Having another baby after our twins was not an easy decision. Life was already hard with two babies who became toddlers. And the thought of going through all we went through the first time made us nervous and scared to say the least. But when our twins were around 20 months old, things started becoming a bit easier and we decided to go for it. Afterall, we were already sleep deprived, what was adding one more to the mix?

Our options were either undergoing a frozen embryo transfer with our one embryo, which would mean a lot of money plus traveling to CO for the treatment, or trying naturally to see what would happen. We decided to go for the latter.

I went off the pill but just 3 months later our plans changed. My anxiety had come back full force and I just couldn’t do it. The waiting on my cycle was too much to handle. It brought back all the anxiety and fear as I had the first time we tried to get pregnant. I talked to my OBGYN about going back on the pill and he wanted me to take a pregnancy test before starting it “just in case”. I also went to my primary care doctor about my anxiety. This is what infertility does to you.

I picked up my birth control pills and went home and took a pregnancy test. It was positive. I thought surely this couldn’t be accurate. You hear of people all the time getting pregnant easily on their own after IVF/adoption/you name it, but to think that it actually happened to us? No way. I not only hardly ovulate, but even when I ovulated with medications 3 eggs per month I could never get pregnant. I didn’t believe it and actually called my OBGYN and talked to a nurse asking her what I could have eaten or done to cause a false positive (though I knew this was silly). We had just decided to wait on having a baby and here I was pregnant naturally, no medications or thousands of dollars.

My doctor had me do a series of blood tests since I never had gotten a period after going off the pill. We scheduled an ultrasound at what we believed would be 7 weeks based off the blood tests. While we waited for the ultrasound my heart was so full of joy. My body had worked and done something it was actually made to do. It felt amazing in a way that I can’t even explain.

Another thing infertility does to you once you are pregnant: constant fear. For some reason, something just didn’t seem right the whole time I was pregnant. I pushed it out of my mind, telling myself that this time was different in that we got pregnant naturally. It was suppose to happen this way. There was nothing to worry about. Then the day arrived for our ultrasound. I knew right away that it wasn’t good news. I should have been 7 weeks and the baby was measuring 5 weeks 3 days. The ultrasound tech left and I burst into tears. I don’t remember much else except my doctor telling me not to think we were out just yet. He wanted to check my blood levels to see where they were. Maybe our dates were off. But I knew.

The next day I lost our baby. The pain of a miscarriage is not easy to describe and is obviously different for everyone. I had two children already so I felt guilty for feeling so sad. I had two precious boys who I was so thankful for. Was I being selfish wanting one more? I felt guilty for feeling sad because I was only in the first trimester and others lose their babies much further along. But how could I not be sad? I literally had a growing baby inside my body one day, and the next day I didn’t. I learned that losing a pregnancy in the first trimester is still a loss. And for us, we didn’t know if we would ever have an opportunity again. There was a lot of emotional pain, but at the same time I felt numb.

On the other hand I still felt hopeful that my body had done something it was intended to do. This is one of the first times in my life I recognized God’s goodness even through the hard times. Despite losing the baby, I still felt such joy and was thankful that I got pregnant naturally. Then, like I always do, I couldn’t stop questioning what this meant for our family and our future. Were we not meant to have another baby? Were we meant to try again? Were we meant to go straight to our embryo? Were we meant to adopt? We gave ourselves 5 months after our miscarriage to see if my cycle would return and it didn’t. That officially closed the book on ever trying to get pregnant naturally again. We would use our remaining embryo, even if it cost us thousands of dollars and wasn’t guaranteed. We had to give it a chance. The only decision left was when.

Courtney Bauerle