I’ve been meaning to post a list of all the good things Eric and I have going for us, the infertility positives so to speak, for quite some time now. So here they are, in no particular order.
Insurance Coverage – I’ve started following a few blogs, okay, like 20. Keeping up seems to be a full time job, and perhaps if this coffee shop thing doesn’t work out I’ll just hang out in a coffee shop and read blogs for the next 30 years… Anyway, in reading these blogs, 99% of which are written by strangers, I’ve realized Eric and I are quite lucky really. By-and-far one of the largest stresses on couples related to infertility is the financial strain. I’m told the average IVF cycle can run $20,000 or more, and from hearing of other’s struggles, lots of couples muster through several cycles. That can certainly take a toll on one’s checkbook, not to mention their marriage. I seriously cannot even begin to explain how comforting it is to have our health insurance cover our treatments, in full, up to a generous dollar amount. I’ve actually felt really stinking guilty regarding this coverage for quite some time now. One of Eric’s benefits as a resident is healthcare free of charge. That’s a HUGE benefit, one I certainly do not take lightly. If we didn’t have this coverage, I higher doubt we would have the opportunity for IVF. So for that, I am extremely thankful. I’ve already been thinking of ways to give back, perhaps start a fund to help those who can’t afford infertility treatments. Everyone should have the opportunity to start a family if they so choose. Okay, within reason. Don’t even get me started on the number of teenagers I see walking through the hospital carrying their seven children…
Location – I continue to be amazed at the travels some couples must pursue to receive infertility treatment. I am truly fortunate to not only live close to the University, but work there as well. My treatments are literally a fifteen minute walk from my office. Can you only imagine flying out of state, or out of the country? I honestly can’t. The added stress, the added financial obligation… It’s almost too much for me to even consider, so to those who live through it, God bless you.
Supportive Husband – Eric and I have been through a ton the past almost two years since our wedding. And I’ll admit, we haven’t always been on the same page. There were times shortly after the wedding where Eric’s concerns were far more focused on his own career than on starting our family. And I’m not going to lie, his four months in Mason City were hard on us. But strangely, we are much closer because of the distance. The time we spent apart forced us to communicate in ways and about topics we haven’t before. I really, really despise that saying, ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’, but unfortunately, I think it’s actually true. Dammit anyway.
Looking back, I felt far more supported by Eric once we knew we were headed toward IVF. Even through our failed IUI cycles he seemed a bit nonchalant, always giving his standard response, ‘relax, it will work’. And while he still repeats that to my constantly, there is something different about him. I guess it’s the little things, how he takes the time to explain the process now, points out the positives, and of course the hugs he’s been more free with lately. I’m very fortunate to have Eric, as I realize many couples struggling with infertility don’t necessarily have each other to rely on for support.
Friends & Family – It was quite tough for me to reach out and share this website with those close to me, and even some not so close to me. I’m a fairly open individual, but these topics are somehow far more personal to me, almost too close to home to speak of in public. That said though, I’m happy I’ve shared. It’s comforting to know you’re reading along, sharing the experience, and offering kind words of love and support. I’ve read many blogs which are strictly anonymous, and while those strangers have offered me comfort and support as well, it’s helpful to know those who are close to me understand this journey as well. (Actually just last night I reminded Eric of the website. Why does he reading make me nervous???)
Health – Who knew there was so much crappy sh*t that can go wrong when it comes to your health… So far, knock on wood, Eric and I are considered healthy. Nothing in any of our tests have led our specialists to suspect anything is wrong with us. Well, from a fertility perspective. HAHA. And while I’m thankful for that, I’m skeptical. If nothing is wrong, then why am I forced to endure these treatments? The only conclusion I’ve reached is that God truly wants us to appreciate the gift of children. And for that, I am thankful. What’s that saying about nothing worthwhile is easy? Well, this certainly hasn’t been easy, which tells me it’s going to be so much more than worthwhile in the end!