Inconceivable! Mother spends 40,000 on IVF to have son… only to fall pregnant naturally a year later
Mother tragically lost a child to meningitis before she was told her fallopian tubes had fused togetherDoctor told her she had more chance of winning the lottery than conceiving naturally againShe lost first IVF twins at six weeks
15:28 GMT, 1 May 2012
A mother who spent 40,000 on IVF over eight years in order to have a son was thrilled to conceive another child a year later, without trying.
Jenifer Heneghan, 35, and husband Kevin, 37, spent their life savings on six rounds of IVF treatment after Jenifer was told she was infertile.
My miracle babies: Jenifer Heneghan who was told she could never fall pregnant naturally with IVF son Tiernon and daughter Nuala who was conceived naturally
The couple were over joyed when she gave birth
to son Tiernon in May 2010 and accepted he would never have a sibling because
they couldn’t afford any more IVF treatment.
But shortly after his first birthday
Jenifer realised her period was late and was left stunned when a test
confirmed she was pregnant.
She gave birth to her miracle daughter Nuala ten weeks ago.
The former care home manager said: 'We’ve never used contraception because I was told there was more chance
of me winning the lottery than falling pregnant.
‘It took eight years of IVF and every
penny we had to conceive our son, I never expected in a million years to
fall pregnant naturally. To me it’s better than winning the lottery.
‘We bought one and we got one free but to me they are both priceless.’
Inconceivable: A 20 week scan of baby Nuala who was conceived naturally
Jenifer lost her first son Jack to meningitis and miscarried twins at six weeks before having Tiernon and Nuala (pictured)
Mrs Heneghan's ordeal started when aged 23 she lost her only son Jack to meningitis weeks before his second birthday.
Her grief was compounded when she then
met engineer Kevin and started trying for another baby without
success. A visit to the doctor revealed Jenifer, then 25, had a condition that had fused her fallopian tubes together.
She said: ‘He said there was more chance of me winning the lottery and that my only hope was IVF.
‘I was stunned because I had fallen easily with Jack. I was only 25, it didn’t make sense.’
It was engineer Kevin that suggested cancelling their holiday and spending the money on IVF instead.
But four painful attempts over four years and 20,000 later Jen was still not pregnant.
She said: 'It was heartbreaking and so stressful that I even developed Bell’s Palsy. My consultant advised me to take a break form the IVF because emotionally I was so drained.'
But thee years on the yearning for a baby was stronger than ever and in 2008 the couple started another course of IVF.
Jenifer with husband Kevin: The couple tried IVF over eight years
Three weeks later Jenifer fell pregnant with twins but miscarried at six weeks.
She said: 'I wasn’t sure I could keep putting myself through it. We had spent 26,000 which was everything we had. All our friends had bought bigger houses or new cars but we had ploughed it all into the chance of having a baby.’
The couple decided to have one last shot using two frozen eggs they had left and Jen’s parents gave them the 14,000 they needed to have them thawed and implanted. It took the total they had spent to 40,000.
One egg didn’t survive, but the other did and two weeks later Jenifer was pregnant. Her son was born in May 2010.
'We were overjoyed, he felt like a miracle and even though we would have loved more, we felt blessed to have Tiernon.
'There was no way we could afford more IVF so as far as we were concerned our family was complete.'
But shortly after his first birthday Jenifer felt sick and realised her period was late. She bought a test and went into shock when it gave a positive result.
Tiernon and Nuala: Jenifer was convinced she was going to have an ectopic pregnancy
She says: 'I bought a cheap one because I didn’t want to waste my money knowing deep down it was impossible for me to pregnant. I’d spent eight years an 40,000 on IVF to have Tiernon so I didn’t get my hopes up.'
'When I saw the blue line I was convinced something must be wrong. Because the condition of my tubes there was a high chance the pregnancy would be ectopic.'
Her GP arranged an urgent scan and to everyone’s relief and astonishment it showed Jenifer was six weeks pregnant and the baby was developing normally.
'Even they couldn’t tell us how or why it had happened, I couldn’t believe it and neither could they.
'My consultant said just being relaxed and not trying may have made all the difference and I think he’s right. We spent so long trying and it never happened and then when we stop it does.'
The doctor told Jenifer being relaxed made all the difference to conceiving Nuala
Jenifer was closely monitored throughout her pregnancy and had a planned caesarean section on Feb 8th this year.
She said: 'Even when I held her I still couldn’t quite believe what had happened to us. We went through years of heartache and spent everything we had on having our son, and then we get a daughter for free.
'I thought we were the luckiest parents in the world when we had Tiernon, now I know we are.'