After almost a decade of unsuccessful attempts to get pregnant, Chris and Amanda Schlatter will celebrate their son Noah’s second birthday this week, thanks to the life-changing prize. The couple spent eight years trying to conceive naturally, and even experimented with fertility boosting yoga and hanging upside down after intercourse.
But after visiting a fertility clinic in December 2009, tests found Mr Schlatter had low testosterone levels and Mrs Schlatter was diagnosed with endometriosis, a polycystic ovary and a blocked fallopian tube.
The couple started IUI – intrauterine insemination – which involves separating out the fastest moving sperm and placing them in the womb. But the costly treatment meant they were forced to sell possessions in their home to cover the $10,000 (£6,000) cost.
“With each treatment I hoped we’d get pregnant,” Mrs Schlatter, 30, said. “And when each one failed we’d pin our hopes on the next. "We became so desperate to get pregnant we sold everything of value in our home, to fund the IUI. "But we had six goes and none of them were successful.
“I felt bitter that other people had children and felt sad and jealous when friends started having babies. “In the end our doctor said: ‘Any further treatment along these lines would be a waste of money’. “IVF became our only option after this, but we knew it would be expensive, and we’d run out of things to sell by this point.”
Amazingly, it was Mr Schlatter’s magical words that saw them get pregnant after they beat 99 other couples to win funding for IVF treatment. After researching treatment options online, the couple, from Nevada, USA, came across a charity, Baby Quest Foundation, which was granting struggling couples the funding for IVF.
So Mr Schlatter, 34, applied, explaining why he and his wife would make perfect parents, and should receive the help. “His letter was so heartfelt,” Mrs Schlatter explained. “He wrote about our struggle to conceive and about how heart-breaking it had been for us with every negative pregnancy test.”
Incredibly, two months later, in April 2012, the couple got the call to say they’d won the funding. And less than a year later, in March 2013, their son Noah was born. Mrs Schlatter said: “When the doctor said the words I never thought I’d hear – ‘you’re pregnant’ I couldn’t stop smiling.