulting with since there were no results and not much improvement. So again we chose to go to an infertility clinic and began the treatment there. This was in 2011.
It was a very hectic year because every month we had to get checked up and were on different medicines. Despite following up every month and taking medicines religiously for the next 8 to 10 months or so, there was still no major improvement.
The thing with PCOD is that the women who have it go through irregular periods and I remember early in 2012, my wife didn’t get her periods for over one and a half weeks and that really shot our hopes up high. We thought this was it, that our wait was over and that she was finally pregnant.
But then one morning, while I was at work, she messaged me saying that her periods had started again. We were both shattered badly. I remember going back home that evening and we were both lying down on the bed staring at the ceiling and crying non-stop. We were comforted by some of our close friends who knew what we were going through at the time.
Time went by and in August of the same year, my wife’s mom suggested to see a cousin who was also working at an infertility clinic in another hospital. We met him and he asked me to do an ultrasound scan of my scrotum. We did it and I had another blow. They diagnosed me with having varicocele in the scrotum. So he said, “Chances are that your sperm count and motility can go up if you get it surgically corrected.” He also went on to say that the only option for treating it was through surgery. I remember going through a major depression after hearing this. I even told my wife that I was sorry I couldn’t give her a child and that she made a mistake in getting married to me. But she held me close and said that we are both imperfect but God will make a way. Her mom was another person who was with us at the time again comforted me. That was quite touching to me especially when I realized that here she was fighting cancer which was life threatening and my problem was so small compared to hers. I thought a couple of times after that on whether to do the surgery or not but we chose not to go ahead with that surgery.
Shocked Over Math Of The IVF Process | Says No To IVF
Towards the end of 2012, our doctor from the first infertility clinic called us and said that we had been undergoing medicines and trying for over more than a year and he felt that it was time to take the next step. He suggested going forward with IVF treatment. I asked him as to if we could try the IUI first but he said that since my sperm count and motility was quite low, and it would be pointless to try that out.
So, I asked him as to what were the chances with IVF. He said that we would try it out once and that it had a 30 percent chance that it would work. I was a little disturbed, I asked him again as to only 30 percent? He said that we would try it once and if it didn’t work we would try it a second time and then a third time so that would mean 30+30+30= 90%. I asked him the IVF cost. Each treatment apart from the hospital charges would come around approximately 1.5 lakhs. We were both shocked.
Chose To Fight Infertility With Faith
After the consultation ended we went back and thought it through. We were fed up. We had been under medication and tests for over two years and now they wanted to go for another trial or error method to see if that would work out. We chose to leave all the doctors, all the clinics and all the medicines that we had been taking.
Let me say this: we are a people of faith. I do not want to impose our faith on anyone but here’s what we did: We chose faith. We chose to believe that Jesus would do something for us and even if He didn’t, we would still continue to believe in Him.
It was like a big burden was taken off from both of us. We were cheerful again and continued to go about our daily lives. Even when people would ask us about why we were not having a child; we would just respond by saying that when the time was right, God would give us. We kept trying naturally.
Is She Really Pregnant?
Six months had passed by since we had taken any medicine and then in the month of June 2013, my wife began to develop signs of pregnancy. It had been over two weeks since she was supposed to have her periods. We were scared because we had been through this before and didn’t want to get our hopes up high. But still to rule out if she was pregnant or not, we got the home pregnancy test done. For the first time in six years through our marriage, it came positive! We couldn’t believe it! It was such a big surprise. So we went ahead and got a blood test done. I’ll never forget sitting in front of the doctor with that blood report of my wife asking, “Doctor, is she really pregnant?!” And the doctor replied, “Yes!”
We were so happy. Words cannot describe the joy that we both had! All of our close friends and family were so happy too. My wife’s mom was very happy as well. But what was probably a sad end to this happy ending story was that she passed away when my wife was still 5 months into her pregnancy. She lost her life to cancer and didn’t get to see our child.
On February 7, 2014, we both held our son, John Danny Simon closely and smiled at each other with tears in our eyes. We both knew the journey we had taken together and here we were still standing.
I think all couples going through infertility have many decisions to make: to choose to go through this treatment or the other. We chose to go through some of them and some of them we did not. But we finally chose faith and our faith rewarded us well.
Video – Our Journey Of Faith
Danny spoke about how he fought infertility with faith in a Church Testimony . This emotional tell-tale true video is a must watch. It openly talks about the pain of infertility and raises pertinent questions of the choices a couple has to make and how to make them.
About The Author
Dr. Danny Simon is a dentist by profession. He works and resides at Mangalore, Karnataka. Besides dentistry, inspirational writing has always been his passion mainly to motivate and encourage people to a better and brighter future. You can know more about him and read his blogs here.