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January 11, 2023

By Rebecca Mohr, Capital University Communications Manager

A Journey to Family Through Community for One Capital Alumna

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in a baby carriage.

The rhyme-turned-relationship blueprint may be catchy but is due for a rewrite. Jaimie Selwa, a marketing professional and now children’s book author, used her infertility struggles to create an inclusive community for those who have difficulties conceiving and end up exploring new pathways to creating a family.

“Originally, I’m from Northeast Ohio. When I was looking at schools, I wanted a smaller school in a bigger city. I graduated from Capital in 2009 and then stayed in Columbus for a job. I met my husband, a Capital Law School alumnus, got married in 2013, and started trying for our family,” said Selwa. “That’s where our journey, our struggle, started. What I wanted to do was take this really isolating experience and just put it out there for the world. I realized it was a lot more common than I thought.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “in the United States, among heterosexual women aged 15 to 49 years with no prior births, about 1 in 5 (19 percent) are unable to get pregnant after one year of trying (infertility).”

“About a year and a half into our journey, we were seeing a fertility specialist and I just felt like my world revolved around this. I had told some of my close friends, but I didn’t know anyone at that time that had or was going through what I was going through. I felt very isolated,” said Selwa. “I started to go on Instagram and just look up hashtags, just some of the words such as infertility, and I found a lot of people posting.”

With the support of her husband, Selwa started to build an online community through @infertility. With the support of more than 17,000 followers, she shared the good, the bad, the ugly, and the funny throughout her journey to conceive a child.

“I wanted to share and just see if other people could relate. To help others so they don’t feel so alone, but I had no idea how much I needed it,” said Selwa. “My biggest hesitation to sharing my identity was just that I can’t undo this. I have a professional career; I have my husband; I was sharing things that someone might think are taboo. I was talking about being disappointed in getting your period. Sharing details about appointments. Finally, I just decided that I’m all in. This is going to be part of my identity now, whether I like it or not. There hasn’t really been anything off limits.”

Through In vitro fertilization (IVF), Selwa and her husband welcomed a baby boy in April 2022.

Selwa’s path to motherhood looked and felt different than her peers’. As a mental health advocate for herself and others, she saw a therapist throughout her infertility struggles and journaled to “help process everything.”

“For some reason, what I was writing was coming out in rhymes. My makeshift office was in our spare bedroom, and I just started laying pieces of paper on the bed and thought this could be a children’s book,” said Selwa. “I told my publisher that I really wanted more inclusive books out there about how you can build your family. The illustrations show all different types of families. I didn’t want to just make it about my journey. It starts with our journey and then in the middle it explores different ways of creating a family, including adoption.”

Families come in all shapes and sizes. Selwa’s book “First There Was Me: The Journey to You” explores the many different ways that families are created.

“My hope is that parents and kids can see themselves in the story. I hope that when they have that book, they see their journey. They don’t feel as lonely or isolated as I once did,” Selwa said. “There’s nothing better than when I get photos of friends or family or people from Instagram showing their little kid reading it. It melts my heart.”

To learn more about Jaimie Selwa, visit

To purchase Jaimie Selwa’s book “First There Was Me: The Journey to You,” visit