How to “Brave It”

Infertility sucks. 
There are no other words to describe the feeling that you are incapable of having children. Being able to conceive is glamorized by the media and people all around us as being so easy.  However, 1 in 6 people worldwide, are unable to have children naturally and must resort to some kind of medical assistance.  David and I had the rare combination of both of us being infertile. This meant going to the most extreme intervention, ICSI-IVF. Without it, we would have had a 0.2% chance of having our own children naturally.
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Brandi’s injections and pills for going through the process of IVF
Infertility changed us in a way not many would expect. We realized that just because I was the one trying to carry a child, the weight was not solely carried upon my body. The toll it had on David made him feel like he had failed me when I was the one who felt I had failed him. Sadness and stress impact us physically as well as mentally, and it was clear it was affecting his health as well. That hurt and pain between both of us made me realize, as a woman, that men need equal amounts of compassion and understanding when dealing with infertility. It has built our desire to spread awareness and support for both men and women going through this journey.
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David & Brandi on embryo transfer day
Initially, we felt like it wouldn’t change us as parents. But, in the difficult moments our kids give us, we realize that these are those same moments we longed for all these years. It’s made us value those less than perfect times as those pieces that make up the fabric of our family; whether good or bad, those moments are cherished.
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David with our oldest daughter, Cecilia,  on the day she was born (conceived via ICSI-IVF)

The sensitivities of dealing with infertility actually helped us decide which products we wanted featured in our store and how to sell them. We try not to send out samples of nursing items in case a mother may be dealing with breastfeeding struggles (we’ve been there). We try to examine whether products will benefit not only the child(ren) but the family as a whole. When I dealt with post-partum depression, I saw how babywearing saved our family. We decided to carry all varieties of carriers to better educate others of both the physical and mental benefits. Every familia is unique in their situation in that we wanted products that were one of a kind just like them.

When we were going through our journey, we had support from friends and family. But, not many understood what we were really going through or what was involved. Years later, we are thrilled to see more awareness and discovered a local group that was organized years later call Braving Infertility Together (#bravingIT). While we wished we had this support during our struggles, we are so fortunate to have them now and want others to be able to have that support from the get-go. That is why we are donating 10% of all sales this week to Braving Infertility Together during National Infertility Awareness Week.

For those who are going through the struggles of infertility, I need you to understand this first and foremost hope and love are two very powerful tools; use them when and where you can. The journey may be hard and the destinations aren’t always going to be beautiful. But, remember to give yourself credit for walking that first step on the path of infertility. Everyone will have opinions on which way you should or shouldn’t be doing things, and there will be those that don’t support your choices, and that’s ok. Why? Because, there are thousands of others who WILL and have been on that same path.

Be Bold. Be Brave. You have a Familia here. 

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