The journey to parenthood was a long and arduous one for Sandi and Ken Begor. Both are school teachers and coaches, happily surrounded by kids on a daily basis. After five years of marriage, the couple decided that they wanted the opportunity to teach a child of their own to learn, grow and thrive.
“We just have always had this outlook that good things happen to good people,” said Sandi. “And if we’re surrounded by these kids and we’re giving them everything that we have, then we’re just hoping to get this repaid to us.”
After trying to get pregnant naturally without success, the couple scheduled an appointment at RAD’s Dover office to seek help on the advice of Sandi’s gynecologist. According to Sandi, walking through the doors of RAD was an unexpected reality. “I truly thought it was just going to happen on its own,” she said. “That whole world of infertility was just not one that I thought about.”
Fortunately, Sandi was surrounded by colleagues and friends with their own experiences of fertility treatment who were able to help ease her mind and let her know what to expect. The staff at RAD did their part as well. “From the minute you walk in you’re always greeted with a smile and by name,” Sandi said. “The nurses are so friendly, and instantly become your No. 1 fans. They know you’re nervous, they recognize how difficult the journey is, and they do whatever they can to ease your nerves.”
“The nurses are so friendly, and instantly become your No. 1 fans. They know you’re nervous, they recognize how difficult the journey is, and they do whatever they can to ease your nerves.”
Lifestyle Changes and Hard Work
While IVF tends to get the most press when it comes to fertility treatments, many RAD patients find success through less-invasive procedures, including intrauterine insemination (IUI). The Begors are one of those families, but it took time for the couple to choose IUI as a treatment option.
Sandi was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal disorder that is common among women of reproductive age and can halt ovulation. At the time of diagnosis, Sandi also had a relatively high BMI, and made the decision to live a healthier life in order to better facilitate pregnancy.
“I knew right then and there that if this was something that I wanted, I needed to buckle down and I needed to make the changes,” said Sandi. “I started eating better and working out.”
At the same time, the Begors began treatment, experimenting with Clomid and timed intercourse over the course of five months. When nothing happened during that time, the couple decided that a four-month break to ease the stress and pressure that comes with treatment was needed. Despite the temporary setback, they maintained a strong commitment to their journey towards a healthier lifestyle and even succeeded in running their first 5K.
Ken and Sandi’s son, Kenny Begor III, born in August 2014.
The Stars Aligned with Help from IUI
Following their much-needed break, the Begors came back to RAD refreshed and ready to try something new. Dr. Barbara McGuirk recommended IUI, and miraculously, the very first IUI procedure resulted in pregnancy. Sandi and Ken welcomed Kenny Begor III in August 2014.
The Begors immediately embraced parenthood, and are thankful for their son on a daily basis. “He has been the greatest thing to bless either of our lives and either of our families,” Ken said. “I didn’t know it was possible to love someone so hard until my son was born. Every day that miracle blesses our lives and I will never forget it.”
“He has been the greatest thing to bless either of our lives and either of our families. I didn’t know it was possible to love someone so hard until my son was born. Every day that miracle blesses our lives and I will never forget it.”
Seeking a Second Miracle
Both Sandi and Ken grew up in large families, and when Kenny was 1 year old, they decided to try and give him the love of a younger sibling. The couple once again turned to Dr. McGuirk for guidance, with a greater understanding of what to expect.
Prior to undergoing her first IUI, Sandi had a hysteroscopy to remove polyps in her uterine cavity. In order to improve her chances of having a second child, another hysteroscopy was scheduled, giving Sandi a fresh start. Sadly, two subsequent IUI treatments failed, and at the same time, the Begors began to feel the financial sting that can accompany fertility treatment.
“These failed cycles unfortunately have wiped out our lifetime insurance amount, and have tapped in to our savings account tremendously,” said Sandi. As state employees, the Begors had limited insurance coverage, but they put their hope in a proposed bill expanding fertility care coverage that would provide a chance at IVF.
Advocating for SB139
With IVF being the only option the Begors have to get a second baby, the couple became vocal advocates for the passage of SB139. Holding true to their belief that good things happen to good people, they decided to share their story and write heartfelt letters to state representatives. Sandi cried when she read her husband’s letter, she said, “It’s funny when you go through this journey, we talked but I didn’t realize how much it affected him as well.”
Ken even considered switching jobs so that his son could have a sibling and his wife could realize her dream of being a mother a second time. Sandi was extremely touched by her husband’s offer, especially considering that he loves his job as a teacher. “It’s pretty intense,” said Sandi. “I got a good guy.”
Their advocacy efforts paid off. The good news arrived on June 10, 2019, when the State Employee Benefits Committee (SEBC) voted to expand fertility care and add fertility preservation benefits for state employees. The Begors were elated and know this news will ease their financial burden as they move forward.
“They were rooting for us. They were our cheerleaders.”
No matter if the Begors ultimately grow their family from three to four, they remain forever grateful to the staff at RAD. “Seeing those people and their friendly faces all the time made it easier,” said Sandi. “They were rooting for us. They were our cheerleaders. At the end, everyone’s goal is to get you pregnant. So, no matter how scared or nervous I was, everyone was like, ‘you’ll be fine, this is going to work, have faith’ — and we always did.”
Photos provided by Amy Stamm, Jennifer Trego Photography, and Delaney Dobson Photography
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"We had a wonderful experience working with RADfertility. Our doctor was so sweet, informative and helpful with all of our questions. The front desk, it’s always nice to be greeted by a friendly smiling face."
"RAD heard my hopes, dreams, and wishes and led me toward them while holding my hand. My dream came true. I was guided to a beautiful baby girl! It took less than a year for my pregnancy to begin and it was successful. This was the best decision I ever made. Thank you, RAD!"
"From the beginning our team was determined to find a way for my husband and I to complete our family. All the RAD staff was knowledgeable and truly cared for us. We wish we could have continued with them after our baby hit 12 weeks. We thank them daily in our prayers for giving us our beautiful baby girl!"
"We will be forever grateful for the wonderful care we received at RAD! Dr. Feinberg took the time to listen and create a plan we were comfortable with. The whole team was amazing and truly care about their patients. You have exceeded our expectations. Thank you!!"
"Thanks to RADfertility, we have the most perfect addition to our family. The help and support the whole staff gave us was indescribable. We never once lost hope because of them. We will be forever grateful to each and every person we worked with during our journey."
"Dr. Neithardt was amazing. She explained in great detail all the options we had and put us at ease about the entire process. Everyone has been amazing and I have absolutely no complaints. Today I am 17 weeks pregnant and we only have Dr. Neithardt and her wonderful team at RAD to thank."
"They are the most amazing team of doctors and care coordinators. After having started at another facility I was so happy to come to RAD. They are truly amazing, never make you feel like just a number and have empathy and compassion every step of the way. They also get the job done! Thanks RAD!"
"Dr. McGuirk is a very holistic doctor. She doesn’t just treat the fertility issues. She also points out personal health ideas (juicing, whole 30) to help heal/treat the whole patient. She is honest and open. Be open minded and trust in her process. This is a marathon, not a sprint! Dr. McGuirk will be with you the whole way."
"I will never be able to put into words how thankful we are for RAD. Rhonda was there every step of the way as we were going through the process. Everyone was so welcoming and patient as we asked questions. We were blessed with a daughter, who is now three. I have already recommended and will continue to recommend RAD to people who need help growing their family!"
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