Love, Faith and Infertility, a memoir by Nina Leicht-Crist, shares her love story with her husband, their journey to parenthood, and how she fell in love with another woman’s children. She made me laugh and cry and taught me much I had no way of knowing. At just over 100 pages, I was able to easily finish reading this book in a day.
Leicht-Crist starts off telling how love unexpectedly crept up on her and how she resisted becoming a wife at what she considered a young age. She shares some of the challenges of being a military wife and being a stepmom and provides details on the many complexities of dealing with infertility. She minimizes the difficulties of military life (long stretches of being alone, having little to no say in where you live or for how long) preferring to tell about how she found herself and her calling: helping other women with their pregnancies and deliveries, all while she was struggling with the very real challenges she and her husband faced to have a child of their own.
Though I cannot personally relate to having issues conceiving (four children came easily to me, prompting family members to call me “Fertile Myrtle”), I do know people who struggled to become parents (I sometimes felt guilty that I was so blessed to have no problems at all), and have seen the pain this can cause. However, since many people don’t talk about infertility, I never knew how much truly goes into the process of IVF and what great sacrifices are made.
The book is broken down by time period and I found myself very much relating to stories in certain places, discovering unexpected personal connections. I share her fascination with Washington D.C and enjoyed reading about their life in Germany, particularly because it is an area I am somewhat familiar with, having stayed with friends on the Army base in Stuttgart for a week-long visit. It was also fun to realize we may have even both been at the same Stuttgart Volksfest!
Though family does not play a huge role in the story, the love and support shown is palpable. Faith also is not explicitly mentioned much, but runs throughout the book. Despite numerous setbacks, the author seems to never have questioned whether things would work out in the end.
I found myself wishing there was more to this book (I want to hear more stories!), but there is much personal information here that can provide comfort, advice and hope to couples facing infertility challenges. The tone is upbeat, but realistic – it doesn’t give false hope and portrays how difficult and draining infertility can be and how wonderful it is when there is a happy ending.
** Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher to review.
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