[Editor’s note: In 2009, shortly after marrying her (first and only) husband, Paolo, Elizabeth Heath was diagnosed with premature menopause and resulting infertility. Paolo and Liz are now parents to a baby girl, Naomi. In this series, Liz recounts the couple’s struggle with infertility, and how they finally achieved a successful pregnancy and parenthood.] FACING MY INFERTILITY I was 41, nearly 42 when Paolo and I met. I’d never been married, but I hadn’t given up on the idea. I had, more or less, given up on the idea of having children of my own. I figured I’d meet some older, divorced professor or architect who had grown kids of his own, and settle comfortably into the role of cool stepmom. But instead, I fell in love with a man six years my junior. He too had never married, but for whatever reasons, the planets aligned and we both felt ready to make the leap—very soon after meeting, at that. So it wasn’t until we were already committed to a life—and a family—together that I got the first hints that I was infertile.