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I feel lucky every day - Natassia Garton shares her inspiring story for Fertility February

I have worked for Research and Development at UHCW since 2012 and am passionate in my love for research.

My work and home life combined forces in January 2018 when my husband and I found out we would not be able to conceive naturally.

We were informed our best chance was to have Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) treatment, this is where the sperm is screened and then injected directly into the egg.   

Even though I was only 32, we were told I only had around six months to start the process as if we left it any longer then there was a chance the treatment would not work. I felt a complete failure.

Within 10 days of this heart-breaking appointment, a large box of medication arrived and my husband and I were trained to mix and administer the injections.

This led to weeks of scans and injections (47 to be exact) and for the whole month of Fertility February 2018 I undertook treatment, which was both mentally and physically exhausting. 

I was lucky that I felt happy to share that we were undergoing fertility treatment with colleagues and my manager, I felt so supported by them. I also felt quite broken but carried on working to give myself a distraction.

One part of my fertility journey that I found the hardest was the constant anticipation and hope.

We eventually got to the point of egg collection and even though I was on the highest level of medication, we managed to retrieve just three eggs.

My husband and I waited to see what stage they would get to (embryos need to get to a state called Blastocyst, which usually takes five to six days, if they don’t get to this stage then they won’t be viable).

We were told we had one embryo that was viable, the other two had not survived the journey. Following this I was introduced to the TWW (two week wait) where you wait to take a pregnancy test - this was the longest two weeks for us both!

On 25th March 2018 at 6am my husband and I did a pregnancy test and we were extremely lucky that it was positive. In November 2018 I gave birth to our daughter Penelope.

I will never forget our fertility journey. We were so very lucky that we had one go and it worked as so many people can’t access treatments or are not successful when they do.

I feel lucky every day this worked for us. Our daughter was made with love, science and research.

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