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Our Story

                        

 

 

 

 

 

You know that feeling you get when you attend a function where you will meet familiar people, you start to wonder how many are going to approach you again and ask “if you are pregnant?” And when you tell them you're not pregnant, they respond with encouraging words like, "Oh, I am praying for you okay. You will conceive” and this is not because you shared your story with them.

 

You could be getting yourself a drink or food from the buffet cue and someone turns to you out of the blue and says: “Oh my gosh! That’s really something you’ve got there. Is there something small coming soon?” Your world stops. You stiffen, immediately. You want those words to be true more than anything. Instead, you need to reply. Do you pretend you didn’t hear them?or find a way to hide? 

 

When this happened to me, I laughed and affirmed it even though I knew I wasn’t pregnant. Sometimes, I smile and said “time will tell because I couldn’t bare to reply. I couldn’t bare to answer “no.” I knew they were only trying to be nice; after all, we’d gotten married only a few months earlier, so it seemed a natural next step. Of all the statements that I heard over the years of childlessness one that stuck with me till date was when someone said to me at a wedding “we thank God because as for this your stomach, you will be due soon.” In fact, this person followed it up with a phone call a few months later to check if I had given birth. I instantly came up with a story of miscarriage and they happily spoke to me about it. One day, I just said to my husband, "enough I need to loose weight as people are now using my weight to shame my childlessness."

Although the desire to have a baby had taken over my world at that point, five and a half years, it wasn’t easy to speak to my family, friends, or colleagues for that matter. I didn’t want to have the pressure of the issue hanging over our conversations every time I saw them. Since I have been through this journey, I know what it’s like. I don’t want others to experience a silent struggle. Since sharing my story, so many people have come to me to ask me for advice. It’s only when you open up that you realize how many people have actually been through it or know someone who has. Shared experiences are so incredibly powerful, and I really hope that through this foundation, people read my story and see that there’s nothing to feel shy about or ashamed of. I also want to educate others who aren’t directly affected about how it really feels to go through this. 

 

Starting out with hope
Like many christian women these days, I spent a long time trying to prevent myself from seeking medical support to become pregnant. All this while, I was going through miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies. Then, all of a sudden you hit the age and circumstance when you change your mind. You are ready to seek support to have a baby. For me that time came when I was 38.
It took about six months to get a referral to the fertility clinic before I could see a specialist. All necessary test completed and no causes were found. We were both fit to have a baby. She told me to give it another six months and come back if nothing happened. This may not seem long but, believe me, you put a lot of pressure on yourself. In that time, it becomes all encompassing. Every month can feel like a new heartbreak. The excitement you start out with can soon be worn down after the monthly cycle of hope building up, then being destroyed. Getting pregnant turns into a fear of not getting pregnant. And of course, you feel like you see babies and pregnant women everywhere. When friends tell you they are pregnant, you are (of course) really happy for them, but deep down there is also a sadness for yourself. Six months came and went, and in all that time nothing happened.

 

Coming to terms with childlessness
When we realized that it wasn’t happening for us, I was told there was no explanation as to why I couldn’t carry a pregnancy to terming was discharged from the fertility clinic even though I was qualified to get IVF, I was never put forward to the approval panel because I couldn’t loose any more weight to get my BMI to the required number. I soon turned 40 and was discharged. We came away from the appointment with some general advice but no explained data on my condition. Nevertheless, we had done some research on the internet and were convinced that there was an issue, so we went back to my doctor who referred me back to a gynecologist/miscarriage consultant. As hard as it is to think of yourself as ‘an infertile couple,’ we still felt positive. It meant we were going to get support. Even if we knew we were unlikely to conceive and carry it to term without support, the journey up until then started to feel lonely and out of our control. Having a team of specialists behind us was rather reassuring. It gave us direction and reignited our hope.

 

Facing it together
Of course, my husband and I were in it together – we absolutely had to be a team. By the time we had our first consultation at the hospital, it had been eight years since we decided we wanted a baby. 

The bad news was that our chances of conceiving on IVF through NHS were close to zero. The good news was that further test could be done to find the cause of my miscarriages with possible treatments options available.  The option of having a myomectomy surgery which was one of there many other surgeries I under went was discussed. I soon fell pregnant again but the obvious happened again and it was decided I needed the treatment. Going to the theater room became part of my life so much to the point that my face was familiar to the staff. From this point, the romantic notion of getting pregnant transformed into a scientific and clinical process. We were told our chances of pregnancy was around 30% and it was recommended I don’t use my own eggs to conceive and consider a young woman’s egg due to my age should I wish to have baby. The advice of seeking private IVF outside of the country was also discussed. I was almost broken. It is a physically and mentally exhausting experience for both you and your partner. A woman’s body and emotions rapidly change within days – going through this more than once, I can totally understand why people give up at this point. My husband really worked tirelessly to bring me up again. He said “look, it’s a journey and we will do this together.” Throughout everything my husband was my best friend. We were in this together. 

The most wonderful gift
I vividly remember February 2020. It was two weeks after we had returned from a well deserved cruise trip to Dubia. There was something different this time. I felt so unwell yet happy. Thoughts swirled in my head: “Maybe this time you’ve won the jackpot! Don’t wait. Don’t torture yourself. Take a pregnancy test at home.” And so, I did. I waited, for what seemed like the longest few minutes. I felt like time stood still. I was acutely aware of how the result could change my life forever. The second pink line filled my eyes with tears at once. I was going to be a mother. I took the test stick, and delicately placed it in my husband jeans pocket. As he pulled it out of his pocket, I was consumed by tears of joy – there are no words to explain how we felt. That day will stay with me forever. In total, I had six surgeries, several non-surgical treatments coupled with several pregnancies. The last one, is now our twelve-month-old daughter. The whole process, from deciding to have a child to holding our baby in our arms took almost 12 years and at age 42. Our daughter brightens our life every day. She is everything. She puts any issues into perspective and brings us so much joy. 

 

You are not alone
When you start trying for a baby, you hear stories. There’s the one about the person who had a baby they didn’t plan for. Then there’s the one about the couple who fell pregnant after just a few months. There’s the one about the person who had a baby even though they were in their forties (sometimes, fifties) – and there’s the one about the people who struggled a bit, but got pregnant before full fertility treatment started.
For some reason, people love to share stories about fertility when it’s easy. The truth is that there are lots of people out there who don’t find it easy. It is only when you are in it, that you find out there are others in your existing community in the same position. I remember bumping into a colleague at our local fertility clinic. The relief I felt to have someone else who I could talk to, someone who really understood. We could go for a coffee and share our stories. Once I opened up, I discovered that several other friends and acquaintances had similar stories also. I was surprised but encouraged to know that we were not alone. I realized that for every person that didn’t know what I was experiencing - there were so many others going through the same situation. 

I kept a diary, so that I would remember my story. I knew that I would want to return to what I went through and what I felt at the time – if somebody else needs my help, I want to be able to remember how it felt for me. Infertility is not something to be ashamed of. It’s just a reality of life, affecting so many people.

I really hope that our story will encourage others to openly talk about infertility to support and simply be there for each other. We are in it together and you are not alone.

 

Kind regards 

Nana

 

Awesome God. 

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Our  "Why"

by  Nana Agboado
 
Founder & Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Bella Faithful Fertility Foundation

We believe all women can embrace who they are,
can define their future, and can change the world.

 

Our Mission

At The Bella Faithful fertility Foundation, our mission is: "To provide HOPE to couples struggling in their journey to creating their families, by helping them tell their story, by spreading infertility awareness, festering of abuse, providing counseling and medical support and providing financial assistance through grants and fundraisers."

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Our Vision

The organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

 

The Bella Faithful Fertility Foundation aims to

 

- Help couples pay for their treatments or adoption by providing financial assistance through grants.

 

- Raise awareness concerning the struggles couples go through. This helps couples not feel so alone in their journey.

We Need Your Support Today!