On the ring finger of Samantha Busch's right hand is a tattoo that serves as a somewhat somber reminder of the past seven years of her life.
While the blue band symbolizes the birth of her and NASCAR driver Kyle Busch's now-5½-year-old son Brexton Locke, the two crosses alongside the blue band symbolize the two girls they lost after a miscarriage in November 2018 and a failed cycle with a second girl embryo in November 2019.
“I just didn't really think we would have to add another cross for our last girl," Samantha, 34, tearfully tells PEOPLE about losing their "last girl embryo" last month, despite the use of a surrogate. "But I do plan to get another cross added to the tattoo. I just haven't decided exactly how to do it yet."
But every time she looks down at that tattoo, Samantha says she is not only reminded of their infertility struggles, but also reminded of yet another struggle — the struggle to save her marriage.
"There were times when we were trying [to get pregnant] and we weren't even speaking," recalls Samantha. "After the miscarriage [in November 2018], there were days that I was like, 'I don't think we are going to make it at this point.' We were fighting every single day about everything."
And it's this fight and these cruel realities of their infertility struggles that Busch will document in raw detail in her upcoming book, Fighting Infertility, which is scheduled for release in March 2021.
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NASCAR's Kyle Busch, Wife Samantha Open Up About Losing 'Last Girl Embryo' on Quest to Baby No. 2
"There is nothing about this that is easy, and we wanted other couples to see that," explains Samantha, who alongside Kyle has created the Bundle of Joy fund, which helps couples cover the costs of their own fertility treatments. "I know people look at Instagram and have probably just gotten done with a fight or just had sex for the 30th time that month and they are not even talking, and they look at Instagram and they are like, 'Oh well, look at [Kyle and Samantha]. They have been doing this forever and look how loving they are.' "
"But that's just a snapshot," she says. "That's just two seconds. That's not always what's happening behind closed doors."
Indeed, in addition to the doctor's visits and the shots and the treatments, Kyle, 35, and Samantha say there were also times during their almost 10-year marriage when things were extremely fragile, mostly due to the fact that they were both trying to come to terms with the many disappointments that come within any infertility journey.
"People have to grieve the process in different ways," Samantha says quietly. "It's hard."
Indeed, not only has she and Kyle had to fight through their share of struggles as a couple, but Samantha too has had to find a way to fight through the sadness that comes when one struggles to conceive.
"I'll be very honest, during the beginning of infertility, before Brexton and after the miscarriage, I feel like I really went into a state of depression where I was crying all the time," Samantha remembers. "It was very hard to process after the failed cycle. I wanted to shove all these feelings down because I didn't want to feel this way again."
It's these stark realities that will also be included in Fighting Infertility, which will give readers a look at Samantha and Kyle's story "from beginning to end."
"The book tells everything I would have wanted someone to tell me," explains Samantha. "I would have wanted to know what your sex life becomes when you are struggling. I would have wanted to know how hard marriage can be when you're both grieving something you can't really even process yet. I hope people will see all that Kyle and I got wrong, so they can avoid some of those things. If we sugarcoat it, that doesn't help anyone."
NASCAR Driver Kyle Busch and Wife Samantha Tearfully Recount IVF Journey and Recent Miscarriage:
Currently, the couple is looking at a variety of other options in their quest for a second child. Unfortunately, given the outcomes of two failed cycles in two different uteruses, their doctors now believe that their remaining boy embryos do not have a chance at success as well.
"[The doctors] would like us to start back over, which is hard to wrap my mind around seven years later," Samantha says. "We are awaiting the results of numerous tests to confirm that they believe I can hopefully carry. But that too has been hard to process. I gave up hope on ever feeling the kick of a child inside me and carrying a child to now being told it may be possible."
"I’m excited, scared, grateful, hopeful, nervous," she adds. "I still flashback to the miscarriage and the fear and the reality that it could happen again. We will keep fighting though through the meds, the pricks, the appointments and emotions.”
But perhaps, even more importantly, Samantha and Kyle say they are now looking at various options with the confidence that comes in knowing that their marriage is now on solid ground, thanks to a much-needed mix of therapy and renewed faith in God.
"Kyle and I are in a place right now where he's like, 'Yeah, let's fly across the country and get more testing and do what we need to get done,' but there were times when it wasn't like that," says Samantha. "When I started all of this, I was much more fragile. I felt like I couldn't do this. But now, we are both like, 'What's next?' Bring it on. We can figure it out."
Samantha, too, says she has never felt stronger.
"This time, I feel like I have the tools and the resources that I need," she says. "But don't let me cover anything up. I have a little anxiety and I don't sleep well. But I'm okay. You have to be strong. You have to find strength in the struggle."
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