Liz's Birth Story
My husband and I met in 2014 and married in 2016. We quickly started our journey to parenthood. You see, I was 36 years old and also known in the medical world as advanced maternal age or elderly primigravida. Sexy, huh?! However, I actually really embraced these terms. I am proud of my age and proud of the experiences that life has given me. I chose to start a family later and wait for the right person to start that family with.
With those choices comes some potential sacrifices ....... Over the course of 3 years I had 3 miscarriages, started my IVF journey, had 2 rounds of egg retrieval, 1 successful embryo transfer and now at 40 years old I have a beautiful baby girl, London Elizabeth.
Most of my career has been as a nurse in labor and delivery and aside from wanting a family someday, I always wanted to experience what my patients experienced. Well, I can finally say I have and boy, was it a trip! Pregnancy is such a fascinating journey and each person’s experience is so different. When I finally got pregnant through IVF it was a pregnancy of mixed emotions. I was excited but nervous due to my previous 3 miscarriages. I found myself having a hard time connecting and this lasted the entire pregnancy. I could feel the physical side effects and see this growing belly but I don’t think I ever truly connected to London while she was in my belly. I didn’t give her a name until she was born. I told everyone and myself I wanted to see her first but what I realized is that I didn’t want to name her because I was having difficulty connecting. I was scared to name her and then miscarry again. I didn’t prepare myself for what was to come because I was scared...
Since her birth I have had time to reflect on my journey over the years and I’ve come to accept a few things. I still have a hard time realizing she came from me and I don’t know if this will ever change. I am not sure if that is related to the IVF, my miscarriages or my birth experience. Sometimes I feel like one minute I was me, and the next minute I had this baby put on my chest and now my life has changed forever. But I’ve learned to accept this, and my role now is to give London the best life I know how.
I went through some pretty severe anxiety post birth for the first several weeks but through family support and medication, I quickly was able to recover and truly enjoy being a mother. What I am enjoying most about being a mom is watching London learn about the world. Watching her eyes follow a person for the first time, her first smile, learning to grab her toes, or rolling over for the first time are just a few examples of some of my favorite things. I even love when she started this high-pitched scream when she is learning what frustration is.It really is so cool to watch it all unfold.
While my journey was not an easy one, it is true what ‘they’ say.... It is all worth it in the end.