Monday, October 22, 2012

Our First IVF Baby

In the spring I went to the PFM PO Box as I routinely do. I wasn't expecting much to be there as we had just finished up the 2012 gala. I spotted a blue envelope and eagerly opened the card.

As I read the words tears spilled down my cheeks. One of our medical grantees from 2011 had recently given birth to a baby boy. This was the first success (as far as I know) that we celebrated from a grantee who had undergone an ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) procedure.

We have helped a total of 7 couples with ART medical expenses so far (since 2010). With the difficult odds that IF sufferers face when doing IUI or IVF, I know that our grant money helps give people a chance at conception. But it is never a sure thing. These are the people that we have tried to touch base with after receiving the grant. But until now we had never heard back from anyone. This doesn't mean that no one has been successful; but we are left to wonder if they found their way out of IF or are still hoping for their own miracle.

I have been given permission to share with you the testimonial written by Dan and Marybeth about the pregnancy, birth, and young life of their son, Faolan.

Seeing his little face reinforces within me why I chose to devote such a large part of my life to helping those suffering through infertility. It helps me to understand my own difficult journey to parenthood.

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"On the day I was waiting for the results of my last pregnancy test, I started singing "You Are My Sunshine," but by the time I got to, "You'll never know, dear, how much I love you," I was choking back tears. I could barely complete, "Please don't take my sunshine away," and didn't even attempt the part about dreaming and waking up mistaken. To date, my husband, Daniel, and I had been trying to conceive for five years. For the past two, we had completed eleven failed intrauterine inseminations, accompanied by surgeries, monitoring, fertility drugs, Chinese herbs, special diets, acupuncture, Reiki, yoga, Maya abdominal massage, and more. With the costs of in vitro fertilization (IVF) seeming so far beyond our budget, we tried any and every alternative approach that had ever worked for anyone else. But our options were running out. The doctors had suggested that we move on to IVF, which would improve our chances of conceiving, give us more information regarding why our previous attempts had failed, and perhaps help us address any issues discovered along the way.

As many struggling with infertility know, however, IVF procedures and medications can easily cost anywhere between $10- and $20,000, none of it covered by insurance. We couldn't fathom any way for us to afford such expenses, yet we also couldn't picture the devastating possibility of remaining childless forever. Then I learned of Parenthood For Me, which I read like this: Parenthood? For me? Am I really going to get the chance? The name gave us hope that it could happen, and the organization gave us much more. After we shared our story, they granted Daniel and me a significant sum to help us pay for our costs. Amazingly, I received the news only days before we had to make a decision to go ahead with the IVF or not. A couple weeks later, we were completing the procedures. And a couple weeks after that, a little while after I broke down to "You Are My Sunshine," I learned that I was pregnant.

After a blissful pregnancy, our son, Faol├ín, finally arrived on March 2, 2012, a healthy 7 lbs, 1 oz. Our very own miracle. Tonight, when I put him to bed, I sang "You Are My Sunshine" once again, as I do every night. But I have since changed the lyrics to, "And when I woke, dear, there you were. So I raised my head and I cried." Every day, every moment we spend with him, we feel gratitude to all the wonderful and caring people who helped him find his way to us. The members and contributors of Parenthood For Me are at that top of that list.     

Thank you Parenthood For Me!"

- Daniel and Marybeth C.


"We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us."
- Joseph Campbell


7 comments:

Sm♥Ink said...

That's an amazing story.

Alex said...

I'm in tears. This is amazing! What an incredible gift you gave this woman.

Geochick said...

What an amazing story, and so awesome that Parenthood for Me is around to help couples like these!

Pamela said...

How wonderful to see your efforts celebrated!

luna said...

congrats to everyone involved! truly a wonderful story. thanks for sharing. everyone at P4Me should be so proud of this work!

pepibebe said...

Congratulations! How lovely to hear about the birth, a pity that you don't get to hear more success stories as I am sure you often wonder.
You are doing an amazing thing.

Matt Cutts said...

To have your first baby through IVF is a strange but excellent experience. The happiness of becoming mother can not be described in words.

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