Empty Follicle Syndrome: Soleine’s Story [SUCCESS]

May 29, 2017

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Today’s success story is about a woman named Soleine. Before infertility, she was a happy person who was fortunate in many ways. Her husband often jokes that, before infertility, there was a side of her personality he had never seen — a sad side. As someone with a big family that includes 56 first cousins, she always knew she wanted kids. However, because her mother had secondary infertility, she wondered if it would be a struggle for her. Let’s listen to how her journey spanned multiple continents, a rare diagnosis, timed intercourse, IUI, and IVF before she ultimately became pregnant on her own.

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Soleine’s French heritage, her work for improvement in access to vaccinations in Africa, and her favorite hobbies
  • How she met her husband in college and they formed an adventurous, silly, different, yet complementary team
  • “I knew the happiest day of my life would be when I became a mom.”
  • Marriage and a move to Kenya
  • Why doctors didn’t take her concerns seriously at first
  • Three doctors in Kenya, four doctors in France, medications, cysts, endometriosis, IUI’s, IVF’s, cancelled cycles, and no good follicles
  • Empty follicle syndrome
  • When treatments fail and hope is lost
  • How Soleine coped: vacationing, volunteering, praying, working, and chronicling her feelings
  • A fond memory? The closeness that developed with her husband after the second IUI.
  • The miracle of unexpected pregnancy—all on their own
  • Soleine’s surprise and “huge feelings of joy” at the news of pregnancy
  • Balancing a career that demanded heavy travel with infertility
  • Soleine’s advice to others on balancing career and treatment: be clear and open
  • How living abroad impacted her fertility journey
  • How infertility treatments work in Africa, where adulthood is defined by parenthood
  • The need for awareness and transformational change in the infertility world
  • How infertility has changed Soleine: “It was a major life change for me. I’ve become more empathetic and humble.”
  • Soleine’s advice to herself back then: “I would be nicer to myself. I felt like I hated my body and felt dissociated from it. I would accept my weaknesses more fully.”

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Words of Hope:

Don't lose hope, even if the world seems full of baby strollers for everyone else. Find time to practice meaningful activities. Click To Tweet

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