Nevada woman starts blog and friends help raise money in journey with infertility

Marlys Barker, Nevada Journal Editor
Shown during one of their fundraiser garage sales are (from left) Sarah Miller of Waterloo, Belicia and Matt Barker, and Lisa Johnson of Nevada. Miller and Johnson are among the couple's many friends who have helped them to raise funds to pursue an appointment at the University of Iowa Hospitals Reproductive, Endocrinology and Infertility Clinic.

A Nevada woman has started a blog called Anchored in Hope, through which she is sharing the story of infertility and trying to provide encouragement to others who are walking the same path.

Belicia Barker and her husband, Matt, have been trying for three-and-a-half years to have a second child — a problem often referred to as secondary infertility. Their son Rowan is 5.

“Ever since I was little, all I wanted to be when I grew up was a mom,” Belicia said. “I have always had a heart for children.” Because she grew up as an only child, and found that to be lonely, she never wanted a child of her own to be an only child. “I would love for him to have a brother or sister to grow up with.”

Faced with the many difficulties and emotional roller coaster that going through the pain of infertility poses, Belicia started her blog, which can be found at: www.teambarkerbaby.blogspot.com. She is sharing her journey with infertility with others.

As the Barkers started to check into things they might be able to do, they discovered their medical insurance doesn’t cover infertility treatments. “We wanted to see a the specialists at University of Iowa Hospitals; however, the appointments are very expensive and we couldn’t pay for them on our own.”

So they looked into some other possibilities, meeting with an adoption agency in August of 2015 and also attending an informational foster care meeting the same year. But they came away from both of those meetings discouraged.

So, with the support of family and friends, they decided to start trying to raise the funds to support seeing the specialists that might be able to help them.

In October, they held a fundraiser garage and bake sale at their home.

“So many people donated unwanted items, baked goods and their time to help this event come together,” Belicia said, and all the support offered her encouragement. “When I was in the planning stages (of putting on a fundraiser), I never would have imagined having this kind of response and outcome. We had so much stuff left after the first Thursday, Friday sale, that I ended up opening the sale up the following Friday.”

With the money raised from the first set of sales, Belicia is happy to report that they have been able to schedule a first consult appointment at the University of Iowa Hospitals Reproductive, Endocrinology and Infertility Clinic. “I am so humbled and so thankful to everyone who helped make this possible,” she said.

Their appointment in Iowa City, which is scheduled in December, Belicia said, will be a chance to go over lots of information and billing details. “Hopefully (the appointment will) give us enough information that we can decide which option is best for us.”

Her blogging, which she plans to continue as she works through all the options and the highs and lows of this journey, is important to Belicia.

It (infertility) can be very discouraging. I have gone through every emotion possible,” she said. “It’s especially hard when the world around me doesn’t seem to have any problem having kids. It can be a lonely place, and that’s why I decided to start the blog. I’m certain that other people’s lives are not as perfect as they appear on Facebook and that everyone has their own struggles. It’s just that many of them don’t open up publicly about them.”

Sharing with others is something Belicia feels called by God to do. “I felt like God was leading me to start the blog to share our story, in case there are other people like me who need to know they aren’t the only ones. My faith is what I hold onto during the hard times; it’s where I find my hope. I trust God in this, no matter what happens. He has placed us on this path for a reason.”