After 3 years trying to conceive naturally, Jemma and Simon decided it was time to get some answers. They started their fertility journey with Simply Fertility in 2016 and want to share their sheer joy at becoming parents.
Jemma and Simon came to the clinic for a fertility assessment in April 2016 where they saw Mr Gangooly. He diagnosed the Chelmsford couple with male infertility and recommended ICSI.
“We felt disappointed that we wouldn’t be able to have a baby naturally but there was still hope and science that meant we might be able to have the family we had always dreamed of.”
All of Jemma’s appointments took place in Chelmsford but when it came to egg collection, she had to go to Boston Place in London, as the Simply Fertility clinic hadn’t yet been built. She had an incredible 19 eggs collected with 1 being transferred and 9 embryos developing enough to be able to freeze. Unfortunately this cycle resulted in a negative test.
“We felt so positive and lucky to have so many eggs collected, I even joked I was like the Easter bunny!” Jemma says. “We didn’t really have any expectations at that point as it was all so new but we always hoped that things would work out first time and due to the amount of eggs, we knew we had options.”
Jemma and Simon tried to stay positive and decided to use one of their frozen embryos for their second attempt. This was a natural cycle with no medication and after a few scans, it looked as though Jemma’s body wasn’t doing anything and therefore treatment was converted to a medicated cycle under the guidance of Mr Gangooly.
“We knew what to expect the second time round so we felt more hopeful. When we got the positive test, it felt amazing but at the 7 week scan there was no heartbeat and that hit us both really hard” Jemma says. “It took us a couple of months to get our heads around it all but we both kept saying that if it could happen once it could do so again.”
After reviewing Jemma’s medical and embryology reports, Mr Gangooly advised her to have a hysteroscopy and investigative blood tests that would result in Jemma being high risk for thromboembolism. The advice was for Jemma to reduce her BMI before she attempted her next cycle. A different medication regime was also commenced.
“Every contact with Simply has always been amazing. We always felt like Jemma and Simon and not numbers. To always be recognised and acknowledged by the staff made us feel very welcome and at ease. Annette will always stand out as our beacon of light. She was there every step of the way and whenever I saw her, I always felt like I could be myself around her and not have to put on a brave face like I had to with everyone else”
“We decided that the diet and exercise would really start on January 1st 2018. This was to be our fourth attempt and our savings were decreasing so we had to give it our all” says Jemma. “We both exercised every day and increased our fruit and veg intake. Seeing the results each week on the scales as well as changes in my body was what kept me going. Focusing on this stopped me thinking about the process and boosted positive emotions I hadn’t had in a long time. I felt like a new person.”
Jemma’s 4th cycle started in June 2018 and by this time her embryos had been transferred to the clinic in Chelmsford so all appointments would be carried out in one place. Jemma also started having acupuncture sessions with Mark to get her in the right frame of mind.
“I had been having acupuncture elsewhere and I found it really helped my mood, but there was no connection with the acupuncturist. As soon as I met Mark, he made me feel so welcome, I knew it was right to continue with him. The fact he could offer sessions before and after my transfer helped me massively and I had never gone into a transfer feeling so relaxed and positive. Even Simon said he could see a big difference in me!” said Jemma.
Simon adds, “I was always made to feel part of the journey although I felt at times a bit of a spare part. I always felt the clinic were very informative and really looked after Jemma.”
Jemma’s transfer took place in July and resulted in a positive pregnancy test! Jemma was advised to stay on some medication until her third trimester due to the results of previous investigative blood tests.
Fast forward to April 2019 and Luke was born by emergency C-section weighing 7lb 4oz.
“Without the clinic and staff, I would not have our beautiful son Luke who I feel so lucky to have. I never thought it would happen. He really completes our family,” concludes Simon.