Having a baby had always been the last thing on Vicki’s mind: “I wasn’t maternal in the slightest or broody when I was growing up,” she says. “My peer group felt the same, we all went to university and had the kind of independent lives for, which women have been longing for hundreds of years. My twenties were a blast.” And then something strange happened one Christmas shopping trip…
Christmas shopping with decaf coffees and frequent loo trips
“I accidentally found out that one of my friends was pregnant,” she says. “We had been Christmas shopping and a couple of things happened which made me realise something was up. We went for a coffee and she ordered decaf. She never does that. She also went to the toilet about four times. Later I sent her a text saying ‘I know your secret’. She denied it, but I knew.
“Driving home after dropping her off I had an unexpected, overwhelming, uncontrollable longing to have a baby. It manifested itself into physical pain. I felt sick and was shaking. I had just turned 30 and suddenly having a baby had become the most urgent thing.
“All of a sudden I was ready. I genuinely hadn’t expected that feeling to ever happen to me but it is absolutely true what they say – when you hit your thirties – you really start to hear that clock ticking. And it was really loud.”
Vicki then had to convince her partner James that it was time for them to start trying for a baby – and he took some persuasion as Vicki had always been so adamant that she didn’t want children.
Everyone around me seemed to get pregnant straightaway
The couple started trying for a baby and gradually, as the months passed and they still hadn’t conceived, friends around them began getting pregnant.
“Naively I thought that I would get pregnant straightaway,” says Vicki, “but that was not the case.
“To me it just felt like everyone else could say, right I want a baby and then ‘Poof!’ they had one.”
Weeks and months turned in to years.
“Three years passed and still nothing,” recalls Vicki. “Then came the most painful week. Firstly my sister announced she was pregnant again with her third child. I was over the moon for her of course, but it also felt as though my heart had been ripped out. I then found out the following week that my best friend was pregnant.
“After that I knew that I had to do something. It wasn’t going to happen naturally and I needed to be a lot more proactive about it.”
Baby Rose arrived when she was needed the most
Vicki and her partner were referred for hospital tests and were told that they had unexplained infertility and were entitled to IVF treatment. The couple went to Bourn Hall and Vicki was told that she needed to lose weight as her BMI was too high.
“I had never been so motivated to lose weight in my entire life,” she says. “I lost a stone and a half in six weeks.”
James and Vicki’s IVF at Bourn Hall was successful first time and Vicki gave birth to daughter Rose eight years ago. Sadly, however, James’ mother had died during Vicki’s pregnancy.
“Rose was meant to be,” says Vicki. “She came at a time that helped heal the pain of her grandma’s passing and helped her daddy through one of the most difficult times of his life. At my most wistful and poetic I like to think that she was sent to us when we needed her the most.
“None of this would have been possible without the help of Bourn Hall.”