Posts Tagged ‘IVF’ Featured at for Infertility Insurance Coverage

Saturday, November 3rd, 2012

I’m always excited to get a press request to tell more people about our story, and the resulting sweet little Paisley Joon! Last week I got an email from Sydney Lupkin at ABC News asking if I could be available. Umm, of course I can!

See the Story Here

Sydney’s story discusses the sad truth that few people struggling with infertility will have insurance coverage for their treatment. For couples like us, male factor with multiple surgeries and procedures, the cost topped out at $20,000. Out of pocket!

Of the day we learned we’d have to do IVF, Shelton said this about this website:

“By the time we got to the car, it was a done decision,” Shelton said. “My wife is one of those people. She comes up with crazy ideas and executes them really well.”

I’ll never be able to thank him enough for saying yes. For agreeing to let me talk about his sperm on the Internet. For agreeing to scrimp and save on a gamble.

The night Paisley was born, I looked across the bed at Shelton and told him, “Thank you for her.” While my words may never completely summarize my gratitude for Shelton going along with all of this, I hope that the sassy, silly, blonde-headed miracle baby napping in my bed at this very moment says what my mouth may not ever be able to.

Thank you Sydney for a well-written article with some important information, and for including our story. And thanks Jennifer White Portraits for capturing the three of us so perfectly. StoryCorps on Wichita’s KMUW

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

UPDATE: You can hear this five-minute segment of our interview re: the day of our pregnancy test at NPR station KMUW. Listen now!

If you are in the Wichita radio listening area, tune-in bright and early tomorrow morning to hear mine and Shelton’s recent StoryCorps interview.

TIME: 6:35am, 8:35am
DATE: Wed 12/16/09

In November the StoryCorps bus made a stop in Wichita and we had the opportunity to spend 45 minutes interviewing one another and sharing our infertility and BabyOrBust story. StoryCorps is this fantastic organization that gives people a chance to record 45-minute interviews to capture a story, and the exchange occurs between family members, friends, colleagues, etc. from all walks of life. It’s a chance to save forever a conversation that might mean something only to the parties involved, and could very well touch the lives of the thousands of people who have the opportunity to listen. The digitized conversations are archived in the Library of Congress, and about one percent are selected to be aired on various NPR stations. Like ours!

If you’re awake and have your radio on, we hope you’re able to tune-in and listen!

Pregnancy Week 14

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

OK, so it’s official, we are in the second trimester. Woo woo! Huge relief. We both feel like a bit of weight has been lifted, and yet we know we’ve still got a long way to go.

The whole thing is still unbelievably surreal to us both. The only thing that slaps us into reality is my ever-expanding belly. Yes, it’s getting rounder and rounder by the day. For now it’s a perfect little bump, nicely centered. I do hope it doesn’t expand on a horizontal plane. Nevertheless, being pregnant still feels foreign and intangible to me at times, and I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever get past that. I think of everything we’ve done and where are lives have gone in the five years we wanted/tried to have a baby. It’s then that I realize how truly long we really did wait to get here.

So we embrace. I just keep reminding myself that this is all worth it.

I do have a new pet peeve (as if my list had room for any more!). The psuedo “I told you so comments.” For instance, I say I’m so hungry all the time. And people reply with – well, this is what you asked for. I say I have heartburn that would make a dragon cry. And people reply that this is what I signed up for. I mention that none of my clothes fit. And people kindly remind that I knew what I was getting myself in to.

“No shit!” is what I want to scream back. As if I needed a snarky reminder of exactly what it is we got ourselves in to. I’m pretty sure I was there the day I handed the clinic two credit cards and a check to make our lump payment of more than $10,000. So, I’m pretty sure I knew as she was swiping and stamping that I wouldn’t feel well, that my skinny jeans wouldn’t fit for a while and that I might be all around uncomfortable for a period of time. But again, I also know just how very worth it all of this is.

Anyhow, can anyone else tell the hormones arrived? I laugh and I cry and I get really, REALLY frustrated.

We did have an appointment last week (read week 14 OB appointment) and got the a-OK from the doctor. My weight is progressing normally and everything else checked out perfectly. You can’t ask for more than that. And I started pre-natal yoga which I’m so pumped about and will take every Monday.

It was a fairly uneventful week. I just keep growing, and eating, and sleeping, and popping Tums like Halloween candy.

A Bittersweet Farewell

Thursday, September 17th, 2009

I knew going in to the clinic this morning for my sonogram that it would likely be my last. Not my last sonogram, but my last trip to the clinic. Today was my last scheduled appointment and I couldn’t imagine any reason they’d keep me after this. And that’s exactly what happened.

Dr. T came in to do my exam and upon finding that everything is “textbook normal” and saying we have every reason to believe this is going to go the way we want it to, he said he couldn’t see a reason for us to come back. Not in a bad way, just that we’d accomplished the goal. I’m pregnant, and it’s time to go to my OB.

It might sound stupid but I’ve been preparing myself for this release back in to the wild for a few weeks now. I cannot express how much I love this practice, my doctor, the nurses, the staff. I’ve never in my life worked with a better medical practice and the thought of leaving them breaks (broke) my heart.

So Dr. T turned to Shelton and shook his hand, gave him a hearty congratulations, and then turned to me and where there would usually be a handshake, there was a hug. And I’ve wanted to hug this man for so long and tell him that there are no words to express how eternally grateful I am for 3.5 years of care and attention… and let’s not forget helping me get pregnant!

Part of it is probably the intimate nature of what we’re working on here. I mean, this is a fertility doctor. And I’ve never had to see a doctor for anything much more than a cough, cold or annual exam. This is the person who had to help me start a family. So maybe some shrink will tell you that that’s part of it. But I will tell you that it’s because I’ve never had the pleasure of working with a better doctor. He’s kind and professional, never speaks down to you yet speaks in a way that helps you understand these complex medical procedures, is reassuring and honest, and in general makes me trust him like no other doctor.  If you’re in a room with him, you’ll never feel like there is a single other patient, task, surgery or appointment waiting on him. It’s you and him, and you’ll feel like you have all the time in the world. I don’t know if it’s this way for other patients, but he’s the only doctor I ever worked with there. He’s amazing – and if I had to pay $20,000 for IVF, and have him as my doctor, then I’ll say a good chunk of it was worth it.

Before we left the exam room Dr. T invited me back when I’ve got a big ‘ole buddha belly and check-in with everyone. They can count on it!

I then went in to the hall and “B” the office manager, another stellar member of their staff, asked if I were going to see them again and I pouted and told her no. And she said something about me being a baby bird flying from the nest, and I was all, but I like the nest. Please keep me! We also had a hug and goodbye with “M” and that one was equally as hard as Dr. T. I saw her and spoke to her more in the last five months than I did the doctor. And again, a truly top-notch person and hands-down the best nurse I’ve ever had. I think I can say that aside from Shelton, I couldn’t have done this without her. For one, she knows her stuff and even my most inane questions were thoroughly, carefully answered. She always had, or at least made, time for me. And let’s not overlook the fact that she’s genuinely like talking to a girlfriend.

We bid farewell to everyone and left and I cried a little when we got outside. Shelton laughed and said he felt like we were at my college graduation.

I just wish I could stay with them until the baby gets here. But that’s not what they do. And I’m leaving feeling completely confident that they did what they do very, very well.

So thanks to the entire staff at our clinic for making one of the most difficult trials of our life so much easier, more comfortable, manageable, and let’s not forget successful!

My One and Only

Monday, August 31st, 2009

This morning was our first ultrasound and I can tell you with all certainty that Shelton and I were far more nervous and anxious about this appointment than we were the pregnancy test. I didn’t even want to talk this morning; and Shelton kept doing it! I was just a ball of nerves and when they called our name to go back I thought I was going to lose my breakfast right there in the waiting room.

I was taken back and weighed – 138 pounds. This is up about six from when we started the IVF two months ago. We did my blood pressure and made witty small talk about how last night I told Shelton that if he didn’t come home with a chocolate chip cookie he shouldn’t come home at all. (He slept here last night!) Then I was left to undress from the waist down and prepare for my ultrasound. (This is vaginally – not goop all over the belly.)

The doctor came in and asked how I’ve been feeling. I told him and he said welcome to pregnancy! Had a nice ring to it. Then we started the ultrasound and within seconds he pointed on the screen to my uterus and the one “pregnancy sack” on the screen. Our baby!!! Just the one. No twins. Or octo-babies. A single baby measuring 5mm (.19″), with the tiniest little heartbeat fluttering so fast a hummingbird would feel inadequate. We heard the heartbeat and saw the little flicker at 105 beats/minute. Pretty amazing!

Everyone talks about this emotional moment the first time you hear the heartbeat. But neither of us had it. Are we broken? I don’t think so. Honestly, there was so much anxiety going in to this appointment, I think we both were completely confident we were going to hear “twins,” and then we didn’t and that’s pretty much all we could focus on. So while I was completely impressed with the fact that this minute being had a heartbeat and thought it was beautiful to hear it, my head was elsewhere.

Dr. T said our pregnancy is on track so far and looks healthy and viable. YAY!!!

We scheduled a follow-up sonogram for two weeks from now and left with a few tiny sonogram pics.

Shelton and I had a little embrace outside and assured one another we were OK. I dropped him off at work and as soon as I put the car in reverse I started sobbing. I felt like I’d lost something I’d never had. And the harder I cried over not having a second baby, the more I’d cry for feeling guilty that I wasn’t acting grateful for the one I do have. What a friggin’ mess! It was just this adrenaline crash and overwhelming bittersweet feeling. We’re disappointed. And thrilled. All at the same time. Part of me feels like I’d feel like this if I’d heard twins, too.

I’m over the moon that we have a healthy baby, and a healthy pregnancy. This baby is going to make us parents and change our lives in ways we can’t even see yet.

IVF Shots Day 17 – Stim Day 8

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

I’m pretty miserable folks. Pain is just radiating out of my right ovary into my stomach, back and everywhere in between. It hurts to walk. It hurts to sit. It hurts to use the little girl’s room. And according to the ultrasound I had this morning this makes sense because my right ovary is doing all the work and left ovary is barely doing its fair share. As I explained yesterday, my ovary is about 2-3 times its normal size, which would be painful all by itself, but then it’s surrounded by several eggs. My guess is at least ten now.

My appointment went well this morning, just in and out. My afternoon call from “M” said that my estrogen is now around 1600. I have another appointment in the morning and then I’m guessing we’ll figure out a plan for the retrieval. It will be Sunday or Monday.

I’m tired, I have a headache, I’m crabby and I’m sore. That’s pretty much the gist of today’s events.

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