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A Miracle By Any Other Name

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*Editors note: A heartfelt congratulations to Kayser! We appreciate him sharing this non-political, yet most exciting bit of personal news.  We know a lot of readers enjoy his columns with us and we figured a little human interest story wouldn’t hurt anybody. :)

As many of my friends and colleagues know, following a miscarriage in my wife’s first pregnancy about six years ago, my wife and I have been unsuccessfully trying to have a child.  We’ve known since shortly after the miscarriage our odds of a natural pregnancy are about 1 – 4%.  Like many couples who have trouble conceiving we’ve gone through all the usual motions (and emotions) of consulting doctors, reading on the Internet, and ultimately trying to put a price on the cost of resorting to medical science.  Despite the roller coaster of emotions – and the shock of a potential fifty thousand dollar or more bill – the one thing we agreed on from the start was that we refused to go into debt in our efforts to have a child.

Recently, we learned of a procedure that’s roughly 20% the cost of in vitro fertilization (IVF).  Our doctor told us this procedure would cost $3,000 per cycle and would increase our likelihood of getting pregnant by 4 – 5% (IVF increases the odds by about 50 – 60%, but runs about $15,000 per cycle).  We also learned that it often takes about three cycles for a pregnancy to occur, and that most couples who use the less expensive procedure end up going to IVF after three failed cycles.  Doing the math, we knew we were potentially looking at somewhere between $9,000 (at best) and $54,000 or more, all with no guarantees of a pregnancy.

Holding true to our commitment of not going into debt, we decided we use our savings to fund up to a maximum of three cycles of the less expensive procedure.  A $9,000 gamble with pretty low odds!

At this point the ball was in my court.  The first step was for me to make an appointment with the doctor to begin my part of the procedure.  For several days in a row I forgot to make the phone call to set up the appointment, though I knew I needed to, and my wife wouldn’t let me forget for too long.

And then, it happened.

I came home from work one day and my wife told me she thought she was pregnant.  She waited on me to arrive so she could take a home pregnancy test with both of us there.  In what was an amusing and yet fitting cap to all we’d been through, when she took the test she was so nervous she screwed it up by putting the urine in the wrong place.  Luckily she’d bought more than one test and the second time she got it right.  Just as she thought it would, it came back positive.  With all that we’d been through, and on the verge of spending a lot of time and money, we almost couldn’t believe that out of the blue, in the nick of time, after six years, we were 100% quite naturally pregnant.

Now, here we are three months later and both mother and baby (as far as can be told at this point) are doing fine.  So yes, for those that didn’t already know, this is our announcement that the world is going to suffer the fate of having someone just like me running around come early January.  Well, at least showing up for his or her debut.  Training and indoctrination start promptly thereafter!

So, call it what you may, believe what you want, but for us, this pregnancy, and this child, are truly a miracle by any other name.  In a world where I see so much wrong this little miracle of our own is a reminder that God is always with us.

And I still have my $9,000 buried in Mason Jars out in the backyard, just waiting to spoil this little bugger rotten.

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