I am a walking home inspection report

Anyone who has ever bought a home knows all about the dreaded home inspection process. You have found this wonderful home that’s not just perfect for you, it’s perfect for your future you, your future mini yous, and the dogs and cats and barbeques you just know you’ll all have together one day in the yard that will surely be 72 and sunny all year round.

Amazingly, you and the sellers even agree on a sales price and terms of the sale. And so aside from the whole mortgage thing the only big step left is the home inspection. Yeah, you figure there’s likely one or two things wrong with the house – a wall that needs to be reinforced or a little roof damage here and there. But these are things that can be fixed relatively easily.

And then, you get the home inspection report. It’s 50 pages. Filled with problem upon problem upon problem involving things you don’t understand, things you can’t pronounce, and things you never even knew were supposed to be part of a house. This one perfect house is so very secretly riddled with problems, you wonder how on earth anyone has ever even managed to buy a house before.

Well, after my long-awaited appointment with Dr. Kwak-Kim in Chicago, that home inspection report is me.

To back up a bit, I had been awaiting my appointment in Chicago for decades (9 weeks). So when it finally arrived, I was so excited I didn’t even think to worry about the things she would find. I was like a kid on Christmas. A kid who just couldn’t wait to have a transvaginal sonogram while having 22 vials of blood drawn from their arm. It was magical.

The 4-hour appointment involved a series of high tech ultrasounds measuring things like blood flow and uterine lining, collection of blood for 27 different lab tests, a thyroid ultrasound, a complete physical examination and a one-hour consultation with Dr. Kwak-Kim.

The majority of the findings would be revealed to us three weeks later, during a follow-up call with Dr. KK. But on the day of the exam, she open my eyes to a couple of things. One, I have PCOS. This shocked the hell out of me seeing as I’ve been ovulating monthly and neither my RE or his NP had found cysts in earlier ultrasounds. Second, I need to gain weight. What I thought was “healthy” is apparently unhealthy for pregnancy, since a healthy BMI is 19 – 25 and my BMI is 18. Third, balancing all the above is going to be a challenge. I’ll need to limit my carbs to help manage the PCOS and somehow gain 5-10 lbs in the process.

That was just the start. Three weeks later, we had our phone consult with Dr. KK, during which all the hidden cracks in the foundation and wiring hazards were revealed. In additions to PCOS, I have:

Hypothyroidism*

Anti-Nuclear antibodies

Anti-phospholipid antibodies*

Natural Killer Cells with high toxicity

Elevated TH1 Helper Cells (pro-inflammatory)

Three gene mutations that cause blood clotting (Factor I, Factor XIII, PAI1)

Elevated homocysteine levels

*These two tests were run previously by my RE and deemed “normal”

So right now, I am on Levothyroxin for my thyroid, Metformin for PCOS, Baby Aspirin and Vitamin E supplements for blood clotting, Folgard because of my homocysteine levels, And vitamin D3 for…well I’m not sure, exactly but why not. That’s in addition to all the supplements The Dragon Lady has me on. I have become a walking pill box.

The plan is that I’ll continue on these meds for 4 weeks, then have another round of blood work. If it looks like the meds and dosing are working, I’ll then add daily heparin injections for blood clotting, Prednisone to lessen the inflammation and IVIG infusions during a planned natural conception cycle.

The kicker? Like most people’s insurance, mine will not cover IVIG. And at more than two thousand dollars a pop, it would need to be administered before ovulation and then every two weeks after a positive pregnancy test for the length of a pregnancy. In addition to the logistics of taking at least 3 hours off work every two weeks to secretly receive infusions, the reality of actually paying out of pocket for IVIG seems unfathomable. Then I start wondering, what happens if it takes 3 months of infusions before we actually even get pregnant?

We’re just not sure IVIG is going to be a realistic option for us.

And it makes me feel like the home inspector just told us the new roof that’s needed is going to cost more than the house itself. Do we do everything else to patch it up as best we can and hope it holds all the same?

7 thoughts on “I am a walking home inspection report

  1. Ugh, what a hit, especially after your RE said those tests came back normal. My dad has Anti-phospholipid antibodies, so if you want to talk to someone who’s been dealing with them for over a decade, I can send you his contact information. Of course he hasn’t been dealing with them in a reproductive way, but he might have some information for you.

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  2. I feel like we are kindred spirits. I happened upon your blog from one of the many ttc groups I’m a member of on Facebook. Your amazing personality shows through your posts, and all I could think was “god, I wish I could have a glass or (bottle) of wine with this woman. ” Your analogy is spot on; as tragic as it is. I’m not going to say anything in attempt to show how I feel for you and your inspection, because nothing ever comforts me. just know, that now you know what your battling and can come up with some war strategies. I’m still too scared to know for myself how my home will hold up. my analogy is every month I build a sandcastle, I work hard on it, fretting over every detail, making sure I use the best sand and tools. Just to have it get washed away. The second it gets washed away, I build it again. Some day I feel the sand will diminish. Sorry for the ramble. Thank you for your amazing and witty posts- I find solidarity in them. Thank you, Jessica

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    1. That is another perfect analogy. Love it. And I also love wine. A lot. If you ever happen to be around Kansas City, let me know. My analogies get better the more I drink.

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  3. I know when we went to Dr. Braverman, the list of issues was somewhat scary and our list wasn’t nearly as long as yours. But for us, more then anything, it was nice to know what we were up against. Having a reason, or reason(s) was so important to us to be able to figure out our next steps. Our local RE’s kept saying it was unexplained and so to get an answer meant the world to me/us.
    Also, I totally hear you about the cost of IVIG – we simply couldn’t afford it. As out of country patients we would also have had to pay international travel costs on top of the drug costs – it was just too much.
    Anyways, I hope you can find a way forward without IVIG!!!

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