Woman Secretly Videos Emotional, Five-Year Infertility Battle - Then Releases It To Give Others Hope
A woman who was struggling to conceive for five years secretly recorded selfie videos during her fertility battle and has now released the heartbreaking clips to give others hope - after finally giving birth.
Unbeknown to her husband, and in an attempt to deal with her heartache and get her feelings off her chest, Kayleigh secretly recorded selfie videos on her "down days".
She fell pregnant, and Tyler was born on Christmas Day 2018, so the clinical support worker quickly forgot about the years of tearful video confessions she'd filmed.
But the new mum came across the hoard of clips by chance and posted a heartbreaking 13-minute video to Facebook.
In the video, the now-mum from Birkenhead, Wirral, poured her heart out about her fertility battle - and finally she introduces her new son.
As well as being a celebration of her journey and eventual success, Kayleigh hoped the struggle would help other women going through the same thing.
But Kayleigh was astonished when it picked up more than 66,000 views and she was inundated with messages.
She said: "I felt like I had no one. I have such lovely family and friends but I still felt like that. I felt so alone and like I wasn't a woman. It was horrible.
"I was doing pregnancy tests every week. It was so hard. It was devastating. I would cry every single time it was negative. It never got easier. It was so stressful.
"I was just doing the videos for myself. It made me feel like I could talk to someone. Even my husband didn't know I was doing them. Just saying it to someone - even though it was to myself - helped a bit.
"If I was having a down day, I would do a video. I felt I had someone to talk to when I was down.
"To be honest I forgot all about them. I saw them the other day. I was just looking through my phone and I saw them. I have been through so much and I don't want people to give up on trying to get pregnant. Never give up if that is what you want.
"And always have someone to talk to and someone to listen - even if that is just your phone."
Kayleigh and Lee were childhood sweethearts and have been together since they were 14 years old. They started trying for a baby five years ago.
After a year of being unsuccessful in falling pregnant, they went through countless tests to find a reason behind their infertility - but doctors couldn't find anything wrong, so were unable to help.
The pair were told they had to lose weight before trying IVF and embraced a strict diet and exercise regime, shedding more than six stone between them.
They tried every remedy and old-wives' tale from herbal teas to pregnancy supplements, and Kayleigh would take pregnancy tests every single week.
Kayleigh confided in Lee, her friends and family during those five years but worried the ordeal was taking its toll on them too.
So she started spilling her heart out in selfie videos around three years ago, getting a small relief from talking about her feelings and "getting it out".
"When we started having problems conceiving, it was ok at first," she said, "I was upset, but nothing compared to after two or three years of trying.
"It's hard when you are both upset or arguing, and he's of course trying to be positive and saying 'it's ok, it will happen'. I did thousands of tests.
"It's hard to describe the heartache. It was so hard. It's so soul destroying. It was actually devastating.
"When you're speaking to people, they always ask if you have kids. You don't want to go through it all with them all the time.
"It's devastating to say 'I don't have kids'. I used to lie sometimes and say 'ah I'm going on holiday so we aren't trying'. When really I had been trying for five years.
"And when people say 'you're trying too hard', it's just awful. It's the most awful thing to hear. It's really the worst thing you can say to anyone."
She didn't tell her anyone about the heartbreaking videos and totally forgot they existed when she finally fell pregnant in early 2018.
She found out days before she was about to start mediation for IVF - and admits she had "almost given up all hope".
During a problematic pregnancy, she suffered hyperemesis gravidarum - extreme morning sickness - and SPD, an instability and pain in the pelvis and hips.
But baby Tyler was born happy and healthy at Arrowe Park Hospital, at 2.41am on Christmas Day - his dad's birthday - weighing 7lb and 8oz, at 39 weeks and two days.
She posted the video clips online as part of an edited video in early February and was inundated with messages from other women.
Lee only found out about the videos when he found her crying on the sofa while she was editing the video, a few weeks ago.
Lee, also a hospital clinical support worker, said: "It was rough to watch, but nice at the same time. It's easy to forget just how hard it was, and watching her video brought it all back. It was rough to watch, but of course rewarding.
"I'll never forget what we went through, but you put it away, because we got what we wanted in the end."
Kayleigh added: "I've had loads of messages from girls going through what I was saying I gave them hope.
"Never give up. I was on the verge of giving up. I thought I can't do this anymore - and then I got caught pregnant.
"A fertility battle is mentally and physically draining. Everyday is a struggle. I hope people find comfort in the video and now people may understand why I was so protective through my pregnancy. Never give up."
Featured Image Credit: SWNS