By Josh Saunders
A couple have celebrated ‘beating infertility’ with a collage of needles, vials and pregnancy test thanks to a $36,000 [£27,000] gift of IVF from the grandparents-to-be.
Becca and Michael Lang, 30 and 36, from Olympia, Washington, USA, recognised their problems trying to conceive last year after countless failed pregnancy tests.
Tests revealed male fertility problems and the couple’s only chance to genetically have children of their own was through IVF.
Hopeful mum Becca would go onto inject herself over 300 times with hormones to increase her chances of producing more eggs and to help ensure she didn’t miscarry.
The latter of the two stimulation periods, required Becca to take seven shots a day for 12 weeks, starting at 4.30am.
But three months ago, the couple’s battle was celebrated after being told they were pregnant and the knowledge that Becca will give birth to a girl in December.
They are thankful to both of their parents who paid their $36,000 medical bills to allow them to have a child and make their parenthood dream a reality.
To commemorate the hardship of the journey and to break the taboo surrounding fertility issues, which affect one in eight couples, they created a collage of vials and syringes, with their successful pregnancy test at the centre.
Becca, office manager at ForeverLawn, said: “It was the greatest gift anyone could ever receive, it was huge, they are the most amazing people and we are very lucky.
“Our families were in a position to help us and without hesitation they made it happen for us, they gave us a family, I don’t know who else can say that.
“They told us if I could physically go through the stimulation period again they didn’t want us having to worry about taking a huge loan or going into thousands of dollars-worth of debt.
“Without them I would not be pregnant right now, we are eternally grateful, and they will be a huge part of our daughter’s life.
“While trying on our own I had seen negative after negative after negative pregnancy test, so to finally know I was pregnant and see those two lines on the stick was the happiest day of my life.
“I had saved a lot of my vials of medication, all of my shots and empty syringes knowing that once I was complete I wanted to photograph them for myself and other women going through this.
“I wanted something to look back on and say, ‘Man I did that,’ I had to give myself all those shots for a good reason as we now I have a baby on the way.
“As hard, challenging and expensive as it was, I can look back on it now and say it was 100% worth it because I’m pregnant with our daughter.”
The couple started trying to conceive six months after their wedding in 2015 but after months without any success they were referred to a fertility clinic.
Becca initially blamed herself for not falling pregnant, believing it was due to only having one ovary after battled ovarian cysts in her early 20s.
She said: “I would blame myself and was discouraged, but after my husband had a semen analysis it turned out we had male factor infertility, which was a shock for us both.
“It’s actually a pretty common 50-50 split on infertility issues and we were referred to a specialist.
“They told us our only option was IVF. We were excited by the news that we could still genetically have children of our own.”
In September last year, Becca started her first round of the stimulation period, which helps women produce more eggs for extraction
It saw her inject herself three times a day for 12 weeks but only led to one successful fertilised embryo.
Becca said: “It’s a big numbers game with retrieval, they were able to collect five eggs but from the fertilisation and growth period we were only left with one embryo.
“Doctors advised that we go through the stimulation period again to increase our chances.”
Bravely she underwent a second high-intensity round last December, which required giving herself seven shots a day.
Becca said: “I went through two cycles in four months, the second was a lot harder I was waking up at 4.30am to start my seven-a-day shot regiment.
“I was exhausted, felt miserable every single day and looking back now, sometimes, I don’t know how I did it.
“The next time they retrieved my eggs there were eight, which resulted in four embryos, meaning we had five in total.
“From there they genetically tested the embryos chromosomes to make sure they were normal, and which had the best chance for transfer, so that we didn’t miscarry.
“From the five we were left with two healthy embryos, IVF is such a numbers game its crazy.”
Becca had the transfer on March 26 and then the two-week wait until blood tests could confirm whether they were going to be parents.
She said: “I wanted to enjoy the two weeks, I didn’t want to worry about taking a home pregnancy test and not seeing a line.
“After my blood test we were by the phone all day waiting for the doctor to call me, when they told us it had worked I cried, screamed and cried some more.”
The couple are ‘endless grateful’ for the generous offer to pay for their treatment, from now grandparents-to-be, Steve, 55, Stacey, 54, and Kathy 64.
Becca also credits her husband Michael for his support and the community on Instagram where others share their stories.
She said: “My husband was so supportive, he never missed a single doctor’s appointment, was there every time I poked myself with another needle and told me how proud of me he was every day.”
To help further the conversation about IVF and fertility issues, she shared a photograph of the vials and syringes required to allow them to have a child.
Becca said: “I wanted to include as many as possible in a circle with the positive pregnancy test and little cards in the centre.
“I decided to use my voice for myself and others, to share the journey, the good, bad and ugly, I wasn’t trying to hide anything and got a lot of great feedback.
“There is still a lot of embarrassment and taboo around fertility problems even though it affects one in eight couples.
“Looking at that picture reminds me that we beat infertility, we have a successful IVF story, I’m so proud and thankful of our journey.
“Even though it was hard and challenging, I found out how strong I actually am and as far as my relationship with my husband this has bought us even closer together.”