About This Website
This is a place designed to gather, share, learn, think, help, and to hopefully make sense of the feelings that infertility brings to couples who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS).
As I was trying to make sense of my own infertility, I sought help and guidance from many places. In my quest, I read several books about infertility that offered information from a medical and worldly perspective and they seemed empty to me. I wanted to learn about infertility from an eternal and spiritual perspective. But, as I looked, resources providing this spiritual strength seemed limited. I found that there is very little information available on the subject of infertility from an LDS perspective.
I felt that by sharing my story, insights I have gained, and the experiences of others, I could perhaps help fill this need. I believe that as we talk about and acknowledge infertility, healing can begin to change our lives.
My name is Kerstin Daynes and I am the creator of ldsInfertility.org. I also wrote the book Infertility: Help, Hope, and Healing. I was born and raised in Littleton, Colorado where I met and married (1998) my childhood sweetheart, Joel Daynes. I graduated with a degree in Family Science with a Marriage and Family Emphasis from BYU in 1999. Things that bring me great joy include running, cycling, reading, organizing, being out in the warmth of the sun, eating out, having a Saturday soda, and saving money by finding a great deal. Even though our continuing battle with infertility has spanned over many years and included medical treatments which failed 100% of the time, we have witnessed a miracle along the way in the birth of our son. We currently live in Lehi, Utah.
I feel compelled to share my story and to encourage other couples to share their stories about infertility so that all may be positively affected by acknowledging this very real sorrow.
As you browse through this website, I truly hope you find it helpful; I hope you cry a little, I hope you laugh, and I really, really hope you find healing. You will soon notice that I would love your input and ideas as you interact with the site. Don’t be afraid to share with our community. And, feel free to invite friends and family to come and learn with us. Dig in and enjoy!
My story is much like any of yours: complex at best. I used to keep it all to myself, but then I found that I felt better when I shared bits and pieces. With each telling, my burden became that much lighter, my circle of friends became that much larger, and I somehow became that much stronger. Because I find value in sharing and because I want you to know where I have been and where I am going, I will share an abbreviated version of my story here.
Our infertility is because of me, or rather, because of my body. My reproductive system cannot function as it should, and it never will. After Joel and I had been married for five years, and after several attempts of IUI were unsuccessful, what we had always known was confirmed: conception on our own would be unlikely. Instead of considering adoption or childlessness, we felt strongly that we should continue pursuing the medical intervention route. Our medical options…finite, the money that could be spent…infinite, and the chance of success…a gamble. We did IVF 1 1/2 times, without success. We spent time, money, and emotion with wonderful OB/GYNs and a renowned Reproductive Endocrinologist. For three years, we entertained all the options and used all of our resources. We were exhausted.
Only days after our second cycle of IVF failed, knowing that all of our remaining embryos died, we decided we were done with the stress of it all. We determined that we were done with medical intervention, we were done with making decisions, and we were done spending money for something that comes so naturally for most. We weren’t ready to consider adoption, so, we felt resolved that we could be happy being just the two of us. The next month, we were pregnant. Some people want to explain that the medication remaining in my body from the recent IVF caused me to conceive, but, because I know my body and the impossibilities that lie within, I knew the pregnancy was an absolute miracle.
Now, you might be deflated or disappointed to hear that someone who is outspoken about and is educating about infertility IS a mother. You might even be just like me…when you find out that someone writing or talking about infertility has experienced fertility, you think “She has experienced conception, carrying a child, and being a mother…surely she is unable to give advice or to remember the aching of infertility. She has no clue!” It is easy to assume that being a mother discredits me. But, just because I have a son does not mean I am fertile. I will be infertile the rest of my life. It is a challenge that is mine. I do know how you feel. I do know what it is like. And, I do want to reach out and help.
That is my story in a nice, concise package. That is where I have been. As for my future? That remains to be seen.
Please feel free to contact me. You can email me at kerstin(dot)daynes@ldsinfertility(dot)org.