Sara Walsh was part of the recent layoffs at ESPN, and was even traveling back from maternity leave in Florida when she was notified she would not be returning to SportsCenter. Tonight, on her first Mother’s Day as a mom, she told the story of her personal struggle to have children while working as a sports anchor.
My mother bought them these onesies because she thought they were funny. For us, they're especially poignant. Finding a good egg didn't come easy for me, and I suspect there are many people out there facing the same struggle. The road down a dark path began while hosting Sportscenter on the road from Alabama. I arrived in Tuscaloosa almost three months pregnant. I wouldn't return the same way. The juxtaposition of college kids going nuts behind our set, while I was losing a baby on it, was surreal. I was scared, nobody knew I was pregnant, so I did the show while having a miscarriage. On television. My husband had to watch this unfold from more than a thousand miles away, texting me hospital options during commercial breaks. It would get worse. Two more failed pregnancies. More than once, I'd have surgery one day and be on SportsCenter the next so as not to draw attention to my situation. We then went down the IVF road of endless shots and procedures. After several rounds, we could only salvage two eggs. I refused to even use them for a long time, because I couldn't bear the idea of all hope being gone. I blew off pregnancy tests, scared to know if it worked. It had. Times two. It was exciting news, but we knew better than to celebrate. So I spent a third straight football season pregnant, strategically picking out clothes and standing at certain angles, using scripts to hide my stomach. There would be no baby announcement, no shower, we didn't buy a single thing in preparation for the babies, because I wasn't sure they'd show up. We told very few people we were pregnant, and almost no one there were two. For those that thought I was weirdly quiet about my pregnancy, now you know why. For as long as I can remember I hosted Sportscenter on Mother's Day, and the last couple years doing that have been personally brutal. An hours-long reminder of everything that had gone wrong. I wasn't on tv today, and I'm not sure when I will be again, but instead I got to hang with these two good eggs. My ONLY good eggs. And I know how lucky I really am. #twins #ivf
Walsh detailed having a miscarriage while on location at a SportsCenter in Alabama, and her husband (pitcher Matt Buschmann) having to deal with it unfolding while she was on TV a thousand miles away. She had two more miscarriages, went through IVF, and had two good eggs left. She closed her story with:
“I wasn’t on tv today, and I’m not sure when I will be again, but instead I got to hang with these two good eggs. My ONLY good eggs. And I know how lucky I really am.”
Truly an inspiring story of heartache and ultimate joy. Happy Mother’s Day.