I promise to tell the truth, the whole truth ..
Just writing that headline makes me feel ANXIOUS! So anxious.
When I first shared the journey that Toby, my husband, and I were on I was nervous. And a bit ashamed. It was embarrassing to share that we were struggling to have a baby. It was hard being so raw with friends and family. I didn't want people to pity us or feel sad for us, I just wanted (want!) another child. But my mission with Minus One is to remove the stigma that is attached to infertility and the IVF (and related treatments) journey, which means that if I want other people to share, then I need to lead from the front.
Tobes and I went to Genea last week for our first appointment at the clinic and we really loved it. The staff are beautiful and friendly, and we immediately felt like we were in the right hands. They also had a coffee and tea making facility. It made me feel at home. I love tea. #littlethings
But despite the tea, I also started to feel scared about what is to come. What is potentially our last attempt to find our little #plusone. I felt myself sweating when we met with the nurse and she started running through the medications, the cycles, the potential outcomes, how we were feeling and so on. Could I really put myself through this again? Yep, I have to. They offered us counselling which we weren't offered at our last clinic, and I really could have used in the last cycle! I've already put a call in.
We met with someone from the finance team, who was lovely but also very pregnant (I'm so sorry but I was triggered by this, which is terrible and I'm sorry for being a terrible person!! She was so sweet, ugggghhhhhh!). Once I got over that I was surprised that there weren't any loan products, payment plans or any other financial solutions offered. She was just there to tell us how much cold hard cash we needed to pay up front. We hadn't been offered any assistance at our last clinic either so I shouldn't have been surprised, but I was a little.
So here's the truth. We are not doing well financially. We're in a huge black hole. It's deep and it's wide and it's scary. Tobes and I are always pretty philosophical about it now, reminding ourselves that things will be ok. We will make it work and stay on our feet, as we always do. But there are too many times to count when I've been worried about cards being declined when I pay for groceries, the internet being turned off, etc, let alone paying $10k up front for treatment at some point in the near future. This dire financial situation was brought about by trying to make a startup survive, against the odds, which I don't regret. But it does feel pretty rubbish sometimes.
We left the clinic and went to the bank to ask for an extension on our loan, which was declined. I was feeling pretty good at this point, as you can imagine :(
BUT THIS IS WHY MINUS ONE MUST HAPPEN!!!
Money should NOT be an obstacle to having a child. I refuse to let it be. We won't be able to help everyone initially, but maybe one day we will.
Are you with me?
Oh, and don't worry about us!! We will make it work, as we always do :)
Love Phoebe xx