Infertility Through Our Eyes | An Interview with Breonna Lusch

DISCLAIMER: The following post outlines Breonna’s personal journey with infertility. It is not intended to act as medical advice. As always, please consult your doctor with any questions about infertility.

Working with a fertility clinic is personal. That’s why we are honored to walk you through the IVF process with Breonna Lusch, one of Dr. Kowalczyk’s patients from the Michigan Center for Fertility + Women’s Health. Breonna shares about the clinic becoming her family, the uneasiness that can come with graduating from the IVF clinic and seeing a regular OB, and how IVF is definitely not the easy way out.

Breonna is sharing her experience, her journey, and what she’s been through. She also discusses what it’s been like choosing to work with Dr. K when there are SO many options for infertility clinics within the Metro Detroit area.

We’re honored to share the infertility stories of local women in our community. If you’re navigating infertility, you are definitely not alone. We hope these stories help you find the community you need in a difficult time.

Breonna’s story starts back in 2013.

She conceived her first child with no issues, and then decided to get an IUD for a few years. Fast forward to 2016, and Breonna had her IUD removed. She and her husband tried conceiving for a year, but were unfortunately unsuccessful.

Following the line of thinking that many other women in her position have thought, she sought out some help to try to figure out what the issue could possibly be. After undergoing a laparoscopy, it was discovered that Breonna’s tubes were blocked–100%. Along with this, she also received an endometriosis diagnosis, among other health issues. These results were devastating for Breonna and her husband.

Her doctor was able to resume a little flow from her tubes, she was put back on medication, and she and her husband tried to conceive once again. After four or five months with no success, Breonna began to wonder about alternative options–and even though she didn’t know much about IVF or IUI, she thought maybe it could help.

Breonna consulted with her doctor and was recommended to see Dr. K at Michigan Center for Fertility + Women’s Health in October of 2017.

After running a few tests, Breonna and her husband decided to pause; they really couldn’t afford the costs associated with the testing and procedures. They tried to get pregnant for another year and then in 2018, they secured a loan to begin the IVF process.

After their first egg retrieval, they were able to get eight eggs, which then became four embryos. A fresh transfer was performed with one embryo in December of 2018 but unfortunately, it was unsuccessful. The decision was made to freeze the other embryos, as the cost for another transfer was high. Breonna and her husband got to a point where trying to get pregnant became a chore. Yet, they did not give up.

Through her husband’s new job, IVF coverage became available.

They skipped the IUI process and moved right into IVF but then, COVID hit. All procedures and appointments were on pause, much like the rest of the world at the time. In September of 2020, with two embryos left, they transferred one. Unfortunately, this ended in a chemical miscarriage at 5-6 weeks pregnant. Again, they were devastated.

With one embryo remaining in November of 2020, Breonna again underwent an egg retrieval (the previously frozen embryo did not survive the thaw, and was lost). The embryos were tested–three were genetically normal and one was genetically abnormal. They transferred one boy embryo in January of 2021 and were ecstatic to discover that Breonna was pregnant!

However, around 12 weeks, Breonna began to miscarry her baby, Koah Gray, at home. She had already graduated from being seen in the IVF clinic–and after being seen in the IVF clinic so often, it was definitely hard to leave when she graduated from their services. So, she went to see her OB because she felt something wasn’t right. Her OB who confirmed she was experiencing a miscarriage.

Then, about 10 days later, she lost an extremely close work friend during a surgical procedure. The grief from those two losses was immense. When she was ready to get more support, Dr. K. led Breonna to people she could talk to at Michigan Center for Fertility + Women’s Health about her grief, her miscarriages, and her IVF journey.

In August of 2021 Breonna underwent more bloodwork and testing to try to determine a cause for her miscarriages.

But, nothing came up. Her last big testing round included another laparoscopy, in addition to the multiple procedures she had already undergone between 2018 and 2021. Before the procedure, she and her doctor discussed the possibility of removing her fallopian tubes if they didn’t look great. During the procedure, it was discovered that her tubes had no flow. Thus, they were removed.

In December of that year, Breonna underwent another transfer–this time, a girl embryo, named River Lynn. Unfortunately, she miscarried in February of 2022 at 10 weeks.

With both of her miscarriages, she just *knew* something was wrong. Breonna sees so much importance in naming your baby, and following your gut feelings if you think something is off. Throughout all of the loss, Dr. K. stuck by Breonna’s side, and she made a plan. It was comforting to Breonna to know that Dr. K. was with her every step of the way. And not just as her doctor–but as someone who has walked a similar path before and is open about her own story.

In June of 2022–year five of Breonna’s IVF journey–she never thought she was going to get out of IVF.

But, she knew there was a light at the end of the tunnel at some point. Her journey brought her to a mock trial transfer in which she would endure all of the shots and medicine that is necessary for an embryo transfer, but at the end she wouldn’t undergo a transfer. Instead, doctors took a biopsy and sent it to a lab.

It was discovered that Breonna had strep B, which she also had with her son. She took antibiotics, had another biopsy, and everything was clear. At this time, she thought the abnormal “mosaic” embryo was gone, but it was kept frozen because science and research can change and advance. (Through genetic testing it was determined to have a chromosomal abnormality, and Breonna and her husband can decide later what they’d like to do.)

In August of 2022, Breonna’s doctor transferred the last boy normal embryo.

She tested on day three of the transfer during the two-week wait, because it’s not easy to wait! Even after a positive test and beta, she was still worried. While on vacation, they shared the news with their in-laws, after some deliberation on when was the “right” time to share. Spoiler alert: it’s any time you’d like to share.

Breonna carried her baby for nine months. The pregnancy was full of worry and anxiety, especially after the losses she experienced. There was the consistent worry that something bad might happen if she was too happy and excited about the pregnancy. Her son was born in April of 2023. Breonna is so proud to say that he is a successful IVF + Michigan Center for Fertility + Women’s Health story!

Breonna’s Advice

After five-and-a-half years of waiting for her rainbow baby, Breonna has some helpful, personal advice to share with anyone navigating a similar path:

  • Don’t give up! Keep going.
  • You need to have a support system around you whether it’s your IVF family, your friends, other family members, etc. People who will hold your hand, hug you, and be there for you every step of the way.
  • Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable or to cry. You can absolutely cry!
  • If a loved one is navigating IVF or something similar, and you’re unsure what to say or do, you can tell them, “I’m sorry you’re going through this, what can I do to help you?”
  • Lastly, have faith in yourself and in God.

If you would like to hear more about Breonna’s infertility journey with the Michigan Center for Fertility + Women’s Health, be sure to listen to her podcast episode with Elizabeth Lewis on Dr. C in the D!


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