Kyla Tulou, the stunning ‘other half’ of professional rugby player Alex Tulou, shares her story about her IVF journey, maternity fashion and style.
Originally from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, Kyla moved to France with Alex when he joined the Montpellier rugby team in 2011. She created her blog, ‘The Evolution Road’, to chronicle her own challenges with fertility.
How did creating your blog help you on your journey to becoming a mum?
To write, and then push the button to publish was daunting at first. Opening up about my struggles made me feel vulnerable and uncomfortable, until I received my first private email from someone I knew, but had never known was also struggling with the same things I was. She thanked me and said I had given her hope! I’ve learnt that sharing is reciprocal. When I opened up, others found it easier to do the same. Communication is so vital.
What would you say your blog brings to others looking for support or advice with fertility?
HOPE! Hope in the possibility of what can seem like a never-ending battle. Fertility issues can really make you question so much about yourself. I was able to get my husband to write a post regarding dealing with infertility, and that is so insightful for women and for men in the same position. The blog offers hope and insight. That was always the goal when talking about IVF and my road to pregnancy.
What advice would you give to someone in a similar position today?
It’s hard to believe, but there is still a lot of stigma attached to IVF. Not many people are able to talk about fertility problems, but it’s exactly what you need to do. TALK, share your struggles, allow people to understand the position you are in. I spoke to a girlfriend. It was from that conversation that I was able to find a better specialist.
As crazy as it might sound, after your 2-year journey to conceive, you are now pregnant again, naturally.
I would not have believed it was possible unless it actually happened to me! The female body is amazing! I remember my doctor telling me, ‘It’s hard right now, but after one pregnancy your hormones can reset and natural conception can happen.’ I’m pretty sure I laughed and swore at him. Safe to say he was right; I stopped breastfeeding and I fell pregnant 6 months after my son Ryder was born.
Maternity fashion isn’t always easy, but can be so rewarding if you find a style that works for you, not to mention a few comfy clothes for good measure. In your opinion, what are the maternity must-haves?
Good support bras, a LBD, ribbed fabrics, (better for when the bump grows), a maxi dress and leggings in the cooler months.
Does your style change in the course of a pregnancy?
I don’t have a pregnancy style, I just like what I normally wear, so I buy things in larger sizes.
Can you share any fashion tips or advice with our readers?
Pinterest is a great place for inspiration if you’re stuck on what or how to wear something. Type in key words, see the screen shot looks you like and go from there. Slow and steady is the way to build a wardrobe that is completely you!
Being the other half to a professional rugby player must have its own challenges, especially when you are far from home. What are the positive and negative sides to that?
The highlights include meeting new people, who become friends and then like family. The most challenging aspect of this lifestyle though is being away from my family.
Did that lifestyle mean additional challenges for you when you were going through IVF?
Rugby schedules and ovulation do not synchronize so yes it did! Most appointments were spent figuring out if we’d be in the same town when needed. If not, I took medication to speed up or delay ovulation. Our doctor was and is amazing though, so I wasn’t concerned at all about having to do things in a foreign country.
Raising a child can be tough at the best of times, but raising a child on the other side of the world, often on your own, must be even more stressful. Do you have any tips for mums in a similar situation?
Create your own community of support as soon as possible! Get to know your neighbors, you’ll feel safer for it. Learn to speak the language, it will make for less anxious times when your partner/husband is away. Something people may not know about the world of ‘WAG’ is that ‘WAG’ actually stands for the Waiting Around Girl, you do a lot of waiting around…
Visit Kyla’s blog at www.theevolutionroad.com