The Queen actress Lunathi Mampofu (31) on using in vitro fertilisation (IVF) after a health complication that might have left her unable to bear children. By Kwanele Mathebula
Actress Lunathi Mampofu on conceiving through IVF
I had a child earlier
than planned. In 2013, I went to see a gynaecologist following abdominal pains. I was diagnosed with fibroids, and advised to consider having a child soon.
This was because the fibroids could possibly prevent me from having one in the future. I was single at the time, and so decided to go for IVF.
In 2014, I started IVF
treatment while living
in the US. Before starting the process, I went for counselling and medical check-ups to make sure that I was healthy. I chose an anonymous sperm donor, and then went through five rounds of insemination until I got pregnant. Fortunately, my pregnancy had no complications. Being a first-time
mom was difficult. I gave birth to my daughter, Skye (3), in November 2015. The first week was easy, but things quickly changed. I became overwhelmed with raising her alone as I wasn’t used to not sleeping at night; everything was new. I called my parents in Cape Town, and told them that I wanted to come back home. I returned six weeks after giving birth. It was a relief to be back home and have the support of my family. They helped me with Skye for a year before I moved to Johannesburg for work. Being away from her was tough because I was used to having her with me all the time. I visited her every second weekend, and leaving was always hard.
taught me a lot. Earlier this year, I decided to move my daughter to Johannesburg so that we could live together. Having her with me is great. However, I have to work often and sometimes feel that I am not giving her enough. At times, I think had I planned better before having her, I would be able to provide for her the way that she needs. But, every time I look at her and she smiles, it all feels worth it. When I come home from work, she gives me a hug and kiss. This reminds me that I am good enough, and watching her grow into a bright and beautiful girl is amazing.