Kismet.

A mystical word, loaded with meaning. Some positive: fortune, what’s written in the stars. Some less so: fate, one’s lot in life. Most of us struggling with our fertility feel an overwhelming sense of kismet at times – that whatever will be, will be, it’s all out of our hands anyway, right? When you’ve been trying to start a family but without success, and are at your lowest ebb, blaming it all on the darker forces of kismet might be the only way to make some sense of what’s happening and keep going. We are three women – Abi, Hannah and Karen – who’ve recently ridden the fertility rollercoaster, at times feeling the rush of hope; at others the familiar stomach lurch of another miscarriage or failed cycle. Our paths crossed at just the right moment (there it is again – kismet! – this time the good kind, mind) to spark and idea for a new kind of fertility platform – one that offered all the things we’d longed for when we were trying. That left us feeling empowered, not powerless. We actually met at a mindfulness session and quickly exchanged stories. A recurrent theme was the sense of loneliness and confusion we’d each felt whilst trying to conceive. Where can I find information that I can trust about my fertility options? Is it just me or are these success rates really hard to grasp? How do I find a really good clinic?  Is IVF right for me? Or something else? And what if none of it works, what then? It seemed the available sites and sources were either heavily medical, leaving us even more bamboozled, or forums offering gems of the ‘my-sister-told-me-if-you-do-it-in-the-garden-when-the-moon-is-waning-you’ll-definitely-get-pregnant’ variety. Why wasn’t there a single place – a one-stop fertility shop, if you like – that was both practical (want to search for and book a clinic or holistic practitioner near you? No problem!) and supportive (would you like to read some stories from our community – people who’re facing similar challenges to you? Come on in!). Fast forward a year and here it is – The Fertility Circle. What we hope will become the definitive home of all things fertility. Our vision for this site is to give you all you need to feel connected, empowered and supported, throughout your fertility journey. We are also united in our belief that everyone should have access to fertility treatment if and when they need it. So we plan to use this new platform not only to add voice to the many great campaigns already working to help end the fertility postcode lottery, but to offer practical help in the form of financial funding to those struggling to pay for their own fertility treatments. [Kind request: if you’re a business or individual reading this and are interested in supporting our funding mission with a donation or other contribution, please drop us an email at hello@thefertilitycircle.com].

A little bit about us 

 

Abi, 36 2.5 years to conceive

Trust, surrender and receptivity became my mantras during our fertility struggles. There were certainly moments when these felt impossible and fear set in but, looking back, I now realise that investing in both my emotional and physical wellbeing was a turning point in our journey. I think it’s important to embrace whatever works for you in terms of self-care in these challenging times. For me, this meant a marriage of eastern and western practices and I believe this was fundamental to our success. It even led me to new studies and I can’t wait to share more of this with you in the future”.   

Hannah, 44 7 years to conceive

“Dealing with the lack of control that fertility issues presents was a really big challenge and I had to find ways to cope with failed cycle after failed cycle.  You can be ‘in charge’ at work, at home, but when your future feels as though it’s being taken out of your hands it’s hard to accept. Sometimes solace was in the bottom of a barrel; other (healthier!) options were running and yoga. Going through fertility treatment is never easy, but if I had my time over, I’d be a lot kinder to myself.  I’d say: ‘Don’t try to run at your usual pace during IVF.  Slow down and take your foot off the gas a little.  What’s the worst that’s going to happen?’”   

Karen, 39 3.5 years to conceive

Sometimes I still can’t quite believe what we went through on our mission to have a family. The route we had to take was certainly not one I’d envisioned when we started out. I was extremely lucky to have a shoulder to cry on, support and love from my wonderful best friend who had experienced similar struggles herself. Without her help and the strength of my amazing partner it would have been an even darker time. This has shown me the importance of sharing our experiences. To have someone there for you who understands without you even having to say anything is a great comfort. I hope that The Fertility Circle will be a place people can come to when they need a friend who just “gets it”.