Five major abdominal surgeries, four in-vitro fertilization cycles (IVF),
one heart-shattering miscarriage and still…no baby. I remember it
like it was yesterday. After nine years of battling fibroids and infertility,
I was at a life-defining crossroads. Should my husband Marc and I
continue to pursue our dream of becoming biological parents one
more time through IVF, or begin the sacred journey of adoption?
Deep in my heart I was tired…NO, I was brutally broken from the hun-
dreds of days spent recovering from one major surgery after another—
because the fibroids had returned three times in nine years—and the
emotional storm brought on by the tidal waves of failed IVF cycles
and the gut wrenching miscarriage that threatened to permanently
disfigure my joy.
Although adoption was always a desired part of our family plan, I knew
Marc also deeply desired a biological child. But now, I found myself
yearning for what felt like the “rescue” of adoption. I wanted NO MORE
fertility injections, open surgeries, seemingly endless hospital stays
and grueling recoveries.
“Weighing the tension of past failed attempts and surgical complications
against my husband’s dream of biological fatherhood, I struggled to make
a decision. I prayed for wisdom and direction. One morning I woke up and
felt compelled to call my sister-friend, Denise. We spent two hours on the
phone and she coached me with questions that helped me hear myself
think. As I talked through it I had an “aha” moment that confirmed Marc’s
words to me throughout this period. Now it was crystal clear. I believed
that God had provided the way! For instance for the first time our health
insurance actually provided IVF coverage. Also during my last surgery, the
odds were against saving my uterus but my doctor miraculously managed
to do so. I felt confident that it was my time and I was ready to try again.
A week later, my Godmother Yanick called me. Though I hadn’t shared my
dilemma with her, she informed me that she’d prayed for me and I would
have a baby within a year. Her confirming word became my faith’s anchor!”
(Excerpted from HOPE BEYOND FIBROIDS: Stories of Miracle Babies
& the Journey to Motherhood.)
That moment, I let go of my safe agenda and initiated the battle to rebuild my
hope. If you find yourself battling hopelessness I encourage you to:
- Celebrate Your Blessings: A popular Proverb states “Hope deferred
makes the heart sick but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” Disappoint-
ments and failures have a way of backing us into a corner of fear and
despair. It becomes so dark that we can’t see our way out. Gratitude
shines the light of possibility and enlarges our capacity by reminding
us of the many things for which we should be grateful. Start a HOPE
journal to begin documenting your blessings!
- Get Your Village: Community is the support network we need to live
our dreams. Listening to and connecting with sisters who share similar
experiences helps to normalize your situation and opens your thinking
to new possibilities. This was the very reason I started the “Circle of
Hope” Prayer Call. Find the support network that best suits you.
- Increase Your Possibilities: After ESSENCE’s profile of my story went
viral, I became a Fertility Coach to help women navigate the mental
and emotional hurdles that accompany fibroids and infertility and work
with them to develop a personalized action plan. You don’t know what
you don’t know. Open yourself up to a broader spectrum of options
and resources by engaging experts and your new village to learn about
their successes, failures and best practices.
- Set Your Mind: Your mindset determines your reality. Thought and talk
enlarge anything. Begin every day with an affirmation and song to set
your mind on the HOPE before you and your words and experience
As for my story, I’m happy to report my miracle Nia was born on September
8, 2011 at 2.5 lbs and 14 inches! I shudder to think what my life would be
like today if I’d given up HOPE and not proceeded with the fifth IVF cycle.
My co-author and sister Coach Felicia says it best “Never quit! You may
know how far you’ve come but you don’t know how close you are!”
About Gessie Thompson
Bestselling Author of Hope Beyond Fibroids, Fertility Coach and
Fibroids Awareness Advocate Gessie helps couples navigate the
emotional and mental hurdles that accompany fibroids and
infertility. HopeBeyondFibroids.com @GessieTUG.