Wednesday, April 25, 2012

infertility awareness week and other things

I'm a list type of person.  So, here is a list of things that I think are important for you to know this week:

1. We need to send positive thoughts and prayers to a friend of a friend who is planning to do her embryo transfer on Friday.  she has an awesome support system, but a few more prayers wouldn't hurt.  (sidenote, we go to the same doc, and her family has had multiple good experiences with him!)

2. Giuliana and Bill are having a baby!!!! For those of you that don't know, she works for E! and he was the first winner of The Appretentice.  They have a reality TV show that has documented their struggle with fertility and then her battle with breast cancer.  Since she had to have a double mastectomy, their final option was to have a gestinational carrier (meaning another amazing woman will be carrying their embryo made of Giuliana's egg and Bill's sperm)  You can watch the full story of their announcement here:
I DVR their show (called Giuliana and Bill on the Style Network) and tonight watched the episode containing both the mastectomy surgery and the news that the carrier was pregnant.  I watched them find out about the positive pregnancy test and then argue over who to call first then watch them tell their parents.  I was a puddle of tears.  What an awesome moment for them.  I feel like we're on the same team and I am so happy for them!

3. In case the title of this post wasn't enough of a give away, it's National Infertility Awareness Week.  I'm not one to be extremely vocal about my political or religious beliefs (although I do have some pretty strong opinions at times) but this is something that I want to find a way to be more vocal about.  Bob and I are lucky to have amazing family and friends that have been accepting and supportive of our journey and our decisions.  We are lucky to have jobs that will afford us the opportunity both financially and with the needed time off work to do IVF.  We are lucky, but there is still so much that can be done. 

Infertility affects 7.3 million people in the U.S. This figure represents 12% of women of childbearing age, or 1 in 8 couples. (2002 National Survey of Family Growth)  Think about it.  I'm sure all of us know multiple people that suffer with some form of infertility and have had or will have to make their own journey and decide how they will start their family.

Only 15 states (Ohio being one of them) require coverage. That means 35 states get no help at all.
Our insurance doesn't cover any of the costs beyond the diagnostics. There's a long way to go.

There are 3 goals for NIAW
1. help people that are trying to have a baby know when to see a specialist
2. raise public awareness of infertility of a disease that needs intention
3. educate legislators

As I said, I don't want to push my opinions on people, so I will tell you my experience.  I knew very little about infertility until it affected me.  I imagine many people are in that same boat.  Now that I know how devastating it can be emotionally, physically and financially, and how big of a problem it really is, I want to find a way to do my part to help.  Today, that means providing resources to all of you kind people in case you want to learn more, too.  And to be honest, I'm still trying to figure out what it means beyond that.

Want to know more?
  • (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)
  • (About NIAW)