Finding The Right Fertility Doctor And Embracing IVF Success
By Millie Brooks
I have never been one of those women who felt like motherhood would define me. I always wanted to have an established career, a solid relationship, and a proper living space before I brought a child into this world.
As a result, Rowan (my husband) and I started down the TTC road when I was 33 years old. I understand in certain parts of the world, this is very late to start trying, but here in the liberal bubble of San Francisco, it is considered young.
After 10 months of trying naturally and using all the holistic methods out there (brazil nuts, pineapple core, legs up, home-insemination kits, acupuncture, etc.) we made the decision to seek help with a fertility clinic.
The first clinic we went to felt like a scene from "The Jetsons" - the animated sitcom from the 1960s where a family lives in space. It was shiny white acrylic walls wrapped in vinyl with modern art hanging at every corner. The waiting room chairs had a retro vibe with bright orange cushions and funky house plants next to them. It felt like the hippest spot in town that no one wanted to be seen at. Barely anyone makes eye contact with you, and the silence is deafening.
We had two IUI procedures done at “The Jetsons Clinic” and then quickly realized that we were just part of a conveyor belt of patients. “Roll 'em in! Roll 'em out! Stamp this one with IVF and stamp this one with an Egg Donor.” We felt like cattle and didn't receive the individual care that we had hoped for. At this point, we decided to switch clinics and doctors.
Our first round of IVF with our new Reproductive Endocrinologist was a success and I’m currently 35 weeks pregnant. Our final diagnosis after all of this was Male Factor Infertility. This was a tough pill to swallow for my husband, but we persevered together and never gave up on our goal.
This journey has so many plot twists. When things go wrong for so long you forget that things can also go right. Success can happen. Good things can happen. I wish I remembered this more. I really think finding the right doctor is half the battle. Find someone who is as invested in your success as you are. You can’t put a price on that.
Life really never works out the way that you imagined it, but through this process, I’ve been able to find grace through acceptance of what it is and gratitude for the joy that is in front of us.
Millie Brooks lives in Alameda, CA with her British husband, Rowan, and her dog, Cleo. When she isn’t performing in live theatre or doing local commercial shoots as an actor, she’s talking about infertility on her podcast “Me, Myself & Millie.” Check it out anywhere you listen to your audio shows. You can also follow Millie on Instagram at @memyselfmillie.