Balanced Translocation: Traci’s Story [SUCCESS]

April 27, 2020

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Today’s success story is about a woman named Traci. She is a 32-year-old program analyst who enjoys traveling and cooking. During the first year of trying to conceive, Traci became pregnant twice but miscarried both times. Her doctor discovered she had a balanced translocation, and she consulted with a genetic counselor about how to best move forward. A month later, further testing revealed she had Factor V Leiden and bladder cancer. The tumor was quickly removed and she began chemotherapy. However, her struggles didn’t end there. During her infertility journey, she learned her father cheated on and left her mother. She had to learn how to balance this pain alongside everything else. Join us to hear how Traci found out she was pregnant with her rainbow baby a week before she was to begin IVF.

Episode Sponsor:

Infertility Coaching with Heather Huhman

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Before infertility, Traci was very social and enjoyed her easy life with many grad school, church, and military friends
  • How she met her husband while playing basketball at UNC Charlotte, where her husband’s brother introduced them; she then dropped everything to be with him where he was stationed in Hawaii
  • As a couple, they balance each other well in a nice partnership
  • How they decided to have kids but not put their lives on hold while trying
  • How Traci’s best friend had a miscarriage and gave Traci a firsthand look at what she never thought would happen to her
  • After trying to conceive for a few months, they took a vacation to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, that turned out to be a turning point in letting go of the stress and anxiety
  • How Traci dealt with the pain of her father’s repeated unfaithfulness and the fact that he left her mother for another woman
  • How a hidden garden path, a gazebo, and scripture helped Traci heal
  • How they were overjoyed when they found out Traci was pregnant, but the first ultrasound showed no heartbeat, so they were faced with a devastating and unexpected loss
  • The pain of not being able to share their miscarriage with their family because they didn’t want to burden the family with more bad news
  • When they started trying again, they found ways to heal and fun things to do together; Traci became pregnant again, so she was hopeful that everything would be OK and that the first miscarriage was a fluke
  • When Traci experienced some bleeding, a trip to the ER confirmed her fears of another miscarriage; she felt lost, unsure, and like she had let her husband down in the biggest way ever
  • Why Traci felt like this was her rock bottom moment because of the turmoil in her family and the confusion of losing this pregnancy
  • Testing on the miscarriage showed a balanced translocation genetic disorder and the clotting disorder, Factor V Leiden, both of which carry a higher risk of miscarriage
  • Why Traci felt like her dream of motherhood was further away than ever before
  • How she saw a urologist after her doctor had reason for concern at the miscarriage; the diagnosis was that Traci had bladder cancer at age 26
  • The monumental moment in which Traci asked her husband to choose her over the army on the day of her cancer diagnosis—and he couldn’t do it
  • Now, truly at rock bottom, Traci had a chance encounter with a friend at Chick Fil A, and another friend came to visit at her house; both of these friends helped lead her to a place where she knew she would be OK
  • How Traci stopped worrying and trying to control everything; she learned to find joy in the middle of storms and change her thought processes
  • After successful surgery to remove the bladder cancer, Traci had chemo and prepared for their first IVF round, but first, her husband insisted that they try again naturally
  • How she found out she was pregnant on the day before they were to make the first payment on their IVF cycle
  • Their rainbow baby is now four, and her little brother is two
  • Why Traci is so grateful for two natural pregnancies and no genetic defects in her children
  • What it was like to struggle with infertility as a military spouse
  • What it was like facing infertility and cancer at the same time
  • Traci’s advice to others about dealing with the layers of other life challenges on top of infertility
  • The positive moments were many; they taught Traci to trust the process and enjoy every moment in life
  • How the intimacy in her marriage was affected, and how trying to conceive put a strain on their relationship
  • In relationships with friends and family, Traci wishes she had been more open, honest, and vulnerable with them because she would have had more support
  • How infertility changed Traci: “I wouldn’t change my story for anything. Infertility has taught me much about patience, faith, and perseverance. It prepared me to become a better mother, even though I had to go through the dark seasons of life.”
  • Traci’s advice to her past self: “I wouldn’t want to give my past self any advice because I wouldn’t want to alter anything from the way it happened.”

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Thanks for listening!

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