Motherhood is a blessing unlike any other, but the path to becoming a mother sometimes comes with trials and hardship.
For former SportsCenter anchor Sara Walsh, the road to motherhood was an excruciating struggle. After years of silence about her struggles, she opened up about her horrible experiences with miscarriages and infertility.
"Finding a good egg didn't come easy for me, and I suspect there are many people out there facing the same struggle," Walsh said.
A horrifying live show
Walsh recalled a particular tragic night when she was on the road hosting SportsCenter. She was three months pregnant when she got on set in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and began her live television broadcast at a sporting event. In the middle of the show, she suddenly felt the symptoms of a miscarriage and realized she was losing her baby on live TV.
"The juxtaposition of college kids going nuts behind our set while I was losing a baby on it, was surreal," Walsh said. "I was scared, nobody knew I was pregnant, so I did the show while having a miscarriage. On television."
Walsh's husband watched helplessly as his poor wife miscarried on TV over a thousand miles away, and texted her about different hospitals in the area between commercials breaks.
Sadly, this was only the beginning of pregnancy hardships for Walsh and her husband. She had two more miscarriages and related surgeries following her horrible experience on TV, but rarely told anyone about her struggles and presented herself on SportsCenter without drawing attention to her situation.
"We then went down the IVF road of endless shots and procedures," Walsh said. "After several rounds, we could only salvage two eggs. I refused to even use them for a long time, because I couldn't bear the idea of all hope being gone. I blew off pregnancy tests, scared to know if it worked. It had. Times two."
But even with the success of getting pregnant with twins, the Walshes feared it was too good to be true and chose to forgo pregnancy announcements and baby showers. Walsh spent that football season on SportsCenter carefully picking out clothes and camera angles to hide her pregnancy from coworkers and viewers.
"We told very few people we were pregnant, and almost no one there were two," Walsh said.
But despite her history of pregnancy mishaps and fears, Walsh welcomed two beautiful twins into the world earlier this year-Brees and Hutton. They had to be treated in the NICU, but were soon home with their parents who once thought they would never have children.
Responses from followers
After Walsh shared this heartbreaking story with a happy ending on social media, many people expressed gratitude to Walsh for sharing something so personal and relatable to many.
"Thank you for sharing your story," commented Laura Winston, who also went through IVF treatments and just celebrated her first Mother's Day as a parent. "It brings so many of us comfort knowing that we are not alone in our struggles."
Sports podcaster Jess Ceresino commented, "Your bravery and professionalism and downright grit is inspiring. You've redefined strength and given us gals another stellar role model. Thank you."
Taking on her role as mother
After finally becoming a mom, Walsh is taking time off from her career.
"I wasn't on TV today, and I'm not sure when I will be again," Walsh said. "But instead, I got to hang with these two good eggs. My ONLY good eggs. And I know how lucky I really am."