Cumbrian woman writes book about journey to motherhood after being told she was infertile

Sarah Igo (author of Hetty the Hen Who Couldn't Lay), sister Beth and daughter Dillon. Credit: Sarah Igo

A mother who was told she would not be able to have children has written a book about her journey to motherhood in the hopes of breaking the stigma around fertility issues.

Sarah Igo, from Arnside, received donated eggs from her sister, Beth, which were used for IVF treatment to allow her to become a mother.

She gave birth to her daughter, Dillon, four years ago.

Sarah's debut children's book, Hetty the Hen Who Couldn’t Lay, is based on her own story with the aim of starting a conversation about egg donation and IVF.

Sarah gave birth to her daughter Dillon four years ago. Credit: Sarah Igo

Describing the ordeal, Sarah said: "When I was 14 there was literally nothing. I was told I couldn’t have children and that was it.

"I remember walking out of the hospital and sinking into the floor and then I shut it away and didn’t deal with it for 20 years."

Brought to life by the watercolour illustrator Rebecca Williamson's, the story follows the journey of Hetty and her sisters as she fights for a chick of her own to love.

She said: "When my husband and I were going through IVF they showed us these books that you could read to your child to make them familiar with the process.

"But the books were awful, I thought I can’t read her this. I decided to write one myself.

"My sister donated eggs and it felt natural to go with the hen analogy. Dillon’s grown-up knowing mummy didn’t have any eggs, so auntie gave me some eggs."

The copywriter and author has written the book in honour of her sister who contributed towards fulfilling her dreams of becoming a mother. It's a gift she described as incredible.

"There’s quite an age gap between me and Beth. From the beginning Beth was saying let me donate eggs and I kept refusing because she was so much younger.

"She hasn’t had a family yet and it just made what she did extra special.

"I think it takes someone incredibly special to do that and it’s not a straightforward process, she had to do injections for weeks, the procedure was quite painful.

"It’s like I say in the book what’s in it for you? I can’t give one back, although I’d love to.

"It’s impossible to repay such an incredible gift, but that’s the whole point she didn’t want anything back she did it because she’s a lovely person."