Emily Delgado and her husband Rick are used to taking the road less travelled, but creating their family of 5 has led them through an epic journey.
Married for just over 10 years, Emily, 34 and Rick (35) were having problems creating the family of their dreams. Just shortly after being married, Emily was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal disorder causing the ovaries to have multiple small follicles (early egg units), which can result in menstrual irregularities, not releasing an egg on a monthly basis and difficulty getting pregnant. After suffering three miscarriages, the couple was anxious for treatment. However, due to Emily’s relatively young age, doctors were hesitant to intervene. “I knew something was wrong,” says Emily Delgado. “No one seemed to be listening nor did they acknowledge the pain we were enduring through multiple losses.”
The Rogers Park (Chicago) based couple went beyond to seek the assistance of John S. Rinehart MD, PhD, a Reproductive Endocrinologist and Infertility specialist who is the Medical Director for Rinehart Fertility Center (www.rinehartfertilitycenter.com) with locations in Hinsdale and Oak Lawn. “It was a ‘relief’ to meet Dr. Rinehart and actually learn that something was wrong and that there was something we could do about it,” says Delgado. “Dr. Rinehart was very thorough and yet ‘not scary’ in how he presented the information to my husband and I.”
Starting with a low tech approach, Baby Beatriz was conceived through a Clomid cycle and born in December of 2014. This approach was not as successful the next time around resulting in another miscarriage. “We were thrilled when Dr. Rinehart suggested Invitro Fertilization (IVF) and on the first round, we conceived Baby Felix.” The pregnancy, however was heterotopic, with Felix inhabiting the correct spot in the uterus, while a second embryo had settled in one of Delgado’s fallopian tubes. Despite having to have the tube and the mislocated embryo removed to avoid a dangerous rupture, Emily successfully carried Felix who was born in November of 2017.
Feeling buoyed by their ‘perfect babies’, the couple decided to go for three in December of 2019. Suffering another miscarriage in 2020, the week the pandemic officially ‘began’ in the US., the Delgado Family found their care paused at the direction of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM). During this time of change and upheaval, Dr. Rinehart left his old practice and set off on his own with Rinehart Fertility Center, opening their doors in May of 2020 – and the Delgado Family followed him for their care.
“We would follow him to the ends of the earth,” says Delgado, and as soon as they moved past the pandemic pause, the Delgado Family were ready and willing. “Despite the difficult journey, I was ready to start again,” says Emily Delgado. Dr. Rinehart was accommodating, saying “Let’s do it!” Delgado recalls. “The truth is we probably wouldn’t have tried again if it weren’t for his presence and support.”
With a goal of getting pregnant before her upcoming 34th Birthday, Emily Delgado conceived, amidst the chaos and loss of 2020. None the less, for the couple that often took the road less travelled, pregnancy during pandemic had its own share of problems. “It was scary and isolating to go to every doctor’s appointment, to do every screening ultrasound without Rick’s support or that of our families,” says Delgado. “But we soldiered on, and joyfully, Rick was able to be with me during the birth of our miracle Marisol on March 26 of 2021.”
Now, at their new home in the Wildwood neighborhood in Chicago, the Delgado Family reflects on their long, but ultimately joyous journey. “It made us stronger than we thought we could be,” says Emily, who is now back at school to pursue a career in Nursing, with a specialty in…Reproductive Medicine and Infertility! No surprise to her medical team who talk of the positive and determined young family. As Lisa Rinehart, CEO of Rinehart Fertility Center, aptly states, “The fertility world needs enthusiastic and compassionate caregivers. With her dedication and personal experience, Emily will be a welcome addition to any fertility team.”
For the recently expanded family of 5, there is little disagreement there.