It’s rare that I mention or speak about how much money we spent to have Rex, either here or with people outside of the computer. Part of it is because we didn’t really have financial issues in trying to have him, hence no drama. But the other part is that I think it’s a little tacky to talk about the gargantuan wad of cash that we spent over the course of our five year epic saga to have a real live baby when so many couples in similar situations don’t have the means to take their journey as fas as ours went.
I will break that silence today, though, because those nifty ladies Lori and babysmiling asked me (and everyone else) to answer some tough questions about finances and infertility. What is the effect of finances on the path that we chose to take in building our family? What will I tell Rex when he’s older about how much money we spent to have him?
For us, finances were a consideration, but not a deciding factor in terms of how far we would go to have a baby. This was partly because my tubal surgery, 6 IUIs and 1 IVF (including meds for most of those) were covered by insurance. Between the write offs that my insurance company was able to negotiate with Dr. Uterus and our generous lifetime benefit, we didn’t feel the full financial heat until IVFs number 2 and 3 with Dr. Salsa. Even then, though, Dr. Salsa had very competitive rates for IVF. I even got him to give me a discount for IVF number 3 that resulted in Rex. So, money was an object, but it wasn’t the only object.
With each additional cycle, and disappointment – either with a negative or worse a miscarriage – the question that we would ask ourselves was did we have the emotional resources to continue on, not the financial ones. We had about hit the wall when we decided to do IVF #3. We both knew that if it didn’t work that we were probably done.
Of course, since it was IVF # 3 that produced Rex, are we going to tell him how much he cost? No more than we are going to give him a bill when he turns 18 for all of the food and expenses he’s cost growing up. It’s part of doing business. The reality was that we were not in that fortunate group of people who got pregnant for free. I won’t lie and say that this didn’t bother me greatly because it did.
I will tell him, though, how fortunate we were to be able to afford all of the treatments because (insert Hallmark Channel music here) they resulted in him. The baby I wanted for so long and who turned out to be even more fantastic and amazing and every other superlative adjective in the English language. We wouldn’t have had HIM – not a baby, but HIM – if it hadn’t been for all that we did and to me, that’s priceless.
This doesn’t mean that we won’t joke to him every once in a while that we spent his inheritance trying to have him. It will be just like the time when I was in college and received a post card from my parents in Europe that simply said: “Study harder. Inheritance fading fast.”