Male Factor

Dr. Zouves,

It is hard to believe that it was a year ago today that you called Matt and me to tell us that we were pregnant, and I cannot believe how much has changed in this past year. Nothing could have prepared me for the challenges and rewards that parenthood brings, and there are no words to describe what it feels like to be a mom after such a long journey. Seeing Isabella’s face light up when she sees us, the sound of her breathing as she sleeps soundly, her laughter, and her innocence make up for the many tears that we cried and the heartache that we endured as we prayed for a child. She is incredible, and she is a miracle come to life. We are profoundly grateful for her, and you and your staff always will be part of that gratitude. If it weren’t for the care, support, and encouragement that we received from all of you, we would not have had the strength to do our fifth IVF/ICSI cycle, and if we had not tried one more time, we would not have our beautiful daughter here today. It is hard to think of our lives without her.

I know that it is hard on all of you when you have to make those phone calls telling someone that the pregnancy test was negative, so I wanted to remind you all that those positive phone calls have an eternal affect. This day always will hold a special place in our hearts, and it just so happens that this also was my maternal grandmother’s birthday. She died suddenly when I was 9, and there has been a hole in our family ever since then, but Isabella has filled that void and then some. She shares her middle name with my grandma, and I have to believe that my grandma had a hand in helping to bring Isabella here, too.

Well, our little miracle is making her presence known quite loudly, so, I will close this note by saying thank you, and God bless you!!!

Love and gratitude,

Dear Dr. Zouves,

We are writing to you today to say hello and let you know that we are looking forward to our very first Mother’s Day and Father’s Day ever. We are happy to inform you that our two miracles have arrived, Jayden (our son) and Skyler (our daughter). We want you to know how thankful we are to you and your wonderful staff for making our dream come true, a family. When we were first informed of Aaron’s condition it seemed impossible for us to have a family of our own and we were heartbroken.

Then we met you and for the first time we had hope. From our first phone consultation through all the steps leading to our transfer, our experience with you and your entire staff was exceptional. We felt compassion, understanding and genuine care from you and your staff. As you are well aware this entire process can be a combination of emotions from fear and uncertainty to anticipation and hope. We were very fortunate in that our first cycle was a success. Not only did we achieve pregnancy but we were blessed with twins. Words can only begin to express what a wonderful gift you have given to us. You will always hold a special place in our hearts because we now understand the love a parent feels for their child, it’s overwhelming at times the happiness and love we feel every time we hold Jayden and Skyler.

Thank you for all of your knowledge, understanding and genuine kindness. We will be forever grateful to you. You are an exceptional doctor and a true friend. We were truly blessed to have been one of your patients and we will treasure our experience with you.

Aaron & Debbie

Dear Doctor Zouves and Staff,

It has been a long road for Austin and me and it is hard to know where to begin with this letter of thanks to all of you who have so positively impacted our life.

As you know, Austin and I have been trying naturally for two years with no luck. It was during this time that we heard more about SGD and given I was a carrier of an x-linked disease that causes vision impairment or complete blindness in boys, we thought we would investigate this option. We knew this would entail going through the in-vitro process. We spent the next year and a half speaking with several geneticists trying to find if a lab existed that could test our family and identify the chromosomal mutation unique to our family for retinal-skesis. We had no luck but had sought out in-vitro anyway in hopes of being able to identify the sex of the embryo before implantation. It was during this process that we were called by our fertility doctor and first learned that due to an extremely high FSH that I had issue conceiving naturally, let alone of achieving success through in-vitro. This was quite an unexpected blow to us especially myself as I was in my early 30′s at this time. We were informed of our slim chances and donor egg was discussed. Needless to say I was considered a failed cycle as my ovaries did not respond and again was informed of donor egg options. Austin and I decided to take some time and get acclimated to the fact that we might not have a family naturally.

The Turning Point. It was shortly after that my best friend urged me to speak with Dr. Zouves and not listen to the opinions of one doctor. She herself having failed with another doctor and since had a beautiful boy and girl with the help of Dr. Zouves. We were then introduced to Amy Vance and from here on out my words below can tell you all how incredibly grateful we are and always will be. For the hope you gave us, the unending support, and your belief in what you do. It is amazing what you have given us…the greatest gift of all…life. It is hard to thank someone for this and have it emanate in words the overwhelming emotion you feel inside.

Amy, I am truly grateful for your dedication to your field. Thank you for finding Dr. Hughes and allowing us the opportunity to do PGD and eradicate a disease that has passed through every generation of boys in my family. Now I am close to five months pregnant with two girls who are not carriers. You deserve so much praise for your part. Thank you for all of your follow-up e-mails of support. It meant so much and kept me so positive.

Of course to whom I will be praising his dedication for an eternity, Dr. Zouves. You are an amazing human being. Having worked with other sets of doctors makes one notice these things more. The fact that while you were realistic with our situation you always spoke so positively, you inspired hope and confidence in me the entire way even when only one ovary responded, even when of six eggs only two were viable, and yet your face and words continued to make us feel hopeful.

It was a shock to us nonetheless, as well as to our family and friends that of the two encouraging looking embryos you transferred, both wanted to go on the journey! I cry every time I see them on the sonogram. I cannot believe this happened to us and we were to be so fortunate. Austin and I feel completely blessed to have been in the hands of so many that care and believe in what they do to the extent that all of you do.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts! The girls to date had excellent results on the nuchal fold test and continue to grow at the same pace. No gift can be enough of the gift you have given us. The hearts and candles are a small token of our gratitude. The candles are made by a husband and wife who have an autistic son. Every candle they sell is part of Project “light a heart” which was created to help non-profit organizations and currently contributes to support children and young adults with autism and epilepsy. Know every time you light that candle you have lit our lives with joy!

Thank You All!!!!!!
Austin and Kelly

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