Category Archives: Donor Eggstravaganza

no. 513 – If Biology Didn’t Matter

. . . your fertile neighbors would stock up on BCP and adopt “all those babies that just need a home.”

. . . birth mothers would never mourn the decision to place their children for adoption.

. . . birth fathers would never have to be informed of an adoption intent.

. . . Open Adoption would become just a loose term used when someone’s under aged daughter’s baby is adopted by Aunt Jane.

. . . abortion wouldn’t be controversial.

. . . the discovery that your frozen embryos didn’t survive the thaw wouldn’t send you to your bed in tears.

. . . no one would care if left-over embryos were destroyed, used in medical research or adopted.

. . . you wouldn’t have to wonder if it’s worth $400 to store the frozen sperm of your cancer-surviving husband for just one more year.

. . . you wouldn’t budget to buy enough donor sperm to not only create one baby but to have enough to try for a sibling in the years to come.

. . . there wouldn’t be the heartbreaking decision made by couples to chose a child-free life after years of failed treatments.

. . . there would be no such thing like a site that spews such claptrap as third-party reproduction is nothing more than high tech “baby trade”.

. . . there would be no need for artificial reproductive medicine or its technology and those advancements would never be realized.

. . . you wouldn’t be here . . . if someone didn’t care about biology.

For many of us who have had to face failed treatments, third-party ART, or adoption, we must somehow be allowed to mourn the loss of that biological link without guilt; yet celebrate the creation of something completely unexpected and foreign and beautiful, in our own way.

Understand that Biology and it’s importance does not mean it has to be your own.

no. 503 – BeaUterus

The results of my saline HSG:

UterusWhen I relayed in a text message to Mr. DD that my doctor said my uterus was beautiful, he replied with the Beauterus.

Sure, an offhanded compliment, but I’ll take’em where I can get’em.

My donor is 31 and a veteran to the process. I really hope by the time we get to the stims that they won’t just try to get the minimum, which is four eggs per recipient. I’m greedy. I want 10, dammit!

I was also able to give my doctor and the nurse an up-close view of my hives, which had been dormant for the past couple of days. They were in full bloom today, especially in their favorite location: the backs of my thighs. Both women were visibly impressed when they lifted the sheet covering my legs.

Side note. I am so used to de-pantsing that I usually forget to take the sheet into the changing room and make a quick, sloppy mess of trying to arrange it modestly when I hit the stirrups. Has that ever happened to you?

Even better, I had one big hive on my lower lip (face, people). Yep, I get the bee-stung look without any needles.  It’s just too bad I can’t get the hives to evenly attack my upper lip as well so I can try on the Angelina look. Instead I look like this kid:

In unrelated news, I’m going extreme with my hair. Most of you have seen it at one time or another and you will note that it is blondish. I’m going dark with a panel of red. Not auburn. RED. It’s time to find that rock-n-roll girl that’s been packed away since…lord I don’t know when.

no. 502 – The Eagle Has Landed

In one of my former lives, I use to sell cars. Yes, I was one of those people with a perpetually cheesy smile on my face and a business card in my hand. You would drive up onto the lot and see a group of us clustered around the showroom looking out the window and guess what we would say when we’d see you show up? “Ducks on the pond!”

Ooooh, we were so covert.

Once you were in an office and negotiating a price, we would go to our Floor Manager for approval with an announcement, “Fish on!”

Then there were the moments when your loan application was pending approval from your bank, which we relayed quaintly, “Throw it on the wall and see if it sticks.”

Today, I got a phone call from the clinic. The duck is on the pond.

I start BCP as soon as I pick them up from the pharmacy and I have a saline hysterosalpingogram tomorrow morning to make sure my uterus is not harboring anything deemed clinically funky.

Final coordination is still weeks away, but I’m all giddy with excitement mixed with a sense of impending doom. Definitely the right mixture to make me jump and down and then puke in my trashcan.

no. 489 – Material Loss

It’s been a rough weekend. I think it’s the combination of many things that have been weighing on me that made me teeter between taking off the head of any person who dared glance at me to literally collapsing to the floor to cry.

I found out that I’m number ten on the waiting list at my clinic for a donor. You need to know that they get approximately one donor a month. One donor to match to two recipients. You do the math.

It’s CD17 and there’s nothing to indicate I am going to ovulate.

There were a couple of pregnancy announcements by some friends of ours.

We attended my husband’s 25th class reunion. You don’t realize how old you are until you see a room of your peers.

It was then this post by Jen about maternity clothes that tied up my guts and made it difficult for me to focus beyond my sadness to see much or any of the good that may have been around me.

Over a year ago I took every piece of maternity clothing I had and gave it to someone I knew pregnant with her first child. Maternity clothing is expensive and it can be hard for the average person to justify the cost for something that may only be worn 4-5 months.

I was one of those “average persons”. I remember shopping the first time for maternity clothes somewhere around four months pregnant with X. My sister accompanied me and was willing to give me a more than honest opinion of the items available. I would strap on the fake bump and laugh at the idea that I would ever be big enough to fill out any of the pieces.

I remember the funky maternity jeans with the flared bottoms that were just as hip as any non-maternity jeans and I wore them for almost every casual occasion. I remember the dupioni silk top in a deep red that I wore to a formal fundraiser with the black boot cut slacks with high heels when I was over 8 months pregnant. I remember the striped horizontal turtleneck sweater that I wore to my baby shower.

While I hated them all, I saved them…just in case.

I was so happy when I was able to retire them to the far reaches of my closet.

I was so happy that someone else would finally get some use out of them. I also thought in some cosmic way that my selflessness in letting someone wear those clothes would somehow grant me some immunity from all the bad luck we had been experiencing.

When I got pregnant with Wolf and we saw a heartbeat, I was worried about how I would ask for the clothes back as I hadn’t been clear as to whether I was loaning or giving her the clothes. I knew I would have to ask since she had just delivered her baby and nothing had been mentioned about returning the clothes.

My concern was for naught as I went on to miscarry Wolf at 8 weeks.

Now that I’ve had yet another miscarriage since then, I wonder if maybe she knows that I’ll never be pregnant again and therefore would have no need of them. They are probably long gone by now. I have no idea.

The very idea that I may never need those stupid clothes back, even though I KNOW I would end up getting all new stuff anyway, just breaks me.

I wonder if I hadn’t just kept those clothes, it would have told whoever it is controlling my destiny that I was serious about having another baby. Maybe by giving them up as well as all the baby clothes and furniture it was misunderstood as my giving up on the dream. For the first time in a long time I am really regretting those things not taking up space in my attic or basement. I’m scared that by giving those things away I gave away the hope and dreams I had for our future.

What if I fucked up? What if instead of promoting good karma, I did the opposite? It makes me nearly ill with grief to imagine it.

I know I can get new things and that I shouldn’t fret over something so ridiculous, but now I have nothing around me anymore to remind me of what we have been struggling so hard for. Shouldn’t I have kept something so that my desire wouldn’t appear disingenuous? If I really wanted another baby, shouldn’t I have a nursery ready to go? Shouldn’t I have a dresser full of baby clothes? Wouldn’t these be proof of my intentions and that we plan on doing everything we can to reach that point?

Right now, I am feeling more alone and helpless than I have in a long time. I haven’t written a post where I cried all the way through it in a long time.

It all feels so utterly futile.

no. 472 – The Silver Lining

Most of you have read the statistics: as many as one in five known pregnancies will end in a miscarriage and usually within the first trimester. With that said, the likelihood of a woman who has had one unexplained miscarriage going on to a subsequent healthy and term pregnancy is 60 – 70%, if not better.

After we lost Vivienne in 2004, that information was my silver lining in my dark cloud for over a year even with the troubles we were having getting pregnant. Eventually that silver lining received a spit-shine when we saw the RE for the first time and the genetic testing on both my husband and I confirmed that Vivienne’s trisomy was a fluke – not a gene passed on from either of us.

The embarrassing enthusiasm I wrote with when our beta numbers came in after the first IVF is painful even now, 18 months later, to think about. But that enthusiasm was fueled with the naiveté that comes with believing that statistically that particular IVF should have been my swan song.

When the beta didn’t double within 48 hours, that silver lining lost its sheen, scratched by disillusion and tarnished by bitter tears (if I was to wax poetic).

The bad news to which there is no good is that since my subsequent pregnancy to my first miscarriage ended in yet another miscarriage, statistics start tilting against me. Less than 5% of women have more than two miscarriages, and once a woman has two, her chances of having that healthy pregnancy start falling from that nice cushy 60 – 70% range.

Who could blame me then when I struggled to find some bit of happiness with my brief and odds-defying pregnancy with Wolf? When we found out that even that one was doomed, I blamed myself more than usual for not having optimism or faith and instead a premonition of what turned out to be the worst possible outcome: miscarriage number three.

Wolf threw me into the less than 1% of women who are jumbled into the three-or-more-concurrent-miscarriages basket. They (Researchers) don’t have information that outline specifically odds on the fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, tenth, or eleventh iscarriage. Three becomes the “magic” number. After that, it doesn’t really matter to ASRM if I’ve had three or thirteen.

The fear of getting pregnant again has finally outweighed the fear of not getting pregnant again. I’m trying hard to remember that using donor gamete/egg gets me a statistical reprieve because the number one cause of Early Pregnancy Loss (poor egg quality due to age and chromosomal defects) has been eliminated. Unfortunately, the little testing we’ve had (genetic analysis and clotting disorders) have not indicated what our…excuse me…what my problem is. The tests have only ruled out what it is not.

So here I sit with a rather misshapen cloud, rimmed with tarnished and dented silver, and imagining it in its former glory. I try not to get too close for fear of seeing myself reflected back in the few remaining spots not marred by anger, depression and reality.

Since we don’t have any known medical reason for my miscarriages, I cannot safely bring myself to hope again that donor egg will be the answer to our presently unanswered prayers. I will try to polish up that silver lining again but it won’t be with the enthusiasm I had before. This seems like a good place to end with a riddle: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” What happens when I let a pregnancy fool me for the fifth time?

no. 462 – Kissing My Biology Good-Bye

I had to take 6 10mg prednisone tablets last night for my hives treatment. I got number three down before gagging. I would be willing to pay twice as much for each of those little fuckers (a whopping $ 0.10) if they would just coat them. A whole glass of milk and a couple of Riesens candy helped chase the bitterness from my tongue. And I hate milk.

I signed the paperwork today to have my medical records removed from Dr. Holierthanthou’s office and transferred to another. I wonder if I’ll have to make part of my initial H&P the request that all talk of God and any association to him be kept limited to phrases that would be considered taking his name in vain?

With that I do feel I owe an apology to a few of you who I know have placed a lot of faith in God and his plans for you. I do not wish to show any disrespect to you as individuals. It’s just…it’s not what I want or need to hear right now. It may never be.

Let’s talk about something less controversial: donor egg.

Several of you have suggested giving up some of yours for the cause and asked me questions regarding the hows and whatfors. Before I address those questions, which I asked my clinic’s nurse today since it’s officially Day 1! Whoohoo! (Fuck.), I’ll give you just a little more info on my clinic’s protocol up front.

Our clinic actually plans for two recipients to one donor to help defray the costs. They only do fresh transfers so I can’t go through the glamour shots of those post-teen beauties and pick the one who best resembles me. Which is good, because how do you possibly find another face as beautiful and as timeless as mine?

The donors are selected for the recipients that have similar characteristics, which is used in the very broadest of terms. In my case they are looking for a female of average height, average weight and caucasian. That’s it.

That, and women with no prior fertility issues.

So for those of you who thought about offering up your ovaries, here’s the poop on the eggs:

  • You would have to be a patient at my clinic throughout the entire process. The cycle could not be started somewhere else and then retrieved here.
  • No female factor.
  • Your eggs would not be used just by me.
  • My wait could be six months, more or less to be matched with a donor.

It seems like there were other questions that I fielded but for the life of me I can’t think of anything else outside of this scope. If I didn’t answer your question, feel free to ask in comments or email me.

Speaking of which, I have a new email address: dd_tko at yahoo dot com. I couldn’t take typing in “ddknockedup” one more time without feeling mocked by my own failures.

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I didn’t have a title for this post until I got done writing it. After I typed it in, I looked at it and started crying.

no. 460 – Moving On in a Manic-Kind-of-Way

I’m feeling better, relatively speaking. My ass is a little sore from kicking myself for doing something no infertile woman who has a history of miscarriages should do, and that was calculating the due date. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. February 8, 2008, in case you were wondering.

Speaking of miscarriages, to clarify, this was my fourth. Sorry for the confusion. I have the category for fifth pregnancy as I am giving credit to that time when I was fertile, had a normal pregnancy and gave birth to my son, X. Can you believe that when I started blogging he was three? He’s now five. How time flies when you’re having spontaneous abortions. A rather gruesome thought, no?

When I talked to Dr. Blinksalot on Tuesday, she said that she and all of the staff were quite upset by this sad turn of events. I’ve become the office underdog. I wish I could say that it would boost my rank from the bottom to closer to the top of the donor egg list.

I have to admit that I really thought karma was on our side this time, as I know you did, too. Mr. DD’s count was back up. I had several good follicles. What you probably didn’t know is that we had used up all of our injectables, even the PIO. Surely that should have been a sign that we would need no more? I guess that was karma’s way of not only administering a judo chop to the side of my head but giving me an atomic wedgie. I won’t need much for a donor egg cycle, either.

Speaking of such, I wondered how easy it would be to find information on becoming an egg donor so of course I googled “become an egg donor” and some of the stuff I found gave me the huzz, quite frankly. This site in particular because of their “glamour shots” of donors in combination with the ages. 20, 21, 22? As nice as I’m sure their eggs are, I kind of like the policy my clinic follows and that is they want their donors to have already had “normal” children. These 20-somethings are still children, in my opinion. I’m old enough to be their mother. Hmmm, now there’s a cheery thought.

Many of you offered a hand in helping me if there was anything I needed. I thought of something some of you might actually be able to do. If you know someone who may qualify as an egg donor with our clinic (late 20’s, early 30’s, have completed their family, and an understanding that becoming an egg donor will not pay the kids’ college tuition, and live in either Nebraska or Iowa) maybe you can suggest they check out this site for more details. My clinic is the first one (hint, hint).

Yes, I am pandering for eggs. I will what is in my powers to do.

Segway of sorts. Have you all seen this??! My husband thought we should get one and use it. I said we’ve already paid hundreds and hundreds of dollars to know that my FSH is crap, and his motility is crap, so why would I pay another $100 to confirm that? Especially since it’s all irrelevant as we move on to Plan K, Subsection 42, Paragraph 3 that theoretically eliminates the crap? I did however, share the website with someone I know trying to get pregnant…

Before I go, I want to thank Mel and her husband for sending us flowers when you heard of our recent loss. I had them delivered to me at work. The lilies fill the hallway with their heavy, summer scent.