I'm grateful for my infertility.
I've expressed that before, but now - especially now - I feel the need to express that again. This disease has brought upon a change in me. And in this moment, I am incredibly thankful that it brought me the will to advocate for myself. Because now I have to use this skill to advocate for my daughter.
We didn't have a choice in this hospital. This is where T gave birth, so this is where K's NICU stay must happen. We can't transfer her, as insurance won't cover it because it isn't medically necessary. It's 90 minutes from home - inconvenient but not impossible - and supposedly has one of the best NICU units in the area.
Maybe it does. We've seen some great things from the doctors and nurses here. But we've also seen the bad and the ugly. There is no consistency in the way these babies are treated by the doctors or nurses. And there is no consistency in the evaluation methods used on K to determine whether she is ready to go home.
With many of them, there is also no support. We are often not treated with the same respect as biological parents with children in the unit. Because I stay almost full time, we are also taken for granted. The good nurses help in any way they can, but the bad nurses leave me to struggle both with sleep and trying to comfort our little girl. There have been times when we look out to see babies crying and nurses busy chit chatting or surfing the Internet.
And let me not get started on security. The lack of wrist bands. The constant questions about where the child's mother is - even though they see me every day and know that I am the mother.
I've fought everyone under the sun about these issues, and even though it's exhausting, infertility has taught me to never give up on an important fight. If I had been in this position several years ago, I never would have questioned the doctors and the nurses on their protocols. I never would have fought back. And even if the fighting back has to go on after we leave this hospital, to call attention to the issues with our level of care, I'm not afraid to do it.
So thank you, infertility. Every day you teach me new lessons about life, but today I am grateful for the most important lesson you've taught me thus far. I'm grateful for the ability to stand up for the medical care I believe is right. I'm grateful for the gift of advocacy - and I promise to continue with it. I promise to pass it along to my daughter.
I promise to never give up on what's right.