In ONE day my life completely changed.
I think about that a lot now, how you can go to bed ONE person, and wake up the next morning to news that fundamentally changes everything you know, trust, believe, expect, and hope for. How you can forever be changed by ONE thing.
Eleven years ago today a doctor told me I had cancer.
That ONE word changed me. It took me from a 30 year old who was just wrapping up a post-grad journalism degree — with plans to travel Australia and then settle into what I hoped would be a long career in news and television –- to a 30 year old with ONE focus: survival.
As part of that diagnosis, I would lose many things (my travel plans, job prospects, my hair, the confidence that youth protects you from scary life challenges…), but ONE of the most crushing losses would be my treatment-induced inability to have a child. I would need fertility treatments — specifically in vitro fertilization (IVF) that we would have to fund ourselves — to even hold on to the possibility of becoming a mom ONE day.
Thanks to my forward-thinking oncologist, I met with a fertility specialist and we all agreed to ONE IVF procedure – ONE chance to realize the dream of having my own biological child. ONE try was all I had time for before I started treatment, as my cancer — though in early stages — was aggressive and required a swift approach.
I did my ONE IVF cycle … and luckily we ended up with 21 embryos to freeze for the future.
My daughter — now five years old, and so spirited and full of life it’s hard to believe she was frozen for five years in a lab — was ONE of those embryos.
My daughter is here because of ONE IVF cycle. My husband and I are parents because of ONE IVF cycle. My whole life changed, again, because of ONE embryo. Cancer can never take that away from me.
News is out that the Ontario government will fund IVF for couples experiencing infertility – with the caveat being that only ONE embryo is transferred at a time.
Well, I’m here to tell you that ONE is all it takes.
And thankfully, couples for who IVF may previously have been financially prohibitive now have ONE chance to create the family they’ve hoped and dreamed for – without having to pay the price, literally, or face significant financial hardship in the process.
This is a good day, for so many reasons.
ONE chance is no small thing.
ONE chance can change everything.
ONE chance is all it takes.
Conceivable Dreams has been advocating fiercely for this for six years. They didn’t give up, and now those who couldn’t afford even ONE cycle of IVF won’t have to, either.
Please follow @OHIP4IVF on Twitter or the hashtag #OHIP4IVF to support government funding for IVF. Help other couples become parents, without the financial burden that comes with infertility.*I am sharing this as a member of the Conceivable Dreams blog team, and have been compensated for this post. Opinions and the words I’ve written, however, are all my own.