When you have zero infertility insurance coverage, you have to be really creative when it comes to funding the growth of your family. This has always been our story. Today I want to share how (without creating more debt) we fully funded an embryo adoption that cost us nearly $10,000, between the doctor visits, medical testing to make sure I can carry, legal fees, required third-party counseling, ultrasounds, blood tests, acupuncture, travel expenses (multiple 6-hour round trips!), medications, and the most expensive part: the frozen embryo transfer procedure itself.
Counting Pennies and Saving
We took what we used to set aside for our vacation fund (we went to Disney in May 2019 so this started in June) and applied it to the embryo adoption off the top of each paycheck just like any other bill. It came out first.
Instead of spending more money on unnecessary Halloween costumes for the whole family, it went into savings. The weeks we spent less on groceries, that extra amount went into savings. $20 here, $15 there, and before you know it, it added up quick! Also, our bank has a savings roll-over option where when you use your debit card, it rounds the total up to the nearest dollar and automatically transfers the extra change into savings, so that alone helped, too! Anywhere we could save, we saved. We even got a random $27 refund from CarMax that went right into the embryo adoption fund! This all came down to prioritizing.
Over the course of 7 months, between June-December 2019, we saved $5,000, which means we ourselves funded half the embryo adoption. This isn’t something that just came easy, we had to commit, no matter what. Anytime there was extra money we came across, it went right into savings and we pretended like we didn’t even have it. We saved that $5,000 because it was important to us. You just have to decide what’s important to you: that Starbucks every day, or making coffee at home to save money? Do you really have to have every new movie that comes out? Or can you wait until it’s old and on sale, and set that money aside now for what’s really important to you?
Thanks to the generosity of our amazing community, we were able to fundraise the remaining $5,000 over the course of just 4 months, between September-December 2019. Unfortunately, a couple of fundraisers had to be canceled due to unforeseen circumstances (like the chili fundraiser, which I was most disappointed about, and an Origami Owl fundraiser that we had to cancel when my mom passed away), but God still provided what we needed to help fill that void. These were the successful fundraisers:
- GoFundMe set up on our behalf by my sister-in-law
- Bonfire T-shirt Campaign
- Pet sitting 3 different dogs
- Instagram Auction
- Bake sale hosted by another family on our behalf
- Santa photo sessions with earnings donated directly to us
- Cash donations from friends and family who didn’t want us to lose money from a convenience fee (like we did with GoFundMe)
- Usborne Books fundraiser my friend Emily hosted on our behalf
In addition to these, my friend April raised some travel agent commission that will come in later and will help with medical bills for the delivery. You can read the full details on all of our fundraisers here and here.
I’m grateful that embryo adoption costs a fraction of what traditional infant adoption costs. I can’t imagine us being able to fund a full adoption right now, but what I do know is it’s clear that this is where God has called us because He helped provide exactly what we needed exactly when we needed it. We didn’t have to take out any loans for this – it all just worked out the way it was meant to. I say that to be an encouragement to those of you who are about to embark on this same journey. Looking at the dollar amounts, it can seem so discouraging, but I knew from the beginning that if God called us to it, He was going to fund it. He just had to. I’ve said that over and over again. If you are vulnerable and diligent, you can raise and save what you need to grow your family. I know how frustrating it is when it’s free for everyone else but you. Growing our family has never been free. Not even to conceive Zoey! It’s always been so expensive and has always felt so out of reach. But here we are… fully funded!
Well, except for actually having a baby. But that’s another conversation for another day…
I’m so grateful. It’s an honor to be surrounded by such an incredible community. We seriously have the best support. And yeah, there are some people who have been absent, unsupportive, and silent. But these babies will grow to know who was supportive and who was there when we needed them, and I’m not talking about financially… I’m talking about emotionally and verbally. Some are there, some are not. But I’ve decided to not dwell on the absentees. The rest of you are amazing, and because of your encouragement and pushing us to endurance, our family is growing. Because of your generosity, our embryo adoption is fully funded and we didn’t need to tap into our line of credit. I’m so, so grateful.
Thank you, thank you.