CHARLOTTE — Monday marks National Infertility Awareness Week, and former Mrs. North Carolina is sharing her difficult journey to start a family.
Nichelle Sublett went through six years of fertility treatments and five miscarriages.
“To be sitting here now with a two and a half year old son, a daughter on the way, it is, yeah. It still feels surreal to me,” she told Channel 9′s DaShawn Brown.
In the last 10 years, Sublett was first diagnosed with a hormonal disorder called polycystic ovary syndrome, followed by miscarriages.
“There were days that I cried, and just begged God for these babies. Didn’t know if it was going to happen,” she said. “I felt like something was terribly wrong with me and that nobody told me. Like I had no idea growing up that I would have trouble having babies.”
But she would soon learn she was not alone.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention says one in five women between 15 and 49 are not able to get pregnant after one year of trying.
Sublett and her husband tried for nearly six years, though she started sharing their story even before her son was born.
“I was just overwhelmed with love and gratefulness. I felt almost in disbelief,” she said. “I started speaking about the story and I didn’t have Hudson yet. I didn’t know what was going to happen and I was incredibly scared that what if I never have kids and I’ve now told this story, but I knew there was something in that and it made me stronger and it built my faith. It built our marriage to be stronger.”
The journey was also the foundation for her latest platform -- Start Asking.
“Start asking your doctors for fertility assessments because we get our blood pressure checked. We have well women checks. There are so many different preventative measures that we take as people, as humans -- why is fertility not on there,” Sublett said. “I always knew when I was going through it, okay eventually when we have the two kids and the dog and the white picket fence, I’m going to share my story and tell everybody about it, but what I didn’t realize was how powerful it is to go ahead and tell it before the story is finished.”
Sublett said she is often asked what someone can do to show support for someone struggling with infertility. She suggested people can often start with a simple question and ask them how they would like to be supported and allow them to lead.
(WATCH BELOW: FAMILY FOCUS: Charlotte couple shares struggle with infertility)
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