CAIRO - 30 April 2019: Motherhood is a very valuable blessing that deserves to be highly cherished to those who are blessed with this gift. It deserve exerting great efforts to be granted motherhood; to see a child that carries your traits, characteristics and a part of your soul.
Even if it comes to harsh criticism or the most difficult surgical procedures, the ultimate goal is to achieve the "motherhood" dream.
Louise Joy Brown (born July 25 1978) is an English woman known for being the first human to have been born after conception by in vitro fertilization, or IVF. Brown was born at Oldham General Hospital, Oldham, by planned Cesarean section delivered by registrar John Webster.
She weighed 5 pounds, 12 ounces (2.608 kg) at birth. Her parents, Lesley and John Brown, had been trying to conceive for nine years. Lesley faced complications of blocked Fallopian tubes.
On November 10 1977, Lesley Brown underwent a procedure, later to become known as in vitro fertilization (IVF), developed by Patrick Steptoe, Robert Edwards and Jean Purdy.
Purdy was the first to see her embryonic cells dividing. Edwards, as the only surviving partner, was awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize in Medicine for this work.
Although the media referred to Brown as a "test tube baby",her conception actually took place in a Petri dish. Her younger sister, Natalie Brown, was also conceived through IVF four years later, and became the world's fortieth child after conception by IVF.
In May 1999, Natalie was the first human born after conception by IVF to give birth herself—without IVF.
Egypt Today held a private dialogue with Louise Brown during her visit to Egypt for -two days only- to participate in a scientific conference organized by Ain Shams University. During the interview, Brown talks about her experience in life and her mother, who took the bold decision to undergo the procedure in 1977.
What was the strangest reaction you received from people and how do you deal with such reactions?
Mom received a package in the post to our house, from a group in California in the USA. It was a broken test tube fetus and fake blood, and it was all smashed. It said in there that they are going to come and find mom, which sort of frightened her a little bit, but she kept it. So, that's the weirdest one i think. The test tube is now located in a museum in Bristol. She kept everything for when i was born.
Did you have any concerns before getting married about pregnancy and marriage in general?
No, as i was growing up through my teenage years, press asked me if i would use IVF procedure if i needed to, which i answered yes I would, but i never actually thought about it.
Louis Brown During the interview - CC Hazem Abdel Samad
What did you feel with your first pregnancy?
I was relieved that I was pregnant, because this is sort of when you realize that everything is OK. When I found out i was pregnant, i did write down to Bob Edwards, to let him know and i think he was really pleased as well. It is quite funny, because I got a younger sister, and she is the first test tube baby to have a baby naturally on her own. So, I knew probably there would be no problems but you sort of you don't really know because as you grow up, you don't really think about things like that. I just left it for time.
What can you tell us about your relationship with your mother?
Well, me and my mom are both born in July, so we are both Leos. Teenage years, like every other teenage girl and her mom, we didn't really get along together. We were arguing a lot and probably it's just me being a teenager. However, as soon as we got over that we became very close.
What is your comment about the determination of your mother to take the risk in 1977 and undergo the IVF procedure, and hence giving you life?
She just wanted a baby. She heard the words Patrick said to her “I might be able to help you” and from there she just believed that she would just have a baby.
Do you see yourself as a symbol of hope to any women who might be facing pregnancy difficulties?
I don't, but i think a lot of other people do. I'm just me, to me i'm just a normal down to earth girl that was just born slightly differently.
What do you tell your children about the way you were born?
My oldest song Cameron is twelve, he understands a lot more as he is doing sex education at school, so he knows. He doesn't tell me, but he knows. He is quite interested in it. My youngest one is only five, so i don't even talk to him about it. But what i usually tell them is “Nanny needed help, so Bob and Patrick helped Nanny and granddad to have me”. We always mention their names to the children so they know them very well.
What message would you like to send to Patrick and Bob if they were here today?
Thanks for giving me life. It's not just about having babies, it's about creating families. When my mom passed away she said “Bob Edwards and Patrick did not only give her a child, they gave her an entire family. She would of been alone if it wasn't for them. So, we just owe them everything really, both of them.
How do you use the circumstances of your birth to send a message of hope to any women currently facing any problems with pregnancy?
Mom did it. Mom was a really shy girl from Bristol, she just wanted a baby, and she just went for it. She believed that she will have a baby and she did! Don't lose hope, keep going, don't give up.
Louise Brown speaking to ET - CC Hazem Abdel Samad
What was the most common advice given to you by your mother?
Just to behave myself! The normal advice any mom would give to her teenage girl.
What did you inherit from your mother and want to pass it onto your children?
I don't really know. I am more like my dad, and i never really realized it until i saw my wedding day pictures. There was a picture of me and my dad in the wedding car before going to the church, we just have the same cheeks and smile! Mom was determined and did not give up. Cameron looks like his dad but he has my ways, where Aden looks like me but got his dads ways!
Is being a mother worth all that hassle and pain?
Yes. There are times where it gets really tough, and they drive you up the wall (the children) but 99.9 percent it is worth it!
Any message you want to address to women in general?
Never lose hope. Keep going after your dreams! Good luck!