New clinic set to make IVF easier for mamas-to-be in south Essex

Bourn Hall, Wickford, Essex, #whatkatydidUK

Opening soon: Bourn Hall’s new purpose-built IVF clinic in Wickford

Sonny Jim was conceived thanks to in vitro fertilisation (IVF) at Barts Hospital, in London.

We were living in Leigh-on-Sea (in Essex) while undergoing the process. And while I think I would have travelled to Scotland three times a week, if it meant the treatment would be a success, there is no doubt the commute to the clinic did take a bit of a toll.

Juggling a job on a regional newspaper, with the newsroom based in Basildon, but travelling into London to undergo internal scans (always a joy!) and blood tests and egg collection and embryo implantation was not exactly easy. A lot of the appointments were mere minutes long… but the round trip meant it was at least a 3-hour plus process. Which was not simple to slip in before work. It meant I had to tell my boss I was having IVF – and while he was very understanding and good about helping me work shifts around it, I would still have rather not have had to tell him. Continue reading

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Rubbish things no one tells you about IVF

Sonny Jim, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydidUK

Worth it all: My Sonny Jim

The first IVF baby was conceived on this day, 40 years ago (#IVFis40).

To mark the (rather amazing!) milestone, as a mama of an IVF tot, here are some rubbish things no one ever tells you about it…

  • If you are a needle-phobe, it will either break you – or cure you.

By my reckoning, one cycle of IVF probably involves you getting stabbed about 70 times (in your belly, your thigh, in your bum cheek.) A lot of them you’ll have to do yourself, or get your other half to do. You’ll even have a special yellow toxic-waste sharps bin – like actual drug addicts on TV. Continue reading

Why I’ll be holding my baby extra close tomorrow

Katy Pearson, Sonny Jim, lucky, Mothers Day

So lucky: My wonderful baby boy

Tomorrow will be my first Mother’s Day as a mama. I am beyond thrilled to be able to type that.

But as wonderfully special as the day will be for me, there are so many, many women for whom the day is the hardest of the year.

Before Sonny Jim, even though I’m lucky enough to still have my wonderful ma, I disliked this day. I waited nine years for my baby. Spent more than five of those years under various hospitals, undergoing tests and procedures, being stabbed with hundreds of needles, pumped full of different hormones and then constantly disappointed. Mothering Sunday became a day when scrolling through my Facebook feed felt a bit like death by a thousand papercuts. All those gorgeous babies snuggled up to their mamas. All those cute kids with their homemade creations. It hurt. More than I can explain. Continue reading