BEFORE GABRIELA – Conception issues with first child and secondary infertility, 5 failed IVF/ICSI cycles

I conceived my first child while in a same-sex relationship. We always planned on having two children, and after we separated, I felt like my family was incomplete. Experiencing several years of IVF for the first time and multiple losses was a hard decision, and I also felt like I was running out of time. 

Having previously used donor sperm, though, I did not feel a loss like some other couples may when deciding to use donor sperm or eggs. I felt like I knew and trusted the process, but I knew nothing until I met Gabriela Rosa!

I was struggling and lost on the IVF journey, unaware of other options or perspectives.  My IVF clinic and fertility specialist kept telling me it was ‘a numbers game’ and that I had conceived before – I had a 7-year-old son – so it should just be a matter of time.  

But multiple cycles and multiple miscarriages were taking their toll on me.

I believed it was “just a matter of time” and that I could beat the odds. So why couldn’t I just be lucky and get pregnant? I did 5 IVF cycles and 3 back-to-back IVF (PGD tested) cycles, each getting similarly bad results, and none of them resulted in any embryos freezing, so I started from scratch each month.  

In hindsight, this was horrible to do to my body, but decisions are made quickly, and I felt like I would have missed an opportunity if I hadn’t done something.  Again, this pressure did not put me in the right physical or emotional space to make good decisions or allow myself to process anything. 

Financially this was crippling, but then I felt the more you invest, the more you have to lose.  I remember thinking, “I can’t spend this amount for nothing.” My health was suffering, and so was my heart. It was a big leap of faith to go through this process again, and all I wanted was to feel like my family was complete, whether I was in a relationship or not.


I came across Gabriela and her fertility programs on Facebook. Initially, I was defensive, angry, and challenged by everything it said in contrast to my previous beliefs and the path of my infertility journey.

I was angry because some of the changes were really simple things I COULD change and do to increase my chances of conception proactively.  And if it were that simple, why weren’t people talking about it, and why weren’t fertility specialists suggesting it?

But I also struggled because somewhere in my mind, I was still convinced it was a numbers game. I believed that my age or the age of my eggs was the problem, that I was the problem. Even worse, I thought that I had done something wrong. I had become so negative I couldn’t see my way out.

Working with Gabriela and her team, I was able to pull apart all these ideas and these struggles and redefine myself.  I talked, cried, and unpacked so much with each practitioner.  I often said the biggest transformation was my thinking.

The beginning of The Fertility Breakthrough Program™ is a bit overwhelming.  There’s a lot of information to take on and appointments with different people, but there’s a rhythm and a process that you are guided through.  There’s peer support, too, and you can build relationships with others on the journey.

This wasn’t successful, and if I couldn’t get pregnant, I’d still be okay. It was a breakthrough for my fertility journey, and a moment I’m so thankful I could get to.

After 4 months on the program and the preconception period complete, I did 2 more promising IVF cycles. However, genetic abnormalities were found in all 4 of my embryos in one cycle, and in the second, a perfect embryo failed to implant.

I felt so lost but had the niggling feeling that this wasn’t the end.  Gabriela’s words of strength, compassion, and all I had learned kept me going.  To have a support team behind me and with me made all the difference.

I never stopped the diet or the supplements – except for one day when I ate only chocolate, but then I got right back on the process the next day.  I did everything possible and developed a sense of peace that I had tried everything.

I tried again and fell pregnant at 43, only 8 months after starting The Fertility Breakthrough Program™ and with one full egg maturation cycle.  I couldn’t believe it.  I wouldn’t have gotten to this place without all the parts of the journey, as cliché as that sounds.  I accepted that even the harrowing pain and despair got me to listen, re-think, let go, find strength, love myself, and give it everything.  

I got pregnant with the baby of my dreams and got so much more during the process that I never could have predicted! I am so thankful for Gabriela and the team because I truly believe their advice helped me get pregnant and have a beautiful, happy baby and a very happy mum, free from postpartum issues and with completely natural and uncomplicated labor and delivery. 

I am so grateful for my ‘Gabriela baby’ (whose name is Cohen), and from the bottom of my heart, thank you for everything.