Joy as Hampshire couples welcome IVF babies into the world

IT HAS been a difficult year for most – but for some couples 2020 has been the best of their life as they welcomed new bundles of joy thanks to IVF.

Wednesday, 30th December 2020, 12:30 pm
Stacey Grant with daughter Ivy and husband Garret from Gosport
Stacey Grant with daughter Ivy and husband Garret from Gosport

This year the team at Wessex Fertility Clinic in Cowplain has helped bring 70 babies into the world.

For Stacey Grant and her husband Garret, 25, it took to £80 worth of pregnancy tests until they were convinced Stacey was pregnant. They had spent two years trying, and Stacey had seen an eight stone weight loss.

The pair from Gosport found out their news in February, just before the world went into lockdown, and welcomed baby girl Ivy on October 14.

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Corinna Farrell with partner Zoe and son Theodore. Picture: Diary of Wildflower

Stacey, 30, said: ‘We just couldn’t believe I was pregnant. Garret went out and spent £80 on pregnancy tests and made my best friend take one as well to check it wasn’t faulty.

‘We had started trying for a baby in 2017 and I lost eight stone to try and help but we had unexplained infertility diagnosed. We went to Wessex Fertility’s satellite clinic in Cowplain and I had injections to make my eggs grow.

‘At first it wasn’t working so they decided to give me a double dose over the weekend as a last ditch attempt and it worked.’

Stacey added: ‘This year has been awful but it will always be the year that I became a mum and we got our little miracle.

Caroline and Neil Ball with daughter Apolline. Picture: Cherry Blossom

‘The team at Wessex were absolutely amazing and they were always there if we had any questions. We feel so lucky to have had such great support and now we are a little family.’

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After four rounds of IVF and two miscarriages, teachers Caroline and Neil Ball from Portsmouth, also got a new addition to their family.

They welcomed baby Apolline, weighing 7lb2oz, on June 17.

The couple, both 39, were about to start IVF treatment in November 2017 but discovered that they had fallen pregnant naturally but this ended in a miscarriage.

In 2018, the pair started IVF but the first cycle had to be cancelled and the second cycle, while successful, also ended in another miscarriage

In January 2019, the couple started another round of IVF, at Wessex Fertility, resulting in five embryos. Using their last embryo, the couple discovered they were pregnant with Apolline in September.

Caroline told The News: ‘Having a baby during the pandemic I was worried that Neil wouldn’t be with me because at that time partners were only allowed in active labour and we had heard other people had missed it.

‘I had to have a C-section and they had to break my waters and so luckily he was with me at the time. It has been sad not being able to take Apolline to see as many friends and family.

‘We managed to get over to France in the summer to my parents met her but my husband’s parents live in Spain and they haven’t been able to meet her yet.’

The pair also praised the team at Wessex Fertility for helping them throughout their journey.

Caroline added: ‘Before we started IVF we didn't have a clue where to go to get help and we decided after a seminar that Wessex was the one. When we first had their help we had to travel to the clinic over in Southampton but they have a clinic in Waterlooville now which was great for us.

‘They really helped us through everything after our natural pregnancy and then the miscarriage. They were absolutely amazing.’

Also singing praises of the team at Wessex is project manager, Corinna Farrell and her partner, Zoe, a 32-year-old gas engineer from Portsmouth, who welcomed baby Theodore, weighing 6lb7oz on March 6 after two years of treatment.

The Lee-on-the-Solent couple underwent two unsuccessful rounds of intrauterine insemination (IUI) and a fresh round of IVF, which couldn’t be completed due to Corinna showing signs of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome.

Following a frozen embryo transfer cycle, Corinna fell pregnant and gave birth to Theodore just before the coronavirus lockdown.

The 29-year-old said: ‘Finding out we were pregnant was amazing. After the transfer cycle I think in my heart I just knew it had worked and that I was pregnant. The team at Wessex were so helpful all the way through.

‘When I was giving birth it was before all the restrictions and I remember being on the ward at Queen Alexandra Hospital and all the nurses were talking about coronavirus. I am so glad that Zoe was able to be there throughout all the scans and the birth.’

Corinna added: ‘Despite the pandemic it was nice to have Zoe at home with us for a bit longer than it would have usually been and with a baby we didn’t really notice it as we were just getting through each day with feeding and sleeps.

‘It is going so quick though as Theo is now a bit more active which has been harder with the second lockdown but as long as he doesn't pull over the tree we will be fine.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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