My name is Valerie Landis. For my 33rd birthday as a gift to myself, I finally crossed egg freezing off my bucket list and retrieved 22 beautiful eggs that resulted in 17 successfully frozen via vitrification (fast-freezing) in 2015. It was an empowering experience that I am thankful to be given the opportunity to do. I froze again in 2017 to collect another 13 more eggs to add to the frozen bank. I always knew I would freeze my eggs someday, it was just a matter of when. If I had been born ten years earlier, this amazing technology of vitrification or the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) lifting their “experimental” label for egg freezing may not have been an option to have taken advantage of. I wanted to utilize vitrification technology while I was still young enough to benefit the most from egg freezing.
After being in the medical field for over a decade and I have extensive work history in women’s health, egg freezing, IVF, fertility, and most recently oncology research. I was astounded by the lack of educational resources available for women. I struggled to find educational examples, what to expect, or what the emotional roller coaster would feel like. I found it challenging to learn about other women’s experiences (not sensationalized by the news) who talked openly and honestly about their egg freezing journey. When I did find personal stories, I was encouraged and relieved to learn they experienced similar symptoms and side effects I had also experienced.
I wanted to create a “Girlfriend’s Guide” or “Egg Freezing For Dummies“ or rather “For Smarties” out there to refer to. Thus the idea of Eggsperience was born. I realized after going through the procedure myself what I wanted to read, hear, see, and learn about. I figured if I wanted to learn about those things, you might too. I wanted to create something to help women feel brave, to act progressively on these fertility decisions, and provide non-bias resources for the purpose of education at any reproductive age. Even being educated in the field of fertility, I didn’t know until I became a patient myself, what the true effects of injecting myself with hormones would feel like or how it would impact the way I think and feel. Now you can learn from not only my experience but the experience of countless others to be inspired to take control of your future today. I also host and created Eggology Club Podcast to explore and talk about the modern day journey to parenthood.
For now, I’m the proud dog owner of an affectionate 4 lb Yorkie named Izzy. She is pure joy, loyal, and a constant companion in my life that fills a temporary void from the lack of a significant other … until Mr. Right (not to be confused with Mr. Right Now) decides to show up. Izzy is eight years old and also acts as my pseudo dog-kid, until I take my egg-sicle babies out of the freezer and make my own anxious mother, a grandma someday, which she is steadily dreaming about.
Overall, I’m just your average girl-next-door with a big heart and even bigger dreams with the desire to making a difference in the world. I have a passion for people, but I’m no one famous. I am not striving to be a household name like Beyoncé however, we do share the same birthday. Please tell your friends who may be thinking about or are struggling with this topic. Read, explore, and come join the ride as we learn from each other. Let me know what you think, I can’t wait to hear from you!
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