You have likely dealt with infertility or know someone very close to you who has.
Even though my husband and I have somewhat openly struggled with infertility, we have yet to really start worrying. I mean, don't get me wrong, I've worried. I've cried. I've been jealous of people for having babies. I've also forgotten about the jealousy when I see their beautiful little baby. But that's the honest truth.
Not being able to have a baby seems like a really cruel twist of fate to me because I was adopted. For what it's worth, I've really loved being adopted... and at times envision us adopting children. I just kind of wanted the biological connection that I missed growing up. I was so insecure about not looking like my parents, especially during certain school assignments... or just listening to friends talk about sharing clothes with their moms or sharing certain features with their loved ones. At the same time, I was so afraid to meet Asian people because I felt like an inferior Asian for not knowing anything about my perceived culture.
Everything I know about Korea is because I've spent a lifetime learning. Sometimes that is tedious and painful.
November is National Adoption Month
So, when I did a story about Mel and TC Boyd, I cried with them. I prayed for them. I felt heartbroken with them. I mean, you don't have to be going through infertility treatments to feel bad for someone when they're in a dark place. Leah Linscheid was working with me when they got the news that their final IVF cycle didn't take and we both left feeling heavy and drained... and then we had to come back to the newsroom and finish out our shifts.
DONATE: Adopting Baby Boyd GoFundMe
What has been a light is hearing from so many of you. Even the sad stories have given me so much hope. I think the truth is powerful. Even when we share those dark moments.
RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association
It also reiterates how many of us struggle with infertility. Nearly 1 in 10 people deal with infertility. Some might even call that an epidemic. Experts on reproductive health ask - how is it that some insurance companies cover Viagra, birth control or abortions... but won't even consider infertility as a real diagnosis? For the record, I'm not picking on Viagra, birth control or abortions - a growing number of people just wonder why infertility can't be added to the list.
Dr. Elizabeth Pritts from the Wisconsin Fertility Institute says 8 states are mandated to cover infertility, including Illinois. In a Google search, it looks like 15 states may offer some sort of coverage.
Last year I was a mess taking the hormones. I had hot flashes and had a real "super ragey" attitude. I broke out with some fairly large zits, which is a great look for television. I gained weight. I remember giving myself a shot in the bathroom at work (because you have to give them at a specific time), trying to hide the needle and thinking... this is the month it's going to happen. And then, of course, when I wasn't pregnant, I just felt sad, angry and depressed. Because I wanted people to know why I was being so different, I told everyone what I was going through... but I came to loathe telling people I had once again tested negative. It felt like a failure.
For some people, it can be so easy to have children. And that's wonderful. But when I read some of the nasty comments on our station FB page -- like one guy who said infertility is like nature's way of weeding us out -- I lose a little faith in humanity. I actually kind of rolled my eyes and moved on, but someone today messaged me and said how hurtful that was to read because they were struggling with infertility.
A friend of mine wrote a book called 'Inconceivable' - it just released this week and is a novel about a young couple who... you guessed it... can't conceive. She's donating half of her profits to BabyQuest, an organization that helped Mel and TC and several others pay for some of their procedures.
People who don't have children are looked at like they're selfish... or that their lives and issues are trivial. I got this once... from a person not in the news department... but someone who kept asking me to come in early for a shoot.
It went something like this -
"Hey, can you come in early tomorrow?"
"What about the next day?"
"Doesn't work for me."
"You don't have kids, right?"
"Right... but I have two dogs...?"
It was so awkward for me and I wish I hadn't said that. But I was so caught off-guard. I actually don't mind working long hours but it just didn't work for me then.
The point I'm trying to make is that we are all human. We all have issues, challenges and struggles. Some of us have several to get through! Some of us live with them in silence and along comes someone like the Boyds to help us get through them.