Today I made my first phone call to someone on Capital Hill. I made three calls actually, one to Senator Saxby Chambliss, one to Senator Johnny Isaacson, and one to Representative Lynn Westmoreland. I don't know why, but I was really nervous about it. I called to express my desire to see the Family Act passed and to see the Adoption Tax Credit extended. I was sent to a voicemail by Senator Chambliss' office but I was able to speak to actual people from Senator Isaacson's and Representative Westmoreland's offices.
I shared with both of the men that I spoke to that my husband and I were one of the many couples that wanted desperately to have a family but do not have coverage for infertility through our insurance company and, like most couples of child bearing age, we aren't rich. I expressed how much these tax credits would mean to families like mine in that they would make our dream of having children a little bit closer in reach.
The man that I spoke to from Senator Isaacson's office had just gotten out of a meeting with Resolve when I called. I didn't get a definite answer on whether or not I could count on the Senator to support the Family Act (he said they wanted to look at the nuts and bolts of the bill before making a decision) but he did sound very positive towards it.
The man that I spoke to from Representative Westmoreland's office said that they supported both the Family Act and the Adoption Tax Credit. He told me that not only would these bills help build families, but they would also help stimulate the economy. If I have a baby I go to Babies'R'Us and buy products, I take my child to the doctor, and pay for child care. All of these things are good for the economy. I was so thrilled to hear this argument for the tax credits. I hadn't thought of it that way, but it's a darn good argument.
I felt so empowered after making those calls. Standing up for myself, my husband, and people like us felt amazing. We need to be our own advocates. We are many, and if we stand together we CAN make things happen. This is meaningful to me because infertility has made me feel so out of control of my life and my own body. It felt good to take even a little of that power back.