When Yasar and I went to FCI Highland Park, we were given rather bleak news on our chances of ever conceiving a child naturally. At the time I was employed in Illinois, one of only 15 states in the US that require insurance companies to cover infertility treatment. Because of that insurance coverage, however, costs that would have been prohibitive for us pursuing treatment, became affordable (although still expensive...wowza). We spent one and a half years going to doctors appointments, sometimes daily, getting blood drawn, exams done, ultrasounds, test done, etc. We went through a total of 5 IUI cycles, all failed. Each cycle was around $1,000, never mind the cost of all those additional appointments. After the last failed cycle, it was decided that we should move on to IVF. The average IVF cycle costs around $12,000 depending on the amount and types of medications you need. Starting IVF meant a huge financial, emotional, and physical dedication. At this point, I was no longer working for a company in IL, but the high cost of treatment without insurance, meant it was worth paying the crazy COBRA premiums in order to keep my old insurance until we had a successful pregnancy. We went through 3 embryo transfers before finally having a successful pregnancy, the one that resulted in our amazing little boy, Atlas, who we nicknamed Frosty when he was a frozen embryo in a cryo lab in IL. We adore that little guy more than words can express, and will forever be greatfull for the amazing staff at FCI who helped make our miracle baby a reality. It is heartbreaking to me, to think that if we didn't live in one of those 15 states that require insurance companies to cover infertility treatment, Atlas probably wouldn't be here today. And I know that for many families, many childless parents, they are waiting for their own miracle baby, but they aren't lucky enough to live in a state where insurance will cover it, so they continue waiting, without much hope. Every loving family deserves the joy of a baby if they choose to have one in their life. Whether they know that joy or not should not be determined by financial statements and insurance coverage. By donating to the Kevin J Lederer Life Foundation, you help mitigate some of those costs, bringing other families closer to to the joy we know every day. So please, donate, and share hope.