The following post is a success story that Ashley Sargent has graciously decided to share with us. 

On July 25th, 2016, our lives would forever be changed.

I met my husband, Chris, when I was only 14 years old. Not everyone falls in love so young and marries their high school sweetheart, and even fewer stay together. It wasn’t always easy and there were many breakups and fights along the way. Marriage isn’t easy but God had a plan for our lives, much more than we would ever know.

March 2012, we decided we were finally ready to have a family. We assumed it would be so easy, all of our siblings had kids already and we had never really heard of anyone struggling. How hard could it be? I remember researching ‘getting pregnant at 24- how long to expect’. Most websites said average around 3 months… months went by and nothing. I began to feel confused and like something was wrong with me. It wasn’t supposed to be hard, that wasn’t in my plan.

Months turned into a year and finally when I asked my doctor what was wrong, she referred us to ART Fertility of Birmingham. The thought of having to go to a fertility doctor was not only embarrassing to us both, but also it just felt more shameful. Why can’t we get pregnant? What’s wrong with us? Can it be fixed? It was so extremely difficult to make the first call for booking our appointment.

April 2014 we had our first fertility appointment. The feeling of the unknown was unbearable.

After a few months of fertility cycles, we found that I had fibroids within my uterus that needed to be removed. They removed 5 large fibroids and straightened my tubes. If we were to ever have a successful pregnancy, we would now require a c-section.

In January 2015, we attempted and failed our first IUI. We were told that in our case another round of IUI would be useless and we should consider moving on to IVF. They explained to us their shared risk program where you can try 2 or 3 rounds of IVF and are given a partial refund if there is no successful live birth. It turned out that we might need several attempts. We felt defeated. Financially and emotionally, we couldn’t stand to go through it all. This wasn’t in my plan.

We prayed. We prayed a lot. Should we just take the risk and ‘hope’ that it works even though it may not? Should we just look into adoption? Should we just give up for a while? It just felt unsettled. I wanted so desperately to be pregnant and to experience everything like a mom is supposed to do. I wanted those complaints of aching/swollen feet, and tiredness, and morning sickness, and feeling those kicks for the first time. As much as that sounds awful to some, I wanted it so badly. But could we put ourselves through more disappointment?

Another option our doctors had talked about was this strange thing called embryo donation. I had never heard of it and wasn’t sure this was something we should consider.

I was terrified that our baby wouldn’t be accepted as ‘ours’, that people would criticize our decision, or that one day our baby would want to know ‘his real parents’. After many tears shed, many cries out to God, many talks to family, friends, and mostly with Chris, we decided this was our path. In April of 2015 we called our fertility doctor and asked them to put us on the waiting list for a baby.

On November 17th, 2015, we transferred two embryos in hopes that one would work. The morning of my procedure we prayed. We drove to Birmingham and we prayed; we went inside the waiting area and prayed with one of the nurses. The doctor took me back and then showed me a picture of our two babies, our little frozen snowflakes. She took the embryos, implanted them into my cervix, placed the picture over my belly, held hands with everyone in the room surrounding me, and she prayed for our babies. A moment in time I will never forget. This was God’s plan.

Friday, November 27th, 2016, at 7:30am we went to Birmingham once more for blood work and to find out our results. We were pregnant. Our results were positive. God had answered our prayers!!!

For the first 10 weeks, we had weekly check ups with our fertility doctor and learned that only one embryo had survived. We were able to also discover we were having a healthy little boy!

Sam was a name we knew immediately we loved, no special reasoning, we just liked the sound of Sam Sargent. His middle name, Owen, came from a friend of ours who mentioned it and we instantly fell in love. As all new parents do, we looked up the meaning of Sam (which comes from Samuel) Owen and discovered it meant God’s chosen warrior. We then also realized his initials would be SOS… the distress signal that ships use to signal when they are in trouble- Save our ship.  Sam became our lifesaver. He made our marriage stronger than ever, he brought us closer to God, and he made us a family. This was God’s plan.

Sam was a frozen embryo that may have never been brought into this world if it wasn’t for our plan not going according to plan. I praise God for all our struggles and for all our pain, because it brought us together, it made us who we are today.


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