By Josh Saunders
A first-time mum’s riddle has baffled the internet as she explains how her three-month-old baby is ALREADY A TEENAGER.
Nancy and Chris Weiss, both 43, of Atlanta in Georgia, USA, reveal that they went through two and a half years trying to conceive before welcoming little Luna into the world.
For six months, the couple tried for a child naturally before quickly progressing onto IVF, recognising their chances of becoming pregnant were decreased as they met in later life.
After five failed IVF attempts and a chemical pregnancy, they discovered embryo adoption – where a frozen embryo from a successful couple is fertilised and implanted.
Despite having a 50% success rate, Nancy fell pregnant immediately and after enquiring further about the process, she was shocked to discover hers had been frozen in time since February 2004.
She gave birth to adorable Luna in December and now the loved-up little one who is three-months-old has confused people online who can’t work out how she is already a 14-year-old teenager.
The new parents are now trying to raise awareness of embryo adoption as another option for couples to fall pregnant, that is cheaper than an egg donor, and relatively unheard of.
Nancy, a fertility coach, said: “It still blows me away whenever I talk about it and I have to break it down into simple terms with explaining it to others.
“Trying to explain IVF is hard enough, let alone telling people that our daughter had actually been frozen for 13 years.
“I had never heard of embryo adoption before then, it’s not something that’s overly popular, few people know about it and it’s much less expensive than other treatments.
“Our embryo adoption process was under $5,000 which makes it so much more accessible to families because using an egg donor can cost up to $30K.
“It baffled us, I had no idea how old the embryos were when we adopted them, I thought they would have been frozen for a couple of years, but she was created in February 2004.
“The success rate is 50% with embryo donation, but with the first one we had transferred it worked and she became our Luna.
“Our miracle girl was frozen in time for a little over 13 years before I was able to give her a belly in which to grow into the beautiful little baby girl she is today.
“For us, we had endured the trials and tribulations of infertility for two and a half years, now talking about where she came from is just another reason why she is extra special.
“We couldn’t be more grateful for this gift, our little sweet pea wouldn’t be here without the family that was so selfless in donating their surplus embryos.”
Nancy and Chris started trying to conceive shortly before her 40th birthday, after six months without falling pregnant they decided to visit fertility specialists.
She said: “We met later in life, so I knew at our age the egg and sperm quality wouldn’t be as good as it could be.
“We thought IVF treatment would be our best option, so did the retrieval along with all types of medication to stimulate the production of eggs to be used to create embryos.”
They tried five times in a year and a half without success but ever-determined to become parents they never gave up – despite the toll and heartbreak negative results had on them.
Nancy said: “The first frozen embryo transfer was pretty devastating for both of us, you assume that IVF is going to work and knowing the science, think it will work on the first time.
“It was very upsetting to go through all of that, as the hormones jostle your mind and body, and so then not to have positive results is pretty hard.
“You want it so badly by that point, so to be told you’re not pregnant was difficult, but we had to keep moving forward, we never gave up.”
They kept hopeful, even after a chemical pregnancy in 2016, where there is a miscarriage in the first two weeks, prior to the foetus being detectable on scans.
Nancy said: “No matter what happened, I remained constantly positive, I was determined that one day I would become a mother.”
The pair found out about embryo donation, where embryos are donated from couples who have had a successful IVF cycle.
After giving having their child, the IVF couple can choose to have their remaining frozen embryos destroyed, used for science or donated to other hopeful parents trying to conceive.
Nancy said: “Our nurse coordinator matched us with donors who had similar characteristics and were the closest match.
“Everything from their physical looks to their personal and health history, including things like cancer or psychological issues.
“We had three sets to choose from and the one we went for would give us Luna.
“It’s weird that our daughter was here waiting for us both. We were warned it could take up to a year for us to be matched, but it happened within three months.”
After being implanted with the adopted embryo, that had been frozen for 13 years, Nancy says she felt different straight away.
She said: “It was incredible, it was like I knew I was pregnant and just had a feeling, I woke up that morning to take the test and it came back positive.
“I told my husband ‘I don’t know if it’s real but it’s positive’, we were very excited and cautiously optimistic, but remained calm until we had tests done at the doctors.”
After the positive results were confirmed, Nancy had a ‘blissfully wonderful’ pregnancy apart from severe morning sickness for her first 14-weeks.
She was in labour for close to four days but after hearing her Luna cry for the first-time, she it all became worth it as she was finally a mother.
Nancy said: “I was in labour from Wednesday night to Sunday morning and wanted a natural waterbirth, but after developing a fever I had to have a C-section.
“I was told that babies born through C-section are quiet, but not to be afraid or worried if I didn’t hear her make any noise.
“But Luna came out crying, it was like angels singing and the best sound I have ever heard.
“There’s something about birth that erases all of the struggles, we had been trying for two and a half years to fall pregnant and finally had our daughter.”
Nancy and Chris, who moved from New Jersey to Atlanta, Georgia, shortly before trying for a child believe it was almost ‘fate’ that they conceived – as their little Luna waiting for them, frozen in time for 13 years.
She said: “We moved down here for a better quality of life and our little Luna was waiting for us here, it was like it was all meant to be.
“I always focused on being happy and nurturing myself instead of consuming myself with doubts that it would never happen for us.
“It was hard work but I credit it for giving me unshakable faith.
“When you are dealing with fertility issues, I think it’s about layering everything from healthy eating and taking the proper supplements but above all practicing and developing a positive mindset.
“If you don’t believe you’re going to be a mom, it can just get further and further away from you.
“Once you start to focus on being loving yourself and life regardless of being pregnant, it helps you follow a path that will lead to success no matter how that baby comes into your life.”