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While having a child may be priceless, infertility is not...

Posted Apr 23 2009 5:26pm
A number of people have asked how much all of this costs. Simple answer? A LOT.

Believe it or not, not a single drug or invasive treatment in this has been covered by OHIP (our provincial health plan), even with my history and diagnosis. This is amazing to me, and I still struggle with why a woman with blocked fallopian tubes gets IVF and FET coverage, but I don't with my cut fallopian tubes and everything else. But I digress...

This is certainly not the budget-friendly way to go about having a child. As we were going through all of this I would look pleadingly at Adam and say, "I so WISH we could just go get drunk and make a baby...why can't we be one of those lucky couples?" The answer I got back was always the same: "Life isn't fair baby. Stop trying to make it be." Ahhh. My practical husband. I love him for so many things, but this is one of the things I so appreciate about him.

For us making a baby has required a lot more than a nice bottle of wine and a quiet evening. It started with the Cadillac of infertility treatments, IVF, and only went from there. We were lucky to receive a generous gift from my Nana during our IVF cycle, which helped us pay for what would have been a very difficult bill. This little baby girl may not even have been created if it wasn't for my Nana, and we are forever grateful to her.

In truth, I haven't really added it all up in one place, so this will be educational for all of us (and will probably cause Adam and me to have heart palpitations).

Here we go:
Initial IVF (retrieval, medications, freezing): $12,000
My Frozen Embryo transfers: $6,000
My FET medications for cancelled cycles: $1,000
Fee for transferring embryos to new clinic: $200
Lawyers for surrogacy: $8,000+
Mandatory social work appts: $250
Jenna's two FETs: $7,000 (incl. meds)
Jenna's coverage (Life Insurance, Short-term disability): approx. $2,000
Jenna's lost wages (she's an independent contractor): approx. $3,500 so far
Other maternity etc. expenses (anticipated minimum): $5,000
Storage fees for frozen embryos: $1,000
Total so far: $45,950

After the baby's born we'll have a few more:
DNA tests for Adam, me, Jenna, D'arcy, and baby Brown, Jenna's lost wages for when she's off after birth (short-term disability doesn't kick in for 2 weeks and Jenna doesn't get maternity leave), any leftover lawyer's fees, and anything miscellaneous that I'm not thinking of. This will definitely push us over the $50K mark, which is crazy to think about.

So there you have it. Having a baby, at least for us, is a very expensive venture. Adam and I, when we start getting freaky about how much this has all cost, remind ourselves that this is the price of a nice, imported car. That's when it doesn't feel quite so dramatic to be spending so much trying to get a baby...it's all relative I suppose.

The reason I wanted to share this is because 1) it's a good exercise for me to add it all up, 2) there are others out there thinking of venturing into this world, and 3) it just shows how damn much this kid is really wanted.

I will leave this post with this thought: If you're one of the ones who managed to get knocked up with good old fashioned sex and maybe a reasonably expensive bottle of wine, you are very, very lucky. I'm sure you know this of course, but I just wanted to leave a little reminder. If you're on our side of the fence, and have either spent a lot already or are anticipating a big line of credit, you're not alone. Come and vent to me - I'm happy to listen.

It isn't easy, or fair, but when she gets here, baby girl Brown will be worth every one of those 5,000,000+ pennies.
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