It was 2012—girl meets girl through an online dating website. We were so embarrassed to tell anyone we met online that it wasn’t until 2016 we finally came out with the truth. The first time we met was at a park by my house. I walked over there after I finished work at a restaurant in town. I made her a milkshake before I got off of work to bring with me to the park. When Katie showed up with flowers on my doorstep and that’s when I knew: This was the girl I was going to be with forever.

We just couldn’t stop seeing each other. Everything just clicked right into place. We were married about a year after meeting each other and moved in together. We started to save money for our future. In 2015, we bought our first house and decided it was time to start our family.

Katie and I started our reciprocal IVF journey thinking we would make our dreams become a reality. She told me she wanted to carry my egg so we could both be a part of the process of making our family.

After our first IVF appointment, we already knew we wanted to implant two embryos at the same time and hoped to have two babies. Implanting two embryos also raised our chances that at least one would take.

Our first round of IVF was exhilarating. We were so excited during the entire process. We couldn’t wait to get started. It’s a long process of medications to create embryos ready to implant. In the beginning, it was mostly me who did all the shots, which prepared my body for egg retrieval. Meanwhile, we started looking for a sperm donor online, which took us several days. It’s hard to pick someone that will play a genetic role in your child’s life. We tried to find someone who resembled Katie as much as possible but also had similar interests.


The day of egg retrieval was terrible. My body was in so much pain and it continued after my surgery. It hurt to stand up, walk, and go to the bathroom. But I wasn’t focused on the pain; all we could focus on was a phone call to see how our eggs fertilized. We were told we wouldn’t get a phone call until the following morning, but Katie got a phone call from the embryologist later that day who asked if he had permission to open our second vial of sperm. The eggs weren’t fertilizing and he wanted to try the second vial. We both went into a panic. What if our eggs didn’t fertilize?

The next morning we got the phone call. Out of the 13 eggs that had been retrieved, only two had survived. The embryologist had to perform rescue intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) on the two remaining eggs and hoped they would fertilize. He informed us of the low percentage of eggs that survive this procedure so late after retrieval. Immediately after our phone call, we started searching the internet for any information we could on surviving embryos from this procedure. We found more sad stories than happy ones.

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Still reliving yesterday. I know we shouldn't get excited over being 15 days pregnant but I've learned in IVF world this is a huge step. How can we not be excited over a huge step?! I do remember how scary it was last time we did this, got through this step, then almost lost both our embryos. It's hard to remind yourself to not get excited. Our emotions take hold and block out all those "what ifs." For now, we are happy and yesterday is a moment we keep reliving ❤️ Tomorrow we finally find out if this little one stuck! 🤞 . . . #lesbianmommies #ivfjourney #herbunmyoven #hereggmynest #AheadOfTheCurve #thebump #ig_motherhood #thatsdarling #motherhoodrising #momtogs #babylistbabes #uniteinmotherhood #momsquared #thenextfamily #teamtwomoms #lesbianfamily #femmetribe #mrsandmrs #samesexfamily #loveislove #somefamilies #oneofthem

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The following day, we got the news we didn’t want. One of our eggs didn’t make it. We still held onto hope for our last remaining egg. I was still giving Katie shots of progesterone each night, preparing her body for our embryo. This process had lost its excitement.

Sadly, we got the phone call that our last egg didn’t make it. Day after day, we had been holding out hope that we could still have a healthy baby from this procedure. We were left feeling empty inside. We broke down crying on each other after we got that last phone call. All we could do was cry. I tried to not show how depressed I was and tried to get all my crying out during the day while Katie worked. My body felt weak.

I turned to the internet for answers again. I came across another option—embryo adoption.

Embryo adoption seemed like it could be the right choice for us. What I liked about embryo adoption was that we could get three embryos and get our money back if it didn’t succeed in a pregnancy (if your health, age and history qualified, which we did). Unfortunately, this process is so expensive that money played an important role; we’d have to borrow money to even do this procedure. We also considered that Katie’s body was ready for an embryo. We were still doing progesterone injections each night, not sure of our next decision. Our time was running out and we needed to make a choice. This could be our answer.

We moved along with the process of embryo adoption. We went back to our clinic for implantation. That morning, we sat in the waiting room of our clinic. We weren’t smiling. Our names were called and we walked back to our exam room. Our nurse walked in, who we knew from our previous procedure and who wanted to be with us during implantation. She’d been as devastated as we were when our first round of IVF failed. As soon as she walked in, I burst into tears and she hugged me. I looked over and Katie was crying too. This was supposed to be a happy day, so why were we both so sad? After talking with our nurse, we decided to try IVF one more time.

We tried to stay positive. Katie looked to the internet for support. She found many blogs about IVF and other fertility stories. Hearing from other people who have gone through what we went through was comforting.

We did the same needle routine. We prepped our bodies with shots. Egg retrieval day came; I was in pain, again. We waited for that phone call the following morning and were relieved when we didn’t get a phone call the day of egg retrieval. The next morning, the embryologist called with great news. Eighteen eggs were retrieved, nine went through ICSI the day of retrieval while the other nine were left for regular fertilization. In the end, 11 embryos were fertilized! Two of those embryos were grade A embryos. The embryologist rarely gives out an A on embryos, but he said these two were fantastic.

Just as we had our minds filled with excitement again, we were faced with turmoil. Our second embryo miscarried. It was a morning I will never forget: Katie panicking and crying in the bathroom with blood all over the floor. I tried to stay strong as I cleaned the floor hoping that we didn’t lose both babies. We were able to get an appointment with our IVF clinic that afternoon. What a relief it was to hear our one baby’s heartbeat on the ultrasound, but the huge blood clot we saw on the ultrasound sitting next to our tiny baby was terrifying. We were told the blood clot could take over the baby and end the pregnancy. It was unlikely our baby would survive.

Time passed and eventually, the day came where our pregnancy had progressed enough to transfer to an OBGYN and leave our fertility clinic. That was an exciting day but we tried not to get too excited. We knew the risk of losing our baby was still there.

Luckily, our baby got bigger and the blood clot kept to itself. We spent the entire pregnancy very cautious. We worried about every little thing. Every ultrasound we had was a focus on the blood clot. We didn’t want to buy anything for the baby because we weren’t sure we would have one. We tried not to talk about all our fears because it wouldn’t ease all our worries.

As Katie’s pregnancy progressed, we started to feel small moments of joy. I remember feeling our daughter Kennedy kick for the first time. I wanted to cry. I couldn’t believe a little baby was inside there. All my worries and fears faded in that minute.

Finally, Kennedy’s birthday arrived. Kennedy remained breech the entire pregnancy so we scheduled a cesarean section for her estimated due date. It was a date we had memorized already and we felt it was meant to be that day.

After we checked back into the hospital, everything seemed to happen fast. It’s hard to explain the feeling of being in a room, sitting by Katie with a mask on, holding her hand, expecting a baby to come out at any time from behind that curtain.

I can’t explain how it feels to see your daughter for the first time. It was overwhelming. This little girl you had once seen as an embryo was now a full grown baby. I just couldn’t believe this baby was ours and she was actually here. I was no longer thinking about the pain from fertility procedures and needles, the mental pain I felt when our first round of IVF failed or all the money we had spent on the process. Kennedy was all I could think about. We had our family now and our dream had become a reality.

Soon after, we started our IVF journey again for our next child, Charlotte. When we embarked on this second journey, we knew the process would be different. We didn’t expect any problems this time because we were using a frozen embryo which seemed to be an easier process than going through egg retrieval and fertilizing eggs. This embryo was from the same batch as Kennedy.

Transfer day came quickly. The transfer happened, the little flicker of light appeared on the ultrasound screen, and we sat there with our embryo photo wondering what this little boy or girl would look like one day. We were already in love.

We did our blood test a week later and waited for the results. The phone rang and our nurse delivered us great news. We were pregnant! We took photos with huge smiles on our faces thinking about our soon to be a family of four.

Katie went and took her second blood test and the BETA number didn’t double as it was supposed to. The nurse assured us that everything was probably okay but Katie would do another test just to make sure. We learned that the number from the BETA test showed that Katie would most likely miscarry or have an ectopic pregnancy. We were told to watch Katie’s body carefully because if it was ectopic and untreated, it could result in serious damage. We were terrified but also heartbroken. Why was this happening to us?

Waiting for a miscarriage was terrible. We had a hard time talking about it because all we wanted to do was cry. Katie called me one morning and said she was bleeding. She called our nurse who told her to prepare for the miscarriage to happen that day. Katie stayed home from work and waited. When nothing happened, she decided to go back to work. We scheduled an ultrasound to see what was happening.

We waited for what seemed like forever to be seen. A little flicker appeared on the screen and heartbeat was heard. I wanted to just cry right then and there but we waited until the doctors left the room. Our baby was there all this time! The doctor told us he has only seen this happen one other time. He said to still be cautious but the baby was the size it should be.

Weeks passed. We were transferred to our OBGYN. We started thinking about names. This pregnancy was very different than Kennedy’s, and Katie was sick all the time. We had a rough start to this pregnancy but we are so thankful for Charlotte.

We plan on having more children in the future and we know now that anything can happen. I think we told ourselves this when we went back to our clinic for our second child but we threw it out the minute we heard the news, ‘You’re pregnant!’ It’s hard to not get caught up in the excitement of receiving pregnancy news. This emotional roller coaster can take you from an all-time high to an all-time low.

There are so many options now to becoming a parent. Whatever road you chose to go down, be positive. Be there for one another. When we had a baby, it created a tighter bond between the two of us. We are now a stronger team and teamwork has become a key part of our marriage. Charlotte continued to tighten that marriage when we were faced with more heartache at the beginning of the journey with her. We’ll continue to teach our children that love makes a family. Love is something every person has in common.

We are a girl meets girl love story! We fell in love, got married and we now have two children via reciprocal IVF. We love to travel and show our kids as much of the world as possible. You can find Christina and Katie on Instagram and YouTube.