My husband Nigel and I were together for 7 years before we were married, so the natural step after the big plunge was to have children. We enjoyed our married life for a while but realized that we were not getting pregnant. So we went to see a specialist and they explained that they could not see anything wrong with either one of us … we had unexplained infertility.

After numerous unsuccessful assisted attempts, we decided to take a break after this to prepare for the next step. It was during this time (around our 10th wedding anniversary) that we did become pregnant.

Our first trimester was a breeze…no morning sickness! At around 18 weeks I went to an appointment with my OB and my blood pressure was not good at all. He admitted me into the hospital were I stayed for one week … after this it was bed rest until the baby was born.

I felt bad about leaving work so suddenly so I spoke to my ob and convinced him that I would go in for a couple of hours 1 to 2 days a week to get things ready for the person taking over for me.

One morning (I was around 29 weeks at the time); I was in the shower and started to bleed. My husband was still home so we drove to the hospital. They took me in right away. They could not find a heartbeat with the Doppler, so I had to wait for an Ultrasound tech to arrive at the hospital.

When she took me in (alone … without my husband) … she was very rough with the wand and would not say a word.

We were brought back to our room where we had to wait for my OB to arrive. He was walking down the hallway and I could hear him speaking with two other people and he was having a very nice conversation. So I thought everything would be ok … but it was not.

They came into the room and he said what we were not expecting … our baby has passed and we have to give birth today. He would come back when we were ready. He left two nurses to answer our questions.

Family members came by and I was in labour for about 11 hrs before I gave birth to a stillborn baby girl who we named Pearl. She was born on April 10, 2006, weighed less than 1/2 pound and her skin was peeling.

After I gave birth I passed out and all of the arrangements were made by the nurses and my husband.

My six week check-up was the worst. He told me to forget about it, lose some weight and gave me a prescription for sleeping pills.

We waited over a year to try again. When we did it was with a different hospital and different clinic. We tried one assisted attempt with no luck. They found some polyps which they removed and one month after this we were pregnant. Almost two years to the day we lost Pearl.

Once again the first trimester was great! However at 18 weeks the same thing happened … blood pressure out of control and I was on bed rest.

At 20 weeks we found out that we were having a boy and he was of good size … they only problem was that the blood flow to the placenta was not that great … so they wanted to do more ultrasounds.

I ended up going for weekly ultrasounds until they admitted me into the hospital at around 27 weeks. They gave me steroid shots for his lungs and did an ultrasound every day and tracings 2x a day (monitoring the baby’s heart rate and my contractions).

I passed 29 weeks which was a big relief but around 30 weeks he was not moving around as much. They moved us over to the labour and delivery ward where we were monitored 24/7 and they were just waiting for the right time to take him out.

The day before he was born three doctors got involved … each of them taking us at a different time for an ultrasound and each of them with a different opinion on what to do. No one was making a decision.

That evening he had a lot of drops in his heart rate (nurses were quite concerned) but it was not until a fourth doctor got involved the next morning that they decided an emergency c-section should be done.

I had a spinal epidural and our son Ryan was born on October 3, 2008. He was 4 pounds 7ozs and he looked perfect … but he was not breathing when he was born and it took them 16 minutes to get him breathing again. Because of this he was brain dead with a 5% chance of survival.

We had him on life support for 4 days … we took him off life support on October 7th … we had NILMDTS come in to take pictures and he passed 6 hours after this.

This was a huge blow to the both of us and it took us quite a while to “recover” to a semi normal life. We went back to the same hospital and clinic one year later and tried more assisted attempts with no luck. They found polyps again and once they were removed we got pregnant again.

However my HCG levels kept dropping … I ending up having a miscarriage at 10 weeks in November, 2009.

My husband and I now give back to PAIL by helping out at events myself being a facilitator for the Bloor West group. I also speak on many parent panels and my husband and I both are on committees at the hospital where our son was born and we speak at NILMDTS training events. As for if we will ever get pregnant again, there is a very slim chance but we always have hope.