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Infertility is Truly Everywhere

Spreading awareness and hope this National Infertility Awareness Week. #LeaveYourMark2024 #NIAW2024

National Infertility Awareness Week logo

With @resolve National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW) coming soon to a close, I wanted to share my thoughts and leave my own mark on the conversation. Even though I'm no longer struggling, I know what it feels like to be part of this club, one you never thought you would you wanted to belong to, and I'll always be a member. It's a cause I'll continue to support.


I love every chance I get to share my story or help someone else going through a similar struggle as I once did. So, it was fitting that a friend of mine reached out to me on Instagram this week telling me that a friend of hers who's having fertility issues had messaged me. I had not seen the message until she followed up with me.


It was only then that I saw her original message. She heard a little about my story from our mutual friend and wanted to know if I have a doctor to recommend. I sure did!


Dr. Jerome Check of Cooper Institute for Reproductive Hormonal Disorders will work with you when other doctors have given up or feel you're too much of a "risk" (to their stats and success rates). The things I hear that doctors have told their patients is truly appalling. Cooper has many patients in their 40s trying to become first-time parents. And, many times, these same patients who were previously turned down by another provider have gone on to become successful.


Dr. Check is a little wacky (maybe a lot) and does things out of the box, but when everything else has yet to work, what do you have to lose?


When I first met with the doctor, I had my doubts because he was so all over the place. And when I went to their NJ office and took a look at the stained carpet and noticed the lack of modern technology --- they have you fill out the same form each time you visit, and the exam rooms only have one ultrasound monitor, not two --- I began to miss my former practice. But with all the niceties of that practice, I had no success there. We paid a lot of money, and it didn't work.


I continued to have doubts on and off, thinking about possibly jumping ship to another doctor and practice but ultimately decided to stay and trust the process. I was told this advice from more than one person. While you're in the thick of it, it can be very challenging to do this, but now, when looking back, I realize how right they were.


Infertility is truly everywhere, affecting people of all backgrounds. It's quite possible that someone you know is secretly struggling. In fact, when talking to neighbors, I learned that several of them had their own IVF success stories (one such neighbor is how I first learned about Dr. Check).


I'm a part-time professor at a local community college, and one day I drove to campus to pick up my parking permit. I stopped into the department office and was greeted by the friendly administrative assistant. We started talking, and she mentioned her kids. The next thing I knew, I was opening up about my infertility and IVF experience and my precious Harper. Well, it turns out that she also experienced similar struggles! I could tell she enjoyed being able to open up about it. I'm an open book, so I tend to have that effect on people.

Me holding my smiling baby girl
Me and Harper smiling

It truly is a great feeling when you connect with someone on a deeper level because of a shared personal experience --- starting off as strangers and becoming friends.


This is what NIAW is all about: uniting people based on their shared experiences to spread their message of awareness, of hope, of understanding. Sometimes it's just to show others that they're seen and heard. Shared experience is truly a powerful thing.

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