Randi and Joe: Dreaming of Dad Jokes

We met back in 2015 and during our almost nine years together, we have partnered through life’s challenges, from struggling with personal health issues, through pandemic isolation and job changes, and surviving the loss of a parent. We have always been a dynamic pair, by each other’s side whenever it counts. You won’t find one of us without the strong …

Lindsay and Jimmy: Turning Loss into Hope

Our journey together began in Chicago where we first met in 2015. We married in June 2020, during the peak of Covid, and later on were able to safely celebrate our marriage with friends and family in June 2022. Eager to start a family, we were excited to become pregnant in November 2022. During the third trimester, abnormalities were detected …

Rus and Yosi: NYC and Midwestern Connections

Rus and Yosi met nine years ago and have been married for almost eight years. Rus was born and raised in NYC while Yosi is a native Midwesterner. Together, they love traveling the world, and also enjoy cooking and baking. Rus and Yosi have experienced infertility in multiple forms over the last several years and are extremely appreciative of the …

Jenna and Eugene: Navigating Genetic Challenges with Unwavering Support

Eugene and I (Jenna) met online in 2015 and have been inseparable ever since. We share a love for family, food, travel, and our dog, Maddie.  We completed comprehensive genetic testing in 2023 and learned we are both carriers for the same genetic disorder. This news was quite a surprise to both of us, as well as our families. After …

Carly and Ethan: Love, Health and Surrogacy

Carley and Ethan’s journey together began at the University of Illinois, where an AEPHi/AEPi event brought them together. Both hailing from the north Chicago suburbs and pursuing degrees in Economics, their connection was immediate and enduring. After graduating, their adventure took them to several cities – from San Francisco to Los Angeles, then back to Chicago, and finally settling in …

Brianna and Ben: From City Love to Family Values

Hi all! We’re Brianna and Ben.  We’re city-loving Chicagoans who met through an app (Coffee Meets Bagel) 7.5 years ago, and had our first date at Jeni’s Ice Cream on Southport Ave (try the Brown Butter Almond Brittle!).  Our lives have since become centered around our little Southport Corridor, including getting married at our favorite restaurant (Ella Elli) in 2020 …

Alexa and Jason: Love, Longevity, and the Path to Parenthood

We met back in 1999, when we were both in fourth grade. After a long friendship and an even longer courtship (including five years of long-distance dating), we got married in December 2015. As we began planning to expand our family, it became clear IVF would be our most likely path to having a successful outcome.  We are so excited …

Susan and Yonatan: From ‘Jews and Brews’ to Family Dreams

The first night we met was at an event called “Jews and Brews” where we felt the chemistry right away. After sitting down at our table, we ended up talking for so long that when we finally looked away from each other we realized that everyone else who had started the night at our table had long since left the …

Sara and Isabel: Building Community, Raising Love

We have always wanted to be mothers but as lesbians, we knew our journey to parenthood would be different than the paths of our straight friends. We are so grateful that the CCFB/JUF grant is helping us to complete our queer bayit ne’eman b’yisrael (faithful Jewish family).  We are both deeply involved in the Jewish community and excited to raise …

Diane: A Hopeful Mom-to-be

I couldn’t be more excited to become a mama with help from CCFB and JUF! I’m a reconstructionist-ordained rabbi, currently serving a reform congregation, and deeply engaged with my local Jewish community. Among my friends, I am known for sharing very openly, loving data, and making pretty challah. I am looking forward to sharing more happy updates soon! Diane is …

Hannah and Mike

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2018 at age 30. My daughter (our 1st and only child) was born in May 2017, and I found a lump while I was breastfeeding her. Soon after that, I was also diagnosed with a BRCA2 mutation, and elected to have a bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction. In the window between my surgery …

Kim and Jeff

Thanks to the Chicago Coalition for Family Building, Kim and Jeff were proud to welcome their twins, Eve and Emilia, in 2019!

Robyn and Mike

Mike and Robyn met in 2014 and it was love at first sight. They shared a dream to one day become parents. A few years later, they got married and began their journey to start a family. After difficulty conceiving, they decided to contact a fertility clinic for some extra help. Currently, they are on their third round of IVF and hoping …

Jessica and Rob

The path to having a second child has been more of an adventure than we expected. We tried on our own and with IUI, then found out we are both carriers for a genetic disease. After several rounds of IVF, we have been through a lot of the emotional and physical work that accompanies painful loss. None of this was …

Scott and Ma’ayan

Our first due date was supposed to be in June of 2019. We had been dreaming of a family and were really, really excited when we found out we were pregnant. Our 8-week ultrasound looked good and the doctor told us our baby was strong. After we found out we were expecting, we did genetic testing through the Sarnoff Center …

Kathryn and Sean

We are so thankful to have heard about the Chicago Coalition for Family Building, and to have the opportunity to apply for a grant. When we learned about Katie’s carrier status and made the decision to pursue IVF, we had serious concerns about the cost. As we look to start a family, being selected to receive a grant would be …

Aset and Emperor

My name is Aset and my husband is Emperor. Our fertility journey started before we even knew we were on it! We met our freshman year in college and immediately connected. At the end of our first year, we found out we were pregnant! However, that pregnancy unfortunately ended in a miscarriage. After that loss, we decided to just live …

Becki and Ricky

Our journey together began in 2006, while in high school.  We were two teenagers who fell in love and dreamt about having a large family.  It has been our dream since we were kids ourselves.  After many years of dating, we were married in 2016 and have been blessed with two children.  Being parents is our greatest blessing. A few …

Laura and Ed

When I (Laura) was 35, I froze my eggs in Chicago thinking I would have an insurance policy for the future. I had to do three rounds of IVF to get a good amount to freeze. Fast forward to 2019 when I met Ed, we were engaged in 2021, and we decided not to waste time and start our journey …

Brea

When asked as a child what I wanted to be when I grew up, I always– without hesitation– responded that I wanted to be a mom. Since childhood, I have had the opportunity to travel to six countries, live in four different states in every region of the US, graduate from two masters programs, explore my identity and ambitions, and …

Dara and Michael

My husband and I have been together since college and have been married since our mid-twenties. We made our living as actors and musicians for much of our 20s and 30s, and delayed starting a family until we felt we could take on the financial responsibility of being parents. We had no idea how difficult it was going to be …

Hannah and Alex

We met in 2014 shortly after graduating from our respective colleges. We lived in numerous different cities across the States and finally found home in Chicago. We got married in 2020 and were excited to start our family with the values taught in Judaism. After a year of trying to get pregnant without success, we chose to pursue fertility treatment. …

Jackie and Isaac

Jackie and Isaac met when we were in third grade at their synagogue. We were in the same class from third grade on. Isaac asked Jackie to go to a Coldplay concert when they were juniors in high school. Despite the fact that it was very loud and we were there to listen to the music, all we did was …

Julie and Daniel

Our relationship began in June 2018 through a dating app called Coffee Meets Bagel, in what we truly believe to be an act of fate. Daniel had just moved back to Chicago to be closer to his family after living eight years on the West Coast. Julie, who had been living in Chicago for many years, was getting ready to …

Ree and Marty

Marty and Ree live in Chicago and are active in both their professional lives and personal pursuits. They are excited to grow their family and feel grateful for the opportunity that CCFB has provided them. Marty and Ree look forward to giving back to the group! Marty and Ree are recipients of the Path to Parenthood Grant from the Jewish …