Meet our Support Group Facilitator, Anna Westley!

The season of infertility between the births of my son and my daughter was the darkest time in my life. We started trying to conceive when our son was three. We welcomed our daughter the day before our son's eighth birthday. In between was month and after month of devastating disappointment, debilitating depression, and increasingly crippling isolation as our friends welcomed new babies year after year. I sought answers and solutions, endured tests and treatments, explored alternative avenues for growing our family and struggled to find coping strategies and emotional support. If there was a safe space where I could have gone to be in community with others walking this path, I would have gone in an instant!

Since 2005 I have worked with families as a birth and postpartum doula. In 2012 I took the MotherWoman training and, in collaboration with It Takes A Village, started a weekly support group for new mothers in rural Ashfield, where I live. I know how powerful and healing it can be when people gather to share what's really going on for them in a safe, supportive, non-judgemental space. During my infertility years I often wished there was a local infertility support group that I could attend. It is a dream come true and an honor to offer such a space to struggling families through Empty Arms Bereavement Support.