Our Infertility Journey
By: Edward & Sarah Dalton
If you are familiar with our little family, you already know we love #AllThingsAdventure, and living larger than life. We have shared many extraordinary memories over the years, but for the most part, we are an ordinary couple with full time jobs and a fur child named Ophir Dog.
Sarah works for a non-profit health care provider, and I am in law enforcement. We don’t make a fortune, but we love what we do helping others.
We work hard while always looking forward to our next exciting adventure, of which we have experienced many together. Some we have shared openly and hope you enjoyed. But, we would be lying to pretended they are all great. Infertility has been our unconquerable Everest for 6 years now, and we need your help to reach the summit of growing our family!
While it’s hard to say what adventure has been our favorite, infertility is easily our LEAST favorite adventure thus far! One we never chose to go, with places we never wanted to be. Like any other undesired plight in life, it chose us as its unsuspecting victims. It’s been a journey full of tears, anger, confusion and absurd expenses.
Our battle with infertility began 6 years ago. That’s short compared to some, but long enough to sadly realize if we ever have children, it’s not going to happen as spontaneously as it does for most, and time is not on our side.
If you don’t suffer from it yourself, chances are you are very close to someone who does. And to those who do personally deal with it, first and foremost, we are sorry and empathize with you wholeheartedly! The nightmare is real. The truth is, there are few situations in life that leave you as powerless and devastated as infertility.
In the midst of realizing we may never have kids, at least the traditional way that comes so free and easy to the majority, and after learning more about the technical process of conception than I cared to know, I couldn’t help but marvel at the “miracle of life”, as they call it.
When you begin to view conception through the paradigm shift of infertility, it truly is just that, a beautiful miracle! A miracle that seems so out of reach for us. A miracle that happens so frequently around us, it is easily overlooked and even taken for granted. Every breath we take, run we go on, trail we hike, or lake we swim in took an impressive series of miracle after miracle to occur!
In the back of our heads, we knew IVF treatment or adoption was always an option. But as we learned of the costs associated with these alternatives, the little light at the end of the dark infertility tunnel began to fade away.
As if there wasn’t enough to be disheartened about already, these discouraging financial hurdles only make it harder. It can even begin to feel demoralizing having your vulnerability profited on, whether it be through treatment, adoption, or both. Neither of which most insurances cover.
I can only begin to imagine how devastating it is for couples who have already spent tens of thousands of dollars on treatment, only to remain infertile with nothing to show for it but an empty wallet and broken hearts. Then there is adoption, another beautiful option, if only it too wasn’t as expensive, or more, than IVF.
Our careers expose us daily to many of the tragic hardships society and life unfortunately come with, which helps us keep perspective and come home grateful knowing how quickly life can be flipped upside down without warning. While we do well at being grateful for even the trivial comforts we do enjoy, some days we can’t help but feel like something is missing. It can be hard to muster the motivation to keep searching for a solution to a problem so physically, emotionally, spiritually, and financially taxing as infertility.
A simple philosophy I have subscribed to throughout my life, which has proven true whenever I was faced with something hard, Is that true growth, character and success doesn’t evolve in the safety of comfort and consistency. Only obstacles that demand the best of our wits and the deepest of our grit to overcome will provide the deepest sense of accomplishment. A ship is safe at harbor, but that’s not what they were made for where they?
I once heard someone say “ too much sunshine makes a desert” , implying that our lives, like climates, are beautified more drastically by the occasional periods of inclement weather, rather than by being sunny and trouble free all the time.
While this analogy may very well be true, we, like others navigating their own challenges, have struggled to find what is to be learned from it. Patience? Persistence? Or maybe there isn’t a lesson at all, and it’s just the bad hand we were dealt?
Some clarity might be found in an old parable you may have heard before. It says…
And so it is day after day in all our lives. Good and bad fortune is relative and subject to context. There are things we may never know the answers to, or be able to explain, such as child bearing, or in our case, the lack thereof.
But misfortune should never stop people from chasing their dreams. The greatest obstacles yield the greatest opportunities on the other side. After all, what are dreams for if they can’t be chased?
When I first created @TheDreamChasingFamily account, it had nothing to do with infertility. My initial intention was to create a place, if for no one else but ourselves and future children, to journal our family’s adventures together through life. At that time, I never thought we would struggle to start our family. While it has already been rewarding to look back on our memories together as a couple, we have always wanted to add kiddos to those experiences we cherish. Without them, our family and adventures feel incomplete.
Over the years, we have silently and privately climbed towards our ultimate goal of having children, hoping the dream would eventually come true. Unfortunately, the dark clouds of infertility still loom overhead, largely in the form of otherwise unattainable funds for the expensive medical treatment (IVF) doctors have said we need to conceive.
Meanwhile, we find joy in what our bodies can do for us. We can run, hike, swim, bike and play in the great outdoors. This provides periodic breaks in the stormy weather as we keep climbing our Everest. With your help, we know we can beat infertility’s ass, and eventually share our passion for life with our future children.
Now, our next adventure is chasing our ultimate dream of growing our family.
For those asking, or if you feel so inclined. We have set up a GoFundMe Fundraiser where you can donate to help our dream come true.
Because we have been so uneasy asking for help in our infertility journey knowing we could never repay you, we wanted a way to show our donors our immeasurable gratitude. No matter how big or small your donation, we will be writing your name on the reverse side of a puzzle piece. Once complete, we will frame the puzzle and put it in our nursery to represent all the individual pieces that came together to help bring baby Dalton to our arms.
Lastly, and most of all, THANK YOU! Thank you joining us on this journey. Thank you for lifting some of the heavy burdens from our shoulders. Thank you for your thoughts, prayers, positive comments and donations. We are more resilient because of you. ❤️