“But what about our babies?”, asked Josh Powell to Fabi, his wife, shortly before succumbing to cancer. Since then, Fabi, 33, has been battling to realize this crazy dream of giving birth to Josh’s baby… It all started in 2014. Fabi and Josh fell in love but, very quickly, love at first sight gave way to worry. Josh, a former soldier and accomplished sportsman, feels very tired. He was then diagnosed with synovial sarcoma, a rare and aggressive tissue tumour.

Before starting chemotherapy, Josh freezes his sperm. After healing, the couple will be able to conceive a baby. “Josh told me that I would be the most amazing mom. And that was one of the reasons he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me,” Fabi recalls. Unfortunately, despite the treatments and his courage, Josh is doomed. In a last snub to death, the lovers get married on November 12, 2016. Everyone knows that Josh is having his last party there. A month later, he died in his wife’s arms. On his will, he took care to register his desire to allow his wife to use his sperm donation.

There is only one healthy embryo left for the young widow

“Josh gave me his blessing to pursue this plan to have a baby, with or without him. After he died, I didn’t think to myself, ‘I want a piece of him.’ I wanted to make the right decisions, so I gave myself four years of reflection.” Since 2021, she feels ready. It was still necessary to find a medical team in agreement with this project. Eventually, she begins her IVF journey in early 2021 at a clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. “My case is very complicated, because Josh and his mother carried the BRCA2 gene, a genetic mutation that predisposes to the development of cancers. So I chose to test our embryos to detect this mutation.”

Unfortunately, most embryos were found to carry the mutation. And after two unsuccessful IVFs, there is only one healthy embryo left for the young widow. “All the weight of the world falls on this one. The pressure on this little miracle makes me physically sick. But after all, it only takes one and I’m so grateful to have another try.”

“I want to give my precious little embryo the best chance to implant”

Fabi wants to put all the chances on his side. “We decided to slow down, she explains. The stakes are so high with this next transfer that we have decided to choose other tests. I want to give my precious little embryo the best chance of implanting itself.” The young woman will carry out a battery of medical examinations, including an endometrial biopsy. Objective, an embryo transplant before the end of the year. The ultimate opportunity. “I refuse to let fear win. I pray that this one attempt is the right one to bring Baby Powell to life.”

TESTIMONY. "Before his death, I promised my husband to try to have a baby with his gametes"


Maria T.
Maria T.

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