The Next Family

By: Heather Somaini

I met with Dr. S, our fertility specialist, on May 30, 2006. It was surreal to be there by myself. I was always the supportive partner; I knew that role well. But now all of a sudden I’m at a consult by myself and now I was the patient.

We sat in his office and I explained what happened with the fertility monitor. He said that since everything seemed “normal” for me, he thought that my air travel was the culprit and we should just try again on my next cycle. If that didn’t work, we’d look further. With me being 37, he wasn’t overly enthusiastic about much.

I had been thinking for the past few days about another option. No, not a surrogate! Well, actually sort of like a surrogate. I had not floated my idea past Tere because it was the one thing we swore we would never do.

I asked Dr S. if it were crazy to think about using my eggs but to have Tere carry the baby.

I know what you’re thinking. How could I be the one to totally backtrack on the one thing I was so adamant about? There were two reasons. The first was that I was finally, truly understanding how important it was to Tere to physically have children. The second reason was that I was completely freaking out!

My head was all over the place. I was a wreck. An island? Tere leaving me? What was wrong with me? I was also completely obsessed with the thought that I would get fat and never be able to lose the weight after the baby. And why would I want to do that? I was truly beginning to understand that I am not baby-making material.

Dr. S. said that it was an entirely reasonable plan; that Tere was physically able to carry a pregnancy. The problem was her egg quality – she had old eggs. We spoke further and he gave me an overview of what the process was. There were going to be lots of drugs and they would have to “sync” up our cycles so that Tere would be ready for the embryos to implant 5-6 days after the eggs were retrieved from me. I was worried about the cost of IVF – because that’s what this was going to be – In Vitro Fertilization. Dr. S. said that I should evaluate the costs and get back to him right away as we would need to get into the process within a matter of days.

I went home that night and asked Tere what she thought of my idea – the one thing we said we’d never do – and I braced myself for her reaction. Funny enough, she responded positively. She saw it as a second chance. We agreed that I would do a cost analysis and we’d decide then. Over the next couple days I got all of the info and came up with the conclusion that, because Tere was covered under my very good insurance, almost one-third of the total costs were covered.

IVF Costs
Covered Not Covered
Professional Fees
Ultrasound Exams & Lab Tests 2,800
Physicians Fees/Oval Induction 2,770
Cycle Management Fee 1,300
ART Reproductive Center Fees
IVF/Embryo Transfer 2,550
Ultrasound Guided Egg Retrieval 400
Ultrasound/Medication Fee 75
Medication Costs 3,500
Total 6,300 7,095
Other Costs
Legal 1100
Cryobank 800


Tere and I agreed that we could try twice using my eggs with Tere carrying before going back to “just me”.

I breathed a sigh of relief. I was off the hook for the near future. I guess this sort of goes back to Tere’s “yes” answer when given an “either or” decision. When I realized the options were either not working or turning me into a complete and utter mess, maybe we needed a third option. Now we just had to begin the long and arduous task of getting down this new road we were on.
How could we know what was ahead? We couldn’t.

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