August 10, 2021 5 min read
Meghan (@megsalfonso725) is a CEO, mom-to-be of a baby boy, stepmom to two girls, wife, and all-around juggler! Based in Phoenix, AZ, she talks here about her pregnancy journey – from her husband’s vasectomy reversal to the ups and downs of IVF.
My name is Meghan and I am now 36 (almost 37) and today I am 22 weeks pregnant. I am so happy and grateful to be able to say, “we are pregnant.” This wish has been one I have been hoping to come true for at least 2½ years. I didn’t realize that focusing on growing two businesses and a life with my husband and his two daughters would put me at such a disadvantage. By the time Sean and I really started trying to get pregnant, I was 34 and we had been married for two years, but together for 7 years.
I knew this was the man I wanted to have children with, so the first step was to get his vasectomy reversed. Before Sean and I met, he had already had two beautiful and healthy girls and had thought he was done having children. Then he met me and all bets were off! We fell in love almost instantly and even though we took our time to really be together and move forward, we both knew we were in it for the long haul.
Fast forward almost 10 years, which is when he decided to get the procedure reversed. After a painful recovery, we were able to try the “natural way,” and after 6 months of nothing, he went back to the doctors. I remember when he called me: I was sitting at my desk excited to hear what he found out, and all he said was: “It did not work.” “What didn’t work?” was my immediate response. I couldn’t fathom the reversal wouldn’t work because don’t they always work…? NOPE! After the tears and the anger passed, we sat to talk about what the next steps were going to be. Sean was very adamant that he did not want to go down the IVF route or if we did, we would put a limit on how many tries we did. I agreed to two tries and then we would investigate other options.
The reason we had to go immediately to IVF was because we could not get the sperm we needed. So IUI was off the table. We asked around and decided to go to a fertility doctor in Tempe, AZ that is old school and has been around for a while. After the initial blood work and putting down a deposit for all of the medicine and procedures, we had our first egg retrieval on Thanksgiving 2019. From those 15 eggs, we had four embryos to work with and to implant. The New Year hit, and we were on the transfer schedule and planned to transfer two embryos at a time. Our first transfer occurred at the end of January, and we waited the long 10 days and got the call that it did not work. Once again devastated - but hopeful because we had two more embryos to use - we scheduled the second transfer.
When a transfer doesn’t work, your body has to go through a full period to start again. Then you have to begin on the medicine and shots to prepare your body. By now we were in March of 2020 and the world was shutting down. Thankfully our doctor said it was important to continue and move forward with this procedure. We transferred our last two embryos with lots of hopes and prayers, but once again it did not work.
ALL I WANTED WAS TO BE A MOM.
I was crushed. Never did I think I would have to go through anything like this and all I wanted was to be a mom. Those first few weeks were really tough and to make matters worse, the whole world was shut down and a little bit of fear was creeping in.
Sean and I took a break from the baby talk and looked into adoption. After chatting with a woman who was an agent and could help us get started, I felt it wasn’t the right decision for us. We learned that we could choose a baby or one that was going to be born to adopt and pay for everything and the mom could still legally keep the child after we financially supported her pregnancy. To me this felt like another unknown avenue and I didn't know if I could emotionally handle that. A thought also crept into my mind that if something were to happen to Sean, the girls had their mom and would be with her. Then if we adopted a baby and the parents wanted it back or fought us for custody one day, I would lose that child too.
We got back on track to try IVF with a new doctor and give it one more go. Well thank goodness we did. Sean and I interviewed (via Zoom) a number of doctors and settled on Dr. Lipskind. The world was slowly opening up but not enough, so I had to go to every appointment alone. Sean had to do three rounds of a sperm extraction this time making each time that much more painful. After two egg retrievals and one pretend transfer, we did the real transfer with our ONE healthy and good embryo and it worked! Dr. Lipskind’s nurse called us and told us the good news and we were both in shock. We found out we were pregnant a few days before our wedding anniversary and had a trip planned to Sedona. It felt like the storm clouds were opening and we finally received some good news.
I cannot even express how thankful I am to be carrying this little boy in my belly. After the hundreds of shots, pills, and appointments it was finally worth it. Everyone said, “it will happen when it is supposed to happen” and boy were they right. Though, I wish I would have paid more attention to my fertility clock. As soon as I hit 36, everything changed. If I knew then what I know now, I would have frozen my eggs. Those are an "insurance policy" and it would have saved me a lot of tears.
I am beyond grateful we are on a new phase of this journey, but I will never forget what we had to go through to get here. Whenever I hear of someone who is having fertility issues, my heart just breaks for them. Every story is different and has their own ending, but I can tell you that if we wouldn’t have stuck this out, we wouldn’t be expecting our baby boy in November.