Thursday, September 27, 2012

Guest Post - a tale of fertility, naturopaths and doing away with jocks forever

Please welcome Breanne, who is bravely sharing the story of her struggle to get pregnant. It's it's sad, it's funny, it's insightful - and best of all, it's not over yet.

In light of Stacey's upcoming birth, I thought it would only be fitting to talk about the wonders of becoming a mother.

I was married young (that's another blog for another day). We were young(er), bright eyed and ready for the nights of no sleep!

December 2010 rolled round and we actively started trying for a baby. It was exciting, new and thrilling to be having sex with a purpose other than to rock each other's worlds.

June 2011 rolled round, still no baby. I had only turned 22 at the time, and didn't need to be a fertility specialist to start questioning what the fudge was going on? Started prodding hubby that maybe we should get some tests. He wasn't keen - ya know, the whole "I'm a man, I'm perfect" ego set in. I didn't want to bruise him, so I let it be.

March 2012 rolls round. Still no baby. By this stage I had well and truly had enough. I was doing everything- basal temps, ovulation kits, you name it, I had it. After gentle persuasion and many tears, we had fertility tests done. To say hubby hated the experience was an understatement, to say that hubby was so super-confident that his sperm was the best in the world would also be an understatement.

The two days of waiting were painful, I just wanted to know my fate. I was 100% sure that I was the problem, most of the time women are. We walked into the doctor's office, hubby still telling me "everything is fine, don't worry about it", but I knew otherwise. I got my results first - the doctor said I was "perfect" (his words not mine, but hey I wasn't going to argue!) and I was in top condition for baby-making. Hubby, on the other hand, had received terrible results.

Let me get technical for a moment. The average count of sperm to conceive a child is 20 million per ml. You need to have 2ml of sperm to get pregnant. You are consider to have low sperm count if you have 10 million per ml. REALLY low if you have 5 million per ml and pretty much hardly any chance with 1million per ml. Well my husband had 19 thousand per ml. 19 thousand, 0.01% of the average man. I cried instantly, I knew exactly what that meant: IVF. Through tears and jolted breath, I asked my husband's very stern Polish doctor if that meant we had to do IVF? "yesss, you do I V F, not big deal, is ok" he says, at which point I wanted to punch him in the face! NOT A BIG DEAL?! Was he crazy?! Please don't misread this, I think IVF is one of medicine's greatest achievements, and I have know many people to have done it and succeeded. BUT I am the biggest scaredy cat when it comes to needles. Then add the crazy hormones, the weight gain, the procedures... it's all a little overwhelming.

I was just SO sad! All I have ever wanted to be was a mother. Everyone around me was a mother; 15-year-old girls who lived down the street were mothers. WHY NOT ME?! My poor husband, dealing with his own bruised ego, and not feeling like a man, he then had to put up with me, a constant crying mess! I never once blamed my husband though, he felt really guilty, but it wasn't his fault, he hadn't lived his life thinking "hey I'm going to do this now to reduce my sperm count". We decided that we weren't ready for IVF. The good thing is that we had time on our hands, we knew what we were dealing with.

It was April now, and I had become obsessed with reading anything and everything online to boost sperm count. A friend suggested we go see a naturopath, so off we went. She suggested things about health and eating well, stuff I already knew, but I wanted things we could actually changed. Here are the things she suggested:

1. My husband runs his own company, and can get quite stressed out, leading to not only anxiety but him digesting at least 6-8 Panadol/Nurofen a day. This is the worst thing you can do, according to our naturopath. Panadol ruins the function of your liver, your liver produces the hormone for the man to produce healthy sperm. Crap liver = crap sperm. NO MORE PANADOL FOR HUBBY!

2. My husband drives a car with heated seats, it helps ease his back pain too. Heated seats boil and kill your sperm. NO MORE HEATED SEATS FOR HUBBY!

3. My husband wears jocks, which over heat his you-know-whats, so we changed them to boxer shorts, which he surprisingly loves. "Woo I feel so free in these!" I believe is what he said! HA! NO MORE JOCKS FOR HUBBY!

So we changed these things and in July started to actively get pregnant again. My period was due on August 7th, August 18th rolled round and I still hadn't got my period, the first time I had ever been late. I knew hands down that I was pregnant, my whole body felt different. I was 5 weeks pregnant, and explained to my husband how big our baby would be, a size of a sesame seed. The next night I started bleeding. I went to my doctor to see what was going on, but I knew that I had miscarried, to which she confirmed had happened. You know what? I was ok with it. I was a bit bummed out, but I wasn't sad. I was more happy that all the things we had changed were finally working.

Getting pregnant is hard work, made even harder when every single person around you is having a baby...seriously.. everywhere I turn there is a pregnant woman!! But along my journey, I have come to realise that I have to be happy with what I have. Which is a husband that loves me. When I have a baby, that will be the biggest bonus in the world. Something that I hope I will love with such conviction, the way that Stacey Veggiemama loves her babies!

Here's to babies! The wonderful gifts they are, having a great time making them ;) and living a healthy & happy life!

I'm just going to take a second here to point my lovely readers in the direction of Nat Kringoudis's Fertilise Yourself eBook. Nat is a fertility specialist, among a huge list of other impressive titles, and knows her way about mamas and babies like nobody's business. The best part about Fertilise Yourself is that it's not just geared to women who want to eat the right foods to boost their fertility, but to anyone who wants to eat cleaner, better and more in tune with their bodies. Who DOESN'T want that?

Nat is awesome. Check her out.


  1. Such a fantastic story! I'm thrilled to bits that they got pregnant! We're going to get there in the next couple of years and it scares me to death that we won't be able to get pregnant! Maybe this books is for me, getting prepared early!

  2. Love your attitude & best of luck! xx

  3. Thanks so much for your kind words. I know that feeling of being scared, all to well. Advice I give other women and my friends is be prepared- I highly recommend Nat's book, its a great read and really helps get your body back on track!

  4. Thanks Reannon! You have to have a good attitude otherwise it consumes your life! xo

  5. I feel your pain, I have had two miscarriages this year and am keeping my fingers crossed that we get a postive result for another pregnancy soon. It's difficult when everyone round you seems to manage with no trouble at all (baby showers especially seem like a very cruel invention), but you are not alone. Good luck for the future, I'm sure it will happen for you.

  6. Hi Lorna! I'm sorry to hear that, I know you'll get your positive result soon! When you want something so desperatly but you cant have it, it is hard not to get down! I really struggled in the beginning with hearing about friends being pregnant and going to baby showers, but I really had to change my thought pattern. I have to be happy with just me and my husband. If I put all my lifes happiness on a baby it just becomes very upsetting. So I encourage you, even though it may be hard, to find joy in those who are pregnant and having baby showers, knowing that when you are pregnant and have a baby shower how happy you will be and how EXCITED all your friends will be for you! All the best. xo