Our IVF Journey has had its ups and downs.  I have talked about this before, but have to say again: there are so many unknowns!  That’s the reason I’d like to share a little bit more about our experience with you today, and I’m going to start with the team that helped us.  The staff at IVF New England needs some recognition.  Our nurse, who would call me every day, was so wonderful and made this whole process much easier than I thought it would be.  What an amazing job she has too!  Helping couples get pregnant and being there on the phone listening and answering ALL of our questions; they have changed our lives in the best way possible.  Everyone I met throughout the IVF Journey has been so nice and helpful.  I felt that I was being taken care of at every appointment.  I felt like they cared for me as if we were best friends.  They made the atmosphere so relaxing and calming, especially for such a stressful situation.  I can’t say enough good things about IVF New England!  I HIGHLY recommend them.

Exactly one year ago are IVF Journey took a positive turn.  I went in for blood work two weeks after transfer, and at that point going to the office to get blood drawn was my new normal morning routine.  We knew that day that we would be getting a phone call in a few hours to tell us good or bad news.  I know I keep repeating myself, but it’s such an emotional rollercoaster.  I was a bit distracted that day but tried to keep the day normal and go with the flow as best as I could. 

Transfer was on October 4th, 2016.  I had some bleeding on day 3, which at first I was freaking out over, but it was a good sign and meant that the embryo was implanting and making its’ home for the next nine months.  I’m not going to lie, I secretly somehow just knew I was pregnant but didn’t say it out loud because I didn’t want to jinx it.  I also did not want to get Sean’s or my hopes up.  I had been feeling EXTREMELY tired.  My body felt different, but not in a bad way.  I would say to Sean, when I yawned, it felt like a very deep yawn.  Weird, I know!  Hard to describe but it was different, and I had no proof until October 17, 2016. 

I received the call while I was at work, and to this day I can’t remember the time.  I tried conferencing Sean in on the call but it was unsuccessful.  So I got the news that my count was great and that we got a positive test, and after hearing CONGRATULATIONS there was a huge sigh of relief. Needless to say we were SO EXCITED to get the news.  At this point, I was already falling asleep on the couch by 8pm every night.  (This was one one of the reasons why I secretly knew I was pregnant!!!)  I did not attempt to take a pregnancy test until after the blood work.  Again, I didn’t want to get my hopes up because you can get a false positive.  I may have already known, but I had been waiting years to pee on a stick and get a positive so I did it!  For the first time ever it was positive. 

Happy 1 year anniversary of finding out we were pregnant!  October 17th will always be a special date in our lives! 

Xoxo Jen Araya

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One year ago, October 4, 2016, was the day we had been waiting for: Transfer Day!  This day was something I would ALWAYS think about, and it was just getting us one step closer to becoming pregnant.  This day also had a lot of what if’s.  What if it doesn’t work the first time?  What if I miscarry?  What if I get pregnant?  What if we have to do this multiple times and it STILL doesn’t work?  What if I never get pregnant?  What if they had to thaw out multiple eggs?  So many worries!

Luckily it was like the stars had aligned for us, it was meant to be.  We had a relaxing morning, I believe our appointment was around noon time.  On our way to the appointment we stopped at Starbucks so I could get my usual drink, Strawberry Acai refresher (I don’t like coffee) and then made our way to IVF New England.  The reason we stopped for the drink is that you need to have a full bladder for this procedure.  We went over all of the paperwork and what you can and cannot eat just in case you are pregnant.  I took 2 days off from work for our Transfer.  I could have gone back to work the next day but I wanted to take it easy.  They say to go back to your normal everyday life, but I took the extra day JUST IN CASE!

It is not until you arrive at your appointment that you find out how many eggs have been thawed, and you just hope it’s only one or possibly two at most.  We were very thankful to hear that in our case it was just one.  Like all medical procedures, they double and triple check your bracelet and make sure they have the right information.  Once that was confirmed, off we went!  It was really cool to see it all happening on the screen.  I will say this, Transfer is the easiest procedure in the IVF process.  Besides being uncomfortable from not being able to pee for a length of time, it was a breeze.

Fast forward a year, and our daughter is here and 14 weeks old!  It’s so crazy to reflect and look back at this time last year.  We feel very lucky that we had a successful transfer, and haven’t taken that for granted for even a minute.  It’s funny to think about, but before I was married I told myself if I couldn’t get pregnant that I would never do IVF.  When you’re at a fork in the road and you have to make a decision to try IVF or not, what do you do?  It’s a tough decision.  I did not want to have shots every day BUT I would have regretting not trying.  If any of you are trying and having trouble, or wondering if it’s right for you, I would absolutely say go for it based on our experience.   I felt like it would have been a HUGE “what if” to add to that list above if I didn’t.

Happy 1 year Transfer anniversary!  To be able to celebrate with our 14 week old daughter is something pretty special that I will never forget!!!

*Note – Most of these photos were taken with my iPhone*

  • October 9, 2017 - 5:51 pm

    libby - Sean and Jen,
    These are just such beautiful, special pictures. Much love to you both – well, all 3 of you! These are just so special.
    Love, Mom-LibbyReplyCancel

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I feel like I’m repeating myself but I can’t believe we have a three month old baby.  I know you’re only a few months old but time is going by too fast!!!  I wish I could stop time and enjoy every new thing that you do!  My time was up and I had to go back to work this month.  Leading up to it, I shed A LOT of tears.  I know you’re in good hands but this was the first time that we would be apart for a long period of time.  I only left Vivienne with Sean when I would photograph weddings.  That was it!  She always came with me EVERYWHERE!  I wouldn’t want it any other way, but she is my new best friend!

This past month was harder for me because I knew my time was running out.  I didn’t let that get in the way of enjoying my time with her.

I want us to remember all the things that have happened over the past four weeks.  Vivienne here are a few memories from month three:

  • You have been sleeping 7+ hours – scared mommy a few times when she got a full night of rest, she woke up in a panic.  Thank you to Dock a Tot.  If you are a new mom you need to check this product out.  Click here to order your own.
  • Being able to put socks on your feet. Having the brace on, we couldn’t put these on you.  Something as small as putting socks on and playing and kissing your feet make me really happy.  (Yay footsies!!!  Baby footsies are the best!!)  Also…..
  • Watching your legs kick and go crazy at times make me so happy that your hips are healed! Makes mommy REALLY happy to watch you do this
  • Your more on a regular routine with feedings and sleeping
  • I Cherish our conversations when you are on the changing table in the morning and at night
  • The way you play with your hair
  • Watching you develop and hold your head up more. I will always say that you are growing up too fast!
  • Mommy went back to work – very hard for her
  • You started doing tummy time
  • Teething – it has already started!
  • You had your first road trip up to Mt Washington Resort in New Hampshire – you are a rockstar!

Here are a few of Vivienne’s favorite things:

  • Love putting your hand in your mouth
  • Love your new tag blanket
  • Love to have something against your face when you fall asleep
  • Love the car ride, even a quick 5 minute ride to Grammy’s house l lulls you to sleep right away

I love remembering the memories with you and will never forget them.  Everyone asks do you take pictures all of the time since I’m a photographer.  My answer is yes/no.  Yes I am taking more with my phone because it’s right there.  No because I want to be PRESENT AND IN THE MOMENT!!!  I will remember this forever and that is more valuable to me than interrupting the moment to take a picture.  I love our adventure so far and can’t wait to see what is new for you next month!

Xoxo Jen Araya

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Lauren and Alex decided that they would get married at the venue Lake Pearl.  It was a perfect day, not too hot or too cold, to have a ceremony outside by the gazebo.  You couldn’t ask for anything better for  an August wedding.  It was as though Lauren’s dad was protecting the weather for this amazing couple. 

I was introduced to Lauren and Alex by a mutual friend, Kristi.  When we met up I knew they were going to be a fun couple to get to know and to photograph their special day.  These two love birds met while playing hockey together.  It was very appropriate because they LOVE the Boston Bruins.  Hence the Boston Bruins cake at the reception was very fitting. 

One of many special memories I have from their memorable  (tried to find something to replace special since you used that in the beginning of sentence)day was Lauren walking down the aisle.  I love when I get to see the groom’s reaction to seeing his bride.  Since Lauren’s dad was there in spirit, she walked down the aisle with both of her brothers.  Talk about intimidation for Alex.  Alex’s reaction was so sweet!!

Thank you so much Lauren and Alex for allowing me to be a part of your special day!  You are so sweet and I can’t wait to hang out with you soon!

Xoxo Jen Araya

PS- They love Converse!

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Happy 4th Wedding Anniversary to my husband!!  I can’t believe it’s been four years since we said I do at our beach, Humarock.  Every year we now take photographs together at the exact spot we read our vows to each other, but this year we had our daughter with us, yay!

This past year has been the greatest adventure yet!  We became parents to our beautiful daughter, Vivienne.  We went out to dinner as a family to celebrate.  Babe you are my rock, you keep me grounded, my best friend and I still hope we always have fun and laugh together.  Love you more than you know!

As I’ve done in the past, I’m sharing our pictures from the start, at our engagement session with Trevor Dayley.  Our first anniversary Shannon Cronin kindly photographed us.  This year my cousin Madison kindly took some photographs of us.  Enjoy!

xoxo Jen Araya

Photo Credit – Trevor Dayley Photography | www.trevordayley.com

Photo Credit – Shannon Cronin Photography

  • September 7, 2017 - 8:02 pm

    Nancy Loncto - Beautiful pictures and exciting times for Sean, Jen, and Vivienne. Finally putting baby gift together and hopefully will get in mail. Thanks so much for sharing. We have news: moving to a townhouse in Wake Forest. New construction and same functionality as house: three bedrooms and LR, DR, and FR with an office for Steve. So our invite is still there. We will have a pool and no yard work/ Yeh!!ReplyCancel

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