Saturday, April 12, 2008

News from the egg donor front

So this last fortnight has been a wave of emotions for me... and I suspect that adjusting to the birth control pills only added spice to the experience.

First off we decided to take a wild leap and leave our wonderful apartment for a rental in the outskirts of town. Country living sounds great, but its been ages since I've actually done it (and more importantly the added driving requirements). This led to some stomach wringing anxiety, excitement, and lots of anticipation! I was practically vibrating as I flung myself into finalizing the move.

More importantly, movement has happened on the whole egg donor front. After I heard my best friend's news, I found myself at my another friend's house – the one who offered to donate awhile ago. We talk about lots of things, and I really appreciate that she is letting our friendship continue to evolve irrespective of her amazing offer. Over tea, I mentioned mybest friend's pregnancy and how I was surprised on how mellow I felt about it.

The next day I received a wonderful email from mydonorating inclined friend sharing all sorts of information that I was planning to ask her about as soon as I had made some headway through the grieving process over my failing ovaries. She volunteered information regarding her own fertility and medical history and other details that she felt that she would want to know herself if she was considering an older egg donor.

That afternoon I also received a letter from my fertility doctor in response to a letter I had sent only a few days prior saying that I had a donation offer. The letter outlined next steps and made it easy to respond to my friend's email.

Two days later while I was off at a conference, unbeknownst to me, my friend was having her FSH levels tested. In the middle of a brutal meeting, I got a text message from her sharing the results... I have never been so excited by a single digit number in my life. At 39 her FSH was lower than mine had ever been in my twenties! I was twitching with nerves at that point. Suddenly all of this no longer seemed theoretical. I could actually try to conceive. I could be a parent in the next year even! And boy oh boy do I need to get my head sorted about how I felt about the emotional aspects of egg donation.

In 72 hours I had gone from a holding pattern with no obvious transition point to actually planning doctor appointments with my friend!

I've often been told not to make any major decisions whilst grieving...

In fact several years ago, I choose not to switch jobs once because of this (a dear dear friend had died and I decided that I 'ought' to wait to leave my job until I was in a 'better' place griefwise...), a decision that felt wrong at the time and continued to feel wrong for years later.

I promised myself that I would never blindly follow that advise again. I'm starting by embracing the upcoming move to the countryside--even if it comes at a time where I am desiring stability and safety as my world seems to churn under foot.

Now I am also heading down the egg donor path (keeping a backdoor open for now) with as much confidence as I can given how overwhelming, exciting, hopefully, terrifying, and unknown as it is.

following directions...

So I've been following directions with the whole birth control thing. Taking the pill each and every morning around 7:30. Keeping track of any side effects.

And this time around some things are better:
  • sex drive has not been completely squashed - minus the initial emotional elements related the knowing that as shot as my ovaries are, that on the pill there really is no chance of any fertile outcomes for the time being

But I must say I am not impressed with the following:

  • spotting each and every day

  • cramps each and every day
  • breast tenderness that makes me vigilantly guard against any bumps, brushes, or most of my tops

  • anxiety that is hard to calm myself through

  • occasionally searing pains when my stomach tightens

This isn't anything I should be worried about, is it? Particularly the last one.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Yeah!!!! Nay...

Today my best friend called. I knew she was calling to tell me she was pregnant. The last 7 days I've just had this sense. I guess others did too, because her dad told her to take pregnancy test (she was in need of some pain meds for an injury).

I was surprised at my reaction -- I was completely ecstatic. I put on happy music and wrote her a card. I even tracked down her new address in my vast inbox. She may come visit me so that we can share the experience a bit in person together. She asked me about whether anything had happened with my local friend who offered to donate. Turns out that yes, today in fact I sent a letter to the clinic today asking about whether its a possibility.

And mostly I was just so relieved that she is not going to have to go through what I am going through. And that she is still the most wonderful friend and will support me in my journey.
She was convinced that it would take her at least a year to get pregnant. To her credit, several teachers at her school are going through treatments – My friend is observant and generous and helps cover things discretely if people need to pop out for a minute. Her sister in law has been dealing with this for years. My friend is not taking this pregnancy for granted.

I was convinced it would take her a month. She asked why... well this is is a woman who's cycle is SO regular and powerful, that MY cycle always synced up with her whenever I spent more than a week around her. Even last year when I was home for the holidays, with my FSH was skyrocking and my mood was hitting bottom having just learned my diagnosis, my period arrived --- just as the supplies for hers appeared on her bathroom sink. Skip progesterone to induce a period... my friend has always had just as much power over me.

Somehow this lead to some less than brilliant logic that if she is capable of controlling my cycle... well perhaps I could somehow magically be pregnant. Really I just needed any excuse to pee on the only remaining stick left in my house before we shift to a new apartment later this month. One line. No surprise. But what was different was how calm I was. I just chucked it in the trash. It was the only time my husband has ever watched me use a pee stick. He was a bit taken back that I didn't wait longer, stare more closely, or talk back to the stick more. I just shrugged realizing that mostly I just wanted some small way to be a sister-in-arms with my best friend. I may never get to directly experience what she is now experiencing, but damn it I can aim and pee on a 1 cm stick with the best of them!