Kendra and Carlton’s Journey to Parenthood
Kendra and Carlton’s Journey to Parenthood
32Days to go
Shana Sandoval is organizing this fundraiser on behalf of Kendra and Carlton Braunskill.
Kendra and Carlton’s story began in 2014 when they became an item. As time went on they both had a growing desire to become parents. However, at the age of 21 Kendra had become medically diagnosed with PCOS which then led her along her fertility journey. Having PCOS has made it very difficult for Kendra to conceive leading to a lot of disappointment and heartache through her journey to motherhood. PCOS, or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, causes Kendra’s body to not have regular menstrual cycles and therefore no ovulation leading her body through the struggle of a lifetime to conceive.
She knew she would need some assistance in getting pregnant and in considering her options but she, nor Carlton, could have ever anticipated how challenging and emotionally taxing their journey would become. In March of 2019 Kendra began fertility treatments at Bethesda Fertility Center here in Cincinnati, Ohio. They started by first doing three rounds of Letrozle. Their first round had failed and so they had moved on to their second round.
With this round Kendra was able to get pregnant but then sadly had to face the realization of finding out it was an ectopic pregnancy in which the doctor had to give her 2 shots of methotrexate to dissolve the pregnancy within her Fallopian tube in order for it not to rupture. The two shots then had been too much for Kendra’s body in which she had experienced excruciating pain and had gone to the Emergency Room only to be told to go home and have to come back with worse pain. After being sent home and coming back for a third time, the ER doctors finally admitted Kendra into the hospital for treatment. To top it all off she had to face the loss of her baby. This loss landed her in the hospital for a week and cost her time and money with being admitted into the hospital and with missing work it really hit the couple financially for a bit. Not to mention the heaviest part of her devastation of losing the baby she had hoped and prayed for. Her hopes in getting pregnant had been crushed and Carlton had to watch the woman he loved so dearly undergo more disappointment and pain, both physically and mentally. The whole process with Letrozole had been such an intense experience. It had become so discouraging, yet Kendra continued to press on. Bringing a baby into this world was all she wanted and so she then decided to go for another round.
Her third round of Letrozole failed. How could this be happening? After all that had happened up to this point, Kendra and Carlton were starting to feel hopeless until the doctor they were seeing at Bethesda Fertility Center recommended IVF. This process was supposed to be more likely to succeed than the Letrozole, which is what they had been advised.
The cost for IVF would be $15k the doctors had said. Insurance would only cover 40% of the cost, therefore leaving the remaining 60% to Kendra and Carlton. This didn’t include what they would have to come out of pocket for in medications as well. So, they would have to pay $9k plus and additional $3k in prescription medications.
In beginning IVF, they were able to retrieve 20 eggs, only 4 had actually made it past the blastocyst stage and Kendra would have to give herself shots daily, and the needle on the shot was not for the faint of heart. However, with her ultimate goal in mind she pressed forward in her attempts at getting pregnant. Through their first round they successfully were able to do a fresh transfer of 2 embryos, however to their dismay the first round ended in miscarriage at 5 weeks gestation, but they continued to be hopeful and decided to go another round.
With the second round they had done a frozen transfer of 2 embryos and once again got pregnant and lost this baby as well. At this point Kendra had become so physically and mentally drained. Why did she have to endure all of this just so that she could have her chance at a family? At this point she even questioned God. However, she still wanted and family and wanted to continue. She still had hope that she would get her rainbow baby.
After her third miscarriage Kendra went online and joined a few Facebook support groups with other women like her going through similar situations. She was able to do research and learn about things to talk about with her medical provider. Kendra had been so ashamed and fearful of telling her story but talking with other women gave her the confidence to share her story with others and gain that additional knowledge that would give her the courage to eventually switch medical providers. She was beginning to feel like her providers at the clinic just saw her as a number and that for everything that she was going through she still had no real answers as to why all of this was occurring.
Prior to switching providers, she had decided that she would stick with them a little while longer. After the previous 2 rounds of IVF, Kendra and Carlton had decided that they couldn’t afford IVF on their own. They had attempted 2 rounds of IUI after that and had been unsuccessful with that process. This costed roughly $1,200. So now they were down more money and still hadn’t gotten their rainbow baby. Feeling frustrated and let down by the institution they had poured so much time, money, and effort into, Kendra and Carlton finally made the decision to leave Bethesda Fertility Center.
This is when she found Dr. Chin. Dr. Chin was in West Chester, OH and decided to have multiple tests done for Kendra. It was through these tests that she found out that some hormone levels had been higher than normal, and this was contributing to her miscarriages and had given her medication to alleviate this issue. Also, due to having PCOS she was informed that her body was becoming resistant to insulin and therefore would need medication to level that issue out as well. Both issues were underlying issues that contributed to her infertility. These were things her previous provider had never considered to look in to. Dr. Chin was also so caring and responsive which really helped Kendra and Carlton to feel more at ease with the process and it gave them a better understanding of their next steps of action. At this point Dr. Chin had strongly recommended going back to IVF due to its higher success rate.
Kendra and Carlton had decided to take a break after everything they had endured within the past few years. During their break they had a wedding and got Married and were able to work towards some of the other goals and consider some of their other options. They looked into Surrogacy which costs about $80k. They looked into options for adoption which came to about $10k. Then there was their final option of IVF with Dr. Chin which costs about $15-20k and utilizing insurance for partial coverage was impossible due to them maxing out fertility benefits with the previous provider.
Now, coming up on their 1-year wedding anniversary they have decided they’d like to try again with IVF, but they need help to do it. If they can even get close to what they would need to for IVF, they would be beyond grateful for. They cannot have their chance at a rainbow, or possibly any other options at a family, without your help. Please take it upon your heart to bless this couple with the opportunity to finally have their rainbow baby and a lifetime of happiness.
|Leone Mebane||$20.00||June 14, 2022|
|Rodney Smith||$100.00||May 27, 2022|
|Aisha Owens||$10.00||May 27, 2022|
|April Dixon||$20.00||May 27, 2022|
|Pamela Williams||$50.00||May 27, 2022|
|Gloria Wood||$100.00||May 26, 2022|