Wednesday, July 21, 2010


I am back for one quick post. Really quick because I've got a presentation to prepare for tonight on Social Networking!!! It will be for older women who want to know about facebook and twitter and blogs and skype. Whew! This is definitely my good deed for the year ;)

Anyway, I wanted to let the blogosphere know that I am still here and still grappling. I'm also having my period and trying not to think about the fact that my husband is not ready to try again.

I've been away from the blog for 2 reasons:

  1. I don't have internet where I live (in bfe) and have to take the few opportunities that I stay in town to complete freelance assignments and other pressing work
  2. I have been starting the job hunt process, and that has sucked up every free piece of my time. Good news is that my resume is now current and I have a brand-spanking new website up displaying my fabulous desing work.

My hiatus will soon be over. And this infertility thing is not going away. People are still getting pregnant and having babies left and right, and I am still NOT.

My cousin just gave birth to a baby boy yesterday.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Frida's Birthday

Google reminded me that it is Frida Kahlo's birthday today, a woman who chronicled the pain of her miscarriages in her art. I love her depictions because they do not shield the viewer from the pain and corporeal reality of the loss of a wanted child. Happy birthday, Frida. 

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Bills, bills, bills

The flood came last week – the deluge that lifted me off my feet and has left me completely off-kilter for 2 days now - a pile of bills and claim statements accounting the 101 medical services I have accrued since the emergency room visit on May 7th (billed at a staggering $4500, though thanks to good insurance, I had only to pay $400 of that). All the bills seem to have descended at the same time: HCG tests to make sure my betas go down, the usual infertility regimin of blood sucking tests (when the nurse pulled out 7 SEPARATE vials with which to collect my blood, I asked her if I would be walking out of the room – and I was only half joking) including Factor V Leiden, Proteins S and C, Prothrombin Mut, Lupus Ant, and anticariolipin. And I haven’t’ yet mentioned the check ups with the Dr’s., consultations with two specialists, ultrasound of empty uterus, karyotying of POC (products of conception) and the imminent arrival of the bill for my own Karyotype test. Luckily, I pulled back from the all-or-nothing attitude just in time to cancel the Karyotpying of my husband’s genes, discovering after an (always) frustrating exchange with the insurance company that they will not cover any sort of service or diagnostic test having to do with infertility. Pieces of shit. I really should have cancelled mine as well since the Karyotype of the last fetus indicated with an acceptable degree of certainty that neither my husband nor I have any genetic anomaly that is causing the miscarriages.

The explanation of benefits from BCBS for the 6 blood tests with the impossible-to-pronounce names totaled over $1100; and following the usual cryptic listing of these tests was an innocent little asterisk (keep a sharp eye out for that damn asterisk, y’all; it never bodes well.) I skimmed to the bottom of the page, looking for its mate, and read that BCBS was trying to determine whether or not these expenses were eligible and they were waiting on requested medical records. The idea that these charges might be rejected and that I might have to pay for those procedures out-of-pocket literally makes my stomach turn. Because it's another injustice added to my basket of unfair.

I know that, compared to the expenses of many many other people riding this train, my medical expenses are pretty modest, not to mention the fact that I have relatively decent health insurance. But aside from the fear of financial melt-down is an anger and resentment over the fact that I am spending the hard-earned, diligently-saved money put aside to give birth to a LIVE baby on the loss of three babies instead.

I hate that I give (have to give?) financial concerns so much weight in my decision making process- what tests to take, how many specialists to consult with, and - inevitably - whether to try again. I think that if expense wasn't a concern, I'd be much more likely to try IVF. Having children seems like it should have been included in the Declaration of Independence as one of the Inalienable Rights. But financial means, or lack thereof, are a very real consideration.

In this day and age and in this country, when you are spoon-fed the tripe that you can do anything you want, be anything you want, follow your dreams and the money will follow you - it seems downright anti-American to NOT chase this fundamental dream of a family. What kind of person quits in the face of such earthly, existential, tasteless concerns as money? If I subscribed to such gobbledygook as that book "The Secret" or even prayer, I would forge ahead with the understanding that all I have to do is wish/imagine/visualize/request success with all my heart and soul and I will get what I want, or more damaging still, what I deserve. Sorry, but that is not the way my or the poverty-stricken beggar in Calcutta's slums (you think she doesn't pray with all her heart that she can find food for her baby?) worlds work. My experience is that life is unfair, confounding and unpredictable and can turn on a dime. You lose as often as you win. And sometimes you lose more than you win because this time, you walked in front of an unfortunate statistic. If you are reading this blog, you know what it feels like to be caught by that random bullet.

BUT, despite what I know about life's inequity, I still harbor hope - the most resilient of all human states-of-mind and the one that helps us through our darkest hours. And I am glad for that since a life without hope is a life that doesn't sparkle. And what I hope is that I can dodge the bullet before I have to decide that money was the reason I couldn't have children.