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  • Writer's pictureBreeanna Scott

Dani's Story

Loss, Fertility, Pregnancy & Birth

Trigger warning: baby loss

In 2022, we were thrilled to find out that we would be parents to our very first baby girl but in the same breath at our routine 12 week scan the sonographer saw what looked like anomalies of our baby girls heart. Baby was a bit too little to get a final prognosis as yet, so we would have to come back at 16 weeks gestation to do an early morphology scan. 

Those 4 weeks were the longest weeks we had ever faced. Our 16 week appointment confirmed that our baby girl had Tetrology of Fallot (congenital heart disease consisting of four specific cardiac defects) missing a right kidney and a two vessel umbilical chord. The prognosis deemed her incompatible with life and we had no choice but to have a termination for medical reasons (TFMR), which I feel is not spoken about as much as it occurs. We speak about miscarriages but we don’t speak about TFMRs. Somewhere along the way anomalies can occur in either egg or sperm and parents are needing to make these tough decisions to induce labour early and say goodbye to their babies and they really don’t have a choice, because following through with the pregnancy would mean still birth or baby not surviving their first few years of life, or a lifetime of excessive and invasion medical treatments which some families also cannot financially afford. So these decisions are having to be made early on in utero, in the most humane way possible. The weight the parents have to bare is indescribable and never leaves you, you just learn to carry it differently. 

We were so heart broken, it was the darkest time we had ever faced as a family, but we needed to hold it together for our 3 year old son who needed us. Needless to say when we were ready to try again we were going to do everything in our control to ensure we were not faced with the same challenges. Having known that our daughter Lily’s heart anomalies were not genetic but by circumstance and that we have already had a healthy baby previously, we felt encouraged and determined that we wouldn’t let this happen again, if we could. We knew we had no fertility issues and becoming pregnant was easy for us thankfully. Which was lucky as so many couples face that hurdle so it was all down to ensuring that the egg and sperm are in top health prior to conception. That was what we could control, and we were leaving no stone unturned or taking any risk this time around. 

Our health journey lead us to Breeanna. Breeanna explained that it is beneficial to do at least 3 months worth of nutritional work and nourishment of our bodies before trying to conceive. As your eggs start maturing 3 months before ovulation for fertilisation and a couple of months for sperm vitality. We cut out all alcohol (yep, not a drop by either of us), minimised toxins and focussed on what we put into our body and followed a nutrition supplement plan. Breeanna helped us on a plan taking a series of particular supplements to boost egg and sperm health and gave me a clear plan on what foods to focus on consuming along with guidance on how to track my ovulation window and blood work to ensure what we were taking was right for us. 

When the time came to try and conceive we were shocked and delighted that we conceived first go in that ovulation cycle. The wait to our 12 and 16 week morphology scans were long. What got me through strangely was morning sickness, what a distraction that was, so in a way there was a silver lining there. Our NIPT tests and ultrasounds came back all normal the best words … normal! And that we were expecting a baby boy. A surprise indeed and our little healthy, strong miracle. 

Our pregnancy was seamless and we delivered our healthy baby boy at full term the day after his due date. A natural delivery with no pain relief (which I do regret as he was basically 9lbs, big ouchies).

It was a very tough, rocky and emotional journey, one I don’t wish anyone to ever go through but tragically TFMRs (termination for medical reasons) happen every day. Unfortunately, these parents do not have a choice to deliver a healthy baby, most of these babies, even if they survive birth may not survive the first few years of life. The best chance you can give your family to minimise the chance of having to go through this pain is to do the ground work before conception. 

We have our baby now and we love him so much but not a day goes by where we don’t think about Lily, even more so now that our baby is now safe earthside and at the same time it’s bittersweet because if this path wasn’t paved for us then this little boy wouldn’t be here with us today. 

Story by Dani (Breeanna Betar Nutrition Client)


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