Story by Aditi Ranade
I remember the day my husband & I were told that I couldn’t conceive. We were sitting across the physician, as he read my reports. From his grimace, I understood that something wasn’t right but what he said next was something I had never imagined! He bluntly told me that I can never conceive.
That moment, my whole world came crashing down. My eyes welled up. My husband was numb. Somehow I gathered courage to ask the physician whether there is any treatment to reverse this condition. He said that I should consult a gynecologist for available treatments.
I broke down as soon as I reached home and wept for hours while my husband held me tightly in his arms. That was the beginning of our hardest journey together – infertility.
I underwent multiple treatments with no positive outcome and was declared “infertile”. I wondered how a woman who got periods regularly and produced eggs could be called infertile. But according to science, if you can’t have children naturally, you are “infertile”.
For me, the pain of being called ‘Infertile’ was greater than the injections. It crushed my confidence. Day by day, my physical and emotional health deteriorated. What kept me going was my will to become a mother.
Eventually, we decided to undergo ICSI (Variant of IVF) treatment. We knew that it would cost us a fortune and would be demanding of my immunity & willpower. But our desire was stronger.
It was the toughest treatment I had ever undergone. The numerous shots which I had to inject myself and the process of extracting eggs was overwhelming. The embryo transfer was done very efficiently which resulted in a successful pregnancy.
Once, someone asked us why we were doing so much for a baby who could turn their back on us. To us, it didn't matter if the baby would love us back when they’re older, what mattered was that we loved the baby of our dreams without any conditions.
My doctor said that I would have twins probably. But four weeks into the pregnancy, I saw blood in the bathroom. When we went for an ultrasound, we could hear just one heart-beat. Everyone around me was happy but I had mixed feelings: I didn’t know if I should celebrate or grieve. I was delighted to hear the heartbeat of one baby but my heart shattered when I realized what I had lost.
Time passed and the day of my delivery arrived. I was excited, nervous and scared. But things went smoothly and I delivered a healthy baby! I had a fear that I wouldn’t lactate in spite of my doctor insisting that IVF cannot be a reason for not lactating.
I trusted her fully only after being able to nurse my newborn. Aarnav latching on to the breast was perhaps the most lovable touch I have ever felt.
Technology and Science have made it possible to combat infertility. Often, women hesitate to bring up this topic even with their family, fearing the social stigma and the so called disgrace it will bring along but by doing so they are missing out on the opportunity to bear children.
Infertility is not a disease, it is just a biological condition. There is no need to feel guilty or to be ashamed of infertility. We must work together to pass on this message to society, thus taking such women a step closer to their dream of motherhood.