Our Story:
After trying to conceive for about a year, my husband and I suspected something was wrong. What we never expected was stage IV endometriosis. How and when did this happen? This disease had silently invaded my reproductive system. The first step was to "clean me out."

The surgery went well. What was hard was finding out that I had a one percent chance [per month] of conceiving on my own. I thought, "My God, some people using contraceptives have a greater chance than I have of conception." I also thought it to be extremely unfair. I started thinking about all of the neglected and unwanted children, and thought, "Why me? What did I do? Was I a bad person?" But before I could become consumed with bitter feelings, I realized that things happened for a reason and that I had to have an optimistic attitude despite what lay ahead.

We discussed our options, adoption or In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). We chose IVF. This wasn't an easy decision for us as we knew it involved great detail and that it might not work. In the end, we hoped it would be worth the effort.

We started our IVF cycle in August, 1999. It was extremely difficult. I had a hard time with shots, as well as my husband, who had to administer them. There were many sore muscles, some bruises and a whole lot of prayers.

Everything went according to plan. My blood levels and the production of follicles were where they should have been; I was ready for my egg retrieval. Seven eggs were taken. I thought, "Great, that would give me some for reserve." Well, of the seven, only three made it. We were disappointed, but more than that, scared that something would happen to those eggs or that they wouldn't fertilize and that we would be left with nothing.

I was so nervous about the transfer. It was also very difficult since I had so much time to think while lying in bed for two days. I was afraid to laugh, cough or sneeze. Every time I moved, I wondered what the effects would have been on the transfer.

The nine days following, waiting to see if we were pregnant, seemed like the longest days of our lives. Then came the big day. Nervous and filled with anticipation, I thought I would faint before they took my blood! When I heard the results, "You're pregnant!", I couldn't believe my ears! I thought it was a joke. I was in such a state of shock and disbelief that I couldn't express any emotion. I was also scared to get too excited since I knew all too well the feelings of disappointment.

As I went for my next two blood tests and as each one came back with improving results, we began to believe the miracle. We couldn't wait for my first sonogram. Watching the monitor was truly amazing; there he/she was, a tiny little peanut, 4 mm large, nothing to anyone else, but life and hope for us.

As we eagerly awaited our new arrival, I thought back to everything we had gone through, I couldn't seem to remember it being all that bad. It is as though I was only left with the good memories and the closeness of my husband, who had been extremely supportive. I often thought to myself how unfair for him and how lucky I was to have him. I was also thankful for Dr. Sweet and his staff, and for all of the other miracles that brought us to where we are now. It was a long road to take, but the end result was worth every step.

My husband and I are proud to announce that our miracle, Alexis Nicole, arrived May 13, 2000 (what a beautiful Mother's Day present), 6 lbs, 11 oz and 20" long.

God bless and good luck to you.

Kim Bonadies

Comment From Dr. Sweet:
I remember many important aspects in this couple's situation. I remember suspecting severe endometriosis on her  irst visit to my practice and knowing that they were in for a bit of a roller-coaster ride. I remember her surgery taking about three hours and that it was very complex and tedious. The IVF cycle was also a challenge. I became concerned that the endometriosis had taken their toll on Kim's ovaries.

In the end, however, Kim's ovaries came through. Everyone, especially Kim and her husband, did their very best. My laboratory provided three healthy embryos for transfer.

This couple bonded with our staff and the staff certainly bonded with this family.

Thanks should also be extended to her OB/GYN, Robert Strathman, M.D., for recognizing that there was a problem and not delaying her diagnosis and treatment. Great job, Bob!

Kim has kindly offered for other couples to contact her and her husband for support. If you are interested in speaking to Kim or her husband, please contact my office and we will make the arrangements.

updated 1/10/10

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