So its been a long time......

Its been a long time since I last blogged. Since then: Josh and I have moved into a new house and have been bogged down with house stuff. I'm going to give blogging another whirl. So here it goes............

Today's Topic: Infertility

As many of our friends know Josh and I have been trying to conceive for about 4 1/2 years now. We have done it all (well not all); but as the start of a new year begins, I always say.... is this the year? My gut says no (after 4 years its hard to think otherwise) but then you always think in the back of your head maybe it could be possible.

So far we have done: 3 inseminations (at the tune of about $350 a pop), multiple rounds of clomid (luckily that is cheap about $10-$40 bucks a try depending on how many the doctor gives you per round), probably 20+ doctors visits at $15-$30 copays depending on if its a specialist or not, classes to learn about natural family planning $30/class, and 1 surgery to clear my fallopian tubes at the tune of probably a $1000 by the time it is over. Then there is the blood test here, ultrasound there, one more medication here and there... FOR A GRAND TOTAL OF $3000+!!!!

And people say raising kids is expensive. Every time I do something else or Josh does I think.... should I give up or what could I do with this money instead. Josh could upgrade his motorcycle to whatever he wanted. I could have taken an extra vacation. We could have bought a smaller house and retired in 20 years. Who knows maybe we still will but that money is still gone and I have no baby to show for it.

At the same time... because I have no baby, Josh and I took a last minute trip to Mexico and it was wonderful. Literally last minute... I booked it on Wednesday and we left of Saturday after Thanksgiving. We have traveled to England, Costa Rica, Belize, Nashville, Indy, Chicago; Norris Lake (any weekend we want).

I have a ton of friends with kids I can borrow anytime. They are free and I can give them back and I still get to sleep through the night. Its wonderful.

So why blog on this now... because I was thinking of New Year's Resolutions and mine reads like this...

New Year's Resolution 2010
1. Get Pregnant or
2. Have fun trying.
3. Get better at Muay Thai kickboxing
4. Take another wonderful vacation


Be the Kind Stranger (if you can)

In this economy its easy to be selfish and only think of yourself. I know I do. I came across a very nice couple that had it all at one time. Good jobs at P&G, driving a Lexus, owned a home; the American Dream. Now they have nothing. Literally. For example, I would often say I have no food in my house but I could probably make do for a week with what I had. When my patient said this they really meant it. As I was doing my assessment she took me into the kitchen and literally the only food they had was a jar of peanut butter (the wife hoped hers wasn't recalled) crackers and a can of coffee. I think they also had a couple apples. They are now living in a one bedroom apt, very well kept with some very fancy furnishings (from their "good ole days" that she is trying to sell to make rent) There was also Lexus parked out front, but it doesn't run. How did they get here?

My patient (the husband) was diagnosed with early Alzheimer's and the wife took a leave of absence to care for him take him to testing, specialists, the whole nine yards. His disease was progressing so fast she couldn't/ can't leave him home alone. After her twelve weeks of leave she was "let go" at her job because they were "downsizing" and obviously the husband is unable to work. So they foreclosed on the house and got the apt., then they cashed in their 401K's and took big hits but were able to pay rent for 1 year and get by. This coming month they have no income and may be evicted from the apt. They no longer have any income at all. The wife applied for social security disability for the husband back in August so when they ran out of money this month he should be getting Social Security by then. What she didn't know to do was keep following up with Social Security. She found out in December that the man a Social Security didn't input their info correctly so they have to start over with the 6 month process. What do they do for the next 4 months?

And to answer your question... No social security doesn't care if it is their fault. They are still having to start over from square one. I talked to them myself.

As a social worker I felt helpless. I can't make money appear. The wife was so organized and has applied for everything possible with no response. The county gave her $60 dollars a month ago and hasn't heard another word since. I was going to give her money out of my own pocket so she could get food but remembered she has absolutely no transportation. The lexus parked out front doesn't mean much if you literally don't have 2 nickels to get it fixed.

I was able to finish the rest of my day and then I went to Kroger after work. Took the $85 out of my purse and bought them as much as I could with it. I'm not going to say it was easy for me to do this. It wasn't. I had a lot of things I wanted to buy with that money (mostly crap I didn't need anyway), but couldn't go home to a house full of food knowing someone that only had crackers. I'm not telling you this to toot my horn but because I learned I need to be a little more giving. Especially right now. Times are hard for a lot of people. I have a lot more patients like this and I can't give to all but if I can just one its worth it. My patients wife cried in my arms for a long time. She said she never expected this type of kindness from a stranger. I can't tell you how much better I felt for doing this. I could sleep well that night. I know it won't get them far but hopefully another stranger can help them too.