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Let’s start at the very beginning

May 6, 2014

Three years ago this week, I saw the first photograph of The Spaniard, the little bundle of cells, the embryo that went on to become Hope.

The Spaniard was 5 days old … 5 days on from the moment, in our Spanish clinic (having IVF somewhere sunny a long way from home makes it a much more peaceful and relaxing experience without the noise of the ‘real world’ intervening), the moment when sperm was injected head first into ovum and Hope’s journey began. I know pretty much the exact time it happened, I know that the cells divided exactly in a text book fashion over the following 5 days until the A grade first class gold star 100% perfect embryo was transferred into me … and we haven’t had a day apart since.

It was called The Spaniard as all that happened in Spain … I have friends who called their unborn souls anything from bumpy to the alien, that kind of name just didn’t seem right for our little soul. Another friend whose first born was conceived in Kampala gave her baby a little vest with Made in Uganda written on the front. I think that’s where my inspiration came from and so the The Spaniard came into being, and the same was exactly right for the stubborn, determined, resilient perfect little person that grew inside me… The Esperanza that The Spaniard gave us led to Hope.

The first picture I have is of The Spaniard under a microscope the morning of the 5th day of its existence, the second is a screen snap of the moment the huge comedy syringe launched my precious embryo into it’s womby home, the third is at 33 days after a series of alarming cramps made it seem as if it had moved out already. The third is at 35 days.

How incredible for Hope to be able to see what she looked like from almost the very moment she came into being. I look at the pictures now and marvel that the tiny spec which looks a bit like a blurred comet grew only 28 days later, into a little someone with a heartbeat, a tiny flickering but insistent heartbeat, and is now, 3 years on a mischievous thriving wonderful child.

So, hurrah for creation day, for embryo transfer day and for the incredible journey so far. I miss The Spaniard, that will sound odd, but I do, the intimacy of a pregnancy, the emotions, the feelings, the movement, the bond, the wriggling. I talked to it all the time, described my world, played it music, chatted when in shops, patted it when it was restless and laughed when it kicked against anything pressing up against its world. Now I cherish every second I have with Hope, that’s true too, even when she’s stubborn or grumpy (which is rare), I still can’t believe she’s here, and I can scarcely imagine a time when she wasn’t. She still pushes my hand away when I reach over the back of the car seat to check she’s not too hot or if she’s sitting looking at a book, in just the same way The Spaniard reacted to external pressure.

We are SO very blessed to have been successful, to have carried a healthy pregnancy almost full term and to have such a remarkable daughter.

Just compare the ‘then’ and the ‘now’…


Day 5 of The Spaniard’s existence


and 3 years on

and our Hope 3 years on

Quite a transformation! Isn’t life incredible?

So, celebrate 3 remarkable years, raise a glass to The Spaniard and to Hope, to the incredible doctors, nurses and midwives that helped us on our way, to the men who started the miracle of IVF Dr Steptoe and Dr Edwards at Bourn Hall … listen to Jake Clemons Song for Hope written and performed for his goddaughter on her christening day, have a read of the wonderful poem Esperanza which her ‘ungodmother’ Jane Berry wrote, and was also ‘performed’ at Hope’s christening.

As Jake put it so eloquently in his song, and as we found out, it wasn’t just persistence and good fortune that got us where we are now, but the thought that ‘a little Hope’ll go a long way’.


Post Script …



If you’re so inclined it would be wonderful if you could vote for this geriatric mother and her blog in the Brilliance in Blogging awards, we’ve been shortlisted in the Inspire category (yes I know I know) and need all the votes we can get to go through to the final … it’s category 5 and the blog name is Mush Brained Ramblings … thank you so much

4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 8, 2014 12:53 am

    Salud y viva la esperanza de toda vida nueva, tan rica y especial. x

  2. May 8, 2014 7:19 am

    Such a nice read! Story like this make me always hug my son because they are our hope and gifts =) #MBPW

  3. May 12, 2014 12:28 am

    gracias x

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