And of course she's probably getting a kickback from CBR, as it's the only company I had memorized myself from the mass amounts of marketing they do. If you've been pregnant in the U.S., chances are you've held their pamphlet in your hand at least once. Or a bag they print to hold your pregnancy magazines and swag from your OB's office. You know the little girl staring down at her belly button on the white and purple brochure. I am not endorsing them. As a matter of fact, we almost certainly will not use them ever because there are other, cheaper companies that are also accredited and reputable. Just mentioning them because they attack you with their brochures.
Now, I know that other than the possible kickback my OB might get from endorsing them, she also is looking out for our well-being and the well-being of this new baby. She is endorsing anything under the sun that might give us a fighting chance if we do end up a very small statistic again. But also, she likely feels an obligation to endorse something that could mean we don't lose another baby. She feels as though her success as an OB with our case of loss and hopefully life again is contingent on her giving us all the options and encouraging we do everything in our willpower (and pocketbook) to see that things pan out differently. She also wants the success of a healthy baby and wants to ensure that happens because she is a good person.
While pregnant with Andrew, we were bombarded by the blood banking companies and their mass amounts of paraphernalia. It turns out that no matter what, banking cord blood was out of the question-- obviously. But if we had a normal birth with a live baby as the outcome? We would've probably declined the opportunity. Why? Because it's so stinking rare to be in that tiny, itty-bitty percent of people who actually need the cord blood ever. This technology is relatively new anyway and as I've written before, we
are were the minimalists. Who needs a video baby monitor, let alone to bank cord blood for something so statistically rare anyway?
Yeah, well now we're the statistic. We weren't convinced in all our research that cord blood was the way to go anyway-- as you can read all over the web and in print that cord blood may not even help your child even if they were in need of it. That certain races don't benefit as frequently as others in the use of their cord blood. That it will likely be a huge waste of money.
And here we are now. We have lost our firstborn and his entire life. While it had nothing to do with our decision against cord blood before (like I said, didn't matter anyway), it sure did place us in a minority. A tiny statistic that doesn't happen to over 99% of people. But it happened to us. So this whole cord blood talk has found new meaning to us. I'll tell you now that we are almost certain to go for it this go-around. We wouldn't want that (still) slim chance of cord blood being helpful to inhibit this child from having a full life that continues on way past we are in our graves. We don't want the prospect of $3,000 (give or take) to be the reason our child cannot have critical stem cell research if needed. I guess that opens up our political views on that subject a bit. Try convincing a couple who lost a child not to believe in stem cell research. I scoff.
I've been reading a blog over the years of a woman whose son has cerebral palsy. He had a stroke at birth-- but his family saved the cord blood. They're thankful they did, because stem cell research may be the key that helps their child speak more clearly and live a more "normal" life.
Advantages that I can see:
- potential life-saving possibilities
- potential sibling support
- stem cell research leading to better quality of life and/or saving life
- cost (upfront and annual)
When you've lost it all, you hardly want to let something so trivial as a few thousand dollars prevent you from having the best care and chance to survive for future babies. I'm not sure we'd be able to forgive ourselves if this baby was born and needed the blood at some point and we didn't based on cost. Plus, who needs new furniture anyway? Someday we're all going to die and leave it all behind. Perhaps though... it could mean our children will live a little longer or enjoy life more fully.
So here's where I open this to you... if you're not comfortable sounding off by name, please do so anonymously. We'd love to hear your opinion on the matter. Did you bank cord blood? This question is open to all and not just baby loss parents. Would you bank it again? Any stories to tell or companies you've researched or recommend? Do you still disagree completely with the process and want to sound off on that? This might also help fellow pregnant mothers/fathers who are interested or considering the same thing.