After 13 years, 15 miscarriages, an ectopic pregnancy, multiple failed surrogacy attempts and several efforts with adoption, Lindsay and Brian Vargas welcomed a daughter into their family via adoption on Oct. 15, and revealed that she will be joined by twin siblings via a surrogate in April.
The couple, who began trying to start their family a year after they got married, had turned to a GoFundMe page to share their infertility story and help pay for a final attempt at surrogacy. Lindsay, 35, and Brian, 37, had cashed in their stock portfolios and retirement accounts to fund the more than $500,000 in medical bills that had accumulated over the years.
In a video posted on the page, Lindsay shared that after they first sought help with fertility she experienced a health scare caused by medications she had been taking to help trigger ovulation.
“My doctor kept increasing the dose beyond the recommended length of time and didn’t monitor me,” she told Yahoo Lifestyle. “As a result, I developed a softball-sized cyst on my ovaries.”
They then attempted in vitro fertilization using her eggs and Brian’s sperm, but they suffered a miscarriage each time after eight weeks. A doctor would later diagnose Brian with a genetic condition that could often cause miscarriage, according to Yahoo Lifestyle.
“I longed for the experience of being excited about my pregnancy. And I became jealous of pregnant women in my life – even those I saw at the grocery store,” Lindsay said.
When a doctor told her there was nothing further they could do, Lindsay said she entered a dark period and began withdrawing from friends and family. She eventually sought the help of a therapist, and her sister, Kelly O’Toole, volunteered to be a surrogate.
During an ultrasound in preparation for the procedure, doctors discovered O’Toole had a grapefruit-sized benign tumor, and removed it along with one of her ovaries. They then attempted in vitro using donor sperm and O’Toole’s own eggs, but four rounds failed. Brian had been working three jobs to help finance the procedures, and they were receiving help from family members.
They kept baby Henley a secret for months out of an abundance of caution, and traveled to California for her Oct. 15 birth.
“I cried like an absolute baby,” Lindsay told WOWT. “Absolutely sobbing.”
They then learned that O’Toole had become pregnant with the two remaining embryos, and is currently expecting a boy and a girl.
“I can’t wait for them to have this complete family,” O’Toole told WOWT. “It makes me so happy.”