After a rollercoaster of 17 months, ‘Team All Aboard’ are finally in a position and thrilled to announce we are 20 weeks pregnant. It’s not been the easiest journey, but we wanted to share our story to give hope and encouragement to any teams who may currently be in a similar position.
Ahead of our first transfer, everything had been smooth sailing, and after matching with the amazing Natalie we honestly felt (and still do feel) like the luckiest IPs around. Natalie and we live five hours apart, but when you know you know, and we said from the start we would travel however far for the right match.
Working with both Herts & Essex Fertility Centre and CRGW clinic in Plymouth, again we have felt so lucky with the support, expertise and care we’ve received from both clinics. Our main treatments have been carried out at Herts & Essex, who has been incredibly accommodating in allowing Natalie to use a more local clinic for scans and testing.
In May 2021 the time came around for our first transfer, and given how lucky we had been to date we hoped that our streak may continue. With strong embryos and Natalie in perfect health, we hoped to be one of the “1st attempt” success teams. However, despite the odds, this was not our time. Although you think you are prepared for a failed attempt, nothing prepares you for the emotions until you’ve experienced it first-hand.
Concerned about Natalie’s mental and physical health, our primary focus following our failed transfer was to ensure Natalie was ready before going again. Being the incredible surrogate she is, her primary concern was us, and all in agreement we geared up for round two, exactly two months after round one. The clinics put our failed transfer down to nothing other than bad luck, so we looked at the previous attempt as a test run and prepared for the rollercoaster of another transfer. Everything was as perfect as we could have hoped for, again a strong embryo and Natalie’s body in perfect health – however, two weeks later we again found out transfer two had failed. Devastated once again, the clinics assured us there was no reason for our failed transfer other than bad luck. Regrouping as a team, we picked each other up and dusted each other off determined to get our happily ever after.
Another two months along, we were ready for Transfer three. Once again, we were incredibly lucky that everything went to plan and our strong little embryo had successfully been transferred to Natalie’s perfectly prepared body. Following up the transfer with some salty fries from MaccyDs, we began another TWW (two-week wait), trying to pass the time and hope for the best. Testing negative from Day six we tried to remain hopeful, and by Day nine the tables turned and we finally received our BFP (big fat positive)! This moment has been one of the best of our journey so far, all crying and laughing over FaceTime together as a team, that lucky number three had taken. A few days later we got the HCG blood results for some reassurance, and it was the news we hoped we’d never have to hear. We had suffered a chemical pregnancy and our little emby had miscarried shortly after implantation. We were utterly heartbroken and felt for every team who has been through this cruel part of the process. They say darkest storms make oak trees take their roots, and as dark as this time was, it’s one of mine and Jon’s proudest moments in our journey. The love, support and care that flowed between ourselves and Natalie in the following days made our team stronger than ever, and in a time where people may have doubted their match, we had never been more determined for our incredible Surro to be the one to bring our baby into the world.
In true ‘Team All Aboard’ fashion, we picked each other up and agreed as a team that we wouldn’t dwell and wanted to press on with our journey. The clinics were assuring us that everything was as it should be, the embryos were strong, Natalie’s body was responding perfectly to the meds, and that our luck had to turn at some point. Over the next two weeks, we saw our lines get darker and darker until we had an RBFP (real big fat positive!) on OTD followed by two positive HCG results to confirm our pregnancy.
Since then, Natalie has suffered from awful sickness for weeks on end, but never failed to speak to us every day and keep us up to date with every baby update there has been to know. We truly feel proud of our team, and more so of Natalie as a first-time Surro, and are so blessed to be the ones to share this journey with Natalie as our Surro.
Apologies for the long post, but we felt it’s important to share our story in the hope that it may help even just one person who is currently struggling in the middle of a journey like ours.
Despite our odds, our journey hasn’t been easy, and it’s taken us four attempts to get here. We are also aware that our journey isn’t anywhere near as traumatic as many other teams in this group have suffered, and are forever thankful that our journey has brought us to this point.
Surrogacy for us, so far, has been a true rollercoaster with both some of the best and some of the toughest times in our lives. But reflecting back we’ve learnt two key things:
- When you’re going through hell, keep going. Remember that everything happens for a reason, keep pushing forward, keep positive and your time will come.
- Surrogates are amazing women. We are blown away every day by what Natalie (along with all the surrogates in this group) put themselves through to enable people like us to fulfil our dream of having a family. We’ve watched Natalie risk her physical health, risk her mental health, and make sacrifices to her job and to her family solely to give us the family we desire. We have been and will always be so grateful to you for what you are doing.
Wherever you are in your journey, we wish you the best of luck so that like us you can achieve your happily ever after.
Dan & Jon x